Mills County, Iowa


Glenwood Opinion
August 27, 1924

"Veterans Live Again, the Days of Ox Teams. Old Time Music Much Enjoyed."

      Pioneers from Mills, Fremont and Pottawattamie gathered at Carson Friday, August 22 to enjoy the annual tri-county reunion of "Old Settlers." The scroll of time was rolled backward and many interesting stories of the hardships and trials of an early day was recalled by these veterans. There were present men and women who recalled John Brown at Tabor, the first building in Glenwood, and the time when the old pioneer trail was the first road out through Pottawattamie county. Travel by stage coach was mentioned and the old line which went from Council Bluffs (then Kanesville) through the places which are now Glenwood, Tabor, Sidney, Hamburg and into Missouri was recalled.

      There was a formal program which was followed as closely as possible, but what probably was the most popular event of the platform, was the fife and drum music by R.M. Shipman and O.R. Smith of Emerson, and S.B. Hutchings of Hastings. Their tunes were martial, the kind that went with marching blue in '61.

      The speakers of the forenoon were Sen. A.J. Shinn of Woodbine, an old timer, following the address of welcome of Frank Shinn of Carson. During the afternoon the speakers included Milton Pitt of Crescent, former speaker of the Iowa house, and John Y. Stone of Glenwood, former Attorney General.

      The oldest Pottawattamie county resident was Mrs. Patience E. Pitt, who had resided there 76 years and said to be the first white child born in the county. The oldest Mills county resident was Salome R. Shepardson and the oldest from Fremont was W. Gaylord. Among the interesting tales related was that of one old settlers who had a record of driving a team of oxen so fast that the spokes in the wheels of his wagon could not be seen. He explained that the wheel was made of two sections cut from a round tree with the grain crossed so it would not split, and then for a tire a hickory pole was bent around the wheel.

      Inspired by the fact that his mother was in the audience and holding the record of being the first white child born in the county. M.B. Pitt, former speaker of the Iowa house of representatives, gave what many said to be the best talk they had ever heard him deliver. Tears dimmed many eyes which had been shining brightly when the speaker told of the father and mother going out in the cold gray dawn, to cover the grave of the boy who had given his life for his country, with the choicest flowers of the garden and then he closed by asking that we leave the same hope of freedom that our fathers left for us.

      About 1,200 people were in attendance at this reunion. Next year the old settlers will hold their reunion at Tabor, Fremont county. B.E. Mann, president for the coming year, received the gold headed cane, symbol of the presidency from this year's president F.W. Weeks. A.L. Chantry, chosen vice president, is a Sidney resident; John Barbour, secretary, lives in Tabor. Mrs. R.M. Shipman of Emerson was chosen vice president from Mills county and H.A. Smith, Macedonia, as the Pottawattamie vice president.

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