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Old 07-01-2007, 04:41 PM
 
Location: IN
22,499 posts, read 39,133,615 times
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I was wondering if anyone on this forum used to live in any of the rural counties in Kansas and has since moved to a larger city in the state or out of state to another urban area. If so, name the county you were originally from and what area you moved to.
For the past several decades many of the rural counties have lost 10-50% of their population as our agricultural system has become ever more mechanized, and many of our other manufacturing jobs have been outsourced to other countries. It is just amazing to drive through many of these old abandoned towns that look like 3/4 of all of the buildings are vacant and falling apart. With Sebelius as our governor now it looks like the economic situation is improving some for the rural areas compared to what it had been like 5-10 years ago. Also, their seems to be an emphasis being placed on bio-fuels and ethanol as well. This could help out some of the rural counties by creating more jobs related to ethanol plants. However, we know that ethanol is very energy intensive and it still takes a lot of energy, fertilizers, and irrigation to grow the corn. Ethanol is not very efficient compared with gasoline and the miles per gallon is much lower with ethanol as well.
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Old 07-02-2007, 05:06 PM
 
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I grew up in rural Edwards County and now live in Seattle, Washington.

I can believe that the rural areas are losing people. It's very hard to be a farmer!
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Old 07-03-2007, 12:07 AM
 
Location: IN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by malarkey View Post
I grew up in rural Edwards County and now live in Seattle, Washington.

I can believe that the rural areas are losing people. It's very hard to be a farmer!
You are absolutely correct. I believe that the county seat of Edwards County is Kinsley? I know that Larned is the nearest bigger town. The county has definitely lost another 9-10% of the total population in the last 6 years. A very long-lasting drought did not help matters the past several years either. For the most part in the Great Plains the older residents tend to stay and the younger residents tend to leave in increasing numbers mainly because of jobs.
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Old 07-03-2007, 12:19 AM
 
Location: Chicago
38,704 posts, read 93,937,342 times
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An interesting look at a declining small Illinois town that used to have 15,000 people and is now down to about 3,000:

If Rubble Could Kill: The Cairo, Illinois Story

(BTW, it's inexplicably pronounced KAY-roh)
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Old 01-31-2008, 02:57 PM
 
Location: Wyoming
2 posts, read 13,130 times
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I went to high school in Edwards County (Kinsley), and I left town in 1975 when I graduated...not a lot of opportunity in the old western Kansas farm towns anymore. As a high school kid, Kinsley had three car dealers, two implement dealers, and our graduating class was about 75 kids...great town...now, unfortunately, it's just a shadowy ghost of its former self...no car dealers, small graduating classes, and lots of cheap old house for sale...too bad, really.
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Old 01-31-2008, 03:20 PM
 
Location: IN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danceswithdeer View Post
I went to high school in Edwards County (Kinsley), and I left town in 1975 when I graduated...not a lot of opportunity in the old western Kansas farm towns anymore. As a high school kid, Kinsley had three car dealers, two implement dealers, and our graduating class was about 75 kids...great town...now, unfortunately, it's just a shadowy ghost of its former self...no car dealers, small graduating classes, and lots of cheap old house for sale...too bad, really.
Did you leave Kansas after you graduated high school?
Most people I know either moved to the larger urban areas of eastern Kansas or left the state for better job opportunities.
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Old 02-01-2008, 09:13 AM
 
Location: Wyoming
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I left the state for better financial opportunities as well as recreational opportunities. After high school in Kinsley, I attended and graduated from the University of Wyoming; I'd never leave the Rocky Mountain West...ever...jeez...great scenery, skiing, hiking, low taxes, great salaries, healthy lifestyle.

I really can't imagine what keeps people in western Kansas other than the fact that most houses cost less than my last car.
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Old 02-01-2008, 09:52 AM
 
Location: IN
22,499 posts, read 39,133,615 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danceswithdeer View Post
I left the state for better financial opportunities as well as recreational opportunities. After high school in Kinsley, I attended and graduated from the University of Wyoming; I'd never leave the Rocky Mountain West...ever...jeez...great scenery, skiing, hiking, low taxes, great salaries, healthy lifestyle.

I really can't imagine what keeps people in western Kansas other than the fact that most houses cost less than my last car.
The big issue in western Kansas currently is whether or not a coal plant will be built there It has been a huge political issue that is still going on, and both sides are very divided regarding whether they want to build it or not. The state representatives from that area of SW Kansas say the economy there is not good, but I think they have somewhat ignored the fact that most younger people move to where the jobs are (for the last 50-100 years), and don't stay in SW Kansas.
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Old 02-01-2008, 12:38 PM
 
Location: Clarksville, TN
713 posts, read 2,547,469 times
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I grew up in Sacramento, California and lived for 17 years in rural NW OK (Harper Co.) and SW KS (Clark and Comanche Counties). Marriage is what took me there. Job or no job, life is just plain difficult in rural Kansas and Oklahoma..rural anywhere. While I miss the wheat and the thunderstorms, I dont miss driving for hours to do shopping and to get medical care.

Last edited by verynicebecky; 02-01-2008 at 12:39 PM.. Reason: added a word
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Old 02-01-2008, 04:27 PM
 
136 posts, read 546,651 times
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Default Cowley County

I grew up in Cowley County, specifically, Arkansas City. I went to college in Oklahoma but immediately moved to th East coast after graduation.

I left because I wanted to live in New York and challenge myself. I have been here for 5 years and am considering a move back to AC with my husband.

We are planning to move back for a variety of reasons. The real draw for us is that my mother still owns an historic downtown building. We plan to renovate it and live there.

For us, it is a chance to do a really cool project without spending hundreds of thousands of dollars. I just receive to live in a place where my only goal in life is to work to pay the mortgage.
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