Chappell is located in Deuel County east of Sidney off of I-80 between Lodgepole and Big Springs, near the Oregon & California Trail and the Kansas State line. The population estimate for July 1, 1998 was 883, a decrease of 96 since 1990.
The town is named after Charles Henry Chappell. Chappell was a construction engineer who made his headquarters near the present day site of Chappell. When supplies were sent to his location, they were sent to "Chappell", thus the town was named.