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About The courier. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1894-1903 | View Entire Issue (April 13, 1901)
(he rare personality of its founder, that airy de?ply to heart. It was not long
it is useless to epeak concerning it with- alter this it3ry had been told, that Mrs.
cut referring to Mrs. Stoutenborough, Stoutenborough on going into the post
in spite of her prates. office was met by a little boy who sprang
One evening, at dusk, Mrs. Stouten- forward to open the door sajing, "I
borough heard a violent pulling of her want to be a Sir Knight too."
door beil. On opening the door she When these boys are full grown men
discovered six boys standing in the un- and their influence is making itself felt
through their integrity, thoroughness of
work, and courtesy, then only can Ne
braska begin to measure the effect of
the Boys' History club of Plattsmouth.
certain light, with the request on their
"Say, MIb' Stoutenborough, won't you
start a boys' club?"
A boys' club was soon organized that
grew and flourished. The boys who were
charter members six years ago are now
saniors in the High school or graduates,
and having too many demands upon
their time, they relinquished their mem
bership to tbirty-Sve younger boys, who
hold this privilege as the greatest of
Historical subjects that are of vital
and throbbing interest to every boy are
discussed in the club. Besides the
knowledge gained from bookB Mrs.
Stoutenborough reads or tells some
story that haB a practical application.
One thought that is especially impress
ed upon the boys is that it is the quality
not quantity of work that counts. The
following lines are favorites among
"If I were a cobbler
It would be my pride
The best of all cobblers to be;
If I were a tinker
No tinker beside
Should mend an old kettle like me ."
A story that is well-liked and known
to the boys is that of a judge of wide
reputation who sent for a carpenter to
build a fence. A strong, young fellow
appeared. The judge said:
"I want you to make the fence strong
a d substantial." Later the judge on a
tour of inspection, found the carpenter
planing the boards and numbering
"My good man," he exclaimed, "there
is no use in all that work, and, besides,
I'll only pay you S1.50."
Coming back an hour later the judge
was displeased to tind the carpenter
still finishing up the boards with his
"Why, didn't I tell you there was no
need of all that care? The fence is to
be covered with vines. I don't care
how it looks."
"I do,'' said the carpenter. When it
was finished the judge asked the puce
"A dollar and a half," said the
Report of the Lincoln Gty Improvement
Organization. The City Improvement
Society of Lincoln, Nebraska, was organ
ized in January, 1897, at a meeting of
the board of directors of the city feder
ation of women's clubs. The formation
of this society was the result of study
undertaken by the Civice Department
of the Woman's club. The course of
study conducted by the leader of this
d partment, Mrs. W. G. L. Taylor, was
on the subject of Municipal Gevernment
in European and American Cities.
Committees. The work of the society
is conducted by special committees.
About thirty different committees acted
during 181)7. These included commit
tees for improving and beautifying the
school grounds, a special committee
for each school being chosen also a
committee on the health ordinances,
care of the streets, repair of sidewalks,
cutting down of weeds, cooperation with
the Charity Organization, removal of
waBte papers, suppression of obscene
pictures, drafting of ordinance against
WORK OF THE SOCIETY THROUGH ITS
COMMITTEES DURING 1897.
School Grounds. Thejmprovement of
the school grounds included setting out
additional trees, grass-seeding, making
flower-beds, and placing window boxes
in all the schools, a new fence at the
Elliott school, special improvements on
the Capitol school grounds; grading, a
new fence, and other necessary improve
ments at the Park school. In this work
the principals, teachers, pupils and pa
trons all assisted . The school board
furnished some of the necessary means.
At the Capitol school over 840.00 was
raised by subscription among the pupils
and patrons; $69 00 was made by the
pupild and teachers of the Elliott school
by an entertainment, aud $33.00 was
car- raised for the Park school by a concert
organized by the chairman of the school
"Why did you. spend so much labor
on it, if it were not for more tnone)?-'
"For the job, sir."
"But nobody would have seen it.'1
"I should have known it, sir."
Ten years later and this is the part
that pleases the bos most that judge
had the letting of a contract, in which
there was much money, for the erection
of several public buildings. There were
a number of applicants, but there was
one he particularly noticed, his carpen
ter of ten years bpfore. The judge gave
him the contract for he knew that the
work would be well done. When some
perplexing problem now disturbs the
boys they often remark, "Remember
grounds committee, Mrs. Seamark. This
movement towarJ the improvement and
beautifying of the grounds aroused and
induced the children themselves to free
the grounds from waste paper and rub
bieh, and to keep them tidy. The credit
of initiating this movement among the
BchoolB is due to the first chairman of
the Capital school grounds, Mrs. U. H.
Wheeler, whose good example was fol
lowed by other schools.
Weeds. Incessant war was waged
against weeds by the chairman of the
weeds committee, Mrs. Welch. She de
voted herself to ascertaining the locali
ties, chiefly vacaot lots, where the weeds
were most of a nuisance, and then re
ported these to the proper authorities
The boy are extremely fond of anec- who had them cut down. The city spent
dotes of Sir Walter Raleigh and any
deed of gallautry is a joy to them. A
story from Scotland is one they par
ticularly relish. A Christmas treat was
given in a mission hall in Edinburgh
Several hundred children, many of
them barefooted, were at the doors,
waiting long before the hour of admis
sion. One little girl, more delicate than
the others, and seemingly unused to the
in tms way during me summer oi iodi,
Nuisance Averted. The society, by a
resolution personally presented to the
city council, was instrumental in pre
venting the erection of sign-boards at
the street corners for the purpose of ad
vertising. Street-Cleaning Proclamation, The
mayor, at the request of the society, set
cold, shivered and danced from one lit- aside two days for street-cleaning.
tie bare foot to the other until a small
boy. who had been watching her, could
endure it no longer, and throwing his
hat to her. exclaimed:
"Vo maun stan' on that.,'
The boys take these lessons of chiv-
Finances. Daring the year $38 00 was
received as membership feei from the
152 members at twenty-five cents each.
Five dollars was given to the society by
Sorosis Junior, and the same sum by
Sorosis. Twenty-seven dollars and six
ty five cents was spent for incidentals,
leaving a balance on hand of $20.35, u
the f jnds of the society at the end of
Cans for Waste Material. Thirty
galvanized iron cans for waste papers
were placed on the street corners
through the efforts of the society's com
mittee appointed for the purpose. Mrs.
Welch and Mrs. Richardson. The cans
were made under the direction of this
committee, and paid for by the city.
Ordinance Against Indecent Pic
tures. An ordinance in regard to inde
cent and objectionable pictures, post
ers, etc., waB submitted by the society
to the council and favorably acted upon.
School Grounds. The work of improv
ing the school grounds was accom
plished as in the previous year. Eighty
dollars at the Capitol school was used
for this purpose. Extensive improve
ments were made at the Park school.
Through the efforts of the chairman,
Mrs. Seamark. 810 00 to aid in this
work was raised by means of an enter
tainment given by the high school
seniors. The co-operation between the
society and the school board was evinced
by the meeting of the board with the
officers of the society, and the chair
men of the different schools for the
purpose of 'presenting the neods of the
schools and discussing plans thereto.
Seats Through the efforts of the
chairman, Mrs. Ogden, seats were fur
nished by the Traction company at the
intersection of lines, for the accommo
dation of those obliged to wait.
Postals Printed. Postal carda were
printed for the convenience of those
wishing to inform the proper authori
ties of a violation of the ordinances.
These cards were signed by the name of
the society, and enabled one to give in
formation without giving his own name,
and perhaps thereby giving offense to
neighbors or acquaintances.
Waste Papers. Untiring efforts were
made by the chairman, Mrs. J. R. Web
ster, to improve the untidy condition of
our streets, due to waste papers. The
theater managers and hotel pioprietors
were interviewed concerning the accu
mulation of waste papers, etc., on their
premises, and much improvement fol
lowed in consequence of the removal of
this source of evil. The chairman con
ferred.with the superintendent of schools
to secure the co operation of self govern
ment leagues, and thus to help educate
the school children of the city in the
matter of tidiness.
Arbor Day Program. At the sugges
tion of Mrs. E. T. Hartley, the society
furnished a city improvement program
for Arbor Day.
Finances. The receipts of the year
were $5.25 from the twenty-one new
members. The expenses were $6.45;
the balance remaining was $19 15.
Expectoration Ordinance. An ordi
nance against expectoration on the
street cars was passed by the council.
Street Signs. At the suggestion of
Mayor Winnett, the society considered
the matter of placing signs at the street
corners, giving the names of the streets.
The impossibility of the work for the
whole city being done by the society
was at once apparent, because of the
great expense involved. However, as
an incentive toward this much needed
change, the society voted to place one
hundred eignB. The question of re
naming the streets arose; many plans
and much discussion followed. The
matter was of course referred to the
council, and until its settlement the
society has been unable to proceed with
its task of erecting street signs.
Cindeu Walks. As the result of the
talk by Miss Herron on the Needs of
the Social Settlement of Lincoln, before
the society, cinder walks were made (at
the street commissioner's order) in the
vicinity of the settlement, which hereto
fore bad been entirely without walks.
Addresses. During the year Mayor
Winnett addressed the society; Miss
Herron spoke on the Social Settlement
at Eighth and X streets; a poem en
titled "The Wider Sphere," written by
William Reed Dunroy and dedicated to
the society, was recited by the author,
and Mrs. Taylor lectured on municipal
Finances ok tuk Year. The receipts
were $6.00 from the membership dues
at twenty-five cents each, and $4.45 col
lected for street signs. The expenws
were fifty cents; a balance of $29.10 re
Ofeioerb ok 1900. The officers of the
society for 1900 were: President, Mrs.
W.G. L Taylor; vico president, Mrs.
M. D. Welch; secretary, Mrs. Nellie M.
Richardson; treasurer, Mrs. W. D. Fitz
Gerald; auditor, Mrs. II. J. Winnett.
Cluii Delegates. In response to an
appeal from the society, the following
clubs have expresaed an interest in its
work and shown a desire to co-operate
by sending delegates to its meetings
during the year, Lotos, Fortnightly,
Matinee Musicale, Woman's club, So
rosis, Woman's Faculty club, Athenea,
P.E.O., Wives of Traveling Men of East
Lincoln, W.R. P.O. (Wives of Railway
Postal Clerks), Century, Farragut Corps
W. R. O. and Hall in the Grove.
Mr. Elmen, the street commissioner, and
several city officers have addressed the
society on methods of city improvement.
Organization ok the Children. The
organization of the children of Lincoln
into bands for the purpose of keeping
the streets and yards cleaner, and the
sidewalks in better repair, was effected
through the chairmen, Mrs. Ladd and
Mrs. Seamark, and their assistants.
These assistants, appointed from each
school district, called meeetings of the
children and organized them into bands,
each with ita own corps of officers.
Badges were furnished the members of
the bands by the society; much enthu
siasm was aroused, and some work ac
complished. Protest Against Extension ok Fences.
The society called attention to the prac
tice of many property owners of ex
tending their fences into a portion of the
street, and the fact that after ten years
of exclusive and uninterrupted posses
sion, a title is acquired. The society
sent a petition to the mayor and coun
cil tor the removal of these obstructing
fences, and that any further confiscation
Opening ti:e City Park. Through the
efforts of the society the grounds known
as the City Park, heretofore used chiefly
for the pasturing of the neighboring
cows, were put in order and formally
opened as a park. On one side a street
was opened through, a new cross walk
put in, the driveways graded and put in
good condition, twenty-five seats, the
lumber for which was donated by Mr.
Woodward, wore put in, swings were
given by Mr. J. T. Thompson, and Mr.
Elmer Stevenson, one hundred trees by
Mr. E. T. Hartley, eight bushels of grass
seed by the city; Ave hundred plants
were contributed by florists, electric
lights were given by the Electric Light
Co., and the city employed a man regu
larly during the summer months. The
formal opening, on the evening of July
12th, was celebrated by addresses of
Mayor Winnett and Hon. W. J. Bryan;
Hagenow's band furnished music, and
ice cream was sold, the proceeJs for the
benefit of the society.
Milk Inspection. The necessity of
pure milk and the need of its inspection
in Lincoln was discussed. A committee
was appointed to investigate the con
ditions in other cities, and the ordi
nances concerning its inspection. The
reports were presented at several eubse-
(Continued on Page 10.)
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