Compendium of Biography – Charles Ingalls

The Cottonwood Tree

Charles Ingalls Biography ButtonOver the next several months, The Cottonwood Tree will be gradually adding to a series of resources from historical texts, which are relevant to the life and times of Laura Ingalls Wilder. We hope these resources will be of interest to our readers.

We are starting with relevant sections from Memorial and Biographical Record, An Illustrated Compendium of Biography, published in 1898 by G.A. Ogle and Company. It contains a “series of biographical sketches of prominent old settlers and representative citizens of South Dakota with a review of their life work”.

But first, a word of advice. You are welcome to use these pieces; but please remember that although the publisher states the articles were derived directly from liaison with individual subjects, the articles themselves are not primary sources. Like most short professional biographies, there is a limit to how long they can be – and the individuals in question…

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It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Wait, what? It’s not quite the end of July; are you kidding me? In case you think I’m joking, take a look around at some of the local stores, and you’ll see a few shelves of Christmas items there among the clearance summer stuff and the Halloween merchandise.

Aren’t we rushing things just a bit? I mean, I know the whole Christmas in July concept has been around for years, but in my day (cue the old granny voice) that didn’t mean a whole section of department and craft stores displaying Christmas trees, ornaments, lights, inflatables, and whatever else they have in their stock.

This whole rushing holidays really gets on my nerves. It’s a running joke in our family that you know Back-to-School is approaching when the Giant stores put out their Halloween merchandise. Halloween brings Thanksgiving décor (the two or three items they put out) and the beginning of the Christmas onslaught. And everyone knows that the day after Christmas, if they even wait that long, brings the Valentine’s Day merchandise. It’s like we can’t enjoy one holiday at a time without having to worry about the next one, even if it’s a couple months away.

Oh, and don’t even start me on Christmas carols. For years now, most of the radio stations in my area have begun playing the 24/7 Christmas music either on Thanksgiving or Black Friday. That’s not too, too bad, but a couple years ago, one station in its desire to be the first station to go all Christmas started on November 1st. Ridiculous! The kids had hardly had their trick-or-treat buckets sorted out, and we’re listening to “Jingle Bell Rock.”

My question is, how long will it be till the schools catch up with the stores? Maybe we should move their Christmas vacations to coincide with the marketing displays. Hey, we already start school before Labor Day; the kids have maybe 3 days of school and then a 3- or 4-day weekend, so why not? Let’s just have Christmas break in September. Of course, I suppose it will seem odd to sing “Frosty the Snowman” and “Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow” when it’s still 85 degrees outside, but hey, we can pretend we’re having Christmas in Florida.

So who’s with me?