April 30, 1916

Rousing Reception Given Evangelist.

The busy thousands of Kansas City will now turn to the contemplation of their sins -- Billy Sunday's in town.

He came yesterday morning at 10:30 o'clock, Sunday grin, Sunday fedora of pearl gray, Sunday overcoat with fur collar. And, oh yes, behind the great evangelist, when he stepped out of his Pullman, appeared "Ma" Sunday, with small round hat with pom pom adornment, in a smile as pleasant as one could wish to see on a bright spring morning. Ten thousand pairs of eager eyes looked and danced a merry welcome while 10,000 voices lifted in a welcoming shout, as the pair and their retinue advanced up the steps into the waiting room of the Union station. Behind them surged a crowd of several hundred who had forced their way past the gatemen to be the first to extend a welcome.

Among the last to shake the hand of Mr. and Mrs. Sunday were those who had been officially selected to do it first. They were borne backward by the throng and had to wait their turn. when former Judge William H. Wallace, whose palatial home at 3200 Norledge place, has been turned over to the evangelists party, finally fought his way to Mr. Sunday, the latter exclaimed with characteristic enthusiasm: "This is a typical Kansas City welcome, isn't it? Say, when my two boys, Billy and Paul, are out of school they will have a great time here."
Mrs. Sunday Busy, Too.

Mrs. Sunday was busy with both hands greeting new friends. The pom pom vibrated with the fervor of her hand shakes. Her illuminating smile came and went and then decided to stay. She, too, appeared to be immensely pleased with the reception.

Out of the station surged the crowd, filling the plaza outside as the couple climbed into a motor car. The voices now had joined in harmony.

"Glory, Glory Hallelujah," and "Brighten the Corner" were sung. Mr. Sunday added his voice to the many, and stood up in the car. He doffed his pearl gray fedora, and waved it like an enthusiastic fan cheering the home team to victory in the ninth.

"Go to it!" he shouted. "That's the way. Now, I know we can't fail to win Kansas City to Christ. It's all over when the shouting begins."

In spite of this however, Mr. and Mrs. Sunday seemed to be fagged out by their long train ride. They soon settled back restfully in the cushions and gave the signal to the driver to "speed up." The party was whisked away amid a hurricane of applause and singing. And "Ma" Sunday looked at her husband with gentle concern because of the drooping eyelids and tired neck muscles which kept his head bent low. It was evident she was thinking of the several weeks of desperately hard work ahead of him. "Ma" Sunday always seems to have her husband's welfare in the back of her mind. As the car jogged along, the pom pom nodded and the fedora dropped, but Mr. Sunday's pleasant and far carrying voice talked on as he recognized landmarks known to him of old.
Recalls Landmarks

"The Midland building?" he said. "Why, that was a hotel when I came here once before. A fine one, too. Seemed like staying at home to be in it. We made our headquarters there when I was playing with the White Sox."

As they passed the tabernacle, which is so large that Solomon's temple and Noah's ark both could be housed in it and with plenty of room to spare, Mr. Sunday brightened up.

"Wasn't this the old ball grounds?" he inquired.

"The very place," declared Colonel Fred Fleming. "But it has been filled up for the tabernacle. You will preach just about where the catcher's stand used to be."

"Really!" was the reply. "That's strange, though. The same thing has happened with variations in several other cities. I guess that is because the old ball parks are about the only downtown vacant spots these days."

The long, low wooden structure, stretching away over a full block on its myriad supports, held his attention for some time. He watched it for many moments and then said:

Pleased with Temporary Home.

"It is just like all of the others, of course. We guard against architectural mistakes by building them in duplicate."

The car now began climbing the unbroken height of Scarritt's Point and Mrs. Sunday caught her first view of the sweeping curves of the river far below and the distant haze-enveloped hills of Clay county.

"Beautiful!" she exclaimed. "This is the prettiest spot in the world. Can we see the river from the house?"

"The best vantage point in the city to see the river," assured Mr. Fleming. The Wallace house was a great source of delight to the entire party. The spacious, well furnished rooms and the wonderful prospect from the bed room windows were points quickly noted in its favor. Mrs. R. A. Long greeted the evangelist at the door. She had personally supervised the finishing touches to the stately homestead and her own hands had adorned the various rooms with thirty dozen carnations. The Sundays proceeded at once to make themselves perfectly at home in their new surroundings and after an hour or two devoted to giving interviews, eating lunch and admiring the landscape, the retired for the afternoon to rest.