Fort Hays was an important frontier outpost used after the Civil War for about 25 years. It’s primary purpose was to protect those traveling the Smoky Hill Trail to Denver. After it was abandoned in 1889, Congress turned the land over to the State of Kansas which established an agricultural college on it. The college later turned into Fort Hays State University.
A good friend of mine grew up in this area and had told me about the fort. Trey and I swung by on our way across Kansas but it was closed. Fortunately the grounds are open and we were able to walk around and see the restored buildings (we just couldn’t go in any of them).