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Legacy h

FALL 2012

  T H E   J O U R N A L   O F   T H E   R E N O   C O U N T Y   H I S T O R I C A L   S O C I E T Y

the hutchinson fire department boasts a rich heritage. see more on page 4.

I 13 want to go hunting for rocks that “speak?”





E 22 have a “spooktacular” ride that winds underground!

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Legacy h


Linda Schmitt, executive director, rchs

Jamin Landavazo, chief curator, rchs

Gayle Ferrell, director of operations, kusm

Tonya Gehring, docent supervisor, kusm

Mike Allen, finance manager, rchs

4 battling the blazes

13 kusm expands the adventure

Lynn Ledeboer, curatorial assistant, rcm

Tina Moore, administrative assistant, rcm

Kourtney Krehbiel, visitor services, kusm

BOARD OF DIRECTORS Michael Armour, president • Charles Studt, treasurer Shannon Holmberg, secretary • Richard Shank, presidentelect • Nan Hawver • Barbara Withrow • John Doswell Tim Davies • Sherry Mundhenke • Patty Foss • Elaine Fallon Billy Klug • Mary Wilson • Conrad Koehler • Myron Marcotte, ex-officio • Lee Spence, ex-officio • Mike Carey, ex-officio

on the cover firefighters sit atop a horse-drawn fire truck in front of hutchinson fire department station #1 that is adorned with bunting. spread the word!

14 overnight scouting

Dave Unruh, maintenance supervisor, kusm heritage uncovered in photo cache

...and it’s all underground!

17 more supporters join rchs cause

...they make it all happen

18 endowment to ensure the future

...and keep our museums strong

19 fire memorabilia runs the gamut

...from firebugs to escape devices

22 spooktacular madness in the mine

...check out these fantastical events

23 don’t miss special christmas plans

...crafts, cookies and creativity

Volume 24, No. 4 Legacy is published quarterly by The Reno County Historical Society, Inc. 100 S. Walnut St., P.O. Box 664, Hutchinson, Kansas 67504-0664 For advertising or membership information, call 620-662-1184. © 2012 The Reno County Historical Society, Inc. ISSN 1045-3423 All rights reserved. The RCHS disclaims responsibility for statements of fact or opinion made by contributors.

firefighters and others look out through a house devastated by fire, above.

FIRE! ...and those who fought it

the photos donated by the hutchinson fire department have been added to reno county museum archives, and will be used for future research and exhibits. our “legacy” readers, however, are getting the first sneak peak! we don’t have specific information for many of these photos, but if we do have hints or dates, they are indicated in the caption.


By Jamin Landavazo, Chief Curator


rose from my chair as the doorbell made a soft “ding” to alert the staff that a visitor had just walked into the museum on that cold January day. We try our hardest to greet every visitor that comes into the museum personally, to make sure their needs are met and they find a welcoming place to explore. As I made my way down the steps from the office

area into the lobby, I found a handful of firefighters had just walked in. They were dressed in blue polo shirts and slacks – not yellow hard-

hats and boots – so I didn’t worry that they had come because of a fire in the museum that had gone undetected. I figured that we were due for our annual inspection, or perhaps they had just stopped by to look around; after all, we often see them pass through the museum’s courtyard since Fire Station #1 is located just

ten men, right, stand in front of a hutchinson fire truck. the photo is signed by “garrett.”

across the street. related to the police deOn this day, however, partment that had made they had a different agentheir way into the mix. da. Battalion Chief Rex Albright stepped forward FACING A DILEMMA to shake my hand; in his As he spoke, he hit other arm he cradled a upon a dilemma that slim, tan filing box. many people and organiHe explained that when zations encounter – they cleaning out the station, want to know the best they had found the box way to preserve the items and thought we might be from the past for the interested in taking a look future. inside. When BattalJust then, the ion Chief Albright alarm sounded a treasure opened the box, from the fire trove of hfd I had no idea station across clippings and what might the street, and photos lie inside, but the firefightI was certainly ers sprang into excited. action. They knew The box did not disapthat they were needed, point. Photos and newsbut as Albright grabbed paper clippings came the box and sprinted out spilling out even before the door, he yelled over the box was open all the his shoulder, “I’ll be back!” way, and I immediately They were back a couple saw treasures. of weeks later, and had He explained that this decided that what they box held items that had really wanted to preserve been gathered and packed were copies of the materiaway throughout the als they had found. They years – newspaper clipdonated the originals to pings, official group phothe museum so that we tos, snapshots and more. could preserve and protect There were even items them, but also make them


available so that the whole community could benefit from the items that had been hidden for many years.

(See AVOID, page 6)

townspeople join firefighters in this WP & CO fire truck in what may have been a special community event.

take steps to preserve your family photos for generations to come.

Avoid extreme environmental swings (Continued from page 5)

a firefighter drives an opentop fire truck with part of the hood propped up.

PRESERVATION TIPS We understand that not everyone is ready to donate the photos and memorabilia that they have collected throughout the years – and we probably don’t have room to store everyone’s lifelong memories. However, if you are just as concerned about preserving your memories as our local fire department, there are certain

things that everyone can do to make sure that their photos last for generations to come.


n Keep the temperature and humidity constant. Studies abound about the proper temperature and humidity storage conditions for photos. It is true that often museums employ special environmentally controlled zones to store images.


Often, this level of devotion is not possible or economical for family snapshots. But luckily there is a much more manageable way to preserve your photos that is almost as effective: Just control drastic environmental swings. Although extreme temperatures and humidity do cause deterioration, it is rapid fluctuations in temperature and humidity that cause a majority of

three firefighters on the stairs battle thick, dark smoke in this house fire in march, 1967, at 504 E. avenue c. below, fire trucks leave station #1. convention hall can be seen in the background.

problems. If you are not able to keep your photos at a cool 50-55 degrees F, but are able to keep them around 72 degrees F year-round (with slight seasonal variations), it will certainly preserve them better than keeping them in a building where temperatures are at the mercy of the weather. A good rule of thumb is that for every 10 degrees F increase in tempera-

houses and looking desperately for photos – tangible reminders of their memories. Whether you’re worried about a natural disaster, theft or destruction, you will be able to rest easier if your photos have been backed up. What exactly does that mean? In the simplest terms, it means having another copy in one form or another. This can

ture, deterioration roughly doubles. Even if you can’t see any evidence on the photos with the naked eye, chemical changes are happening at a microscopic level. So don’t take any chances. n Back them up All of us have seen videos of people after major

mean that you keep a film negative when you have

natural disasters, scouring the remnants of their


already made a print of an image, or it can mean that you make a digital scan of an image for which you have no film negative. It can mean that you back up digital photographs to “the cloud” (data storage provided

(See STAY, page 8) a fire truck shoots water on the blaze that demolished the historic bisonte hotel on march 1, 1965.

the “h.f.d no.1” sign is in decorative glass above the open garage door with back of fire truck in view.

u Stay organized (Continued from page 7) on massive servers, often at multiple locations, by companies for a fee) or that you copy them to a CD, jump drive or SD card (the type used in many digital cameras). If you have photos that are particularly important or irreplaceable, you might want to store one copy in a fireproof safe or safe deposit box. If you are using digi-


tal back-ups, you may have to migrate to other file types or media in the future. If CDs go the way of floppy disks, you may find it hard to locate the hardware you need to read them in the future. Find an organizational system that works for you. Many options are out there to help you organize your photos. You can go high-tech and sort digital photos in folders by date or event, or low-tech and place prints in photo albums. You can spend money to have your photos made into books by online companies, or you can utilize low-cost photo boxes that store large quantities of photos in a smaller space than albums. Whatever you choose, I encourage you to employ some organizational structure, if only to promote access to your photos. You and your family are much more likely to pull an album from a shelf or scroll through a folder if there’s a good chance you can easily find what you are seeking.

military firefighters prepare to protect people and property in this april 13, 1945, photo.

If you have hundreds or thousands of photos, organizing them might seem like a daunting task. I encourage you to start now, however, because chances are you will continue to add to the photos you already have and the job will continue to grow. Start with a small pile here and there while you are watching TV or waiting for the laundry to finish drying. The sense of accomplishment will be great, and you will be one step closer to sharing and passing on meaningful photos to your friends and family. n Handle with care At museums, photos are often

handled with white gloves to prevent the oils from people’s fingertips from depositing on the prints. While this may be overkill when dealing with family photos, some caution is still necessary. Handle prints and negatives with clean hands and along the edges to minimize fingerprints. Use albums or protective coverings for photos that will be accessed often. Use caution when selecting plastic sheets for albums or individual

photos as many can degrade over time and cause damage to photos. n Label the back This suggestion is controversial, so weigh the pros and cons carefully before you decide what is best for your photos. Advocates of labeling photos say that all too often, the information about the people or places in a photo is not passed down with it. If it is written on a piece of paper included with an album, for example, it can become dissociated or lost. With that information gone, the photo loses much of its value. On the other hand, labeling photos

(See SAY, page 10)

the dented front end of this fire truck draws close scrutiny. the vehicle apparently fell victim to a fender-bender in march, 1963.


note the firefighters smoking while putting out the fire.

Say “no” to these common mistakes (Continued from page 9)

faces from the past eerily peek out from the rolled-up photos, right, presented to the museum by the hutchinson fire department.

does alter and sometimes permanently damages them. Many photos that have come to the museum bear the marks of people who – with the best of intentions – labeled the front of a large group portrait with the names written in ballpoint pen, often obscuring parts of people in the photo or causing deep creases or small tears in the photo from pressing too hard. Other photos have names written on the back with a marker and, over time, the ink leeches through to the front of the image. If you do decide to label photos, we suggest using a soft pencil to write near the bottom edge of the


photo, and be careful not to press too hard.

DO NOT: n Roll, fold or otherwise bend your photos It is often tempting to roll longer panoramic photos for easy storage, fold the edge of a photo to fit into a frame, or disre-

gard a small corner that has been bent behind the photo in an album. The truth is, all these methods can lead to permanent damage. Folds and bends create weaknesses that can lead to cracks in the image or tears in the print. Rolling a photo can often be difficult or impossible to reverse without causing damage, especially if the rolled print has aged considerably. Rolled photos that do not exhibit signs of cracking, brittleness or other damage can sometimes be flattened by placing large books or weights on them for a prolonged period of time. Sometimes other methods, such as gentle humidification, are

it appears as if equipment is being tested as the fire truck ladder is extended high into the air in this november, 1960, photo.

Paper clips and binder clips exert pressure on the photos, often scratching them or leaving “dent” marks. If they get wet or deteriorate, they can rust and leave stains on your photos. Rubber bands also exert pressure, mainly on the edges. When they deteriorate, they can become either brittle or sticky – neither of which is good for your photos.

(See GUARD, page 12) needed. Humidification should only be attempted by professionals as it can often cause more damage to fragile photos. n Use adhesives Although fewer are made today, self-adhesive photo albums were once a popular choice for holding prints and other paper documents firmly in a book, while allowing them to be repositioned if necessary. Over time, however, the prints will pick up the adhesive and it can leech through the paper. At the very least, when a print is removed, it is likely to leave adhesive on the back of the print that is

difficult to safely remove. The same can be said for double-stick tape, school glue, glue sticks or any other type of adhesive. Most will discolor AND lose their effectiveness over time – another reason to avoid them. Instead, choose albums with individual sleeves for photos, or use archival photo corners, which have adhesive on them but allow the photo itself to float free. Avoid paper clips, binder clips and rubber bands. If you choose not to use albums, you might be drawn to dividing your photos with one of these methods to help organize them – but just say no!


sharon mckee sits atop a fire truck in the 1961 parade celebrating hutchinson’s centennial.

likely to look at them if they are within arm’s reach.

Guard from light (Continued from page 11) Paper strips wrapped around groups of photos and labeling them with the date or event, or placing the photos in folders or envelopes to keep them separated can be good alternatives. a wichita kwch-tv reporter, right, interviews a hutchinson firefighter for the camera while another firefighter on the truck looks on.

n Store them in a basement or attic The temperature and humidity fluctuations discussed above aren’t the only reason to shy away from storage in attics and

basements. They can also be the areas most likely to flood or house pests, which make them less than ideal storage spaces for treasured images. Instead, try to place photos on the main floor both for preservation purposes and because you might be more


n Expose them to light Light – whether artificial or from the sun– is one of the greatest enemies of prints. Luckily, there are also easy ways to protect your images from this deterioration. Store any photos that you can out of direct sunlight or overhead light. Photo albums and boxes are great for safeguarding photos from light. For those prints that you just must display (after all, that’s part of the reason we take them!), either print an extra copy just for display, or take advantage of new frames that use glass with a UV coating to block many of the harmful rays that can destroy your photos.


rock hunters comb through piles of salt rocks in the mine during kusm’s “red rock-tober.” the annual event gives participants the chance to look for – and keep – those rocks that “speak” to them.

Check this out! …lots at KUSM to trip your wire

By Gayle Ferrell, KUSM Director of Operations


E’RE FUN! WE’RE EXCITING!! WE’RE AN ADVENTURE!!! I have to admit that those words were never ones that I associated with a stop at a museum. Nor did I ever dream that those were words I would someday use to describe a museum where I work! I was never interested in stopping at museums when I passed through small towns or big cities, whether in a car or on a motorcycle. If it had the word “museum” on the building, I wasn’t thrilled about spending any time in some stuffy old boring

place. Now if this socalled “museum” had a cool name or eye-catching street appeal that made me think I might get to

SEE or DO something special, well, then I wanted to check it out. KANSAS UNDERGROUND SALT MUSEUM. Does the name grab your attention? Perhaps the word “underground” makes you wonder – is it


a museum about underground salt? How could that be interesting! Or does it mean that the museum might be underground. Like in a basement or in a cave. Except looking at the building, you can’t see a big opening for a cave entrance. In fact, it is pretty plain and uninteresting on a corner with no trees or grass. So what would make you check it out?? For more than five years, we have been trying to dispel the image that it

(See page 14)

where’s the cave entrance??

an actor entertains the crowd in one of the popular “murder in the mine” dinner theatres.

(Continued from page 13)

OVERNIGHT SCOUTING AT KUSM • boys: nov. 10, dec. 8, jan. 12 • boys’ geology merit badge: nov. 3, jan. 26 and feb. 2 • girls: dec. 1, march 2 call tonya or kourtney 620-662-1425

hutchinson salt employee willie rodriguez, right, is interviewed for the upcoming exhibit, “a miner’s life.”

is scary, claustrophobic, dark or dangerous. Now don’t get me wrong – those are all important concerns to address so that visitors will come in the front doors. But we may have overlooked an even more important message – how this place makes one FEEL!!!


Our “negative six-fifty” is where time stands still. Two hours go by as fast as 30 minutes. There is a soothing calmness that is unlike anywhere else. The salt walls and pillars seem to embrace me like a soft cocoon and whisper to me of survival and endurance. It is my refuge where perspective is gained and my head is temporarily cleared. It is a thrill for me each and every time I step off the hoist, but our goal here is for each visitor, if possible, to discover his or her own personal connection to the ageless Permian Sea. So take that feeling a few steps further and picture Red Rock-tober, our annual rock hunt out


into the mine. It is to the skip as early as the BYOB – Bring Your 1920s! Own Bucket – and Or will it be the Dark participants get the Ride that connects you to chance to spend a the salt – enjoying a quiet couple hours looking ride with a tour guide through pile after pile as you learn about salt of salt rocks for those formations, air flow and pieces that speak to them. discovery of this salt bed, There is nothing but you then stopping to choose and the salt, and a bucket your very own souvenir and flashlight. Time stops. piece of salt. Hunters become Have you experitotally absorbed enced one of our in their quests. Murder in the lots to There is little Mine dinner thrill crowds conversation theatres? where time as lights flicker Held understands still and move over ground in the the mounds. Event Center Take the Salt with new flushing Mine Express underrestrooms nearby, ground train ride. Literalthis interactive whodunly, take a train ride! it is funny, relaxing and This is not stuffy musedefinitely unique. um stuff! This is a journey Whether you choose to into a raw and basically attend in a theme-based untouched area of our salt costume (“Who Killed mine that is seen as it was the 80s?” “Clue-less,” “A left in the 1950s! To top Very Brady Murder,” “The it off, the train glides over Spy Who Killed Me”) or rails and ties that were just enjoy how others get actually used to haul salt

(See page 16)


this ominous-appearing roof sag is a feature one may see on “salt safari” tours that start in 2014.

(Continued from page 14)

as the poet pablo neruda said in his ode to salt: “i know you won’t believe me but it sings, salt sings.” drop in sometime and see if you can hear it, too.

creative, it is always good food and lots of laughs. Perhaps you will be drawn to our next new exhibit, “A Miner’s Life.” You will see and hear miners tell in their own words what draws them back to the mine day after day and year after year. A sampling of awards and trophies given and received by Carey Salt and Hutchinson Salt over the past 90 years will also be on display. This exhibit will grow and expand in pieces for at least a year.

Or maybe you have been waiting for the ultimate adventure, the Salt Safari. Coming later in 2013, this hike into the mine will only be offered a few times each month. Adventure-seekers who have yearned for “more” and are physically able to walk more than a mile on rough, uneven and unlit terrain will not want to miss this opportunity!

The “Submarine” and “Tombstone” are two of many stops in this twoto three-hour experience. Now I know that I am “preachin’ to the choir,” because if you are reading this article you have probably already visited us at least once. So I am asking the choir to preach to the congregation, ‘cuz they are all still sittin’ in the pews, all comfortable with their arms crossed and their feet up, thinking there is nothing here for them. They may be thinking that the Salt Museum is great for school field trips. And they would be right! But it is so much more!


Although we are drooling over a large LED screen that could be installed on our “blah” corner to showcase our museum as more of a fun adventure, the bottom line is that until we have the megabucks to buy it, you telling others what you’ve seen or heard or read could send people here searching for their own connection to the salt. This will open doors and opportunities for us to grow. It also will fulfill our mission: “…[to] provide a unique, entertaining and educational underground experience for visitors from around the world.”



Thank you, supporters A hearty welcome to all the new members of Reno County Historical Society, and a heartfelt thank you to all those who renewed between June 1 and October 10.


Whitey & Shirley Alpers Angeline “KiKi” Cappony Mary Alice Ditgen Sally Holmes McPherson Judith Mielke James & LaVerna Shaw Mr. & Mrs. J.B. Stucky Clark & Charlene Wesley Cleyton & Laura Yowell


*Susan Clemens Richard & Marcia Cooper *Somnath Dasgupta *Pupan K. Dev

Bob & Sharon DeVault Richard & Jane Falter *Arlene Frederiksen *Shane George *Gary Hackney Greg Hoefer *Linford Holdeman Kyle & Shannon Holmberg *Daniel Holtman Jack & Ginger Koelling Ron & Joleen Leslie *Ron Moore Dr. & Mrs. Robert Morrison Jack & Jeanette Mull *Jim & Viola O’Connell *Ronald & Judith O’Hara Sam & Judy Ontjes Dr. David & Nancy Richman *Julie Robinette *Tammy Root *Rebecca Rothe *Dilrukshan Silva *Ahmad Vaqar

Dr. Michael Wesley Robert & June Winslow *Jill Zeger


Frank & Sally Depenbusch Roger & Judy Hawk Gary & Sue Poltera Virginia Rayl Bob & Charlotte Summers

PRESERVER Merl Sellers


Advertising Specialties *Ball Doctor Pro Shop Bridgman Oil Co., Inc. Shep Chev, Inc. *Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary


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t’s hard to believe that I have been at the Reno County Historical Society and its museums for six years. So much has happened that to think about it all makes it seem much longer in some ways and shorter in others. At the Kansas Under-

martha slater farrell and cris ary of first generation video interview hutchinson salt general laborer willie miller for the upcoming exhibit, “a miner’s life.”

volunteers to begin to personal favorite – jewelry! turn things around for the At KUSM the progress museums. Today both are in only five years has debt-free and living within been astounding due to their means. generous donors, the At RCM, the backlog is quarter-cent sales tax, caught up and we are colthousands of enthusiastic lecting again. In 2011 and visitors and careful man2012 a total of 15 exhibits agement of resources. were created – 13 of which The underground were placed at locations in bathroom complex is the county. now finished. As a result, Because of community our visitors can now stay support, new signage underground longer will greet visitors at in comfort, and the museums outdoor exhibits Event Center can thriving with to provide better host almost any promise of bright interpretation kind of occasion, future than ever before. regardless of how A special source grand. of pride for our staff The Salt Mine was RCM’s involveExpress underground ment in the removal and train added a third unique replacement of the Conattraction to round out vention/Memorial Hall the Gallery and Dark Ride Time Capsule in 2011 and experiences. 2012. This afforded a rare Changes were made to opportunity to revisit the empower KUSM visitors to past and send a message personalize their underinto the future that was ground experience and go inspirational for many. at their own pace. Watch for three new The next year we’ll see exhibits at RCM in 2013 the opening of another that will include a travelnew exhibit, “A Miner’s ing exhibit, tools and my Life,” that will explore

ground Salt Museum, we’ve made great strides since the modest opening five and a half years ago. Without a visitor center, underground bathrooms or train, the museum was in debt and struggling. The same can be said about the Reno County Museum. How fortunate we are to live in a For years it had community with such diverse and fallen behind because high quality amenities -- including of the demands of salt the Reno County Museum and museum development. Kansas Underground Salt Museum! This led to debt, a 4 Hutchinson locations to serve you maintenance crisis in 2009, and shelves full of unprocessed artifacts. It took diligent staff and many

We’re proud to share our hometown with you.


please help make this vision of the future a reality by remembering the museums in your estate plans and charitable gifts. what it’s like to be a salt miner working underground every day and why so many stay with the mine for decades. Future plans include a geology exhibit and an adventure hike out into the mine itself. Be sure to read Gayle Ferrell’s article in this Legacy for the exciting details! It has been a challenge to get where we are today. The Time Capsule project brought home to me the importance of permanency and sustainability. This is why I will be shifting my focus for the next year to establishing secure

and permanent funding for the museums. To this end, the Permian Salt Fund Endowment has been set up at the Hutchinson Community Foundation. By 2025, we hope that 20 percent of KUSM operations will be funded from endowment interest.


Just as our salt from the Permian Sea is timeless, people far into the future should have the opportunity to experience this incredible underground space. RCM is charged with

safeguarding and preserving Reno County history for generations to come. Planned giving must also be part of its future if it is to be secure. One hundred years from now, when the time capsule is opened, it is my hope that those who catch a glimpse into Hutchinson’s past through the artifacts safely tucked inside, will recognize not only the continued strength and importance of our two museums, but also how the citizens of the 21st century made their vitality and longevity a reality.


Linda Schmitt Executive Director, Reno County Historical Society

new signage will provide more comprehensive information at the siegrist claim house.

FIRE! ...and the tools to fight it

Fire! That yell and the clanging bell caused much terror in the hearts of every Reno County pioneer. Even today with our technological advances and improved building materials, fire wields the same power to both captivate and frighten. The Reno County Museum has many fire-related items in its collection. Here are but a few that represent our ongoing love/hate relationship with fire.

this pyrene fire extinguisher and holder, copyright 1917, was meant to hang on a wall or in a vehicle.

this bright-eyed patch was worn by the midian firebugs, a volunteer fire organization that owner dale hobbs belonged to around 1970. 1997.18.16


some lucky child played with this fire truck from the 1950s. 1993.83.01


this hat, with detail at far right, readily identified firefighters around 1970. 2006.09.03

tetco extingisher, circa 1939, above, was found in the partridge post office. 1999.45.02 the merlite fire alarm system, above right, kept homes safe around 1950. 1995.56.03 the 7-inch brass pyrene extinguisher, right, was used in the johnson and sons funeral home ambulance around 1930. 1988.107.03

davy’s automatic safety fire escape, circa 1910, was promoted as the best ever. 1985.00.2385

this brass bell was used on hutchinson’s first fire truck purchased in 1906. 1989.116.01




sold out! waiting list only. watch for the next “murder.”

see below for more info...


A KANSAS UNDERGROUND SALT MUSEUM 9 am–5 pm Tues–Sat 1–5 pm Sunday closed Mondays except for special holiday tours last tour departs at 3 pm each day. reservations strongly recommended call us or check our website for holiday hours. NEW SALT BLAST PASS our best deal includes gallery tour, dark ride (both handicapped-accessible) and new train ride. adults: $19 seniors (60+) and aaa: $17 children (4-12) & members: $12.50 reno county residents: $14 children under 4 not admitted due to mine safety regulations. pricing available to add only dark ride or train ride to gallery admission. all prices include sales tax. special pricing for groups over 28 and school groups with arrangements made one week in advance. 3504 e. avenue g (at airport road) hutchinson, ks 67501

620-662-1425 toll-free 866-755-3450


“Mayan Madness in the Mine” Dinner Theatre

Sunday, October 28, from 1-6 p.m. Rides depart every 20 minutes Last tour departs at 4 p.m. Walk-ins welcome, but reservation guarantees you a seat. 620-662-1425 • 866-755-3450

Friday, December 21 $60 per person / Table of eight: $440 Doors open at 5 p.m. Last trip underground: 6:15 p.m. For details and reservations: 620-662-1425 • 866-755-3450

Get a Salt Blast Pass for just $10 when you come wearing a Halloween costume! That’s up to a $9 saving per person and includes both the Salt Mine Express train and Dark Ride!

On December 21, the Mayan calendar comes to an end, marking the end of the world. What better place to be than 650 feet underground! Only 200 will survive! (This adults-only [18+] event strictly limited to 200 paid reservations. Tables must be purchased by one person. Full price charged if one or more cancels. Price includes meal, theater production, access to Gallery and Gift Shop, plus the chance to win survival prizes!)


Everyone must wear a hard hat underground. You must remove your mask if you wear one, and no make-up is allowed above your brow line. Underground scouting details, page 14.

KUSM EXHIBITS Miners’ Trash Display

See this fascinating new display case of items left behind by miners. It’s a preview of the larger Miners’ Break Room exhibit coming later.

Salt Mine Express

Hurry aboard to ride the thrilling new underground train on the original rails and ties used underground.

Salt Secrets

Salt secrets exposed!

Permian Playground

Go interactive and explore the incredible varieties of salt. First hand!

Mine Corridor

Explore the general history of salt mining in Hutchinson.

The Iodine Deficiency Disorder Story Explore the efforts of Kiwanis International and UNICEF in using salt to combat IDD.


Take It with A Grain of Salt

Discover how live bacteria were extracted from ancient Permian salt.


Come see the “Myronmobile,” from TV’s “Dirty Jobs,” filmed in the Hutchinson Salt mine.

The Story of Underground Vaults & Storage View costumes and props from your favorite movies.


watch for details on our new exhibit all about tools, due to open by the end of this year. it will be “tool-tally” awesome.

RENO COUNTY MUSEUM EXHIBITS Hail to the Hall: 100 Years of Convention Hall This exhibit traces the history of Convention Hall and officially displays the items from the Convention/Memorial Hall 1911 time capsule box.

Bisonte Hotel: The Best in the West

Visitors have the opportunity to take a long-awaited look at one of Hutchinson’s most beloved memories – the Bisonte Hotel. from the early 1900s to more modern times.

Can you guess what these early day tools were used for?

“86.121” Meet past Reno County resident Mildred Hobbs (donor #86.121) through the vast collection of artifacts she and her family generously donated.

A Few of Our Favorite Things

The Reno County Historical Society staff chose their favorite artifacts, most never before shown.

Transportation Gallery

Come enjoy the Schuttler wagon, an Amish buggy, the Indian motorcycle, sidecar and much more.

9 am–5 pm tues-Fri 11-5 saturday closed sunday and monday

Don’t miss RCM events

free admission unless otherwise noted

Old-Fashioned Christmas Saturday, December 8 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. $1.50 for all crafts Don’t miss out on this annual holiday favorite featuring winter crafts for children, ages 4-12.

Cookie Decorating Thursday, December 20 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. (or until the cookies run out!) One of our most popular events, this fun fest is where sugar and creativity meet!



100 S. Walnut 620-662-1184

FIGHTING HUTCHINSON FIRES PAGE 4 reno county historical society p.o. box 664 hutchinson, kansas 67504-0664

return service requested

If your address changes, please call us at 620-662-1184.

Legacy Fall 2012  

Legacy is the quarterly journal of the Reno County Historical Society. The Legacy covers history and other topics relating to the Reno Count...

Legacy Fall 2012  

Legacy is the quarterly journal of the Reno County Historical Society. The Legacy covers history and other topics relating to the Reno Count...