NAME: Bloomington
COUNTY: Osborne
CLIMATE: hot summers with some snow in winter
BEST TIME TO VISIT: Don't miss the local wheat harvest in late June!
COMMENTS: about 10 residents, Bloomington lies 285 west of Kansas City on U.S. Highway 24, or five miles west of the county seat of Osborne. The 1879 native stone one-room schoolhouse is a classic of its kind. Check out the nearby historical marker for a map of the town as it looked in 1930.
REMAINS: 10 buildings
In spring 1871 Dr. Daniel Tilden conferred with the local Indians as to the best site to locate a new town. He chose the site for "Tilden" where the Indians swore that was legendary for never having been hit a major storm or flood. Tilden tried twice in two elections to become the county seat but failed each time. In 1874 the residents renamed the town Bloomington in hopes that prosperity would follow the name. At its peak in 1930 Bloomington sported 75 residents, two churches, a bank, a restaurant, a lumber yard, and other businesses of note. However, by 1955 the post office was closed, followed by the school in 1968. Today there are no businesses except the local elevator. So far the Indians have been proven right, as the only storm to ever disrupt the townsite was a hailstorm in 1926, which featured baseball-sized hail that caused great damage to local crops and homes. From 1872-1876 Charles "Buffalo" Jones, the noted Western frontier enviromentalist, homesteaded one mile southwest of town, and it was here that he first realized that men were decimating the once-vast buffalo herds. He began bringing home calves to raise for future preservation of the breed. Bloomington is the home of writer/producer Phil Hahn (born 1932), who was the creative genius behind such shows as Sonny & Cher, Three's Company, the American portion of Live Aid in 1985, and many others - including no less than eight Bob Hope specials. Submitted by: Von Rothenberger

1879 Bloomington School
Courtesy Von Rothenberger

Lafe Boultinghouse's Bloomington Cafe as it appeared in 1930 next door to the post office. This building is now a private home. On the left can be seen the Bloomington General Store, the top floor of which was a dance hall.
Courtesy Von Rothenberger