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Title: Twains Degree
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Fiddlinsue
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Rank:none
Score: 216
Posts: 216
From: USA
Registered: 11/11/2008

(Date Posted:02/16/2009 7:21 PM)
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Robert Somers Brookings (1850-1932)
Block 333, Lot 5759
Ethan Allen Hitchcock (1835-1909)
Block 51, Lot 320

Samuel Clemens, at the age of 66,  had
never expected to see his hometown,
Hannibal, Missouri or to see his child-
hood friends again.  However in the
Spring of 1902 the University of Missouri
awoke to the fact that Missouri had
produced a world-renowned, distin-
guished man of letters.  Yale had pre-
viously bestowed two degrees on the
Missourian.  The University invited him
to come west to accept an honorary
LL.D degree.  Before traveling to
Columbia, Missouri he spend five days
in Hannibal.  He was greeted by old
boyhood friends and spoke in each
church in town claiming that each one
was responsible for his early Bible
training, even the churches that were
built after he had left town.  He was
greeted with enthusiasm on his arrival
at the University.  On June 4 he received
his Doctor of Laws degree.  He led the
procession of graduating students and
awarded the diplomas to them dressed
in his Yale scholastic gown.
He was introduced as "America's
foremost author and best-loved citizen,
Samuel Langhorne Clemens--Mark
Twain".  Twain appeared in doubt as
to whether he should make a speech
or just express his gratitude.  Un-
expectedly, the large audience rose as
one and stood silent.  He bowed but
was unable to speak.  The assembly
began to chant and slowly spelled out
the word M-I-S-S-O-U-R-I.  Recovering
from the deep-felt emotion he said he
didn't know whether or not he was
expected to speak.  They cheered,
demanding a speech and he gave them
one.  It was one of the speeches he
made best; humorous, gentle, dramatic,
using his typical quaint phrases and he
ended it by telling one of his favorite
stories, the watermelon speech, for
its moral effect.
If I am not called at least 'Doc' from
now on, there will be a decided cool-
ness.  He was a proud Missourian.  A
dinner was given in his honor after the
ceremony.  Other Missourians honored
with him that day were Robert S.
Brookings, Ethan Allen Hitchcock, Beverly
Galloway and the Secretary of Agricul-
ture, James Wilson.  Robert Brookings
and Ethan Allen Hitchcock are both
interred in Bellefontaine Cemetery.
Robert Brookings was very successful
in the woodenware business; his partner
was Samuel Cupples.  He retired at the
age of 47 to devote his time to philan-
thropy.  He was a founder of the Brook-
ings Institution in the District of Columbia
which is devoted to public service
through research and training in the
social sciences.  Among his many local
philanthropic gifts, the one to which
he was most devoted was Washington
University.  He was at one time its
Chairman.  An impressive building on
the campus was named Brookings Hall,
in his honor.  On his tombstone in Belle-
fontaine Cemetery is a bas-relief of its
entrance.
Ethan Allen Hitchcock was a political
leader in the Midwest.  He was a great-
grandson of Ethan Allen, the famed
leader of the Green Mountain Boys in
the Revolutionary War.  Hitchcock was
appointed by President McKinley to be
the first ambassador to Russia in 1897
and a year later he became the Secre-
tary of Interior.  He continued to serve in
that capacity under President Theodore
Roosevelt until 1907.  Hitchcock
prosecuted a vigorous program under
Roosevelt by enlarging forest reserves
and withholding mineral lands from
exploitation.  He removed incompetent or
corrupt officials, uncovered frauds in
administration of public lands and re-
organized the administration of Indian
Affairs.  Ethan Allen Hitchcock is interred
in Lot 320.  It is near the grave of Julius
Moulton and next to the family lot of
John H. Dickey, for whom a steamboat
was named.  Sam Clemens was a cub
pilot on the John H. Dickey which was
owned by Dan Able.








 The images' on this page are from Donald Sanders and
used with his permission. The information that is on this
page has been researched through genealogy links
and the
Bellefontaine Cemetery listings.
This set is NOT linkware and is NOT to leave
this site by any means.  It is for my own personal
use and NOT yours.  If I find that any part of it is
used somewhere else....I will turn you and your site
over to MSN and there will be
NO QUESTIONS
ASKED!!!  Thanks.....Fiddlinsue a.k.a. Suzanne

~January 2006~

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