VOL I.           Wray, Colorado, December 3, 1900.            NO. 1
Helen L. Grenfell
State Sup't Public Instruction
Minnie Cunningham
County Sup't Public Instruction
Mrs. L. M. Butts    President
J. N. Counter       Secretary
G. B. Vaughn        Treasurer
Simon S. Dow        Principal
Mrs. F. Hendrie     Grammer
   Miss B. Sisson      Intermediate
Mrs. M. Derr        Primary


    With this number we launch our frail craft, THE OWL, upon the turbulent sea of journalism. While we expect to encounter huge waves of criticism, the fact that we are working in the interest of higher education should act as oil upon the angry waters.
    Like our namesake, the nocturnal canary, we must do our best work at night, school duties occupying the day.
    The subscription price has been fixed at the lowest ebb, and by reading THE OWL you will be piloted out of the narrow channel of illiteracy into the broad waters of knowledge and wisdom.
    It is our aim to give the pupils of the Wray high school an opportunity to develop their literary talents, and all MSS prepared by them will be heartily accepted.
    Our labors will not be confined to the Wray schools alone, but we hope to keep in touch with our neighboring schools and work to their interests as well.
    We expect to arrive at the end of our voyage sometime in June 1901.  Between now and June we expect to give our patrons twelve or more publications.
    Should the reader, in glancing over these columns, become satisfied that our cause is a just one, let him not stop to criticise the typographical appearance or rhetorical effect of this periodical, but advance fifty cents and procure the friendship of, yours truly,
       THE OWL.

J.C. Counter and J.O. Simpson
Editors and Publishers

Subscription - From now until June 1901, 50 cents

    This copy, the initial number is sent to your address free of cost.  The subscription price is 50 cents per term.
    Subscriptions must be paid invariably in advance.  Our experience with other newspapers has taught us that papers not worthy to be paid for in advance are not deemed worthy to pay for at expiration.  Anyway it requires money to conduct the business.


    A pupil of the school attended a party a few nights ago, where a picture of the group was taken.  The next day he handed us the following verse:
      As sure as the kodak sat on the stand,
        It looked in the face of the little band;
     And when the light made a wonderful glare,
       The "horrid" thing took a picture there.

  Attend school regularly.

  The sixth grade had examination in physiology Wednesday.

  There are fifty pupils enrolled in the grammar department.

  Ben McGinnis and Ollie Rightsell are newly enrolled pupils in Mrs. Hendrie's room.

  The seats have been fastened down and a black board put up in the grammar department.

  The eleventh grade has found time in the past two weeks to resume the study of rhetoric.

  The intermediate room is preparing to give an elaborate school program on the last day of this term.

  Edna Bales received the best grade in the fifth grade geography class and was allowed a quarter day holiday Monday.

  The fourth grade of the intermediate has made relief maps of pulp.  The maps show all the principal mountain ranges and elevations of the different continents.

  The physics class is making good headway in the study of electricity.  Many interesting and instructive experiments have been made, illustrating the effects of electrical action.

  For the benefit of those who expect to teach after finishing their school work here, a review class has been added to the eleventh grade.  The next month will be given to the study of physiology.

  Chancellor Buchtel of the Denver University will lecture in Wray on December 21.  The Chancellor is one of the foremost men of Colorado in the advancement of education and everyone should hear him.

  The second grade of the primary room is learning a few of the first principles of common fractions.  Although this part of arithmetic is advanced for the little ones, they do remarkably well in handling small numbers.

    The re-election of Mrs. Helen L. Grenfell as our state superintendent of public instruction was well received by our pupils and at the mock election at school she ran ahead of her ticket.  Mrs. Grenfell has a warm place in the hearts of Wray pupils for the encouragement and help she gave in the founding of our school library.
  The teacher's meeting which was advertised to be held at the school house Saturday, December 1, failed to materialize as only four teachers made their appearance at the meeting place.  For some reason there has not been the interest taken of late in these meetings as there was in those formerly held here.  They are in every way a benefit to the teacher as the different modes and ideas of others in regard to teaching are brought out.  THE OWL unites with those who are interested in having these meetings a success, and hopes to see the teachers give more attention to such work in the future.

  In the original story contest given in the fourth and fifth grades, Miss Myrtle Armstrong, age 11, was awarded the highest honors.  Her story is as follows:

A Thanksgiving Story

    It is the day before Thanksgiving in the home I am going to tell about in which there is to be a great dinner tomorrow, to which many relatives and friends have been invited.
    It is a beautiful home in the city of Breckenridge where live Mr. Kerbaugh, his wife and little daughter, Mona, six years of age.

        Mrs. Kerbaugh is in the kitchen preparing pies, cakes and cookies, turkey and other things for tomorrow's dinner. Mona is beside her making little pies and cakes.
    "Mamma may I invite Grace Williams here tomorrow?  I want to have a little dinner by myself on my little table with dishes and have just what you have on your table, and then I want to have Cousin Flo, Goldie and Maude eat with us, too."
    "Yes, I suppose, you may have them, if they will come," said Mrs. Kerbaugh.
    Mona goes quietly on with her work for a while and then says, "Mamma, I wonder what Thanksgiving is for, anyhow? Won't you tell me?"
    "Thanksgiving is a day in each year, usually the last Thursday in November, which the President says we shall take to enjoy ourselves and think about all the things we have had to be thankful for through the year.  The first Thanksgiving day was in 1622 when Bradford, governor of the Pilgrim colony at Plymoth, called the people to meet at their little church and than God for their new home and good harvests."
    "Mamma, who is going to be here tomorrow?" asked the little child.
    "O, Aunt May, Uncle Arthur, Cousin Flora and little Maggie, Aunt Minnie and Cousin Dorthay."
    "O, My! won't we have fun!" said Mona, "but mamma, why won't Willie be here too?"
    "He is dead, Mona - brother Willie is in heaven."
    "In heaven, mamma? Where is heaven, is it so very far away? Farther away then Aunt May and Uncle Arthur live?"
    "Yes darling, far, far away - where God is."
    "Far away where God is," the little one murmured. "But Miss Allen told us at Sunday school that God never was far away.  I believe I could find Willie.  I'll go tomorrow and bring him to my little Thanksgiving dinner."

    It is Thanksgiving, a beautiful day.  The sun is bright and there is no snow on the ground.
    The table in Mrs. Kerbaugh's dining room is spread with a snowy cloth, and on it have been placed all the good things that one could think of.  Pretty vases of flowers have been placed on the table also, and over the windows and pictures of that beautiful dining room there are great wreaths of holly and mistletoe.
    The visitors are standing around in little groups talking and waiting to be called to dinner.
    They are at last told that dinner is ready, but as they take their places at the table, Mona is missed.
    "O, where is Mona?" said Mr.s Kerbaugh.
    They are all frightened.  They look all through the house, then run on into the streets and alleys.    At last she is found in a deserted street leading a little ragged boy by the hand.
    Mrs. Kerbaugh runs up to her and says, "O, Mona my baby, what are you doing here; and this little boy; who is he?"
    "Well, I couldn't find Willie, mamma, so I thought I would bring this little hungry boy home to be my brother."
    "The lady turns to the little boy and says, "What is your name, little boy?"
    "Johnny, ma'am."
    "Where is your mamma?"
    "I haven't any."
    "Do you want to go home with us?"
    "Yes, ma'am, if you will give me something to eat - I am so hungry."
    "Yes, Johnny, we will give you something to eat," she answered.
    They all return home.  They take the little boy home with them also.  Dinner is cold and spoiled but no one cares as they have found Mona.
    Mr. Kerbaugh adopts him, gets him clothing and sends him to school.  He is a good boy and learns fast.  All love him and are glad that their baby found and brought him to them that Thanksgiving day.

  Written by Lura Johnson, aged six years.  Reproduction work in the second grade.

    Robinson Crusoe was a man who was ship-wrecked and cast on a desert island, with two cats and a dog.  He saw animals and birds on the island so he made him a coat out of goat skin.  One day he was out hunting and saw some wild men having a feast of other men.  One of these men ran and fell down in front of Robinson Crusoe and begged him to let him be his slave.  Robinson took him to his tent and called his name Friday because he got him on Friday.  At last Robinson Crusoe went back to England taking with him his good man Friday.

    Thursday, Thanksgiving Day, dawned beautifully, and there was every promise of a perfect day, but while many of the homes were preparing for the feast of the day and while people were enjoying the good cheer incident there-to, the angel of death hovered over the home of Mr. and Mrs. S.S. Dow and grasped from the arms of the mother her only babe, leaving the home dark and desolate.  The little one was born two weeks ago Friday, and during the brief period of life it became ill; rallying at times but not sufficiently to give hope. Every care and attention was given, but it was of no avail.  A place had been prepared among the hosts of angels and the little light was needed there.  The funeral was held at 4 o'clock at the home and the baby in a pretty white casket was carried to the cemetery for burial.  The sorrow of the mother and father touched a responsive cord in the hearts of our people, and cast a gloom over the entire community.  We extend to the bereaved parents the heart felt sympathy of their many friends. - Rattler.


   The Yuma schools are in a flourishing condition. - Pioneer.

    The ninth grade has written an original story on the early emigration to the west.

    Harve Cox who attended school here for the past two years is now attending a business college in Chillicothe, Mo.

    One of the grades in Mrs. Hendrie's room is writing essays on the Pueblo Houses.  The best paper will appear in the next issue of THE OWL.

    Egbert Bullard has filled the position of janitor in the school since the first of the term.  He has given the best satisfaction in attending his duties.

    The schools taught by Miss Flora Finn and Miss Grace Chapin will unite in giving a program at the Shumaker school house on the last day of this term.

    The teacher's examination will be held on Friday and Saturday, December 21 and 22.  Miss Minnie Cunningham will have charge of the examination here.

    The principal's room has been decorated with flags and bunting and the pictures of Longfellow, McKinley, Roosevelt and Francis Williard adorn the walls.

    The A and B classes in the primary school have show their handi-work in making pin cushions and other needle work. They have also drawn birds and flowers with colored crayons, which are worthy of special attention.

    The Independence school taught by Miss Rolla Cunningham and the Union Valley school taught by Miss Sadie McKee will unite in giving a Christmas program to be held in the Independence school house on the night of December 21.

    The eleventh grade general history class will finish its text book work within the next month.  At the end of the term an essay will be written on the greatest character in European history.  Each pupil will be allowed to use his own judgement in selecting the subject for his essay.  The one having the best production will receive a prize from the Professor.  THE OWL has spoken for the MS for publication.

    A basket ball team has been organized in the Haigler schools, which is proving a success.  There is some talk of having a team in the Wray schools, also.  Should the latter succeed here there are probabilities of several match games next spring.

    A partition has been placed in the upper room of the school building separating the sixth, seventh and eighth grades from the ninth tenth and eleventh.  Mrs. Hendrie will have charge of the former grades and Prof. Dow, the latter. The division will be an advantage to both teachers and pupils.

    The Isthmian canal commission appointed by president McKinley during the last session of congress has reported. They are in favor of a route across the country of Nicaragua as against all other routes here-to-fore proposed.  They encourage the building of a canal 30 feet deep at a cost of $120,000.  The report recommends that the locks and dams be so constructed that the channel may be deepened 5 feet when commerce demands it.  The total distance will be 190 miles. It will take less than then years to build and will employ 50,000 men in the United States and on the isthmus.

    The first issue of Rev. Ellis' paper, "Church Tidings," published at Aspen, Colo., has been received by a number of people here.  Rev. Ellis was the pastor of the Methodist church of Wray until a short time ago.

    America's most famous humorist, Mark Twain, is said to be working on his autobiography which is not to be published until 100 years after his death.

    Winston Churchill, the author and war correspondent, will tour America giving a series of lectures.  From the fact that Mark Twain will introduce Mr. Churchill to his first audience here, someone has said that the whole thing is a joke.

    The official report from the director of the Census gives the United States a total of over 76,000,000 inhabitants. In the report Colorado is given a population of 539,700 a gain of 30.9 percent.  Yuma county ten years ago was 2,596, the last census show 1,729, a decrease of 867.  From the gain in population in the state, Colorado is sure of having another congressman.

This copy of The Owl was preserved in Edna Bales Kitzmiller's collection and was passed on in her estate. It is currently in the Yuma Museum. Transcribed by Lee Zion for the COGenWeb.

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