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Hope, Kansas
Aerial photo of Hope (2013)
Aerial photo of Hope (2013)
Location within Dickinson County and Kansas
Location within Dickinson County and Kansas
KDOT map of Dickinson County (legend)
Country United States
State Kansas
County Dickinson
Founded 1871
Incorporated 1886
 • Type Mayor–Council
 • Total 0.39 sq mi (1.01 km2)
 • Land 0.39 sq mi (1.01 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
1,398 ft (426 m)
 • Total 317
 • Density 813/sq mi (313.9/km2)
Time zone UTC-6 (CST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
Area code 785
FIPS code 20-33075
GNIS ID 476981

Hope is a city in southern Dickinson County, Kansas, United States. As of the 2020 census, the population of the city was 317.


Stouffer's Railroad Map of Kansas 1915-1918 Dickinson County
1915 Railroad Map of Dickinson 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 1854, the Kansas Territory was organized, then in 1861 Kansas became the 34th U.S. state. In 1857, Dickinson County was established within the Kansas Territory, which included the land for modern day Hope.

In 1871, a group of about forty people, led by Newell Thurstin, began planning a town site in Hope. The town is said to be named after one of Thurstin's sons.

The first post office in Hope was also established in July 1871.

David Jacob Eisenhower, the father of US President Dwight David Eisenhower, lived in a 160-acre (0.65 km2) ranch near Hope from 1878 to his enrollment at Lane University. He and his partner, Milton Good, operated a general store here in 1885.

Hope was incorporated in 1886, and at that time it had a population of over 700, larger than what it is today. The arrival of the railroad one year before, brought access of bustling Chicago to tiny Hope.

In 1887, Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway built a branch line from Neva (3 miles west of Strong City) through Hope to Superior, Nebraska. In 1996, the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway merged with Burlington Northern Railroad and renamed to the current BNSF Railway. Most locals still refer to this railroad as the "Santa Fe".


Hope is located at 38°41′22″N 97°4′37″W / 38.68944°N 97.07694°W / 38.68944; -97.07694 (38.689536, -97.076815). According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 0.39 square miles (1.01 km2), all of it land.

There are two parks in Hope: one in the downtown area on Main Street and an older one in the northern edge of town.


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


Historical population
Census Pop.
1890 632
1900 557 −11.9%
1910 567 1.8%
1920 589 3.9%
1930 556 −5.6%
1940 500 −10.1%
1950 480 −4.0%
1960 463 −3.5%
1970 438 −5.4%
1980 468 6.8%
1990 404 −13.7%
2000 372 −7.9%
2010 368 −1.1%
2020 317 −13.9%
U.S. Decennial Census

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 368 people, 166 households, and 104 families residing in the city. The population density was 943.6 inhabitants per square mile (364.3/km2). There were 192 housing units at an average density of 492.3 per square mile (190.1/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 93.5% White, 2.4% African American, 0.8% Native American, 0.3% Asian, and 3.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.3% of the population.

There were 166 households, of which 22.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.2% were married couples living together, 6.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 2.4% had a male householder with no wife present, and 37.3% were non-families. 33.7% of all households were made up of individuals, and 18.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.22 and the average family size was 2.81.

The median age in the city was 48.7 years. 19.8% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.9% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 16.3% were from 25 to 44; 34% were from 45 to 64; and 23.1% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.7% male and 50.3% female.


Hope is located on K-4, the longest highway in the state. It was once at the junction of the BNSF and Missouri Pacific railroads, but is no longer served by either Railroad.


The community is served by Rural Vista USD 481 public school district.

Notable people

  • Edgar Eisenhower, brother of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, was born in Hope, Kansas.
  • Don Ihde, philosopher, was born in Hope, Kansas, in 1934.

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