Richard R. Riedel Typescript

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Richard R. Riedel Typescript

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The Richard R. Riedel Typescript - 10 pages

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Richard R. Riedel

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A Fragmentary History of the Early Life of Temple University by Rev. Richard R. Riedel. Compiled by Mrs. Richard R. Riedel and Richard Langham Riedel.

In this feeble attempt to assist in an effort to assemble and preserve all possible facts in connection with the early history of Temple University and its founder Russell H. Conwell we have hurriedly. and fragmentarily gathered a few extracts from reminiscences written by Mr. Riedel, from interviews with him and extracts from sketches written by others about him and his association with Temple University, In doing this we have tried to eliminate everything pertaining to his work outside of that connected with the University, which has been a difficult task, for his whole life was so imbued with the spirit of and love for the University and Dr. Conwell. This is a much abbreviated stagy of the experiences of one "original" student. More might and same day may be written and much could never be written of the struggles and sacrifices of the early students in order that they might obtain a higher education and at the same time help in their small way to establish for future generations a great and helpful institution which they believed in. But no one can ever record the gladness of it for they "counted it roll joy" and "offered the sacrifice of praise to God continually" as did also Mr. and Mrs. Conwell and the heroic members of the faculty and church watching for souls as they that must give account, that they might do it with joy, and not with grief."

From reminiscences of Rev. Richard R. Reidel written by him in 1910 we quote: "Early in the year 1887 two young men, members of Grace Baptist church, Charles Sloan and Earl Francis, were led by the Master to think of the christian ministry as their life work. They came to Russell H. Conwell, then as now, pastor of Grace Baptist Church and told of their great desire, and asked him to help them gain the necessary education. They had no money with which to pay their way at a University and could not be spared from home. The history of the founding of Temple College is inseparably linked with the church and Pastor Conwell. To write a history of these is to write a part of the history of the greatest of institutions. The pastor preached straight forward and earnest and many were inspired to nobler deeds. Mr. Conwell was known far and near as ''one who loved his fellow men". It never mattered whet creed a person professed, if the need was there they were helped. If broken in spirit he had a, healing balm, always doing and saying the right word. The erring or lost were pointed to Christ, and the church was with him in everything". How the people sacrificed many of the necessities of life in order to help preach Christ. by word and deed. Mr. Conwell promised to help these young men; offered to teach and in that way they could work by day and recite in the evening. In this offer was laid the foundation principle upon which the present great Temple University now stands and has become the beacon flaming forth hope and success to those who want to fit themselves for something useful in this work-a-day world. By voice and pen and untiring Energy Mr. Conwell soon gathered about him many who Were inspired by his spirit of helpfulness. Some came to teach, others to learn. A few stood aloof and waited. No one ever realized for an instant that this spirit of self forgetfulness on his part would have such a far reaching effect, for since then dozens of institutions have copied after the plans laid by Mr. Conwell and thousands of men and women have been enabled through the Temple College to better their condition and help the world to better things, and who would otherwise perhaps never have had the chance to develop their God given talents. I remember well that first night we met. It was in the house next door to the old church building on Mervine above Berks Street, used on Sundays for several departments of the ever Increasing Sunday School. The upper portions were used as offices for the church and Mr. Conwell’s study. The church was fast outgrowing its seating capacity. On Sundays it was crowded. On the platform Mr. Conwell had scarcely room to stand. The isles and the stairways were packed hundreds were turned away and others waited in the lecture room for the after meeting. Plans were under way; I remember seeing several sketches for enlarging the old building, for that became a necessity. The present large Temple is a monument to the self sacrificing spirit of both pastor and people. Thanks be to God for giving such a man to Philadelphia and the world. One Sunday Mr. Conwell announced that on the following Tuesday evening a class would be formed for the study of Latin and Greek, Rhetoric and Logic, and Hygiene. Other studies as they were needed would be added. Those who wanted a higher education, said Mr. Conwell, should join this class. At this point taking up the words of the chronicler the story of the forming of the first class is carried on in the third person. It was on that Sunday afternoon that Earl Francis said to Richard R. Riedel, who was also a member of the church, You are coming to the class are you not? Why no, said Riedel, it is only for those who wish to prepare for the ministry. Well no, not only for those, was the reply but for all who wish to gain an education. You have been wishing for just this for a long time now so you had better come." "I'll think it over" said the other and they parted. Young Riedel was then studying Art with John U. Boirzard who had a school for young artists at 10th and Cherry Sts., having studied for a term in Spring Garden Institute, term of 1886-1887, trying to fit himself to go to a Conservatory of Art in Boston. He was employed at the artificial flower manufacturing establishment of Isador Birge, 924 Arch St., having been with the firm for about eleven years. So he simply entered College that he might gain higher education yet half afraid to put his power of mind to the test. From the time he was thirteen years old he felt that some day he must enter the christian ministry but put it off (feeling, to put it in his own words, "that he was not good enough for such a high and sacred profession" even though he was a young man of such marked integrity) and it was only after a long struggle that he became convinced that "woe is me if I preach not the Gospel, and now duty has become a joy. Through part of the struggle he had the encouragement and counsel of Mr. Conwell and he finally decided to denote his life to the Christian ministry. Richard R. Riedel was born February 13, 1864. When eleven years of age he united with the reformed church but for a number of years had been an attendant of the Grace Baptist church, and was baptized into the fellowship of that church by Rev. Dr. Russell H. Conwell on November 2, 1884; was a member of W.C. Eisenbray’s Sunday School class from which class quite a number of boys have entered the ministry and many other useful professions. Mr. Riedel was also a member of Section G. Christian Endeavor Society. The first class in Temple College was organized one Tuesday evening early in 1887. Mr. Riedel had promised Earl Francis to be present and was there that first night. Quoting direct from Mr. Riedel he says, "Mr. Conwell talked it over with us and we found what books were necessary and set the time for recitations etc. "After a lecture by Mr. Conwell as to the possibilities lying before us if we had "sticktuitiveness" and wishing us success we were dismissed for the evening, and thus began the great work of education now carried forward on such an extensive plan. "This first class for the study of Latin and Greek was composed of the following: Earl Francis, Charles Sloan, Richard R. Riedel Elmer Robertson, O. T. Steward, Alexander Douglass, and Wm. Wilson. "Those were the first seven who were there the very first night. Later there were J. L. Parker, Chas. Hall, E. C. Hall, C. E. Parker, and Wm. laws, making in all twelve students in the first Greek class formed in "Temple College." "Rev. Edward S. Fitz M.D. of Roadstown, N.J. was the first regular teacher of Latin and Gree, Mr. Conwell taught rhetoric and Logic. Caroline M. Dodson, M.D. taught Hygiene. Later Dr. J.E. Sagebeer taught Logic and Rhetoric; then followed Dr. Geo. A. Peltz, Hiram F. Reed, Miss Clara L King and Morris Korrstine, O. G. J. Schadt and a noble army of men and women who had caught the spirit of helpfulness from our dear President. "In 1889 Mis Zelia W. Dellow became Secretary to the Temple College corporation and Rev. Frederick H. Greul became Dean." In recalling these days Mr. Riedel always referred loyally to his fellow students and to those early teachers in the then struggling institution whose influence was ever upon his life. "Since then the history of the college is one of constant enlargement, and Philadelphia and the College Alma Mater are proud of her achievements and thank God for the self sacrifice of time, labor and money of her honored President and her noble faculty, in order that men and women might realize better things and do the work of the world in the best possible way. "On June 13, 1839, the Temple College held its second Annual Commencement exercises in the Academy of Music which was attended by thousands of Philadelphia's citizens, and proved the need for such an institution and what could be done by earnest men and women." Reverting again to the third person we find the following record: "Mr. Riedel had the honor with others, of delivering an original oration at this commencement as a representative of the Oratory classy his subject way the College motto, "Perseverentia Vincet." He has preserved both his address and a copy of the program. This address was memorized. In it he told how Mr. Conwell came into the class room one evening when the College was but a few weeks in existence and gave to the Latin students "Perseverentia Vincet" as a motto, saying if they made it their own they would be sure to succeed and from that day one it has become the motto of Temple University." While this Occasion is referred to as a "commencement" there were no graduates at that time as the following account of the first graduating exercises is quoted from a Philadelphia paper of that period, and preserved by Mr. Riedel in a scrap book. According to this list of graduates Mr. Riedel was the only one of the original seven who remained to graduate, The date is lacking on this newspaper account but as Mr. Riedel is one of the graduates his diploma is dated June 6, 1892. TEMPLE COLLEGE NOW AN ALMA MATTER. For the First Time Since Its Founding the Institution graduates a Class. Eighty Others receive Certificates of Proficiency in Various Branches. President Conwell's Eloquent Address. For the first time since its founding, four years ago, Temple College conferred degrees upon graduates last night at the commencement exercises in the Grace Baptist Temple, Broad and Berks Streets. There were eighteen graduates and they are the first to call Temple College their alma mater. Besides these, eighty students received certificates of proficiency in various branches, but are not enrolled as full graduates. The vast church was crowded with people. Those who happened to come a little late were turned away, as there was not even standing room. Hundreds waited on the Temple steps hoping to get in, but were disappointed. The interior was beautifully decorated. Rev. Dr. Russell H. Conwell, president of Temple College, presided and around him were gathered the trustees and Professors. In front of the pulpit sat the happy-faced graduates, and behind the pulpit were many of the 1200 students of the college. After an invocation by Rev. Forrest E. Dager, President Conwell made an address, which was frequently interrupted by applause. He Said: "It is our joy and our pride that Temple College exists and is prosperous. We have struggled along and, we are proud that the institution is financially ahead and not behind. Temple College is open to every wage earner, to everybody, to get a full collegiate education. It is for the person who was not born with a silver spoon in his mouth. To Educate The Poor. "The aim of the institution is to educate the poor. Look at the great men in public life, at the head of our political institutions, at the head of our great banks, and you will find that 95 per cent. of them come from a humble family. Their brains were disciplined by the hard lot they had. But it was their poverty which gave them stamina and won them fame. In every free country the poor man is bound to win; he may not in an aristocratic government. "It is our aim to fit a boy or a girl or any person of any age (for it is never too late to get an education) with an education. that will elevate him or her. We have been told that it would never do to educate the poor, that it would make the poor boy and girl discontented with their lot. Indeed, the manufacturers informed me when this college was being started that it would never do. I venture to make the prophecy now that in twenty years some employee of those manufacturers will have received their education here and will be the owners of those very factories. "Intelligence is better, mightier than sinews. Education helps a man or woman in this life. We have the corporate power to confer degrees. We give a good collegiate education to the poor." In conclusion Dr. Swell stated that it was the hope of the trustees and himself to see the beginning of the erection of the proposed college building alongside of the Temple Church October 1, and that when the next commencement exercises rolled around the college hall would be the scene of the event. The property had been purchased and was partly paid for. The cost of the college building is to be $55,000. It will be built of stone, be three stories in height and will be divided into fifty four class rooms. The Exercises. Following Dr. Conwell's address, the students sang a college song and Albert E. McKinley Delivered the Latin salutatory. Charles 0. Herdershott gave a recitation in Greek entitled the "Address of Clearchus." The rest of the programme included a recitation, "The Wreck of the Hesperus," by Kate F. Berry; a French recitation, "Iphigenia," by Beatrice Clayton; a German recitation, "Einer, oder der Andere," by Pierson. Desch; a German essay on Baron Alexander von Humboldt, by William B. Monroe, Jr.; an essay, "They Say," written by Beatrice Clayton and delivered by Bertha Braley; essay, "Marvelous Peace," by John Meighan; essay, "All studies tend to a thorough mastery of English," by William Copper Dickey, Jr.; an address, "Sunshine and ihadows," by Mary E. Young; an address, "Municipal Reform in Philadelphia," by Robert J. Milligan; an address, "The Power of Oratory," by Henry A. Hoefler. After this President Conwell awarded the diplomas and certificates and then benediction was pronounced. The following were the graduates and received the degree of bachelor of oratory: Margaret Laura Welsh, Mary Elizabeth Young, Fannie M. Chambers, Ella Fazer, Charles Adams, Henry A. Hoefler, Edward Henry Eldridge, Albert Edward Mckinley,. Richard Reinhold Riedel, Harvey Edward Knupp, Harry Francis Young, Harvey Gourley, Robert Jackson Millign, Sylvan Rodelheim, George Washington Maxwell, John Meighan, Charles Oelschlager, William W. J. Crowell. The Certificates Granted. Certificates of proficiency in various branches were givin to the following students: Bookkeeping- Lidie Makinson, Charles A. Norman, John Purdy, William J. Adams, James Fernley, Mary G. Ellinger, Bella S. T. Bunnell, Anna Mckee, Albert H. Geibler, Clara Y. Gamble, Edward J. Bortner, George L. Rich, Marie C. Supphin, Alexander H. Harvey, Mary H. Smith, Lillian M. Hunt, William Summerfield, Thomas Fitzpatrick, Emma Nadaud, Ida A. Iba, Morris Umstead. Day Department- Grace Essex, Kate Campbell, Bertha Umstead, Bert. Vanlier Campbell, George W. Hice, A. B. Arleigh. Composition- Ida Shulte, George Smith, Samuel Johnson, Emma Semidtmeier, Robert Magee. Arithmetic- Thomas J. Bigger, George L. Rich, William J. Harper; Frank J. Brown, William J. York; Jr., John C. Rommel, William F. Meyer, Alexander Wright, David Price, George Holden, Mary F. Cook; Blanche E. Herbert, Emma Schmidtmeier. Grammar- William J. Harper, George B. Eutchins, William R. Wick, Frank J. Brown, Howard C. Gibbens, Robert J. Magee, Alexander Wright, Matilda Schnell, Bella Hume, Hume, Emma Schmidtmeier, Anna Lamb. Penmanship- Sophia A. Brabant, D. R. Byron, J. McBrearty, J. H. Ray, H. C. Anderson, J. C. Rommel, K. E. Smith, C. J. Olsen, W. Miller, R. Zink, Lizzie McCreary, E. J. Butler, E. A. J. Gegenheimer, M. Umstead, Bella F. Shoemaker, Harry A. E1tz, Walter Miller, Nellie E. Taylor, Ida B. Ludwig, W. C. McGowan, Mayer Laveson, Clara Greenwood Samuel McLaughlin, Jennie E. Sadler. At a Meeting of the Board of Trustees in the afternoon Rev. J. M. Mealy, of New Wilmington, Pa., and Professor Charles Wilbur, of Adrian College, Michigan, were given the honorary degree of doctor of divinity. The following Board of Trustees has elected for the ensuing year: Rev. Dr. Russell H. Conwell, president; William S. Reed, Richard G. Oellers, John Little, Thomas D. Caswell, Joseph E. Laure, Matthew Brooks, George Zidel, Alexander Reed, William C. Bennett, E. C. Eisenbrey, William Zindel, Charles F. Stone. Miss Zilia W. Dellow was re-elected secretary of the board." In October, 1889, Mr. Riedel vas elected president of the Philomathian Literary Society, with Henry A. Hoeffler as secretary. This Society was the first in Temple College and was organized by Horace McKean. The original Constitution, By-laws and Rules of Order is an interesting twelve page document signed in their own hand writing by the following: E. B. Francis, Richard R. Riedel, Fred L. Davies, Elmer E. Robertson, Alexander Douglas, Elmer E. Hall, Harry Beck, T. H. Downward, Samuel H. F. Batemen, Edgar K. Peirson, William Herring, Wm. Van Toor, Howard G. Lambert, H. A. Hoefler, EdgarL. Davies, Chas E. Craig, Frank W. Bander, Alexander Moxwell, John Weaver. One evening during the examination in the Spring of 1889, Mr. Conwell asked each student to state upon his or her examination paper just what profession or business he or she intended to prepare for. Mr. Riedel was undecided. He felt he ought to study for the Ministry, yet ever underestimating his own worthiness and ability felt there were others far better qualified than he, and they should enter that work. Mr. Conwell said to Richard, "I want to speak to you just a moment after class is dismissed." He then offered to bear all expenses to send him to another college if he would give himself to the Christian ministry, telling him that he was sure of this one thing, that his usefulness lay in that direction and he would never be happy until he entered the ministry. The extreme sensitive nature of Mr. Riedel asserted itself and he declined this gracious offer saying much as he knew God was calling him, just then he felt unfitted and undecided what he should do. He thought too of his folks at home; His father was old and losing his power of sight; his wages were needed at home and what would his parents do without his help. He thought that by perhaps preparing himself for the profession of law of could support his parents and remain with them, so he declined the offer. The offer was never renewed. Possibly Mr. Conwell forgot all about it and M. Riedel never reminded him of it although many times sorely tried and often penniless. Once M. Conwell sent him ten dollars to help him out in a financial crisis and he has tried to pass it on to some other poor fellow since. The following summer the final decision came and he resolved to enter the ministry, to go to the day department which had just been opened. Dr. Geo, A. Feltz was teacher of the Bible department. It was while on the annual excursion of the church and Sunday School to Cape May that year that he told Mr. Conwell of the resolve. Wm. Foley at this time also resolved to study. In the fall of 1890 Mr. Riedel resigned the position he had held for more than eleven years to take up day studies. During the years since the organizing of the first class he had attended the college at night, working during the day. The "Crowning of Columbia" was presented in the then almost completed building of the Temple. It was a great success. Mr. Riedel and Wm. Foley were night watchmen during this fair. As the hours wore on through the night Riedel, in order to rest from study, would frequently stand upon the temporary platform and repeat a few verses from the Bible, a few lines from Shakespeare, or a verse of a poem, called "The Four Seasons," by May Field McKean, which he had recited at an entertainment. The little he had saved soon went and he found work for half a day with McGee and Co., Bookbinders, on Ridge Ave., going to College in the afternoon. Later he and Herman Heppe entered the "Fruit Business."

As time went on Richard found employment with the City Mission Society, Dr. B. McMackin Superintendent. He was "special police" at a tent where Thomas Needham conducted revival meetings, 45 and Woodland Ave. That fall he became janitor of Temple College with privilege to all classes, So he continued in his studies and worked on earning his way its he went, giving good service. In the summer of 1891 he preached as a supply in a church in Camden, N.J., and received his first fee. It was five dollars. This he gave to the Temple College. His second fee soon followed, in supplying for Rev. Horace McKean, then pastor of the Pilgrim Baptist church, Philadelphia." In the record of "Texts and Topics" of sermons preached by Rev. Riedel we find the following note, written in later years in reference to his early sermons preached while a student at Temple College: "1891;" This was the beginning of my work for Christ. I remember that I felt much encouraged but felt also the need of an education." The first sermon of which we have record was preached at Clearfield Mission of Grace Baptist Church, from the text "I will, be thou clean, Matt. 8: 3. Then followed Tioga Mission, Rising Sun Lane and Broad St., Text, Follow Me, Matts 9: 9. "This was a blessed service" is the comment added. Fairhill Baptist Church, Lehigh near 5th St., Text s, Whitened fields, John 4: 35; Is not this the Christ, John 4: 29, with this word added: "'worked real hard and wept, I was so glad to preach, and consecrated Myself to the Lord's work." "Mariner's Bethel, Front and Christian Sts., Texts: I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, Romans 1: 16; Lord teach us to pray, Luke 11: 1." This comment follows. "Taught a class, led in the singing etc. Rev. McKay, a blacksmith by trade, then just starting was the preacher ordinarily. Here I had a good class and often led prayer meetings." "Baptist church Camden, New Jersey, Texts, , Whitened fields, revised; I will, be thou clean.'' This comment; "here I received my first fee for services as preacher. It was five dollars, which I gave to the Temple College." The first record of 1892 is that of supplying the pulpit in the church of which Rev. McKean was pastor. "Pilgrim Baptist Church, 23rd and Christian, Horace G. McKean pastor.: Text, Your talents, Matt. 25: 19. This gave me my second fee of five dollars." This is but a sample of the Christian work done by the early students, working their way through College and in addition to this Mr. Riedel was helping support his father’s family, as possibly others were doing. While this is a record of a small portion only of the work of Mr. Riedel during his student days and omits thirty years of faithful Christlike living and preaching in which no hand but that of the Recording Angel can register efforts and results; it might be well to mention here the subjects and texts of the sermons preached two days before God called him suddenly. Sunday morning, February 1, 1920, The Unknown Christ, John 14: 9; Sunday evening, investing in the Promises of God, Hebrews 11: 24. On June 6 1892 he was graduated from Temple College receiving the degree of B.0. His intention was to go to Crozer Seminary in the fall should the way open. Of this period in the life of the College Mr. Riedel has this to say, "The College met with opposition from those of whom it was least expected and the students had to prove they were as capable of entering advanced institutions as those from other and older institutions of learning and it was no easy task to be true to the Col1ege. The Societies maintained to he1p worthy students for the ministry were reticent about spending money on us and it was no easy task either to get help for worthy men." Through the kindness of Dr. Conwell and Dr. Peltz help came from the Pennsylvania Ministerial Education Society, and Crozer gave room rent, bedding and tuition free so these things being secured he went to Crozer Theological Seminary the third week in September. That summer before going to Crozer and before receiving his appointment, as he was trying to earn some money to again work his way though, Philadelphia and the whole country seemed to be in a general panic. Thousands were idle but Richard procured work, caring not how hard only so he might help at home and save a little for Seminary expenses, working with several contractors and for months being employed with stone masons at the hardest kind of work.

The boss, "Joe," they called him, and all the others were sorry when he bade them goodbye as he told them he was going to the Theological Seminary. They could not understand, never having heard of such a place. When told he was a student for the ministry several said, "Ah, I thought so; you never drank nor swore but were kind and obliging, the best man on the job, the men never had to call the second time for mortar or stone. Goodbye, and God bless you." During the early loam of his Seminary course he preached in Wilmington, Delaware in a fission connected with the Delaware Ave. Baptist church, Dr. Bainbridge pastor. There is now a flourishing church where the Elliot Ave. Mission was conducted in an old farm house. Later he became pastor of the Morton, Pa. Baptist church, which student pastorate he retained during the remainder of his Seminary course. He was licensed by the Grace Baptist Church on the twenty-sixth day of January, 1895 "to exercise his gifts in the work of the ministry, to preach the gospel as he may have opportunity." On the sixth day of June 1895, he was publicly ordained to the work of the Gospel ministry by a Council of Baptist churches, composed of messengers from sixteen churches, convened at the call of the Grace Baptist Church at Philadelphia. Rev. Chas. Warwick, D.D., Moderator, and Rev, L,J. Denchfield, D,D. clerk. Dr. Milton G. Evans of Crozer Seminary preached the sermon from the text, "And the Kingdom shall be Jehovah's." That fall Mr. Riedel returned to Crozer for another years work, upon the earnest solicitations of Dr. Stiffer and Dr. Evans, preaching meanwhile very successfully in Morton, Pa. To this term and to the kindness of the professors he attributes his success as a student of the Scriptures, having time to meditate, to make use of the valuable library at Crozer, graduating June 3, 1896. With the graduation of Mr. Riedel from Crozer Seminary we shall pass over all the experiences of the years, for a later record. Much has been recorded of his seven years' work in Western Pennsylvania, followed by six years in 'the National Capital at Washington, on to Chicago for five years and back to Washington, D. C, for seven years where the end came February 3, 1920. During this period he built a church and burned mortgages on two other churches. He was married at the Temple February 8, 1898, to Carrie E. Langham, Mr. Conwell performing the ceremony, and a happy home was established. A son, Richard Langham Riedel, was born December 3, 1908. Souls were won for the Kingdom. He was a courageous champion of religion, righteousness and reform. Varied were the experiences of his ministry in civic and religious circles, and through it all he constantly gave himself with that full measure instilled in him through his association with Dr. Conwell. He was called by his fellows "the Big Brother to the Poor" and unfailingly he paid tribute to that great leader whom under God he felt all success was due. One writer said his life might be surmised up by the three P’s, Piety, Pluck and Perseverance. Writing of Mr. Conwell and the College, a year before the death of Mrs. Conwell, Mr. Riedel has this to say: "Perhaps it will never be known to what extent Mr. Conwell assisted the boys and how much we owe him for the inspiration and assistance he has given to hundreds. "A deep sense of gratitude fills my soul when I think what he has been to me personally. Longing as I did for higher things, for culture and education, yet proud and backward to the extreme. I owe all I am, under God, to Mr. Conwell. He inspired hope to every movement and provided the way under God for the boys and girls to make effort and win their way in business and professional lines. How much we would have missed had he never come to Philadelphia. God grant him yet many years of usefulness and joy. We love him. "There are a few things, mementos of long ago, that I cherish. One is a letter written by Mr. Conwell before I was converted, another written by him and containing ten dollars, urging me to accept it and use it. The letters received from Mr. Conwell in recent years I cherish but those of the long ago seem best. Another is by the president of the King’s Daughters, enclosing a sum of money which came at a very opportune time while a student at Crozer, and a little booklet of Shakespeare’s Forget-me-nots, presented by Caroline M. Dedson, M.D. professor of Hygiene, Temple College, Philadelphia, June 19, 1888, the close of our first year in College, containing this tribute, "In memory of you faithfulness." And still another, a book on the life of Russell H. Conwell, "Scaling the Eagle’s Nest," presented by Miss Xelia Dellow, Christmas, 1891. "Also a copy of the program of the second annual commencement exercises of the Temple College, held in the Academy of Music, Thursday evening, June 13, 1889. "To this list may be added a copy of the constitution of the Philomathian Literary Society and a copy of the names signed by those present at the organization. "I am proud of the fact that I am one of the original few who formed the nucleus of the first class that Tuesday evening. "Charles Sloan passed into the "beyond" very soon thereafter. Earl B. Francis went to Munson, Massachusetts. Rev. O.T. Steward went to Crozer and is now Supt. Of City Missions, Philadelphia, Pa. Elmer Roberston remained and is now a business man in Philadelphia. Alexander Douglass, Chas. Hall and Elmer Hall went to Bucknell. The rest plodded on, did our work as best as we could assured of victory, "Perseverentia Vincet." I wish we might have a reunion some day, that is, as many as are left. "May God our Father bless our dear friend, brother, teacher, and pastor, Mr. Conwell, that he may be entirely restored, and pastor, Mr. Conwell, that he may be entirely restored to health and strength. God bless Mrs. Conwell, the silent partner in all of his endeavor, by whose quite, patient, self-sacrificing life so much of the abiding fruit of their labor has blessed us all. "They have been like parent to us. Oh, how often we might have failed and despaired but for their faith in us and prayers that God would bless us, and as the years roll on, more and more are we treasuring their every word, every look of cheer, every act of faith and love for humanity. "Dear God, bless Mr. and Mrs. Conwell and the dead old Grace Baptist Church, the noble who stood their ground and gave of their all to the work of Christ, the cause of the Brotherhood of man, for Jesus sake, Amen." On Tuesday evening February 3, 1920 after having repeated the one hundred and twenty-first Psalm, and ministered to his sick wife and son, Rev. Richard R. Riedel stepped outside to complete a task and "he was not, for God took him." In the last message delivered from the pulpit by Mr. Riedel he said that when his time came to go he wanted to see his Savior first of all and then his mother. Two days later this desire was granted. On December 6, 1925 there was a great reunion in heaven when the Founder of Temple University was welcomed in Glory by the hosts whom he had helped to a higher plain for "I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die." "Therefore, my beloved Brethren, be ye steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord."

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Richard R. Riedel, “Richard R. Riedel Typescript,” Digital Exhibits, accessed March 20, 2019, http://gamma.library.temple.edu/exhibits/items/show/290.

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