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Scouts clean (Little Red) House, prepare for reenactment of Larned's first Christmas
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JERRY BUXTON Great Bend Tribune Girl Scout Troop 78 has been serving in Larned for six years, They are fourth- and fifth-graders who are earning money this year to go to Colorado Springs for a Leadership campout. In the front row, left to right, are Kristen Anderson and Maxx Burke (brother of Hannah and Big helper). In the back row are Peighton Ryan, Jessie Parkin and Hannah Burke. The girls and Maxx are pictured just before they used their elbow grease to do some cleaning at the Little House, owned and operated by David Clapsdaddle of Larned. A replica of Larneds First Christmas Treeis behind them. Not pictured is Kiley Dinning. Cookie sales start in January; look for their faces! - photo by JERRY BUXTON Great Bend Tribune

Girl Scout Troop 78, with Scout Leader Beth Burke, cleaned the Little Red House last Sundayand put up a Christmas tree in preparation for the Dec. 4 celebration of "Larned’s First Christmas."

The girls went to Ash Creek, cut a young ash tree there, and covered its branches with cotton batting as did early citizens of Larned in 1873.

Over Actors Anonymous of Larned High School will portray members of the Worrell family, who resided at the Little Red House in 1873. Dressed in period clothing, they will interpret the history of the LRH on Dec. 4. Isabel Worrell, only 16, conducted school in the saloon room. Her family, three girls, a boy and parents, occupied the other three rooms in the building.

Refreshments will be served by Girl Scouts on Dec. 4. They will be furnished by the Larned Tourism Committee.

At the same time, from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m., across the street north at Sibley’s Camp, children may ride in a mule-drawn wagon driven by Santa Claus.

December 1873 — Larned’s First Christmas

Celebrate Larned’s First Christmas, described by George Worrell in a letter to the Larned CHRONOSCOPE dated Dec. 22, 1927. George was the brother of Isabel Worrell, Larned’s first teacher, who held class in the Little Red House.

"I well remember the first Christmas tree in Larned. A young ash tree was cut out on Ash Creek. It was wrapped carefully in cotton, decorated with anything that could be procured. The whole town was there and there wasn’t a very big crowd then. I have an idea that one class in any Sunday school this year will get more presents and costing more money than all that was on that first tree. But everybody got something — no one was missed. It might be only a naked stick of horehound candy with a string around it, but it was taken off the tree — name called and delivered, as it is today.

Such as they had. The true Christmas spirit was there. They met that night only as friends and fellow beings. I have been to many since that night, but don’t believe that the anticipation by the children is any greater today than then, or that the simple toys of that first tree were any less valued by the kids than are those from off the finest tree you will have in your city this year.