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Rippey Decoration Day, 1899

Rippey Decoration Day 1899 celebrated in spite of damp weather. A great crowd was on hand to witness the fine services at New Rippey and Old Rippey.

Jefferson Souvenir  June 3, 1899

            Decoration Day was grandly observed on Tuesday, by the people of Rippey and vicinity. No pains had been spared to make the day the best success and all efforts were fully rewarded. A great crowd of people gathered and marched to the cemetery but the exercises where only begun when the threatening weather made it advisable to adjourn to the church for the address.

Under the leadership of C. H. Suydam, the ceremony of decorating the graves of soldiers was speedily carried out and the line of march formed, for town.

            After music by the band and glee club, the speaker of the day for Rippey began his address to an interested audience in the Presbyterian church. Rev. Frank D. Evans is an old veteran and spoke from experience and his words went straight to the heart of his comrades, taking them back to the trying times of '61 and living over again with them many of the soul trying and sorrowful incidents of those dark days when love of country and loyalty to government meant life or death. He the paid Grand Army of the Republic and members of the W. R. C. and plead for equality in pensions and fair treatment for the remnant of our nation's defenders. His whole address was from the standpoint of one who knew every step of the way and probably was more appreciated by the old soldiers than any like address ever delivered in Rippey.

            At 2:30 o'clock the procession started for Old Rippey, Thirty loaded rigs were headed by the band wagon and upon arriving at the O. R. cemetery, about the same number of teams were already there. It was estimated that between three and four  hundred people had gathered in Washington township's historic spot, to witness the most impressive memorial day exercisesever held in that beautiful old cemetery.

            Music was furnished by the Rippey glee club and band and the finest memorial day address we ever listened to was made by E. B. Wilson, of Jefferson.  It was very soon discovered that the subject had been by no means exhausted by the speaker of the morning. Naturally he spoke from a different point of view. Born since the war knowing nothing of its experiences, yet with a heart full of love and loyalty for the old soldiers and the land they fought for and died to save. He assured them of our continued devotion and perpetual observance of this day. His entire speech was an inspiration to sons and daughters of veterans and every friend of the soldiers, to hold in reverence and respect our country's defenders and the memory of our soldiers dead.

             The ceremony of decoration was performed by the veterans. The unveiling of the monument furnished by the government was performed by Rev. Frank Evans, who made an appropriate speech at each grave. Lottie Lovejoy recited a piece, but owing to the high wind,

but few could hear. The great crowd testified to the interest in the day. The weather was intensely disagreeable else many more would have been present.

            The band is receiving words of highest praise for the excellent music furnished at both cemeteries. They have been organized but little over four months and most of them are beginners but everyone who hears them play are astonished at the splendid music they make.