After his term as surveyor ended in 1869, Dr. Arter retired from business, and devoted his time to theology, thinking and writing. As his health began to fail, he welcomed death as a release from his frail flesh; he died in August 1879 at the age of 82. 1
A news item on Arter's death reads:
Cairo, Ill. Aug 6. -- Cairo lost one of her oldest citizens this morning by the death of Dr. Daniel Arter, who has been sick for about a year. He was in his 82d year. He was a prominent Republican, and was Surveyor of this port under Lincoln and Johnson.2
Dr. Daniel Arter
Born June 3, 1797
Died August 6, 1879
Aged 82 Yrs, 2 Mos. & 3 Da.
Wife of Dr. D. Arter
Born July 22, 1813.
Died May 27 1886.
A further line of extremely light script appears below Mrs. Arter's date of death. The soft marble has almost completely worn it away. I believe the first word is "Lord"; the rest is completely illegible.
Milly Arter was a member of the Women's Club and Library Association, which was organized in 1875. In 1877, it established a subscription library, and in 1882 gave it to the city as a free library. Landsen wrote of the club: "I do not know how I can better express the good this club has done for the people of the city than by asking what our condition would now be had it never existed. What we could or would have had in its place I do not know. Perhaps nothing."3