An Opportunity to be Better - Chapter 8 Page 4

The big day was November 17, 1994. The presentation was at the Clay County Historical Society museum. The following Monday, the Clay Center Dispatch described the program.

"In 1948, Morganville played a role in assisting post-war France recover from the shock and disillusionment," KU professor John Sweets told a crowd of about 30 people at the Clay County Museum last Thursday evening.

Sweets ... explained that the French Government, by collaborating with their German occupiers, exposed the French people to much suffering. Some were deported to Germany to work in factories. Those staying home existed on a starvation diet as any food produced went to Germany.

The French resistance movement, according to Sweets, built bright hopes for the future, but the Americans and British liberated France at a high cost in French lives and destroyed the country's infrastructure.

After the war, there was a labor shortage in factories and on farms and transportation was severely crippled. That is why many communities like Morganville "adopted" towns of similar size in France or elsewhere in war ravaged Europe.

November 17, 1994 program poster

Inspection of the text reveals no mention of Daly. That was because he had a mechanical problem with his car and never made it to Clay Center that evening.

Years later, Sweets said he recalled nothing about the night ... until his wife reminded him. He had left his home in Lawrence, Kansas late and was traveling faster than the speed limit. A policeman wrote him a citation. He said the fine was just about equal to what he received for participating in the project.

Sweets added that Haney did all the actual work, while Daly and he only contributed an overview. Daly was to have provided a broad outline of conditions in the United States in 1948, while Sweets addressed the situation in France.

Reflecting on the project, the July 6, 1996 article in the Salina paper concluded with, "Haney would like to do more. The 50th anniversary of the Feves-Morganville connection is in 1998 and she thinks it would be great if Morganville restaged the pageant. But she's not pushing. 'This much has kept the story from dying and that was my objective,' Haney said."