Town Board Approves Move to Town Hall

The North Manchester Historical Society has a home!

Since the last newsletter the town board has given to the society go ahead to use the apartment space on the second floor of the town hall.  The town board almost apologizes, saying “that is the best we can do,” but the society is happy for small favors.

The “museum” has public access and will become a Fun Fest activity, as well as being available by appointment at other times.

We will always be indebted to the Wibles.  For some time they have allowed the society to store its holdings and Americana articles in the upstairs of their store.  They have been interested in the society’s function in this community.

A real measure of progress is visible now in the museum.  Volunteer labor has put on a couple of coats of bright paint.  Display cases have been donated, too, one given by Phil Oppenheim and two lent by Brent and Michelle Callahan.  Be sure to thank these individuals the next time you see them.

In the months to come the museum will take its place in the new rooms and will undertake an inventory and cataloging system to keep track of the relics given to the society for safekeeping.

Society Guests on Frances Slocum Tour

Thirteen of us took advantage of the invitation from the Wabash Historical Society on April 14, 1984, for a special excursion.

In the forenoon the group toured the county museum in Memorial Hall and the Kim-com-a-ong Spring near the original location of the Big Four Depot at the famous “cut.”  Following lunch at Clark’s Cafeteria, Jack Miller, curator of the county museum, gave a slide presentation on Frances Slocum (Ma-con-a-quah), The White Rose of the Miamis.

Frances, who was red-headed, was stolen by three Delaware Indians on November 2, 1778, at the present site of Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, and was raised by the Miami Indians.  She later married the Miami chief, She-po-con-ah.  After 59 years her brothers discovered her and visited her, but Frances never wished to return to her family.  She died March 9, 1847. 

The motorcade, led by Miller, was formed to visit points of interest along the Frances Slocum Trail: Godfroy cemetery, the Seven Pillars, the Cole Porter home, and the new Frances Slocum cemetery.

A stop was also made at the base of the Mississinewa Dam.  It was a beautiful day for touring an area rich in natural wonders, the Rich Valley basin, as well as hearing of the native heritage of this territory.  Keith and Helen Ross

Newsletter seeks clientele!

This newsletter is the second of the series.  Many of you have expressed you appreciation of this outreach of the society; others of you like the idea but have not subscribed.  We regret that the newsletter cannot be a part of your membership dues, at least for the time being. 

Please use the enclosed coupon to register for your subscription soon, so that we will know if you care for this newsletter to be continued.  We need a minimum of 100 subscriptions.

The newsletter has, among others the following important functions:

(1)    It provides continuity from one meeting to the next and from the executive committee to the


(2)    It is one way of publicizing the society’s goals and workings.

(3)    It records historical data, relying on a number of resources, and disseminates them periodically and stores them for future users.

(4)    It will serve as a genealogical resource for those who are interested.

(5)    It serves as a connection between our historical society and other such groups in the State of Indiana.

Other societies have learned that the newsletter is one of the most important activities that they sponsor.  If you envision a continuing sponsorship of a newsletter for the North Manchester Historical Society, tell your friends here and outside the community and support us with your articles and suggestions as well

Items to this newsletter and articles and anecdotes of local interest will always be welcome. 

Little Hoosiers Happy Learning History

The Maple Park Little Hoosier Historians Club recently completed projects for various contests held at the state convention in Tipton on May 5, 1984.

The 18th annual convention is just the second the local club has attended, but Maple Park is looking forward to winning a few more awards this year.

Three entries were made into the “Notes on Indiana” writing contest.  “The History of the Fun Fest” by Josh Fitzgerald, “Martha Winesburg: The Woman and the School” by Shilo Thompson, and “The History of Maple Park” by Robyn Jones.

Five entries were made to the Alumni Association Art Contest.  Chad Duffy, Tom Sizemore, Jamie Toy, Larry Smith, and Stacy Schneider all used charcoal or pencil to draw their pictures.

A parent, Catherine Smith, drew the preliminary design for Maple Park’s convention nametag contest entry.  Later, club members used construction paper, “diamond dust,” and real feathers to complete individual likenesses of Chief Little Turtle who spent many days in the North Manchester area.

Chad Duffy, the club’s president, was nominated for an “Outstanding Little Hoosier Historian” certificate.  He is in the sixth grade and has served the club well.  His parents are Michael and Elsie Duffy. 

Eligibility for the “Bob Montgomery Memorial Award” requires that a club recruit new clubs.  Maple Park is responsible for contacting sponsorship of four new clubs.

Of course, the staff at Indiana Junior Historical Society’s office in Indianapolis will review each club’s annual report in order to award the most active club the “Outstanding Chapter” Award. 

In the meantime, Maple Park Little Hoosier Historians are waiting in great anticipation for all of the coming activities planned for the convention.

Our Committee Chairpersons

Covered Bridge Charles Koller  982-4373
Education Dyanne Tracy  839-7320
Historian  Helen Ross  982-4732
Histories  Mary Louise Leckrone  982-6508
Membership  Evelyn Neher  982-4456
Museum & Inventory  Raymond Welborn  982-8725
Program  Keith Ross  982-4732
Publicity  Nancy Reed  982-2858
Restoration  Ed Lowder  982—8895
Sesquecentennial  Nancy Reed  982-2858
Ways & means  Judy Brown  982-6618

Memory of man hazy despite cigar
By John J. Shaughnessy  Star Staff Reporter

Columbia City, Ind. – When Lannie Maloney shows the cigar box to a visitor, he  does it with the care of someone sharing a delicate treasure.

This is not a typical cigar box, Maloney explains.  No, this is a cigar box with a history.

Imprinted with the name and image of Thomas R. Marshall, the cigar box seems the best way for Maloney to begin the story of Marshall, a once-famous Hoosier who nearly became president but who is remembered now, if at all, for a phrase he coined about cigars.

“What this country really needs is a good five-cent cigar,” Marshall once said when he was vice president under Woodrow Wilson.  Although the phrase became etched in the American mind, Marshall didn’t.

Nearly everyone has heard the phrase, but they attribute it wrongly,” says the 33-year-old Maloney as he stands inside Marshall’s old home, which now serves as a museum for this northern Indiana community.  “People never seem to connect the phrase with Marshall.  They say, ‘Thomas who?’”

Maloney claims that was Marshall’s problem.  The former Indiana governor had a penchant for cracking jokes and one-liners that lasted far after his death in 1925.

Never one to take himself too seriously, Marshall summed up the influence of being vice president with the following story: “Once there were two brothers.  One ran away to sea; the other was elected vice president.  And nothing was ever heard of them again.”

Another example of his wit came in his farewell to the Senate, over which he had presided.  Removing a cigar from his mouth for just a moment, Marshall told the senators: I have been in the cave of winds.  I need a rest.

As the museum’s curator and tour guide, Maloney knows Marshall’s humor made him a popular vice president.  But if there’s a regret for Maloney, it’s that Marshall’s wit has overshadowed his accomplishments.

“People tend to forget the beneficial things Marshall accomplished during his life.  He had a definite impact as vice president and especially as governor.”

As governor from 1908 to 1912, the North Manchester native helped pass an employers’ liability law, a pure food law and a law on corrupt practices in elections.  Laws also were enacted requiring the medical inspection of schoolchildren, a minimum wage for teachers and taxation of corporations.

Partly because of that record, he was chosen as Wilson’s running mate and served as vice president from 1913 to 1921.  And when Wilson nearly died at the end of his second term, Marshall came close to being president.

“He’s often been criticized because he didn’t step in and assume the presidency when Wilson was
ill,” Maloney says.  “But it wasn’t that he was timid of ignoring his responsibilities.  It’s just that there was no political precedent for him to take the reigns.  And, besides, Wilson was very strong-headed about keeping power.”

So now, Maloney is not only in the position of defending Marshall, but also preserving his memory.  For someone who never has smoked a cigar, for someone who was born 25 years after Marshall died.  Maloney considers it a difficult, but welcomed task.

What attracts me to Marshall is that he was very concerned about the individual and equal opportunity.  Unity was very important to him.”

But for all of Marshall’s witty remarks and stories, there is one thoughtful incident that is rarely remembered.

It happened during World War I, when a Presbyterian chaplain in the Army feared he would be thrown out of his church for giving last rites to Catholic soldiers.  When the chaplain told Marshall about his concerns, the vice president replied, “We’ll go out of the church together, if it be necessary.”

“It would be nice if he was remembered for more than ‘a good five-cent cigar,’” Maloney says.

After that Maloney puts the cigar box back inside a wood cabinet, waiting for the next time someone will ask him to share the memory of a Hoosier many have forgotten.