Commission to stay silent on tribute to '60s beat icon
When it comes to naming a creek after beat-generation icon William Burroughs, Douglas County commissioners have a lot of opinions about having no opinion. Monday morning, commissioners failed to reach a decisive conclusion about whether to support efforts to name the creek after Burroughs.
Once again, I am wondering if certain members of our local government and our local media are literate. William S. Burroughs is considered by many, including his alma mater, Columbia University, to be one of the most influential and important popular writers of the past century.
Editor's note :: Whatever one might think of William S. Burroughs, he was one of the most widely known residents of Lawrence. Before his death in 1997, Burroughs -- whose work included 'Naked Lunch' and 'Junky' -- lived in a modest house on Learnard Street in east Lawrence. The well-traveled author lived more years in Lawrence, Kansas than in any other location in the United States or abroad.
So there's a nameless ditch out there to which various pinkos want to attach the name of William S. Burroughs. Can I assume that the reasoning behind this is that the creek, like its proposed namesake, is frequently loaded with junk? Sorry. Too easy.
Burroughs is not widely known -- or "notorious" -- for having been a famous (because self-confessed) victim of drug addiction, nor for having killed his wife in 1951 in a reckless, horrible, stupid accident. That's not why he's famous. William Burroughs is known to us because he is almost universally acknowledged as one of the most influential American writers of the twentieth century.
Research Report for Stakeholders in Projects Related to the William S. Burroughs Legacy in Lawrence, Kansas, and City Improvements
There is no gainsaying the significance of Burroughs in the history of postwar American literature and its international impact. Clearly, his long late-life residence here represents a valuable and important asset for the future of Lawrence as a destination both for visitors and for new residents of our community.
It's hard for me to believe the Douglas County Commission's recent decision not to recommend naming the creek that runs behind the former home of author and artist William Burroughs in his honor. I'm also quite disappointed with the Dec. 3 Journal-World editorial that stated "The most notable events in Burroughs' life revolved around drugs and mayhem." That's just plain wrong.
Beat icon prevails in debate over creek's name
Depending on whom you ask, it's either a ditch, a tributary, a creek or a concrete tunnel. Now, it's officially a creek - Burroughs Creek, that is.
Beat writer brought unique element of fame to city
It is easy to forget that the unassuming bungalow at 1927 Learnard Ave. helped put Lawrence on the world map.