The Old Settlers.
Again They Meet, Greetings are Cordial.
They Part in Hope of Another Picnic
Originally Published in the Kendall County Record, August 21, 1889.
Edited and Compiled by Elmer Dickson.
The good Father of us all gave the early settlers of Kendall County a perfect day last Thursday on the day of the annual picnic. While the threshing machine kept many at home, the attendance on the fair ground was good. The day was happily spent in good old time talk and greetings.
There is nothing new of which to make an extended article for the Record this week. It was the routine program of other years. While there was no noted speaker from away, our home folks managed to entertain a large company very acceptably.
The Yorkville Military Band and Mr. and Mrs. Marcellus Evans furnished the musical part of the program, and all were pleased with the music. The forenoon hours were given to getting to the ground and saying how-do-you-do, while the teams were being cared for, and the opening exercises, which consisted of prayer, music, and the welcome address by Reverend, Andrew W. Chapman were followed by dinner. Two hours passed in this necessary and delightful exercise. Our people live well. They not only ride in handsome vehicles behind fine horses, but they are careful of the cuisine, and plenty was provided for all. Few people enjoy themselves better than those who live in the country. It is all ease and comfort, while with the city folks, it is style and stiffness. Suffice it to say that the dinner hour last Thursday was an occasion of good fellowship and family reunions.
In the afternoon, those who cared to gathered at Agriculture Hall to listen to speeches when President Newell called the people to order and presided in a pleasing manner. Our reporter failed to stick to business, and we are without notes of this part of the program. Several gentlemen made appropriate remarks which were happily received. One of our good mothers complained that there were no women speakers, and she thinks there are some good ones in the country. An hour or so passed agreeably with the speaking and singing. A game of baseball drew quite a congregation during the afternoon, and the people began to seek their homes about four o’clock.
Many who came to this county fifty years ago are now weighted with years, and in another decade but few of the pioneers will be in our midst. Their descendants are on the stage of action and we have no doubt they will prove worthy followers of our honored sires and matrons. God bless our old people! May peace flow like a river about them, and joys await them on the other side!
The Honorable Miles B. Castle and daughter Grace enjoyed the picnic.
Mr. Andrew P. Welch and his second wife, Elizabeth (Shepard) Welch, visited former neighbors on Old Settlers’ day.
Mrs. H. F. Wood of Aurora, a former resident of Yorkville was present.
Mr. and Mrs. Lyell T. Aldrich and Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Jefferson Phillips were on the grounds.
Mr. and Mrs. Horatio N. Woodward, of Sandwich, were renewing old acquaintances.
Amer Brewer Cook, II, one of the early comers and an old resident of Plano was on the grounds.
Mr. Russell D. Crofoot and wife Hannah M. (Kent) Crofoot, of Sandwich, were among the visitors from abroad last Thursday.
Reuben Owen has not gotten a day older, in looks, than when we first knew him twenty-five years ago.
Mrs. Dr. Calvin Wheeler came out from Chicago to see old friends. She was one of the first comers to the valley.
Mr. Lucius Page came all the way from Geneva, Iowa, to attend the picnic, and will remain here some time.
Those Aurora veterans, Joseph G. Stolp, Charles L. Hoyt, and Lewis Brinsley Judson, shook hands with many old acquaintances.
Dr. Daniel Smith Jenks and Nathan Carr Mighell, two of Plano’s oldest citizens were most cheerful in their greeting of old friends.
Of course Uncle Billy Hiddleson was on the ground and he is the same kind-hearted old neighbor as he has been for fifty years.
From Seward we saw Mrs. Lucretia (Starkweather) Baker (Mrs. Daniel “Aiken” Baker), Reverend Andrew Wells Chapman and his son, James A., John McKanna and that pioneer, Justus W. House.
Mr. and Mrs. Albert Denney of Aurora, with their children, came down to the picnic and remained over night at Dr. McClelland’s.
Father Serrine made the prayer at the picnic, and it is good to hear this venerable servant of God in his petitions for divine help.
Mr. and Mrs. Frank Seely, who were truly pioneers in this region, came from Decatur to visit relatives and old acquaintances.
You can always depend on seeing Lyman Loomis of Somonauk among our old settlers. He has a warm affection for Kendall County.
The Honorable, Lorenzo D. Brady, who settled on the Rock Creek in 1837 and was a merchant in Little Rock village, and member of the legislature from Kendall County in the 1840’s, was at the picnic looking extremely well.
Addendum from the Plano Column of the August 21, 1889 Kendall County Record.
The annual gathering of the old settlers brings many pleasant things that are not down on the general program. Though the picnic was a feast of good things in the speeches, meeting with old friends, and the dinners, we have enjoyed a little of the desert in Plano. On Friday, Mr. and Mrs. Gilbert “Denslow” Henning entertained at dinner quite a number of the old settlers now living in different parts of the county, with others that remain in this vicinity. It was a most enjoyable occasion. There were present from abroad, Mr. John M. Kennedy of Chicago, who came here in 1834; His son A. D. Kennedy and daughter Miss Lizzie, of Chicago; Mrs. Mary Ludington of Wenona, Illinois, and her daughter; and Mrs. Lena Cowen and children of Saint Louis, making four generations of the family present; Mr. William C. Rogers, of Lake View, whose early home was on the farm now owned by Mr. Royal Orlando Lincoln, and Mrs. Mary (Goff) Knott and daughter, of Chicago. On Saturday, Mr. Otis Latham and wife Phebe Catherine (Henning) Latham entertained nearly the same company, when another red letter day, which will long be remembered, was enjoyed. The friends left for Chicago on the five o’clock train with a small flower garden in the form of bouquets cut by Mrs. Latham’s generous hands from her fine collection of flowers.
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