"In Memoriam--A Well Rounded Life--In last weeks issue was noticed the death of Mrs. Amanda Chaney, which occured at 3 o'clock on the morning of December 30, 1896. Amanda, daughter of Amos and Anna Rice, was born in Nunda, Livingston County, New York on the 24th day of March, 1820. At an early age she became converted and united with the Presbyterian Church. During her girlhood in 1837 her father removed with his family to White Rock, Illinois. It was when her home was in White Rock while she was teaching school that she was empressed with the possibility of a richer, deeper christian experience than she possessed. She felt that positive assurance of pardon and of salvation was possible. In this she was in advance of her time. Older Christians and ministers with whom she talked told her she could not know, that she could only trust and hope. But she persisted in reading and in prayer. She felt that such passages as, 'I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have commited unto Him against that day,' were for her. Thus she came into a larger hope, a stranger trust, indeed a full assurance which she never lost but with the passage of time deepened and expanded, enriching and beautifying a character almost already sweet making her life a benediction to all with whom she came in contact.
In White Rock she became acquainted with Osborn Chaney. On March 16, 1843 their lives were united and flowed on in what seemed almost an ideal union for forty years, until the death of her husband which occured on the 21st of April 1883.
For some time after her entrance upon her higher Christian life Mrs. Chaney had been troubled about certain doctrines held by her church and finally she became convinced that she could best serve her master in the fellowship of the Baptist Church. Therefore in 1853 she was baptized. Upon her removal, with her husband and their family, to Rockford, Illinois, in 1865 she united with the State Street Baptist Church of that city, and remained a consistent member of that body of believers until 1891. In that year her membership was transferred to the Baptist Church of Warren, Rhode Island, which was then under the pastoral charge of her son-in-law, Rev. Dr. E. K. Chandler.
During the summer of 1881 Mr. & Mrs. Chaney came with a daughter & three sons to Newell, and settled on a farm one mile east of town. Since that time the life of the family has been to the people of this community. All secured and have held high place in the esteem of the citizens and everyone has been respected for qualities peculiar to each. The death of the husband and father in 1883 already referred to, and changes in branches in the family elsewhere resulted in the breaking up of the home in 1887, since which time Mrs. Chaney has been a welcome inmate of the various homes of her children. The advance of creeping paralysis, which began a year or two ago, made it seem best that she have a permanent home for her declining years. The choice was properly left to her. While fondly attached to all her children, and appreciating the loving rivalry which prompted each to claim her, her own heart turned most strongly to Newell where rested the body of her sainted husband, and where in her Lord's own time she preferred to be laid. Only last summer a home was prepared in the house of her son George, where her last days might be passed in comfort, where loving hands might minister to her wants, whither her absent children might come from time to time for her blessing, whence they might receive fresh inspiration towards faithful living and where it was hoped she might remain during many years. But He, in whose hands are the issues of life and death, who acts according to His own eternal pruposes, because He sees the end from the beginning, has willed it otherwise. He has taken her to Himself and now although many hearts here are bitterly sad, we cannot but rejoice that she is where she would rather be, with him in Glory.
Mrs. Chaney often thought & talked of the second coming of the Lord, an event for which she continually watched & prayed, in trustful obedience to His own command. Within two days before her death she was talking of the subject to one she loved and she said, 'Death is an enemy, and we naturally shrink from a conflict with him. My own wish would be that I might live until my Savior comes and be caught up to meet Him, but His will be done. I am ready to do as He bids.' This remark was the index of her life, meekness, patience, resignation and trust. All who knew her are thankful for having known her, and those who knew her best loved her best and will miss her most.
This tribute all too weak and inadequate, is offered by one who knew her for thirty years and loved her as a son though not a son, who Thanks God that she came into his life and who ernestly prays that the fragrance of her memory may remain with him as a constant benediction, and an incentive towards increasing faithfulness to that Savior to whom she was always pointing.
Mrs. Chaney left the following daughters: Miss Louise A. Chaney of Newell, Iowa; Mrs. E. K. Chandler of Marshall, Texas; and Mrs. J. D. S. Riggs of Ottawa, Kansas. Her sons are: Edward O. of Chicago, Il; George W. of Newell; Morris J. of Wakonds, SD and Harry E. of Missoula, Mont. The brothers and sisters left to mourn her loss are as follows: Edwin Rice, Wm. Rice, Esther Rice, and Mrs. David Hayes of Ogle County, Illinois; Alanson Rice of Linn County, Iowa and George Rice of Seven Oaks, Oklahoma.
The following poem taken from The Independent, was read as a tribute to Mrs. Chaney at the last ladies missionary meeting which she attended.
I thank thee for thy written word, my God,
For every sacred line;
But more I thank thee for thy humble saint,
Whose daily life doth shine
A living page, most true, most pure, most sweet
Fresh from thy hand divine
The patriarchs and prophets all are gone.
The psalmists are asleep
Or in some country far beyond our ken
Their mighty lyres they sweep;
But God's dear saints still live to share our joys,
Or weep with those who weep.
Our dear Lord Jesus left us ages since
Our hearts would faithless grow
Did not His saints still prove His witnesses
And keep our love aglow.
Oh, Holy ones of old, because of thee
Your record true we know."
[Newell Mirror, Newell, Buena Vista, Iowa Jan. 1897]
Contributed by Juli Chaney Jarvis, Buffalo, WY
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