Shadow on the Hill locations: explore Coffey and Lyon counties

The settings and people of Coffey and Lyon counties play an important role in Shadow on the Hill. Here are some suggestions for learning more about where the murder of Florence Knoblock and the investigations and trials took place:

Coffey County

Maps

1919 Standard Atlas of Coffey County, Kansas at Historic Map Works will help you understand the geography of Coffey County, Kansas. It includes rural area property ownership and many buildings and communities that no longer exist. The atlas can also be found at the Kansas State Historical Society.

1912 Sandborn Fire Insurance Maps for Burlington at the Kenneth Spencer Research Library at the University of Kansas will help you explore the town most connected with the murder, investigation, and first trial.

Books

Coffey County, Vol. 1 – A glimpse into its past, present and future!, compiled by Wanda Christy and published by Coffey County Today in 1987, is a good history of Coffey County with lots and lots of historic photographs.

Strawn, Kansas USA, 1872-1963: 91 Years Worth Remembering, compiled by Verla I. Keith in 1969, includes many of the families mentioned in Shadow on the Hill.

Visit

The Coffey County Historical Society and Museum includes the church that held Florence Knoblock’s funeral and an excellent genealogy room. This is a very nice museum and totally worth the visit.

Lyon County

Maps

1918 Standard Atlas of Lyon County, Kansas at Historic Map Works will help you understand the geography of Lyon County, Kansas. The atlas is also available through the Kansas State Historical Society.

1911 Sandborn Fire Insurance Maps for Emporia at the Kenneth Spencer Research Library will give you a basic layout of Emporia. Please note that Emporia experienced tremendous construction growth in the 1920s and 1930s, after these maps were created.

Current Emporia map at the Emporia Area Chamber and Visitors Bureau will show you the town’s layout today.

Online Resources

Researching Lyon County your Lyon County roots? Visit the Flint Hills Genealogical Society site.

Books

History of Emporia and Lyon County by Laura M. French is an excellent resource for Emporia’s early history and was published in the 1920s not long before the murder of Florence Knoblock.

Visit

There are plans in the works for the Lyon County Historical Society and Research Center to move to a new location on Commercial Street. In the meanwhile, their artifacts and research materials are located in two buildings.

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