July 3, 2017, marked the 100th anniversary of the General James “Birdseye” McPherson statue installation. General McPherson was a Civil War Union officer for whom the city and county is named. At age 35 he was killed during the Battle of Atlanta, six years prior to the founding of McPherson County. Why is the community named for a man who never entered the state of Kansas? As Civil War veterans moved westward and settled in Kansas after the war, they paid tribute to their generals by naming cities and counties in their honor.