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Archive for Friday, June 8, 2012

100 years ago: Local man writes first book at age 86

June 8, 2012

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From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for June 8, 1912:

  • "The two covered wagons which leave Lawrence tonight are not headed back for a visit with 'wife's folks' but contain six young men from the University of Kansas, who are to spend nine weeks leading the simple life and studying the fish, reptiles, mollusks and crustaceans that are terrorizing Eastern Kansas. The party is headed by R. D. Lindsay, but is working under the direction of Dr. C. E. McClung for the Zoological section of the State Biological Survey.... Besides giving attention to the work of the department, they will also give some attention to insects."
  • "Lawrence tomorrow will entertain a large number of visitors who will come here in their gasoline vehicles. It was learned today that the Leavenworth Auto Club will send a large delegation to the University city tomorrow to spend the day.... The autoists are to leave Leavenworth at 9 o'clock in the morning with their cars decorated in flags and Leavenworth pennants. A total of fifteen car owners are planning to make the trip. The cars are to start at two minute intervals. It is planned to make the trip in three hours which will bring the cars into Lawrence at 12 o'clock."
  • "As the prisoners were being taken to the rock pile this morning, Sam Jackson, better known as 'Catfish,' broke away on Winthrop street and ran south in the alley west of Massachusetts street. Five shots were fired at him It is thought that one hit him but he did not stop. He continued on his way up the alley, ran across the Quincy school grounds and South Park, then started west near Hancock street and disappeared over the hill. He has not been recaptured."
  • "Knut Ketels, the father of the Ketels brothers and of Mrs. Barteldes and Mrs. Uhrlaub, has long been known to the people of Lawrence and surrounding country, but no one suspected that he had literary ability until now at the age of eighty-six he has published a book. The book is entitled 'How I Came to be a Sailor' and tells of the experiences of Mr. Ketels when as a boy of 13 he became a sailor and sailed the high seas for seven years retiring as second mate. It is full of interesting experiences and will interest the young as much as a tale of the Indians and the Wild West. It is now sixty-six years since Mr. Ketels left the sea and it is wonderful how well he remembers the various incidents connected with his life as a sailor. The book will be on sale at the Barteldes Seed Store where Mr. Ketels has long made headquarters."

Comments

Sarah St. John 1 year, 10 months ago

Flint, I remember him -- he was kind enough to let me and Mr. OHT use one of his classic cars for our wedding (he drove us from the church to the Castle Tea Room where we had our reception). A very nice man. I will see if I can figure out any way to contact him.

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FlintlockRifle 1 year, 10 months ago

Miss Sarah, Chris Barteldes was a teacher here in Lawrence school district and later sold realestate here in Lawrence, maybe can contact him and find out if he has any info. on this matter

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LadyJ 1 year, 10 months ago

According to a LJW article in 1924, the public library had a copy of the book at that time.

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Sarah St. John 1 year, 10 months ago

Oh, and --

  1. "... the fish, reptiles, mollusks and crustaceans that are terrorizing Eastern Kansas" -- that made me laugh when I found it. I haven't seen any scary mollusks, crustaceans, etc. this summer. Not even any lemurs. The only thing that's come close to terrorizing me lately was that batch of chiggers that found their way to me a week ago. I am filet mignon to chiggers. Man, I hate those things.
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Sarah St. John 1 year, 10 months ago

  1. The first thing I did after typing this up was to search online for this book. I tried all my usual antiquarian book sites.... not a bit of luck! I'd really love to read it, both because of the historical connection with Lawrence and because it just sounds like a rattling good read. I am serious about this! I promise a batch of homemade cookies to the first person who can find a copy for me that I can borrow or afford to buy! I wonder if any of the Barteldes descendants have a copy. Wasn't there an occasional commenter on the J-W site who was a member of that family and was now living in NYC?

1.a. I have the day off today and I'm listening to "Listeners' Choice" on KPR on this fine morning. I requested Vaughan Williams' "Sea Songs" in honor of Mr. Ketels!

  1. Next time I drive up to Leavenworth, I should decorate my car -- I'm sorry; my "gasoline vehicle" -- with flags and pennants, don't you think? And refer to myself as an "autoist?"

  2. That Catfish guy was pretty tough... or the law-enforcement officers weren't very good shots! I suppose they were shooting to scare or injure, not to kill. That rock pile must have been a pretty awful place to spend the day; isn't this the second or third escape this month?

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LadyJ 1 year, 10 months ago

Google 'how I came to be a sailor' ketels and click on the link that starts Voyaged as a boy. It will take you to a really cool website where you can see editions of the Lawrence Journal World, unfortunately it only goes back to 1911

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LawrenceTownie 1 year, 10 months ago

Go to findagrave.com and it will show you Mr. Ketels headstone in Oak Hill Cemetery along with children's names. I could not get Ms. LadyJ's link to work either.

Very interesting to read about early settlers of Lawrence. What used to take 3 hours to drive from Leavenworth to Lawrence can now be done in approximately 20-30 minutes.

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poolside 1 year, 10 months ago

Couldn't get the link to work. Anyone know if the book is available at the library or Watkins?

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LadyJ 1 year, 10 months ago

I happened to find a copy online of his obituary which appeared in the LJW. He died just two weeks short of his 97th birthday. It was usual to live that long back then. The obituary was very interesting. http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=2199&dat=19230501&id=Gl5eAAAAIBAJ&sjid=EmENAAAAIBAJ&pg=4416,584283

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