Typographic art along with poetic interpretation and more glimpses of Methodist missionary work (Original Boomerang for October 31, 1920)

Original Boomerang, October 31, 1920

Original Boomerang, October 31, 1920

A specimen of typographic art entitled “Today” takes the center page of this issue of the original Boomerang (for other examples of the Boomerang man’s work in this vein, see posts here and here). The poetic interpretation of it is in the left hand column:

The autumn leaves are falling,
Falling everywhere,
Falling in the atmosphere,
Likewise in the air.

I thought this verse might have been written by the same artist as the one responsible for the “Today” picture, but no! It’s part of a poem by journalist and humorist Edgar Wilson “Bill” Nye (read all about him here and here), who (among other things) was the founder and editor of the Laramie Boomerang (the plot thickens!). Find the whole poem below as it was published in the Indiana Medical Journal in 1909. Fred Eno likely read it in some other periodical or newspaper.

BillNye

Autumn Leaves, Bill Nye

This issue also offers more interesting glimpses of Methodist culture in the early twentieth century. In the first column there’s the mention that Grace Church (on which, see this post here) will soon be getting a new pastor in the wake of its current one taking up the “supervision of Indian home mission work.” That would be Indian as in India, where our Enola, mentioned in the second column is now serving but is expected to be home soon. In case readers are interested, there’s a brand new book out about Methodists’ missionary activity, which was concentrated in India, called Methodists and their Missionary Societies 1900-1996 (find a description here). Who would have thunk that we had an on-the-ground view of it in Fred Eno’s Boomerang?

Another aspect of the work is on view in the mention in the second column of Betty’s having a meeting of the King’s Heralds to go to (necessitating an early supper!). The King’s Heralds was a youth group under the supervision of the Methodist Women’s Foreign Missionary Society; it was open to children aged 8 to 14 … as its constitution (below) stipulates. Since Betty would have been 18 in October of 1920, she was perhaps attending the meeting in a supervisory capacity?

King's Heralds constitution, extract

King’s Heralds constitution, extract

Finally, a momentous transition occurs in this issue: in the left hand column, the youngest of the five Eno girls is called Beth, and in the right column she’s called Betty twice! Stay tuned to find out if the new name sticks!

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