Lillian Jacobey Baur

The KU Child and Family Services Clinic is supported by an endowment provided by the family of Lillian Jacobey Baur.  These funds have provided critical remodeling of the clinic space, furniture, and technology upgrades.  The clinic strives to honor the memory of Mrs. Baur through its service to the children, youths, and families of Northeast Kansas.   

The following history was provided in December of 1996 by her husband of 52 years, E. Jackson Baur, and serves as a reminder of Mrs. Baur's dedication to the welfare of children and youths. 

Lillian Jacobey Baur’s professional career was devoted to the education and well-being of children. On graduating from high school at the age of sixteen she took her first job of teaching in a one-room school in northwestern Nebraska. She boarded in the home of the local farm family and rode a horse to school. She began each winter morning by lighting a fire in the school-house stove. Later she taught in the primary grades, kindergarten, and nursery school.

She was born Lillian Earline Jacobey in 1912 in Battle Creek, Nebraska where her father was the superintendent of schools. Her mother had been a school teacher. Their children were three daughters, of whom Lillian was the youngest, and all of whom began their careers as elementary school teachers. The family moved to other small, Nebraska towns where her father headed the schools the last of which was Harrison, in the northwestern corner of the state, where Lillian graduated from high school.

In 1929 she enrolled at Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln and after two years as an education major qualified for a teaching certificate. She taught first and second grade classes in the towns of Western (1932-35) and Beatrice (1936-37). During summers she continued her education. In 1933 at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, and from 1934 to 1938 at Nebraska Wesleyan University. She received a B.S. in Education in 1937 and a high school certificate to teach social science and English. She was initiated into the national social science honorary society.

Beginning in the fall of 1937 Lillian taught at the Sheridan public school in Lincoln. At a district teacher’s meeting she looked at the many grey-haired spinsters, and knowing that she would lose her job if she married, determined to change careers. She chose social work and applied to admission to the School of Social Service Administrative of the University of Chicago. She was accepted and went to Chicago in June, 1939.

On July 9, 1939, Lillian met E. Jackson Baur at an open house for summer students. He had completed all requirements but the dissertation for a Ph.D. in sociology and had applied for a teaching position. In early August he accepted an offer from Dillard University in New Orleans and proposed marriage. They set their wedding date for December 26, when she would have fulfilled the terms of her teaching contract. With the prospect of marrying an academician, she decided to change her career aspirations back to teaching so that the time of their work and vacations would coincide.

Mr. and  Mrs. Baur returned to Chicago in the summer of 1940. Jackson worked on his dissertation and Lillian enrolled in the Human Development program and obtained an appointment as apprentice teacher in the University’s nursery school. On returning to New Orleans in the fall, Mrs. Baur was employed in the preschool of Metarie Park Country Day School.

In the summer of 1941, they returned to Chicago where Jackson completed Ph.D. requirements and Lillian taught in the Nursery School. He worked for the National War Labor Board until October, 1943, when he began two and a half years of military service and she was employed in one of the federally-funded, war-time, nursery schools. In 1946, she lectured on human development at the University of Illinois School of Nursing in Chicago.

In September, 1947, the Baurs moved to Lawrence, Kansas, where he had accepted a faculty appointment. From February, 1958, to June, 1959, Lillian was employed as the head teacher for the Lawrence Community Nursery School. For several years beginning in 1959, she was variously employed by the local school district as a substitute teacher, teaching home-bound children, and teaching English to the foreign born.

In later years Lillian applied her talents to volunteering rather than paid employment. Among the agencies where she worked were Small World (a nursery school for children of foreign-born parents), Head Start, Women’s Transitional Care Service where she served the needs of children of women seeking aid, and as a docent for the Spencer Museum of Art where she Specialized in leading tours of school children.


December 17, 1996
E.Jackson Baur
Lawrence, Kansas



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