Some History of Belvue

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When Belvue was platted.

On March 14, 1871 the village of Belvue had been laid out by Andrew J. Baker and Malcolm Gregory, but their plat was not recorded until May 1, 1871. That same day they deeded to the Belvue Township Company the southeast 40 acres of the land they had purchased from the Santa Fe.

How Belvue got its name:

There is some dispute as to where the name "Belvue" orgininated. Legend has it the town was named for the daughter of Louis Vieux, but there is no evidence that he had a daughter by this name. The same legend says that Belvue's namesake was buried in the old Belvue cemetery southeast of the city, but since this cemetery is no longer in existence, there is no way to check this out.

Another source source says that "Belvue" simply is a French word meaning "beautiful view". Although no one knows for certain where the name origintaed, Mrs. Andrew J. Baker is credited with giving the name to the town.

Belvue Post Office Established:

The Post Office was established in Belvue on May 3, 1871. At that time it had two rural routes, but now has only one. The first Postmaster was George Meens and earned a salary of 23.08.

Belvue Newspapers

The Dodger, was in print from Jan. 1, 1889 to Aug. 6, 1889. Dr. J.S. Watt was the editor. Many people used it for advertising. It was interesting to note that Dr. Watt used his newspaper to issue a general bill to his patients. In each issue, he urged his patients to pay what they owed him. According to this paper, a ferry crossed the river south of Belvue into Wabaunsee County in 1889.

The Belvue Mirror, was in print from November 18, 1897 to may 12, 1998. It's editor was C.M. Dunn. People also used the paper as a means of advertising. According to this paper, December 23, 1987, "Belvue raised nearly one-half of the entire amount of wheat in Pottawatomie County--42,884 bushels."

Churches of Belvue

At one time there were 4 churches in Belvue. However, residents remember only 3 of their names. Methodist, Baptist, and Presbyterian.

The Baptist Church was located where the school gymnasium stood, today is the Onyx Collection. The Presbyterian Church dwelling was remolded into a home and is located at 505 Noble. It was built in 1901.

The Methodist Church was first known as the Methodist Episcopal Church and is now called the Belvue United Methodist Church. The sanctuary was built in 1878. In 1955 an addition was added including Sunday school rooms, restrooms, and a full size basement with kitchen. It is now the only Church in Belvue. In 1968, Mrs. Loreen Weeks Klassen of Topeka died and left the church a substantial legacy. She was born and raised in Belvue and to her this was her home and church. This bequeath amounts to approximately 10,000-15,000 a year as long as it remains a Methodist Church.

First Mayor and City Council Members

The first city council of Belvue met May 8, 1913. Police Judge J.W. Falkner, having perviously qualified, administered the oath of office to Mayor elect E.C. Hooven, and to Councilmen elect John D. Weeks, O.R. Searl, W.C. Child, H.G. Lambert, and A.W. Eggers. Several ordinances were acted upon and a regular meeting place was decided. The Belvue City Council would meet the first Monday of each month in the director's room of the Belvue State Bank(became Farmers State Bank in 1925). S.A. Ross was appointed city clerk and Harold Child treasurer. Mayor Hooven also appointed Frank Rischer City marshall and Street Commissioner.

Belvue School and Gymnasium:

The first school in the Belvue area was a one-room building established in 1870. Some of the early teachers were Massey Albright, May Worthing Watt, and Miss Fischer. In 1916, a new building was erected which served as both the grade and high school. Early in the 1930's, Belvue had to close its high school and was put in the St.Marys school district. Belvue residents petitioned out of the St.Marys district when it decided to build a new school, and they became part of the Wamego school district.

It was during the rains of 1951 that Belvue built a guanset-type gymnasium located on the south side of the school. Its construction caused quite a disagreement with some of the farmers who felt it was much to expensive. A few of them actually put up each to take action and stop it from being built, but it was in vain.

For more Belvue History:

Most of this information on this page was provided to us by Barbara Sackrider. Her paper on "The First 100 Years fo Belvue" can be found at Brunkow's Garage.