The Big Apple, Lawrence, Kansas, and BMC

mbackus's picture

What a weekend. Saturday I spent a very full, very incredible 12 hours in New York City. I had been once before with my parents doing all the touristy stuff people do, but this Saturday I went with my friend Kara who knew all the secret, wonderful details of the city. While we were there we visited one of my best friends from high school, Jim, who goes to the Pratt Institute of Art in Brooklyn. I think we were both a little taken back to see each other in such an urban setting, so different from the suburban/rural setting of Lawrence, Kansas. We spent lunch reminiscing (read: gossiping) about old friends and a dearly loved town that felt worlds away. Jim reminded me about everything I love about home and my hometown. After having that conversation sitting on the moon bench right now makes me think about everything I love about good old Lawrence, KS. Fall looks the same in both places, squirrels race in the treetops above and the forrest floor below. I can see the occasional person traversing the green, and leaves fall like rain. I love fall, I love home, and I love Bryn Mawr. The moon bench really made me think of home today in all the best ways possible. Even though there weren't many people out I could feel the community around me buzzing. I feel the same way sitting in a park in Lawrence as I do sitting on the moon bench. What a weekend. 

And because I have an insane amount of hometown pride, here is the best representation of my hometown I have ever seen. I stumbled upon it on Facebook a few weeks back, another friend (also at art school) created it.

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mbackus's picture

This is great! What an

This is great! What an incredible connection! You will have to visit Lawrence, KS one day to see the results of your great great grandfather's efforts! 

Sarah Cunningham's picture

my great great grandfather

And I think he was pretty great.... Amos Lawrence, after whom Lawrence, Kansas was named! He was a New England entrepreneur who, we are told, walked from Groton to Boston with twenty dollars in his pocket, and went on to make his fortune, owning cotton textile mills in Lawrence, Mass, also named after him. A philanthropist and abolitionist, who also founded Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin-- my great great grandmother, married to Amos Lawrence was Sarah Elizabeth Appleton, my namesake... so, mbackus, we're kind of cousins, in a way, don't you think?

Wait, I just did my wikipedia research: turns out there are two Amos Lawrences, father and son. Amos Adams lawrence who was a radical abolitionist, gave money and guns to John Brown, supported Kansas as a Free State, and financed the founding of the U of Kansas and also Lawrence U was my gr gr grandfather. His father was the one who made his fortune out his $20 savings, with mills in Lawrence and Lowell Mass. 

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