July 6, 2017
This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
In an article written for the August 17, 1978 “Daily Union”, Chloris Killian wrote about “Junction City’s Earliest Pools”. She wrote that “Junction City was unusual in that a pool was built in the city park near the turn of the 20th century. Sumner Pierce, one of the early settlers in this area, gave the park land to the city and was responsible for building a swimming pool there. As a young boy in New York, he developed a crippling ailment at the age of 12 and lived the rest of his life with some disability. He was convinced that better swimming facilities might have prevented his illness. The first pool in Junction City was built in 1913.
The swimming pool in the park had a native stone bath house. The pool was south of the stone house and had the most modern facilities of the time with a sanitary method of changing water by means of a drainage ditch that ran north across several lots to the edge of town. The pool was managed by John Rogers, who also served as the lifeguard. However, John couldn’t swim, but used a life preserver with a rope tied to it in the case that anyone needed help. Just this system caused swimmers to be cautious about going beyond a depth of water that was comfortable to them.
Be listening tomorrow when we continue this story about John Rogers’ rules and how Lois York remembered wearing a stylish new bathing suit to swim in and how he disapproved of it.
This has been today’s story on “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.