1874 Mahaffie Farm
Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Historic Site
About twenty acres remain of the original 360 acre farm once owned by James Beatty and Lucinda. The farm is located on the "Westport Route," which actually carried traffic of all the trails leading out of Westport, Missouri: the Santa Fe, Oregon, and California Trails. Arriving in Olathe in 1857 from Indiana, the Mahaffies purchased this farm site in 1858 and used oxen to move a portion of the wood frame home from their downtown lot to their new holdings - at that time, about a mile outside of town. The family lived in that home until the new, stone house was finished in 1865. The family owned another 200 acres in land around the community.
The Barlow and Sanderson Stagecoach Line contracted with the Mahaffie family to provide one of the stops needed for their coaches, running between Fort Scott and Fort Leavenworth, and carrying passengers and the U.S. Mail from Independence, Missouri all the way to Santa Fe. By 1865 and until 1869, hungry passengers took their meals in the basement of the stone farmhouse, built to serve as a kitchen and dining hall. In 1867, Lucinda, her daughters, and hired helpers might have served as many as 50 to100 meals a day. While the passengers ate, the incoming teams of horses were switched for fresh animals.
James & Lucinda Mahaffie 1870
The Mahaffie home and adjoining property was purchased by the City of Olathe in 1979 to insure its preservation and to operate as a historic site. In 1997, the city purchased the properties to the east and south to further protect the site from encroaching development, and to provide park facilities and a location for a support facility in the future.
Today, the site is administered by the Parks and Recreation Department of the City of Olathe. The Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Foundation supports fundraising efforts for the preservation of the site and public programming.
Other Sources for Historic Information