Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Rydal, Kansas - a dead town in Republic County

Building the overpass at Rydal in the early 1950s.

Then, in 1950, U.S. 36 highway was built through Scandia township and a new overpass was constructed over the railroad tracks at Rydal. A large park was built for tourists just east of Rydal on the highway.
But the hustle and bustle of the little town would soon come to an end. According to the June 5, 1952 edition of the Telescope, a fire broke out that year at the elevator.

Mrs. Amos J. Dickerman, Rydal, postmistress, gave the first alarm. "I was wakened by a crash like "thunder, and looked out the window. When I saw the sky was clear, I looked to see if a car had wrecked on the highway. Then I saw the glare of the fire ... It was burning all over, with the flames swirling and sparks flying everywhere."
But as crews put one fire out, the hot ashes landed on the roof of the Presbyterian Church, Dooley said. 

1951 aerial of Rydal
Rydal, Kansas, was as ordinary as any town planted in Kansas in the late 1800s.

The Rydal Giants played their regular weekly game of baseball for practice on the home diamond in the pasture near Rydal Saturday afternoon and under their able manager and captain it is safe to say it will soon be in the shape to play any team in the county. - May 31, 1907 
William Johnson, of near Rydal, shipped a carload of hogs of his he was raising to Kansas City, loading them at Rydal Thursday morning. - Dec. 2, 1920
 About 30 from the Rydal community enjoyed a basket dinner at the Rydal church basement. - June 13, 1946

But those taking a trip by the town that seemed to come to life from the pages of the Belleville Telescope will find little left.

Trucks line up for harvest at Rydal, Kansas

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1935 photo of grocery store owned by William West. Rydal is a dead town in Republic County. These photos are courtesy of the Republic County historical society

My Dear Santa: - I am a little boy 8 years old. I live at Rydal, Kansas. I go to No. 9 school. We are going to have a program at our school. Will you please bring me a desk with pigeonholes in it and a chair and a storybook? I am in the third grade. I have one brother and one sister. Please give lots of toys and candy and things to the poor children that have no parents. Santa, you are a jolly fellow. The 25th of Dec. is Christmas.Yours Truly -Charles B. Beymer Jr.- Belleville Telescope, Dec. 16, 1910

1 comment:

  1. We have been researching the elevators built by Van Ness Construction Company of Omaha. One of the Rydal elevators was built by them, and in a google image you can still see the footprint where they stood. Charles H. Tillostson was president of the company in the 1930s. Come visit our blog!