Chat about Civil War on the Western Frontier

August 9, 2007

This chat has already taken place. Read the transcript below.

Chat with Rebecca Phipps, director of the Watkins Community Museum of History, about Civil War on the Western Frontier events.

Moderator:

Hi, everybody. Rebecca is here and ready to answer your questions. Feel free to post more questions through the chat.

I'm Terry Rombeck, a J-W features reporter, and I'll be moderating the chat. Welcome, Rebecca.

Rebecca Phipps:

thanks for having me

Moderator:

First off, for those who aren't familiar with Civil War on the Western Frontier, please give people a brief overview.

Rebecca Phipps:

CWWF is a 13 to 15 day period of Civil War programming. The event began as a way to comemorate the victims of Quantrill's Raid. Several organizations through out town, sometimes, the county, participate.

hipper_than_hip:

Is there a posted schedule for the Western Frontier events in our area?

Rebecca Phipps:

Yes. You can see visitlawrence.com for a complete list. See watkinsmuseum.org for the events in our building. And also there are brochures available throughout town. You can get one at the museum, chamber office or visitor's center. Also check the newspaper daily.

mpaget:

Does Civil War on the Western Frontier draw lots of out-of-town visitors and Civil War junkies, or is it more of a local phenomenon?

Rebecca Phipps:

We do get visitors from all over. A couple at today's showing of Dark Command were from Uma, Arizona and they will be here for the entire event. Many attending the programs are local or from the Kansas City Metropolitan. The museum typically sees over 1,000 during this event.

mpaget:

Are there events that might be appropriate for very young children (1 to 3 years old)?

Rebecca Phipps:

L for Lincoln is a family story hour with crafts. It will be held Aug. 18 at the museum at 10:30 a.m.

monkeywrench:

a lot of areas, especially around here, take "credit" for sparking the civil war-battle of blackjack, quantrill's raid, etc. in your opinion, what event really started the civil war, and was it around here?

Rebecca Phipps:

I do believe the impetus for the war did begin with the settlement of Kansas and especially the Kansas-Nebraska act of 1854. Lawrence, of course, was a hotbed in the conversations of states' rights, slavery, the meaning of freedom--all eyes were on this area.

DennisAnderson:

How do museums, such as Watkins, present the Civil War in the context of today's war?

Rebecca Phipps:

Museums do not traditionally present current events. That is changing as younger generations of museum professionals are entering the field. We have had many researchers at Watkins drawing connections between the CW and Quantrill's Raid to wars in Bosnia, Kuwait, and Afghanistan.

ChristyLittle:

What sites do participants visit during the Quantrill's Raid Walking Tour?

Rebecca Phipps:

This year's walking tour is of East Lawrence. Katie Armitage is leading the tour. I do not know the specific route.

Moderator:

A lot of people who have lived in Douglas County awhile probably know at least some about the Civil War era here. Are there any random facts people might be surprised to know about the era?

Rebecca Phipps:

There are so very many stories. One I just came across recently was that Gov. Roscoe Stubbs' wife's family was present in Lawrence during the raid. The Gov.'s mother-in-law witness one of John Speer's sons murder. The story goes that he was walking home from the newspaper office for breakfast and was shot in the street. Mrs. Stubbs left the stafety of her house to cover the young man.

Rebecca Phipps:

Sorry, not Mrs Stubbs, it was Gov. Stubbs mother-in-law the covered the Speers boy.

Moderator:

A lot of KU students will be moving to town for the first time this weekend. If they want to get a brief primer on the Civil War era in Lawrence, how could they go about learning?

Rebecca Phipps:

Attending any of our programs during the next several days of course! Our research archives are also open to anyone, but we to ask researchers to make an appointment. There are also many books on the topic -- some of which are available in our gift shop. Also, they can learn by visiting the museum and our exhibits.

Moderator:

For those who want to learn more, you can check out a story about women who fought in the Civil War:

http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2007/aug/09/act_recounts_role_civil_war_women/

Also, tomorrow's Pulse Podcast, posted here at ljworld.com, will feature music of 1850s Kansas with The Freestaters, a band that will perform Saturday at the Watkins Museum.

That does it for today's chat. Thanks, Rebecca, for coming in, and good luck with all the events.

Rebecca Phipps:

Thanks!

Comments

Godot 7 years, 9 months ago

Good job, Rebecca! Very succinct and informative.

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