Edith Torrey’s Social

The Skidmore newspaper reported on many successful parties over the years. Here’s one from September 29, 1899.


Tuesday evening was made one of merry making at the pleasant home of Mr. and Mrs. L. N. Torrey, east of town. Miss Edith entertained a number of her friends so delightfully that the occasion is very happliy remembered by all who were present. The young men were given the task of trimming hats for the young ladies. It was great fun and the hats “looked funny” when they were finished. Then there was an apple peeling contest, followed with music and refreshments. A prize was awarded for the best trimmed hat and also for one to the couple that finished their apples first. Those present were Misses Laura Ashbrook, Anna Medsker, Mina Porter, Floy and Irene Dodds, and Messrs. James Lawson, A. C. and A. L. Dodds, E. A. Miller and the writer.

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Letters Home: Henry R. Lee at Camp Funston

From the October 18, 1917 Skidmore News, page 5:

From Henry R. Lee.

Camp Funston, Kans., Oct. 8, 1917.

Dear Sir, I promised so many to write to them, but found that an impossibility, so will let all my friends know through the Skidmore News that we are still on the map.

Camp Funston is sure a real town, only 48,000 soldiers up to date. Uncle Sam has 22,000 acres for us to drill over. The Skidmore boys have only been over a part of it. A two mile hike has been the longest we have ever taken.

There were five of the boys that got to stay together, isn’t quite so lonesome as being among perfect strangers. Albert Linville and I bunk together. We have to double up in order to keep warm as the nights are sure chilly. We have been issued all of our bed clothing. Haven’t got our coats and overcoats yet.

There is nearly everything a person can think of for pastime. They are building a store and moving picture show for every regiment and there are eight regiments in all.

The Y. M. C. A. is doing good work here. They issue all of our stationery free. Have plenty of literature and music to cheer us up.

Well it is nearly time to turn in as they turn all lights out at 9:30 o’clock, so had better ring off. Will try and answer all letters I receive.

As ever,
Private Henry R. Lee.
Co. I 356 Inf., Camp Funston, Kans.

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Do You Want Darkness or Light?

Some strong opinions on a subject we now take for granted, as published in the Supplement to the Skidmore Standard on October 7, 1904:

Do You Want Darkness or Light?

Some of our citizens seem to be interested in an electric light proposition, which we think is a wise thing. There are several towns not any larger than Skidmore that has electric lights and water works. If the citizens of this town do not want to furnish the capital to build and operate such a system, outside capitalists can be induced to come here and build and operate such a plant by giving them an opportunity.

The little city of Craig, in Holt county, owns and successfully operates a system of electric lights and we can’t see why our own town is not able to do likewise in this respect. We have one of the neatest and cleanest towns along the Nodaway Valley branch and let’s keep up our good name by advancing along in the line of good and substantial improvements of these kinds. There are some who are always ready to howl about any proposition that may be offered for the advancement of our city.

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Flag Pole and Parade, 1917

Patriotic news from the October 25, 1917 Skidmore News, page 1:

Flag Pole Raised and Parade.

As Wednesday was Liberty Bond day the Skidmore school very appropriately observed it by putting up a flag pole, with flag, on the top of the school house.

Everything was gotten up on short notice, but it worked out nicely. Prof. E. R. Adams with the assistance of the rest of the teachers had the pupils to all bring a flag to school in teh afternoon and about half past three o’clock the entire school marched from the school house through the business part of town.

Each class carried a banner appropriate to the occasion. The banners as we got them were:

“Liberty Bond Day.”
“Why Not A Liberty Bond?”
“Do You Own A Liberty Bond?”
“Help the Boys In the Trenches.”
“Save the Flag by Purchasing a Liberty Bond.”
“Bring the Kaiser to His Knees by Paying Liberty Bond Fees.”
“I Own a Liberty Bond.”
“If you Like Your Uncle Sammy Buy a Liberty Bond.”
“We’ll Explode the German Bombs With Liberty Bonds.”
“Land the Kaiser On the Banks by Landing a Liberty Bond.”

The march through the streets by the school looked very pretty and it could only have been improved by a band.

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Bryan at Quitman, 1902

Skidmore’s almost brush with fame, and Quitman’s response, from the September 30, 1902 Skidmore New Era, page 4:

W. J. Bryan is to speak at Quitman the afternoon of October 6. This is one time that Quitman got ahead of us, for Skidmore could have secured the date if somebody had done a little hustling. But every one was too busy with the Punkin Show, and no one took the matter in hand, so that is why we lost the chance of having Bryan in Skidmore. — Standard.

Yes, Brother, Skidmore might have secured Mr. Bryan “if,” but don’t you remember the little story about “if”? However it isn’t very far from Skidmore to Quitman and we’re going to have a special train, you know, and we would be glad to have “every mother’s son of you” come up and spend the day with us. We’ll feed you on the best of barbecued beef, and besides that we “sorter” feel like Skidmore owes us a good crowd on the 6th from the fact that nearly the whole town of Quitman went down to the Punkin Show last week. — Quitman Record.

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Letters Home: Searcy Garnett at Camp Meigs

From the May 2, 1918 Skidmore News, page 8:

From “Searcy” Garnett.
Camp Meigs, April 23, 1918.
Skidmore News: —

I want to thank you for sending me the paper which I assure you I appreciate.

Camp Meigs is located in the District of Columbia, in the northeast section of the city of Washington. The soldiers here are all Quarter Masters, of whom there are about 2,000 in this camp. It is a new camp, being built since the war with Germany has commenced. It is a classification camp. After you are classified, you stay here until you are called to some other camp where you are put to work at your trade or profession.

There are more places of interest located in Washington than any other city in the United States. I have visited the capitol building, senate offices, congressional library, white house, national museum, Washington monument, the national cemetery at Arlington, Virginia, and several other places of national repute.

Airplanes are so numerous, here, people who have lived here long, hardly look up when they go over.

I had the pleasure, Sunday, of seeing the British tank, Brittania. This tank was one of the first used in the war. The soldiers who man this tank are the same that had charge of it in France.

I was helping keep the crowd back for the tank to cross a bridge when President Wilson and wife drove by in an auto. they had to stop directly in front of me, so I had a good view of them.

Yours, S. B. Garnett,
Camp Meigs, 5th and Florida Ave., N.E., Washington, D.C.

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Dr. Hutt’s Wheat

From the August 3, 1900 Skidmore Standard, page 1:

Dr. Hutt’s Wheat.

Dr. J. M. Hutt has a very fine farm just across the river west of town. He had 56 acres in wheat, this season, which threshed 1,695 bushels of grain. One field of 19 acres made the splendid yield of 699 1/2 bushels, or nearly 37 bushels to the acre. Dr. Hutt thinks this is something out of the ordinary in wheat raising in this part of the world. And the figures are made larger when the amount of down grain, which the binder failed to get, is added. It is a very conservative estimate say the men who harvested the fields, that the down grain left would make four bushels to the acre. Thus we have a field within rifle shot of Skidmore which made 40 bushels to the acre.

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