Kanapolis, formerly Fort Harker, an incorporated city of the third class in Ellsworth county, is located on the Union Pacific R. R. 5 miles east of Ellsworth, the county seat. It has a bank, a grain elevator, a weekly newspaper (the Journal), telegraph and express offices, and a money order postoffice with two rural routes. The population, according to the census of 1910, was 577.
During its boom Kanapolis was one of the most extensive "paper" towns ever conceived. It was founded in May, 1886, and printing presses were kept busy night and day for a time by the promoters, getting out advertising for what they claimed was going to be a great city by 1900.
Sky scrapers loomed up in their vision. The site was laid out on a scale suitable for a city of 150,000 people. Four blocks were reserved for a "State House Grounds;" lots sold as high as $1,000. An incident of the legislative war of 1893 was an attempt by the Populists to move the state capital from Topeka to Kanapolis.