Archive for Wednesday, May 7, 2014

100 years ago: KU chemistry department reacting to platinum disappearance

May 7, 2014


From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for May 7, 1914:

  • "The chemistry department is worried today over the disappearance of over $300 worth of platinum from the department's laboratories some time yesterday. The platinum was in the form of four small dishes and seven crucibles which are used in the qualitative analysis work. So valuable are the dishes that every student in the department signs up for them when he must use them in the laboratory. He is held responsible for them while in his possession. At noon yesterday, the dishes were checked off, but when they were sought shortly after the noon recess, they had disappeared. Professor H. C. Allen of the chemistry department was loathe to treat the matter as a theft, hoping that the utensils has been hidden by some practical joker. As they have not reappeared up to today, Professor Allen is afraid that they might have been carried away. The four students in whose possession the crucibles were entrusted are threatening to go into bankruptcy if the missing articles are not found.... Platinum at present is valued at $1.75 per gram."
  • "Your poll tax is due and payable. That is if you are between the ages of 21 and 45. Three collectors started out from the office of the commissioner of finance this morning armed with receipt books and a thorough canvass of the voters of Lawrence will be made. The canvass will be complete and no one will be allowed to slip through the toils of the collector. There will be no tax dodging. The writer knows, because he happened at the city hall as the officers made their start this morning and he was promptly compelled to dig up the necessary $3.00. In vain did he offer excuses and seek to delay the day of reckoning. The collector was firm as adamant, and so the name of the Journal-World man was entered on stub No. 1, book 1, being the first person in Lawrence to pay his poll tax under the commission government."
  • "Fourteen Kansas editors will preach in Lawrence pulpits next Sunday. They will all have for their text 'The Press and the Pulpit.' Each editor will treat the subject in his own individual way. Editors have a way of preaching to people. But it is usually done in the editorial column of the newspaper. Next Sunday they will stand before the audience and deliver their sermons."
  • "Two boys who had been given work by A. R. Nottingham attempted to rob him Sunday. The strong box in which he keeps his papers was taken but the theft was not discovered till yesterday when it was found back of the barn broken open. Evidently the boys had taken the box expecting that it contained money and when the found it did not they discarded it. None of the papers were taken, but a fine revolver belonging to Mr Nottingham is missing."
  • "Washington, D. C. -- With a plain gold circlet typical of the quiet elegance of the ceremony, Miss Eleanor Randolph Wilson, youngest daughter of the president, will be married at 6 o'clock this evening to William Gibbs McAdoo, secretary of the treasury. The Presbyterian service will be pronounced by Rev. Sylvester Beach, pastor of the Princeton, N.J., church. The ceremony will be witnessed by the smallest company that ever attended so important a function in the White House."


Ron Holzwarth 4 years ago

$300 worth of platinum in 1914 = $7,088.79 in today's dollars, due to inflation.

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