Interesting: Addresses by Several of the Prominent Guests, Both from at Home and Abroad
The second annual Ladies’ Night of the Norwood Business Association, which was celebrated in Masonic and Village Halls on Tuesday night, was one of the most brilliant banquets ever given in Norwood. At seven o’clock the guests began to assemble and were received in Masonic Hall by Hon. Warren E. Locke, Messrs. E. J. Sliattuck, Françis Donne, W. F. Tilton, G. H. Batoman, H. \V. Barrett, F. E. Everett, F. L. Fisher and H. M. Plimpton. Shortly before eight o’clock, about 100 of the guests having arrived, all repaired to Village Hall, where a sumptuous feast had been spread by Caterer N. A. Dill.
During the supper, a number of beautiful selections were rendered by Colburn’s orchestra. The hall had been elaborately decorated with ferns, palms, Eulalia, spiræa, new French cannas, marguerites, and hydrangeas from the conservatories of W. A. Talbot, while pinks in profu6ion adorned the tables, although no other embellishment was needed than the beautiful and exquisitely gowned ladies.
When the good things had been disposed of Mr. J. S. Cushing, president of the association, in his opening remarks said he did not know how he was to fill up the eight minutes allotted to him; that he had spent all the afternoon casting about for a subject on which to discourse, and had at last found one which he deemed suitable for tho occasion: “Organisation is the basis of civilization.” The choosing of his topic was as far as lie had gotten, however, and he would let those who were to follow him enlarge upon it. There was one question which he thought many would expect him to answer: “What is the object of the Norwood Business Association?” That, however, would be ably answered by the secretary later in the evening. In the absence of the President of the United States, he would now introduce Hon. Winslow Warren, Collector of the Port of Boston.
Mr. Warren said, “I have not come here tonight with a set speech, as has President Cushing, but I have come simply to meet my friends and neighbors. During a year of campaigns, I have learned that it is the duty of every man in public office to attend such occasions as this, and you can imagine my enthusiasm when I learned that I was to speak tonight. I came to Dedham just before Norwood left the old homestead—l do not know that the two circumstances had anything to do with each other. One question that has arisen in my mind since then is, Why did Norwood separate itself from Dedham? I have come to the conclusion that it was not because it loved Dedham less, but because it loved Norwood more. Since that separation, Norwood has not had the advantage of the good, old-fashioned New England town meeting, where questions wore settled by numbers rather than merit. Lawsuits and the most serious questions were settled by town meeting, and satisfactorily, too. But the larger towns have outgrown that now, and settle their disputes in different ways. It gives me extreme pleasure to see the great growth of Nor. wood and the thrift and spirit of its citizens, ami I congratulate you all on your success.
A man striving in a community must learn to be patient. That was the main point in the character of Washington and contributed more than anything else to carry through the country. And it was the samo with Lincoln, his quiet perseverance overcoming everything. It is the quiet citizen who helps most to build up a community.
It is, moreover, the duty of every man to give a part of his time to public questions. The people themselves must take them in hand and solve them. The greatest question of the day is whether America is honest or not. That can be answered by every man in Norwood. The main thing is whether a man believes in his party, be he a firm Democrat or a staunch Republican. As the old New England motto says: “Be sure you’re right and then go ahead; never mind where you land.’’ People are losing their hard-headedness, losing that horse sense, the greatest element of the New England character. That is what settled all the country around here. The old citizen was never afraid to differ from another when he knew he was right.
We come now to the basis of civilization, and that brings us around to the Norwood Business Association. One can’t remain on the right basis unless he has the right qualities and is ready to sacrifice his time for the benefit of others. Some men do not take an interest in the affairs of the community; they say they do not have time to go to town meeting. But it is the duty of every citizen to enter into the interests of his town, and that is what makes an organization! like the Norwood Business Association.
Mr. Warren’s speech was very enthusiastically received throughout, and he retired amid great applause. Two very pleasing selections were then given by the quartette, Messrs. E. W. Jewett, H. T. Satterlee, Dr. Lyman F. Bigelow and Chas. F. McIlvaine.
The next toast, “The Commonwealth of Massachusetts,” was responded to by Mr. Henry A.’Thomas. The substance of his speech was as follows:
“There is no need to defend Massachusetts, for she speaks for herself. Where can’t there be a more delightful spot than the Public Gardens in Boston? or where can be found more beautiful buildings than some there, such as Trinity church, with its great steeple towering to heaven? We have reason to be proud of Massachusetts. See what Massachusetts men and Massachusetts women have done for their state and country. They have wrought a change throughout, and such a gathering as this is the result. Here we can learn what it is to be a good citizen of such a community. Women understand as much as some men about the questions of the day. It is not necessary to flatter them and fawn upon them longer. We must improve our community. It cannot stand still. It must either go ahead or go back, and we want the best things. We do not want the crumbs, but the feast. What we need are heroes of humanity to loop on good works and organizations. Great men and women combined can help on the good deeds, and Massachusetts puts her foot down and says she is with us for the best. America is the first nation and Massachusetts must be in the front.”
Mr. Thomas’s address was received with well recieved enthusiasm. It was followed by two beautiful soprano solos by Miss Elizabeth White, and then Hon. Roberts Gray was introduced to answer the toast of “Norfolk County.
He thanked the Association for their invitation to him and congratulated them on the good of the organization, and the successful men that it turned out. A stranger could not but be struck by the well kept streets and general appearance of neatness in the town. They might not be favorably struck by the Rail Road Stations, but in all probability, better ones will be built soon. He wished particularly to congratulate the ladies now, as at all times. Having “made himself solid,” as lie himself expressed it, with the fair members of the audience, Mr. Gray closed his remarks.
Miss Sally Joy White, editor of the Woman’s Department of the Boston Herald, then made a few comments, having been requested to do so but a few moments before. She said:
“I came here with the expectation that this would be one of the rare occasions when I would be permitted to hold my tongue, but 1 see is not to be so. I am particularly glad to be a hero now, as it is usually the case in such organizations that the men have met by themselves, and the women have not been called in either as guests or helpers. But the time may come when it will be the men who are called in as helpers. Women are becoming more important every day. They will soon be called upon to assist in the political side as .well as in the domestic. Perhaps the reason for Norwood leaving Dedham was that it did not like the conservative spirit of the town. People are being brought in and their minds enlarged with local, state and national questions, and at last, they become good citizens, the women as well as the men. I do not speak from the Woman’s Suffrage point of view; everyone acknowledges that they are coming to be acquainted more and more with the way things should go, They are coming into the professions and the teaching of the young is put almost entirely into their hands. They are also coming into government. I am glad to see the Norwood men bringing In the women as they arc.”
Mrs. Erwin A. Bigelow and Mrs. E. P. Moreland sang a duet which received a hearty encore, to which they kindly responded.
Rev. Wm. B. Eddy then delivered an address, the gist of which was as follows:
“As a town, we are fast learning the secret of progress and power. The vendetta of blood and opinions passes down through succeeding generations The enmities, the politics and the religion of the father are those of the son. But Norwood is already removing the burden of traditions and inherited prejudices. In the past year, we have learned much of the important lesson of development which is adaptation to the conditions of the hour. We have a just pride in our community. We are proud of the old Commonwealth with its illustrious traditions. Wc are proud of Norwood. We have much the same spirit of the Norwood man who some years ago addressed a Sunday school picnic in another town. Last year he went again and spoke to the same Sunday school. “Ob,” said he, “when I was here before, there was such a dear little flaxen-haired boy sat- over there; lie was so good, so studious, the finest little boy I ever saw; he always came to Sunday school; he always knew’ his catechism; ho never was naughty. Children, where do you suppose he now?” “In heaven,” they all shouted. “Oh, no, children, better than that; he is a type-setter of the Norwood Press.”
Norwood is no longer looked upon as a country town. The recruits from the country arc marching to us. The states to the north are no longer able to gratify the ambitions of their youth. Norwood offers a wholesome retreat to the uneasy youth and an opportunity to reduce the marriageable list one by one.”
Mr. Eddy then spoke of some of the inducements which Norwood offers as a place of business and residence. Its location, its unexcelled water-power facilities, (the Neponset), its railroads, its railway shanties (depots), its energetic park commission, etc.
“Norwood is a progressive town. The broad, fraternal spirit is fast gaining headway. The man of one political persuasion is finding some good in the man of another political mind. So in our churches; liberality of feeling is at the front. All must realize that there is only one salvation for all people, whatever the individual method of worship. The Congregational 1st discovers the need of something more than creed. The Baptist sees that a man can be spiritually clean without being immersed. And the so-called liberal churchman perceives the responsibility of man respecting his welfare and the general need of conversion. And all churches must agree in the one faith, one hope, one baptism, one God, one Christ, one spirit of love. In a community of our intelligence narrowness should have no existence. All organizations which bear the name of Christ should bear the marks of Christian Catholicity and fellowship. There is only one shepherd and one fold.”
Then Mr. Eddy spoke of order inducements offered by Norwood, referring to the field drivers—a happy set of men, comprising many professions. Some skilled in material medical schools, the handsome schoolteachers (some of them), the tanners that outwit even Simon in business ability; the Norwood ink that is the means of communicating news to countless homes, not only in the United States, but in many other countries.
Norwood bears the promise of becoming a greater place than it now is. Here Mr. Eddy told the story of an African missionary who went as a bachelor. The New England Missionary Society thought he would be much more useful if he had a wife, and so sent one ou to him. The climate did not agree with her and she died. The society sent another who died. Finally, a spinster from the Berkshire hills was selected, and as the missionary saw the ship approach and only one female on deck, he dropped his glasses and said: “The ways of Providence are mysterious and past finding out. Red hair— and for the third time”
Over the Norwood Press floats a red flag. It has withstood our climate for some months. Let us not wait for its decease before we bring to our town the second and third emblems of the enterprising spirit of the Norwood Business Association.
Miss White kindly consented to giro another selection, after which Rev. Geo. Hill, Secretary of the Association gave a short history of the organization and gave an idea of its purposes:
The Norwood Business Association was organized a little over a year and has over 80 members. The purpose is to discuss topics of interest and thrift and such as will promote the welfare of the town, and things discussed by the association usually go into the town warrant, although it is not intended to influence town meeting.
Two years ago no one had heard of Norwood, now you can hardly meet a man in Boston who has not heard of it. The association helped to dedicate the Norwood Press, and has also relieved the debt of the town to a considerable degree. It is things of this kind that make the town, and the work of the Norwood Business Association is towards that end.
The thing that I particularly want to bring before the people tonight is the need of some place where men can drop in to spend the evening, some place a little better than the street. A building comprising a reading room, gymnasium, recreation room and a room where men can smoke and talk, instead of loitering on the street. It is about impossible to estimate the amount of good that such a place would do. I remember an iv Lance where a temperance saloon was formed. It had all the attachments of a saloon, with liquor left out. The Cooper Institute of New York is an example, of what we need here.
“When Peter Cooper came to New York young and lonesome he said that if he ever became wealthy he would build some such building, and the institution which bears his name is the result. It is important that wc should have some place more attractive than the street. In starting a place of this kind we must have help front the women. Mrs Liyermorc says ‘Woman is not the better half, but the other half.’ Wc wish to get them to act as the other half in this case and assist.in getting such a building.
Mr. Hill illustrated his discourse with | a number of his witty stories which were all very much enjoyed. He was followed by a few remarks from Pcs. Cushing, who thanked the assembly for their attendance and attention, and announced that the Ladles’ Night next year would probably be earler in the season so as to avoid the heat
A selection was then given by the quartette, after which the Hall was cleared of the tables, and dancing was indulged in until midnight, when the guests said their good-nights. It was universally conceded that a most entertaining and profitable evening had been passed, and all proffered their heartiest congratulations and best wishes to the Norwood Business Association.
Among the many present were: Hon. Winslow Warren, Hon. Robt- S. Gray Henry A. Thomas, Mrs. Sally Joy White, Mrs. E. P. Moreland, Hon. Warren E. Locke, Dr. F. W. Dodge, Messrs. George Hill, Walter Berwick, Chas. Locke, E.W. Jewett, Robert Scavcr, 11. T. Satterlce, C. F. Mcllvaine; the following gentlemen and their wives: J. 5. Cushing, Edyar L. Bigelow, J. A. Hartshorn, Lewis Day, Frank A. Fales, Dr. Lyman F. Bigelow, W. H. Bigelow, Dr. F. S. Bastón, Gco.W, Gay, Rev. Wm. B. Eddy, F. W. Talbot. G. E. Sanborn, G. II. Bateman, F. L Fisher, F. O. Winslow, H. M. Plimpton] Geo. S. Winslow, Francis Doane, Geo, F. Willett, C. E. Pond, H. W. Barrett; M.JI. Howard, H. F. Walker, F- A. Morrill, A. N. Reynolds, E. A. Bigelow, Dr. E. C. 2CorU»i, G. F. Bagley, S. A. Coir.oy; and Misses Elizabeth White, Julia Bancroft, Ray Hartsliorne, Gertrude Bigelow, Clara Rich, Orra Guild, Susie Wheelock, Florence Berwick.
(All articles were originally published in the Norwood Messenger unless otherwise noted)