Smallville may be fictional, but the names of these Kansas cities highlight the ‘ville

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Smallville” is Superman’s fictional Kansas hometown.

“Stubbville” is the Sunflower State city where Steve Martin’s and John Candy’s characters catch a train after a frigid ride in the back of a pickup in “Planes, Trains and Automobiles.”

That’s reel life.

In real life, Kansas communities with names that end in ‘ville” are pretty common.

In celebration of Kansas Day, here are the 25 incorporated Sunflower State cities identified in U.S. Census records as having names that end in “ville,” listed in order of population, plus one in Nemaha County that’s unincorporated but nevertheless has 182 people.

The list doesn’t include “Larryville,” a common nickname for Lawrence, or “Aggieville,” the Manhattan bar district.

1. Haysville

Haysville, which the 2020 U.S. Census says has a population of 11,262, is in Sedgwick County in south-central Kansas. The city is named after its founder, W.W. Hays. It has been called the “Peach Capital of Kansas,” though peach production there has waned.

2. Coffeyville

Coffeyville, population 8,826, is in Montgomery County in southeast Kansas. It is named after Col. James A. Coffey, an early trader in the area. Coffeyville is perhaps best known as the place where the Dalton Gang met its demise when it tried to rob two banks at once in 1892.

3. Edwardsville

Edwardsville, population 4,717, is in Wyandotte County in southeast Kansas. It is named after John H. Edwards, a railroad employee, who later was a justice of the peace and state senator from Ellis County.

4. Marysville

Marysville, population 3,447, is the county seat of Marshall County in northeast Kansas. It is named after Mary Marshall, the wife of Francis J. “Frank” Marshall, an early trader in the area.

5. Belleville

Belleville, population 2,007, is the county seat of Republic County in northern Kansas. It is named after Arabelle Tutton, the wife of one of the city’s founding fathers, A.B. Tutton.

6. Wellsville

Wellsville, population 1,953, is in Franklin County in east-central Kansas. It is named after D.L. Wells, a railroad construction engineer.

7. Plainville

Plainville, population 1,746, is in Rooks County in north-central Kansas. Its name reflects its setting upon the Kansas plains.

8. Rossville

Rossville, population 1,105, is in northwest Shawnee County in northeast Kansas. It is named after William W. Ross, a Kansas reporter, according to the city’s Facebook site.

9. Spearville

Spearville, population 791, is in Ford County in southwest Kansas. It is named after Alden H. Speare, a railroad official who was president of the town company. The city’s name appeared as both “Spearville” and “Speareville” until the 1890s, which local newspaper editors agreed to use the former spelling.

10. Waterville

Waterville, population 658, is in Marshall County in northeast Kansas. It is named after Waterville, Maine, the home of an official for a railroad that was built through the community.

11. Nortonville

Nortonville, population 601, is in Jefferson County in northeast Kansas. It is named after T.L. Norton, a supervisor on the crew that built a railroad through the area.

12. Macksville

Macksville, population 471, is in Stafford County in central Kansas. It is named after George Mack, the first postmaster of Stafford County.

13. Leonardville

Leonardville, population 432, is in Riley County in northeast Kansas. It is named after Leonard T. Smith, a railroad official.

14. Brookville

Brookville, population 247, is in Saline County in north-central Kansas.

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