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1891-1892 Meeting Minutes
SEPT. 26, 1891-JUNE 8, 1892.
Maryland Historical Society Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore Collection, MS 988, Box 3
Board Meeting--September 26th 1891.
Meeting Board of Management 12 E. Centre Street September 26th 1891.; On meeting room for Club; 12 E. Centre St. accepted size; Terms; Improvements; Temporary House Committee; Salon October 6th; Suggested monthly House Committee; “Teas” charge of 2nd V.P.; No set sum to House Committee[?]; Franklin desires to be dropped from roll during absence; Secretary allowed to have printed cards meeting days
A meeting of the Board of Management of the Woman’s Literary Club was held in the building of the Academy of Sciences--12 East Centre Street, on Saturday morning, September 26th, 1891, about 11 o’clock, with the President in the chair.
There were 8 members present.
The important question was discussed of choosing a room for the meetings of the Club during the coming season, and the offer made by the Academy of Sciences through Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat], was considered and accepted. By this offer, the Club is given the use of one larger room capable of holding more than fifty chairs and of other smaller rooms, and it is requested that all the members of the Woman’s Literary Club will in return become adjunct or associate members of the Academy of Sciences at the rate of $1 each per year. The President feared we may not be sufficiently scientific to deserve admission to this association, but was informed by Mrs Sioussat that we were only asked to be adjunct members, which removed the difficulty. The President put to vote the question “Shall the courtesy of the President of the Academy of Sciences be accepted by the Woman’s Literary Club?” Carried without dissent.
It was proposed by the President and decided that the Woman’s Literary Club furnish a carpet for the larger room, and also paper the walls, that the Club colors be remembered in the selections made, and that if the Club vacate these rooms, both these improvements shall be the property of the Academy of Sciences.
It was decided to buy slowly much of the furniture needed for the Club, but to provide at once six chairs for the Officers and Executive Committee, curtain drapery, a table cover and a secretary.
Mrs Sioussat and Mrs Lord [Alice Emma Sauerwein Lord] were appointed by the President a temporary House Committee to make the various purchases.
It was decided to have a Salon without refreshments on October 6th.
The President suggested that a new House Committee be named for each month, and appointed the second Vice President to take charge of the “teas” as heretofore.
The Treasurer asked if a fixed sum would be allowed to the House Committee. The President thought not.
Mrs Sioussat wished to know if she should send the bills to the Treasurer, and was requested by the Treasurer to approve them before forwarding them. The President asked that they might be sent through her; and informed the Secretary that Miss Brent [Emma Fenwick Brent] and Miss Bond are still members of the Club.
The Treasurer stated that Mrs Franklin [Christine Ladd-Franklin] (former Club Treasurer) desired to be dropped from the members’ roll during her year of absence. The President asked postponement of decision in this matter until the Committee meeting October 13th.
The Secretary requested to be authorized to have printed at once cards of meeting days for the season. Allowed.
The President appointed October 13th, 2.30 o’clock, for the next meeting of the Executive Committee.
Approved by Board.
10th Salon--October 6th 1891.
10th Salon 12 E. Centre St. October 6th; President’s greeting; Letter accepting room and reply; Resolution of thanks to Academy of Science; B. Taylor’s portrait; Cabinet for President; Milnor elected to the Maryland Historical Society; Various Club books and their uses; “Public Schools” committee; O.T. Miller’s book; Reese’s and Easter’s books to appear; Copies [of?] Constitution and meeting cards; No weekly postals; Resolution of thanks to forward to Dr Uhler.; Resolution of thanks to President and decoration committee
The tenth Salon of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore, and first of the autumn of 1891 was held at 12 East Centre Street, in the rooms of the Academy of Sciences, on Tuesday afternoon, October 6th, after 3.30 o’clock.
The President was in the chair, and there were about thirty one (31) persons present.
The President, in her greeting to the Club, bade the members welcome to the new room offered them by the Academy of Sciences with the suggestion that the members become associates of the Academy, thus proving that we are “regarded as an earnest body of workers[.]” A copy of the letter of acceptance written by the President of the Woman’s Literary Club to Dr Uhler President of the Academy of Sciences, and Dr Uhler’s reply were read by the Secretary. The Club thanked the Academy of Sciences by a rising vote, and a resolution of thanks was framed by Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] and passed by the Club. The President referred to various matters of interest as follows: The portrait of Bayard Taylor given by Mrs Graham [Elizabeth Turner Graham]; the artist’s proof engraving and etching lent by Mrs Graham; the ornamentation of the room--inviting the ladies to make presents to the Club, also gifts of needlework and their own literary labors; the cabinet given by the President--suggesting that it might be used for a collection of autographs of Club members; the election of Miss Mary Worthington Milnor as the first lady member of the Maryland Historical Society; the fair promise of the Club papers presented; the various Club books--1. “Authors and Artists of Maryland,” in charge of Miss Milnor, 2. Scrap book for clippings by Miss Milnor who would be glad to have the assistance of Club members in collecting anecdotes of celebrated men, etc., and who could furnish a very good form of indexing for the books, 3. “[?Waifs]” by Miss Cloud [Virginina Woodward Cloud] for printed matter of interest to members, not collected in book form, 4. and 5. “Club Records”--2 volumes--of which “Scrap book” by Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton] of printed accounts of Club meetings, etc., and “Blank book” by Miss Balch [Grace Ballch] to contain accounts of any special meeting and papers members would care to have, 6. “Woman’s Work and Progress” by Mrs Eames [Mrs. Henry H. Eames], of which the central idea in so full a subject might be to collect work that bears a literary stamp.
The President also called attention to the “Public Schools” Committee formed by request of the Supervisor of Public Schools, and consisting of Mrs Colvin [Mary Noyes Colvin], Miss Bond, Miss Sally Carter [Sally K. Carter], Miss Milnor and Miss Duer [Edith Duer]--also announced the gift to the Club by Mrs Olive Thorne Miller of her last book, the approaching appearance of Miss Reese’s [Lizette Woodworth Reese] book dedicated to Sidney Lanier and of Mrs Easter’s [Marguerite E. Easter] book dedicated to William Hand Browne.
The programme for next Tuesday [was] given by the President and the following Tuesday [was] named as [a] Memorial Day for Mrs Tiernan [Mary Spear Tiernan].
It was also stated that the Secretary had copies of the Constitution and cards of Club meeting days for distribution and that there will be no more weekly postals.
Mrs Graham proposed that the resolution of thanks passed be forwarded to Dr Uhler--Mrs Sioussat seconded [by] Miss Thompson [Charlotte Dellacklot Thompson] moved that the Secretary forward a copy. Carried.
Mrs Griffin [Rebecca Griffin] wished to express pleasure to the ladies for the decoration of the room. [A] resolution of thanks to the President and all the ladies on the decoration committee was proposed, seconded by Miss Haughton, and passed. Mrs Sioussat replied for the House Committee.
Board Meeting--October 13th 1891.
Board of Management meeting 12 E. Centre St. October 13th; Payment of dues to Academy of Science; Discussion on Residents as guests of Club; Haughton--for Salon; Lord--Memorial table; Committee meeting
A meeting of the Board of Management of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, October 13th, about 3 o’clock.
The President was in the chair and eight (8) members were present.
The Secretary read the minutes of the Board meetings of May 21st and September 26th which were approved.
The President thought the dues of the Club for associate membership in the Academy of Sciences should be paid from the Club funds.
Question was [put?] by the President whether Mrs Yardley [Alice Yardley] should be invited as guest of the Club for the coming winter as a courtesy to our active member Mrs Graham [Elizabeth Turner Graham].
Mrs Griffin [Rebecca Griffin] thought that others might apply for the same privilege.
Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] suggested that a fixed number of persons be admitted as guests.
Mrs Colvin [Mary Noyes Colvin] proposed an immediate vote upon the special case.
Question postponed by President for want of time.
President also reminded Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton] to take charge of the Salon tea, and appointed Mrs Lord to decorate the memorial table for Mrs Tiernan [Mary Spear Tiernan] on the following Tuesday.
A special meeting of the Committee was called after the general meeting of October 13th to attend to the programme for October 20th. Miss Haughton was appointed a Committee of one to purchase two teapots for the Club Salons.
The President named the first Tuesday in November--2.30 o’clock for the next Executive meeting.
Corrected and Approved by Board November 10th.
33rd General Meeting--October 13th 1891.
33rd meeting 12 E. Centre St. October 13th; Notices of Memorial Day to absent members; Sioussat on “Colonial Women”; President--”Myer’s St Paul”; Delsartian Lecturer
The thirty third general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, October 13th, about 3.30 o’clock.
There were about twenty four (24) persons present, with the President in the chair.
The Secretary read the minutes of the meetings of June 2nd, and October 6th.
Consultation as to the need and mode of sending notifications to absent members of the memorial day to Mrs Tiernan [Mary Spear Tiernan] the following week, resulted in a request being made to the Secretary to send special written notices.
Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] read a paper on “Colonial Women” speaking of the influence of women on colonization, especially of that exercised by women of Spanish and English descent in our own early settlements.
The President read a paper upon “The Motif and Manner of Myer’s St Paul,” recommending the work to the Club as of fine rhythm, intellectual quality and beautiful sentiment.
Mrs Colvin [Mary Noyes Colvin] by request of the President, announced that [?Mr] Russell--Delsartian Lecturer--would, if desired, give a course of lectures to the Club on dress and decoration reform.
34th General Meeting--October 20th 1891.
34th general meeting 12 East Centre St. October 20th; Tiernan Memorial Day; President on Mrs Tiernan; Miss Crane’s paper on Mrs Tiernan; Miss Milnor on Mrs Tiernan; Mrs Tiernan’s works presented to Club--President; Miss Milnor’s booklet; motion of thanks; Readings by Misses Cloud and Crane; Original poems on Mrs Tiernan by Mrs Lord, Mrs Easter, Mrs Graham and Miss Zacharias; Reading by Miss Crane
The thirty fourth general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, October 20th, about 3.30 o’clock.
There were about fifty (50) persons present, with the President in the chair.
The day was kept as a memorial for Mrs Mary Spear Tiernan.
The President referred to Mrs Tiernan as one of the original members of the Club, and as a woman of noble presence, courtesy and unfailing vivacity, possessing range of reading, suggestiveness and ability to stimulate others, as well as a power of literary expression, a voice and manner which made her our most gifted speaker.
The President stated that last spring two members of the Club had been chosen to make a list and critical estimate of Mrs Tiernan’s books.
Miss Lydia Crane read a paper on Mrs Mary Spear Tiernan, speaking of her personality and writings.
She began to write in October 1868; her first story was published in “The Sun” of January 12th 1878, and her last in “The Century” of February 1889. She died January 13th 1891. Her three novels--”Homoselle,” “Suzette” and “Jack Horner” were published in 1881, 1885, and 1890.
Miss Milnor [Mary Worthington Milnor] spoke of Mrs Tiernan’s nobility of character, intense sympathy, and of the lesson of earnest labor that might be taught by her life.
The President presented Mrs Tiernan’s three novels to the Club, and announced that Miss Milnor had given a booklet with selections from Mrs Tiernan’s works.
Mrs Bullock [Caroline Canfield Bullock], seconded by Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat], proposed a motion of thanks to the President and Miss Milnor for their gifts.
Miss Cloud [Virginia Woodward Cloud] read selections from “Jack Horner,” and Miss Crane read from Mrs Tiernan’s unpublished writings a fragment on Old Plantation Life which had been lent by Dr Adams.
Original poems on Mrs Tiernan were read:
by Mrs Lord [Alice Emma Sauerwein Lord] “In Memoriam of Mary Spear Tiernan”; by Mrs Easter [Marguerite E Easter] “So will we think of thee”; by Mrs Graham [Elizabeth Turner Graham] on “Truth-tellers of Fiction”--a tribute on a conversation with Mrs Tiernan upon Homoselle”; and by Miss Zacharias [Jane Zacharias] “On Expression,” referring to the last address made to the Club by Mrs Tiernan.
Miss Crane read “The lost Music Lesson” from “Homoselle.”
11th Salon--October 27th 1891.
11th Salon October 27th 12 E. Centre St.; Social meeting
The eleventh Salon of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, October 27th, 1891, about 3.30 o’clock.
There were about thirty two (32) persons present, and the meeting was entirely a social one.
Light refreshments were served.
The President announced the subject of the programme for the next week.
Board Meeting--November 3rd 1891.
Board of Management meeting 12 E. Centre St. November 3rd 1891.; On re-admission of Club members after necessary absence; (Limit Club membership?); May be re-elected on return by Board of Management; Not necessary to announce to Club; May be re-elected; Are such absent members non-resident or are they dropped from list?; Matter referred to next meeting; Committee on Invitation postponed; Insurance on Club property; Aid to janitress
A meeting of the Board of Management--W.L.C.--was held at 12 East Centre Street, Tuesday afternoon, November 3rd about 3 o’clock.
There were nine (9) members present with the President in the chair.
The reading of minutes of last Board meeting was postponed by President on account of shortness of time.
The subject was discussed whether members who could not attend the Club meetings on account of protracted illness or necessary absence from the City might be dropped from the Club list and re-admitted on their return.
The President suggested that we might at some future time limit the Club membership--perhaps to one hundred--and in such case, of half the members should leave the City, we should not have funds sufficient to cover Club expenses. Miss Thompson [Charlotte Dellacklot Thompson], seconded by Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton], asked that the question be put, which the President did in effect as follows, “Shall we permit those ladies who consider that they have sufficient reasons for absence from the Club to continue members?”
Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] proposed the amendment that such persons shall be extraneous to limitation.
The Treasurer thought that no limitation of numbers enters into the present question.
The President agreed with the Treasurer the question of limitations and thought with Mrs Sioussat that members absent from good cause should on return, be re-elected by the Board of Management, not by the Club.
Treasurer asked if this meant that the names of persons returning should not be announced to the Club.
This seemed the view of the Board.
Miss Szold [Henrietta Szold] remarked that this brings the question to individual cases.
The Secretary asked whether such absent members should be classed as non-resident with half dues or should be entirely dropped.
Miss Szold thought if allowed to leave on account of illness or absence with good cause, the Committee must pass upon such cause in re-admitting them.
The President thought it difficult to examine into real cause, and that they should be either termed non-resident members, or absolutely dropped and re-elected by the Committee.
Mrs Lord [Alice Emma Sauerwein Lord] thought that at time of re-election, the cause of absence could be enquired into.
The Secretary asked that the decision be put into the By-Laws, and was requested by the President to frame it and present it to the Board and the next meeting.
The President also hoped that in the admission of new members, only those would be chosen who would raise the standard of the Club.
The Secretary thought members should be chosen strictly by Constitutional rule, and asked the President to appoint a Committee on Invitation in accordance with the Constitution.
Appointment postponed by the President until the next meeting which was fixed for the following Tuesday at 2.30 o’clock.
The President suggested that we should have an insurance on the Club property, and that we might help the janitress who has been put to heavy loss by recent fire in the building.
Mrs Sioussat and Miss Szold thought we might do something for her, and Miss Szold agreed to find out if the Academy of Sciences would assist her.
Approved by Board November 10th.
35th General Meeting--November 3rd 1891.
35th meeting 12 E. Centre St. November 3rd 1891; Letter from Mrs O. Thorne Miller; Mrs Latimer’s new book.; Article on “Dues”; Volck on Etching, etc.; “Ramble among Burins and Needles”
The thirty fifth general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon November 3rd, 3.30 o’clock.
The President was in the chair, and there were about twenty nine (29) persons present, among whom was Mrs Frances H. Easby of the New Century Club of Philadelphia and former Secretary of the Club for the Advancement of Women.
The minutes of the meetings of October 13th, 20th, and 27th were read by the Secretary and approved.
The Secretary also read a letter from an honorary member Mrs Olive Thorne Miller--accepting the President’s invitation to read a paper to the Club if in Baltimore this winter, and extending the hospitalities of the New York Clubs to the Woman’s Literary Club.
The President announced two courses of lectures to be given by Mrs Latimer [Elizabeth Wormeley Latimer] on “English Historical Gossip” and “English Poets”--also spoke of Mrs Latimer’s new book on “Historical Gossip,” and of Miss Reese [Lizette Woodworth Reese] and Sidney Lanier.
The President also asked to be informed of any work prepared for the Club, that the programmes may be more uniformly arranged.
Mrs Graham [Elizabeth Turner Graham] asked if any Committee of History existed, as she had been asked to present for membership certain former members of a historical society. The President named the Committee on “Authors and Artists of Maryland,” as the only historical Committee, and said the voting upon members would take place later.
The President also called attention in the name of the Treasurer to the constitutional article on “Dues.”
Miss Volck [Annie C. Volck] preluded her paper on “A Ramble among Burins and Needles” with a hasty sketch on the making of etchings. Engraving is the older art and was first done on copper--then on steel. The tool used is a burin or graver. Etching is done as follows. A plate is prepared either of zinc for coarse work, or copper for fine work--especially beaten--not rolled--copper. The etching ground consisting often of a certain preparation of wax, is spread on the plate and the picture drawn with the etching needle. The plate is then placed in the bath or “mordant” consisting frequently of hydrochloric acid and water, and is there bitten by the acid whence the name of the art “etching” from the old German verb “etzen,” to bite. On removal from the bath more etching ground is added and certain lighter lines are stopped up with the wax. The plate is then put back into the acid to deepen the darker lines, and this process is repeated until the lines are rightly bitten, when the plate is taken out, the ground removed, and the etching printed. Artists sometimes print their own etchings. The berceau is a curved instrument used to plough up the surface of the copper--or raise the burr. A soft ground engraving has paper spread between the ground and the instrument. An artist’s proof always bears the artist’s re-mark upon it.--
Mrs Whitelock [Louise Clarkson Whitelock] requested that her paper might be dropped from the day’s programme to enable Miss Volck to continue her subject. Upon request of the President Miss Volck read her paper, in which she described an engraving as incised, an etching as bitten, spoke of celebrated engravers and etchers--mentioning Rembrandt as a “god in art,” and declared that etching is worthy of the greatest work of the finest artists.
The President announced the programme of the next meeting and the Club adjourned.
Board Meeting--November 10th 1891.
Board of Management 12 East Centre St. November 10th 1891.; On-members unavoidably absent from Club meetings; Not yet added to By-Laws; Appropriation asked to tea table; November House Committee; Subs. for janitress; Plan to collect works of Maryland writers; Cover for tea table; Committee on Invitation appointed; Non-resident guests of members may attend meetings?; Also distinguished strangers may be brought without invitation?; Residents may come again to hear special paper; Reports to newspapers.
A meeting of the Board of Management was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, November 10th, after 2.30 o’clock, with the President in the chair and nine (9) members present.
The minutes of the meetings of October 13th were corrected and approved and those of November 3rd approved. The words “prolonged” and “upon her request” were by the President added to the form presented by the Secretary on “members unavoidably absent from the Club meetings,” which then read as follows: “Any member unable to attend the Club meetings on account of prolonged illness or absence from the City may be dropped from the Club list upon her request, and re-admitted on her return by vote of the Board of Management.
Such a person may if she should prefer it, be classed as a non-resident member.”
The President asked that this addition be not made by the By-Laws at present; and no action was taken.
The Treasurer made the request for the second Vice-President that an appropriation be set aside (allowed) for the Salon tea table--which was done.
The President appointed Mrs Lord [Alice Emma Sauerwein Lord] and Miss Mary Willcox Brown the House Committee for November.
It was decided to take up a voluntary contribution requested to notify absent members of the plan.
The President suggested that we make an effort to secure a Maryland library for the Club, consisting of the books and pamphlets of those who have lived or written in Maryland. Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] thought Dr John Morris has made a collection of such pamphlets at the Peabody.
Mrs Colvin [Mary Noyes Colvin] said that we might confine ourselves to books.
The President suggested that the younger ladies make a cover for the tea table with a flower and the name of each person embroidered upon it by herself. Miss Thompson [Charlotte Dellacklot Thompson] asked for a Chairman, and the President thought Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton] would attend to the matter.
The Secretary asked for a Committee on Invitation. The President appointed Mrs Colvin. The President thought concerning guests, that all non-resident guests of members--whether literary or otherwise--and all distinguished strangers may be brought without obtaining invitations.
Mrs Sioussat thought of course if a resident of Baltimore, not a member, should be asked to hear a certain paper and the paper were postponed, such a guest could be again invited when the paper should be read. The Board seemed to hold the same view.
In a consultation on the reports of Club meetings to newspapers, Mrs Colvin suggested a censor.
No action was taken.
Approved by Board.
36th General Meeting--November 10th 1891.
36th meeting 12 E. Centre St. November 10th 1891; Notice of purse for janitress; Notice of Class of Political Economy; Cup and saucer to Club if desired; Photograph of honorary member; Address--President; Committee “Current Criticism”; Criticism on “Mademoiselle [?IXE]” by Treasurer, read by Dammann; Other Criticisms; Whitelock--”Modern Metaphysical Romance”; Easby on the New Century Club Philadelphia; Reese--”Mistress Persis’ Hawthorn Blossoms”
The thirty sixth general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, November 10th, 3.30 o’clock.
The President was in the chair and there were about twenty nine (29) persons present.
The President gave notice that it has been decided to take up a purse for the janitress who has lost property by fire in the building, and members were asked to contribute if they desired. Also gave notice that the Class of Political Economy formed last season will be held at 202 W. Monument Street. All are invited to join.
Those who might desire to contribute a cup and saucer to the club after the example of certain members, were asked to bring the gift on or before the next Salon, and it was suggested that we should have a tea-cloth worked with the autographs of the younger ladies.
A photograph of Mrs Cayley [Mrs. Arthur Cayley] of Cambridge--honorary member--was shown to the Club, and notice was given of a possible visit to Baltimore of Mrs Neville Lubbock, formerly Miss Herschel.
The President made a short address on the new Committee of Current Criticism, and thought that of this Committee all the Club might become members.
Mrs Dammann [Aileen B. C. Dammann], Chairman of the Committee, read a criticism written by the Treasurer on “Mademoiselle Ixe” by Lanoe Falconer. Also criticisms on “Home Life on an Ostrich Farm” by Annie Martin, two dramatic poems “The Intruder” and “The Blind” by Maurice Maeterlinck, a poem “The Isles of Greece” by Frederick Tennyson--brother to Alfred.
Mrs Dammann also said that Madame Repplier had spoken of the pleasure Miss Reese’s [Lizette Woodworth Reese] book had given her, and had observed that in “Lydia,” “somebody seemed so glad.”
The President announced that the programme for next Tuesday would be under the auspices of the Committee on “Authors and Artists of Maryland.”
Mrs Whitelock [Louise Clarkson Whitelock] read a paper on “The Modern Metaphysical Romance” speaking of “The Faith Doctor,” Howells’ “Undiscovered Country[“], Besant’s “Rise and Fall of Herr Paulus,” etc., and naming Russia as the home of the true psychological romance.
Mrs Easby [Gertrude Pierce Easby] spoke of the New Century Club of Philadelphia. It contains eleven Committees, six Sub-committees.
One of its great results is the “Working Women’s Guild” which has a gymnasium, provides lessons in dress making, type-setting, etc., with a paper of its own to chronicle good deeds--not police reports.
The “Education” Committee has school directors on the public school Board. The only endowed department is for the “legal protection of women” which looks after the payment of working women’s wages, etc. There is a Committee on “Public Interests” which corresponds to the position of Secretary of State in the government, and discusses the great questions of the day. This Committee has caused the establishment of Police Matrons in various places. The “Browning” Committee has four hundred and eleven members. The new Club building is to cost $70,000, and the mural decorations will be made by a Philadelphia woman architect and her pupils.
Mrs Easby closed with good wishes for the Woman’s Literary Club.
Miss Reese read a story--”Mistress Persis’ Hawthorn Blossoms.”
Resolution of thanks passed by the Academy of Sciences and forwarded to the President--W.L.C.--by Mr Edward Stabler Jr.
Recording Secretary Academy of Science--in a note dated November 12th 1891.
Resolved, that the cordial thanks of the Academy be, and the same are hereby tendered to the President and members of the Woman’s Literary Club of the City of Baltimore, for the very generous and appropriate manner in which they have fitted up and furnished the Meeting Room of the Academy, for the use of the Club, as well as of the Academy.
37th General Meeting--November 17th 1891.
37th meeting 12 E Centre St November 17th 1891; Letter read from Recording Secretary of Academy of Science; Resolution of Academy of Sciences; Suggestion that Club collect all writings of those born or writing in Maryland; Atkinson--on William Wirt; Tait--on Lanier; Lanier’s poem “Hard Times in Elf-land”; Letter read from Mrs Charles Howard; “Francis Scott Key” by Miss Brown; “Star-Spangled Banner”; Shippen read from “Baltimore Patriot” an account of “Bombardment of Fort McHenry”; Portraits shown
The thirty seventh general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, November 17th, 3.30 o’clock, with the President in the chair.
There were about thirty (30) persons present.
The minutes if the last meeting were read and adopted. The Secretary read a letter from Mr Edward Stabler Jr. Recording Secretary of the Academy of Sciences in which he acknowledged the receipt of the letter of the President--W.L.C.--accepting associate membership in the Academy, and of the resolution passed by the Club and forwarded by the Secretary. It contained also the following resolution of the Academy of Sciences.
“Resolved, that the cordial thanks of the Academy be, and the same are herely tendered to the President and members of the Woman’s Literary Club of the City of Baltimore, for the very generous and appropriate manner in which they have fitted up and furnished the Meeting Room of the Academy, for the use of the Club, as well as of the Academy.”
The President suggested that the Club undertake to collect the works of all writers who have been born or who have written in Maryland, and that an appeal be printed in the papers the following day, asking that all who desire to do so, send such writings to the Club. The form of appeal was read by the President and the matter approved by the Club. The President spoke of the Committee of Authors and Artists of Maryland--Miss Milnor [Mary Worthington Milnor]--Chairman, and mentioned several subjects of papers to be furnished the Club later by them.
The first paper of the day was on William Wirt by Mrs Robert Atkinson, read by Miss Jane Randolph Harrison. It spoke of him as an orator, writer and distinguished member of the bar, and mentioned his writings such as the “Life of Patrick Henry,” “Letters in defence of Madison,” and “The Old Bachelor.”
Thanks were sent to Mrs Atkinson with a message expressing sorrow at her absence and enjoyment of her article.
Mrs Tait [Anna Dolores Tiernan Tait] read a paper upon Lanier who “embodied harmony and was the very soul of chivalry,” whose “genius was distinctly lyrical,” who was a “great poet and greater man.” Mrs Tait read Lanier’s Christmas poem on “Hard Times in Elfland,” and announced that a Philadelphia paper said a series of Lanier’s letters would soon be published.
The President read a letter from Mrs Charles Howard daughter of Francis Scott Key, regretting that she could not be present at the meeting of the Club.
“Francis Scott Key” was the title of the article read by Miss Mary Willcox Brown, in which she reviewed the poet’s life and referred especially to the Star-Spangled Banner written by him at the time of the battle of North Point, and afterwards set to an old tune “Anacreon in Heaven.”
According to the tradition of Mr Key’s family the song was first brought out at a tavern near Holliday Street, although it is also said to have been first sung at the theatre whence it passed to the street. Mrs Shippen [Mrs. Edward Shippen]--great-niece of Key and grand-daughter of Judge Nicholson--stated that she had in her possession the old back of a letter on which the song was first drafted before it was handed to Judge Nicholson.
Mrs Shippen read from an old paper “The Baltimore Patriot” of September 28th, 1814, an account of “The Bombardment of Fort McHenry.” Miss Brown then read “The Star-Spangled Banner.” The President reminded the Club that it was Joseph Nicholson who though ill at the time, had been carried to give the casting vote which made Thomas Jefferson President instead of Aaron Burr.
Portraits of William Wirt, Francis Scott Key, Judge Nicholson, and the bust of Lanier by Keyser illustrated the papers read, and the books of Wirt, Key, and Lanier were shown.
The portrait of Key was draped with the flag from Fort McHenry brought to Miss Milnor by a soldier for the occasion.
12th Salon--November 24th 1891.
12th Salon 12 E. Centre St. November 24th 1891; Social Meeting; President read criticism on Miss Reese’s poems from “Churchman”; Mrs Lanier to present Mr Lanier’s works; Poem by Mr Van Bibber presented
The twelfth Salon of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, November 24th, at 3.30 o’clock. About twenty five (25) persons were present.
The meeting was purely social.
The President announced the programmes for the two following Tuesdays, and read a criticism in “The Churchman” on Miss Reese’s [Lizette Woodworth Reese] poems, and some lines from the same paper.
The President also referred to the scheme of the Club to collect the works of Maryland writers, and stated that Mrs Lanier [Mary Day Lanier] had desired to present her husband’s work.
Mention was made of a poem by Mr Joseph[?] Van Bibber given to the Club.
About 5 o’clock, refreshments were served and the Club adjourned.
38th General Meeting--December 1st 1891.
38th Meeting 12 E. Centre St. December 1st 1891; Committee “Mediaeval Poetry”; Latimer’s paper “The Great Love Story of XIII. Century”; Tutwiler’s paper on “Dante--a Florentine Study”; Masque of Dante and picture of Giotto; “Life” refers to scheme to collect Maryland Authors works
The thirty eighth general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon December 1st, 3.30 o’clock, with the President in the chair.
There were about thirty to (32) persons present among whom was Miss Green of Boston.
The minutes of the meetings of November 17th and 24th were read by the Secretary.
The President announced that on account of illness, Miss King [Elizabeth T. King] would not be able to give her paper at the meeting.
Mrs Latimer’s [Elizabeth Wormeley Latimer] article was entitled “The Great Love Story of the XIIIth Century,” being an account of the romance of Dante’s life. In some lines on the death of Beatrice in the “Vita Nuova,” we see the first glimpse of his “Inferno,” and only after her death (was) he willing to speak openly of her, and indeed vowed to speak more worthily of his “most blessed lady.”
Mrs Tutwiler [Julia R. Tutwiler], Chairman of the Committee on “Mediaeval Poetry” read a paper on “Dante, a Florentine Study” which she intended as a supplement to Mrs Latimer’s and Miss King’s papers, and as an introduction to Mediaeval Poetry. Mrs Tutwiler spoke of Dante’s political views, of his impassioned soul, intelligence, courage and undoubtful early acquaintance with no law but that of righteousness; tracing also the history of the commonwealth of Florence; speaking of Dante’s exile, and referring to the great honor now done him by his native city.
By the President’s request, Mrs Griffin [Rebecca Griffin] called attention to the masque of Dante which she had brought to the Club for the day, (and a small picture done by Giotto was shown).
An Englishman, Mr Kirker obtained permission to uncover this and other frescoes, removing the whitewash which had hidden them. Miss Adams said she had met Mr Kirker who had become a spiritualist, and that he had presented her with a dress which he claimed had been Dante’s. Miss Adams painted a large picture of ‘Dante expecting Beatrice’, which she would be glad to have any one see.
The President announced that two excellent papers on “Lanier” had been read at a literary society in Richmond when she had also made a contribution upon the subject.
The President gave the programme for the following week, and spoke of the reference made by “life” to the effort of the Woman’s Literary Club to collect the works of our authors.
Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore.
December 8th 1891.
Board of Management meeting December 8th 1891; On Postal Cards for weekly notice to Club; Subject of Postal Cards postponed; Question of Assistant Secretary or of a Corresponding and Recording Secretary; Miss Balch has resigned care of book (Scrap); Mrs Lord takes charge of book; On subscription for Janitress; Appropriation for Club China, etc; Lock on closet
The Board of Management met, with the exception of the Secretary, Miss Ridgely [Eliza Ridgely], who, being unavoidably detained, sent a request that some other lady would take her place,--for the evening. Miss Crane [Lydia Crane] consented to take notes.
Mrs Turnbull [Francese Litchfield Turnbull], the President, brought before the meeting the question asked on a former occasion, by the Secretary--whether postal cards ought to be sent out, to give notice of our regular meetings?--as was done last year. To direct these cards had required one hour a week of the Secretary’s time; and whether these notices are necessary or desirable--in proportion to the time and labor expended on them--is an important question.
The President said that, in her experience, a private notification had always been successful, and had invariably met with a response.
It was said that the members ought to care to attend regularly, but that securing a large attendance was worth some effort.
It was also said that the average attendance last year, under the postal card system, had been 45, and this year--so far--about 30.
Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] said that many persons were not yet settled in town, and that there were many things just now to take up the time and attention of our members.
We were told that the proportion of members who had paid their dues this year--64--was greater than at this time last year.
Mrs Lord [Alice Emma Sauerwein Lord] suggested sending the notices later--on Monday--so that they may be received very near the meeting; and not be forgotten.
Miss Szold [Henrietta Szold] thought Tuesday morning too late for them to be received.
There was no decision on the subject of the postal cards, as the Secretary, who, no doubt, has the best right to speak on this point, was absent.
It was asked whether Miss Ridgely would bare to have an Assistant Secretary, or, as our members increase, to divide the many duties, hitherto so-satisfactorily performed by herself, between a Corresponding, and a Recording Secretary.
Of course, this whole subject was deferred until Miss Ridgely could be present, and give her opinion and vote upon it. Therefore an Executive Meeting was agreed upon for next Tuesday, the 15th of December.
Mrs Turnbull then announced that Miss Grace Balch has found it necessary to resign the position she accepted last spring,--that of Recorder, or Keeper of the book in which any of our meetings of unusual interest were to have special records;--after consultation with the writes of specially interesting papers.
Mrs Lord, who was said to have never once been absent from any of our meetings, then consented to take the office resigned by Miss Balch.
Miss Thompson [Charlotte Dellacklot Thompson] reported that the subscription for the Janitress amounted to $16.00(?)
As it had been proposed to raise $25.00, to replace her sewing-machine, lost by fire, the suggestion had been made to supplement the amount in hand from the Club funds;--or, else, to give her the $16.00.
After several suggestions, as: that the $16.00 might not be judiciously spent,--that the sewing machine would be the most useful of all presents,--that the business of our Club was not especially philanthropy, and, that we must be just before we were generous, the question was asked, whether the $9.00 could be spared from the treasury?
Though we were told that we were not in debt, the proposal which had been made seemed to require mature consideration.
It was argued that final action upon it should be deferred until the next Executive Meeting;--also--that the President would call the attention of the whole Club to the subject of the subscription, at the meeting about to be held.
The Treasurer announced that the last Salon, on November 24th, given, as we knew, under the direction of herself and Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton], had cost $7.38, instead of the $18.00 which we had been accustomed to pay for those formerly held. These ladies, however, had lent some articles to the Club; and we all remembered that they had done a large amount of work that evening.
It was agreed that the $10.00 saved should be spent for china,--the linen having been already paid for out of the Club funds. Also, that what was saved each month might be used to purchase such things as the Club needs.
It was decided that a lock should be placed on the door of the china-closet.
An informal discussion then followed on the qualifications of new members. Several names, in this connection, were mentioned; as that of Mrs Charles Henry Smith, by Mrs Colvin; and those of the Misses Gilman, by Miss Brown; but no formal proposals were made, and no votes were taken on this subject.
Approved by Board
The above notes were taken from the notes given by Miss Crane to the Secretary and read (by Miss Crane?) to the Board and approved.
Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore.
Meeting on December 8th, 1891.
39th meeting December 8th 1891.; Subs for janitress; President-Article on “Modern Poetry Committee”; Mrs Easter “Ode to Joseph Rodman Drake”; on his grave; Mrs Miller on a visit to the poet’s grave; Miss Cloud’s poems “Her Picture” and “Rest.”; Mrs Easter on “Oliver Goldsmith”; President read poem by Miss Litchfield “To the Cicada Septemdecim”; Miss Reese’s Poem: “Her Last Word.”
The Club met and was called to order by the President, Mrs Turnbull [Francese Litchfield Turnbull].
On account of the absence of our Secretary, Miss Ridgley [Eliza Ridgely], the reading of the minutes of the meeting on December 1st was omitted.
The President, in a few words reminded the Club of the subscription which had been begun for the Janitress of the building in which we meet, to replace her sewing-machine, lost by a recent fire.
The first Article was by Mrs Turnbull: “A Few Notes on Behalf of the Modern Poetry Committee.”
She spoke of having written in haste, and said: that Mr Steadman had been accorded ample time before speaking on a subject to which he had given his life;--“and how could an amateur, at a week’s notice, say what she thought about a subject very dear to her?”
She spoke of poetry in its nature, its infancy, its noblest and highest work, its creative touch and its divine power. “As men of science have sought in vain for a definition of life, so even poets have vainly struggled to define poetry. True are has its vital qualities, and may be as elusive as life.” We were reminded that, often “it is not the man that creates the poetry, but the poetry that creates the man,”--the poet. That to the question: “What is poetry?”--the answer has been given; “The expression of inspired thought in rhythmical language.” Also of the comment that; “The antithesis of poetry is not prose,--but science.”
But that all true inspiration is related, is complementary,
rather than antithetical. That “the universal art, music, is independent of language, and as far above painting as life is above pictures.” That “the poet’s divine art appeals to the inner depths of our natures, and stirs our own creative instincts.” That it appeals to the childhood of all nations, and to the childhood of individuals; to “the aged who have the best love in sight,” and “are ready to go up higher.” That “the true poet is the prophet, the seer, and ought always to be in advance of his age,” and this we look for in the creators of Modern Poetry.
“That all singers are not poets,” but “genius has its own true brotherhood, through all the ages,” and “with enduring speech of truth and beauty, it shall show us the value of our inheritance” and raise us to an ideal life.
Mrs Marguerite E. Easter next gave us an original “Ode to Joseph Rodman Drake.” It spoke of his early promise and his early death; how “like Keats and Shelley, he has left us such work, that we know not what he might have left us.” She spoke of standing under the tree that droops over his grave, and “giving tribute to the poet never dead to nature’s cries.”
But that “negligence entombs this poet’s dust;” and his grave looks lonely and un-visited.
Mrs Miller also gave an account of a visit she had made to the grave of this same poet, of whom it was said: “None knew him but to love him,
None named him but to praise!”
She was shocked at its neglected state but she has since learned that it is to be repaired and restored.
Miss Cloud [Virginia Woodward Cloud], whom we are always glad to hear read, then gave use two original poems. The first was called “Her Picture.” It was of a picture “whose eyes hold heaven’s light;” though somewhere, above the woman’s eyes “the grass is growing now.” The other was called; “Rest.” It was on rest,--in the midst of all sweetest things.”
Mrs Easter next gave us; “Some Discursive Notes on Oliver Goldsmith.” She treated him lovingly, though she told us of his “frank lack of common sense; of “the irrepressible ‘Paddy’ in his nature,” of “his bull-dog face,” of his “want of a high standard of conduct;” of his “wandering homelessly like Dickens’s ‘poor Jo’, and, like him, being continuously told to--“move on!”” Also, of his “boundless charity and forgetfulness of his own necessities in those of other people.” She said that we are sometimes told that “his works are read, and his life forgotten.”
But that in his life were deeds of such unselfish goodness, that “if they did not open Heaven’s gate to him,” they made him loved in life, and mourned in death. She thought “perhaps he needed some exalted woman’s love” to complete his character. “There is nothing in his works like Cowper’s “Address to his Mother’s Picture.”” Truly, we can never forget Goldsmith’s description of his father, the village preacher; “the cliff that”--
“--midway leaves the storm,
Though round its breast the rolling clouds are spread,
Eternal sunshine settles on its head.”
We may fear that his mother could not have inspired a similar tribute.
Mrs Easter spoke of the irresistible charm of Goldsmith’s
works,--of his having “attempted many styles, and adorned them all.” She thought that the power of “passion was wanting to make him a great poet.” Still that “there is genuine sentiment,--that almost satisfies”; and that “he is the first of the minor poets.”
We next enjoyed hearing Mrs Turnbull read a poem written by her sister, Miss Grace Denio Litchfield. It was” “To the Cicada Septemdecim.” It spoke of “the dead present,--and past”; of “the dream that could not be dreamed,--and, yet, was true;” and of the “going forth, winged, to an undreamed of life.”
The last reading was by Miss Lizette Woodworth Reese, of one of her poems which is to be published in Scribner’s Magazine. It was called “Her Last Word.” It seems to be a sweet, suggestive half-showing of a woman’s feeling for her former lover: as to whether he shall remember--or forget her.
The Club adjourned; to meet again on Tuesday, December 15th 1891.
The minutes immediately preceding were taken from those given by Miss Crane to the Secretary, and by Miss Crane [Lydia Crane] at the general meeting on December 15th 1891.
Board Meeting--December 15th 1891.
Board of Management meeting 12 E. Centre Street December 15th 1891; Shall fund [?money] for janitress be taken from Club treasury?; Committee to attend to matter of janitress; Meeting to be held in Christmas week; Salon first Tuesday in December; Subject of “weekly postals” postponed.
A meeting of the Board of Management--W.L.C.--was held at 12 East Centre Street, Tuesday afternoon, December 15th 1891 after 2.30 o’clock, with the first Vice-President in the Chair. Eight (8) members present.
The question was discussed whether the remainder of the amount needed to buy a sewing machine for the janitress should be made up from the Club funds, and finally decided in the negative, as Miss Szold [Henrietta Szold] and others thought such action would be a bad precedent.
Miss Griffin [Rebecca Griffin] and Miss Szold agreed to act as a Committee to attend to the matter at once, using the money in hand as seemed most suitable.
It was decided that the meeting on the Tuesday following (December 22nd) should not be postponed on account of Christmas week, and that the Salon should be held as usual the last Tuesday in December.
The question whether weekly postal cards should be sent was postponed on account of the President’s absence.
Adopted by the Board January 5th 1892.
40th General Meeting--December 15th 1891.
40th meeting 12 E. Centre Street December 15th 1891.; Club associate members of Academy of Science. Those who wish may be asked to attend its meetings?; Anderson--on “Silas Marner”; Colvin--on “Caxton’s ‘Godfrey of Boulogne’” and on “W[illia]m of Tyre.”; Hampton--on “District Nursing.”
The fortieth meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, Tuesday afternoon, December 15th, about 3.30 o’clock.
In the absence of the President, the meeting was presided over by the first Vice-President.
There were about thirty five (35) persons present. The first Vice-President said that sixty three of our members had been made associates of the Academy of Science(s), and that those who wished to attend its meetings should notify our President who would communicate with Mr Edward Stabler Secretary of the Academy of Sciences.
The minutes of December 1st were read by the Secretary and of December 8th by Miss Crane [Lydia Crane] who had so kindly taken notes during the Secretary’s absence.
The first paper was by Mrs Anderson [Mrs. W. H. Anderson] a “Critique on Silas Marner.” It is the story of the remedial influences of pure human relations, it makes attractive a character naturally uninteresting. It is brightened by humor, as in the excellent tavern scene, and is true to life. This simple tale is good for us, and “Silas” must have been dear to George Eliot.
Mrs Colvin [Mary Noyes Colvin] read a paper speaking of “Some Investigations in regard to William Caxron’s ‘Godfrey of Boulogne’ [Godeffroy de Boloyne]” and referring to the various M.S.S. extant of the work of the great historian William of Tyre.
Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton] gave “A New Illustration of Practical Philanthropy,” speaking especially of the success of “District Nursing” in London, and its large opportunities in other places. Such nurses should know mankind and be familiar with household economy--she should
even understand plumbing. If only each dispensary could be provided with such a nurse!
The first Vice-President spoke of the programme for the following week and the Club adjourned.
41st General Meeting--December 22nd 1891.
41st meeting 12 E. Centre Street December 22nd 1891.; Salon paper to be chosen by vote of Club; Thompson--on “Dante.”; Adams on; Conversation.
The forty first meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon, December 22nd 3.30 o’clock, with the President in the chair.
It was decided that the paper should be read at the January Salon should be chosen by vote of the Club from papers already given.
Miss Thompson [Charlotte Dellacklot Thompson] read a paper: “Personal Impressions of Dante,” speaking of the beauty, strength and influence of the Divina Commedia, and of Dante--the poet--the teacher--the prophet.
Miss Adams spoke upon [text missing?]
Stating that German art shows great thought and noble execution--although the French should excellent finish.
After conversation upon the paper, the Club adjourned.
13th Salon--December 29th 1891.
13th Salon 12 E. Centre Street December 29th 1891.; President--sketch of Mrs D. Dandridge; Shall Club discuss “whether woman has produced anything that will live--as in literature, art, music”?; Miller--poem by Mrs Fulton “On the Old Year”; Crane read Easter’s story of “Waiting Will.”; Refreshments served.
The thirteenth Salon of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, December 29th, at 3.30 o’clock.
The President was in the chair and there were about twenty seven (27) members present.
The President read a sketch of the life of Mrs Danske Dandridge [Caroline "Danske" Dandridge] the poetess.
The question was started whether the Club should have a discussion upon an article in “The Critic” which seemed to doubt if woman had produced anything that would live.
It was suggested that we should give a Salon evening to the matter; again suggested that we should spend three Salons upon the subject; also that we should discuss the subject in detail, namely:--whether woman had created anything lasting in literature, or in art, or in music. It was also proposed to give the two sides of the question in charge of two members, to whom a Chairman was added. The matter seemed not clearly understood, and it was decided that the Club should read the “Critic”’s article either before next Tuesday as individuals, or that it should be read to the Club at that time.
Mrs Miller read a poem “On the Old Year,” written by Mrs Fulton of Denver, Colorado.
A story called “Waiting Will” was read by Miss Crane [Lydia Crane], and the President asked the Club to name the writer. Mrs Miller alone was successful--naming Mrs Easter [Marguerite E. Easter].
Refreshments were served, and the Club adjourned.
Board Meeting--January 5th 1892.
Board of Management meeting January 5th 1892 12 E. Centre Street; 6 new members approved.; Former member re-elected; May an unknown name be brought up on a day not named in Constitution? Laid on table; Name proposed unconstitutionally.; May Executive member second unfinished presentation? No.
The semi-annual meeting of the Board of Management for the approval of new members was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, January 5th 1892 after 2.30 o’clock, with eight (8) members present.
The President was in the chair. The minutes of the Board meeting of December 15th were read by the Secretary and adopted.
Six new members were approved; and one old member who had resigned fearing she could not fulfil the duties of the Club, was, by her own desire, re-elected.
The question was raised whether the name of a person unknown to the members of the Committee, and upon which they do not feel able to vote, may be brought up again for approval at a subsequent Committee meeting, on a day not named by the Constitution for that purpose. The President thought such deferred action might not be opposed to the spirit of the Constitution. Several members thought we should keep strictly the letter of the Constitution. Finally, Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat], seconded by Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton], moved to lay the matter on the table--which was done.
A name proposed by a member of the Club, but not seconded as required by Article 4 Section 5 of the Constitution was therefore not voted upon.
The Secretary asked whether in such a case a member of the Executive Committee could not second the name.
The majority of the Board thought not, and the name was held over, as no being proposed in due form.
Adopted by Board.
42nd General Meeting--January 5th 1892
42nd meeting 12 E. Centre Street January 5th 1892; First reading of new names approved; On associate members of Academy of Sciences; Crane read “Critic”’s article on “Absence of Creative Faculty in Woman.”; Reply read by Szold.; Volunteers asked to uphold 1st view. None--Miss Clark appointed.; Choice of title for discussion; Sioussat uphold affirmative view.
The forty second general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, January 5th, 1892, after 3.30 o’clock.
The President was in the chair, and there were about thirty (30) persons present.
The minutes of the meetings of December 15th, 22nd and 29th were read by the Secretary, and also the names of new members approved by the Committee.
The reference to the clause in the minutes of December 15th on associate membership in the Academy of Science, the President stated that all members of the Club and those who might join in the future, except the honorary and non-resident members could be admitted as associates of the Academy of Sciences.
Miss Crane [Lydia Crane] read the article in “The Critic” by Mollie Elliott Sewell on “The Absence of the Creative Faculty in Woman.” Miss Sewell said that woman--not excepting Sappho, George Eliot and Austen--has created nothing that will live in music, art, literature, or even in mechanical invention, and is made up of emotions; while man possesses intellect.
The reply to this article also taken from “The Critic” was read by Miss Szold [Henrietta Szold].
The President asked for a volunteer to uphold the view of the first paper at the discussion to take place the last Tuesday in February. So slight was the response that the President decided to place the matter in the hands of Miss Clark [Bessy L. Clark] who had introduced the subject.
The choice of a title for the discussion was put to the vote and decided upon as follows: “Does the creative faculty exist in woman.” Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] consented to
sustain the affirmative view of the question.
The President announced that the programme for the following week would be in charge of Mrs Colvin [Mary Noyes Colvin].
43rd General Meeting--January 12th 1892.
43rd meeting 12 E. Centre Street January 12th 1892; 2nd reading of new names; Section on “Election of New Members” read.; “Education” Committee; Schröder on “Oxford Student Life.”; Hurd--on “Gymnastics in Europe.”; Carter--on “Education of German Women.”
The forty third general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon January 12th, after 3.30 o’clock.
In the absence of the President, the first Vice President was in the chair.
There were about twenty four (24) persons present, among whom was Miss Cotton, President of the Woman’s Literary Club of Portsmouth, Ohio.
The minutes of the last general meeting were read by the Secretary who also gave the second reading of the names of new members.
By request of the Chairman, Sections 5, 6 and 7 of Article IV. on the Election of New Members were read to the Club by the Secretary.
The literary work of the day was in charge of Mrs Colvin [Mary Noyes Colvin]--Chairman of the Committee on “Education.”
Miss Olga Schröder [Olga M. D. Schröder] gave an article upon “Student Life in Oxford,” telling of the attraction of the place, and the efforts made in 1878 to admit women as students.
Miss Schröder also spoke of the advantages open to women, and of the dues required; of the public examination; of the three women’s halls; of the few restrictions made; of the charitable work open to them; and of the pleasures allowed them--as afternoon teas, garden parties, tennis,
boating, driving. Miss Schröder also read extracts from the Lady Margaret Hall paper.
Mrs Griffin [Rebecca Griffin] announced that Miss Agnes Repplier will be with us next Tuesday, and that the President asked the names of all completed papers, that she might prepare the programmes for some weeks in advance.
Dr Hurd [Kali Campbell Hurd] then spoke upon “Gymnastics in Europe”--that the schools seek some rule of gymnastics, and the book worm is no longer admired. The French need gymnastics to save them from utter degeneration, but their system of ventilation and exercise is not complete. The German system is on physiological principles, but the girls are not dressed nor [?shod] as might be desired. The Swedish system is almost aesthetic, and about as much may be said for it as for the German.
In reply to questions from Mrs Griffin and Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton], Dr Hurd said that excessive training is injurious.
Miss Sally R. Carter [Sally K. Carter] spoke upon the “Education of German Women,” and gave a personal description of Miss Lahne who has such good educational ideas. In private schools in Germany, the work is narrow with little breadth of culture even in seminaries.
In arithmetic, the training is poor, except for mechanical accuracy; in geography excellent work is done, especially in location and physical conformation, although the limits are narrow and there is apparently neither map-drawing nor modelling. One finds accurate knowledge of rules of punctuation and careful writing, correct but too
automatic grammar, wonderful acquaintance with continental and especially with German history--both of facts and of dates. There is excellent knowledge of French and English, but perhaps too much manual training, and the discipline seems to mean restraint rather than to teach self-control. The Victoria Lyceum is to give women a lighter training. The German intelligence--of women as of men, shown elsewhere--is the most truth-seeking and strongest of our time.
44th General Meeting--January 19th 1892.
44th meeting 12 E. Centre Street January 19th 1892; Brent’s paper chosen for re-reading; Letters from McConkey and Franklin; Miss A. Repplier: “A Literary Symposium”; Griffin on “Homes”; “Wrath of Achilles”; Latimer--”The Quarrel” in Iliad; Iliad divided into 2 parts
The forty fourth general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon, January 19th after 3.30 o’clock, with the President in the chair.
There were about thirty three (33) persons present, among whom were Miss Agnes Repplier, and Miss Williams Vice President of the Southern Literary Association.
The President gave the list of those members whose papers had received votes from the Club from re-reading at the next Salon, and stated that Miss Brent’s [Emma Fenwick Brent] paper (“Two Oriental Women”) had been chosen.
The President also read extracts from letters received from Miss McConkey [Miss McCoukey]--honorary member, and from Mrs Franklin [Christine Ladd-Franklin]--former Treasurer of the Club. The latter was from Göttingen.
Miss Agnes Repplier read a paper upon “A Literary Symposium” written for the Contemporary Club
of Philadelphia, dwelling humorously upon the efforts made in the present day to “live by the brains of others,” as partly shown by lists made of “the best hundred books,” “Books that have helped me,” etc, which have been solicited from strange and varied sources. Miss Repplier deplored that we should “replace literature with journalism,” and desire to publish and read what is written by those who have become in some way prominent rather than that which is in itself solid.
After thanks to Miss Repplier for her paper, Mrs Griffin [Rebecca Griffin] read an article upon “Homer” quoting from a professor that “classical knowledge is the substructure,” and saying that we should grow by old literature. In the childhood of the world, there were many fancies and fables about nature, and Homer is now “as a fresh beautiful child.” One who wishes to be ruler of his house, an orator, or a general should study Homer.
Mrs Griffin gave the story of “The Wrath of Achilles,” speaking of the superb description of the horses, etc, of the strength on the Greek side, and the beauty, valor, and feminine softness among the Trojans. Helen was the ideal of beauty of the early Greek imagination, and Achilles summed up the idea of the Greek character. There is much parallelism between Greek and Hebrew history, and the Hebrew Bible student best understands Homer.”
Mrs Latimer [Elizabeth Wormeley Latimer] read an adapted translation of “The Quarrel” in the Iliad, also speaking of the “grand roll of the Greek hexameter,” and the first magnificent line of the Iliad.
Mrs Latimer divided the Iliad into two parts: “The Plot
Terrestrial” and “The Plot Celestial,” the first treating of the wrath of Achilles, and the second symbolizing the triumph of the cause of civilization and the Greeks.
She described also the character of Agamemnon--selfish but royal;--while Achilles laid down his life for his friend.
14th Salon--January 26th 1892.
14th Salon January 26th 1892 12 E. Centre Street; Discussion about topic: “Does the creative faculty exist in woman?”; Sioussat read article from “Critic”; Thanks for gifts; Selection from Easter’s book; “Greeting to Sidney Lanier”; Brent--on “Chinese Laundry”; Characteristics of nation; Customs; Language; Legends, etc.; “Angel--flower.”; “Lotus--flower”; Middleton--original lines; Conversation; Refreshments.
The fourteenth Salon of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, 3.30 o’clock, and there were about thirty nine (39) persons present.
The President, in speaking of the little talk or paper to be given at the next Salon on the topic “Does the creative faculty exist in woman?,” said that Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] would take the affirmative side of the question, but Miss Clark [Bessy L. Clark] on account of absence, would be unable to give the negative view. After several suggestions, it was decided that Mrs Early [Maud Graham Early] should substitute her “Statement” on the negative side.
Mrs Sioussat read an article from “The Critic” in support of woman’s creative ability.
The President expressed the thanks of the Club to several members for gifts made, and read a selection from Mrs Easter’s [Marguerite E. Easter] new book which had lately been presented.
A “Greeting to Sidney Lanier” sent by Mrs Lanier [Sydney Day Lanier], and written by Mr Tabb a Maryland poet and an intimate friend of Mr Lanier, was read by the President.
Miss Brent [Emma Fenwick Brent] substituted for her article “Two Oriental Women”--a paper on the “Chinese Laundry.” Miss Brent
described the Chinese as of dauntless energy, prompt, active, frugal, speaking of poverty with bated breath, not willing to accept pecuniary aid, grateful, charitable to their sick, trustful when convinced of another’s fidelity, very discriminating, intensely earnest both as heathen and as Christians, always an oriental, seemingly phlegmatic but most emotional, ingenious, with artistic talent and a good memory for commands received. It is against the custom of the nation to bury their dead in a hollow where the wind can blow lest the body should turn over, and the family fortunes be consequently overset. Tribal distinctions are so marked that even those who have become Christians are nearly everywhere found to be members of the same tribe. The father commands the son to marry, and the wife--often chosen by the size of her foot--becomes a slave after being carried across her husband’s threshold, and swears eternal obedience and faithfulness to her mother-in-law. Ther married Chinaman wears a bracelet on his left arm. There are many leagues formed to overthrow the Manchurian dynasty, while others are superstitious in their feeling for the Emperor. Their love of music is undeveloped, for in China, singing is the actors’ duty, although others know the Chinese songs. The Chinaman talks a great deal when work is over, and is a ready speaker without self-consciousness. The language much resembles the Indian tongues. The Chinese have various legends and superstitions. They think the configuration of the earth is caused by the dragon, and dragons have been supposed to represent to them the power of water--
beneficent and malevolent. Indeed they think riches and rank depend on the movement of the stream.
The serpent hates woman; for when he attempted to go up to heaven, she laughed, and he fell down. Good luck is brought to the person who has an “angel-flower” in bloom at the national New Year, and they are familiar with artificial means to make it grow more quickly.
Miss Brent closed with lines on the “Lotus-flower.”
Miss Maria Middleton [Maria H. Middleton] read the following original verses: “To a While Camellia” written on a camellia planted in 1802 by the French naturalist Micheau; “On a White Marble Church Spire”; “The Wind”; “To any Friend in the Fourth Storey.”
The President announced the names of those who would contribute the next programme.
General conversation ensued, and light refreshments were served, after which the Club adjourned.
Board Meeting--February 2nd 1892.
Board of Management meeting 12 E. Centre Street February 2nd 1892.; Misses Brent and Grace re-elected
An informal meeting of the Board of Management was held at 12 East Centre Street, February 2nd, about 3.30 o’clock before the regular meeting of the Club.
About six (6) members were present.
The re-election of Miss Brent [Emma Fenwick Brent] and Miss Grace [Mary F. Grace]--former members of the Club--was the subject brought forward by the President and affirmatively passed upon by the Board which then adjourned.
Adopted by Board.
45th General Meeting--February 2nd 1892.
45th meeting 12 E. Centre Street February 2nd 1892; Treasurer’s report; Cloud read “Pluckamin.”; Lord on “Miss Mulock’s Poems”; Bennett: “The Evidence of a Book”; Middleton on “An Old Roman Coin”; Lord on “Time and Immortality”’ President on “Man of Genius.”
The forty fifth general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, February 2nd, about 3.30 o’clock.
The President was in the chair and there were about thirty-two (32) persons present.
The minutes of the meetings of January 12th, 19th, and 26th were read by the Secretary and approved.
The Treasurer’s semi-annual report was read and approved.
Miss Virginia Cloud [Virginia Woodward Cloud] read an extract from a diary in the shape of a sketch upon “Pluckamin,” a village of revolutionary times. The neighborhood was an interesting bit of country, and it had its historic tale of a fallen hero.
Mrs Charles W. Lord [Alice Emma Sauerwein Lord] substituted for “A Dickens Revery” a tribute to Miss Mulock in the shape of verses on “Miss Mulock’s Poems.”
Miss Sarah E. Bennett [Sarah H. Bennett] read an article upon “The Evidence of a Book.” This was the Ladies “Monthly Museum” printed in London in 1808 which bore witness to the kind of literature provided for the female sex at that period. It was written especially for the amusement and instruction of women, and was embellished with six portraits and six fashion plates. There were sketches of Miss Edgeworth and of the actress Catalani. Reference was made to educational matters, and music, dancing and drawing were approved.
The custom of selling women as wives for a pint of gin or a few shillings was discouraged. It contained
verses dolorous and amorous--of sickly sentiment--some lines were addressed “To a Lady who Sent a Present of Some Preserves.” There were busy body essays on “Beauty,” “Anxiety,” etc; “Thoughts on Celibacy”; a sentimental story or so; book notices of names now forgotten or unknown. The old book itself was shown to the Club.
Miss Maria H. Middleton read a paper upon “An Old Roman Coin.” Of these coins there were three kinds--that of the Republic at first shaped like a brick but later made circular; the family coin to commemorate events in family history and duds of ancestors; and the Imperial coin. Miss Middleton traced the imaginary course of a coin from its ancient house--and finally to America. Casts of old coins from Caesar to Domitian were shown to the Club.
Mrs Charles W. Lord read verses upon “Time and Immortality,” and the President spoke of “The Man of Genius” a book written by Professor Lombroso of the University of Turin, who seeks to prove that all genius is insanity--partial or total. Their [?] work is curious and interesting.
The President announced the programme for the following week, which would be in charge of Mrs Miller Chairman of “Fiction,” and the Club adjourned.
46th General Meeting--February 9th 1892.
46th meeting 12 E. Centre Street February 16th 1892.; “Fiction” Committee; Bennett “A Singular Case of Gratitude”; Haughton--”The First Enemy”; Reese--Chapter of an Old Love Story”; Reception tendered President and Litchfield; Williams--”At Last”--poem; Haman read “A Bit of Delft” etc Whitelock authoress.
The forty sixth general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street--Tuesday afternoon, February 9th, 3.30 o’clock--with the President in the Chair.
There were about thirty eight (38) persons present, and the literary work was under the auspices of Mrs Miller Chairman of the Committee on Fiction.
Miss Sarah E. Bennett [Sarah H. Bennett] read a tale called “A Singular Case of Gratitude,” treating of the struggle of an old lady between pride of birth and need of money, which was ended by the opportune but sarcastic bequest of a rejected lover.
“The First Enemy” was read by Miss L.C. Osburne Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton] and told of the disappointed love which caused a young doctor to lose faith even in God, although by way of consolation, he attempted to make a woman free from taint of falseness. He formed the body scientifically, wrapping it in sweet-scented clothes, made the flesh quite perfect with the exception of animal heat, compounded the blood most carefully, and partially succeeded in giving his subject circulation and muscular action thus even causing momentary pulsation and motion. Yet the experiment failed to his intense disappointment. He left home and travelled; and one day was much impressed by a story telling of information gained by two persons while their bodies were sleeping, thus showing the superiority of a strange something to the mere physical body. He went home, and at last by the side of the beautiful, inanimate woman he had made, he realized that there is above the physical a mysterious soul--God-made;--
and he believed.
Miss Reese [Lizette Woodworth Reese] read the First Chapter of an Old Love Song” in which “Bathsheba tells the Bees” according to an old custom which provided that on the death of a member of the family or of the head of the family, the bees should be informed.
The second Vice-President tendered the President and Miss Litchfield [Grace Denio Litchfield] a reception in the name of the Woman’s Literary Club.
The President accepted the courtesy with thanks and with the hope that the Club may always exert an influence for good.
Miss Williams--Vice President of the Southern Literary Association--read a spirited poem on the South called “At Last.”
Mrs Haman [Louise C. Haman] read a story called “A Bit of Delft--An Optical Illusion” by and authoress whose name was withheld until the reading should be finished. The story turned upon the desire of a young English girl to discover the secret of the blue Delft china--how she with her parents, went to Delft, and she met there in the factory a man with a beautiful face and smile with whom she fell in love. One day she was told that he was ill and then came the strange illusion--the picture of his beautiful dark face framed by the light of a window--she sketched the face in a strange trance--then fainted and was carried away and taken home to England having gained a face upon a tile and having lost her first love. Mrs Whitelock [Louise Clarkson Whitelock] was the authoress of this story.
The President announced the programme for the following week, and the Club adjourned.
47th General Meeting--February 16th 1892.
47th meeting 12 E. Centre Street February 16th 1892.; Note from Miss Litchfield read; To defer Reception; Scrap book “Waifs”; Richardson’s article on “Prince Galitzin”; Schröder “A Plea for Virgil as an Original Poet”; Hurd--”Cicero”; Reception and discussion postponed
The forty-seventh general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, Tuesday afternoon, February 16th, 3.30 o’clock, with the President in the chair. There were about thirty seven (37) persons present.
Minutes were read by the Secretary and adopted by the Club. A Note was read from Miss Litchfield [Grace Denio Litchfield] expressing her thanks to the club for the Reception tendered and signifying her acceptance of the courtesy.
The President stated that Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton] would like the Reception deferred until after Lent as many persons have engagements and many are ill; and called attention to the Club Scrap book “Waifs” intended to contain articles of prose and verse of the members saying that it had not advanced as was desired.
The President also referred to a letter received from Mrs Richardson [Hester Crawford Dorsey Richardson] in which the latter spoke of sending a copy of the magazine containing the article on “Prince Galitzin, Priest and Pioneer,” and hoped to be able later to visit the Club.
Miss Schröder [Olga M. D. Schröder] read “A Plea for Virgil as an Original Poet” saying that in his Pastorals however, he was attracted by Theocritus--the second, third, fifth and seventh Eclogues being purely imitations; in fact he wished to be the Latin Theocritus. In the first and ninth as they now stand, it is said that we see more of the Lombard--less of the Sicilian; the sixth is an imitation of Lucretius; but the eighth contains some of Virgil’s finest words, as the passage on “Apples,” etc. The simplicity and tenderness of the lines are doubtless due to his art that made his lovers children. The Georgics, called didactic by critics, form a regular farmer’s manual (for Virgil loved
nature”); yet their aim is beyond this. The imaginative and melodious verse and conscious aim at poetic charm differ from the work of the didactic poets. Virgil’s Epic Poetry--see the Eneid--was not--as were the Iliad and primitive essays--long narratives in hexameter verse written for love of the story, but to sing the greatness of Rome. Notice the visit of Eneas to the lower religions--how far is that from an imitation! how splendid the interview with Dido! Miss Schröder would be most glad to awake a deeper love for the classics.
Dr Hurd [Kali Campbell Hurd] read an article upon Cicero, saying that his great desire was the establishment of an oligarchy at Rome. His life may be divided into six parts: 1st when Questor; 2nd A Consul; 3rd an Exile; 4th Governor of Cilicia; 5th with Caesar, himself in the background; 6th writing the Philippines.
His orations are very celebrated especially those against Vares, and his denunciations of Catiline. His action in obtaining the death of one of Catiline’s followers, caused his own fall. His letters at the time of his exile are very forcible, and later he wrote essays on “Glory,” “Old Age,” “Friendship,” etc. The Philippines written against Antony are so scathing that Antony is in consequence despised by posterity. Cicero was bold in spirit and in speech though a physical coward--yet he died bravely. He was full of self love, fond of the praise of others, ambitious, and a great orator. His words are so sweet, the rhythm so true--he was indeed a man who could express himself in perfect language. He worked for the highest seeming good of Rome.
The President announced that the Salon would be held the following Tuesday, but the Reception, and proposed discussion for the afternoon would be postponed. Adjourned.
15th Salon--February 23rd 1892
15th Salon 12 E. Centre Street February 23rd 1892; Jane Harrison on “Empress Eugénie”; Invitation to lecture on “Carmen Sylva”; Williams--”Some Impressions of the Club.”
The fifteenth Salon of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, Tuesday afternoon, February 23rd--3.30 o’clock.
There were about fifty (50) persons present, among whom were Mrs Childs, Mrs Easby [Gertrude Pierce Easby], Miss Litchfield [Grace Denio Litchfield], Miss Williams and other guests.
The President introduced Miss Jane Randolph Harrison [Jane Harrison] who read a paper on the “Empress Eugénie” speaking of her birth in Granada in 1826, her father being a Spanish grandee, and her mother a descendant of a Scotch family. Her childhood was passed in Madrid. She was very graceful and amiable, and in described as attractive in feature with a charming smile, and a beautiful, fair, transparent skin. 1853 she married Napoleon III. of France, and as Empress was very lovely and charitable, though extremely extravagant in dress. The Emperor and Empress gave a banquet at one time every Thursday during the winter to the deputies, ambassadors, etc. In 1856 the Prince Imperial was born. During Napoleon’s absence on several occasions, Eugénie became regent and she held this dignity during the Franco-Russian war in 1870. On September 4th, when the Paris mob approached the Tuileries, Eugénie was hurried out of the city by Dr Evans--the American dentist--and taken to Belgium, then to Trouville whence she sailed for England on Lord Burgoyne’s vessel. At Camden House, Chiselhurst, she and the Emperor and Prince Imperial lived, and there the Emperor died. The Prince entered the English army and was killed by the Zulus. Eugénie went to Zululand in her grief
--to be sure there was no mistake, and afterwards returned to England where she now lives a calm, beautiful life at Farmbrough(?) in Hampshire.
After reading this paper, Miss Harrison invited the Club members to her lecture on “Carmen Sylva” the following Saturday.
Miss Williams of the Southern Literary Association read “Some Impressions of the Club,” speaking in very complimentary terms of the Woman’s Literary Club--its President--and its distinguished writers.
During the afternoon, refreshments were served.
Board Meeting March 1st 1892.
Board of Management meeting 12 E. Centre Street March 1st 1892; On Club “Reception”; Invitations to newspaper representatives; Invitations engraved, monogram on paper, blank for name.; Board to be the Reception Committee; Academy of Sciences to be invited; Date to be April 19th.
A meeting of the Board of Management of the Woman’s Literary Club took place at 12 East Centre Street, Tuesday afternoon March 1st--2.30 o’clock--to make arrangements for the Club Reception to be given to the President and Miss Litchfield [Grace Denio Litchfield].
The Second Vice-President was in the chair and nine (9) members were present.
It was decided to send invitations to representatives of the “Sun,” “American” and “Evening News” papers; to have the invitations engraved--with the Club monogram in lavender on the paper--not on the envelopes--to leave a blank for the name of the person invited, that the whole invitation may be put in the third person.
Decided that the Executive Board shall form the Reception Committee.
Agreed by vote, after discussion, that the whole Academy
of Sciences shall be invited.
Date of entertainment to be April 19th. Reading of minutes deferred for want of time.
Adopted by Board.
48th General Meeting March 1st 1892.
48th meeting 12 E. Centre Street March 1st 1892; Note from Sylvan Drey; Discussion on “Creative faculty of woman” be omitted; Invitations to “Reception”; “Prince Galitzin”; Anderson--on “Luther Martin”; Articles to Committee “Authors and Artists of Maryland”; Malloy--on “Drama in Baltimore”; Collection lent; Motion of thanks passed.
The forty eighth general meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon, March 1st, 3.30 o’clock, with the President in the chair.
There were about thirty two (32) persons present. The Secretary read the minutes of February 16th and 23rd. Also a note from Mr Sylvan Drey, presenting two pamphlets and a play to the Club.
The President asked whether the Club preferred to have the discussion on the question “Does the creative faculty exist in woman” postponed for two weeks or dropped. After close voting, it was decided to omit the discussion.
The President stated that the married members of the Club would receive invitations to the Reception for their husbands, and asked that the unmarried members would send in the names of the escorts desired--and also referred to Mrs Richardson’s [Hester Crawford Dorsey Richardson] article on “Prince Galitzin” in Lippincott’s Magazine.
Mrs W.H. Anderson gave a biographical sketch of “Luther Martin” who lived about one hundred years ago and was for thirty years Attorney General of Maryland.
If Wirt and Key may be compared to a “cameo,” Martin can be called an “etching.” With him, breadth was gained at expense of finish; he had a great brain and a tender heart; was generous but madly extravagant, and made many debts. He suffered much and gained much. He espoused a cause with might and main, and had a sort of proud satisfaction in being in the minority, was highly courageous, and the unpopular side was always his! What he read he assimilated, having a magnificent memory. He loved a good joke; was devoted to his friends; but too fond of ardent spirits. His boyhood was passed on a farm, whence he went to Princeton at twelve years of age, and here he graduated before he was nineteen. He chose the profession of law, and in 1778 was made Attorney General through Judge Samuel Chase. Then he moved to Baltimore Town, where he married, and settled. He attended the Philadelphia Convention and voted against the Constitution--being opposed to the centralization of government. When Judge Chase was impeached, Luther defended him successfully. Later, Luther opposed Mr Wirt in the famous trial at Richmond which resulted in the liberation of Aaron Burr. In 1820, he was paralyzed, but partly recovered, and in his seventy-seventh year, went to Philadelphia to visit Colonel Burr; and here he died and was buried--the Baltimore bar passing a resolution that its members should wear mourning for three months in honor of this “patriarch of the profession.”
The President expressed a desire that all such articles be given to the Committee of “Authors and Artists of Maryland” to be collected in the Club book.
Miss Malloy [Louise Malloy] read an article upon “The Rise of the Drama
in Baltimore.” In 1773 our first theatrical performance took place at the corner of Baltimore and Frederick Streets, and performances were continued at Water and Albemarle Streets until the Revolution. Our first Theatre was opened 15th January 1782. When yellow fever was prevalent, theatrical performances were not allowed after 10th June, but the time was extended to July 4th. Among earlier actors were Miss Elizabeth Arnold mother of Edgar A. Poe, Master Payne a bay actor and the author of “Home, Sweet Home.”
Among the celebrities who played, sang and danced at the Holliday Theatre were Cook, Macready, Forrest, Kean, Celeste, Charlotte Cushman, Booth, Edwin Forrest, Adelina Patti, Lucca, Ristori, and Lotta, etc.
At Front Street Theatre, Jenny Lind sang and Fanny Ellerslie danced. Ford’s Grand Opera House was opened by Mrs Caroline Richings-Bernard in “As you like It.” Here Mary Anderson acted before Dom Pedro and his wife; in 1886 the sum of $5,000 was raised here for the Charleston sufferers; in 1885 Wm Forrester’s funeral took place here; and in 1889 a reception was given to Captain Murrill and Officers who saved the passengers of the Danemark. In 1870 the Academy of Music was started, and many interesting entertainments of various kinds have been given here.
Miss Malloy referred also to the old “Museum,” and the Adelphi Theatre.
A very interesting collection lent to Miss Malloy by Mr John L. Ford, Mr Rennert and Mr George W. Rife, was shown to the Club. A motion of thanks to these gentlemen proposed by Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton], seconded by Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat], was passed by the Club.
49th General Meeting--March 8th 1892.
49th meeting 12 E. Centre Street March 8th 1892.; Colvin--on "W[illia]m of Tyre" etc; Intermission to meet Mrs B. Harrison, etc; Burton Harrison speaks; Szold--on "Jehudah Halevy"
The forty ninth meeting of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon, March 8th, after 3.30 o'clock, with the President in the chair.
There were about thirty two (32) persons present, among whom were Mrs Burton Harrison, Mrs Martin and Mrs Szold [Henrietta Szold].
Mrs Colvin [Mary Noyes Colvin] read a paper upon "William of Tyre and his Works.” He was born about 1130--probably in Palestine, was well educated in Latin and Arabic, and said he spoke Greek. He was Canon of the Christian Church in Tyre, Bishop of Bethlehem, Archdeacon of Nazareth, and at one time, tutor to Baldwin--afterwards the Fourth--of Jerusalem. He was also a statesman when the power of Saladin began to threaten the Christian Kingdom of Jerusalem. His writings are: "A Report of the Third Lateran Council"; "History of the First Crusade"; William of Tyre far surpasses other writers of his time.
After the reading of this paper, the President called an intermission to enable the members of the Club to meet Mrs Burton Harrison and other guests.
Mrs Harrison thanks the Club in a few words for the kind reception given her, and said in reference to her literary work, that she had sought to conserve the habits of the Southern people, and hoped always to be remembered as a "daughter of the South.”
Miss Henrietta Szold read an article upon "Jehudah Halevy" (Yehūdah Hallēvi) [?dwelling] upon Israel's history, and describing the Jews especially as "a spiritual fraternity,” and for many centuries heroes in intellectual combat. The Koran aptly calls them the "people of the Book,” and it is their study of the law that explains their continuity
and also their adaptability. Jehudah was full of good sense, and had high morals and an unfeigned love of nature--he was a poet but no soft sentimentalist. Early in life he wrote many poems and love songs; but after producing Kuzzery--a tale of the Kuzzár King and nation, he devoted himself entirely to Jerusalem, and became a religious poet soaring aloft, free from all personal selfishness. His elegies entitle him to a place among the world's poets. If Israel might only live up to his altruistic teaching!--for Jehudah is the spiritualized expression of the Jewish people.--
Before adjourning, the President announced that the programme the following week would be given by the Class in Political Economy started last year by Mrs Franklin [Christine Ladd-Franklin].
The minutes of the last meeting were postponed, and the Club adjourned.
50th General Meeting--March 15th 1892.
50th meeting 12 E. Centre Street March 15th; Should there be monument erected at Guilford Court House?; Books and address given Club; Sioussat--on "The Mosaic Agrarian Law"; Brown--on "The Russian Mir"; Thompson on "Trades Unions for Women.”
The fiftieth general meeting of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon, March 15th,--3.30 o'clock, with the President in the chair. There were about fifty four (54) persons present. The Secretary read the minutes of March 1st and 8th which were adopted.
The President made mention of a letter she had received which suggested that it would be a mistake to place a monument to the Maryland revolutionary soldiers at Guilford Court House--the scene of their defeat. The matter was referred to Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] and Miss Milnor [Mary Worthington Milnor] for investigation.
The President announced the gift of [?books]--made to the Club by Mr Carpenter and Mr Teackle Wallis, and of an address on the McDonogh school by Mr Charles Lanier.
The first Vice President said that a talk will be given by Mrs Stockbridge [Mrs. Henry Stockbridge] on the admirable Oriental Collection in Mrs Walters' Gallery.
The literary programme of the afternoon was presented by the Class of Political Economy.
Mrs Sioussat contributed the first paper on "The Mosaic Agrarian Law,” referring to the Club and to the Class of Political Economy which had grown from it; tracing the ancient ideas of the tenure of land, and speaking of the advancing civilization of the ancients--their passage from tents to huts--thence to houses grouped about a Rappa field--thus making a street. Mrs Sioussat spoke of the view once held that the earth was the Lord's and therefore common to all men who might cultivate it--
of the allotment of the land by families who retained it--and of the Mosaic law which allowed a man to redeem his land in seven years and made the restitution of it obligatory in the fiftieth year--the year of jubilee. This plan according to Rabbi Szold would remedy many drawbacks and simplify complex relations.
Miss Mary Willcox Brown read an article upon "The Russian Mir" speaking of the present state of Russia where there is no scientific cultivation of the earth and only two per cent of the population attend school while a strict censorship is placed upon the press. There is in contrast an old Sclavonic [Slavonic] legend that in a certain neighborhood, any citizen could call a meeting to consider a wrong done or to discuss any policy of the government. The Muscovite rule suppressed this freedom. The Mir is a community ruled by an elder who apportions the land to the peasants and the moujik in return pays his part of the tax and harvests when the elder appoints. When absent from the Mir, he must pay his allotted portion and must return if required. Women rule in the absence of men. The weakness of Mir is that it discourages personal labor or ambition and stays improvements as the peasant must divide with his associates. The tax collector is the great curse of the peasants for ninety per cent of the possible gains of the most fertile land must be paid out for taxes, etc., and if the required amount is not forthcoming, the peasant may be reduced to a state of hopeless indebtedness. Nihilism asked of the
former Czar a constituent assembly and pledged no violence. Nihilism is a hope for the nation and is not anarchism.
Miss Charlotte Thompson [Charlotte Dellacklot Thompson] read a paper upon "Trades Unions for Women.” The objects of these Unions are to secure justice for each laborer and the rights of the worker; to establish uniform wages everywhere; and to assist disabled laborers. The Trades Union is properly not aggressive but protective. The great body of the Knights of Labor was for eleven years preparing for its present position. The unprotected woman laborers must enter the trades unions.
The President announced that Mr Jebb's lectures will take place in Peabody Hall beginning March 28th; and gave the programme for Tuesday next.
An opportunity was then given the Club to meet Miss Merrill of Mississippi, a member of the "King's Daughters,” ("Circle of the(?)"), and of the Chatauqua Club.
Board Meeting--March 22nd 1892.
Board of Management meeting. 12 E. Centre Street. March 22nd; 40 members Academy of Sciences to be invited to "Reception"
A meeting of the Board of Management of the Woman's Literary Club was called by the second Vice President at 12 East Centre Street, Tuesday afternoon, March 22nd, before the meeting of the Club. Five (5) members were present.
Decided to limit the Reception invitations--to be sent to the Academy of Sciences--to forty members chosen by the President of that Society, and not to include the whole membership.
Adopted by Board.
51st General Meeting--March 22nd 1892
51st meeting. 12 E. Centre Street. March 22nd; Graham absent; Merrill--on "proposed work for tenement house reform."; Moore on "Free Kindergarten"; President--on "Nobler Life for Women.”
The fifty first meeting of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street Tuesday afternoon, March 22nd--3.30 o'clock, with the President in the chair.
There were about thirty six (36) persons present. The Secretary read the minutes of the preceding meeting.
The President announced the programme for the two following weeks. Also gave notice of a humorous reading by James Whitcomb Riley.
Mrs John T. Graham [Elizabeth Turner Graham] was expected to make an "Appeal to the King's Daughters,” but was unable to be present, and Miss Merrill one of "The King's Daughters" gave an outline of a proposed work in aid of tenement house reform in New York.
Time was given for discussion of the topic, and Miss Szold [Henrietta Szold] suggested the need of municipal reform--Miss Merrill thought the proposed training house would improve the sentiment of the poor in the matter.
Mrs Moore spoke upon the "Free Kindergarten" and its usefulness to the homes of the poor.
The President read a paper upon "The Nobler Life for Women" referring to the recent question proposed for discussion "Does the creative faculty exist in women" and speaking of the many articles contributed at present by women to magazines. "To be the uplifting, inspiring, sympathetic force is woman's place in God's creation.” Mrs Turnbull [Francese Litchfield Turnbull] questioned if genius might not be shown in philanthropy and reform--and by women, and named Pandita Ramabai--great also in education. Woman should above all
"rule wisely" in the "Kingdom of home" and should "seek to be enlarged spiritually"; for the "highest beauty is perfect love.”
16th Salon--March 29th 1892.
16th Salon 12 E. Centre Street March 29th; Richardson on "Prince Galitzin"; Photo of Richardson; Cousins' lectures on Art.; Conversation; Refreshments.
The sixteenth Salon of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, March 29th--3.30 o'clock, with the Second Vice President in the chair. There were about forty one (41) persons present.
The President sent to the Club a greeting and message of regret that she was unable to be present.
The Second Vice President read Mrs Hester Dorsey Richardson's [Hester Crawford Dorsey Richardson] article on "Prince Galitzin, Priest and Pioneer,” published in Lippincott's Magazine of March 1892--and also a few words upon the life of the authoress.
A photograph of Mrs Richar[d]son who was a founder of the Club was shown to the members.
The Presiding Officer announced that the Club is invited to subscribe to and to attend Miss Cousins' [Lucy Cousins] lectures on Art.
General conversation ensued and refreshments were served.
52nd General Meeting--April 5th 1892.
52nd meeting. 12 E. Centre Street. April 5th 1892.; Lord on "Dickens and Gadshill" and poem--"A Dickens Reverie.”; Miller--"Critical Review" of Dickens; Crane Thackeray's tribute to Dickens.; Crane--Reading from Dickens; Cloud--Reading from Dickens; Dammann--poem "The Church Poor Box" by Dickens; Fullerton on Dickens "Chas Dickens--The old, old Fashion Death"; Graham--"To Chas. Dickens--Prince of Story Tellers"; Vote thanks to Needles.
The fifty-second general meeting of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon, April 5th--3.30 o'clock, with the First Vice President in the chair.
There were about thirty eight (38) persons present.
The Secretary read the minutes of the two preceding meetings.
Mrs Lord [Alice Emma Sauerwein Lord] read an article upon "Dickens and Gadshill" ending with a poem: "A Dickens Reverie.”
Mrs Miller gave "A Critical Review" of Dickens describing him as a philanthropist and a genius, although too elaborate and verbose in style.
The Presiding Officer repeated the notice of Miss Comins' lectures on "Modern Illustrations.”
Miss Crane [Lydia Crane] read Thackeray's beautiful tribute to Dickens from the "Lecture on Charity and Humor,” and showed the pressed bouquet that had been worn by Dickens at his last reading in Baltimore, and afterwards sent by him to Miss Crane's sister the authoress of "Emily Chester.”
Miss Crane also read some "Humorous Sketches" from "Nicholas Nickleby": "Mrs Nickleby talks to her Son at Night,” and "Kate sees the mad man who made Love to her Mother.”
Miss Cloud [Virginia Woodward Cloud] read pathetic selections from "Dombey and Son": "Paul Dombey leaves School,” and "Paul at Home."
"The Church Poor Box"--a poem of Dickens--was read by Mrs Dammann [Aileen B. C. Dammann], and also a contribution
of Mrs Eleanor Fullerton now of Denver, Colorado, on "Charles Dickens--The Old, old Fashion Death.”
Mrs Graham [Elizabeth Turner Graham] read original verses To Charles Dickens--The Prince of Story Tellers. "Lord Keep My Memory Green"(?)
A vote of thanks to Miss Needles for her gift to the Club of a photograph of "The Old Curiosity Shop" was proposed by Mrs Graham and seconded by Mrs Lord.
53rd General Meeting--April 12th 1892.
53rd meeting. 12 E. Centre Street. April 12th 1892; Sioussat--"Report of Committee on Battle Guilford Court House."; Vote of thanks to Committee; Reception instead of afternoon meeting; Stedman and Jebb on work of Club; President introduced Lanier to Jebb; President--Reading from "Catholic Man"; Note from President accepting invitation to Reception; Vote of thanks to Turnbull for Stedman and Jebb lectures; Resolution of thanks.
The fifty third meeting of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Tuesday afternoon, April 12th, 3.30 o'clock, with the President in the chair.
There were about forty one (41) persons present.
The minutes of the last meeting were read by the Secretary.
Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] read the "Report of the Committee on the Battle of Guilford Court House" showing the very important part taken by the Maryland forces in that engagement and during the campaign.
At the President's suggestion, a vote of thanks was passed by the Club to the Committee--Mrs Sioussat and Miss Milnor [Mary Worthington Milnor]--for the paper.
The President asked that the names of papers prepared might be sent to her, announced that the Reception would replace the afternoon meeting on the following Tuesday, and suggested that on account of the unexpected failure of programmes, readings should now be given from the books of Club members.
The President states that Mr Stedman and Mr Jebb
had praised the work of the Club--that of Mrs Easter [Marguerite E. Easter], Miss Reese [Lizette Woodworth Reese] and Miss Cloud [Virginia Woodward Cloud]--and also said that she had made Mr Lanier's works known to Mr Jebb who would take them to Mr Tennyson.
Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton] requested that the President would read her favorite passage from her own book, and the President consented and read from "The Catholic Man" a portion of the scene of "Paul's Choice of a Profession.” Before finishing the selection the President was obliged to leave the Club, and the Second Vice President took the chair.
The Secretary read the note from the President, accepting the invitation to the Reception.
A vote of thanks was passed by the Club to the President declaring its appreciation as a literary society of the lectures resulting given in Baltimore by Mr Jebb and Mr Stedman through Mrs Lawrence Turnbull [Francese Litchfield Turnbull].
Mrs Sioussat was appointed to draw up the resolution and the Secretary was requested to forward it to the President and to enter it upon the minutes of the Club. The resolution is as follows.
Board Meeting--April 14th 1892.
Board of Management meeting 12 E. Centre Street. April 14th 1892; To arrange for "Reception"; 2 maids in dressing-room. Violet and white badges; Bouquets to President and Litchfield.; Reception Committee early at Lyceum; $275 voted for supper, hall and flowers.; Supper.
A meeting of the Board of Management of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street on Thursday afternoon, April 14th, at 4 o'clock--to make arrangements for the Reception.
The Second Vice President was in the chair and at least eight (8) persons were present--and among them Miss Adams.
It was decided that two maids should be placed in the ladies' dressing room; that badges of white and violet should be provided for the Committee, for Miss Adams who would have charge of the decoration of the hall, and for Mr Edwin Turnbull and a friend who would assist in introducing the guests.
Decided, that bouquets of violets should be sent to the President and Miss Litchfield [Grace Denio Litchfield], and that it would be advisable for the Reception Committee to be at the Lyceum as near 7.30 o'clock as possible.
The sum of $275 was voted from the Treasury for the supper, flowers and hall--the supper to be served by a caterer, and to consist of croquettes and peas, salad, ices, bonbons, coffee, etc., and to include china and waiters.
Adopted by Board May 3rd 1892.
2nd Reception--April 19th 1892.
2nd Reception. Lyceum Parlors. April 19th, 1892.; Given to President and Miss Litchfield; Hours--Invitations--etc.; Decorations; President and Miss Litchfield received.; Also Reception Committee.; Guests--.
The second Reception of the Woman's Literary Club took place at the Lyceum Parlors on Tuesday evening, April 19th, 1892, and was given in honor of the President of the Club--Mrs Lawrence Turnbull [Francese Litchfield Turnbull], and Miss Grace Denio Litchfield.
The hours were from 8 to 11 o'clock and there were about 360 invitations issued and about 175 acceptances received.*
The Reception hall was tastefully decorated with growing plants and flowers, oil paintings and water colors under the direction of Miss Adams.
Mrs Turnbull and Miss Litchfield received the guests assisted by the Officers and Executive Committee of the Board of Management, and by Mr Edwin Turnbull and Mr Jesse Reeves.
The supper was served after 9 o'clock in the upper hall under the care of Miss L.C. Osburne Haughton and Miss Charlotte Dellacklot Thompson.
*Among the invited guests were members of the Academy of Sciences and of the Historical Society, and personal friend of Mrs Turnbull and Miss Litchfield.
54th General Meeting--April 26th 1892.
54th meeting 12 E. Centre Street. April 26th 1892; Letter from President on Reception of thanks passed her; President--thanks for Reception--Club congratulations by the Societies.
The fifty fourth general meeting of the Woman's Literary Club took place at 12 East Centre Street--on Tuesday afternoon, April 26th--3.30 o'clock.
The President was in the chair.
The minutes of the fifty third general meeting and of the Reception were read by the Secretary, and a letter from Mrs Turnbull [Francese Litchfield Turnbull] expressing her pleasure at the Resolution of thanks passed by the Club for the lectures by Mr Stedman and Mr Jebb.
The President thanked the members in person for the Reception tendered her and Miss Litchfield [Grace Denio Litchfield], and referred to warm congratulations made the Club on that occasion by the Historical Society and the Maryland Academy of Scienes.
[54th meeting, continued]
54th meeting Continued; Announcements; On new members to be elected; Letter from Robinson and Easby on Police Matron Board; Delegate asked; Delegate chosen; Easby--on "Development of our Country in Works of Fiction"; Comments on paper; On Annual Club elections. Club Salon; Books from General Bradley Johnson.; Mrs Anderson presented.
Notes of the latter part of the meeting of the Woman's Literary Club, on Tuesday afternoon, April 26th 1892.
Mrs Turnbull [Francese Litchfield Turnbull] announced that the next meeting of the Club, on May 3rd, would be under the direction of the Committee on "Current Criticism,” of which Mrs Dammann [Aileen B. C. Dammann] is Chairman.
It was also announced that on the same afternoon there will be an executive meeting, at which the names of new members are to be presented for election.
The President called attention to the rules of the Constitution with regard to the election of new members, to the qualifications of new members, and suggested
that those who had names to propose should consult with the members of the board of management on the subject.
Mrs Turnbull next read a letter from Mrs Edward A. Robinson and Mrs Easby, of the Committee to which the appointment of Police Matrons in Baltimore has been referred by the municipal authorities; requesting the co-operation of the Woman's Literary Club, in securing the best persons to fill these important and much needed positions.
The Club was requested to send a delegate to represent it on the committee of twenty women of good standing to whom the responsible work of choosing Police Matrons is to be committed.
It was moved by Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton], and seconded by Miss Brown [Mary Wilcox Brown], that such a delegate be appointed,--to which the Club agreed. Mrs Turnbull suggested the name of Mrs Griffin [Rebecca Griffin], as that of a member who would well represent the Club, and who was interested in the work proposed. Mrs Griffin having received the appointment, Miss Haughton was requested to inform her of that fact.
The literary paper of the meeting was given by Mrs Easby [Gertrude Pierce Easby] of Philadelphia. It was on "The Development of our Country in the Works of Fiction.” She referred to the historical labors of Mr Fiske and others. She spoke of the latest elaborated theories that the aborigines of our own continent were of one race only; that its varieties have been differentiated as those of our European ancestors have been;--in love and war and romance developing strong characters.
She went back to the romantic stories of the early discoverers before Columbus, to Columbus himself and Queen Isabella, to those who have given us stories about the early settlers of our continent, from Fernando Esteban to Charles Kingsley, in his "Westward Ho!" Then to Captain John Smith, "champion liar,” as she said, "who gave us another side of the subject, which, perhaps, we can not afford to lose. She passed on to Washington Irving's "veracious" Knickerbocker History of New York, to Longfellow's Miles Standish and Whittier's New England legends. Then to Hawthorne's wonderful tales from the Grandfather's Chair to the "Scarlet Letter"--from the stories of Governor Endicott, and the red cross he cut out of the flag, and the May-pole he cut down at Merry Mount, to the weird magical legends of the Province House, the home of the colonial governors of Massachusetts. She reminded us of the reception of the republican governor of the state, John Hancock, when the loyalist "Colonial Dame" old Esther Dudley, handed him the key of the Province House with the cry: "God save King George!" This is according to Hawthorne, but if perchance there is more fiction than truth in his charming legends, we will not quarrel with him for telling them to us. We were told of the stories about Governor Bellingham and Sir Edmond Andros, of those recalling the far more gracious presence of William Penn, under the elm tree: Then the stories of our own state of Maryland, those of our former fellow townsman, John P. Kennedy, and of W.H. Carpenter on Clayborne's
Rebellion; the stories of William Gilmore Simms, and the "Block House on the Prairie,” Spielhagen's tale of German emigrants; Then Thackeray's Virginians, with its first mention of George Washington in fiction. We were reminded of the heroic picture of General Wolfe, and of Thackeray's "very English" ignorance of American geography; how he makes Washington travel in three hours a distance which requires at least three times as long to transverse now. And that we like Henry Esmond Warrington far better when he generously rejoices over his brother's return to life than we do when he is the petted favorite of the old bishop's widow, who--was--, as she says, Beatrix Esmond, his grandfather's lady-love. We were told of the delightful letters of Abigail Adams;--of the "Midnight Ride of Paul Revere";--of Cooper, in the "Spy,” and his Indian novels; of the story of Edwin Brethertoft, and of André, worthy of a better fate; of the stories of Red Jacket and Brandt; and Campbell's "Gertrude of Wyomming [Wyoming].” Then of Mrs Stowe's "Minister's Wooing" and "Old Town Folks,” and "Uncle Tom's Cabin.” and the many books written on both sides of a vexed question.
For the literature of the war of 1812, Mrs Easby thought that the "Star Spangled Banner" seems to stand almost alone. She spoke of the "Bigelow Papers" relating to the Mexican War and the Civil War, of Sam Slick the pure patriot, and of Cable's "Strange New Stories of Louisiana.” Then of Theodore Winthrop's "John Brent,” and "the finest horse story
in literature." Also of Mr James's Virginia story, in which there is no "solitary horseman" at all. Then of the work of one of our own members,--whom our club always holds in remembrance,--of "Homoselle" and "Jack Horner.” Then of the author of "Ramona,” of Mrs Custer and of Captain King. These and more of our old and new friends passed like a living procession before our eyes.
Mrs Easby's article was followed by entertaining comments from Miss Grace [Mary F. Grace], Mrs Graham [Elizabeth Turner Graham] and Mrs Turnbull.
The President announced that at our last two meetings in May would be held the annual election of officers of the Club, and the closing "Salon" of the season. Also that three books had been presented to the Club by General Bradley T. Johnson.
Before the adjournment, Mrs Joseph R. Anderson of Richmond, Virginia, was presented to the Club, as the guest of the meeting.
The preceding notes of the latter part of the 54th meeting of the Woman's Literary Club have been taken from those kindly prepared by Miss Lydia Crane during the Secretary's absence.
Board Meeting--May 2nd 1892.
Board of Management meeting. 1530 Park Avenue. May 2nd 1892.; Our presentation of work of Club at World's Fair; Constitution and programmes of meetings to be sent.; Also book of Club essays; Committee of 3 to supervise printing of book; Perhaps also book of poetry and stories may be sent; Decided to try to have last day in May election day and Salon first Tuesday June.
A meeting of the Board of Management was held at 1530 Park Avenue, on Monday, May 2nd,--12 o'clock noon, with seven (7) members present.
The President was in the chair, and the proper presentation of the work of the Club at the World's Columbian Exposition was brought forward.
Decided to send to the Exposition the Constitution and complete programmes of meetings bound together in Club colors.
The apparent sentiment of the Board after discussion was that a book should also be prepared for the Exposition containing the best selection of essays--from articles read at the Club.
Mrs Lord [Alice Emma Sauerwein Lord], seconded by Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton], proposed that a Committee of three be chosen to supervise the printing of such a book. Passed.
Mrs Turnbull [Francese Litchfield Turnbull], Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] and Mrs Colvin [Mary Noyes Colvin] were selected for this Committee. To this book may be added, if found desirable, a volume of poetry and stories from those read at the Club.
Suggested by the President that each member might wish to possess a copy of the Club essays--as also other Clubs or booksellers;--and that any deficit from such undertaking be made up from Club funds, and any advance added to the Club treasury. Not final.
Proposed and decided to change the last day in May to a regular meeting day, and to have the elections then;--Also to move the Salon to the first Tuesday in June.
Adopted by the Board May 3rd 1892.
Board Meeting--May 3rd 1892.
Board of Management meeting. 12 E. Centre Street. May 3rd 1892; For approval of new members; Resolution of thanks passed [Misters?] Turnbull and Reeves; Mrs Warren re-elected; 11 names approved; On [?account] of mistake--non-appearance of 12th name, though properly prepared, Brown allowed to re-present it. Approved.
A meeting of the Board of Management of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon May 2nd*--2.30 o'clock--for the approval of new members according to the Constitution.
The minutes of the Board meetings of April 14th and May 2nd were read by the Secretary and adopted by the Board.
Ten (10) members were present, and the President was in the chair.
Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton], seconded by Miss Thompson [Charlotte Dellacklot Thompson], moved that a resolution of thanks be passed to Mr Edwin Turnbull and to Mr Jesse Reeves for their assistance at the Reception. Carried.
The President suggested for re-election by the Board, Mrs Minturn Warren--who had been unable previously to attend the Club meetings. Elected. (See Minutes Board Meeting--November 10th 1891.)
Eleven (11) new members were approved.
The twelfth name--properly prepared in writing by Miss Mary Willcox Brown and sent by mail--had failed to reach the Secretary and was not reported. Miss Brown was on this account permitted by special motion to prepare again and to present the name in full form to the Board while in session.
The name was approved.
Adopted by the Board May 17th 1892.
55th General Meeting--May 3rd 1892.
55th meeting 12 E. Centre St. May 3rd 1892.; Committee of "Current Criticism.”; Another delegate (2nd) to Board on Police Matrons; 12 names of new members read; Motion on changing Election Day temporarily and moving Salon:--to be repeated.; 3 Pamphlets on A.A.W. from Mr Mark; "Sappho" from Mrs Early; Loyola College Debate; Crane--Readings of Criticisms on Easter's book--by Latimer, Graham and Lord; Cloud--poems Mrs Easter; Manly--"Notes on Gilbert Elga's Son"; Jenkins--on "10 Tales" of Maupassant, Brown--on "Two Novels"; Reese--on "Barrie's Novels"; On book for representation at World's Fair; Criticisms on books of light reading suggested--President.; Dammann on "Lawrence Oliphant.”
The fifty fifth general meeting of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon, May 2nd*--3.30 o'clock.
The President was in the chair.
There were about thirty four (34) members present.
The minutes of the last meeting were read by the Secretary, and by Miss Crane [Lydia Crane] who had kindly consented to take the larger part of the minutes during the Secretary's absence.
The President states that by request Miss Ridgely's [Eliza Ridgely] name had been added to the Board formed for the recommendation of Police Matrons.
Twelve (12) names of Candidates approved by the Board for membership in the Club were read by the Secretary.
A motion was proposed by Miss Brown [Mary Wilcox Brown], seconded by Mrs Griffin [Rebecca Griffin], that the Constitution be temporarily changed, so that the Salon be transferred to the first Tuesday in June from the last Tuesday in May, thus making the last Tuesday in May the day of election of Club officers. Motion to be again considered by the Club the following Tuesday according to the Constitution.
The President announced that three pamphlets had been received from Dr Mark in connection with the Association for the Advancement of Women and a "Literal Translation of Sappho" from Mrs Early [Maud Graham Early].
The President also announced that the Club members were invited to the Loyola College Debate to be held at Lehmann's Hall.
Miss Lydia Crane read three very favorable criticisms on Mrs Easter's [Marguerite E. Easter] book "Clytie and Other Poems.” The criticisms were by Mrs Latimer [Elizabeth Wormeley Latimer], Mrs Graham [Elizabeth Turner Graham], and Mrs Lord [Alice Emma Sauerwein Lord].
Miss Virginia Cloud [Virginia Woodward Cloud] read "The Face of Raffaeta" and "Most Days it Comforts Me"--two poems also written by Mrs Marguerite E. Easter.
The President stated that Mrs Easter had received many congratulations in addition to those made her by the Club.
Mrs Manly [Mrs. Gaston Manly] read "Notes on Gilbert Elga's Son"--a book written by Mrs Harriet Davis, the scene of which is laid among the Quakers in Montgomery County, Maryland.
Mrs Jenkins [Mrs. Edmund Plowden Jenkins] gave "A Review of the Ten Tales" of Guy de Maupassant, citing his axiom that "to prove you have first rate talent you must show first rate style,” contrasting his tale "L'Orage" with the simple story a "Piece of String,” and praising also his "Moonlight,” etc.
Miss Mary Willcox Brown read a criticism of "Two Novels"--"Taras Bulba" by Gogol and "Rois en Exile" by Daudet.
Miss Lizette Woodworth Reese read a paper upon "Barrie's Novels"--so true, simple, lifelike, pathetic, and sometimes humorous--giving words of special admiration to "Thrums.” Miss Reese also told how the story grew from Barrie's homesick feelings for his native weaving village.
The President announced the programme for the following Tuesday, and also that in consequence of several requests that the Club should be represented
at the World's Fair, it had been decided by the Board that selections should be made of the best Club papers of the last two years, and that these should be sent to the Fair to represent the Club. Suggestions on the subject will be gladly received.
The President also thought that during the summer members might make criticisms upon books of light reading for the Current Criticism Committee.
Mrs Dammann [Aileen B. C. Dammann]--Chairman of this Committee and of the day's entertainment, gave a condensed Outline of the Life of "Laurence Oliphant,” taken from the "Memoir of Laurence Oliphant and of Alice Oliphant his wife." In closing, Mrs Dammann recalled Mr Gifford Palgrave, and contrasted his character and work with that of Laurence Oliphant.
Adopted and corrected.
56th General Meeting--May 10th 1892.
56th meeting 12 E. Centre Street May 10th 1892.; Constitution on Election Day etc. temporarily changed.; Treasurer's Report read. Auditing Committee appointed.; Leakin--on "3 Women of Genius"; Dammann read Balch's paper on "Sappho.”; Woolsey Johnson on "Colleges on the Cam.”; On book and programmes for World's Fair.
The fifty sixth general meeting of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon, May 10th--3.30 o'clock. There were about thirty five (35) persons present.
The President was in the chair.
The minutes of the last meeting were read, approved and corrected. The Secretary also read for the second time the names of those approved by the Board for membership in the Club.
The temporary change in the Constitution proposed at the last meeting--to move the Salon this year from the last Tuesday in May to the first Tuesday in June, thus making the last Tuesday in May the day of election of Club officers--was again proposed, and passed.
As provided in the Constitution, the Treasurer's report was read to the Club. In compliance with the Treasurer's request, an auditing Committee to examine the report was appointed, consisting of Mrs Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] and Mrs Lord [Alice Emma Sauerwein Lord].
Miss Leakin [M. Leakin] read a paper upon "Three Women of Genius:" Mary of France--the Anglo--Norman poetess; Donna Agnes--famous in geometry; and Mary Somerville--the celebrated mathematician.
Mrs Dammann [Aileen B. C. Dammann] read Miss Balch's [Grace Balch] paper "Sappho, a Woman of Genius,” tracing the life of Sappho, referring to her as the head of a school of poetry and music, and citing the fragment "Ad Lesbian" as a sample of her poetic art.
Mrs Woolsey Johnson's [Mrs. W. Woolsey Johnson] article was upon "Colleges on the Cam,” and gave a description of University and College life in Cambridge, England. Mrs Johnson contrasted the English University with the College--
the University examines students and confers degrees, while the College prepares the students for examination. The ordinary graduate of a university may stay there indefinitely and be often plucked, by the "honor" man must take his "tripos" at the end of nine terms. The Chancellor is the head of the University--the Master is the head of the College.
The Professors belong only to the University--the special chair of Regius Professor of Greek--now held by Mr Jebb, was founded by Henry VIII in 1540. The Fellows are the legal trustees, and the beneficiaries of the endowments of the Colleges, and are elected only for scholarship;--of these fellowships Trinity College has sixty.--Fellows need not teach at the College ,and may reside elsewhere.
The Tutors are the heads of the College educational department, and look after students--choosing their lectures and selecting their lodgings.
The Proctors and Pro-proctors are the civil officers, and have under them their bull-dogs who are sworn constables empowered to make arrests.
Mrs Johnson referred also to the promise given by the recent vote, that women will soon be admitted to University honors.
The President spoke to the Club of the book to be compiled for the World's Fair from the writings of our members, and of the programmes of meetings. It was stated that suggestions will be welcome. The Club adjourned.
Board Meeting--May 10th 1892.
Board of Management meeting 12 E. Centre Street May 10th 1892.; Miss Sarah Adams made honorary member.
A meeting of the Board of Management--W.L.C.--was called at 12 East Centre Street, after the meeting of the Club on Tuesday evening, May 10th, about 5.50 o'clock.
Nine (9) members were present, and the President was in the chair.
Miss Sarah Adams was proposed by the President--as an honorary member of the Club--and elected.
Adopted by Board May 17th.
Board of Management Meeting--May 17th, 1892.
Board of Management meeting 12 E. Centre Street May 17th 1892.; 500 Salon Cards; New members to be asked to next meeting and to Salon--not Election Day.; Card of Club; New members adopted.; On Committees; Suggestion--A Conference of Committees.
A meeting of the Board of Management of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon, May 17th, after 2.30 o'clock.
Nine (9) members were present, with the President in the chair.
The minutes of the meetings of May 2nd and 10th were read by the Secretary and adopted by the Board.
The Secretary asked to be authorized to have five hundred Salon cards printed. Allowed.
The new members are to be invited to the next meeting and to the Salon in June, but of course have no vote in the elections.
Discussed whether we shall have a Card of Club Membership. A model was shown by the President, and, after discussion, a motion to adopt it was made by Mrs Colvin [Mary Noyes Colvin], seconded by Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton],
and passed. This certificate to be given up by a member on her resignation.
The President wished to scatter the Topic papers before summer, and the question of Committees was taken up. Decided to continue the same general plan of Committees with a few alterations of last season's title.s
The Secretary suggested a Conference of Chairmen that they might consider together a plan of work.
57th General Meeting, May 17th, 1892.
57th meeting 12 E. Centre Street May 17th 1892.; Auditing Committee on Treasurer's Report.; Vote of thanks to Treasurer.; President on honorary-member's work; Briscoe--"The Tousey Girls' Sale.”; Lord--poems from "Symphony in Dreamland.”; Haughton reads Cloud's story "Postal Service of Shezar of Shezak."; Carter presents Miss Randolph's books and speaks on Miss Randolph's character; Literary Association to meet.
The fifty seventh general meeting of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon, May 17th--3.30 o'clock.
There were about thirty six (36) persons present with the President in the chair.
The minutes of the last meeting were read by the Secretary. Mrs Charles W. Lord [Alice Emma Sauerwein Lord]--for the Auditing Committee--reported that the balance in the treasurey [treasury] was $119.49 and said that it had been a real pleasure to look over the Treasurer's accounts, as they had been kept with so much correctness and order. The President thought that thanks of the Club were due to the Treasurer, and a vote of thanks to Miss Thompson [Charlotte Dellacklot Thompson] for her faithful work was proposed by Mrs Graham [Elizabeth Turner Graham], seconded by Mrs Haman [Louise C. Haman], and unanimously passed by the Club.
The President referred to the work of a new honorary member--Miss Sarah Adams.
Miss Margaret Briscoe [Margaret Sutton Briscoe] read a story called "The Tousey Girls' Sale"--a sketch of the poverty and tribulations of two unsuccessful women farmers.
Mrs Charles W. Lord gave the following selections from her book "A Symphony in Dreamland,” namely" "Rubinstein's Ocean Symphony" in four movements, "The Song of the Summer Wind" and "My Philosophy.”
Miss L.C. Osburne Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton] read a tale called "The Postal Service of the Shezar of Shezak,” which had been obtained from one of the story writers of the Club, and which was prepared for a Child's Magazine.
This story gave the cause of the substitution of writing for messenger service in the Kingdom of Shezak.
The Club was requested to name the writer and,--among others--several correct guesses were made for Miss Cloud [Virginia Woodward Cloud].
Miss Polly Carter presented two books which Miss Sarah Randolph--lately deceased--had wished the Club to receive as gifts from her.--One was the "Life of Thomas Jefferson" to whom Miss Randolph was related.
Miss Carter spoke of the great charity of Miss Randolph, and told how she had in a few years raised and paid $40,000 towards the removal of a debt upon an old family place.
Miss Carter also said that Miss Randolph had been the friend, relation, and chosen companion of Mrs Tiernan [Mary Spear Tiernan].
The President announced the the Club the meeting of the Library Association to take place at the Peabody, and the Chair adjourned.
58th Meeting May 24th 1892.
58th meeting 12 E. Centre Street May 22nd 1892; President--"Report" to Club: Home.; Members; Attendance and interest; "Topics" programme; "Committee" plan; "Economics" class; Committee on "Public Schools"; Delegates to Police Matrons' Board; "Maryland Library"; Representation desired at World's Fair; Secretary read some minutes of Club; "Annual Address" of President; Elections to be following Tuesday.
The fifty eighth meeting of the Woman's Literary Club was held at 12 East Centre Street, on Tuesday afternoon, May 22nd, after 3.30 o'clock. There were about forty two (42) persons present, with the President in the chair.
The President made her annual Report, speaking of the results already achieved and of the condition of the Club. The home offered by the Academy of Sciences should prove a centre of growth for us.
The President spoke of the membership of the Club--now over one hundred persons without the new names.
The meetings have been well attended and encouraging and the interest shown in the papers read by the other members--has been remarked upon by the guests of the Club. The programmes of Topics distributed has made an improvement on last year's work--showing that better literary results are secured by the better arrangement of subjects.
The plan of the Committees is the life of the club, and it would be so wise if the members would early inform the Chairmen of papers written--The paper of course remains in possession of the writer who may revise or even re-write it at pleasure.
The Class in Economics has been working earnestly outside of the Club; as also the Committee on Public Schools formed by request of the Commissioner; while two delegates have been sent to the Associated Committee for the examination of Police Matrons.
The President also spoke of the plan to form a Maryland library, suggesting that papers be scattered, asking contributions of books, and offering to head the subscriptions
to a friend--if started--for the purpose of collecting such books. Thanks are due to Miss Milnor [Mary Worthington Milnor] for many of those already received.
Application has also been made by Committees of the World's Columbian Exposition that the work of our Club be represented there.
The President referred in kind words to the satisfactory report of the Treasurer, and to the work of the Secretary.
By her request, the Secretary then read selections from the minutes of the Club.
These were followed by the "Annual Address" of the President in which she remarked upon the consideration already shown the Club by the Maryland Historical Society and the Academy of Sciences. She thought that if there should be adverse criticism anywhere, it ought to make us even more severe, more critical, more zealous, humble, eager in growth, and united--we should be a "moral, intellectual, and spiritual force in our community.” Let us aspire--we must have faith in ourselves if we would reach our aim; and we must be faithful to our duty. In reply to the question--often asked--why we are called a literary society when our Constitution is so broad, we may say that we not only seek to follow pure literature, but also to encourage great thoughts and movements treated in a literary way. Individuality and Catholicity are needed; and to follow the Constitution with regard to the adoption of "right and serious views of life and literature" is our hope. The President said she had striven not to seek her own specialty--nor to show marked sympathy for any branch of literature.--
Woman does not require so much teaching in specialties; but to become a rounded figure, a priestess, a mother.
Poetry--the emotional, spiritual feeling--is needed in these practical, scientific days; and indeed the real and the ideal should go hand in hand--for from the idea is developed the real, practical beneficent work.
The President hoped that thus year has left traces of an inward growth, a glimpse of new fields of thought, spiritual sight, new opportunities, or wider friendships.
She also expressed thanks for the pleasure received by her the last two years through the Club and the Officers. The Officers had always--when called upon--responded promptly and courteously, and the zeal of the Chairmen had been untiring.
Indeed it is these we may thank for any usefulness and honor attained by the Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore!
The President announced that the elections would be held the following Tuesday.
59th Meeting. May 31st, 1892.
At No 12 East Centre Street.
Notice of Election; Temporary President--Secretary and letters.; Voting by proxy; Voting for names put in nomination; President; First Vice President; Second Vice President; Secretary; Question of having a Corresponding Secretary; Treasurer; Executive Committee.
The meeting was called to order by the President, Mrs. Turnbull [Francese Litchfield Turnbull], who announced that the regular annual election for all the officers of the Club, was now to be held.
She requested that a temporary president should be nominated, and voted for; who should appoint a secretary and two letters to assist her in conducting the election.
Mrs. Dammann [Aileen B. C. Dammann] nominated by Mrs. Sioussat [Annie Leakin Sioussat] was elected as temporary president, Mrs. Manly [Mrs. Gaston Manly] was appointed secretary, and Miss Thompson [Charlotte Dellacklot Thompson] and Miss Cloud [Virginia Woodward Cloud] as letters.
The question then arose whether voting by proxy was in order--or allowable. Mrs. Johnson [Mrs. W. Woolsey Johnson] and Mrs. Colvin [Mary Noyes Colvin] gave us some clear and forcible reasoning against that kind of voting. Mrs. Johnson read us the Article of our Constitution "On Elections;" and made a motion that only members present should be allowed to vote. This motion she afterwards withdrew, on hearing that many members had understood that they were to be allowed to vote by proxy on this occasion.
After some interesting discussion and lively conversation, the voting began--, by ballot. During its progress the suggestion was made that the members should confine themselves as much as possible to the names put in nomination, in order to prevent scattering and losing their votes.
Mrs. Turnbull was the only nomination for president;--and she was immediately re-elected.
Mrs. Griffin [Rebecca Griffin] having declined the nomination for re-election as First Vice President, and Mrs. Colvin declining a nomination for that office, our Second Vice President for the last two years, Miss Haughton [Louisa Courtland Osburne Haughton], was elected First Vice President.
Mrs. Sioussat was elected Second Vice President.
Miss Ridgely [Eliza Ridgely], who has, for the last two years, filled the position of our secretary, positively declined--to our great regret--to be re-elected. Miss Edith Duer and Miss Lydia Crane were nominated to succeed her. Miss Crane, however, distinctly stated that she could not think of undertaking to do the work Miss Ridgely has done successfully for the last two years: that her engagement would only allow her to attempt to be the Recording Secretary of the Club. With this stipulation, Miss Crane was elected to that office.
The question of having a Corresponding Secretary of the Club was deferred to a later occasion, Mrs. Griffin generously offering to do some of the work needed in the mean time.
Miss Thompson was unanimously re-elected Treasurer.
The Executive Committee who were elected separated, were: First, Mrs Mary Noyes
Colvin--Second, Miss Eliza Ridgely,--Third, Mrs. William Wolsey Johnson, [Mrs. W. Woolsey Johnson]--Fourth, Miss Henrietta Szold,--Fifth, Miss Mary Grace,--Sixth, Miss Mary Wilcox Brown.
Although we were not--
"--freemen, casting with unpurchased hand
The vote that shakes the turrets of the land,”
the election was carried on with great spirit and interest.
After numerous pleasant congratulations, our President said that "many of us would wish our Board of Management to be twice as large as it is, as there are many members whom we delight to honor."
The President also announced that our next meeting would be a "Salon,”--and the closing one of the season.
Written from memory,
by the newly-elected secretary.
17th Salon. June 8th, 1892.
New officers; Autograph--list of members; Certificates of membership.; Roses as mementos of the meeting; "Garden roses."; Accompanying sentiments; New members; President's farewell.
Also written from memory.
The 17th Salon, being the last meeting of the 2nd year of the Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore, was held on Tuesday afternoon, June 8th, 1892, at No. 12 East Centre Street.
The President, after calling the meeting to order, announced the names of the new officers elected for the succeeding year, at the previous meeting on May 24th; and introduced those of them who were present to their fellow members.
A request was made for all members present to write their names in the Club Book: it being desirable for the Club to possess an autograph list of all its members, present and future. A large portion of the present membership being absent on this occasion the list was by no means a full one; but we trust to the future, attendance and membership, to supply the deficiency.
Handsome Certificates of membership were presented to all the members present.
A request had been made during the preceding week for each member to bring to this meeting a rose, tied with a violet ribbon, accompanied by an appropriate sentiment. Many members complied with this request; and, at the close of the exercises, the leaves of these roses--of "the leafy month of June"--were collected in a jar, to be presented as a memento of this last meeting of our Club's second year.
We may, if we choose, believe our roses to be life those "garden roses" told by Keats, whose--
"--sense with their deliciousness was spelled"; while their "soft voices"
"Whispered of peace, and truth, and friendliness unquelled.”
The reading of the accompanying sentiments comprised the only literary exercises of the meeting. They were generally poetical in form, and ranging "from grave to gay." A large portion were of a humorous nature, and seemed to be highly appreciated,--judging from the sounds of laughter which followed their reading.
Our newly elected members were introduced by our President; after which refreshments were served; and a portion of the afternoon was passed in social conversation.
After a few graceful words of farewell from our President, the Club adjourned, to meet again in October 1892.
[END OF SEASON 2]