The third program in a series of events to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Fort Hays in its present location will be 2 p.m. March 19 in the Historic Fort Hays visitor’s center. The program will focus on “Frontier Military Posts and the Women Who Called Them Home.”

Attendees will come to know the different classes of women on post, their day-to-day routines, their social interactions, and on a more personal note, how they functioned under Victorian and military constraints.

This is an opportunity to learn more about these noble women, who along with the soldiers, found themselves “in harm’s way.” Through the accounts they left behind, we are left with compelling stories of life alongside the frontier military.

These women provided a sense of home and civilization in an otherwise challenging situation. It is a unique and fascinating perspective of life in the American West. Pioneers in their own right, their story is well worth the telling.

This program will be presented by Marla Matkin, a lifelong Kansan tracing her roots to her great-grandparents, who homesteaded in southwest Kansas in 1877.

Growing up near Dodge City, her love for history developed at an early age. Matkin received a degree in education from Fort Hays State University and was a teacher for several years. Time and exposure to American History, and the West in particular, only increased her curiosity. Becoming a living historian and independent scholar was a perfect marriage of history and theatre, yet another of her interests. For more than 20 years, she has traveled extensively throughout the Midwest and West presenting programs trying to keep our history alive and relevant.

The program is free.

Fort Hays State Historic Site is located 4 miles south of Interstate 70, Exit 157 at Hays. For more information contact Fort Hays State Historic Site at (785) 625-6812 or email at