Last Updated on May 14, 2023 by S Jason Cole
Watkins Mill State Park is gearing up for a summer full of exciting events and educational presentations. The park, known for its picturesque surroundings and historic landmarks will be hosting a variety of events and speakers who will share their knowledge and expertise with the community.
Starting every Tuesday (weather permitting), the Greater Kansas City Master Gardeners will tend to the Victorian garden behind the Watkins home. Visitors can witness firsthand historic gardening techniques and learn about the different plants that thrived during the Victorian era.
Robert Stone, a master weaver, will be reassembling a historic 1800s floor loom on May 20th and 21st. Visitors are invited to bring their weaving questions and find out what stories this loom may hold.
On May 27th, Michael Dickey will present “Native Missouri at the Time of the Louisiana Purchase,” also sponsored by the Missouri Speakers Bureau. The presentation will use Spanish and American records to explain the cultural tension and rapid changes that characterized Euro-American relations with the Osage, Missouria, Kansa, Ioway, Sac and Fox, Kickapoo, Shawnee, Lenape, and Illinois nations in the Missouri region from 1803 to the final extinguishment of American Indian titles in 1836.
On June 10th, Dr. Ann Raab will present “They Fought Like Tigers: The Skirmish at Island Mound and the First Engagement of Black Soldiers in the Civil War,” sponsored by the Missouri Speakers Bureau. This presentation will share the experiences of Black soldiers during the Civil War and will cover the evolution of the USCT from the first-ever engagement between Black troops and Confederate forces during the Civil War to the development of off-shoots of the Buffalo Soldiers during World War II and the Korean War.
On July 8th, historian and author William Garrett Piston will explore Missouri’s role in the famous compromises of 1820 and 1850, the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854, and the Dred Scott decision of 1857, in a presentation titled “Sowing the Whirlwind: Missouri and the Coming of the Civil War.”
Finally, on October 14th, visitors can experience “Fall on the Farm,” an exciting fall harvest fest with period crafts, games, and demonstrations.
With so many educational opportunities and fun events, Watkins Mill State Park is the perfect destination for families, history buffs, and nature enthusiasts alike. Be sure to mark your calendars and join in on the fun! For more information give them a call at (816)580-3387 or visit their website. Watkins Woolen Mill State Park is located at 26600 Park Road N. Lawson, MO
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