Category Archives: Fort Scott National Historic Site

FSNHS Candlelight Tour Ticket

Fort Scott National Historic Site glows during the annual candlelight tour event.

Fort Scott National Historic Site Announces Its 38th Annual Candlelight Tour

Be an Active Part of History

 

December 6 and 7, 2019, Fort Scott National Historic Site will present its 38th Annual Candlelight Tour.

Tours on December 6 will begin at 6:30 pm and leave every 15 minutes until 9 pm. On Saturday, December 7, the tours will start at 5 pm with the final tour leaving at 8:45 pm. Please arrive 10 minutes early to allow time to park, present/pick up your ticket, and get oriented.

Tickets go on sale Friday, November 1st and are available by calling the Fort at 620-223-0310 (with a major credit card) or by stopping by the Visitor Center on Old Fort Blvd.

They are $8.00 per person and non-refundable, children 5 and under are free.

It is recommended that you get your tickets early for your choice of tour times as this event frequently sells out. Participants are advised to please dress for the weather and the terrain, as they will be outside and on sidewalks.

1,000 candle lanterns illuminate the site and 100 reenactors (including you) bring the fort to life.

“This year’s tour will include the audience in the tour stops. It will feature six stops around the site beginning with the enlistment and ending with reassignment of release from service, where the fort’s buildings were sold to the public two years after the U.S. Army abandoned Fort Scott,” said Betty Boyko, Superintendent, Fort Scott National Historic Site. “We encourage everyone to dress up (in modern or period clothes) and step back in time.”

Take the tour under the identity of one of our own Fort Scott soldiers. Enlist in the U.S. Army stationed at the Fort; learn about life on the frontier; the ups and downs of payday; celebrate the holidays 1840’s style; find out how much the officer’s wives appreciate all of your hard work; and after an memorable career, receive your discharge or reassignment stamp.  Keep your enlistment card to remember your journey through time.

Fort Scott was an active military post from 1842-1853, which was a time of rapid growth and change in the country.  As Fort Scott was being built, the nation grew west, expanding all the way to the Pacific Ocean.

With this growth, Fort Scott changed, the mission of its soldiers changed, their experience changed, the environment changed, and the nation changed. Soldiers at Fort Scott lived their lives to the fullest despite the constant change.

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 visitor center 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.

 

Reflect on Citizenship at Naturalization Ceremony Sept. 20

Jane Njeri Lifer smiles following the naturalization ceremony in 2017. In her hand is the certificate of naturalization. Lifer is a Fort Scott resident.

What has become an annual Fort Scott event since 2011 each September is a chance to see people from all parts of the globe become citizens of the United States.

The Naturalization Ceremony, as it’s called, will be at 10:30 a.m. on the grounds of the Fort Scott National Historic Site, just off the north end of Main Street.

Fort Scott National Historic Site

The naturalization ceremony involves a judge introducing the group of new citizens and a ceremony where they swear allegiance to their new country. The full program and words to that allegiance are at the bottom of this story.

” Last year we had 95 new citizens from 35 countries,” Carl Brenner from the Fort Scott National Historic Site said. “This year we are expecting about 120 new citizens.”

It is also a time of reflection, music, documents handed out, registering to vote for the new citizens, followed by a communal meal at the Fort for them and their families.

A bird’s eye view of voter registration following the naturalization ceremony. The League of Women Voters, Johnson County, provided the resources for the registration.

The United States District Court for the District of Kansas is the official government office holding the event.

The Honorable Teresa J. James, United States Magistrate Judge for the District of Kansas, will preside over the ceremony.

Fort Scott High School musicians play patriotic music.
All the citizens are introduced to the audience, one by one.

This year, the speaker is Dr. Leo Oliva.

Dr. Oliva is a Kansas Historian, author and former professor of history at Fort Hays State University, Betty Boyko, Superintendent of FSNHS, said.

The event is open to the public.

In case of rain or other inclement weather, the ceremony will be held at Fort Scott Memorial Hall.

FSNHS Superintendent Betty Boyko welcomes the crowd to the fort grounds in this 2016 photo.
The PSU ROTC presents the flags of America and Kansas during the ceremony in 2015.

 

The program:

There will be music provided by the Fort Scott High School Orchestra.

Then a welcome by Betty Boyko, Fort Scott National Historic Site and Dave Martin, City of Fort Scott.

The official court proceeding will be opened by U.S. District Court Deputy Carol Kuhl.

Followed by the presentation of the Colors by Pittsburg State University Army ROTC.

“The Star-Spangled Banner”  will be played by the FSHS Orchestra.

The new citizens will be welcomed by Judge James.

“America: Sweet Land of Liberty” arranged by Michael Story will be played by the FSHS Orchestra.

The new citizens will be introduced by John King, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, then led in the recitation of the Oath of Citizenship by Carol Kuhl, Courtroom Deputy.

“America the Beautiful” will be performed by the  FSHS Orchestra and Choir, followed by remarks by James.

The group will then hear from Leo E. Oliva, who is a Kansas historian.

The Pledge of Allegiance will be led by the FSHS Choir.

Closing remarks will be by Judge James.

The new citizens and their families will be offered a complimentary lunch in the Grand Hall provided by the Friends of Fort Scott NHS, Inc.

The following is the oath that the new citizens take:

United States of America Oath of Allegiance

I, _________________________ hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.

1800s Grand Ball Nov. 9

The Friends of Fort Scott National Historic Site (NHS) are once again hosting an 1800s Grand Ball. It will be held on Saturday, November 9, 2019, in Memorial Hall located in old downtown Fort Scott. The ball is only one part of the celebration for Veterans Day Weekend in Fort Scott. Along with 1800s period dancing and music, the ball will honor all veterans and current military personnel. All funds raised at the Grand Ball will go to support the activities of the Friends of Fort Scott NHS. The Friends provide support to the national historic site in a variety of ways, such as assisting with educational activities and programs for all ages as well as providing refreshments for special events. Tickets will be available at the Fort Scott Chamber starting October 16th.

 

The tentative schedule for the Veterans Day Weekend activities in Fort Scott are listed below.

Friday, November 8 – The Missourians Gospel Quartet, a special concert honoring veterans at Memorial Hall, 7 pm

Saturday, November 9 –

  • 1800s Period dance lessons, Grand Hall on the grounds of Fort Scott National Historic Site, 10 am – 1 pm, free, street clothes
  • Parade Honoring Veterans, Downtown Fort Scott, 3 pm
  • 1800s Grand Ball, Memorial Hall, doors open at 6:00 pm, Dancing from 7 – 10:30 pm

Sunday, November 10 – Elvis Impersonator Concert, TBA

Monday, November 11 – National Cemetery Services, 11 am

General information concerning the weekend will be continually updated at the Fort Scott Chamber website at www.fortscott.com.

 

 

“We would like to encourage everyone attending the Veterans Day Weekend activities to come and participate in the 1800s Grand Ball, and likewise, we encourage anyone attending the 1800s Grand Ball to take part in the other activities offered during the weekend in Fort Scott,” Dee Young, member of the friends group said.

Contact her at 913.557.1632 or email

waynedeeyoung@hughes.net

Click below for the poster:

Veterans Day Weekend 1800s Grand Ball

 

Explore the Labors that Created Fort Scott this Labor Day Weekend

 

Saturday, August 31 through Monday, September 2, 2019, Fort Scott National Historic Site will take you on an exploration of the Labors leading to the creation of the “Crack Post on the Frontier”. Labor Day weekend activities include Native American dancing, artillery demonstrations, small arms drills, living history demonstrations and a variety of interpretive programs. All programs are free.

Saturday, September 1

10:00 am – Artillery Demonstration
11:00 am – Guided Tour of the Fort
12:00 pm – American Indian Dancing
1:00 pm – Artillery Demonstration
2:00 pm – Artillery Demonstration
3:00 pm – American Indian Dancing
4:00 pm – Flag Retreat

Sunday, September 2

11:00 am – Guided Tour
12:00 pm – Building the Crack Post of the Frontier-Interpretive Program
1:00 pm – Artillery Demonstration
2:00 pm – Small Arms Weapons Drill
3:00 pm – Artillery Demonstration
4:00 pm – Flag Retreat

Monday, September 3

11:00 am – Guided Tour of the Fort
12:00 pm – Building the Crack Post of the Frontier-Interpretive Program
1:00 pm – Soapsuds Row-Laundress Program
2:00 pm – Securing the Perimeter –Guardhouse Program
3:00 pm – Construction Tour of Fort Scott
4:00 pm – Flag Retreat

All programs are free and open to the public. The site exhibit areas and visitor center are open daily from 8 am -5 pm daily. 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.

 

Help the Fort Scott Youth Team Search the Fort    

Fort Scott National Historic Site’s Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) is looking for clues during the Fort’s Junior Ranger Day Saturday, July 20, and ‘Texting and Twitter: 1840s style’ 10 am until 3 pm Saturday, July 27. Both Saturdays are for all ages.

Get clues from dragoon or infantry soldiers, a laundress, or other people from the fort as you search the grounds. The interactive Junior Ranger Day programs are separated into age brackets of 3-5, 5-7, and 8-up. We also encourage the young at heart, and older ‘Jr. Rangers’, to try our new ‘Fort Inspector’ program. This program will keep you on your toes and test your I-Spy skills as you search for items throughout the fort.  Upon completion of your Junior Ranger Program, you will be sworn in as an official Junior Ranger and awarded a Junior Ranger badge. This program runs continuously all day.

‘Texting and Twitter: 1840s style’ will give you clues into historic methods of communication including quill pen and ink well letter writing, deciphering messages in Morse code, and composing a ‘tweet’ for a historic news story.

All programs are free and open to the public. To participate, stop by the visitor center.

The site exhibit areas and visitor center are open daily from 8 am -5 pm daily. The park grounds are open daily from ½ hour before sunrise until ½ hour after sunset.

FSNHS: Public Response Brings Extra Week of Trailblazer Program

Fort Scott National Historic Site

Second Week of Trailblazer Program Announced at Fort Scott NHS this Summer!

FORT SCOTT, Kansas: Due to the popularity of Fort Scott National Historic Site’s Trailblazer Program, we are pleased to announce that the program will be repeated for a second week from August 12-16, 2019. It will begin at 8:30 a.m. and end at 12:00 p.m. each day. The workshop will be the same as the one held the previous week, except that 12 additional children will be able to participate in the program.

Registration is underway. To sign-up, contact Fort Scott National Historic Site at (620) 223-0310 or email fosc_interpretation@nps.gov with your name and phone number. Participants must be between ages 9-12 as of the beginning day of camp. Participants will be sent an informational packet after registration is complete. There is no charge for the day camp. Since space is limited to 12 participants, priority will be given to youth who have not attended before.

During this workshop, children will be introduced to the National Park Service mission of caring for the Nation’s natural and cultural heritage. They will search for treasure in a mock archaeological dig, explore the prairie, and discover methods used to preserve the buildings and artifacts of the fort. The students will engage in living history, be fielded in flag protocol, and will work on a play that they will present at the end of the week. Also, there will be green activities that will teach children how to use our resources wisely.

www.nps.gov/fosc

Fort Scott National Historic Site is a fee free park that offers a glimpse into the growth of our nation. A walk through the fort reveals the significant role it played in the opening of the West, as well as, the Civil War and the strife in the State of Kansas that preceded it. For more information about Fort Scott National Historic Site, please call the park at 620-223-0310, visit us at www.nps.gov/fosc, on Facebook www.facebook.com/FortScottNPS, Twitter www.twitter.com/FortScottNPS, and Instagram www.instagram.com/fortscottnps

www.nps.gov

About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 419 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit us at www.nps.gov, on Facebook www.facebook.com/nationalparkservice, Twitter www.twitter.com/natlparkservice, and YouTube www.youtube.com/nationalparkservice.

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Independence Day At FSNHS

Celebrate Independence Day with the Sights and Sounds of 1840’s Military Fireworks

FORT SCOTT, Kan. – Celebrate the anniversary of American independence with the sounds of cannon fire and homemade ice cream while honoring the service men and women who have defended the United States for the past 243 years. Thursday, July 4, Fort Scott National Historic Site will have artillery demonstrations twice each hour from noon until 4 pm. At 3:30 pm, we will pay tribute to the nation’s founders followed by a flag retreat at 4 pm.

The celebration continues on July 6 and 7 as you discover the rich history and significance of the fort. Experience frontier cooking demonstrations, play period games, see mock artillery and weapons drills, and explore the prairie grass as the fort comes to life before your eyes.

Thursday, July 4

12:00 pm – Artillery Demonstration

12:30 pm – Homemade Ice Cream

1:00 pm – Artillery Demonstration

2:00 pm – Artillery Demonstration

3:00 pm – Artillery Demonstration

3:30 pm – Tribute to the Founders

4:00 pm – Artillery Salute and Flag Retreat

Saturday, July 6

10:00 am – Prairie Walk

12:00 pm – An Arm and a Leg: 1840s Medical Program

1:00-3:00 pm – Let the Games Begin-Historic Games station

3:00-4:30 pm – Going Green: Historic Gardens station

4:00 – Flag Retreat

Sunday July 7

11:00 am – Guided Tour of the Fort

12:00 pm – A Hearty Grip

1:00 pm – Guided Tour

2:00 pm – Democracy Run Wild

3:00 pm – The Price of War

4:00 pm – Flag Retreat

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

To find out more or become involved in activities at the Fort, please contact the park at 620-223-0310.

www.nps.gov/fosc

Fort Scott National Historic Site is a fee free park that offers a glimpse into the growth of our nation. A walk through the fort reveals the significant role it played in the opening of the West, as well as, the Civil War and the strife in the State of Kansas that preceded it. For more information about Fort Scott National Historic Site, please call the park at 620-223-0310, visit us at www.nps.gov/fosc, on Facebook www.facebook.com/FortScottNPS, Twitter www.twitter.com/FortScottNPS, and Instagram www.instagram.com/fortscottnps

www.nps.gov

About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 419 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit us at www.nps.gov, on Facebook www.facebook.com/nationalparkservice, Twitter www.twitter.com/natlparkservice, and YouTube www.youtube.com/nationalparkservice.

Flag Disposal Ceremony June 14

Bring your Worn Flags to the Fort for a US Flag Disposal Ceremony

Fort Scott Kan. – This Friday, June 14, 2019, at 7 pm., Fort Scott National Historic Site (the Fort) and American Legion Post 25 will be hosting an official US Flag Disposal Ceremony. Bring your: United States, POW/MIA, State, and Service (U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Navy, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Coast Guard) flags to the fort at or before 7 pm Friday and we will properly and respectfully dispose of them.

“4 U.S. Code § 8k (Respect for the flag) states that ‘The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.’” said Betty Boyko, Superintendent, Fort Scott National Historic Site. “As with celebrating this countries newest citizens at our Naturalization Ceremony and honoring those we have lost through the ‘Field of Honor’ during Symbols of Sacrifice, we are proud to be a part in honoring this country’s flag by hosting this ceremony.”

To find out more or become involved in activities at the Fort, please contact the park at 620-223-0310.

 

Good Ol’ Days at the Fort

Experience growth and change from the ‘Good Ol’ Days’ at Fort Scott National Historic Site

The Good’ Ol’ Days are back Saturday, June 1, 2019 at Fort Scott National Historic Site. With the completion of the transcontinental railroad 150 years ago, growth and change were once again on the doorstep of Fort Scott.

Try your hand at using a telegraph or quill pens instead of texting, reminisce with reenactors about how life used to be, play traditional games, or learn about how the railroad changed the face of Fort Scott.

A surgical reenactor will be discussing historic medicine and then at 2 pm we will be landing AirMedCare’s air ambulance and hosting Fort Scott’s ground ambulance to discuss how medicine has improved.

Living history activities will be ongoing from 9 am – 4 pm. All activities are free and open to the public.

To find out more, please contact the park at 620-223-0310.

SATURDAY, JUNE 3

9:00 a.m. – Raising the Colors

All Day – Telegraph and Quill Pens hands on Demonstrations, Living History Reenactments

10:00 a.m. – An Arm and a Leg: The Cost of Surgery Demonstration

11:00 a.m. – Guided Tour of the Fort

12: 00 p.m. – A Speck of War, The Military’s Involvement in Post-Civil War Fort Scott

1:00 p.m. – Railroads of Fort Scott program

2:00 p.m. – Landing AirMedCare’s air ambulance and hosting Fort Scott’s ground ambulance

4:00 p.m. – Flag Retreat

Symbols of Sacrifice Memorial At FSNHS This Weekend

Symbols of Sacrifice event. Submitted photo.

Update: This is an all weather event. Programs will move indoors in case of inclement weather.

Thousands of American flags will be displayed in a Field of Honor at Fort Scott National Historic Site, in what is called Symbols of Sacrifice.

Fort Scott National Historic Site will be hosting “Symbols of Sacrifice” this Memorial Day Weekend, Friday, May 24 through, Monday, May 27.

We encourage community members and organizations to join the park in placing the flags Friday morning beginning at 9 am.

There will be guided tours daily at 11 am and 1 pm.

All weekend at 2:30 pm, we will have special programs.

Saturday will discuss the Mexican American War;

Sunday, the Civil War -A Most Diverse Army;

and Monday, a special Memorial Day program followed by a Moment of Silence at 3 pm.

Saturday, May 25 at 4 pm, Ralph Carlson and Arnold Schofield will present “The Vacant Chair” followed by musicians performing a special concert of patriotic music.

“The 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.

To find out more and to become involved, please contact the park at 620-223-0310.

Fort Coordinates Prescribed Fire

Nearly Five Acres Successfully Treated with Prescribed Fire at Fort Scott National Historic Site

 

Fort Scott Kan. – Yesterday, Park managers at Fort Scott National Historic Site, in coordination with Fire Managers at the US Fish and Wildlife Service from Marais des Cygnes National Wildlife Refuge, successfully treated five acres with prescribed (Rx) fire in the park’s restored tallgrass prairie.

“We are pleased with the outcome and professional manner in which the Rx burn was conducted,” said Betty Boyko, Superintendent, Fort Scott National Historic Site. “These prescribed fires, reduce the fuel load, suppress the invasive woody plants and cool season grasses, and stimulate native plants.”

The park will begin rotating the burn cycle between seasons to maintain plant diversity as this more closely approximates the natural fire regime in Eastern Kansas where lightning-ignited fires occurred most frequently during the dry summer months (July and August) and Native Americans burned most extensively in the late fall, particularly October.

Prescribed fires play on important role in the ecosystem. However, spot treatments and manual pulling are still necessary. To find out more on how to become involved, please contact the park at 620-223-0310.

Prairie Fire at FSNHS on April 28

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 just after 4 pm. Sunday, April 28, 2019.  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 project as an in-season prescribed fire (Rx) with the assistance of our interagency neighbors. Our ability to treat the tallgrass prairie at a time of year when fires naturally occur enhances the resilience of the ecosystem and protection of visitors, the infrastructure of Fort Scott National Historic Site, and the city of Fort Scott,” 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 northeast, 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.