• Fort Parade Ground and Officers Quarters as seen from Guardhouse

    Fort Scott

    National Historic Site Kansas

Memorial Day Holiday Events

Volunteer Mike McCartney dressed as an officer with the Corps of Engineers

VIP Mike McCartney portraying an officer with the Corps of Engineers.  McCartney and his wife, Marty will be at the site on Saturday for this year's Memorial Day activities.

NPS Photo

This Memorial Day weekend, you and your family are invited to visit Fort Scott National Historic Site and learn more about crucial events of the mid-1800s that helped shape our national character. Experience the sights, sounds, and smells of a frontier military fort. Celebrate the weekend with traditional living history programs, cooking demonstrations, and artillery firings. A guided tour will be offered at 1 p.m. each day and a National Moment of Remembrance honoring America's fallen heroes will be held Monday at 3 p.m.

Come Saturday, May 24, and see soldiers, civilians, and ladies of the 1840s Old Army Era. Visit with the post surgeon about the ailments and cures of the day. Jump in and assist the post laundresses as they wash and mend soldiers' clothes. Smell the aroma of freshly baked bread from the fort bake house and watch as the soldiers and women of the fort go about their daily routines. Visit with the Guard and learn about crime and punishment, frontier style. In "Gallery of Heroes", volunteer Arnold Schofield will focus on soldiers from Fort Scott who died in the line of duty. Highlighting the day's activities will be a Memorial Day Tableau paying tribute to fallen officers and soldiers at Fort Scott during the frontier years, "Bleeding Kansas", and the Civil War.

Activities will continue on Sunday and Monday with more artillery demonstrations and programs focused on various historical events in which Fort Scott was involved. The program Democracy Run Wild examines the turbulent politics of Bourbon County and Kansas Territory during the 1850s. "Flash Flood" will focus on the role that the dragoon soldier played in westward expansion. Fort Scott's Medal of Honor Recipients will be honored with a presentation offering a brief history of the Medal of Honor from its beginnings. Three Fort Scott Medal of Honor recipients will be highlighted with a history of the soldier, his citation, an explanation of the engagement, and post-war information. Listen to patriotic music from the American Revolution through World War II as "The Carlson's" play popular tunes of soldiers at war.

The schedule of activities is listed below:

Saturday, May 24

  • 10:00 a.m. Cast Iron Skillets and Dutch Ovens: Cooking Demonstration
  • 11:00 a.m. Thunder Wagon: Artillery Demonstration
  • 12:00 p.m. Crime and Punishment: Guard Duty
  • 1:00 p.m. Guided Tour
  • 2:00 p.m. "Gallery of Heroes" – Interpretive Talk
  • 3:00 p.m. Memorial Day Tableau: "Making the Ultimate Sacrifice"
  • 4:00 p.m. Flag Retreat

Sunday, May 25

  • 11:00 a.m. Thunder Wagon: Artillery Demonstration
  • 12:00 p.m. Democracy Run Wild - Interpretive Talk
  • 1:00 p.m. Guided Tour
  • 2:00 p.m. Thunder Wagon: Artillery Demonstration
  • 3:00 p.m. Flash Flood: Fort Scott and Westward Expansion – Interpretive Talk
  • 4:00 p.m. Flag Retreat

Monday, May 26

  • 10:00 a.m. Fort Scott's Medal of Honor Recipients presentation
  • 11:00 a.m. Thunder Wagon: Artillery Demonstration
  • 1:00 p.m. Guided Tour
  • 2:00 p.m. Patriotic Music – The Carlson's
  • 3:00 p.m. Moment of Silence
  • 4:00 p.m. Flag Retreat

Fort Scott National Historic Site, a unit of the National Park Service, is open daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. There is no entrance fee charged. For more information call the site at 620-223-0310.

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Did You Know?

Reenactors portraying the First Kansas Colored at a Civil War Encampment at Fort Scott in April of 2003

Kansas was the first Union state to recruit, muster, train and send African American soldiers into combat during the Civil War. The First Kansas Colored Infantry mustered in at Fort Scott, Kansas on January 13, 1863. The unit compiled a proud combat record during the war.