University of Texas
Austin Lee McRae
October 25, 1861–March 18, 1922

 

 

Austin Lee McRae

 

Acknowledgement: Helpful sources and a number of photos generously provided by David Macomber

Austin Lee McRae was appointed by UT Regents on September 10, 1894 for one year as Associate Professor of Physics at a salary of $3000. November 30, 1894, McRae requested that UT ask for a portion of the power about to become available from Austin Dam and Power Company. He was a director of Athletic Association and a founder of Kosmos Science Organization. On December 5, 1894, a resolution was presented to the Regents to establish a school of engineering. McRae had signed the resolution. In January 1895, McRae was re-elected by the Regents at no change in salary. By June 1896, they reduced the salary of the position from $3000 to $2500, so position was likely empty and McRae must have resigned sometime during 1896. A statement in the History of University of Missouri at Rolla is as follows, “Dr. Austin Lee McRae served as Professor of Physics through the 1893-1894 year, and started classes the fall of 1894. He then resigned to take a position in the Department of Physics at the University of Texas, Austin, but due to factional difficulties in that institution, remained there only a short time.” (The same history states later that he stayed two years. Exact time at UT currently unknown.—Mel Oakes)

AUSTIN LEE McRAE, SD

Professor Austin Lee McRae is not only one of the foremost teachers of the Missouri State School of Mines and· Metallurgy, in which he occupies the chair of physics, but is a prominent, influential and public-spirited citizen of Rolla, who takes interest in all movements which are intended for the betterment of the city. He was born at McRae, Telfair County, Georgia, October 25, 1861, and is a son of John Colin and Elizabeth (Clements) McRae. His paternal grandfather, Alexander Bain McRae, was born in Perth, Scotland, in October, 1771, and came to America when nine years of age. He married Effey McRae, a member of the North Carolina family of that name, whose founders were among the early settlers of Raleigh. Alexander B. McRae, who was a successful planter and a farmer of McRae, Telfair county, Georgia, died January 29, 1849.

His son, John Colin McRae, was born at McRae, August 12, 1834, and was reared on the family plantation. He was educated in private schools, and became a planter. When the Civil war broke out, he enlisted as a private in the Georgia Hussars of Savannah, one of the three companies which formed the Jeff Davis Legion, comprising a part of the brigade under General Wade Hampton. He was killed in action at Goldsboro, North Carolina, March 15, 1865. He was a Mason and a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church South. On November 14, 1858, he married Elizabeth Jane Clements, a daughter of John Clements, a planter of Telfair County, Georgia, and a granddaughter of Gabriel Clements, ensign and lieutenant in the Continental lines and later captain of a company of South Carolina militia, who served under General Francis Marion. On the conclusion of his military service, he located in Crawford county, Georgia, where he died October 20, 1825. He married Mary Watts, of Lexington township, South Carolina, who was granted a pension on January 27, 1853, when she was eighty-two years of age, and who lived to be ninety-seven. Elizabeth Jane Clements McRae was born May 5, 1836, and died in 1872. She is survived by Professor McRae, and Charles Colin McRae, who was born September 24, 1864, and who now resides in Florala, Alabama, a manufacturer of turpentine. John Bascom McRae, the first child of this union, was born September 10, 1859, and died September 18, 1867, at the age of eight years.

Dr. McRae acquired his early education in the private schools of Telfair County, Georgia. He was graduated from the University of Georgia with the class of 1881, and during the fall of that year, taught school in Telfair county. In January 1882, he entered the United States Signal Service of the War Department at Fort Meyer, Virginia. In the fall of that year, he was sent by the United States government to complete a course at Harvard University, taking up atmospheric electricity, and was graduated with the degree of SD in 1886. His thesis was entitled, The Effect of Magnetism in Producing Changes in the Dimensions of All Substances. From January that year until November, he was stationed at Columbus, Ohio, in charge of the United States Weather Bureau and engaged in observation work at the Ohio State University under Dr. T. C. Mendenhall. In the fall of 1886, Dr. Mendenhall was made president of Rose Polytechnic Institute at Terre Haute, Indiana, Dr. McRae being also transferred to that city. The government atmospheric electricity stations at that time were Johns Hopkins University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cornell University, Washington, D., and Terre Haute, the data being compiled at the latter station. Dr. McRae remained there until January 1,1889, when he was transferred to Rapid City, South Dakota, in charge of the Weather Bureau there. In August of that year, he was sent to Columbia, Missouri, to establish a weather service to be supported by the State of Missouri. The following month, he was offered the assistant professorship in physics at the Missouri State University and with the assent of the chief of the Weather Bureau accepted, devoting half of his time to taking charge of the laboratory. His work was such that the legislature in the session of 1891 accepted the weather service which he had established and made it a department of the Board of Agriculture. (Austin Lee McRae was the first head football coach for the University of Missouri Tigers located in Columbia, Missouri, and he held that position for the 1890 season. His career coaching record at Missouri was 2 wins, 1 losses, and 0 ties. This ranks him 29th at Missouri in total wins and eighth at Missouri in winning percentage. (Online, “College Football Data Warehouse” —Mel Oakes)

On September 1, 1891, he was elected professor of physics at the Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy at Rolla, and he remained there until 1894, when he resigned in order to accept an associate professorship of physics in the University of Texas. He resigned the latter position in 1896 and, during the next three years, resided in St. Louis, as a consulting engineer. In the fall of 1899, he returned to the Missouri State School of Mines and Metallurgy as professor of physics, which chair he has occupied ever since. He is one of the best known and most successful men of his Department of Education in America.

While a student at the University of Georgia, he became a member of the Chi Phi fraternity. He is also a member of the Phi Beta Kappa and the Tau Beta Pi scholarship fraternities. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, a member of the Society for the Promotion of Engineering Education, a member of the Missouri Mining Association, and a member of the National Council of the National Economic League.

On June 15, 1893, Dr. McRae married Miss Minnie Wood, a daughter of Henry Wood, assistant cashier of the National Bank of Rolla. She was born February 9, 1872, and was educated in the schools of Rolla and the Western Conservatory of Music of that city. She is a descendant of Thomas R. Musick, a soldier of the Revolution and a prominent Baptist, who built the Fee Fee Church, St. Louis County, the congregation of which is the oldest in the state. Her descent is as follows: Sarah Musick, daughter of Thomas R. Musick, married David Martin, of St. Louis County. His daughter, Sarah McCurdy Martin, married Henley Russell Edgar, a native of Virginia and a soldier of the War of 1812, who later resided in St. Louis. Sarah Martin Edgar, his daughter, married Henry Wood, and is the mother of Mrs. McRae. Mrs. Wood is a real Daughter of the War of 1812.

Dr. and Mrs. McRae are the parents of the following children: Isabel, born March 24, 1894, graduated from the Rolla high school and for two years attended the Wesleyan College of Macon, Georgia. She married Sumner Cooley Macomber, September 16, 1914, and resides in Tipton, California; Eleanor Wood, March 29, 1896, is a graduate of the Rolla high school of the class of 1914; Sarah, born March 8, 1901, died March 16, 1901; Margaret, born January 9, 1903, and Austin Lee, Jr., born February 22, 1907, are both at home. Mrs. McRae is prominent socially in Rolla, taking part in charity, club and church work. She is a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution and belongs to the Eastern Star. Her religious faith is that of the Episcopal Church and she takes deep interest in its work.

Dr. McRae is prominent fraternally, being a member of the St. Louis Consistory of Masons; Rolla Commandery, No. 591 K. T., and he is affiliated with Moolah Temple of the Mystic Shrine at St. Louis. In Masonic circles, his prominence is state-wide and he was grand high priest of the grand chapter of Royal Arch Masons of Missouri in 1912. He also belongs to the Sons of the American Revolution. He is a member of the Episcopal Church and secretary of the vestry of his congregation. Dr. McRae has rendered valuable service to the nation and is now doing work which will live in the younger generations of his state. He is interested in national politics, although he is the contrary of what one generally understands to be a politician, but he views the affairs of the government from the standpoint of a scholar, yet being not in the list of the impracticable in regard to political situations as they exist. All who know him esteem him for his high principles of manhood and honor him for the deep interest which he brings to his work—a work which does not recompense him so much in dollars and cents, but which must give him satisfaction because he has the knowledge that he renders valuable services which are of more worth to the nation than the accumulation of mere wealth.—Missouri the Center State: 1821–1915, Volume 4, by Walter Barlow Stevens. 1915 S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, Chicago-St. Louis.

 

Austin Lee McRae, Obituary,
1961-1922

We regret to announce the death of Prof. A. L. McRae, which occurred at Rolla, Mo., March 18, 1922, at the age of 60 years.

Professor McRae will be remembered by the older members of the Weather Bureau as a colleague of McAdie, Morrill, and Schultz in the early eighties in investigation upon atmospheric electricity. While stationed at Boston he studied under Prof. John Trowbridge, of Harvard University, and received the degree S. D. from that institution in 1886. In addition to service at Boston, he was on duty at Columbus, Ohio, Terre Haute, IN, Rapid City, SD, and Columbia, MO. At the last-named station, he perfected arrangements whereby the State Weather Service of Missouri organized in 1877 by Prof. F. E. Nipher, of Washington University, and supported by private means, was taken over by the National Weather Service in cooperation with the State Board of Agriculture of Missouri. Professor McRae was the first director under the reorganization. He resigned from the Signal Service in August 1891, to engage in teaching at the University of Missouri; later he held the chair of professor of physics at the University of Missouri, School of Mines, at Rolla, Mo., 1891-1894. After a brief period of teaching at the University of Texas and three years as consulting engineer in St. Louis, Mo., he returned to the School of Mines at Rolla in 1899 as professor of physics and since 1915 as director. He is survived by a wife and three children. –by A. J. H. ( From Monthly Weather Review, Vol 50, Issue 3, March 1922, page 145.

(In 1920 the Carnegie Foundation granted Professor McRae a retirement allowance.—Source: 1920 Annual Report, Volumes 15-17
By Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching)—added by Mel Oakes

Snippets of references about Dr. Austin L. McRae from Clarence Roberts’ book , The History of Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy

“Another achievement of the Harris Administration was the appointment, in the fall of 1891, of the first permanentpProfessor of physics. Dr. Austin L. McRae, who later became prominent in school activities and director of the institution, was elected to this chair. E. G. Harris tendered his resignation as director in 1893 but continued to serve the school in the capacity of Professor of Civil Engineering until his retirement as Professor Emeritus in 1931.

“Development of Modern School of intercollegiate athletics at the school was Professor A. L. McRae. He devoted an unusual amount of time and energy to all sports and did much toward placing athletics on a permanent foundation.

“The period from 1907 to 1920 ended with the resignation of Austin L. McRae as Director on July 1, 1920. His service as director had covered a five-year period filled with momentous events in the history of the school. His affiliation with the school as a professor dated back to 1891, and during this long period of employment he witnessed the growth of the school from a small institution of three buildings and an enrollment of less than one hundred to the modern progressive technological School of Mines of 1920, with nine edifices and an enrollment of more than three hundred. He successfully administered the school affairs through the difficult years of the First World War and handed to his successor an institution prepared for a future service even greater than that rendered in the past.”

Austin Lee McRae Photo and Document Album

Ausin Lee McRae, UT Cactus, 1896, second from right, top row.
Austin Lee McRae , Univerity of Missouri at Rolla Yearbook, Rollamo, 1907
Austin Lee McRae
1908 Rollamo, Univeristy of Missouri at Rolla yearbook
dedicated to Dr. McRae
Austin Lee McRae, University of Missouri at Rolla yearbook, Rollamo 1909
Austin Lee McRae, University of Missouri at Rolla yearbook, Rollamo 1910
Austin Lee McRae, University of Missouri at Rolla yearbook, Rollamo 1911
Austin Lee McRae BS, SD
Director of Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy
University of Missouri at Rolla yearbook, Rollamo 1919
Director McRae’s Home
University of Missouri at Rolla yearbook, Rollamo 1917
1921 Rollamo, U. of Missouri at Rolla Yearbook,
Dr. McRae died in 1922
Caption: Dr.. McRae was director of the Missouri School of Mines from1915 until June, 1920. Prior to that time he had been an instructor in the school for nineteen years. During his term of service, he has been extremely conscientious and ever zealous for the advancement of the school. He was at all times willing to render any assistance possible to the students. He was an ardent advocate of athletics and is yet greatly interested in all our contests.

We wished to extend the thanks of the student body to Dr. McRae for the achievements he had accomplished for the school
UT Regents November 30, 1894 Minutes, Communication from Professor A. L. McRae

Austin Lee McRae, Tenth Director
(Biographical Sketch)1
From The History of Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy.
Phelps County Historical Society, Rolla, Mo., 1941

Austin Lee McRae was born at McRae, Georgia, on October 25, 1861. He died on Saturday, March 18, 1922, at his home in Rolla, Missouri, and was laid to rest in the Rolla Cemetery. He was the son of John Colin McRae and Elizabeth Jane (Clements) McRae, both of whom were members of substantial pioneer Georgia families. The "McRaes", of Georgia, as the name would indicate, perhaps, were of Scotch descent.

As a boy, Dr. McRae received his elementary and high school education in the schools at McRae, Georgia. With this preparation, he entered the University of Georgia, at Athens, from which he was graduated with the class of 1881 with the degree of Bachelor of Science. While at this institution, he served as captain of Co. B., Georgia Cadets. He was also a member of the Chi Phi fraternity.

In 1882, he entered the employ of the United States Signal Service and was selected as one of three young men to make a special study of atmospheric electricity with reference to its possible utility as a means of forecasting approaching changes in weather conditions of the atmosphere. The same year, being highly interested in science, physics, and electrical engineering, he entered Harvard University for graduate study, and upon completing his work in 1886, received the degree of Doctor of Science. The subject of his doctoral dissertation or thesis was, On the Change of Dimensions Produced In All Bodies By Magnetization.

The three years, 1886-1889, were again spent in the employ of the U. S. Signal Service, where he carried on further investigation pertaining to the electrical conditions of the atmosphere. Some of the studies he was engaged in and the papers he wrote during the period 1885–1889, in addition to his doctoral thesis, were as follows:

On the Elasticity of Ice. Am. Jour. Science, 1885. (Study and paper in conjunction with Professor John Trowbridge, of Harvard University.)

On The Effect Of Temperature On The Magnetic Permeability Of Iron And Steel. (With special reference to the effect of the intense cold of the North Pole on the magnetic needle.) Am. Acad. Arts & Sciences, 1885.

On Atmospheric Electricity. Am. Acad. Arts & Science, 1885.

On The Magnetic Observations At Point Barrow, Alaska. (This was a study related to the data collected by Lt. Ray, who conducted the Point Barrow Expedition. See Lt. Ray's Report.)

1. Who's Who in America, Vol. X, 1918-19, at page 1850. See also American Men of Science, 3rd Ed., 1921, p. 447, for short biographic sketches.

On The Flow Of Heat In Various Solids. Proc. Am. Soc. Microscopists, 1887. (This was a study in which he assisted Prof. W. A. Rogers, of Harvard University, in some special investigations.)

Two other labors in which he engaged during this period were as follows: (1) The translation of Edlund's and Palmierri's papers on Atmospheric Electricity; and (2) the writing of a History of Electrometers for the U. S. Signal Service.

In August, 1889, he went to Columbia, Missouri, and organized, under direction of the United States Signal Service and the Missouri State Board of Agriculture, a State Weather Service, of which he had charge until August, 1891.1 During this same period, 1889-1891, Dr. McRae held the position of Assistant Professor of Physics at the University of Missouri, at Columbia. Two papers he wrote during this time were: On Missouri Rainfall, and On Missouri Temperature, published in Annual Reports of State Board of Agriculture, 1889 and 1890, respectively.

The reader will recall that, in the spring of 1891, Director W. H. Echols had written the fiery letter demanding that a professor of physics be appointed for the School of Mines. This letter led to the appointment in June 1891, of Dr. McRae as Professor of Physics. He began his long period of service to the School of Mines in such capacity in September 1891, under Director Harris, as we have recorded at pages 491. In this position he found ready use for his knowledge both of Physics and of Electrical Engineering, in each of which fields he brought about an organization of courses, and the collection and arrangement of apparatus and equipment, that had not been possible theretofore because there had been no such organized department of physics, nor any regular professor thereof. The courses had been taught by the various professors of engineering or mathematics instead, except for the 1882–1883 year, as we explained on pages 439-440.

It was during his first term of service at Rolla, from 1891 to 1894, that Dr. McRae met Miss Minnie Wood of Rolla, to whom he was married on June 15, 1893.2 Miss Wood was the daughter of Henry Wood and Sarah (Edgar) Wood, and was born at Rolla on February 9, 1872. Her parents were of English ancestry, the father having been born and reared in England. Mr. Wood had in various businesses in Rolla, at one time operating a grocery store on Pine Street, just south of the 1941 Scott Drug Store. He was afterward connected with a Rolla Bank, and served the School of Mines a number of years as its Treasurer. He had assisted Director Wait, of the School of Mines, in constructing the Rolla Episcopal Church, in the early 1880's, and was for years its Warden. In memory of these acts the Church has placed a memorial plaque on which his name appears.

1. See: "Establishment of Station," p. 19, Annual Report, Missouri State Board of Agriculture 1890-91; History of Work of Signal Service, by A. L. McRae, Observer, Ibid., p. 26; Endorsement of the work of Sergeant A. L. McRae, Observer, Ibid., pp. 27-28; and paper on Lightning Rods, by A. L. McRae, Ibid., p. 441.

2. See account of wedding in The Rolla New Era, Vol. XIX, No. 13, Sat., June 17. 1893, p. 2, col. 4.

Miss Wood—now Mrs. McRae—is still living at Rolla (1941). She was educated in the public schools and high school of Rolla, and, for three years, 1888 to 1891, was enrolled as a student at the School of Mines. She was also a graduate, class of 1888, of the Western Conservatory of Music at Rolla, which in those years was prominent in Rolla cultural affairs, and a very excellent institution of its kind. Mrs. McRae is an accomplished organist and pianist. For seven years before the Episcopal church was built, she was organist at the Rolla Methodist Church, during which time she never missed a single service. For years thereafter, she was organist or pianist at the Episcopal Church. She has been active in all major social affairs in Rolla for many years, and has been prominent in such organizations as the Rolla Civics Club, the Saturday Club, the Eastern Star, and the Episcopal Church.

During Dr. McRae's term as director, he and Mrs. McRae were frequent hosts to the entire faculty group. It was their custom to begin each academic school year with a reception to the faculty members and their wives. One other traditional event during this period was the entertainment, by Dr. and Mrs. McRae, of each separate graduating class, at a sumptuous evening dinner. These events were all held in the present director's residence on the School of Mines campus.

Dr. and Mrs. McRae were the parents of four children—Isabel, Eleanor Wood, Margaret and Austin Lee, Jr. Isabel became Mrs. Sumner Macomber of Tulare, California, and the mother of two children—Mattie Locke Macomber and Sumner Macomber, Jr. Both Mr. and Mrs. Macomber died at Tulare in 1919. Margaret became Mrs. W. K. Garrett and lives at Zamboanga, in the Philippine Islands. She is the mother of three children, Austin Glidden McRae Garrett, and the twins Margaret and Eleanor Garrett. Miss Eleanor McRae lives at Rolla with her mother, and is in the employ of the registrar's office of the School of Mines. Austin Lee McRae, Jr., graduated in Civil Engineering at the School of Mines in 1931, and is at present practicing his profession at Los Angeles, Calif.

In the fall of 1894, Dr. McRae was elected Associate Professor of Physics at the University of Texas, at Austin, which position he held two years. He then resigned and went to St. Louis, where he entered the office of Hiram and Richard H. Phillips as a consulting electrical engineer. He remained in this position until the fall of 1899, when, he was again, invited to take the professorship of Physics at the School of Mines, and accepted. Mrs. McRae, who had given us much of the foregoing information in personal interviews, states that Dr. McRae was very deeply interested in the electrical engineering work he was engaged in. This was the period just preceding the St. Louis Louisiana Purchase Exposition and things electrical were very much on the upgrade. Dr. McRae was not at all sure that this change was to his personal interest. It probably involved a considerable financial loss to him in the long run, as the success made by Professor A. H. Timmerman, with whom he exchanged the Chair of Physics, might well indicate. But the gain to the School of Mines was exceedingly great.

In various of the preceding chapters, we have given an account of the work that Dr. McRae did as professor of physics up to 1915, when he became director. His career and acts as director are sketched in this chapter, so that we shall pass now to other aspects of his biography.

To Dr. McRae goes the distinction of being the first really capable faculty football coach. He appears in suit and tie above in the 1891–1892 Savitar, yearbook. He is the Manager (Coach). He had much to do with introducing this sport at the University of Missouri at Columbia, and upon coming to Rolla, continued his interests and efforts among the School of Mines boys. He coached the "Miner" team of 1893—the first that wore distinctive "silver and gold" (orange and white) football uniforms. The score with Drury that year was Rolla 0, Drury 22. Professor Landis was both captain and end for the 1893 School team. During all his many years of service, Mr. McRae was interested in all student sports, and whole-heartedly supported them. He actively participated in such individual games as tennis. The 1921 Rollamo (page 31) contains a student tribute to this interest and activity.


Dr. McRae's educational interests led to his becoming a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, a member of the Society for the Promotion of Engineering Education, and the American Institute of Mining Engineers. His high scholastic standing won for him election to the honor scholarship societies of Phi Beta Kappa and Tau Beta Pi. While in Texas, he belonged to the Texas Academy (of Science), and at the time he came to Rolla, in 1891, he belonged to the American Academy of Political and Social Science.

During his residence in Rolla, Dr. McRae took an active interest in all civic affairs. Several times he was elected a member of the Rolla City Council. During the installation of the Rolla Water Works and Sewerage System, and also the Rolla Electric Light and Power Plant, he, in conjunction with Professor E. G. Harris, was engineer for the work. Also, with Professor Harris, he made surveys and designs for an electric power station on the Niangua River, where now such a plant is operating.

When the World War came on, although serving as Director of the School of Mines, and teaching physics, meanwhile, he took a very active part in serving his country. He was made chairman of the Phelps County Branch of the Red Cross, and chairman of the Phelps County Branch of the National Defense Council. He was also a member of the Advisory Committee for Missouri for the U. S. Explosives Act. In each of these many responsible positions he was an honored member, and filled each with fidelity and distinction.

These many duties, added to his already heavy work at the School of Mines, brought on a most serious illness of five month's duration in 1917, from which he never fully recovered, and which initiated the period of ill-health he suffered from that time on, resulting in his resignation as Director at the close of the 1919–1920 year and his eventual demise in 1922.

At the close of his directorship in 1920, Dr. McRae was granted a pension from the Carnegie Foundation's fund, and was made Professor Emeritus of Physics of the School of Mines.

Dr. McRae was greatly interested in, and was very active in, Free Masonry. He served, respectively, as Worshipful Master, High Priest, and Commander of the several Masonic organizations of Rolla, and was a member and Worthy Patron of the Rolla Chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star. In 1911, he was elected Grand High Priest of the Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons of Missouri, and at the time of his death, in 1922, was Grand Senior Deacon of the Grand Lodge of Masons of Missouri.

He was a member of the St. Louis Consistory of Scottish Rite Masons, 32nd degree. He was an honorary member of the "Square and Compass", the college organization of Masons among students at the School of Mines, and his latest efforts were directed toward the organization of the DeMolay Chapter (Sons of Masons and their chums, of ages between 16 and 21 years) at Rolla, of which he became advisor.

Dr. McRae became ill with pneumonia and, following a brief period of confinement to his bed, died at his home shortly after six o'clock on the morning of Saturday, March 18, 1922.

On Monday morning, March 20, his remains were conveyed to Parker Hall Auditorium of the School of Mines, where they laid in state, with representatives of the DeMolay Chapter serving as a guard of honor. The bier was covered with a floral blanket, the gift of the Faculty. Surrounding the bier, and banking the entire front of the stage, were floral tributes as beautiful as were ever seen in Rolla—the tribute of Rolla citizens, and various organizations out of town.

As an evidence of love and respect, the School of Mines and the Rolla Public Schools were dismissed, and the business houses of town closed during the funeral hour. The funeral proper is thus described in the Rolla Herald for Thursday, March 23, 1922: “Funeral services were conducted from Parker Hall at two o'clock Monday. Following scriptural reading by Rev. H. Nelson Tragitt, Rector of Christ Church of this city, the Rt. Rev. F. F. Johnson, Bishop Coadjutor of Missouri, conducted the service. The Bishop's tribute, "He Taught Me How To Be A Man" was short and most impressive. He told of how two college students, who after having been out of college many years, returned on a visit to their old college, and on seeing one of their old professors, one inquired of the other, "What did he teach you?" And without hesitation the quick reply came, "He taught me how to be a man." The application of this tribute required no explanatory remarks, the deceased, over whose bier it was uttered, was fully worthy of it.

He had filled every position to which he had been called with faithfulness and zeal. He had always done what was right, and his life was clean. He had the confidence and esteem of all who knew him. There was no tribute that could have been paid to his memory but what it would have been worth.

Following the services at Parker Hall, the remains were taken in charge by the Grand Lodge of Masons of Missouri, with Bert S. Lee of Springfield, Missouri, Deputy Grand Master, officiating. The Grand Body formed in Masonic procession, under command of A. A. Smith, as Grand Marshal, and headed by Rolla Commandery, Knights Templar, under command of B. F. Culbertson, Past Commander, as escort, marched to Rolla Cemetery.

Following in the procession were the Square and Compass organization, and the DeMolay Chapter. The remains came next, followed by the long procession of automobiles bearing the family and friends. At the grave, the splendid Masonic ceremony was spoken by Deputy Grand Master Lee.

The prayer was spoken by F. R. Jesse, Grand Secretary of the Grand Lodge, and the benediction was pronounced by Bishop Johnson. As this solemn and inspiring ceremony was being concluded by Bishop Johnson, it was a notable fact that the clouds of the day cleared away, and God's sunshine shown full in all of its effulgence and glory. A man has passed from us who has been an example in our community, and whose place it will be hard to fill.

The pallbearers were Chas. L. Woods, J. A. Spilman, Prof. E. G. Harris, B. H. Rucker, Edwin Long, Prof. J. H. Bowen, Prof. L. E. Garrett, Dr. E. W. Walker, Prof. C. R. Forbes, Fred H. Lane, E. J. Koch, and Prof. Geo. R. Dean. Those present from a distance were: Mrs. Mattie Locke Macomber, of Des Moines, Iowa; Dr. A. E. Wood and little son of Cabool, Mo.; Herbert Wood of Morris, Oklahoma; and delegations of Masons from St. James, Salem, Newburg, and Steelville.


Here is an article by Dr. Austin Lee McRae’s son Austin Lee McRae Jr. This appeared in Popular Mechanics, 1942.