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Historians continue discussion of Bethel in the Sixties

February 10th, 2020

Jan Dick rings tolls the bell for the American dead during the Moratorium to End the War in Vietnam in October 1969

The next Friends of the MLA program, on Saturday, Feb. 22, will look back at the impact of the 1960s on the college and the larger Newton community.

Keith L. Sprunger, Bethel professor emeritus of history, will facilitate the program “Remembering Bethel in the Sixties: A Turning Point?,” Feb. 22 from 2-3:30 p.m. in the college’s Mantz Library lounge (ground floor).

The ’60s turned out to be a time of great changes in American life – a decade some have even called “the 20th-century turning point.”

Said Sprunger, “The 1960s was when I began teaching at Bethel College. It will be interesting to look back at the momentous [decade] and ask: Was it [the college’s] turning point?”

The public is invited to this informal gathering and time of sharing that will include light refreshments.

“Remembering Bethel in the Sixties” will expand on the Nov. 24 Friends of the MLA program that focused on the experiences of the Bethel College community during the 1969 Moratorium to End the War in Vietnam.

The Mennonite Library and Archives at Bethel College sponsors periodic presentations on topics related to Mennonite history and thought.

For more information on the Friends of the MLA or the Feb. 22 program, call 316-284-5360 or e-mail

Bethel is a four-year liberal arts college founded in 1887 and is the oldest Mennonite college in North America. Known for academic excellence, Bethel is the highest ranked Kansas private college, at #12, in Washington Monthly, Top 200 Bachelor’s Colleges; ranks at #23 in U.S. News & World Report, Best Regional Colleges Midwest; is’s highest ranked Kansas small college with the highest earning graduates; stands at #57 among 829 U.S. colleges and universities listed by lendEDU as “Best for Financial Aid”; has the #10 RN-to-BSN program in Kansas according to; and earned its second-straight NAIA Champions of Character Five-Star gold award, based on student service and academic achievement, all for 2019-20. For more information, see  

About Bethel

As the first Mennonite college founded in North America, Bethel College celebrates a tradition of progressive Christian liberal arts education, diversity within community, and lifelong learning.