The Rockport Democrat, November 2, 1934

Article was typed as it was worded in the newspaper.


Historical Recital, Unveiling Of Lincoln Mural Attracts Hundreds,

Many Distinguished Guests Here


Concluding his speech with "Abraham Lincoln belongs to Hoosierdom," Prof. Ross Lockridge of Indiana university, brought to a close a historical recital at the flatboat landing at Rockyside park Wednesday morning. It was a part of a double celebration of the unveiling of a Lincoln mural here. Speaking on the subject "Lincoln’s Ohio River Contacts," Prof. Lockridge renewed the story of Lincoln’s childhood and boyhood environment in Kentucky and Indiana, emphasizing again that "Lincoln was born in Kentucky and raised in Indiana," with the great Ohio river as a link in this small portion of the country that young Lincoln knew. He told the familiar story of Lincoln’s trip on the flatboat and his famous statement about slavery, upon his seeing its existence in the south. Prof. Lockridge contrasted the schoolroom of today with the schoolroom Lincoln knew, a room with a sky overhead for roof and the natural beauty of the Ohio and the overhanging bluffs as a background.

Mrs. C. D. Ehrmann, president of the Spencer county historical society, made the opening remarks, and the invocation was given by the Rev. Earl Courter, pastor of Rockport Trinity Lutheran church.

T. C. Basye, president emeritus of the historical group, made the welcome address. The Evansville college chorus, directed by Dr. I. M. Blackburn, presented a group of French songs and followed with old songs of Abe Lincoln’s day, among which were "Hail, Columbia," "Anna Laurie" and "On The Banks of The Wabash."

Superintendent T. V. Pruitt, of Rockport, presided at the afternoon session, held in the high school auditorium, and Mrs. Eugenie S. Hayden, superintendent of Spencer county schools, made the welcome address. The invocation was given by Rev. H. R. Page, pastor of Trinity M. E. church, Rockport.

The principal speaker was Dr. Stewart McClelland, president of Lincoln Memorial university, Harrogate, Tenn. "Things Not Learned in School" was the subject which he used, and applying it to Lincoln he said that the education which Lincoln received in his boyhood days was worth as much to him as college degrees mean to graduates today. "He received no A.B. degree, but he received the degrees of all the other letters of the alphabet." Dr. McClelland is a fluent speaker and made a splendid address, pointing out qualities of Lincoln’s character, courage, determination, energy, good will, honesty, these all were woven together to make the degree laid up for Lincoln, the guiding star of Americanism. Dr. McClelland paid tribute to southern Indiana authors, declaring that "it is no wonder that southern Indiana ends out authors, writers and artists of its own, with such an environment which was Lincoln’s. Dr. McClelland is one of the most interesting historians that Spencer county people have ever been privileged to hear and his address will long be remembered.

C. T. Baker, editor of the Grandview Monitor, and a great Lincoln historian, mentioned the fact that this week is the 90th anniversary of Lincoln’s political tour of Spencer county.

Dr. Earl Harper, president of Evansville college, and Prof. Lockridge spoke briefly. Mrs. C. D. Ehrmann, in her charming manner, presented the distinguished guests of the day, including George H. Honig, sculptor, whose Lincoln mural was unveiled at the close of the program, and Andrew M. Sweeney, of Indianapolis. Mr. Sweeney recalled having met James Grigsby 60 years ago and it was his story of the forest college of Grigsby and Lincoln that inspired Honig to model his sculptured mural.

A number of telegrams, letters, and messages were received by Mrs. Ehrmann throughout the day. The Evansville college chorus sang a group of songs which were very much enjoyed. Eli Grigsby, a descendant of James Grigsby, unveiled the mural.

The programs were sponsored by the Spencer county historical society and the public schools of Spencer county and hundreds of school boys and birls were in attendance.