Cook, Thomas Strang (October 31, 1862 - September 8, 1950)


Unknown - September 14, 1950

Converse county lost another of her real pioneer citizens last Friday when Thomas S. Cook, 87, who arrived here in 1887, died of a heart attack while participating in the corner stone laying ceremonies of the new Converse county memorial hospital. Death came in a manner fitting to end the career of one of the oldest, in point of membership, Masons in the entire state.

Mr. Cook was just completing his duties as Bible bearer in the Masonic corner stone laying ceremony for the hospital when he turned to E.T. Alvord, who was also participating in the rites, and said he was "going down." Mr. Alvord caught him as he fell. A doctor on the scene pronounced death as instantaneous.

Funeral services were held at 2:00 o'clock Monday afternoon from the Congregational church, with Rev. Louis Gale officiating and Woodbine chapter, O.E.S., assisting. Interment was in the family plot in Douglas Park cemetery. Ashlar Lodge No. 10, A.F. & A.M., was in charge of the graveside service.

Thomas Strang Cook was born in Scotland Oct. 31, 1862, and passed away in Douglas, Wyo., Sept. 8, 1950, at the age of 87 years, 10 months and eight days. He was the son of John and Margaret Cook, the third child of a family of 12. At the age of five he came to America and resided in Pennsylvania and Iowa, where he worked as a coal miner, before coming to Douglas in 1887.

On Dec. 18, 1886, he and Nellie Hartman were united in marriage at Chadron, Neb. To this union three children were born, Donna, Eleanor and Florence. Donna Chapin and Eleanor Jamieson preceded him in death and his wife passed away in 1917. In June, 1919, he and Ada Brown were married and lived happily together until her passing in August, 1947.

Mr. Cook was a pioneer in the full sense, his occupations being blacksmith, carpenter, county assessor and peace officer. He was active in early day development of Douglas and Converse county, being a member of the first volunteer fire department, the militia and musical organizations of the period. In later years he became custodian of the Masonic Temple, a position he gave up because of failing health only a few years ago.

Tom Cook was a member and active worker in Ashlar Lodge No. 10, the Royal Arch, Commandery, Shrine and Order of Eastern Star. He was past patron of the Star.

Surviving are his daughter, Florence H. Cook of Douglas; three grandchildren; Donald C. Jamieson of Powell, Tom Chapin of California and Margaret Manning of West Virginia; five great grandchildren, Jess Cook Jamieson and James, Dorothy, Shelia and Donna May Downey; one brother, John Cook of New York state. Other surviving relatives are nephews and nieces in Douglas and elsewhere, and Mr. and Mrs. Hollis Burdick of Casper.


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