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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - August 17, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta Saturday, August E LETHBRIDGE HERALD-5 People of the south By Chris Stewart Humming a song helps the day along THE VOICE OF ONE Franks Morley "Humming or whistling a happy tune really does make the day go according to Milton Strong, director of the Golden Mile Singers "Try it and see'" 'Some dairymen believe quiet music aids milk production and others insist it increases plant growth But one thing is certain there's nothing like a melody to brighten an otherwise blue Monday This director is seldom without music He has a stereo system installed in his bedroom, owns a prized record collection plays the trombone, has practiced regularly with the Lethbndge Symphony chorus and directs the Golden Mile Singers Music has always been an important part of Milton's life His mother, soprano Lily Page of London England, sang in the Mormon Tabernacle choir under director Evan Stevens in 1894 and with them captured second place in the Chicago World's Fair in 1897 When, following her Salt Lake City marriage to Charlie Strong of Little Hampton England she and her husband and two voung children, in 1902, were called bv the Mormon church to assist with the settlement of Raymond, they made sure they included their organ among their scanty household effects brought with their livestock by train to their new home This pump instrument was to be the hub of their humble household where family members eased the day s stresses and cares gathering round in a sing-song while Mrs Strong manipulated the pedals They also brought their horse Prince nicknamed 'Old Roney because of its red- tinted coat and their surrey with the fringe on top which became a conversation piece each Sunday as the Strongs made their way to church Milton the first of the Strong children born in Canada was nicknamed Snowbird when his arrival on 15 1903 coincided with an unseasonal blizzard which topped fence posts and made it difficult for Charlie and Old Roney' to fetch midwife Lettie Bacon in time for Milton's birth Mr Strong cultivated wheat and raised turkeys and beef on the 40 acres he purchased south of town while his wife tended a prolific garden on their large lot east of the townsite Her strawberry rhubarb made her famous as did her jams jellies and date- crusted rice pudding The familv drew coal bv wagon from the nverbottom near Magrath the Strong sons pitched hay and thrashed to help eke out the tight budget while Charlie Strong built chimneys and fireplaces and helped construct some of Ra> mond s initial buildings Gradually he added a lean-to to their tent dwelling and subsequently built a house Worship was conducted in the homes of John Silver Onn Snow and Heber S Allen s Mercantile store until the first wooden Mormon church was erected replaced 10 years later with a brick structure Milton got his musical start at age five when asked to sing Silent Night in the annual Christmas concert As a trombonist at age 16 he played in the Raymond school band directed by Lorenzo N Mitchell and in the town band directed by William Rouse but after studying choral and band direction in Salt Lake City he formed his own dance orchestra at age 21, known as Milt Strong and his Arcadians His seven-piece group, active for four years, played in neighboring towns as well as the Waterton Lakes dance pavilion and the Prince of Wales hotel Members included pianist Lula Pans Gibb (formerly of first trumpeter and violinist Henry Perett of Stirling, second saxaphonist and B flat tenor, Hiram Fromm, third sax, E flat alto and second trumpeter, Delbert Oler of Raymond, banjo player player, Nephi Christian and drummer Tom Allen (both deceased) with Milton playing first sax and trombone He played the trombone in Lewis King's dance orchestra (brother of Shirley King, current director of the Raymond orchestra) with pianist Emma Holt (nee trumpeter and violinist Leif Erickson saxaphonist and clarinetist George C Laycock and drummer Tom Allen Several of today's Raymond orchestra members are descendants of this initial group If music was a first in Milton's life, sports placed a close second He was active in all types of athletics particularly baseball and basketball He played centre for the provincial-titlist Raymond high school basketball team and as a substitute for the Raymond Union Jacks (the famous team which captured both the Dominion and provincial played centre for Raymond's agricultural school team and third base for the LDS baseball team "Basketball was a different game in those days, he recalls You used to jump in the centre to start the game He was always a good shot and apt at scoring points But it was in tennis Milton scored best He and his pals Archie Terrv and Rosco Gibb played doubles with Muriel Webster, Lula Pans and Winnifred Eveson and each married his tennis partner Winnie s father tinsmith Charles Harrv Eveson of Worcestershire England had come to Raymond in 1909 with his wife and four daughters following the next year Music played just as important a role in their home as it did in the Strong household Winnie who worked at the Raymond Mercantile helped with the church choir and served as organist She and Milton were married in the Cardston temple in 1933 Milton like his father was a bricklayer in Raymond for 20 vears until he became interested in converting waste cinder from the local mines into bricks It was a new way to do things I learned from observing similar operations in Salt Lake CiU he explained He moved to Lethbndge established a plant where he mixed sand and gravel with the cinder residue and soon was in business Lethbndge life for the Strongs was just as music and sports oriented as it had been in Raymond Milton served as president of the Commercial Basketball League for three vears (his secretary and right hand man was Chick Macintosh) and was one of six men to organize Little League and Pony League baseball He helped organize (and directed for 10 the 40- voice Lethbndge Glee Club featured in numerous local musical events and both he and Mrs Strong sang for five in the Symphonj chorus He served for 10 years as musical director for the Lethbndge Stake assisted with the preparation of anthems in Taber and Barnwell and directed the spring musical festival featuring as many as eight choirs and 150 participants He directed the Glee Club for three vears and several ward choirs until his appointment as a bishop counsellor to Bishop J Frank Johannsen of the Lethbndge stake of the Mormon church Milton Strong has been associated with the annual Kiwanis Musical Festival for 20 years He and his family captured first place twice in the three festivals in which they competed His son Brian plaved the E sax Melvin the B flat tenor sax and clarinet Wayne the trumpet and wife Winmtred the piano with Milton playing his trombone Under his direction the Lethbndge Glee Club, several church choirs and the Golden Mile Singers have all captured first place in the festival Mrs Strong a director in her own right directs the 65- voice Singing Mother s choir comprised of members of the LDS Relief SocieU who are featured at conferences and special church functions They practice each Monday evening When Milton Strong, now retired from his successful concrete business he expected to relax but his respite was to be short-lived Soon he was approached to assume the directorship of the Golden Mile Singers Both he and the 34 choir members were a little shy at the first practice, he admits, but when the singers realised their new director possessed a rollicking sense of humoi along with his director's ability they relaxed and started to enjoy the practices "Instead of practices being arduous they became he said Milton Strong believes music makes the world go round It should be joyful, satisfying, beneficial and enjoyable, not drudgery as is the case with so many would- be musicians If the tenor section starts singing the wrong song and doesn't detect their error until well into the last stanza Mr Strong doesn't throw the book at them He merely leans his head back and laughs, and soon the embarrassed singers are laughing along with him Whether he's directing his choir in The Blue Danube or the majestic Messiah, Mr Strong puts himself into it wholeheartedly and infuses his choir members with enthusiasm and delight He claims music has enriched his life immeasurably He marip music prominent in his home while his children were young and each of his three sons has followed his example All graduates of LCI and previous Kiwanis band members they have appreciated their musical backgrounds and have determined their families would enjoy the same Brian, a graduate in political science is administrator in Matsqui, B C Melvin, a graduate in business administration, manages a firm in Layton Utah and Wayne is a teacher and professional photographer in Cardston Milton Strong BILL GROENEN photo Book reviews Reassessment of David Livingstone "Livingstone" by Tim Jeal (William Hememann Ltd., 95, 427 pages) The accepted picture of David Livingstone a century after his death is still that of a saintly missionary to the Africans But Tim Jeal makes it clear that he was not much of a missionary and lacked many of the qualities usually associated with saintlmess Most of Livingstone's ef- forts in Africa were expended in exploration, not in mis- sionary activity It is true that he looked on his explorations as a service to God but they were of greater value to the establishment of colonialism than to the spread of Christianity In fact, ac- cording to Jeal Livingstone's greatest significance was as a colonial theoretician and prophet Even less is the reputation of saintlmess deserved Livingstone's relationships left a great deal to be desired He had a tendency to judge harshly on little evidence He was capable of hypocrisy and self-righteousness of telling lies and engaging in double- dealing His inability to res- pond to suffering is jarring Livingstone might have been quickly forgotten indeed, he was forgotten after the disastrous Zambesi ex- pedition if the new-' spaperman Henry Morton Stanley hadn't captured the fancy of readers around the world It was he who turned Livingstone into a legendary figure Stanley set about canonizing Livingstone, and he succeeded The picture of Livingstone as largely a failure he only made one convert and he lapsed, he virtually abandon- ed his wife and children, his confidence that the Zambesi would prove to be the highway to Africa's interior was un- founded he was mistaken in his belief that he had found the source of the Nile comes as something of a shock to someone reared on sermon il- lustrations about the great man Jeal recognizes this Speaking of Livingstone's final years he says "That any man could voluntarily have undergone such hardship seemed and still seems, so remarkable that to ask whether he achieved his aims or deceived himself appears in the end almost churlish Jeal does not deny that Livingstone was a great man with some real achievements to his credit He seems only to want to strip away some of the fantasy that has surrounded him and look at him as he was In this he may have gone too far in the other direction from that taken by his churchly ad- mirers whom he accuses of being too confined and un critical in their approach The only other biography I have read of Livingstone (which I read immediately after reading Jeal's book) is George Seaver s David Livingstone His Life and Letters' (Harper Brothers 1957 650 pages) Many of the criticisms made by Jeal are also made by Seaver but they are so overwhelmed by material of a favorable nature that failure would not likely have been suggested to earlier readers Disturbing as it may be to have heroes brought down off their pedestals the exercise cannot be condemned if it is done honestly without shortchanging the merits of men Jeal has written a con- vincing book His Livingstone is not saintly but a great man nonetheless DOUG WALKER Essays from U.S.S.R. "Report from the Beria Reserve" by Valentyn Moroz, edited and translated by John Kolasky (Peter Martin Associates Limited, 95, 162 Valentyn Moroz, a Ukraman nationalist is currently a political prisoner in the USSR apparently suffering torture from his jailers in an attempt to break him and to get him to recant The only evidence offered at his closed trial were the four essays in this book and, on their evidence in 1970 he was clapped in jail for a second time He had had only nine months of freedom after a lengthy term for dissidence in the sixties Three of the essays were written during the nine months of freedom and one by far the best was written and smuggled out during his first prison term The irony of the matter is that tyranny cannot stand anv challenge to its dominion, not even one so confused strained, and petty as these essays often are Only the title essay is really coherent and integrates abstractions with specific detail The others seem to have been written under an unbearable strain, at a pell mell pace, without pause for reflection or revision This is understandable, though, for no doubt expected the unrelenting grasp of the secret police to fall on him at any time JOHN BELL A church without clergy A feature of some of the fastest growing Protestant bodies is the diminishing importance of the clergy and the emphasis on the laity In my own denomination it takes at least as long, often much longer university study, as that taken by medical doctors and lawyers Some denominations have cut down these prerequisites drastically, not even requiring high school graduation, emphasizing instead 'practical work of the church The claim is that the disciples were not educated but certainly they had a rigorous training in the company of Jesus while St Paul without whom there would be no Christian Church was a most highly educated man The idea of an illiterate clergy was abhorrent to the reformed churches and colleges to educate them were among the very first things founded in America by the immigrants There was however a strong distrust of the clergy among the Puritans They were very suspicious of the power of music ceremonial clothing, ceremonial smells, holy days and hours, and liturgy to body forth symbolic truth Yet Puritan writers do express great esteem for the clergy that escapes the dread sin of clericalism Thus Robert Bolton declares, 'Every faithful minister is to every Christian under his charge either a spiritual father or a spiritual tutor, a blessed instrument unto him either of plantation or preservation of grace, either of the first happy inspiration or the after comfortable continuance of spiritual life The functions of the ministry and priesthood are best and most simply described in Paul's letters to Timothy The dangers of the priesthood and clericalism are strongly set forth in a book by an ardent Roman Catholic, Jacques Duquesne, prominent French journalist in, A Church Without Priests He is most distressed by clerical celibacy which he contends separates church and people He contends also that this leads to psychiatric disturbance The clerical society says Duquesne must be destroyed because 1 It is oppressive for its members and has brought about a crisis in the priesthood, 2 It has destroyed the concept of the priesthood of the laity, 3 The existence of a clergy with a special life style is harmful to the missionary activity of the Church Mr Duquesne is equally emphatic that the priesthood must be preserved Like Henri Denis he thinks that 'a church of laymen could spread Christianity in the world but it would be at most a Christianity without Christ a mere ideology The priests are needed as experts in preaching theology and pastorate What he wants is "declencahzation of the clergy'" Mr Duquesne has a great heart He has a profound sympathy for the priest s engulfing loneliness and his frequent sense of uselessness He sees him as less and less able to function as a human being in his society and professionals have taken over his role as psychotherapist Nor does the priest occupy the exalted social position he once did Perhaps however, this will lead a minister or a priest back to his true function which is to speak to the people of God to counsel the confused to encourage the brokenhearted to visit and heal the sick, to be a shepherd to the flock of Christ and to declare the will of God Where else can people find a conscience for their society John Watson was a clergv man in Liverpool where he was better known as Ian Maclaren Late one night a clergyman was returning home when an electric car pulled up and the driver, white with emotion leaned over the rail Have you heard the news7 he said John Watson is dead it is a bad dav for us There will alwavs be a need for clergymen like that Pro ballplayers should be free By Norman Cousins, editor of Saturday LOS in the news papers about the attempt of football players to acquire the rights to their services have reminded me that there may be a basic issue here the American people haven't yet thought through Like thousands of Little Leaguers, I grew up dreaming I might become a professional baseball player That aspiration dimmed in teens but I don t think I ever really got over my infatuation with the sport it didn t trouble me that ballplayers, once they made the grade didn't have the same freedom of employment that other Americans enjoyed It seemed only natural to me that players whether in baseball, football, basketball or hockey should be sold1 or "traded In fact I didn t see how the game could operate on any other basis That was the way it had been and it was nothing to be questioned Just after college my first job was as a sportswriter I began to realize I had been so wedded to the traditions and folklore of baseball that I had blinded myself to the realities And the more I learned at close range the more I realized that T was wrong in thinking that baseball or any other professional sport would fall apart if the players owned themselves and were free not just to bargain for their salaries but to have a voice as to where they wanted to play I also came to realize that the argument over whether baseball is a sport or a business is completely irrelevant If it is uncon- stitutional and immoral to buy and sell human beings, it doesn't make any difference whether the enterprise is called a sport or a business The basic laws of this countn were not established for some groups and not others It is absurd to sav that it is all right to sell or trade human beings like chattel just because they bring entertainment to large numbers of people It is equallv absurd to sav that professional sports figures don t have to play if they don t like the contract offered them or if don t want to be traded or sold What this line of reasoning overlooks is that the penalty to a player for refusing to be traded is that he can be deprived of his livelihood altogether Would a business executive be willing to accept the proposition that he can be traded to another company and that if he refuses no other company will take him'' Would a city official from San Francisco sav accept the notion that he can be sent to Corpus Chnsti and that if he doesn t like it he can lump it' A great injustice has been done in the name of sports for much too long The surest way of correcting that injustice is for the American people to see the issue in sports for what it is and to support athletes in their attempt to bring professional sports within constitutional protections The American people need not fear that their favorite sport will be impaired in any way if a player retains basic ownership of his talents A game of baseball or football or basketball will still be as exciting as it ever was The only change will be that players w ill probably get a larger share of the total pie and will be in a position to control their own destinies Book Reviews Valid mental force "The Truth about ESP" by Hans Holier (Doubleday Company, 176 Extrasensory perception, which has developed from the laugh of the century to some serious consideration within and out- side scientific circles is according to Hans Holzer para psychologist and author of numerous books on the subject, a valid force that must be studied seriously unless mankind is to regress to medieval thinking, back into the narrow channels of prejudice and severely limited fields of study He points out the advances the Soviet Union has made concerning ESP and attributes this mostly to research made in eight universities with full-staffed research centres in para- psychology He maintains that all people (except mentally incompetent are endowed with ESP, the occurence of an actual experience or not depends on whether we suppress ignore or enhance it He describes astral projection (ethenc or inner body is leaving physical shell and can observe but can t be observed) bnocation (projection to another location can be observed but can't observe) and many other branches of ESP Mr Holzer says very little that hasn t been said before although his book is different in a way he makes the workings of ESP under- standable to the general reader and bases his assertions on 20 vears of research The book should arouse the of the believer as well as the skeptic although it should be pointed out that grave inaccuracies make much of the data given questionable Even so Calgarians can be proud to have their city elevated to the capital of Alberta with a full-fledged governor minding the province s business HANS SCHAUFL A period of English history "Mvself, Christopher Wren" by David Weiss (distributed by Longman, 864 pages) This is a massive book chronicling English historv through a most interesting period, from Charles I and Cromwell to the German George and the entire life of Christopher Wren a span of over 90 years For history lovers the many references to events and people both in and out of England forms a natural continuity sometimes lacking in such books I really was amazing to see the parallel between 250 years ago and parts of our life today the politicians, the corruption, the separation between those who are at libertv to enjoy life and those poor souls bare- ly able to stay alive, and most of all "man's inhumamtv to man Although it has been said often that Christopher Wren was a man far ahead of his time this book uses his success and failures to show he fully realized how much more man could and would discover His main ac- complishment St Paul's Cathedral in Lon don was built over 33 years and under five different monarchs each with pre judices and vet Wren lived to see his dream completed One criticism I have of the book is that it lacked the passion that I feel could have been elicited from such a dramatic period Wren although a subtle unassuming man per- sonally was able to extend his influence over most of London's important architecture, and surelv David Weiss could have caught some of these fantastic emotions One last thought when 864 pages are spent describing the tortures of planning and building St Paul s one page could surely have been spared for a decent picture of it JOANNE GROVER ;