Mr./Mrs. Oliver (1907)
----Sources: COLBY PHONOGRAPH (Colby, Wis.) 08/01/1907
Yerkes, Mr./Mrs. Oliver (27 JUL 1907)
It is our pleasant duty in this issue to chronicle an event, not uncommon the state at large, but to our little city it is the first in its history.
Saturday, July 27th, 1907 was the 50th anniversary of the marriage of our old and respected townspeople, Mr. and Mrs. Oliver Yerkes. A goodly portion of those years have been spent in Colby and vicinity, and the relatives and friends joined in the occasion to commemorate the day by arranging a surprise for them.
Owing to the large crowd which it would be necessary to accommodate the opera hall was engaged. The hall was very tastefully decorated with bunting and asparagus and every available space was filled with flowers and house plants; wires were strung from opposite corners of the hall, from which Chinese lanterns were hung. At the father end of the room a large Japanese umbrella was suspended, also hung with lanterns and beneath, with a background of geraniums, two rockers were placed for Mr. and Mrs. Yerkes to sit in and receive the guests. It was the wish of the relatives to make it as much of a surprise as possible, and it was a complete surprise to both.
Oliver attended the Odd Fellows Lodge as usual, intending after lodge to spend the evening with Mrs. Yerkes at E.L. Wicker’s, but when the lodge meeting was over, Oliver was piloted by E.L. to the hall and on entering was marched up to the front, where he beheld his bride of fity years ago awaiting him, who had in the meantime, by surprise, been taken to the hall by the ladies. He took his place beside her, and they received the hearty congratulations of between two and three hundred guests, there assembled.
Dr. D.R. Freeman acted as master of ceremonies, and introduced President John F. Sims of the Stevens Point Normal School, and an old Colby boy, who made a few appropriate remarks to the occasion, calling attention to the similarity of this occasion to the homecomings now so popular with cities and villages. He spoke of the influence of such lives on the community, and his thoughts were very well received. Hon. F.M. Jackson spoke on the progress and discoveries that have occurred during the last fifty year and of which they were witnesses. He spoke of the faces of old friends of the bride and groom now gone from the earth forever.
A very nice lunch was prepared and the next two hours were given over to eating, singing and visiting generally.
Near the close Prof. J.T. Sims of Edgar, in a few chosen words on behalf of the friends and relatives, present them with a gift as a testimonial of their esteem to which Oliver replied in a few well chosen words. Then Dr. Freeman, in a short but very appropriate speech, which the sentiment of all, said: "There may be lots of people older than uncle Oli and Aunt Kate, but there are none any better."
During the evening a vocal solo entitled, "We Are Growing Old Together," was rendered by Mrs. W.D. Bartell, and a quartet entitled, "I’ve Grown So Used to You," was rendered by the Misses Alma Harry and Belle Marsh, and Messrs. Gehrman and Laurence Firnstahl, after which there were sung many old songs by the audience, and one and all expressed themselves as having had a royal good time and the wish was that Mr. and Mrs. Yerkes might have many more pleasant anniversaries.
The attendance from the city and surrounding towns and villages was too large for us to attempt to publish the list, but those from afar, whom we caught on our tablet were: Mrs. L.A. Grow, Minneapolis; Hal Grow, Neillsville; Mr. and Mrs. John Loberg, Nelsonville; Mrs. Emiline Wicker, Mrs. Nettie Castner and daughter Ethel, Loyal; Mr. and Mrs. J.F. Sims, Mrs. Mary Moerke and daughter Georgie, Stevens Point; Mr. and Mrs. Joseph T. Sims, Edgar; Frank Wicker and son Harold, and Misses Ethel and Bernice Wicker, Medford.
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