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karismanic

Old Duggar Newspaper Articles

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karismanic

It's been a quiet few weeks for the Duggars on social media. I also wasn't having much luck with a research project, so I found myself passing library time by searching NewspaperArchive for historical articles about the Duggars. (I might have a problem...?) I found quite a few, so I thought I'd start a topic and post them.

 

When there's nothing new to snark on, why not snark on the past?

 

Seriously, though, I think it might be enlightening to get an older, less-filtered, less media-saavy take on the Duggars in their own words.

 

First article coming up in the post below...enjoy!

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karismanic

The Daily Times

Farmington, NM

Feburary 21, 1999

Nuclear family explodes

Arkansas state rep balances new job, wife and 11 kids

1999_02_21_Nuclear%20family%20explodes.png

This article was the earliest I found touting the Duggars' megafamily status. The kids were so little!

Snarkable info:

  • The family was already experienced grifters all the way back to 1999. They convinced a friend to move out and let them squat in a 5000 square-foot house so they family could be together during the legislative sessions. But from the wording, it sounds like they could have lived there at other times too.
  • The styrofoam cups!
  • How annoying was it for JB's co-representatives to have to deal with two little kids following him around all the time? What normal job would look favorably upon that behavior?

FULL TEXT OF ARTICLE:

CONWAY, Ark. (AP) -- State Rep. Jim Bob Duggar and his wife, Michelle, have more than a nuclear family. Consider it a nuclear explosion family.

In the last 10 years, they've had 11 children, including two sets of twins. Mrs. Duggar also has had one miscarriage. The young couple -- he's 33, she's 32 -- consider their children a blessing from God. For now, they've set no limit on the number of children they will have.

"I love them. She loves them," says Duggar, "We've welcomed each one into our family."

Duggar, who does real estate work and recently sold a car sales business, is one of the 57 new House members this year. A Republican, he represents Springdale, but he and his family are living in a friend's very large home in Conway so they can be together during the months of the session. The friend is living elsewhere.

If Duggar can keep track of bills as well as he he keeps track of his children, he shouldn't have any trouble. He takes one or two children with him to work or, these days, to the session so he can get to know them and they can get to know him.

He and his family pray together every morning and the children help get him ready for work. While Duggar was putting on his socks one day, his 2 year-old son waddled over to Daddy's shoes and brought them to him.

At the end of a day at the Legislature, Duggar can tick off the names and ages of his children just as easily as singing "Do Re Mi" -- Joshua, 10; Jana and John David, 9; Jill, 7; Jessa, 6; Jinger, 5; Joseph, 4; Josiah, 2; Joyanna, 1: Jeremiah and Jedidiah, born Dec. 30.

Mrs. Duggar is mother and teacher to her children. She holds school at home, now a 5,000-square-foot ranch house on an expansive lot, shaded by a broad maple tree. Her grandmother also had two sets of twins.

"We rise anywhere from 7 to 7:30, 8 in the morning. We all get around the table and we have our devotions together. We pray and then I have story time with them, just like a biography of great Christians. We eat breakfast and then Dad leaves for work," she says.

Schedules for each child are neatly written on separate sheets of paper. Each is assigned housekeeping responsibilities, in addition to their school duties. The schedules line the side of the refrigerator. On a table nearby are styrofoam drinking cups, each with a child's name on it.

Each child also has a set of chores. "It works great," Mrs. Duggar says. "They think it's great. It's part of life and making things happen. It gives them a sense of responsibility."

"We're not just having these babies just to be having the children," Mrs. Duggar insists. "We're raising these children and desiring to train them to instruct them and to teach them in the right way."

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bbtlover

Awesome find! I've always wanted to know what the Duggar Family was like back then. Can't wait to read more articles you find.

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halcionne
He takes one or two children with him to work or, these days, to the session so he can get to know them and they can get to know him.

problematic

"We rise anywhere from 7 to 7:30, 8 in the morning."

So, more like 9. :shhh:

"We eat breakfast and then Dad leaves for work."

Either they didn't really have breakfast with JB, or he was horrifyingly late to sessions, or sessions started at 10 or 11.

"We're raising these children and desiring to train them to instruct them and to teach them in the right way."

problematic, again

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Nic

problematic

Again, watching Joshie's father's day video reminiscing about hanging out with him at the used car lot learning about paperwork... just made my heart tingle. Why has he not gotten a Father of the Year award by now!

The sad thing is if 19KAC ends, Meechelle won't have a reason (plot line) for her to hang around and get to know her kids like she did with digging a hole with JD (a little late for him), shooting a sling shot with James (I think she wanted to show off) or chess with Jsomebody (her words Im sure)

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CorruptionInc.

It's weird to think JB ever went to work.

Did Mullet actually do some parenting? Or was Jana old enough then?

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tapdancer493

"We're not just having these babies just to be having the children," Mrs. Duggar insists. "We're raising these children and desiring to train them to instruct them and to teach them in the right way."

What does this even mean? Is this your excuse for why your older daughters eventually raised babies (although since Joy was on Jill's buddy team we have to assume the older girls already had childcare responsibilities) and the kids have jurisdictions? I just... :wtf:

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DaysAgo
The Daily Times

Farmington, NM

Feburary 21, 1999

Nuclear family explodes

Arkansas state rep balances new job, wife and 11 kids

1999_02_21_Nuclear%20family%20explodes.png

This article was the earliest I found touting the Duggars' megafamily status. The kids were so little!

Snarkable info:

  • The family was already experienced grifters all the way back to 1999. They convinced a friend to move out and let them squat in a 5000 square-foot house so they family could be together during the legislative sessions. But from the wording, it sounds like they could have lived there at other times too.
  • The styrofoam cups!
  • How annoying was it for JB's co-representatives to have to deal with two little kids following him around all the time? What normal job would look favorably upon that behavior?

FULL TEXT OF ARTICLE:

CONWAY, Ark. (AP) -- State Rep. Jim Bob Duggar and his wife, Michelle, have more than a nuclear family. Consider it a nuclear explosion family.

In the last 10 years, they've had 11 children, including two sets of twins. Mrs. Duggar also has had one miscarriage. The young couple -- he's 33, she's 32 -- consider their children a blessing from God. For now, they've set no limit on the number of children they will have.

"I love them. She loves them," says Duggar, "We've welcomed each one into our family."

Duggar, who does real estate work and recently sold a car sales business, is one of the 57 new House members this year. A Republican, he represents Springdale, but he and his family are living in a friend's very large home in Conway so they can be together during the months of the session. The friend is living elsewhere.

If Duggar can keep track of bills as well as he he keeps track of his children, he shouldn't have any trouble. He takes one or two children with him to work or, these days, to the session so he can get to know them and they can get to know him.

He and his family pray together every morning and the children help get him ready for work. While Duggar was putting on his socks one day, his 2 year-old son waddled over to Daddy's shoes and brought them to him.

At the end of a day at the Legislature, Duggar can tick off the names and ages of his children just as easily as singing "Do Re Mi" -- Joshua, 10; Jana and John David, 9; Jill, 7; Jessa, 6; Jinger, 5; Joseph, 4; Josiah, 2; Joyanna, 1: Jeremiah and Jedidiah, born Dec. 30.

Mrs. Duggar is mother and teacher to her children. She holds school at home, now a 5,000-square-foot ranch house on an expansive lot, shaded by a broad maple tree. Her grandmother also had two sets of twins.

"We rise anywhere from 7 to 7:30, 8 in the morning. We all get around the table and we have our devotions together. We pray and then I have story time with them, just like a biography of great Christians. We eat breakfast and then Dad leaves for work," she says.

Schedules for each child are neatly written on separate sheets of paper. Each is assigned housekeeping responsibilities, in addition to their school duties. The schedules line the side of the refrigerator. On a table nearby are styrofoam drinking cups, each with a child's name on it.

Each child also has a set of chores. "It works great," Mrs. Duggar says. "They think it's great. It's part of life and making things happen. It gives them a sense of responsibility."

"We're not just having these babies just to be having the children," Mrs. Duggar insists. "We're raising these children and desiring to train them to instruct them and to teach them in the right way."

They say the same stuff today as they did way back then, 20 years ago! It's like they have not evolved in any type of thinking or speaking.

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DGayle
He takes one or two children with him to work or, these days, to the session so he can get to know them

How well can he do his job with kids tagging along, and since he should be doing work that taxpayers were paying him for, how much time was there to "get to know" the kids?

He and his family pray together every morning and the children help get him ready for work. While Duggar was putting on his socks one day, his 2 year-old son waddled over to Daddy's shoes and brought them to him.

Sounds like the kids are nothing but dogs, fetching daddy his shoes.

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DGayle

What does this even mean? Is this your excuse for why your older daughters eventually raised babies (although since Joy was on Jill's buddy team we have to assume the older girls already had childcare responsibilities) and the kids have jurisdictions? I just... :wtf:

What it means is they aren't having kids just because. They're having kids to "train and instruct" them on how to keep Gothardism going ("the right way").

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DeFrauder

This might be an unpopular opinion :nenner:

I don't find the giant brood of children to be their main problem. I am not even sure that it is a problem except for the ideological reasons that they give for having all these kids.

Reliable contraceptives only became available in the 1960s. Condoms were around for quite a while, but they were expensive and hard to get. It used to be the norm for people to have 8-12-16 children. Especially if there were twins involved. It was just a fact of life that women would have a large brood and possibly die from it. It was not that long ago that child birth came with a 30% risk of death. It still does in many parts of the world.

It was also the norm for half the kids to die as infants. Queen Anne, for example had 18 children that were either stillborn, or died in infancy. My own Grandma had 6 children and 3 lived to adulthood. My Great Grandmother had 12 children. Mormons continue to have huge families--as do some Catholics.

Michelle Duggard is normal in the amount of children that she has turned out--she just happens to be extra fertile than avg and has the benefit of vaccines and other healthcare advances that serve to keep her entire brood alive. If this was 1915 instead of 2015, she might have been down to 10-12 kids by now.

So my point is: There is nothing wrong with having so many kids (unless you literally are unable to feed them, but there seems to be enough tater tot casserole to go around). There is also nothing special about having 19 kids because a lot of women can manage giving birth to that many. It was the norm to have babies every 1 to 2 years for millennia. It is just no longer the NORM to not use contraceptives and avoid pregnancies. We forget really easy.

So yeah, I cant blame them for having so many children. Its what happens when you don't use contraceptives. Its just their ideology that is the problem.

:stir-pot: :popcorn2: :)

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laundry
This might be an unpopular opinion :nenner:

I don't find the giant brood of children to be their main problem. I am not even sure that it is a problem except for the ideological reasons that they give for having all these kids.

Reliable contraceptives only became available in the 1960s. Condoms were around for quite a while, but they were expensive and hard to get. It used to be the norm for people to have 8-12-16 children. Especially if there were twins involved. It was just a fact of life that women would have a large brood and possibly die from it. It was not that long ago that child birth came with a 30% risk of death. It still does in many parts of the world.

It was also the norm for half the kids to die as infants. Queen Anne, for example had 18 children that were either stillborn, or died in infancy. My own Grandma had 6 children and 3 lived to adulthood. My Great Grandmother had 12 children. Mormons continue to have huge families--as do some Catholics.

Michelle Duggard is normal in the amount of children that she has turned out--she just happens to be extra fertile than avg and has the benefit of vaccines and other healthcare advances that serve to keep her entire brood alive. If this was 1915 instead of 2015, she might have been down to 10-12 kids by now.

So my point is: There is nothing wrong with having so many kids (unless you literally are unable to feed them, but there seems to be enough tater tot casserole to go around). There is also nothing special about having 19 kids because a lot of women can manage giving birth to that many. It was the norm to have babies every 1 to 2 years for millennia. It is just no longer the NORM to not use contraceptives and avoid pregnancies. We forget really easy.

So yeah, I cant blame them for having so many children. Its what happens when you don't use contraceptives. Its just their ideology that is the problem.

:stir-pot: :popcorn2: :)

In it self, to have 19 kids may not be a problem, but when your children have to make an appointment to have alone time with their parents and when they become more attatched to their big sister buddies (who eventually will leave them to raise their own kids) instead of their own mom, then I think it's a big problem.

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gustava
This might be an unpopular opinion :nenner:

I don't find the giant brood of children to be their main problem. I am not even sure that it is a problem except for the ideological reasons that they give for having all these kids.

Reliable contraceptives only became available in the 1960s. Condoms were around for quite a while, but they were expensive and hard to get. It used to be the norm for people to have 8-12-16 children. Especially if there were twins involved. It was just a fact of life that women would have a large brood and possibly die from it. It was not that long ago that child birth came with a 30% risk of death. It still does in many parts of the world.

It was also the norm for half the kids to die as infants. Queen Anne, for example had 18 children that were either stillborn, or died in infancy. My own Grandma had 6 children and 3 lived to adulthood. My Great Grandmother had 12 children. Mormons continue to have huge families--as do some Catholics.

Michelle Duggard is normal in the amount of children that she has turned out--she just happens to be extra fertile than avg and has the benefit of vaccines and other healthcare advances that serve to keep her entire brood alive. If this was 1915 instead of 2015, she might have been down to 10-12 kids by now.

So my point is: There is nothing wrong with having so many kids (unless you literally are unable to feed them, but there seems to be enough tater tot casserole to go around). There is also nothing special about having 19 kids because a lot of women can manage giving birth to that many. It was the norm to have babies every 1 to 2 years for millennia. It is just no longer the NORM to not use contraceptives and avoid pregnancies. We forget really easy.

So yeah, I cant blame them for having so many children. Its what happens when you don't use contraceptives. Its just their ideology that is the problem.

:stir-pot: :popcorn2: :)

You do know it's 2015?

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Nic

You do know it's 2015?

I'm more concerned that DeFrauder sees kids like fishes-- all you got to do is feed them.

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FundieFarmer

Great find, Karismanic! No pressure, but I can't wait to read more! You're right that a lens-less look from the media would be awesome.

This article is respectful, but I also got the beginning of the "look at this huge abnormal family" vibe. The beginning of the end!

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19 cats and counting
This might be an unpopular opinion :nenner:

I don't find the giant brood of children to be their main problem. I am not even sure that it is a problem except for the ideological reasons that they give for having all these kids.

Reliable contraceptives only became available in the 1960s. Condoms were around for quite a while, but they were expensive and hard to get. It used to be the norm for people to have 8-12-16 children. Especially if there were twins involved. It was just a fact of life that women would have a large brood and possibly die from it. It was not that long ago that child birth came with a 30% risk of death. It still does in many parts of the world.

It was also the norm for half the kids to die as infants. Queen Anne, for example had 18 children that were either stillborn, or died in infancy. My own Grandma had 6 children and 3 lived to adulthood. My Great Grandmother had 12 children. Mormons continue to have huge families--as do some Catholics.

Michelle Duggard is normal in the amount of children that she has turned out--she just happens to be extra fertile than avg and has the benefit of vaccines and other healthcare advances that serve to keep her entire brood alive. If this was 1915 instead of 2015, she might have been down to 10-12 kids by now.

So my point is: There is nothing wrong with having so many kids (unless you literally are unable to feed them, but there seems to be enough tater tot casserole to go around). There is also nothing special about having 19 kids because a lot of women can manage giving birth to that many. It was the norm to have babies every 1 to 2 years for millennia. It is just no longer the NORM to not use contraceptives and avoid pregnancies. We forget really easy.

So yeah, I cant blame them for having so many children. Its what happens when you don't use contraceptives. Its just their ideology that is the problem.

:stir-pot: :popcorn2: :)

But if it were 1915, the adult children would most likely not be sticking around. So there would never be 19 in the same household (at the most there was 18 as Josh was married before Jordyn and Josie were born). Jana and JD would definitely be gone, perhaps also Jinger and Joseph.

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Nic

JB fascinates me in a perverse way: He's cunning enough to get his freebies and to promote The Duggar Brand, but then he says things like I take my kids to work with me to get to know them.

Who is going to think this is cool? If he was my representative I would say do that on your own time.

If I were him, I would say despite having a hectic schedule representing his constituents, JB makes it a point to play catch with his kids when he gets home from work or spend the weekend having picnics. WHATEVER. Not I dragged my kids into work so I can find out who the hell these creatures are. Who was impressed with that answer? How can a guy that can get so much off of people repeatedly say stupid stuff like that?

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19 cats and counting

I work in politics so I'm all for having kids learn about the political process in order to become informed citizens as adults. As a kid, I spent a lot of time at my dad's office (local government job) first doing things like coloring at the conference table and eventually filing and organizing things (out of boredom).

If JB were my candidate (never would happen as I'm a Democrat) and the kids came to the campaign office all the time, I'd accept it as part of who the candidate is and find age-appropriate things for them to do. I've worked with candidates' kids before and it varies by age on what I will put them to work as. One candidate's son was great at knocking doors (HS senior) and he had an army of his friends to help him. Another (Late 20s/early 30s) I put calling undecided voters at the last minute with a heartfelt plea to vote for his dad. If the candidate brought kids under 10, I'd have them draw pictures/vote for XYZ signs to decorate the office.

Never worked on the legislative side, but there are community events (NOT ALL) that you can bring kids to. Fairs/festivals, parades, group picnics, etc. You can get time with your kids and still do your job. I doubt JB sees this though which is why his political career never took off (was he even re-elected?)

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Toaster
Each child also has a set of chores. "It works great," Mrs. Duggar says. "They think it's great. It's part of life and making things happen. It gives them a sense of responsibility."

She says this constantly -- "They think it's great." Every single time I get the feeling she's trying a little too hard. If someone had asked my mum (mother of seven, wife of a preacher, homeschooler for at least a few years) she would have laughed. "Oh, it's not their favourite thing, but we think it's valuable to know how to help around the house."

This emphasis on "The kids WANT to raise each other, the kids WANT to have jurisdictions, the kids WANT to _____." It's actually okay for parents to make kids do chores even if they don't want to (within reason, obviously). Even in the most fundie families in our homeschool group, kids whined, kids grumbled, kids tried to get out of their chores, it's just normal. Pretending that doesn't happen is creepy.

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shedemei
At the end of a day at the Legislature, Duggar can tick off the names and ages of his children just as easily as singing "Do Re Mi" -- Joshua, 10; Jana and John David, 9; Jill, 7; Jessa, 6; Jinger, 5; Joseph, 4; Josiah, 2; Joyanna, 1: Jeremiah and Jedidiah, born Dec. 30.

I love the writer of this article. You guys! He can name his own children!

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ShepherdontheRock
This might be an unpopular opinion :nenner:

I don't find the giant brood of children to be their main problem. I am not even sure that it is a problem except for the ideological reasons that they give for having all these kids.

Reliable contraceptives only became available in the 1960s. Condoms were around for quite a while, but they were expensive and hard to get. It used to be the norm for people to have 8-12-16 children. Especially if there were twins involved. It was just a fact of life that women would have a large brood and possibly die from it. It was not that long ago that child birth came with a 30% risk of death. It still does in many parts of the world.

It was also the norm for half the kids to die as infants. Queen Anne, for example had 18 children that were either stillborn, or died in infancy. My own Grandma had 6 children and 3 lived to adulthood. My Great Grandmother had 12 children. Mormons continue to have huge families--as do some Catholics.

Michelle Duggard is normal in the amount of children that she has turned out--she just happens to be extra fertile than avg and has the benefit of vaccines and other healthcare advances that serve to keep her entire brood alive. If this was 1915 instead of 2015, she might have been down to 10-12 kids by now.

So my point is: There is nothing wrong with having so many kids (unless you literally are unable to feed them, but there seems to be enough tater tot casserole to go around). There is also nothing special about having 19 kids because a lot of women can manage giving birth to that many. It was the norm to have babies every 1 to 2 years for millennia. It is just no longer the NORM to not use contraceptives and avoid pregnancies. We forget really easy.

So yeah, I cant blame them for having so many children. Its what happens when you don't use contraceptives. Its just their ideology that is the problem.

:stir-pot: :popcorn2: :)

Actually, my problem is not necessarily with having so many kids per se, it's the fact that they were clearly incapable of loving/raising them all. It's not just about feeding and clothing them, it's about educating, disciplining, being emotionally there for them, which they've CLEARLY failed to do.

I mean, if you are somehow actually capable of loving and raising properly 50 kids, then I wouldn't have a problem with it. But if you can't do that, it's irresponsible and selfish to keep having kids.

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Meh
formergothardite

I love the writer of this article. You guys! He can name his own children!

So Jim Bob did a bit better than Kelly Bates. :lol:

One thing Jim Bob and Michelle were tactful about was that they didn't admit that they were raising an army for God, which is pretty much the real reason they had all these kids. I think even back then they realized that they needed to keep quiet about the super crazy aspects of their life.

And yes, if you have to bring kids to work so that you can get to know who they are, well you are doing a pretty shitty job of parenting.

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SassyPants

Since there are only 24 hours in a day, I do find it irresponsible and selfish to procreate 19 children.

The day never gets longer.

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December

I think not having time to get to know the kids is more a function of having too many of them! I can't imagine anyone with 10+ kids giving them all adequate attention; that's why they have the sister-moms.

As for whether it's wrong (with or without the ideology) to have so many kids... When people routinely had large families 100+ years ago, it wasn't out of the same ideology as the Duggars. It was because access to reliable contraception and/or abortion was extremely limited, questionably legal, or perhaps outright nonexistent. You can't really choose to follow the idea of letting God determine your family size when, short of abstinence, you have no other options to choose. (And if you were a women before marital rape was outlawed, even abstinence may not have been a legal choice for you.)

The Duggars don't realize how historically privileged they are to have the option of modern medicine. Anyone who's walked through an old cemetery has probably noticed plenty of graves of babies, small children, and young mothers. In some sibling sets in my own family tree, only like 1-3 of 10 recorded children made it to adulthood. Plenty of male ancestors remarried multiple times because their wives died in childbirth. I seriously doubt the Duggars would be continually pursuing more pregnancies, especially high-risk ones, if they did not have the option of using doctors/nurses with the secular education they so despise.

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