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1899 Meeting Minutes
APRIL 11, 1899-JUNE 6, 1899
[Minutes from 1898-1899 season before April 11, 1899 missing]
Minutes of the Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore.
by Lydia Crane
Meeting of April 11th, 1899.
The Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore met on Tuesday, April 11th, 1899, at the corner of Franklin and Cathedral Streets. This meeting was under the direction of Mrs. J. Francis Dammann [Aileen B. C. Dammann], Chairman of the Committee on Current Criticism. The President called the meeting to order, and the Recording Secretary read the minutes of the meeting of April 4th.
The first article of the programme was by Miss Ellen Duvall, and was on Benjamin Jowett, Master of Baliol College, Oxford. Miss Duvall spoke of the life of Professor Jowett, which began in 1817, and ended in 1893, covering three quarters of a century,--a very important one in the history of the world, during which he stood for many of the leading ideas of his time,--in philosophy and advanced thought. She told of his early disadvantages, and of the assistance he received in gaining the education which led to his high position and intellectual leadership. But he never attached too much importance to material success. "It is work," he said, "and not success, that makes life worth living." She told of his connection with the so-called "Oxford Movement;" and of his relations with Newman, Ward, Pusey and others. She spoke too of his earnest efforts
for the removal of the restrictions surrounding entrance into Oxford University. The result was the abolition of the test oath--required from students and professors--to support the thirty nine articles of the Church of England. His great work was not one of modern philosophy, but was a translation of Plato. This, however, strikingly reveals the qualities of Professor Jowett's mind,--as full of suggestions rather than of conclusions. Like Plato himself, he asks much that he never answers. Professor Jowett had contemplated writing a "Life of Christ," for which he had collected a mass of notes,--still unpublished. He did much for his college,--much to raise the standard of scholarship, and of intellectual life. At the end of Miss Duvall's article, Mrs. Turnbull [Francese Litchfield Turnbull] said she was in England at the time of Professor Jowett's death; and she was surprised at the outburst of sympathy and affection that followed it.
The next article was by Mrs. R. K. Cautley [Lucy Randolph Cautley], and was "The Victory of Cyrano de Bergerac." Mrs. Cautley spoke of the play which has risen like a star of the first magnitude on our firmament, and seems as yet to remain undimmed. She told with vivid interest the story of this play of Rostand; its historical foundation, its interpretation by the genius of Coquelin in Paris, and its reception with
enthusiasm elsewhere also. She described Roxane, the "Precieuse," who learns to know the great heart and soul of Cyrano--only when he is dying. She brought before us Cyrano, the Gascon, with something of Don Quixote in his nature; but far more noble. He stands for that love and joy of self-sacrifice which she said, is the essence of all true fatherhood and motherhood in the world, which gives life to the type of Baldur, the Beautiful, to the maxims of Confucius, to the doctrines of the gentle Buddha, and more than all, to that of highest divine example to which the heart of man answers with all its allegiance and hope.
The next article was by our honorary member, Miss Emily V. Mason, and was "A Few Reminiscences." Miss Mason said we "could scarce expect one of her age--eighty four--"to speak in public on the stage." She did not know whether to speak of a journey taken in 1820, of a visit to Jerusalem, or of what she saw in Vienna. Choosing the last remembrance, she said that she met, at Cannes, in 1878, the Austrian Archduchess Marie, the granddaughter of Maria Theresa, who had married her first cousin, a grandson of the same Empress. She spoke English, though her husband, the Archduke Regnier did not. He, we were told, looked like General Lee. The Archduchess had heard and much admired, the singing of a young
lady of the same party with Miss Mason, who as it happened was Miss Balch, daughter of Canon Balch, who was long ago, a resident of Baltimore. The royal lady told Miss Mason that when she came to Vienna, she was to send her card and ask for the Archduchess. The result was an invitation to breakfast with the granddaughter of the great Empress, who was unaffected in conversation, and surprised her guest by speaking of some American books which she herself had not seen. The breakfast was elegantly served, and elegantly simple. She afterwards saw the magnificent jewels given by the great Napoleon to his wife, Maria Louisa, and inherited by her niece and nephew. Miss Mason also told of a court ball, which she attended in Vienna, and of there seeing and speaking in English with the beautiful Empress, whose fate has since shocked us all. The etiquette and costumes were mediaeval, magnificently so,--the men wearing rather more jewels than the women. A ball at the court of Dresden was also described. Miss Mason then told of her journey--with her mother and grandmother--in 1820, when it took three weeks to go from Leesburg in Virginia to Lexington in Kentucky, riding in their own carriage with four horses and servants outside. There were no hotels on the way, but they were instructed to stop at any house with curtains
in the windows,--that being a sign of superior civilization,--and they were always hospitably received. They were told of one lady--a great toast in her neighborhood,--that she wore calico every day. Calico was an imported article, as valuable as silk now,--homespun being the usual wearing material. In crossing the Ohio river they said their prayers, fearing they might be drowned. Miss Mason then spoke of her visits to Spain. That country, she thought as interesting as Italy, except in all that relates to Rome itself. In Spain the old monuments of Roman imperial rule are still preserved, and the relics of Moorish rule are there also. Entertainment was inexpensive and she found everybody generous. Miss Emily Harper, with whom she travelled, grew quite agonized, because she could not make the peasants take money for the grapes and melons they put into their carriage. One gentleman finding them fond of music, insisted on their use of his opera box for the week of their stay in Madrid, and sent them the tickets. After a luncheon there arrived at their hotel some cakes like those they had enjoyed, and two little pictures they had admired. They did not, in Spain, admire cakes of pictures again.
The last article of the programme was by Mrs. Thomas J. Morris, and was on "The Psychology of Henry James." Mrs. Morris spoke
of two works of Henry James "In the Cage" and "The Two Magics," which have been called stories of the action of mind on mind, of spirit on spirit. The first on "In the Cage," is a portrayal of subtle suggestions of thought and feeling and consciousness. It is the tale of a girl, a telegraph operator in her cage, in the heart of fashionable London. The messages sent by fashionable people come to reveal to her something of the individual ego of each sender, and unexpected flash lights on their life. She is engaged to marry Mr. Midge, a grocer,--honest and commonplace. But now a new phase of life is developed before her, that smart life of London which does not regard the laws of God or man. A type of fashionable life appears in a young captain, who after sending messages begins to talk and pay attention to the girl,--to whom he is a new revelation. But there is no degradation in the story. The Captain may intrigue among his equals, but he takes no unfair advantage of the girl he has met in her cage. And she, dismissing the romantic dream of admiration which she has never allowed to come near her inner soul, goes back to her lover Midge in all honor, and with all the possibilities of a good life. Mrs. Morris dwelt on the triumph of at with which in the telling the delicate balance is maintained to a satisfactory and right conclusion.
The second story "The Turn of the Screw," has been called "A Tale of Horrors." It is the story of two orphan children--a boy and a girl,-- and of the evil influence over them very early in life, by two wicked natures a valet and governess, now both dead. Then there is a new governess, making every effort to counteract the evil done--and still being done. Whether the disembodied spirits "revisit the glimpses of the moon," striving to keep possession of the souls of the children, or whether their ghosts are treated allegorically, has been questioned and discussed. Mrs. Morris said the author uses the supernatural element as the Bible uses it, and as Shakespeare and other writers use it. The efforts of the governess to save the young souls confided to her care, and the tragical end that comes after her efforts to gain a confession from the boy were described and the lessons drawn from them were brought before us. It was the solemn presentation of the need of not only right intention and affection, but also of care and wisdom, and self forgetfulness in dealing with those little ones "whose exterior resemblance doth belie the soul's immensity."
Mrs. Dammann [Aileen B. C. Dammann], Chairman of the Committee, then read a list of books which had been considered by the members helpful and inspiring or interesting.
The meeting adjourned.
Meeting of April 18th, 1899.
The Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore met on Tuesday, April 18th, 1899, at the corner of Franklin and Cathedral Streets. This meeting was under the direction of Miss Anne W. Whitney [Anne Weston Whitney], Chairman of the Committee on the Study of English. The President called the meeting to order; and the Recording Secretary read the minutes of the meeting of April 11th. The resident announced an invitation from the Roland Park Literary Club to the officers of the Woman's Literary Club to be present at the anniversary meeting to be held at he Club house, Roland Park on Wednesday, April 26th, at 3 P. M.
The first article of the programme was by Mrs. George K. McGaw [Margaret Ann Worden McGaw], and was called: "A Glance at the Scot Through All Time." Mrs. McGaw took us back to the earliest known records of those branches of the Aryan Race known as the Cymri, Celts and Gaels. She spoke of the reference made by Herodotus to the land of these tribes--the [? Keltiae]. The Cymri were said to have come from Medea, but not have been aboriginal there, having traditions of a former immigration after an ancient war. They seemed to go back to the days when there were giants on the earth, the Gog and Magog of the Bible are placed
by tradition in this old family of men. Some archaeological scholars believe them to be the descendants of the ten lost tribes of Israel, carried from their homes by Shalmaneses in 731 B. C.; and colonized in Medea,--before making their westward migrations. In the great Russian Museum there are Hebrew relics, confirming these views and opinions. The Geographical names given by them in their passage over Europe may show traces of their past; the sacred river Jordan was perhaps remembered in naming the Danube, the Don and other streams, and Gallia is a reminder of Galilee. They had learned to worship Baal or Bel, and even in the British Isles, we still find traces of this worship. Mrs. McGaw went on to speak of the divisions of the tribes, and the difference in their languages, which resulted in the Irish, the Highland Scotch, and the Manx:--the British, Welsh, and Cornish or [? Armurican] She told of the Cymri in the days of Caesar, and spoke of their prowess in battle. She noticed the union in old Celtic monuments of the cross with the circle around it, as a survival of the worship of the sun after the adoption of Christianity. Mrs. McGaw spoke of the different characteristics of the Picts and the Scots, before their union under one king in the 9th century. She traced the effects of this union, and also of the
Anglo Saxon and Norman civilization which later spread from England over hte borders. She touched on the high heroic qualities shown in the lives of Wallace and Bruce and their followers. She told of the old Highland chief, who lying on the ground covered with snow, reproved his son lying by his side, for effeminacy because the young man had rolled up a snow ball pillow for his head to rest upon. She spoke of the culture and love of learning of the Scots, as foreshadowed in the early Gallic literature that has come down to us. They have been accustomed, she said, to practice "plain living and high thinking." In intellect they stand side by side with the English and have given place to none. Miss Whitney spoke of the typical qualities of the Scotch, and of the Gaelic language.
The next article was "A Story" by Miss Lizette Reese [Lizette Woodworth Reese]. It was a Gaelic Tale of the Last Supper of our Lord and his Disciples; in which we were reminded of the old hallowed verities by an allegorical vision, as told by a Gaelic child.
The next article of the programme was by Miss Maria Middleton [Maria H. Middleton], and was on "The Gaelic Language and Literature." Miss Middleton spoke of the old Celtic dialects and noticed the Cymri as one of the oldest forms of Aryan speech, still surviving in Wales, and having done so until the last hundred years in Bretagne. She
spoke of the Gaelic language as having been that of the Irish and Scots; of the people on both shores of the Irish Sea,--of Scotia and Albyn. She spoke of the old translations into the Gaelic; those of the Apostles Creed, the Bible of Bishop Bedell, the Catechism of John Knox, etc. She told of Finn and Ossian, and of their heroic deeds, as told by the bards and minstrels of their time; quoting a Lament, by the last of Finn's noble race. Miss Middleton then spoke of the well known controversy over Ossian's poems; which James McPherson declared himself ot have discovered and collected, and which were at one time said to be only a deception of his own. She gave the later opinion that McPherson did collect many ancient and fragmentary poems, which he pieced together with additions of his own. She told of his having visited an old Highland woman, one hundred and five years of age, who recited the legends of the bards. We were given translations of ancient poems. Miss Middleton said it was estimated that three millions of people in Scotland, and one million in Ireland speak Gaelic. She spoke of the fine soldierly qualities of these people, and mentioned a Gaelic regiment in the Confederate Army, recruited in North Carolina. The Gaels are poor, but they pride themselves on gentle blood and brave deeds. Not more than
one half of Scotchmen live in Scotland, but all learned to love their old songs, sung to the old tunes of the bagpipes; and that tell of the fame of their forefathers.
The next article of the programme was by Mrs. Waller R. Bullock [Caroline Canfield Bullock], and was on "The Preservation of Gaelic." Mrs. Bullock spoke of the selfcentered interests of the present age. But she thought it is important to preserve the Gaelic, in that it is a language rich in traces and qualities of the past. The latest English Dictionary contains two hundred and fifty thousand words. She spoke of words and forms of words now lost from our language, some verbs surviving only in one or two of their tenses. Some words must be heard spoken, the key of the ancient language to which they belong surviving in the pronunciation. She dwelt on the new science of Phonology or the sounds of words, and its use in treating variants from old roots. She told of an old woman lately dead, whose claim to distinction was that she still spoke Cornish. The Irish has been said to be the oldest language in Europe, the elder sister of Greek and Latin. Mrs. Bullock went on to trace the common characteristics of Irish and Sanscrit, in etymology and syntax, giving evidence of an elaborate grammar in prehistoric times. Irish, she said, as a literary medium ceased in 1650, nothing of interest in it having appeared since then. She then went on to describe the efforts of
scholars, Irish, English, and German, to discover, and to rescue form oblivion the old Gaelic literature, inscriptions and traditions, and to preserve the ancient language. She told of Gaelic societies of a professorship of Gaelic in the University of Edinborough [sic], in some Presbyterian colleges and especially of the well endowed and well equipped chair of Gaelic in the Roman Catholic University of Washington. We were shown copies of a Gaelic newspaper published in Sydney, Nova Scotia. With respect to he Welsh, we were reminded that it is the same language heard by Caesar and by Agricola, some two thousand years ago; and that its preservation and that of its kindred tongues ought to interest all lovers of literature.
The last article was by Miss Whitney and was on "The Manners and Customs of Gaelic People." Miss Whitney spoke of the old Gaelic Clans,--the word clan being derived from the Gaelic for child or children. The Clan system was patriarchal government founded on the relations of father and child. But the great rule of the feudal system--the inheritance from the father to the eldest son--did not prevail in the Gaelic clans. The chief's heir was likely to be his bother next in age, as being nearer to the original ancestor than his son. By the fraternal heirship also, the reign
of a minor could be avoided, and a wiser and more experienced leader gained. The members of the clan to be all of one blood, brothers, descended from the same original ancestor. The land was divided among all the men,--there was no female inheritance, and all revered the chief. We were reminded of the fiery cross that called all the men together to fight, and of the oath taken on cold iron or steel. In giving hospitality they never asked the name of the guest, he might be an enemy, and they would take no advantage of a foe. Miss Whitney went on to tell of the fires of Beltein, dating back to the days of the Druids, and probably a survival of the fires of Moloch. Ptolemy describes the Gaels as tattooed savages, each loving his own clan and hating other clans. Among others Miss Whitney spoke of the Clan McPherson, whose ancient tradition relates that their ruling family lost all its male members, except one,--and he was a priest. He was obliged to obtain a dispensation, and marry,--afterwards his children and their descendants were called the sons of the parson, or McPherson. Miss Whitney spoke of the belief in brownies and in trolls, but in closing dwelt on the intense religious faith of the Celtic nature.
After some comments, the meeting adjourned.
Meeting of April 25th, 1899.
The Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore met on Tuesday, April 25th, 1899, at the corner of Franklin and Cathedral Streets. This being the regular monthly Salon, only one literary article was presented. The President called the meeting to order, and the Recording Secretary read the minutes of the meeting of April 18th. Notice was given that the next meeting would be devoted to the reception of reports from the Chairmen of Committees. The subjects of all the meetings of the month were given by the President, including those for nomination and election of officers. Notices were given of an invitation to the private view of the Charcoal Club Exhibition,--also a course of Lectures in French, also a meeting of the Folk Lore Society--which would be of particular interest.
The President, Mrs. Wrenshall [Letitia Humphreys Yonge Wrenshall], then read--by special request--her deferred article on "Crystals." She began with a graceful reference to the opening of Spring; and to the varied and beautiful flowers, that with the change of seasons greet our sight and give pleasure to all our perceptions, like divine messages to the children of men. But the beauty and splendor of the flowers on the surface of our earth are rivaled by the charms of other flowers deep in its bosom. These obey the unfailing laws of Nature, and teach the same great lessons of order and purpose that we have learned in field
and forest. Mrs. Wrenshall wen ton to speak of the crystals that have been formed in the dark by the irrevocable forces of heat, moisture and pressure, to be revealed to our knowledge and admiration. She spoke of their distinct forms; each crystal taking its own,--long or short, broad or square, with angles and faces well defined. She went on to tell of the six systems into which science has divided these creations of beauty and value. They are well determined, though some crystals like honneblend and feldspar might seem to be referred to two systems. as it was impossible in a short article to tell much of all of these systems, Mrs. Wrenshall took here only one the Cubic or Isometrice, with it three principal axes, all equal, and at right angles. She illustrated her description with fine drawings of the forms of these isometric crystals, the cubes, octohedrons, dodecahedrons, and their varieties. She told of the precious metals and stones belonging to this system,--as gold and silver, and the queen of jewels, the diamond. She referred to the well known fact that indifferent instances the same chemical constituents in the same quantities, may produce different results; and told of a stone found in a cliff at Brancheville, Connecticut, which is dark and ugly, which in North Carolina there are specimens of the same crystallization which are beautiful and clear. She spoke of the lines of cleavage in different crystals, or the direction
in which the different varieties are most easily split and the power in some of them of double refraction of light. She dwelt on the wonders revealed by the microscope, which makes visible within the perfectly formed crystal, the forms of the small particles, of the same shape that belongs to their system, with their sharp clear angles, packed together. WE can here have so knowledge of the meaning of molecular constructions; we can make some progress in learning the great law of the universe. After reading her article, Mrs. Wrenshall invited all present to examine her collection of crystals, which they found very interesting.
The Club and its visitors then enjoyed conversation and refreshments for the rest of the afternoon.
Meeting of May 2nd, 1899.
The Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore met on Tuesday, May 2nd, 1899, at the corner of Franklin and Cathedral Streets. The President called the meeting to order, and the Recording Secretary read the minutes of the meeting of April 25th. The President announced that this was a business meeting, devoted to the reception of Reports from the Chairmen of Standing Committees; but after adjournment of business, a short literary programme would
follow. The President said a few words on the value of Committee work, and on the desirability of specialization in our literary labors. The Reports that followed were entertaining and encouraging,--often giving us items of particular interest.
The first presented was that of Miss Virginia Cloud [Virginia Woodward Cloud], Chairman of the Committee on Fiction. Miss Cloud presented the programmes of three meetings,--those of December 20th, 1898, February 21st and March 28th, 1899. AT the last named meeting were were favored with the Reminiscences of Mrs. Elizabeth Wormeley Latimer, our honorary member.
The Report of Miss Lizette W. Reese [Lizette Woodworth Reese], Chairman of the Committee on Modern Poetry, was, in her absence, read by Miss Duvall [Ellen Duvall]. Miss Reese had presented the programmes of three meetings,--those of October 18th, 1898, and January 3rd, and January 31st, 1899.
Mrs. R. k. Cautley [Lucy Randolph Cautley] reported the meeting of January 10th, 1899, and work prepared in her Committee for further presentation.
Mrs. J. Frances Dammann [Aileen B. C. Dammann], Chairman of the Committee of Current Criticism, reported her meetings of November 8th, 1898, and April 11th, 1899. At the last named meeting we enjoyed the charming reminiscences of our honorary member, Miss Emily Mason [Emily V. Mason].
Mrs. Jordan Stabler [Ellen Austin Walker Stabler], Chairman of the
Committee on Unfamiliar Records, had presented the programmes of the meeting of January 10th, and March 7th, 1899.
Mrs. Frederick Tyson [Florence McIntyre Tyson], Chairman of the Committee on Translation,--our Corresponding Secretary had, as we remember, given us the programme of February 28th, 1899.
Miss Emma Brent [Emma Fenwick Brent], Chairman of the Committee on Archaeology, has prepared the programme for the meeting of May 9th.
Mrs. Fabian Franklin [Christine Ladd-Franklin], Chairman of hte Committee on science, reproted her meeting of February 7th, 1899.
Mrs. Waller R.. Bullock [Caroline Canfield Bullock], Chairman of the Committee on Education, told of the consultation of her Committee, and of the special interest of the discussion to be held at her meeting on May 30th.
Mrs. R. M. Wylie [Elizabeth J. Wylie], Chairman of the Committee on Art, gave an account of her meetings of November 1st, 1898, and January 24th, 1899.
The Report of Mrs. John M. Carter [Florence Carter], Chairman of the Committee on Philanthropy, was read by Mrs. Uhler. Two meetings had been given by this Committee, those of December 13th, 1898, and March 14th, 1899.
The Report of Miss Zacharias [Jane Zacharias], Chairman of the Committee on Music, was read by Mrs. Dammann. Miss Zacharias reported three meetings: First, November 15th, 1898, Second, December
27th, the Christmas Salon,--and Third, when the ninth birthday of the Club was celebrated, on March 21st, 1899. The closing Salon of the year on June 6th, will also present a musical programme.
The Report of Miss Malloy [Louise Malloy], Chairman of the Committee on the Drama, was given by Miss Cloud [Virginia Woodward Cloud], and reported the meeting of April 4th, 1899.
Miss Whitney [Anne Weston Whitney], Chairman of the Committee on the Study of the English Language, reminded us that Miss Brent had been Chairman of this Committee at the time of its first meeting on November 22nd, 1898. At the meeting of which Miss Whitney had charge, on April 18th, the subject of discussion was the study of Gaelic, the oldest language in Great Britain. At the close of the Reports, Miss Brent reminded us of the article of Miss Trail [Florence Trail], a non-resident member on Italian Literature, at the Salon of January 17th, 1899. The President spoke of our successful Committees, and of the sense of personal responsibility they gave to each member,--as well as the advantage each receives from them. The business meeting then adjourned, to give place to two articles.
The first had come to us as a sort of greeting from a sister Club in Louisiana. It was called "Notes on Alfred Austin," Poet Laureate, and was written by Mrs. Buckner, President of the Woman's Book Club of New Orleans. A visitor from that city, who had
enjoyed some of our meetings this year, had asked leave to carry to the New Orleans Club two poems written by our member Mrs. Cautley [Lucy Randolph Cautley], and had brought back this review. It was read by the Recording Secretary. The writer, after quoting the Saturday Review in its comparison of the late and present Poets Laureate as Alfred the Great, and Alfred the Little,---tells us that though she finds lines of rare beauty scattered through Mr. Austin's works, she finds too "so much of hte commonplace htat the poet seems shot in the wing." Instead of finding these fragments joined together with a golden thread, we feel the fret of an insufficient cord. She compares her prose works wiht those of Robert Louis Stevenson, and the comaprison can but give one a sense of disappointment.
The next article was by Mrs. Frederick Tyson [Florence McIntyre Tyson], and was on "King Alfred and Boethius." Mrs. Tyson spoke of the rule of the hero, and the power of individuality in this world. She spoke of Cyrus, who trained his followers and made them unconquerable like himself,--of Mahomet who believed in himself and made others believe in him,--of Marcus Aurelius, the best of Caesars. She told of Louis the 9th in France, of Gustavus Adolphus in Sweden,--of William the Silent in Holland. So too, she said Louis the 14th, the Grand Monarque, made France grand
and magnificent. But the grandsons of his people, under Napoleon, forgot beauty and elegance and lost themselves in the militarism of their leader. The same people in England who had accepted Cromwell's stern Puritan rule, turned to Charles the 2nd, and became gay and reckless like the merry monarch. Mrs. Tyson went on to speak of Alfred the Great and his influence. She said it was due to him that England was not swept away from among the nations of the earth. He founded England's first navy, he formed a nation from a weak and lawless people,--he made good laws, some in force even now. A wise King and a learned man he had studied much, in the 9th century when not many men could read and write. He had studied History and Geography, he wrote and translated books for himself. Mrs Tyson went on to speak of King Alfred's translation of The Consolations of Philosophy by Boethius. Into this translation Alfred put much of himself, with loving appreciation. Another sovereign of England--Queen Elizabeth--afterwards translated the same book. Boethius, whom Alfred loved, was an Italian, of high name, born in the year 475 of the Christian Era. Rich, learned, seeming to possess all virtues and advantages. He was the last of the great Roman writers conversant with the Greek language and literature. He translated into Latin the works of Aristotle, and did much to prevent his age
from lapsing into barbarism. His work on music is still an authority, especially with regard to ancient music. Mrs. Tyson said it had been disputed whether Boethius was a Christian. She thought he was not one--though influenced by the Christianity around him. His philosophy, like that of Marcus Aurelius, as of an exalted type. He fell under the displeasure of King Theodoric, who cast him into prison; and there, while awaiting the fatal stroke, which fell at last, he wrote The Consolations of Philosophy. He discusses such subjects as why God lets evil exist, God's goodness as opposed to chance, and the question of future rewards and punishment. Mrs. Tyson said that in times of personal depression she could read these Consolations for an hour o two and then wonder where the tired feeling had gone. There is high cheer and rest in them, and the teaching that no evil is too hard to bear until man thinks it so. She closed by reading the beautiful sonnet of Boethius called: "Of Inward Light," of that "light before which the Sun itself is dark."
After some comment the meeting adjourned.
Meeting of May 9th, 1899.
The Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore met on Tuesday, May 9th, 1899, at the corner of Franklin and Cathedral Streets. This meeting was under the direction of Miss Emma Brent [Emma Fenwick Brent], Chairman of the Committee on Archaeology. The President called the meeting to order, and the Recording Secretary read the minutes of the meeting of May 2nd. The President gave notice of the meeting to be held for the organization of the Audubon Society for the protection of singing birds.
The first article of the programme was given by Mrs. Jordan Stabler [Ellen Austin Walker Stabler], and was called A Plea for an Idea." The "Idea" for which Mrs. Stabler made an able plea was the proposed reproduction of the "Halls of the Ancients," at the capital of our country; projected, begun, and superintended by Mr. Franklin W. Smith of Boston. Mrs. Stabler spoke of having met Mr. Smith two weeks before in Washington, and of having seen and enjoyed the work in which he is deeply interested. She also told of having visited Mr. Smith's reproduction of a Moorish villa in Florida, and of the Pompeian "House of Panza" at Saratoga Sprigs. The work to which he is now devoting his time and energies, and in which he is endeavoring to engage the United States Government, is an immense undertaking, as brought before us by Mrs. Stabler,
and as decided and pictured int eh prospectus presented to us, endeavoring to makes real again, in some senses, those ancient days-- "whose deathless memory lives entwined
With all that conquers, rules or charms the mind."
The next article of the programme was by Mrs. John D. Early [Maud Graham Early], and was called "Historic Customs." It was read for her by Mrs. T. J. Morris [Thomas J. Morris]. Mrs. Early spoke of the brilliant ethnological discoveries of the nineteenth century with regard to the descent of all the Indo European nations from ancient Aryan ancestors, and the tracing of their languages as coming from one parent tongue. She spoke of a book that had greatly interested her, "The Evolution of the Aryans." In the prehistoric ages, she told us, customs were formed, which endured after the original reasons for their adoption were gone. Losing their useful efficacy, they were still revered as ancestral observances, became religious rites, and finally superstitious practices. Mrs. Early then described one of the very ancient Aryan migrations, perhaps the origin of a great nation. She told of the host of families, flocks and herds, with one purpose,--travelling by day, and encamping by night,--of the leader and guide who decided the road to be taken after watching the flights of birds, as indication of the climate or fertility of the unknown lands before them.
The leader--the pontifex--directed the crossing of rivers by temporary bridges, the palaces of encampment and also the killing of the animals, at the halting places, and the examination of these carcasses. If these were in a healthy condition, then the animals of the emigrants could live and feed too on the environment of the aboriginal life they were encountering. So would seem to have come the pontifex and augurs of later time. Other customs too may be traced to the old fashioned wisdom and virtues of our far away ancestors.
The next article of the programme was by Mrs. P. R. Uhler [Pearl D. Uhler], and was called "Lines of Thought form Sayce's Early Israel." Mrs. Uhler spoke of having found this book of great interest, and full of information with regard to the early history of the people of Israel, and the surrounding nations. She reminded us of the small space occupied by Palestine on the surface of the earth, yet here was the centre around which revolved the greatest forces of faith and of modern civilization,--the meeting place of Asia and Africa, and by the characteristics of its people destined to influence the whole world. We were reminded that one hundred years ago there seemed no way of corroborating many of the statements of our sacred scriptures, but since then, the buried records of Egypt, Babylon and Assyria
have been revealed, to bear testimony to their truth. They show to that the cradle of the human race in Asia, was the centre of culture and civilization long before the classic days of Greece and Rome. Mrs. Uhler referred to some recent discoveries as of untold value to students of Archaeology, and still more to students of the Bible.
The next article of the programme was by Miss Emma Brent, and was on "Our Indebtedness to Archaeology." Miss Brent said that the study of Archaeology opens the treasure houses of far off regions and times, and makes them real and familiar to us. We have read the records of the great monuments on the banks of the Nile; we now place a Babylonian cylinder under a microscope and we discover its inscriptions, or an Assyrian tablet gives us the name of Prince Asshurbanipal clearly shown upon it. Archaeology is a great search light thrown into the dark corners of the past. Miss Brent quoted from the Egyptian Book of the Dead the claim of a man that he had been leading a just and honest life, which reads like Job's defense of his own integrity. The old Egyptian's claim would seem worthy of an approving verdict from the Judge to whom he appealed. Miss Brent spoke of the symbolism of the Egyptian religion. She spoke of the lotus flower of
Egypt and of India, as being the origin or suggestion of many forms, having much significance, or of ornmentation. It was considered as perfect flower, leaf, and fruit--seeming to grow in the form of the circle; and was sacred to Isis, the emblem of light and immortality. Miss Brent showed us some remarkable pictures and curiosities, Egyptian and Arabian mantles, chains, amulets, etc.
The President, Mrs. Wrenshall [Letitia Humphreys Yonge Wrenshall], spoke of her own great interest in the Committee on Archaeology. She had been its founder siz years ago; and she did not doubt that the study and work of this Committee would repay any member who would like to join it. After examination of Miss Brent's curiosities, the meeting adjourned.
Meeting of May 16th, 1899.
The Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore met on Tuesday, May 16th, 1899, at the corner of Franklin and Cathedral Streets. This was a business meeting for members only, and devoted to the nominations of officers and directors for the coming year. The President called the meeting to order, and the Recording Secretary read the minutes of the meeting of May 9th. The President announced a meeting of the Baltimore Audubon Society, to take place on the
following Friday afternoon. The President then gave explanations with regard to the nominations to be made of six officers and three directors. To prevent mistakes the names of the three directors holding over form last year were placed on the blackboard, being those of Mrs. Cautley [Lucy Randolph Cautley], Mrs. Uhler [Pearl D. Uhler], and Miss Whitney [Anne Weston Whitney]. The President then appointed the Election and Nomination Committee, which finally stood as: Miss Duvall [Ellen Duvall], Judge of Election, Mrs. Carter [Florence Carter], Mrs. Uhler, Miss Whitney and Mrs. Hill [Harriet Louise Wescott Hill]. Mrs. Tyson [Florence McIntyre Tyson], Corresponding Secretary then called the roll, and twenty members responded to their names. Another member arriving immediately afterwards made the number of voters twenty one.
The President read to the Club, Article II, Section 2nd of the Constitution, relating to the election of officers and directors.
the Committee represented by Miss Duvall and Miss Whitney, distributed the nominating ballots to the members of the Club present who filled them with the names of their choice. They were then collected, and the whole Committee retired to count them, and find the result. The President reminded us that the Treasurer's Report would be given to the Club, on the day of the general election,--the next meeting,--and that it was now in order to appoint auditors for that occasion. She appointed as these auditors, Miss Goessman [Helena T. Goessman] and Mrs. Wylie [Elizabeth J. Wylie].
While awaiting the Report of the Nomination
Committee, the President requested the Chairman of the Standing Committees to come to the platform to consult with her on the dates for their meetings in the coming year. The Committee on Elections soon returned, and reported the result of the nominating votes.
For President, Mrs. Wrenshall 19. Mrs. Bullock [Carolone Canfield Bullock] 1. Miss Brent [Emma Fenwick Brent] 1.
First Vice President, Mrs. Bullock 18. Mrs. Cautley 1. Miss Goessman 1. Mrs. McGaw [Margaret Ann Worden McGaw] 1.
Second Vice President, Mrs. Carter 19. Mrs. Bullock 1. Mrs. Morris 1.
Recording Secretary, Miss Crane [Lydia Crane] 20.
Corresponding Secretary, Mrs. Tyson 19. Miss Whitney 1. Mrs. Cautley [Lucy Randolph Cautley] 1.
Treasurer, Mrs. Belt [Ariana Belt] 20. Mrs. Hill 1.
Directors: Miss Duvall 16. Miss Zacharias [Jane Zacharias] 14. Miss Middleton [Maria H. Middleton] 9. Mrs. McGaw 7. Mrs. Percy Reese [Elizabeth Reese] 3. Mrs. Wylie 3.
Some others received two votes or one. Congratulations followed on the speedy and, apparantely, satisfactory results of the voting. The Chairmen of Literary Committees resumed their consultation with the President. She requested these Chairmen to send her lists of the members of their Committees.
The meeting adjourned.
Meeting of May 23rd, 1899.
The Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore met on Tuesday, May 23rd, 1899, at the corner of Franklin and Cathedral Streets. This was the occasion of hte annual Election of Officers and Directors of the Club. The members as they assembled were requested to register their names and receive the printed ballots prepared for them. The First Vice President, Mrs. Bullock [Caroline Canfield Bullock], called the meeting to order, and presided. The President--it was explained--was out of the city. The Recording Secretary read the minutes of the meeting of May 16th. While waiting for the arrival of a quorum we were entertained by a informal remarks by our member, Mrs. Graham [Elizabeth Turner Graham], President of the Lend a Hand Club of Mt. Washington.
The presiding officer then called for the Treasurer's Annual Report--always read on the day of Election. Mrs. Belt [Ariana Belt], the Treasurer, then presented her report, which had been audited by Mrs. Wylie [Elizabeth J. Wylie] and Miss Lizette W. Reese [Lizette Woodworth Reese]. It showed the very good present condition of the treasury with a much decreased expenditure, and an increased balance in bank over former years. It was moved, seconded and voted that the Report be accepted with thanks to the Treasurer.
A notice given at a former meeting was repeated regarding the Amateur Play to be given at the home of Mrs. William Buckler, for the benefit of the Union Protestant Infirmary. More than a quorum being announced as present, the ballots were collected by Miss Duvall [Ellen Duvall] and Miss Whitney [Anne Weston Whitney], and the Electoral Committee retired to count the votes.
Miss Graham then spoke of the Out Doors Sketching Class under the patronage of the Lend a Hand Club, and under the direction of well known artists. There are no dues in this class and the members of the Woman's Literary Club who are interested in Art were invited to join in its work and pleasures.
Miss Virginia Woodward Cloud was requested to give the Club a Recitation. She consented to do so, and recited Rudyard Kipling's L'Envoi, which was much enjoyed by her fellow members.
The Electoral Committee then returned, and Miss Duvall, Chairman, adn Judge of Election reported the result of the votes. The six officers were unanimously re-elected, being:
President, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall [Letitia Humphreys Yonge Wrenshall].
First Vice President, Mrs. Waller R. Bullock [Caroline Canfield Bullock].
Second Vice President, Mrs. John M. Carter [Florence Carter].
Recording Secretary, Miss Lydia Crane.
Corresponding Secretary, Mrs. Frederick Tyson [Florence McIntyre Tyson].
Treasurer, Mrs. Alfred M. Belt.
The three directors elected were Miss Ellen Duvall, Miss Jane Zacharias, Miss Maria Middleton.
The three directors holding over in office from last year are Mrs. R. K. Cautley [Lucy Randolph Cautley], Mrs. P. R. Uhler [Pearl D. Uhler], Miss Annie W. Whitney.
The members congratulated the officers present on the unanimity and pleasant circumstances of the Club it he year now nearing its close.
The meeting adjourned.
Meeting of May 30th, 1899.
The Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore met on Tuesday, May 30th, 1899, at the corner of Franklin and Cathedral Streets. This meeting was under the direction of Mrs. Waller R. Bullock [Caroline Canfield Bullock], Chairman of the Committee on Education. The President called the meeting to order, and the Recording Secretary read the minutes of the meeting of May 23rd. The President read the invitation to the officers of the Club to be present at the Anniversary meeting of the Lend-a-Hand Club of Mt. Washington on June 6th.
Announcement was made that our former member, Mrs. John T. Pleasants, was about to organize a class for teaching singing on the most advanced lines,--as an intellectual and spiritual educational development.
The first article of the programme was by the Chairman of the Committee, Mrs. Bullock. She bean by stating the Question of our Study: "Is there a difference in the teaching by Men and that by Women, as to the results upon the Students." The question was suggested by the decision of the Chicago Educational Committee, instituted by the Mayor of that City, Mr. Carter Harrison, and under the direction of President Harper of the Chicago University. The Committee decided that the
teaching of men was more advantageous than that of women; and that more men ought to be induced to adopt the profession of teaching as their life work. After referring to the importance of the question, Mrs. Bullock went on to speak of the much longer number of women than men among the teachers of Great Britain, of France, and particularly among those of the United States,--giving general statistics. She told of having written on this subject to the official Superintendents of schools in the different States of the Union. The answers contained in them, were now to be read to us by Mrs. J. E. Gilpin [J. Elliott Gilpin]. Mrs. Gilpin's "Report of Letters received form State Superintendents of Schools" then followed. She said that the majority of the Superintendents speak very highly of the work of women in the public schools, especially in the primary departments, but some of them prefer to have, after the sixth grade, the teaching of men. Two of them prefer the teaching of women,--all else being equal. Mention was also made by some of the benefit derived form having the teaching of both men and women, as in the ideal family the influence and training of both father and mother is essential. Letters from North, South, East and West were given, the last being from Alaska, where primary schools only have as yet been established; and there the work of women
is preferred as having given better results than that of men. Some mention was made of the fondness of women for details, and of the alleged broader views of men, but good credit was given to the work of women in the departments of morals and behavior.
The next article of the programme was given by Mrs. G. K. Peay, and was the "Report of Letters received form the Presidents of Representative Colleges." Mrs. Peay read first the opinions of the United States Commissioner of Education in Washington, Mr. Harris. He spoke of the power of women to bring their work into good training, and of their power to keep good order, but thought it best to have both men and women as teachers. The President of Vassar College, in answer to the question if there is difference in results--answers: "None that I am, as yet, ready to define." The President of Cornell speaks of the different influence of men and women, women inclining girls to womanliness, and men inclining boys to manliness. The President of Bryn Mawr College sees no difference in results, and hopes to see the number of women increased int eh faculty of the College. The former President of Wellesley thinks women entitled to the same respect as men, and thinks there should be more of them on Boards of Trustees and College Faculties.
The President of the Ohio State University would be glad to see more women in the profession of teaching. The President of the University of Wisconsin suggests that colleges will not be what they ought to be, until more women hold full professorships.
The programme next called for "Discussion," and the first speaker was Miss L. North, Professor of Greek in the Woman's College of Baltimore. Miss North said "There is no difference." She spoke of the methods of the two teachers in the world's history, form the days of Socrates to the present time. Great minds have defined teaching as not so much instruction as extruction;--and building upwards in the development of character,--of the ability to make the right moral choice in life. It is showing the child not that each study is a new fence to be jumped over, but what this world is, and what is its own relation to it. There may be difference of environment, or opportunity--but it is not a question of sex at all, --nor of fashion, nor of business, nor even literature,--but the methods of the best constituted and est equipped teachers will give the best rewards.
The next speaker was Miss E. L. Lord, Instructor in History in the Woman's College. Miss Lord, spoke of her full agreement with the convictions of her predecessor. She then spoke of the influence of women on education as
shown by history. Even in mediaeval times the boy chosen to receive the honor and glory of Knighthood, was first sent to be trained as a page in some lady's bower, to learn gentleness and courtesy as the first lessons in chivalry, before he handled the sword and shield, or rode out to do deeds of valor.
The last speaker of the programme was Dr. N. V. Mark [Dr. Nellie V. Mark]. She said she was reminded of a story told by Mark Twain--that after listening to a discussion regarding the rewards and punishments of the future life, he said:"I am silent, from necessity,--I have friends in both places." So Dr. Mark said, her best and her worst teacher was each a woman. She gave some entertaining experiences of her own with regard to the teaching of men and women tending to show that the true teacher is "born, not made," and is born sometimes a woman and sometimes a man. And when each shall put aside all small jealousies, and help each other to develop manliness and womanliness, then shall come the crowning glory of the human race.
The Chairman of the Committee of the meeting said the question was open for discussion. She thought we probably had not much difference of opinion with regard to it. Mrs. Graham spoke of her agreement with the opinions of Miss North. The President thanked the
Committee on Education and the visitors who had given us the study of the meeting.
The Club adjourned.
Meeting of June 6th, 1899.
The Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore met on Tuesday, June 6th, 1899, at the corner of Franklin and Cathedral Streets. This meeting was the June Salon, and the closing of the year 1899. The President called the meeting to order; and said we would all be sorry for the absence of our dear Ex-President, who had hoped to be with us on this afternoon. A note form Mrs. Turnbull [Francese Litchfield Turnbull] to the President was read telling of her having a special engagement int he evening, and being obliged in the extreme heat of the weather to rest in the afternoon. She explained that a musical composition dedicated to her, and intended to be performed on her birthday, was to be given at the First Presbyterian Church this same evening. TO this entertainment she invited the members of the Club,--no tickets being necessary.
The first article of the programme was Instrumental Music, by Miss Coulson [Elizabeth Coulson], who gave us Schumann's "Nachstück in F Major," and Chopin's Waltz in C. Sharp Minor,--performed in her own beautiful manner, always appreciated by the Club. The next article was the "Address
of the President. Mrs. Wrenshall [Letitia Humphreys Yonge Wrenshall] said that one year had passed since the Club had called her to be its leader. If the outlook was hopeful then, it s far more so now; the ties are closer, with our better knowledge and appreciation. For the happy and successful past year she wished to thank each member; all having contributed able and loving support and good will. She thanked them too for the quick response, for the flow of thought, for the undiminished effort to reach the goal before us. We can congratulate our selves on the work done in 1898 and 1899, and show results and appreciated in our Club, and beyond its bounds. We have worked for the advancement of literature in the right and wide and clear paths. There have been really no drones in this hive. With one or two exceptions from sickness all have contributed their efforts, even the newly elected ones. The President went on to speak of our Committee work; of the choosing of particular lines leading to specialization, which has added to the interest of ou meetings. WE have adhered to our Club methods and aims, we have followed no ignes fatiu, but have tried to work where only pure air blows. One year ago she had asked for our confidence and support; it had been freely given; for the coming year she asked our help in working together for the good advancement of the Woman's Literary Club of Baltimore.
The programme next called for two Songs,
by Mrs. John T. Pleasants. She sang first "Magdalen," an English ballad sent to her from London, prefacing the singing by reading the words, a poem founded on an ancient legend of penitence and forgiveness. Her second song was "Oh! Mio Fernando."
The next article was by Mrs. Albert L. Richardson, formerly Miss Hester Crawford Dorsey [Hester Crawford Dorsey Richardson], who, as our President said needed no introduction, for it was mainly from the thought in her mind, and at her call, that this Club came into existence. Mrs. Richardson's article was on "The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam" in harmony with Modern Higher Criticism. She spoke of old Omar as one of the seekers after God. He could leave the pleasures of a court, and the favor of his Sultan, without vain regret, an seek a simple life of quite meditation. But he knew the same desire for the knowledge of good and evil that robbed Eden of its joy. She drew a comparison between some of his utterances and those of Plato. But Omar, she said possessed the clairvoyance of the poet, as well as the reasoning power of the philosopher. His mind was in sympathy with advanced thinkers. Like the so-called higher criticism of today, he rejects eternal retribution Omar could not accept hopeless condemnation from the Creator to the thing created by himself. He did not have the Christian faith to teach him that God is love, but he could not think Him vengeance.
He was an Oriental, hew as not an European altruist, still as James Russel Lowell says, "Omar, in groping found a pearl." He was a poet, a philosopher, and intensely a scientist also. He brought intellect and imagination to bear on the problem of the creation and fate of man--on Nature as it is. We are at the disadvantage of reading him in a translation,--however good it may be,--but there are broad and high sentiments given us. Mrs. Richardson went on to quote stanzas from the Rubaiyat, with great appreciation. She spoke of Omar's use of the illustration of the potter's wheel and of the use of the same in Browning's Rabbi Ben Ezra. Omar's striving was not hopeless even though he knew not the Star of Hope that has arrived for us.
We next had the pleasure of hearing Miss Coulson play "Two Etudes" from Poldini.
The President then announced that our pleasant year together was over. She wished us all a happy summer; and hoped that none of us would fail to meet each other again in the autumn. She then declared the Woman's Literary Club adjourned until Tuesday, October 3rd, 1899. The rest of the afternoon passed with pleasant conversation, refreshments and the interchange of plans for the future.
[END OF SEASON]