“Illness of Mr. Thad R. Manning,” originally from the Gastonia Gazette as reprinted in the Watauga Democrat, Boone, N.C., February 2, 1911
Worn out by 30 years in the newspaper office, Mr. Thad R. Manning, founder, owner and editor of the Henderson Gold Leaf, is confined in a hospital in Richmond, Va., and his physicians say he will doubtless have to remain there for several months at least. He advertises his paper for sale which is strong evidence that he himself has slight hope of ever being vigorous again as to wish to try the strenuous work of making a newspaper.
He has given 30 years of his life to the laborious and often unappreciated task of boosting his town and giving it a good newspaper. Those who have never tried it have no conception of the nerve-racking and nerve-wrecking existence the newspaper man leads.
The fact is, 30 years of such living is more than the average newspaper man has allotted to him. A few nights ago Charles C. Boyd, for 12 years Associated Press operator on the Roanoke, Va., Times, fell dead at his key. Daily instances come to one’s notice of men, young in years but old in “living” who go from the newspaper office to the cemetery or the hospital. It is indeed about the most exacting life and the most strenuous in every respect that one can live. And yet many who have the opportunity to change to some more lucrative vocation stay on and run out their allotted space in life in the “print shop.” It has its recompense, ‘tis true, the largest of which is the consciousness of a work well performed and a task done for a betterment of humanity. We believe that if the public generally had half the conception of the trials and tribulations of the newspaper man’s life, they would be more charitable in their criticism of his shortcomings. Mr. Manning’s friends all over the State hope for him a speedy recovery of his health. His permanent retirement would mean a great loss to North Carolina journalism.