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Archive for Thursday, October 22, 2009

Murphy-Bromelsick House in east Lawrence now open to students

A view of 19th century Kansas

Rose Naramore-Winfrey explores exhibits at the Murphy-Bromelsick House. Third-graders from New York School toured the historic house at 10th and Delaware streets during a field trip Wednesday. Organizers are hoping to accommodate more student field trips at the site.

Rose Naramore-Winfrey explores exhibits at the Murphy-Bromelsick House. Third-graders from New York School toured the historic house at 10th and Delaware streets during a field trip Wednesday. Organizers are hoping to accommodate more student field trips at the site.

October 22, 2009

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Children get a first look at historic home

New York School third-graders were first students to tour Murphy-Bromelsick House at 10th and Delaware streets, which was the homestead of abolitionist John Speer. Enlarge video

About 30 third-graders from New York School made history on Wednesday.

Third grade students from New York School learn about the Murphy-Bromelsick House in Hobbs Park Wed. Oct. 21, 2009 on a field trip. Organizers are hoping to host more student field trips in the historic site in the future.

Third grade students from New York School learn about the Murphy-Bromelsick House in Hobbs Park Wed. Oct. 21, 2009 on a field trip. Organizers are hoping to host more student field trips in the historic site in the future.

They were the first school group to tour the Murphy-Bromelsick House, a local landmark commemorating the founding of Lawrence and Kansas statehood.

“I learned that it was hard to live in the olden days,” Rose Naramore-Winfrey said. “You didn’t have any electronic things like Game Boys.”

The kids might find it difficult to fully comprehend what life was like when the Murphy-Bromelsick House was built in 1866. The field trip, however, helped them visualize some of their history lessons.

Marty Speer, an artist, spoke to the students about his great-great-grandfather John Speer, whose land accommodates the house at Hobbs Park Memorial at 10th and Delaware streets in east Lawrence.

“There’s so much here, and it’s untapped,” Speer said. “There’s a multitude of history. It’s everywhere.”

Historians remember John Speer as an important advocate for the Free State cause in the battle over Kansas’ statehood in 1861. He was a journalist who published Speer’s Defy, an abolitionist hymn denouncing a gag law that prevented speaking about slavery. His great-great-grandson has a copy of the original document on display at the Murphy-Bromelsick House.

“When these kids grow up, what are they (going to) do?” Marty Speer asked. “What are they (going to) pass on this thing called legacy?”

Speer would like to see more school groups tour the home. He also said that the Murphy-Bromelsick House could provide some revenue for the Lawrence community.

“You would have people coming into this area like crazy,” he said. “People would come, you know, if you showed them something really interesting.”

Comments

mom_of_three 5 years, 2 months ago

does that house look big enough to house a brothel?

mom_of_three 5 years, 2 months ago

guess it does have more room in the back of the house then the small room in the front.

kmat 5 years, 2 months ago

It wasn't a brothel.

http://www.hobbsparkmemorial.org/mbinhabitants.html

I love that it is now finished. There were many that just wanted it torn down. Thank goodness they saved this gem and relocated it.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 2 months ago

"I belive my friend. I think it was a brothel."

Give 1000 to one you that more tricks have been turned in the Eldridge than in all the two-room houses in E. Lawerence, combined.

kmat 5 years, 2 months ago

Well hillbilly, don't take the word of historians. Also consider that the house was owned until 1871 by the Murphy family (Irish immigrants) who raised their children in the house. The father was a laborer. They sold the property to Frederick Bromelsick (a German immigrant) in 1971 who was also a laborer and raised his seven children in the house. They were very active in the Methodist church. The family occupied the house until 1923.

Why not read the history?

If your friend is so knowledgable about the subject, then why not tell us who he/she is and how he/she knows this historical information that the historical society doesn't know? Please also have him/her explain how a brothel was being run out of a house that so many children were being raised in (by religious parents who helped found churches in town)?

I'm very curious, so please provide accurate information, not speculation.

The historical societies in KS are very forthcoming about info like that. For example, the largest brothel in KC was housed in what is now Milburn Country Club. They don't keep this kind of info hidden. It is part of the history and they are open about it. Why would they be hiding it in this case? If your information is correct, the historical society would want to know about it.

kmat 5 years, 2 months ago

Pywacket - I don't know if there's anything on the web about Milburn and it's past history. I grew up across from it and my parents still live there. I worked at the pool as a teen. The first time I had to go up into the offices on the second level I asked why all of the offices were tiny little rooms (the hallways were nothing but a series of doors to these little rooms). They explained that these used to be the rooms for the "working" girls. They only needed enough room for a small bed. the building has be redone a few times, but the upper level still retains what the original building was like.

mom_of_three 5 years, 2 months ago

donald evidently does not appreciate history.

Keith 5 years, 2 months ago

Donald would only be happy if the house needed an air ambulance to fly it somewhere.

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