OMAHA WORLD-HERALD AND NEBRASKA EDITORS' DAY.

August 24, 1898.

The Omaha World-Herald had requested and been granted a special day in which to
celebrate the achievements of this progressive daily newspaper.  The occasion
of the celebration was the 13th anniversary of the founding of the Evening
World, which grew to be the World-Herald.  The day was the same as that set
aside as Nebraska Editors' Day and the two services were therefore merged two
celebrations were therefore merged.  The exercises on the grounds were a
luncheon served at the Markel Cafe at the expense of the editor of the
World-Herald.  G.M. Hitchcock, proprietor of that paper, presided.  After
luncheon the speech-making was started by Mr. Hitchcock, who spoke of the many
pleasures the Exposition afforded his friends, and of the many trials and great
effort by which this grand spectacle had been made possible.  He then
introduced President Wattles, who spoke briefly of the history and progress of
the exposition and in closing, referred to the grand Peace Jubilee which had
been planned for the month of October.  He referred to the fact that Captain
Jones of the 22nd Infantry was present, carrying a Spanish bullet in his leg. 
His reference to Captain Jones was the occasion of great cheering, which called
for a short acknowledgment from the Captain.  Dr. George L. Miller, founder of
the Omaha World-Herald, responded to the toast "Seed Time and Harvest of
Newspaperdom".  He spoke in his usual felicitous manner and elicited much
laughter and applause.

W.S. Day, of the Aurora Register, responded to the toast.  "Nebraska, She Leads
Them All".  He spoke in part as follows:

In some respects I am unfitted by nature to make response to the toast
proposed, being of an argumentative disposition and accustomed to reach
conclusions only by exhaustive and exhausting discussion.  A question with only
one side to it and not end at all, is a very difficult one for me to handle. 
When a boy I remember reflecting on the awful consequences of a supposed
encounter between an irresistible force and an immovable body, but they are
likely to prove mild in comparison with the result when an interminable talker
comes into perihelion with an inexhaustible subject.

That Nebraska leads them all is a self-evident proposition.  Who would produce
statistics to demonstrate that the sun shines or the wind blows.  (Especially
would it resemble the carrying of coals to Newcastle to attempt to prove by
figures or diagrams that the wind blows in Nebraska.)  The people of this state
have acquired a reputation of being a little extravagant and given to
exaggeration when speaking of its advantages.  I shall, therefore, weigh well
my words and be ultra conservative in every statement made, preferring only the
modest claim that Nebraska has the richest soil, the purest air, the best water
and as manly men and womanly women as can be found on this earth.

One has but to breathe the lifeless air of the lower altitudes; note the
stunted products of the red and yellow putty called farm land throughout the
east and south; attempt to swallow the lukewarm solution of clay which hundreds
of thousands of good people must use as a beverage, to be keenly sensible of
some of the every day, yet priceless blessings in which Nebraska leads them
all.  No person who has sweltered through the long night and until 4 o'clock in
the morning for a refreshing breath, or who has felt a touch of malaria in his
system, would be willing to exchange our climate for all the big red apples of
the universe.

I am of the west, western.  I have lived here for more than a quarter century
and have passed from boyhood to manhood in a homestead country.  I can remember
breaking sod day after day when the highest object in sight was the ears of my
taller horse.

I have witnessed the development of our state form a barren, treeless plain to
one of the most fertile and beautiful countries ever sung by poets or prosed
over by historians.  The labor of one generation of men has effected this
transformation, and next to the welfare of my family I have no stronger wish
than seeing Nebraska owned, free and clear of encumbrance, by the people who
have sacrificed so much to make what it is.

Long ago in the days of "hoppers",
When real estate agents dealt in whoppers,
House of sod with roof poles limber;
Buffalo Grass and cottonwood timber
People poor - with hearts of pity;
Each incipient town a city;
Hedge rows broke, but roads across 'em
Folks that let nobody boss 'em;
That's the West as I first knew it.

The settlers of those days may have had to live largely on "bread and with it",
but no heroes have greater claims on the world's history than the pioneers of
Nebraska.  Earnest and indomitable, hard-working and self-denying, they labored
to make homes for their children, and they bore with fortitude - nay,
unexampled good humor - all the misfortunes of frontier life.

One day in August, a forlorn, disheartened looking team, drawing a rickety
wagon, passed through our "city", bearing a western family back east for a
winter's visit to the "wife's folks."  As they drove by a crowd of young
fellows gathered in front of the harness shop and it became apparent from the
looks and gestures of the spectators that they were poking fun at his rig. 
Quick as a flash the homesteader gave to his willing team the signal to stop
and leveling his long forefinger at the boys, shouted earnestly:  "Look here,
strangers, I ain't so darned poor as you think I am.  One of these horses isn't
mine."

Such citizenship is one of the resources of Nebraska.  The best harvest of
which any land can boast is brave and worthy men and women.  The best heritage
we can leave our children is an ancestry that merits their emulation.  These
things have left their impress upon Nebraska.  Springing from such stock,
surrounded by such environments, who wonders that everything here is done on a
large scale.  That our stock fields are so extensive that we are spoken of as
the "fodder land"; that we could furnish a necklace of corn cribs to encircle
almost any territory desired; that our commerce, both internal and external,
exceeds that of any other commonwealth of equal age, and that in the late
Spanish skirmish we made a record that proves us worthy sons of the brave sires
who in the days of rebellion from a population of 30,000 -possibly 7,500
families- sent 3,307 officers and men to fight for freedom.

To conclude, Nebraska is noted for her peculiarities, her possibilities and her
productions.  The fame of our pure air, Poland China pigs and pop-pop-popular
government has gone abroad in the land.  Who has not heard of our bright women,
brainy men, and Bry-an.  Where can you find the equal of our cattle, corn or
country newspapers?  Our crops are world-beaters; our Exposition beats the
World's Fair; and our World-Herald can't be beat.

The day has come when we can attune our voices not only to the melody of
pioneer days.

"A home, a home,
Where the deer and antelope play;
Where seldom is heard
A discouraging word
And the sky is not clouded all day".

But remembering the achievements of the years gone by, can catch the more
majestic strain:

"From Atlantic to Rocky Sierras,
No people more loyal or true,
Nebraska, the gem of the prairies,
The best 'neath the red, white and blue."
________________________

G.W. Hurlbut, of the Aurora Sun, responded to the toast "A Country Yokel".
W.J. Waite, of the Exeter Enterprise, responded to the toast, "The Late
Unpleasantness".

W.T. Howard, of the Schuyler Sun, responded to the toast, "The Exposition as an
Educator."  He closed his eloquent address with the following words:  "The
memory of the Transmississippi Exposition will ever remain an enduring monument
to western energy and civilization and of the minds who conceived and carried
the project to practical results."

The program closed with the toast "The Country Press:  Its Might and Its
Mercy:"  Responded to by Edgar Howard, of the Papillion Times.
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