TOPEKA – (November 1, 2019) – Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt and Chief Judge Bruce Gatterman will host a local display on the history of the Magna Carta – the 13th century document that set the course for democracy in England, and greatly influenced democracy in the United States.
The exhibit will be on display at the Santa Fe Trail Center Museum and Library, 1349 K-156 Highway in Larned, from November 5-29. School classes, youth groups, civic clubs and members of the public are invited to visit the display from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday.
“While the Magna Carta began as a series of grievances from barons in medieval England, the fundamental rights that were laid out in that document were later echoed in our own Declaration of Independence and Constitution, and have been symbolic of liberty and democracy,” Schmidt said. “I encourage civic clubs, educators and other interested citizens to use this opportunity to discuss our civic history and to engage in learning about the precious system of self-government we have inherited from those who came before.”
The Magna Carta has also had great influence on the development of laws.
“This is a unique opportunity for people in our community and the surrounding area to observe and learn about the Magna Carta, which is one of the most important documents in history,” Gatterman said. “The ‘Great Charter’ of 1215 established the principle that every person, even the King, is subject to the law. It guaranteed each individual the right to justice and the right to a fair trial. Many of the basic liberties included within the Magna Carta were, over 500 years later, incorporated within the Bill of Rights of the United States Constitution, including the right to a jury of peers and speedy trial. I sincerely hope that everyone who is able will come and observe this display that we are privileged to host.”
Schmidt and Gatterman encouraged all local residents, and particularly students, to visit the display and learn more about the Magna Carta’s legacy. Those interested in arranging a group visit in Larned may contact museum staff by phone at 620-285-2054. Those interested in requesting a presentation with Judge Gatterman may contact administrative assistant Paula Tammen by phone at 620-285-2247 or by email at email@example.com.
The exhibit was produced by the American Bar Association in honor of the Magna Carta’s 800th anniversary in 2015. Although that anniversary has passed, the exhibit is on traveling display. More information about the display and the Magna Carta is available on the attorney general’s website at www.ag.ks.gov/magna-carta.