Throwback Thursday: May 23

News from around Johnson County as reported on May 23 in the pages of the Daily Journal and the Franklin Evening Star from the last 112 years.

On this day in 1994, the main story on the front page of the Daily Journal was about a Franklin College graduate who wanted to repay a debt of gratitude.

William Lincoln, a 1964 graduate, taught Solidarity how to negotiate with the Polish government and resolved a prison riot in Massachusetts.

But before he became a world authority on solving conflicts, he had to handle disputes at Franklin College in the early 1960s.

In what he called a debt of gratitude, Lincoln pledged to give the college 500 new books on conflict resolution and help set up a study program on the subject. “Indiana … taught me the value of the handshake, the value of the pat on the back and the value of the world,” said Lincoln, a Boston native who quit a factory job to come to the college. “Franklin taught me to research and be analytical, and to not be afraid of abandoning my plans.”

Lincoln spoke to graduates during commencement ceremonies on May 21, 1994. He also received an honorary doctorate of humanities.

He said Franklin provided the foundation for the work that was to come as president of the National Center Associates, a Washington-based conflict-resolution company.

But Lincoln didn’t think of contributing until he came back before commencement and showed his family around .

“I was inspired,” he said. “I said to my wife, ‘What would happen if we gave 500 volumes of books to Franklin?’ She said to do it. I think Franklin could become a very respectable center (for conflict resolution study).

“I was impressed with the administration and faculty members of Franklin. There are thinkers here. There are a lot of people who made a commitment to stay here.”

Other memorable Johnson County stories from this day


A Franklin man was facing marijuana cultivation charges after police found nearly 500 plants growing in an industrial building.


Doctors were warning the public to use eye protection when viewing an annular eclipse expected the following week.


President Lyndon B. Johnson was likely to campaign in Indiana, a U.S. Senator told the Daily Journal.