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Protection, Comanche County, Kansas

A 1910 picture of Protection Boosters and Band lookin north on Main Street, Protection, Comanche County, Kansas.  Photo from the Diamond Jubilee Historical Souvenir Program. Coldwater, KS: Western Star, 1959.


"There are two stories about the naming of Protection: One is a traditional story having to do with an Indian scare when the people collected at Red Bluff for protection. It was, according to tradition, an attempt on the part of the cowboys to frighten the early settlers. The other story is a matter of history, the name Protection being given from a protective tariff of that decade, 1880-1890. The town became nationally and internationally known via radio and television in 1955-1956, when the National Polio Foundation chose it as the center for the free distribution of Salk vaccine shots for polio. It then became 100 percent protected. Protection is the only town of that name in the U.S. with a post office. -- Diamond Jubilee, page 46.

"About a year later a post office was started on the Kiowa and called Protection. Among the prominent members of the old Protection Town Company were E. P. Hickok, W. P. Gibson, J. W. Johnson and one or two others, all republicans, good and true. When it came to selecting a name for the new post office, there was some difference of opinion, and it was finally agreed to leave the naming to the postmaster general, who was a republican also. In the political platforms of those days there was much said in regard to "protection," as compared with "free trade," when speaking of the development of American industries and the employment of labor, and it was but the natural thing for the postmaster general to think of the word "Protection" for the new post office on the Kiowa in Comanche-co., Kansas. That, as I understand it, was how the city of Protection got its name." -- Hiram O. Holderby, The Western Star, April 8, 1921.

The city of Protection in Comanche County took a direct hit from a tornado Friday, although the damage seemed mostly limited to overturned trees and power lines. The worst destruction occurred at a manufacturing plant, a Comanche County Sheriff's dispatcher said... The city of Greensburg, Kansas, which was largely destroyed a year ago by a massive twister, reported minor damage when a tornado hopped from the western edge to the eastern edge of town Friday. "The funnel cloud went directly over the top of Greensburg," said Ray Stegman, Kiowa County emergency preparedness manager. " - More tornadoes strike Kansas, Oklahoma, Associated Press, 24 May 2008.

Sign designed by Stan Herd at the south side of Protection, Comanche County, Kansas.  Photo by Orlin Loucks, 19 June 2005.
Sign designed by Stan Herd at the south side of Protection, Comanche County, Kansas. Photo by Orlin Loucks, 19 June 2005.

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This page was last updated 24 March 2008.