Chicago Tribune from Chicago, Illinois on February 11, 1900 · 33
Get access to this page with a Free Trial

Chicago Tribune from Chicago, Illinois · 33

Publication:
Location:
Chicago, Illinois
Issue Date:
Sunday, February 11, 1900
Page:
33
Start Free Trial
Cancel

EDITORIAL SHEET. PART FIVE. ' Pages 33 to 44. FEBRUABY 1900 FIFTY-SIX PAGES. 11, CT. VALENTINE'S day, for all Its pagan origin, probably can claim I more devotees the world over than ' any other day in the year, and assuredly there Is no other mltered father In all the calendar like the good Bishop Valentine. Tho patron saint of all true lovers, his diocesans are as many as there are darts In Cupid's exhaustless quiver. There ore neither high nor low In his bishopric, and rich and poor are alike his followers. The cheapest token carries as much sentiment as the most costly, and there are as many heart throbs in a valentine for a penny as in a hand-painted treasure bearing a verse from a poet laureate. Nor are all valentines foolish, as some soured grumblers of the harder sex assert. Except those coarse caricatures In the comic class, which mainly serve as cowardly vents for a splenatlc nature, the best emotions of the human breast find expression In the thoughtful selection of the gift and the delicious anxiety and anticipation with which it Is sent on fts nameless, hlntful way. Its least intimation is of a friendship that bethinks Itself of the absent, and If it often serves to veil the admiration of some timid swain or modest maiden the sentiment, if shrinking, is not shameful, and he Is a nobler boy and she a sweeter girl for its entertaining. Perhaps in only one scale of life does St. Valentine ever lack for devotees among those whom years and habits of affairs have carried beyond the wakeful dreamland of youth, in which life is all In the present and every anticipation has its fountain in the heart. Men and women, as they grow old and engrossed In those domestic cares for which St. Valentine stood sponsor, seem to forget the days when they were watchful of whom they met lest the wrong person should be their ' valentine," or peeped under the pillow In the morning to see If the kindly sahit had left some tell-tale of the sweet-heart of the year. But though the valentine habit may have passed the valentine spirit seldom vanishes, and if husband and wife and grown-up friends fail to exchange tokens among their own sober selves they live all over again In the harmless joys of their children, In giving and receiving, the delights and anticipations of their own young days. A shrewd observer has said that he knew the world grows better, because more and more the genuinely sentimental comes uppermost in character and survives the frosted locks and withered cheeks of those who near the end. How pleasant and often tender are the memories of bygone Valentine days among the elder generation in Chicago was evidenced by the replies which The Sunday Tribunes received from men and women to whom It put the question: " What is your recollection of your first valentine?"' Some, to be sure, answered that they never had received a valentine, and one or two rather sadly owned they never had sent one, either. But many more replied that they could not remember their first nor yet their thirtieth sufficiently to recall in detail any impressions they might have felt in getting or in giving, but of one thing they were sure that St. Valentine was the best saint in the calendar and the day sacred to him one fragrant with many of their sweetest memories. Two pictures of interest to the day were found in old books in the library of the Rev. J. ' S. Stone, D. D., rector of St. James' Protestant Episcopal Church. One shows the arrival of Cupid after impatient waiting for his coming. This is an original edition of " Hone',8 Every-Day Book," printed in 1S30. The other shows a matron telling a maid rules for ascertaining who her valentine " Is. This Is printed in an original edition of " Parson's Select British Classics," and bears the date of Nov. 30, 1703. Replies to The Sunday Tribune's query follow: I can remember clearly the valentines of thirty-five and forty. years ago in England. There were two The Rev. Dr. J. S. styles then, one Stone of St. James' which might be called Episcopal Church. serious and tne other grotesque. The rivalry between them was keen, and finally the comical valentine advanced strongly into the lead. I remember receiving both kinds. The serious valentines generally showed a picture of a pair of lovers with a border of flowers around them. Then there would be a stanza of poetry or an extract from the writings of some author of the day. The comical valentines were good-natured but crude affairs. They were caricatures coarsely drawn In bright colors, but it always was understood that they did not intend to hurt any one's feelings. The recipient enjoyed them as much as the sender. These gro tesque missives usually came from boys. Whence the serious ones came I can only conjecture. We used to look forward With great de light to the coming of St. Valentine's day la Oxfordshire when I was a boy. The girls and boys would tiptoe up to the doors where they wished to leave valentines, slip them underneath, and then scamper away, lr a window were opened a little they would put them in there. Members of the family who wished to give each other valentines would lay them under the plates at the breakfast table or put them in other places about the house where they would be found easily. I remember distinctly the pleasure I experi enced when I received my boyhood valen tines. It was a wholesome delight. As I grew older the character of the comic valentines changed for the worse. They grew more vulgar till it became a painful thing to receive them. The refined caricature developed into a purposed takeoff of one's shortcomings or physical abnormalities. And as the taste for quieter hues grew in matters of dress and decoration the loudness and vulgarity of the comic valentine increased. It was a long time age when I received my first valentine, but I can remember pleas antly today the Ikfcsoirg's Edition or Select British Classics, Elbridge Hanecy, Jutge of the Circuit Court. ,5 r'Kiud. dtsL VALENTINE From an original FROM AN OLD -if PAGE work in the possession of the Rev. J. S. James' Episcopal Church. ENGLISH BOOK. Stone, D. D., rector of St. Orrin N. Carter, Judge of the County Court. agreeable surprise I felt when I heard the knock on our door and the patter of footsteps as the brlnger of the valentine fled to a place of hiding. I hurried to the door and threw it open, but I was not quick enough to see who brought the missive. It was not an ornate affair. I saw that as I picked It up from the snow-covered steps. It was folded in a long and narrow envelope. I tore It open and disclosed a home-made, or perhaps a school-made, valentine. The design was the conventional two hearts impaled on an arrow, and, off in the distance, a little out of proportion and badly drawn, waa a cupld with a bow from which; he had just shot the arrow with unerring aim. That bow was not a symmetrical affair, but was lop-sided and the string was not taut, but I did not care for such little inaccuracies. I was delighted that some one, not of my family, had thought of me, bad cared enough about me to execute that valentine and drop it in the snow of our doorstep and scamper away. Of course, I had a pretty satisfactory guess who tho girl was and I might write a little more of the sentimental side of that episode of my boyhood but there is a great deal of hard work at hand for a man who is seeking the nomination for the Governor ship of the great State of Illinois, so I must turn from the memory of that valentine and give attention to the practical duties of a modern political canvass. Just now I can recall only two valentines that came to me. It was when I was in col lege and the missives did not come - from girls but from college boys. One, I remem ber, had this quota tion from Samuel "Wordsworth printed on it:, How dear to my heart are the scenes of my child hood. When fond recollection presents them to view; The orchard, the meadow, the deep tangled wild- wood. And every loved spot which my Infancy knew. The other I remember, chiefly for its. pic torial feature. It was rather a crude carica-, ture of me. exaggerating certain features. It was drawn and sent by a man who is now In business in Chicago. There was a stanza of some sort written on it detailing my past and the then present and expressing good wishes for the future. Of course I'll -have to admit that earlier in life I received my share of valentines from schoolgirl friends. I can recall a pleasant composite with hearts and arrows and cupids in it and with verses -tender and jocose. But I cannot remember specihcally the first one I received nor what my feelings were when it came to me. That seems a long time ago, and, while I feel young in my heart, it makes me realize mat me years are supping Dy rapidly when I stop to consider the matter. Valentines? Yes, they had their place in my experience, ana i. am. truiy sorry ior any one who has not . experienced the thrill Howard H. Gross, of joy these tender ex-Member of the missives bring. The Board of Education first valentines I recall were those home-made affairs, compounded as follows: Take a piece of bristol board, size of a postal card or larger; draw in the center a blue heart of conventional form, pierced by a golden arrow; above this, with pen and red ink, engross the word " My, ana Deiow the heart "Thine forever"; tne wnoi framed with pink and blue tissue paper laia in fold3 around the edge of the card- As a youngster I was not popular in school. Many of my schoolmates saia J. was too . r -i .J - bossy. I had, however, some strong j.nciiu, so at valentine time I usually was ia urea with quite a quantity of the comic variety, with here and there some or. me icuuer variety. One of the latter I shall never lurga, il was so unexpected and so out of the ordinary. It was the custom to hide the valentine in one of the books of the one to receive it- Upon the occasion in question I opened my old Mitchell's Atlas of the find in it a valentine of enormous proportions and ravishing beauty. The upper layer was made up of embossed angels and cupids radiant in sunlight, floating about in fleecy clouds, then layer after layer of laced papers and filigree work, each with rrofue decorations of flowers, interspersed whi, riftoorations of love. The whole effect to me seemed as gorgeous as the' trahsfqr mation scene that closes the speotaqulji.r'; .-..-..oanKn. of "Ali Baba or theHCiri- t.i K'ir.oer." On the reverse side,-to'jVntf& mark, sufficiently erased to give the'fmi0 s'.on that the senacr inea to remove Vt.tfMit yet plain enough to make you feel sure it was purposely left, were the figures, 1.25. A further inspection, disclosed a half -con cealed monogram in one corner, in which the initials of the sweetest, daintiest, brown-eyed girl I ever knew were entwined in a lover's knot. Then the earth seemed to fade away, and a golden mist enveloped me in the first sweet dream of love. Doubts and uncertainty left me. I knew knew beyond a doubt that the affection that had been hers for two long years was finally returned, at least to the extent of a dollar and a quarter. The first valentine; I ever received that had been bought in a store I have forgotten all about In fact, valen- Denis J. Swenie, Chief of Chicago Fire Department. I was a clerk in the book store of W. W. Barlow at 121 Lake street, and of course we were supplied with valentines galore. Among the many purchasers a young man (who is now one of our prominent Board of Trade men) made a fine selection of the note paper, filled it in, and sent it to his' best glrL. I remember how I envied him his faculty or. composition, and wished I could do likewise and feel as satisfied over it as he iooKea. But of course I must send a valentine, bo I decided to send a fine gift book to my young lady friend, sending it by a boy messenger, expecting to hear of its receipt in a few days. But judge of my astonishment w nen a sister of the one to whom the book was sent called on me and demanded an explana tion for sending her sister such a book. I could not imagine what the trouble was, when she told me her sister haa receivea a fine copy of a work on physiology and was angry about it. One can imagine my feel ings. I was mow than provoked, and explaining the facts to her I immediately be gan to hunt for the culprits wno naa played this cruel hoax on me. The messenger boy had been intercepted by some of my roguish friends, and then the change was made. After they had enjoyed their fun the gift book was returned to me. and then found Its way to the young lady for Whom it was intended. A short time after I enlisted for the Mexican war, and the next Valentine day found me inside the lines of Mexico. Perhaps the first valentine I ever received I do not remember there were so many and they were all so pretty. But one of the earliest I never have forgotten. In my mind, at least, its colors have not faded nor its delicate tracery grown coarse. I will not attempt to describe it, for mere words could do only injustice to its charming art, but I remember distinctly the couplet which emphasized the sentiment at which the pictures hinted: My love and my duty both I resijrn. In humble submission to St. Valentine. Could anything be more charming? There was a pretty custom in my girlhood days in the sending of a valentine. Generally the smitten youth chose to bring it in person. There was a great knocker on the front door, and after slipping the valentine under the door he would send a resounding volley ringing through the house with the heavy knocker, and then walk hastily away but not too far. From around the nearest corner or some otlier convenient near-by place of concealment he would watch the door to see who opened and took in hia valentine; and if by any chance she happened to be the girl he fancied he adored he went as elated and happy for one day at least as any merely mortal youth could be who had trusted his fate to the hazard of an anony mous confession of heart-burnings. Do I remember the first valentine I ever sent? O, no. It is so different sending Cupids and bleeding hearts and sentimental posies is not at all like receiving them. The delicious guess who the particular ewain may be, and, perhaps, whether he really meant all his valentine seemed to say all this is lacking then- Sending a valentine is almost prosy in contrast with the poetry of receiving one. Dr. Julia Holmes Smith. tines were scarcer with me, I guess, than with many young fellow of my time. But one valentine I got many years ago was the prettiest and sweetest that ever any man had, and I am not likely ever to forget one of my feelings when I got it and was sure beyond a doubt that it was really mine. That was my wife. She was born on St. Valentine's day. Beat that who can for a valentine! I am handier at a lot of things than writing poetry, and I guess If I was her valentine she had to take it in pretty plain prose; but it Is safe to say that all the poets and painters In the world never got up any. thing to compare with my valentine. We were not married on Valentine's day. That would have been romantic, certainly, but we were satisfied to take each other when we could. I was a fireman, of course, and probably Mrs. Swenie had as queer a wedding day as any woman yet ever had. There wasn't an alarm during the ceremony, and 60 we got married without any trouble, but before we had been man and wife twenty-four hours I had had tc go to two fires, and my wife felt like a widow before she fairly got tha roses out of her hair. It has been a' good many years since I have received a valentine or sent one but there is no need, you see, for I have mine with me always, and St. Valentine, if I had my way, would be the most popular one in the calendar. My memory is faulty as to the first valentine I received, but my mind is clear as to one I sent fifty-three Hortensia n. Black. Combined World, to Charles C. P. riolden. years ago this coming valentine day. I will tell vou about It, first explaining the kinds of valentines we had in those days. There were the comic, long single sheets highly colored, some witn Dig rea nearts pierced with Cupid's arrows, etc., etc., and a large variety of caricatures a penny apiece. Then we had expensive headings on fine note paper, which could be filled in to suit! the individual taste. At the time referred to, in February, 1847, I am not sure I can, tell anything about my first valentine later ones probably made stronger im pressions on me. But I know the story of one St. Valentine's day in, Texas forty years ago, when its heroine was 14 years old, a day whose experiences she never will forget, and it is all true. Perhaps if I make it impersonal it will not spoil the telling. It was a Texas day, clear end sunny, in Brazoria, and this young girl, pretty enough to deserve a valentine and dressed In becoming white, sat out on the broad gallery of her home, listening and waiting. She heard the roar of the gulf by way of the river; she marked the beauty of the flowers and trees; she listened to the mocking birds in the sycamores, and looking across the Brazos saw the deer come down to drink but she thought little of them all. There was just one thought in that young heart. This' was Valentine day, and would she get one? Valentines were rare favors then. She was too young to be in love, but, O, how in her heart of hearts she longed to receive that attention from some one of her boy friends. It was a sense of delicate attention that attracted her; the rosebud's fragrance, the early youth romance, bearing the mind back to the old French tales of St. Valentine s day. At last the hour for sending to the post-office arrived, and soon in the glamour of that spell-hour in country places she saw the negro boy returning empty handed. She sat perfectly still, but it required determination to look unconcerned and utterly indifferent, she was not sure she accomplished it, for the boy retired grinning, and she soon heard him whistling " Massa's in the cold, cold ground" in sympathetic mournfulness. The sounds of a horse's hoofs caused her to look up, ani to her dismay she beheld about the most uninteresting man In the county coming up the walk. He was an old bachelor, a Veryt very old mani almost 30," she wrote to her confidential friend. It was JOHN FARSON FROM TWO POINTS OF VIEW. r rV in 5 I I -j" .mhux my,. M rm "tVhere can the postman be, I say? He ought to fly on such a day! ur an aays in tne year, you know. It's monstrous rude to be so slow: The fellow's so exceeding stupid want: tnere ne is: O! the dear Cupid! OLD-TIME ST. VALENTINE'S ILLUSTRATION From an original edition of Hones' Every-Day Book of the date of 1S30; owned by the Rev. J. S. Stone, D. D.. rector of St. James' Episcopal Church. Aa his an "William's valentine shows him. As he appears to Uj6 people.. too bad. He entered all smiles, and seated himself beside her. He was one of those abnormal men who seek not sympathy, but are attracted by disparity of years. Suddenly he caught her hand and slipped a ring on her engagement finger, saying, " Be this your valentine." " You are an old f " then she stoppel. She remembered the proprieties. Drawing the ring off she fairly threw it at her tormenting beau and fled in dismay. She was heartbroken. Nothing in the mail for her,, and this grown man come a-courting her! Weren't her boy friends mean? she asks-l herself, and wouldn't she slight them at the next dance? Evening approached, and she sallied forth to walk sentimentally among the flowers and hide her grief. As she reached the gate it opened, and there stood one of her best boy friends then came another and anothtr, and then a bevy of girls, her own choicest friend's, with more boys and girls, and all began to laugh aa the girls cried out: - " We've come to bring you a valentine! The boys all wanted to know of us what you liked best, and we all said a dance. So we've brought Uncle Ben (the fiddler), and we know your mother will let us dance in the big dining-room." What a time those young hearts had. " Indian Queen," "The Coquette," "Spanish Dance," and "Virginia Reel" filled in a merry time. And she forgot to slight anybodyshe was so happy with her valentine. The first valentine I ever received? I could not pick it out from amongst the many. But I remem- Carter H. Harrison, ber wel1 the nrsCone ri.:. I sent. I made it my- nayor of Chicago. self We llved awy out on the prairie on the West Side, and boys then did not have money to buy things as they do now. My boy has more money to spend in a day than I had in a year. I made that particular valentine something elaborate. I sketched it first and then I painted it three throbbing hearts pierced through and through with darts, and bleeding most dolefully. I think there were some flowers and leaves and a vine for a border. It was better than anything the old masters ever did. It makes no difference now to whom I sent it she was the handsomest girl on the West Side, and, for that matter, in Chicago then. If she' didn't know who sent it she ought to have known. Valentines are not so much in my line now as they were then. O, I. get them, of course. Every now and then some one sends me a picture of a man with all sorts of emphatic features and exaggerated personal appearance and a label underneath which says: "This is how the politician looks." But it doesn't look at all like me. I sent a valentine once that I thought was the funniest I ever saw. I had a friend in the navy and I sent him a " Jack Tar ' L. E. McGann, when he was on a Commissioner of foreign station. It pubic Works. was one of the burlesque kind, a sailor gotten up like Dick Deadeye. When that man came home I was all ready to dodge, but he merely laughed about the caricature and said he enjoyed it Immensely, though he got it on Christmas day. Then he said he couldn't buy any valentines where he was so he'd brought me something else, and he unloaded a regular museum of trophies and curios. We had to build an addition to the house to hold the museum and I quit sending valentines. Well, now, it is a far cry from the desk of a busy business-man in Chicago to the days of youth when John J. Badenoch, tender Jove tokens m were shoved under ex-Chief of Police. the door by mtla schoolgirls. Why, say, I never got a valentine in al! my life. That is, I don't remember of ever receiving one. However, if I sat down and thought hard perhaps I could remember getting one and even recall the sentiments I felt. s I remember my first valentine as if it was yesterday, and my impressions, too, for they were strange and overwhelming. I was -v 6 years old. Father ur' w had been up to the Howard. village on an errand and he brought me back a valentine. I knew the moment I saw it that Adelaide h,r mind the other name), one of th neighbor's little daughters and as sweet as a peach, had sent it. I was head over heels in love with her, ana at inai nappy age wnen Intuition served for logic and there were no doubts to chill my duss. The valentine and the conviction that Adelaide ent it upset me so that I could not a word and I bolted for the woodshed. Father I remember, followed me out and made so much fun of me that I nearly choked with wrath. Then mother came out, too, d I suppose I looked so funny and red and Bheeplsu that she and father both laughed, and at that I broke down and cried at the top of my lungs. TheH mother petted me, and when I got my breath back and my tears wiped away I read the valentine. It had a picture of a girl on the face, I remember not half so pretty a girl as Adelaideand a verse under it. When I read that I said to mother: " I'm going right over to Adelaide's now." Then she laughed at me again, so I had to show her the poetry. I remember well how it read: I love you For you love me. If you don't believe it Come and see. I went over to Adelaide's but I wasn't gone long. Her folks couldn't find her and I felt downhearted, for it seemed as if perhaps she had not sent it after all. Long afterward I found out that she did send It, though, and was expecting me to come straight over, as I did. But when she saw me coming she had a wonderful fright for so little a maiden, and ran away and hid in the chicken coop till I was gone. I have that valentine still, anfi Adelaide is Mrs. Howard. I am glad to believe that the genuine sentiment that attached to St. Valentine's day when I was a young- General John flcNulta. ster is even more characteristic of the season now. Senti- . ment is the expression of the truest and highest nature, and I am fain to think the world, as well as individuals, grows sweeter as it ages. One thing I notice there is not so much caricature-cartoon in the valentine nowadays as there was half a century ago. Even those who called themselves well-bred in those days too often took advantage of the anonymous missive to wound slylx where they would not have dared strike openly. It occurs to me that most of the " comic " Valentin? sending today Is done by children, who know no better, and by coarse natures who probably never will be any better. Ridicule once in a while serves a good turn, however. I remember a case forty years ago. She was a lady, and somewhat young, too, though she did not lead the choir, and her cheeks were not the fiushest in the congregation. A young fellow thought to have some sport at her expense, and tried to turn poet long enough to indite this valentine: Soft is the down on the butterfly's wing. It is so soft and meek; Soft is the voice that my true love doth stnit But softer yet is her crimson cheek. The young w;oman knew who sent it at a glance and this was what she sent flashing back: . Soft Is 'taters all mushed ui. . As soft as mush can be. But softer yet is the silly pup Who wrote that verse to me. It wasn't altogether well-bred, but it cured that young man of a disposition to ridicule. Seems to me the valentine habit is growing. In my boyhood we were satisfied with one or two, and three Ralph fl. Easley, Secretary of the Civic Federation. were a lot. Now my boy wants a dozen and then is hardly content. They are cheaper for one thing, so It is easier to have many. But I think the appetite grows, especially for comic creations. I can't remember my first valentine I had 'em, like measles, natural to childhood. In fact, I am rather glad that recollection does not abide with me, for I am confident the thing, whatever It was, was a caricature that hurt my feelings. Wl.t a vehicle for hatred those ridiculous things used to be! It was a common trick for a boy to send a beauty to the girl he thought he liked best and then the most outrageous thing he could find to the boy he suspected of being his hated rival. It sounds silly now, but it was all real in those days. My sensations when I received my first valentine are impossible to recount, for I The Rev. William cannot reca11 tht I ine s.cv. ever was the recipient n. Lawrence, cf gucn a t3LyOFt for Pastor Second which I have been Baptist Church, thankful; for I have always regarded the observance of the day as something grotesque and foolish. But I remember that I once sent a valentine and that the affair really had an Important bearing, from a moral point of view, on my whole life. When I was a small boy, about 5 or 6 years old I was sent to a French school, where nothing but that language was spoken. About that time there came to the church which my parents attended a pastor whose wife had the misfortune to be a second wife and also a beautiful woman in character and appearance. These facts exposed her to comment which was not always kind. She was alsb a finely educated lady, and thoroughly conversant with the French language. Our teacher suggested to us that we each prepare In our own way and in the French language a note of appreciation which should be sent her on Valentine's day. which are di, CSiember -wel1 tIle (?axo took with the sentiment and language. a tnat it would be regarded as a welcome word of cheer. I was careful to express the thought that we wished her to feel at home among us, and pledged myself to do all that I could to make her life a happy one as the wife of our pastor. The endeavor to say a kind thing had a vast deal to boyish life, for having written the assurance I felt bound to live up to it. The lady was pleased to acknowledge the effort, and for. many years the reply was treasured and kept. Professor James says that if you feel good, do something good, if you only give a scat to a woman In the street car, and thereby form the habit of goodness. That little note I sent was in accord with that great principle, and so I am willing to unfold this trivial personal account as an illustration, of a great psychological and moral truth. Really, the birds have mated so many times, and the fated prosaic things have come on so thickly, John Vance Cheney since I received my Librarian of first valentine, that Newberry Library. Jne memOTy Gf 11 is J lost, j obliterated. " I am quite sure, however, that the sender was gentle and fair, and I can well believer that her missive gave me a thrill that tingled on until the daffodils and bluebirds took the following March with beauty perhaps longer. I cannot say. Would I could for your sake, and far more for nay own. Since pleasures are too few, Why lose the old sweet things. Though sweeter prove the new? I am getting to be an old man Mr. Farsoa Is 45 years old and it is so long since I received my first valentine that I have for gotten all about it. John Farson. At this moment, however, there happens to be lying on my desk the last valentine I received, which it seems came from my son, William. It is evident this little lad knows his father pretty well. This valentine shows an after-dinner speaker with exaggerated features responding to a toast at a banquet, The stanza that gpes with the picture is picturesque in the extreme. What were my feelings when I received my first valentine? Why, it's so long ago I don't remember even , W. D. Kerfoot, City Controller. the thing itself, much. less1 my emotions. Tou make me thin it of something that occurred at a vestry meeting a few evenings ago. The Rev. Dr. James S. Stone was telling what marvelous things you newspaper men think up to ask questions about. " What do you think?" he said. " Here's a, letter from an editor who wants me to write him a two-column article on " What I Would Do if I Was a Woman." You really must excuse me. If I had any feelings about valentines I have forgotten them along with the valentines. The Aldermen have invited me to dinner next Valentine's day. Perhaps I may have some impressions' after that ia over. Valentines were not showered on'me wtiPi. I was a youngster, and it is not strange that I have forgotten the first one, If there ever was a first one, and A. S. Tmde. also my feelings when I got it. The girls used to pass me by without much no tice, and I suppose no one ever thought of attaching anything as sentimental as a valentine to me, even in fun. My wife says I'm so homely she never thinks of being jealous, and I believe I'm better looking now than when I was a boy. Sometimes I get a valentine now, one of those things half-baked people call " comic," and I suppose the sender thinks It looks like me andwanw me to think so, too but it doesn't, ablt- My case probably Is the funniest of which you will learn I never received a valentine in my lire, jso 1 can- Dr. E. Benjamin Andrews, Supt. of Schools. not relate my Impressions when I received the first one, and I am sure that how !c seems not to get one would not prove interesting. The memory of my first valentine goes far back into the dim past. I was only a little girl ia short dress Mrs. Matilda B. Carse. and white pinafore. All I can recollect is recelvlne: a little childish love rhyme. That has come down the century and Is, .1 suppose, just as fresh and sweet today to the childish heart as then. It was written in a crude, boyish hand: The rose is red. the violets blue. Honey Is sweet, and so are you. And so are they that sent you this. And when we meet we'll have a kiss. The hand that wrote it has long been folded in the dreamless sleep, and my state of mind upon its reception is burled beneath the weight of too many leaves of dead eummers and the shroud of too many winter snows for me to resurrect my feelings on that occasion. I never received a valentine. At "least, I don't remember ever having one sent to me. Orson Smith, Pres. flerchants Loan and Trust Company. The girls used to get all the valentines when I was a boy. They were cheap affairs in those days. mostly comics and crudely drawn not the ornate affairs we have today. As I remember it now, it was the custom when a valentine was left -at the door to pick it up, look it over, and then take it to a neighbor's house and leave it a sort of plan to pass them around. I never got a valentine; no, never. Tcu set, when I was a boy the girls, just as they always do, picked out only the handsome young men to favor . with valentinesand, Peter Van Schaack. of course, you understand, they passed me by. That was a good while ago; and perhaps I have forgotten. But, seriously, of course I received my share cf the little love tokens and they made me happy, just as they have made boys happy since the pleasant practice began. I cannot recall cow any specific valentine, but they were crude affairs compared with what the boys and girls now have, '

Get access to Newspapers.com

  • The largest online newspaper archive
  • 21,100+ newspapers from the 1700s–2000s
  • Millions of additional pages added every month

Try it free