Lebanon, Kansas: Geographical Center of the 48 StatesThe ultimate fallback position in case we're attacked by Canada, Mexico, and the Fish People from the Atlantic and Pacific. Bonus: a tiny church decorated with an American flag shaped like the lower 48, and bisected by a wooden cross.
Visitor Tips and News About Geographical Center of the 48 States
Twenty-three years ago my wife and I stumbled on this spot on our way home to L.A. from Ohio after getting married. This summer we returned with our daughter to show her the glories of Kansas. My, how the spot has changed over the years! The first time we stopped, the Center chapel was on a little trailer; now it is a solid building on a foundation. There is a picnic shelter, not just a picnic table, and of course the trees are taller. On a day with a mild temperature, it could be a lovely place for lunch. The view, of course, hasn't changed much. The spot is still in the middle of farm fields that spread out as far as you can see.[Doug lidz, 08/18/2014]
The chapel has been rebuilt, and a flagpole was added to the monument. If you're nearby, it's well worth the stop. A historical marker has been added about three miles away on Hwy 36. It doesn't say why it wasn't added at the actual site.[Chuck Dunaj, 08/13/2010]
The monument -- which was built in 1941 -- isn't at the center, either. The exact spot is in a field adjacent to the monument, but the farmer didn't want visitors on his land.
Our beautiful little chapel was destroyed on June 1 when someone traveling at a high speed was not able to turn at the T at the end of K-191 highway and totally demolished it on impact.
We are hoping to be able to replace it but the sentiment will not be the same for residents.[Pat, 06/19/2008]
A grave blow to Tiny Churchdom....
Geographic Center of the Contiguous United States is located just north and west of Lebanon, KS, adjacent to a pasture and overseen by a friendly-if-nonplussed herd of cows. The Center is a small grass patch containing a 10 ft. high stone podium and flagpole, on which U.S. and Kansas flags fly. A small plaque on the podium informs visitors that a government geographic survey in 1898(?) established this spot as the center of the continental U.S. A picnic table allows you to contemplate the the equilibrium of your surroundings. Nearby is a tiny hut, the Chapel at the Center, which invites you to pray (a bible is provided at the altar; it was open to the book of Revelation when we visited) and sign the guestbook. Souvenirs, a sign informs you, are available back down the road in the town of Lebanon.[B Bergevin, 01/12/2003]
This is a very small chapel outside of Lebanon. The chapel has seating forabout 6 friendly people and was well kept up. It is purported to be "the Geographical Center of the U.S.A." It sits on a little rise overlooking a corn field. Nearby is a defunct motel. You can get info on how to get there from the cafe in Lebanon.[Penny Spring, 06/16/2002]
Nearby is this monument marking the "Geographical Center of the 48 States."