Later Years of the Saturday Club, 1870-1920

Later Years of the Saturday Club, 1870-1920

Later Years of the Saturday Club, 1870-1920

Later Years of the Saturday Club, 1870-1920

Excerpt

When 'The Early Years of the Saturday Club' was published in 1918, it was the intention of Dr. Edward Waldo Emerson, its maker, to follow it with at least one more volume, continuing the history of the Club. To that end he had begun to assemble material -- indeed he had already written several memoirs for inclusion in it -- when the state of his health obliged him to lay the task aside. The notes he made indicate that he intended to pursue the plan on which 'The Early Years' was constructed -- namely, to write a series of papers on the successive years through which the Club has lived, and after every such paper to present brief memoirs of the members, no longer living, who were elected in each of the years thus reviewed. In 1870, the last year with which Dr. Emerson's published volume concerned itself, two members were elected -- Charles Francis Adams, Sr., and Charles William Eliot. As President Eliot was still living, happily in full vigor, in 1918, the volume was brought to a close with a memoir of Charles Francis Adams.

No other member of the Club was so well equipped as Dr. Emerson, through his background of associations and memories, to deal with the beginnings of the Club and with that Olympian group of his father's friends who constituted its membership. Nor was any present member of the Club so well qualified, even had he been willing, to undertake the labor of producing, so nearly single- handed as Dr. Emerson in the production of the first volume, a second constructed upon any such general plan. The difficulty of relating the life of the Club to each year of the half-century ending in 1920 might have been overcome -- as it has been in the following pages -- simply by ignoring it altogether. The difficulty of finding any individual possessed of the requisite knowledge and command of his time to deal at all adequately with any considerable number of the more than fifty former members of the Saturday Club awaiting commemoration in accordance with the programme framed by Dr. Emerson was a difficulty not so easy to sur-

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