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Caldwell, Kansas has been known as the ORNATE BOX TURTLE CAPITAL OF THE WORLD since October 1986. Click on this text to go to a collection of photos and other information at a facebook page about how Caldwell, Kansas became know as the ORNATE BOX TURTLE CAPITAL OF THE WORLD.

The ORNATE BOX TURTLE: Kansas Icon 1986-2006
(Click on this image to go to the Caldwell, Kansas page)

The design on the original Ornate Box Turtle
t-shirts. Artwork by Tom R. Johnson from NATURAL KANSAS.

Members of the Caldwell, KS 1985-86 sixth grade
class pose with Governor John Carlin at the Capitol in Topeka, KS.

Images on this page relate to the successful campaign by the 1985-86 Caldwell, Kansas 6th grade class to have the ORNATE BOX TURTLE named the official state reptile of Kansas. The students and their teacher, Mr. Larry Miller, started the campaign as a part of a required school project to celebrate the 125th birthday of Kansas. They quickly gained the support of educational, environmental, wildlife, and turtle loving groups from across the nation. Other schools and their students became involved too. The campaign was successful, and the Governor of Kansas traveled to Caldwell to sign the historic bill after it was passed by both the Kansas House and the Kansas Senate. The bill was signed at high noon on Monday, 14 April 1986 in the school gym in Caldwell. The signing was covered by ABC, NBC, and CBS as well as many newspapers and radio stations.

Caldwell, Kansas became the official Ornate Box Turtle Capital of the World during the annual homecoming activities in October 1986. A few years later Martin B. Capron, a professional wildlife artist, was employed to paint a large turtle on the side of a downtown building. Capron is the artist that did the art work for the 20th anniversary t-shirt that can be purchased from Kansas Heritage Photography. Just click on the "t-shrit" link at the top of this page or the links at the bottom of this page for more information.
(Photographs on this page and other pages honoring the Ornate Box Turtle and the 1986-85 Caldwell, Kansas sixth grade were taken by a number of people including members of the 1985-86 Caldwell sixth grade class, USD 360 staff members, parents and friends of the students, members of THE KANSAS HERPETOLOGICAL SOCIETY, staff at the office of the Governor, members of the Kansas Rural Electric Cooperative, and Friends of the Ornate Box Turtle.)

Click here to email Mr. Larry L. Miller.









Governor John Carlin signs HB 3113 as students,
teachers, and elected officials observe.

Click here to view the design on the 20th anniversary Ornate Box Turtle t-shirt and to obtain information on how to order one for your very own!

1986-2006 T-shirt
Click on image