Summary Of Newton
But for the A.T. & S.F.R.R., running to and stopping for a short time on Sec. 17, township 23, range 1, east, seventy four miles west of Emporia, no set of extravagant speculators would ever have thought of laying out a town where Newton now stands. But such is the power of railroads, that far out upon a sandy upland soil, and that rather thin, ten miles from a stick of timber even large enough for a switch, quite a lively town of several hundred people and upwards of fifty houses closely compact; and some quite respectable buildings, full of all sorts of wares and merchantables, looms up, even in advance of the cars. The location is rather sightly. The great cattle trail and Sand creek, with its channel cut out in the bald and level prairie, with nothing to mark it but the body of drifted sand, which the eye discovers simultaneously with the water as you reach the banks, the broad prairie as far as human ken can reach dotted here and there with the emigrants’ houses, and a single spot of timber ten miles to the south west, reminding you of an oasis in the desert, is all the scenery of Newton.
The growth of grass is varied and uneven. Some buffalo wallows and other irregularities on the surface, indicate that the prairie dogs, owls, rattlesnakes, and kiotas may have held the unrivaled sway and here dwelt in towns not many years since.
The population is emphatically mixed. Representatives from the most of the States are among the more permanent inhabitants, while the Texas drover drops in for “refreshments” as the ever flowing stream of bony horses are passing on or grazing for the season around the village, awaiting sale or shipment. The veritable Mexican “greaser” and Mexican cart with slight improvements on the old Spanish pattern of two hundred years ago, add to the novelties of the place. The faces once familiar in Emporia, Sebastian Hepler, Clapp, and others are among the citizens of this new town. After all that has been said about the wickedness of the place, Newton is not without its religious privileges and advantages. Last Sabbath on a few hours notice, some ninety or a hundred person were gathered into a half finished store room and listened attentively and with becoming appreciation to the Gospel. Throughout the day the place was quiet and orderly.
Such is Newton as it now stands and prospectively, the result of brain and muscle, operating and experimenting for a few weeks upon the naked prairie and the circumstances and advantages of this past age, at present a live and stirring place, destined to be quite a railroad town not many days hence.
Two fine wells on the main street furnish an abundance of excellent water; and indications of coal have been discovered near by. R.M.O. The Emporia News, Emporia, Kansas. July 7, 1871. Page 1.