The Fort Dodge Messenger: Dec. 26, 1906
Santa Claus Held Sway
Yesterday Given Up to The Observance of Christmas Day.
Good old Saint Nick, the knight of the sock, the reindeer and the big pack, reigned supreme yesterday and received his full share of homage in Fort Dodge. The day was given up to Christmas rejoicing, merrymaking, feasting and holiday celebrations all over the city.
Business was suspended, except such as had to be carried on through necessity, all over the city when the stores closed Monday night after the busiest day of the year 1906.
The Christmas sun rose radiant and the day continued throughout one of the most beautiful for the time of year that could have been wished for. Christmas gatherings, family reunions and church programs formed the main events of the day. The happenings are chronicled in part below:
At St. Mark’s.
One of the prettiest trees on Christmas eve was that of St. Mark’s Sunday school. Prior to the distribution of the gifts a program of recitations was given by Misses Grace Chantland, Ellen Clark, Elizabeth Wheeler, Martha Fransen, Evelyn Roper, Myrtle Drake and Katahrinee (sic) Francis. In spite of the fact that regular church is not being held the Sunday school has been suprintended (sic) very ably by Mr. Frank Griffith and the school teachers.
Dolliver’s Family Reunion.
At the Senator Dolliver home a family re-union was indulged in. Miss Gay Dolliver of Sioux City was present to enjoy the festivities of the day. “Uncle Vic” rigged himself up in fur coat and flowing beard to impersonate “Saint Nick” and succeeded in scaring a year’s growth out of the baby, George Prentiss Dolliver, and so confused Francis and Margaret that they were not sure of their bearings. They exhibited the same symptoms that a (shy?) colt does the first time he meets a steam roller and it took considerable assurance from the older heads before they could be brought to think that the impersonator was not a wild man who had invaded the home for the purpose of committing some terrible deed. After the youngsters had been quieted the program was carried on with merriment and the occasion made one that will linger long in the minds of those who were present to participate. The genial “Vic” succeeded in carrying out his part without destroying his borrowed plumage by fire or enacting any of the tragedies incident to the occasion. The younger member of the household has recovered from his scare but still retains an aversion to anything with long shaggy whiskers that speaks in muffled tones.
A Christmas Tree Fire.
A Christmas tree at the J.W. Amond home Christmas eve caused quite a little excitement by catching fire. No serious damage was done although the carpet was burned and Mr. Amond received a slight injury to his hand.
Remembered The Employes.
Among the most generous and most appreciated Christmas gifts were those received by the clerks of the Sturges company from their employer, Mr. L.E. Sturges. The gifts consisted of sums of money which were presented with the compliments of the season on Christmas eve.
Methodist Christmas Eve.
The surprise program of the Methodist Sunday School was one of hte most interesting and novel Christmas eve celebrations in the local churches. The church was decorated with two trees and festooned evergreen and strings of colored lights. In the centre (sic) of the choir loft was suspended a large star.
Nine classes took part in the evening’s celebration. Superintendent Dr. Money called upon each one in turn to give some literary or musical feature. Here are the classes:
Senior Bible Class – Scripture reading.
J.F. Nelson’s class – Piano solo, Miss Myrtle Parsons.
J.G. Early’s class – Album characters.
Miss Martin’s and Miss Houk’s classes in primary department – Sixty children in motion song.
Young men’s class, Mrs. J.G. Early, instructor – Cornet solo. Harry Sultzbaugh.
Miss Ruth Cummings’ class – Duet, Misses Sauerbrunn and Gregg.
Mrs. J.F. Monk’s class of boys – Recitation and chorus song.
James Sultzbaugh’s class of girls – Recitation – Miss Corenlia (sic) McBurney.
Miss Jeanette Early’s and Miss Phoebe Sultzbaugh’s classes – Chorus of 30 little girls.
The favorite number on the program was the album given by the young men and women of Mr. Early’s class. Here were shown pictures of members of the Early faily (sic – family?) in early days.
West Side M.E.
A Christmas program was held by the Sunday school classes of the West Side M.E. church Tuesday evening. A large crowd was present. A beautiful Christmas tree which held a gift for everyone present, and a fine program constituted the entertainment of the evening.
Railroad Offices Closed.
Yesterday there was not a railroad office in the city, with the exception of the Illinois Central dispatcher’s office, open. The railroad men one and all were making merry. On the Great Western freights 85 and 86 and the stucco special were annulled. On the M. and (S)t. L. the wayfreights were pulled off for the day. Business on the Illinois Central did not stop because of the holiday. The switch engines were busy in the yards all day and the traffic was as large as on any other day.
At Corpus Christi and Sacred Heart Catholic churches three morning masses were said. The first ones were at five and six thirty o’clock. They ended with the usual high mass at ten thirty. Sermons appropriate to the occasion were preached by the pastors.
Bring Back Gifts.
In almost every store along the street people can be seen today bringing back gifts to exchange them for a different design or size. Especially where the articles are gifts of clothing and a misfit resulted, is this to be noticed.
Now that the busy Christmas season has practically closed, many of the merchants along the streets are beginning to take their yearly invoice and perparing (sic) for straightening accounts, which always comes at the close of the year.