Edmund Lyne Starling

by Edmund Starling, 1886

EDMUND LYNE STARLING.-In treating of the life of the one whose name heads this brief sketch, one must feel that the difficulties he has to encounter, are equally great with those of the photographer when he attempts to reproduce on prepared paper, the exact features of a picture that presents aspects of a marked character. From his earliest childhood he possessed a mind remarkable for its strength and clearness. His chief aim seemed to be to earn an honorable name through the practice of those civic virtues whice, while they adorn their possessor, are the strongest supports of both society and government. At an early age he began to exhibit those of character, which, in their fuller development, caused him to be beloved and respected wherever he was known.

In his domestic life, his home stood with hospitable gates ajar, welcoming the stranger, the friend, the wayfarer and the distressed. No cloistral quiet there, with grave and irksome duties, where life was treated as a great sorrow to be borne in peace; nay, but a genial homelike pleasantness, rife with joyous sounds and echoing with contagious laughter, from its open windows and light, inviting chambers. Little children loved and came to him, their intuitions, wiser than our skill, recognized his kindly, generous nature, and they climber about his knees, roguishly and confidingly. He ever could sympathize with the child over its broken doll, as well as he could with a man borne down to earth with his sad and sorrowful bereavements. The young maiden, strange with the new love springing in her innocent heart, and wandering over the prize, found in this plain and good man, the tenderest advisor and friend, a confident more true than her old schoolmate, to whom she planned a future in the soft brilliance of their moonlit chamber. this enlarged good feeling for charity as God made the world, and not narrowly, as man uses it, was one of the qualities and attributes of Col. Edmund L. Starling. All those who knew him and felt his kindly influence, know that it is no more possible to resist a kindly nature shining from a noble heart, than it is for the earth to turn ungrateful to the sun and refuse its plants and flowers its generous kiss.

Col. Edmund L. Starling was born in Mecklenburg County, Virginia, on the ninth day of May, 1795. Sir William Starling, of Stopplesy Hall, of Bedfordshire, England, his paternal ancestor, was knighted in 1661, and Lord Mayor of London in 1670. The celebrated William Penn, it is said, was arraigned before Lord Mayor Starling for non-conformity of his religious opinions to the accepted creed of the government. William Starling, grandfather of the subject of this sketch, was the first man of the name who came to

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