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Salina, KS

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Speaker to Explore Coronado Heights History

Jeff Garretson - May 3, 2017 1:01 pm

Local lore points to the hill northwest of Lindsborg – as the landmark where Spanish explorer Coronado made a U-turn back to Mexico.

Coming up Thursday evening at the Smoky Hill Museum in Salina, archaeologist Tim Weston will be exploring the myths, history and connection Coronado Heights has to residents in Saline and McPherson Counties.

Weston says sometime between 1540 and 1542, Francisco Vasquez de Coronado pushed his band of soldiers northward on a quest for gold leaving evidence of their visit in Rice and McPherson Counties in the form of Spanish chain mail.

The hunt for riches had paid off for others.

“They were thinking it would be like the Spanish expeditions in Mexico and Peru, like Cortez and de Soto,” Weston said.

“What they found were people living in grass huts and hunting and gardening.”

Weston will dive back into Coronado’s journey and also look at how the WPA castle project from the 1930’s has had an economic impact on the area.

Coronado Heights: Myth, Oral Tradition and Personal Connection is a free presentation on Thursday, May 4, 5:30pm to 6:30pm at the Smoky Hill Museum.