OSAWATOMIE, Kan. — President Obama came to this tiny middle American town Tuesday to invoke the spirit of a long-ago Republican president in a speech that laid out, in his sharpest language yet, the economic and social arguments he will probably use against Republicans in 2012.(1)
Osawatomie, Kansas…It’s a small town now. On January 7, 1907 when my Grandpa Sewell was born there it was just a bit smaller. But, when 30,000 people were in town for the dedication of the John Brown Memorial Park to hear President Theodore Roosevelt give his speech on August 10,1910, Grandpa was already living in far south Texas.
I know of Osawatomie from the biography about my Great-Aunt Helen(2) that was published many years ago. Grandpa, you see, was much too young to remember anything about the town. He was barely past his first birthday when the family rode the train south to Hebbronville in Starr County on the Texas Mexican border.
So, you can imagine my surprise as I was driving yesterday to here the name rolling off the tongue of the news announcer. Reading a little history today, I see that the town wasn’t all that happy with the last Presidential appearance they had. I can only imagine their reaction to yesterdays speech.