Next I headed southwest out of Manhattan a few miles to Fort Riley. At the Ogden entrance to the Fort it took about 5 minutes to get a visitor's pass. The army requires photo ID, car registration and proof of insurance. Once on the large post, I saw no restrictions in where visitors are permitted to go.
On the way to the museums, there are many historical markers, statues and monuments. Even a huge old Steam Engine. Although someone posted to Fort Riley would probably see it differently, to a visitor it looks a lot like a large park and history preserve.
Great War Memorial - erected in 1918
Wounded Knee Monument - dedicated in 1893
Old Trooper Monument modeled after the drawing "Old Bill" by Fredric Remington.
Grave of Chief the US Army's last Cavalry Horse
In front of Old Trooper Monument
There are two museum buildings housing three museums (U. S. Cavalry Museum, Fort Riley Regimental & Constabulary Museum), and the "Custer" Hose just a couple of hundred feet away. I put Custer in quotes, because when they picked that house to restore, the got the wrong one. Custer lived a few doors down the row.
U. S. Cavalry Museum
1st U.S. Volunteer Cavalry Regiment (Rough Riders)
M5 Horse Gas Mask from World War 2
Custer House (1855)
interior of Custer House
The museums provide directions for a walking tour of the immediate area, and a 10 mile driving tour. I did the driving tour, stopping to visit the building that served briefly as the first capitol of Kansas. There is a quite, rarely used nature trail that starts out from behind the small capitol building and goes along the Kansas River. The building is open weekends and admission is free.
First Territorial Capital of Kansas (1855)
2nd floor of the Territorial Capital
Kansas River from nature trail
Next stop was to see the buffalo display, but they were missing and the pen held only mules.
Fort Riley Cemetery - the first recorded burial was in August, 1854
All of these things are free, most are open year around and the Fort has an entrance right off exit 301 (see Photo on the next page).
Insect Zoo & KSU Gardens Fort Riley Junction City Manhattan's Sunset Zoo
Keith's other trips
Copyright 2005 by Keith Stokes