The Chariton Leader, Chariton, Iowa Thursday, August 31, 1905
Fifty years ago next Tuesday, September 5, S.N. VAN NICE and wife, of Russell, took upon themselves the marriage vows back in the Old Hoosier State. He was a native of Hendricks County and she of Putnam, so they compromised by coming to Iowa where they have resided ever since, most of the time on a Cedar Township farm but of late years in Russell. On the date above mentioned they are going to celebrate the event with their children and seventy-five or a hundred relatives and friends, in the grove on his farm northeast of Russell. All the children have given assurance of being present. The meeting will be a most happy one and then MR. VAN NICE says they will again tranquilly start forward for the hundred year mark. The Leader may not be able to be present on the near occasion, though acknowledges a generous invitation, but if not will be in sure on the second, fifty years hence. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The Chariton Leader, Chariton, Iowa Thursday, September 7, 1905
'A GOLDEN WEDDING'
On Tuesday, Sept. 5, 1855, MR. S.N. VAN NICE and MISS MARY ALLEN were united in marriage back in the old Hoosier State -- he being a native of Hendricks County and she of Putnam, so as mentioned last week they compromised the matter and a month later emigrated to Iowa and founded a home in Cedar Township, continuing to reside on the farm until a number of years since when they moved to Russell. In his own words he says he got mighty homesick and for a long time mistrusted that this country was fit only for wolves and Indians but that delusion has been dispelled many, many years ago. Seven children were born to them, all being present at the golden anniversary, which was held at his "Kentucky Home Farm," northeast of Russell, on Tuesday of this week. MR. and MRS. VAN NICE know what the pioneer life is and surely have earned that competency which they are now enjoying in their later years. They have had their sorrows and the minglings of pleasures, both having the happy faculty of looking on the brighter side of life, enjoying the companionship of their friends and fellowship of children, thus the retrospect for them holds few regrets.
But by way of a little description. The place where the celebration was held on Tuesday is a natural park and a more sightly place would be hard to find. The forest trees have been kept clear from undergrowth and the lawns nicely mown. Up from the little stream on a knoll and just in front of the cottage the tents were spread for the occasion. Fitting decorations appeared conspicuously and the trees were invested in colors of gold, which produced a most pleasing effect. The banquet table was spread under the trees near the big tent and as the clouds were lowering, precaution had been taken to provide a canopy of canvas and the threatening elements marred not the tranquil feast which was announced at the proper time and with befitting ceremony. What a scene. That table, seating fifty or more, loaded with the choicest viands of several climes, prepared in culinary perfection, surely belied the groom's earlier convictions about the wolves and Indians. MR. and MRS. VAN NICE were seated at the board under a large decorated bell and their friends were distributed in two long lines on either side -- more than seventy-five being present and ample justice was done to the sumptuous spread, where, in the absence of formal restraint, mirth and repartee held full sway. After dinner all gathered in the large tent where a pleasant afternoon was spent in a social way and in listening to a splendid program. Mesdames Clay Allen, Alymer Allen, T.F. Van Nice and Miss Ethel Cassity entertained with choice piano recitals. Messrs. Littleton, Love and N.W. Kendall rendered the air redolent with music from violin and flute. Trudie Van Nice and Roy Gray aroused with the power of song and Mrs. T.F. Van Nice and Donald Van Nice each gave recitations but the climax of the day came when Mrs. Florence Pedigo recited a parody on the "Courtin of Fifty Years Ago." This was a happy hit as the customs back in old Hendricks and Putnam Counties when "SAMUEL and MARY" were young. Many beautiful and costly mementoes were gratefully, as well as gracefully, received by the honored and honoring couple, for this remembrance of their Golden Anniversary.