Thursday, June 26, 2008

John E. Davidson

Prominent Man Passed Away at 10:35 Saturday Night, March 12
Was Ill only about Twenty-four hours.
Funeral this Afternoon Largely Attended, Interment in Pleasant Hill.
It was hard to believe when the sad news was spread Saturday night and Sunday morning that our prominent townsman, John E. Davidson had died at his home Saturday evening March 12 at about 10:35. No one, even his wife, knew of the seriousness of his illness and he passed away without a struggle.
Mr. Davidson attended to his regular duties at the Farmers Elevator all day Friday, starting for home about 5:30 in the evening. He intended to change clothes and attend the Ladies Aid supper at the home of Mrs. Marie Brekke, but upon reaching home became so weak that he was forced to go to bed. His wife, who had been expecting him at the Brekke home, returned and found him very ill. She at once called Dr. Schwendener of Bryant who arrived about midnight and pronounced it bronchial pneumonia. The doctor made another call the following morning, but a few hours later Mr. Davidson passed peacefully away without showing the slighest signs of suffering.
Deceased was born in Dane County, WI on Oct 16, 1853 and moved with his parents when still a boy to Highlandville, IA where they settled on a farm. On Sept 6, 1877 he was united in marriage to Miss Mary Bentley and remained on his fathers farm after the latter's death for about 15 years. They came to Vienna in 1892 and in company with his brother-in-law L. H. Forde erected the building now occupied by Nels L. Brakke and conducted a general store for about 4 years. In 1896 he moved to Bryant where he was employed as grain buyer for the W. W. Cargill Elevator Co. In 1905 Mr. Davidson was elected Register of Deeds of Hamlin county and served in that capacity for 4 years. After retiring from that office he returned to Vienna and accepted the position as manager of the Farmers Elevator Co., where he remained until his death or about 12 years.
Besides his loving wife he leaves one sister of the immediate family to mourn his death. His parents, one brother and 4 sisters preceeded him to the grave. The funeral was held this Thursday afternoon at 1 o'clock from the home and at 1:30 at the Lutheran church, Rev. Arneson officiating at the last and rites. The pall bearers were old time friends of the deceased, S.E. Seim, Martin Eggen, P.B. Engen, Julius Brakke, N.N. Brekke and George Jensen. Interment was made in the Pleasant Hill cemetery west of town. Mrs. Johnson of Sioux Falls the sister, arrived last evening for the funeral.
Mr. Davidson was a true type of Christian gentlemann who, by his honesty and cheerfullness had won the esteem and friendship of everyone with whom he came in contact. Being a well read man he took a keen interest in everything pertaining to the welfare of his fellowman and was considered one of our most able and respected citizens. He served as chairman of the local school board for nearly 9 years and held that office at the time of his death. The school children and teachers attended the funeral in a body and the flag hung at half mast.
The church of which Mr. Davidson was a faithful member was crowded to overfllowing by his many friends to pay their last respects and the many floral offerings together with the fact that all business was suspended in the village during the services, show the high esteem in which this spendid man was held. His wife, who is the sole suvivor, they having no children, will miss him greatly and the deepest sympathy is extended to her in this sad bereavement. Mr. Davidsons place will be hard to fill in the community and he will be long remembered.
Transcribed from clipping in old scrapbook. Clark County SD newspaper, 1914

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