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National and State Registers of Historic Places

Soule Canal - Gray County Segment 2

Picture of property Sec. 6, Twp. 26S, Range 28W
Ingalls (Gray County)
Listed in National Register Oct 15, 2014

Architect: N/A
Category: irrigation facility
Thematic Nomination: Historic Resources of the Soule Canal

The Soule Canal, also known as the Eureka Canal, was a 96-mile-long earthen ditch constructed in the late 19th century to carry water from the Arkansas River to farms in southwest Kansas for irrigation purposes. Plans for its construction were conceived by brothers John and George Gilbert, and the project was financed by Asa Soule, a native of Rochester, New York who made his millions manufacturing and selling hop bitters. Construction of the canal began in April 1884 and was completed in 1889. It took two years, 60 horses, 150 men, and between $250,000 and $1 million to dig the channel that stretched from Ingalls in Gray County to Spearville in Ford County. The canal was a complete failure, due in part to the nature of its construction, including a risk of side slopes collapsing and water loss due to seepage, and the fact that there was nobody in charge of maintaining it. Attempts to revive the canal in 1909 and 1931 were unsuccessful. This segment includes two distinct portions of the canal located adjacent to the north of U.S. Highway 50 east of Ingalls. This segment was nominated for its significance in the areas of agriculture, community planning and development, and engineering.

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