Haunted Lawrence Archives

Phantoms of the NightLawrence Journal World, Oct. 1995

One of the things I really like about my library is that my boss is really flexible and open to ideas, which means that my coworkers and I are free to sort-of “invent” our own jobs.  It makes for a really creative and energetic work environment, because everyone is doing pretty much what they love — as long as they’ve been willing to take the initiative to make that happen.

So I’ve been carving out this little niche for myself in social media, technology, and instruction.  Last week we started this experiment with our Twitter feed to tweet once a day about #thisdayinhistory.  This means I get to trawl the Google News Archive of the Lawrence Journal World for tweet-worthy happenings. Although I never really saw myself as an archivist-type, at all, I can definitely seeing myself getting into it from a social media standpoint… archives meets Twitter?  OK, I can live with that!  My spoils from this past week include a few ads for Lawrence, KS, Halloween festivities:

Jaycees '83Lawrence Journal World, Oct. 1983

This next one had a very controversial “Chainsaw Massacre Room” that received a lot of criticism from feminist groups for being too violent towards women!  Apparentely Jaycees clubs around the country were under a lot of scrutiny in ’81 for continuing to disallow women into the organization:

Jacees '81Lawrence Journal World, Oct. 1981

And my very favorite — note all the amazing details, including “‘The Starliners’ from Topeka,” “Everyone Must Be Costumed or Masked,” “$10.00 Prize for Best Dressed Couple,” and the “Special Witches Brew for Ladies”:


Lawrence Journal World, Oct. 1969


2 thoughts on “Haunted Lawrence Archives

  1. Hi Rachel,

    I went to that Jaycees haunted house in 1981, with my then fiancee (now ex-husband). The guy with the chain saw was someone who had been in our class in high school, and I still screamed my head off when he came at me. Ahh, the memories…

    • Maria, that is amazing!!! There were several news articles in the LJW from this time period talking about just how scary and controversial the Jaycees ’81 haunted house was. I love that you were there to see it in person!

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