News Releases

11/6/2018 - Wreath Ceremony to Honor Salina Founders

Representatives from the Smoky Hill Museum, BEL Tree Farm, the City of Salina, St. Johns Military School and others will gather on Monday, November 12 at 3 p.m. to honor the three Salina town founders who are locally buried, with a commemorative wreath laying ceremony. The 20-minute event will take place at Gypsum Hill Cemetery, off of Marymount Road south of east Iron Avenue. The public is invited. Among Salina's pioneer founders to be honored that day is veteran Colonel William Phillips, who worked as a war correspondent before and serving as the commander of the Third Indian Home Guards during the Civil War.

Other town founders to be honored include Alexander M. and Christina Phillips Campbell and David L. Phillips. Town founders Alexander Spillman and James Muir are buried in McPherson County.

Mayor Karl Ryan and Museum staff will share brief remarks about the town founders' contributions before laying a wreath at each grave. The fresh-greenery commemorative wreaths have been donated by BEL Tree Farm. Battalion bugler Bradley Berutich, a second-year St. Johns cadet from Sedalia, CO will conclude the graveside ceremony by playing taps.

Similar memorial wreaths are available to purchase by pre-order through the 2018 Friends of the Smoky Hill Museum's Poinsettia and Wreath Sale, until Thursday, November 15.

For those wishing to attend the wreath-laying ceremony on Monday, November 12, parking is suggested off of Marymount Road, along the east/west gravel-road entrance to Mount Calvary Cemetery that borders the northern edge of Gypsum Hills Cemetery. The gravel road leads to the vertical white Section marker "A" that is just north of the town-founder grave sites and markers. Parking along Marymount Road is not permitted.

For more information or for details on ordering memorial or other fresh greenery wreaths or live holiday poinsettias that support the Museum's educational programming, call (785) 309-5776, go to, or find "Smoky Hill Museum" on Facebook.