Old Hometown

Local writer Sarah St. John pulls from the Journal-World archives to compile reports of what it was like to be in Lawrence decades ago.

40 years ago: LHS students settling in for new semester

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 30, 1974:Lawrence High School students were beginning to settle into the routine of a new semester. In Art Sloan's fantasy and fairy tale class, students were beginning their first major project of reading J. R. R. Tolkien's "The Lord of the ...

25 years ago: SRS workers experiencing job stress

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 30, 1989:Local social workers, interviewed for a feature article today, said high levels of stress often took their toll on new workers who got into the field with a wish to make the world a better place for families and children. Social workers at ...

40 years ago: Fertilizer truck overturns south of town

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 29, 1974:A front-page photo today showed a 5,000-gallon trailer carrying 71,000 pounds of 28 per cent nitrogen fertilizer which had overturned this morning south of Lawrence, near the Wakarusa River. Officials were attempting to control the flow of ...

25 years ago: School board hears public reactions on second high school decision

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 29, 1989:In the wake of the recent decision to add a second high school in Lawrence (pending a bond issue to be placed before voters), the faculty of Lawrence High School had given their varied opinions, as had the students. Today, members of the ...

100 years ago: Lawrence enjoys ‘June-like’ weather in January

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 28, 1914:"Lawrence enjoyed another June-like day today. At 2 o'clock this afternoon the thermometer on the hill showed a temperature of 63 degrees above zero -- doesn't sound just like January weather does it. But the weather man evidently likes ...

40 years ago: Interior improvements on tap for Allen Fieldhouse

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 28, 1974:Work on an Allen Fieldhouse improvement project could begin as early as May 1974, according to Keith Nitcher, KU vice chancellor of business affairs. However, Nitcher said, plans for the work had not yet been drawn up, and after their ...

25 years ago: City, developers to meet on design concerns for riverfront mall

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 28, 1989:The Lawrence City Commission and the Chelsea Group, developer of the planned riverfront factory outlet center, were scheduled to meet this week for a study session to discuss design plans for the center. The meeting was to come one week ...

100 years ago: Neighborhood residents protest paving of alley

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 27, 1914:"Another Kansas statute is to be tested out in court. At least certain property owners in Lawrence are threatening to bring suit against the city of Lawrence to restrain the city from paving a certain alley in this city. The city council ...

40 years ago: Officials question propriety of showing of erotic films at KU

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 27, 1974:Kansas University and state authorities this week were questioning the propriety of showing erotic films in the Kansas Union. The planned Feb. 19 showing of "The Devil in Miss Jones," a film confiscated in Kansas City, Mo., for its ...

25 years ago: KU student arrested for Mass Street burglary

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 27, 1989:Lawrence police this week arrested a 19-year-old man suspected of having shot an arrow through the front window of a downtown clothing store in October 1988 and then stealing more than $1,000 in merchandise. The unnamed man, a sophomore at ...

40 years ago: County may lose federal road funds

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 26, 1974:The number of roads in Douglas County eligible for federal secondary road construction funds were in danger of being cut by 50 percent in the coming two years. The Federal Highways Act of 1973 required roads on the secondary system to be ...

25 years ago: LHS students weigh in on second high school decision

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 26, 1989:Students at Lawrence High School continued weighing in this week on the school board's decision to build a second high school. Although the school would not be ready until 1992 at the earliest, current LHS students felt they had a stake in ...

100 years ago: KU professor injured in gas explosion at home

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 25, 1914:"Prof. J. B. Whelan, instructor in chemistry at the University of Kansas, was quite painfully burned in a gas explosion which occurred at his home, 1902 Rhode Island street, about midnight last night. Prof. Whelan is suffering considerable ...

40 years ago: Two arrested in rural burglary

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 25, 1974:Two men were under arrest today in the investigation of a robbery earlier this week at the rural home of Mr. and Mrs. Homer C. Flory. Terrance Wayne Drennon and Jerry Dean Zilner, both 18, were arrested and held in the Douglas County Jail ...

25 years ago: City, mall planners disagree on late-stage design changes

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 25, 1989:City officials and an East Coast-based development group, on the verge of closing on the property destined to become the Riverfront Mall, were having last-minute differences of opinion on the shopping center's design. Mayor Bob Schumm and ...

100 years ago: Anti-pool-hall petition circulates in Lawrence

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 24, 1914:"'To the Honorable Mayor and Council of the City of Lawrence; Gentlemen: We, the undersigned, citizens of Lawrence, without any enmity or ill-feeling toward the owners of the pool and billiard halls of this city, respectfully request your ...

40 years ago: City approves plans for South Park, downtown ‘arcades’

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 24, 1974:Plans were approved today for improvements to South Park, including the elimination of the baseball diamond. The park's walkways were to receive a new layer of asphalt with new redwood edging, and the fountain then located on the east side ...

25 years ago: School board decides on second high school

From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Jan. 24, 1989:Lawrence made its first big step away from its long-time status as a one-high-school town this week. School board members voted 6-1 to seek voter approval for a bond issue to build a second high school. Larry Morlan, who cast the ...