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Durham, Kansas
Downtown Durham (2010)
Downtown Durham (2010)
Location within Marion County and Kansas
Location within Marion County and Kansas
KDOT map of Marion County (legend)
Country United States
State Kansas
County Marion
Township Durham Park
Platted 1887 (Durham)
1887 (Funk)
Incorporated 1906
Named for Durham cattle
 • Type Mayor–Council
 • Total 0.17 sq mi (0.45 km2)
 • Land 0.17 sq mi (0.45 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
1,371 ft (418 m)
 • Total 89
 • Density 524/sq mi (198/km2)
Time zone UTC-6 (CST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
Area code 620
FIPS code 20-19050
GNIS ID 477238

Durham is a city in Marion County, Kansas, United States. As of the 2020 census, the population of the city was 89. The city took its name from Durham cattle. It is located about 8.5 miles north of Hillsboro on the west side of K-15 highway next to a railroad.


Stouffer's Railroad Map of Kansas 1915-1918 Marion County
1915 Railroad Map of Marion County

Early history

See also: History of Kansas

For many millennia, the Great Plains of North America was inhabited by nomadic Native Americans. From the 16th century to 18th century, the Kingdom of France claimed ownership of large parts of North America. In 1762, after the French and Indian War, France secretly ceded New France to Spain, per the Treaty of Fontainebleau.

19th century

In 1802, Spain returned most of the land to France. In 1803, most of the land for modern day Kansas was acquired by the United States from France as part of the 828,000 square mile Louisiana Purchase for 2.83 cents per acre.

In 1806, Zebulon Pike led the Pike expedition westward from St Louis, Missouri, of which part of their journey followed the Cottonwood River through Marion County near the current cities of Florence, Marion, Durham.

From the 1820s to the 1870s, one of the most significant land routes in the United States was the Santa Fe Trail. It was located about 1 mile northwest of Durham. The trail was active across Marion County from 1821 to 1866.

In 1854, the Kansas Territory was organized, then in 1861 Kansas became the 34th U.S. state. In 1855, Marion County was established within the Kansas Territory, which included the land for modern day Durham.

In 1887, the Chicago, Kansas and Nebraska Railway built a main line from Herington through Durham to Pratt. In 1888, this line was extended to Liberal. Later, it was extended to Tucumcari, New Mexico and El Paso, Texas. It foreclosed in 1891 and taken over by Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railway, which shut down in 1980 and reorganized as Oklahoma, Kansas and Texas Railroad, merged in 1988 with Missouri Pacific Railroad, and finally merged in 1997 with Union Pacific Railroad. Most locals still refer to this railroad as the "Rock Island".

A post office was established in Durham Park on June 22, 1874 (near current Cottonwood Grove Christian School northwest of Durham), then it was moved to the community of Durham on September 19, 1887 around the time the new railroad was built through the area.

20th century

In 1906, Durham incorporated as a city.

In 1962, James C. Donahue established the Donahue Corporation, maker of farm implement carriers, and has grown to a 40,000 sq ft (3,700 m2) facility. They have built and distributed over 50,000 implement carriers. It currently is located approximately 0.5 mile northeast of Durham on 290th St.


Durham is located at 38°29′04″N 97°13′38″W / 38.484392°N 97.227337°W / 38.484392; -97.227337 (38.484392, -97.227337). According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 0.20 square miles (0.52 km2), all of it land.


The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Durham has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.

Area attractions

Durham has one listing on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP).

  • Santa Fe Trail:
    • Santa Fe Trail - Marion County Segments (NRHP), 2.5 miles (4.0 km) south-west of Durham. From corner of 270th St and Falcon Rd, parallels on west side of railroad tracks towards southwest. The ruts are approximate 3 miles (4.8 km) long, and described by the National Park Service as "outstanding". Not open to public.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1910 268
1920 288 7.5%
1930 254 −11.8%
1940 245 −3.5%
1950 229 −6.5%
1960 183 −20.1%
1970 143 −21.9%
1980 130 −9.1%
1990 119 −8.5%
2000 114 −4.2%
2010 112 −1.8%
2020 89 −20.5%
U.S. Decennial Census

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 112 people, 48 households, and 34 families residing in the city. The population density was 560.0 inhabitants per square mile (216.2/km2). There were 65 housing units at an average density of 325.0 per square mile (125.5/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 99.1% White and 0.9% from other races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.5% of the population.

There were 48 households, of which 25.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 66.7% were married couples living together, 4.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.2% were non-families. 25.0% of all households were made up of individuals, and 12.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.33 and the average family size was 2.79.

The median age in the city was 47 years. 20.5% of residents were under the age of 18; 5.5% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 22.4% were from 25 to 44; 27.7% were from 45 to 64; and 24.1% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 51.8% male and 48.2% female.


Durham is home of Donahue Corporation, Jason Wiebe Dairy, Main Street Cafe, G & R Implement, Agri Trails CO-OP.



The community is served by Hillsboro USD 410 public school district. The high school is a member of T.E.E.N., a shared video teaching network between five area high schools. All students attend schools in Hillsboro.

  • Hillsboro High School, located in Hillsboro.

Durham schools were closed through school unification. The Durham Hornets won the Kansas State High School boys class BB basketball championship in 1963.


  • Cottonwood Grove Christian School, Private Grade School, 2925 Goldenrod Rd, approximately 1 mile northwest of Durham.



K-15 highway runs along the east side of the city. Durham is served by the Union Pacific Railroad, formerly the Southern Pacific, and prior, the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad. Durham is located on UP's Golden State main line to El Paso, Texas. A Union Pacific Local still serves the Durham Elevator during the Kansas summer harvests. The line was originally built by the Chicago, Kansas and Nebraska Railroad.


  • Internet
    • Wireless is provided by Pixius Communications.
    • Satellite is provided by HughesNet, StarBand, WildBlue.
  • TV
  • Electricity
    • Rural is provided by Flint Hills RECA.
  • Water
    • City is provided by City of Durham.
    • Rural is provided by Marion County RWD #1 and #4.
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