Sunday, April 20, 2014

Historical society saluting residents who fought in Battle of Black Jack

By The Herald Staff | 10/9/2013

The Franklin County Historical Society plans to cross county lines this weekend as the group combines its quarterly meeting with a caravan north to the Battle of Black Jack historical site near Baldwin City.

“Franklin Countians from both the free-state and pro-slavery sides of the border war fought at the Battle of Black Jack, June 2, 1856,” Deb Barker, historical society executive director, said of the conflict, regarded by some as the first engagement of the U.S. Civil War. The Black Jack Battlefield and Nature Park in Douglas County, east of Baldwin City, recently was named a National Historic Landmark.

The Franklin County Historical Society plans to cross county lines this weekend as the group combines its quarterly meeting with a caravan north to the Battle of Black Jack historical site near Baldwin City.

“Franklin Countians from both the free-state and pro-slavery sides of the border war fought at the Battle of Black Jack, June 2, 1856,” Deb Barker, historical society executive director, said of the conflict, regarded by some as the first engagement of the U.S. Civil War. The Black Jack Battlefield and Nature Park in Douglas County, east of Baldwin City, recently was named a National Historic Landmark.

The historical society’s quarterly meeting is expected to begin 2 p.m. Sunday at the Franklin County Records and Research Center, 1124 W. Seventh St. Terrace, Ottawa. Barker is set to discuss the Franklin County residents who participated in the battle, and review the events leading up to it, including the Pottawatomie Creek Massacre near Lane.

The group then plans to caravan to the Black Jack site via K-68, K-33 and U.S 56. Costumed interpreters at the historical area are expected to offer commentary on both sides of the conflict as group members are guided on a walk through the actual battle site.

The event is free and open to members and non-members of the historical society alike. For further information, call (785) 242-1232 or (785) 242-1250.

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