Monday, October 23, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 23, 2017

October 23, 2017
            This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            Leona Garrison, who along with her husband Don, have worked in our Museum’s Research Center for many years.  She shared some copies of “The Blue and White,” which was a monthly newspaper published at Junction City High School and written by the Journalism class.  The copies used in this and future stories were published in 1917 and 1918. 
            Here is a further explanation written in the April 1918 edition about the purpose of the paper.  “The Blue and White strives to portray the student life of the Junction City High School – not merely to print the news, but to support the ideals of the school; to have no pet; to be truthful; to be sunny; to be courteous; to hurt no one; to dare to stand for the right and to serve to the best of the ability the students of the school.”
            The student writers wrote articles in an editorial style about what was going on in Junction City High School.  Here is an example which is timely even today.  It was titled “Our Flag.”  “Students in JCHS have become too thoughtless with respect to showing the proper feeling toward our flag.  The flag is our national emblem and is symbolical of every noble thing our country stands for.  When the flag is displayed in theaters, one should applaud with the hands only, instead of giving shrieks and whistles.  If the flag passes in a parade on procession, one should uncover, that is remove his hat, until it has gone past.  It is often hard to think of doing these tributes at the right time, but saluting the flag is a habit easily acquired and is worthwhile.”  The article was written by Arthur Carlyle. 

            Keep reading this week for more information from “The Blue And White” on “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society. 

Friday, October 20, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 20, 2017

October 20, 2017
            This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            Today’s story is about a mother, her three children and a puppy, who narrowly escaped their deaths. The mother’s name was Mrs. Theodore Zook.  She lived in Junction City with her three children.  One day they embarked on an excursion to gather nuts from a tree.  This was in October of 1894.  The three boys had a small wagon with them in which they had placed their coats, shoes and a picnic for their outing.  There was a small dog – or large pup, which was also included on the trip.  They went down the Union Pacific track and started across the railroad bridge that crossed the Republican River.  About halfway over the trestle, they were startled to discover a fast moving express train that was within a few feet of them.  The train was so close that it was impossible for them to reach the end of the bridge.  Mrs. Zook, in her excitement, grabbed the pup instead of one of the children and threw herself and the pup down on the ties outside of the rail. The children did the same.  The wagon was abandoned in the middle of the bridge and soon there were shoes and dinner buckets flying through the air.  The engineer stopped the train as soon as possible.  He was amazed and very thankful to discover that none of the Zook family had been seriously injured. 
            It is always wise to be very cautious at railroad crossings and anywhere there might be a train coming down the tracks. 
            And… that’s today’s story on “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 19, 2017

October 19, 2017
            This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            Today's story is about the Riley Manor Housing Development.  The location of Riley Manor was and is at Webster and First Streets in Junction City.  In October of 1949, there was a sale of the federal housing development.  Veterans of WWII, who were occupants in the development, were to have first priority in the purchases of the units.  Veterans who intended to occupy a dwelling unit in the building purchased had second priority, non-veteran occupants had third priority and non-veterans who intended to occupy a unit in the building purchased were to be a fourth priority.
            The prospective purchasers were instructed to register their intent to purchase on forms to be provided for that purpose and the sales were to be fixed prices.  The registration was to begin on October 18 at the Riley Manor Management Building at 707 West First Street.  Registration would end November 17, 1949. 
            Each housing unit was equipped with facilities for heating, cooking and refrigeration.  The equipment was included in the sale prices.   A good-faith deposit of $50.00 per dwelling unit needed to be made with each offer in the form of a certified or cashier’s check or money order made payable to the Treasurer of the United States.  All sales were to be for cash and all the buildings have been approved for FHA-insured loans. 
            That’s today’s story…….
            Stop by our Museum at the corner of Sixth and Adams Streets to see our Gallery’s, which are rich in Geary County history any day Tuesday through Sundays between the hours of 1 and 4:00 PM.  Admission is free.  We would love to share stories and hear yours too. 


Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 18, 2017

October 18, 2017
            You are reading “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            October is “Fire Prevention Month.”  This news item from the 1920’s is interesting to share.  “While electric irons are a boom to housewives, their improper use is the chief electrical fire hazard.” So stated a report compiled by the National Fire Protection Association in October of 1926. 
            “Manufacturers of the appliances had cooperated by safeguarding them in numerous ways.  One of those was to provide a thermostat control to prevent the temperature from rising above given point.  That point was usually between 400 and 600 degrees Fahrenheit.  Stands were also being provided on practically all models to keep the irons from coming into contact with combustible material when not in use.  In mercantile and manufacturing establishments and even in dwellings, an effective precaution was the installation of a red light to warn when the power was on. If the operator left the power to the iron, there was a light which would be lit.  Despite precautions being taken by the manufacturers of electric irons, there was no way to counteract human carelessness.”  The author of the article stated that “It seems housewives continue to fail to put hot irons on stands and continue to fail to turn off the power whenever they left the room, even if only for a few seconds.  Often, these seconds turned into minutes and during that period many disastrous fires started.” 
            Make an effort to send our local firefighters a note of appreciation or stop by one of the stations and personally express your thankfulness to them for all they do to serve us and our community. 


Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 17, 2017

October 17, 2017
            This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            The thirty-third anniversary of the founding of the Ancient Order of the United Workmen was observed by the members of the order on October 17, 1900.  The event was held at the Knights of Pythias Hall and Ballroom in the Gentner block in the Junction City business district.  The Fort Riley Orchestra was secured to provide music. For the benefit of those who did not enjoy dancing, a short and well selected program was arranged under the supervision of Mr. John Mumment.  Spectators were urged to be in their seats at 8:00 PM sharp.  There would be no delay in starting promptly once the clock struck 8:00.  Tickets were 10 cents for each person in attendance.  At the conclusion of the program, the Ladies of the Degree of Honor were to serve coffee and appropriate foods. 
            Those who had ball tickets were to adjourn to the ballroom to engage in the pleasure of the evening.  In order that the dance floor not be overcrowded, the committee suggested a very moderate charge of 50 cents per couple for those who wished to dance.  Ladies without escorts were not permitted in the ballroom except on presentation of dance tickets.  The Ancient Order of United Workmen (A.O.U.W.) was known to be one of the best insurance orders in America.  They were especially known for their helpfulness to widows and orphans. 
That’s today’s story.  We want to encourage our readers to visit our museum at the corner of Sixth and Adams Streets to see the displays in Gallery One, which will be coming down and be replaced with a new display. The museum is open on Tuesdays through Sundays from 1 until 4 and admission is free. 


Monday, October 16, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 16, 2017

October 16, 2017

This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            Our story today is about some helpful household hints from 1900.  The first hint is about care of table linen.  The author of the article from which this information came stated that “you may have a delightful meal to serve, plenty of pretty china, glass and silver, but if your tablecloth is not snowy white and of just the right stiffness, your table would not look it’s best.  One should examine the cloths once a week and darn the smallest break.  A tiny hole was easy to mend, but a patch was unsightly.  An undercover of Canton Flannel would make the tablecloth look better and prevent the table from wearing the linen.”
Another hint was about the use of tray cloths.  “Tray cloths were to be used to prevent spillages and stains.  These smaller cloths were easier to wash and dry than the larger cloths which would be on top of the smaller ones.” 
Several tips were given for the removal of stains on the different cloths.  “Tea and coffee stains were to be removed by pouring boiling water over them and kerosene could be used on fruit stains and iron dust.  Alcohol was good for grass stains and chocolate required a soaking in cold water before being rinsed in boiling water.”
“If the woman of the house did not do the laundry herself and if she wanted to keep her table up to standard, she must still be able to direct the laundress.”
Today less time is spent at the table to share in a meal.  Gatherings with friends tend to be for barbecues, sharing finger foods and watching games on television.  We often use paper plates and plastic ware.  Most items used can be thrown in the trash or recycled with less time spent on clean up.  Even some table cloths can be thrown away.  People tend to serve themselves in a buffet style and serving trays are rarely needed.  As we mentioned last week – to some, the good ole days were more formal.  However to others -  THESE will be the good ole days.  What will be our eating and dining habits in the future?

Well…. That’s today’s story on “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 13, 2017

October 13, 2017
            This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            Each of us who drive a car must have a driver’s license, proof of insurance, registration of the vehicle and a clearly posted license plate on our vehicle.  Well in the fall of 1909 the local law enforcement officers set out to be more rigid in enforcing similar ordinances in Junction City.  As a result, there had been several arrests for infractions of the Ordinances and more were likely to follow.  It seems the police officers had been checking up on delinquent motorists for several days.
            There had been periodic checks of the speed ordinance since it was enacted, but it had not been rigidly enforced.  Several arrests had been made, but at widely separated intervals.  However, to the credit of Junction City motorists there had been few incidents of reckless driving on the streets and only a few complaints of violations of the speed ordinance.
            The provision requiring each motor car be driven by a licensed driver and that the car have a leather tag number of ITS license be displayed at all times was to be more rigidly enforced.  Some motorists had disregarded this provision and one arrest had been made for failure to have a number properly displayed.  This particular motorist said he had lost his tag number off the car and did not realize it.  He was fined anyway!!!
            Another provision to be enforced was one requiring that motor cars, when driven at night, shall display tail lights showing red behind and white on either side so that the tag number of the car would be visible at all times.  Little attention had been paid to this provision in the past.  In fact, there were some cars in Junction City that NEVER displayed tail lights at all.
            Our vehicles automatically come from the factory with lights built in, so unless there is a bulb burned out, appropriate and legal lighting is not a concern for today’s drivers.  We only have ourselves to blame, however, if we get stopped for speeding. 
            Well… that’s today’s story on “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 12, 2017

October 12, 2017
            This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            Today’s story is about the “Mother’s Club” of Junction City.  It was organized by Miss Ellen Huston in the fall of 1925.  The club started with 18 members, who were all mothers of the boys in the “Builder’s Class” of the Presbyterian Church.  By 1934, this group had grown to 75 members.  The “Mother’s Club” was an interdenominational club for mothers who had a personal knowledge of needy families in town.  The mother’s tried to can a little surplus fruit and vegetables to give in baskets to those in need – especially during the winter months.  Club dues were $1.00 per year, but even those dues were not compulsory.  The dues helped fill the 180 baskets given to the needy at Christmas time.  The club also gave treats to the inmates of the County Poor Farm at New Years and Easter.  Along with bedding and food, the Club also gave 3,000 garments and 300 pairs of shoes in 1933. 
            Our community is always responsive to those who are need.  Many civic clubs, churches, businesses, local agencies and individuals do not hesitate when asked to help others.  One more reason to say this is a great place to live, work, play and retire. 
            And… That’s today’s story from the Geary County Historical Society.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 11, 2017

October 11, 2017
            This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            Today’s story comes from a newspaper article dated March 27, 1947.  The headline was “Start Work On War Memorial – Landscaping of South Jefferson Street Park Is Underway”.
This is the area we now call Coronado Park.  The author of the 1947 article wrote that the “landscaping is expected to make it one of the most beautiful spots in Junction City.  The park is located between Vine and Ash Streets, just north of the hospital grounds. In a central location in the park will be a monument with a bronze plate bearing the names of approximately 80 men who gave their lives in WWII.  Prominent in the landscape plan will be 80 trees, which will be planted in honor of the memory of each of the men.”  This memorial was a joint project of the Woman’s Relief Corps and Veterans of Foreign Wars with the cooperation of other organizations and individuals.  The V.F.W. provided the monument and bronze plate.  A six-foot marble monument, three feet wide and eight inches thick was ordered for the park display.
The author of the article also wrote that the trees will be Oaks, American and Chinese Elms, Maples and others.  There will also be foliage placed for the winter months.  A small parking area and driveway are planned along the north side of the Park.”
            The Coronado Park has changed some over the years with the addition of playground equipment, a shelter house and basketball court for instance.  However, it remains one of our attractive parks in town where people can relax, enjoy the facilities and celebrate the contributions made by those who have served out country.
            And… that’s today’s story on “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 10, 2017

October 10, 2017
            This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            In October of 1909, Dr. Fred W. O’Donnell and Junction City Attorney, I.M. Platt, were tasked with inspecting all the hotels in Junction City to see that the hotels  were in compliance with the regulations of the State Board of Health. These inspections included fire protection, sanitary inspection and even the specifications of towels, sheets and pillow cases.
            Hotels were required to have fire alarm gongs of sufficient size to be heard in all parts of the building.  Ropes or other approved devices for fire escapes had to be in every sleeping room above the first floor.  The inspecting officer’s report had to show the kind and number of escapes and the arrangements of the lighting directing the way out of the hotel.
            Inspection of sanitary concerns had a large number of things to be considered.  The inspectors were required to inspect the offices, wash rooms, pantries, kitchen closets, back yards, dining rooms and bedrooms.  The pantries had to be rat proof.  Inspectors had to note that the towels in the wash rooms were individual or roller types, trash and tin cans were not allowed to accumulate in the back yards and garbage and to be removed from the kitchen.  There was even a check to see if dishes in the dining room area were kept clean and flies kept away from the tables.
            When inspecting the bedrooms in the hotels, one of the checkpoints was to measure that the top sheet on the bed was sufficient width and length to cover the bed and fold back over the upper end of the blankets for at least fourteen inches. Inspectors also had to verify that there were clean individual towels, clean sheets and pillow slips for each guest. 
            After making an inspection, the local officers reported to the State Board of Health concerning their judgment.  A certificate would then be issued to each hotel where the inspection had been passed.  Those hotels which did not receive a certificate were to be closed.

            And… that’s today’s story from the Geary County Historical Society.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 9, 2017

October 9, 2017
            This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            Today’s story is about a town by the name of Welcome, Kansas where we are sure everyone who attended the traditional community fair felt welcome.  In most cases, community fairs were held during the summer months.  An article in the 1923 newspaper stated that the Welcome, Kansas community fair would start on October 4 and end on October 6.  The event was to be held at the A.R. Germann farm, which was located six and a half miles northwest of Alta Vista.  Specific directions for getting to the event were given to those who lived in western Geary County: Turn at the Weston Schoolhouse, travel to the Welcome Cemetery, then go two miles north and a half mile east to arrive at their destination. 
            In past years, the Welcome ladies had served a chicken dinner in cafeteria style. However, for the fair in 1923, arrangements had been made with Brigadier General E.L. King, who was the Commandant at Fort Riley.  He was to provide a detachment from the Bakers and Cooks School to assist with the meal.  The men would prepare and serve a baby beef dinner in traditional Army style.
            Among the attractions of the fair was a draft-pulling contest and horse races. For these events half of the gate receipts would be awarded as prizes. Other activities included band concerts, horseshoe tournaments, a school parade and a program with eight county school districts participating.
            The town of Welcome, Kansas temporarily grew in size with many people attending the  Community Fair on those two days.  Welcome was located southeast of Junction City in the vicinity of McDowell Creek.
            And…. that is today’s story on “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.   

Friday, October 6, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 6, 2017

October 6, 2017
            This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            In the fall of 1943, the County Ration Board Chairman, Joe Deines, reported he not only maintained a sizeable victory garden, but he also was trying his skills at dehydrating vegetables.  He had built a dehydrator to aid in the process, which consisted of heating and drying to remove moisture.  Joe found that if he started with a gallon of produce, it was generally reduced to about a quart by using the dehydration procedure.  The fresh peas came through the process well, but garden beets did not have a very appetizing appearance.
 The vegetables were blanched in boiling water to set the color, then heated to 150 degrees for 4 hours.  The heat was provided by four 250 watt reflector bulbs.  An electric fan circulated the heat and ventilators provided a means for the moisture to escape. Mr. Deines had made his dehydrator by using plans given in the General Electric magazine and he encouraged others in Junction City to support the War effort by giving this method a try.   
            We have a sample of a typical “Victory Garden” in our gallery on the main floor of our museum.  You could not dehydrate or eat the vegetables in our garden, however, because they are made of plastic.  But at least you can see what such a garden looked like during WWII. 

            That’s today’s story on “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society. 

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 5, 2017

October 5, 2017
            This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            While looking through advertisements printed in the local newspapers of October 1947, there is some nostalgia about the “Good Ole Days” to which they are often referred by some of today’s senior citizens.  For example:  The “Song of the Thin Man” starring William Powell and Myrna Loy was showing at the Kaw Theater.  The Fashion Shop on North Washington was selling 100% wool coats for $35.00 and the fare to ride the Santa Fe Trailways Bus to Kansas City was only $2.90.  If you were more adventurous, you could go to Chicago for $10.20 or San Antonio for $14.95. A pair of “Acme” boots from LaShelle’s Shoe Store would have cost you $15.00.  Fresh cut roses at Keeshan’s Junction City Floral were $1.75 a dozen and a large mum plant was only $3.50.  To quench your thirst – a bottle of Coca-Cola would have cost you five cents.  Cooper’s CafĂ© claimed that with their home made cooking they save you money and with those savings you could purchase a pair of Boumont draperies for 98 cents at Townsend’s Department Store. 

            These were great prices as compared to what we pay now for similar items. Those were the “Good Ole Days” for some to recall.  Our children and their children will possibly recall these as their “Good Ole Days” when they are senior citizens and how little things cost today as to when they become senior citizens. 

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Our Past Is Present October 4, 2017

October 4, 2017
            This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
            In the fall of 1901, a local clergyman once exchanged pulpits with a younger minister, who was well known for his aggressiveness.  Before the service, the resident pastor told his substitute that the window behind the pulpit was broken. However, the pastor asked the substitute not mention it to the congregation, since it had already been mentioned several times in the past without any progress to get the window fixed.  The resident pastor also stated that the hymn books were badly torn, but there was also no need mention this to the congregation, because this issue had been discussed before and no action taken. The young substitute minister promised he would refrain from commenting on the broken window and the badly torn hymn books. 
            After the service began, the younger minister found the draft from the broken window unbearable.  So, he quietly stuffed his overcoat through the hole in the window.  The deacons of the congregation became uneasy and inwardly resolved to remedy this at their earliest possible moment.  When the minister announced the second hymn, he found the last two stanzas from HIS book were missing.  So, he told the congregation that if their books were complete – just keep on singing without him. 
            Without even saying a word about the broken window and the concern about the torn hymnals – as he had promised – both issues were resolved before the return of the elder clergyman the next Sunday.

            Well, that’s today’s story on “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.