Fremont County, Iowa

Family History Stories

Huse N. Morgan
(Told in Newspaper Articles, 1888-1920)

The Fremont County Herald
July 26, 1888
Huse N. Morgan, a dramatic star who is filling an engagement at Boyd’s Comique as a stage manager, is getting some of the finest printing of any dramatic star in the business. His letter heads being the most artistic piece of work ever seen.

Huse is a rustler and ranks among the foremost in his line of business and will always succeed. If energy and talent will place a man at the top round of the ladder, we expect soon to note his name among the foremost in the professions. Aspen, (Colo.)”Democrat-Press.

The Fremont County Herald
January 14, 1892
Local News.

Prof. Clell Cassity, solo cornetist and leader of orchestra, assisted by Miss Emma Cassity, solo cornetist, and Frank Cassity, double bass and tuba soloist, in conjunction with a number of other noted musicians will comprise the band and orchestra of the Huse N. Morgan Comedy Co. which opens for a week’s engagement to Sidney beginning Jan. 25, in a repertoire of fine dramas and comedies, introducing songs, dances, etc.

We are doing a fine lot of printing for Huse N. Morgan, who expects to have his Company ready by Jan. 25 when he will play Sidney for one week. He will have a fine band and orchestra. Some of his people arrived yesterday and he expects them all by Saturday.

The Fremont County Herald
January 28, 1892


Sidney is enjoying a week of comedy and music. Huse is a Sidney boy who has been upon the stage for a number of years and has attained a degree of proficiency gained by few of the many who attempt to climb this difficult ladder.

For the past few years he and his wife have been playing through the west and along the Pacific coast. He has a fine collection of comedies and dramas I his repertoire and has organized a company of his own, and will take to the road, playing southern Iowa, northern Missouri, eastern Missouri, eastern Nebraska and Kansas.

One of the chief attractions is his challenge band and classic orchestras. This title is somewhat high sounding, but not one half tone higher than it deserves. Prof. Clell Cassity is musical director, playing solo B flat cornet in brass and violin in orchestra. As an artist and director he is certainly superb, the grade of music he handles being beyond our comprehension and out of sight. His wife is a fine cornetist, possessing a power and brilliancy seldom found in a lady cornetist.

Frank Cassity is a wonder on the tuba and more than keeps up his end of the band. Prof. Potter is the baritone player and furnished his portion of the difficult harmony. A.N. Davis and C. Jones are handling the altos and Huse plays a tenor trombone. Today Prof. Chas. F. Shaw arrives from Chicago, and plays E flat clarinet. Next week, George V. Gray, of Memphis, Tenn., joins the company at Hamburg and plays 2nd violin in orchestra and B flat clarinet in the brass.

Upon the arrival of these men this superb band will be complete and Prof. Jones whose home is here and has kindly been helping out, will drop out. No finer set of musicians are on the road today and their choice selections will be appreciated each day by their audiences wherever they go.

The Fremont County Herald
August 24, 1893

The Huse N. Morgan Comedy Company are to play in the Court House every night next week. On Monday night they open with the great sensational comedy “Sentenced To Death.” Tuesday evening an Irish play “Inshavogue.” Wednesday night the romantic drama “Stricken Blind.” Thursday night the highly sensational drama “Phoenix.” Friday night the beautiful drama “My Partner.”Saturday night the romantic original drama “Michael Earle.” Saturday afternoon matinee “Mixed Pickles.”

New and special scenery for each piece made by Messrs. Rapier and DeForest, of the company. Frank Cole, a son of Gilbert Cole, of Beatrice, Neb., is here to join the Huse N. Morgan troupe. He was born in Sidney and is a very fine violin and piano player.

Fort Wayne Sentinel
An Actor Has His Hand Torn to Pieces On The Stage.
Marengo, Ill., Oc. 17, 1894
During the production of the play “Uncle Josh Spruceby.” At the opera house last night, Huse N. Morgan, one of the leading actors, in arranging the saw in the saw mill scene accidentally let his hand fall between the saw and the log and it was literally torn to pieces. It was amputated at the wrist later. By his self-possession a panic was narrowly averted. Nearly a dozen ladies in the audience fainted.

The Fremont County Sun
October 24, 1895

Huse N. Morgan, manager of the Empire Stock Co., is now playing a week’s engagement in our little city, and proves, as recommended, to be one among the very best Dramatic Companies now on the road. Mr. Morgan is well known throughout this entire section of the country as also he is in the theatrical circles over all the western states.

In the selection and management of this company Huse has made no mistakes and he is to be congratulated upon securing such talented artists as the ones who compose this company. All their plays are new and popular and have been produced with great success in all the leading cities of the east.

The troupe will continue in Sidney the remainder of the week with a grand family matinee Saturday afternoon. Large audiences attend each evening.

The Fremont County Sun
November 17, 1895

Huse Morgan, manager of the Empire Stock Co, is in our city making arrangements to play his company here for a week.

Some years ago Huse organized a company in Sidney and gave an entertainment in Hamburg, which so disgusted him that he fired the whole company.

At that time he told his audience that if he ever gave another entertainment in Hamburg he would be sure that he had a first class company before undertaking it, and he now informs us that he is ready to redeem his promise, as his present troupe is first-class in every respect.

The Fremont County Sun
December 12, 1895

Huse Morgan, of the Empire Stock Company, which recently played a three nights engagement in Malvern, has brought suit in the district court of this county against B. Lewis, manager of the Josh Spruceby Comedy Co. for damages in the sum of $2000. The claim for damages is based on the loss of an arm sustained by Morgan about a year ago, while a member of Levis’ company. How the action could be commenced in this county, where neither party resides, is not clear.

The Fremont County Sun
March 5, 1896

Huse Morgan came out victorious in his lawsuit last week in Glenwood. He was given a judgement against the Josh Specialty Company in the sum of $2,ooo for the loss of his hand.

The Fremont County Herald
February 13, 1906


The production of “The Irish Aristocrat” at the courthouse Friday night by the Morgans, supported by home talent, proved immensely successful in every respect. Every seat was sold in advance including chairs which filled all the available space in the room, and scores who had failed to take time by the forelock were obliged to put up with “standing room only”.

The play is a mixture of love, villainy, misfortune, humor and pathos. Fergus McCarthy, the hero, is a Fenian chief who after the collapse of the Irish rebellion in ’98 escapes to America. Twenty years later he returns to Ireland in the disguise of a piper in hope of finding his wife. By a strange combination of circumstances he meets his daughter and the scene is intensely dramatic. In the last act the villain is killed, the hero escapes the gibbet, the lovers are re-united and all the clouds roll by.

Very seldom have we seen a play that gave such complete general satisfaction. Huse Morgan had a reputation to sustain and he “made good” at every point. All things considered the work done by the home talent one and all was excellent. The music by the Mandolin Club contributed in no small degree to the evening’s enjoyment. The members of this club are Mollie Hiatt, Alma Yowell, Harry Fletcher, Jess Ettleman and Earl Holloway. Miss Althea Fletcher was the pianist during the play. The net proceeds amounted to $118 of which the K. P. Lodge gets one- half.

The Fremont County Herald
February 27, 1906


Large Crowd Greets the Home Talent in their Rendition of the “Old Homestead”.“The Old Homestead” played at the courthouse last Thursday by the Morgans, assisted by a cast of local players, was greeted by a packed house and made a great hit. It was thoroughly enjoyed from the rising of the curtain to the last scene, which closed with “The Old Oaken Bucket.” Huse Morgan, as Uncle Josh Whitcomb, the old rough and ready New England farmer, with his independent, comical, country ways and laughable sayings, and his big Heart, is a whole show by himself. Bessie F. Morgan, his wife, is a pretty and clever little actress and a favorite both on and off the stage.

Bob Rupp made a dandy policeman and also took the part of Cye Prime, the oldest man in the county, which he handled well. John Adams in the roll of Bill Taylor, the drunken father, looked and acted the typical hobo, and everybody was glad when Uncle Josh put him out of business by firing him through the skylight from the seventh story.

Elsie Rupp, as Little Tot the street waif, was fine; and Charlie Acord made a good bashful lover. Mrs. John Adams, as Mrs. Taylor, was well suited for her part and most of the audience were in tears when she died.

The Fremont County Herald
20 April `1906


“My Partner,” a four –act drama of western life, was presented at the new theater last evening under the auspices of John Huss Castle No. 144 Royal Highlanders.

The Fremont County Herald
July 6, 1906

Huse Morgan and wife came home from Tabor yesterday where they had been for the past two weeks drilling a home talent company for the presentation of, “My Partner,” a comedy that the Morgans have played many times and Mr. Morgan informed us that the opera house at that place was crowded on the evening of the 4th and that the audience was an appreciative one. This is the second entertainment that the Morgans have given at Tabor in the past two months.

The Fremont County Herald
July 17, 1906


The Morgans of this place with a company of home talent presented at the courthouse last Friday evening “A Son’s Devotion”, a drama of three acts which was well rendered to an appreciative audience.
  • Hugh Floyd: The outcast
  • Mearle Hatten: Frank Jackson, a bad one
  • Bob Rupp: Nimrod, a coon from way back
  • Huse Morgan: Charles Floyd, an unfaithful son
  • Elmer Hills: Old Man Floyd, the father
  • H.N. Morgan: Sheriff Davis, John Adams
  • Mrs. Floyd: The mother, Lottie Adams
  • Jennie Floyd: The ungrateful, Veva Brown
  • Annie Elsworth: Bessie F. Morgan

The Fremont County Sun
June 11, 1908

Sidney people are to be favored by the Morgans, who will on the 16th instead, put on the boards at the courthouse, the famous play entitled, “The Old Homestead”.

The play will be given under the auspices of Juanita Lodge 227 Knights of Pythias. The Morgans will be assisted in this play by Sidney’s best local talent, and no doubt this play will prove a great treat to all who can get into the courthouse. Turn out and give them the encouragement of your presence.

Remember the date: June 16, 1908 Admission: 25cents and 35 cents. Seats on sale at Penn drug store.

The Fremont County Herald
June 12, 1908

Sidney local news

M.A. Stephenson and wife drove over from Thurman yesterday. Mr. Stephenson to transact a little matter of business and Mrs. Stephenson to arrange with the Morgans to put on a play at Thurman under the auspices of the Ladies Aid Society of that place.

This office acknowledges a call on Wednesday evening from Huse N. Morgan and wife the theatrical people of Sidney. They were en route for a rehearsal of “THE OLD HOMESTEAD but took occasion to visit ye reporter and to sheer him by a few reminiscences of their experiences on the road. As a teller of comical stories Mr. Morgan stands in the front rank, and occasionally Mrs. Morgan would sustain a literary point by chiming in on the joke. They are looking forward to a successful season in the melodrama field of entertainment.

The Fremont County Herald
June 19, 1908


The “Old Homestead” was the theatrical bill at the courthouse last Tuesday evening with Mr. and Mrs. Huse N. Morgan as leading characters who were supported by a strong cast of amateurs of this city.

The Morgans have presented this ever favorite several times to Sidney audiences and each production calls forth a crowded house. It is one of those old time plays that never grow old and when Mr. Morgan takes the roll of Uncle Tom Whitcomb he is certainly in his realm. Mrs. Bessie Morgan is an actress of refined ability and her character sketches elicit the closest attention. W.R. Lamb nicely sustained the part of John Martin, a true sport; Victor Laird called forth praise as an English dude; T.W. Iiams managed the part of the city policeman in a clever manner. Miles James acted well his part as a drunken father; Robert Rupp excelled old Cy Prime himself; Sylvia Webster made a hit as the little street waif, Lulu Birkby did well in the sorrowful scene of a dying mother. Blanche Spittler received applause in portraying the veiled woman.

The play was given under the auspices of the Knights of Pythias which order is contemplating building a suitable home for their meetings and in addition to have an opera house of modern design and finish. Total receipt of tickets was $88.60

The Fremont County Herald
May 6, 1920


Huse blew into our village Sunday morning by way of Shenandoah from St Louis where he is now living. Huse is having it pretty soft, he being deputy grand president of the Eagles, the founder of the Junior Citizens league of St. Louis and superintendent of the St. Louis Workhouse at an annual stipend of $7,500 with incidentals furnished. He left for Kansas City Monday to be present at a large convention and from there on home. Come again Huse, we’re always glad to see you.

Sidney Argus Herald
Jan. 14, 1937


Certain there remain a few- and they are only a few- who will recall old Library Hall that once stood at the north entrance to the courtyard. And most of those whose memory reaches back to that day surely had a part in the cast of a home talent play coached by that master showman, Huse N. Morgan. Huse, son of an early day lawyer, civil war veteran and several times mayor of Sidney, Major W.W. Morgan.

All such will be pained to learn of Huse’s death, which occurred in St. Louis on New Year’s Day. Huse Morgan, long time trooper, probably knew more localities and “opera house” managers than any other living man up to the time of his retirement from the stage some 20 years ago. Since that day he had figured somewhat in the politics of St. Louis, being for a time manager of the city’s workhouse. His age is not known exactly, but it was upword of 70.

Newspapers donated from Tanya Webster. Transcribed by Lois Shaul

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