Lecompton was founded in 1854 on a 640-acre Wyandotte Indian land claim on the south bank of the Kansas River. The town, which was originally named Bald Eagle because of the many eagles that nested along the river, was renamed later that year to honor Judge Samuel D. Lecompte, the chief justice of the Kansas territorial supreme court. In 1855, the territorial legislature chose Lecompton to be the only official and permanent capital of the Kansas Territory.

Learn more about Lecompton – the political birthplace of the American Civil War – by visiting our two museums, Constitution Hall, Lane University, plus other historic sites, restaurants and shops.

Constitution Hall

Built in 1856 by Sheriff Samuel J. Jones – who used native cottonwood and black walnut lumber cut from his steam sawmill on the Kaw River – Constitution Hall is the oldest wood-frame, civilian structure left standing in its original location in Kansas. Learn more…

Territorial Capital Museum (Lane University)

This museum sits on the grounds of the former 13-acre Lecompton capital square district. In 1855, construction of an elegant capital building began with a $50,000 appropriation from Congress. By 1857, however, all the money was spent, and antislavery legislators had gained control of the territorial legislature. Learn more…

Democratic Headquarters

This stone building was the headquarters of the Democratic Party during the Kansas Territorial period (1854-61). The cabin was used during a time when Lecompton, known as “The Birthplace of the Kansas Democratic Party,” was the territorial capital and stood at the center of national attention. Learn more…

Latest News

“Best of the Best” Christmas Tree Display for 2020

The Territorial Capital Museum will once again hold it’s annual Christmas tree display for 2020. Being referred to as the “best of the best”, the display will run Nov. 1st through Jan. 3rd. To help protect the health and safety of staff and visitors, the museum decided to reduce the number of trees on display to allow for more social … Read More

The Territorial Capital Museum Opens June 10th!

We will be requiring all guests to wear masks, observe social distancing and use hand sanitizer upon entry. Sanitizing stations will be located through out the museum. Looking forward to seeing everyone!

2020 Bleeding Kansas Series Announced

Our annual Bleeding Kansas lecture series will commence on January 26, 2020, Kansas Day! Again, there are exciting topics presented every Sunday through March 1, 2020 at 2 pm at Constitution Hall in Historic Lecompton, Kansas. Please join us for these talks and dramatic interpretations on the violent territorial and civil war events of Kansas and the nation that occurred … Read More

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