Cook, Archibald David (January 19, 1861 - March 17, 1942)

A.D. Cook, Douglas Pioneer Is

Summoned This Morning Was Former County and State Official and in Federal Agricultural Service

Douglas Budget - April 23, 1942

The small list of Douglas' "charter" citizens was lessened by one this morning when death came to Archie D. Cook, early pioneer miner, engineer, business man and government official.

He passed away at 5:25 at the Douglas hospital, which he entered March 17. He died of complications brought on by a heart ailment. He was in his 82nd year of life.

Funeral services will be at the Masonic Temple at 2:30 this Friday afternoon, in charge of the local Masonic lodge and Eastern Star Chapter, of which he was a long time member. Friday evening his remains will be taken to Denver for cremation, as was his wish. Pallbearers, all sons of fellow pioneers, will be R.C. Maurer, H.F. Esmay, H.M. Peters, T.U. Slonaker, Edward Rowley and R.L. Swan.

Archibald David Cook was born near Edinburgh, Scotland, on January 19, 1861, the son of John and Margaret J. (Johnstone) Cook. He was the oldest of eleven children. When seven years of age the family came to the United States and located in the coal mining region of Pennsylvania.

Mr. Cook's education was acquired in the national schools of Edinburgh and the public schools of Pennsylvania. As a young man he entered the coal mines but saw better prospects to the west and when he became of age moved to Iowa where he railroaded for several years.

Here he met and married Miss Florence H. Hartman. To this union five children were born, all of them living. Mrs. Cook passed away in Denver in December, 1939.

A few years after this marriage the couple went further to the west and located in the then promising Black Hills country where he was employed in practical mining and in the mills. In 1886 he was contracted by the Chicago Northwestern railroad to prospect for coal in Converse county. He came to the Shawnee area and in 1887 made a permanent location in the new town of Douglas.

His first venture here was in the meat business, which was successful for three years. When Douglas' first waterworks system was established Cook became its first engineer.

In 1894 he was elected to the office of county clerk and was retained in that post fourteen successive years, relinquishing it in January, 1907, to take over the duties of state superintendent of public instruction, to which office the people of the state had elected him the year before. He served one term of four years.

Late in 1912 he was engaged by the federal department of agriculture as field representative, covering the states of this area on statistical work. Later he was transferred to the state office at Cheyenne and several years after that to the regional office in Denver.

He retired from active government service in 1930, at the age of 70. He continued to reside in Denver until two years ago, following the death of Mrs. Cook, when he moved to Douglas. His winters have been spent in California.

It was a Long Beach in February that he contracted a severe case of flu. He started home earlier than he had expected, reaching Denver about the first of March seriously ill. He came to Douglas March 17 and went directly to the hospital.

Archie Cook had a full share in the building of Douglas and Converse county. He was active in all civic and social endeavors of the growing town. He was an officer of the first volunteer fire department organized here. He organized and directed a municipal band in 1891 that became the leading band of the state and in 1901 the military band of the Fifth Regiment of Wyoming.

He was active in band work even after moving to Cheyenne, organizing and directing the famous "Cowboy" band for the Frontier Days celebrations in 1906 and 1908.

He became a member of Ashlar Lodge No. 10, A.F. & A.M., and Woodbine Chapter, O.E.S., in the early days and was active in both when occupation and health permitted. He was the first patron of the local star chapter. In Odd Fellowship he "went through the chairs" and was deputy grand master and chief patriarch of the encampment early in the century.

He was a man of rugged health. The illness that caused his death was his first, aside from a slight stroke suffered while a resident in Denver about five years ago.

He is survived by three daughters, Mrs. B.J. Steffen, Mrs. W.J. Smith and Miss Bea Cook, all of Douglas; two sons, Arthur H. Cook of Denver and D.C. Cook of Douglas; a sister, Mrs. Mary Driscoll of Athens, PA.; two brothers, Thomas S. Cook of Douglas and John Cook of Reynoldsville, PA.; six granddaughters, Mrs. Bernard VanDine of Newcastle, Mrs. Richard VanDine of Rapid City, S.D., Mrs. Roland Hinzman, Douglas, Florence Steffen, Eleanor Smith and Sandra Smith, all of Douglas; four grandsons, William J. Smith, Jr., Doug Cook, Kenneth Cook and Donald Cook, all of Douglas and one great-granddaughter, Janet VanDine of Rapid City.

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