|Feature Story November 2004|
“A Tribute to Jacob S. Heim”
|The passing of Jacob S. Heim not long before the publishing of this book seemed as if God, in His infinite wisdom and love, had chosen a particular moment in which to bring to a close a certain chapter of the story. It has been recalled that as a youth Uncle Jake was the member of the church appointed to drive the horses to Verdon, meet the train upon which the Bishop arrived, and bring him to Dawson for the dedication service of the first Evangelical church building here. Throughout the following years the faithfulness of Uncle Jake never wavered. He was the last one of that first little group whose strong, willing hands held high the torch of faith. All of them have now passed that torch to those who are to come after…..How shall we carry it?|
Uncle Jake was a person who could always be counted on to understand, simply and kindly living out the principles of life that we should not so much seek to be understood as to understand. He was not afraid of hard work, and along with the necessary labor found time to keep his mind young and to keep his home surroundings beautiful. Some of the most pleasant of the Pennsylvania Colony reunions were enjoyed at the spacious country home. The organization known as “Friends of Music” once participated in a never-to-be-forgotten experience of worship, when we went into the majestic “green cathedral” of tall evergreen trees which Uncle Jake and Aunt Rebecca had loving planted and tended, there to sing as our prayer the song called “The Green Cathedral.”
To each of the relatives and friends there come many memories of this good life. Each of us may choose the manner in which we shall hold the torch: and we may say, “I watched Uncle Jake carry it this way!” “Hold high the torch! You did not light its glow; ‘Twas given you from other hands, you know.”
….True Stratton Ulmer (Dec. 5, 1955)
Some time during the last ten years of his life Mr. Heim found these thoughts and clipped them and put them away. He must have felt they expressed his thoughts about his own life.
The Life Abundant
Grown old, before the fire he sits and dreams of days long past. The flickering flames and shadows, glowing coals fading and falling into dead white ashes upon the cold hearth unfolds life’s tale.
Springtime of implanted possibilities; summer days of growth and maturity; autumn, time of harvests of life’s brave endeavors, colorful memories of rich adventure in living; winter with its icy, clutching fingers, the certainty of death, the anguish of farewells.
The Grim Messenger demanding departure holds little terror for the dreamer. Youth had few vain regrets. Manhood was free from profligate imagination and conduct; his strength had been spent in clean thought and constructive action. He lived secure in faith in God’s great plan for man, now he walks death’s valley holding His Guiding Hand.
A copy of the Pennsylvania Colony Historical Society of Nebraska’s reprinting of the “Folklore” book may be purchased by going to the “for sale” page and filling out an order. The book is a large collection of true stories and experiences of the group of Pennsylvanians who settled near Dawson, Nebraska, in the 1870″s.