News From 1882

Vinton Eagle,
March 22, 1882


This community has not many times been called upon to suffer such a loss as it has suffered in the death of Rev. Robert Carothers, which took place at the College for the Blind, on Friday morning of last week. As our readers already know, Mr. Carothers was stricken down a little more than a year ago, in the midst of his arduous labors as principal of the College, and almost without warning. During the spring and summer months he rallied somewhat and was very hopeful, as were his friends, of final recovery. But gradually disease undermined his strong constitution. From early last fall he was able to leave the house but little. During the winter he was confined to his room, and during a few days only before his death was he confined to his bed. He suffered much at times but was always patient and full of courage, and up to the last few days, from his sick room he exercised general control of the school which never for a moment lacked in discipline or efficiency.

A brief outline of Mr. Carothers’ early life and Christian character will be found in another column, written by one who knew him well. As there stated, Mr. Carothers came to Vinton in 1877, to take the responsible position of Principal of the College for the Blind; responsible because of the rare combination of talent required to manage it successfully—requiring the knowledge of the scholar, the skill of a disciplinarian, and the tact and the shrewdness of the business man. All of these qualities Mr. Carothers possessed in marked degree, hence the success of the school under his management—a management which has commanded solid compliments from the highest authority in the state. As a business man, Mr. Carothers was clear-headed, laborious and scrupulously honest. His word was as good as his bond. His care for those under his charge and his faithful management of the public trust placed in him were untiring. And to this, partly, is due his early death. Overwork had much to do with his sickness. Socially he was one of the most affable of men.

The funeral took place on Monday last, and though the day was very disagreeable the attendance was large, indicative of the deep interest felt in the deceased. There were present several brother ministers from other places—Revs. Phelps, Burkhalter and Hood of Cedar Rapids, Rev. Mills of Nevada, Rev. Brown of Garrison. The services were conducted by Rev. E. H. Avery of the Presbyterian church of this place, assisted by Rev. R. D. Parsons, resident pastor of the M. E. church, and Rev. S. Phelps of Coe College, Cedar Rapids. The singing was by the college choir—blind pupils, all of whom were devotedly attached to their superintendent and teacher.

A brother of the deceased came on from Pennsylvania and took the remains to the old home near Pittsburgh, for burial, accompanied by the bereaved widow and two of their children. It is needless to say that this community extends a cordial sympathy to the afflicted family in their sorrow.