Strung along the highway in central Medicine Lodge you will find the Carry Nation Home and Stockade Museum.The 'stockade' is a timber fortress built in the style of the original settlement. On the grounds here are a local history museum, an old pioneer house and a gift shop.Next door is the home of Carry Nation, a famous firebrand who took her...more
The cabin is furnished and open for viewing. In many areas on the Kansas prairie, early settlers were not so lucky to have sufficient quantities of wood for building cabins such as this, and had to settle for huts made of sod. Medicine Lodge and Barber County is blessed with several rivers and creeks along whose banks were a number of trees. I have...more
There is a LOT OF STUFF in this little museum. True, much of it is poorly marked and not professionally displayed (common in small town museums), but there are so many interesting items you will finding yourself spending more time browsing than you might have expected. You can expect to see lots of items relating to farming, ranching, and small...more
The stockade that now stands on US Highway 160 is a replica of the original that was erected at another location in Medicine Lodge in 1874. The Kansas State Guard was organized to defend the locals from Indian raids.Within the walls of this stockade are a number of items of historical interest shown in the following Must See Activity Tips.more
Among the items belonging to Mrs. Nation are her writing desk, cupboard, bed, valise, hat, purse, and one of the hatchet pins she sold to pay her considerable fines.Then there is this old hatchet. One of the college-age young ladies providing information insinuated that it might be Carry's own, then snickered. Guess it wasn't hers.more
Carry Nation called Medicine Lodge home. It was here that the internationally-known abolitionist began her saloon-smashing crusade against "demon rum." She was scorned and hated by many, hailed a hero by some as she terrified bar owners around the country, spending many a night in a jail cell as a result.It is interesting to note that her first...more
Frankly, just about everything in this part of the world is off the beaten path. The Guinness Book of World Records claims that the countryside outside Medicine Lodge is one of the quietest places on earth! If the wind ever quit blowing and birds stopped singing, then I see how that could be true...The highway cutting through this countryside gives...more
Within a few miles west of Medicine Lodge on US Highway 160, the terrain begins to get more uneven and you see a sign pointing to the Gyp Hills Scenic Drive. It's a short, but pleasant drive through some scenic ranch land. Not too far to the south, Ted Turner owns a large spread on which he raises buffalo.If you stay on 160 to the west as far as...more
The Kansas Ranch Rodeo is a championship event that takes place annually, and is fun and interesting to view.
Notice that this is called a RANCH RODEO. There are a number of differences between this and the numerous rodeos you may have seen on television. First of all, this is a team event featuring full-time working cowboys from Kansas ranches. Secondly, the events are a test of the individual skills and horsemanship needed on a working ranch, as well as extraordinary teamwork and communication.
Once every three years, on the final full weekend of September, Medicine Lodge hosts thousands of visitors who come to experience a historical pageant held on a 40 acre "stage." Make plans to attend the next pageant on the last weekend of September, 2006.
A number of events take place during the weekend - parades, the Championship Kansas Ranch Rodeo, an Indian encampment, a western art exhibit, street dances and country music concerts, a craft fair and more.
See my travelogue for additional photos.
Fondest memory: My fondest memory of Medicine Lodge is traveling here with my family as a boy in 1955 to view the pageant. As I witnessed the event for the second time, 48 years later, it returned to a wonderful childhood adventure.
(Another memory of Medicine Lodge is rather vivid. I was traveling with my father who was at that time a meat saleman calling on small-town groceries. We spent the night in Medicine Lodge, and for entertainment saw Disney's movie "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea." The next morning, we heard of massive tornados which had caused death and destruction all through the area where we lived. It was several hours before we learned that our home and family were safe, although more than a hundred people had died the previous night.)