Excerpt Pioneer Portraits 1905 – 1965
Ernest A. Kemp
“ In 1905 the people of Cupar were of all nationalities. Indeed, there were many people in the area around Cupar who could not speak English, many more spoke only broken or accented English, Scotch, Irish, or American, all could be told by their pronunciation . European folk mostly depended upon the phrase “ Nicht's Versteh” to help them over an awkward moment. But there was one thing they all had in common. It was the ability plus the inclination to get along with each other and make a common brotherhood of our people. It is amazing when one looks back sixty years to note the wonderful success that was to come of this preliminary agreeableness.
Sixty years ago when immigrants were the rule and not the exception, one could almost tell a man's nationality a block away or as far as one could hear a conversation. There were differences of dress, walk, features, and conversation that it would seem were irreconcilable, but they had in common
many virtues which were not at the time so noticeable. These were a bold, never say die attitude and a willingness to co-operate with their neighbors, forgetting the things that divide, remembering only those things which unite, and above all, it seems to me that they practised to a large extent that simplicity of religion that tended to be the advance guard of the ecumenical spirit now so mush talked about.”
After reading this I thought about today's immigrants. They should not be feared or shunned but welcomed. They are critical in the continued evolution and progression of our country into the future.