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Archive for Wednesday, April 13, 2011

40 years ago: North Lawrence grass fires nearly destroy lumber yard inventory

April 13, 2011

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From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for April 13, 1971:

  • In Topeka, Gov. Robert Docking had signed into law 41 more bills passed by the 1971 legislature. These brought his total of bill-signings from this session to 208. Among the bills he had signed on this day included one which made it a class A misdemeanor to throw a rock or other object from a bridge or overpass onto a highway, road, or railroad right-of-way. The bill had resulted from an incident in which a Nebraska woman had died of injuries suffered when a rock tossed from a Kansas Turnpike overpass had broken through her windshield and struck her in the face. Other bills included one making the desecration of cemeteries a class C misdemeanor, requiring all trailers to carry two stoplights, and authorizing Kansas University to proceed with construction of a new health services building.
  • Two grass fires, which had apparently started in a ditch near the Union Pacific tracks in North Lawrence, had come very close to destroying $10,000 worth of lumber in the rear of the Foster Lumber Yard. A second fire had also threatened to destroy inventory in the Wickes Lumber Yard a few hundred yards to the north. Lawrence firefighters managed to extinguish the flames before the damage was done, but the fires spread from the ditch area eastward into some fields and yards of dry grass, keeping firefighters busy for some time.

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