Take Me Out to Lakeside

Via Wikipedia.

Via Wikipedia.

African American ragtime musician James Scott, who spent his formative years in Carthage, Missouri, entertained crowds at Lakeside Park, just outside Joplin. In 1914, Scott wrote music for a song he called, “Take Me Out to Lakeside.” The words are by Ida Miller.

Take Me Out to Lakeside (1914)

First verse:

Take me to “Lake-Side” that beautiful place,
Where your life seems complete,
Orchestras playing and everyone swaying gives you such a treat,
Dancing and glancing with smiles so entrancing is all you can see
The Waltz hesitation is all the sensation,
Oh come and dance with me.

Refrain:

Take me out to Lakeside Sunday afternoon,
Where the band is playing, Flowers all in bloom,
Boys and girls together happy as a lark,
Take me out to “Lake-Side”
Beautiful Lake-side Park, park.

Second verse:

When twilight draws near and the whole world seems drear,
And you’ve no place to go,
You may sit guessing but no thought expressing The pleasures you love so,
You think of your only while you feel so lonely it all
Seems a dream
So while you are pining there comes a reminding,
A glorious thought it seems.

Refrain:

Take me out to Lakeside Sunday afternoon,
Where the band is playing, Flowers all in bloom,
Boys and girls together happy as a lark,
Take me out to “Lake-Side”
Beautiful Lake-side Park, park.

To listen to a sample of the song, visit this link at Pandora Radio.

Powers Museum Needs Your Help

The Powers Museum of Carthage needs your help. Recently, the museum’s air condition system had a near catastrophic failure. The result is that only the main gallery and library are receiving air conditioning, while the storage area of the museum, home to many of the museum’s most valuable and climate sensitive items, is not.

As noted in the above linked Joplin Globe article, never in the museum’s 24 years has it requested public help, but the cost of replacing the faltering system is more than the museum’s usual sources of funding can support. Repairs are not an option, unfortunately, as the company which makes the needed parts is now out of business.

The Director of the Powers Museum, Michelle Hansford, stated in the Globe article, “Powers Museum has never solicited the community for operational or maintenance support before, but now we need their help to make this repair possible. Any gift, no matter what size, will be used for this purpose. At this point, anything would be appreciated.”

If you have never been to the Powers Museum, it is definitely worth a visit and a fine example of what a local history museum should be. Please show your support for local history and make whatever donation you can to help preserve Jasper County’s history.

Carthage Christmas Homes Tour

For those of you who missed the announcement in last Sunday’s Globe, it was announced that the Carthage Historic Preservation, Inc., will be running a historic home tour next month (click on the link for descriptions of the featured homes).  The tour will run from 10 am to 4pm on December 4th for a price of $20 at the door, but buying a ticket in advance will save you $5.  A tea will also be available for $6, and Christmas/Winter themed paintings by regional artists will be available for purchase.  It’s a great chance to enjoy history quite literally from the inside out.  For those of you who love turn of the century homes and just don’t get the chance to visit them often enough, next Saturday will be an opportunity not to be missed.

A Town Called Joplin

Although it is now considered a ghost town, Joplin, Virginia, was named after Joplin, Missouri. William Crow, a native of Jasper County, Missouri, and brother to former Missouri Attorney General E.C. Crow, settled in Virginia. He became a justice of the peace, notary public, and postmaster. As postmaster, he had the privilege of naming the small hamlet in Virginia. He chose the name Joplin. When asked why, Crow replied, “Because the postal department wanted a name with as few letters as possible, and one that would be easy to remember. When [I was] a boy, I made many visits to Joplin, Missouri, as I was reared at Carthage.”

Crow returned to Joplin, Missouri, in 1931, and recalled, “I remember when there was no Joplin, no Webb City, no Galena, Kansas. And as a boy I knew that country when it was all open and wild. Baxter Springs was an Indian trading post.” Upon finding out that Joplin had grown in the years since he had left, Crow remarked, “I can only say that anyone who leaves the boyhood home and remains away for 20 to 40 years should never visit that place; he is sure up for a great disappointment.”

When asked about the origins of Joplin, Montana, residents had no clue why the town was named Joplin. George L. Brennan, the agent for the Great Northern Railway, recalled that before 1909, Joplin, Montana, “was a blind-siding on the main line of the Great Northern Railway.” The area, he said, was used for sheep and cattle ranches until the federal government opened it up for settlement just before 1909, and an influx of settlers quickly snapped up all the available land. Some of these settlers may have been from the Joplin, Missouri, area. Today Joplin, Montana, has an estimated population of 210 residents.

If anyone is aware of any other hamlets, villages, towns, or cities named Joplin, let us know.

Source: Joplin Globe

Globe Coverage of Powers Museum Lee Grant Exhibit

We previously mentioned the impending opening of the traveling Lee – Grant Exhibit, but wanted to bring to attention some coverage of it by the Joplin Globe.   The article includes a nice list of events happening in relation to the exhibit such as lectures, and reminds us, the exhibit is only around until the 20th of this month!  Also touched upon is Amanda Shurlds, the wife of General Grant’s brother-in-law.  With the impending 150th anniversary of the Civil War about to begin next year, now is the time to refresh yourself with the generals who helped brought about the war’s end.

Lee & Grant Traveling Exhibit Arrives at Powers Museum

Wikipedia image of Robert E. Lee painting

A portait of Lee via Wikipedia.

The much talked about Lee & Grant traveling exhibit will be opening September 1st at the Powers Museum in Carthage. The exhibit features,”a major reassessment of the lives, careers, and historical impact of Civil War generals Robert E. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant.”  Furthermore, the exhibit, “encourages audiences to move beyond the traditional mythology of both men and rediscover them within the context of their own time — based on their own words and those of their contemporaries.” To do this, the exhibit uses a great variety of items, such as photographs, paintings, accouterments, coins, prints, and reproduction clothing.  Also used are documents written by each of the famous generals.

Unknown to many, Julia Grant, Ulysses’ wife, had relatives who lived in Carthage, which created a connection to the Jasper County city and the Grants.  Lee also has a connection to Missouri, where while in service with the Corps of Engineers, he helped to prevent the Mississippi from flowing away from the bustling city of St. Louis.

For a sneak peak of the exhibit, check out this link on the exhibit from the National Endowment For the Humanities.

Of course, available all year round is the Powers Museum, a great place for local history.

Carthage Attorney Charles Wild: Defying the Odds

Although he was a citizen of Carthage, Charles Wild’s story is worth mentioning on Historic Joplin.  As a young boy growing up in Sarcoxie, Wild suffered a bout of scarlet fever.  He was left crippled and unable to walk.  Wild, however, was undeterred.

Although he could not play baseball or swim in a country stream, Charles Wild focused on his studies.  It was said that as a mere boy he took over as the bookkeeper and business assistant in his father’s nursery in Sarcoxie.  Later, when he was older, Charles attended St.  Louis Law School (now called St.  Louis University).  After graduation he opened a successful law practice in St.  Louis before he returned to Sarcoxie in 1906 and became the law partner of H.T.  Harrison of Carthage.

What made Charles Wild unique was that although he was unable to walk, he still managed to travel all over town with the aid of a cart that was described as a, “small box-like affair hung between two large rubber-tired wheels resembling those of a bicycle.  The box of the cart is just large enough to admit his body and in this, when he desires to move around, he is strapped.  Then, leaning forward, he propels himself by pulling himself along with his hands.  He carries wooden blocks which he uses to preserve his hands.”

Charles Wild, Carthage Attorney in his cart and at desk

A sketch of Mr. Wild in his cart, as well seated at a table.

Wild could travel faster than the average pedestrian unless there was snow on the ground when “it is almost impossible for him to make any progress.” In addition, “rough roads and in wet and muddy weather” were a hindrance.

Despite his physical challenges, he was an accomplished author and attorney, with some of his work published in contemporary publications such as Harper’s and Century Magazine.  He was noted as “an advocate of great ability before a jury.  His physical condition is no handicap to his prowess as a speaker.” Wild would often ask to be taken from his cart and seated in a chair, “his head barely showing above the edge of the table” when he delivered “some of the most highly polished arguments and addresses ever hard in a tribunal of justice in this county.”

Wild, it was noted, “was respected by everyone, a friend to whom one can go in time of need, he is not only one of the most able but one of the most beloved men in Carthage.” He depended “upon his own abilities for making his way in the world” and he certainly did.

Source: Joplin Globe

The Joplin Shadies

While Joplin did not have a professional baseball team until around 1901 / 1902 in the form of the Joplin Colts (who became the Miners), amateur teams were active and present before then.  Among them was this African American team called the Joplin Shadies.  Unfortunately for the Joplin team, on July 30, 1896, they lost to a Carthage team.

A brief score from an African American baseball team in 1896 Joplin, Missouri

A brief score from Joplin's African American baseball team in 1896.

Source: The Joplin Globe