These items were taken from the Sun’s editions 20, 30 and 40 years ago.


July 17, 1979

Two Parsons researchers had used an elephant in the Ralph Mitchell Zoo in Independence to gain a better understanding of human hearing. They were concluding the second summer of experiments with Lois, a 7-year-old Indian elephant, and were disproving a common misconception that human hearing was unique because of the frequencies of sound that could be heard by humans. Rickye and Henry Heffner had used diluted red Kool-Aid to reward the elephant when she made a correct response. The Heffners were with the University of Kansas Bureau of Child Research at the Parsons State Hospital and Training Center.

The Parsons City Commission split in its support of a request by Individual Mausoleum Co., with two commissioners saying they would approve retail sale of ready-mix concrete as an accessory use. Commissioners Robert Bartelli and Andrew Plowman said they would approve the request for an amendment to the city’s model zoning ordinance. Charles Brown, mayor, said he felt the zoning ordinances and plans for growth called for ready-mix to be in heavy industrial areas and that he would stand behind the Parsons Planning Commission and area residents who opposed the change.


July 17, 1989

Labette County Commissioner Joe Renfro called for Lonie Addis’ resignation as commission chairman and listed five instances when he said Addis’ actions were misleading or inappropriate. Addis, who countered all of Renfro’s claims with denials or explanations, said he would resign as chairman before the end of the day only if Commissioner Barney Pontious, Parsons, agreed with Renfro. Pontious said the decision was totally up to Addis.

The Labette Community College Foundation withdrew its request for rezoning property at 1410 Broadway for use as a women’s resource center, citing the opposition of area residents. At a June public hearing on the request to rezone the house and property from single-family residential to controlled office and professional use, several residents said the rezoning would increase traffic in the area and reduce property values.

Plaza Pool, 1719 Parsons Plaza, opened with seven pool tables and a snooker table available for the public. Jim and Peggy Lawson owned the business. 


July 17, 1999

The Parsons City Commission was considering an ordinance that would require owners of certain breeds of dogs to keep their dogs in a secured pen or on a chain and muzzled. Under the proposed ordinance, dogs that would have to be kept in a pen or muzzled would be Doberman pinschers, boxers, chows, German shepherds, great Danes, Siberian huskies, Rottweilers, wolf-cross breeds and any mixture of the breeds.

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