LECOMPTON, KS (KCTV) -- People in Lecompton take pride in the town's history and in their museum.
“This building was started as the Capitol building,” museum director Paul Bahnmaier said.
Bahnmair loves telling guests about the former territorial Capitol's role in the events leading up to the Civil War.
“Lecompton's history is nationally important,” Bahnmaier said.
But this time of year, it's not the portraits or artifacts on display that draw people to the museum.
“I tell people when they come through the door, there's a great museum under all these trees,” museum volunteer Deb Powell said.
Christmas trees that is. The count this year is around 170 trees and almost any kind you can imagine.
“These little poinsettia flowers are made of corn husks,” Powell said.
All the museum's halls completely decked.
“There's your one horse open sleigh for those who want to see Santa Claus,” Powell said.
The ornaments offer their own history lessons -- some are more than 100 years old. The collection grows every year.
“People now come and leave their old antique decorations because they want them preserved and they want to preserve them,” Bahnmaier said.
They are on display to the dozens of tour groups pining to visit the territorial Capitol.
“This is great economic development for our town,” Bahnmaier said.
It is also another way to shine light on the past.
“Lecompton is the birthplace of the Civil War where slavery began to die, and we have the best Christmas display in the Midwest,” Bahnmaier said.