Fort Scott National Historic Site

Visited: June 2020

Location: Fort Scott, Kansas

Accommodations: day trip from home

Duration: 1-2 hours

We had bought a new horse trailer and it just so happened to be in a town that had a National Park Service Site, how fun is that. We took off early in the morning with our old trailer and headed down to Fort Scott. While they were getting our new trailer ready we had lunch with some friends and then spent about an 1-1.5 hours walking the grounds at Fort Scott National Historic Site. Due to Covid-19 not many things were open. We had to knock on the door at the Visitor Center, to get Junior Rangers, cancellations and a brochure. .

Fort Scott is an important site because of its history in Indian Removal, westward expansion, Bleeding Kansas, the Civil War, and the Railroad years. Its story spans one of the most critical eras of our nation’s history. It was a beautiful summer day and we enjoyed our walk around the site.

We started at the Visitor Center and went clockwise around the site. Follow along.

Infantry Barracks (now houses a museum)

Dragoon Stables – The original stables were built in 1843, it housed over 80 stalls for horses and several rooms for the storage of hay, grain and tack. This is a reconstruction.

Dragoon Barracks – The Barracks were first occupied by Co. A of the 1st Dragoons in 1844. Soldiers were bunked in the upper level and they had their meals on the ground floor in the mess hall. This is a reconstruction.

Post Headquarters – This held the offices of the commanding officer and his adjutant, a court-martial room and artillery storerooms. This is a reconstruction.

Officers Quarters/Wilson-Goodlander House – This is where officers and their family lived. This is a restoration.

Quartermaster Storehouse -All of the military supplies needed were delivered and stored here. This is a restoration.

Post Bakery – a staple of a soldier’s diet is bread. The daily ration was baked in ovens here by bakers chosen from each company on a rotating basis. This is a restoration.

Guardhouse- This is where any military discipline would take place. Solitary confinement and a diet of bread and water were common punishment. This is a reconstruction.

Powder Magazine – The magazine, completed in 1844 and demolished in 1868 was the storage to the fort’s explosives. This is a reconstruction.

Below is the canopy well, situated in the middle of the fort grounds.

Back at the Visitor Center we handed in our Junior Ranger books, earned our badges and we were off. We made another trip down here in 2021 to get repairs done on our trailer and the Visitor Center was open for us to buy our magnets and other items. Another site done…….

Until next time……which I hope is soon. 3 months in the pandemic and this is getting old.

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