The Life of Margaret R. Thomas
We bent to-day o'er a coffined form,
And our tears fell softly down;
We looked our last on the aged face.
With its smiles of peace, its patient grac
And hair like a silver crown.
We touched our own to the clay-cold hands,
From lifes long labor at rest;
And among the blossoms white and sweet.
We noted a bunch of golden wheat
Clasped close to the silent breast.
We know not what work her hands had found.
What rugged places her feet:
What cross was hers, what blackness of night-
We saw but the peace, the blossoms white.
And the bunch of ripened wheat.
As each goes up from a field of earth,
Bearing the treasurers or life,
God looks for some gathered grains of good
From the ripe harvest that shining stood,
But waiting the reaper’s knife.
Then labor well, that in death you go,
Not only with blossoms sweet;
Not bent with doubt and burdened with fears,
And the dead dry husks of wasted years,
But laden with golden wheat.
- Courier Journal.
Died; of heart failure, on Saturday September 27, Margaret R. wife of StephenG. Thomas, at the family residence in Olathe, aged 60 years and 7 months.
“Like a clock worn out with eating time, the weary wheels of life at last stood still.”
The measures of her years was full. Mrs. Thomas was the oldest daughter of Samuel and Nancy Danner, and was born in Rush county Indiana on Feb., 19, 1830. In March l1851she was married to Samuel M. Ball, of Rush county. Three children were born of this union, Henry M., John W., and Helen W. Mr. Ball died on March 24. 1864.
On December 24, 1866, she was united in marriage to Stephen G. Thomas, and two children, Olen, and Zoe, were born to them; tthose five children, a step daughter, Dr. Jessie Thomas, and her husband survive her.
In September 1867, when the tide of immigration was settling strongly westward, the family left Rush county and settled in Lee’s Summit, Mo. After little over a year’s residence there, they removed to Johnson county in December of 1868 and settled on a farm a few miles south of Olathe, where the intervening years have been spent until last fall, when they came to this city, hoping to spend their declining years in that rest from arduous labor their earlier years had been accustomed to; and now, one of them is taken and the other left.
The tired eyes of the devoted wife and mother, so often heavy with the tears caused by the sorrows of others, see with clearer vision in the world beyond the stars. The willing hands that were so often burdened beyond frail strength here, are folded in the pulseless quiet of eternal rest. The busy feet, so used to rugged journeying. now press the paths beside the still waters in the green pastures bevond the waveless sea.
She passed to peaceful dreamless slumber, like a little child, with her loved ones about her, just as the sun was setting, and though the twilight gloom seemed black and impenetrable to the heart broken mourners, like the luminous rays that still shed their refulgent light in the chamber of death, the smile of ineffable peace, the charm of the pure christian life of the slumberer, lingered about them and left its fragrant impress on their hearts.
A faithful wile, a devoted mother, she yet found ample time for christian work in the church and Sabbath school, and no cry of the sick, the helpless or unfortunate ever reached her ear unheeded. And about the casket in which the earthly semblance of the form divine was laid, there gathered on that lovely Sabbath afternoon, hundreds of those who had known and loved her in death. Little children who had felt the benediction of her hands, and youths and maidens who had grown up under her christian teachings, matrons, her kindly counsel had helped over rough places and, gray haired men and women whose feet besides hers had often trod the wine press of affliction, all were there to pay the last sad honors to a valued friend who had slipped from the tumult of life into the harbor of rest.
The sweet white face with its crown of silvery hair, taught a never to be forgotten lesson of a race well run, as it rested upon the satin pillow surrounded by the flowers, the fragrant offerings, with their incense like sweetness, emblematic of the chrushed hearts that tendered them.
She loved music, and the dear old hymns, full of precious promise she loved so well, were sung, "Asleep in Jesus blessed sleep." "Jesus Lover of my soul," and "My days are gliding swiftly by. " Then from the Bible, the passage marked long years before by her own hand-
“And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes, and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow nor crying neither shall there be any more pain," was read, and her pastor. Rev. Bishop of the first Congregational church, said a few words relative to the helpful christian life of the woman who had gone in and out before them for nearly a quarter of a century, and then after the saddest and bitterest farewells, the long lonely march toward the silent city was begun.
In the neaceful quiet of that noiseless home, where the trees bend above and the birds sing requiems all the long day, they left her to sleep in dreamless rest, under the upheaped flower draped mound, with the sun just sinking behind the western hills, shedding long rays or golden lightt as if in benediction upon the hallowed spot. .
“Beantifol twilight, at set of sun
Beautiful goal, with race well won,
Beautiful rest, with work well done,
Beantiful crave where grasses will creep.
Where the brown leaves will fall and drifts lie deep.
Over worn out hands - Oh beautiful sleep.
October 9, 1890
Page 3 col 5