Officially organized and founded as a city in 1870, the first street laid out and used was known as Edwards Street (now west 9th). The heart of Ellis' business district started and grew here offering such services as hotels, saloons, general stores, barber shops, cafes, a post office, hardware and drygoods stores, doctor and dentist offices, express offices, meat markets, drug stores, and many others.
The top photo shows Ellis in her infancy as it looked in the mid 1870's. The bottom photo shows Ellis approximately 10 years later. On the right of each photo the railroad shops can be seen. First run by the Kansas Pacific Railway, then taken over by the Union Pacific in the 1880's, the line is still operated by the Union Pacific today, though it is no longer a major division point and maintenance center.
The only early buildings still standing today are the two tall buildings seen in the center of the bottom photo. The well shown in the bottom photo was dug by Tom Daly, an early merchant whose store was across the street to the north of the well.
Dedicated to John Begler for his work on the Historical Walking Tour.