Chronicles of Oklahoma
Volume 16, No. 2
REVEREND MARCUS LAFAYETTE BUTLER, D.D.
The Reverend Marcus LaFayette Butler, son of William Edward Butler, son of Thomas Paschal Butler, was a descendant of the
famous Butlers of the House of Ormonde, noblemen, warriors, and conquerors.
Perhaps the most famous in the long line of the House of Ormonde was James Butler, Duke of Ormonde, prominent in the military
and political affairs of Ireland and England during the reign of Charles I. After the execution of Charles I a little past
two o'clock, January 30, 1649, James Butler remained in Ireland long enough to proclaim Charles II King of Britain and Ireland.
He then quitted the country and remained in exile for a long time.
One of the younger sons of the House of Ormonde came to America, settled in Virginia and became the progenitor of the Butler
family in the United States. These Virginia Butlers had the characteristics of their Irish ancestors. They were jovial, hospitable,
brave, and intensely patriotic. They were sometimes referred to as the "fighting Butlers."
Every major war in which this country has fought has had a representative of the Butler family in it except the World War.
M. L. Butler sought to enter that war since he had no son to offer but, of course, he was past the age to be accepted for
Thomas Paschal Butler moved from Virginia to Oxford, Mississippi, in 1839. His son, William Edward Butler, the father of Marcus
LaFayette Butler, was married to Miss Margaret White, at Oxford, in the year 1859. They had eight children, Marcus LaFayette
being the eldest.
His mother was a native of North Carolina, born at Concord, a daughter of Samuel G. and Catherine Russell White, who came
to the United States shortly before the birth of Margaret. Samuel G. White belonged to the McGregor Clan.
Marcus LaFayette Butler was born July 5th, 1860, at Oxford, Mississippi. His early childhood was spent amid the scenes of
destruction and horror of the Civil War and the cruelties and injustices of the reconstruction days that followed. These made
a deep impression upon his childish mind and planted in his young spirit a bitterness which took years of grace to efface.
However, there was a different environment in old Mississippi for the young child.
His father's people were religious of the Baptist persuasion; his Mother was a Presbyterian of the pure Scotch type, refined,
cultured, and pious. She pointed his young mind toward the greater men of the day—L. Q. C. Lamar, Jacob Thompson, General
Longstreet, and Drs. Waddell and Wheat, ministers of note. In his diary, Brother Butler recalls the influence of such men
upon his young heart.
Thus the fundamental principles of virtue, honor, and integrity were planted in him as well as an inspiration toward greatness.
When he was twelve years of age his parents moved to Arkansas and settled on a farm near Fort Smith. They lived a quiet useful
life rearing their family under such religious and social conditions that prevailed in that section during the pioneer days.
At fourteen years of age, on a September morn, he united with the Presbyterian Church. His grandfather, then eighty-two years
of age, had never connected himself with the Church, but was so impressed with the services and the reception of his young
grandson that on the afternoon of that day, he presented himself and was received into the membership of the Presbyterian
Very early the mind of the young Butler turned toward the ministry. His father objected to his becoming a minister, preferring
that he choose the law as a profession. With much diffidence, Marcus told his mother of his desire. She took him in her arms,
saying, "Son, the day you were born, I dedicated you to God. You have my blessing." Thus, encouraged and comforted, he immediately
began plans for securing an education.
Educational advantages were very limited and finances were very meager; he had to work his way through school. He entered
Hendricks College and with sheer hard work laid the foundation for his ministerial life.
In the larger contacts of educational forces at the age of eighteen, he became somewhat confused in his religious thinking
and found himself at variance with the doctrines of the church to which he belonged and drifting into atheism. "Just at this
time," he wrote in an autobiography, "I came in contact with that peerless character, Reverend Doctor I. L. Burrow, of the
Arkansas Conference, Methodist Episcopal Church, South. In that splendid way of his, he led me into the light and beauty of
the Armenian theology. Soon I found myself securely founded upon the Rock of Ages. I transferred my membership from the Presbyterian
to the Methodist Church. Soon thereafter, I was licensed to preach according to the Discipline of the Methodist Episcopal
November 14, 1879, he was admitted on trial into the Arkansas Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. Bishop
George F. Pierce was the President of the Conference. Butler was appointed to Van Buren Circuit.
The next year, Bishop Pierce, who was assigned to preside over the Indian Mission Conference, made an appeal for young men
for work in the Indian Territory. Marcus LaFayette Butler responded and was transferred from the Arkansas Conference to the
Indian Mission Conference which met at Fort Gibson, September 6th-10th, 1880. He was received in the Conference in the class
of the first year. Other members received at the same time were Leonard Parker, Thomas Barnett, Rowland Brown, Moses Siya,
Tecumseh Tyner, C. W. Myatt, John W. Bryan, and J. M. C. Hamilton, father of Mrs. John Randolph Frazier, of Oklahoma City.
M. L. Butler was appointed to Flint Circuit. This was quite a large order for the young man. The circuit was seventy-five
miles long and thirty miles wide, comprising parts of the counties of Adair, Sequoyah, and Cherokee. The membership of the
church at this time was composed largely of Cherokee Indians. There were some choice spirits on the charge, however, which
greatly aided the young preacher. There was Aunt Nancy Adair, who had been received into the church by Reverend John B. McFerrin,
D.D., when he was a missionary to the Cherokees in the Old Nation in East Tennessee. Uncle William Ghormley was always an
inspiration to the preacher, and Judge Thompson Adair and several others. Among the preachers of the Conference at that time
who were especially helpful to the young man were Young Ewing, the Presiding Elder, T. F. Brewer, E. R. Shapard, and J. F.
Thompson. His associates among the Indian preachers were John Sevier, Gibson Grayson, Samuel Checote, and James McHenry. He
served this charge two years. Thus, he began his long and useful ministry for the Church in Oklahoma.
His service record in outline follows:
Admitted on trial into the Arkansas Annual Conference, November 14th, 1879.
Transferred to the Indian Mission Conference in the class of the first year, September 6th, 1880.
Flint Circuit, 1880-1881.
Tahlequah and Fort Gibson, 1882-1883.
Atoka and Caddo, 1886-1889.
Carlsbad, New Mexico, 1905, part of the year.
Redlands, California, 1905-1906.
Chickasha, Oklahoma, 1907-1910.
Educational Secretary for the East and West Oklahoma Conferences, 1915. Resigned as Educational Secretary in the midst of
the year and appointed pastor at Norman.
Presiding Elder, Oklahoma City District, 1916-1919.
Presiding Elder, Lawton District, 1920-1921.
Vinita, 1922-1924. Presiding Elder, Muskogee District, 1925-1928.
Oklahoma Editor Southwestern Advocate, 1932-1933.
Superannuated at his own request November 10th, 1934.
This was a long service record, marked by initiative, zeal, fervor, self-denial, fortitude, effectiveness, evangelism, at
times brilliancy and always faithfulness.
While serving his first pastorate in the Indian Territory he wooed and won the hand and heart of Helen Dougherty, a beautiful
and consecrated young woman whose mother's people had been connected with the Presbyterian Missionary work among the Cherokees
in the Old Nation. They were married at Van Buren, Arkansas, March 3, 1881. Throughout the entire years of service, she was
his faithful companion, sharing the burdens of hardships of pioneer days, going with him to charges where the work was hard
and the stipend small, with cheerful heart and never a word of complaint. Being a teacher by profession before she married,
she betimes, during their married life, taught school to help meet the ever increasing high cost of living.
Three daughters came to bless their home. They are Mrs. Ralph E. Ellison, of Okmulgee, Mrs. E. P. Kilgore, of Oklahoma City,
and Mrs. John L. Allen, of Okmulgee. The three daughters and their mother survive.
Dr. Butler gave spiritual aid and comfort to people of all classes and races during the political and social changes that
were constantly taking place in the Indian Territory.
When he came to the Indian Territory, there was a large influx of white people into the Territory. This made important changes
both for Church and State. The political and social life underwent constant change. The Five Civilized Tribes were gradually
losing their status as separate national entities, and were being merged into one State under the government of the United
States. This, of course, made necessary the finest type of statesmanship on the part of the political leaders of the time.
Brother Butler was in close council with many of those leaders and made his contribution to the successful merger of the several
nations and to the building of the wholesome moral order for the whole.
His life, stretching as it did, over a long period of years, touched and was touched by many people. He numbered his friends
by the hundreds. Among them were men of great influence in the State. He could claim as personal friends Colonel William P.
Boudinot, Colonel William P. Ross, Senator Gullager, Congressman W. W. Hastings, and Senator Robert L. Owen. Among notable
women who bore testimony to his genuine worth and helpfulness were Mrs. Elizabeth Bushyhead, wife of Chief Dennis Bushyhead,
Mrs. G. B. Hester, mother-in-law of Senator Robert L. Owen, and Mrs. Mary Rogers, mother of Will Rogers.
Dr. Butler was interested in education. He himself was an educated man. While he did not finish his college career before
he entered the ministry, a fact he always regretted, he nevertheless was a diligent student all of his life. He prepared his
Conference courses regularly and met each examination at the bar of the Conference with credit to himself and to the Church.
He studied his books while riding horseback on long journeys on the large circuits. After completing his Conference course,
he took correspondence courses, spent time in summer schools and was a diligent student in his private library. He was interested
in every effort made by State and Church for the betterment of education and served as Trustee for Spaulding College, Hargrove
College, Willie Halsell College, and Oklahoma City University. The Hargrove College conferred upon him the honorary degree
of Doctor of Divinity.
He was a very useful servant of God and faithful and valuable leader in the Church.
The Bishops of the Church regarded him as a careful administrator and good adviser. He numbered several of them among his
close personal friends. In his early ministry were Bishop Duncan and Bishop Pierce; then came Bishops Hargrove, Hendrix, Galloway,
Morrison, Hoss, Mouzon, Moore and A. Frank Smith. All of them gave him important assignments for work in Oklahoma.
For twenty-one years, Brother Butler served his Conference as Secretary, seventeen of them consecutively; he served on the
Conference Board of Missions.
He was elected the first alternate delegate to the General Conference in 1902 and attended that Conference. He was principal
delegate to the General Conference which met at Dallas, Texas, in 1930.
Brother Butler was the Chairman of the Oklahoma Conference Historical Society from the beginning of its organization until
He never lost interest in the Indian work. His first circuit was composed largely of full-blood Cherokee Indians. During a
large part of his ministry, the Indian Mission Conference held on to its Indian and missionary character. When the white people
came into the Territory after the run of 1889 in such large numbers as to necessitate the change of both the Indian and missionary
character of the Conference, giving it the status of a full Annual Conference predominantly for white people, and the setting
aside of the Indian work as a separate Mission Conference, Dr. Butler retained all his interest in the Indian work, visited
the Indian Mission Conference annually and held steadfastly to his large number of friends among the Indians. The Indians,
in turn, deeply appreciated him and their love for him abides.
Among his last sermons, if not the very last sermon he preached, was one to the Indian Mission Conference which was held near
Okmulgee in September, 1937. This sermon was heard by a large congregation of
Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, Seminole, Kiowa, and Comanche Indians, together with a large number of white preachers
and laymen. Bishop A. Frank Smith, President of the Conference, was in the audience. The sermon was marked by enthusiasm,
deep religious fervor, and missionary zeal, characteristic of all his sermons.
After his superannuation, he was still very active in religious matters. He taught a Sunday School Class for the Presbyterian
Church in Okmulgee, preached frequently, and wrote for the Church papers. He attended the sessions of the Annual Conference
and made helpful contributions to its business. He possessed great energy; he went about his work with a deep passion; he
was a crusader for Christ from the beginning until the close of his ministry.
Dr. Butler served fifty-five years in active service in the ministry, fifty-three of them in Oklahoma. During the three years
and a fraction of his retirement, it can not be said that he was inactive. He worked until the very last.
During his ministry, he assisted in building fifteen churches and seven parsonages; received more than five thousand people
into the Church; married sixteen hundred and fifty couples and conducted twenty-six hundred funerals.
The time comes for us all to quit this world for another.
Dr. Butler went to the hospital on January 13th, 1938, critically ill with a heart disease, so critical that he was denied
the visitation of even his closest friends. At five o'clock in the morning of Februaray 22nd, 1938, his heart, weary after
long years of toil and burdened with many sorrows other than his own, ceased to beat. His soul, cheered with precious memories
and crowned with honor and glory, joined the immortals in heaven.
"Well done, thou good and faithful servant."
—Sidney Henry Babcock.
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
A number of Virgil Durham's friends recommended him for the O.E.A. distinguished service medal last fall, stating at the time
that he had served the schools of Oklahoma for forty years. He had served in every capacity, from rural teacher to county
superintendent, and during that time he had organized the consolidated school system of Hughes county and attached rural districts
to Wetumka, Calvin, Dustin, Stuart, and to Allen graded schools. However, his friends were more interested in stating that
Durham had been a friend to boys and girls throughout his long life, and that many prominent people in the state were formerly
students of his, and owed their advancement to the timely advice and the inspiration he gave them.
He died in Oklahoma City, March 27, 1938, at the home of his daughter. While in the schoolroom, a few days before, he was
stricken with a heart ailment. He was just past 71 years of age. He first taught a rural school in Arkansas, later in Missouri,
coming to the Shawnee schools in 1898. During his career he taught at Tecumseh, Wynnewood, Afton, Stuart, and many different
consolidated schools in Hughes county. At the time of his death he was instructor in social science in the Holdenville highschool.
He held a Bachelor of Arts degree from the East Central State Teachers' College. He had been a member of the Oklahoma
Education Association since its organization and attended all meetings his health would permit. In school work he classed
himself as a conservative.
School work did not claim his entire time. He had held various offices in the Masonic Lodge at Tecumseh and had been Worthy
Patron of the Order of Eastern Star; also a member of the Chamber of Commerce and the Baptist church. Through all his busy
active life he did not accumulate great wealth but continued to believe in the work of the public schools and the youth of
America, and was cheerful and happy to the end.
—C. M. Howell.
Oklahoma Education Association.
MRS. FELIX J. KING
On November 24, 1937, Mrs. Felix J. King, sixty years old, passed away at her home east of Ardmore, Oklahoma. She died suddenly
from a heart attack.
Mrs. King was the wife of a long-time Southern Oklahoma dairyman and farmer. They were married in 1897, having both a civil
and religious ceremony.
Requiem mass was read at 9 o'clock November 26th and she was buried in Rose Hill cemetery at Ardmore. The pallbearers were
Dr. Walter Hardy, Paul Clarkson, E. E. Denton, L. A. Sprekelmeyer, E. E. Guilliot and Walter Colbert.
Surviving, in addition to her husband are nine children. They are Mrs. Charles S. Garland, Oklahoma City; Mrs. Thomas G. Sumonka,
Tulsa; Mrs. Phinn W. Townsend, Duncan; Mrs. Gilmer A. Murphey, Oklahoma City; Mrs. Milton E. Holmberg, Bartlesville; Mrs.
Leland Robertson, Healdton; Felix W. King, Corpus Christi, Texas; Justin King, Oklahoma City, and John B. King, Ardmore. Ten
grandchildren and one sister, Mrs. W. F. Warren of Ardmore, also survive. A foster daughter, Sister Mildred, of Lockport,
N. Y., also survives.
Mrs. King was born at Boyd's Oil Springs, 20 miles northeast of Ardmore, November 9, 1877, the daughter of Thomas and Sarah
Jane Corbit Boyd. Her father came West from Mississippi at the time of the Chickasaw removal.
Left an orphan at an early age she attended the Lebanon Children's Home, St. Xavier's Academy, Denison, Texas, and St. Elizabeth's
Convent at Purcell, Oklahoma. She was assistant postmistress at Berwyn in the Territorial days before her marriage.
Mrs. King was a woman of much talent and leadership, was active in many religious and civic organizations, and always gave
generously of her time and talent to any worth while enterprise. Among the clubs of which she was a member were the Ryonis
Club, the Minnie B. Home Demonstration Club, the Altar Society, the Catholic Daughters of America, and the Tifahaya Indian
Mrs. King was largely responsible for the organization of the Tifahaya Indian Club, organized for the purpose of preserving
the arts, language, and customs of the Indians. The In Memoriam of this club stated: "In the capacity of Advisor she rendered
inestimable service to the Club and was beloved by every member. She served the Club for many years with loyalty and devotion.
Her influence felt in all major decisions of the organization showed a clarity of thought, imagination and wisdom that never
failed and that will continue to affect club standards for many years to come. With her talents for leadership and organization,
Mrs. King combined the charm of manner, graciousness, and rare gift of friendship that endeared her to all and makes her loss
a personal one."
The Daily Ardmoreite wrote this tribute to Mrs. Felix King.
"When requiem mass was read above the bier of Mrs. Felix King, Friday, the final chapter in the annals of a noble woman whose
life had been a benediction to her family and to her legion of friends was written. It is given to few to traverse life's
fitful pathway with its myriad of trials
and tribulations, and emerge with a smile and song as only she knew how to bestow upon a world beset by troubles.
"Mrs. King was a pioneer in the truest sense of the word. She was aware of the struggles pioneers had to make, and the sacrifices
they had to endure when this part of the state was emerging from chaos. She knew many not so fortunate as she needed aid and
comfort, and it was in that sphere of work she shone like a glittering star. Mrs. King was ever mindful of others. She did
not ask why; she only inquired how she could help to alleviate distress, and in so doing, asked not of race or creed. Mother
of a large family, she never was too busy or too distressed to think of the circumstance of others, and her largess was as
boundless as her love of mankind.
"When death summoned her, her husband and children suffered an irreparable loss, and the community one of its best known and
best loved women. Always a leader, her life was devoted to making her home, city and community a better place in which to
live. She had been closely identified with many organizations that required much of her time. She never complained, but bore
her burden cheerfully.
"Ardmore mourns the passing of Mrs. King; she will be sadly missed by many poor and unfortunate people who were beneficiaries
of her bounty. Sincerest sympathy of every citizen of Ardmore is extended to the bereaved husband and family, in their great
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
W. W. HASTINGS
"Death loves a shining mark," and when the icy hand of death reaches out to gather its victim, it usually gathers in the best
loved, the most useful, the most honored, and the one that is hardest to be spared. In this instance this rule has not been
slighted, but your most useful and best loved citizen has been taken.
He was my life-long friend, reared on Beattie's Prairie, Delaware District, Cherokee Nation, now Delaware County, Oklahoma.
Born in Arkansas on the 31st day of December, 1866. His father bought the old Benjamin Franklin Thompson farm, adjoining the
farm on which I was reared, separated by a rail worm fence, when he was about three years old. We went to the old log school
house, called the Beattie's Prairie Public School of the Cherokee Nation. As classmates and schoolmates we finished there
and went to the old Male Seminary, where we were roommates, classmates and schoolmates until we graduated in June, 1884, with
Hon. J. T. Parks. We both taught school one year, each having a public school of the Cherokee Nation. We then went to Vanderbilt
University, Nashville, Tenn., where we were roommates and classmates, graduating in the Law Department in June, 1889. We returned
to the Cherokee Nation and afterwards formed a partnership with E. C. Boudinot. Boudinot died, and the firm of Thompson and
Hastings continued until the U. S. Government abolished the Courts of the Cherokee Nation. We dissolved and I went to Vinita
and formed a partnership with Judge J. S. Davenport.
During this period Mr. Hastings held many positions of honor and trust in the old Cherokee Government. He was the representative
of the Cherokee Nation at home and in Washington, D. C. He was Attorney General of the Cherokee Nation, Superintendent of
Education and confidential adviser of the Chiefs of the Tribe.
After our dissolution he was Attorney for the Cherokee Nation in making up its final rolls, allotment of lands, and cases
before the Court of Claims and the Supreme Court of the United States. He then was elected to Congress and remained there
for nine terms, or 18 years consecutively, except one term he was defeated by Miss Alice Robertson of Muskogee, Oklahoma,
the year of the Republican landslide in this state. He was re-elected the next term and held office until 1934, when he retired,
on his own volition.
While in Congress he was looked up to as an authority not only of his own Cherokee Tribe and the others of the five tribes
of Oklahoma, but of the Indians of the entire United States. He was an active member of the Committee on Indian Affairs, and
of the Appropriations Committee of the House, which is the most important committee of that body. He was on several important
commissions, one that went abroad and was considered one of the outstanding members of the lower house of Congress. He stood
as an outstanding representative of his Tribe, of his State and Nation.
Mr. Hastings was successful in all of his undertakings. As a politician he was a decided success. As a business man, he was
unexcelled. As a friend, he could not be surpassed. As a home man, husband and father, he stood at the top. If each person
for whom he has done some loving act of kindness could offer one flower to his memory, his bier would rest under a mountain
of flowers. His deeds of charity stand out in his life as a monument to his memory. His achievements in his acts in private,
political, and home life are memorials to his greatness. You cannot go
up and down the streets of Tahlequah, his beloved home town, but you see buildings and institutions that he had a hand in
bringing here and building for the advancement and improvement of his home and country. In 1896 Mr. Hastings married Lula
Starr, who, with their three lovely daughters, survive. He belonged to the Masonic Lodge and its coordinate branches. He was
affiliated with the Presbyterian Church.
He has gone from us. No longer shall we see that beloved form upon the streets of Tahlequah. No longer shall we hear that
voice of his in defense of the downtrodden and oppressed. No longer shall we look forward to his donations to the charitable
institutions of his country. No longer will he participate in the procurement of blessings to his people and nation. No longer
shall I, his lifelong friend, enjoy the confidences of that friendship, but shall remember it to the end of time. No longer
shall his family have the benefit of associations with him, and the advice and comfort that he gave them while here, except
as a blessed memory. But he shall suffer no longer the pains and pangs of sickness and death. And as Longfellow said in his
beautiful poem, "Hiawatha,"
"Farewell, said he, Oh Minnehaha;
Farewell, Oh my Laughing Water.
All my heart lies buried with you;
All my heart goes onward with you.
Come not back again to labor,
Come not back again to suffer,
Where the famine and the fever
Wear the heart and waste the body.
Soon my task will be completed,
Soon your footsteps I will follow,
To the Islands of the Blessed,
To the Kingdom of Ponemah,
To the Land of the Hereafter."
I, as his lifelong friend, partner and associate, knowing him as I knew him, perhaps better than any other living man, will
say for him, as a final tribute,—
"Few hearts so full of virtue warmed.
Few minds with wisdom so informed,
If there be another world, he lives in bliss.
If there is none, he made the best of this."
—William P. Thompson.
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
JOSHUA BUCHANAN CAMPBELL
Joshua Buchanan Campbell was born at Crawfordsville, Indiana, May 29, 1855 (where as a boy he was affectionately given the
name of "Buck" by that stout old soldier, General Lew Wallace), and died at Enid, Oklahoma, June 25, 1937, aged 82 years and
He was the youngest son of Elisha and Nancy Campbell. As a young lad he first moved with his parents to Illinois, thence to
Iowa, where he learned the printer's trade in the office of the "Eagle" at Brooklyn, Iowa. He later moved to Nebraska, near
Brownsville, and then to Northern Kansas where he was connected with newspapers at Alma, Frankfort, Wamego, Washington, and
Haddam. In the spring of 1890 he came to Hennessey, and finally to Garfield County in 1900, taking over the "Oklahoma Hornet,"
which had been established a year or so previously by Bert Campbell.
He became a registered pharmacist, and as a life-long republican was always active in public life. He served as a postmaster
in Kansas, a county officer of Kingfisher County, several terms in the legislature from Garfield County, and as register of
the United States land office at Guthrie. He was a past-president of the Oklahoma Press Association, and its meeting at Chickasha
in the spring of 1937 was the first meeting of that association he had missed for a period of approximately thirty years.
He was also a life member of the Oklahoma Historical Society and of the Waukomis Masonic lodge.
In 1878 he married Carrie M. Kunz at Waterville, Kansas. Six children were born to that happy union, of whom Bert Campbell
and Mrs. Flossie Wilson of Waukomis; Ralph Campbell of Minneapolis, Minnesota; Frank Campbell of Lubbock, Texas, and Mrs.
Bernice Hughes of Henryetta, Oklahoma, survive. A daughter, Docey, died at the age of three years. Mrs. Campbell died in Waukomis,
June 7, 1925.
He typified an order that is fast passing into memory. Within a month of his death, he said:
"The happiest days of my early life were when I was the editor of a dinky country newspaper in a scattered village with only
the crudest equipment—an Army press, a jobber that worked by a lever, enough body type to set one page of a six column folio,
a piece of tin on a table for an imposing stone, and a dry goods box for an office desk. The whole outfit cost less than $100
and if it had cost more I wouldn't have been able to have it."
How quaint and warm the picture as he proceeds:
"The Mrs. inked the type, folded the papers and looked after the mailing of the paper in those days, while I did the rest
of the work, acting in all capacities from office devil to editor and publisher.
"Most of our subscribers were country people and practically all of them took the paper and paid their subscriptions in products
from the farm. And they paid generously—butter, eggs, chickens, all kinds of vegetables and fruits in season. In the fall
at butchering time we were overloaded with spare ribs, sausage, head cheese and ham. Wood was another item of barter, and
oats, corn and hay for our horse was always in the barn. We even traded advertising for the things that were not brought in
on subscription—lived like princes.
"Although we didn't have much money, we didn't need much. About all the cash requirements were for paper, postage and taxes,
and they were nominal. The cash subscriptions, job work, an occasional legal
notice and the announcement fees from candidates took care of these and left a little surplus.
"In fact, in a few years we were able to build a small home, doing most of the work for ourselves, and to us it was a castle!
We (he always smilingly included Mrs. Campbell, "a good wife and an inspiration," in telling of those early struggles)—we
added to our equipment, too, until we had a pretty fair country printing shop, a rotary jobber, plenty of type and a Prouty
And with what a kindly twinkle in his eye, he recalled:
"The country editor was a leader in all civic affairs, presided at public gatherings, introduced the celebrites that come
to town, took an active part in church affairs, led the grand march at the dances, was head of the debating society, sang
in the church choir, passed the contribution plate, taught a class in Sunday school, was consulted freely on all matters pertaining
to the welfare of the Community, attended the weddings and funerals, spread the news of births, deaths and marriages; had
a good word of encouragement for all. Always a booster.
"There is another institution of those days that warms the cockles of the heart—the country dinners, which occurred quite
often. One of the pleasantest things that I know of was those dinners. The men folk would quaff beer and play penny ante in
the barn while the women folk would be getting up a dinner that would fairly put one in the hay.
"—and when we wanted to go fishing or off on a trip, all we had to do was close the door—no locks—and hike out with no fears
that someone would confiscate our business while we were away."
With tolerant mind and the mellow philosophy of more than eighty years, his last observation was, "If I had it all to do over
again I wouldn't publish a partisan paper any more than I would attempt to operate a partisan bank or mercantile store. In
reading my paper you would never know my religion, my politics, or my enemies."
His many years of faithful discharge of every obligation entrusted to his care, his unfailing loyalty and honesty, his true
Americanism and his unsullied character, mark him a monument which will endure.
May his soul rest in everlasting peace.
Harry O. Glasser.
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