Nicodemus National Historic Site

After the tragedy and devastation of the American Civil War and the bungling inherent in the Reconstruction era, African Americans felt disenfranchised. Despite the passing of the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments to the Constitution, the lynching of African Americans in the South was a frequent occurrence. In 1877, a call to unite and move to friendlier locations ran through the African American community. Out of it came Nicodemus, KS, resulting from an expansive pioneering spirit that could not be denied. Today, the Nicodemus National Historic Site preserves the five historic buildings representative of that spirit that drove people to a "Promised Land."

Things to Do

Things To Do Near Nicodemus National Historic Site

There is much to say about visiting a town where the sense of community overcame the forces of discrimination, suspicion, and outright hate. The five structures listed as historic buildings — Township Hall, Saint Francis Hotel/Switzer Residence, Old First Baptist Church, African Methodist Episcopal Church, School District Number 1 — represent the spirit of resistance that founded and promoted the town. Visiting each of these sites informs travelers of the hardships, heartbreaks, and victories experienced by people determined to find their freedom and define their culture. A roadside park with play structures, picnic areas, and easy access to the town buildings is the perfect spot for a family gathering. 

Hiking Trails



Nearby Shops and Restaurants

map-marker-alt-regular How to Get There

How To Get To Nicodemus National Historic Site

The nearest large community to the Nicodemus National Historic Site is Salina, KS. To get to the site from Salina, get onto Interstate 70 West, and drive 92.9 miles to Hays, KS. In Hays, turn right onto US Highway 183 North, and go for 23.5 miles. Turn left onto Kansas Highway 18, and travel for 19.9 miles. Turn right onto 2 Road and drive for 4.7 miles. Turn left onto US Highway 24 West, and go for 1.6 miles. Turn onto Washington Street, and you'll find the Nicodemus National Historic Site Visitor Center directly ahead.

The Nicodemus National Historic Site is open year-round. The site's grounds are available 24 hours per day, seven days per week. Hours for the Nicodemus Township Hall visitor center are limited to five days per week, Thur.-Mon., from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.


304 Washington Ave., Nicodemus, KS, 67625

Fee: Entry fee $0

The best method to travel the wide-open plains of northeastern Kansas is with an RV. With so much space between places of interest, using an RV allows you to rest between stops. Once you grasp the immensity of this area of the country, it is easy to appreciate the "deliverance" African Americans felt after generations of suffering under slavery. The Nicodemus National Historic Site is a statement of human persistence under incredible stress. A visit here gives hope for the country's future and is an event the family will remember for a lifetime.