• 1882-Natural gas was discovered near Paola. Kansas Oil and Mining Company was formed
    and made borings on the farm of A. Westfall 7 miles east of Paola “Gas was found of
    sufficient quantities to light a city of one million people.”

  • March 3, 1886-“Paola was lighted with Gas” The pipeline was completed from the Westfall
    farm to the square and a grand illumination was held.

  • February 4, 1887-“The city council held a meeting Friday night and among other important
    matters attended to was one instructing the light committee to purchase 50 lamps to be
    placed on the main thoroughfares, at the cost of $8.75 apiece, said lamps will be
    illuminated by natural gas. This is what we have waited for, for sometime and we are glad
    the improvement will be made. It speaks well for the enterprise and push of Paola and is a
    move in the right direction.”

  • March 18, 1887-“Natural gas is Paola’s Mascot.”

  • April 15, 1887-“T. S. McLachlin adapts a plan for using natural gas as fuel at the Roller Mill,
    the first mill west of the Mississippi to use natural gas as fuel.”

  • April 22, 1887-“Paola has the cheapest fuel in Kansas. Natural gas is superior to anything
    for convenience and cheapness, and we have it in immense volume, sufficient to supply all
    the manufactories that can crowd into the county. We earnestly invite inspection and

  • April 29, 1887-“A street car line will be built from the Gulf depot to the east limits of the
    purchase, a boulevard established throughout its entire length.”

  • May 6, 1887-“The abandoned well in the Boon Field still remains a wonder. The well is full
    of mud and water and the gas flow is so strong as to cause the water to flow out at the
    top of the pipe, which is ten feet above the surface and when the gas is ignited it will blaze
    at least forty feet high.”

  • May 6, 1887-“Paola has seven hotels, seven churches, gas street lamps, seven miles of
    water mains, and sixty hydrants.”

  • May 13, 1887-“A GUSHER- The Paola Gas Company strikes a phenomenal supply of
    natural gas in the Boon Field. The most remarkable flow of natural gas ever found in the
    west was struck in well No. 2 in the Boon Field.”

  • May 20, 1887-“Paola in known as the great gas center of the west. Our friends up at the
    Gate City are realizing the fact Paola is a good substantial place in which to invest capital.”

  • May 27, 1887-“The Paola Gas Company furnishes their gas to Paola and run it seven miles
    into town. They have the whole town lighted with it, and now furnish two hundred stoves
    in the city with fuel, and also a large flouring mill, which is supplied by six half inch burners.
    The capacity of this mill is one hundred barrels of flour a day. This Paola business seems to
    be one of the most wonderful achievements made with natural gas west of the Mississippi
    River.”- Missouri & Kansas Farmer

  • May 30, 1887-Quote: What?! A City of 10,000; Yes, Paola will be a city of 10,000 in less
    than five years!”

  • June 20, 1887-“Bond elections for the Paola Glass Company passes with virtually no
    opposition. Building to commence immediately.”

  • June 24, 1887-“NATURAL GAS JUBILEE: Grand preparations being made to celebrate on
    Tuesday, June 28, 1887. The first natural gas celebration ever held in the west will take
    place in Paola next week.”

  • June 24, 1887-“Natural gas arches will be built across the four corners of the square,
    which will be illuminated with natural gas.”

  • June 24, 1887-“The Paola Gas Company makes a liberal offer to manufactories that
    cannot fail of good results. They will give natural gas free for one year to any
    manufactories locating in Paola that will employee one hundred hands.”

  • June 28, 1887-Paola celebrated its first Natural Gas Jubilee. Excursion trains brought
    nearly 2,000 people to town to witness the wonders of natural gas by visiting the Boon
    gas wells just east of town, attending an auction of new town lots, feasting on a free lunch
    provided by the townspeople, and enjoying an evening “grand illumination” of gas street
    lights, specially-built gas arches and home displays, like the one of S. D. Condon.. the gas
    was attached to a yard sprinkler by a rubber hose, and when it was ignited there
    appeared nests of small blazes which were beautiful and attractive.

  • July 8, 1887-“A Grand celebration was given in Paola last Tuesday. It was a general
    jollification of the grand achievement that has been accomplished in the city with natural
    gas. The streets were greatly illuminated and the great day was one that will remain in
    history as the acme of a great demonstration. Paola has many enterprising and wealthy
    citizens and she is bound to build up.”- LaCygne Leader.

  • June 25, 2005-The Citizens of Paola will again celebrate a Natural Gas Jubilee as part of
    its four Sesquicentennial events. The one-day festival, located on Paola’s Historic Park
    Square, will focus on the events surrounding the natural gas fever of 1887, including re-
    enactment of the town tour through free carriage rides, visiting dignitaries, 500 free box
    lunches, and a walking tour of displays that tell the story of

  • Paola’s Natural Gas heritage from 1882-1887. The day concludes with a free performance
    by the 35th Military Band, also celebrating their 150th year of National Guard Service,
    dressed in military uniforms ranging from the Civil War to Iraqi Freedom and playing music
    and sharing love letters from the same period. Additional highlights include a display of
    early gas artifacts (courtesy of Kansas Gas Service) held at the Miami County Historical
    Museum, tours of the Washburn designed 1898 Miami County Courthouse, a display at the
    Sheriff’s Office of 150 Years of Miami County Law Enforcement, and including period
    demonstrators and vendors.
Hannes Poetter Design and Sponsorship - all rights reserved
Miami County Historical Museum - 12 E. Peoria, - Paola, KS 66071 Phone: 913-294-4940
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