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Turner, Kansas
Country United States
State Kansas
County Wyandotte
830 ft (253 m)
Time zone UTC-6 (CST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)
Area code 913
FIPS code 20-71775
GNIS feature ID 0478951

Turner is a neighborhood within Kansas City, Kansas, United States. It was formerly an unincorporated community of Wyandotte County, similar to Piper, Kansas. Turner has its own school district, Turner USD #202.


The Prophet (Tenskwatawa; literally, "the door opener"), brother of Tecumseh, created Shawneetown in the area (near what today is Woodend and Shawnee Drive at 35th street). He made his final home near Turner in Argentine, Kansas (the property is today owned by Jack Beemont).

19th century

Wyandotte County, Kansas 1899 Map from History of Kansas by Noble Prentis.

In 1828, Cyprian Chouteau established the first trading post in this locale. It was the American Fur Company trading house (located near 55th and Speaker Road). The original Shawnee Methodist Mission was built in 1830 near Chouteau's old trading post (near the heart of the Turner community). Reverend Thomas Johnson built the mission for the Shawnee. It was located at what would be 5100 block of Edgehill Drive. This mission was open till until 1839, when the Mission School was built at the current location in Johnson County. Around 1837, Charles Lovelace established a saw mill (today it would be located at 55th and Speaker Road, but has been long ago torn down). There was also a grist mill in close proximity. In 1838, the mighty steamboat, "The Antelope" docked in the area. It had several scientist and pioneers heading west. They stayed over in the area on their journey to Fort Pierre in South Dakota.

The Delaware Crossing (or "Military Crossing"; sometimes "the Secondine") was where the old Indian trail met the water's of the Kaw River. Around 1831, Moses Grinter (one of the earliest permanent white settler in the area) set up the Grinter Ferry on the Kansas River here. His house, the Grinter Place, still stands at 1420 South 78th Street. The ferry was used by individuals (such as traders, freighters, and soldiers) traveling between Fort Leavenworth and Fort Scott on the military road. Other would cross this area on their way to Santa Fe.

Various farmers took up residence around Turner by the fall of 1854. Turner as a community was known as early as 1856 (and no later than 1859). The community, then named "Farmer, Kansas", tried to incorporate itself on October 8, 1859. The attempt failed because the community never had enough population to achieve the statute requirements.

Members of the old Quantrill's Raiders sacked a few homes and killed some of the inhabitants of the area around July 1863. Various families (living in the area that today is between Swartz Road from 51st to 53rd Street) suffered in the attacks. They were fended off from but a few homes.

In 1859, the community had been referred to as the "Farmer" community (when the first post office was established). Twenty years later, the community took the name "Turner". Farmer post office name was switched to the "Turner" post office on September 23, 1879; by Robert M. Hester.

20th century

The Flood of 1903 hit Turner. The 1910 population was around 200 people. In 1912, Turner had a few general stores, a school, money order post office, telegraph and express facilities.

Historically, the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway went through Argentine, Turner, and Kaw Valley. From the railroad yard in the Argentine, the railroad cars would be turned around at the Farmer train platform. The Farmer train station's circular platform stood at 55th street (which is Turner’s main downtown area).

Parts of Turner were hit in the Great Flood of 1951 and the flood resulted in the "Highland" community being built (for displaced individuals from Argentine and Armourdale). Between late 1965 and early 1966, Kansas City, Kansas annexed the community of Turner. Although now a part of Kansas City, Kansas,the community still retains its own distinct flavor and personality.

The Turner post office was discontinued in 1958.

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