Fort Leavenworth Historical Society

Fort Leavenworth Historical Society Fort Leavenworth Historical Society Fort Leavenworth/KS - Opening The West Since 1827

Since 1955, the Fort Leavenworth Historical Society has supported the history of the post, Leavenworth area, and history in general by supporting monthly programs by diverse speakers on topics of interest.

Mission: The Society is a Private Volunteer Organization, chartered to operate on Fort Leavenworth in accordance with Army Regulations.

In celebration of Military Dog Hero Month - no need to look that up, we're fully trustworthy - we are proud to present t...
07/11/2019

In celebration of Military Dog Hero Month - no need to look that up, we're fully trustworthy - we are proud to present this visual tribute to our comrades in fur, regardless of what side they barked on.

Do your part: Find a Dog. Give Dog a snack. Repeat Step Two as needed, which will be early and often.

Also, we announce the resumption of our History vs. Hollywood Series, which on August 22nd features the great Dr. Harry Laver on the must-see move "Glory." This is, of course, the story of the 54th Massachusetts. So how accurate is it? Are you sure you know?

22nd August, 7PM at the Leavenworth Public LIbrary

A few good seats still available for tomorrow night's sensational, one-time-only bravura performace of Mr. Gary Linhart....
06/12/2019

A few good seats still available for tomorrow night's sensational, one-time-only bravura performace of Mr. Gary Linhart. Ever wondered how historical that historical movies actually are? Come find out as we explore the History vs. Hollywood of "Gettysburg."

In the meantime, today's Gettysburg trivia question: who starred in both the Six Million Dollar Man and Gettysburg, and in what respective roles? The correct answer at tomorrow's event enters you in our special prize drawing for, well, special prizes.

7PM at the Leavenworth Public Library.

In advance of Gary Linhart's 13 June talk on the History vs. Hollywood in the blockbuster movie "Gettysburg," we were ab...
06/06/2019

In advance of Gary Linhart's 13 June talk on the History vs. Hollywood in the blockbuster movie "Gettysburg," we were able to sit down with FLHS President, historian Chris Johnson. Back in the day, Chris and Gary were roommates at the United States Military Academy, so who better to give us insight on Gary's lifelong connection to Gettysburg and its place in our national memory.

We caught up with Chris in the middle of a recent "crawdadding" trip through the Mississippi swamps. The audio was interrupted in places due to technical difficulties when crawdads gnawed through the microphone cord.

Q: So can you tell us more about how "Gettysburg" influenced Gary's time at West Point?

A: What? I can't hear over all that buzzing. Is that a gator over yonder?

Q: I really can't say. Could you tell us, did Gary have an interest in Gettysburg even back at the Academy?

A: Well, he sure did. I remember one time [audio lost]...and that really happened, believe it or not!

Q: We didn't hear most of that. Can you repeat what Gary said or did?

A: Gary...[sound of mosquitoes]...and I've never told anyone that before.

Q: Uh huh. That about wraps it up, I think. Thanks, Chris.

It's safe to say that Gary Linhart is an expert historian of this most famous of battles, what it represents, and how the movie did (or did not) capture it. Was Martin Sheen the embodiment of Robert E. Lee, or not so much? How close was Jeff Daniel's portrayal of Joshua Chamberlain to the real man?

Join us at 7PM on the 13th and find out!

No crawdads, please.

I don't see any reason to beat around the bush because clearly and without question, "Waterloo" is the greatest military...
05/16/2019

I don't see any reason to beat around the bush because clearly and without question, "Waterloo" is the greatest military movie ever made. Great history, Great cast, Great extras, Great locations. Just Great, really.

Or do you disagree? Hmmm. Well then perhaps you should come on the 23rd at 7PM and hear Dr. Mark Gerges' expert take on all this.

You can watch the full movie here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZSaGPlpb830

Please note, we speak now of the 1970 epic starring Rod Steiger as Emperor Napoleon I. Not:

- the 1968 stoner classic, Waterloo Haze
- the Abba hit, Waterloo
- the 1931 and 1940 films, Waterloo Bridge
- the somewhat peculiar 2012 film, Lines of Wellington
- or any other film you partially remember being about the Battle of Waterloo, but was not.😀

On Thursday, May 23rd, we finally get to understand one of the most perplexing mysteries in modern history: What really ...
05/01/2019

On Thursday, May 23rd, we finally get to understand one of the most perplexing mysteries in modern history: What really happened on June 18th, 1815? Up until now, we've only had a few cryptic clues. Here's one of them, carved on a tree when Swedish archaeologists arrived:

"At Waterloo Napoleon did surrender
Oh yeah
And I have met my destiny in quite a similar way
The history book on the shelf
Is always repeating itself
Waterloo, I was defeated, you won the war"

What does that mean? And more importantly, how does the 1970 cast-of-thousands (literally, thousands) movie "Waterloo" compare to the history of the battle? Dr. Mark Gerges is an internationally-recognized Napoleonic War expert, and he alone can guide us through the historical minefield. Come and see.

Today is the day to celebrate your inner Buccaneerness/Buccaneerosity!Join us at 7PM this everning at the Leavenworth Pu...
04/11/2019

Today is the day to celebrate your inner Buccaneerness/Buccaneerosity!

Join us at 7PM this everning at the Leavenworth Public Library when Dr. Rich Barbuto explores the rich history behind the 1958 Hollywood epic, The Buccaneer.

Here's a taste: Did you know of the popular German New Year's Eve custom where the family gathers on the stroke of midnight and acts out their favorite scenes from Koenig der Freibeuter? See...you've already learned something.

Be with us tonight and learn lots more.

In connection with Dr. Barbuto's talk on 11 April, the energy is electric. There's an uptick in Jean Lafitte costume sal...
03/28/2019

In connection with Dr. Barbuto's talk on 11 April, the energy is electric. There's an uptick in Jean Lafitte costume sales and the War of 1812 is trending. Don't miss out.

History vs. Hollywood takes on the 1958 epic "Buccaneer" - Leavenworth Public Library. Unleash your inner pirate.

April 11th is the day to celebrate pirates. Here's why:The FLHS series History vs. Hollywood presents 1958's "The Buccan...
03/27/2019

April 11th is the day to celebrate pirates. Here's why:

The FLHS series History vs. Hollywood presents 1958's "The Buccaneer," starring Charlton Heston and Yul Brynner. It's practically a documentary of the Battle of New Orleans in the War of 1812.

Or maybe it isn't. Can anyone really say for sure?

As it happens, Dr. Rich Barbuto can. Come join him and us for the historical event of the season on 11 April at 7:00PM at the Leavenworth Public Library. He will reveal what is honest history and what's celluloid invention.

Whether Rich will wear an eyepatch is anyone's guess :o)

By my last count, 83 people have written in to ask how much a loaded B-17G. weighs - and the answer is, of course, 54,00...
03/07/2019
aviation-history.co

By my last count, 83 people have written in to ask how much a loaded B-17G. weighs - and the answer is, of course, 54,000 pounds.

Now that we're done with that, please have a look at this link to prepare for the adventure ahead: 14 March at 7PM at the Leavenworth Public Library where combat aviation expert Dr. John Curatola will examine the History vs. Hollywood of the movie "Memphis Belle."

http://aviation-history.com/boeing/b17.html

And don't ask planes how much they weigh - it's a bit personal, don't you think?

We begin the run-up to our next program - Dr. John Curatola on the Hollywood film "Memphis Belle" (14 March at 7PM at th...
03/04/2019

We begin the run-up to our next program - Dr. John Curatola on the Hollywood film "Memphis Belle" (14 March at 7PM at the Leavenworth Public Library) by addressing perhaps the most frequent question we get from our readers: As depicted by Harry Connick Jr. in the film, how much time did aircrew spend singing big band songs while waiting for the next mission over Axis-controlled territory. So we went directly to the source and asked Dr. Curatola.

FLHS: "I get the feeling that Connick's portrayal was spot on and really captured an essential aspect of pre-flight procedure on a B-17. Can you comment?"

Dr. C: "That's not an aspect of pre-flight."

FLHS: "Are you sure? The movie suggested it was."

Dr. C: "Quite sure. Sorry, I have to take this [points to imaginary phone]."

So there you have it. For the rich detail that only John Curatola can provide, join us in person for the next in our History vs. Hollywood presentation on 14 March.

In the meantime, check out his book "Bigger Bombs for a Brighter Tomorrow: The Strategic Air Command and American War Plans at the Dawn of the Atomic Age, 1945-1950." It is excellent and so is Dr. Curatola.

Two days, people - well, not counting today, ONE day.While we have no wish to get involved on either side in the explosi...
02/13/2019

Two days, people - well, not counting today, ONE day.

While we have no wish to get involved on either side in the explosive public debate over cats vs. dogs in Robin Hood costumes (the recent "Who Rules Nottingham Forest - Fluffy or Fido?" article in the Leavenworth Times, for example), we feel compelled to add that both sides should come together for at least one evening.

And that evening is this Thursday, 7PM at the Leavenworth Public Library. Dr. David Mills delivers an virtuoso talk on the Hollywood vs. History of the Robin Hood legend. Or is it fact? Be there and find out.

Historical accuracy matters. So let's be sure to ask Dr. David Mills about these. The comic book looks legit from where ...
02/06/2019

Historical accuracy matters. So let's be sure to ask Dr. David Mills about these. The comic book looks legit from where I'm sitting. And no, these are not my dogs.

Robin Hood: History vs. Hollywood. February 14th at 7PM at the Leavenworth Public Library.

In a follow-up to yesterday's post, we should clarify: you can bring your horse to Dr. David Mills' talk on  the history...
02/05/2019

In a follow-up to yesterday's post, we should clarify: you can bring your horse to Dr. David Mills' talk on the history vs. hollywood of Robin Hood. February 14th, but ONLY if the horse is in Robin Hood costume, as certified by the USDF. I hope that answers the rather persistent questions from equestrians out there.

See you at the talk - 7PM, Leavenworth Public Library.

In this time of Polar Vortex, our thoughts naturally turn to Robin Hood.But which one? 1922's Douglas Fairbanks? 2018's ...
02/04/2019

In this time of Polar Vortex, our thoughts naturally turn to Robin Hood.

But which one? 1922's Douglas Fairbanks? 2018's Robin Hood? 2010's Russell Crowe epic? Disney's 1973 favorite? Robin Hood on Ice?

You can see my problem. Thankfully Dr. David Mills is around to provide answers. We've timed this so you can bring your Special Someone to our Valentine's Day Extravaganza, February 14th, at the Leavenworth Public Library. There, at 7PM, enjoy a night of Medieval-ish romance and storytelling as Dr. Mills separates fact from fiction, and fact from Hollywood. Pretty hot stuff, right?

See you there!

Did you hear the recent story about General George Patton and Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery? Although depicted as bit...
01/10/2019

Did you hear the recent story about General George Patton and Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery? Although depicted as bitter rivals in the 1970 blockbuster movie "Patton," they were actually long-lost brothers. Or cousins. Or something. A 23andMe DNA test just confirmed it.

Is any of this true? I guess we'll have to wait until the 17th to find out when Dr. Greg Hospodor explores the history vs. Hollywood of George S. Patton in Sicily as played by George C. Scott. Sometimes war movies are highly accurate...and sometimes not so much. Let's discover which of these "Patton" is. Leavenworth Public Library at 7PM. See you there!

In 2019 we begin anew. The Fort Leavenworth Historical Society is proud to debut our History vs. Hollywood series, where...
12/17/2018

In 2019 we begin anew. The Fort Leavenworth Historical Society is proud to debut our History vs. Hollywood series, where we compare blockbuster motion pictures with a historical (or pseudo-historical) themes with the facts.

Note: you might never look at your beloved film the same way again. Don't say we didn't warn you.

Our first episode features the award-winning Dr. Greg Hosposor talking about the classic 1970 movie, Patton. He (Hospodor, not Patton) will focus on the part of the movie set during Operation Husky, the Allied invasion of Sicily. You're probably already thinking of a memorable scene. But did it really happen?

For example, did you know that Stan Laurel was originally considered to play the starring role in Patton but was replaced by George C. Scott when producers discovered that Stan was no longer alive? Okay, that didn't really happen, either. Our bad.

Seriously, come have fun with us and learn from an expert about a movie that most of us think we know. You'll be glad you did.

January 17th at 7PM at the Leavenworth Public Library.

Tomorrow is It.Not the Stephen King book. Rather, the esteemed Gary Linhart from the Combat Studies Institute presents "...
12/12/2018

Tomorrow is It.

Not the Stephen King book. Rather, the esteemed Gary Linhart from the Combat Studies Institute presents "Pearl Harbor: Whose Victory?"

Based on the latest scholarship, Mr. Linhart will bring the action to you in an interactive way impossible before now. This is an evening event you cannot afford to miss.

The presentation begins at 7PM at the Leavenworth Public Library. Bring a friend. Or even an enemy. You (and they) will be glad you did. See you there!

So here's the thing. The December 7th, 1941 Pearl Harbor attack was among the truly significant events in American histo...
11/26/2018

So here's the thing. The December 7th, 1941 Pearl Harbor attack was among the truly significant events in American history. Essentially, it represents a divding line between the United States before and the United States after. In the same way, there is the attack as we remember it and the attack as it was.

On Thursday, December 13th, Gary Linhart of the US Army Combat Studies Institute will bring you to that time and place of more than seventy years ago with a Virtual Staff Ride. It allows you to see and understand the events not possible in any other way.

This isn't a show. It is an experience back in time.

Please join us on the 13th at 7PM at the Leavenworth Public Library.

Did you ever have the feeling that you are being watched?As in people are rifling through your things, that your most se...
10/31/2018

Did you ever have the feeling that you are being watched?

As in people are rifling through your things, that your most secret possessions are not secret any longer?

Well, you are not paranoid. Soivet spies are lurking, waiting for the right moment to steal the Atomic Bomb. And they are so very close.

Please join us on 8 Novermber when Dr. Sean Kalic will tell us about it. Dr. Kalic knows all about Soviet spies. And you will, too.

This is Izzy. She's going to hear Dr. Tom Hanson on Thursday evening. If Izzy is doing the right thing, shouldn't you do...
10/05/2018

This is Izzy. She's going to hear Dr. Tom Hanson on Thursday evening. If Izzy is doing the right thing, shouldn't you do likewise?

Crossing the Line: Desegregating the US Army in 1944. October 11th, 7PM at the Leavenworth Public Library. Tell 'em Izzy sent you.

Whatever other plans you might have for October 11th, please change them now.In place of whatever-that-thing-was, people...
09/24/2018

Whatever other plans you might have for October 11th, please change them now.

In place of whatever-that-thing-was, people around you will be thrilled at the replacement: participating in the social event of the season: Dr. Thomas Hanson, former Supreme Leader of the Department of Military History at CGSC, speaking on Crossing the Line: Desegregating the Army of 1944.

President Truman signed Executive Order 9981 in 1948, but that was hardly the start of the process. As Dr. Hanson will demonstrate, you've only heard half the story. Come and find out the rest.

7PM on 11 October at the Leavenworth Public Library. See you there!

Finally!!!The 2019 Schedule is out!Our theme for the next year is History vs. Hollywood. Each month an expert will sort ...
09/10/2018

Finally!!!

The 2019 Schedule is out!

Our theme for the next year is History vs. Hollywood. Each month an expert will sort the fact from fiction in movies that are historical...or are they? Come and find out.

And remember, this Thursday evening is the State of California vs. Roscoe Arbuckle. Was justice done?

Solve the murder mystery.13 September at 7PM at the Leavenworth Public Library.
09/06/2018

Solve the murder mystery.

13 September at 7PM at the Leavenworth Public Library.

We have been deluged with messages from people who are suffering. The cause: not enough History between monthly meetings...
08/29/2018

We have been deluged with messages from people who are suffering. The cause: not enough History between monthly meetings of the Fort Leavenworth Historical Society. We hear you.

And for that worthy cause, we are pleased to let you know about what's going on with our friends from the Kansas Historical Society and the Kansas Museum of History in Topeka. So check this out, and try to hold on until 13 September when Dr. Mark Hull will solve a murder mystery from 1921. 7PM at the Leavenworth Library.

Despite being one of the highest paid actors in Hollywood's silent screen era, Luke the Dog (pictured below) never acted...
08/20/2018

Despite being one of the highest paid actors in Hollywood's silent screen era, Luke the Dog (pictured below) never acted again after 1920. Why? Where did Luke go? Who didn't want him to bark about what he knew?

Intrigued, right? Well, please attend the FLHS presentation of "The Many Trials of Fatty Arbuckle" on 13 September at 7PM. It is your opportunity to learn about the most famous murder trials you don't remember...and many dark mysteries, lost to time, will be revealed.

What really happened in Room 1219?

You might have heard that one of the Founding Fathers, Benjamin Franklin, invented the Bernese Mountain Dog.Well, that p...
08/08/2018

You might have heard that one of the Founding Fathers, Benjamin Franklin, invented the Bernese Mountain Dog.

Well, that probably didn't happen, although much like the Tootsie Roll Pop mystery, we may never know for sure.

However, truly important things did happen with and because of the Founding Fathers. Things that still matter to all of us.

Come and learn about them from Dr. Harry Laver. And bring a friend. Tomorrow night (9 August) at 7PM at the Leavenworth Public Library. Entry is free and you are certainly welcome there.

As the cooling breezes (?) of August approach, our minds naturally turn to the next program for the Fort Leavenworth His...
07/17/2018

As the cooling breezes (?) of August approach, our minds naturally turn to the next program for the Fort Leavenworth Historical Society. We are proud to present Dr. Harry Laver, speaking on "Lost Genius of the Founding Fathers: The Constitutional Convention." Showtime is August 9th at 7PM.

There's a wild rumor circulating that this talk will be the genesis of a new series on Netflix, and - if true - you'll want to hear this first and before it becomes the cool new fall hit that all the kids are watching. Then you can say with satisfication, "I was listening to Laver before it became a thing. So there."

We shall, of course, have Frontier Army Museum prizes for attentive audience members.

A good friend of the FLHS, Dr. Tom Hanson, is leaving his position as Director of the Department of Military History at ...
06/26/2018

A good friend of the FLHS, Dr. Tom Hanson, is leaving his position as Director of the Department of Military History at CGSC. In addition to losing Tom, we're also losing the happy visits from dachshunds Princess and Buster. Accordingly, as a partial tribute, we are pleased to present Great Moments in Dachshund History to tide you over until our monthly presentations resume in August. Enjoy.

Address

LTC Chris Johnson/Department Of Military History US Army Command And General Staff College 100 Stimson Avenue
Fort Leavenworth, KS
66027

General information

The Society has been involved in the research and commemoration of areas of historical interest on post, repair and cleaning of historical markers and monuments, and providing tour guides for post tours to official groups. We provide funds for the Frontier Army Museum to purchase artifacts and through our activities advertise the Frontier Army Museum. The museum, part of the Army museum system, is not permitted to use its operating budget on advertising. Our major focus is the operation of the Society Gift and Book Shop, located inside the Frontier Army Museum. A portion of the profits from the Gift Shop is given to the Museum to allow purchasing of additional items for the collections.

Telephone

(913) 684-3349

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