Scott County Historical Society

Winter 2013 Newsletter

Winter 2013 Newsletter

It never seems to slow down, does it? There were just four weeks between the amazing Battle Canyon anniversary celebration and the annual Membership Appreciation Day. Perhaps that was why some of you missed the outstanding program that day

Guest speaker, Thad Beach, presented a great multi-media program about the Dirty Thirties - entertainment at its best! We try to provide a variety of programs to our members as we know people are interested in different things. We always welcome your suggestions for programs and displays, so don’t hesitate to contact us.

If you didn’t make it to the Battle Canyon symposium or to the membership appreciation meeting, you probably haven’t seen the newest paintings and priceless artifacts in the Jerry Thomas Gallery. Some of the artifacts are directly related to Battle Canyon and/or the history of the Northern Cheyenne. Jerry has been acquiring these items for some time and is rightfully proud of the new displays that showcase them. There is so much to see in the Jerry Thomas Gallery, and it is time well spent.

One more SPECIAL EVENT before the year comes to a close - the Christmas Open House and ever-popular Sugar Plum Sale! This is scheduled for Sunday, December 15th.

TIME CHANGE: We’ll run from 1:30 to 3:30, with a drawing for raffle prizes at 3:30. Among the raffle prizes will be one of Tava See’s famous German chocolate cakes, a gift plate of Marvel Hopkins Keyse’s marvelous fudge and Patsi Graham’s practically perfect peanut brittle! There will be at least one more item for your choice.

            We will be selling holiday cookies and candies by the pound and will serve refreshments. It’s a fun afternoon – don’t miss it!

            Now, of course, we need your help. If you can provide a batch of cookies or candy, would you please call the museum 872-5912, or Patsi 872-3523, or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . This is the only fundraiser we hold during the year and we need your support to make it successful.

We’ll be decking the halls soon, and our holiday exhibit in the temporary gallery is a beautiful display of Hallmark Christmas collectibles on loan from Trudi Eikenberry.  

REMINDER: Year-end donations to the SC Historical Society in any amount are tax deductible and would be greatly appreciated!



Spring 2013 Newsletter


February 2013

As I write this newsletter today (Feb. 22nd), the sun is reflecting off the bright white SNOW. We didn’t get the big snow the weatherman predicted for us, but it was good snow cover and welcome moisture. Those of us who have been around awhile know that winter is not over. I’m not forecasting an Easter blizzard, but two of the most memorable blizzards in my lifetime started on the 23rd of March – one in 1957 and another in 1987. (Easter is March 31st . . .)

Read more: Spring 2013 Newsletter

Winter 2012 Newsletter

‘Tis the Season . . .

How did it get to be ‘that time of year’ again? I suppose it’s because we’re so busy, but time just evaporates. And we do stay busy. Here’s what’s been going on since the July Newsletter was sent.

Read more: Winter 2012 Newsletter

Summer 2012 Newsletter

SUMMER IN SPADES---It’s doubtful that any of us will soon forget those last couple of weeks in June 2012!  Triple digit heat, high winds, and no rain made for a miserable early summer.  And then. . .well, it’s Kansas, and it’s SUMMER. Thank goodness for Air Conditioning.  Many of our long-time members can well remember the “good old days” when the most important thing you held in your hand in the summertime was a cardboard fan fastened to a flat wooden stick!

June was a stellar month here at the museum and the Jerry Thomas Gallery.  The first ever June Jaunt, originated to celebrate Highway 96, brought in an overflow crowd to hear Keen Brantley tell the story of the Fleagle Gang.  Nearly 200 people enjoyed the two presentations on Saturday afternoon.  In addition, a busload of 20 or more folks enjoyed the historic park bus tour and the Duff buffalo pasture tour on Sunday afternoon.  Scott City offered great activities for the June Jaunt and something fun was planned for every age.  We’ll do it again next year!

Before we could get our feet back on the ground, the group known as Grandmother’s Horses were in town.  We partnered with Travel and Tourism, the Chamber of Commerce, and several interested individuals to host their activities here.  We learned about “Indian Time,” which was sometimes hard on those of us who live by the clock, but we found our guests to be warm, friendly and appreciative of every thing that was provided for them.  The public reception held on Friday evening brought in another 60 people.  Some of our local riders accompanied the group on the ride from town to Battle Canyon, where healing ceremonies for the battlefield were led by Grandmother Margaret Behan, the Cheyenne/Araphoe leader of this year’s tour group.  A handmade, beaded headdress and medallion given to us by Thomas Smittle, is on display in the museum gallery.  A special thanks to Rod and Kathy Haxton for the excellent newspaper coverage of this historic event.

In spite of the triple digit heat wave and the high gas prices we have had visitors nearly every day.  It’s interesting that except for local visitors, most of those who sign our guest book are from out-of-state, and even out-of-country, with recent guests from Canada, South Korea, Brazil and Mongolia.

Once again we teamed up with the Scott County Library summer reading program.  A book was placed in each of the galleries and many kids came out to look for them.  Most of them got hung up on the fossil dig and played happily in the sand until their moms tugged them away.

The temporary gallery is once again featuring the Roy Browning collection of hand-carved buildings, farm machinery and animals. This large collection fills all five of our display cases and is a truly remarkable example of folk art.  We are so grateful to Mr. Browning’s family for donating his work to the museum.  Come out and enjoy this unique display.

By the way – we’re always looking for local collections to display in the temporary gallery and would welcome hearing from you if you have something you would like to share with the public for a period of about three months.

It’s always exciting to receive historic items for the museum collection, but we have recently been given several one-of-a-kind treasures.  Some of these are so rare, we’ve had to do extensive research to identify them.  Thank goodness for Google!  Some of the more interesting items are now in the display case in the foyer of the museum, including a vintage Magic Lantern, an early electric negative print box, a wicked looking hair clip to create those luscious waves associated with the Flappers of the 30’s - well, you get the idea.  Come on out and see.

New paintings and many more artifacts have been added to the outstanding collection in the Jerry Thomas Gallery. If you haven’t been out in the past few months, you have some catching up to do.   Our young visitors often describe our galleries as really “cool” – so if you’re looking for a place to spend a comfortable afternoon, we can guarantee that you’ll find it to be ‘cool’ out here in more ways than one, and you’re always welcome.

Our summer hours are from 1-5 p.m., Monday through Saturday.  We know it’s hard for those of you who hold regular office hours to visit us, but maybe you can come by on a Saturday afternoon between now and September 1st.  We’ll return to weekday afternoons at that time.  Off-hour tours may be arranged is staff is available.  Call 872-5912 (museum) or Dennie 874 1559

Regarding payment of dues:  Dues reminders are sent annually on the month your dues were paid.  Example: August 2011 members will be notified by mail in August 2012.  Some dues have not been paid up for a couple of years or more.  If you’re not sure about your membership status, just give us a call at the museum.  Dues remain modest at $10 per member, $20 for a family membership, and $50 for a corporate membership.  Granted, you don’t get much for your money, but you can take pride in being a member of a local organization that is alive and well at 80 years, and still growing!  The Scott County Historical Society is a member of the Scott City Area Chamber of Commerce and works closely with Scott City Travel and Tourism to promote Scott City as a tourist destination.





Spring 2012 Newsletter

March came in like a lamb and went out like a lamb – a roasted lamb! It’s not often that March 31st hits a high temperature of 90+ degrees! It looks like Spring has sprung, and now we are being blessed with April Showers.

One sure sign of Spring here at the museum is the increase of daily visitors. It was a long, dry spell through January and February, but we’re enjoying visitors nearly every afternoon now. It remains to be seen what the ever-increasing gasoline prices will do to summer travelers.

A couple of exciting events are coming up soon. The first of which is THE ANNUAL MEETING of the historical society. The date is: Sunday, April 29th, at 2 p.m., at the El Quartelejo Museum. We will have a short business meeting and will consider a change in one article of the constitution. More about that later. Our program will be The History of Nicodemus, brought by Angela Bates, a great-great granddaughter of one of the original settlers of the only remaining all-black settlement west of the Mississippi. Ms Bates is a Nicodemus historian, an author, and the executive director and past president of the Nicodemus Historical Society. This program is made available to us through the Kansas Humanities Council. It promises to be a delightful afternoon and we urge you to join us. Oh – and we need cookie bakers . . .please.

The other special event involves not just Scott City, but virtually all the towns along Highway 96. June 1-2-3 will be the first-ever June Jaunt, a celebration of Highway 96, from Tribune to Ellinwood. Each town on that stretch of Highway 96 will provide some type of celebration or entertainment during those days.   Scott City is planning all types of events for all ages. You will be hearing much more about this in the weeks to come. El Quartelejo Museum and the Jerry Thomas Gallery are planning to present “Heartland History on the Highway,” featuring some sort of historical presentation on the grounds. There will be plenty of advance information going out to the public later on, and we’ll be posting updates on our website and Facebook, but put those dates on your calendar now.The Jerry Thomas Gallery was closed for a period of time this winter in order to complete a storage room for the gallery and to add some interesting new items to the gallery exhibit.   More lighting has been added and visitors are enjoying the new displays.

The Jerry Thomas Gallery was closed for a period of time this winter in order to complete a storage room for the gallery and to add some interesting new items to the gallery exhibit.   More lighting has been added and visitors are enjoying the new displays.

There have been additions in the museum gallery too. The Indian display now features two Native American mannequins in full costume. They are very lifelike and add a great deal of interest to that display. Our sincere thanks to some very faithful members of the historical society for their financial support of this project.

The four high school Biology classes were here on March 26th, for a full day of tours for our staff and volunteers. We appreciate those teachers who make arrangements for students to see and hear the history of Scott County, and enjoy the fine artwork of Jerry Thomas.

The temporary gallery held a display of artwork from our local high school students through the month of March. Such amazing talent! We would have kept it longer, but the students had spring competitions to enter.

The temporary gallery is now being prepared for a new exhibit which we hope to have ready for the annual meeting. “A Stitch in Time,” will showcase our own collection of vintage quilts and maybe some other handiwork. Some of our quilts are too fragile to be hung, but we’ll display them some way. They are all beautiful and special. Several are “Friendship” quilts from early Scott City social clubs or church groups. If we have room, we will consider showing quilts that are not a part of our collection. If you have a quilt you’d like displayed, please contact the museum soon.     872-5912

Our gift shop is a good place to shop for unique, one-of-a-kind gift items. We have two new travel guides you might want to pick up before the summer traveling season begins. One is Marci Penner’s 8 Wonders of Kansas Guidebook, and the other is An Explorer’s Guide to Kansas, which includes places stay overnight and places to eat, as well as places to visit. We carry Kansas postcards, other Kansas items, many books and toys, and of course, a full range of Jerry Thomas prints.

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