Category Archives: History

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

 

Fort Scott’s Frontline Pandemic Workers Honored

Lowell Milken Center Announces New Banner Exhibits Honoring Fort Scott’s Frontline Workers

 

The Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes invites all community members to visit the Center beginning Wednesday, July 28, 2021, to see its newest exhibit, “Fort Scott’s Frontline Heroes.” Three new banners will be part of the exhibit, highlighting three groups of frontline workers – First Responders, Health Care Workers, and Educators. This new exhibit has been made possible with funds received from a Fort Scott Area Community Foundation grant.

The Lowell Milken Center’s “Fort Scott’s Frontline Heroes” project highlights frontline professions within our community who have been directly dealing with pandemic issues in order to provide safe and direct action for our citizens. The following three groups have been recognized in the new banner exhibits: FIRST RESPONDERS (Firefighters, Law Enforcement Officers, EMS Workers), HEALTH CARE WORKERS (CHCSEK, Ascension/Via Christi ER, Southeast Kansas Multi-County Health Department, Long Term Care Facilities, Assisted/Independent Living Facilities), and EDUCATORS (Public and Private Schools).

The LMC believes these groups of workers are truly Fort Scott’s “unsung heroes,” as they have given so much of themselves to our community’s citizens during the pandemic and continue to do so. We encourage all Fort Scott area citizens to support these heroes by viewing the new exhibits at the Lowell Milken Center, sharing words of gratitude and support in the LMC guest book and through the LMC’s social media pages on Facebook – www.facebook.com/LowellMilkenCenter, Twitter – https://twitter.com/LowellMilkenCtr, and Instagram – www.instagram.com/LowellMilkenCtr.

About the Lowell Milken Center: The Lowell Milken Center is a non-profit 501 © (3) that works with students and educators within a range of diverse academic disciplines, to develop projects focused on unsung heroes. Once their projects are finished, the student’s unsung heroes are shared in the Hall of Unsung Heroes or on the website, encouraging people all over the world to discover their individual influence and obligation to take actions that improve the lives of others. The Hall of Unsung Heroes is proudly located in Southeast Kansas and showcases some of the top projects developed in collaboration with the Center.

 

History Tour This Weekend in Bourbon County

Sponsored by Old Fort Genealogy Society,

Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce &

The Historic Preservation Association of Bourbon County

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PRE-REGISTRATION ONLINE IS REQUIRED FOR THIS EVENT.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER AND PAY!

Please arrive at Memorial Hall before 8:30am so we can

check you in and give you information and bags of goodies.

Tour should conclude by 10:30am.

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Facebook  Twitter  Instagram

Bourbon County History Tours: Marmaton, July 3

Sponsored by Old Fort Genealogy Society,

Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce &

The Historic Preservation Association of Bourbon County

headline.png

PRE-REGISTRATION ONLINE IS REQUIRED FOR THIS EVENT.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER AND PAY!

Please arrive at Memorial Hall before 8:30am so we can

check you in and give you information and bags of goodies.

Tour should conclude by 10:30am.

pre-register.png
Facebook  Twitter  Instagram
Marmaton - Marmiton Carpool History Tour.png
THANK YOU TO OUR BOOSTER SPONSORS!
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New Unsung Heroes Park in Downtown Fort Scott

Fort Scott Tourism Director Jackson Tough, City Park Committee Members Beth Nuss and Elaine Buerge, LMC Communications Director Karen Wilterding, LMC Program Director Megan Felt, LMC Executive Director Norm Conard, City Manager Jeremy Frazier, Chamber Director Lindsey Madison, Owner of Dreamscapes Innovations Josh Baldwin, City Economic Development Rachel Pruitt, and Community Development Director Allyson Turvey. Submitted photo.

The Lowell Milken Center Breaks Ground for New Unsung Heroes Park

Construction on the Lowell Milken Center’s new Unsung Heroes Park has officially begun, with groundbreaking taking place Tuesday, June 29, 2021, at 11:00 a.m.

With this much-anticipated expansion to the center and an opportunity to be part of Fort Scott’s downtown revitalization, the Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes is anxious to share this newest resource with both the community and the many visitors that come to Fort Scott.

“We are so proud of our latest addition to the Lowell Milken Center and to downtown Fort Scott,” said Norm Conard, the executive director. “Our vision is to have an impact on our community and the entire region in many different and positive ways. We appreciate the benevolent funding from the Lowell Milken Family Foundation and other significant contributions from generous donors such as Timken and others.”

The Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes (LMC) completed its main building in 2016 at the corner of Fort Scott’s Wall and Main Streets.

In 2018, a park was begun in the adjacent space south of the building in conjunction with members of the city’s park committee: Beth Nuss, Elaine Buerge, Carolyn Sinn, and Bernita Hill.

The LMC will now complete the park, called the “Unsung Heroes Park,” featuring outdoor Unsung Hero exhibits with interactive story rails, a walking trail, an enhanced water feature, and beautiful landscaping with bench seating.

The objectives of the park are to provide a place for visitors to enjoy the pleasant outdoor scenery, learn about unsung heroes, and offer a centralized community gathering space for programs and activities, while also complementing the downtown area.

The new Lowell Milken Center’s Unsung Heroes Park is expected to be completed in mid-August by Dreamscape Innovations, Inc.

The park will also feature the talents of teachers who have visited Fort Scott as past LMC Fellows and have helped design the park exhibits that will share new stories of Unsung Heroes.

To learn more about the Center and its stories and programs visit www.lowellmilkencenter.org and keep up with current events and announcements on their Facebook page, www.facebook.com/LowellMilkenCenter.

According to Community Development Manager Allyson Turvey, “The Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes is truly one of the great assets of Fort Scott and enriches our entire community. We are so thrilled to see the addition of the Unsung Heroes Park which will create a vibrant green space in our historic downtown and will benefit not only our local community but the thousands of tourists that visit Fort Scott each year.”

Since its inception, the Lowell Milken Center locally has hosted over 80,000 visitors from every state in the country and has impacted over 2 million students through its various programs.

The LMC was established in 2007 and has expanded its reach nationally to include international programs and visitors from 102 countries to the LMC in Fort Scott.

The Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes is an educational non-profit that discovers, develops and communicates the stories of Unsung Heroes.

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.

 

Bourbon County History Tours: Marmaton on July 3

Bourbon County Carpool Tour – History of Marmaton/Marmiton

The Bourbon County History Tours are starting with a visit to Marmaton on Saturday, July 3rd. The tour will consist of the history of the Marmaton/Marmiton communities, the massacre in Marmiton and Marmaton Cemetery where 5 of the 6 killed in the massacre are buried.

The tour will be carpool by personal vehicle which will meet and leave from the National Avenue side of Memorial Hall, 1 E. 3rd St., at 8:30 am to beat the heat of the summer. Attendees should arrive early to be checked in and be provided a bag of goodies.

Reservations may be made online with the Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce for $5.00 per person at fortscott.com.

The Old Fort Genealogy Society, Fort Scott and Area Chamber of Commerce and Historic Preservation Association are sponsoring this event and all three are active in research, news releases and telling the stories. There will be a tour the first Saturday of each month until cold weather arrives.

Contact the Old Fort Genealogy Society with any questions at 620-223-3300.

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Signs for “The Learning Tree” scene location project to be delivered

The Gordon Parks Museum is scheduled to receive the delivery of the signs from Lark Label in Wichita, KS for The Learning Tree scene location project on Wednesday, June 23.

The project is a series of signs located at the different scene locations where the filming of The Learning Tree took place.

The signs will also include QR codes along with a virtual tour of identified 12 different scene locations of The Learning Tree film.

The Gordon Parks Museum has received a grant from the Fort Scott Area Community Foundation and Humanities Kansas to assist with funding support for this project. The completion goal date for this project is by August 1, 2021.

This historical film by Warner Bros. Seven Arts, was the first time a major motion picture movie filmed in Hollywood was directed by a black film director; Fort Scott, KS native son, Gordon Parks was that person. This film was partially filmed in 1968 on location in Fort Scott and the surrounding area to include Mound City, KS. The film was released in 1969. The film was based on a semi autobiography novel with the same title that Gordon Parks wrote in 1963. The story, based on Gordon’s childhood in Fort Scott, KS, is about a boy growing up in difficult time in segregation and poverty. This film was placed in the Library of Congress National Film Registry Classics in 1989 as one of the top 25 important films. The film continues to be very important today.

A grand opening event with ribbon cutting will take place during the annual Gordon Parks Celebration Oct 7-9, 2021.

More details about the event along with other schedule celebration events will provided at a later date. Please feel free to contact us with any questions, 620-223-2700 ext. 5850 or email gordonparkscenter@fortscott.edu.
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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.