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RILEY COUNTY RAMBLING – 100 YEARS AGO

 

From the Manhattan Republic 
August 16, 1907:

 

Zeandale.  
    Dr. Colt was out riding in his new auto Monday afternoon, trying to steer clear of the corners and barns that came in his way. 

    The automobile disease is a growing one, Frost and Davis sold three in Manhattan this year.  They expect to double that next year.

 

    (Note:  The first automobile in Manhattan was owned by E.F. Chumard and used as a delivery truck for his Candy Kitchen located at 6th and Humboldt in 1902.  )

 


From the Manhattan Republic 
August 16, 1907: 

A Charming Wedding.
M.F. Ahearn and Miss Mary Davis United in Marriage Wednesday.
    About sixty guests assembled at Mr. and Mrs. E.H. Davis’ home at 116 Juliette Avenue Wednesday evening to witness the marriage of their daughter, Mary Elizabeth, and Mr. M.F. Ahearn.  The rooms were beautifully decorated in colors green and white, and the wedding was one of beauty and elegance.  Rev. Fisher of the Presbyterian church performed the ceremony.
    Before the entrance of the bridal party Mr. Humphrey Jones of Topeka, uncle of the bride, sang “Beauty’s Eyes,” immediately after which the Cueer Cuartette (sic) sang “The Bridal Chorus.”  At 8:30 Mr. Harry Brown played a violin wedding march, accompanied by Mr. Jones on the piano, while Mr. Davis and Miss Mary entered the parlor, meeting Rev. Fisher and Mr. Ahearn at the double door….
    Miss Davis is the eldest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. E.H. Davis and has lived in Manhattan since her childhood.  She was a graduate of K.S.A.C. in ’04, and has for the past two years worked as record clerk in the executive department at the College….
    Mr. Ahearn or “Mike” as he is more commonly known, is one of the best known and most popular young men of Manhattan.  His athletic work has made him the idol of both the students and the townspeople… 

     (Note:  Mary Davis Ahearn McNall was born July 3, 1884 at Bala to the E.H. Davies family.  (I am not sure why Mary spelled her name Davis and her family spelled it Davies, but that was the case.)  The family came to Kansas in 1870 with the Welsh colony that settled Bala.  Mr. Davies farmed, and for many years laid brick sidewalks in Manhattan.  Mary’s Uncle Humphrey Jones wrote the KSU Alma Mater in 1888.  
    Mike Ahearn (Michael Francis Ahearn) was born ca. 1879 and died February 5, 1948.  He came to Manhattan in 1904 to work as foreman of the Kansas State Agricultural College greenhouse.  In 1915 he became a Professor of Landscape Gardening in the Department of Horticulture.  He began coaching football at K.S.A.C. in 1905, was coach of all the college sports 1906 – 1911, and left coaching in 1920 to become Head of the Department of Physical Education.  He retired in 1946.  When the new field house was built in 1950 it was named Ahearn Field House in his honor.  
    Mary Ahearn married Preston McNall in 1969.  Professor McNall’s first wife, Eugenia FairmanMcNall, died in 1966.  Eugenia McNall designed the first wildcat emblem used by KSAC athletic teams.  Mary Ahearn McNall was a long time member of the Riley County Historical Society.  Her extensive doll collection is held by the Riley County Historical Museum and the organ brought by her family to Kansas is currently on exhibit.  She died February 20, 1977.  Both she and Mike Ahearn are buried at Framingham Massachusetts.) 

 


From The Riley Regent 
August 23, 1907: 

The Fair Opens
The RILEY Co. FAIR opened last Tuesday, and will close Friday.
    The agricultural products are not as numerous nor as large as in former years, but a very brave showing is made.  In spite of the very late Spring which made the crops so backward.
    The machinery and livestock exhibits are up-to-date.  The trotting race on Wed. afternoon was won by John Dobson who took first place and John Hibner, 2nd.  The other entries were Ed. Taylor and Austin Smith.
    A spirited ball game between the Ogden and Sedalia teams, resulted in a victory of 5 to 1 in favor of Sedalia.
    The band from Milford is furnishing the music for the Fair.    
    A detailed account of the events of Thursday and Friday will be given next week.

     (Note: Though the Regent promised a “detailed account” in the next issue, the August 30, 1907 paper had only a small article that did not add much additional information.  The article did say “Our readers will appreciate the fact that it would be difficult for a new man to give a full account with personal mention in the different departments.”   The paper was sold the first of August to Mr. and Mrs.J.M. Colburn and the paper was advertising for a compositor, so perhaps staffing issues prevented printing more detail.
    The first fair in Riley County was organized by the Blue and Kansas Valley Agricultural Association in 1869 in Manhattan.  The fair moved to Riley in 1889 and was organized by a committee of Riley citizens.)