Best Preserved Frontier Fort in the West Fort Larned Old Guard Newsletter

David Clapsaddle Recovering From Surgery
     David Clapsaddle, life member of the Old Guard and longtime supporter of Fort Larned, recently had open-heart surgery at the DeBakey Heart Institute in Hays to repair severe blockages. The operation went well and he is recovering at the hospital in Larned. He should be home by the time you read this. Cards and letters may be sent to 215 Mann, Larned KS 67550. We all say, "Get Well Soon, David!"

Fort Larned Buffalo Bones At Smithsonian
by George Elmore, Chief Ranger
     Buffalo (actually bison) were part of everyone's life at Fort Larned in the 1860s. Nearly every officer and literate enlisted soldier wrote about buffalo, buffalo hunting, and buffalo stampedes in letters, journals, and official reports. The first sighting of buffalo and the first buffalo hunt were big events in the lives of soldiers and civilians. Many also commented about the texture and flavor of the meat. The lives of those stationed at Fort Larned were in some way oriented around the buffalo. Over the years I have pondered the use of and events around the buffalo and found historic references about buffalo of special interest.

     Last week I got a call from the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History wanting to know about Fort Larned buffalo. So right away I got a sharp interest in what was being said. The woman on the phone asked when we had sent the buffalo bones from Fort Larned. I told her we had not sent any bones and we do not have buffalo at Fort Larned today. She responded that she was doing research on the bison bones in their collection at the Smithsonian and we had sent a skull and some bones. I asked her when did we send the bones and the response was they did not have a date but the tag reads "Bison sent from United States Government Fort Larned, Kansas." Naturally, at that point, I am pondering what I have been told and then it hit me what might have happened. So I asked her, "Since there is no date, does the tag have the name of the person who sent the buffalo bones?" The reply was YES the name was "Forwood, W. H."


Buffalo herd

     I about jumped our of my chair. The bones had been sent by Fort Larned Post Surgeon William H. Forwood who was stationed at Fort Larned from July to August 1866 and October 10, 1867, to June 17, 1869. These bones were sent from the Fort before the vast slaughter of the herds.

     The post surgeon was also the post scientist and had somehow managed to take the time, while serving at Fort Larned, to collect a buffalo skeleton and send it to the Smithsonian for study or display. I had her look to see if Forwood had sent anything else and yes he also sent a coyote tagged from Fort Larned.


William Forwood

     William Forwood was born September 7, 1838, at Brandywine Hundred, Delaware; he graduated from the Medical Department of the University of Pennsylvania in 1861. In August 1861 he was commissioned an Assistant Surgeon of the Army. He saw field duty during the Civil War, taking part in the battles of Yorktown, Gaines's Mill, Malvern Hill, second Bull Run, Antietam, Gettysburg, and Brandy Station. At Brandy Station he was wounded through the chest. After recovery he resumed his military career, being assigned to duty at various forts throughout the West, including Fort Larned.

     In the 1880s he was assigned to several expeditions throughout the Northwest, both as surgeon and naturalist, and collected botanical specimens. On one trip, President Chester A. Arthur was a member of the group. In 1902 he was named Surgeon General of the U.S. Army then retired three months later due to his age. He lived in Washington DC until his death, May 12, 1915.

     At Fort Larned, on January 26, 1869, the Post Commander ordered then Major Forwood to remove his pet wolf that he kept chained to his sandstone quarters. The chain was causing damage to the building and other officers were complaining about the wolf howling at night. Then, on January 28, 1869, Forwood was ordered to remove the buffalo calf he was keeping in the stables behind his quarters. Again, other officers were complaining that the calf would care the officers' horses when they rode past the stables.

     Now we need to explore getting the Smithsonian to transfer the buffalo skull and coyote for a museum display at Fort Larned. It should be more than just a buffalo skull on display, but a visual connection to the life and story of Surgeon Forwood and his attempt to preserve the remains of one buffalo from the vast herds around Fort Larned in the 1860s.


John Scott

Fort Larned Roll Call: John Scott
by Ellen Jones, Park Ranger
     Fort Larned staff members are pleased to be working with a new fort manager, Acting Superintendent John Scott. Superintendent Scott comes to us from Pea Ridge National Military Park in Arkansas. Originally from Springfield, Missouri, John's superintendent role began with Pea Ridge in 2000. He has much experience as an acting superintendent both at the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, Wisconsin, and at Mount Rushmore National Memorial, South Dakota.

     John attended the University of Nebraska and received a BS in Biology and MS in Freshwater Biology. During his summers between college semesters he took a seasonal job as a fishing guide at Yellowstone National Park. By 1975 he was "hooked" and his National Park Service career began! Yellowstone is where he met his future wife, Diane, who was working for a consessionaire at the time.

     When he left Yellowstone John worked as a seasonal park ranger at Lake Meade. His first permanent position was at Ozark National Scenic River Way where he was offered law enforcement training, which he completed in the early 1980s. Over the years he climbed the ranks to become the Chief Ranger at Apostle Islands. Along the way he worked at Crater Lake National Park, Oregon, and was District Ranger at Buffalo National River, Arkansas, and Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area, Washington. If asked about his various ranger roles, John will tell you he misses being involved in the day-to-day operations. He often makes a point to get out of his office at Pea Ridge and join a tour-or even lead a tour!

     John and Diane have been married for 37 years and have three children and three grandchildren. They enjoy their life in Bentonville, Arkansas. John humorously claims to have stayed so long in Arkansas for one reason-the fly fishing is so good! That's not his only hobby. He is a beekeeper with three hives and growing, an avid gardener who grows heirloom vegetables, and he is fascinated with Plains Indian history. We like the sound of that last interest! When asked what he thinks about Kansas, John exclaims, "I like how far I can see across the land. I imagine living here in the 1860s and 1870s." An interpreter at heart!

     John has a management philosophy that has worked well for him. "Develop good people and then get out of the way and let them do their job." He quickly adds how fortunate the staff of the National Park Service is when they can tell both sides of our nation's history. Future generations can learn from the mistakes of past generations and make better choices.

     We invite members of the Old Guard to stop by and say hello to Superintendent John Scott.

Fort Larned Old Guard Chair's Column
by Rex Abrahams.
     The summer heat brings a new respect for those who endured life at Fort Larned without air conditioning! When the nights are hot and humid with no trace of a breeze, I ask myself how did the soldiers endure being packed together in the barracks, sleeping head to toe, without going crazy. How did they keep the mosquitoes at bay when they tried to rest? I think we have got it made!

     Changes continue to dominate the landscape at Fort Larned. The new walking bridge is up and the approaches are being completed. Access to the fort from this historical West side will give a new perspective to all who enter. It will be a visual jolt. Just like the removal of the trees along the oxbow was a "stand and stare" reality when first encountered, I think this will have the same effect. We are too used to walking across the bridge from the North. It will take some getting used to. The new paved parking lot is another great improvement.

     I want to remind everyone about the generous Challenge Grant presented to the Old Guard by Glenn and Carol Pearsall. They have offered to match $1 for $1 every donation made to the Old Guard during the coming year, up to $5000. What an opportunity for the Old Guard and Fort Larned to make a difference! A gift of this magnitude does not come along very often-if at all. We need to take full advantage of it and show the Pearsalls how much we appreciate their challenge. Your donation is tax deductible. We are an IRS 501 (C)3 organization and, since we have no political affiliation, our status was granted years ago. Ha! We won't even go there. Thank you for your donation. Our treasurer, Leo Oliva, will make sure your gift is accounted for. To those who have already donated to the challenge, the Old Guard extends grateful thanks. Also, Leo can accept credit card donations through the Santa Fe Trail Last Chance Store, if that works for you. Please contact him for details at {oliva@ruraltel.net}.

     On Saturday, September 21, the fort will host the Material Cultural of the Prairie, Plains and Plateau 2013 Conference. The conference will be meeting in Larned September 19-20. Guests from across the country will set up camp and enjoy the topic "Historic Tipis and Daily Camplife." Eleven speakers have already committed. There will be seminars and educational programs throughout the weekend. The Old Guard Board will serve the registrants the noon meal on the 21st. If anyone would like more information, contact Board Member Ken Wiedner {whirlwind@ucom.net} for information. Also, see article in this issue.

     Now for some important news, in case you have not heard, Kevin McMurry is no longer at Fort Larned. He will be sorely missed. I cannot recall a time when he did not go out of his way to make the Volunteers at Fort Larned, members of the Old Guard, and the Old Guard Board feel extremely welcome. We wish him well in his new endeavors. For the interim, we welcome John Scott, the Park Superintendent from Pea Ridge, Arkansas, to Fort Larned as acting superintendent. We look forward to working with him. Welcome John!

     On a final note, Lieutenant Frank Dwight Baldwin's sword has found a permanent display in the Fort Larned museum. There may be some tweaking, but the exhibit showcases the sword quite nicely along with the engraved scabbard. On Thursday, July 4th, a trio of presenters talked about Baldwin, the sword, and Congressional Medal of Honor winners. What could be a more fitting tribute on Independence Day. My appreciation goes out to fellow presenters, historian Dan Holt and Park Ranger Roy Hargadine, for their excellent presentations.

Have You Heard About The Fort Larned Old Guard $5000 Challenge Grant?
by Rex Abrahams, Fort Larned Old Guard Chair
     Glenn and Carol Pearsall of Johnsburg, NY, have set up a challenge grant for the Fort Larned Old Guard. Through their generosity, they offered to match dollar for dollar all donations up to $5000 in the coming year. Now is the time to really make a difference for Fort Larned and the Old Guard. What do we do with these moneys? A brief list includes:
     * Purchased the Indian Village Site where General Winfield Scott Hancock and Lieutenant Colonel George A. Custer burned the Cheyenne and Sioux village of 200+ lodges, causing "Hancock's War."
     * Purchased an original copy of General Hancock's orders to destroy the village for Fort Larned's museum.
     * Commissioned and paid for the Jerry Thomas painting of the village site, "Bold and Fearless," which hangs in the Fort's Visitor Center.
     * Purchased a rare Rucker ambulance for the Fort.
     * Purchased a US 3rd Infantry marked 1866 2nd Allin Trapdoor Springfield rifle.
     * Commissioned and paid for the creation of historically accurate Cheyenne clothing for the Fort's traveling exhibit.
     * Purchased a horse mannequin for the traveling exhibit.
     * Purchased the personally engraved sword of two-time Medal of Honor winner Frank D. Baldwin, an officer stationed at Fort Larned.
     * Brought many speakers and programs to Fort Larned during the last 25 years.

     We cannot thank the Pearsalls enough. Their ancestor, Colonel Uri B. Pearsall was Post Commander at Fort Larned from October 1, 1865, to December 6, 1865. The Pearsalls have only visited the fort once but were so impressed that they offered this Challenge Grant. Old Guard members and history buffs know we have something special among our midst. Do not let this opportunity slip by.


Glenn and Carol Pearsall

     Please consider making a donation to the Old Guard. Now is the time! All donors will be listed in Outpost.
     Thank you Glenn and Carol Pearsall!!

Volunteer Roll Call: Clive Siegle
by Ellen Jones, Park Ranger
     If you want to delve into the subject of the Conestoga wagon just ask Volunteer Clive Siegle. That was the first conversation I had with Clive and since then his wagon interpretation has come in handy for me. I soon learned Clive's knowledge of history expanded far beyond freight wagons! He is also an expert on buffalo hunting and the hide trade.


Clive Siegle

     Originally from Butler, Pennsylvania, Clive lived on Erding Air Force Base in Germany growing up. Currently he is a history professor in Dallas, Texas. His PhD from Southern Methodist University is in History of the American West. His dissertation was about Hispanic Buffalo Hunters on the Southern Plains. He teaches at Southern Methodist University and Richland Community College.

     Clive has volunteered for Fort Larned since the late 1980s. He has been involved with reenacting and historical programs at other forts, including Fort Sill where he is part of a cannon crew. But Clive enjoys Fort Larned the most because of the friendly staff and volunteers. "They always make me feel very welcome and it's a wonderful facility. It gives me a real sense of what a fort was like."

     Prior to working on a doctoral degree, Clive was Advertising and Marketing Director for 20 years at Abercrombie & Fitch when the business was a sporting goods store. He also was Director of Special Projects for this company. In 1989 he turned to freelancing in "Data Management, Design and Marketing" as a consultant. He continued successfully as a private consultant while earning his PhD. Exxon-Mobile Corporation was his most prominent client.

     Clive didn't rest much but prepared for a career doing what he loves most-teaching history. His academic success gave him an open door to teaching at the same institution where he earned his doctorate-Southern Methodist University in Dallas. Not surprising, Clive's undergraduate degree in history was earned from George Washington University, Washington, DC. I thought that was worth mentioning!

     Clive is a dedicated volunteer and true friend of Fort Larned. He states, "This is a good example of what the National Park Service can do when they give it their all." Clive insists that Fort Larned "is the park service at its best!"

     Clive is married to Jane and they have a Siberian husky named Mishka.

Fort Larned Old Guard Roll Call: Kit Carson Farwell III
     (Kit Carson Farwell III, Burke VA, is a new member of the Old Guard. He came to Fort Larned Old Guard's annual Mess & Muster last April to see the historic silent movie, The Daughter of Dawn, and joined the Old Guard. He shared the following biography for our readers.)


Kit Carson Farwell III

     I grew up in Norman, Oklahoma, and have worked for the government in Northern Virginia for the past 20 years assessing pesticide safety to people. Growing up in Oklahoma, I mainly thought of Kansas as a football rival. Now that I live far from home, I see Kansas and Oklahoma as being very similar, with a shared Southwestern heritage.

     My great-great grandmother was born around the 1830s and became a Comanche captive as a young girl. She was told as a girl that her natural family was Mexican and that appears to be the case from photos of her taken later on. Her story is told in Comanche and Kiowa Captives in Oklahoma and Texas by Hugh D. Corwin (1959), but I've often wondered about what was left out of the book; where in Oklahoma and Kansas she traveled, what famous historical figures she may have seen, and if she was happy in her day-to-day life.

     We're enrolled members of the Comanche tribe. My parents and sister helped finance the soundtrack for the Daughter of Dawn movie. I visited Larned for the screening and was very touched by the observations of the narrators. The large turnout was very impressive; the Smithsonian Museum does not attract such a large, motivated crowd!

     I only had a quick tour of Fort Larned on my weekend visit but was really impressed by how well the site is preserved. It obviously takes a lot of work by the Park Service and the Old Guard. The Old Guard is a very active, dynamic group and you have a lot to be proud of in your preservation of our heritage. I'm proud to be a member of the Old Guard and look forward to my next visit!

Post Commanders: Henry Asbury
by Celeste Dixon, Park Ranger
(This is fifteenth in a series on the commanding officers of Fort Larned.)
     Major Henry Asbury, 3rd U. S. Infantry, arrived at Fort Larned at the end of May and assumed command of the post from Captain Nicholas Nolan on May 30, 1868. Although the winter had been relatively quiet for Captain Nolan in terms of Indian activity, the spring and summer of 1868 would be one of increased activity on the part of the Plains tribes, despite the treaty signed the previous fall at Medicine Lodge Creek, Kansas.

     Part of the problem stemmed from the fact that the government withheld the guns, powder, and ammunition from the Cheyenne and Apache when they came to Fort Larned to collect their annuities. They had attacked the Kaws near Council Grove before arriving at Fort Larned, an action the government felt warranted some sort of punishment.

     Another flash point for the Indians was that the summer of 1868 marked the beginning of the mass killings of bison by White hunters due to high demand for their hides in the East. Buffalo hides were selling for as high as $3 a piece, which brought White hunters from all parts of the country to kill the one animal the Plains Indian tribes relied on for their existence. It was not a situation conducive to peace.

     July was a busy month at the fort. Approximately 15,000 Kiowa, Comanche, Apache, Arapaho, and Cheyenne Indians were camped about a day's march from Fort Larned. They were waiting for their summer annuities, which Major Asbury wanted to be delivered to them right away. Since he only had a total of 223 troops from both the 10th Cavalry and 3rd Infantry under his command at the time, he would have been greatly outnumbered had there been trouble with the Indians. These were all the soldiers he had to make sure all the work was done around the fort, as well as perform escort duty on the trail and patrols in the area around the post.

     Brevet Major Gen. William B. Hazen, who was Superintendent of Indian Affairs for the Southern Plains, came to the fort in July to oversee the distribution of annuities promised from the Medicine Lodge treaty. The guide who brought him to the fort was Buffalo Bill Cody, who spent several years in the central Kansas area as an Army scout.

     One of the main provisions of the Medicine Lodge treaty the Indians were eager to have fulfilled was the distribution of arms and ammunition. Major Asbury had not yet distributed those because of skirmishing and raiding that had been going on among some of the tribes. The chiefs explained that the hostilities were the actions of some of the younger warriors and that the entire tribe shouldn't be punished for the misdeeds of a few. Brevet Brigadier General Alfred Sully ordered Major Asbury to hand out the rifles and ammunition to the Indians. They were given with the warning that the chiefs should try to control their young men since the Whites were usually well armed and would not tolerate Indian raids on their settlements and ranches.

     Almost immediately after the guns, powder, and ammunition were handed out to the various Indians along with their other annuities, some of the warriors began raiding and attacking settlements along the Saline River and the Smoky Hill Trail.

     White authorities had different reactions to these raids. While some called for all the Indians to be punished, others believed it wouldn't be right to punish all of them for the acts of a few bad apples. Acting Commissioner of Indian Affairs Charles Mix believed the Cheyenne had not acted in good faith when collecting their annuities at Fort Larned and accused them of actually planning the raids as they were collecting their annuities. "I can no longer have confidence in what they say or promise," he wrote. "War is surely upon us."

     Throughout the summer of 1868 some of the Plains Indians went on the warpath while others tried to remain at peace with both their fellow Indians and with their White neighbors.

     On the night of August 5, the officers and soldiers had something else to contend with besides the hostile Plains Indians and regular escort and patrol duties that made up their daily routine at the fort. A rabid wolf entered the fort, and bit several people before finally being shot to death by one of the sentries. Those bitten included Corporal McGillicuddy, who had been in the hospital, Lieutenant Thompson, who was on the porch of the sutler's store, and Private Mason.

     During the summer of 1868, another famous person to visit the fort was the British journalist H. M. Stanley. He reported an overall favorable impression of Fort Larned, including the fort's commander, Major Asbury, who was "a gentleman who served with some distinction in the late war." According to Stanley, Asbury deserved the credit for the orderliness of the fort and its activities. Everything was conducted according to military standards, and he found the officers to be "affable with their equals and gracious towards their subordinates."

     The man whom Mr. Stanley felt ran the fort so effectively was from Illinois and had indeed had an illustrious career during the Civil War, beginning with his commissioning as a 2nd Lieutenant in the 3rd U. S. Infantry in August 1861. He advanced to 1st Lieutenant in June 1862 and was then brevetted to the rank of Captain on July 2, 1863, for gallantry and meritorious service during the Battle of Gettysburg. In March 1865 he received a brevet promotion to Major for his meritorious service throughout the war. Major Asbury died on October 20, 1870.

     Major Asbury was replaced at Fort Larned by Brevet Major Dangerfield Parker in September 1868. He had assumed command of the fort during a relatively peaceful springtime, only to have the summer heat bring renewed fighting among some of the Plains Indians.

Maintenance News
by William Chapman, Facility Manager
Bridge
     It is getting closer, oh so close, oh so very close. I can hardly wait for the time when you all get to have the chance to do it as well.

     That's right. . .a walk across the new bridge. As we wrote in the last issue of Outpost the construction progress was moving along well and planned completion is the middle of August. As of today, July 25, we are a week away from using the newly extended and paved entrance road. As it winds you around the Pawnee River you will enter a kidney-shaped paved parking lot, with plenty of room for fifty cars and nine RV/buses to park or wagons and a place to relieve one's distress. From here you will traverse the sidewalk, view waysides as you approach the wood bridge, and enter the Fort as the military would when returning from the north and west. Enjoy your adventure!

     We will post on the web site {www.nps.gov/fols} and the Fort's Facebook page when all is complete.

Adjutant's Office
     Over the last few weeks a volunteer group from Larned Mental Health Correctional Facility has worked with park staff to install an interpretive display on the grounds in the Historic Corridor. On the north side of the North Officers' Quarters will sit a wood structure of board and batten in approximate location of the Adjutant's Office. A historic account dated January 31, 1868, by Brevet Lieutenant Colonel A. F. Rockwell states the construction of a framed building that measured 30' long and 15' wide. He also reported that the following was used at a cost of $474.07: 8095 feet of lumber and flooring, 3 doors, 275 bricks, 1 bushel of lime, 5 bushel of sand, 4 PR hinges, 24 pounds putty, 50 pounds white lead paint, 1 gross screw, 3 locks, 7,000 shingles, 2 kegs nails, Sashes for windows, 2 boxes glass, 2 gallons of oil.


Historic Adjutant's Office located north of North Officer's Quarters.


New Adjutant's Display being raised in background.


James Courtney

James Courtney Sprucing Up The Visitor Center Porch
by Celeste Dixon, Park Ranger
     The next time you come out to the fort you might notice that the columns in front of the visitor center look a little fancier. That's because seasonal maintenance worker James Courtney has been working all summer on a project meant to give the columns a more authentic historic appearance. He is shown above working on the base of a column.

     James has been reproducing the molding around the bottom of the columns to match the original base molding found on the columns on the porches of the officers' quarters. He began the project in mid-May by replacing all the rotted wood on the columns. He then prepped, sanded, and painted the columns. The next part of the project involved replacing the square base around the bottom of the column and finally adding molding to the top of all the bases.

     James has been working independently on this project for most of the summer, after some initial instruction and training from Facility Manager William Chapman and historic preservation specialist Robert Sellers of the Fort staff. Once it was time to cut the molding for the bases, James said they actually had to create their own shaper bit for it in order to match the pattern of the molding on officers' row.

     James was hired as a seasonal through the Park Service's Pathways student hiring program and attends Fort Hays State University. He is majoring in tech studies and education with plans to be an industrial technology, or shop, teacher after he graduates. He is also involved in cabinet making, welding, carpentry, and construction.

Old Fashioned 4th of July at Fort Larned
by Celeste Dixon, Park Ranger
     This past Independence Day at Fort Larned saw red, white, and blue bunting on the north officers' quarters, a concert by the post band, and guests enjoying free watermelon to celebrate our nation's independence.

     The celebrations also included a series of special talks to honor Frank Baldwin, a two-time Medal of Honor winner, whose sword is now on display in the Visitor Center museum, thanks to a generous donation by the Old Guard.

     Talks included a presentation by Dan Holt, a Frank Baldwin historian, who presented an overview of Baldwin's life and military career, including the two actions that won him his Medals of Honor. Old Guard Chairman Rex Abrahams told the story of how Baldwin's sword was found for sale on Ebay and subsequently purchased by the Old Guard and donated to the fort. Park Ranger Roy Hargadine presented the history of the Medal of Honor and the various service members who have been awarded the medal over the years, with a special concentration on Frank Baldwin and his two Medals of Honor.

     The day ended with a special ceremony of bugle calls on the Parade Ground honoring Frank Baldwin. Tunes played included Boots and Saddles, Cavalry Charge, Taps, and Retreat. The ceremony ended with bugler, Fort Larned Volunteer Sam Young, playing To the Colors and the cannon being fired while the flag was lowered.

     All the events were well attended, making it a fitting way to honor one of our nation's brave military men on our national birthday.

Little Red House Series, Part IV
by David K. Clapsaddle
     In the previous installments, Larned's first school was discussed. The teacher, sixteen-year-old Isabel Worrell, lived in one side of the first building with her parents, a brother, and two sisters.

     The building served as a general meeting place for the small community. Larned's first Christmas was celebrated in its less then commodious space. Larned's first church dignified the former saloon/dance hall. The first Justice of the Peace Court was conducted there. Henry Booth sued Georgie O'Dell for lack of rent payment on a room in the Little Red House. The judge finally ruled that if Booth paid the court costs, and O'Dell agreed to pay the back rent, the case could be closed. Who was Georgie O'Dell? Census records identify her as a prostitute. Evidently, the Little Red House was another type of house not discussed in polite society.

     Timothy McCarthy purchased the building and moved it to Fifth and Main Streets in Larned where it housed a carpenter shop, a U. S. Land Office, a newspaper office, and finally a blacksmith shop. In 1885, the building was razed.

     If one knows something of the Little Red House, he/she knows a great deal about Larned in its infancy.

Fort Larned Heritage Garden
by Ellen Jones, Park Ranger
     The 2013 Fort Larned Heritage Garden is currently at its peak summer season. The vegetables were grown from heritage seeds and are the same produce listed on the 1869 garden list of Fort Larned. In June we harvested radishes, lettuce, and spinach. In July the zucchini plants produced at a rapid rate. We'll be collecting zucchini well into the autumn months. Several recent rainfalls have helped greatly leaving the garden's appearance luscious and green.

     August is producing cucumbers, beans, and tomatoes. The cabbage plants are looking healthy and we may be making sauerkraut during Labor Day weekend. Sauerkraut at the Fort? I have discovered some of the most animated stories told by older visitors are the memories of making sauerkraut! We have a large crock but need a large wooden pestle.

     Frequently the produce is used for exhibits and living-history interpretation on Officers' Row. On July 21, approximately 40 visitors enjoyed watching a cooking demonstration using zucchini, spinach, and squash blossoms. Visitors also participated in a garden activity involving six different herbs and their sense of smell. It was a fun test of one's knowledge of herbs!

     The fried squash blossoms were a real hit with the visitors. I invited each child to pick three blossoms. We carefully spread the petals to remove the pistil and then stuffed the blossom with cheese, twisted the top of the petals, and rolled the prepared flower in a basic batter. Then into the frying pan the delicacy went! I explained to visitors how the Mexican culture used the blossoms in cooking and the influence could have been prevalent on the Santa Fe Trail. Cheese making was very popular in the 19th century, too.

Indian Material Culture Conference At Fort Larned September 2013
by Ken Weidner, Conference Host
     The 2013 Material Culture of the Prairie, Plains & Plateau Conference at Larned and Fort Larned, September 19-22, with the theme "Historic Tipis and Daily Camplife."

     The Thursday and Friday meetings will be at the Larned Community Center. Thursday will be registration and vendor setup. Thursday evening will be open for socializing and vendor shopping.

     Friday will be formal lectures all day, with lunch and supper on your own. Evening hours will bring socializing and vendor shopping.

     Saturday the conference will move to Fort Larned National Historic Site. We will hold more lectures in the Quartermaster Storehouse. There will also be a small Cheyenne-Sioux tipi village of the 1860s time period set up at the fort.

     The Fort Larned Old Guard, will serve a lunch of hamburgers and brats so we don't have to drive to town to eat. We will have pizza delivered for an evening meal. To end the day, the evening will be spent hanging out in tipis and talking about Indians.

     Sunday an auto tour will be arranged to visit the Cheyenne-Sioux village site on Pawnee Creek.

     Please check the website at for registration information and additional details.

New Memberships
Fort Larned Old Guard welcomes the following new members:
     Dorothy Morgan, PO Box 774, Lakin, KS 67860
     Craig & Carol Potter, 756 Melrose Ave, Chula Vista CA 91910

Event Calendar
     Sept. 19-22, 2013: Material Culture Conference at Fort Larned.

     October 12, 2013: Annual candlelight tour at the Fort

Deadline For Next Issue: November 1, 2013

Membership Reminder
     Annual memberships in the Fort Larned Old Guard expire on December 31. If you have not renewed for 2013, please send dues to membership chair Linda Peters, 1035 S Bridge St, Lakin KS 67860. Thank you for your support.

Fort Larned Old Guard Contact Information
     The officers, members of the board of directors, dues information and email's are listed on this page of information. Please feel free to contact any of us.

Schedule of Annual Events
     True to life stories of the Indian Wars along the Santa Fe Trail, brought to life by some of the greatest volunteers in the West. . . ! Visit the most complete Indian fort surviving from the days when Custer and Buffalo Bill Cody rode through this part of the West on their missions. Original restored buildings to that time period, a visitor center, Park Rangers will guide you through this adventure of the Old West.

     Memorial Day Weekend (Saturday, Sunday & Monday) largest living history event in western Kansas - experience a working frontier fort.

     Labor Day Weekend (Saturday, Sunday, & Monday) Re-enactors bring the fort back to life for the holiday weekend.

     Candlelight Tour (2nd Saturday of October) Entertaining evening tours with vignettes from the fort's history.

     Christmas Open House (2nd Saturday of December) Old-fashioned Yuletide celebration with hot apple cider, cookies and Christmas carols.




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