An Awesome Day of
Wagon Show Activities!!

Wagon displays, renown speakers and demostrations of old west skills needed on the Santa Fe Trail. Learn about the Santa Fe Trail, while having fun in historic Council Grove! Memories for the whole family!!


* wagon photo is for example only

Snead Wagon - Linstroth-1.jpg


Santa Fe Trail 200th Wagon Show

Schedule of events and speakers

Friday, September 17 :


9 a.m. – PARTS OF WAGONS: David Sneed a noted historian of horse-drawn wooden wagons, will be a guest speaker and judge. With more than two decades of personal research, today David Sneed is the founder of the country’s largest private collection of western vehicle archives. Inside his sprawling files are countless original catalogs, photographs, patents, promotional materials, and related ephemera. Records in his “Wheels That Won The West” compilation span nearly two centuries of horse-drawn vehicle manufacture. Focusing on the specific farm, freight, ranch, coach, business, and military vehicles, Sneed is an avid writer and curator of thousands of artifacts.


10 a.m. –WINDWAGONS: Mark L. Gardner: The Wagon Show is also delighted to have the author of Wagons for Santa Fe Trade and award-winning historian, author, and musician Mark Lee Gardner as a speaker and judge. He writes for both popular and scholarly audiences, having published with numerous periodicals and websites such as The Daily Beast, National Geographic History, American Heritage, Wild West, American Cowboy, True West, New Mexico Magazine, and Journal of the West. Mark's previous books include the critically lauded To Hell on a Fast Horse: The Untold Story of Billy the Kid and Pat Garrett and Shot All To Hell: Jesse James, the Northfield Raid, and the Wild West's Greatest Escape. He is currently researching famed Lakota leaders Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull for a dual biography to be published by William Morrow/HarperCollins.


11 a.m. – HARNESS’S and HITCHES: Rawhide Johnson of Cody, Wyoming, Rawhide Johnson is currently the Vice President of The National Stagecoach & Freight Wagon Association, in which he was one of the six Founders back in 2008. Rawhide is ranch raised in Montana and Idaho. He grew up driving teams and fixing wagons as a normal days work. In Rawhides youth, his father, along with ranch work, gave stagecoach rides commercially.This background, along with a love of stagecoach history, has led him to the teaching of ideas and techniques of stagecoach & wagon conservation and restoration. Through these concepts he hopes to help preserve the visual and reality of each vehicle’s history that he comes in contact with. Rawhide serves on several Boards, including the West Yellowstone Historic Center Board, he does independent consulting, along with speaking and demonstration seminars involving early transpartation vehicles.


12 Noon- Lunch Break- 1 p.m. -  MALCOLM CONN : Trader on the Santa Fe Trail: Katie Gardner, is the Great-Great Granddaughter of Malcom Conn, who was at one time one of the wealthiest trader in Council Grove, is scheduled to speak. Gardner is the former Assistant Curator of Material Culture at Colorado Historical Society. She studied the Winterthur Program in early American Culture at Winterthur Museum and Gardens and at the University of Delaware. Studied Art History at Colorado College in Colorado Springs, Co. Conn built a stone - trading post along the Santa Fe Trail in Council Grove, Kansas in 1858. Although it has been modified, the building still stands today on the southeast corner of Neosho and West Main Street.


2 p.m. – BLACKSMITHING:  Jeff McManus will be presenting traditional blacksmithing from a portable blacksmith shop housed in a two-wheeled wagon. Jeff McManus has lived in Wyoming and has been a part of ranch involvement his entire life. Blacksmithing became an important interest in his life in 1974, when he started making iron products for Mountain Man re-enactors. Since that time jobs such as Iron work for log house interiors & exteriors, along with a few parts for stagecoaches and wagons has increased his enjoyment of Blacksmithing. His first team to harness and drive came at age 13; helping his dad feed cattle with a team and hay rack. He has since, owned several teams of horses and mules and has gathered a collection of several types of wagons. He is currently President of The National Stagecoach & Freight Wagon Association, and uses his time to lead in the efforts of the NSFWA to encourage us all to preserve our history and knowledge of all horse-drawn transportation.


3 p.m. -   WHEEL WRIGHT: Don Werner, of Werner Wagon Works, is a skilled wagon maker and Wagonwright. He will be giving demonstrations on wheelwrighting and will also be a judge. Don Werner of Horton, Kansas, along with his wife, Connie, have been in the wagon building business for 33 years. When Don was a little boy his dad farmed with a wagon and he would ride in the back listening to the corn hit the bang boards. From this memory came the desire to build his own wagon and from that desire Werner Wagon Works was born. They have products in almost every state, Canada, and Japan. Besides building small buckboards and grand stagecoaches, the Werner’s also do restoration of horse drawn wagons. Don is a wheelwright and is able to build new wheels or restore old ones. The Werner’s are unique in that they build everything from the ground up. In the U.S. today there are only a handful of these craftsmen. Their vehicles are housed in museums and historical sites, used on living history farms and on ranches, have been selected to be in a historical presidential inauguration parade, have traveled a number of the historical trails and are used privately by individuals that love the era of these horse drawn conveyances.


4 p.m. – MAINTENANCE OF A WAGON ON THE SANTA FE TRAIL : Doug Hanson- Doug started Hansen Wheel and Wagon Shop almost 35 years ago. A craftsman and horseman with a background in wheelwrighting, blacksmithing and wainwrighting, Doug has also done extensive research and documentation on historic vehicles for museums and private collectors. Motivated by a love of history and a desire to preserve our heritage, Hansen Wheel & Wagon Shop has grown to be the premier builder of authentic, horse-drawn vehicles. For thirty-five years, our experienced staff of dedicated craftsmen have fashioned a line of superior quality wagons, wheels, and equipment to suit a wide range of individual budgets and interests.


Photos are encouraged of the wagons. Please respect the wagons and do not climb on or in them unless asked by the owner. The wagons will be judged in three classes, Farm. Military and Freight. Please bring your own lawn chair for comfort. No smoking is allowed in Council Grove City Parks. Alcohol is prohibited in Council Oak Park. For more information go to

wagon registration edited.jpg

Please include a photo and short description of your wagon.