DEED OF CONVEYANCE,
Know all men by these presents, that I, Samuel E. Sawyer, of Gloucester, County of Essex and Commonwealth of Massachusetts, in consideration of one dollar, paid by John James Babson, Charles H. Hildreth, Allan Rogers, Hiram Rich, Joseph 0. Procter, Joseph L. Stevens and Edward H. Haskell, trustees, all residents of said Gloucester, the receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged, do hereby give, grant, bargain, sell, and convey, unto the said Babson, Hildreth, Rogers, Rich, Procter, Stevens and Haskell, who are appointed my trustees, and have accepted the trust to act under the authority herein given, with full power of substitution to fill any vacancies occasioned by death or otherwise, in order that this trust shall be made perpetual:
A certain tract or parcel of land, with the buildings thereon, situate on the corner of Middle street and Dale avenue in said Gloucester, as described by a deed of conveyance to Samuel E. Sawyer by William A. Pew, dated January twentyeighth, A. D. eighteen hundred and eightyfour, and recorded in the Essex Registry of Deeds, Southern District, February first, 1884, Book 1124, Leaf 10, containing (29,944 feet) twentynine thousand nine hundred and fortyfour feet of land, more or less; a full description of the same may be found in said deed, to which reference may be had.
This property is given to my trustees for the benefit, in trust, of the Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library; a corporation duly established by the laws of said Commonwealth and located at said Gloucester, for the purposes and uses set forth in said act of incorporation.
I also give to my said trustees in trust, any endowment fund or funds now held by or that may hereafter be given to said corporation, for the purposes expressed in said act of incorporation, which shall be transferred to said trustees, and survivors of them, or to those appointed, as herein provided, to be carefully and ,safely invested, and the income only to be paid over to said corporation as often as the same may be collected, to be appropriated by the directors of said institution for the purchasing of books, or other literature, to keep the buildings and premises always in good repair and condition and for the adornment and general support of the Institution.
No part of the real estate nor the personal property shall be alienated, but they shall be held sacredly in trust and in perpetuity.
Touching the power of substitution and appointment by the surviving trustees, to fill the vacancies occasioned by death, resignation, or otherwise, it shall be the duty of the survivors to keep the number of trustees always promptly at seven, but the surviving members for the time being shall execute and discharge the duties until the vacancies are filled, and in order to fill such vacancies, the appointment of some suitable person or persons shall be made by vote of a majority of the surviving trustees, and that in the new trustee or trustees so appointed, shall be vested the same powers, rights and interest in the trust property as is now possessed by the present members of the board of trustees, and subject to the same duties and liabilities.
Whenever an appointment is made to fill a vacancy or vacancies, the surviving trustees, or a majority of them, shall by a writing signed and sealed by them, be made in duplicate, and one of said writings appointing such trustee or trustees shall within five days after such appointment be filed by said trustees with the clerk of said corporation and recorded.
To have and to hold the granted premises, together with an endowment fund, with all the privileges and appurtenances thereto belonging, to the said Babson, Hildreth, Rogers, Rich, Procter, Stevens and Haskell,Trustees, and their heirs and assigns, to their own use and behoof forever, but in trust, nevertheless, for the following purposes, namely:
The object of the purchase and conveyance of the property herein named to my said trustees and their successors in the office is for the purpose of carrying out a cherished plan long held in abeyance, of establishing a permanent home for the Institution known as the Gloucester. Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library, which shall be devoted to the use of the citizens of Gloucester especially, and to strangers so far as may be considered advisable by a majority of the Board of Directors, who shall have the power to make the ByLaws and Rules for the government of the corporation.
The act of incorporation states briefly "That the object of the Institution is for the purpose of maintaining a Free Library, Lectures, Collections in Natural History, Works of Art, and the promotion of intellectual culture generally, which I heartily endorse and approve."
And I hereby for myself and my heirs, executors and administrators, covenant with the grantees and their heirs and assigns that I am lawfully seized in fee simple of the granted premises, that they are free from all encumbrances, that I have good right to sell and convey the same as aforesaid; and that I will and my heirs, excutors and administrators shall warrant and defend the same to the grantees and their heirs and assigns forever against the lawful claims and demands of all persons.
And for the consideration aforesaid I, Abby I. Sawyer wife of the said Samuel E. Sawyer, do hereby release unto the grantees and their heirs and assigns all right of to both dower and homestead in the granted premises.
In witness whereof we the said Samuel E. Sawyer and Abby I. Sawyer, wife of said Samuel E. Sawyer hereunto set our hands and seals this twentysixth day of April in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and eightyfour.
(s'gd)SAMUEL E. SAWYER. [L. s.]
(s'gd)ABBY I. SAWYER. [L. s.]
Signed and sealed in the presence of
(s'gd)EDWARD DOLLIVER, (s'gd)JOHN S. THOMPSON, (s'gd)SAMUEL A. STACY.
COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS.
ESSEX, SS. GLOUCESTER, April 26, 1884.
Then personally appeared the above named Samuel E. Sawyer, and acknowledged the foregoing instrument to be his free act and deed before me.
(s ed)CHARLES P. THOMPSON,
Justice of the Peace.
SALEM, April 28, 1884.
At eight o'clock and twenty minutes, A. M. received and entered with Essex Deeds, So. Dist. Libro 1127 Folio, 223.
Attest: CHARLES S. OSGOOD,
ENDOWMENT NOTE. $20,000
GLOUCESTER, July 1, 1884.
On demand I promise to pay to the order of the Board of Trustees of the Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library and their successors in office, the sum of Twenty Thousand Dollars, value received, with interest at the rate of six per cent. per annum, payable semiannually.
SAMUEL E. SAWYER.
Witness, JOHN S. THOMSON.
ARTICLES FROM THE PRESS
RELATING TO THE SAWYER FREE LIBRARY PREVIOUS
TO THE DEDICATION.
CAPE ANN BULLETIN, JAN. 23, 1884.
The long declared purpose of the founder of this institution, who has been its steadfast supporter through many vicissitudes of fire and removal, to give it a fit and lasting home, became an accomplished fact in the news current among many of our citizens on Thursday evening last, that Mr. Samuel E. Sawyer had that day purchased for it the William A. Pew estate for $20,000. Commanding in situation, centrally located, open on every side to pure air and unobstructed light, tasteful in its appointments, with spacious and attractive grounds and fine surroundings, this valuable property excels for this purpose all others in the city. It would be a monument to one's love of education and unchangeable fondness for his native place, of which any man may well be proud.
The first owner of the mansion was Thomas Sanders, one of the notable citizens of his day. The merchant's word to build staunch and strong was heeded. The worthy master's heart was in his work. With greatest care he chose timber of chestnut, and elm, and oak,' for the ' raising,' that, from the journalof Parson Chandler, minister of the church near by, took place July 10, 1764. Such an event, always important in those days, must have attracted an unusual attendance at the beginning of by far the finest house in all the town.
It passed next into the possession of John Beach, its walls, doubtless, echoing often with his traditional revels; from the Beach family to Samuel Calder; a year later, to Thomas W. Penhallow; and in 1827 to Dr. William Ferson, a name still held in honored remembrance. His occupancy is familiar to many yet living, though widely scattered, who have pleasant memories of the strains of the viol and the pattering of merry feet in the roomy chambers and spacious halls.
In 1849, it was bought by Madam Davidson, subsequently passing by devise to Dr. Herman E. Davidson, her son. Each occupant changed the mansion more or less, to suit his own convenience, or fancy. After the considerable alterations by Capt. Beach, the most important were made by Mr. Pew, who bought it in 1878 of Dr. Davidson, and, while beautifying house and grounds, fitted it by thorough and complete repairs for another century of useful service.
Just thirty years ago a movement was going on for the creation of the library that is to become the next occupant. Stimulated by repeated offers previously made by Mr. Sawyer, a public meeting was held on Feb. 6th, 1854. A library of goodly size and quality was established in connection with the Gloucester Lyceum. It was supported by a small annual fee and the profits arising from the Lyceum lectures. Both before and after the disastrous fire of 1864, Mr. Sawyer contributed handsornely to its increase and support.
In 1871, at the earnest request of Hon. John J. Babson, than whom no better friend of education resides on the Cape, the library was made free, free as any library can be made and perpetuate its existence. But this desirable result was reached only by the zealous cooperation of Mr. Sawyer, who gave a fund of $10,000, the income of which should be devoted to this purpose. For this munificent deed the directors asked his consent to have the library called by his name. This was done at the time, and in the ensuing year it became part of the corporate title. Finding the income still insufficient, Mr. Sawyer subsequently increased the fund by an additional gift of five thousand dollars.
In 1874 the City Government required the library to vacate the commodious rooms furnished by the Selectmen in the new Town Hall, after the brief occupancy of two years. After a year's waiting, its present accommodations were obtained by the kindly interest of the directors of the Cape Ann Bank. More money being needed to defray the increased expenses, the emergency was promptly met by Mt. Sawyer in the semiannual payment of the interest of still another five thousand dollars.
But these rooms were taken only for temporary occupancy. It had been Mr. Sawyer's intention to have a home for the library. Accordingly, when the disposal of the Davidson estate was mentioned a few years ago negotiations were entered into, but not completed in consequence of Mr. Sawyer's previous arrangements to go abroad. The failure to acquire this property at that time was to him a source of regret and disappointment. During his absence a sale of it was made to Mr. Pew. This gentleman having recently offerd it to Mr. Sawyer, he has availed himself promptly of the opportunity, and has generously bought this elegant estate for the benefit of his fellow citizens and the many strangers who frequent our shores, as the permanent home of the Sawyer Free Library.
Wise is he who becomes the almoner of his own bounty. Fortunate the man, who sowing good seed in his lifetime, can watch its growth, and is privileged to see others enjoy the shade, and partake of the fruit of trees his own hands have planted.
BOSTON HERALD, JAN. 25, 1884.
The Sawyer Free Library of Gloucester has at length been given a suitable and permanent home by the generous purchase for it, by Samuel E. Sawyer, of the William A. Pew estate at a cost of $20,000. This valuable property is well known to be superior for the purpose to all others in Gloucester. It is a staunch and strong old mansion, erected by Thomas Saunders, the raising taking place in 1764. Having passed through the hands of a number of owners and occupants, it has now been purchased by Mr. Sawyer and generously given to the uses of the Library forever. The Library was made free in 1871. Mr. Sawyer at that time contributing a fund of $10,000, the income of which was to be devoted to its support. The directors of the Library, for this noble deed, obtained his consent to have it adopt his name. He afterwards added five thousand dollars to the original gift. The Library has been compelled to move a number of times, on one of which occasions Mr. Sawyer added another $5000 to his other gifts. He has now given it a home, and a worthy one, forever. He is to be envied the satisfaction he must feel for the remainder of his life in contemplating the work of beneficence he has so nobly performed.
CAPE ANN BULLETIN, APRIL 30, 1884.
Mr. Samuel E. Sawyer has conveyed to John James Babson, Charles H. Hildreth, Allan Rogers, Hiram Rich, Joseph O. Procter, Joseph L. Stevens, Edward H. Haskell, all residents of said Gloucester, trustees, the property on Middle street and Dale avenue, recently purchased of Mr. William A. Pew for the purpose of "establishing a permanent home for the free library, to be devoted to the use of the citizens of Gloucester, and to visitors and transient residents, so far as may be considered advisable. The trust deed refers briefly to the act of incorporation, and the object of the institution as stated therein, viz. to maintain a free library, lectures, collections in Natural History, Works of Art, and the promotion of intellectual culture generally; all of which the donor cordially endorses and approves. No part of the real estate, nor the personal property shall be alienated, but shall be held sacredly in trust and perpetuity.
The lot conveyed by Mr. Sawyer contains 29,944 feet. Any endowment funds which he has given or may hereafter give, are to be transferred and conveyed to said trustees.
The location, prospective advantages, and intrinsic value of this fine estate are worthy of the object to which it is to be devoted and of the generosity of its donor.
CAPE ANN BULLETIN, APRIL 30, 1884.
This institution was founded, we believe, in 1830, and was for many years quite a success, and afforded our citizens almost the only opportunity to hear the distinguished men of the day. It owned an extensive electrical and chemical apparatus, and had frequent lectures illustrated by experiments, many of these causing great amusement, especially when they were unsuccessful, but much to the chagrin, sometimes, of the lecturers, who said, " When I do so and so you will see so and so," which the audience did not always see. Afterwards a loud report, and a villanous smell of chemicals, when least expected, would occur, greatly to the affright of the audience, and to the astonishment of the operator. The income of the Lyceum was never much more than $200 annually, and frequently less, the season tickets for gentlemen being one dollar, for ladies and minors fifty cents; the price paid for lectures clear of the stage fare, and board over night here, was ten dollars, and for this small sum, the citizens of Gloucester were favored with lectures from such men as Rufus Choate, Dr. J. V. C. Smith, Wendell Phillips, R. W. Emerson, Edward Everett, Charles W. Upham, Stephen C. Phillips, B. B. Thatcher, Alexander H. Everett, Theodore Parker, Edwin P. Whipple and many others. Various citizens of Gloucester also made their first appearance on any rostrum before the Gloucester Lyceum, among those were William Parsons, John J. Babson, Dr. Ferson, Dr. Dale, and the various clergymen of the town. The lectures were delivered in Union Hall, where the Collins School House now stands, which was then considered a fine audience room, but would not seat more than three hundred persons. This Lyceum was sustained quite respectably for many years on a very small income, an equal amount being frequently paid for one lecture in later times. Rev. Dr. E. H. Chapin received one hundred dollars for each lecture for years. The lectures brought together once a fortnight the leading people of the then small town, and was a pleasant social reunion of friends, and the ladies sometimes brought their knitting work with them. Debates and discussions were frequently held on the leading questions of the day, and the first President in announcing a debate one evening unfortunately said, "On next Wednesday evening there will be a lecture on debates." The Gloucester Institute was for some time a rival to the Gloucester Lyceum, and debates and lectures were held in the Unitarian vestry; but it only existed a short period. The present Sawyer Free Library is the only memento of the Gloucester Lyceum existing here at the present time, of this old, honored institution, which afforded for so many years valuable instruction and often amusement to our citizens.
The elegant estate of Mr. Pew has within a few days been transferred by Samuel E. Sawyer, the generous donor, to the trustees, and the old " Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library" will be perpetuated, we hope, to do a truly elevating and noble work in this community for many years.
CAPE ANN BULLETIN, MAY 7, 1884.
I have been more than pleased with the manifestatations of generosity from our townsman, Samuel E. Sawyer, Esq., in so liberally providing for the support and usefulness of the Sawyer Free Library. That generosity on his part will be more and more appreciated as the years roll by, and the princely distributer of wealth for the good of our city, will be held in still greater regard as this institution broadens and increas es in usefulness, in the future. The same may be said of Mr. Sawyer's other good deeds and beneficent gifts, in fact, it seems to be his aim to so dispose of his fortune that his good works shall live after him, and he is certainly deserving of commendation for his laudable ambition. Mr. Sawyer must enjoy a feeling of satisfaction and pleasure in knowing that he has done well, and having started in the good work, he is not the man to rest from his labors so long as life and fortune last.
By last week's Bulletin, I learn that the object of the institution for which Mr. Sawyer has done so much and which bears his name, is to maintain a free library, lectures, collections of natural history, works of art, and the promotion of intellectual culture generally; a worthy object, certainly, and one in which every citizen should take an interest. As one who has known and appreciated the benefits of this institution, I wish to see still further progress, and hope that the next move in this direction will be a provision by which the Cape Ann Scientific and Literary Association shall have a home with the Sawyer Free Library, and the advantages of its extensive and valuable miscellaneous collections, now filling some halfdozen large cabinets, may be of more benefit to our citizens in connection therewith. If Mr. Sawyer so wills it, I feel sure that the result would prove highly satisfactory to all parties interested. The meetings of the subsections of the Scientific and Literary Association for study and advancement in literary, musical and other branches of knowledge, would be much more profitable and pleasant if held in the same building with the library, where the full benefit of its large stores of valuable books could be made available. In many ways this combination would be advantageous, and as a citizen who takes an interest in such matters, and also appreciates the spirit of our most generous townsman, in freely spending his money for the benefit of others, I hope this subject will be taken into consideration, and some movement made toward a consummation of this much to be desired end. Correspondent.
CAPE ANN BULLETIN, MAY 14, 1884.
The adjourned meeting of the Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library Corporation was held on Monday evening. Mr. Sawyer's deed of trust of the Pew estate was presented, and acknowledgment of his gift was voted; a committee on dedicatory exercises was appointed; William Williams, Esq., presented, on behalf of Mr. John Curtis, of Boston, an oil portrait of Rev. Daniel Fuller, framed in oak and bearing the inscription, "Rev. Daniel Fuller, pastor of the 2d Parish, Gloucester, 1770 to 1828," for which thanks were voted.
At the regular quarterly meeting of the directors, held afterward, the organization for the coming year was effected, Mr. Babson being rechosen president, Mr. Dolliver, clerk, and the other library officers reelected. A committee on removal to the "new home" was chosen.
CAPE ANN BULLETIN, JUNE 25, 1884.
After several weeks of active work on the fine estate near City Hall, bought last January by Samuel E. Sawyer, Esq., for a permanent home for the Free Library, it is officially announced that the dedication will take place on Tuesday next, July 1st, with appropriate ceremonies.
In a previous article we noted the endeavors of the generous founder of the institution to obtain this estate for the purpose to which it is now to be dedicated, and for which no other in the city is so well adapted, and referred to the history of the mansion, which dates back to July 10, 1764.
The estate, which was purchased by Mr. Sawyer for $20,000, is worth much more than that sum, and the purchaser is to be congratulated upon his good fortune in obtaining it at so low a figure.
The house has been thoroughly refitted and presents a very neat and pleasing appearence in every part. The arrangement of the rooms is admirably planned, the first floor giving ample case room for the books belonging to the library, in the two rooms on the northern side of the building, while the librarian has a position at the rear of the main hall, for receiving and delivering books. The superintendent has a cosy little office in the northwestern corner, adjoining the library. One large room on the Middle street front will be open to all who wish to select books from the catalogues and bulletins which will be kept there. The other, which has been elegantly frescoed and furnished, will contain many valuable paintings and other works of art. The spacious hall above, as well as that below, will be profusely hung with attractive and instructive works of art. Other handsome art rooms will be furnished in the second story, and the whole collection thrown open to the public on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons.
A room is finely fitted for the trustees' and directors' use in the second story. On the same floor two pleasant rooms are set apart, distinct from the remainder of the building, for the Female Charitable Association, a time honored institution, in which Mr. Sawyer as well as every other good citizen, takes much interest, he having been a regular contributor to its funds for nearly forty years. The third floor has not, as yet been assigned for any special purpose, but the friends of the Cape Ann Scientific and Literary Association cherish the hope that some day the valuable collection now gathered in the museum of that society may have a place fitted for its better arrangement and growth under the same roof with its colaborer in the cause of education, the Sawyer Free Library. The building was thoroughly and solidly built and bids fair to outlast many generations of men, and with its solidity is also combined a certain air of refinement, which one instinctively feels in looking at the elaborate handcarving in all the interior finish. The main hall and stairway is probably one of the finest productions of ancient architecture to be found in New England. The grounds around the building, so pleasantly situated on the corner of Middle street and Dale avenue, have been well cared for, and to look at the fine lawn, handsome trees and shrubbery so tastefully arranged, is a pleasure for which every citizen should feel grateful. Many marked improvements are being made there, and the building in the rear of the First Parish Church is to be fitted as a residenee for the library janitor.
The dedication will take place on Tuesday afternoon next, commencing at 2.30, and will be an interesting occasion, the following being the proposed programme; Dedicatory prayer by Rev. J. S. Thomson; addresses by Samuel E. Sawyer, Esq., and Hon. John J. Babson; remarks by Hon Charles P. Thompson and Benjamin H. Corliss, Esq., with singing by a male quartette consisting of Messrs. Spaulding, Barnard, Thompson and Pomeroy.
The Trustees of the Sawyer Free Library have organized by the choice of Hon. John J. Babson as chairman, Joseph L. Stevens, secretary, and Hiram Rich, treasurer. The vacancy on the Board occasioned by the death of Dr. Hildreth, has been filled by the election of Benjamin H. Corliss, Esq.
CAPE Anne ADVERTISER, June, 27, 1884.
The dedication of the Sawyer Free Library Building will take place next Tuesday afternoon at 2.30. The dedicatory prayer will be by Rev. John S. Thomson, of the First Parish Church, and addresses will be made by Messrs. Samuel E. Sawyer, the donor, John J. Babson, Charles P. Thomson and Benj. H. Corliss, with singing by a male quartette, consisting of Messrs. A. A. Spaulding, George K. Barnard, Fred. S. Thompson and Win. H. Pomeroy.
The new library building has been put in thorough order for the pnrposes for which it is designed, under the careful oversight of Mr. Sawyer, and will make a permanent home for the library of which all connected with it may feel proud. The two rear rooms upon the first floor are arranged for the books, the librarian being located at the rear of the main hall to receive and deliver them, while a cosy little office has been arranged for the Superintendent, adjoining the library room. One of the front rooms has been set apart for those who wish to consult the catalogues and bulletins for the selection of books, while the other, which has been elegantly frescoed and furnished, will be an Art Room, for the display of costly paintings and other works of art, which the liberal donor of' the library and building has been for years collecting for this purpose. The spacious halls and rooms on the second floor will also be devoted to the same purpose, and the collection will be open to the public on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons.
Two pleasant rooms on the second floor have been set apart and furnished for the accommodation of the Female Charitable Association, in which Mr. Sawyer has always taken a lively interest, and a room has been tastefully furnished on the same floor for the use of the directors and trustees of the library and building. The third floor has not yet been assigned to any special purpose, but will ultimately be devoted to uses which harmonize with the charitable and educational features of the establishment.
The grounds have been put in good order, and from the rejuvenating effects of the recent rain present a fine appearance. The building in the rear of the First Parish Church is to be fitted up as a residence for the janitor of the building, and other improvements will be made from time to time.
Gloucester may well congratulate herself in having a public library building so finely located and so well adapted to the purposes for which it has been set apart; one which is an ornament to. the city, and a fitting monument to the generosity and public spirit of the founder.
HON. JOHN J. BABSON.
The exercises were opened by Hon. John J. Babson, with remarks as follows:
"You are already aware that the fine estate on which we are assembled this afternoon, has been purchased by our honored fellow citizen, Samuel E. Sawyer, and placed in the hands of trustees to be held as a permanent home for the Sawyer Free Library. As a mark of lifelong friendship, Mr. Sawyer has placed my name at the head of his list of trustees, and my cotrustees have done me the honor by formal election to make me President of the Board. It becomes my duty, therefore, now to ask your attention to the opening exercises with which, in accordance with a vote of the directors, the Library will take possession of its new quarters."
REV. JOHN S. THOMSON.
Rev. J. S. Thomson, of the Unitarian Church, asked the divine blessing, in the following words:
Our Father, who art in heaven, we invoke thy blessings upon the dedicatory services and the purposes of this institution. Thou art the fountain of all knowledge, and thou hast revealed to us all the knowledge which we have and enjoy. We thank thee for knowledge, and for all the agencies through which we receive it from thee. We thank thee for the knowledge which this library contains. We dedicate this institution to thee and the service of man. Accept, we pray thee, the dedication. Take the library under thy care. Make it a blessing to all those who will use it. May its books give useful knowledge, afford needful and rational entertainment and amusement, and be sources of inspiration for virtuous conduct. May the pictures on these walls become teachers of the pure, the beautiful, and the good. May this library remain here till the last generation, a free temple of pure and helpful knowledge, ever increasing in power to do good.
May the men to whom this important trust has been committed and those to whom the management of its daily affairs is entrusted be guided by thy spirit to make this free and perpetual gift a source of knowledge that will quicken the noblest powers of the mind, that will purify all the affections of the heart, and that will train human conscience to be the word of the living God. May they be enabled to overcome all the difficulties in their way. May they grow strong in their work. May they be inspired to struggle on to reach their highest aims to make this library a blessing to our city. May thy grace sustain them in the discharge of their duties, and help them to realize and honor their solemn responsibilities. May they have the sympathy and cooperation of those for whose benefit they are working in the management of this institution.
We thank thee for putting it into the heart of thy servant, our brother, to give this large and good gift to the people of this city, and for granting him prosperity to enable him to satisfy this deep desire of his heart, and for sparing his life to see the interpretation of his dreams and the fulfilment of his hopes concerning this institution this day. The vision which thou didst cause to pass before his eyes long ago is now become a free and perpetual temple of knowledge. May it be to him a fountain of joy, "a well of water springing up into everlasting life." May he who has thought so long and labored so earnestly to establish this library for the benefit of others feel that he has thy approval in his work. May this tree of his planting become to him a tree of life that will yield fruit for the strength and joy of his own soul. May he be permitted for many days to see thy work prospering in his hands.
May he and his wife, who has sympathized with him in his aims to found this institution, who now rejoices with him in the realization of those aims, and who inspires him to follow the leading of thy spirit in his soul, live long to behold the good results of their united purposes, prayers, and efforts, to confer a perpetual favor upon his native place; and may the blessings which always accompany the wishes and endeavors to do good follow them all through life, to encourage, to gladden, and to ennoble their spirits.
May this occasion give suggestion and inspiration to other rich men in our community to devote some of their wealth to the support and establishment of such institutions as we need. May they be led to consecrate some of their means to the promotion of knowledge, of public virtue, and of needed and rational amusement and entertainment. May they strengthen the hands and encourage the hearts of those who are working to enlighten and purify our city. May they see that it would be good for them to give of their abundance to fortify the agencies which are destroying ignorance and vice. The influences of religion, morality, and education, gave them their opportunities to gather riches, and created the laws which protect them in the enjoyment of the rights and privileges of civilization. May they learn that it is their plain duty to sustain the institutions which make our city religious, moral, intelligent, and healthy.
We pray that the readers of the books in this library may receive thy benedictions; may the books convey true wisdom to their minds, and purity and strength to their hearts; may they read the books wisely and usefully; and may they learn lessons that will remain in their memories forever as guides and inspirations to a good and happy life; may they become grateful for the benefits which this institution confers upon them, and may they show their gratitude by taking a deep and constant interest in the welfare of the library, and by helping others to gain knowledge, to do right, and to enjoy innocent and necessary pleasures.
We thank thee, everblessed God, that the spirit of Jesus the Christ, still lives among us in the men and women who are able and willing to help the world. His spirit greets us on the streets in words of encouragement; it sits at our firesides and teaches lessons of love and selfsacrifice; it appears in our schools in kindly care and devotion; it preaches the resurrection and the everlasting life in our churches; it speaks to us from the pages of the books which consecrated authors have written; it raises and guides the prophets, reformers, and benefactors, of every age; it is performing moral your number, whom we all held in our hearts as one who was worthy of our highest esteem. To me he often proved himself a sincere and faithful friend; by you, and by the citizens of Gloucester, I know he will long continue to be missed from your social circles and from your daily walks, for you have met with a great loss. Public spirited, always watching vigilantly the interest of the city, the interest of education, and aiming at a high standard of culture; he was a sincere and devoted friend to the teachers in our schools, and to do good seemed to be the leading motive of his life. Such a man has passed away from among you, but his memory will be cherished with affection.
It has always been a prominent motive or object of my life, to do something to promote the best interest of the young; for in them lie the germ, the roots and fibres of civilization. Books are the food of the mind; from the earliest years of childhood books are sought to feed the intellect, and so from school to college; later on they are a source of recreation to the idler, the tools of the student, the scholar, and the man of letters.
The pictures upon these walls, I trust, will serve as an incentive, and create a stronger love of art in its higher branches. Fondness for art treasures has been for many years a source of great enjoyment to me.
I now have the pleasure of presenting to you, as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library, these keys, as symbols, and the deed which conveys the gift of this property to you in trust, for the benefit of the citizens of Gloucester, for their use and behoof forever. I also have the pleasure of presenting to you in trust, an endowment note for twenty thousand dollars, which I hope may be increased as the years pass on.
To the past and present Board of Directors and Treasurer of this Institution, and to the faithful Superintendent, whose constant and valuable services have encouraged me in the accomplishment of this end, I owe you each and all a debt of gratitude, and I am sure you will all rejoice with me that the library has such a pleasant, permanent and convenient home, in which to carry on and continue the work of education; for the local library is an efficient auxiliary of our school system.
To you, my friends and fellow citizens, now so numerously gathered here today to witness the dedication of this charming old mansion, as a temple of knowledge for your free use, I give my hand and hearty welcome. May each and all of you and the generations that come after, avail yourselves of these sacred privileges.
HON. JOHN J. BABSON.
Hon. John J. Babson, the president of the trustees, received the trust, and replied in the following words:
" Mr. Sawyer :—When at the meeting of the Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library the announcement was made that you had completed the act recorded in this deed, the thanks of this institution were unanimously voted for your continued interest in it, as manifested by this generous act, and you may rest assured of the grateful appreciation by all of your fellow citizens of the great benefit it confers upon your native city. I am sure that their hearts would have warmed towards you, if they could have witnessed, as I have, what I may call the beautiful enthusiasm with which you have personally labored in the final preparations for this occasion. May a vision of untold benefits to result from your benevolence be your ample reward.
I have to inform you that at a meeting of the trustees last evening, the board was organized by the election of president, secretary and treasurer, and there is no doubt but that your intentions in creating the trust will be faithfully carried out. Deep regret was felt that one of our original number, Dr. C. II. Hildreth, who would, without doubt, have proved a very valuable member, had been so soon removed by death, and the board proceeded, in accordance with terms of the trust, to fill the vacancy by the election of Benjamin H. Corliss, Esq., to the vacant place, by a unanimous vote.
Ladies and Gentlemen:—If it be true, as Mr. Emerson says, that the intellect and the affections cannot in the last analysis be separated, that ought to be a happy day in the annals of any community that is set apart for the celebration of an event destined, or at least designed, to have a lasting influence upon its intellectual character. The consecration of this building to this great work invests the building itself with some interest, which is increased by observing that the style of its architecture is different from that of any other building in the city. It was built in 1764, by Thomas Sanders, a merchant of the town, a graduate of Harvard College, and evidently a man of refined taste, if we judge by the elaborate and handsome finish of the lower part of the house. It was at first a two story gambrelroofed building, but it has experienced various transformations in the course of its long life, until at last we behold the stately and elegant appearance which the house and the surrounding grounds present today. In connection with the use to which the building is now to be put, it may be proper to state that about forty years ago, a small proprietor's library was kept in one of its lower rooms, and if you accept the story about the sea serpent as an interesting scientific fact, you may be pleased to learn that in what is hereafter to be the superintendent's room, the young sea serpent, killed with a pitchfork, near Good Harbor Beach, in 1807, was exhibited.
There are no more interesting facts connected with the history of any community than those exhibited by its progress in intellectual culture. In Gloucester for more than a hundred years after its settlement, the only opportunities for such growth were those afforded by religious training. I know but one person in the town during the whole of the last century, who possessed even a small library. The inventory of Rev. John White's estate shows that he had about sixty different works, valued at X21, nearly every one of which was of a theological character; but the next century was to witness the beginning of a thirst for reading matter, which has never since ceased to exist. The Gloucester Social Library had been formed, and in 1796 had been granted liberty to a place in the Grammar school house building. The building, then new, stood on Granite street, but was several years ago moved to Beacon street, where it is now occupied by primary schools. I doubt if any person now living ever visited the library while in the Grammar school house, for I find a few aged people who first resorted to it when it occupied the front room of the house of the librarian on Front street. The librarian, at that time, was Master John Rogers, who died in 1827. His successor, Mr. Thomas Stephenson, a lawyer, who accommodated the library in his office in a building which stood on Front street, a little east of the corner of Short. In 1830, the library had accumulated nearly 2000 volumes, when nearly the whole was destroyed by the great fire of that year. Such, in brief, is the history of the first library of any importance that existed in the town.
Mr. Babson also spoke of the future of the institution and some of the ways by which it might be aided in its usefulness.
Mr. Babson closed by speaking of the generous contributions made by Mr. Sawyer to the library, crowned by this last great benefaction in providing it with a permanent home; of the duty of the people to follow that generosity by liberal encouragement; and of the effect of a public library upon popular education. He then called upon Hon. Chas. P. Thompson, who spoke as follows:
HON. CHARLES P. THOMPSON.
Mr. President:—Most heartily do I congratulate the members of the Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library, its officers, and the people of Gloucester, upon the possession and occupation of this valuable, commodious, beautiful and permanent home for the Sawyer Free Library; an institution that is so vitally connected with this city, and so justly the object of its pride and affection. Nothing could have been done so assuring to the friends and beneficiaries of the library as this provision that has been made for it. The library now assumes a new interest and invites more persuasively the people to come and partake of its rich treasures.
The story of its origin, progress and present condition has been happily told by you, Mr. President, who have been its firm and valuable friend during its whole existence; still I cannot but avail myself of the opportunity, kindly tendered me by the Trustees, to say a word in appreciation of the important and interesting event that has brought us here.
These beautiful grounds, this elegant and commodious building, coming from the past century, with its ancient beauty preserved, and supplemented with the result of the modern idea of greater utility and comfort artistically blended, with its halls decorated by works of art, speak more aptly and forcibly than it is possible for any human tongue to speak of the value of the gift the people have received from the heart and hand of him, who through his ability, integrity and deserved success, has acquired the means to bless, and who, possessed with a deep affection for his native city, has given this munificent and substantial expression of that affection. Were I to attempt it, I should not be able to describe the grateful emotions that possess the people who are now to enjoy its benefits, and which will continue to possess those who shall enjoy them through all coming generations. This home of the Sawyer Free Library, will be the home of the friends of education, and of the promotion of intellectual culture generally, and from it must go forth continually an influence which shall elevate the people intellectually and morally.
In these consecrated halls we stand amidst the richest treasures of learning that the past and the present have produced. The founders of States, heroes, orators, poets, scholars, philosophers, the world's greatest and wisest benefactors, in all its departments, are here with their rich legacies of instruction, and all may commune with them without money and without price. Who would not regard it a high honor to possess a letter from some one who thousands of years ago was distinguished for his virtues, his deeds of valor, for his high official position, or for the powerand brilliancy of his intellect? How carefully would such a letter be preserved, and what a deep interest would be felt by the whole community in which its fortunate possessor might hold it; but we have here in these halls not simply a letter, but volumes of letters from just such personages, which contain all that is precious that such a letter could possibly contain; several thousand volumes are now here, and provision has already been made for the continued accumulation of them, ever increasing as they must, through all coming time. I feel certain that I may truly say there is not anywhere a better selected library than this, and it would be unjust for me not to speak of the great obligation this community is under to its able and accomplished Superintendent, for the great interest he has taken in the library, and the time and labor he has contributed to make it what it is in its valuable and choice collection of the best works of the best authors, and I am sure that no one appreciates more than he the position the Library has attained, and the event we here commemorate. Who can estimate what the value of this library will be a thousand years hence? There is in its very nature and character the highest security that this library and its valuable home will be most sacredly preserved. Their intrinsic value and increasing aid to the people will most securely insure this, and the time is not very far distant, when all these apartments will be filled with elegant and choice volumes, though they now present a liberal provision for the increasing wants of the future. This Library is now, and will continue to be, a most valuable compliment to our common schools; here the scholar has furnished him the material and opportunity for the continuance of his studies in any department he may desire, and the man of letters can here find ample means for desired advancement. Who can calculate the value of this insttution. as an educational force? There is scarcely a private library in the State so valuable as this; no one with any guarantee that it will long remain intact; but every inhabitant of Gloucester has nearly as beneficial a use of this library, as if it were his own private property, and that, too, with an ample assurance that it will be preserved to him, increased in value by the addition of the constantly increasing contributions to our literature in its various departments. The fact that others are to share its privileges does not diminish their value to any individual, as each has access to, and the full benefit of the whole.
Had our benefactor been ambitious to have perpetuated his name, to have erected a monument which would keep alive his memory for centuries, he could not have done anything which would with such absolute certainty have accomplished that object as to connect his name as it is, with this institution; but we know he has not been actuated by any personal considerations; we know how reluctant he was to have his name used in the designation of this library, and with what earnestness he insisted upon having the words, "Gloucester Lyceum," preserved in its corporate name, out of respect and veneration for the founders of the Gloucester Lyceum, which had for its object the intellectual and moral improvement of the people; but the friends of this library, appreciating his generous aid and deep interest in it, and regarding him, so justly, as the real founder of its permanency, as the guarantor of its successful future, insisted that it should bear his name, the higher honor became unsought, because the intelligent and grateful tribute of those who knew his merits, and could not but give expression to their appreciation of them. No higher honor can be conferred upon a citizen than to connect his name with some beneficent enterprise, some valued and respected institution. Edward Everett, who had been favored with the expressions of the confidence of his fellow citizens which conducted him to the highest positions in the state and nation, after receiving them all, when one of the public schools of Boston was called after his name, said : " Devoted for a pretty long life to the public service, in a variety of pursuits and occupations, laboring, I may, say diligently, and I hope I may add, though sometimes with erring judgment, yet always with honest purpose for the public good at home and abroad, I frankly own, sir, that no public honor, compliment or reward, which has ever fallen to my lot, has given me greater pleasure than the association of my name with one of these noble public schools of Boston." And does any one believe he would have considered it a less honor to have had his name so associated with the Public Library of Boston?
Mr. President, it gives me additional pleasure to know that the "Gloucester Female Charitable Association," an organization so deserving of consideration, that has through so many years been a minister of mercy to the unfortunate and destitute, is provided with rooms in this building; and I trust in its new and pleasant home its means of usefulness may be increased and its noble object more fully appreciated and recognized by the friends of humanity here and elsewhere. And, sir, may I not with the greatest reason congratulate him, whose generous and continued liberalty to this community we meet to recognize, upon the wise and beneficial use he has made of his bounty; that he has had the sagacity to bestow this bounty in his lifetime, and to aid by his practical skill and experience in placing it upon the best basis for its greatest usefulness; and I express the wish of all, that he may long live to witness the happy results of his well directed liberalty in the enjoyment of every earthly blessing.
Another song followed, by the quartette, after which Benj. H. Corliss, Esq., made the following address:
BENJAMIN H. CORLISS.
Mr. President:—It affords me great pleasure to be present at these dedicatory exercises, and to greet so large a number of our fellow citizens assembled to do honor to the occasion. Many years ago our friend conceived the idea of establishing a public library in his native town. He has cherished the idea earnestly and steadfastly, considering the best manner in which it could be carried out.
It was a grand conception on his part, a consecrated purpose, a lofty inspiration. So as time has passed on, this idea has been realized, grandly, fully realized, till today we have met to dedicate this building as the permanent home of the Sawyer Free Library. It is a rare privilege for a man to have the ability to give; it is rarer when the ability and the disposition are united, as in this case, so that our fellow citizen is enabled to make this liberal provision for the good of this community. This building is admirably adapted for the use and purposes of the library and its patrons. Living in my early boyhood in close proximity, I have long known this old mansion, with its historic associations, and have ever regarded it with a feeling of local pride. The location is one of the best in the city, central, easy of access, with excellent surroundings, the church on one hand, the projected new high school house on the other, and the City Hall just across the way. I rejoice in the fact that the Sawyer Free Library has now a permanent home, one in every way worthy of it, decorated and arranged with such good taste, and richly adorned with this choice collection of paintings.
Pardon me, friends, if I speak for a few minutes upon some matter a little personal, perhaps, but which may not be uninteresting upon au occasion of this kind. The old Gloucester Lyceum, of which this library is the legitimate outgrowth, was established in 1830. Now, without wishing to be egotistical, I think I can say that I had some small part in this early organization. • I was a boy at the time in the store of Kimball & Hough, and the Rev. Hosea Hildreth, who may truly be regarded as the founder of the Lyceum, was in the habit of calling at the store and discussing the subject. So when it was decided to inaugurate the movement, I helped the work along by sweeping out Athens Hall, trimming the lamps, and carrying round and posting the notices for the first public meeting, held Feb. 2, 1830. I also signed the books when the constitution and bylaws were adopted and thus became a "charter member."
I recall distinctly many of the lectures delivered in the early history of the institution by the two Everetts, (Edward and Alexander H.) Choate, Pierpont, Emerson, Holmes, Hillard, Rantoul, Chapin, King, and others, when rare intellectual treats were furnished, and the ruling price was ten dollars and expenses.
By,a singular coincidence I have found, within a few days, the original letter written by Mr. Sawyer and dated Feb. 18, 1850, and to my address as President of the Lyceum, in which he proposed to give the sum of one hundred dollars towards the establishment of a public library, provided one thousand could be raised. Two years subsequently he proposed to give the sum of $250 on the same condition. These several propositions were laid before the Lyceum and considered at some length, but no definite action was taken to secure the end desired, and thus the matter rested for a while.
In 1854 a public meeting of our citizens was called to consider the subject, and from $1800 to $2000 was raised as the nucleus for a public library. I hold in my hand two subscription papers started at that time, and on which about $1000 was subscribed of the above amount. These papers I shall leave with the Trustees that they may be preserved with the records of the institution.
I thank my friend, Mr. Thompson, for his kindly allusion to the "Female Charitable Association," and most heartily endorse all that he has said in its favor. This organization has been in existence many years, and has been the means of accomplishing much good in this community. Its membership is composed of a band of earnest, selfsacrificing women, laboring for the good of others, assisting the needy and unfortunate, visiting the sick, and putting courage and hope into the hearts of those who are well nigh crushed by the severer experiences of life. Surely such service is a practical illustration of the principles of christianity, and deserving our highest commendation. Mr. Sawyer has taken a deep interest in the welfare of this society from its inception; and now he has generously provided it a comfortable home in this building, where it will, I trust, have a more public recognition, and greater opportunities for usefulness. I commend the interests of this association to your favorable consideration.
It is a matter of congratulation to all of us, that today the library is permanently established in its eligible new quarters. I feel truly grateful for this generous benefaction, and am sure that I voice the sentiment of my fellow citizens, when I say that they also appreciate this act of kindness, and the motive which has prompted it. The rich treasures of the library are free and accessible to all, the poor and the rich upon the same equality. All classes can profit by its privileges. The present occasion is suggestive, and my mind reverts back to fifty years ago, when books were not so available and easy of access as today.
There were but few private libraries, and they of a very limited number of volumes, and the social library, which was kept by Master John Rogers, and which as a boy I well remember, was a small affair as compared with libraries of the present time. So in those earlier days the opportunities to obtain and enjoy the privilege of reading good books were rare, and when to be had were eagerly seized upon and thoroughly prized. Today how marked the change. Upon the shelves of this library are to be found works in every department of literature. History, biography, science, art, philosophy, romance, are all to be found, here, and the collection is varied sufficiently to meet every want and taste, from the superficial reader to the thoughtful and more studious, and all without money and without price.
It was my privilege to be present, a few days since, at the graduating exercises of the Collins school, which were very interesting, and highly creditable to all concerned, both pupils and teachers. The graduating class was large, about eighty in number, if my memory serves me, and I was quite favorably impressed with the general bearing and proficiency of the graduates. The superintendent, in some welcomed and appropriate remarks addressed to the class, said, among other things, that the value of their education depended upon their ability to impart knowledge to others. This is very true. In other words, all knowledge or education must be utilized and brought into requisition to make it valuable. The school educates; the library assists and supplements school education.
Every one at all interested in the cause of education, must feel gratified and pleased at the present high standard of our public schools. Our common schools are the boast and pride of New England, and I most cheerfully bear witness to the generous disposition manifested by our citizens in their appropriations for educational purposes. And considering the valuation of Gloucester, the appropriations may be regarded as very liberal. Taking a period of five years together, the sum granted for the maintenance and support of our schools will average from 30 to 333 per cent. of our taxes. This is a large amount, and I allude to it in this connection not in a spirit of complaint, but with an earnest desire that the greatest possible amount of good may be realized by our citizens for this munificent outlay.
With the large measure of opportunities now open to our people, and particularly to the rising generation, there can be no excuse for ignorance on their part. Our public schools, the library, pulpit, press and lecture room are all exerting a wholesome and salutary influence to elevate the moral and intellectual standard of this community, and we fondly trust with beneficial results. The preservation of our Republican form of government, with its inestimable blessings for ourselves, and posterity depends upon the virtue and intelligence of our people, and it is all important that we recognize the obligation to so educate our children that they may be prepared to appreciate this rich legacy of freedom, and transmit it in turn with undimmed lustre.
I congratulate you, my friends, upon the favorable auspices attending these exercises. This large gathering of our people manifest by their presence the personal interest felt by each, the bright sunlight and beautiful weather, the pleasant grounds which attract and charm us, the promising outlook for the future, all these may hopefully be regarded as a favorable augury for the permanent prosperity and success of the library.
And we earnestly hope that the generous donor may be spared for many years to enjoy with us the advantages and blessings of this institution, and realize the rich fruitage of his disinterested benevolence.
The singing by the quartette between the addresses, was fine, and added much to the enjoyment of the occasion. At the close of the exercises an invitation was extended for an inspection of the premises, and a pleasant hour was spent in so doing; the congratulatory remarks that the donor had been enabled to do that which he had so long and earnestly desired, and that our citizens were to derive so much benefit therefrom, which were heard on every hand, proving that this evidence of generosity was well appreciated by those present.
Two large and elegant baskets of flowers, generously presented by Mr. Seth Cole, added to the attractiveness of the rooms and in every particular the occasion was most enjoyable.
ARTICLES FROM THE PRESS
RELATING TO THE SAWYER FREE LIBRARY AFTER THE
CAPE ANN BULLETIN, JULY 4, 1884.
One of the most important events, from an educational and historical point of view, which has ever occurred in this city, was observed yesterday afternoon, when the dedication of the beautiful estate on the corner of Dale avenue and Middle street, as the permanent home of the Sawyer Free Library, was observed in an appropriate manner.
As announced last week, this valuable property had been purchased by our honored townsman, Samuel E. Sawyer, Esq., and refitted in a pleasing and convenient manner, to be presented by him to trustees for the permanent home of the institution which bears his name; this generous gift being supplemented by another consisting of a bond of $20,000 as an endowment fund for its support. The refitting of the building has been under the immediate supervision of Mr. Sawyer, who has shown excellent judgment in its arrangement, a Ril I description of which was given in our last issue. The liberal display of pictures, of which there are more than one hundred and fifty, hung in the various rooms, show that patience and good taste has been exercised in the collection, which has extended over a period of many years.
The dedication was largely attended, both ladies and gentlemen showing much interest in the library and its surroundings.
CAPE ANN ADVERTISER, JULY 4, 1884.
The dedication of the Sawyer Free Library Building took place on Tuesday afternoon, in accordance with the programme announced in our last issue. At an early hour in the afternoon the friends of the library and our citizens generally began to assemble, and the numerous rooms of the building were soon crowded, although not too much so for comfortable and thorough inspection of the large number of costly oil paintings and other works of art, with which the spacious halls and rooms are profusely ornamented.
There was also a fine display of summer flowers in the several rooms, the generous gift of Mr. Seth Cole.
Soon after halfpast two o'clock the assembly was called to order by Hon. John J. Babson, chairman of the Board of Trustees, who stated the object of the gathering, to dedicate the premises purchased by Samuel E. Sawyer, Esq., and placed in the hands of trustees for a permanent home for the Sawyer Free Library.
The dedicatory prayer was then offered by Rev. John S. Thomson, pastor of the First Parish Church.
Singing followed by a select quartette, consisting of Messrs. A. A. Spaulding, George K. Barnard, Fred S. Thompson and William H. Pomeroy.
MASS. PLOUGHMAN, JULY 1, 1884.
A generous gift to the City of Gloucester.—The estate on the corner of Middle street and Dale avenue recently purchased by Samuel E. Sawyer, Esq., at a cost of $20,000, was today turned over to the trustees as a permanent home for the Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library, and was dedicated with appropriate ceremonies. The building is three stories, was erected in 1764 by Hon. Thomas Sanders, and is itself of historic interest. Its numerous rooms have been elegantly fitted up by Mr. Sawyer and decorated with costly paintings and works of art, and the grounds are extensive and attractive. A very large number of people gathered to inspect the building and its contents, and listen to the dedicatory services, which were of an interesting and appropriate character. Hon. John J. Babson, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, presided. The dedicatory prayer was made by Rev. John S. Thomson, pastor of the First Parish Church, followed by singing by a quartette.
Mr. Sawyer then presented to the Trustees the keys of the building, together with the deed conveying to them the estate in trust for the benefit of the citizens of Gloucester, for their use and behoof forever; also a note for $20,000, as a nucleus for a library fund. Mr. Babson accepted the gift in appropriate terms, giving an interesting historical sketch of the building and of the inception and growth of the library. Addresses of an appreciative and congratulatory character were also made by Hon. Charles P. Thompson and Benjamin H. Corliss, Esq.
BOSTON MORNING POST.
A Boston merchant's munificence.—The presentation on Tuesday to the Bostonian Society of a photograph of the Brook Bank in Gloucester by Mr. S. E. Sawyer, suggests what this well known Boston merchant has done for his native town by the sea. Thirty years ago, through Mr. Sawyer's efforts and donations, a library of "goodly size and quality was established in connection with the Gloucester Lyceum."
This nucleus was nourished by its friends until 1871, when it was made free, and its freedom sealed with a $10,000 fund from Mr. Sawyer, and the directors of the library in 1872 had its corporate title changed to the " Sawyer Free Library," and $5000 was added to the fund, and $5000 more in 1874.
But the generous patron of the library has never been satisfied with its lack of a permanent home, and has just succeeded in getting rid of the difficulty by the purchase for $20,000 of the wellknown Pew estate on Dale avenue, on which is a historic building, erected in 1764, whose frame is as solid today as when it was built. Happily each successive owner of the property has improved it, and now it is to become a permanent memorial of Mr. Sawyer's munificence. The plan will be to have the library on one side of the broad entrance, and a readingroom on the other, and up stairs a gallery for paintings, statuary, etc. Gloucester is to be congratulated.
CAPE ANN ADVERTISER.
Munificent gift from a son of old Gloucester.—Mr. William A. Pew disposed of his house and land corner of Middle street and Dale avenue yesterday, to Samuel E. Sawyer, Esq., for $20,000. It is Mr. Sawyer's intention to carry out a long cherished wish of presenting his native city with a suitable building for a Public Library. The above estate is admirably adapted for such a purpose, being centrally located, and can be easily arranged for library purposes. We congratulate our citizens upon the reception of such a munificent gift, and take this opportunity of expressing our appreciation to the liberal minded son of old Gloucester for this additional token of his thoughtfulness and generosity toward the place of his birth.
EVENING TRANSCRIPT, JULY 2, 1884.
There are some few towns and cities in our Commonwealth so fortunate as to possess among their citizens one whose desire to benefit his native place is equalled by his wise discrimination and ample fortune. Such a city is Gloucester. Such a citizen is Mr. Samuel E. Sawyer. Long would be the list of the benefactions bestowed by him upon his native city, which has honored itself by bestowing his name upon one of its great public schools. Mr. Sawyer's most recent gift to Gloucester, that which shall carry his name down to posterity, and which shall be gratefully cherished by generations yet unborn, is that which was consummated on Tuesday last, when he gave for a permanent home to the Sawyer Free Library the fine old historic mansion, in perhaps the finest location, on the finest street in the city.
The day set apart for the dedication of the building to its new use was simply perfect, and throngs of citizens assembled to view the building, to walk in the beautiful grounds, to examine and admire the tasteful interior decorations, to look at the valuable art treasures and to listen to the simple and appropriate services of dedication. When Mr. Sawyer, in a brief but felicitous address, presented the keys of the building to Hon. John J. Babson, the president of the board of trustees, and crowned his benefaction by presenting at the same time an ample endowment fund, the grateful emotion of his listeners was too deep for noisy applause. Mr. Babson in his response gave a concise history of the interesting old house in which the company was gathered, and reviewed briefly the history of the library. Hon. Charles P. Thompson followed in words eminently appropriate to the occasion, and Mr. Benjamin H. Corliss gave some pleasant reminiscences of the old Gloucester Lyceum, which began in so humble a way the work which has now grown to such grand proportions. He alluded to the lecturers of those early days, Choate, the two Everetts, Emerson and others, recalling the subjects of the lectures, and adding that the lecturers came for ten dollars and expenses. "Lecturing in those days," said Mr. Corliss, " was quite a different thing from what it is now." Interspersed through the exercises was some most agreeable singing by a male quartette.
It would extend this brief notice to too great length to speak of the attractions of the art rooms and of the rooms so admirably fitted for the meetings of the Ladies' Charitable Association. The upper rooms are as yet vacant, and it is hinted that the valuable and interesting collection of specimens of the Scientific Association may be located here, and it is by no means improbable, since Mr. Sawyer has taken a most generous interest in this association, as indeed he does in all efforts for progress and improvement.
Visitors to Gloucester can understand and appreciate Mr. Sawyer's generosity best by visiting the beautiful Sawyer Free Library. They will find the librarians so courteous, and the collection of books so large and fine, that who goes once will surely go again, and they will understand why July 1, 1884, was a notable day in Gloucester—a day to be long and gratefully remembered. Would that other cities might be as fortunate as this city by the seal Would that there were more men of fortune like Samuel E. Sawyer.
COMMERCIAL BULLETIN, JULY 5, '84.
Mr. Samuel E. Sawyer's gift of a free library and library building to the city of Gloucester was a noble act and characteristic of the man. The Sawyer Free Library is situated in a fine old historic mansion on one of the finest streets in the city, and its beautiful grounds, tastefully decorated interior and art treasures, will render it an attractive as well as most useful institution. Mr. Sawyer's public spirit, shown in this gift to his native place, as well as his wise discrimination in the gift itself, is commendable and worthy of imitation.
GLOUCESTER DAILY NEWS, JULY 2, 1884.
The magnificent gift to the city of Gloucester of the Sawyer Free Library, by Samuel E. Sawyer, Esq., an honored citizen, was dedicated yesterday afternoon with appropriate exercises. This charming mansion presented a fine appearance, being decorated in the National bunting. In one of the front rooms was a large and elegant basket of roses. The walls throughout were hung with rare and costly oil paintings. One would almost imagine they were in some noted art gallery.
The entire surroundings of this fine structure are of an interesting and historical nature. There was a large assemblage present at the library to witness the ceremonies. John J. Babson, Esq., Chairman of the Board of Trustees, made a short address, stating the nature of the gift, after which Rev. J. S. Thomson invoked the Divine blessing. A quartette, consisting of A. A. Spaulding, George K. Barnard, Fred S. Thompson, and William H. Pomeroy, sang a selection. Then followed addresses by Messrs. Samuel E. Sawyer, John J. Babson, Chas. P. Thompson and Ben. H. Corliss.
CAPE ANN BULLETIN, JULY 9, 1884.
Messrs. Editors : — On my return from the interesting dedicatory services of the Sawyer Free Library, I thought that some reminiscenses of this estate might interest your readers. I have jotted them down, presuming that anything concerning this famous locality would now be interesting. I have endeavored to state the various facts correctly, but may have erred in some details. The mansion house, garden, and ropewalk, were my almost daily boyish resorts, and the remembrance of them is strongly impressed upon my mind. This estate after the death of the Hon. Thomas Sanders, its builder, was sold to Capt. John Beach, for £1050. The deed reads "house with four acres of land including orchard and tillage land. Capt. Beach was an enterprising ship master, and successful commander of privateers in the Revolutionary War. He built, adjoining his residence, the famous Middle street ropewalk, and operated it himself with varied success.
This made the third ropewalk in Gloucester, the others being on Spring street and Western avenue. The Middle street ropewalk extended the entire distance from Middle street to the present Prospect, or as it was called then, Back street, and was situated on the present eastern boundaries of the church grounds. " The Head House " was flush on to Middle street, two stories high, and for many years after the disuse of the ropewalk, it was often used as the headquarters for the political parties on election days, when bread and cheese and strong potions of New England ruin were freely offered and as freely imbibed, as the elections were held in the "old meeting house" close by. The ropewalk at the northern boundary of the Parish lands, had a small annex running west from the main building, which ran nearly north and south. It seemed of interminable length to us boys, from Middle to Prospect street one continuous building. The machinery remained in the ropewalk for many years, and the building went gradually into decay and ruin. In the daytime it was a favorite resort for the neighborhood boys, but nothing could tempt us to visit it at night. It was in dark nights and at moonlight a most weird and ghostly place, the ruinous roof fallen in in many places, the great wheels with their skeleton frames, the reels and spools and iron machinery, all rusty, decaying, made a sad scene of desolation. " The scent of roses (or tar) still lingered there" in the forsaken premises. Adjoining it in the garden was the noted fish pond that we boys sometimes believed had no bottom, and some spot near by in the neighborhood was connected with a sad legend of suicide.
The extensive garden of this estate was cultivated by Dr. Ferson, and contained an orchard with some of the finest and largest cherry trees to be found in the city. Take it altogether the garden was a very attractive place, and the fruit trees especial objects of envy for us boys. Gradually the tooth of time preyed upon the old ropewalk, and every winter's gale brought some additional ruin to the forlorn old place; it roared through those long lines of open windows, and howled as it sent old shingles and boards whirling to the ground. Finally two small sections on the Back street end were cut off and made into small tenements, and one of them, we think, is still standing near the old location. In one of these tenements a sad event occurred, perhaps nearly fifty years ago; Mr. Wm. Tucker a veteran constable, and the only one here for many years, one night committed suicide with his razor.
Not a vestige can now be traced of the ropewalk or its foundations, once such a prominent object, and with the exception of one well known son, esteemed and honored by all who know him, not one is left of the family of that grand old man, who for so many years occupied the mansion. I allude, of course, to the Hon. William Ferson. W. B.
CAPE ANN BULLETIN, MARCH 12, 1884.
Female Charitable Association.—With pleasure we record a gift of $100 from the Arlington Street Church of Boston to the fishermen's widows and orphans of this city, through this admirable organization. It must be over fifty years since this society was formed. Probably no similar organization on the Cape has such a record. Its management has always been of the wisest and the best. Steadily and persistently all that time its stream of charity has flowed into hundreds of desolate households.
Doubtless there are many in other places who would be glad to bestow of their abundance on the needy widows and orphans of the lost fishermen, could they know what judicious almoners this society contains. We can assure such, and we hope our generous brethren of the press will aid in making it widely known, here are women whose natural aptitude for charitable work has become so effective by long training and large experience, that anything may be entrusted wil.h perfect confidence to their disposal. The work of the society is all done gratuitously and the officers receive no pay.
GLOUCESTER, JULY 9, 1884.
HON. SAMUEL E. SAWYER:
Dear Sir: — Permit me, among your numerous friends, to congratulate you upon the culmination of the design which, for so many years, has been a leading sentiment, amid your many kind and philanthropic projects. Knowing, as I do, the great interest cherished by you for so many years, going back to the time when, under your direction, I obtained the dimensions and design of the public library of the City of Newton, which was intended to be the character of your gift to your native city, and realizing now, as then, that your interest in our public schools was of no stinted character, but based upon the broadest liberality; yet with the keen foresight of a practical business life, you saw that the teachings of the schools must of necessity be of a routine nature and which by a broadening and widening influence would develop the highest form of useful education, if the means and right influence were available to supplement the schools.
The library was your conception of improvement to make the home and the hearthstone not only pleasant and desirable, but instructive and liberal; from this fountain would flow the sweet influences, valuable alike to youth and age, and it was the broad and catholic spirit that conceived and held fast through long years, this conception of usefulness, that is now typified in the institution that bears your name.
Citizenship, truly honorably borne, is virtue, even in a negative sense; but the citizenship that can anticipate the highest development of its surroundings, can guide with unerring hands the instinctive impulses born of a wide comprehensiveness, and fitly crown them with deeds like this, fears not to stand in the presence of kings. Honored in its own personality it still addresses itself to future generations and challenges its peers in future imitative usefulness.
Thanking you as one who loves the name and fame of his native home, I doubt not that your own conscious satisfaction and the gratitude of the community will ever abide with and bless you.
Respectfully, yoiir obedient servant,
F. J. BABSON.
DODGE CITY, KAN., JULY 16, 1884.
Dear Uncle:—Allow me to be one of the many who congratulate you upon the consummation of the work which has been so near to your heart for the years that are passed. A friend sent me the Gloucester paper containing the account of the opening of the library. I read it with much interest, and take this, my first opportunity, to express my thanks for your very generous gift; for, although I may never be placed in the position to enjoy its advantages, I know that many others will, who must and will appreciate it.
I have always taken a deep interest in the founding of libraries, but this one, bearing, as it does, the family name, will ever be nearest to me in point of interest, and I shall look forward to its growth from year to year with greatest pleasure. We are eighty miles from the post office which will account for the seeming tardiness of this letter. Again congratulating you, I am, with highest regards,
WALTER L. SAWYER.
THE SAWYER FREE LIBRARY.
A Sermon preached in the First Parish Church, on
Sunday morning, June 28, 1884, by the pastor,
Rev. John S. Thomson.
Text, He had in his hand a little book open.—Rev. x:2.
Next Tuesday afternoon, the new and permanent home of the Sawyer Free Library will be dedicated; and, as the dedication will be one of the most important events in the history of the intellectual development of our ancient town, I have deemed it' proper that we should devote this hour to a study of the uses and promises of the institution. The occasion will suggest many thoughts to us, and it is our duty to convert these thoughts into moral and religious lessons.
The purpose of a good book is to educate, or to amuse, or to inspire, the reader. A good book may have any one, or all, of these three purposes. Our only standard for judging a book is the question, Does it give useful knowledge? or, Does it afford healthy amusement? or, ds it an inspiration to a good life? We may, therefore, divide all good books into three classes. In the first class, we have books on science, philosophy, theology, art, industry, education, and history. These books educate the intellect, and prepare the reader to win success in some of the many avenues or departments of thought and labor. The second class gives us stories, novels, romances, plays, poetry. It transports us into the glorious realms of the imagination, into the company of Homer and Virgil, of Goethe, Schiller, and Zschokke, of Chaucer, Shakespeare, Scott, Dickens, Irving, of Boileau, LaFontaine, and Racine. Books of this class recreate, enlarge and embellish the mind. We find, in the third class, those useful books which show us how to appreciate and utilize our powers and opportunities. They make us .dissatisfied with the ways of selfishness and indifference, by causing to pass before our eyes visions of our possibilities, and by pointing out to us the destinies which we may create. They appeal to conscience, purify the affections and passions, and call the spirit into its native clime of devotion and worship. Like the little book in the angel's hand, they are bitter to our sins and selfishness, describing the native ugliness of our lowborn and destructive pleasures, and letting us see the necessity and divinity of hard duty; but, in the end, they make us 'prophesy' — live true and brave lives that become living epistles, "known and read of all men," and that God himself "delighteth to honor." Biographies, works of fiction, legends of virtue, are some of our best teachers.
Two things should never be found in a book—an immoral influence and dryness. Immoral books are not only those which make vice attractive and allure their readers to sin and misery, but those also which contain exaggerated and distorted views of life. The book which is unteresting, which has no "living soul" in it, which has not come from a warm heart, is useless, no matter what its aim may be. Some of those who use books of a public library have very narrow and false views of life, and astonishingly low literary and moral tastes. They demand books that no public library should have on its shelves; for one immoral book may do much injury, not only in pandering to the depraved tastes of the lower classes of readers, but in poisoning the minds and in corrupting the hearts of the young in respectable families. It would be better to have no public library rather than to have one that would contain a single bad book. The management of a public library has, therefore, very weighty and solemn responsibilities. It has to select books that are neither dry nor immoral—books that will be read and that will do the readers good. It must aim, also, to encourage and create, in all possible ways, a public taste for reading good books; and, in striving to create this taste, it ought to have the cooperation of teachers, editors, and all persons that are interested in the circulation of good literature.
I am happy to be able to say truthfully, that the wise and good men who have managed the Sawyer Free Library have discharged their duties faithfully and diligently in this important matter. When we consider how much time and thought and labor must be devoted to the work of supplying readers with interesting and useful books, when we realize what difficulties they have to meet and overcome in following the high standard which they have set up, we must feel that they deserve the sincere thanks of our citizens, and the praise of every good man and woman.
A public library is a branch of public education. The public schools teach with the living voice; but the public library teaches silently with books. Although they teach in different ways, yet they aim to do the same kind of work—to enable all to labor successfully and to enjoy rationally whatever success honest toil and earnest thought may win. Since, then, the public school and the public library have the same aims and are doing the same work, why should they not also work together in mutual recognition and in well concerted cooperation. The teacher with his living voice, and the librarian with his book are brothers in education. Let them recognize and realize this fact. Let them meet together and consider the needs and capacities of the young under their care in the school and in the library. In this way, a great deal of aimless and useless reading could be prevented, and much better habits of reading could be formed, and higher literary tastes could be created. If parents and teachers take little or no interest in what the children read, and if the librarian simply gives the books which are applied for, is it wonderful that our children and young people, without guidance and advice, acquire the miserable habits of reading which we have to deplore? When we complain that worthless and injurious books are demanded and read by the young, let us at the same time ask ourselves if we have adopted and followed any wise and practical plan to prevent the evil. What are we doing to remove it? It is the duty of parents, teachers, and librarians, to work together in teaching the young how tc read books wisely and profitably; and nothing is more certain than that such a union would soon result in the discovery of methods of success in this matter. Why should we not make a beginning now? Let the teachers of the High school consult with the superintendent of the library and the librarians regarding the books which the pupils should read to help them in their classwork, or regarding the books which they might read with profit and pleasure. In Worcester, in this State, in other cities of this country, and in Europe, attempts have been made, by the cooperation of teachers and librarians to improve the literary taste of the young, and the results are encouraging. In order to carry out such a plan, more help might be rrecessary in the library; but if so, the required help will be obtained. Whenever we take a Christian interest in the intellectual and moral development of our young people, we shall learn soon how to teach and influence them to read good books.
In the munificent gift which Mr. Sawyer will formally make next Tuesday, two things are to be considered especially. The first thing to be considered is that the library is free to every inhabitant of the city. The poor can use it as well as the rich. The members of every church can borrow its books. Those who go to no church have the privilege of reading any book it contains. All nationalities in the city are welcome as applicants for any of its volumes. Those who visit our city are invited to avail themselves of the privileges which the library extends to all. It is a temple of knowledge, offering the use of its treasures to every one, "without money and without price." The angel of the library has a book in his hand open, not shut by demands for fees, or by distinctions of any kind; and he asks but one question, "Are you willing to read good books?" Nothing, perhaps, shows a greater contrast between our times and past ages than the fact that every citizen of Gloucester has received, through the generosity of one man, a right to the free use of a large library. Books used to be so expensive that only the very rich could purchase a copy of the Bible; but now any citizen of Gloucester can borrow whatever book he wants, out of thousands of volumes, without having to pay a single cent.
The second thing to be considered is that'the library is not only free but it is free forever. TheDome in which it is now placed can never be used for any other purpose. The present inhabitants of Gloucester will all be gathered to their fathers in a few years; but the library will remain here as a perpetual fountain of knowledge, entertainment, and inspiration, for their sons and daughters. Generation after generation will pass away into the invisible world, and the face of things, as we see them today, will be changed; but the angel of the library will still stand here with an open book in his hand for every reader.
This institution, which is to remain here forever, has cost much money. Next Tuesday, when the donor will convey to the trustees the keys of this spacious and beautiful mansion and an endowment note for $20,000, the library will have cost him $75,000. But this is not all. We should remember that he has devoted his thoughts and influence to the growth of the institution for more than thirty years.
When you visit the library and realize that neither money nor labor has been spared to fit the house for its noble purpose, to make it comfortable and beautiful, you will see the results of work that he has engaged in, with his own hands as well as with his thoughts, for several weeks. We are to remember, also, that he has had faithful and wise helpers in his plans and work, men that have given their time and thoughts to the library for thirty years, that have loved this city always, and that have taken a deep interest in every agency that aims to develop its intellectual and moral forces. These true friends of Gloucester have done whatever they could to make the library useful and prosperous. I mention this because truth and justice demand that I should do so. We should appreciate the labors of earnest souls in a good cause; of those who are struggling to deepen and widen knowledge, and to strengthen and purify public morality. I wish to emphasize the fact that the library represents devotion and labor as well as money, that it is a fine expression of Christianity.
In this city, as in all other cities, there are, doubtless, some people that cannot appreciate selfsacrifice, generosity, wise and useful gifts for the public good. We should not expect to receive from such people what they have not been trained to give; and their conduct should not be permitted to shut our eyes to the fact that all the good and wise people of our city appreciate the noble gift, and that they are grateful for it. Even our Master himself prayed and worked for the unthankful and evil people of his day and country. We should not let the ingratitude and the lack of appreciation which some persons exhibit, prevent us from supporting institutions, established for the promotion of knowledge and virtue.
The love of money is a good thing; for it makes a man industrious, economical and provident. It creates enterprises in every department of industry. A proper appreciation of money is essential to prosperity and happiness. It is no sin to like money, It is a duty as well as a necessity to desire money and to work for it. Money is a gift of Providence. If we work for it faithfilly, honestly, and honorably, it becomes to us one of the greatest powers for doing good. But, if it be gotin a wrong way, it then becomes a curse to us. In the New Testament, it is called "the unrighteous mainmon," when it is gained dishonestly.
Although it is hard to earn honorably as much money as we think we need, yet it is far harder to use it properly in helping others. Many men have a genius for making money, but very few of them know how to use it successfully in philanthropic work. When they begin to be philanthropists, they enter a field in which their habits of moneygetting do not qualify them to gain success. Generally, they have been so much absorbed in their business that they have had neither time nor desire to form habits of giving; and, when their attention is called to this work, they show a lack of wise sympathy, or they are very easily imposed upon, or they become the victims of wild schemes. On this account, nearly all the philanthropic institutions of the world are managed by poor men. They succeed, because they know the proper methods for using money to help the needy, or to benefit the public.
When a man has more money than lie and his family can use, it is his duty to devote some of it to the improvement of the condition of mankind in his neighborhood. His money is his talent. He is responsible for the way in which he spends it. He should not put it in a napkin, and bury it in the earth. He should make friends out of it, by using it conscientiously and wisely in acts of Christian philanthropy. "Make to yourselves friends of the mammon of unrighteousness," says Jesus. If we feed the hungry, clothe the naked, give shelter to the homeless, provide work for the needy and industrious, put it in the power of young men and women to receive an education that will qualify them to make a living and do good in the world, we make friends that will "receive us into everlasting habitations." In this way we can convert our money into blessed friendships that will never forsake us. It is said of some people that "they died and left their money behind them." How true is this of many! They leave it all behind them. They take none of it with them in the form of friendships that will receive them into everlasting habitations.. When philanthropists like Peabody, Cooper, and Howard rise into the larger consciousness of the invisible world, they find out that they have taken all their money with them, for they are known there and remembered here, on account of the good uses to which they put their wealth, and the good which they have done to others returns to them in eternal joys.
Mr. Sawyer has learned this lesson well. Although engaged for many years in a very large and prosperous business in Boston, yet as soon as he had money to spare he remembered the destitute in his native city. Forty years ago he began to make contributions to the Female Charitable Association, an institution in this city, and lie has continued to do so ever since. And now that institution of generous and useful charity is introduced by him into two convenient and comfortable rooms, beautifully furnished, in the library building. Surely, this is the right way to obey Jesus, when he says: "Freely ye have received, freely give."
It seems to be very hard for some rich men to execute their wills in their lifetime. It makes them miserable to ask, or even to suggest to them, to spend some of the money which they do not need, in doing good in the community. Many ways of benefiting mankind may be shown to them; but their conscience is not powerful enough to make them generous and useful. Destitution and struggling genius and worth appeal to them for help in vain. You may tell them that worthless relatives are wishing for their death, so that they may waste the hoarded treasure, that no one could spend their money as wisely as themselves, that they should learn to enjoy doing good, and that they are injuring their own souls by refusing to answer the calls of God and humanity; but you cannot open the fountains of love within them.
You may tell a man that he should plant trees around his house and along the highway. You may show him that the place is bare and that the rays of the summer sun and the winds of winter make it hard for people to live or walk there. He will say to you that there is an item in his will providing for the planting of trees after his death. You cannot make him see that it would be better for hint to plant them now and to have the pleasure of watching them growing and to behold them doing good with their beauty and shade. His god has blinded his eyes. One of your neighbors planted trees many years ago. They are now large and beautiful. He sits beneath them in summer, and enjoys their shade and hears the birds singing in their branches, and in the evening looks up through the leaves at the moon and stars, and feels the influences of the holy mysteries of the night upon his soul. Or he sees with pleasure the traveller with dusty feet resting upon a seat in the shade of his majestic: trees. Is not this man a much wiser and happier man than the other? He has learned to do good and to enjoy the good he does in his earthly life.
He is a wise and happy man who knows how to utilize his superfluous means for the benefit of others, while he is living, and who does not leave it to others to execute his will after his death. He plants trees of life along the highway of struggling humanity that give fruit and shade to weary toilers. He provides seats for the tired wayfarers and fountains of water for the thirsty. Every one that comes near his home feels the influences of his wisdom and love. His love has made it possible for him to receive the love of others.
Make channels for the streams of love, Where they may,,broadly run;
And love has overflowing streams To fill them every one.
But, if at any time we cease
Such channels to provide,
The very founts of love .for us Will soon be parched and dried.
For we must share, if we would keep That blessing from above:
Ceasing to give, we cease to have,—Such is the law of love.—R. C. Trench.
Those who visited the new home of the library during the last five or six weeks saw a man that was happy in planning and working for others. It seemed to be the, greatest joy of his life to prepare that building for the purpose for which he bought and designed it, He has planted a tree of life and he is now sitting underneath its branches and eating some of its fruit. He can watch his noble work, blessing the community. Already the joys of doing good are flowing into his own soul through this permanent channel which his wise and useful generosity has made. His " works praise him in the gates," and they will follow him through life and into the eternal world. Let others "go and do likewise."
The donor of this excellent library had a dream forty years ago. He dreamed in his thoughts that some day, when he could afford it he would establish a free library in his native place. That dream has followed him through vicissitudes and trials ever since. It rose like a vision in his hours of business; it haunted him when he was visiting the conservatories of art and the grand libraries of Europe, and it followed him back over the waves of the broad Atlantic, as a voice of God, pleading for a library for the citizens of Gloucester. Next Tuesday that dream will be hilly interpreted to the public, and it will be fulfilled in the largest and best gift that this old city has ever received.
There is a lesson for us in this dream and its fulfillment. If our young people would dream of making some useful gift to the world, when fortune would enable them to do so, it might become to them a vision that would not only sane them from morbid selfishness but also cheer and inspire them in the duties and drudgeries of life. They would learn that "it is more blessed to give than to receive." It would not hinder them from gaining success in life; but it would convert their success into a blessing. The young man who starts out in the world with the intention of doing some good whenever he can, carries the word of God in his heart and the lamp of heaven in his hand.
Mr. Sawyer's ancestors have lived here for many generations. They came to Gloucester among the early settlers, and their ashes slumber in our graveyards. He is the fifth generation to occupy the mansion in which he now lives. Gloucester is sacred to him. He loves its grey rocks, its bouldercovered fields, its beautiful seashore, its old roads, its quaint streets. He has seen many wonderfully beautiful places in Europe and America, places that nature and man have made paradises; but not one of them could charm him away from this old town to which he is bound by ancestral ties as strong as love, and as enduring as life. After a successful business career in Boston, whose worthy institutions receive his support and influence, he returned several years ago to his ancestral home, to enjoy the scenes in which his boyhood was spent. Let us rejoice with him that his life has been spared, and that prosperity has attended his efforts, so that he has been enabled to improve and beautify the home of his fathers, which he loves so strongly, and to give such a munificent gift to his native city in which lie takes such a deep interest.
Spacious and beautiful as the house is, which is now the home of the library, yet the large lot, which has the best situation in the city, does not seem to be fully utilized; and this has made me dream a dream that I may tell you, In my dream, I have seen a large brick structure of fine architectural proportions, with granite trimmings. I have seen in the same a hall, with many fine pictures on its walls and with several noble statues on every side, in which lectures upon art, science, and literature are given. I have seen a room, full of pictures and photographs of old and notable citizens. I have seen another room, containing the antiquities and curiosities of the city, under the care of the Gloucester Antiquarian Society, that is to be. I looked into another room and I saw geological specimens, fishes, and birds, of Cape Ann. I beheld in another some of the leading papers and periodicals of Europe and America. I saw the Female Charitable Association in a suite •of rooms. This was the second story. The first story contained the books of the library. The third story, with all its rooms, was devoted to pictures, statues, and astronomical instruments. I looked up at the imposing structure from the outside, and saw Minerva, the Goddess of Wisdom, surmounting the temple of knowledge, over which she must forever preside. That is my dream. May you all live to see my dream fulfilled.
Our city will soon be much larger than it now is; but it is not likely that it ever will be large enough to support all these departments in separate places. One large building could contain them all. Let us hope that our brother will live long enough and have prosperity enough to justify him in building a home for the library, whose solid walls and numerous large rooms will adequately symbolize the perpetuity and munificence of his present gift.
Here in Gloucester, the Female Charitable Association originated in the First Parish; and one of our household of faith has now given to our city a free and perpetual temple of knowledge. And it is worthy of remark that the library and the Female Charitable Association now have their home next to our church. The High School is next to the library. So here we have together the Unitarian Church, the library, the Female Charitable Association and the High School. Nothing is more natural than that these four institutions should be together and should grow and work together.
When husband and wife sympathize with one another in their aims and plans to do good, when the one encourages the other to struggle on to actualize worthy ideals, we see a realization of the divinest friendships upon earth. What pleasure it must give two souls that have been united and blessed in doing good, to look back and see the happy results of their united efforts! I thought of this a few weeks ago, when I witnessed the wife signing the legal instrument which conveyed the library property to trustees, for the perpetual use of the library. She has helped and inspired her husband to interpret and fulfill this divine dream of his life.
In one of the principal railway stations in London, there is a large statue of Stephenson, the celebrated engineer, representing him looking down upon the crowds that pass in and out continually. There is an interested expression upon his noble face. He seems to contemplate the results of his work with pleasure, and to live in the good which his brave life did for man. In another part of the same city, in a leading thoroughfare, is a fountain, the gift of Lord Holland, with thestatue of the donor behind it, seeming to watch with delight those who stop and quench their thirst at the fountain. There is that in his face which makes you believe that he is glad and thankful that the spirit of mercy guidedihim to erect the fountain. Perhaps the money spent in that fountain affords him more joy than all the other money he spent in other things. These two statues are attempts of art to interpret to the public the meaning of Jusus, when he said: "Make friends of the unrighteous mammon to receive you into everlasting habitations."
In these times, when so many families are suffering from the depreciation of stock, when it seems that no investments are safe in corporations of any kind, the question, "How should I invest the powers of my life?" suggests itself. Jesus answered the question thus: "Learn how to use your talents. Love and save others. Make investments in human souls. Do good till it becomes a pleasure. Then you will have treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust can corrupt, and where thieves cannot break through and steal. If you love any one purely and wisely, if you feed the hungry, clothe the naked, teach the ignorant, strengthen the weak, cheer the lonely and discouraged, you have made investments that will never disappoint you. Your prosperity is in the lives of those whom you love and bless. You are rich in proportion to the gifts which you have made. God gives his blessings continually to man and beast. Imitate him. Give and grow rich in love, in glad remembrances, in eternal friendships. "When a man dies," says an oriental sage, mortals ask, what goods has he left behind him? but angels ask, what good deeds hast thou sent on before thee? The right eons will be held in everlasting remembrance."
Give, though thy store be scant or full;
Scatter thy blessings wide
On every outward going wave;
And each returning tide
May bear into thy life again,
Perchance a double meed;
The harvest heads shall glisten white
For every tiny seed;
From thy full cup of blessing, give,
From thy best stores bestow,
Not the waste drops, nor scentless buds,
That hedged 'mid thorns may grow.
Oh, every gift of God is free!
The sun, the dews at even,
The cooling wind, the fresh'ning shower,
In measure large, are given.
The river fills its channels vast,
And hurries to the sea,
Yet not one cooling drop is missed
By either you or me.
The fountain tide is ever full,
So purer for its flow,
In blessings thro' the thirsty land
Its mighty waters go.
More blessed far to give than take —
This truth our hearts may know,
If 'mid our own lot, grief or joy,
We heed another's woe,
And never from our stores shall miss That which in pity given,
May save some fainting soul from sin, And keep it pure for heaven.
So let us learn to value most,
The good that we can do,
Forever proving in our deeds
The holy precept true.
Nor mourn if light returns should come
From those we strive to aid;
But give and hope for nothing back,
As Christ the Master said.
—Libbie L. Hall.
Precious and priceless are the blessings which books scatter around our daily paths.—Edwin P. Whipple.