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The History of Rushden
By Dr. C. R. Fisher.

The index A page in the book
The index and page from the draft book showing the alterations proposed
Rushden Echo, 8th October 1909, transcribed by Peter Brown

DR C R FISHER, who returned to the United States at the beginning of this year after spending eighteen months in Rushden, has just taken up a new position of great importance in the musical world of the States. He is now the director of the College of Music in the State University of Iowa, and is the head of the pianoforte department and teacher of organ and theoretical music. The Daily Iowan, the university newspaper, of Sept. 17, contains an excellent portrait of Dr. Fisher, and quotes striking testimony to the doctor's great ability as a musician and his remarkable success as an instructor. Dr. Fisher's many friends, in Rushden are well aware of his enthusiasm in regard to anything affecting his art, and will not be surprised that in addition to his other duties he is taking charge of the choral work and is training the choir to give Romberg's “Lay of the bell " in addition to choruses from Wagner and Rossini tor the Christmas choral concert. Mrs. Fisher is also engaged at the College and takes several classes. Our hearty congratulations are offered to the doctor in regard to his appointment, and we are quite sure that the students who will work under his direction are even more to be felicitated.

Dr C R Fisher
Dr Fisher in 1909

Rushden Echo, 16th September 1910

Dr C R Fisher, Professor of Music in the State University, Iowa City, son of Mr C M Fisher of Rushden gives an organ recital today at the Japan-British Exhibition.

Charles Rootham Fisher was born at Grantham in Lincolnshire in 1862. His parents were Charles Mason Fisher, born at Hargrave, and Jane (nee Rootham) born at Yelden. In 1881 the family was living in Rushden, where Charles established his clockmaking business near South Terrace, moving later to 25 High Street. Charles junior was then aged 19 and teaching music at a private school. His younger sister Beatrice also taught music, and later was also a toy dealer.

In the early 1920s the Rushden Echo newspaper, published by Charles Cross, ran a series of articles by Dr Charles Fisher about the history of Rushden. These articles were pasted into a large volume, (previously containing Art Pictures), to which Charles added copious notes, marked positions for photographs, and re-worded much of the printouts. This volume has no illustrations, but the newspaper clip below tells us a local artist had been preparing drawings for inclusion in the book.

Charles R Fisher was Faculty/Staff-Head, in 1911 of the School of Music at University of Iowa, USA. He had returned to England and was living in Bournemouth in October 1929, when he wrote the following letter to the Rushden Echo & Argus:-

Dear Mr. Waring,

Twice Mr. Cross assured me that the subscriptions (uncanvassed) warranted publication of the Book on Rushden, and a moiety was to go to the Nursing Association. Being away from Rushden the second time that statement was written to me I had no certain knowledge as to why continued delay happened.

I am convinced that canvassing would have quadrupled orders, but no canvassing was ever made. You can readily see that I am not the man to undertake that work, but as The "Echo" did give me every assurance that the book would go through, its successor "The Argus," will I feel sure, give every consideration it can do to that end before ruling it out as a closed incident.

The material gathered from every known source on Rushden and environs is quite distinct and beyond anything already published. It was Mr. Cross's idea to publish as now arranged. My wish is to prune and cut the whole very considerably, to near its half, perchance, and rewrite.

As a record of Rushden I am prepared to do this free (all save a copy or two of the book for personal use) because of my personal interest, which has become a love for old Rushden lore. You can readily see that beyond this it would be unwise for me to go, yet in proper "commercial" hands, well canvassed, I feel certain it would be a successful financial venture.

Very cordially yours,

Rushden Echo & Argus, Friday, March 6, 1931

To Our Readers
As residents of this district you are no doubt much interested in the history of Rushden, its folk-lore, notable people who were born and lived here, and many other old-time associations.

A series of articles on these subjects, which have appeared in “The Rushden Echo and Argus,” together with additional chapters, all by Dr. C. R. Fisher, a native of Rushden, will be published in book form and will include a number of illustrations excellently drawn by a Rushden artist specially for the purpose. These pictures have not so far been published in any form.

The book will be worthy to be placed in anyone’s library, and only a limited edition is possible. The volume will be of from 150 to 200 pages with the illustrations, and copies will be offered at 7s. 6d. each. If you would like one or more reserved, will you please fill in the appended from and return to us at your early convenience.

This book will not be proceeded with unless sufficient orders are received to warrant publication.

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