Greensburg, Kansas: World's Largest Hand-Dug Well and Meteorite
Big Well Museum and Visitors Center
Two unrelated attractions under one roof -- until the roof blew away in a 2007 tornado. But the big hole and the space rock survived. Roadsideamerica.com Report...
The Big Well: May 2010 marks the third anniversary of the opening of the Kansas Underground Salt Museum in Hutchinson, Kansas, and the flattening of the town of Greensburg, 90 miles away, by a tornado. [05/11/2010] Complete Story...
Visitor Tips and News About World's Largest Hand-Dug Well and Meteorite
A great detour and fine example of how Greensburg, KS is literally picking up the pieces of their community and making it a better place to live. The Well and Meteorite showcase awesome aspects of historical Kansas![Dawn, 10/09/2012]
The Big Well lives! Just over a year after the tornado that destroyed Greensburg, there is a new temporary gift shop next to the well, where you can not only buy Big Well souvenirs but also tornado-inspired memorabilia, including several books of local residents' stories of how they survived the wind storm.
You can no longer go into the well; it was not damaged structurally, but the tornado ripped out the lighting and it has not yet been replaced. You can look down into the Well - a single light has been placed inside. The slab of the old gift shop is clearly visible, as are a couple of twisted metal poles.
A new sculpture stands nearby, made from some of the damaged metal debris. The World's Largest Pallasite Meteorite was recovered, but is currently at the Sternberg Museum in Hays, where it will remain until a new permanent museum and gift shop are constructed.
Greensburg is being rebuilt as a "green" community, with new energy-efficient buildings that stand a good chance of being Roadside Americana in another 50 years due to their often eccentric appearance. There's not much business in Greensburg yet - a gas station/convenience store is just about it - but the people there are appreciative of those who take the time to stop and visit. And if you've seen any of the Greensburg TV series on the discovery Channel, you might just recognize a face or two![Barry Short, 10/14/2008]
We really enjoyed our visit to the World's Largest Hand Dug Well last summer. Pleasantly cheesy.
However, as is widely known, Greensburg KS was almost totally demolished in May. A number of aerial pictures taken by rescue workers confirmed that the water tower by the well was demolished by the storm, as was the museum by the well. However, one of those aerial pictures also show that the cover of the Well itself was relatively undamaged, and the meteorite was apparently recovered during the rescue efforts.[Pat OConnell, 06/13/2007]
Nearby Offbeat Places
- M.T. Liggett's Political Sculptures, Mullinville, KS - 10 mi.
- Midway USA, Kinsley, KS - 23 mi.
- Home of Beautiful Women, Hot and Cold Water Towers, Pratt, KS - 31 mi.
- In the region: Gunfighters Wax Museum, Dodge City, KS - 41 mi.