Franklin Papers to be presented at Gross Memorial Coliseum

Area fifth- and eighth-grade students will gather on the Fort Hays State University campus at Gross Memorial Coliseum on Wednesday, Sept. 26 for what promises to be a fulfilling and educational program related to the life of one of America's greatest Founding Fathers, Benjamin Franklin.

The Ben Franklin Papers is an annual event hosted by the Center for Civic Leadership with assistance from the Department of Education, the office of the provost, the American Democracy Project, the Department of History and Forsyth Library. The program will host Hays, Ellis and Victoria eighth-graders in the morning from 9 to 11 and fifth-graders in the afternoon from 12:30 to 2:30.

The program will feature a presentation by Ben Franklin impersonator Fred Krebs, Johnson County Community College professor of history. Interactive learning stations will be presented by students from the Department of Teacher Education.

The centerpiece of the event is two original Ben Franklin letters, in his own hand, and copies of Franklin's newspaper, The Pennsylvania Gazette. The letters and papers were donated to Forsyth Library by FHSU alumni Dr. Cecil B. Currey. The letters have an appraised value of $25,000 and $35,000, respectively.

The Center for Civic Leadership at FHSU, in collaboration with the Department of Teacher Education and Forsyth Library, has compiled supplemental educational materials for fifth- and eighth-grade teachers. The materials include pocket-sized copies of the U.S. Constitution, interactive online resources and other materials created by elementary school social studies students taught by Sue Boldra, instructor of teacher education, and Dr. Sue Jacobs, assistant professor of teacher education. __

Students will also have an opportunity to take part in an essay contest, with one prizewinner from both fifth and eighth grades receiving an engraved iPod shuffle provided by the Ben Franklin Papers host. Winners will be announced at an all-school assembly after they are scored in October.

For more information about the Ben Franklin Papers, contact Chantelle Arnold, assistant director of the Center for Civic Leadership, at or by telephone at (785) 628-5592.

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Kent Steward, Director   |  |  Kurt Beyers, Assistant Director   |