Massachusetts Street:

Monuments and Milestones


           The beginning of our historic town – its struggles, its successes – centers on Massachusetts Street. Explore the buildings that stand as monuments to our history and the milestones that define us as a community. Come explore Mass Street.


View South of 7th and Massachusetts St., ~1880.


Navigating This Exhibit

           This online exhibit contains photos of buildings and businesses on Massachusetts Street from as far back as the 1850s. The photos are categorized by the type of businesses the buildings housed as well as by time period. Each slideshow has a brief history of the business or building, which may include a retelling of events in Lawrence or Kansas and how those events were affecting businesses on Massachusetts Street. Flip through the slideshows to watch the transformation of building façades through time. Watch Lawrence change from a pioneer town to a city with modern conveniences. Use the red navigation bar above to begin.


Dickinson Theater, 1940

Founding of Lawrence

If you are interested in the story of the founding of Lawrence and its role before the Civil War, please refer to our "Founding of Lawrence" page, which can be found here.


Development of this exhibition was supported in part by a 2011 grant from The Ethel and Raymond F. Rice Foundation


For more information, look for these references:
Dary, David. Lawrence: Douglas County, Kansas, An Informal History. Lawrence: Allen Press, 1982.
Douglas County Government. Douglas County, Kansas - Douglas County Courthouse History. The Government of Douglas County, Kansas. 2011.
Cutler, William G. History Of The State Of Kansas, With Biographical Sketches And Portraits. Chicago: A. T. Andreas, 1883.
Rowe, Elfriede. Wonderful Old Lawrence. The World Company. 1975.
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