Riggs Family Reunion
Riggs Family Riggs Family Reunion - The 75th annual reunion of the James D. and Lucinda Riggs family was held Sunday, Aug. 17, 2003, at the Burns Community Center in Burns. The reunion was held this year in Burns instead of Florence to have a building large enough to accommodate the larger group of family attending. 150 family members were present for the basket dinner.
In 1865 J.D. and Lucinda Riggs, with their family, migrated from Union County, Iowa to Marion County, Kansas. They owned land north of Florence including the land which the city springs are located. Riggs families settled in Marion and Chase Counties over the years since coming to Kansas.
Lucinda Barker Riggs was the first person buried in the Hillcrest Cemetery at Florence in 1871. In 1929, the Riggs family had the first of what was to become an annual family reunion. The reunion and sumptuous picnic dinner was held on the J.D. Riggs farm north of Florence at the City Springs, the old stomping grounds. They met yearly at the City Springs until 1934; being too much rain, they met in the Florence City Park under the large pavilion and in spite of the downpour of rain had a wonderfully good time and fine picnic dinner.
In August of 1982, the reunion was moved to the Florentine Building on Main Street in Florence. It was nice to have the kitchen available to use and the air conditioning (and no flies or bugs)!! This year, due to the number of family attending, to accommodate the group, the reunion was held at the Community Building in Burns. There were family members represented at this years reunion of five of the twelve children of J.D. and Lucinda Riggs.
Tee shirts were purchased to wear at the reunion with the family tree printed on the back with tree roots representing each of J.D.'s children. Each root was represented by a specific color chosen for each family group. There was a photo parade presentation shown throughout the day from a collection of family pictures on CD's which were also made available to family members. A tablecloth which had the family tree painted on it was placed on a table for family members to sign and have on display for future year reunions. A song was written honoring the 75th reunion and a large flag/banner with J.D. and Lucinda Riggs pictures on it was made for display at the reunion.
Family attending traveled from various parts of the country - Missouri, Texas, Washington, Idaho, Colorado, California, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Minnesota, Germany, and Kansas. There was a pre-reunion get-together on Saturday, Aug. 16, 2003, at the Burns Community Center. There were approximately 50 people who attended. Sandwiches and salads were provided for lunch. Photo Parade presentations were shown throughout the day. Several tables were filled with photo displays. There were several gathering information on family genealogy, as well as scanning pictures, etc.
A map had been prepared for areas from Burns to Wonsevu, on to Florence and then back to Burns. The map showed where the cemeteries are located, where the home place of J.D. Riggs was north of Florence, as well as, the location of the Florence City Springs. Several took tours in the afternoon of the area and some visited the Burns Museum. Several of the younger generation met at the Marion Lake (Reservoir) for boating, skiing and water sports. It was a great day spent visiting with family.
Chase Counhty Leader-News, Cottonwood Falls, Kansas, Sept 11, 2003.
Riggs Family Reunion - The 75th annual reunion of the James D. and Lucinda Riggs family was held Sunday, Aug. 17, 2003, at the Burns Community Center in Burns. The reunion was held this year in Burns instead of Florence to have a building large enough to accommodate the larger group of family attending. 150 family members were present for the basket dinner.
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