Archive for Thursday, April 22, 2004

Days Gone By

April 22, 2004

7 years ago
April 1997
The city of Eudora was 140 years old April 17, 1997. An article was written about the history of the town. (The first segment ran in last week's Days Gone By column).
Much had changed since Eudora was "born" April 17, 1857, when $2,200 was allotted to purchase a circular saw and a corn cracker to build log cabins and harvest the area's first crops.
Back then, the first house was an 18-foot-by-20-foot, one-story log cabin, which served as a common property for all the settlers. Twenty-four German families called Eudora home.
The Germans brought whatever money they had with them and pooled it together for the common good of their new town.
The first public building in Eudora was a town hall and school, erected a year after the founding of the town. The frame building served as polling place, school house, dance hall and community room. When it was time for sport, men fished the Wakarusa, catching spoonbill catfish weighing as much as 80 pounds. They also organized the first buffalo hunt, in the fall of 1858.
Five men -- Henry Basemann, Henry Basemann Jr., Lother Hartig, Ernest Ziesenis and Julius Fischer --loaded an ox wagon and a pair of two-horse prairie schooners. They headed west to Salina, where buffalo were plentiful. The hunters returned with a wagonload of meat, enough to last the long winter.
Eudora's first elected officials were a mayor, five councilmen, a justice of the peace, a city treasurer, and a city marshal. These were all chosen in 1859.
(Facts were gathered from "Eudora Centennial Magazine 1957" and "Eudora Data Sheet," produced by the Kansas Department of Commerce and Housing Business Development Division).
¢ The Eudora school board had not yet made a decision about filing a lawsuit against the architects who designed the new high school.
The district contended Glenn Livingood Penzler Architects in Lawrence did not represent USD 491's best interests when designing the school, which opened in 1995, and its grounds.
The school board had a special meeting to discuss he possible litigation, but legal matters were discussed in executive session and were not open to the public.
Supt. Dan Bloom said the district always wanted to get issues settled with the architects but after two years at attempting to reach an agreement the talks broke off in March.
He said the architects decided to come back to the table and discuss the unresolved issues with the district.
At issue were three practice football fields, a baseball field and a softball field north of the high school. The district had repeatedly contended over the past two years that all the fields were improperly graded, the football fields were too small, and the baseball and softball diamonds had too much slope on the infield.
The engineer and architects contend the district got what it asked for -- practice fields, not regulation playing fields.

30 years ago
April 1974
Construction was underway on the 30-by-40-foot metal building at Seventh Street next to Eudora City Hall. The building would house the Eudora Auto Trim upholstering business, owned by John Reese.
¢ Randy Burchett, the 16-year-old son of Mr. and Mrs. Dennis Burchett, was released from Lawrence Memorial Hospital, where he had been treated for a leg broken in a truck-motorcycle accident near Perry Lake the week before.
¢ Officers of the Mothers Club were Irene Caviness, president; Rose Long, secretary; Wilma Griffin, treasurer; and Verna Terrell, card chairwoman.
¢ The Eudora girls track team broke four school records and earned 30 team points, placing fourth at the Baldwin Invitational track meet.
Mary Schopper broke the school record with a 4-foot, 8-inch high jump; Holly Reusch with a 12.7 second 100-yard dash; JoAnn Abel with her 18.3 second, 110-yard hurdle run; and the medley relay team of Dawn Puett, Joyce Katzfey, JoAnn Abel and Holly Reusch, with a 2:07.3 time.
¢ A half gallon of Purex super bleach was 29 cents at Howard's Super Saver. Suxteen-ounce cans of Argo sweet peas were five for $1.
¢ Larry Cyr, a freshman at Eudora High school, won a red ribbon at the Douglas County Science Fair. His exhibit was a stem-mechanical energy converter in the senior physical science division.
¢ Fancy Red Delicious apples were 10 for 89 cents at Market Basket. Chuck steak was 88 cents per pound.

69 years ago
April 1935
Preparatory work for paving four miles of Highway No. 10 through Eudora was being done. The work started near the John Ott farm and headed toward Eudora.
¢A dust storm lasted for more than an hour, and visibility was restricted to less than a block. The temperature dropped from 85 to 48 degrees in four hours.
¢ Marie R. Abels wrote, "Good roads lead into the town, as well as out, and if everyone will cooperate, the new road will mean a new era of prosperity for Eudora; but the merchant cannot do it all."
¢ Eudora won third place in the one-act play contest with "On Vengeance Height," starring Violet Gerstenberger, Ralph Rood, Dorothy Mayhugh and Roscoe Parker.
¢ Floodlights were placed on the poles, and wiring was completed at the athletic field.
¢ Sam Davis had the battery taken from his car.

110 years ago
April 1894
A basket factory came to Eudora. An elderly German gentleman was granted permission by the mayor to occupy the house on Leander Island. He made willow baskets.
¢ Graduates of the eighth annual commencement at Hesper Academy were E.N. Cosand, Mary Pearson, M.B. Starr, Eva Walker, Eva Elliot, C.B. Harris, Mabel Thomas, A.J. Redding, Ell Dicken and Louella Couch.
¢ Fresh, homemade lard at Hammert and Hagenbuch was 5 cents a pound.
¢ Postmaster Rayson went to Topeka to serve as United States petit juryman.

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