Southeast Kansas boasts picturesque prairie lands and unique historic sites. Start your tour at the Fort Scott NHS. A former military base and Civil War security facility, the preserved Fort reveals life in the 1850s. From there, visit the Little House on the Prairie Museum’s replica of the 1870 cabin belonging to the Ingall’s family. The site also includes an original post office and one-room schoolhouse.
Do you remember the Dalton Raid? You can learn all about it through displays and memorabilia housed at the Dalton Defenders Museum in Coffeyville. And if your travels take you to Columbus, the 1919 Seth Thomas Clock Tower is well-worth a visit.
Are you traveling with kids? They’ll love the David Traylor Zoo of Emporia and the Safari Zoological Park in Caney. The Erie Dinosaur Park is a big hit, as is the sight of the “Big Brutus” electric shovel.
Adventurers should grab their hiking boots or bikes to explore the Prairie Spirit Trail. It runs 51 miles and reveals prairie, wildlife, and towns, with stops at the Old Museum Depot or the Santa Fe Depot. If a road trip is in order, take a drive down the historic Kansas Route 66 Historic Byway.
Fort Scott National Historic Site in Kansas
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Step into the world of 1850s Kansas at the Fort Scott National Historic Site. The Fort encompasses 17 acres and reveals its former life as a military base, supply depot, and Civil War security post. On the property, 20 historic structures can be explored, as well as the parade grounds and surrounding prairie. Among the most popular guided tours is "The Highlights of History Tour" that shares tales of the "Bleeding Kansas" era.