Kansas 105

Today's Trivia (May 15)

The play "Arsenic and Old Lace" debuted at the Fulton Theatre in New York on Jan. 10, 1941, and ran for 1,444 performances. It features the Brewster sisters who through, well, "charity work," offer lethal doses of elderberry wine to lonely old men. Their recipe was simple enough. For one gallon of elderberry wine, they mixed a teaspoonful of arsenic, added a half teaspoonful of strychnine, and then just a pinch of cyanide.

By the play's end the two Brewster sisters had buried 13 men in the basement, affectionately called the "Panama Canal" by their slightly touched nephew, Teddy, who believes he is President Teddy

Roosevelt called upon to bury victims of the yellow fever.

There are those who say a house in Kansas provided the inspiration for Joseph Kesselring's play "Arsenic and Old Lace." And just as in the play, the house originally had a basement filled with twisting turns and eerie, dungeon-like rooms.

The huge, sprawling house with the beveled glass windows, oak woodwork and archways was certainly frequented by Kesselring when he taught at this college from 1922 to 1924.

Born in New York City in 1902, Kesselring became a professor of music at the age 20.

When Kesselring left this Kansas college in the mid-1920s, he toured as a vaudeville actor and wrote several vaudeville sketches, short stories and poems.

''Arsenic and Old Lace" was the play that brought him his most success, however. He died in 1967.

Question: What Kansas college did Joseph Kesselring teach at? And, what is the name of the house he is said to have used as inspiration?

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Answer to Saturday's question: It was largely because of Lewis Lindsay Dyche that a natural history museum, Dyche Hall, was built at the University of Kansas in Lawrence.

Check Kansas.com on Monday for the answer to today's question.

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