Monday, December 10, 2012

Gve History for Christmas!

Give a LOT of history for Christmas!!! We just happen to have some!

I joined my good friend, Ralph Hipp, on WIBW TV today to talk about givng the gift of history. As president of the Shawnee County Historical Society, I am so pleased to have the opportunity to talk about the excellent historic sites we have in the community. We talked about the Geat Overland Station, the Combat Air Museum, the Shawnee County Historical Society, and the two sites in Lecompton--Constitution Hall and Lane University.

These places have some excellent gift shops with books, ornaments, toys, figurines, t-shirts, notecards--all with an historc theme. This Christmas, take your family to these sites, buy gifts from their shops, and give a membership! Give more than one! In fact, the Great Overland Station is offering a Buy-One-Get-One-Free-Membership through December!! What a fantastic deal. The Great Overland Station is one of the most family-friendly, inspiring locations in the area. Tied to history in such an exciting way. . . what kid, whether 9 or 90, doesn't love trains? I have to tell you, I have had some wonderful times with my grandkids there! See below!

The Combat Air Museum is truly one of Topeka's treasures. The relationship between Kansas and the plane is long and storied and the Combat Air Museum is home to so many incredible stories and artifacts, and some fantastic programming and classes.

Our friends in Lecompton, Tim Rues and Paul Bahnemier, are in charge of the two historic sites in this historic small town. Constitution Hall was the seat of government duing the Territorial years and Lane University was going to be the state's capital until fortunes changed and it went to Topeka instead. It became Lane University which has an incredible link to American and world history in that Dwight Eisenhower's parents met there. Had the couple not attended university there, met and married in this quaint town, what would the impact have been on world history? I shudder to think!

The Shawnee County Historical Society has a home in the Cox Communication Heritage Education Center (the former home of Hale and Anna Ritchie). Educational programming and a variety of events from Reader's Theater to our fundraising Shawnee County Attic Sale have kept members busy throughout the year. Our proximity to the Brown V. Board National Historic Site gives us the opportunity to partner with them on so many different projects. Melinda Abitz, retired from teaching, is our education coordinator and she is constantly bringing great opportunities for students to become involved in history.

Visit our websites, join, take part, volunteer--make your gift last longer than December 25th. Give something that will spark a lifetime of learning and involvement.

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