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1911-1912 Meeting Minutes
[MS 988 BOX 5, BOOK 1]
Minutes of the Twenty-second Year.
718th Meeting. [Oct. 17, 1911]
The 718th meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held on Tuesday, October 17th, 1911, at 105 West Franklin street. This was the opening meeting of 1911-1912. The programme--arranged by the President--called for "A Book Talk: Comments by Some Resident Members." The President called the meeting to order; and the Recording Secretary read the minutes of the last season’s meeting on May 23rd, 1911.
Then followed "Introductory Remark by the President, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall."
The President spoke of our great pleasure in meeting to-gether again. She called attention to the latest gifts received by our library,--very welcome ones. The first was the attractive children’s book: "Ray’s Reward," by our former member Miss Isabel Foster. The second was the "Royal Pawn of Venice," by Mrs. Lawrence Turnbull, to whom the Club is much indebted as our first President. Both of
these authors favored us with their presence at this meeting. Mrs. Wrenshall went on to speak of this occasion as our twenty-second annual opening meeting. She recalled our memories, experiences, and development. She spoke of the purpose with which our life as a Club began,--the same living purpose to which we still loyally hold ourselves; of our faith and courage to meet the future;--and of our striving for the highest types in literature and life. She spoke of our enjoyment of congenial companionship, and of our mutual ambitions, and appreciation and aid for each other. She closed with an appropriate and happy welcome for the new Club year.
Then followed the "Book Talks," a series of "three-minute" reviews, by the members, of the new books they had been reading.
And here the Secretary must ask the indulgence of the Club. She took copious notes, and enjoyed doing so; but not only found herself in the weeks following, overwhelmed with pressing business, but discovered that it
would be impossible to anything like justice to the quantity, or, still more, the quality of the delightful little essays presented to us, in any ordinary or extraordinary report. She can only copy the programme to remind those who listened to those bright, appreciative, and truly literary criticisms of their great enjoyment in them; and to make the rest wish they had been here to listen also.
The Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore
Tuesday, October 17th, 1911.
Opening Autumn Meeting of 1911.
Introductory Remarks by the President.
A Book Talk.
Comments by Some Resident Members.
"The Miller of the Old Church":-
Ellen Glasgow.--Miss Emily Paret Atwater
(omitted) "The Wind in the Willows":-
Kenneth Graham.-- Mrs. Edith Howell Armor.
"The Secret Garden.":-
Mrs. Francis Hodgson Burnett.—Mrs. Robert B. Bowie
"The New Machiavelli.":-
H. G. Wells.--Miss Virginia Berkeley Bowie.
"The Unknown Isle":-
Pierre de Coulevain.--Miss Virginia Woodward Cloud.
"Under the Open Sky":-
Samuel C. Schumucker.--Miss Harriet Frances Cooper.
"Footsteps of Scott"
W. S. Crockett. (Minister of Tweedsmuir)--Miss Mary Dorsey Davis.
"The Gates of the Netherlands":
Mary E. Walter. . . . Mrs. James C. Fenhagen.
"A Diplomat’s Wife in Many Lands":-
Mrs. Hugh Fraser. . . . Miss Victoria Elizabeth Gittings.
"Miss Gibbie Gault":-
Kate Langley Bosher. . . . Mrs. Thomas Hill
(omitted) "The Biography of Sir Henry Morton Stanley":-
Edited by His Wife. . . . Mrs. Samuel Alexander Hill.
"The Glory of Clementina":-
William J. Locke. . . . Mrs. Charles W. Lord.
Henry Sydnor Harrison. . . . Miss Lucy Temple Latane.
"Keeping Up with Lizzie":-
Irving Bacheller. . . . Miss Elizabeth Lester Mullin.
"To Love and to Cherish":-
Eliza Calvert Hall. . . . Mrs. Charles S. Morgan.
"Joan of Arc":-
Grace James. . . . Miss Lizette Woodworth Reese.
Bayard Taylor. . . . Mrs. Francis Putnam Stevens.
Arnold Bennett. Mrs. Wm. Mulligan Smith.
"La Ville Inconnue":
Paul Adam. . . . Miss Nellie C. Williams.
Programme arranged by the President,
Mrs. John C. Wrenshall.
At the close of the close of the programme, Mrs. Sidney Turner, by request of the President, gave an account of her observations of life during the summer;--which was a pleasant addition to the review of books.
The President thanked her fellow members for their delightful afternoon’s entertainment; and declared the meeting adjourned.
The 719th Meeting. [Oct. 24, 1911]
The regular meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held at the Club rooms Tuesday, October 24th, Mrs. Wrenshall presiding. In
the absence of Miss Crane, Mrs. William Mulligan Smith was appointed secretary. The programme was under the charge of the committee on Autographs and Letters, and the first number on the programme was a paper on Margaret Deland by Mrs. Harriet Lummis Smith. The progress in Mrs. Deland’s art as indicated by a comparison between "John Ward, Preacher," and the "Awakening of Helena Ritchie" formed the chief theme of the paper; and Mrs. Deland’s optimism, her insight, and the peculiar individuality of her characters were emphasized in turn.
A paper by Mrs. Margaret Fayerweather on Aaron Burr was read by Mrs. James Fenhagen. Mrs. Fayerweather told the story of Burr’s varied career most entertainingly, and the interest awakened was evidenced by a number of informal comments from various members of the Club, Mrs. Wrenshall telling of a most dramatic episode in Burr’s life, of which an ancestress of her own was a witness.
Under the title "Giants of the Bar," Miss Elizabeth Lester Mullen dis-
cussed four famous legal lights of Maryland, representing four generations of lawyers. Luther Martin famous as Murr’s counsel in his trial at Richmond; William Wist, remembered by the present generation for his literary ability, rather than for his legal acumen; Chief Justice Taney whom Miss Mullen accused of breaking the bank of the United States, with official assistance; and Severn Teackle Wallis, to whose ability and high ideals a fine tribute was paid. Autographs and letters of the celebrities discussed were exhibited at the conclusion of the papers.
The 720th Meeting. [Oct. 31, 1911]
The Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore met at the Club rooms, Tuesday, October 31st, 1911, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding. Owing to the continued absence of Miss Crane, Mrs. Williams Mulligan Smith acted as Secretary. The minutes of the previous meeting were read, and the programme opened with a paper on "Poetry in the [?Rongh]" by Miss Lizette Woodworth Reese, a
discussion of the ballad, taking up first the Old English ballads of Robin Hood and his Merry Men. In Robin Hood, Miss Reese said, we first see chivalry from the side of the common people, while the ballad of Chevy Chase, still sung in Queen Elizabeth’s time, we see the first smoke of the long border warfare. A favorite theme with the English ballad makers was conversation between kings and their subjects, the latter generally being ignorant of the identity of the former. Some of these old ballads show extraordinary vitality, crossing the ocean, and surviving in isolated rural communities. The ballads of the western cowboy, inspired by stampedes, and other stirring themes, incident to their occupation were also discussed.
Two brief and charming poems "Omniscience" and "Sub-Conscience Possession" were given by Mrs. Edith Howell Armor, after which Miss Latane read a paper by Miss Ellen Duvall on "The Court of Love." The legendary literature of Europe, which, from so
rich a part of the world’s imaginative heritage, recognized several motives, among them the love motive which has come to take the supreme literary motive of our day. Through the songs and legends of early times, we trace the development of the ideal of love from the pagan standard, till in the eleventh century we find the theory of romantic love well developed.
The so called "courts of love" were not in any sense tribunals, but were compared by Miss Duvall, to debating societies, where every phase of love was discussed by ladies as well as knights, often with great plainness of speech and much sparkling wit. And these discussions, undoubtedly, did their small part toward developing the ideal of altruistic love prevailing in our day.
Miss Virginia Woodworth Cloud accused the ultra-modernist of fearing poetry, and declared that the new heaven of that school would bar poetry out. In her charming review of the recent poetry output, she spoke approvingly of the fugitive magazine verse,
as showing freedom and spontaneity. Conan Doyle’s recent book of poems received qualified praise; and the fiction of Arthur Stringer was criticized by implication when Miss Cloud pronounced the story of the underworld as unworthy of his poems. Dr. Van Dyke’s last book was considered disappointing, on the whole. "The Ante-Room" by William Henry Woods, a Baltimore author, was given especial appreciative mention.
Miss Cloud regretted the scarcity of sea-poems, suggesting as an explanation that our American heritage binds us more closely to the fields, and lacks the strain which responds to the call of wind and wave.
At the conclusion of the programme, coffee was served, and a social half hour enjoyed by all present.
The 721st Meeting. [Nov. 7, 1911]
The 721st meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore met at the Club rooms November 7th, 1911, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding. In the continued absence of Miss Crane, Mrs. Wil-
liam Mulligan smith was appointed Secretary, and read the minutes of the previous meeting. Mrs. Wrenshall gave some announcements, and called attention to the efficient work of the Committee which annually decorates the graves of those authors and artists of Maryland who are buried in Baltimore. Mrs. Wrenshall also acknowledged the presentation of the "Reminiscences of Bishop Paret," edited by his grand daughter, Miss Emily Paret Atwater, a member of the Woman’s Literary Club, and by her presented to the Club Library.
The programme, which was in charge of the Fiction Committee, was opened with a story by Mrs. Robert B. Bowie concerned with the experiences of a country boy, ambitious to be an artist, who meets his first great disillusion before he has won fame, and then finds fame not worth having if the heart’s better impulses are denied.
Under the title "A Lion among Ladies," Mrs. Harriet Lummis Smith told of the experiences of an elderly
man, who, driven to desperation by his lack of success with servant girls, resolved on matrimony. Owing to a blunder, he finds himself in the awkward situation of having been accepted by three women at the same time, a predicament from which the wit of a fourth woman successfully extricates him.
Miss Victoria Elizabeth Gittings read a story, "One of Dives’ Brethren," in which a professor of psychology, ignorant of music, and indifferent to its charm, comes under a singular influence in which he transcribes a piano sonata. A young friend of the professor credits this feat to the influence of the spirit of a young musician, a former occupant of the house, who had died while attempting to put on paper his last musical creation. The professor, however, prefers to ascribe the experience to his subconscious self, and makes it the theme of his lecture to the class next day.
Under the Title "Who Won?" Mrs. Edith Howell Armour told of a practical test, devised by three young men,
to settle the vexed question whether feminine curiosity exceeds that of the masculine portion of humanity. As the test resulted in giving to one of the trio the girl of his choice, he was clearly the winner, even though the long-discussed question his experiment sought to settle, is still open for debate.
The 722nd Meeting. [Nov. 14, 1911]
The 722nd meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held on Tuesday, November 14th, at 105 West Franklin street. This meeting was under the direction of Mrs. Wrenshall Markland, Chairman of the Committee on Art.
The President announced that on account of unavoidable delay, we should defer the reading of the minutes of the meeting of November 7th, 1911, kindly written by Mrs. Harriet Lummis Smith, during the absence of the Recording Secretary.
The President then informed the Club of the election by the Board of
Management of a new member in the Club,--Mrs. William Butler.
The first article on the programme was on "The Potter’s Art," and was by Mrs. W. C. A. Hammel of North Carolina. Mrs. Hammel, we were reminded, was formerly an active member of the Club. She is now an honorary member, and is well remembered for her former articles of interest and research, during her residence in Baltimore, and also since her husband, Professor Hammel, and herself have gone to live in Greensborough, North Carolina. Her present article had been sent to our President, by whom it was read to us. Mrs. Hammel spoke of the potter’s art, going back almost to the day of savages. In some things it is claimed to be unlike all other arts. She recalled the sending of the Prophet Jeremiah "to the potter’s house," and the ethical lesson he was taught there,--of the work marred in the making, and then re-made "as seemed good to the potter." She referred to Longfellow’s poem "Keramos," and his description of this art in all times and countries,--belonging to all "who are made
of the same clay." She quoted old Omar Khayyam’s appeal of the clay to the potter for the gentle touch of brotherhood. She described the earliest developments, history uses, and achievements of this universal art;--its suggestions and relationships to sculpture, architecture, and painting. She referred to its processes,--ancient, modern, and contemporary, and told of the joy that it brings to the worker who has done his work well.
The next article was by Mrs. Charles Lord, and was on "Some Old World Favorites." Mrs. Lord told of some masterpieces of art that have won the world’s admiration,--and kept it undisputed still. She began by speaking of the beautiful fresco paintings she had seen, in Rome and elsewhere in Italy, worthy to stand with the oil paintings of world wide fame. She described the beautiful mosaics that are hardly distinguishable from oil paintings. She went on to speak of Michael Angelo’s wonderful "Last Judgment," and especially the remarkable figure of Jonah, which seems to overshadow all those around him. In the
discussion that followed the President recalled to us Jonah in the New Testament as a type of Christ, in the three days of burial and resurrection. Mrs. Lord said that Michael Angelo’s pictures showed that he was greater as a sculptor than as a painter. Mrs. Lord went on to speak of the paintings of Titian, of Tintoretto, of Del Sarto, and Veronese, and of Fra Angelico,--and his most beautiful angels. She told of the art treasured in Florence; in Dresden; Munich, and Berlin. She spoke of the Madonnas of Raphael, especially of the wonderful picture in Dresden, in which she described the look into futurity that lives in the eyes of the mother, and in those of the child. Mrs. Lord also told of Murillo’s Madonna’s, with deep dark eyes, and the spiritual expression that appeals to the beholder.
The last article of the programme was given by Mrs. Wrenshall Markland, and was called "American Art Notes for 1911. Third Series." Mrs. Markland’s former two articles on American Art in 1909 and 1910 are well
and pleasantly remembered by her fellow members. The Recording Secretary is glad to present the author’s own account of her interesting third paper on American Art.
"The last article on the programme was given by the Chairman of the afternoon.
In these annual notes, Mrs. Markland has made a special and carefully prepared resume of the interesting work being done by our artists,--confining her remarks exclusively to that of Americans.
This year she first spoke very briefly of the high position occupied by the American women artists,--and their brilliant prospects,--then took up the work being done by our men artists,--their successes both here and abroad, citing a number of interesting art items for 1911.
She drew attention to the appointment of Mr. Hugh H. Breckenridge to the municipal Art Jury of Philadelphia,--and spoke at some length on the splendid qualities of his work.
She mentioned a number of the finest pictures of the past year, speaking of their truth and individuality, but laid especial emphasis on the permanent value of the splendid murals by the late Edwin A. Abbey.
In concluding, Mrs. Markland gave the titles and names of a few choice art books published in 1911, and quoted some interesting statistics of the lavish expenditure incidental to the teaching of Art in America.
The meeting was adjourned with thanks to the Art Committee and its Chairman for our very fine entertainment.
The 723rd Meeting. [Nov. 21, 1911]
The 723rd meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held on Tuesday, November 21st, 1911, at 105 West Franklin street. This meeting was under the direction of Mrs. Robert B. Bowie, Chairman of the Committee on Education. Our President, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall, had written to Mrs. Alan P. Smith [Ellen Anna Jones Smith], First Vice Presi-
dent, explaining her regret for being unable to be present, and requesting Mrs. Smith to preside in her place.
Mrs. Smith called the meeting to order, and announced that the minutes of two previous meetings of the two previous meetings would be read. The first reading was of the minutes of November 7th, taken in the absence of the Recording Secretary by Mrs. William Mulligan Smith, and by her was read to the Club. The second reading was by the Recording Secretary of the minutes of the meeting of November 14th.
The first article of the programme was read by Miss Harriet M. Marine, and was called "Our National Science--and the Meaning of It." This article reminded us that as a young nation, we had at first to copy or inherit our scientific methods, political ideas, and civilization from older communities. Later original ideas and activities appeared among us. One science has gained special development in America,--that of commercialism. Commerce began with the old laws of barter and trade in the days when the cave
man, and his successors, gave shells and wampum for such things as his neighbors could acquire more easily than he could, down to the times of established mercantile laws, and the trading necessary to the lives we now live, and to the welfare of nations. The article went on to describe the latest development of our commercialism, in the department store, and told of one of these in our own city. The employee is trained up from the little bundle wrapper to the salesman or bookkeeper, or any high position in this hive of industry. There is a school for suitable instruction, and a regular physician, who is even sent to the homes of the worker when needed there. It pays to trust the employees; and their welfare as well as their efficiency, we were told is considered among the assets of the firm.
The next article was by Miss Nellie C. Williams, and was called "A Cuban Schoolroom." Miss Williams spoke of having lately visited Cuba. This island, only a few miles off from our own coast of Florida,
had no public schools until after the war with Spain. There were good private schools, and a university; and the Roman Catholic church had schools at low prices. After the American occupation, a system of public schools was established; but she said the so called statesmen of Cuba seek office so much for spoils that the schools are not so successful as they might be. Cubans are of a noble race; but they are comparatively few in number. There are, at least, five thousand Cuban students in the United States, largely in New Orleans and its vicinity, and only the poorer classes go to the public schools. The school she visited was located in an old convent,--which has also been a hospital,--and seems well fitted for its present use, although not quite up to date from our point of view. The women teachers for the girls receive the same pay as the men for the boys. The pupils are not very numerous, and quietness in school is a good trait in them.
The girls seem cleaner, and are of better appearance than the boys. There seem to be very few who are entirely white, the complections remind one of "Heinz’s fifty-seven varieties," but all colors are equal before the law in Cuba. Two pupils were always quarreling; and on the teacher’s inquiring the cause of their feud, the answer was from one that she herself was almost white, while the other was "so black she was almost a monkey." The study of English is obligatory. The children are fond of calisthenics, and show the dramatic tendencies of Latin Americans. The costumes are rather scanty, especially among the boys, but all have on shoes, even when in rags. Miss Williams came away thinking these children are being made mentally more alert,--and she hoped, were gaining higher ideals and advantages than in former years.
The next article was by Mrs. Robert B. Bowie, and was called "Maria Montessori, and Her Methods." Mrs. Bowie spoke of the fact that in all times and countries there
have been wild human beings, who when brought into sane environments are untamable, and resemble idiots. She told of one found some years ago in France, who lived in the woods, subsisting on fruits, the bark of trees, etc., etc.; and who was brought to Paris but remained a savage still. A doctor who had treated him, wrote a book about his case, which book was found interesting and suggestive by Maria Montessori, herself a doctor, and teacher of feebleminded children. Successful in her own work, she thought that if feebleminded children can--to a well known extent--compete in studies with normal children, there must be something wrong in the methods applied to the normal ones. She came to the conclusion that all children should be taught the full use of all their senses, instead of depending almost entirely on sight. For instance, the touch of an infant is evidently exquisite, and until, perhaps six years old, is put to many uses.
A teacher may give a child a rough piece of paper, and a smooth one, looking alike, and differing in touch, adding three words at once to its vocabulary. Maria Montessori’s methods are synthetical and not analytical, creative not destructive, building up, and not pulling down. Details of these methods were given, mental and physical, and both together. The child is made to help himself, and his view of all creation around him is widened. Mrs. Bowie spoke of Macaulay’s opinion that one who adds a simple truth to our knowledge makes the whole world his debtor. There is one point suggested by Mrs. Bowie’s interesting paper which is of importance to some of us. It would surely be well for the normally born person, who in after life finds his or her sight lost, or unpaired, to have had the other senses and perceptions so fully educated, even in any degree to make up for the one no longer normal.
Mrs. Smith gave notice of the lecture of Mrs. Ella Flagg Young
on Education, to which the Club was invited.
After thanks to Mrs. Bowie and her Committee, the meeting was adjourned.
The 724th Meeting. [Nov. 28, 1911]
The 724th meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held on Tuesday, November 28th, 1911. The programme was in charge of Miss Lucy T. Latane, 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 November 21st.
The first article of the programme was given by Miss Virginia B. Bowie, and was on "The Blue Bird" by Maeterlinck. After quoting some interesting critical opinions, Miss Bowie traced the scenes and development of this picturesque and poetical fairy tale. She told of the poor little children looking through the windows of their more fortunate
neighbors to gaze at the Christmas joys and the gifts denied them. Then they go off to seek for the blue bird of happiness, attended by the dog and the cat, the spirit of light, and other influences of the time. They find other birds,--not the real blue bird,--they are told of the spirits of things; and in the end return to find the true blue bird that they have sought.
The next article was by Miss Latane, and was on two new books by Mr. Arnold Bennett--"Clayhanger"; and "Hilda Lessways." Mr. Bennett has now come from England to visit this country. Miss Latane said she had heard that he would be about this time in Washington and Baltimore; and if by any chance he should happen to stray into this literary assembly, she hoped someone would give her a hint thereof,--if she should still be reading about him. She spoke of Mr. Bennett, as having taken a field new to literature for his illustrations of English life, that of the pottery regions of Staffordshire, and
the people who spend their lives there. He tells of five towns and their neighborhood, and shows us a kind of life that is on the whole a splendid one. But she recognized that it is a true picture of the life he has set out to paint. It reminds us of the life of our own middle West--years ago. There is the inevitable love story,--the tyrannical father, and other types we are sure to meet. There is the exaltation of success, and of the shortest roads to success, with not much conscience in the means. There are no high ideals in these books, it seems, but Miss Latane suggested that another one is foreshadowed, which may please us better.
Mrs. Wrenshall read a newspaper interview in which Mr. Bennett is reported to have given his impressions of America two days and ten hours after his landing in New York. Among other things, he compared the American woman unfavorably with the English woman. But he afterwards admitted that his impressions of American women
had been gained from those he had met in Paris.
The last article was given by Miss Virginia Woodward Cloud, and was on "Character in Recent Fiction." Miss Cloud spoke of true art in its relation to morality and to true literature; and went on to criticize the recent books that are,--or call themselves literature. She spoke of those books that make robbers or swindlers their heroes, and describe in detail the methods of business defaulters. These bad books, she reminded us, fall into the hands of the youth of our country, especially the ignorant or foreign born youth. She told us of different orders of authors, and practically described those who seem not to have created characters and who live, not those who talk for themselves, but those whose authors talk for them. Dickens and Thackeray make us feel as if we had known and listened to Pickwick and Pendennis,--but Kipling generally talks Rudyard Kipling. She spoke of the charm of "Sentimental Tommy"; and reviewed Mr. Harri-
son’s "Queed," comparing it with that of Mr. Locke’s "Septimus." She suggested that Mr. Harrison, a newspaper man himself, limited "Queed" to newspaper work when he might have made him write a book. Miss Cloud reviewed Mr. Arnold Bennett’s new play called "What the Public Wants," and suggested that Mr. Bennett does not always give the public what it wants. She reviewed the works of W. I. Locke, especially the "Glory of Clementina," taking pleasure in showing that Quixtus was a gentleman, and Clementina was a lady. She told us that the emotional woman, who fainted and wept frequently, has passed out of the fiction of the twentieth century. After speaking of Robert Herrick, Maurice Hewlett, and others, with much interest, and giving entertaining general criticisms, Miss Cloud ended by reciting a poem written by Herbert Carruths.
The President thanked Miss Latane, and her Committee for the excellent entertainment they
had given us; and she felt sure we were repaid for coming out in very bad weather. She announced the programme for December. On the 5th of December the Committee on "Essays and Essayists," Mrs. Turner, Chairman, will have charge of the programme; on December 12th, the Committee on the "Literature of the Bible," Mrs. Alan P. Smith [Ellen Anna Jones Smith], Chairman; on December 19th and 26th there will be no meetings of the Club.
The meeting was adjourned to enjoy a social hour with coffee and cake.
The 725th Meeting. [Dec. 5, 1911]
The 725th regular meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held at the Club rooms, December 5th, 1911, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding. In the absence of Miss Crane, Mrs. Smith was appointed secretary pro tempore. The programme for the afternoon was in charge of the Committee on "Essays and Essayists," and Mrs. Turner, the Chairman, pre-
faced the programme by a brief discussion of thought and its relation to character, her remarks being suggested by the thoughtful character of the papers which followed.
In discussing "Illusions and Delusions," Mrs. Charles W. Lord showed the important part illusions play in developing men’s spiritual nature. She touched on the commonest of human delusions, that of long life, of complete realization of our hopes in some by and by. Nations, too, cherish their illusions. The illusion of a self-government from which self-seeking is eliminated, proves an delusion in reality. The present day philosophy cropping out in various cults, which assumes that insistence on illusions makes them realities, is not a new philosophy, but is co-eval with man’s longing to see his illusions realized.
Miss Ellen Duvall discussed the topic, "Things Not Done," in the form of an address. In this busy age, the things not done harm the consciences of all men and women,
and the letter that is not written, the visit that is not paid, the little courtesies omitted from the home life, may be the occasion of a lost friendship, or a wrecked home life. Miss Duvall also emphasized the danger of with-held co-öperation, from some of the great national movements, and mentioned particularly the lack of moral instruction in the public schools, and the advance of Mormonism, as matter which should enlist the activity of intelligent and conscientious women everywhere.
The "Inspiration of Heirlooms" was the topic chosen by Mrs. James C. Fenhagen, and she introduced her discussion by a brief description of the island of Marken where every cottage is rich in heirlooms which are not for sale at any price. The comparatively small number of such treasures adorning the homes of the homes of the new world was explained on the score that our Pilgrim father brought little with them, beyond the barest necessities, while the western pioneer, traveling
overland, also went as unencumbered as possible. In addition, the people of a new land craved the new instead of cherishing the old, to the enrichment of the antique shops and impoverishment of many homes. Mrs. Fenhagen spoke of the inspiration afforded by the nation’s heirlooms, the liberty bell, the battle flags, and the buildings connected with an earlier history, shrines before which our patriotism is kindled to a new flame.
The 726th Meeting. [Dec. 12, 1911]
The 726th meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held on Tuesday, December 12th, 1911, at 105 West Franklin street. The programme was in charge of Mrs. Alan P. Smith [Ellen Anna Jones Smith], Chairman of the Committee on "The Literature of the Bible." The President, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall, called the meeting to order; and Harriet L. Smith, Acting Secretary, read her minutes of the meeting of December 5th. The President re-
minded us that this was the last meeting of the year 1911, an intermission being necessary on account of the Christmas holiday season. Mrs. Wrenshall gave the list of the meetings in January 1912. On the 2nd of January the Twelfth Night evening entertainment would be given. The President referred to the thirty regular meetings we had enjoyed since December 1910. She also gave notice of lectures to which the Club was invited.
The first article of the programme was called: "The Literature of Job," and was by Miss Harriet Perkins Marine. Miss Marine said that the book of Job had been called: "The Epic of the Soul." She treated this wonderful piece of ancient literature from the points of view of, perhaps, the greatest of poems: of earliest tradition, history and enduring philosophy, and more than all of its revelation of the spiritual part of man,--in contrast to lower attributes. Miss Marine showed
much research and deep interest in her theme.
The second article of the programme was called: "The Sacred Ministry of Flowers," and was by Mrs. Alan P. Smith [Ellen Anna Jones Smith], Chairman of the Committee of the meeting. Mrs. Smith traced the beautiful symbolism and the holy service of God’s gifts of flowers to the world, from the "rose of Sharon and the lily of the valleys," in the Song of Solomon and in the prophets, to St. Matthews "Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin." Mrs. Smith told us the legend of the red Palestine lily, who, having failed to bow before our Lord, blushed forever afterward. She told too, the other legend of the little maiden who was guided and permitted to carry roses to adorn the manger where the holy Child was cradled. After other beautiful traditions and allusions, Mrs. Smith gave us Sidney Lanier’s poem of "The Trees." She
closed by speaking of the approaching Christmas season, and the joy and light that belongs to it.
The President spoke of our appreciation of the programme given us, and gave our thanks for it to Mrs. Smith and Miss Marine.
The Club was declared adjourned until 8:15 p.m. Tuesday evening, January 2nd, 1912.
Twelfth Night Festival.
The Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore held its Twelfth Night Festival Tuesday, January 2nd, 1912, so large a number attending that the club-room was not large enough to accommodate the audience.
Under the direction of Mrs. Wrenshall Markland, the room had been beautifully decorated, its attractive appearance calling forth expressions of surprise from the Club members, as well as admiration from outsiders.
A delightful musical programme
in two parts, under the direction of Miss Lina Stiebler, opened the festivities of the evening. The first part of the programme consisted of Christmas carols, pleasingly sung by a selected choir, while the second part presented a charming variety of vocal and instrumental selections which called forth hearty applause from the audience.
The address of the President, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall, dealt largely with the significance of the Twelfth Night celebration, and was rendered doubly interesting by the charming descriptions of the old English customs which sprang up about this anniversary. While presenting so much that was instinctive and entertaining regarding the old-time Twelfth Night, Mrs. Wrenshall was keenly alive to the responsibilities of the present festival, and welcomed the guests of the Club with her usual graciousness.
The Christmas Box, a new feature of the Twelfth Night entertainment, was in charge
of Mrs. Harriet Lummis Smith, who spared no pains to make it a success, selecting the gifts with taste and skill. Mrs. Smith wrapped the one hundred and fifty pretty souvenirs in tissue paper, tied them with bright silks, and placed them in a large box that she had appropriately decorated.
Immediately after the conclusion of the programme, the Christmas fun was inaugurated by her presenting the Box to each member and guest to draw from, the opening of the mysterious tiny bundles awakening much admiration, and amusement in the humorous surprises awaiting some of the recipients.
The supper, in charge of Mrs. Edith Armor and Miss Elizabeth Victoria Gittings, was more elaborate than the usual refreshments served at the regular evening functions of the Club. At the conclusion of the supper, the sound of a bugle announced the especial feature of the entertainment, which those
present had awaited with much anticipation, the appearance of the Twelfth Night cake. Blazing with a hundred candles, it was a truly imposing spectacle, as it was borne the length of the hall under the guardianship of Mrs. Wrenshall Markland and Miss Miriam Uhler. So attractive did it prove, indeed, that it was necessary to "rope off" the audience from its shimmering fascinations that no one might come to grief.
Mrs. Wrenshall explained the significance of the mystic articles which the cake contained, in addition to its plums, and cut the first slice after which the demolition of the big cake followed rapidly, amid much laughter. The entertainment closed with the dancing of the Virginia Reel.
[END OF BOOK]
[MS 988 BOX 5, BOOK 2]
The Women’s Literary Club of Baltimore
January 9th, 1912- March 25th, 1913
Beginning January 9th, 1912, and going on to March 20th, 1913.
The 727th Meeting [Jan. 9th, 1912]
The Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore held its regular (727th) meeting Tuesday, January 9th, 1912, Mrs. Wrenshall presiding. In the absence of Miss Crane, Mrs. Smith acted as secretary. In her opening remakes, Mrs. Wrenshall acknowledged a gift to the Club library, "Ray’s Reward", presented by the author Miss Isabel Foster. Mrs. Wrenshall also referred feelingly to the death of Alfred Tennyson Dickens, who was soon to have appeared before a Baltimore audience.
The programme was in charge of the Committee on Foreign Travel, and opened with a paper "New York to London", written by Mrs. James C. Fenhagen, and
read by Mrs. Smith. Mrs. Fenhagen presented presented her topic in the form of letters, the agreeable, chatty strike, enabling her to give many entertaining impressions which would have been difficult to introduce into a paper of a different character. Her hearers were able to share life aboard ships and were given glimpses of the Shakespeare country, Oxford and London, with instructions regarding the best places to eat in the last –named city.
In introducing her paper, "Wanderings in Bohemia" Miss Nellie C. Williams called attention to the rather singular fact that while everyone has a clear and definite understanding as to what is meant by Bohemia in the figurative sense, the ideas of the average person regarding the real Bohemia are extremely vague and indefinite. Miss Williams drew an interesting
picture of the manufacturing city of Aussig, which, though ugly in itself, is near many spots of great beauty, and of Prague, which combines ancient picturesqueness and the quality of being thoroughly up to date in a very unusual degree. Miss Williams described with enthusiasm the resplendent policemen of the last named city, and paid her compliments to the Bohemian language, and to Bohemian cooking. Prague has many Hebrews, and the synagogue and Jewish graveyard are seen by every visitor. The synagogue is said to be the oldest building in Europe, practically untouched since it was first constructed.
Mrs. Charles W. Lord read a paper on "Old Oxford", and began by voicing her conviction that of all fascinating spots on earth, Oxford stands supreme.
Its twenty-two colleges are the growth of centuries, and each college has its distinctive architecture and customs. In Oxford, past and present are constantly brought in close and fascinating contact, as when Old Ben, with its hundred and one strokes, carries the listener back to the days before clocks marked the hours. Mrs. Lord painted a sympathetic picture of the students, at Wissontide, hastening to Magdalene Tower to sing before sunrise. Oxford was pronounced the alma matar [alma mater] of England’s greatest and best, ancient, and yet with everlasting youth, because of her constant contact with youth.
The 728th Meeting [Jan. 16, 1912]
The Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore held its regular meeting Tuesday, January 16th,
1912. In the absence of Mrs. Wrenshall, Mrs. Hill presided and Mrs. Smith acted a secretary.
After expressing her regret for the President unavoidable absence, Mrs. Hill called attention to the interesting course of lectures on Japan now in progress at the Hopkins, and also the exhibit of the works of American women artist at a local gallery.
The programme was in charge of the Fiction Committee, and opened with a story by Miss Victoria Elizabeth Gittings, "A Winner of Unsought Laurels." A countryman caused to turn aside from the straight and narrow path to his home, by the seductive lights of the country grocery store, joined a number of cronies who never listening to a recital by one of their number of his coming across a huge snake. Spurred
to emulation, the new corner told of a far more thrilling experience with a singular ser [ ] friend and was much disgusted to find that he had stumbled on a session of the "Liars Club" and that his efforts was unanimously voted the prize.
In her story "The Cipher Key," Mrs. Edith Howell Armor told of a suspicious lover who refused to allow his sweetheart to explain her breaking her promise as he thought. Denied an interview she fell back on Uncle Sam’s good offices not to write him letters, but to appeal to tender memories to figure his curiosity, and last but not least, to appeal to his sense of humor. Judging from the sequel, the method, is a peculiarly happy one in bringing a jealous and obstinate lover to his senses.
Miss Emily Paret Atwater read a chapter from an unfinished man-
unscript, which, through separated from the longer story of which it forms a part, was complete in itself. The chapter tells of a girl who accompanies a young man, a physician, on a professional round of visits, and finds herself unexpectedly obliged to act as assist-ant in a surgical case. In the course of the story, amusing side lights were thrown on the character of the negro and the poor white.
In "by Courtesy of the Burglar Miss Virginia Berkley Bowie told of two girls returning after a visit to the theatre to a home which should have been empty, and finding a burglar in possession. The more adventurous of the tow goes at once in search of a policeman, but not until she has returned with the officer of the law, does she discover that he is very drunk. So obnoxious
does he make himself, that in desperation she is obligated to call on the burglar to rid her of the policeman’s unwelcome presence. The gentleman in question having complied with her request, and being warmly thanked, takes his departure, his pockets still bulging with the family valuables.
The 729th Meeting. [Jan. 23, 1912]
The regular meeting of the Woman’s’ Literary Club of Baltimore was held at the Club rooms, Tuesday, January 23rd, Mrs., John C. Wrenshall presiding. The programme was in charge of the Committee on Foreign Language. An amusing comedy from the French of Andre Mycho entitled "Apres Nous" was translated by Miss Nellie C. Williams. The scene was laid in the office of a city journal where a popular actress had an engagement to meet
an author of source reputation. While writing for this lady the author discovers the obituary of a celebrity who though ill, is no longer dead, and learns that the obituaries of men and women of prominence are kept in stock. He ah once becomes possessed of the desire to see his own, and bribes one of the officials to secure it for him. He is out of the room when it is brought I, and the actress, who has arrived in the meantime, has the first reading that when the subject walks into the room, she screams with terror. Though this obituary is anything but pleasing to its subject, the lady is anxious to try her fortune, and after doubling the amount, the author paid, secure a most eulogistic account of her life and death, which has been written on the spur of the moment by a suitor whom she has discouraged, and who
cleverly introduces into the obituary references to his own anguish over the loss of the incomparable artist. So softened is the lady by this tribute that she invites him to call, and on the spot pledges an eternal friendship.
"The Orderly", translated from from Italian of Edmondo de Amicis, by Miss Virginia Berkley Bowie, was a story of singular delicacy and feeling. The two soldiers, the officer and his orderly, have been associated constantly for four years, and white superficially the relations have remained formal, in reality a profound tenderness has sprung up between military term draws to a close, and his thoughts turn to his home and his mother, his joy is shadowed his lieutenant a sadness which the officer fully shares. He thinks of the year they have been together[,]
of the courage and the devotion of his orderly, and when, at last the time comes for the farewell, he cannot trust his voice for more that the briefest goodbye.
At the conclusion of the programme, the Club members and their guests enjoyed a social cup of coffee.
The 730th Meeting. [Jan. 30, 1912]
The Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore held its regular (730th) meeting Tuesday, January 30th, 1912, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding. After, the reading of the minutes of the previous meeting, Mrs. Wrenshall announced the programmes for the month of February.
The programme of the afternoon was the lecture, "Across Europe with a Camera," by Mrs. John C. Wrenshall. Mrs. Wrenshall introduced her lec
Ture by a reference to a promise of Puck, to put a girdle round the earth in forty minutes and suggested that the proposed rapid transit, outlined in her programme, resembled a personally conducted tour under the supervision of Mr. Puck.
The lecture was profusely illustrated with stereotypical views, the slides made and painted by Mrs. Wrenshall Markland from her own photographers. The cities of northern Italy were given of their chief architectural and scenic features as well as of their artistic master-pieces. The Italian lakes followed the delicate coloring recalling the actual scenes so vividly that it was difficult for the observers to realize they were viewing art rather than nature. After crossing to Switzerland by the Simplon pass, Mrs. Wrenshall gave an
amusing description of her imprisonment in the castle of Children by an army of Swiss school children.
After a brief but delightful survey of Swiss mountains, lakes, and cities, the audience was given a sail down the Rhine, Mrs. Wrenshall doing full justice to the legend and romance of that fascinating river. The trip ended glimpses of Holland, in which the quaint the picturesque, and the beautiful were charmingly mingled.
The 731st Meeting. [Feb. 6, 1912]
The Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore met at the Club rooms, Tuesday, February 6th, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding. The minutes were read and accepted.
Mrs. Wrenshall, in her opening remarks referred to a letter received from a Club member, Mrs. Elliott, who has now reach-
ed Honolulu on her journey around the world, and who promises something of interest to the Committee on Foreign Travel.
The nearness of the one hundredth anniversary of the birth of Charles Dickens caused Mrs. Wrenshall to open the programme by an acknowledgement of the debt owed by the English speaking world to the great novelist who creation of his inimitable characters, but revealed and
every true and tender feeling of the human heart. Mrs. Wrenshall closed her remarks by reading Bert Harte’s "Dickens in Camp," so [?can’t make out word] characterized by the author as "a spray of western prime".
The poem "Baldur the Beautiful", written by Grace Denio Litchfield, was read by her sister, Mrs. Lanrence Turnbull[.] Baldur in the Norse mythology
in supposed to correspond to the Apollo of the south, though Mrs. Litchfield has made him not only the god of light and love, but of brotherhood. Lolei the god of darkness hates Baldur, and wishes to work his destruction. Masquerading as a women, he learns from Frigga, the mother goddess, the secret of Baldur’s invulnerability. He cunningly plots Baldur’s death and is successful, and as Baldur is not slain in battle, his soul goes to Hel. The ride of his brother Herniod to Hel, upon the eight-legged horse which which has never been riden before except by Odin, is depicted with extraordinary vividness. To the appeal of the messenger for Baldur’s release, the gloomy queen of Hel grants the request provided that all living creatures weep. But in the almost universal grief of the universe for the
beloved god of light Loki alone refused a tear, and the soul of Baldur remains in Hel, and even there makes a "Heaven’s ineffable."
The poem closes with a reference to the coming judgement when the last great conflict should result in the death of Odin[.] The old imperfect order will be done away with, earth shall replace the old; the earth be peopled by nobler beings, and the Heaven ruled over by greater god’, among them Baldur the Beautiful.
Some beautiful lyrics notably the songs of Baldur, are interspersed through the narrative poem.
Refreshments were served at the conclusion of the programme.
The 732nd Meeting. [Feb. 13, 1912]
The Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore, held its regular (732nd) meeting Tuesday, February 13th, 1912, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding. The programme was in charge of the Committee on the Drama.
The opening paper "Tragedy and Comedy in the Southern Rectory in 1815" was read by Mrs. Frances M. Butler. It was Mrs. Butler’s first appearance on a Club programme, and she was warmly welcomed by the members present. Mrs. Butler’s reminiscences took a humorous shape, for the most part, though it is certain that many of the experiences recorded must have seemed tragic enough at the time; as, for instance, the arrival of a party of thirteen strangers to be entertained at the small rectory, with but one spare bed-room. The grace of
hospitality was worked over time when guests of all grades of destitution were likely to appear at any moment for an indefinite stay, some out of the number, as Mrs. Butler said, seeming to regard being the rector’s guest as a vacation in itself. Some of the make-shifts practiced by house-keepers, at a period when tea sold for twenty-five dollars a pound, and very poor tea a that, were graphically and humorously described.
A poem "Ghost" by Miss Lizette Woodworth Reese gave a touching impression of heart-broken yearnings, with a touch of mysterious in its description of the white, misty shapes, shallowed up in the darkness of the night as the clock strikes one.
Miss Ellen Duvall, who discussed Shakespeare’s King Lear and the Pere Goriot of Balzac,
gave the comparison in the form of an address. The story of the two devoted fathers, wronged by the children they have trusted, have a superficial similarity which disappears as we go deeper. There is no beauty in Pere Goriot to offset the beautiful love scene in Lear, no fine characters corresponding to Cordelia and Edgar. Lear recognizes the ingratitude of his daughters, and makes an effort to regain his authority. Pere Goriot seems to be without a sense of justice, to be incapable of feeling hurt by ingratitude, and therefore goes to pieces as an individual. The closing distinction which Miss Duvall emphasized was that there is no social betterment resulting from the disclosure of degradation in Pere Goriot, while in King Lear, the social order is purified. In Pere Goriot everything is going
down, in Lear in spite of tragedy, life is on the ascending scale.
The 733rd Meeting. [Feb. 20, 1912]
The regular (733rd) meeting of the Woman’s literary Club of Baltimore, was held Tuesday, February 20th, 1912; Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding. Mrs. Wrenshall announced the Percy Turnhill Memorial lectures to be given at Johns Hopkins University, always of a special interest to the Club members, the subject this year being the Greek epigram.
The programme was in charge of the Committee on Colonial and Revolutionary History, as is usual with the meeting preceding Washington’s Birthday.
The opening paper on the programme, "Mary Washington her Will", written by Mrs. Charles E. Sadtler, was read by Mrs. Wrenshall-Markland. Mrs.
Sadtler commented on the fact that we know comparatively little of the mother of Washington, and then gave some of the meager details of her life. She was married at twenty-two, considered old at that time, and was a second wife. She was left a widow when young, which helps to account for Washington’ tribute, "All That I am, I owe to my mother." The reading of the will, a unique document, concerned chiefly with the distribution of household and personal effects provoked many similes. A copy of the will was presented to the Club by Mrs. Sadtler.
"The Flags of the Revolution", by Miss Harriet Perkins Marine opened with a discussion of the coat of arms of the Washington family, and its connection with our national ensign. Miss Marine gave a brief history of the flags used in the colonies,
the pine tree and the rattle snake emblems being especially popular. The flag made by Betsy Ross had white, and the original instruction was to add a stripe for each state added to the Union. Finding this inexpedient, in 1818, the flag was stripes, and a star was added at the accession of a new state.
In the absence of Mrs. Sammel Alexander Hill, her paper, on "Cornwallis at Camden," was read by Miss Mullin. This charming paper not only threw much light on an interesting epoch in the Revolutionary war, but set forth the character of Cornwallis in unmistakable colors, and pictured vividly the quaint town where the [breastworks?] raised by Cornwallis are still distinguishable. The gallows stood in the middle of the town, and here cold-blooded assassination was
carried on for two years.
A paper by an out-of-town member, Mrs. Charles T. Mason, closed a mo2st interesting programme, and was read by Mrs. Wrenshall. The old forth in question occupies a spur of North Mountain overlooking the Potomac, and was named Frederick after the last Lord Baltimore. The area of the forth is am acre and a half. It is surrounded by stone walls, four feet and a half at the base, and twenty feet in height. Though no great battles are connected with the fact’s history, it was the scene of many small skirmishes.
In 1790 the Maryland legislature directed that it should be sold. In 1854 it was purchased by a negro named Williams, whose descendants have held it until recently. The paper closed with an appeal for the preservation
Of this important landmark, a suggestion which called forth spirted comments from the ladies present, both Club members and their guests.
The 734th Meeting. [Feb. 27, 1912]
The 734th meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held at the Club rooms in the building of the Maryland Academy of Sciences on Tuesday afternoon, February 27th, 1912 at three-thirty, the President, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding.
Mrs. Wrenshall, in opening the meeting, explained that the absence of our Recording Secretary, Mrs. Williams M. Smith was due to the very sudden death of her mother, Mrs. Lummis, who had been with us two weeks ago, in perfect health. The members deeply sympathized with Mrs. Smith in her sud-
Mrs. Wrenshall announced the 1912 lectures in the Laura Graham Cooper Foundation at Goucher College: February 23rd, on "Moorish Art in Spain", by Chas. Upson Clark; . March 1st, on "The Listener’s Share in Music" by Daniel Gregory Mason; March 11th on "Digging for Manuscripts in Egypt". And March 12thon "Letters from Upper Egypt in the Persian Record" by Robert W. Rogers.
She also called attention to the lecture to be delivered at the Johns Hopkins University on the Percy Turnbull Foundation, beginning March 1st, the subject being "The Greek Epigram" and the lecture Prof. Paul Shorey.
Mrs. Wrenshall stated that the subject of the meeting of next Tuesday would be Essays and Essayists, under the chairmanship of Mrs. Sidney Turner, who we hope to have with us again
after her enforced absence.
The programme for the afternoon, was given by the Committee on Foreign Languages, of which Miss Nellie C. Williams is Chairman, the opening paper being by Mrs. Lillie Schnauffer, and was read by Miss Williams. Miss Schnauffer selected for translation "Puschkin [Pushkin] and Byron", a critical comparison from the German of Dr. Otto Hamach.
Dr. Hamach stated that the accusation had been made that Puschkin was an imitator of Byron, which is not true. But, his temperament was such that his earliest efforts were influenced by Byron. In his young manhood he was banished to the south of Russia near the orient and the sea, and like Byron, sung well of the sea. "He desires to be ironical, but is tender instead".
In 1824 he is permitted to return to his estate, and the
[C.W. Lord presents a classist ideology to the club claiming if you are not born into money, you are no one and do not matter to society. Interacting with a nobody would be by mistake. After that, Mrs. S.A. Hill goes on a random rant about King George the V and how good he was to colonized India and how the “eastern subjects” loved him so much. Cloud shared she attended a large birthday party for William Howells in which the U.S. President attended.
Wrenshall mentioned the anniversary of the club was coming up but said there would be no occasion.
Nellie Williams describes her cruise in the Panama with fun mentions of “lazy natives” and praises to British/French colonialism.
Wrenshall gave a little speech commemorating the beginning of the twenty-third year of the Club and defined the honor of being apart of the Club.]
early impressions wear away. Byron no longer being a model for for his attention is now turned to the folk songs of the native. In 1826 Puschkin came into his full freedom, for he was transformed from a semi-revolutionist to a royal favorite, and his freedom found utterance in epic poetry, in which he made his greatest success. In the epic poetry the influence of Shakespeare is shown, while Sir Walter Scott supplied the model for the mosh successful novel that he wrote.
Dr. Hamack considers that Puschkin’s lyrics resemble those of Byron but are not symbolic; and to Puschkin he attributes greater susceptibility, but less depth than Byron possesses.
The second article on the programme was “France of Today,” a descriptive essay from the French of Louis J. Mercier, translated by Miss Elizabeth Cary Nicholas.
Mr. Mercier refutes the statement made by Mr. David Starr Jordan that France is degenerate, and quotes freely from Missrs. [a name but can’t make out if the second letter is an ‘I’ could be an ‘E’] Barrett Gindell, Lomdlorn [Lomdborn?][I do not know who these women are based on the spelling compared to the members list], and [Mrs Charles J.] Mason to prove that the opinions of other Americans differ from those of Mr. Jordan. Mr. Mercier considers that the French novelist has done much to spread the ideas of French immorality; and speaks also of the French critics who see in the French characteristics of economy and foresight; the very elements to keep France stationary. He calls attention to the scientific attainments; the industries; the superiority of the products, the inventions of the French nation, and by so doing presents a strong plea for his assertion that France is not degenerate.
Mrs. Wrenshall spoke of personal knowledge of the sturdiness of the French character
which she had gained by visits to the south and west coast of France; and of the wonderful revival in France after the war which proved so great a strain upon her resources.
The third and last article, was by Miss Virginia Berkley Bowie, being the “Families of Our Friends, -- A Sketch from the Italian of Edmondo de Amicis.”
The sketch opened by comparing the families of our friends to a crowd issuing from a railroad station, so varied are they in age, personality, and condition. The writer voiced the opinion that the isolated friends, friends with no family connections, presented the surest solution of friendship, and then stepped naturally to the boy whose first efforts at politeness were to the other boy who possessed a charming twelve-year-old sister, saying that “sisters fuch [could be “finish” written really fast?] poetry mte [not? She could have been writing fast] friend-
Next came the survey of the fathers of the friends, -- a long line, some of whom come with counsel, some who consider the son’s friends the natural enemy of the authority of the fathers, -- the fathers grown old, and the fathers passing away one by one.
The next to appear are the mothers of the friends, and finally the wives of our friends, most and interestingly described.
Mrs. Wrenshall, in closing the afternoon, spoke of the great interest of the translations and of the good work of the Committee, and thanked Miss Williams and the members of the Committee.
A social chat over the tea cups closed the afternoon.
The 735th Meeting. [March 5th, 1912]
The 735th meeting of the
Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held on Tuesday, March 5th, in the Club room at the Maryland Academy of Sciences, at 3:30, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall in the Chair.
The President announced that the program for March 12th would be given by the Committee on Foreign Travel, with Mrs. C. W. Lord Chairman.
The programme of the afternoon was Essays and Essayists, with Mrs. Sidney Turner Chairman
The President voiced the pleasure of the members of the Club that Mrs. Turner was able once more to appear with her Committee and Mrs. Turner received a hearty welcome.
The general subject of the programme was the trite phrase “Who’s who?” and the essays read gave the view-point of those presenting the papers.
Miss Elizabeth Cary Nicholas was the first to take part in the discussion. Miss Nicholas ran the gamut of questionings as to who’s who from the society maiden to the scientific man, proving that the who’s who of each differs very decidedly and divided her remarks with the reminder of the wide grasp necessary to be up to date in knowing who’s who in all grades and walks of life.
Miss H. Frances Cooper spoke next selecting as her study the “Who’s who of Every Day Contact”. In this daily contact these are no distinctive marks, but individuals are drawn together by sympathy only -- that we come into touch with everybody and the points to be considered in this contact. The man or worker unseen, as the stoker in the vessel exerts his influence and the best work frequently comes
from the humble home. To whatever use we find our frocvers [too blurry and unclear to read] determines who we are. Miss Cooper illustrated her points with interesting anecdotes.
The next to present a view of who’s who was Mrs. C. W. Lord, who discussed who’s who in Society. Mrs. Lord divided society into two parts; those who consider themselves, because of birth, position or money the “desirables” and all the rest of humanity “impossibles” or the “nobodies.” She sketched the feelings and manners of an ultra fashionable should she by some mistake come into contact with one of the “impossibles.” Fortunately for the “nobodies”, they are by far the greater number, and, as a side do not concern themselves as to the who’s who in society.
Mrs. S.A. Hill presented as her idea of who’s who, that it should mean the most
important character in the world at the present time, and decided in favor of King George V. She spoke of the coronation of king George and Queen Mary, and the great change that it had made in their hitherto simple life. The wisdom of decision that they should go to India in person for the coronation there. The greetings, children’s fêtes, fireworks at Bombay were most notable; but the culmmation [maybe misspelled collimation] of the great event was the stirring scenes at Delhi. The decision to change the capitol from Calcutta back to Delhi had been kept so secretly that it came as a great and pleasant surprise to the people, as Delhi has all the old traditions so dear to an Eastern people, and it was just as Calcutta had been a hot bed of insurrection.
The newly crowned sovereigns
presented large sums to India for charitable and educational objects, and the whole affair tended greatly to strengthen the affection of the eastern subjects for their rulers.
The last to present her views of who’s who was the chairman, Mrs. Sidney Turner, the paper being read by Mrs. Hill.
Mrs. Turner mentioned the requirements of various cities, New York’s question being how much are you worth? Baltimore’s how are you? [question mark with a comma] -- Boston’s what do you know? And Philadelphia’s who is your grandfather? Mrs. Turner took these questions to the Bird of Wisdom, and had his answer -- the consumption being a question back to the querist, have you used the wealth properly? Have you extended hospitality? How have you used your knowledge? And what have you done to gain your place?
Mrs. Turner closed the afternoon by giving Selma Lagerlof’s version of “How the Robin got his red breast” as recited by Miss Kitty Cheatham some weeks ago in Baltimore.
Mrs. Wrenshall thanked Mrs. Turner and the Committee for the delightful afternoon, and declared the meeting closed with the social chat over the tea.
A charming addition to the programme was made by the account given by Miss Virginia Woodward Cloud of the recent dinner in New York given in honor of Mr. William D. Howells who celebrated his seventy-fifth birthday. To this dinner was invited the most important literary people, and about four-hundred were present, including some visitors from abroad, and the President of the United States. Miss Cloud graphically described the arrangement of the guests, the happy speeches, and the
general feeling of good fellowship, -- the appearance in the flesh of Silas Lapham who presented to his author a poem, and after reciting, returned once more to his life in the pages of the book. Altogether a memorable evening never to be forgotten by anyone who had the honor of being present.
The members appreciated the account given by Miss Cloud, and thanked her for it.
The 726th Meeting [March 12, 1912]
The 736th meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held on Tuesday, March 12, 1912, at 3:30 in the Club’s room, 105 West Franklin street; Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding.
Mrs. Wrenshall announced that a course of three lectures on Shakespeare would be given by E.G. Abbott at the Belvedere
for the benefit of the worthy charity the House of the Friendless. Also a course of five Shakespearean talks by our member Miss Ellen Duvall on Thursday afternoon at the home of Miss Early, 711 Park avenue. Names of those desiring to attend should be sent promptly, either to Miss Cloud or Miss Morris, 708 Park avenue.
Mrs. Wrenshall called attention to the fact that the following Tuesday, March 19th, would be the beginning of the twenty-third year of our Club; and while there would be nothing special to mark the occasion, she urged the attendance of all members.
The programme for the afternoon was given by the Committee on Foreign Travel with Mrs. Charles W. Lord Chairman.
Mrs. Lord had for the title of her opening paper “Some Famous Cathedrals of Europe,”
and confused her remarks entirely to cathedrals on the Continent omitting all mention to the English cathedrals. She first described the Cologne cathedral, which she characterized as “the most thrilling if human creations.” Milan’s cathedral came next, being an “exquisite ice-berg, graceful and chaste, a poem in stone.” San Marco of Venice is the jewel of cathedrals. St. Peter’s at Rome came next, and while first in size, does not occupy the first place in hearts or dreams. Not only the chapels with their angels, or rather their human figures but every spot is a study in charm, so that days and weeks are not sufficient to satisfy this study, but it does not satisfy the heart. Sienna cathedral with its zebra-effect of black and white seem only in Italy, is fascinating and unique. The bar reliefs of the popes, placed
around walls, portrait studies of all the popes, and below them the sybils. At this point in reply to a question from Mrs. Lord. Mrs. Wrenshall explained that the sybils were second to the prophets, and were inspired. It was they who predicted the coming of the true God in days when alters were reared to the Unknown God.
Mrs. Lord continued with a description of the cathedral at Oneeto [??], a miracle in stone and the difficulty in searching it, but the beauty of black and white marbles fully repay[s] all efforts. Mention was made of the Pisa group of cathedrals, three buildings of Carrerra [Carrara] marble, lying at the foot of the leaning tower like the “man of sorrows” over his cross.
The next paper was given by Mrs. B. Howard Haman on “The Cathedral of Wells.” Mrs. Haman said that the pouring rain of the afternoon was a most fitting time to talk and think of Wells with the springs and streams; and that two years residence in Great Britain caused one to associate each season of the year with certain parts of the country. The little town of Wells, a purely cathedral town, being off the beaten track, is not so much visited by tourists as many of the more accessible cathedral towns. It is so difficult to reach with its three railroads that if these were four roads it would be impossible to visit it. In some respects Wells is most notable. The grouping of the houses is effective, for it is a secular cathedral, begun in 1211 and completed in 1424, the present edifice being the third church on the same site. The 600 figures were placed there in 1280, and about three statues the rooks make their houses. The choir
is most pleasing.
Of the group of buildings the Bishop’s palace is the crowning gem. Then the gardens, surrounded with a water filled moat. Around all is a glamour and enchantment, a stillness that escape seems necessary less the spell bind indefinitely.
The concluding papers of the afternoon was given by Miss Nellie C. Williams on “A Glimpse of Panama and the Spanish Maine.” Miss Williams pictured the dreary March day a year ago when the cruise began, and the wonderful changes wrought in 36 hours from winter to summer. The steamer’s first stop was at Havana, a truly Spanish city; then next Santiago with its enclosed harbor, -- these harbors being a characteristic of Cuba. Santiago was described as being a forlorn looking town, with beggars in abundance.
Many stops were made, and the traveler is stuck with the fact that the British possessions are much better kept than those of other nationalities; and that where nature is bountiful, the natives are lazy; but in the norete [??] where efforts must be made made, the inhabitants are energetic.
The objective point, Panama was finally reached, and while much has been accomplished, much remains to be done. Miss Williams considers that the United States is greatly indebted to France in this prospect for France did the pioneer work, and the government of the United States is profiting by her mistakes and failures. Much has been said of the elimination of disease, yet many large hospitals filled with the sick an[d] suffering are prominent in the Canal zone. Miss Williams to her de-
scription of the places visited, added the stories of amusing incidents which always occur on such trips. The one that appealed most to the Club was an overheard description of our own city given by a Canadian priest who told of summer spent in the truly tropical city of Baltimore, where no work is done in the summer, and in the centre of whose streets are little plots, and grass, and flowers which the people call “alamadas.”
In closing the programme Mrs. Wrenshall expressed her pleasure for the afternoon, and regretted that owing to the rain, so many of the members had missed that pleasure.
The 737th Meeting [March 19th, 1912]
The 737th meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held March 19th, 1912, in the Club room 105 West Franklin
street, the President Mrs. John C. Wrenshall in the Chair.
Mrs. Wrenshall announced the lectures to be given at the Johns Hopkins University, on “Prudentius the Christian Poet” on March 22nd by Rev. John H. Quirk, S.J.: and on March 26th and 27th by Caspar René Gregory on the subjects “The Apocalypse and Canon of the New Testament,” and “Modern Social Movements in Germany.”
The programme opened with a brief address by the President commemorating the completion of twenty-two years of work by the Club, and the entrance into the twenty-third years.
Mrs. Wrenshall said in past that our anniversary was a new mile stone on our Club highway,-- the preliminary meeting was held on the 19th of March, 1890, exactly twenty-two years ago. As we turn the fresh
leaf of the twenty-third year we do so with confidence. The object in founding the Club was so to bring together women interested in intellectual persuits [pursuits]; and the lines laid down in the beginning could not have been improved, for the committee plans have been the best possible arrangement, as each may select her favorite subject. The committees as originally planned have remained almost the same, but two having been omitted, while four have been added. To adhere strictly to literature in Club work in these times of change and ephemeral relations is not easy, but we shut the door on disturbing elements and the ideal remains. In this constancy of purpose the Club answers a definite need. Of twenty-two years so much may be said that it is difficult to choose The personalities of the women who did their part in building
our house of high thought have enriched us with legacies of their shining memories to guide our steps to further light. There is much to say of the past, the present, and the future, for we are to cherish the past, guard jealously the present, and anticipate and work for the future. To be a member of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore is a privilege, and to it we must bring our best.
Mrs. Wrenshall closed her address with congratulations and wishes for many years of life for the Club.
The programme for the afternoon was arranged by the Committee on Unfamiliar Records, with Mrs. Edward Stabler Chairman, the first paper being “Bits of History, Familiar and Unfamiliar,” by Mrs. Stabler.
Mrs. Stabler said at the present time, when Baltimore is so much in the limelight, an historical review of the founders
of the city, and the results of their well planning would be appropriate. The founder, George Calvert, Lord Baltimore, gave to the new city the name of his title, which title is now extinct, for the city on the Chesapeake, but elsewhere. In order to retain a hold upon the ground, Calvert instituted the irredeemable ground rent system, so little known and understood outside of our own city. The little town flourished and soon became known for her ships called Baltimore clippers, and at the time of the war for Independence, and later was a bustling little place. Good living was abundant, but the markets were not well supplied, householders buying direct from the vessels at the wharfs, for the day of the middle man had not arrived. The first market building, at Gay and Baltimore streets, was built by lottery. Later John Eager
Howard donated to the city the ground for the Lexington market. The city was well provided with their theatres and amusements in those early days. Not to the men alone was due the development, but to the wives and mothers as well. The young city was well governed and while she owed much to nature still more does she owe to the men who guided her through those early days of formation and growth.
Miss Williams then read some extracts describing Old Baltimore as she appeared to travellers long ago. The first an Englishman, here in 1820 who visited and described the country seat of Charles Carroll, the second a visitor who stopped at Barnum’s Hotel in 1827, and who saw and talked with the venerable Carroll then ninety-one years old.
A visitor in the fifties was
not at all complimentary to the belles of Baltimore as seen in the hotel, but one coming here in 1841 and stopping at a boarding house on Gay street, saw much beauty and quiet elegance.
The next paper was given by Miss Mary Dorsey Davis, and had for its title "Fragments." Miss Davis retold the early history of the now great Baltimore and Ohio railroad; and the part taken in it by Evan and Philip Thomas in 1826. Of the two cars Aeolus and Meteor which were run by means of sails, the Aeolus having a speed of twenty miles an hour. But this manner of propulsion was not practical, and was abandoned. Then came the Grasshopper and Camel-backed engines. Much of position was shown to the new road, but a public spirited woman, Mrs. Cornelia Downey, offered from her own woodland all the wood that was needed
to construct the road. In appreciation the Directors presented Mrs. Downey with a silver pitcher, and to the inscription was added the words "Great oaks from little acorns grow." The pitcher is an honored heirloom to-day. The next "fragment" was in reference to the telegraph. When the line reached Halethorp there was some defect in the trenches, and the suggestion came to string the wires on the trees, hence our telegraph poles. Miss Davis read clippings describing the old City Spring, the scene of Hopkins Smith’s novel "Kennedy Square", announcements of deaths, engagements and marriages treated as advertisements, closing with a poem written by her grandfather to her grandmother.
The last article on the programme was "The History of some Patriotic Organizations," by Miss Harriet P. Marine.
Mrs. Wrenshall explained
that Miss Marine was detained at home by illness, and that Miss Williams would read the paper.
Miss Marine outlined briefly the history, organization and requirements from membership of the principal patriotic societies for men and women. The oldest of the societies, and the one with the most rigid requirements is the Society of Cincinnati, founded in 1783, and originally composed of officers in the American Army during the Revolution.
The next society the Sons of the Revolution was not founded until 1876, the year which counted for so much in the United States.
Next the Sons of the American Revolution, with its broader scope of membership.
Renewed interest in the history of our country brought forth the Military Society of the War of 1812, which included only descendants
of officers in that war, while the General Society of the War of 1812 included descendants of any soldier in the war.
The Society of Colonial Wars has for its members the descendants of colonists who saw actual service in the war of Independence, and earlier wars.
Turning to the societies for women, Miss Marine first mentioned the National Society of Colonial Dames, an exclusive society to which membership is by invitation only. The Daughters of the Revolution much broader in scope. The Huguenot Society; and lastly the Society of the Ark and Dove, founded here in Baltimore, and composed of descendents [descendants] of those who came over in the two vessels and founded on our own shores.
Mrs. Wrenshall declared the meeting adjourned after thanking Mrs. Stabler and the members of the committee on the interesting
Refreshments in honor of the birthday were served, and the social hour concluded the afternoon.
The 738th Meeting. [March 26, 1912]
The 738th meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held in the assembly room of the Maryland Academy of Sciences on Tuesday, March 26th, 1912, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding. Owing to absence of the Acting Secretary, the minutes of the previous meeting were not read.
After calling the meeting to order, certain notices were given out: Dr. Edward Abbott’s "Lectures on Shakespeare", for which four tickets were at the disposal of members who wished to use them, were offered.
The programmes was then read, and contributions for a miscellaneous programme for April 18th, were asked for.
The programme was "Current Criticism" under the Chairmanship of Miss Lucy Temple Latané.
The first work noticed was Dr. Arthur [McGiffert’s?] "Martin Luther", revered by Miss Latané herself. Few lives are better known than Luther’s, [hath?] in general on [thine?] and in detail, and she quoted the author to this effect. But if Dr. [McGiffert?] brought no new material her has fashioned fresh and vivid portraiture out of the old. His object, indeed, was to bring out the humanness of Luther, and in this he has admirably succeeded. Luther stood pre-eminently for the human relationships, the basic essentials of human life, without which all else is impossible, so that his work was not only a reformation on the side of religion, but also restoration of human ideals in life and conduct. Miss Latané gave a masterly review of Luther’s early life: his humble birth;
his soon shown thirst for knowledge, his parents’ ambition for him and their sacrifices; the famous Cotta family; the assassination of Luther’s intimate friend, and the revulsion of feeling it occasioned; the sudden monkish vow which swept him into the Augustine Order, so that at twenty-one years of age, Luther was a mendicant friar. Then came the strange religious experiences inseparable from such a religious genius. Hope, and the blackness of dispair [despair]; doubts without and fears within; temptation, weariness, and discouragement--he knew them all. But out of this trial of faith and patience came love and God, the personal knowledge of Christ, and a passionate desire to help his fellow-men. Luther was a born controversialist, and as feeling and thought took shape, pamphlets fell thick and fast. He is a synonym for fiery courage, and he was [bitter?] as he
was brave. His was not an age that knew how to differ politely, and argument was supposed to be bettered by strong language. [Your?] intellectual opponent was treated especially to the art of [illegible word]. In this Luther surely excelled, and his writings are wonders of sixteenth century abuse. He was not himself aware at first of the deep difference between himself and ecclesiastics generally,--but when Tetzel and the Sale of Indulgences inflamed his zeal for morality to the utmost, the inevitable cleavage came. His marriage was the final act of protest, to please his father, and to signalize his return to common humanity. He was no statesman, and stands for the verities of daily life, not for possible political combinations. He broke with the Church because it was not moral enough; he broke with
the humanists because he could not square his theology with the dawning science of the times. And he was not democratic, for he distrusted the fickle temper of the multitude as most men, springing from the common people, have always done. Bitter in controversy, high tempered, and high spirited, he was yet capable of exquisite sympathy, not only with the world of men, but with the inarticulate world as well; as his famous plea for the birds truly shows. His nature was essentially loving, deep rooted in the relationships of child, husband, parent, friend. Luther’s translation of the Bible is a monument of the German tongue, and remains one of the world’s great classics.
Dr. [McGiffert] holds no brief for any shade of ecclesiastical opinion. What he was sought to do is to bring out the human side of Luther, as he says him-
self, "One of the most human of great men."
The second article on the programme was by Mrs. John C. Wrenshall, and was a review of Mr. Royal Cortissoz’s "Memoir and Study of John La Farge." John La Farge was the son of French parents, refugees from San Domingo,--and was born in New York in 1835. His parents brought with them inherited tastes and aptitudes that kept them apart from the push of commercial life. La Farge’s grandmother, for instance, opened a school for young ladies. The precocious boy fell in love of course, and knew the pangs of jealousy. He had an Alsatian nurse, a High-Church Anglican governess, and was brought up, and always remained, a Roman Catholic. So the formative influences of the boy’s character were varied. He owed much to
his father, who inculcated stability and clear cut knowledge. La Farge was early introduced to books, and--happy boy!-- had Voltaire, Bossuet, Fenelon, and Homer at the age of six! (?) Perhaps it was partly because of such influences that he remained mediaeval by instinct. He attended college at St. Mary’s, Emmetsburg, and was graduated there in 1853. Some study in a lawyer’s office in New York followed, and then he went abroad to Paris, where he had several kinsmen who were interested in Ark. He travelled through France and Belgium, and paid special attention to the ancient stained glass of the cathedrals and churches. Then he began to study Art seriously under Puvis de Chavannes and Couture, both of whom found him an apt pupil. He returned home before long, and again took up Law, yet turned to Art and the artists in New York. Elihu Vedder writes of
La Farge’s flowers, of the delicacy and subtlety of his painting. He travelled far in pursuing these nature studies, and contracted malaria in the swamps of Louisiana, from the effects of which he always suffered.
At twenty-five La Farge is described as being splendidly intellectual of head and face, but with eyes and mouth that were not quite in keeping. The Ego in him was intense, and he had a genius in avoiding things he did not wish to do. He hated to shake hands, and was wont to meet and greet strangers with a handkerchief in one hand and a paint brush in the other. Impenetrability characterized his expression, and in disposition he was aloof and secretive--often the mere outward seeming of a highly sensitive nature. His attitude of mind was un-American. "You reason too much," he used to say to his friend Henry Adams, who owed
him incalculably much. It was after the Civil War that recognition of his work came, and his value as a mural paint was acclaimed. And from this time on, in mural painting and decorating he took the lead. When, too, he began his optical studies, whose crowning glory was the rediscovery and invention of Opalline Glass. For this he received the Decoration of the Legion of Honor. Not content with awarding a medal of the first class to that piece of work(the Watson Memorial Window, Paris Exposition 1889), the artists of the Jury paid him this tribute in their report:--
"His work cannot be fully gauged here where a single window represents a name the most celebrated and widely known in our sister Republic. He is the great innovator, the inventor of opaline glass. He has created in all its details, an art unknown before,
an entirely new industry, and in a country without tradition he will be followed by thousands of pupils filled with the same respect for him that we have ourselves for our own masters. To share in this respect is the highest praise that we can give to this great artist."*
Painter, inventor and decorator, influenced as all artists must be by Japanese Art, he also studied French, Italian and Oriental methods, and dreamed of greater achievements still. Large minded rather than large hearted, beautiful as his work is there is in it an absence of the emotional. The unity of his subjects and of his color schemes make him an ideal mural painter. Many cities and buildings are happy in
the possession of his work. The museum at St. Louis has his "Wolf Charmer." Trinity Church, Boston, and Church of the Ascension, have mural pictures. And Baltimore has also a La Farge in the Court House.
He died in 1911. Mr. Cortissoz’s "Memoir and Study of La Farge" is a labor of love, and must be read to be appreciated.
The 739th Meeting. [Apr. 2, 1912]
The 739th meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held on Tuesday, April 2nd 1912. The meeting was called to order by the President, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall.
The minutes of the previous meeting were read by Miss Ellen Duvall, Secretary pro tem.
One of the papers on the programme of the previous Tuesday was upon La Farge, the artist. Mrs. Wrenshall suggested that the
verdict of the Jury awarding him a prize for his labors and discoveries in art glass work, be incorporated in the permanent records of the Club. With this addition the minutes were approved.
The programme for the day was given by the Committee on Fiction, Mrs. Percy M. Reese Chairman.
The first story was entitled "Double-Edged Diplomacy." It was written by Mrs. Harriet Lummis Smith. In her absence it was read by Mrs. Reese. It was a tale appropriate to an April day, for it breathed the freshness of the spring time, the scene being laid in a park, where Carroll, the hero, broken hearted because his Dorothy had refused him, was trying to kill the weary hours listening to the band concert, though his feelings were in gloomy contrast to the bright day and the gay and happy crowd. His morbid reflections were rudely disturbed. A woman
who was walking with her daughter, addressed him, and after some explanatory remarks, asked him to walk with the young Angeola, whose swain had deserted her to flirt with two sisters. The aristocratic young man was amused at the odd adventure, and played his part so well that the recreant Eddie was soon stung with jealousy. He left the sisters to demand that Angeola should leave her new found friend and accompany him.
But in the mean time an automobile part, among whom was the faithless Dorothy, had passed and she was horrified to see the elegant Carroll seated on a bench in friendly converse with a gum chewing girl evidently of factory type. Dorothy was so shocked that she sent Carroll a note the next day, asking him to call on her, as she wished to remonstrate with him. He, having profited by the lessons
in woman’s wile taught him by the ignorant, thought thoroughly feminine Angeola, recognized the symptoms in the cultured Dorothy. His broken heart was soon healed, and two weddings followed Mrs. Hammond’s diplomatic strategy.
The second number was "Aunt Betsy’s Views on Modern Pathology," by Mrs. Francis M. Butler. Mrs. Butler apologized for the sketch, saying it has been made ready on short notice. But no apology was necessary, for it was a most acceptable monologue, supposedly by an old negro Mammy, who expressed her views on various new fangled methods and ideas which did not appeal to her, nor seem equal to the old fashioned ways, especially along the lines of medical treatment. The old woman’s remarks about the plumbago in her back, and about one of her numerous offspring who was so
sadly afflicted that she fell in a fit whenever it was so much as suggest that she should go to work, were most amusing. The paper was written in a humorous vein, and showed an intimate knowledge of the colored sister.
The third story was called "The Runaway," and was by Miss Ellen Duvall. It was a tale of humble life, constructed with the admirable skill which distinguishes Miss Duvall’s work.
Old man Beckler was most unhappy in the home of his son whose wife’s sense of order and cleanliness were overdeveloped.
The picture was so clearly drawn that we could almost see the old man on that rainy Sunday afternoon, wandering about the immaculate house, that was so unhomelike to him, after all the years of real comfort that he has enjoyed with his lately deceased wife. As so often happens
in real life, a mere trifle brought the long strain to a focus that meant a change of conditions; the daughter-in-law’s irritated outburst about a fallen match aroused the old man to rebellion, and he fled to escape the petty tyranny that made his life a burden. He went to the house of an old friend, a widow, who was struggling to pay off a mortgage of which he was the owner. Romances among the middle aged sometimes develop as rapidly as in the fiery days of youth, and the old widower sought and found his heart’s ease when he saw that the widow was not averse to throwing a burnt match upon the floor herself. The Beckler family found the old man a few hours later, after a long and harrowing search, and their distress at the thought of the mortgage leaving the family was as evident as his satisfaction, when he coolly invited them to
his approaching wedding.
Mrs. Wrenshall thanked the Chairman and the members of the Committee for the charming afternoon the Club had enjoyed, and the meeting adjourned for a half hour’s social chat over the refreshments provided by the housekeeping Committee.
Nellie C. Williams,
Secretary pro tem.
The 740th Meeting. [April 9th, 1912]
The 740th meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held on Tuesday, April 9th, 1912, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding.
The minutes of the last meeting were read and approved.
Mrs. Wrenshall announced a series of lectures on "President Johnson and Posterity," to be given by James Schuler of Boston, in
the Donovan Room of the Johns Hopkins University, on April 15th, April 17th, April 19th, April 22nd, April 24th and April 26th. Mrs. Wrenshall also announced a lecture by Rev. George Trumbull Ladd of Yale, on "Philosophy and Life," to be given April 18th.
Mrs. Wrenshall also announced a Board Meeting for Wednesday April 10th, instead of the usual day, Thursday, and read a night letter from Mrs. Gallegher, saying that her doctor had forbidden her using her throught [throat], and as she had to give the paper herself, it would have to be omitted. It was entitled "Two Hours with a Prince of Poesy."
The first paper, "A Poet-Princess of the Iroquois," was given by Miss Victoria Elizabeth Gittings.
Miss E. Pauline Johnson, daughter of Emily S. Howes of England and an Iroquois chief, was born at Chiefswood in the Moskoko region,
Canada. Miss Gittings gave an interesting account of her early love for poetry, her loyalty to England and her identification with her father’s race. She quoted some of her poems, and gave extracts from others. Among them were "The Camper," "Wolverine," "The Bird’s Lullaby," "Fasting," "A Cry from an Indian Wife," "Overlooked," "Happy Hunting Grounds," and the lyrical and probably best known "The Song My Paddle Sings."
Mrs. Charles W. Lord read a paper on "Shrines of the Mighty." She described the huge piles of Stone in Denmark used to mark the resting place of Vikings; the English cemetery at Florence, where Mrs. Browning lies; the English cemetery outside Rome where Shelly and Keats are buried; Melrose Abbey; and many other interesting resting-places of English poets.
Then she brought us home to our own Concord, where modest stones mark the graves of many well known writers, to Sweet Auburn, where lie Longfellow, Holmes, Lowell, Everett and Hale; and finally to our Sidney Lanier in Greenmount, and Edgar Allen Poe in Westminster Churchyard.
Mrs. Lord then read a poem "The Bells of Venice."
Mrs. Wrenshall then said in reference to the closing remarks of Mrs. Lord, that the monument to Edgar Allan Poe would be erected in Baltimore within the next three years, as had been widely announced through the Press. The monument, raised through the efforts of the Edgar Allan Poe Memorial Association, organized on April 19th, 1907, in the Club rooms, 105 West Franklin street, in a meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore, to which a number of the Women’s Clubs of
Baltimore had been invited.
The members of the Board of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore were the incorporators of the new Association, and became the officers and directors of its Executive Board. During the five years lapsing since the organization, the two Boards have virtually remained identical.
Mrs. Wrenshall then alluded to the difficulties attending the movement to raise the monuments but she said that now they were almost entirely surmounted, the contract having been signed with the artist Sir Moses Ezekiel last July, we might believe that this tribute would be consumated [consummated] within the time named in the contact; namely, in 1914.
Miss Atwater gave a beautiful little descriptive poem called "On Eastern Shore."
"The Folk Songs of Labor" was read by Mrs. Frances M. Butler,
Mrs. Butler said the ancient [weavers, galley rowers?] and Greek peasants all had their working songs, and that the French vineyard songs, famous for their beautiful harmony are still heard. She described the Dairy song of the Highlands, the Mackerel Song, the Bee Song of the Sussex peasants, the English Harvest Songs, Irish Love Songs, the Russian Songs of Poverty and Oppression, the Tuscany and Silician [Sicilian] Folk Songs, the Malay Cradle Song, and the Songs of the Southern Negroes and the Juba Dance. In all these songs, she said, there were two dominant notes, the love of a man for a maid, and mother love.
Mrs. Wrenshall thanked the Chairman and members of the Committee for a delightful afternoon, and the meeting adjourned, the members lingering for a chat over the teacups.
Edith Howell Armor,
Secretary pro tem.
The 741st Meeting. [April 16th, 1912]
The 741st regular meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held April 16th, 1912, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding, and Mrs. Harriet Lummis Smith acting as Secretary. The minutes of the meeting of April 9th were read by Mrs. Armor. Mrs. Wrenshall announced the meeting of April 23rd, as the only one devoted to Maryland writers as a class, and so of a nature to appeal to outsiders as well as to our own circle.
The programme, which was a miscellaneous one, opened with a Celtic Folk Tale, "The Natural" by Mrs. Robert B. Bowie, who explained the term as used by the Irish peasants to mean half-witted. Long after his two brothers had departed to seek their fortunes, the Natural pleased with his father that he might be allowed to do the same, and at length
the old man yielded to his urgency.
Very early in his wanderings the Natural is put to the test, but preferring beauty to the glamor of silver and gold, he not only comes through the ordeal triumphantly, but frees a beautiful maiden from an enchanter’s spell, and is hailed as the wisest of men, since he has risen superior to the lure of gold. Like all good fairy stories, the tale ends with a wedding.
Mrs. Edith Howell Armor read a group of poems, "Wild Ivy," "The Arc of Genius," "Aftermath", and "Plenipotentiary." The first three drew brief expressive lessons of nature. The last verse left the audience smiling, as they were a supposed appeal to some poem to soften the editorial heart and win from him the desired cheque.
"China Collecting," an article by Mrs. Charles E. Sadtler was read
by Miss Cooper. Mrs. Sadtler began by comparing the chine collecting mania to a disease, both infectious and contagious, and without remedy. A number of interesting experiences of an enthusiastic collector were given, and as her quest led her into many highways and byways, she not unnaturally found much of interest in addition to the rare specimens she picked up at a bargain. Mrs. Sadtler described some of these finds with an enthusiasm which suggested that she herself might be a victim of the malady she had diagnosed so skilfully [skillfully].
Two poems, "Fireflies," and "To Nannie," were read by Miss Victoria Elizabeth Gittings. The first in graceful verse compared the twinkling fireflies to the lights upon the Christmas tree.
Mrs. Percy M. Reese read a story "Two Prescriptions," describing how two young people
suffering from a surfeit of the good things of this world, are sent by their physician to recuperate far from the maddening crowd. The tranquility of the hermit’s existance [existence], the young man is finding so beneficial for over-strained nerves, is broken one afternoon when the girl appears, disheveled and blood-stained, after a fall from her horse. The doctor’s prescription works admirably in both cases, but the cure is not complete till the engagement is announced.
Two poems by Mrs Reese, "The Dawn," and "April," completed the programme. The poem "April," was not only peculiarly appropriate to the season but was a very charming description of the maiden who sometimes laughs, sometimes weeps, and sometimes weeps and laughs together.
The 742nd Meeting. [April 23rd, 1912]
The 742nd regular meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held Tuesday, April 23rd, 1912, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding, and Mrs. Harriet Lummis Smith acting as secretary. Mrs. Wrenshall announced the musical programme for April 30th, and promised the Club members that it would be as delightful a feature as in former years.
The programme in charge of the Committee on the Authors and Artists of Maryland, was restricted to the work of Baltimore writers.
AS Mrs. Hill, who had the opening paper was detained, her place was taken by Mrs. Harriet Lummis Smith, who read a criticism of the writings of Mrs. Harry Snowden Stabler. Though Mr. Stabler’s first story appeared less than four years ago, he has become sufficiently well established to give
up a commercial life for a literary career. He has showed marked versatility, his negro dialect stories having attracted special attention in his fiction, while his special articles, along with marked popularity in style, have been characterized by a thoroughness of treatment which has won the cordial approval of experts.
Mrs. Samuel Alexander Hill discussed the work of Mrs. Thomas B. Newlin, better known to the reading public as "Anne [W]arwick." Mrs. Newlin is the youngest daughter of Bishop Cranston of Washington, and a number of years ago accompanied her father on an official tour through the Orient. She is a graduate of Goucher college where her literary work began. After graduation she devoted herself to a literary career, the first of her work to attract attention being a series of stories in Harper’s introduced by the story "Anne, Just a Plain Woman." Her first novel
"Compensation" is a story of Washington, in which public life and social intrigue are given about equal prominence.
Mrs. Wrenshall corrected the programme, before Mrs. Edith Howell Armor began the reading of her paper, explaining that the pseudonym of Miss Louise Malloy was "Josh" and not "Josiah Winks." Miss Malloy was the first newspaper woman in Maryland. She is well known as an editorial writer and dramatic critic for the "American," and is also responsible for a column of humorous matter under the pseudonym "Josh Winks." Miss Malloy is a dramatic writer, as well as a dramatic critic, having written a number of successful plays for well-known stars. She has also, by virtue of her position, been influential in bringing about some important reforms.
The establishment of the Juvenile Court is the result of her investigation of sending children to jail.
Miss Virginia Woodward Cloud spoke of the work of Lynn Roby Meekins, and also of that of Dr. William Harvey Woods. Miss Cloud mentioned the excellent editorial work done by Mr. Meekins on the periodicals with which he had been connected, notably "Harper’s Weekly," and the humor of his short stories. She described his novel "Adam Rush" as his best work, not in treatment for his treatment of the short story is admirable, but in depth and feeling. Miss Cloud followed her remarks by reading several entertaining selections from the work in question. In discussing Dr. Wood’s poems, said most of them which had appeared in "Scribner’s" magazine and had a distinct classic note. Among the longer poem Miss Cloud name the "Prayer of
Pan," and said there were a number of beautiful poems in the collection entitled "The Ante-Room."
Mrs. John C. Wrenshall introduced her paper on Mr. Allen S. Will by saying that it was a privilege to record his services to the State of Maryland. After graduating from college, and spending a short time teaching, Mr. Will embarked on a journalistic career, his connection with the "Sun" beginning in 1889. In 1905 he became city editor, a position which he still holds. In addition to his official duties he has found time for the study of American history, especially the early records of Maryland and Virginia, and was instrumental in bringing about the observance of Maryland Day. His book "World Crises in China" was written in five days. A history of the United States in the fire of
1904. His life of Cardinal Gibbons appearing on the Cardinal’s fiftieth anniversary, was favorably received both by the religions and secular press.
The 743rd Meeting. [April 30th, 1912]
The 743rd regular meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held Tuesday, April 30th, 1912. Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding. The programme was in charge of the Chariman of Music, Miss Lina Stiebler, and in spite of an unpleasant day, the room was well filled. For reasons of her own, Miss Stiebler changed slightly from the programme as printed, opening with two Bohemian folk songs effectively sung by Mrs. Toula. Miss [?Lavinia Janes] followed with a very sympathetic rendering of the Chopin "Preludes in G Major, and C Minor." Miss Bertha Myer sang "Calm as the Night," in place of "Love is the
Wind," and also gave [?name] "I’ve Something Sweet to Tell You." A Creole love song was rendered in spirited fashion by Mr. Thomas Randolph Turner, and Miss Beatrice Schartz, a diminutive soloist pleased those present by her rendition of one of Schuette’s valses. Miss Janes then played several popular selections from MacDowell and Nevin, and was followed by Miss Emily Diver, whose rendering of the aria "Voi che sapets" called out as an encore "Rose in the Bud."
Miss Stiebler surprised the audience by announcing a propos of Mr. Harry Karger’s solo "The Old King" that is was his only song, but he sang it with a spirit suggesting a repertoire. Miss Myer gave Green’s ballad "Sweet Eileen," and for the closing number on the programme, "[?Belass] It is Morn" was substituted for an Irish song "Moira, My Girl" sung by Mr. Turner. To give good measure Miss Stiebler added two extra numbers to a programme notable for excellence and variety, two Bohemian folk songs, a spinning song, and a love song; sung by Mrs. Toula, and a piano solo by little Miss Schwartz, whose rather remarkable display of technique resulted in an encore being demanded.
Mrs. Wrenshall invited the guests of the Club to remain for the usual cup of tea.
The 744th Meeting. [May 7th, 1912]
The 744th regular meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held Tuesday, May 7th, 1912, Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding. The minutes of the meeting of April 30th were read and approved after which the minutes of the meeting of March 17th were read by Mrs. Uhler.
Before beginning the business of the afternoon, Mrs. Wrenshall called attention to the movement to erect in Washington a monument to the heroes of the Titanic disaster, and read the appeal of the secretary of the organization formed to carry out the project.
The reports of the standing Committees were then given. The following Chairmen reported in person on the work of the year:--
Mrs. Wrenshall Markland,
For two Committees-- Art
Authors and Artists
Miss Lucy Latané,-- Current Criticism
Miss Virginia Woodward Cloud,-- The Drama
Mrs. Robert B. Bowie,-- Education
Mrs. Percy M. Reese,-- Fiction
Miss Nellie C. Williams,-- Foreign Language
Mrs. Harriet Lummis Smith,-- Letters and Autographs.
Mrs. Alan P. Smith [Ellen Anna Jones Smith],-- Literature of the Bible.
Because of Mrs. Uhler’s full report of the meeting of March 17th,
Mrs. Stabler, Chairman of the Committee of Unfamiliar Records, thought it unnecessary to repeat that report. The report of Mrs. Sidney Turner, Chairman of the Essay Committee, was read by Miss Cooper, and that of Miss Lizette Woodworth Reese, Chairman of the Committee on Poetry, by Mrs. Uhler. Mrs. Wrenshall reported for the Committee on Colonial and Revolutionary History, as Mrs. Hill was ill at the time the programme was prepared; and also for the Musical programme of April 30th; the Twelfth Night Entertainment, and a Miscellaneous programme. She also referred to the work of the House Committee, of which Mrs. William M. Powell is Chairman. No report was given for the Foreign Travel Committee, Mrs. Lord being absent.
The President assigned dates for next year to the Chairman of the various Committees, at the conclusion of each report.
The Club then proceeded to nominate officers for the ensuing year, and three Board members to fill vacancies occasioned by expiration of the terms of Mrs. Powell, Miss Cooper, and Mrs. Sidney Turner. The Committee in charge were Miss Lillie Schnauffer, who with Miss Elizabeth Nicholas, and Mrs. Edward Stabler, represented the Club, and Mrs Uhler and Mrs. Harriet Lummis Smith, representing the Board.
The Club nominated the former officers and directors, those receiving the scattering votes requesting that their names be withdrawn.
The 745th Meeting. [May 14th, 1912]
The 745th regular meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore was held Tuesday, May 14th, 1912; Mrs. John C. Wrenshall presiding. The minutes of the meet-
ing of May 7th were read and approved. Mrs Wrenshall again called the attention of the Club to contributions for the proposed memorial to the heroes of the Titanic disastor [disaster], contributors being asked for one dollar only in order that the memorial may have a really popular significance. Mrs. Wrenshall read the published letter of Mrs. E. M. Read, emphasizing the thought that such a memorial would act as a protest against criminal disregard of the safety of human life. Mrs. Wrenshall suggested that it would be well for the contributions of Club members to be sent together, and asked that such as wished could support the movement, and bring the contributions to the Treasurer, Miss Elizabeth Mullin, Tuesday May 21st the closing meeting of the Club for the year.
The Club then proceeded to
the election of officers, Mrs Wrenshall, on account of indisposition calling Mrs. Alan P. Smith [Ellen Anna Jones Smith] to the Chair. Mrs. Fayerweather was appointed by the Chair to take the place of MRs. Edward Stabler on the Committee in elections. Mrs. Robert Bowie and Miss Harriet Marine were appointed to audit the report of the Treasurer. The results of the election as announced by Miss Schnauffer was as follows:--
President -- Mrs. John C. Wrenshall,
1st Vice-President -- Mrs. Alan P. Smith,
2nd " " -- Mrs. S. A. Hill,
Recording Secretary -- Miss Lydia Crane
Corresponding " -- Mrs. P. D. Uhler,
Treasurer -- Miss E. L. Mullin
Mrs. William Powell,
Mrs. Sidney Turner,
The Treasurer report a balance in the treasury of $334.25,
after meeting all expenses for the year.
At the adjournment of the meeting, tea was served to the members present.
The 746 Meeting [May 21st, 1912]
The closing meeting of the Woman’s Literary Club of Baltimore for the season of 1911-1912, was held Tuesday, May 21st, 1912, with a good attendance. After approving the minutes for the meeting of May 14th, 1912, the President spoke again of contributions to the Titanic Memorial fund, and asked that such as wished to be represented in the undertaking, hand their contributions to the Treasurer, Miss Mullin.
Mrs. Wrenshall announced that during the year Miss Emily A. Lance had been elected to honorary membership, and Mrs. Charles T. Mason to non-resi
dent membership. Mrs. Wrenshall who gave the manes of the following additions to the Club during the year:--
Miss Lilian Sheppard,
Mrs. William Butler,
Mrs. William Gatchel,
Miss Mary Stewart Reid,
Mrs. William Moore,
Mrs. J. I. Copeland,
Mrs. O. G. Martenet,
At the conclusion of the announcements an excellent musical programme, under the direction of Miss Lina Stiebler, was given. The programme consisted of fifteen numbers, largely vocal selections, though several piano selection were given by one of the Club’s members, Miss Mary Stewart Reid, and a cello solo by Miss Ethel [?Lee] was also especially pleasing. At the conclusion of the programme the President thanked Miss Stiebler, and the artists who had
contributed to our pleasure on more than one occasion, her words calling out the endorsement of applause from the members present.
In the brief address, a feature of the closing meeting, Mrs. Wrenshall characterized the twenty-second year of the Club as wonderfully successful, the meetings being characterized by variety and interest. She mentioned the high grade of work done by all the committees, with special reference to the Committee on Translations, and the Fiction Committee; and commented on the fact that the Essay Committee, though its regular routine had been broken by sickness, had filled its dates most acceptably. Mrs. Wrenshall at the conclusion of her remarks read the pledge of the club, to which all members subscribe, and asked
that the new members sign it.
The Club was then declared adjourned till October 15th, 1912. Refreshments were served Club members and their guests at the conclusion of the programme.
[END OF SEASON]
 Perhaps the origin of the Baltimore Poe-Toaster tradition?
 Here spelled "Kayyam."
 Corrected from "Hemtz’s."
 Corrected from "Flag."
 Corrected from "Arnond."
 Spelled "Sydney" in the original.
 A note at the end of the page reads: "*Note: La Farge’s inspiration is drawn from Chartres the shrine of stained glass.-
Perhaps La Saint Chapelle.