History of Phillipsburg

A Brief History of Phillipsburg

Phillipsburg, the county seat of Phillips (PL) County, is located at the intersection of U.S. Highway 36 and U.S. Highway 183. Phillipsburg was named for politician and Civil War colonel William A. Phillips. Phillips County was named for another William Phillips, a Free-State supporter who was murdered September 1, 1856.

In the Spring of 1873, the Army sent word from Fort Hays that an attack by Apaches was imminent. Phillipsburg's Fort Bissell was hastily built but it was never needed. Old Fort Bissell, now located in the Phillipsburg City Park, offers a visit to a frontier community.

Read more about the History of Early Phillipsburg.

County Seat

Phillipsburg became the first county seat of Phillips County, July 26, 1872 by action of the Governor, who appointed the first County officers.

Excerpt from Phillipsburg Phillips County Centennial 1872-1972 Book

Phillipsburg was formed by a group of men from Doniphan County, Kansas, not for the purpose of speculation as to financial gains but with a desire to build a town for themselves to live and become a part of.

They applied for and secured a patent to the property which was to become the town site. The patent ran: To John S. Shurtz, as Probate Judge, as trustee in trust for the several use and benefit of the occupants of the town site of Phillipsburg according to their respective interests by virtue of the act of 2nd March, 1867, entitled an "Act for the relief of the inhabitants of cities and town upon the public lands, which covered SW 1/4 Sec. 26, Township 3, Range 18, West 6th P.M." In turn John S. Shurtz, as probate judge, issued probate judges deeds to the various prospective builders in large tracts.