Summer 2017, Day 23: Barbed Wire Museum, Fort Larned NHS, Tallgrass Prairie NP

We woke up to a sunny day in the city park here in La Crosse, Kansas:

Summer2017_Day23_001

I called the police last night to confirm that we were in the correct spot and that it was legal.  I love how laid back rural America is:

Summer2017_Day23_002

We discovered that we parked next to a cluster of museums, all on the same property:

Summer2017_Day23_006 
We first visited the Barbed Wire Museum:

Summer2017_Day23_003

Summer2017_Day23_004

Barbed wire art:

Summer2017_Day23_005

This museum is surprisingly extensive:

Summer2017_Day23_021

Summer2017_Day23_012

Summer2017_Day23_013

Each variant of barbed wire in the collection is labeled with its patent number:

Summer2017_Day23_014

Summer2017_Day23_015

Summer2017_Day23_016

This wire was used in 1892 in Bodie, California to move power from a hydroelectric plant to the town.  It was the first attempt in history to transport power from the source to a distant destination.  It was thought at the time that electricity flowed like water, and if the wires did not travel in a straight line, the electricity would “spill out”.  The project was a success, and power flowed 12 miles to town, though the perfectly straight path of the power poles was unnecessary:

Summer2017_Day23_017

Summer2017_Day23_019

Summer2017_Day23_020

This nest was built by ravens out of strands of barbed wire.  It weights over 70 pounds:

Summer2017_Day23_022

A setup like this, a modified coffee grinder and grinding wheel, was used to create the first strand of barbed wire:

Summer2017_Day23_023

A fence stretcher:

Summer2017_Day23_025

Summer2017_Day23_026

Fence posts:

Summer2017_Day23_027

Summer2017_Day23_028

The barbed wire hall of fame, which honors barbed wire collectors:

Summer2017_Day23_029

Summer2017_Day23_030

Summer2017_Day23_031

Summer2017_Day23_032

Our next stop was the Rush Country historical museum:

Summer2017_Day23_007

Summer2017_Day23_033

Summer2017_Day23_034

Summer2017_Day23_035

Summer2017_Day23_036

Our third stop was the post rock museum:

Summer2017_Day23_009

Trees were scarce in the plains states, so fence posts were made out of limestone:

Summer2017_Day23_037

Summer2017_Day23_038

Summer2017_Day23_039

Summer2017_Day23_040

Summer2017_Day23_041

Our next stop was the bank musuem, in the closed bank building moved here from Nekoma, Kansas:

Summer2017_Day23_008

Summer2017_Day23_042

Summer2017_Day23_043

Summer2017_Day23_044

Summer2017_Day23_045

Summer2017_Day23_046

The last museum here was a one-room schoolhouse, also moved here from Nekoma:
 Summer2017_Day23_010

Summer2017_Day23_047

Summer2017_Day23_048

Summer2017_Day23_049

We continued east to Fort Larned National Historic Site:

Summer2017_Day23_050

The fort was built in the mid-1800s to protect traffic along the Santa Fe Trail from hostile Native Americans:

Summer2017_Day23_051

Summer2017_Day23_052

Summer2017_Day23_053

The visitor center was interesting:

Summer2017_Day23_054

Summer2017_Day23_055

This photo shows William Bent, one of the brothers who built Bent’s Old Fort, which we visited yesterday:

Summer2017_Day23_056

Summer2017_Day23_057

Summer2017_Day23_058

Summer2017_Day23_059

Summer2017_Day23_060

Summer2017_Day23_061

Summer2017_Day23_062

Summer2017_Day23_063

Summer2017_Day23_064

Summer2017_Day23_065

Summer2017_Day23_066

20171009_173900

Our last stop of the day was Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve:

Summer2017_Day23_074

The preserve protects and interprets the largest remnant of tallgrass prairie in America, which once covered over 170 million acres:

Summer2017_Day23_067

The preserve also protects a historic farm.  We visited with the horse:

Summer2017_Day23_068

Summer2017_Day23_069

Summer2017_Day23_070

Summer2017_Day23_071

Summer2017_Day23_072

Summer2017_Day23_073

We continued east to overnight at Lyon Lake, which allows free lakeside camping:

Summer2017_Day23_075

Summer2017_Day23_076

Summer2017_Day23_077

See the alternating light blue line on the trip map for today’s drive.

Summer 2017, Day 22: Bent’s Old Fort NHS, Amache, Sand Creek Massacre NHS, Monument Rocks
Summer 2017, Day 24: Brown vs. Board of Education NHS

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>