Saturday, April 13: The Victory Garden Movement

WWI and WWI posters promoting Victory Gardens

The Victory Garden Movement  Saturday, April 13, 2 p.m.  Neosho County Community College, 900 E Logan, Ottawa, KS  Free Event   “Victory Gardens” were home and community gardens used to grow fruits and vegetables at a time when food, fuel, transportation, and labor were in short supply. Though these gardens have their roots (roots! Get it?!) in the Home Front efforts of World War I and World War II, the concept of Victory Gardening is just as empowering today. Loretta Craig will present a history of Victory Gardens, including why…

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Kansas and the 1918 Flu Epidemic, featuring historian Tyler Johnson

Neosho County Community College, 900 E Logan, Ottawa, KS Sunday, November 4, 2018, 2 p.m. In 1918, an influenza epidemic killed millions of people around the world. One hundred years later, scientists and historians are still working to understand how it started.  Historian Tyler Johnson will present the story of the 1918 Influenza outbreak’s start in Western Kansas, the national outbreak, Kansas’s battle against the flu, and how Ottawa fared during the outbreak. He will also discuss death tolls and theories of how the pandemic started. This program is free…

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Diary of Reuben Smith, Kansas Settler and Civil War Soldier, presented by author Lana Wirt Myers October 21

Lana Wirt Myers, author of The Diaries of Reuben Smith, Kansas Settler and Civil War Soldier

Neosho County Community College, 900 E Logan, Ottawa, KS Sunday, October 21, 2018, 2 p.m. In 1854, after recently arriving from England, twenty-two-year-old Reuben Smith traveled west, eventually making his way to Kansas Territory. There he found himself in the midst of a bloody prelude to the Civil War, as Free Staters and defenders of slavery battled to stake their claim. For fifty years, Smith wrote fascinating narratives about all he observed and experienced during territorial days, the border war, civil war, and early Kansas politics (he served three terms…

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Historic sign lights up Old Depot Museum

Rick Hamman of Coffelt Sign Company puts the final touches on the newly restored 1962 Ottawa sign in the Model Railroad Room at the Old Depot Museum in Ottwa, Kansas. The sign is one of a pair that once served as a beacon for trains arriving at Ottawa’s fifth and final Santa Fe depot, which opened in 1962. Passenger service ended in 1971. Restoration and installation was completed by Coffelt Sign Company of Emporia, Kansas, and funded in part by a grant from the Caroline E. Hewitt Trust.

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Dietrich Cabin Fall 2018 Hours Announced

Step back in time at the 1859 Dietrich Cabin! Learn about life in 19th-Century Franklin County. Dietrich Cabin is located in City Park at 5th and Main streets in Ottawa, Kansas. Kids are always welcome! Admission is free, but donations to help FCHS maintain the cabin are always appreciated. Fall2018 Dietrich Cabin Hours  Sunday, August 26, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.  Saturday, September 15, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, September 23, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.  Sunday, October 28, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

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Franklin County Museum Hopper Weekend August 4-5, 2018

This August, four Franklin County museums are partnering to promote local history. Appanoose Museum, the Old Depot Museum, Richmond Community Museum, and the Wellsville Historical Society are launching a first-ever Museum Hopper Weekend on August 4 and 5 to encourage visitors to explore the rich history of Franklin County. “What’s amazing about our community museums is that each museum reflects the stories of the people in the community it serves,” said Diana Staresinic-Deane, Franklin County Historical Society executive director. “By visiting each of these museums, visitors can really appreciate how…

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Discover Archaeology in Your Own Backyard on July 29

Archaeology in Your Own Backyard Sunday, July 29, 2 p.m. Neosho County Community College, 900 E Logan, Ottawa, KS The land is much older than we are, and evidence of the people who came before us can be found in the soil. As pieces of farm tools, dishes, pottery, arrowheads, and nails come to the surface, they connect us to the past. What should we do if we find something? How do we identify it? Do we get to keep it? Kansas archaeologist Aaron Colgrove will present “Archaeology in Your…

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FCHS board votes not to pursue barn project

Ottawa, Kansas—After months of research and investigation, the Franklin County Historical Society Board of Trustees unanimously voted against pursuing the acquisition of the 1894 Hatfield-Wolf-Bowers barn, located near the corner of Seventh Street and Eisenhower Road in Ottawa, Kansas. In 2017, the Bowers family approached the Franklin County Historical Society about the possibility of donating the barn and some land to the historical society. “FCHS saw a potential opportunity to develop an agricultural museum and meeting space,” said Diana Staresinic-Deane, executive director of the Franklin County Historical Society. “We saw…

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Dietrich Cabin Spring 2018 Hours Announced

Step back in time at the 1859 Dietrich Cabin! Learn about life in 19th-Century Franklin County. Dietrich Cabin is located in City Park at 5th and Main streets in Ottawa, Kansas. Kids are always welcome! Admission is free, but donations to help FCHS maintain the cabin are always appreciated. Spring 2018 Dietrich Cabin Hours  Sunday, April 15, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.  (weather cancellation) Sunday, April 29, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 20, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.  Sunday, June 10, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 16,…

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Critter Companions exhibit opening March 17

Pets the subject of new exhibit at Old Depot Museum Ottawa, Kansas—The Old Depot Museum’s new exhibit explores Franklin County’s relationship with animals. Critter Companions, a look at working animals and companion pets, opens March 17. Before the 19th Century, most animals found in average households were working animals. Cats chased mice, dogs scented game, and horses provided transportation. During the mid-1800s, companion animals, which had once been common only among more affluent households, began to find their way into the hearts and homes of average citizens. As members of…

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