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Commemorating 200 Years of the Santa Fe Trail - Part 10 (First Trails / First Americans)

Our monthly series, commemorating 200 years of the Santa Fe Trail, continues this week as we recognize Indigenous People's Day (October 11, 2021) and reflect upon the arrival of Native Peoples in North America and the role they're played here. Today, we head over to the Konza Prairie, south of Manhattan, where Rex Buchanan speaks with historian Jim Sherow about the role Native Peoples played in blazing trails that predate that legendary road of commerce to Santa Fe. We also hear about the early years of the Santa Fe Trail and the operators of Bent's Fort, a private enterprise that operated in present day eastern Colorado, trading with tribes on the High Plains.

Historian Jim Sherow spoke with Rex Buchanan in an interview from a documentary about the Santa Fe Trail. The documentary, called The Road to Santa Fe, will be presented at an outdoor screening in Manhattan this week, weather permitting.

The screening will take place adjacent to the Flint Hills Discovery Center in the Blue Earth Plaza, named for the Blue Earth Village, which once served as a home for a large contingent of the Kanza Tribe, also known as the Kaw. The screening begins at 7 p.m., Thursday, October 14, 2021.  

Learn more by logging on to the Facebook page for Prairie Hollow Productions, or by visiting PrairieHollow.net

J. Schafer is the News Director of Kansas Public Radio. He’s also the Managing Editor of the Kansas Public Radio Network, which provides news and information to other public radio stations in Kansas and Missouri.