1900's Centenarians Reflect on 1800s

Dispatches from Waco, Texas, yesterday said that Isaac Brook, more then 112 years old, was awaiting the new century. He was born in North Carolina on March 1, 1788. He fought in four wars and a few skirmishes. He went to the War of 1812, and as a man of 24 years faced the British redcoats. He was living in Texas when the Lone Star State had a separate existence. He was active in the war of Texas against Mexico in 1835 and 1836. He took part ten years later in the war of the United States against Mexico. He was an old man at the outbreak of the Civil War. He was impressed as a gunner by the Southern Confederacy, and was many a time under the fire of the federal gunboats in the fortifications at Galveston.

Dances at 108 Years

Bernard W. Morris, a watchman in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, is a centenarian as hale and well as was old King Cole. He was born in Temple Court, County Cavan, Ireland, in 1792. He came to this country in 1825. He has been married three times. It was not long ago that his wife gave him a birthday party in his honor, at which he nimbly danced.

“I’m glad it is here at last,” said the old man, at his home, 264 Warren Street, Brooklyn. “There were many wonderful changes in the nineteenth century, and there will be more in the twentieth century. The world is marching forward, and I am thankful that it has been my good luck to have lived in three centuries. I do not feel my 108 years, and hope to live for at least a few years in the new century.”

Mr. Morris does not look as old as he is. He goes regularly every day to Prospect Park where he has been employed as a laborer for more years than many of the present employees have lived. His present duties are light. He tolls the park bell and carries messages for Park Commissioner Brower. He lives quietly with his family, and enjoys nothing more than his after-dinner smoke.

He can remember the borough across the river when it was only a village compared with its present size and importance. He recalls the days when Flatbush Avenue, now far down town, was considered quite in the wilderness of the city. His memory is quite good, and he can talk for hours about old Brooklyn. He thinks Brooklyn far superior in every way to Manhattan, and one of the regrets of his recent years was the consolidation of the two cities.

“If they had let Brooklyn remain a city,” he said last night, “it would soon be the biggest and most important city in the country. It’s too bad they had to make it a part of New York. To me one of the greatest things of the nineteenth century was the growth of Brooklyn, and it will continue to grow in the twentieth century.”

Mrs. Ann Slote, a Brooklyn centenarian, was reported yesterday as suffering from an attack of bronchitis. She was born in county Armagh, Ireland, on July 12, 1800. She is the mother of “Dan” Slote, immortalized in Mark Twain’s Innocents Abroad. “Dan” Slote died several years ago.

There came to this city two years ago Andrew Montgomery, the descendant of an African king. He was more than six feet in height. In the years before he had to carry a century of years he measured six feet and six inches. Montgomery came to New York in the interests of an old folks’ home. He returned to Atlanta, Ga., and it was reported yesterday from that city that he was in good health.

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