How much do you know about the ghost town of Sheridan? This notorious railroad town sprang up just to the east of what we call the Twin Buttes in Logan County. In existence for 15 months in the years 1868-1869, it attracted a population of 2,000 rowdy souls during the time that the Kansas Pacific Railroad halted the building of the rail line. This stopping point signified the end of the land grant made by Congress; until a new grant was made, the railroad sat idle.
Sheridan was lawless in the truest sense – it drew in the riff-raff of society and business, as there was no body politic other than the kangaroo courts of self-appointed vigilantes to enforce frontier justice. In the graveyard of 100, not one man died a natural death. Thirty-one men were hung from the railroad trestle at the east edge of town; not one of them was tried by a jury. Legend has it that a notch was cut in the trestle for each of the hangings. Of all the businesses, the saloons were the most profitable; the Dew Drop Inn was the favored establishment, as well as being the unofficial “courtroom.”
When Civil War hero General Phil Sheridan visited his namesake town, he said the conditions reminded him of the Battle of Shenandoah, due to the reckless use of weapons in the town.
Very few real buildings existed in Sheridan; tents, tin shacks and dugouts (such as pictured) were the primary living facilities. This railroad town were never designed to be permanent; it was intended that everything could be picked up and moved on a flatcar to the next track location.