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Guided Tours, Honey Springs Battlefield and Visitor Center
July 14, 9:00 am–5:00 pm
Honey Springs Battlefield and Visitor Center is pleased to announce a unique tour opportunity at the site. Students from the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma (USAO) will serve as tour guides on the six trails that cross the 1,100-acre battlefield on June 9, 16, and 30 and July 14. July 14 is also the date of the annual Memorial Service commemorating the battle. The students will point out the exact locations of military actions, highlight key aspects of the engagement, and discuss its historical importance.
Normally, the park and its six trails are self-guided with a total of 55 trail markers. Through a special historical interpretation course taught by Dr. James Finck at USAO, students will travel from their classroom in Chickasha to serve as tour guides at Honey Springs Battlefield. The students will add to the overall visitor experience by interpreting key elements of the engagement in the environment where they actually occurred.
The Battle of Honey Springs, the largest of approximately 107 documented Civil War military engagements to occur in what is now Oklahoma, took place on July 17, 1863, just two weeks after the famous Battles of Gettysburg and Vicksburg. Approximately 9,000 Union and Confederate troops, mostly American Indians and African Americans, fought here in what is thought to be one of the most culturally diverse battles in the entire Civil War. Approximately 200 total casualties were suffered. After a decisive Union victory, Confederates lost control of Indian Territory north of the Arkansas River. The Union victory also ensured Federal control of Fort Gibson in Indian Territory and Fort Smith in Arkansas.
Before or after touring the battlefield, visitors are welcome to tour the new Visitor Center located just south of the main battlefield. Although the permanent exhibits are not yet in place, visitors will enjoy a temporary exhibit now on display at the Visitor Center entitled Of Influence: Portraits of Cherokee People on loan from the Oklahoma History Center. There is also a 20-minute orientation video about the battle at the Visitor Center. The Visitor Center has a gift shop with many Civil War-related items for purchase. Admission to the Visitor Center is free of charge, but donations are greatly appreciated.
For more information regarding the special guided tour days and Honey Springs Battlefield and Visitor Center, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 918-473-5572.
Honey Springs Battlefield and Visitor Center is located east of US Highway 69 between Oktaha and Rentiesville. The Visitor Center is located on a hill within close proximity to the Oklahoma Blues Hall of Fame in Rentiesville. Take the second left after reaching the Oklahoma Blues Hall of Fame Museum (driving from the west). Directions to the battlefield will be provided upon arrival at the Visitor Center.