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Situated at the confluence of the Big Blue and Kansas Rivers, the town of Manhattan, Kansas, is in both Pottawatomie and Riley Counties. Settled by free-staters in 1855, it was originally named Boston, after the New England city. Two months after their arrival, a steamboat carrying 75 settlers from Ohio ran aground near the new town. The passengers of the boat agreed to settle in Boston, Kansas, but only if the name was changed to Manhattan. It was so incorporated in 1857.



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