Archive for Monday, January 28, 2013

100 years ago: Legislators appalled by conditions at state prison

January 28, 2013


From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 28, 1913:

  • "After visiting the antiquated, poorly equipped, dingy and musty-celled state penitentiary of Kansas, the charitable and penal institution committee of the senate is considering seriously the recommendation that a quarter million dollars be appropriated by the legislature this year for the construction of a new modern penal structure in Central Kansas. Make the present plant into a workhouse for county prisoners is the idea advanced by J. K. Codding, Warden, and the committee from the senate and house has faith in his theory.... Later they visited the federal penitentiary in Leavenworth. The contrast between the modern, well ventilated, sanitary and fully equipped condition of the government prison and the unsanitary, and at times repulsive lack of accommodations at the state institution, brought back to mind the arguments of the Kansas warden -- and the committee is threshing out today its proposed recommendations to the senate and house. It is agreed by the legislative committee that the Kansas penitentiary is a disgrace to the state. Warden Codding concurred in the decision. All that money can do -- that is, the available money -- has been done in the last four years of the Codding administration -- and still the prisoners are forced to live in disease breeding holes-in-the-wall and the state is spending thousands trying to make inhabitable the various old and impractical buildings."
  • "The Jayhawker Basketball Team will make its first campaign into the territory of the enemy this week. The goal squad will go to Topeka on Thursday to meet the Washburn quintette in a return game and then go out to Manhattan for a pair of games with the Aggies on Friday and Saturday. The Kansas team is in very good shape for the trip. The men see another victory over the Sons of Ichabod, but they have a wholesome respect for the playing of the Aggies and are rather dubious regarding the result of the games on the Aggie court. Kansas lost two games to the Manhattan five last week and these defeats came with the Hamiltonians playing on their own court."
  • "The Mackey school house north of Lawrence in Leavenworth county was destroyed by fire this morning. The flames started from a defective flue and only the stone walls remain of the building. The fire started shortly after the beginning of the morning session and the pupils were all in the building when the fire was discovered by they all filed out in good order and none were injured in the least. The Mackey school house was one of the oldest in Leavenworth county.... The teacher and pupils were able to save the piano and the school library and several of the children saved their own books."


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