Master Cottage #1 shown in 2018, now known as the Hans Bethe House and Harold Agnew Cold War Gallery. Photo by Todd Nickols
By SHARON SNYDER
The Los Alamos Ranch School (LARS) was in its seventh year when Director A.J. Connell had a small wooden building constructed to the west of the Big House to use as director’s quarters, giving him some privacy and freeing up space in the main building.
However, there was a slight miscalculation, and long foul balls from the nearby baseball field had the potential to land on his roof. When Fuller Lodge was under construction in 1928, Connell moved to the third floor and turned over the small plank house to two young masters—Lawrence Hitchcock and Art Chase.
In 1931, during a cold winter, the wooden cottage caught fire. With nearby Ashley Pond frozen over, there was little water to fight the flames, and the structure burned to the ground. There was, however, something odd about the fire. May Connell, A.J.’s sister, noted that one corner of the house burned much longer than the rest of the building. The explanation revealed that a 30-gallon keg of corn whiskey was stored in that corner! (Prohibition was still in force but winding down, and the young men said they were aging the keg in case prices increased when prohibition ended.)
By SHARON SNYDER
Los Alamos Historical Society
The road that is Bathtub Row today passed by masters’ quarters and classrooms during the Los Alamos Ranch School years. During the Manhattan Project, it was the road to the houses assigned to key staff members at Project Y, and now it leads to lovely homes, the History Museum, the offices of the Los Alamos Historical Society, and Fuller Lodge. The lane that became Bathtub Row has been significant in three eras of our history.
In the beginning the road was dirt and not much wider than a path. It wound its way through the Los Alamos Ranch School (LARS) property, and gradually a few rustic buildings appeared along the way. Those structures, built of logs and stone in the 1920s and 30s, are historic today.
The sign that made Bathtub Row an official street name. Photo by Sharon Snyder
These articles are written by the Los Alamos Historical Society Staff. Many of these articles were originally published by the