J. O. Crosby
Posted By: Ken Wright (email)
Date: 2/25/2009 at 22:24:50
Clayton County Centennial Edition, July, 1936.
J. O. Crosby
We now come to another son of New England-one cast in a Puritan mold, who for seventy years preserved its characteristics in an alien environment. In biblical times we are told that a certain Jewish sect isolated themselves from a majority of their brethren, claiming superior wisdom and virtue, and were known as Pharisees. It is possible that one of their number shipped away as a stowaway on the Mayflower and broadcast this Pharisee dogma over the granite hills of New England. J. O. Crosby had the unique distinction of having no counterfeit or duplicate and his individuality needed no protection from a copyright. As the spiritual bias of an individual is before birth, we are loath to relate that when inquiry was made to him as to what church he belonged, his reply was “I don’t belong to any church; the church belongs to me,” which fast was evidenced by a sheriff’s deed to the property.
Changing the perspective and giving fair measurements to human discussions, we find a scholarly, painstaking lawyer, historian, geologist and student of world affairs, having been president of the State Bar Association and commissioner to the world fairs at different times. In no sense of a single track mind, he built many sidings to the main line, but no turn table was then placed on any of his tracks, for there was no return scheduled. The reader may fail to find the element of state building in the life work of J. O. Crosby, but Guyot in his “History of Civilization” says that “Society made its greatest advances in its turbulent periods, that when the currents are smooth, the people lose their liberties.” J. O. Crosby declared his own isolation and sought his own St. Helena, imperious and rebellious to the end, good lawyer as he was, he sought to bend and break the statutes, that stayed his hand in the distribution of his estate. In his passing no gentle touch came to stay the ravages of time, no messenger of love to shed the sympathetic tear. He died as he had lived.
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