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Sculpted by Charlie Norton of nearby Leoti, Kansas, this 9-foot-tall bronze pioneer woman statue's dedication was the highlight of Thomas County's centennial celebration on October 8, 1985. The statue was placed in front of the 1906 county courthouse, a Romanesque Revival building that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The pioneer woman holds a baby on her hip and waves a handkerchief over her head to signal to someone--likely her husband--far across the Kansas prairie.


  • Spirit of the Prairie statue
  • Spirit of the Prairie statue (back side)
  • Thomas County centennial plaque

"Thomas County residents set to celebrate centennial Tuesday." Salina Journal (Salina, Kansas) October 7th 1985. 3.

Prescott, Cynthia Culver. Pioneer Mother Monuments: Constructing Cultural Memory. University of Oklahoma Press, 2019.

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Cynthia Prescott

Cynthia Prescott

Cynthia Prescott