The newspaper records are on microfilm and easy to find.
But nobody talked to the children that day.
Eighty-five years later, though, the late Beulah Mae Kasinger Cambron, who died on Sept. 30, 2007, still remembered that party.
She was 5 years old in 1916.
And she was one of the children at that first party.
In 2001, when she was 90, Cambron recalled fond memories of walking with her aunt from the neighborhood around Foust Elementary School on West Fifth Street all the way to the old Grand Theatre — across from Smothers Park where American Legion Post 9 was until recently.
The walk to the Christmas party was more than 20 blocks, a long hike on a cold day for a 5-year-old.
“We didn’t think anything of walking back then,” Cambron said. “That’s how you got places.”
More than 1,000 children were invited to that first Goodfellows party.
“It was the first Christmas party I had ever been to,” Cambron remembered. “It was a really good party. There were so many people there. They had a tree and Santa Claus. I don’t remember if we sang songs or not.”
But she still remembered the gifts the Goodfellows gave her.
“There was a little rag doll with a chalk head,” Cambron said. “And there was candy and fruit. Everybody was poor back then. We didn’t have much. And it was a wonderful party.”
That was the only Goodfellows party she ever attended.
But Cambron said, “I’ll never forget it. The Goodfellows do such a good job for our children, buying them toys and warm clothes.”
Times are tough for a lot of families this year as well.
The need to provide a Christmas party for the children is as great as it was in 1916.
And every dollar raised will go directly to help the children of the community.
You can help by sending donations to Goodfellows Club, Messenger-Inquirer, Box 1480, Owensboro, KY 42302, by bringing contributions to the newspaper office at 1401 Frederica St. or online at goodfellowsclubofowensboro.org/contribute/.
Goodfellows Roll Call, Dec. 5, 2017
Previously reported … $44,008.15
77th performance of the Messiah by the Owensboro Choral Society …
Anonymous cash donations … $2,201.03
In loving memory of Brenda M.
Gerteisen … $500
In loving memory of Barry Boone … $500
KJ Harney … $500
In memory of deceased members of the
Collignon and Van Meter families by the family of L.E. Van Meter II … $200
In loving memory of Charlie and
Emogene Settle by Patricia Settle … $100
In memory of Don Moore, Jr. by
Tab and Vicki Quisenberry … $100
In loving memory of Ralph O. Freer by
Melinda Francis … $100
In loving memory of Lynn Mobley,
Hope McElwain, and Martha Armstrong by Army and Lynne Armstrong … $100
In memory of the Gilles and Slack families by Mr. and Mrs. Robert J.
In memory of my husband, Ralph O.
Freer by Markley Freer … $50
Victor Craig Miller … $50
In loving memory of Lynn Mobley by
Leslie Mobley and family … $50
In memory of Helen Frey by Charles and Belinda Hicks … $25
In loving memory of Helen Hite Frey by Bob and Barbara Bruner … $25
In memory of Martin and Rose
Hodskins by Mark and Tammy Freer … $25
In memory of Ralph O. Freer by Mark and Tammy Freer … $25
In honor of Jane Stevenson by Marcia
Carpenter … $25
In honor of Matthew Constant by
Marcia Carpenter … $25
In memory of Rev. and Mrs. James
Higdon by Mr. and Mrs. Tom Dixon … $25
Rose T. Cecil … $20
In honor of grandchildren Jax and
Ellie by Brenda Zuerner … $20
In loving memory of Gail B. Dixon … $15
Total for the 77th Messiah … $4,781.03
In loving memory of T.O. Blackburn and Kenneth Cole by Winnie J. Blackburn … $500
In memory of Morton and Margaret
Holbrook by Mr. and Mrs. Morton Holbrook III, and Allen Holbrook and Forrest Roberts … $500
Anonymous … $500
Daviess County High School staff Soup Day for Kids … $429.35
In memory of Mary Jane Blandford by Don Blandford … $200
Eleanor Brown … $200
In memory of Billie J. Magruder and
Leticia Barker … $200
In memory of “Burr” Newton by James and Linda Newton … $100
In honor of veterans and a challenge to individuals or couples with income of $100,000 or more to donate $100+ to the Goodfellows Club by Don Everitt Sr. … $100
In memory of Margaret and John
Hayden and Louis P. Wedding, and in honor of Birdie Wedding … $100
In memory of James Constant by
Faye Constant … $100
In memory of Xee Beers and Becky
Kinsey by Southern Belle Homemakers
Club ... $50
Mary Hughes … $50
In memory of Fred and Maurine
Grant … $50
Scott and Anne Gleason … $50
Cherilyn Kizer … $30
In memory of Hoyt Phillips, Jerry
Phillips, Larry Hart, Filmore Aubrey,
Eartha Aubrey, Madalynn Matlock,
Vic Estes, David Matlock,
Allison Tenbarqe, Phillip Drewry,
Darlene Conder, Parker Tenbarqe,
Mildred Sinnett by Marilyn Matlock and Joe Phillips … $30
In honor of Hazel Mayse … $20
Total as of Dec. 5, 2017 … $51,998.53