School & Group Programs

School toursUnlock History…..

…with the Tippecanoe County Historical Association (TCHA). Tippecanoe County has a rich history that is locally and nationally significant. TCHA offers a variety of hands-on interactive programs to unwrap history for your students. All programs meet many of the K-12 social studies standards. Cost is $2.50 a student for the first program scheduled and $1.50 for each additional program. Minimum of 12 students per program. For more information call 765-476-8411, extension 4 or email

Some Helpful Tips for scheduling your TCHA programs:

  • Programs must be scheduled at least 3 weeks in advance.
  • No programs will be scheduled two weeks before or one week after the Feast of the Hunters’ Moon, check website for annual dates.
  • If your group is late, your time will be reduced accordingly.
  • Plan extra time in your visit for bathroom breaks, a walk around the park, or to shop in The History Store.
  • Please call one week in advance for cancellations if possible.
  • Make a day of it! Schedule a program with the Tippecanoe County Parks Department Naturalist at 765-567-2993, Prophetstown State Park at 765-567-4919, the Farm at Prophetstown at 765-567-4700 or the Art Museum of Greater Lafayette at 765-742-1128.
  • To reserve a picnic shelter at the Tippecanoe Battlefield Park or Historic Fort Ouiatenon Park, call the Tippecanoe County Parks Department at 765-463-2306.

Staff Ride 6 4-2014Tippecanoe Battlefield Museum

Students will step into Indiana history at one of the state’s most important sites: the Tippecanoe Battlefield, located at 200 Battleground Avenue in Battle Ground, Indiana. Listen to the story of the two cultures that came into conflict here. Explore the aftermath of the Battle, from the War of 1812 to William Henry Harrison’s election as President, through artifacts and displays. Discover Woodland Indian lifestyles and culture. Learn how the pioneers traveled to Tippecanoe County in the early 1800’s. Make history come alive at the Tippecanoe Battlefield through hands on and interactive learning experiences!

Programs at the Tippecanoe Battlefield Museum are available from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm every day of the week, except Wednesday. The Museum and History Store are closed on Wednesdays.

  • Conflict of Cultures: Explore the Battle of Tippecanoe! Through an interactive discussion students will learn about the factors leading to the Battle, the primary characters involved, the major impacts of the Battle, and take part in a dramatic account of the Battle. This is a 30 minute program. This program covers Indiana Education Standards 4.1.3, 4.1.5, 4.1.6, 5.1.7, 5.3.7, 8.1.1 8.1.13, 8.1.27, USH.1.2
  • Woodland Indian Lifestyles: Students will learn about pre-contact Woodland Indian lifestyles and culture through artifacts, interactive displays, games, and crafts. This 45 minute program offers a fun, interactive approach to Woodland Indian life. This program covers Indiana Education Standards K.1.1,1.1.2, 2.1.1, 2.1.2, 3.1.1, 3.5.5, 4.1.1, 4.1.2, 4.5.3, , 5.1.1, 5.1.3, 5.5.1, 8.1.1
  • Covered Wagon: Imagine a trip to Indiana in a covered wagon! Students learn about the Pioneers, why they moved to Indiana, and what that move was like. They engage in a hands-on activity to plan their trip to Indiana. This 30 minute program covers Indiana Education Standards K.1.1, 1.1.1, 2.1.1, 2.1.2, 3.1.2, 3..5.5, 5.1.1
  • Day in the Life of a Pioneer: Students will learn about Indiana in the early 1800s. They will discover Pioneer culture and everyday life through interactive discussion and hands-on activities. This 30 minute program covers Indiana Education Standards K.1.1, 1.1.2, 1.1.1, 2.1.1, 2.1.2, 3.1.2, 3.5.5, 5.1.1, 5.5.1
  • Search the Museum: Students participate in a guided look at the museum exhibit through the use of a worksheet. The Battlefield Museum explores Native American settlements and lifestyles, early Pioneer life, the Battle of Tippecanoe, Harrison’s election as President, and much more. This is 30 minute program and covers Indiana Education Standards 2.1.2, 2.1.3, 3.1.1, 3.1.2, 3.1.4, 3.1.5, 3.5.5, 4.1.1, 4.1.2, 4.1.3, 4.1.13, 4.1.15
For more information and directions, click here

Battle of Tippecanoe Staff Ride Program:

  • The staff ride tour is a military training exercise in which participants, (active or reserve duty personnel, officer training or ROTC classes) conduct a detailed study of a military action based on classroom and field instruction.
  • The program normally assumes that participants have studied the staff ride handbook for the Tippecanoe Battlefield, titled To Compel with Armed Force, by Maj. Harry Tunnel, USA, and available for download from the Combat Studies Institute at the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College,
  • The program includes a welcome and orientation session by TCHA staff ride volunteers, a tour of the museum, and time for questions, answers, and interaction. The final phase is a walking tour of the battlefield itself. Commanders may choose to have this phase of the program interpreted by TCHA personnel, but many choose to assign responsibility for discussing the details of the battle to their own troops or cadets as they progress around the field.
  • Cost of the program is $4.00 per person, and the tour can take from two hours to half a day, depending on the participants’ schedule.

Fort Ouiatenon

Enter the world of Fort Ouiatenon, the first fortified European settlement in Indiana, and discover the variety of people and cultures that came together at this historic site. Learn about the history of Fort Ouiatenon, interact in the fur trade, try the pastimes of the Fort’s children or dress as a habitant. Introduce your students to one of the most fascinating periods of Indiana history through hands-on and interactive programs! Components of the program may vary. Fort Ouiatenon Historic park is located at 3129 South River Road, West Lafayette, Indiana.

The Blockhouse at Fort Ouiatenon is an outdoor experience and space is limited to groups of 30 people or less. Programs at this location are only available April through mid- September and mid- October through November.

  • Fun at the Fort: Students will explore some of the pastimes French and Native children would have experienced at Fort Ouiatenon such as foot races, graces, and other games of chance and skill! This 30 minutes program covers Indiana Education Standards K1.1, 1.1.1, 2.1.1, 3.1.7, 3.5.5
  • The French: Learn the fashion styles and roles played by the French at Fort Ouiatenon from the habitant to the voyageur in the ultimate game of dress up. This 30 minute program covers Indiana Education Standards K1.1, 1.1.1, 2.1.1, 3.1.2, 3.1.7, 3.5.5, 5.1.6, 5.1.7, USH.1.2
  • Fur Trade: Ouiatenon was a French fur trade post. Students will learn about the fur trade with an opportunity to try their own hand at trading using traditional trade good items. This 30 minute program covers Indiana Education Standards K1.1, 2.4.4, 2.4.7, 3.1.2, 3.1.3, 3.1.7, 3.4.3, 3.4.4, 3.5.5, 4.4.1, 4.4.3, 5.1.6, 5.1.7, 5.3.6, USH.1.2
For more information and directions, click here

Traveling History Programs

These program kits are available for teachers to check out for 1 or 2 weeks for use in the classroom for the flat fee of $25.00 per program, per class. Kits can also be requested and performed for Tippecanoe County schools by a TCHA staff person for the fee of $2.50 per student per program.

Timeline and Maps: Construct a timeline in your classroom! Teach your students the history of Tippecanoe County from 1700 to the present through this fun, interactive timeline activity. As you go through history, compare Indiana maps to see how the state developed. This program can be borrowed from the Tippecanoe County Historical Association or presented to your class by a TCHA staff person. The kit includes a presenter’s guide, yarn, clips, and cards with dates and historical information; various maps and a variety of images illustrating different time periods, events and people in Tippecanoe County history are included. This program covers Indiana Education Standards 2.1.1, 2.1.2, 2.1.3, 2.3.6, 3.1.2, 3.1.4, 3.1.5, 4.1.13, 4.3.9, 4.3.10, 5.3.9, 8.1.26, USH.1.5, USH.1.7, USH.2.8

Places and Faces: Step into the lives of some of the most influential people of Tippecanoe County. Learn about the founding of the community, people responsible for helping the county prosper and places of historical significance. This program goes well with the Timeline and Maps program and can also be borrowed from TCHA or presented to your class by a TCHA educator. The kit includes labeled images, a presenter’s guide, and activities. This program covers Indiana Education Standards 2.1.3, 3.1.2, 3.1.4, 4.4.7, 4.5.4

Frank Arganbright Genealogy Center

The Frank Arganbright Genealogy Center is a valuable resource for teachers and students. It houses a wealth of primary and secondary materials pertaining to local and Indiana history. The center is the perfect place for teachers preparing history lessons and compiling resources, or for students preparing research papers. Guided class research trips are available upon request.

History On Tour

For details about how you can bring the museum to you, click here.

Feast of the Hunters’ Moon

The Feast of the Hunters’ Moon is a re-enactment festival portraying life at Fort Ouiatenon from 1717-1791. TCHA offers two special days at the Feast of the Hunters’ Moon for school groups. Registration opens in late April.

Thursday is “Special Kids Day” reserved for special education students. Students with special needs come for the day to participate in 18th century life on the Ouabache.

Friday is “Feast Friday Fun Day” reserved for fourth grade students studying Indiana history. Students visit a variety of re-enactors, craftspeople, and entertainers making history come alive!

Mark your calendars for these dates! Watch for your invitation in the mail this spring, or call (765) 476-8411 extension 4 for more information or reservations.



Fort Ouiatenon Blockhouse Opening Celebration @ Fort Ouiatenon Historic Park
Jun 3 @ 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Fort Ouiatenon Blockhouse Opening Celebration @ Fort Ouiatenon Historic Park

Celebrate the opening of the Blockhouse Museum at Fort Ouiatenon Historic Park with games and activities for the whole family. Step back in time to the 1700’s- era fur trading post. Encounter characters from this historic fort and learn about the current research being done to help preserve this important site.

The Blockhouse Museum is open on Saturdays and Sundays throughout the summer, from 1:00 to 5:00 pm.

Woodland Native American Life @ TCHA History Center (Former Masonic Lodge)
Jun 10 @ 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm
Woodland Native American Life @ TCHA History Center (Former Masonic Lodge)

“Their Bearing is Noble and Proud.” presentation by James F. O’Neil. It will be a look at what clothing Native Americans of the 18th Century actually wore.  The talk will be based on period quotes, slides of period paintings, engravings, and sketches, and slides of items that are in museums from around the world.  We will see that the image presented to the world is far from what the Native Americans looked like in this time period.  We will also look at the effect of the fur trade upon the appearance of Native Americans.

James F. O’Neil has a Bachelors in history and masters in education from the University of Dayton. He compiled and edited “Their Bearing is Noble and Proud Vol. I & II”, A collection of narratives regarding the appearance of Native Americans from 1740-1815.

Firearms at the Fort @ Fort Ouiatenon Historic Park, River Shelter
Jul 1 @ 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm
Firearms at the Fort @ Fort Ouiatenon Historic Park, River Shelter

The program, entitled Firearms at the Fort will be a discussion and live – fire demonstration of historic firearms of the 18th century frontier.  The program will be led by Rick Conwell, manager of the Tippecanoe Battlefield Interpretive Center and History Store, with the support and cooperation of the National Muzzle Loading Rifle Association.

Visitors will have the chance to:

  • Examine and handle, (with supervision), several original and reproduction arms.
  • View firearms related artifacts from TCHA’s collections which were excavated at the site of Fort Ouiatenon during the 1970’s.
  • Learn how a flintlock works, both from the inside and out, and, btw, why do they call it a “lock”, anyway?
  • Learn the differences and similarities between a musket, a rifle, and a “trade gun”, and the military, social, and economic rolls each played in daily life at the fort.
  • Examine the equipment and accessories peculiar to each type of arm, along with how each is safely loaded, fired, and maintained.
  • Discuss the technological progress that led to the development of modern firearms as we know them today.
  • Find out what a ”Kentucky” rifle is, how it got the name, why the barrel is so long, and how far it will shoot.
  • Learn what we mean by “guage” and “caliber”.
  • Find out how to tell if it’s loaded, and how to safely extract a load.

The program will be held at the west picnic shelter near the boat ramp. The Ouiatenon  blockhouse will also be open, set up to resemble an early French trading post and staffed with historical interpreters in period clothing. So bring a picnic lunch, if you like, and make it an afternoon of historical fun and education. 



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