Good Ol' Days 2009 by ec9af0e834ace297


									Fort Scott                                                                               National Park Service
                                                                                         Department of the Interior

                                                                                         Fort Scott National Historic Site

Good Ol’ Days 2009
Puttin’ On the Dog

                                         Everyone has heard the expression that “dog is man’s best friend” but have
                                         you ever heard the expression “putting on the dog”? This weekend you will
                                         discover the meaning of that phrase and much more as Fort Scott “puts on
                                         the dog” to celebrate Good Ol’ Days weekend.

                                         The phrase “puttin’ on the dog”                 The phrase came to mean showing
                                         originated in the mid nineteenth                wealth or status. At Fort Scott in
                                         century, and may have reference to              the 1840s, officers and their wives
                                         the fact that women of high social              resided at the top of the social scale.
                                         standing, including Queen Victoria,             While not quite as fancy as the
                                         would have small dogs on their laps,            queen of England, they had their
                                         as a symbol of status. They would               own ways to “put on the dog.” The
                                         also often carry small dogs in the              ways in which they did so will be the
                                         sleeves of their coats in order to              focus of this weekend’s events.
        Queen Victoria in 1842           show them off.

“Duck shooting and wolf chasing are the only things that at all reconcile him to the place”
                                                      Captain Thomas Swords, Nov. 10th, 1844, (writing about Captain Burdette Terrett)

“Hunting Mad”                            A literal way that officers ‘put on               To commemorate this pastime, the
                                         the dog’ was through the use of                 site will feature many programs
                                         the dog for sport. One of their                 and exhibits on hunting and the
                                         favorite pastimes was hunting.                  outdoors including a taxidermy
                                         Officers wrote about the many fine                 exhibit, a gun display, a fur traders’
                                         hunting opportunities that the area             camp, and an interpretive program
                                         surrounding Fort Scott provided.                on hunting at Fort Scott. Just off
                                         An officer wrote that “everybody at               the fort grounds, Dock Dogs will be
                                         Fort Scott is hunting mad. Hunting              running dock jumping contests for
                                         dominates their thoughts night and              dogs of all ages. Using dogs in sport
                                         day”. Even the women occasionally               is nothing new; officers and their
                                         took advantage of this pastime. One             wives at Fort Scott often used dogs
                                         officer’s wife wrote that she kept                to assist them in hunting. Just like
                                         her “bow and arrow ready strung                 the Dock Dogs, dogs at Fort Scott
                                         for the first unfortunate Buffalo that            might have ended up in the water
                                         makes his appearance at Scott”.                 as they flushed out ducks and other
“A String of Gossip”                    Officers wives’ ‘put on the dog’ in              reading and letter writing as will
                                        other ways: through dressing in                be reflected in the program titled
                                        their finest clothing, through refined           “The Tongue is More Useful than
                                        entertainments, and through other              the Arrow”. Often these letters
                                        activities befitting ladies of their            contained “a string of gossip”
                                        status.                                        relating to society on post.

                                        Activities which will be presented             A presentation on flora and fauna at
                                        at Fort Scott this weekend include             Fort Scott will relate to the officers’
                                        an 1840s fashion show that will                wives pastime of gathering and
                                        demonstrate women’s wear for a                 pressing flowers. Other programs
                                        wide variety of purposes and period            will address Victorian customs
                                        crafts such as tatting, embroidery,            and etiquette and the language
                                        and crochet.                                   of the fan, a refined form of
                                                                                       communication used by the upper
                                        Officers’ wives showed their                     class women of the time.
                                        penchant for literary talents through

“...Our time is mostly passed in reading...and then when our books become irksome, we ride, fish, and walk, collect all
the pretty flowers and try to become botanists...”
                                                                                               Charlotte Swords, August 7th, 1843

                                        Many forms of entertainment                    Horseback riding, while essential to
Clearing “the Cobwebs”                  were enjoyed by both officers and                the military, also served as a means
                                        their wives. Dancing was actually              of recreation. An 1870s officers’
                                        enjoyed by the entire garrison, not            wife (not at Fort Scott) stated that
                                        just the officer class. A dragoon                pursuits such as horseback riding
                                        sergeant (not at Fort Scott)                   furnished “plenty of excitement”
                                        contended that “even the roughest              and that activities such as these
                                        seemed to rise a little higher and to          could help remedy those who let
                                        think better of themselves,” when              “the cobwebs gather in brains and
                                        they attended a formal ball opened             lungs”. Demonstrations of period
                                        to all personnel.                              dancing and sidesaddle horseback
                                                                                       riding will round out the weekends’

“Sometimes have fine sport-have a very fine country to run over and not the same chance as at Leavenworth for a
body to get his neck broken”
                                        Join us for all this and more as Fort Scott “puts on the dog” during Good Ol’
                                                                                       Captain Thomas Swords, Nov. 26th, 1842
                                        Days weekend. Here is a complete schedule of events.

                                         Saturday-June 6                               Sunday-June 7
                                         •   10:00 a.m. - Language of the Fan: 1840s   •   11:00 p.m.-“The Tongue is More Useful
                                             Leisure Activities                            than the Arrow”: Letters of Thomas
                                         •   11:00 a.m. - “The Tongue is More              and Charlotte Swords
                                             Useful than the Arrow”: Letters of        •   12:00 p.m. -“Putting Your Best Foot
                                             Thomas and Charlotte Swords                   Forward”: Victorian Customs and
                                         •   12:00 p.m. - Flora and Fauna of the           Etiquette
                                             Tallgrass                                 •   1:00 p.m.-Guided Tour
                                         •   1:00 p.m. - Guided Tour                   •   2:00 p.m.-Language of the Fan: 1840s
                                         •   2:00 p.m.-“Everybody Here is Hunting          Leisure Activities
                                             Mad”: Fort Scott Officers Go Hunting        •   3:00 p.m. -Victorian Fashion Show
                                         •   3:00 p.m.-Victorian Fashion Show
                                         •   4:00 p.m. -“Putting Your Best Foot
                                             Forward”: Victorian Customs and

To top