Monday, October 7, 2013

A Testimonial of Gratitude

The Cortland News, March 21, 1884.

A Testimonial of Gratitude.

   Desirous of expressing in a substantial manner the feeling of gratitude with which the people of Cortland regard the Fire Department of Homer, our village trustees ordered a banner to be made, and the Board of Engineers formed a design which was adopted and sent to Mr. Van Dorn, of Rochester, who has succeeded in creating one of the most elegant banners we have ever seen.

   It is of silk and satin, bordered with gold fringe, hung with gold tassels and measures 4x6 feet. On one side, in the center, a painting representing Union Hall, Wickwire and Garrison blocks in flames, with the Homer steamer and hook and ladder truck in front, with the Cortland steamer and hand engine, and the firemen are at work battling with the fire.

   Over this is the inscription, "Homer, N. Y., Fire Department," and underneath, "You helped us," and on each side, in panels, are pictures of fire apparatus. On the other side, in the center, is the inscription, "Presented to the Fire Department of Homer, N. Y., by the Fire Department of Cortland, N. Y., 1884," and on the sides, in panels, are a steamer and axes, etc., all surmounted by an eagle, shield and scroll. The different parts are separated by gold stripes or braid, and the lettering is all gold.


   It was understood by the Homer department that the Cortland boys were to visit them Monday evening, but were not aware that anything more than a friendly call was intended.

   In the afternoon Secretary Delevan took the banner to Homer and secretly placed it in one of the rooms of Fireman's Hall and kept the key.

   In the evening a number of our firemen went to the Hall, in which the Homer boys and several prominent citizens gathered, when, after a social chat, Chief Engineer Cleary, after telling the company that he had something to say and would make his remarks brief as possible as he had the advantage of Chief Engineer Fisher, because he had had time to prepare himself, addressed them somewhat as follows:

Fellow Firemen of Homer, N. Y.:

   It is with the greatest of pleasure I stand before you to-night to ask you to assist us in a brotherly act. We called on you before on several occasions and you promptly responded, particularly so on the night of the 20th of January, when the heart of our village was on fire in the midst of a fearful hurricane. We thought of your assistance but you were three miles away. We telegraphed, we sent messengers, and it seemed as though they had not time to reach you when you were to our assistance with your stout arms and willing hearts, and the timely aid and assistance rendered as well as your heroic and gentlemanly demeanor, are well known and appreciated by the people and particularly so by the firemen of Cortland. The Board of Engineers of Cortland are composed of the Chief and first and second assistants, Secretary and Treasurer and the foreman of each of our fire companies. This board, being the executive body of our fire department, have resolved to record, at least a part, of your charitable acts in a volume not written by pen, but at a glance will be recognized as the scene which caused the Homer and Cortland firemen to meet as two brothers at the one common altar and offer battle to the fiery elements. This volume will also remind us of the stern visage that all wore at that meeting. How different the countenances before me to-night. The twinkling of the eye to me is the forerunner of the friendly smile, and if Chief Fisher will be kind enough to step on the rostrum I will, for the Cortland department, give him the friendly grasp of the hand.

   Chief Fisher:  Allow me in behalf of the Fire Department of Cortland, N. Y., to present through you to the Fire Department of Homer, N. Y., this album, this volume, this banner, yonder it comes. Take it and with it the hearts and, if needs be, the strong arms of the Fire Department of Cortland, and may its memories be ever as green as the grass of our valley and as lasting as the stone-clad hills of our county.

   To say that the appearance and presentation of the banner took the Homer folks by surprise is not enough—they were fairly overwhelmed with astonishment; they could only sit and gaze at it. Finally Chief Fisher got to his feet and undertook to tell what he thought of such conduct, but he was "chuck-full" of silent eloquence. Others said a few words, each expressive of the warm thanks they felt, while our boys sat around and enjoyed the class-meeting.

   The entire arrangement, from the inception of the idea of procuring the banner to the presentation, was a matter that we feel like lauding in unstinted terms of praise, because it fitly represents the feelings of heartfelt gratitude which one and all cherish for the noble firemen of our sister village.


A Washington Letter.

Washington, D. C., March 15, 1884.

Editor, Cortland News:

   The past week has been one of great interest. The liberal-minded, earnest and leading women of this nation, representing both temperance and suffrage reforms, assembled at the capital of the greatest, grandest and noblest republic the world has ever known, asking that they, too, might be permitted to participate in making the laws that govern their absolute and relative rights. They plead earnestly to attentive listeners, and when before the Senate committee they were listened to as never before.

   Prejudice is hard to overcome, but compare the condition of American women with that of other civilized nations and we may thank America manhood. Progress is the watchword; perseverance and right conquer. Facts are stubborn things. To man, woman seems always a problem, and he knows not what to do with her; and certainly he would not know what to do without her.

   Men split this nation into factions and caused a civil war. Men forged guns and with shot and shell slaughtered one another. Women scraped lint, prepared bandages and walked over the battlefield giving the wounded a cup of cold water, binding their wounds, closing the eyes of the dead, and sending messages home of the life or death of their loved ones. While men fought women worked and prayed It is said men saved the Union, but who knows but woman's prayer was the potent factor?

   Now another war is upon us, not with the bullet but with money, and the ballot is making many homes desolate with the accursed traffic of" King Alcohol."

   Let woman have her own way; she is right. A distinguished writer says:

   "That moral elements controlling in society are needed; and that Christian women are to supply those elements partly because Christian and very largely because woman." Another says: “I am fully persuaded that emancipated, enlightened and enfranchised, she will be equal to the demand. Commissioned by the great Messiah and clothed in the armor of affection, she will go forth to conquer the world with the sword of the Spirit. The shining hosts of heaven will enlist under her banner of love and Christ will lead the way. The whole world will surrender to her divine command and before her triumphant march the powers of darkness flee. Prison houses will be transformed into school-houses, and dram-shops and brothels be turned into market places and homes of purity. Inebriates will shake off the demon spell that enslaves them and stand erect in their manhood. The Magdalen sisters of men will look up and smile amid tears of repentance and peace. Oppression's yoke will be broken and the clanking chains of the captive be heard in the land no more forever. The scaffold, the slave pen and the whipping-post will be remembered only as relics of an animal age. Navies will be turned into ships of commerce, and the implements of death be beaten into implements of life. Nation will not lift up sword against nation; neither will they learn war any more."

   Women enlightened with that knowledge that is of most worth in a republic, which is physical laws that govern the development of pure and noble manhood and womanhood, and the laws that govern individual rights and of that as members of society, they will have the armor of protection that will be ironclad against anarchy or despotism, and our nation will stand forth in this progressive age beyond the control of unprincipled politicians and demagogues, and a foundation laid for our republic that can never be shaken.

"Not she with trait'rous lip the Master stung,
Not she denied Him with a liar's tongue;
She, when Apostles fled, had power to brave,
Last at the cross and earliest at the grave."

L. V. B.



   The Cortland Water-Works Company intend to begin operations on the first of April, or as soon as the order from the Court is received. Material has already been ordered, and all the men that can be obtained will at once be set at work. Some two or three hundred laborers will be required, as it is expected that the works will be completed by the first of July.

   The fox-chase from the Fair Grounds last Saturday was a four-mile course, which the dogs covered in ten minutes. We believe that is considered pretty good running. Walter Hookaway's dog took first prize, 16; Wm. Robinson's, second, $3; Owen Brooks’, third, $2; John Gallaher's, fourth, $1. In the shake purse seven dogs entered, Walter Hookaway’s taking first prize, $1.25, and Walter Wilcox's, second, 75 cents.

   [Village] President Daniel E. Smith has rented the W. P. Randall house, corner of Reynolds avenue and Owego street, and taken possession. Dr. H. T. Dana will move into the house vacated by Mr. Smith.

   With less property in Cortland, yet higher taxes, higher rates of insurance and higher rents, what inducement is there for a working man, without a corresponding increase of wages, to locate in this village?

   Should the editor of the Cortland NEWS attempt to "punch the head" of your Cortland correspondent, he would be "L. D. G," Laid Down—Gone — Marathon Ind.
No "attempt" for us. We are in no hurry to "J. S."—Join Sinners.

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