Best Preserved Frontier Fort in the West Fort Larned Old Guard Newsletter
Volume 31, Number 1 ~*~ Best Preserved Frontier Fort in the West ~*~ Spring 2020

Even More Changes At Fort Larned
by Ben Long, Park Ranger

     As many of you know, we recently upgraded our museum exhibits. It is an unfortunate fact due to the current circumstances that not many people have been able to see the new and improved Fort Larned Museum. But, as if one great change wasn't enough, there's another one!

     Near the end of May this year, a contractor hired through the Western National Parks Association (WNPA, a nonprofit organization that oversees our bookstore) put a new face onto our park's bookstore. To appear more like a genuine sutler's store, wood shelves and cabinets and a wooden desk were added.

     One of my favorite aspects of the store is the wooden floor that creaks a little with every step. Also included is a window that looks through the wagon display and into the museum, giving a more fluid feel to the whole visitor experience.

     We also hope to start selling more items like those sold in sutler stores years ago, so visitors can have a functional item to help remember their visit and experience at Fort Larned. It has long been the goal to Fort Larned to immerse the visitor into the world that was once here, to make them feel like they had traveled back in time. We hope that this modification to our bookstore will only help further our immersive experience.

     Everyone at Fort Larned looks forward to the day when the entire complex, including the new museum and bookstore, will be open for public visitation. Until then we will keep you informed of progress.

Gardening At Fort Larned: Then And Now
by Jan Elder, Park Volunteer (in photo)

     If you have visited our small historic garden you may know Fort Larned had acres of vegetable gardens. These gardens supplied fresh vegetables that improved the "bread, beans, salt pork" diet of soldiers and prevented scurvy that often occurred at frontier posts. Gardening in the original gardens and the historic garden is very similar--does that surprise you?

     The garden year begins with the same goal of preparing soil for seed planting--the original gardens by ploughing with draft animals and ours with rototiller. When it is time to fertilize the soil, we use manure. With horses, mules, and cattle at Fort Larned, the original gardens were no doubt manured. We know that in 1874, "All gardens were covered by rich loamy mulch from walls and refuse of old corral before ploughing."[1]

     Both 19th- and 21st-century gardeners use seed catalogs (I confess to also checking online!) for ordering seeds. Seed company promises have changed little. The 2020 Baker Creek seed catalog promised, "We will strive to offer you the most exciting seeds" and "In this catalog you will find a host of new offerings." Charles Breck of Boston (seedsman) promised in his 1842 catalog that "will be able, at all times, to execute orders. . . with promptness and at satisfactory prices" and "every sort warranted to be of the very best quality."

     We know vegetables planted in the original gardens included beans, beets, cabbage, corn, cucumbers, lettuce, melons, onions, peas, radishes, spinach, squash, tomatoes, and turnips, but do not know the varieties. We plant only these vegetables and try to use varieties that would have been available to the original gardeners. Names of varieties have changed over time, so descriptions are also checked. Our "go to" book is The Field And Garden Vegetables of America by Fearing Burr, Jr, (1863), a great resource for historic gardeners. Mr. Burr and I do not always agree--he dismisses the Yellow Pear-Shaped Tomato as being "little used except for preserving and pickling" (page 652); in our historic garden this small tomato is popular with visitors!

     In the Fort's original gardens, seeds would have been directly sown in the soil, although some (e.g., cabbage, lettuce) may have been started under glass.[2] The Fort Larned records noted "hot beds made and planted."[3] We start cabbage, cucumbers, and tomatoes in pots to extend the garden season. We like visitors to see a growing garden and to share in the harvest. Once the garden is growing, out comes the hoe! This is our most used and was possibly the most used 19th-century garden tool. The Fort Larned records do not tell us how gardens were cultivated after planting, but in 1849 Fort Gibson, Oklahoma, budgeted $14 to purchase 38 hoes for cultivation work.[4]

     As with all gardens, once vegetables are growing and warm weather arrives, along come the pests and the need for irrigation. The 19th-century pests at Fort Larned were not always identified: "The ravages of a worm and a bug that appeared toward the end of June continued and completely destroyed the lettuce and beet leaves in the garden and did some mischief to the other plants."[5] "The Colorado bug' destroyed the late spinach and the beets. The grasshoppers are eating the cabbage and turnips, there seems to be no remedy for these ravages."[6] Assistant Surgeon Cowdrey reported in 1874 that "About Aug. 15th the grasshoppers came and destroyed everything left in the gardens eating even the onion tops. All the corn and vegetables in this county and several counties east were destroyed by the swarms of grasshoppers--small grains-oats, wheat, etc. escaped their ravages."[7]

     Our main pests seem to be the cabbage worm and squash bugs/borers. We do not use modern pest control in the historic garden, only controls that would have been available to 19th-century gardeners (e.g., covering squash plants with sieved flour and hand-picking mature bugs/eggs). Not ideal, we get damaged vegetables, but so did the Fort Larned gardeners! Our historic garden is also visited by four-legged pests such as rabbits and raccoons (no armed guards as the Fort Laramie garden had in 1880).[8]

     Irrigation is necessary during the hot dry weather of summer and to keep the garden growing we regularly water with a hose. In 1869 Assistant Surgeon Forwood reported "no system of irrigation beyond that of hauling or carrying water from the creek could be practiced here" and "not sufficient to supply the companies with more than a taste of vegetables."[9] Irrigation was tried at Fort Larned in 1870 as "Co. 'C' selected a piece of prairie on the left bank of the creek . . . surrounded it with a sod wall and inserted a pump so as to irrigate it from the creek."[10] Irrigation may not have continued as it was reported in 1873, "The gardens dried up so much that nothing was obtained from them after August 1st except a few small tomatoes."[11] Irrigation systems were used at frontier forts, including Fort Union, New Mexico, and Fort Defiance, Arizona.[12] In 1873 a private citizen, George Allaman, developed an irrigation project on the Smoky Hill River just off the Fort Wallace, Kansas, military reservation to raise vegetables to sell to the garrison. This is considered the first successful irrigation system in western Kansas.[13]

     The original gardens had good years and bad years. In 1870 Assistant Surgeon Woodhull wrote, "The experience of this year fully demonstrates that gardens may be cultivated at Fort Larned with results sufficient to warrant the labor."[14] This was a year after Forwood and Woodhull reported: "Owing to repeated failures of previous years, no garden was attempted during 1869."[15] Cowdrey reported in 1874 that "Hot beds have furnished plenty of lettuce and radishes and the gardens of young beets and spinach."[16] Our experiences are similar--some years we have more cucumbers than we can give away, other years we can't get a cucumber to grow.

     In closing we can't forget gardening and Kansas weather. As soon as early vegetables are planted, we worry about late frosts, too much rain, hail, too little rain, hot temperatures, and hot dry winds. A report from Forwood in 1869 described June rains in which young plants were nearly drowned, hail, hot southwest winds, and parching sun.[17]

     Our historic garden is small compared to the original gardens, and technology has changed lives since the 1870s, but the basics of gardening have remained much the same. The 2020 gardeners could converse about gardening with the 1870's gardeners and understand each other perfectly!

Endnotes:

  1. Assistant Surgeon S. G. Cowdrey, Fort Larned, April 1873, June/July 1873, August 1873, May 1874, August 1874.

  2. Fort Buford ND records .

  3. See note 1.

  4. Richard D. Gamble, "Life at Frontier Military Posts, 1830-1860," Ph.D. dissertation, Univ. of Oklahoma, 1956,

  5. Assistant Surgeon A. A. Woodhull, Fort Larned, April 1870, June, 1870, July 1870.

  6. See note 1.

  7. Ibid. See also Jeffrey A. Lockwood, Locust: The Devastating Rise and Mysterious Disappearance of the Insect that Shaped the American Frontier (New York: Basic Books, 2004),

  8. John F. Freeman, High Plains Horticulture: A History (Boulder: University Press of Colorado, 2008).

  9. Assistant Surgeon W. H. Forwood, Fort Larned, April 1869.

  10. See note 5.

  11. See note 1.

  12. See note 3.

  13. Leo E. Oliva, Fort Wallace: Sentinel on the Smoky Hill Trail (Topeka: Kansas State Historical Society, 1998), 109-110.

  14. See note 5.

  15. Reports of Fort Larned Assistant Surgeons W. H. Forwood and A. A. Woodhull in Surgeon General's Office, Circular Number 4: A Report on Barracks and Hospitals with Descriptions of Military Posts (Washington: Government Printing Office, 1870).

  16. See note 1.

  17. See note 9.

Fort Larned Old Guard Chair's Column
by Janet Armstead

     Who would ever have thought last October that we would not be able to meet again. . .for how long? A year or more? The COVID-19 Virus has stopped many things, including travel to Fort Larned. The Fort was closed for a while, like everything else. But you can now come back and visit all the open air historical buildings and take the nature walk. The Visitors' Center is closed, so plan accordingly. The only restrooms are in the park north of the Fort.

     Don't forget that you can still support the Fort, while staying home and shopping online. Go to Amazon Smile and sign up to support Fort Larned Old Guard Inc. It's a very small part of your shopping, but every little bit helps, especially in these times.

     The Old Guard expresses sincere sympathy to Bonita Oliva in the recent loss of her mother. We also mourn the passing of Fort volunteer, Roy Hargadine. He will be missed by the Fort staff and volunteers. Roy served on the FLOG board a number of years ago and was very supportive of the acquisition of the Cheyenne and Lakota village site. We are very glad to hear of the recovery from COVID-19 by Old Guard member and friend Alice Clapsaddle.

     The cropland at the village site was enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) for 15 years, and that contract expired last September 30. The application to sign up again was completed months ago and the land has been accepted for another 15 years beginning October 1. The board extends special thanks to village-site neighbor Harold Shank who keeps an eye on the place and grazes cattle on the pasture.

     Your board continues to communicate and work via the internet. Currently we are working on the Fort Larned Old Guard part of the new NPS/Fort Larned Old Guard Friend Agreement. We all look forward to the day we can all meet again. Keep the faith! Keep your chin up!! We WILL see each other again! Stay safe and be well.

Superintendent's Corner
by Betty Boyko

     We are still doing well here at the Fort and hope that all our friends, supporters, and volunteers are keeping safe and well during this time. We certainly couldn't have predicted the impact COVID-19 would have on our operations, but here we are nearly at the end of summer and our Visitor Center is still closed. On a good note, the historic buildings are open again, and we are assessing the situation daily to determine when we can safely reopen our Visitor Center.

     With the situation changing constantly, we can't say with any certainly when that might be. We are doing risk assessments to weigh visitor and staff safety against allowing access to the Visitor Center and the new exhibits. We know everyone is waiting excitedly to see them, but we want to make sure we can make the environment safe for everyone.

     Although the pandemic has curtailed our interpretive programs, it hasn't stopped them. We had limited living history over the Memorial Day and Fourth of July weekends. We had one volunteer come out for Memorial Day Weekend, and one for the Fourth of July, but it was mainly staff providing information and interpretation for visitors. It's most likely that Labor Day Weekend will be similarly low key, depending on the situation. We are also exploring alternative options for the Candlelight Tour in October in order to follow safety guidelines.

     We took the opportunity during the time our Visitor Center has been closed to complete a remodel of the bookstore and gift shop. It now has the look of an 1860's post sutler's store with wood flooring and beautiful wood bookcases.

     For updates on our operating status, please check our website: or our Facebook page:

Fort Larned Roll Call: Mike Seymour
by Ben Long, Park Ranger

     After working at Fort Larned for over 20 years, one would wonder why
Mike Seymour is this issue’s Fort Larned Roll Call. The reason for his being featured is simple and similar in nature to Pete Bethke recently being featured as well--Mike has recently entered a new position at Fort Larned. While I have only been here for a little over a year, conversations of years past with Mike always make me wish I came here sooner. The tales of adventures and misadventures that Mike relays are enough to fill a very entertaining book.

     The new position that Mike holds since the fall of 2019 is that of Museum Technician. All day long, Mike gets to handle, care for, and organize the artifacts and items of archaeology at Fort Larned - a job that could make any history buff jealous. Mike has held a similar position to what he has now since he started working at Foirt Larned. However, Mike is the first, at least in recent years, to hold the title of Museum Technician.

     In total, Fort Larned's museum collection is comprised of about 216,000 individual items, with about half of those being on site. The care of that many artifacts takes a careful and caring mind, making Mike the perfect man for the job. I recently had the pleasure of assisting Mike with part of the inventory of cataloged items in Officers' Row, and I was able to learn so much about some of the items we have. The fact that Mike knows all the little details of so many different things goes to show that he has not only the knowledge of how to handle these items, but the respect needed to properly care for them. With original items in almost every one of our buildings, Mike stays busy with cleaning and inventorying.. Mike's most recent project was organizing the museum collection (the items that aren't in public view) so that the items are more protected and easier to keep track of.

     If any of you know Mike, you know that he has a love for little details. This helps to contribute to the fact that Mike is thoroughly enjoying the new emphasis on his job at Fort Larned. We continue to look forward to working with Mike and can't wait to see how it will benefit the park to have someone keeping an eye on our collections full time.

Volunteer Roll Call: Sam Sullivan
by Ben Long, Park Ranger

     Sam Sullivan was born in Seattle, Washington, and moved with his family to Pratt, Kansas, just a few years later. In 2012, right after college, Sam moved to Larned, where he's lived ever since. What brought Sam to Larned was a job at the Juvenile Correctional Facility near the State Hospital. Sam quickly gained the rank of lieutenant, making him the youngest lieutenant at that facility in recent history. After the Juvenile Correctional Facility shut down, Sam decided to stick around and work at the State Hospital. Since working at the State Hospital for as long as he had worked at the Juvenile Correctional Facility, he has made rank of lieutenant again and is the head of Safety and Security. Sam still lives in Larned with his fiancee and his four-year-old son.

     Growing up, Sam always enjoyed working on carpentry projects with his father, using the classic handtools to create the items they wanted to make. Sam first contacted us in the beginning of the year to inquire if there was a vacancy he could fill by volunteering. The fact that no one was portraying a civilian carpenter in the Carpentry and Saddlery Shop was too perfect to pass up. Since starting to volunteer a weekend here or a weekend there in June of this year, Sam has already shown himself as a great help, both for visitors and for the things needed around the Fort. Sam has already made some tool handles for Pete and repaired a wobbly bench outside the Shops Building.

     It is already evident that Sam will do great things while volunteering at Fort Larned. We are looking forward to working with Sam and we can't wait to see what projects his creative mind will come up with and how it will enhance the visitor's experience at Fort Larned.

Hand Engine For Fort Larned, 1867
by Sam Young, Fort Larned Volunteer

     While researching old issues of Fort Larned Outpost for information to write articles on the Fort's Quartermaster Department an don Quartermaster Captain (Brevet Lieutenant Colonel) Almon F. Rockwell, I found this interesting bit of information on a request for a hand (fire) engine for Fort Larned. The following is from the Fall 1994 issue which covers events at Fort Larned from September 1-December 27, 1867.

     November 18: Letter from Brevet Major General J. L. Donaldson, Assistant Quartermaster General, U. S. Army, St. Loois, to Colonel (Brevet General) Langdon Cheves Easton, Fort Leavenworth: "As regards the Hand Engine for Fort Larned; is it imperatively needed, more than at Fort Lyon, or at any other important post on the plains? It seems to me, with a fire Engine at the Depot, the other posts can get on with ordinary care. I ask these questions because I cannot purchase a hand engine here, they having gone out of use, and having been gotten rid of long ago."

     November 22: Letter from General Easton to General Donaldson: "Your letter of the 19th inst. relative to Hand Engine for Fort Larned, has been received. There is no more necessity for (the) Engine at Fort Larned than at any other post, but as the attention of officers has been called by the authorities at Washington, to the importance of providing against fire, I do not feel authorized to disapprove requisitions for fire engines when they are made."

     November 27: Letter from General Donaldson, to Brevet Major General D. H. Rucker, Acting Quartermaster General, U. S. Army, Washington: "I have the honor to transmit herewith, for your information, copies of communication on the subject of providing a Fire engine at Fort Larned, Kans., in connection with your letter to this Office of 8th inst., giving authority for the purchase of an engine for that post, if deemed necessary."

     Letter from General Donaldson to General Easton: "After duly considering your letter of 22nd inst., in reply to mine of 18th inst., in reference to a Hand Engine for Fort Larned, and, after consultation with the Lieut. General Commd'g (Ulysses S. Grant), I have decided not to furnish the hand engine asked for. The Lieut. General approves of this course, remarking at the same time, that where stores are not accumulated at posts, beyond the wants of the troops occupying them, the troops themselves should take care of their stores by proper organization of fire buckets &c. against fire. The Steam Fire Engine furnished for Fort Harker or such point as you may require it from time-to-time is designed to protect large accumulation of stores at depots."

     Major Meredith H. Kidd, 10th Cavalry, was the Fort Larned commanding officer during the fall of 1867 and probably submitted the request for this hand engine. He recognized the threat of fire to the Fort Larned garrison--a tremendous amount of combustible material that could be easily ignited by lightning, and intentionally or accidentally started by man. And, when you re-read the 22 November letter, you will see the comment, "the attention of officers has been called by the authorities at Washington, to the importance of providing against fire."

     Major Kidd knew the "bucket brigade" firefighting plan for Fort Larned and it was probably exercised several times a year. He also was aware that at any time a fire could start, and there might not be enough soldiers and civilians available to man the buckets, especially if the fire was not close to the river, or if the fire was of such size that men with buckets would not be enough. It is understandable why he requested the hand engine.

     Above is an ad for a hand engine that is similar to what he would have requested. It is pulled by several men and has handles on each side that can be let down and with which men would pump water. Depending on the amount of hose available to reach from the river to the pump and from the pump to fire, the fire might be fought with water direct from the hose or from buckets filled by the hose.

     There are at least two reasons Major Kidd's request was denied. First, in Donaldson's 27 November letter to Easton, he writes that he "cannot purchase a hand engine here (St. Louis), they having gone out of use, and having been gotten rid of long ago." (Note: Fort Leavenworth was the home of the higher headquarters for western forts such as Forts Leavenworth, Riley, Harker, Larned, Hays, Wallace, and Lyon.)

     The second reason was the availability of Army funds in 1867. While Congress had significantly reduced the amount of money it gave to the Army following the Civil War, much of the U. S. Army (Cavalry and Infantry) was forward deployed into the states and territories west of the Missouri River and that was very expensive. Thus, senior Army leadership, to include Lieut. General Grant, considered the hand engine request to be for a want and not for a need.

     Fortunately, Fort Larned did not experience a fire that its bucket brigade could not extinguish. Yes, there was the January 2, 1869, early morning fire that destroyed the 10th Cavalry's stables, but that fire was not reported by the guards until after the fire had destroyed the stables.

     In the April 30, 1869, Medical History of Fort Larned, Post Surgeon Forwood wrote "The grass in early spring is green and beautiful, but as early as July the absence of rain and the hot, southwest winds turn it to brown and the light of prairie fires skirt the horizon every evening."

     Seeing those fires and knowing the damage they can quickly cause, you can probably envision some of the Fort's officers enjoying the evening, watching the glow of distant fires, and talking about the need for a fire engine.

The Enlisted Men Of Company C, Third Infantry
Part XIX - Greisnaber, Halligan, Hanoir,
Harris, Hinds, & Howard
by Celeste Dixon, Park Ranger

     (Fort Larned's main interpretive year is 1868, which is the year the stone buildings were completed. Company C, 3rd U.S. Infantry, was stationed at Fort Larned during that year and part of the research for the restoration of the barracks and hospital building was finding out information for most of these enlisted men. That information was compiled in the Historic Furnishing Study: Enlisted Men's Barracks and Post Hospital, HS-2. Here is the nineteenth installment in a series on the enlisted men whose information is included in that report. There are no photos available for these enlisted soldiers.)

     The next five enlisted men on the list represent a typical collection of soldiers in the frontier Army. Some have routine, unvaried duty, while others have a variety of assignments. Some do well within the Army command structure, others maintain at a lower rank. At least one ends up in confinement, and another decides he's had enough and deserts. All but one of them had either an illness or injury that sent them to sick call, a routine occurrence in the frontier Army.

     Gallus Greisnaber enlisted on 23 September 1867 in Columbus, Ohio. During 1868 at Fort Larned, he spent the bulk of his time either on company duty (January and February) or on extra duty in the Post Quartermaster Department as a laborer (April to June). On 16 April he reported to sick call with a contusion, returning to duty with the Quartermaster Department the next day. On 10 June he deserted and was never captured. Private Greisnaber represents the significant number of soldiers who deserted from the frontier Army, never to be heard from again. We'll never know why he decided to desert, but like many Indian Wars Era soldiers who "unofficially" left the Army, the harshness of Army life and the loneliness of garrison duty might have prompted him to take the chance on desertion.

     William H. Halligan enlisted on 2 November 1865 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Halligan began 1868 on company duty with the rank of corporal and spent all of January and up to 15 February on company duty. On 15 February he was sent on detached service to Fort Zarah for picket duty for the rest of the month. Corporal Halligan received a promotion to sergeant on 18 February. He continued on detached service at Fort Zarah through 15 March, when he returned to Fort Larned for company duty. He was promoted to first sergeant 19 June. He served as the company first sergeant until 2 November when he was honorably discharged from the Army. Halligan demonstrates how a man can advance rapidly in the ranks if he works hard and applies himself. Even though he attained a high NCO rank, Halligan apparently did not want to make the Army a lifelong career.

     Patrick Hanior enlisted on 15 November 1865 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Private Hanior had a variety of assignments throughout 1868. He began the year on company duty until 3 February when he reported to sick call with bronchitis. He was sick in barracks until the 20th, at which time he went back on company duty until the end of March. For the rest of the year, his assignments alternated between orderly with the Post Quartermaster Department (April), company duty (May to 25 June), extra duty as a laborer in the Post Subsistence Department (rest of June to October), and back to company duty until 15 November when he was honorably discharged and left the Army.

     Henry Harris enlisted on 14 November 1865 in New York City, New York. He began 1868 as a corporal on company duty for the month of January. From February through September, with one exception, he was on extra duty in the Post Quartermaster Department as an overseer. On 29 June he went to sick call for diarrhea, returning to duty the next day. He was on company duty for all of October and until 14 November when he was honorably discharged.

     Patrick Hinds enlisted 26 March 1867 in New York City, New York. His trajectory through 1868 is a little different from the others. He is listed on company duty for all of January and up to 11 February when he was assigned to extra duty in the Post Quartermaster Department as a laborer. In March he was back on company duty until the 27th when he reported to sick call for an incised wound. Private Hinds spent the rest of March and up to 17 April sick in the barracks. He returned to company duty until the end of April. He began May on company duty but reported to sick call again on the 19th with an intermittent fever and remained sick in the barracks until the 12th. He returned to company duty until the end of the month. He spent all of June and up to 26 July on company duty, at which time he was placed in confinement for an unknown reason. Private Hinds spent the rest of the year in confinement.

     Michael Howard enlisted on 12 March 1866 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was a Sergeant by the time he arrives at Fort Larned. From January through 30 June 1868 he was on company duty with one exception. On 15 March he reported to sick call for diarrhea but returned to company duty on the 16th. On 20 June he was assigned to daily duty as the Acting Post Commissary Sergeant and remained in that position until the end of the year.

Maintenance Matters
by William Chapman, Facility Manager

     Greetings one and all from the park's facility team. We have been very busy during the limited operations period of Covid-19 and since our last Outpost. We are still repairing windows on the Old Commissary and Quartermaster buildings. The windows have some wood deterioration on the sills and lower portion of the jambs, as well as the sashes bottom rail failing from excess moisture. So,how are we addressing these conditions? We first remove the deteriorated area of wood to sound or good material keeping as much as possible. If the damaged area is a small area, we consolidate the good material surface with an epoxy. Then we fill the void with epoxy filler and shape as needed. If the condition is deteriorated past this type of treatment, we remove a larger section of the window components and duplicate a wood piece to patch the area. Most of the repairs with the windows on the Commissary have been replacement of pieces of window sash components.

     We are evaluating a product that bonds stone together, called "Bond Stone." "Bond Stone" is a 2-part epoxy that can withstand weather and moisture conditions we normally have at the Fort. We had a couple of stones on the Quartermaster building where the stone face had become separated from the body of the stone. We used this product to attach the face piece back to the embedded stone in the wall - with good results currently.

     The contract for painting the Commissary building was executed and is a good product. The revegetation project is in its last year and the contractor has treated the exotic plants that inundated the northwest prairie this year. We believe the seed load was a gift of the flooding last May. Prior to treatment, we were going from prairie to a cottonwood forest with all the new sprout trees.

     We are recruiting once again for a career seasonal Maintenance Mechanic. This position will work on the park infrastructure, fleet, and support water and preservation efforts. Pay for this position ranges from $27 to $31 per hour. It is scheduled as a 13-pay period job (26 weeks) but can be longer depending on available funding. This is great opportunity for a skilled person thinking of a lighter work schedule.

     Prior to writing this article on the evening of 29 July, we had some wind damage from a brief storm. The adjacent building lost shingles and 25 feet of the north fence of the North Officers' quarters was blown over, breaking posts at the ground.

In Memoriam: Roy Hargadine
by George Elmore, Chief Ranger

     After working with Ranger Roy Hargadine for 20 years, his passing on July 11, 2020, is not just losing a coworker but also a good friend. Roy worked at Fort Larned from 1997 to 2018 with a summer off to work for Estes Park in the Rocky Mountains patching up injured bodies. Roy taught social studies in Jetmore, Kansas, during the school year. During summers, Roy taught inquiring minds of all ages about Fort Larned, Plains Indians, and the Santa Fe Trail. He quickly became a key member in the family of Fort Larned Rangers.

     Roy's passion for guns extended to the weapons of Fort Larned, and he joined the crew responsible for firing the Fort's Mountain Howitzer. As part of the artillery crew, Roy went on the adventures to Bent's Old Fort, Fort Union, and Fort Hays, teaching people about the Mountain Howitzer and firing it. With Roy along, trips were never boring. The crew entertained each other with stories and jokes as we traveled down the road with a lot of laughs. Once we arrived, no one was more professional, dedicated, and caring about doing it right than Roy. At the Fort, one of Roy's favorite places to talk about was the Quartermaster issue room. We never had to worry about Roy's programs--he never lacked for stories about the room, yet they were always accurate and respectful to the historic people he was talking about.

     Being an EMT instructor, Roy served as our park medical person. He would keep all the first-aid kits full and up to date. From minor cuts to more serious medical issues, Roy was the one patching the injured and, when necessary, ensured that an ambulance was on the way.

     He served on the board of the Old Guard for several years and was involved in the purchase of the Cheyenne and Lakota village site. He presented public programs about the Hancock Expedition.

     Roy was one of the dedicated, caring, and fine people you meet. It was a privilege to work with him. Everyone who worked with Roy will remember and cherish our adventures and memories.

DEADLINE FOR NEXT ISSUE:
November 1, 2020

     Notice: If you would prefer to receive OUTPOST as a pdf file via email to save paper and postage, please send a note to the editor at {oliva@ruraltel.net}. You will see color photos in color and may print out the newsletter if you want a hard copy. Thank you.

Membership Reminder
     Annual memberships in the Fort Larned Old Guard expire on December 31. If you have not renewed for 2020, please send dues to membership chair Linda Peters, 1035 S Bridge St, Lakin KS 67860. Additional donations are always welcome to assist with projects of the Old Guard. Thank you so much for all 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 Fort Larned 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.

     Fort Larned National Historic Site is a unit of the U.S. National Park Service located six miles west of Larned, Kansas on Kansas Highway 156. Open 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p. m. daily, the park's Visitor Center/Museum and all furnished buildings are admission free. They also have a great book store! Information on Fort Larned may be found at {www.National Park Service.gov/fols}, by calling 620-285-6911, or by sending email to {fols_superintendent@National Park Service.gov}.




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