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JUNE 10, 1887-

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At a meeting of the Standing Committee of the
Maine Historical Society, held in Portland, March
10, 1887, on motion of Hon. William Goold, of
Windham, it was voted that meetings of the So-
ciety be held on the tenth day of June next, and
as that day is the eighty-fifth anniversary of the
birth of the honored President of the Society, Hon.
James Ware Bradbury, LL. D., of Augusta, it was
also voted that the Society observe the day in
some especial manner. Messrs. Henry L. Chap-
man, James P. Baxter, John Marshall Brown,
Lewis Pierce, and Hubbard W. Bryant, were ap-
pointed a committee to confer with Mr. Bradbury
and make suitable arrangements.

The following letter was addressed to him : —

Portland, Maine, AprU 11, 1887.
Hon. James W. Bradbury, President of the Maine
Historical Society^ Augusta^ Me.
Dear Sir, — In behalf of the Standing Committee
and the membership of the Historical Society, we have
the honor to tender to you a complimentary dinner on the
occasion of the approaching meeting of the Society (June

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10th), and to ask your acceptance of the same. We
regard it as fortanate that the meeting of the Society
could be fixed upon a day which is also the anniversary
of your birth, since it is desired to make the occasion a
testimonial of personal respect as well as a recc^ition of
your faithful and valuable services as President of the

Trusting that you will, not unwillingly, accede to the
desire of ourselves and of those whom we represent, we
have the honor to be,

With high esteem, very truly yours,




It was replied to as follows : —

Augusta, April 13, 1887.

Gentlemen, — I have the honor to acknowledge the
receipt of your letter of the 11th instant, inviting me to
a complimentary dinner, at the next meeting of our So-
ciety on the 10th of June.

The invitation comes from gentlemen with whom I
have been so long and so intimately associated in the
prosecution of a patriotic work, and who are esteemed
by me so highly, it would be puerile weakness in me to
pretend to be insensible to such a testimonial of regard.
While the environments of age incline me to withdraw
from scenes where I cannot be useful, or contribute to
the enjoyment of the occasion, I yet feel that I ought
not to decline an invitation so kindly conceived and so
gracefully tendered.

Most respectfully yours,


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Arrangements for the complimentary banquet
were made by the committee, and invitations were
extended to the members of the Society to partici-
pate in the same. The presidents of the several
Historical Societies of New England, and the sur-
viving college classmates of Mr. Bradbury, were
invited to become the guests of the Society on the

On the evening of the 10th of June, at six
o'clock, the members of the Society and their
guests assembled in the parlors of the Falmouth
Hotel. Prominent among them was the special
guest. of the occasion, Hon. James W. Bradbury?
President of the Society, whose birthday the gen-
tlemen present had assembled to honor. With his
bright clear eye and erect figure, he belied his
eighty-five years, whose almost only sign was be-
tokened by his long snow-white hair. Among the
other guests who attracted great attention was the
revered Ex Vice-President of the United States,
Hon. Hannibal Hamlin, who, at the age of seventy-
eight, appeared younger than many men of sixty.
It is a rare circumstance that two men who have
attained such distinction as Mr. Bradbury and Mr.
Hamlin can be found both residents of the same
State, the one representing its leading Historical
Society by the highest office in its gift, and the
other that of the leading Historical Society of the
eastern part of the Commonwealth. They served
together as Senators in the United States Senate
nearly forty years ago.

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James Ware Bradbury was born June 10th,
1802, at Parsonsfield, York County, Maine, where
his father. Dr. James Bradbury, was a physician
of eminence. He graduated at Bowdoin College
in the class of 1825, that included Longfellow,
Hawthorne, and J. S. C. Abbott, among its mem-
bers. He taught the Hallowell Academy for a
year, and then studied law with Mr., afterwards
Judge, Shepley, and with Rufus Mclntyre. In
1830, Mr. Bradbury settled in Augusta, where he
devoted himself to his profession. He edited the
" Maine Patriot " for one year, and was also County
Attorney. In 1844, first as a nominating dele-
gate at Baltimore, and afterwards as President of
the Maine Electoral College, he assisted in making
Mr. Polk President of the United States. In 1846
he was elected a United States Senator. He had
hardly taken his seat in 1847 when he was called
on by the death of his colleague. Senator Fairfield,
to pronounce the customary eulogy. During his
entire connection with the Senate he held a place
on the committee on the judiciary, and was chair-
man of the committee on printing. He was chair-
man of the committee on the French spoliation
claims and made an elaborate speech on the bill in
favor of the claimants, which passed the Senate by
a large majority. He declined a reelection before
the expiration of his term of office. He was an
overseer and is now a trustee of Bowdoin College.
On the death of Prof. Cleaveland he was chosen
Corresponding Secretary of the Maine Historical

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Society, and on the death of Judge Bourne, its

After a half hour passed in social intercourse
and the extension of congratulations to the ven-
erable President, the company repaired to the
small dining-room for dinner. The cozy apart-
ment seemed all the brighter and more cheerful
in its new and rich furnishings, its flowering plants
that bedecked the windows, and were artistically
grouped about the apartment, the tables adorned
with large bouquets of rare flowers, and cut flowers
trailing in odd designs over the snowy napery,
while at each of the plates was placed a choice
houtonniere. A superb basket of roses and ferns
from Mrs. George T. Davis, and an elegant bouquet
from Mrs. J. B. Brown, were placed in front of
Mr. Bradbury. The gentlemen present, as will be
seen by the names, formed a representative assem-
blage in the men of letters of Maine. At the head
of the table sat Prof. Henry L. Chapman, of Bow-
doin College, president of the occasion. At his
right was seated President Bradbury. The guests
were as follows : —

Rev. Dr. H. S. Barrage,
Dr. W. B. Lapham,
Hon. Sidney Perham,
Henry Deering,
Lewis Pierce,
Stephen Berry,
Rev. Dr. Asa Dalton,
Hon. William Goold,

James P. Baxter,
Hon. Cyrus Woodman,
Judge John A. Waterman,
Gen. John Marshall Brown,
Edward H. Elwell,
Hon. Marshall Cram,
Lemuel H. Cobb,
Hon. Charles F. Libby,

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Hon. T. H. Haskell, Hon. E. P. Bumham,

Philip Henry Brown, Oscar Holway,

Rev. Dr. John O. Fiske, Chief Justice J. A. Peters,

H. W. Richardson, Hon. J. W. Symonds,

Edward Johnson, Hon. Lewis Barker,

Hon. S. F. Humphrey, George F. Talbot,

Hon. Joseph Williamson, Dr. H. C. Levensaler,

Abner C. Goodell, Jr., Ex-Gov. Selden Connor,

Hon. Hannibal Hamlin, Hon. Nathan Cleaves,

Hon. J. W. Bradbury, John M. Adams,

Prof. H. L. Chapman, H. W. Bryant.
Hon. Charles Deane,

The menu of the dinner was a two-page card,
and bore on the obverse side, —

Maine Historical Society.

Complimentary Dinner to

Hon. James Ware Bradbury, LL. D.,

On the 85th Anniversary of his Birthday,

1802 — June 10 — 1887.

Falmoath Hotel, Portland,

6 P.M.

On the second page was the menu proper,
which, while not elaborate in number of dishes,
embraced many delicacies, specially imported for
the occasion, perfectly cooked. The service was
such as has become a marked feature of this
house. The following was the menu : —

Little Neck Clams.

Clear Green Turtle Soup.

Boiled Penobscot Salmon — Egg Sauce.

Small Potatoes. Asparagus — Cream Sauce.

Roast Spring Lamb — Mint Sauce.

Butter Beans. Green Peas.

Baked Mashed Potatoes.

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Tenderloin of Beef, larded — Truffle Sauce.

Sweet Bread with French Peas.

Banana Fritters — Venetian Sauce.

Champagne Punch.

Broiled Spring Chicken.

Lettuce Salad.

Fancy Assorted Cake.

Neapolitan Ice Cream. Fruit. Coffee.

Grace was said by the Rev. Dr Dalton of Port-
land. After the banquet had been duly enjoyed,
Professor Chapman called the assembly to order,
and introduced the guest of the evening.


We have reached the point when we may say
with the genial Sir Hugh Evans in ^' The Merry
Wives," " I will make an end of my dinner ;
there 's pippins and cheese to come." It will be
my pleasant duty to oflfer you presently the pip-
pins and cheese ; but in the mean time you will
indulge me in a word or two concerning the
motive of our gathering. Under ordinary cir-
cumstances, and with almost any other association
of gentlemen, it might, perhaps, be enough to say
that a dinner is its own justification, and that, like
virtue, it is its own reward. We are probably in
a frame of mind just now to admit the element of
truth in such a plea. But it is hardly adequate to
this occasion. There is a certain novelty about
the event in which we are engaged which allows,
even if it does not demand, a word of comment.
During its long and honorable career hitherto, the
Historical Society, I believe, has never before de-

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liberately sat down to what may be called an
official or corporate dinner. Its individual mem-
bers have appropriated such nourishment, and
even such delicacies, as came in their way, with
proper diligence and thankfulness, it may be pre-
sumed, but without any particular thought of
their relation to this venerable body. Even when
chance has thrown us together in the informal
association of a basket picnic, we have still eaten
as units and not as fractions, and each man's
basket has been regarded as his magazine, if not
his castle. In a certain limited sense, therefore,
which does not in the least discredit the conclu-
sions of the ancient preacher, we have to-day^ in
this festive gathering, something new under the
sun. And yet, with all its apparent novelty, it is
doubtless a consistent and logical extension of
what has always been regarded as the legitimate
work of the society.

You all know with what pleasure we have, on
several occasions, taken advantage of our field-
days to visit those interesting remains of primitive
life known as shell-heaps, scattered up and down
our State. We have stood around them with
faces that wore a becoming expression of inquiry
and profound wisdom. We have prodded them
with our canes ; we have dug into them with our
spades ; we have, so to speak, turned them over
in our minds ; we have estimated the amount of
savage and sensuous gratification which they rep-
resent; we have speculated upon the conditions

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under which they grew to such notable dimen-
sions. And now, at last, we have endeavored,
under the greatly changed conditions of our mod-
ern civilization, to reproduce that feature of abo-
riginal life, and to construct a sort of shell-heap of
our own. Of course there will be wide differences
between the pattern and the copy. A greater
variety, for instance, tempts our appetites than
was necessary to satisfy the simpler tastes of our
predecessors. We cannot expect, under existing
sanitary regulations, to leave such a material
monument of our achievements at the feast as
they have left. But these differences are only
accidental, and in spite of them we can see that
the same social impulse brought them together at
their appointed banquets which has brought us to-
gether around these tables. And what if it were
true that they gathered in friendly council, and
on the sunny shores of inlet, or headland, or
island, spread their ample feasts, in honor of their
revered and beloved sachems. In this, at least,
we can strike hands with them across all the
barriers of race and time, and feel the touch of
Nature that makes us kin. For we are here
to-day in grateful recognition of the debt we owe
to the fidelity and wisdom of one who has been
for many years our own sachem — our esteemed
and honored President. We all know, gentlemen,
his unselfish devotion to the welfare of the So-
ciety ; his wise and watchful care over its varied
interests; the kindly courtesy of his official and

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personal relations with us. It is a great pleasure
to us to give some outward expression to the
honor which our hearts have all along yielded to
him. And in order to emphasize the feeling that
prompted this gathering we have been glad to in-
vite and to welcome here the representatives of
sister societies to unite with us in this tribute of
esteem. We may thus confirm, by living contact
and fellowship, the sympathies that run along the
obscure lines of antiquarian research, and bind us
together in the ties of common or similar pursuits.
Nor do we forget that the day is one that per-
mits us to add to this token and assurance of our
associated regard the kindly congratulations and
good wishes which belong to a personal anni-
versary, an anniversary, it may be said, that re-
curs with startling frequency in all our lives.
Whatever that was cherished and valuable the
passing years may have taken away from our
revered President, who to-day reaches another
mile-stone on his journey, they have not taken
away from him the continued power and privilege
of serving his fellow -men in many noble ways.
They cannot take away from him the record of
that for which we honor him — a life distinguished
by important duties worthily performed, by high
trusts faithfully discharged, by great privileges
blamelessly enjoyed. And, on the other hand,
they have brought to him in their swift passage, —

" That which should accompany old age,
As honor, love, obedience, troops of friends."

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Among these troops of friends are we who offer
you, sir, to-day, our heartiest congratulations, and
the assurances of our most profound regard.

And not to detain you longer, gentlemen, from
the pleasure that awaits you, allow me to present
to you our chief guest, the honored President of
the Society.

Upon rising to reply Mr. Bradbury was greeted
with prolonged applause.

MR. Bradbury's remarks.

Mr. Chairman and Gentlemen : —

I feel embarrassed by your kind and flattering
civilities, and am unable to make a suitable re-
sponse. The approbation of valued friends, espe-
cially those with whom we have been long asso-
ciated, is among the richest rewards that life can
afford. It touches the heart too deeply for words
to express. I cannot find language to convey to
you my appreciation of your kindness. It comes
from a society of which I regard it an honor to
be a member.

Your commendation of my services is measured
by your kindness more than by any merit of mine.
You have generously taken the will for the deed.

We, gentlemen, have been engaged in a com-
mon cause, in which many of you have done
much. It is a patriotic, unselfish work, in which
the rest of the community have like interests with
ourselves. We have a pride for our State and
desire that she shall have her proper place in

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history, and as a society we have labored to col-
lect and preserve the materials from which that
history may be written. We cannot forget that
after the lapse of a little time nothing is known of
states and nations save what history preserves.
We know not how many kingdoms have risen and
flourished and passed away since the earth has
been the residence of man, and left no trace of
their existence. While some account of the Jews
has been preserved, how much is now known of
their contemporaries in Asia, in Europe, in Africa,
in America ?

It is a duty we owe to our State, and it is a like
duty of every citizen, so far as it may be in our
power, to see that the elements of her history
shall be secured. It is a history full of interest.
Our coast was sejen by the Northmen in 990.
The earliest explorations of the northern part of
the continent were along our shores. Weymouth
entered and examined our rivers in 1605. The
earliest English attempt to make a permanent set-
tlement, under a charter, north of the Potomac,
was within our borders. In the long - continued
struggle between England and France for the pos-
session of the continent, our settlers acted an im-
portant part. They stood as a bulwark for the
defense of the other English colonies, and were the
first object of attack in the numerous wars waged
by the French and their Indian allies. The result
of this momentous conflict was for a long time
in doubt. The French had extended their posses-

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sions along the St. Lawrence to Quebec and Mon-
treal ; and on the Atlantic coast they had pressed
on from Louisburg and Fort Royal to Moimt Des-
ert and Castine.

The issue was not decided until the capture of
Quebec, and the great victory achieved by Wolfe
over the French in 1759.

What far-reaching consequences depended on
the result ! Had France triumphed and colonized
the Northern Atlantic States, carrying there her
religious and political institutions, what to-day
would have been the condition of the country now
embraced in the Union ? What the influence of
such result upon Christianity and constitutional
government throughout the world ?

In the prosecution of our work to obtain what-
ever there is that will throw light upon the
struggles and character of the early pioneers, and
the advance of society to its present conditions,
substituting civilization for barbarism, and the
comfortable homes of an intelligent Christian com-
munity for the rude huts of the red men, as well
as upon the discovery and explorations of this part
of the continent, our Society has not been idle.

It has published nine volumes of Collections of
the first series, and three volumes of Documentary
History of the second series. For some time after
its organization it lacked the means to make pub-
lications. To relieve this want the State, in 1849,
generously granted half a township, which was
sold for $6,000. Up to this time, only two vol-

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limes had been published. Five volumes had
been added up to 1874, and since that time five
more have been published, making in all twelve
volumes, nine of the first series and three of the

Of the character and contents of these volumes
I do not propose now to speak further than to say
that they constitute a valuable contribution to the
cause of history. Many of the papers are of
great interest A well-prepared synopsis would be
convenient and useful. Whether it is not about
time for a new history of the State to be written
is a suggestion worthy of consideration.

The good influence of our Society is not con-
fined to its own publications. It has stimulated
and given vitality to historical research, the fruit
of which is seen in the numerous local and town
histories that have been published, embodying in-
formation invaluable to the historian. A list has
been handed to me by Dr. Lapham. I will not
detain you by reading it in detail. It embraces
thirty-one town histories, published in volumes,
some of them very large, and six histories in
pamphlet. And to these can be added William-
son's " History of Maine," Sewall's " Ancient Do-
minion of Maine," Griffin's " History of the Maine
Press," Allen's " History of Methodism," the Pop-
ham memorial volume, and the Longfellow vol-

Our Society is now in a good condition. It has
a fair number of active working-members, several

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of ihem especially such, ready and qualified to
carry forward its work. Our membership might
now perhaps be safely and profitably enlarged.

We are free from financial embarrassment, and
the moderate yet respectable amount of funds in
the treasury is well invested. By the adoption of
the act passed by our last legislature, prohibiting
the voluntary reduction of the income - paying
funds below $10,000, an adequate amount will be
secured to provide for the regular publications of
the Society, and secure its perpetuity.

I have now held the ofl&ce of President for thir-
teen years, through your great kindness. When I
became a member of the Society, in 1846, there
had been added to the original corporators 179
members, including the 69 elected that year. Of

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