HAYSVILLE, Kan. (KSNW) — The final stop on the KSN Summer Road Trip Tour was the new Dorner Park at 400 W. 79th Street South, Haysville, Friday, July 16. Thank you to everyone who made us feel so welcome. KSN Chief Meteorologist Lisa Teachman and KSN’s Jeff Herndon were happy to be live from their hometown.
The town of Haysville got national attention after a devastating F4 tornado, May 3, 1999. The tornado destroyed the town’s historic district. Only the bank vault was still standing. The Haysville Historic Committee has dedicated itself to saving what is left.
The town also was hit by a tornado on April 26, 1991. The twister tracked through the northwest corner of Haysville, damaging several homes on Willow Lane. Later, the tornado grew to more than a mile wide and devastated the Andover area.
The town’s name comes from William Wallace (W.W.) Hays, an Illinois man who moved his family to the area in 1870. He settled on land that would eventually be incorporated into the town of Haysville. He was a rancher, ran flour mills, a one-time sheriff of Sedgwick County, and a postmaster. According to Hays’ obituary, President Rutherford B. Hayes appointed him postmaster and named the area Haysville, both for himself and for W.W. Hays, as a novelty. The novelty led to a few misspellings of Haysville as Hayesville.
The town was incorporated in 1951. It has grown to a population of more than 10,800.
A Haysville gas station is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Vickers Station, 140 N. Main St., was built in 1954. It is the first station in the U.S. to feature the unique batwing design. It survived the 1999 tornado and the community has worked to preserve it, even adding four Bowser gas pumps. The gas station is a favorite destination for car and motorcycle enthusiasts. According to the Haysville website, the station is currently used for the town’s economic development office.
Another place of note is the Haysville Community Library. The town was excited when it moved into a new location in 1993. But the 1999 tornado damaged it. For about five months, the library had to operate out of homes and Rex Elementary School. The library resumed regular operations in October of 1999, and an addition was finished then, too. KSN Chief Meteorologist Lisa Teachman says the former library director, Betty Cattrell, is one of her fond memories of the library and the town.
The years since the tornado have been focused on rebuilding and attracting more businesses. A website, HelloHaysville.com, showcases the benefits of the town, including community events, the schools, and the friendly environment.
Things to see around Haysville:
- Haysville Activity Center, Swimming Pool
- Party in the 060 – Aug. 21
- Hello Haysville
- Haysville Aviators Baseball
- Haysville Parks
- Haysville Community Library
Community & Government: