ORLIN EATON MORSE               GRAVESTONE PHOTO                      

Linn County Republic, Friday, July 20, 1917, Pg. 1

Vol. 34, No. 16




Captain O. E. Morse While Sitting in

His Chair at Home Suddenly


  Mound City people were shocked last Saturday when word was passed that Capt. O. E. Morse had suddenly died at his home just west of this city.  Mr. Morse had been seriously sick about three weeks, but was apparently fully as well Friday afternoon as he had been for sometime.  He had been sitting in his home reading the paper and had laid it aside, when he suddenly collapsed and was dead before a physician could reach him.

  Capt. Morse had a severe attack of heart trouble last April, but had apparently nearly regained his health when he was taken sick again about three weeks ago.  He was also confined to his bed, but was able to be about and attend to a part of his chores just before his death.

  The captain has been one of the foremost men in the early development of the county and one of the leaders in progress until his death.  A man of unquestioned integrity, his influence, which was considerable was thrown on the side of morality, and material progress.  The development of the sentiment in favor of improved farming methods and the raising of better stock loses one of its foremost champions.  His passing away is a sad blow to the country.

  The following tribute to his memory was written by one who knew him best in his public work and home life:

  Orlin Eaton Morse, born near Norwalk, Ohio, March 27, 1837, died at his home adjoining Mound City, Kansas, Friday July 13, 1917, aged over 80 years.

  With his brother Orlando S. Morse he came to Kansas in April 1857.  They came direct to Linn county and went into business in the old town of Moneka.

  Associating himself with others came to Kansas with the same object, namely, to make Kansas a free state, he took an active part in the “Border Troubles” before the war.

  At the beginning of the Civil war he enlisted in the Third Kansas volunteers.  The company was afterward transferred and became Co. D of the Fifth Kansas cavalry.  After three years and four months of service along the border and in Missouri, Arkansas, and Mississippi he was mustered out with the regiment as captain of his company.

  In October, 1864, he was married to Emma Wattles, daughter of Susan and Augustus Wattles, who with their family came to Kansas in 1855.  To this union were born six children, Wilton L., John O., Theodore W., Stuart T., Orlin R. and Eleanor E., all now living except the daughter.

  For sixty years his home was in and near Mound City and the most of that time was devoted to farming and raising improved live stock, but he was at all times willing to give his time and financial aid to any movement that promised to improve the social or moral conditions of his community.

  To those who heard Mr. Morse’s talk New Years day in the Congregational church last winter, it was an unwritten revelation of the early days of Mound City.  With his characteristic thoroughness and energy he helped in its building the first church in Mound City.

Thoroughness was the keynote of all his labors, whether it was helping to stamp out slavery in the Civil war, building, farming and stock raising or in the legislature championing the rights of the colored people to an education.  To him, what was worth doing was worth doing well.

  Of his company in the Civil war the survivors were always his closest friends, and the reunion of Co. D were times of great enjoyment.  Most of those comrades preceded their captain to the life beyond, only one, Lieut. A. D. Perrin of Prescott, being near and strong enough to attend the funeral.

  This, briefly, is the outline covering the activities of a strong upright man.  Sixty years in one community, always found working on the right side of every social and moral question and at last laying down his burden in his home overlooking the valley where he had lived and worked so long.  The last services were held in the little first church he helped to build so long ago, the sermon by Dr. C. M. Lowe and the exercises at the grave conducted by the Grand Army of the Republic.

  His clean, firm, upright life has left its impress for good for all time.  The world is better for his having lived.

  “Though the bivouac of age

May put ice in our veins

 And no fiber of steel in our sinews


Though the comrades of yesterday’s

    march are not here

Ant the sunlight seems pale and the

    Branches are sere.

Though the sound of our cheering dies

    Down in a moan,

We shall find our last youth when the

    Bugle is blown


                                                M. M. S.