The full text of President Harding’s proclamation, calling upon members of the armed bands threatening invasion of Logan county, to disperse and go to their homes follows:
WHEREAS, The governor of the state of West Virginia has represented that domestic violence exists in said state which the authorities of said state are unable to suppress; and,
WHEREAS, It is provided in the Constitution of the United States that the United States shall protect each state in this union, on application of the legislature, or of the executive when the legislature cannot be convened, against domestic violence; and,
WHEREAS, By the law of the United States, in pursuance of the above, it is provided that in all cases of insurrection in any state or of obstruction to the laws thereof it shall be lawful for the President of the United States on application of the legislature of such state or of the executive, when the legislature cannot be convened, to call forth the militia of any other state or states or to employ such part of the militia of any other state or states or to employ such part of the land and naval forces of the United states as shall be judged necessary for the purpose of suppressing such insurrection and causing the laws to be duly executed; and,
WHEREAS, The legislature of the state of West Virginia is not in session and cannot be convened in time to meet the present emergency, and the executive of said state under Section 4, of Article 4, of the Constitution of the United States and the laws passed in pursuance thereof, has made the application to me in the premises for such part of the military forces of the United States as may be necessary and adequate to protect the state of West Virginia and the citizens thereof against domestic violence and to enforce the due execution of the laws; and,
WHEREAS, It is requested that whenever it may be necessary, in the judgment of the President, to use military forces of the United States for the purpose aforesaid, he shall forthwith by proclamation command such insurgents to disperse and retire peaceably to their respective homes within a limited time;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Warren G. Harding, President of the United States, do hereby make proclamation and I do hereby command all persons engaged in said unlawful and insurrectionary proceedings to disperse and retire peaceably to their respective abodes on or before 12 o’clock noon of the first day of September, 1921, and hereafter abandon said combinations and submit themselves to the laws and constituted authorities of said state;
AND, I invoke the aid and cooperation of all good citizens thereof to uphold the laws and preserve the public peace.
In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.
Done at the city of Washington, this thirtieth day of August, in the year of our Lord, Nineteen Hundred and Twenty-one, and the independence of the United States the One Hundred and Forty-sixth.
Source: “Text of President’s Proclamation Directing Armed Band to Disperse,” Logan (WV) Banner, 2 September 1921.
From the Logan Democrat of Logan, WV, we find the following editorial dated February 24, 1916:
The following was prominently displayed in fourteen point type under the bold, three-column heading, “What Does It Profit a Young Man to Be a Logan County Democrat?” on the front page of the Logan Banner last week. We cheerfully aid in giving it the widest possible publicity and commend its careful reading to all of the conscientious and thoughtful citizens of Logan county:
“To the young men of Logan county, who are to cast their first vote this year and hereafter participate in the political life of the commonwealth:
“For Forty Years Logan county has given stupendous democratic majorities. It has always had the largest percent of democratic votes of any county in the state.
“Logan county has never been recognized by the Democratic party by awarding any one of its citizens a nomination upon the state ticket.
“Logan county Democracy has never had a member of the state committee.
“Not one of its citizens holds an appointment under the national administration other than postmasters of the local offices.
“You, as a Democrat, are just voted like dumb cattle.
“In the Democratic organization of Logan county the highest achievement to be obtained by ambitious youth is to become a deputy sheriff with a tin badge and a gun.
“The Republican party welcomes the vaulting ambition of youth.
“It meets young men on the first round and lifts them higher.
“Logan county Republicans have a voice and exert a powerful influence in the councils of the party in the state.
“It dwindled the Forty Years of Huge Democratic Victories in Logan county to the necessity of a recount in the election two years ago.
“This year the Democratic Hurrah and Horrors will be as naked as Robinson Crusoe’s summer underwear.
“Choose which primary you will go into.”
“Honest confession is good for the soul.” But, whoever expected anything honest from the source from which the foregoing sprung? Yet there it is, and seeing is believing, and we have no choice other than to congratulate the author of the superlative exposure of the designs and ambitions of the so-called Republican organization of Logan county.
Public office, spoils, graft, gratification of personal desires and ambitions, such is the bait brazenly held out in the effort to tempt good men to desert principle and aid in the maintenance of the most corrupt political organization known under the sun, the state Republican machine and its Logan tentacle. The implied promise may be within the Corrupt Practices act, but never was there a more damnable attempt to influence or corrupt voters than The Banner’s public solicitation.
Logan has never had a citizen on the state Democratic ticket; never had a delegate to a national convention; none of its citizens holds an appointment other than postmasters, etc., says the Banner. Undoubtedly true. But for fifty years the Democrats of Logan county along with those throughout the country have battled for something that they prized and still prize far more than self-advancement and this Principle.
How many Presidents has the Democratic party had in fifty years? How many Democratic governors has the state of West Virginia had in the past 20 years? But, has the rank and file of the Democratic party of the nation or state wavered in its allegiance to principle? Not that you could notice it; it has fought steadily on in the face of repeated failure, and discouragement and was finally crowned with a glorious success in the nation in the year 1912, and it is now strongly entrenched and fully prepared to turn the rascals out of the West Virginia state house in the year 1916. The Banner can read the signs, and its outrageous plea for succor is a forcible admission that its organization is in dire distress and will go the limit for votes. Votes to carry on the nefarious work of an organization that has bankrupted the state and sullied its reputation; votes to keep in office the plunderers who have done nothing but feed from the public trough from time immemorial and would not know how to work if cast adrift; votes to maintain a system of subsidized newspapers to outrage the public while at the same time subsisting from public funds lavishly distributed through administrative favor. It is obvious that the Banner is correct when it asserts that its organization, posing as the Republican party, can feed its swine. There is no room for argument on that score; but, where is the honest man of principle that wants that kind of success? He is not in the Democratic party, whether he be young or old, about to cast his first vote or his last this year.
The Banner boasts that Logan county Republicans exert a powerful influence in the councils of the party in the state. No they don’t, and the Banner knows it lies when it says they do. The Republicans of Logan county have no more influence in their so-called party affairs than the editor of the Democrat has with Hatfield, et al. The true Republicans of Logan county are a negligible quantity when it comes to influence, but the so-called Republicans who wear the administration, stand-pat collar, who dictate the policies and the utterances of the Banner, and who are in the political game to rule or ruin are high with the powers that be, but so far as can be noticed they have never let anything get away from them that was at all valuable or that they could use. The very existence of the Banner is a testimonial to the selfishness and applications of this little coterie to whom principle is an unknown quantity and the dough bag and preferment the swaying elements of their lives.
Principles not spoils nor selfish ambition sway the Democratic voter, and one of his foremost principles is directed against this very system of corruptness that the Banner so valiantly expounds as good Republican doctrine. Reduced to the naked truth, the battle of ballots in the state of West Virginia for the past 12 years has been between Democrats and Grafters, the Republicanism of Lincoln has long since been routed out. Democrats vs. Graft, and up to this time Graft has won, but the battle is to be renewed with increased vigor next November and w hen the smoke has cleared away there is every indication that at last Right will have come into its own.
The Banner’s closing paragraph is worthy of another repetition: “Choose which primary you will go into.” Yes, choose! But be not too hasty. Consider well the situation from every angle. If you are a Republican in principle, and you can discover any Republican principle in the organization posing as that of your party in the county or state, do your duty; if you are a Democrat in principle now is the time of times to assert yourself and your manhood, without thought of personal advancement or selfish ambition, but for the satisfaction of assisting in achieving the goal of Democratic ambition, the betterment of the condition of all the people.
Democrats will be confronted this fall with a condition that will take concerted action and shoulder-to-shoulder advance to successfully combat. Negroes, the secret of the Banner’s boast of reduced Democratic majorities in Logan county, will be voted in increased numbers and every artifice and design, legitimate or otherwise, that can be devised will be used to stay the tide of public indignation and resentment against Republican gang politics, so it behooves all true party men to stand-pat and go into the fight prepared to battle for and with his neighbor of the true faith for the common wealth.
Appalachia, board of education, Cemetery Ridge, Chapmanville, Chapmanville Mountain, coal, county clerk, Crooked Creek, Democratic Party, Dr. Ferrell, genealogy, history, Joe Buskirk, L.B. York, Logan Banner, Logan County, O.F. Ferrell, Republican Party, Sons of Rest, West Virginia
An unknown correspondent from Chapmanville in Logan County, West Virginia, offered the following items, which the Logan Banner printed on July 23, 1926:
Joe Buskirk, candidate for county clerk, was looking up Republicans here this week.
Doctor Ferrell gave a wiener roast Friday evening on Cemetery Ridge. It is said one man danced until his shirt was wet with sweat, something that had not happened to him before for five years.
This being the only Democratic district in Logan county, we have a surplus of candidates for members of the Board of Education. The Democrats hate to lose clear out.
Both the Vickers and Tompkins mines have started again, practically everybody is at work.
A number of our young folks went a hiking before breakfast Sunday morning, and cooked breakfast on Chapmanville mountain. It is rumored that some of the boys got treed.
L.B. York is suffering from some strange malady. Doctor Ferrell thinks it is a back set on the sun shine.
...refused to lick stamps for the public.
Quite a lot of our people attended the Sunday School Convention at Crooked Creek last Sunday.
O.F. Ferrell has purchased a fine fox hound. He is a Virginia trail burner.
On Saturday evening the Sons of Rest will award the following prizes to those present: Fattest man, Gold headed cane; Biggest liar, Plug of Brown’s Mule tobacco; Best looking man, Manicuring set. The names of the winners will be given next week.
Allen B. Dingess, Alleyne Dye, Appalachia, Ashland, Battle of Blair Mountain, Cabell County, Caroline Dingess, Cattaraugus County, Ceredo, coal, Democratic Party, genealogy, Hannah Mitchell, Henry Street Settlement, history, Huntington, Illinois, Kentucky, Leo Frank Drake, Logan, Logan Banner, Logan County, Mollie Drake, New York, Republican Party, Springfield, Wayne County, West Virginia
Mollie (Dingess) Drake, daughter of Allen B. Dingess and Caroline (Jackson) Dingess, was born on June 30, 1881 in Logan County, WV. She was the wife of Leo Frank Drake, a salesman. She appears in the 1910 Wayne County Census (Ceredo District). Hannah Mitchell profiled her life in the Logan Banner of Logan, WV, on December 30, 1921. Her husband died in 1925. In 1930, Mollie lived at Springfield, IL. In 1940, she made her home in Cattaraugus County, NY. Mrs. Drake died on July 7, 1958 at a nursing home in Huntington, WV.
It would be easy enough to make a melodramatic start and give her some such extravagant title as “The Angel of the Hills” or “The Mother of the Mines” or “The Florence Nightingale of Blair Mountain.” But if you did and Molly Dingess Drake found it out she might laugh and she might make some sharp remark, but most certainly she would not be pleased.
How she escaped the “war correspondents” who were rushed to the front to cover West Virginia’s recent mine war is more than I can say, for the story is still told of how Molly, like “Sheridan twenty miles away,” when the armed miners were marching on Logan, made all haste not toward safety, as she might very wisely have done, but back to where the bullets were flying.
Her narrowest escape from the feature pages of newspapers was several years ago–two, in fact–when, a woman of some two score years, she was graduated from high school with her sixteen-year-old daughter. That graduation and the attendant high school diploma were in no sense honorary affairs given out of respect for Molly Dingess Drake. They had been earned by this very determined, ambitious woman of the hills after four years of high school work, in which she had enrolled along with her daughter and for which she had attended classes faithfully and with classmates half her age.
On pay day Mrs. Drake is a welfare worker for one of the coal companies operating in the Logan field. Having finished her high school course, she did not go on to college with her daughter. And, as she puts it, one of the coal producers “knew she wouldn’t sit at home and knit and crochet.” So he offered her the job of visiting nurses among the employees of his company. In this job Mollie mothers a large family. It is composed of men and women much older than she and of the children of these older children. True to the mother-type anywhere, she makes their individual troubles, their health, their happiness, a very personal matter.
There was the young Spaniard who lay in the hospital after a severe accident. No friends or relatives rallied to his bedside, and the doctors and nurses could not understand him when he moaned out a word or two in his native tongue. Mollie Drake scoured the hills for an interpreter and found one. She also dug up a cousin of the unfortunate boy. Moreover she made the lives of nurses and doctors miserable until the lad was out of danger, sometimes calling at the hospital late at night to see how the boy was getting on. Was not this foreign born lad one of her children?
It was not the Mollie Dingess Drake, ready to face danger along with other brave women of Logan county when armed miners were marching upon their homes, that interested me most, as you may have guessed already. The World War is too recent proof that American women are not afraid to risk their lives for a cause. It is Mollie Drake and the work of her hands when peace broods over her native hills that make her a woman among women.
Mrs. Drake is a mountain woman herself. She knows the desires, the needs and the hopes of the women and children who live in her hills; in a double sense she is working among her own people.
No serious-minded killjoy is Mrs. Drake, but a large motherly woman with a great capacity for fun and for seeing the human side of things.
It is a common statement among traveling salesmen that they live in a Pullman; Mollie Drake might say she lives in a day coach. Her headquarters are in Logan, and much of her time is spent in riding to and from the little mining towns along the branch lines out of Logan.
Her trips are taken to visit the homes of miners, and no place is too remote for her to visit. Her energy in tramping about and the speed with which she walks over the hills is enough to make a younger woman gasp for breath and all but beg for quarter. That from one who knows.
We started out of Logan one morning on the 10 o’clock train.
Before the train started we were part of the social gathering which greets the all-too-few passenger trains that come into Logan. Mollie Dingess knew everybody.
Arrived at the mining center, our first visit was to the schoolhouse, a substantial two-story building, in front of which were all the latest playground devices for amusing the modern child. The teachers were young and efficient in their schoolroom manners. In Logan county the schools have the advantage of extra good teachers because after the school board has voted what it can afford for salaries the coal companies make up the deficit needed to attract the best.
It was then I learned of Mrs. Drake’s unusual high school career.
“You know I have a high school education,” she remarked as we left the school and strode (at least Mrs. Drake strode) along the dirt road.
“As a girl I went to school till I was thirteen. In the teens I took up nursing and later was married. But I always wanted more education. Sometimes it is the persons who are denied education appreciate it most. Well, when my daughter was ready for high school I decided that I would get my high school education too–not by following her studies at home (I knew that wouldn’t do), but by enrolling in high school with her.
“Some of my friends thought it was an absurd idea. They said I could enroll in college for special courses or take correspondence courses. But the idea of my going to school right along with my daughter and the other young people seemed queer to them. I suppose it was unusual. But what I wanted was a regular education. So I enrolled and went through the four years of high school and was graduated in the same class with my daughter.”
“And how did your daughter feel about it?”
“Oh, she had her young friends and took part in school activities just the same.” Again the twinkle behind the glasses. “It may be that she studied harder than she would have.” I had no doubt of that.
“She is in college now,” continued Mrs. Drake. “When her grades aren’t has high as I think they ought to be she sends them to her father, but a man can’t keep such things secret, and I always find out. She knows I haven’t much patience with students who don’t keep up their grades.
“My daughter is going to be a physician. She didn’t make up her mind until after she entered college. I was rather anxious to know what she would choose. After she started studying biology she was so interested that she decided to go on and study medicine.”
It occurred to me that Mollie Drake was a feminist. I wondered if she had ever been a suffrage worker.
“No,” she answered. “I’ve always been a Democrat, though. My husband says I am what is called ‘a mean Democrat.'”
She paused and then laughed. “I made one rule when I was married. You see, Mr. Drake is a Republican. Well, I told him that if I married him he must keep just one rule. I knew our marriage would be a success if he did. And of course I promised to keep it too. The rule was that we should never talk politics. We never have and we’ve been very happy.
“Of course I voted at the last election, and much good it did so far as the Presidency was concerned. But someway I didn’t care so much for the voting. I’m old-fashioned in many ways. I was brought up in a strict way and I don’t like to hear about folks playing cards on Sunday. I suppose it isn’t wicked, but I can’t get over my bringing-up. And I never take a needle in my hand on a Sunday, only when I just have to mend something, that I don’t feel kind of guilty.”
Our conversation had been interspersed with visits to various miners’ homes, mostly where there were babies. Mrs. Drake’s philosophy had been punctuated by advice on babies and friendly comment upon the little interests of the women we visited. If we weren’t inspecting a baby we were talking with some elderly woman over a fence about her latest “misery.”
As we climbed the trails I was tired, but Mrs. Drake seemed as energetic as when the day began.
“I like the work,” she said, “but I want to study more. Last summer I took a course in New York, and I’d like to go back there for a second at the Henry Street Settlement. I want to study languages, too. There are so many things I want to do.”
Some day I have not a doubt she will do these things she wants to do. In the meantime I think of her in connection with the verse: “Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do.”
Source: “The Florence Nightingale of Blair Mountain,” Logan (WV) Banner, 30 December 1921.
To see Mrs. Drake’s photo and entry at Find-A-Grave, follow this link: https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=20145994
Mrs. Drake’s daughter, Alleyne Howell Dye, died of suicide in Ashland, KY, in 1944. For her death record, follow this link: https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C9YV-H7M5-H
To see Mrs. Dye’s photo and entry at Find-A-Grave, follow this link: https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=20146072
Albert Cabell, Appalachia, Arnold Barker, Canna Creek, Chapmanville, Christian, Democratic Party, G.S. Chapman, genealogy, H.T. Butcher, history, Joker Dingess, Logan Banner, Logan County, Newt Munsey, Patty Ann Cabell, Pecks Mill, Route 10, Squire Barker, Walter Crislip, West Virginia, Yantus
An unknown correspondent from Chapmanville in Logan County, West Virginia, offered the following items, which the Logan Banner printed on July 16, 1926:
The grading is done, and the road from here to Peck’s Mill is open to traffic.
Mrs. Albert Cabell of Yantus died last Sunday morning after a lingering illness of several months.
H.T. Butcher destroyed some high powered mash near Canna Creek a few days ago. So far no one has appeared to claim it.
Young Joker Dingess was visiting at Squire Barker’s Sunday.
There is a movement on foot to incorporate this town again. This will test out how many tight-wads there are here.
Newt Munsey and Walter Crislip have formed a partnership to operate a hack line from here to Logan. They will do their own driving. It will be known as the Safety line.
Arnold Barker is now clerking in the retail department of the G.S. Chapman store. Arnold is right there when it comes to waiting on the ladies.
Since the new mines have started everybody is at work except the Sons of Rest.
A gentleman from Christian spent the night here Sunday night trying to get his car started, but it would not go, so the next morning he gave a mechanic $1 to tell him he had no has in the tank.
The Democrats here are exclaiming: “How wise we are when the chance is gone, And a glance we backward cast. We know just the thing we should have done, When the time for doing is past.”