Dr. Sylvester Gardiner.
CENTENNIAL or GARDINER
AN ACCOUNT OF THE EXERCISES AT THE
CELEBRATION OF THE ONE HUNDREDTH
ANNIVERSARY OF THE INCOR-
PORATION OF THE TOWN
JUNE 25, 1903
The Lakeside Press
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
Doctor Sylvester Gardiner, .... Frontispiece
Saint Ann's Church, ....... 10
General Henry Dearborn, . . . . . .18
Old Post Office, 20
Pownalboro Court House, ...... 24
Robert Hallo well Gardiner, . . . . . .26
Allen Dwelling, 30
Soper Dwelling, . â€¢â– '..". . . . . .34
Lyceum, ......... 38
Episcopal Church, ....... 40
Bishop Burgess, ........ 44
George Evans, ........ 46
Hallowell House, ....... 54
Methodist Church, 56
Congregationalist Church, . . . . . .58
Esmond Dwelling, ....... 64
Colburn Dwelling, ....... 72
Memorial Service, 9
Exercises, ......... 12
Flag Song, 15
Remarks of Mayor, 17
Remarks of Chairman, 20
Historical Address, 23
"Parish Chaise," 54
Act of Incorporation, 57
Last Half Century, 60
Steamboat Reminiscences, . . . . . .69
Centennial of Gardiner.
ON FEBRUARY 17, 1803, in accordance with an act
approved by the legislature of the Commonwealth of
Massachusetts, Gardiner, in the so-called District of
Maine, was set off from ancient Pittston and incorpor-
ated as a separate town. Sparse of population among its
wooded hills, the settlement boasted no edifice of a public
nature other than its single place of worship, a small and
unpretentious Episcopal Church, known as St. Ann's ; and in
this building, on Monday, March 21, of the same year, was
held Gardiner's first town meeting.
SERVICES AT CHRIST CHURCH, SUNDAY,
MARCH 22, 1903.
Most appropriately, then, the hundredth anniversary of
this event was commemorated on the afternoon of Sunday,
March 22, 1903, in Christ Church, the successor of St. Ann's
and neighbor to its site. Here the rector, the Rev. R. W.
Plant, conducted a short service, and suitable music was
rendered by the congregation with the assistance of the
The Mayor with the other city officials was present, and
the church was filled with Gardiner's representative men
At the conclusion of the service able historical addresses
by four of Gardiner's citizens were delivered to the appre-
In a few preliminary words the Rev. Mr. Plant emphasized
the relation which has existed between religion and govern-
ment from the time of the dedication of Solomon's temple
10 CENTENNIAL OF GARDINER.
through the succeeding centuries and through the annals of
the early New England States. With a passing reference to
the customs and birthday of the town of Gardiner, one hun-
dred years before, he introduced the first speaker, Melvin C.
Wadsworth, whose subject was "Lessons of the Hour."
Mr. Wadsworth gave a series of vivid pictures of life in
Gardiner as he had seen it ; and then contrasted by-gone men
and manners with those of the present day. He told of the
efficient service of the town during the War of the Rebellion,
and closed his remarks upon the teachings of the past with
the well-chosen quotation : â€” " The things which are seen are
temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal."
Ex-Mayor Ladd next discussed " Gardiner as My Adopted
Town." His reminiscences of the early life of this commu-
nity and of the strong men of the time were graphic and
vigorous. With regard to religious and moral influences,
he gave his opinion that we had lost rather than gained. In
proof of this, he noticed the loftier ethical standpoint of the
past and the comparatively zealous attendance upon church
services, especially among the men who built up the town.
Josiah S. Maxcy then spoke on "Gardiner as the Home
of My Youth." Mr. Maxcy aptly described the pioneer set-
tlers of the town, their customs, and their public meetings,
with emphasis upon the responsibility of each of us for the
history of his time. Among the sterling qualities of our
forefathers, he praised especially the vigor with which they
established and upheld those three great factors of progress â€”
home, school, and church.
He made mention of several prominent men who had been
of influence during the formative period of our city's life.
He then reviewed the industrial advance of the citizens ; and
concluded with an expression of hope for Gardiner's future
and a reference to the fair memory of a childhood spent
within its bounds.
The fourth and last address was by Henry Richards,
on "The True Value of Progress." It gave, in a scholarly
EXERCISES AT CHRIST CHURCH. 11
review, a brief history of Gardiner, beginning with the arrival
of the white man in this vicinity, some three hundred years
ago. The trials of the early settlers, their bravery and perse-
verance, the Indian outbreaks, the growth of the little town
and its industries, its former prominence among its neighbors
upon the Kennebec, its progress in later years, â€” all these
were fitly chronicled by the speaker. In conclusion he drew a
parallel between the development of our city and that of the
New England States, with comments upon the differing influ-
ences which produced the pioneer of the past and the citizen
Exercises of June 25, 1903.
Not long after this service of commemoration, the City
Government appropriated the sum of $200 to defray the
expense of a general celebration, to be held on the afternoon
and evening of Thursday, June 25, 1903. For arranging
the necessary preliminaries the following committees were
appointed : â€”
Chairman of Committees â€” Mayor E. L. Bussell.
Committee from City Government â€” C. O. Turner, E. P.
Ladd, F. E. Strout, F. W. Harrington, E. L. Blake.
Committee on part of Citizens â€” Josiah S. Maxcy, A. W.
McCausland, O. B. Clason, Henry Richards, Frank E. Boston.
To each of the absent sons and daughters of Gardiner a
copy of the following invitation was sent.
Gardiner, Maine, May 14, 1903.
On June 25th occurs the one hundredth anniversary of the incorporation
of Gardiner as a town. A fitting observance of the day will be made by
our citizens. In the afternoon, all the civic organizations, with citizens
generally, will assemble on the Common, where a procession will be formed
and march to Oaklands, the old historic estate of the Gardiner family.
On arriving at Oaklands, the Hon. R. H. Gardiner, its present proprie-
tor, will receive and entertain the people. In the evening, a reunion of our
people will be held in the Coliseum, where there will be appropriate exer-
cises, consisting of orations, original poems, historical addresses, etc.
As a resident or former resident of Gardiner, bound to her by ties of
friendship or bonds of affection, you are most cordially invited to be pres-
ent and participate in the festivities of the occasion.
Very respectfully yours,
O. B. CLASON, 1
J. E. CUNNINGHAM, Committee
G. D. LIBBY, on
C. H. BEANE, I Invitations.
F. IRVING BUSSELL, j
PROGRAM OF CELEBRATION. 13
The program proposed for the celebration was a credit to
the committee in charge, who, largely through the hospitality
and public spirit of Mr. R. H. Gardiner, were able to promise
the people such a gala day as the city has seldom seen. The
details of this program are given below.
OF THE INCORPORATION OF GARDINER,
on Thursday, June 25, 1903.
The Committee has received an invitation from Mr. R. H. Gardiner to
visit him at Oaklands in the afternoon, and accordingly they have arranged
the following program : â€”
Parade will be formed at junction of Water and Brunswick Streets at
1.45 p. m. by Marshal Drake. The line of march will be down Water Street,
up Vine and School, and down Dresden Avenue to Oaklands in the follow-
ing order :
Marshal and Aids.
Heath Post, G. A. R.
Union Veterans Union.
Sons of Veterans.
Canton Evergreen, P. M.
Uniform Rank, K. of P.
Continental Hook and Ladder Company.
Alert Hose Company.
Eagle Hose Company.
Cobbossee Steamer Company.
Dirigo Lodge, A. O. U. W.
Danforth Lodge, N. E. O. P.
Samuel Grant Chapter, D. A. R.
Heath Relief Corps.
Degree of Honor.
Citizens in Carriages.
Remain until 4.30 p. m. School children form flag at base of Mount
Tom. During the flag exercises the spectators are requested to take posi-
tion near the summit of Mount Tom on the south side, where they will have
an unobstructed view of the proceedings. Old-time dances on the green.
March back to Common and disperse.
It is understood that the mills and places of business will make this day
a half holiday, and it is hoped every one in our city will avail himself of the
opportunity for an outing.
14 CENTENNIAL OF GARDINER.
EVENING AT COLISEUM.
Concert by Togus Band, Prof. Thieme, 26 pieces, 7.30 to 8.00 o'clock.
At 8.00 o'clock.
Opening of meeting by Mayor Bussell.
Prayer by Rev. J. L. Quimby.
Address by Mayor and introduction of Chairman of the evening, Robert
Address of the Chairman of the evening.
Singing by children, "America."
Historical Oration, " Early History of Gardiner," by Josiah S. Maxcy.
Music by band.
Pictures of Gardiner's past history.
Original Poem by Henry S. Webster.
Singing by school children, Ode written for the occasion by Mrs. Henry
General Oration, Hon. H. M. Heath.
Singing by school children, " Home, Sweet Home."
Prayer and Benediction, Father Reardon.
It is hoped that on this occasion everybody possible will decorate his
home and see that Gardiner looks her best.
The morning of June 25th was ushered in by a joyous
blast of whistles and peal of bells ; but the sound of heavily
falling rain caused the citizens to alter their plans for the day.
Instead of the exercises which had been arranged for the
afternoon at Oaklands, it was decided that the people should
meet at the Coliseum to participate in a hastily arranged
THE AFTEENOON EXEKCISES.
The parade was formed as at first intended, and after
marching through a few of the principal streets reached the
Coliseum at about three o'clock. In the meantime the
building had been gradually filling with people, and school
children, to the number of several hundreds, were there with
EXERCISES AT COLISEUM. 15
First on the program was a military drill by sixteen
young ladies, led by Miss Carrie Stone as captain. The
members of this company were Misses Edrie Beede, Ethel
Blair, Sara Bolger, Pearl Cook, Dora Cooper, Kate Dowling,
Mary Duncan, Maude Esmond, Anna Hunt, Julia Marr, Ella
Percival, Flossie Percival, Hazel Potter, Grace Richardson,
Carrie Stone, Lottie Tasker, and Lena Tibbetts.
This was followed by a pretty fancy dance, the "Para-
sol," by Misses Phoebe Beecher, Annie Doe, Josephine Haley,
Barbara Maxcy, Geneva Smith, and Cassie Young, led by
Miss Jennie Harvey. This dance was charming and graceful.
The last fancy dance on the program was the " Colonial,"
by thirteen young ladies in the attractive costume of "ye
olden time." Those who took part were Misses Phcebe
Beecher, Sara Bolger, Kate Clements, Helen Cooper, Jose-
phine Haley, Edith Landers, Harriet Marr, Helen Maxcy,
Barbara Maxcy, Rachel Moulton, Bettie Richards, Carrie
Stone, and Cassie Young. This was a particularly pleasing
dance, owing to the beauty of its figures and the grace of the
The school children then sang the following "Flag Song,"
composed by Gertrude E. Heath and set to music by Kate
Vannah : â€”
Fling out the flag, O children !
That all the world may see
How, cradled deep in the heart of a child,
The love of the flag may be ;
The love of the flag with its crimson bars
And its field of blue with the spangled stars ;
The love of the flag with its crimson bars
And its field of blue with the spangled stars.
16 CENTENNIAL OF GARDINER.
Salute the flag, O children !
With grave and reverent hand,
For it means far more than the eye can see â€”
Your home and your native land ;
And men have died for its crimson bars
And its field of blue with the spangled stars.
Revere the flag, my children,
Wherever its folds you see,
For cradled deep in the heart of a child
The love of the flag may be ;
The love of the flag with its crimson bars
% And its field of blue with the spangled stars.
Pray for the flag, my children,
That never a traitor bold
Defame a bar or a spangled star,
Or sully a silken fold ;
Then pray for the flag with its crimson bars
And its field of blue with the spangled stars.
The rest of the afternoon was spent by the people in old-
Refreshments intended for the proposed reception at
Oaklands were served to those present through the generosity
of Mr. Gardiner, and all expressed themselves pleased with
the afternoon's entertainment.
EVENING EXERCISES. 17
THE EVENING EXERCISES.
In the evening the Coliseum was filled to its utmost capac-
ity ; and, with its tastefully trimmed balconies, its hundreds
of bright school children, and its good-natured crowd of men
and women, presented a most attractive scene.
The National Home Band, stationed on the south side of
the building, discoursed eloquent music while the people were
At eight o'clock the Mayor and speakers entered the hall
and took seats on the temporary stage at the north side of the
building. Immediately in front and facing this stage were the
school children of Gardiner, Randolph, and Farmingdale, some
seven hundred in number, accompanied by their teachers.
Upon the stage were Mayor Bussell, ex-Mayors Johnson,
Clason, Berry, Walker, and Patten, Robert H. Gardiner, Josiah
S. Maxcy, Henry S. Webster, Herbert M. Heath, the Rev.
Langdon Quimby, the Rev. P. H. Reardon, F. E. Boston,
G. D. Libby, Dr. F. E. Strout, and C. Everett Beane, who led
the children in singing.
Mayor Bussell called the company to order and introduced
the Rev. Langdon Quimby, pastor of the Congregation alist
Church, the oldest clergyman in point of service in our city,
who made an impressive prayer.
The Mayor then presented the Chairman of the evening,
Robert Hallowell Gardiner, 3d, in the following words :
Fellow-Citizens, Ladies, and Gentlemen : â€”
You have probably noticed on your program that there is
to be an address by the Mayor. I wish to correct this and
apologize for the mistake, for my duty this evening consists
only in introducing the Chairman, and the few words which
I may say will come far short of being an address, and should
not, by any means, be considered as such ; but, as the gentle-
men who are to follow me are better prepared and will interest
you more than I possibly can, in this case a poor beginning
really means a good ending. I fully appreciate that it is an
honor to take even so small a part in these exercises as I do
18 CENTENNIAL OF GARDINER.
this evening, and that I do that part in a fitting and appro-
priate manner is more than should reasonably be expected of me.
I am satisfied that no effort of mine can do justice to this
occasion. It is my misfortune that I am not a native of
Gardiner, but I am proud to be her adopted son and thankful
for the privilege of being present on this joyful occasion as a
citizen of Gardiner.
We all flatter ourselves that we have a right to point with
just pride to our home city, to its past record and history,
to its present prosperity, and to the moral character and high
standing of its citizens ; and, with its encouraging prospects,
we should have bright hopes for the future. While it is true
that our city is not so large and prosperous as we would like
to see it, yet we can boast of a moral, intelligent, and intel-
lectual community, our people generally being neither very
rich nor very poor ; and we enjoy many of the privileges,
conveniences, and luxuries which are not to be had in many
cities much larger than ours. I think most of us appreciate
this, and are happy and contented to live here.
We should be especially proud of the men and women
who have been educated here, and who so conspicuously repre-
sent our city and State in high places of honor and responsi-
bility in other States and in foreign lands. While I would
like to mention their names and what they have done for them-
selves and their native city, I refrain from doing so, as what
I could say would not do them justice, and would possibly
interfere with the gentlemen who are to follow and will proba-
bly touch on this subject.
Possibly an explanation is due you why we hold our Cen-
tennial exercises at this time. On March 21, 1803, Gardiner
held its first town meeting and took up the active duties of a
town. You therefore notice that our Centennial came on the
21st of last March, but the committee who had the celebration
in charge thought best to have it at this time, when they looked
for better weather than in March. It seems that their judg-
ment was not of the wisest.
General Henry Dearborn.
MAYOR BUSSELl/s REMARKS. 19
Since we have assembled here this evening to assist in
celebrating the one hundredth birthday of our beautiful and
beloved city, let us enter into the spirit of the occasion and
make this an event never to be forgotten.
Gardiner was particularly fortunate in having for its
founder Dr. Sylvester Gardiner, a man of brains, wisdom,
energy, and wealth, â€” a man who made many valuable gifts to
the town and whose heirs and successors have always been
greatly interested in the affairs of our city and the welfare of
When in 1850 our town became a city, it was fitting that
one of his descendants, Robert Hallowell Gardiner, should be
selected as our first Mayor, which office he filled with ability
and great credit to himself and honor to the city. To-night
we have the pleasure of having with us a grandson of our first
Mayor, Robert Hallowell Gardiner, whose historic old mansion
and beautiful home at Oaklands we were to have had the
pleasure of visiting this afternoon ; but, owing to the inclem-
ency of the weather, which unfortunately we could not control,
we were deprived of the pleasure of that visit and of the
honor of meeting Mr. and Mrs. Gardiner. I wish to thank
them in behalf of our citizens for the kindly spirit they have
shown and the great interest they have taken in this occasion,
as well as for the generous manner in which they had provided
our entertainment there and accorded us the privilege of
inspecting that historic house which seems almost sacred to
Gardiner citizens. To this we point with pride as one of our
oldest landmarks, built, owned, and occupied by the Gardiner
family, whose worthy representative lives there at the present
time. Not alone because of his ability, but because of his
good-fellowship and the esteem in which he is held by our
citizens, I have the honor to invite him to act as Chairman of
this meeting. He needs no introduction to the people of
Gardiner, and it is a pleasure for me to present to you our
esteemed fellow-townsman, Mr. R. H. Gardiner.
20 CENTENNIAL OF GARDINER.
In accepting the chair Mr. Gardiner spoke as follows : â€”
Mr. Mayor : â€” It is with great pleasure and deep grati-
tude that I accept from your hands the honor of presiding at
this meeting ; and you, my friends and neighbors, who have
gathered to hear the interesting addresses we are expecting,
will pardon me, I am sure, if the few words with which I shall
detain you are entirely personal, for I used no merely formal
expression when I spoke of the pleasure and gratitude I feel
at this honor. From the time when I was old enough to pass
from the unstable fancies of a child to the fixed purpose of
the boy who has set his face resolutely toward the goal he
hopes to reach in manhood, I have always hoped that I might
some day be your fellow-citizen, and have always cherished
the ambition to be of some little service to you and to receive
some honor at your hands. Your approval, your respect,
your affection, have always seemed to me the honors chiefly to
be desired, and while I am conscious how unworthy of them I
am, in fact, as circumstances are, how little I could do to
deserve them, even were I far wiser and better than I am, yet
none the less I treasure the more eagerly every mark of your
esteem ; and, if I may speak frankly, I do not think that I
altogether delude myself when I feel that it is some pleasure
to you to see me in this chair to-night, as it is the greatest
pleasure to me to be here.
It would be strange indeed if I did not feel so. Four
generations of my forefathers have always had the welfare of
this place closest to their hearts. To its founding, its develop-
ment, to the establishment here of civilization, prosperity,
education, and religion, they devoted all the talents God had
given them ; and I should be afraid to meet them across the
great river if I, too, did not feel for this place the affection
which was the prevailing purpose of their lives.
I can rejoice, too, with my grandfather, that the plans of
his grandfather have not been realized. It often happens that
the dreams of an intensely practical and efficient man, such as
Dr. Sylvester Gardiner, have the essentials of true poetry;
REMARKS OF ROBERT H. GARDINER. 21
and he dreamed a noble dream which he did his utmost to
carry into reality.
Here, when his keen eye saw the possibilities of indus-
trial development, greater in his day than in ours, when the
railroad, the mine, and the wheat field have fixed the indus-
trial centres far from us, he planned to establish a great estate,
where, for generation after generation, his descendants should
reign supreme as lords of the manor, benevolent, indeed, but
autocratic, each a law unto himself. To each such descendant
he meant to give, by the ownership of every foot of ground
for miles about, the power to regulate the community as he
chose, while, by not possessing the power of alienation, each
such descendant should be bound as closely to the soil as his
tenants. Dr. Gardiner hoped that his descendants, so bound,
yet possessing such power, would follow the example he had
striven to set them, and that through their efforts peace and
happiness, truth and justice, religion and piety, might be
established here for all generations, and so perpetuate his name
by a monument more enduring than any triumph of the
It was, indeed, a noble dream ; yet, if I may compare
small things with great, the time was close at hand, when, in
the course of human events, it became necessary that it should
pass away, and that every man who came to establish himself
here should assume that separate and equal station to which
the laws of nature and of nature's God entitle him. The great
Declaration, against which Dr. Gardiner strove with all his
force, made his petty kingdom, noble as he hoped that king-
dom would be, forever impossible. We, who are descended
from their loins, may surely be pardoned, if, while we call up
for a moment the splendid plans of Dr. Gardiner, we take
equal pride in his grandson, who, when yet a boy, saw, as his
grandfather could not see, that there was a nobler future before
him, and who therefore, by his first act on reaching manhood,
surrendered the petty autocracy established for him, threw
open his lands to sale, and encouraged their settlement by men
22 CENTENNIAL OF GARDINER.
who should not be tenants and dependents, but equals and
friends. He saw that to be a free man in a free and independ-
ent community was a higher honor than to be lord of any
manor, however vast. He saw that the new doctrine of the 1
equality of all men was but the old one of the obligation of
every man to labor and to serve ; and to the welfare of his
place he devoted his time, his fortune, and his strength. Nor
was it without a rich reward, for who could hope a finer eulogj^
than that the community in which he had lived to more than
fourscore years should say that from youth to age he had been
their leader, benefactor, and godly example?
We, his descendants, shine by his reflected light. The
affection and respect your fathers felt for him induces you to
think more highly of us than we deserve. God grant that we
may walk worthily in our forefathers' steps, and that, as long
as the city lasts and our name endures, you and we and our
descendants to the remotest generation may be ever more