(previous page) TO THE READER IN DISTANT LANDS who may see in these pages a possibly over-colored picture of this beautiful city and its surroundings, I commend the following expressions of opinion from a good number of gentlemen eminently qualified to pass upon the merits of the situation. The late Gov. Jno. S. Phelps, who came to Springfield a young attorney in 1837, when it was but a hamlet of 200 souls, and who in his later capacity of county attorney, member of the State Legislature, a distinguished member of Congress, a gallant general in the Union army, military governor of Arkansas, and the foremost governor of Missouri, shed the lustre of his name and distinguished services upon the city and State of his adoption, said to the writer in 1880: “We have in Springfield a city of great possibilities, and it will be the fault of our own people if they shall fail to make it one of the leading cities in the Southwest.”
Col. Dan. C. Kennedy, the versatile and genial editor of the Leader, to whom Springfield and the Southwest are as familiar as his own sanctum, says the city will have 75,000 people within the next decade.
Col. J. P. Tracy, who has measured the resources of the city and tributary country with the analytical sense and accuracy of an economist, says its advancement to 75,000 population is only a question of a decade.
Mr. C. S. Tomlinson, the candid, courteous and clear sighted editor of the Republican, believes Springfield will finally grow to 100,000 population, but how soon it is to reach that high estate is a matter largely to be determined by its own people.
Mr. S. H. Horine, the efficient treasurer of the Scott Investment Company, proprietor of the extensive winter gardens, conservatory and seed house, and one of the most sagacious business men in the city, says there is no good reason why Springfield should not have 75,000 people in the year 1900, or even much sooner. Judge Thomas A. Sherwood, an eminent jurist and member of the Supreme Court of Missouri, an honored citizen of Springfield, and the fortunate owner of the beautiful “Oakwood” home and farm, near the city, thinks there is no doubt of its growth to 60,000 or 70,000 within a few years.
Col. Ben. U. Massey, a native of Southwest Missouri, an old resident of the city, one of its foremost lawyers and a gentleman of liberal fortune, and marked public spirit, says the city will easily grow to 76,000 people within the next decade, and that nothing less than stupidity and parsimony on the part of its property owners and business men will prevent a much larger growth.
Mr. J. M. Kelley, the well known abstractor, owner of the Wild Rose addition, a resident of the city since 1851, and a man of excellent judgment, says that Springfield, as the centre and principal town of the finest fruit, agricultural and mineral region in the west, is bound to have 70,000 inhabitants in the next ten years.
Hon. Stephen Johnston, late of Piqua, Ohio, and a gentleman of large intelligence, forecast and experience, says 60,000 population is not an over sanguine estimate for the next ten years. He came to Springfield twenty-three years ago and purchased a tract of outlying land at $35 per acre, which he is now selling at $2,000 per acre.
Gen. N. B. Pearce, of Arkansaw, who has made frequent visits to Springfield in the past ten years, and knows Southwest Missouri like an open book, has great faith in its future and thinks 75,000 people a modest estimate for the next ten years.
Col. J. W. Hall, the popular proprietor of the Metropolitan Hotel, believes Springfield is bound to become a city of 100,000 souls, and predicates his faith on the extent and wealth of the tributary country.
Mr. G. M. Sebree, a rising young attorney of the city, and a gentleman of fine judgment, thinks it is destined to become the third city in the State.
Messrs. Thrasher & McCammon, of the well known and influential law firm of Thrasher, White & McCammon, believe the city will have a population of 60,000 or 70,000 within ten years.
Mr. Stephen C. Johnston, who has had twenty years experience in mining, from the Missouri River to the Pacific Slope, says the wealth of the lead and zinc mines tributary to Springfield is alone sufficient to build and maintain a city of 60,000 souls.
Col. Geo. S. Rathbun, of the well known law and real estate firm of Rathbun & Son, and one of the ablest lawyers and most successful, spirited and confident real estate men of the city, says: We shall go to 70,000 in ten years, and later on to much grander proportions. New mills, factories, mines, farms, railways and jobbing houses are sure to do the work for us. What we need today is more live men to aid us in securing these.
W. C. Hornbeak, the accomplished secretary and manager of the Springfield Water Co., says: We are steadily extending our mains to meet the wants of our rapidly growing city, and I shall not be surprised to see 75,000 people here in the year 1900. So far we have grown with little (next page)
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