Bayless High School - Oracle Yearbook (St Louis, MO)

 - Class of 1936

Page 13 of 120

 

Bayless High School - Oracle Yearbook (St Louis, MO) online yearbook collection, 1936 Edition, Page 13 of 120
Page 13 of 120



Bayless High School - Oracle Yearbook (St Louis, MO) online yearbook collection, 1936 Edition, Page 12
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Bayless High School - Oracle Yearbook (St Louis, MO) online yearbook collection, 1936 Edition, Page 14
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Page 13 text:

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Page 12 text:

Eulogy to Will Rogers WE HAVE lost a great friend. The stage and screen have lost a great artist. Amer- ica has lost her greatest humorist since Mark Twain. He gave gloriously of every moment enriching our lives with the treas- ures of his accomplishments.



Page 14 text:

Will Rogers I . N NOVEMBER 4, 1879, in a ranch house near Oolagah, Indian Territory, Wllllam Penn Adair Rogers was born. From' both maternal and paternal sides Will Rogers derived a strain of Cherokee Indian blood, a fact which he proudly proclaimed in later life. At the age of five, baby Will had already become a proficient rider, and had made his first effort with a lariat. His early years of education were scant, yet they were followed by rich experi- ence on his father's ranch in every capacity from cowhand to foreman. Whatever his responsibility, he was often found sitting on the fence of the corral cracking jokes. By the time the herd of cattle that he had been given had risen to the selling price of 512,000 Will's vagabond spirit stirred him with a longing for far away places. This sole-itching desire took him to New Orleans, from there to England, where he booked steerage passage to Rio die Janeiro. Then the Boer War broke in Africa and Will hopped a cattle boat for England, and from England, at freighter to Africa. He was eagerly enlisted into the Boer army because of his knowledge of horses. After this experience his feet again itched for new and unseen lands. In order to get to Australia he joined a Wild West show, which in time took him to gqapan and China. In 1904 he worked in a Wild West show in St. Louis at the World's air. To star in the movies in 1919 the actor had to captivate the young generation by his looks, and the cowboy philosopher, who looked as if he had not finished cutting his own hair with a pair of dull sheep shears, could not display his great personality to the best advantage. Despite all his fun making, Rogers was an emo- tional actor of rare talent and could make audiences forget that he was a comedian in scenes where he was called upon to portray the simple human emotions that touch every soul of mankind. Those who saw "Mr. Skitch," "Dr, Bull," "State Fair" and "Lightning," as well as others so broadly known, think of Will only as a human being torn with emotion. The radio was not' long in claiming Will: Rogers for one of its star performers. In his: radio talks he found Presidents and politicians made shining targets for his barbed shafts of humor. In March, 1930, he signed a contract for fourteen radio talks at S'72,000. His chief interests in the manners and customs of the great Amer- ican public enabled him to tell us the hard, blunt truths about ourselves-truths about our politics, our civic standards and our social habits. We took them with a chuckle. In addition to the fame that came from Will's moving pictures and radio per- formances, he has to his credit writings representing the shrewd observations that rushed through his mind-skillfully coated ideas with a little humor, sound thinking that made his articles welcome daily to thousands of persons. As a commentator on the ever-changing political scene Will Rogers was the court jester of the nation, but behind his straight shots of humor was a sound wisdom that was even sought by high officials. Many are the anecdotes that illustrate Rogers' philanthropic interests. Will, a philanthropist, that any man might well emulate, once remarked in a serious mood: "Money doesn't worry me any more. All I care about is a. good blue suit." He paused and went on: "It doesn.'t even have to be good." He was a sure haven for old actors and vaudeville players, a staunch friend of cowboys, a loyal and liberal contributor to the Salvation Army, a powerful helping hand to the Red Cross. Will Rogers never did an unkind, thing .of which, there is any record, and more to his credit is the fact that he never hit the fellow that was down. He, joked the big man who was above the masses. The death of Will Rogers and Wiley Post, master aviator, in the barren wilder- ness a few miles from the last outposts of civilization in 'North America, was a shock to the world, for he was a symbol of America and Americans, an example of what our country holds for the ordinary young man from the country' if he will combine with his ability the qualities of frankness and tolerance and genuine devotion to living.

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