2d session United States. 65th Congress.

John H. Capstick (late a representative from New Jersey) Memorial addresses delivered in the House of representatives of the United States, Sixty-fifth Congress, second session (Volume 1) online

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Book _JLLHLi


65th Congress 1
3d Session )


\ No. 185S


(Late a Representative from New Jersey)







Proceedings in the House
May 19, 1918

Proceedings in the Senate
March 18, 1918





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JAi^ 28 1920



Proceedings in the House 5

Prayer by Rev. Henry N. Couden, D. D 5,8

Memorial addresses by —

Mr. Richard Wayne Parker, of New Jersey 11

Mr. Charles O. Lobeck, of Nebraska 15

Mr. Isaac Bacharach, of New Jersey 17

Mr. Michael F. Phelan, of Massachusetts 22

Mr. John J. Eagan, of New Jersey 25

Mr. William J. Browning, of New Jersey 28

Mr. William W. Venable, of Mississippi 31

Mr. Edmund Piatt, of New York 33

Mr. Elijah C. Hutchinson, of New Jersey 36

Mr. Otis Wingo, of Arkansas 39

Mr. Edward W. Gray, of New Jersey 42

Mr. Lemuel P. Padgett, of Tennessee 44

Mr. Frederick R. Lehlbach, of New Jersey 48

Mr. Frank P. Woods, of Iowa 51

Mr. Dow H. Drukker, of New Jersey 53

Mr. John R. Ramsey, of New Jersey 56

Mr. Simeon D. Fess, of Ohio 58

Mr. J. Hampton Moore, of Pennsylvania 61

Mr. Everis A. Hayes, of California 63

Proceedings in the Senate 67




Proceedings in the House of Representatives

Monday, March 18, 1918.
The House met at 11 o'clock a. ni.

The Chaplain, Rev. Henry N, Couden, D. D., offered the
following prayer :

Our Father in heaven, we find ourselves submerged in
almost impenetrable darkness, which covers the earth
as the waters cover the sea; and we most fervently pray
that it may presage the dawning of a new day, which
shall flood the earth with light, warmth, and beauty;
bring to men a clearer vision of the larger life, correct
mistakes, right all wrongs, banish war, and establish a
lasting peace; fructify and replenish the earth with all
good; and unite all men and nations in the bonds of
brotherly love : " For as the new heavens and the new
earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith
the Lord, so shall your seed and your name remain."

Our Father, our hearts are touched by the death of a
Member of this House who has been taken from the con-
fines of the now to the larger reward in the new life.
Comfort us, especially those to whom he was nearest and
dearest, by the precious promises of the gospel of the
Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Mr. Browning. Mr. Speaker, it is my painful duty to
announce to this House the death of my colleague, the
Hon. John H. Capstick, late a Representative from the
fifth district of the State of New Jersey. Mr. Capstick


Memorial Addresses: Representative Capstick

died yesterday morning at his home, Montville, N. J.,
shortly after 10 o'clock. I shall not attempt at this time
to say anything regarding his good qualities or eulogize
him in any way, but I shall at a future date ask that a
day be set aside on which to pay tribute to his character
and valuable public services. I send to the Clerk's desk
the following resolutions :

The Speaker. The Clerk will report the resolution.

The Clerk read as follows:

Resolved, That tlie House has heard with profound sorrow of
the death of Hon. John H. Capstick, late a Representative from the
State of New Jersey.

Resolved, That a committee of 16 Members of the House, with
such Members of the Senate as may be joined, be appointed to
attend the funeral.

Resolved, That the Sergeant at Arms of the House be authorized
and directed to take such steps as may be necessary for carrying
out the provisions of these resolutions, and that the necessary
expenses in connection therewith be paid out of the contingent
fund of the House.

Resolved, That the Clerk communicate these resolutions to the
Senate and transmit a copy thereof to the family of the deceased.

The resolution was unanimously agreed to.

The Speaker. The Clerk will announce the committee.

The Clerk read as follows:

Messrs. Eagan, Glass, Hayes, Parker of New Jersey, Phelan,
Woods of Iowa, Scully, Browning, Hamill, Drukker, Bacharach,
Hutchinson, Ramsey, Gray of New Jersey, Lehlbach, and Lin-

The Speaker. The Clerk will report the additional reso-

The Clerk read as follows :

Resolved, That as a further mark of respect this House do now

The resolution was agreed to.


Proceedings in the House

Tuesday. March 19, 1918.

The Speaker. The Chair wants to make an announce-
ment before he forgets it. The gentleman from Cali-
fornia [Mr. Haj'es] can not go on the Capstick funeral
party, on account of public business, and the Chair ap-
points Mr. Swift, of New York, in his place.

A message from the Senate, by Mr. Waldorf, its en-
rolling clerk, announced that the Senate had passed the
following resolutions:

Resolved, That the Senate has heard with profound sorrow the
announcement of the death of Hon. John H. Capstick, late a Rep-
resentative from the State of New Jersey.

Resolved, That a committee of eight Senators be appointed by
the Vice President to join a committee appointed by the House of
Representatives to take order for superintending the funeral of the

Resolved, That the Secretary communicate a copy of these reso-
lutions to the House of Representatives.

Resolved, That as a further mark of respect to the memory of
the deceased Representative the Senate do now adjourn.

And that in compliance with the foregoing resolution
the Vice President had appointed the senior Senator from
New Jersey [Mr. Frelinghuysen], the junior Senator from
New Jersey [Mr. Baird], the Senator from West Virginia
[Mr. Sutherland], the Senator from Indiana [Mr. New],
the Senator from Idaho [Mr. Nugent], the Senator from
Tennessee [Mr. McKellar], the Senator from Arizona [Mr.
Ashurst], and the Senator from Georgia [Mr. Hardwick]
as the committee on the part of the Senate.

Tuesday, April 30, 1918.
Mr. Browning. Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent
that the House set aside Sunday, May 19, for addresses
on the life, character, and public services of my late col-
league, John H. Capstick, late a Representative from New


Memorial Addresses: Representative Capstick

The Speaker. The gentleman from New Jersey asks
unanimous consent that Sunday, May 19, be set apart for
memorial services to his late colleague, Mr. Capstick. Is
there objection?

There was no objection.

Friday, May 17, 1018.
The Speaker. The Chair appoints Mr. Browning to pre-
side next Sunday at the memorial services for the late
Representative Capstick.

Sunday, May 19, 1918.

The House met at 12 o'clock noon and was called to
order by the Speaker pro tempore [Mr. Browning].

The Chaplain, Rev. Henry N. Couden, D. D., offered
the following prayer :

Our God and our Father, whose name is sacred to the
heart of every true man; and who is the inspiration of
every noble deed which reflects itself on the pages of his-
tory, sacred and profane, in song and story, in monuments
of bronze and granite, we thank Thee for that quality of
soul in man which recognizes in his fellows willing and
faithful service to his fellow men.

We are here to-day to record on the pages of history
the life, character, and public service of such a man.
May those who knew him best speak in terms of elo-
quence of his deeds — a man of great parts, successful in
his business ventures, true to his convictions, he served
his State and Nation with fidelity and patriotic zeal and
leaves behind him a record worthy of emulation, a trusted
friend, a devoted husband, a loving father.

We mourn his going and our sympathies go out to his
colleagues, friends, and those to whom he was nearest
and dearest by the ties of kinship. Comfort them, we be-
seech Thee, in the blessed thought that he lives to a nobler


Proceedings in the House

life, and has gone to prepare a place for those whom he
loved, and that in Thine own good time he shall receive
them in a realm where sorrows never come and love lives
on forever.

Hear us and strengthen us to do Thy will and prepare
us for the change wliich in the dispensation of Thy provi-
dence waits upon us all, in the name of Him whose spirit
lives in the hearts of men, to inspire, uphold, and sustain,
now and evermore. Amen.

The Clerk read as follows:

On motion of Mr. Browning, by unanimous consent,
Ordered, That Sunday, May 19, 1918, be set aside for addresses
on tiie life, character, and public services of Hon. John H. Cap-
stick, late a Representative from the State of New Jersey.

Mr, Parker of New Jersey. Mr. Speaker, several Mem-
bers of the House who expected to speak to-day are
unavoidably absent. I ask unanimous consent that any
Members, those who speak or those who do not, who
desire so to do, may extend by printing in the Record
their remarks on the life, character, and public services
of our late friend.

The Speaker pro tempore. Is there objection to the
request of the gentleman from New Jersey? [After a
pause.] The Chair hears none.

Mr. Parker of New Jersey. Mr. Speaker, I desire to
offer the resolution which I send to the Clerk's desk.

The Speaker pro tempore. The Clerk will report the

The Clerk read as follows :

House resolution 352

Resolved, That the business of the House be now suspended that
opportunity may be given for tribute to the memory of Hon.
John H. Capstick, late a Member of this House from the State of
New Jersey.


Memorial Addresses: Representative Capstick

Resolved, That as a particular mark of respect to the memory
of the deceased, and in recognition of his distinguished public
career, the House, at the conclusion of these exercises, shall stand

Resolved, That the Clerk communicate these resolutions to the

Resolved, That the Clerk transmit a copy of these resolutions to
the family of the deceased.

The question was taken and the resolutions were
unanimously agreed to.



Address of Mr. Parker, of New Jersey

Mr. Speaker : John H. Capstick was born September 2,
1856, at Lawrence, Mass. It seems to me that that town
and its history were an inspiration to the boy. It was one
of the mill towns on the Merrimac River. I knew it well
only a few years afterwards when I went to school at
Andover, Mass. It was created by those merchant princes
and public benefactors, the brothers Amos and Abbott
Lawrence, who put their mills there and had ended their
long, useful, and patriotic lives only a year or two before
our friend was born. Their memory is still green in New
England and throughout the United States for business
ability, activity, and energy in production and in fostering
public improvement, for their public benefactions, for
their beneficence, and their devotion to duty and faithful
service in public office; and that memory must have been
an inspiration to that little boy in the town of Lawrence.

Mills have always been the support of that town. The
cotton factories of the brothers Lawrence were followed
shortly by other factories, such as woolen and paper mills
and the manufacture of steam engines. The water power
had been developed and was the foundation for the mills.

Our friend's father, John Capstick, an Englishman by
birth, was one of those who gave prosperity to the town. .
He was a practical chemist in dyes and colors for textile
fabrics, a most useful and complicated profession, whose
need we are only now learning with reference to dye-
stuffs and the fact that they have been made recently
abroad rather than here. The boy was brought up and


Memorial Addresses : Representative Capstick

spent his life in this skilled profession. While he was still
a schoolboy only 12 years old the family moved to Provi-
dence, R. I., where he found himself in a broader atmos-
phere, not only one of mills but of the university and the
State government, and where he attended the Morey and
Goff College, a technical higher school of that day. He
was even then an ardent American, and became a member
of Rhode Island's crack First Light Infantry. In 1883,
when he was 27 years old, the father and sons moved to
Montville, N. J., a few miles east of Boonton, where they
established their own dye works under the name of John
Capstick & Sons. The works were successful, the town is
their town, and the ground around was almost altogether
owned by the firm. Our friend built his home, where he
lived and died, on the hill above the dye works. Those
works a few years ago were burned and torn down.

But his life occupation had already grown out of the
works. He had become vice president of the Morristown
Trust Co. In 1905 he was made a member of the State
sewerage commission, a inost important work in our
thickly settled State. In 1908 he became a member of the
State board of health, and his associates immediately
chose him as their president. He remained in these duties
until he was elected to Congress as a Republican in 1914.
He was again elected in 1916. We expected a long service
of him, but his health failed. He never thoroughly recov-
ered, and he died on March 17, 1918, at the early age
of 62.

His work here shows that he loved what he had to do
as a Member. He was full of patriotic energy.

In May, 1916, when we enlarged the Regular Army
after the service on the border, he printed a speech saying
that the bill should have been stronger; that an army is
an essential factor of safety and protection in emergency;
that sparks from the flames of Europe have been car-


Address of Mr. Parker, of New Jersey

ried in our direction; "several times critical conditions
have arisen; to-morrow may demand that we face others;
history shows that the powers that have lived the longest
have been the strongest in security and protection; arma-
ment is provocative of war only when it has been pro-
cured for aggression, and the fact that we have unlim-
ited resources is only an invitation to attack, a greater
invitation to attack, unless we utilize wealth and oppor-
tunities as means of security and protection, but in order
to increase and not diminish our influence in promoting
peace; and the cost of preparedness now would be noth-
ing compared with the cost of repelling a foreign

I would have liked to read all this speech, but I have
selected his own words from parts of it.

He offered in that Congress a resolution that soldiers'
mail should be carried free. In the speech he printed on
the subject he urged that such a measure would be an
incentive to soldiers to write oftener, as well as encour-
agement to the folks at home to write to their boys, to
whom letters from home mean so much.

He printed a speech on the merchant marine, another
on the proper and kindly transportation of cattle, and
another with his resolution — I doubt whether it was in-
troduced except by that speech — to provide every soldier
who went to the border with a service honor flag that he
might leave at home as a memento. All his speeches
show his great heart.

In the Sixty-fourth Congress he was a meniber of the
Committee on Claims. It was a very Ijard-working com-
mittee, and he did, at least, his share. I have gone over
35 careful reports which he wrote and filed himself dur-
ing his short service. They are, of course, on business
matters and not generally interesting to us all, but it is
the kind of work that makes Congress a useful body.


Memorial Addresses: Representative Capstick

He was most regular in attendance, devoted to his work,
and showed sound judgment and care in the preparation
of these reports.

In the Sixty-fifth Congress he was assigned to the Com-
mittee on Banking and Currency, but he was too ill to
take the active part which he certainly would if health
had remained.

We all know how devoted he was to home and to its
duties and to its privileges. His wife was Ella F. Blake,
of Boston. He was altogether a good citizen and neigh-
bor. He was respected and loved by all who knew him.
His geniality and generosity were always marked. Among
other things, he loved music. He played the violin and
the piano. Even on his deathbed his violin was by his
side. He even remodeled his house and added a large
music room and a beautiful organ, at the time that his
wife and himself were left alone after the death of their
only daughter and when he wished to take his dear wife's
thoughts away from constant grief.

His funeral was attended by men from all over our
State of New Jersey, as well as from New York and Massa-
chusetts. We were all sincere mourners at his grave.

His memory will live with those who knew him as an
honorable, true, and brave man who loved his country.
Perhaps we could use the words:

Write me as one wlio loves his fellow men.


Address of Mr. Lobeck, of Nebraska

Mr. Speaker : After hearing the story of Mr. Capstick's
life told by the gentleman from New Jersey [Mr. Parker]
I regret that I did not know him more intimately.

I did not have the honor and privilege to meet him
often. My acquaintance with him was not of an intimate
nature. During this Congress we were assigned to the
Committee on Banking and Currency, but illness pre-
vented the Congressman to attend, which I am sure it
would have pleased him to do. I am certain that with his
wide business experience, could he have been able to at-
tend the committee meetings, his advice would have been
very valuable.

In reading the life story of the Congressman I read the
same story that the average American, boy and man, must
go through to secure the confidence of the community in
which he resides. He must have the confidence of his
business associates that he meets with in daily life to se-
cure the eminence that Mr. Capstick attained. The high
esteem and regard in which he was held by those who
knew him best could not have been attained except by
his careful attention to the business he was engaged in
and his ideas of commercial honesty. I read that he was
successful in his business; that in whatever he did he was
most painstaking and industrious and gave the occupa-
tion he was engaged in his most careful attention. I do
not wonder that he was successful in commercial life.

He was highly honored by the governor of his State,
and by his fidelity to the trust placed in him was further
appreciated and greater honors were bestowed on him;
and his associates on the State board of health for the


Mkmoiuai, Ai)1)hi:ssi;s : Rki'kksentativtj Capstick

Stalo of Now Jersey elccled liini lo llie presidency t)f the
board, showing their appreciation of his services.

No wonder his noiglibors and his home people decided
to send him to broader fields of action. They elected him
to represent them in Congress. They knew and trusted
him and had faith in his fidelity to his people, to his State,
and to the flag of our country.

No doubt Mr. Capstick put the same energy in his work
in Congress that made him so successful in business.
Probably he overdid — there is so much to do at the Capi-
tol — for a Member of Congress can be busy every moment,
especially if interested in the work that comes to him.

We shall miss Mr. Capstick. No man of his character
and business abilities would pass unnoticed in the House
of Representatives. Ability is recognized and asserts its
way among the membership. It is a great honor to be a
Member of the Congress of the United States, to possess
tlie confidence of the home people, and I am sure he had
that confidence.

We know not why men are called away from life when
it seems they have just arrived at the period of great use-
fulness and helpfulness to mankind. Humanity can but
demonstrate the fact of what has happened. We can not

In our associations with Members from everj' portion
of our countrj' we make personal friendsliips never to be
forgotten. Since mj' coming to Congress many Members
have passed away and are no more; but their hearty wel-
come, tlicir friendly greetings, and their friendship will
never be forgotten as long as memorj' lasts. Loving hands
have laid away Mr. Capstick. Those that knew him best,
that were his intimate associates, remember him as a
good friend and neiglibor, and they will miss him in their
daily life, tliey will be better for having known him ; for,
as I read the storj' of his achievements, I am sure his
" life was wortli the living."


Address of Mr. Bacharach, of New Jersey

Mr. Speaker: Once again the inevitable hand of death
has been laid upon a Member of this House; and, in ac-
cordance with its beautiful and time-honored custom, we
are assembled here this afternoon to pay public tribute
to the life, character, and public service of a departed
colleague who has answered the summons of his Master
and has rendered an account of his stewardship.

On this occasion we are gathered here to pay tribute
to the memorj' of one of New Jersey's adopted sons and
distinguished citizens, John H. C.\pstick. late Representa-
tive of the fifth congressional district, who died at his
home in Mont\'ille, Morris Countj', on Sunday, March
17, 1918.

Mr. Capstick was bom in La^^Tence, Mass., where he
dwelt with his parents until the age of 12, when his fam-
ily moved to Rhode Island. It was there that he received
his early education in the public and private schools of

His father, John Capstick, was a chemist of consider-
able abilitA' and a practical business man, who specialized
in the coloring and printing of textile fabrics.

With his family he migrated to the State of New Jersey
in 1883, where he erected a factorj' at Mont^'ille and
established the business of printing and dyeing, under the
firm name of John Capstick & Sons, consisting of himself
and his two sons, John H. and Thomas.

Bj' hard work and the application of good sound busi-
ness principles success followed their undertaking, and
in a few years the name and reputation of Capstick &
Sons was well and favorably known throughout the field
of textile commercialism.

116940°— 19 2 [17]

Memorial Addresses: Representative Capstick

Following the death of his father, John H. Capstick
succeeded to the head of the business, which was con-
tinued without change in name. The high order of busi-
ness ability which he had inherited from his father and
which he had developed by close attention to the minutest
details of the work well equipped him for the duties which
devolved upon him.

Possessed of a strong and vigorous make-up, both men-
tally and physically, he put into his new responsibilities
those energies which characterize the virile man of busi-
ness. Under the impetus which his leadership gave to
the business, increased success attended the enterprise
with great rapidity, and not only did it bring wealth to
the owners but it soon became the leading industry of the
little village, bringing much happiness and contentment
to the community.

It was more than a business to him; it was a living
institution, with possibilities of growth and usefulness
which awakened his enthusiasm and inspired in him
almost filial regard. No labors were too exacting that
would contribute to its growth and prestige, for he knew
that its expansion and prosperity meant more to the hun-
dreds of men and women in its employ than it did to him.

His tremendous power for work and his ability to do
big things was an inspiration to those associated with him
to do their best for the mutual success and prosperity
of all. By the application of methods of efTiciency and
the loyalty of those associated with him he developed
a very excellent organization, and in the latter years of
his life he was able to intrust the operation of the factory
to subordinates and to give some of his time and ability
to the welfare of his community, his State, and the

He took an active part in all local civic affairs. In
1906 he was elected as a member of the board of direc-
tors of the Morristown Trust Co., one of the largest and


Address of Mr. Bacharach, of New Jersey

strongest financial institutions in nortli Jersey; in 1911
he was elected as one of its vice presidents, which oflice
he held at the time of his death. I append herewith a
copy of the resolution adopted by the board of directors
of that institution upon the death of their colleague :

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Online Library2d session United States. 65th CongressJohn H. Capstick (late a representative from New Jersey) Memorial addresses delivered in the House of representatives of the United States, Sixty-fifth Congress, second session (Volume 1) → online text (page 1 of 4)