Category Archives: Fort Scott National Historic Site

A Fair Day’s Wage: Fort Scott National Historic Site

Labors of Fort Scott

Saturday, September 4 through Monday, September 6, 2021, Fort Scott National Historic Site will take you on an exploration of the sights, sounds, and smells behind the Labors creating the “Crack Post on the Frontier”.

 

Labor Day weekend activities include artillery demonstrations, historic cooking, breadmaking, construction skill demonstrations, and a variety of interpretive programs. Visit with soldiers, laundress, and an officer and his wife and find out if everyone earned a fair day’s wage. All programs are free and open to the public.

 

Saturday, September 4.

  • Living History stations are available throughout the day
  • 10:00 am – Guided Fort Tour
  • 11:00 am – Artillery Demonstration
  • Noon – Historic Construction Demonstration
  • 1:00 pm – Guided Fort Tour
  • 2:00 pm – Artillery Demonstration
  • 3:00 pm- Artillery Demonstration
  • 4:00 pm – Flag Retreat

 

Sunday, September 5

  • 10:00 am – Guided Fort Tour
  • 11:00 am – Artillery Demonstration
  • 1:00 pm – Guided Fort Tour
  • 2:00  pm – Artillery Demonstration
  • 3:00 pm – Artillery Demonstration
  • 4:00 pm – Flag Retreat

 

Monday September 6

  • 10:00 am – Guided Fort Tour
  • 11:00 am – Artillery Demonstration
  • 1:00 pm – Guided Fort Tour
  • 2:00 pm – Artillery  Demonstration
  • 3:00 pm – Crack Post of the Frontier – Construction Tour of Fort Scott
  • 4:00 pm – Flag Retreat

 

The National Park Service currently requires that everyone, regardless of vaccination status, wear a mask in all federal buildings and outside when others are present and physical distancing (staying at least six feet apart) cannot be maintained.

 

Seeing the Past With New Eyes

NPS Photo: C. Brenner Crew laying out survey grid

Fort Scott National Historic Site will be conducting a geophysical survey of the site on August 2 through 13, 2021, to better understand how the fort looked in the 1840s.

 

A four-person crew from the Midwest Archeological Center will look into the ground using magnetometry, resistance, conductivity, ground-penetrating radar, and magnetic susceptibility. They will be surveying the area known as the Quartermaster’s Quadrangle, the areas behind Officer’s Row, and the courtyard that once existed south of the Post Hospital. If time allows, they will also survey for other features such as latrines, wash houses, and other associated buildings. The crew is also scheduled to return next spring to survey areas that are in the restored prairie after the 2022 spring prescribed burn.

 

“We will be able to see exactly where fort buildings, patios, and walkways were in the 1840s” said Betty Boyko, Superintendent, Fort Scott National Historic Site. “Many of these structures have been lost over time, but through technology, we can better understand how the fort originally looked,” continued Boyko.

 

From April 1-October 31, Fort Scott National Historic Site, a unit of the National Park Service, will be open for its summer hours of operation.  The site exhibit areas and visitor center are open daily from 8 am-5 pm. The park grounds are open daily from a half hour before sunrise until a half hour after sunset. To find out more or become involved in activities at the Fort, please contact the park at 620-223-0310 or visit our website at www.nps.gov/fosc.

-NPS-

 

Credit Photo as: NPS Photo: C. Brenner

1st photo: Crew laying out survey grid

2nd photo: NPS survey marker flag

 

Lunette Blair Returns to Fort Scott

The Friends of Fort Scott NHS, Inc, are hosting the donation ceremony of the Lunette Blair building and land to the Fort Scott National Historic Site in a public ceremony/photo-op on the site in Skubitz Plaza, Saturday, July 3, 2021, at 11 am.

 

U.S. Senator Jerry Moran will deliver remarks as a key proponent of the park’s boundary expansion through the John D. Dingell Jr. Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act.

U.S. Congressman Jake LaTurner also plans to be present and speak.

Reed Hartford, President of the Friends of Fort Scott, Inc., will share the history and progression of events that brought us to this historic day.

Members of several different groups and organizations who have owned and participated in helping to preserve this historic structure including the Molly Foster Berry Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Historic Preservation Association of Bourbon County, Western Blockhouse Committee, and the City of Fort Scott will participate in the event.

 

Construction of the Lunette Blair began in 1863. It is the only building remaining of the three fortifications surrounded Fort Scott during the Civil War. Lunettes are temporary forts, curved into a protective shape and placed near but outside the main fortification. Fort Scott’s three lunettes (Blair, Henning, and Insley) held the blockhouses enclosed by a wood and earthen wall.

 

Celebrate Independence with the Sights and Sounds of 1860’s Military Fireworks 

NPS photo

Celebrate the anniversary of American independence with the sounds of cannon fire while honoring the servicemen and women who have defended the United States for the past 245 years. Fort Scott National Historic Site will accept the donation of the Lunette Blair building and land in a public ceremony/photo-op on the site in Skubitz Plaza, Saturday, July 3, at 11 am.

 

Saturday and Sunday, July 3 and 4, 2021, Fort Scott National Historic Site will have artillery demonstrations, tours, programs, and living history activities throughout the day. On Monday, July 5, 2021, festivities continue with tours, programs, and living history.

 

Saturday, July 3

10:00 pm – Guided Tour of the Fort

11:00 am – Donation of Lunette Blair Property Ceremony

1:00 pm – Guided Tour of the Fort

2:00 pm – The Summer of 1861

3:00 pm – Artillery Demonstration

4:00 pm – Artillery Demonstration

 

Sunday, July 4

10:00 am – Civil War Small Arms Discussion

11:00 am Guided Tour of the Fort

1:00 pm – Guided Tour of the Fort

3:00 pm – The History of Combat Photography (Civil War to Present)

 

Monday, July 5

10:00 am – Civil War Small Arms Discussion

11:00 am Guided Tour of the Fort

1:00 pm – Guided Tour of the Fort

3:00 pm – The History of Combat Photography (Civil War to Present)

 

Visitors and local residents are reminded that fireworks are not permitted on the grounds of Fort Scott National Historic Site.

 

Fort Scott NHS and the Community Honor the Fallen Memorial Day Weekend

Submitted photo from the NPS

Symbols of Sacrifice

Fort Scott National Historic Site will be hosting “Symbols of Sacrifice” this Memorial Day Weekend, Friday, May 28 through, Monday, May 31. We welcome community members and organizations to join the park in placing the flags for the Field of Honor Friday morning beginning at 9 am. This Field of Honor will be open throughout the weekend. There will be guided fort tours daily at 10 am and 1 pm. A special Memorial Day program of patriotic music will be presented by Pat and Steve Harry, followed by the final flag retreat for the weekend, beginning at 4 pm. Monday, May 31.

 

“The Field of Honor with its approximately 7,000 flags commemorate the ultimate sacrifice members of the United States Armed Forces have made to keep this country free,” said Betty Boyko, Superintendent, Fort Scott National Historic Site.

 

If you are not fully vaccinated (less than 2 weeks past your final dose), you are required to wear a mask in all federal buildings and outside when others are present and physical distancing (staying at least six feet apart) cannot be maintained. This is an all-weather event, except the musical program on Monday will be canceled because of rain. To find out more and to become involved, please contact the park at 620-223-0310.

The Fort’s Survey: Needs, Motivations and Evaluation of NPS Digital Media

The bike rack at Fort Scott National Historic Site.

The fort at the end of Main Street that has given Fort Scott its’ name, is reaching out to National Park Service visitors who want an online experience.

“Fort Scott National Historic Site is participating in a nationwide survey to characterize the NPS virtual visitor population so we can better meet their virtual needs, describe visitors’ motivations, and evaluate the effectiveness of NPS digital media products,” Carl Brenner, FSNHS Program Manager for Interpretation and Resource Manager, said.

“We are part of a pilot/pre-test program consisting of a handful of National Park sites nationwide,” he said. “This survey will run four weeks, February 16 through March 14, 2021. These National Parks are making weekly posts, on each social media platform they support, to invite virtual visitors to participate in the survey once they have completed their virtual visit.”

 

“The virtual tour of the park is a series of 360-degree images from all of the rooms here at the site,” Brenner said. “The Virtual Visit, as it is called in the survey, is browsing the posts on each of the social media platforms to gain a deeper connection and understanding of the park.”

 

To take the virtual tour:

http://www.nps.gov/fosc/learn/photosmultimedia/360tours.htm

 

Fort Scott NHS participates on the following social media platforms:

www.facebook.com/FortScottNPS

www.instagram.com/fortscottnps

https://twitter.com/FortScottNPS

Fortscott.biz interviewed Brenner by email.

Here are the questions and responses.

What is it designed to do?

“The public expects nearly all desired information to be found quickly and easily through websites and social media channels. They also expect that organizations frequently update these assets. The National Park Service (NPS) directly manages thousands of digital media web pages, mobile app pages, and social media channels. They also supply content, directly or indirectly, for third-party providers that share digital media information with the public. Within this large digital ecosystem, millions of online users from around the world rely on these resources for a wide range of information. While NPS has an established program for measuring and monitoring physical visitation to its park units, the program for describing and evaluating virtual visitors to its online resources is still being developed.

This study is part of that development. It aims to characterize the NPS virtual visitor population so we can better meet their virtual needs, describe visitors’ motivations, and evaluate the effectiveness of NPS digital media products.”

 

What will be done with the results?

“Through this program, the NPS, and specifically Fort Scott NHS, can better understand and meet the needs of our virtual visitors. We will be able to better evaluate the effectiveness of our digital media products in terms of the virtual visitor experience. With this information we can better prepare visitors for future visits,  increase resource protection, build a deeper understanding of the history and stories of our nation’s heritage, and build better connections to and stewards of National Park Service resources. Additionally, NPS will determine if the current allocation of resources for digital media is generating congruent virtual visitor value, and the NPS will be positioned to more strategically deploy resources where digital information needs are not being sufficiently met and/or where the highest value is being provided.”

 

When will the survey results be collected and analyzed?

“The evaluation of the virtual visitors’ experiences and digital media effectiveness will begin immediately following the close of the survey and we are hoping to receive results by the end of the summer.”

 

 

The fort’s contact info:

Office – 620-223-0310

www.facebook.com/FortScottNPS

www.instagram.com/FortScottNPS

http://twitter.com/FortScottNPS

Water Line Breakage Closes Dragoons Barracks at FSNHS

 

 

Fort Scott Kan. – Fort Scott National Historic was impacted by the sub-zero temperatures last week when a fire suppression line valve and pipe failed and ruptured on Saturday, February 20, 2021 around 6:30pm in the Dragoons Barracks. The rupture caused flooding in the attic space, the exhibit area on the second floor, and the Laundress, Married Non-Commissioned Officer’s quarters, and the mechanical room on the first floor.

 

“The park is currently assessing the damages and undergoing a thorough inspection of the building, its fire suppression system, and electrical systems,” said Betty Boyko, Superintendent, Fort Scott National Historic Site. “We are also working closely with the regional Museum Curator and Harpers Ferry Center’s Museum Curation staff on how to best conserve and store affected museum objects and artifacts.” The Dragoons Barracks monitoring system has been restored but the building will remain closed through the assessment and rehabilitation process.

 

From November 1-March 31, Fort Scott National Historic Site, a unit of the National Park Service, will be open for its winter hours of operation. The site exhibit areas and historic buildings are open daily from 8:30 am-4:30 pm. The park grounds are open daily from ½ hour before sunrise until ½ hour after sunset. To find out more or become involved in activities at the Fort, please contact the park at 620-223-0310 or visit our website at www.nps.gov/fosc.

 

DEADLINE FOR 2021 FLAG SUBSCRIPTIONS NEARS

 

The deadline to sign up for the Friends of Fort Scott National Historic Site’s Fly the Flag project is quickly approaching. Applications for new subscriptions must be postmarked by March 1st. Subscribers renewing for 2021 must submit a renewal application and payment by March 31st.

The project provides homeowners and businesses, within the city limits of Fort Scott, the opportunity to fly the Stars and Stripes, hassle free, on five different flag holidays. For $35 annually, the Friends will install a 3’x5′ flag on a 12 foot staff at your home or business on Memorial Day, Flag Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day, and Veteran’s Day.

Application forms can be obtained at the Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce or can be requested by phone or text by calling Kelley Collins at 417-684-2484. Renewals notices have been mailed/emailed to all 2020 subscribers. Questions can be directed to Kelley or Martha Scott at 620-224-9924.

All proceeds support programs at Fort Scott National Historic Site. These include: Symbols of Sacrifice, a Citizenship Ceremony, Candlelight Tour, Youth Engagement, and many others.

Show your patriotism and help our local National Park by lining the streets of Fort Scott with our nation’s symbol!

The Fly the Flag project is a yearly project sponsored by the Friends of Fort Scott National Historic Site. Once signed up, you will receive the option to renew annually.

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FSNHS Bird Walk For Saturday Cancelled Because of Sub-Zero Temps

“Our bird walk scheduled for this Saturday has been canceled for the safety of our visitors and staff,” Carl Brenner, Fort Scott National Historic Site Program Manager for Interpretation and Resource Management said. ” With the potential for low single-digit temperatures and wind chills in the -the 20s, we felt asking people to be outside for extended periods of time would be unsafe.”

 

“If people would still like to personally participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count at the fort or elseware, they can go to www.birdcount.org to learn more.”

 

Great Backyard Bird Count at Fort Scott NHS 

 

Fort Scott Kan. – Fort Scott National Historic Site and Marais des Cygnes National Wildlife Refuge will host a free guided bird walk Saturday, February 13, at the Fort from 10 am to noon for the Great Backyard Bird Count.

 

Join a Ranger on an easy, one-mile, two-hour birdwatching walk starting from the National Park Visitor Center. Rangers and participants will record all bird sightings and upload the data to the Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC). This walk is for birders of all skill levels and you don’t have to stay for the entire program to make a difference. Birders are encouraged to bring binoculars and warm, layered, clothing. A free Pocket Guide to Common Kansas Backyard Birds is available courtesy of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

 

Since 1998, “The Backyard Bird Count has been an opportunity for citizen scientists around the world to contribute to the understanding of wild birds, their environment, and numbers,” said Betty Boyko, Superintendent, Fort Scott National Historic Site. “We encourage everyone to join us each month for additional bird walks and programs.” Watch for scheduled bird walks in the park throughout the year on Facebook or at the Fort Scott NHS Website www.nps.gov/fosc.

 

For more information about the Great Backyard Bird Count, contact Fort Scott National Historic Site by calling 620-223-0310. If you can’t make it to the program, but wish to participate in the bird count, find out more at the Great Backyard Bird Count’s ‘How to Participate’ page.

 

Each checklist submitted during the GBBC helps researchers at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society learn more about how birds are doing, and how to protect them and the environment we share. Last year, more than 268,674 estimated participants identified 6,942 species of birds. You can make the difference this year. The results of these bird counts are available at www.birdcount.org.

 

-NPS-

 

Credit Photo as: NPS Photo: A. Schauer

2021 Flag Project

The Fort Scott Area Chamber
of CommerceAnnounces for Chamber Member “Friends of the Fort”
“2021 Flag Project”
ACCEPTING NEW SUBSCRIPTIONS FOR 2021!
Click HEREto download the application. You can also pick up a printed application at
The Fort Scott Chamber Area Chamber of Commerce
Fly the U.S. Flag Project!

Prairie Prescribed Fire Planned at Fort Scott National Historic Site 

Fort Scott Kan. – Park managers at Fort Scott National Historic Site, in coordination with Fire Managers with the US Fish and Wildlife Service from Marais des Cygnes National Wildlife Refuge, plan to burn the five acre restored prairie Thursday, December 10, 2020.  The ignition will depend upon weather conditions and the burn may be postponed or canceled if conditions are unfavorable.

 

“We were very excited to be able to implement this prescribed fire (Rx) project with the assistance of our interagency neighbors. Our ability to treat the tallgrass prairie at a time of year enhances the resilience of the ecosystem and results in a more diverse prairie with more cool-season grasses.” said Betty Boyko, Superintendent, Fort Scott National Historic Site. Like all prescribed fires, the plans for the tallgrass prairie Rx contain a set of parameters which define (among other things) the expected weather and fuel conditions under which the fire can be initiated. Prior to implementing the burn, fire managers will evaluate current conditions and will only ignite the fire if all of the prescribed conditions are within those parameters.

 

During typical prescribed fire activity, daytime smoke disperses to the northwest, up and over the highway.  Coordination with the City of Fort Scott, Bourbon County Sheriff’s Office, Kansas State Highway Patrol, and Kansas Department of Transportation is already underway for this prescribed fire.  Smoke impacts or traffic delays on Highway 69 should not occur during the burn.