Rev. Samuel Price was identified for many-years with Kansas, and his services and experlences make an important chapter in the life of the state.
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He was born in Ohio in 1827, his ancestors coming originally from Wales. He was reared and married near Barnesville, Ohio. For a number of years he was editor of the Barnesville Enterprise. In 1878 Rev. Mr. Price removed to Humboldt, Kansas, where he acted as a Methodist minister for three years. Afterwards he held various pastorates in other cities of Southern Kansas. For three years he was located at Wellington, after which he retired from the active ministry and spent the last twenty years of his life at his home in that city, where his death occurred July 30, 1916. He was a colonel of the East Ohio Militia in the Civil war and in politics a republican.
To mention only the bald facts of biography is to do injustice to the nobility of his character and his real influence in his generation. Perhaps two quotations can supply some of the deficiencies in this respect. The first is from a Wellington journal, which spoke of him as “Wellington’s Grand Old Man.”
“The Rev. Samuel Price, after thirty-four useful years in this community, had been summoned to his reward He went as he lived, kindly, smiling, brave, leaving behind a ray of sunshine which no cloud, however dark, can obacure.
“He, loved the world and the world loved him and will revere his memory. Few there are who did not know him. He was known as Wellington’s Grand Old Man, and in thought and in deed, however small, he lived up to that name. Truly he was a Grcathcart among men. Active always in the things which make for the good of any community, with his senses keenly alert as he approached his ninctieth year, he went as quietly and as happily as he lived with the blessed assurance of a joyous future which held so much promise for him. Wellington will miss him. But in her grief there should not be too much sadness for it was not his way. His life was one of sunshine, and in the midst of their sorrow citizens of the town should rejoice that they were permitted to have one such as he so long among them.”
His character as a minister is still better sketched by the pen of Henry J. Allen in the Wichita Beacon: “In the death of Rev. Samuel Price of Wellington yesterday Kansas lost as fine a type of the old-style Methodist preacher as one could find in this or any other state in the Union. He lived to be ninety and it can easily be said without provoking opposition that he lived every hour of his life so close to God and the people that no one could have a better understanding of the kindnees of the one and the obligations of the other.
“In the old days of the church in America some consideration was given to physique in leadership and in this respect Dr. Price reached the classic standard. Large in body, vigorous in mind, militant in his ideas of righteousness and as gentla as a woman whon his heart was touched, he was a man worth knowing and worthy not only of one’s admiration but of one’s friendship.
“Before one knew him well he would be apt to mistake his strong convictions for strong prejudices. That would be an error. Sarnuel Price was a man of fine tolerance when truth was not positively revealed to him. When he thought he had a grip on the truth he was unwavering and unshakable in his loyalty to it.
“He preached Christ and Him crucified with simpie eloquence. He was not a phrase maker. He had no strange or perplexing philosophies. He believed the Bible and he presented the lessons of the book in the language of the people. More than that he performed the duties of his ministry thoroughly convinced that be had the call of heaven to do so and gave additional potency to his teaching by numerous acts of helpfulness and thoughtfulness and friendship that bore the genuine imprint of the Master.
“He had lived in Wellington for at least a generation and it is not surprising that his death, although he far exceeded the allotted years of man, is universally mourned by its people.”
In 1849 Rev. Mr. Price married Charlotte Silcott Alder, who was born in Virginia in 1825 and died at Wellington in 1909. They had a family of ten children, eight of whom grew up to lead active lives. Alice, the oldest, is living at Iola, Kansas, widow of Dr. W. D. Chastain, who was a successful physician. Catherine is now living at Wellington, widow of J. J. Hoge, who died in that city in February, 1917. Viola, next in age to Catherine, is the wife of Prof. F. G. Franklin, professor of history in Albany College, Oregon, and herself a lecturer on literary subjects and librarian of the Carnegie Library of Albany. Charles W. Price, of New York City, had become aminent in the newspaper world. He was one of the founders of the Topeka Daily Capital in 1879. In 1885 he joined the staff of the Electrical Review at New York City, of which paper he is now proprietor and editor. For years he was secretary and treasurer of the International Press Club, and is at present secretary of the Lotus Club of New York. He is a man of influence in the affairs of the great castern metropolis. In his business he had offices both in New York City and Chicago. Bertha C. is performing the duties of theme reader in Southwestern College. Cora, who died at Houston, Texas, in 1915, married D. C. Young, a printer, also deceascd. Maude A. is head of the English Department of Southwestern College at Winfield, and had been active in educational and religious work in Kansas and elsewhere for a number of years. Her home had been in Kansas the greater part of her life though she was born near Barnesville, Ohio. She attended public schools in Ohio, but her higher education was obtained during her study in the New England Conservatory of Music, Boston, and in the universities of Kansas, Wisconsin and Chicago.
Miss Price had her home in Wellington, where she is a member of the Cary Circle. She is widely known for her efforts in missionary work. She is now missionary superintendent of the Kansas Sunday School Association, and for four years traveled exclusively in the interests of this organization, teaching in institutes and lecturing on phases of missionary education in several nothern and southern states. She had been made a life member of the International Sunday School Association. In 1915 Miss Price accepted the position as head of the English Department of Southwestern College at Winfield, and, as a woman of culture herself and of broad contact with the life of the world, she had been able to stimulate and inspire young people before whom she comes as an instructor. Fletcher Price, a resident of Wellington, is traveling salesman for the Miller Fur Company of Detroit, Michigan.