The Fort Scott National Historic Site recently got some help from a Kansas City-area teen and Boy Scout who has spent the last few months working on an Eagle Scout project.
Fifteen-year-old Lucas Leininger has been building living history props for use in interpretive programs at the historic site. Leininger led his troop in building four new stands that will be used by re-enactors during cavalry and dragoon drills at the historic stie in an exercise know as "running at the heads," Park Ranger Barak Geertsen said.
During the drill, mounted soldiers ride on horseback with sabers drawn while taking aim at fake "heads" mounted on wooden stands. The stands that the site had been using were more than 20 years old and were badly in need of replacement, Geertsen said.
Leininger also built a period 19th century coffin, which the site will use as a prop during special events and evening tours to interpret stories of soldiers and civilians who died at Fort Scott.
Leininger, his father and his scout leader delivered the items to the historic site on Saturday.
Assisting Lucas in the project were his parents and members of his Troop 93 in Shawnee, Kan., each of whom contributed about four hours of volunteer work to aid him in completing the project.
With the completion of the service project, Leininger is now poised to receive his Eagle Scout award, the top award in a long series of scouting achievements, Geertsen said.
Lucas has been involved in scouts since the age of 6 and has received all of his Cub
Scout and Boy Scout rank advancements. These awards include Tiger, Bobcat, Wolf, Bear, Webelos, Arrow of Light (Cub Scouts) and Scout, Tenderfoot, Second Class, First Class, Star, Life and Eagle (Boy Scouts).
He has earned at least
21 merit badges to get his Eagle in addition to serving in troop leadership positions, participating in several hours of service projects and several nights of camping.
Lucas has attended four summer camps at the Bartel Scout Reservation near Osceola, Mo. He is a brave in the tribe of Mic-O-Say and is in the brotherhood of the Order of the Arrow (both of which are scouting honor societies). This summer, he will be going to Philmont, a high adventure camp in New Mexico, Geertsen said.
In addition to scouting and the outdoors, Leininger likes golf and baseball, and enjoys studying science and engineering at Mill Valley High School in Shawnee, where he is in his freshman year.