Concordia is a city in Cloud County, Kansas The population was 5,714 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Cloud County. Concordia is located on Highway 81 quite near the Republican River. Boston Corbett, Charles Joseph Chaput, Napoleon Bonaparte Brown, Frank Carlson, Ernie Quigley, and Shanele Stires are all claimed as natives by Concordia.


Concordia holds the unique distinction of being elected the county seat before the town was created. December 1869 was the first election for the county seat with Concordia, Clyde and the now defunct town Sibley. Without a clear majority, a second election was held between Concordia and Sibley on January 4, 1870. Concordia was declared the winner over Sibley 165 votes to 129.

It was over a year later when Concordia officially became a town when the Republican Land District Office opened on January 16, 1871. The Concordia Land Office continued until February 28, 1889 when it was consolidated with the land office in Topeka, Kansas. Also in 1871, Concordia elected its first mayor, R. E. Allen. Under his leadership, Concordia was officially incorporated as a third class city under Kansas law in August 1872.

Concordia was visited in its early years by many traveling shows. As early as 1876 various traveling entertainers including Wild Bill Hickock, Buffalo Bill Cody, Ringling Brothers, and others came to Concordia. In 1892, the Ringling train wrecked east of the town killing two men and twenty horses, but the show played the next day to a crowd of 4,000.

Early 1900's
Carrie Nation visited Concordia in the early 1900s. Records are mixed, but the date is placed between 1908 and 1910. The Concordia Blade newspaper (now the Concordia Blade-Empire) reported:

"Carrie Nation is in town. That wonderfully brave little woman who started the crusade against Kansas saloons lectured at the M.E. Church this afternoon, and will talk again tonight at the courthouse. While in this city she is the guest of Mrs. George Mohr."

The Brown Grand Theatre
In November of 1905, Concordia resident Colonel Napoleon Bonaparte Brown announced to the townspeople his plans to build a fully outfitted opera house for Concordia. Renowned Kansas City theatre architect Carl Boiler was hired to prepare the design drawings and the blueprints.
Today, the Brown Grand Theatre provides a unique experience for all who visit. Restored to its original 1907 splendor, the 650 seat Brown Grand Theatre now serves as a tourist attraction and performing arts / community center for Concordia and North Central Kansas.

Cloud County Historical Museum
The Museum preserves and exhibits objects and documents of historical items representing early-day Kansas. It is housed in the former 1908 Andrew Carnegie Library building and a large newer annex. The treasures of Cloud County, Kansas are exhibited for your viewing - nature, radio, railroads, quilts, photography, toys, vintage clothing and furniture, musical instruments, fossils, tools, and stained glass.
Records are on display of the military Prisoner of War Camp, churches, organizations, schools, and businesses. Displays of glass cutting, rare coins and books, rock and gem shop, micro-film of county newspapers and many others too numerous to list.

Large displays in the annex include the "must see" 1908 Lincoln-Page Airplane, an 1898 Holsman belt driven horseless carriage, and a 1915 Model T Ford.

Nazareth Motherhouse
The Nazareth Convent and Academy is the official Motherhouse and Home for the 260 Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia. It was built in 1903 and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

The sisters quickly gained a fine reputation for the education of young women at Nazareth, giving them a sound academic program as well as instruction in the fine arts, music, French and the social graces. In 1903, the Sisters of St. Joseph entered the health care field in Concordia with the establishment of the St. Joseph Hospital on the original site after the new Nazareth Motherhouse was built at its present location.

Camp Concordia
During World War II, a German prisoner of war camp was maintained a few miles north of Concordia. The original guard house remains and has been restored.

Stained Glass Tour
Concordia claims the title "The Stained Glass Capital of Kansas" and a local tour has been established. Although common in many houses of worship, many private residences also have quality stained glass installed and available for viewing on the tour.

Small Game Hunting
Small game hunting (particularly game birds such as pheasant, quail, and dove) is an inviting experience and attracts a large number of people from all over the world. Opening Day of hunting season is an especially active day for Concordia as it brings a large number of visitors and a boost to the local economy.

The city of Concordia has complementary overnight camping available at Airport Park, one of several city parks. Airport Park is located at the Blosser Municipal Airport (see below).

Concordia is the host of Blosser Municipal Airport (CNK). Blosser Municipal Airport is publicly owned by the City of Concordia. The National Weather Service and the Kansas National Guard maintain facilities at this location.

Radio Stations KNCK (1390 AM) and KCKS (94.9 FM) operate from the same broadcasting facility in Concordia and are privately owned. Radio Station KVCO (88.3 FM) operate as a broadcast journalism project by Cloud County Community College in Concordia. KVCO is publicly owned and operated by the school.

The Concordia Blade-Empire is the official county newspaper and publishes its edition six days a week from its location in Concordia.

Elementary and Secondary Education
The city maintains an active elementary and secondary school district, USD 333. Public Elementary Education for grades K-6 are completed in the district across several buildings. Public secondary education for grades 7-12 is completed at Concordia Junior-Senior High School. Class sizes typically range between 80 to 120 students.

The school district also runs the Cloud County Alternative High School, primarily for area non-traditional students. Students can earn their diploma online or through computer-based classes. Enrollment is very small, typically graduating less than ten students each year.

The Catholic Church in Concordia operated Notre Dame High School a private Catholic High School from 1962 to 1969. It remained open as a catholic grade school until 1971, when the local district purchased the property and has used it for fifth and sixth grades.

Post-Secondary Education
Concordia is the location of Cloud County Community College, a two-year junior college.

Public Library
Concordia is home to the Frank Carlson Library, a public library named for former Kansas governor Frank Carlson.

Notable residents (past and present)
Amber Campbell, recipient of National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Award and DNA/Paleopathology researcher

Boston Corbett, Union American Civil War soldier, famous for shooting John Wilkes Booth, the man who assassinated Abraham Lincoln

Charles Blosser, local businessman and namesake of Blosser Municipal Airport in Concordia

Most Reverend Charles Joseph Chaput, OFM Cap, archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Denver, Colorado

Napoleon Bonaparte Brown, local businessman and philanthropist, namesake of the Brown Grand Theatre in Concordia

Frank Carlson, Former Congressman, Senator, and Governor of the State of Kansas

Keith Christenesn Former NFL Football Player New Orleans Saints

Larry Hartshorn Former NFL Football Player Chicago Cardinals

Michael Gardner, Collegiate Head Football Coach at Tabor College and later at Malone College

Robert E. Pearson, movie director

Ernie Quigley, noted both as a basketball referee and as an umpire in Major League Baseball

Shanele Stires, Former WNBA basketball player Minnesota Lynx and college basketball coach

Concordia is located at 39°34'9N, 97°39'30W (39.569035, -97.658398) and is at an elevation of 1,369 feet. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 8.8 km² (3.4 mi²), all land.

As of the census of 2000, there were 5,714 people, 2,310 households, and 1,399 families residing in the city. The population density was 652.7/km² (1,689.0/mi²). There were 2,671 housing units at an average density of 305.1/km² (789.5/mi²). The racial makeup of the city was 97.90% White, 0.58% African American, 0.25% Native American, 0.39% Asian, 0.14% from other races, and 0.75% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.74% of the population.

There were 2,310 households out of which 26.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.3% were married couples living together, 8.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.4% were non-families. 33.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.24 and the average family size was 2.88.

In the city the population was spread out with 21.3% under the age of 18, 13.5% from 18 to 24, 21.9% from 25 to 44, 19.9% from 45 to 64, and 23.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 83.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 79.0 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $31,398, and the median income for a family was $40,389. Males had a median income of $27,764 versus $20,885 for females. The per capita income for the city was $17,019. About 7.1% of families and 12.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.3% of those under age 18 and 10.1% of those age 65 or over.

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