Archive for Thursday, January 25, 2001

Local parks’ names backed by years of history

January 25, 2001

After input from the community and the historical society, the recreation and parks commission voted on these names for the city's parks. They were adopted by the Eudora City Council in December 2000. The following descriptions were written by council member Pat Dardis:

Pilla Park, located at 6th and Main Street, west of Eudora City Hall. The park is located across the street from the Pilla House. Charles Pilla built the house, of Victorian architecture, in 1884. It is now on the State Historical Register and the National Register of Historic Places. Charles and Fred Pilla, brothers, came to Eudora and started a general store in 1862. Following the death of Fred Pilla, his brother, Charles, carried on the family business until his death in 1916. Charles Pilla also served as a Eudora mayor and postmaster.

CPA Park, located at 9th and Main, west of Eudora Middle School. The park has been the site of the annual CPA celebration since 1908. Most people in Eudora associate this park with CPA, which is an acronym for Cattleman's Protective Association.

Bluejacket Park, located at 12th and Cedar, northeast of Eudora West Elementary. The park is near the former site of Bluejacket Crossing. Pioneers traveling in wagon trains on the Oregon Trail, California Trail and the Fremont-Westport Trail crossed the Wakarusa River at this site. The crossing was named for the Bluejacket Shawnee family that lived nearby.

Paschal Fish Park, located at 14th and Maple, north of Eudora Nursing Center. The park is near the site where Shawnee Chief Paschal Fish operated his roadside inn named "Fish House." In 1857, Chief Fish sold some of his land to a committee of German immigrants who founded the City of Eudora. Chief Fish's daughter was named Eudora.

Lucy Kaegi Park, located at 17th and Elm, adjacent to the swimming pool and ball fields. Kaegi, a former life-long Eudora resident who died in August 1971, bequeathed over $11,600 to the City of Eudora for city park improvements. The money was used by the city to build the park. Kaegi also left the same amount of money to the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts of Douglas County. Several thousand dollars have been spent for Eudora and Lawrence Scouts from interest the money has earned and continues earning to this day.

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