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George C. Rembaugh

                                    [Associated with Cowley County Telegram.]

Richard Kay Wortman obtained the following information on George C. Rembaugh from F. D. Hills. He referred to it as “F. D. Hills bio.” MAW
In 1878 George C. Rembaugh, a journey-man printer was approached by the foreman of the plant of the old Monitor, a Fort Scott, Kansas weekly at that time, with the suggestion, “George, we have an inquiry from Winfield for an all round newspaperman, one who can work anywhere, in front or back, and we believe you can handle the job. Winfield is a little bit of a place but it might be an opening for you. How would you like to try it?”
Rembaugh was just recovering from a siege of typhoid fever and for that reason was compelled to sit on a stool while working, and he was broke. “Impossible, I can’t get there,” he answered.
Bill Perry, manager of the Monitor, later U. S. Dis­trict attorney under Cleveland, liked the young printer. “I’ll get you a pass,” he urged, and the deal was on.
Rembaugh came to Winfield as managing editor of the Cowley County Telegram, and in 1882 he and Charles C. Black made a deal through which Black and Rembaugh became the publishers of the Telegram, which was then operated in the building which later housed the Winfield Independent-Record. This was a separate building across the alley south of the McGregor Hardware store.
Mr. Rembaugh said one issue of the Telegram was about three days late because a member of his staff, James P. (Jimmy) Short, wanted to put over a scoop on a lynching they expected to be staged.
A desperado by the name of Cobb killed the Sheriff, whose name was Shenneman, near where Rock is now. When Cobb was captured he was hidden from the mob for a time but finally they got him in their clutches and took him down to the river at the Southern Kansas bridge, where the ice plant is now located, and kicked him off after having fastened one end of a rope around his neck and the other end to the bridge. For about three days and nights neither of the two newspaper men went to bed, Mr. Rembaugh said.
When a coroner’s jury was called to sit on the case the main witness, when questioned as to whether or not he could identify any member of the mob answered, “Why yes, judge,” addressing the foreman. “The leader looked a lot like you and was built a lot like you. He even moved around like you do.”
A few more questions were asked and the court handed down a verdict to the effect that the deceased came to his death at the hands of parties unknown. But Mr. Rembaugh insists that he, while hiding out with Jimmy Short, saw the mob and he, like the main witness, thought the leader of the mob resembled the jury foreman.
After having served as postmaster from 1884 to 1888, Mr. Rembaugh traveled for a short time then went into the hotel business. He handled both the St. James and the Brettun; he didn’t remember exactly how long but he had one head cook em­ployed for 19 years straight.
After selling out his hotel business in 1913, Mr. Rembaugh found where he could purchase a hardware stock at a bargain, and as he wished to find something for his sons (Clem E. and Sidney Rembaugh) to do, he acquired the business and the three operat­ed at 907 Main street. The store was closed in the 1950s.

The Telegram was a Democratic sheet and, of course, among the many movements advocated by it, was the election of Grover Cleveland. After that election Mr. Rembaugh was rewarded for the part he took in the campaign by being appointed postmas­ter of Winfield.
Learning of Mr. Cleveland’s policy that every public office should be considered a public trust and given the individ­ual attention of the person who held it and learning that others would like to acquire the Telegram, Black and Rembaugh sold out.

The following items concerning George C. Rembaugh are taken from the early newspapers...
Winfield Courier, July 7, 1881.
                                                 THE EVIDENCE IN BRIEF.
                                                     GEORGE REMBAUGH
had been to Manny’s. Had drank “ginger” there. Look some like Peruvian beer. Had foam on it. Did not know whether it was intoxicating or not. Had seen persons under the influence of something in and about Manny’s.
Cross examination: Thought Peruvian beer was slightly fermented to make it sparkle and foam. Re-examined by the state. Had about same effect as a glass of ice-water.
Winfield Courier, November 10, 1881.
George Rembaugh waded the Arkansas river last Sunday to avoid paying tariff to the keeper of the ferry. What means this sudden burst of economy?
Note the discrepancy with respect to the bride (Kitty Majors in Courier) and (Kate McGauhy) in Courant. Majors is correct. MAW
Winfield Courier, November 17, 1881.
Married. Mr. George Rembaugh and Miss Kitty Majors were married at the residence of the bride’s sister in this city Thursday after­noon. Rev. Platter tied the knot. George is foreman of the Courant office and one of the finest printers in the state. The bride is one of Winfield’s fairest daughters.
Cowley County Courant, November 17, 1881.
The following marriage licenses have been issued from the Probate Judge’s office since our last report.
George C. Rembaugh to Kate McGauhy.
Cowley County Courant, November 17, 1881.
The COURANT band of printers are under many obligations to Mrs. Sid Majors (our George’s mother-in-law) for a goodly share of splendid wedding cake, and to George Rembaugh, her newly-made son-in-law, for a lot of fine cigars.
Cowley County Courant, November 17, 1881.
Mr. George C. Rembaugh and wife returned today from their trip through the eastern part of the state. George goes to work as though nothing had happened and thinks there’s no use in a man letting family cares break him down just in the prime of life.
Winfield Courier, January 26, 1882.

Mr. Ed Roland afforded a pleasant evening to the young people by inviting them to a phantom party at the residence of Mrs. Millington, on last Monday night. A gay and happy company responded to the invitation, and made most excellent ghosts, although hardly as silent as a specter is supposed to be. Those present were: Mr. and Mrs. Fred Hunt, Mr. and Mrs. G. W. Robinson, Mr. and Mrs. George Rembaugh, Mrs. Boyer; Misses Hane, Scothorn, Klingman, Beeny, Margie and Lizzie Wallis, Jackson and Carruthers; Messrs. W. H. and W. A. Smith, Roland, Harris, Fuller, Webb, Robinson, Connell, Crowell, Bahntge.
Winfield Courier, February 16, 1882.
Mrs. George Rembaugh has been quite ill with intermittent fever. She is much better now.
Winfield Courier, May 11, 1882.
Mr. George Rembaugh, for the last three years foreman of the Telegram and lately of Courant offices, has severed his connection with that paper. George is one of the few first class printers in the state, and his excellent executive ability has done much for the papers with which he has been connected.
Winfield Courier, July 13, 1882.
                                                             Vale, Courant.
The Cowley County Courant, Daily and Weekly, is dead. The Daily died on July 1st after eight months of fitful existence. The Weekly lingered until last week and died at the age of eight months and a week. The remains were taken in hand by George Rembaugh and Sam E. Davis, and from its ashes a “thoroughbred” democratic weekly will be raised up. It will assume the name of Telegram, and once more the old condition of things is resumed, and the COURIER and Telegram, as in days of yore, will represent the principles of the two great political parties. And it is better for all that this is the case. The interests of the county, the state, and the nation demand that there be two active, belligerent parties. There is a good, strong democratic minority in this county, and it needs an organ. Now that it has one, we hope to see it well supported. Messrs. Rembaugh and Davis are live, energetic young men and can do the work as well or better than anyone we know of. Mr. Davis is a life-long democrat, by birth and education, and should have the full confidence and support of his party. The suspension of the Courant but illustrates what we have all along known to be a fact—that it is impossible to bore a three inch hole with a two inch augur. Mr. Allison tried it and was bruised. Mr. Black got all he wanted and let go. But to Mr. Steinberger belongs the honor of mashing the old thing all to pieces.
A newspaper is grown, not made. All the money one wants cannot make a ten-year-old newspaper in six months. To be a success it must be built up from a solid foundation and its growth nurtured, and watched and cared for, until it is finally established in the homes and hearts of the people—a citadel from which only the grossest mismanagement can dislodge it. So long as its power is for good it will flourish—when for evil its ruin and downfall are rapid and complete.
The Daily is dead, very dead, and will sleep sweetly until some venturesome and misguided Gabriel imagines that his mission is to resurrect it. He will afterwards discover that he is a badly fooled Gabriel.
Winfield Courier, July 20, 1882.

The first number of the new Telegram is out and presents that neat and tasty appearance which Geo. Rembaugh, so well knows how to give it. The local page is bright and the paper carries a large amount of reading matter. Altogether the boys have done well.


Cowley County Historical Society Museum