Douglas County and Lawrence residents can hear the fiery rhetoric of John Brown, tour sites used to ferry escaped slaves to freedom, and view artifacts from William Quantrill’s 1863 raid as part of series of programs offered during the next week collectively called “Civil War on the Western Frontier.”
The event is presented by the Watkins Museum and the Lawrence Parks and Recreation Department in association with a number of other area museums and sites. It will include walking and bus tours, re-enactments and lectures. Online registrations for the bus and walking tours can be made at watkinsmuseum.org/events/cwwf/.
The highlight of the events will be the annual reading by community leaders of the victims of Quantrill’s Raid on Lawrence scheduled for 10 a.m. Saturday. The memorial reading will be followed by the event’s keynote address from Robert Sutton, chief historian of the National Park Service. He will speak on his new book “Stark Mad Abolitionists,” which is about the early anti-slavery settlers in the Lawrence area. The reading and lecture are free.
The schedule of events is:
Sunday, Aug. 13
10 to 11 a.m., Riverkings Museum, 8 E. Sixth St. “Reconstruction and Industrial Development along the Kaw — Post Civil War,” lecture and self-guided tour.
1 p.m., Territorial Capital Museum, Lecompton. “Bleeding Kansas” play and museum tour.
Wednesday, Aug. 16
1 to 2 p.m., Wakarusa River Valley Heritage Museum, 716 North 1190 Road. Gallery talk: “Underground Railroad and Freedom Ring.”
Thursday, Aug. 17
6:30 to 8 p.m., Watkins Museum, 1047 Massachusetts St. Unholy Rebellion — “The Civil War Diary of Charles Adam Wetherbee, 1861-1864.” Lecture at the monthly meeting of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.
Friday, Aug. 18
8 to 9:30 p.m., Oak Hill Cemetery, 1605 Oak Hill Ave. Tour guided by Watkins curator Brittany Keegan. Cost is $18; for more information, call 832-7920 or visit lprd.org
Saturday, Aug. 19
Information about costs and registration for each tour is available on the Watkins Museum website, watkinsmuseum.org.
8 to 9:30 a.m., Quantrill’s Raid bus tour.
8:30 to 10 a.m., Quantrill’s Raid walking tour.
10 to 11:30 a.m., Watkins Museum: Memorial reading and keynote speech.
11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Civil War Era History Hack tour.
11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Ravine and the Raid bus tour.
Noon to 1 p.m., Watkins Museum. Civil War folk music with Jim Krause.
1 to 2:30 p.m., Watkins Museum. Civil War “School of the Soldier” kids' activities. Cost is $5 per child; call 841-4109 to register.
3 to 3:30 p.m., tour of Watkins Museum's Quantrill’s Raid artifacts by museum director Steve Nowak.
3 to 4:30 p.m., Underground Railroad bus tour.
4 to 4:30 p.m., Watkins Museum. Herschel and Jacque Stroud give a portrayal of the Speer family’s experiences during Quantrill’s Raid.
5 to 5:30 p.m., Watkins Museum. Kerry Altenbernd presents a portrayal of John Brown.
Sunday, Aug. 20
4 to 5 p.m. Free tour of Black Jack Battlefield, east of Baldwin City at 161 East 2000 Road, with Kerry Altenbernd as John Brown.