|SAMUEL A. YOUNG.|
Samuel A. Young, of Upton, who passed away April 27,
1914, could rightfully be addressed by the title of honorable or
as captain, but titles added to his name meant little to those who
knew him save to indicate service that he had performed. He was one
whose manhood was above titles, a man whose uprightness of
character, whose kindly spirit, whose genial disposition and whose
integrity in business won for him the lasting esteem and confidence
of all who knew him. He thoroughly realized what Lincoln had said:
“There is something better than making a living—making a
life,” and Captain Young made a
life that may well serve as a source of encouragement and of
inspiration to all who knew him, while his memory remains as a
blessed benediction to those who were closely associated with him.
A native of Ohio, Captain Young was born on the 27th of April, 1835, and spending the period of his minority in that state, he was there married when twenty-four years of age to Miss Sophia A. Steiger, the wedding being celebrated on the 12th of May. 1859. As the years passed. the happiness and interest of the household was heightened by the addition of their six children, of whom five are yet living: Mrs. Thomas Howey, of Moon, South Dakota; Mrs. Joe Card, Mrs. Charles Parker and F. L. Young. all of Upton; Mrs. George Townsend, of Sanford, Florida: and Will Young, who died a few years ago.
It was in the year following his marriage that Captain Young removed with his young wife to Iowa, and in August, 1861, difficult as was the task of bidding good-by to his little family, he responded to the country's call for troops, feeling that his greatest duty was to his native land. He enlisted in August, 1861, as a member of Company H, Third Iowa Volunteer Cavalry, and continued at the front through the four years of strife, being mustered out in August, 1865. He had joined the army as a private and was serving with the rank of first lieutenant when honorably discharged. He participated in many hotly contested engagements and was always found inspiring and encouraging his men. His was never the command of the tyrant to go. but the call of the leader to come. When the country no longer needed his military aid he returned to Iowa, where he resided until April. 1876, and then made his way westward to Cheyenne. Wyoming. On the 25th of June of the same year he started for the Black Hills, reaching Deadwood, South Dakota, on the 14th of July. There he remained until July, 1880, when he returned to Wyoming and settled on a ranch in Crook county, near the Inyankara mountains. In 1882 a mail route was established from Spearfish, South Dakota, to Hatcreek, Wyoming, and Captain Young received appointment to the position of postmaster at Inyankara, in which capacity he continued to serve for twelve years. His fellow townsmen, appreciative of his worth, ability and public spirit, elected him to the office of county commissioner of Crook county in 1894, and in 1898 he was appointed receiver of the land office at Sundance, where he resided until the fall of 1902. He then again took up his abode upon his ranch, which he occupied until 1907, when he disposed of that property and became a resident of Upton, where he opened a drug store, which he continued to successfully conduct to the time of his demise.
Captain Young always gave stalwart allegiance to the republican party, which was the defense of the Union during the dark days of the Civil war and which he ever believed to be the party of reform and progress. In 1908 he was elected to the state legislature from Weston county and was reelected in 1910. In 1912 he was appointed United States commissioner at Upton and continued to serve in that capacity until his last illness, when he resigned. Death called him on the 27th of April, 1914, and eighteen months later his wife passed away. Traveling life's journey most happily together for many years, they were not long separated in death. Mrs. Young was then in her eighty-first year and until within a few months of her demise had retained remarkable physical vigor, while her mind was at all times alert and bright. The death of both these worthy people was the occasion of the deepest and most widespread regret. Their lives were actuated by a Christian spirit which found expression in all that they did and said. They were for many years members of the Methodist church and in that faith they reared their family and at all times they governed their acts by the Golden Rule.
Mrs. Young was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania, August 5, 1835, and married on the 12th of May, 1859, in Bucyrus, Ohio. Captain and Mrs. Young lived to celebrate their fiftieth wedding anniversary and to enjoy several years more together. The celebration of their golden wedding brought out one of the largest assemblages of people that has ever congregated together in Upton, there being people present from every locality in Weston and Crook county and from many distant towns. There was a very close tie between the members of the Young family and the love of husband and wife strengthened and deepened as the years passed by. Mrs. Young possessed a most sweet and kindly spirit, drawing the mantle of charity over all, giving due consideration to conditions and circumstances and ever ready to speak an extenuating word. Hers was indeed a noble Christian spirit and her life was filled with long years of usefulness, of unselfishness and of love.
Captain Young was a man endowed with much personal magnetism and his friends were numbered by the hundreds. He was ever cheerful and trusting and through the seventy-nine years of his life never did his indomitable courage falter nor his trust in God waver. He was a Good Samaritan in times of need, was ever a brother to his fellowmen in distress, was a soldier in courage and a warrior in his indefatigable efforts. Thus wrote one who knew him long and well: ‘He was inspired with a childlike love for his fellowmen and in the evening of his days he stood serene on the hilltop of life, having little regret in the past and nothing to fear for the future.” He was one of the thirty-four charter members of the Grand Army post at Sheridan. and when he passed away, only one survived. He was also among the organizers of the Masonic lodge and was among the last three survivors of that society.
One who had fought with him side by side in battle, who had also been a charter member of the Grand Army post and the Masonic lodge, and his friend for half a century, said of him at the time of the funeral: “As I sat here today waiting for the church to fill, my mind wandered back to the time when I first saw my friend, nearly half a century ago. I can see him now, as I saw him then, a dashing, courageous cavalry captain, leading his cavalry against the right flank of the enemy, who had been annoying us. Since that time I have been intimately connected with him in church work; intimately associated with him in politics; intimately associated with him in the Grand Army of the Republic; and intimately associated with him in the Masonic lodge, during which time I will say of him what I can say of few men, that he was upright, always for the right, and in times of strife, war and deprivation, even knowing hunger, not once did he falter from the course he considered his duty. And I say to you that it takes more courage to face the difficult problems of life and meet them squarely and decide against your will for the right, than it does to fight in a great battle. The man whose body lies there was one of the few men who were able to do this. Emulate his example and meet the problems of life squarely.”