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Press Release

March 21, 2023

Contact: Jennifer Frazee
Fort Gibson Historic Site, Oklahoma Historical Society
Office: 918-478-4088

Local Schools Invited to Education Day at Fort Gibson Historic Site

FORT GIBSON, Okla. — Fort Gibson Historic Site will hold an education day for local schools on Friday, April 21. Schools may register for the 10 a.m.-noon session or the 1-3 p.m. session. Public, private and homeschool groups are welcome. Advanced registration is required.

Education station themes will include:

-Self-guided tour of the 19th-century fort palisade: Students can walk through the palisade area while experiencing and reading about the living and working quarters of the fort. Each area for the self-guided tour is staged with desks, bunk beds, tools and other items commonly used in the mid-1800s.

-The first people: With a focus on the Osage, there will be a short discussion to help students understand who lived in this area before US military exploration and the full development of the fort.

-Civilian commerce: Fort Gibson’s success depended heavily upon the citizens of the various Nations removed to Indian Territory (current day Oklahoma). Food supplies from surrounding farms and plantations and goods from Cherokee and Creek merchants were needed to supply the garrison and its expeditions. Many excursions required the help of translators, explorers and scientists. This station will give a short living history interpretation of these aspects of commerce.

-Keelboat: Students can observe a keelboat up close and learn how they were navigated. Water travel was one of the most efficient methods of moving goods and people in the 1800s, and keelboats were the craft of choice when traveling the shallow waterways of the Three Forks area that pass by Fort Gibson.

-Mess hall/cooking: The mess hall station will demonstrate 19th-century cooking. At this station, students can engage with cooks preparing lunch and supper for a garrison as they learn about who worked at the post’s kitchens. A living history demonstration will show the process of cooking meals for hundreds of people before the advent of electricity and indoor plumbing.

-Sutler store: Sutlers were important sources of goods for the military and folks around the fort. They imported goods such as food items, games, cloth and farming equipment via the river, making them available to those in the vicinity who had the funds or credit to purchase them.

For more information or to register your class, please call 918-478-4088 or email fortgibson@history.ok.gov. The cost for this event is $4 per student. Teachers, bus drivers and one chaperone for every 10 students will be admitted for free. The Fort Gibson Historic Site is located at 907 N. Garrison Ave. in Fort Gibson.

The Fort Gibson Historic Site is a division of the Oklahoma Historical Society. The mission of the Oklahoma Historical Society is to collect, preserve and share the history and culture of the state of Oklahoma and its people. Founded in 1893 by members of the Territorial Press Association, the OHS maintains museums, historic sites and affiliates across the state. Through its research archives, exhibits, educational programs and publications the OHS chronicles the rich history of Oklahoma. For more information about the OHS, please visit www.okhistory.org.


Editor’s Note: Photos of the Fort Gibson Historic Site are available upon request.

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