The American Cyclopædia (1879)/Lawrence (Kansas)

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Edition of 1879. See also Lawrence, Kansas on Wikipedia, and the disclaimer.

LAWRENCE, a city and the capital of Douglas co., Kansas, on both banks of the Kansas river, here spanned by two bridges, 70 m. above its mouth, 25 m. E. by S. of Topeka, and 28 m. S. W. of Leavenworth; pop. in 1860, 1,645; in 1870, 8,320. It is built on a rolling slope, and is regularly laid out, with wide streets, partly shaded with trees, and lighted with gas. There are many handsome buildings. Massachusetts street, the principal business thoroughfare, is built up for two thirds of a mile with blocks of brick and stone. The state university, a large and handsome structure, is situated in the S. W. part of the city, upon a bluff called Mount Oread. Lawrence has an important trade, communicating with the surrounding fertile and well timbered country by means of the Kansas Pacific, the Leavenworth, Lawrence, and Galveston, the Lawrence and Southwestern, the Kansas Midland, and the St. Louis, Lawrence, and Denver railroads. The principal manufactories are a planing mill, a machine shop, 7 wagon and carriage factories, 2 agricultural implement factories, 3 grist mills, 2 elevators, 2 breweries, 4 packing houses, a tannery, a soap factory, a woollen factory, a pottery, 3 furniture factories, and 2 mineral water factories, all operated by steam or wind power. A substantial dam has been erected across the Kansas river at this point, capable of furnishing 1,500 horse power for manufacturing purposes. There are two national banks with a capital of $200,000, a state bank with $50,000, and a savings bank with $100,000. There are graded public schools, including a high school department, and attended by about 1,200 pupils, and a library association possessing 3,500 volumes. Three daily, two tri-weekly, and five weekly (one German) newspapers are published. There are 25 churches.—Lawrence was founded in 1854 by settlers from the eastern states under the auspices of the New England emigrant aid society, and became the headquarters of the anti-slavery settlers in the ensuing struggle with the advocates of slavery in Kansas. On Aug. 25, 1863, it was surprised by a band of about 350 confederate guerillas under Quantrell, who killed 145 of the inhabitants, and burned about 200 houses, comprising the greater part of the city.