The Evansville Courier and Journal, July 4, 1935

Article was typed as it was worded in the newspaper.


Tri-State to Pay Unique Tribute to Pioneer Days at Village Dedication


McGuffeyites to Honor Noted Educator at Special Program in First Picnic

ROCKPORT, July 3—(Special)—

With pageantry depicting pioneer life in Spencer county a hundred years and more ago, residents of this historic community and thousands from throughout the Tri-State tomorrow will join in one of the most elaborate observances of the nation’s birthday ever held in southern Indiana.

Rockport tonight was decked in traditional garb for its "most glorious Fourth" and all was in readiness for an event of nation-wide interest—the dedication of the Lincoln Pioneer Village.


That the celebration here tomorrow has drawn the attention of the nation’s Lincoln students was evidenced by an Associated Press dispatch from Washington, D. C. today.

The dispatch states that "Young ‘Abe’Lincoln will sell molasses and calico again tomorrow across the small store counter in Rockport, Ind., where he earned his first money.

"Judge John Pitcher’s law office, where the young railsplitter borrowed books, will be open, school will be ‘kept,’ and pioneer women will busy themselves around their log homes, spinning and carding wool."

The dispatch continues with a description of the Lincoln Pioneer Village.

The dedication program, scheduled to begin at 2:30 o’clock tomorrow afternoon, brings to fruition a dream of George Honig, Rockport sculptor. Honig, Lincoln student, spent years in careful research before he planned the pioneer village that has been erected in the city park here. Rockport and the Spencer County Historical society joined wholeheartedly with Honig in making his dream come true.


While this unique tribute to the famous American will hold the limelight in the day’s activity, hundreds of the pilgrims to this mecca of Lincoln lore will be just as interested in a tribute to another beloved character of an earlier day—William Holmes McGuffey, noted educator whose text books were used extensively throughout midwestern schools.

A fitting program has been arranged for these McGuffeyites, members of J. Roy Strickland’s Southern Indiana McGuffey club, which was born in January through his daily column in The Courier, Paragraphy. The program will begin at 1 o’clock, adjourning in time for the major event of the day, the pioneer village dedication.

The day’s activities will begin here at 9:30 o’clock in the morning with a series of contest which include selection of the prettiest baby, the first event on the program, various races, calling contests and selection of the largest family present, final event on the program which will take place at 1:40 o’clock in the afternoon.


Preceeding the dedication of the Lincoln Pioneer Village, one of the most colorful Fourth of July parades this part of Indiana has ever planned will file through the streets to the City park. Scores of floats manned by hundreds most of whom will be dressed in century old garb, will participate in the parade.

Featured in the spectacle will be ox teams, old wagons, agricultural tools of the early days, historical relics and other things of interest.

J. W. Newmann of Evansville will play the part of "Lincoln," riding in the 50-year-old Rockport bandwagon that will be drawn by white chargers.

In addition to the street decorations that were completed today, the windows of Rockport’s business houses have been made into displays of relics of a century and more ago. Old costumes, jewelry, household articles, dishes, glassware, hand woven coverlets, quilts of quaint pattern, Indian relics, and other historical articles are featured.


Three special reception committees composed of persons residing en every section of Spencer county will be on hand at the City park to welcome the multitude expected for the dedication of the pioneer village. Signs on the south side of the park will designate the location of the committees.

The "escort of honor," 50 young women who will be dressed in costumes of red, white and blue will form in two lines from the committees to the roadway and visitors will pass between these lines to be received by the reception committees.

The main reception committee will be headed by T. C. Basye. Other members are Mrs. Basye, Mayor and Mrs. Harvey Chinn, Miss Pat Enlow, Mrs. Arch Stevenson, Representative and Mrs. Edward Simpson, Mrs. Fred Heuring, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Salm, Mr. and Mrs. Will Brown, Mr. and Mrs. Dalton Hayden, Mr. and Mrs. Louis Savage, Mr. and Mrs. Amos P. Wright, Don Seay, Mr. and Mrs. John Pyle, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Hoch, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Wilburn, Mrs. Cova Wetzel, Mr. and Mrs. Ben Branch, Mr. and Mrs. Horace Sohn, Mr. and Mrs. Herbert Kinney, all of Rockport.

Mr. and Mrs. Otis Brooner, Dr. and Mrs. Allenbaugh, Dr. and Mrs. Claude Lomax, Mr. and Mrs. S. A. Weller, Mr. and Mrs. Frank Gogel, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Lipsey of Dale.

Mr. and Mrs. Charles Baker, W. P. Meeks, Mrs. Mary Thurman, Mrs. Gertrude Baker, Mrs. Olive Mosby, G. W. Richey, and Dr. and Mrs. G. W. Stuteville of Grandview; Miss Frieda Baker, Miss Hazel Witherell and the Rev. Mr. Stevens from Chrisney; Miss Mary Brinkman and the Rev. and Mrs. Kenneth Rothert of Lamar; Mr. and Mrs. James Mattingly, Mr. and Mrs. Allen J. Payton, Eureka; Mr. and Mrs. Leslie Pattie and Dr. and Mrs. Parvin Jolly of Richland; Mr. and Mrs. W. E. McKinney of Hatfield, Mrs. Alma Mann of Clay City, and Mrs. Rose Hubers of St. Meinrad.

The McGuffey club reception committee is composed of U. S. Lindsey, chairman, Mrs. Lindsey, Charles Halbruge, Mrs. Hilbert Bennett, Prof. A. H. Kennedy, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Haines, Mrs. Matilda Weil, Prof. and Mrs. Morgenthaler, Mrs. Molly Payne, Miss Hettie White, Mrs. Lizzie Gentry, Mr. and Mrs. Louis Wilkerson, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Strassell, Mrs. Eugenia Ehrmann and Grant Johnson.

Mrs. Mina Cook is chairman of the reception committee for the Boonville Press club. Other members are Mr. and Mrs. George Honig, Dr. and Mrs. C. D. Ehrmann, Mr. and Mrs. Pat Axton, Prof. and Mrs. T. V. Pruitt, Dr. and Mrs. J. C. Glackman, Mrs. Lucy Fuelster, Jacob Baum and Mrs. Ophia Adams.