E-News September 17, 2020

OCTA Board and Membership Meetings to be Held Via Zoom

Tomorrow at 10:30 AM (Central), OCTA will hold its semi-annual board meeting via Zoom. Our annual membership meeting will follow on Saturday, also at 10:30 AM (Central). If you would like to attend one or both meetings, please send a request to board member Jean Coupal-Smith at jcs1fun1@kc.rr.com. Please get your request to her by this evening so she can ensure your access.

All agendas, board reports, financial reports, and proposed budget for the upcoming fiscal year can be found on our website. You will need the password to view the documents. It is the same password used to access back issues of the Overland Journal. If you need the password, please send an email to kconway@indepmo.org.

Please Submit Your Volunteer Hours and Expenses

It’s that time of year again for us to submit our Volunteer Hours to the National Park Service (NPS). These numbers are used by NPS to tap funds from their “Volunteers In Parks” program. These funds in turn pay for the mapping software used by our volunteers.  We only need your collective hours as follows:





Simply visit our website and input your numbers. It should only take a matter of minutes. Thank you for all you do to preserve our trails!

Also, if your chapter has any events that you would like announced on E-News or on our social media pages, please submit them to our website section on events as well.

Run the Oregon-California Trail at Alcove Spring in Kansas!

On Sunday, October 11, 2020, at 9 AM (Central), you are invited to walk, run or bike the Oregon and California Trails at the crown jewel of trail sites in Kansas—-Alcove Spring. You can choose between a 1.5 Mile Run/Walk, 3.1 Mile (5K) Run/Walk/Bike, or 6.2 Mile (10K) Run/Bike. Participation in this event on the Oregon and California National Historic Trails is free. Donate $20 or more to Alcove Spring’s upkeep to receive a race t-shirt. Snacks and water will be provided. Unique, handmade finisher awards for all participants! Event sponsored by the Alcove Spring Preservation Association, Alcove Spring Historical Trust, Marysville Health & Fitness, the National Park Service, the Oregon-California Trails Association, and many other supporters. Please download the entry form here.


Trails Head Chapter Launches New Website

We are pleased to announce that our Trails Head Chapter has just launched its new website. Everything you ever wanted to know about historic trails in Kansas City can be found here. It is extensive and comprehensive, containing video, diaries (compiled by chapter member Mary Conrad), letters, memoirs, photos, trail markers, a very dense chapter history section (400 pages of info written by OCTA Past President Ross Marshall), and interactive trail maps. To coincide with the launch of the new website, the City of Independence, Missouri announced yesterday morning that it had just won a $1 million grant to promote, among other things, walking history tours in the city. The city has already agreed to promote the website, and especially the interactive map that can serve as the basis of a very in-depth walking tour, as part of their marketing outreach.

A special thank you to our Chapter (and this was a true team effort; there are too many people to list here) and especially Gina Sifers and her team at Bella Media for creating such an attractive and comprehensive website.


Colorado-Cherokee Trail Chapter Invites You To Zoom Presentation Series

Kenneth Jessen, a noted Colorado historian, is the author of Frontier Colorado Gunfights: True Stories of Outlaws and Lawmen in the American West.  

Conflicts between killers and outlaws were often settled in a gunfight in the “Wild West.”  Please join the chapter for Ken’s lively, memorable presentation about some of the most notorious of these conflicts.

To register for this event, please reply to bradford@usa.net.  You will receive a confirmation and link to the event prior to September 26.

October and November:

  • October 17 – 2:00 p.m. (MDT): Presentation on the Cherokee Trail.  Jack and Pat Fletcher will discuss the history of the trail.  Bruce Watson, Co-chair of the Mapping Committee, will describe the current activities of his committee and the mapping technology utilized.
  • November 14 – 2:00 p.m. (MST): Presentation by Colorado historian Jeff Broome on his new book, Indian Raids and Massacres: Essays on the Central Plains Indian War.  David Welch will moderate the discussion following the presentation
Further information about these events and how to register will be circulated in the interim.