An Appeal To Citizens Of Pottawatomie County

An Appeal To Citizens Of Pottawatomie County


Wamego Times

Jan 9, 2019

I don’t know if you’ve ever been in the position wanting to convey something that is a response to the action of local leaders, represents all of the citizens of a particular area and be afraid that you didn’t have the language skills to convey it at such a way that it makes sense to everyone. Well, I’m that guy.

I’m 89 years old, been told that I have less than 6 months to live and am not nor have ever been a citizen of Pottawatomie County, but I have a son and daughter-in-law who have lived there for years and my daughter-in-law is a Preservation Architect who has a deep love for historic buildings.

There’s been a move recently by a handful of people to make the decision that your courthouse, a literal jewel of the County, should be torn down. They’re trying to claim that it will cost considerably more money to renovate the old courthouse than to tear it down and replace it with a building that will probably look like a first-year architectural student’s project.

You’re being told that it would cost more to renovate the courthouse than to tear it down and replace it with a new building. I don’t know the cost of this new building but in my experience renovating an existing building costs less than building new.

I’ve never known a situation like this where a small handful of people trying to push an issue such as this didn’t profit in some way with their dealings with contractors or whatever but I can tell you that the people involved do not have the best interests of Pott County citizens at the forefront of their decision.

It’s interesting how a handful of people can get involved in something like this and feel that they can lead the majority of citizens around like a bunch of sheep and spread around misinformation that misleads the public into making the wrong decisions.

As you can imagine that at 89 years old I’m retired but I was in dentistry for 42 years and dealt with a great many people from Pottawatomie County. I never met one that didn’t impress me as being their own person and at this point I’d like to think that I’m right about all of you in that you don’t want to be duped into making a decision that you will regret for the entire time you live in the county.

Why am I sending this letter to the editor? I just hate to see a group of good people led down a path to make the wrong decisions. That courthouse of yours has the spirit and a soul of your ancestors. In old courthouses back in the Eastern half of the United States where I helped my wife do genealogy research, I always felt good in the old buildings that reflected the spirit of the county. I would like for you to feel that about your courthouse. By the time any decision is made on this I will probably not be around to enjoy or lament your decision but I hope that God gives you the wisdom to make the right choice.

Paul Boatwright Topeka, Kansas