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Caroline French Benton

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Title: The Complete Club Book for Women
       Including Subjects, Material and References for Study
              Programs; together with a Constitution and By-Laws; Rules
              of Order; Instructions how to make a Year Book; Suggestions
              for Practical Community Work; a Resume of what Some Clubs
              are Doing, etc., etc.

Author: Caroline French Benton

Release Date: July 20, 2010 [EBook #33201]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1


Produced by Annie McGuire. This book was produced from
scanned images of public domain material from the Google
Print archive.


Complete Club Book

For Women



Caroline French Benton

Woman's Club Work and Programs,net,$1.25
Carriage paid,1.40
The Complete Club Book for Women,net,1.25
Carriage paid,1.40
Fairs and Fetes,net,1.35
Carriage paid,1.50
Living on a Little,net,1.25
Carriage paid,1.40
Easy Meals,net,1.25
Carriage paid,1.40
Easy Entertaining,net,1.25
Carriage paid,1.40
Saturday Mornings,0.75
A Little Cook Book for a Little Girl,0.75


53 Beacon Street, Boston, Mass.


Complete Club Book

For Women

Including Subjects, Material and References for Study Programs; together with a Constitution and By-Laws; Rules of Order; Instructions how to make a Year Book; Suggestions for Practical Community Work; a Resume of what Some Clubs are Doing, etc., etc.

A companion volume to

Woman's Club Work and Programs


Caroline French Benton

Author of "Woman's Club Work and Programs," "Fairs and Fetes," "Living on a Little," "Easy Meals," "Easy Entertaining," "Saturday Mornings," "A Little Cook Book for a Little Girl," etc.


The Page Company


Copyright, 1915, by

The Page Company

To The

Club Women of City and Country

[Pg vii]


In a previous volume, called "Work and Programs for Women's Clubs," more than twenty leading subjects were given for club study, including Shakespeare, the opera, the drama and child study, each with ten programs made out under it, comprising papers, talks, readings and discussions, with the names of books for reference. Probably many of the clubs which have used that book may still prefer the subjects and method employed there, and some who have not used it will find in it their work made easy.

Others, however, who believe in "self help," or who wish to harmonize their study programs with some practical work the club is doing, or who find it necessary to adjust their work to the varying tastes of the members, will prefer the method followed in this second volume.

Subjects are here presented with suggestions for divisions into separate meetings; then the papers or talks are outlined under each, with many references to books by contemporary writers. From the mass of material given each club[Pg viii] is to select what best suits its individual needs and arrange from it a year book.

If a club wishes to have sixteen meetings a year on one subject and four on another, the chairman may select one of the large subjects, shape the material offered into sixteen large divisions, add the necessary subdivisions beneath with the references, and then selecting a shorter program, divide this in the same way and combine the two.

Or, supposing a club wished to master a subject with unusual thoroughness, a large subject may be divided into a two-year study course. Several of the subjects indeed might easily be taken up for still a longer time. Any one of them has in it material enough for serious work, yet some are capable also of being taken up in six meetings if that is desirable.

A model Constitution is offered which any club may easily adapt to its own needs. Some condensed Rules of Order are also given. It is earnestly hoped that in this little book every club woman may find everything she requires.


ISuggestions for Club Work
IICommunity Improvement
IIIA Study of the American Colonies
IVSome Poets of To-day
VThe World's Islands
VIThe Business of Being a Housekeeper
VIIA Study of Songs
VIIISome of the World's Famous Buildings
IXFour Short Programs
XCentral and South America and the Canal
XIThe Work of the Rural Club
XIIThe History of England
XIIIWoman's Problems of Work
XIVWoman's Problems of Work (Con.)
XVSome Great Men of Our Time
XVIThe Literature of the Bible
XVIIThe Age of Queen Anne
XVIIIOur Educational System
XIXSpecial Programs on Great Men and Women
XXPrograms From Clubs
XXIWhat Clubs Are Studying
XXIIBrief One Day Programs
XXIIIHow to Make a Year Book
XXIVA Model Constitution
XXVRules of Order for Clubs

[Pg 1]


Suggestions for Club Work

There is no difficulty in starting a club; any group of women who are interested in the same things may form themselves into a simple organization. But the great question will surely arise: What shall we study? And here club members are certain to divide into three distinct classes.

The first group consists of women who have for years been absorbed in home-making and child-rearing. The world of books has been practically closed to them. The club to which they wish to belong must offer them an opportunity for self-development, one in which they will obtain the culture which comes from the study of art and music and literature; one where their hungry minds will be fed.[Pg 2]

But the group of young women,—perhaps college graduates,—have no sympathy with this desire; they have had enough of books! They demand that all the energies of the club shall be devoted to the good of the community, to the "larger housekeeping," to preparation for citizenship. Who can stop to write dull papers on Italian Art in this day of efficiency?

Between these two groups of women there is a third, made up of women who have kept up their reading in spite of family cares, and who also believe in the practical work outside the home which seems to them almost within their grasp. But they lack self-confidence; speaking in public is absolutely impossible; even to lift a voice in a club discussion is a serious matter.

Now the perfect club takes cognizance of these three classes of women and provides for them all. It offers to the first group an opportunity for study; and surely no woman ever grows beyond the place where she still has something to learn. There are always fresh fields of poetry and travel, of music and art which unfold with the years and tempt one on.

And then it offers training to the timid woman who fears to hear her own voice. At first she[Pg 3] may merely read a club paper, but little by little she learns to give a quotation, to put a motion or offer a suggestion; and finally she finds she can speak without notes, or take her part in a debate and hold her own with self-possession and dignity. And that means that she has acquired a liberal education.

As to the energetic class between these two, the ideal club has plenty for them, also. There has never been an opportunity for community work like that offered to-day, offered especially to those women who have been made capable by their training in their own little study clubs to cope with questions of hygiene, of tenement house wrongs and immigrants' problems; they have the widest scope for their energies. If they are wise, they will accept the opportunity of using the woman's club and make it a center of social service.

The following programs are planned to cover all these requirements. The first one is intended to lay out many lines of community work from which each club is asked to choose what best suits the needs of her own locality. Every second club meeting may be given to the study of the various problems presented by the town, and[Pg 4] remedies may first be suggested and then resolved upon. Coöperation with other clubs is also urged, and also the need of working with, rather than against, the city fathers.

Alternating with meetings on these practical and helpful lines clubs are invited to study some one of the subjects which follow this first comprehensive program. Whatever appeals most to club members, music or history, literature or travel, may be selected. References to books are offered to assist in preparation of club papers.

It will be found that, on the whole, it is seldom best for a club to choose a miscellaneous program for an entire year's work. Too often such a choice means a grotesque range from Life in Early Egypt to the Waverley Novels, and from the Panama Canal to Spring Flowers. When one wishes to have a year of work with a different subject for each meeting it is at least possible to choose those which have some relation, and vary the program by having musical meetings also.

A word may be added as to the personal side of club life. A president, above all her other duties, should see to it that the atmosphere of[Pg 5] the club is warm and friendly. If in other ways it is successful, if the study gives intellectual stimulus, and practical work is carried on effectively, still it is a failure if the members are either snobbish or unsympathetic. All the members of a club must be in harmony and work together in a spirit of comradeship if it is ever to reach its highest possibilities.

Last of all, should not a club extend its membership to as many as possible, rather than have a waiting list? Whatever prestige may accrue to it through that, will it not be of the greater good in the long run if its doors are always open to take in any woman who has something fresh to give to its life, or has a need that the club can gratify?[Pg 6]


Community Improvement

One of the up-to-date subjects for clubs is what is sometimes called "The Larger Housekeeping." It is the study of the economic conditions of one's own neighborhood with the determination to find ways to make the place more hygienic, more sanitary, moral and beautiful. It is the development of the idea of social betterment.

A woman's club is an ideal social center from which this work may grow. It is an excellent plan to enlist all the clubs in town, if that is possible. They may carry on other work besides, but each club may also have some particular line of study on the common theme, and at monthly meetings all the women may meet and discuss the one topic of community improvement. The men of the place may be invited later to join these public meetings; their coöperation, and that of the city officials especially, should be secured[Pg 7] from the beginning. The one essential of success is "team work."

The first thing is to understand the actual conditions which exist in the town. The club should first learn who the town officials are, and what are their duties.

Next, find out what the town assets are: if there is a good courthouse and railroad station, good schools, a park, attractive streets, and so on. In contrast to these there should be a complete list of what the town lacks; better paving and lighting, better sewerage and water, a new milk supply, or sanitary groceries, and so on. Study and discussion make this list a long one.

Then, when once the club knows its own town (and here the first pamphlet mentioned at the close of this article should be read), each item on the list may be taken up and really mastered in its every detail; committees should be appointed for each.


The question of roads and pavements may come first. What is their condition?

The yards of the place may come next. Are they in good order? Are the alleys clean? Is[Pg 8] the garbage well taken care of? Does the town need a "clean-up" day? Is the sewerage system in good order? Is the town water pure? Discuss the milk supply. A committee should inspect the dairies.

Parks and playgrounds are subjects which will bring up many questions. Are they well cared for and attractive? Are there any playgrounds for children? Have they swings, parallel bars and the like? Is there a supervisor?

Next the town schools; members should be appointed to visit each school and carefully go over it. Are there vines, flowers and grass around the building?

Are there cheap theaters in town? Are the shows clean? Do children patronize them? Is the theater building sanitary? Have a committee unannounced attend some performance.

Is there a hotel in town? Is it a clean, well-kept place? Are there saloons, and, if so, do they in any way evade the law? Are they loafing places?

Is the railroad station attractive? Is there any one in charge of the waiting-room? Is the town jail sanitary? How is the poorhouse managed?[Pg 9]

Are there tenements? Are they sanitary? How many churches are there and in what financial condition? Is there a town library? Is it up-to-date? Is there any town nuisance, such as soft coal smoke or malodorous factories? Are advertisements painted on rocks or put up in fields?

These are only suggestions as to lines of investigation. When finally the needs and shortcomings of the town are known to all, practical work to improve conditions may be undertaken.

The best plan is to get a few of the many books on town betterment and read them before any reform is undertaken. In addition to readings from these, and papers showing what has been done in other towns on similar lines specialists should be asked to speak to the club, and the public invited to hear them. For instance, a professor from the nearest agricultural college may lecture on pure milk; on water supply the town engineer may speak; on the question of bettering the public schools the state superintendent may be invited. It is better to spend a whole club year in study and accomplish only one practical work for the town betterment, than enthusiastically to begin on a dozen lines[Pg 10] and yet really gain nothing substantial in the end.


When at last, the town is clean and sanitary, and the improvements made which have been outlined, then, and not till then, some of the interesting new lines of social service may be studied and put in practice.

And first, a charity organization should be founded, no matter how small the town may be. All the churches and every individual should work in coöperation with it.

After this, if there are mills in the place these may be visited, and with the consent of the owners night schools and recreation centers of all kinds for the employees may be established.

Another committee may get new books for the town library.

Medical and dental inspection of school children will also be of value, and the town doctors will aid in it.

Pure food should certainly be studied, with investigations and recommendations of clean markets and groceries.

Child welfare is a most important subject.[Pg 11] Fresh air funds, children's summer camps, the prevention of infant mortality, children's clinics and the like will grow out of its study.

Child labor comes in this connection. If there are mills or canneries near by, it must be seen that the state laws are enforced there. The state care of the defective child should be studied.

What can be done to rid the town of flies and mosquitoes in summer? As to the schools, cannot manual and vocational training be secured? Are open-air schools needed? Cannot music and art be better taught? Is there any place in town which affects good morals?

Is it possible to establish a rest room for farmers' wives who come to town? Are coffee rooms needed to supplant the saloon?

Remember that children are always delighted to help in community improvement, and will investigate conditions as to alleys, playgrounds, or help clean up the town.

Much legislation on many of the topics will come up. A lawyer may be asked to come into the club and talk about the state laws, child labor, or any of the other subjects under discussion. Indeed college professors, school superintendents[Pg 12] and teachers, settlement workers, physicians, clergymen, librarians, mill owners, theatrical managers and editors may all be asked to help on this great work of community improvement, and they will be found to respond gladly. The whole population will gradually be drawn into touch and made to assist in the great project of transforming the home town into an ideal spot in which to live and bring up a family.


Among the many books to be had are these:

"Knowing One's Own Community," Carol Aronovici. Social Service Series, Bulletin 20 (National Municipal-League Series, Appleton); "The Country Town," W. L. Anderson (Doubleday, Page & Co.); "Village Improvement," Parris T. Farwell (Sturges and Walton); "Re-planning Small Cities," John Nolen (B. W. Huebsch); "American Municipal Progress," Chas. Zeublin (Macmillan Co.); "The Improvement of Towns and Cities," C. M. Robinson (Putnam); "American City Government," Chas. A. Beard (Century Co.); "American Playgrounds," E. B. Mero (American Gymnasia[Pg 13] Co., Boston); in the Woman's Citizens' Library, edited by Shailer Matthews, there are excellent articles on most of the above topics. (Civics Society, Chicago.) Bulletins of Department of Social and Public Service are excellent. (American Unitarian Association, 25 Beacon St., Boston.)

"Social Forces," Miss L. E. Stearns. (Capitol Bldg., Madison, Wis.) Remarkable list of books on all subjects needed.

American Civics Association; pamphlets on all subjects needed. (Union Trust Bldg., Washington, D. C.)

There are many magazines dealing with out-of-door life which have articles on good roads, tree planting, gardens and playgrounds. Survey has others on child welfare in all its aspects, settlement work, etc. The Chicago and New York Schools of Philanthropy also have pamphlets, and will send any information.[Pg 14]

Chapter III

A Study of the American Colonies

To study the American colonies thoroughly clubs should spend twenty or more meetings upon them. There is abundant material suggested here to enlarge the ten meetings outlined to that many at the very least.

The best way to arrange the club work is to give at least four meetings to Virginia, four to New England, two or three to New Netherlands and two to each of the other important colonies.

In preparing papers, see "The Thirteen Colonies," by Helen A. Smith (Putnam), "Romance of American Colonization," by William E. Griffis (Wilde), and the series on the colonies, one volume on each, by John Fiske (Houghton Mifflin Co.). See also the first part of "America," by H. Butterworth (The Page Company).

Before beginning the study of the first colony, Virginia, there should be one meeting on the England of that time. Sir Humphrey Gilbert,[Pg 15] Sir Walter Raleigh, and Drake should have special attention.


Describe the first expedition to Virginia; have an account of the settlement at Roanoke, then of the second expedition which brought over a hundred and fifty men and seventeen women, and its fate, and then the death of Raleigh and the pause in the spirit of colonization. The meeting following this will then begin the next period, when under King James colonization was again taken up. A paper may be on the settlement of Jamestown, a second on John Smith and his work, and a third on the "starving time," the trouble with the Indians, the coming of supplies from England. Close with a presentation of the conditions of the new colony, its mismanagement and loss of life.

The "era of progress" comes next in order, from 1610 to 1624. Have sketches of Lord Delaware, Sir Thomas Gates, and Sir Thomas Dale; mention the group of new settlements and note their military character. Bring in the story of Powhatan, and of Pocahontas and her important marriage. The growing value of tobacco in[Pg 16] England, the importation of negro slaves, the rise of burgesses, the coming of indentured servants, of poor immigrants, and of wives for the colonists are all important topics; close with an account of the great massacre.

Discuss the coming of the cavaliers to America. Was their influence good? Speak of the consequent loss of a thousand Puritan colonists from Virginia, and its effect.

The curious political development of Virginia should be studied. Note the importance of courts, and describe "court day." The next great point to be taken up is the first colonial tragedy—Bacon's rebellion. Describe the causes which led up to it; have papers on Berkeley, the tobacco riots, the Indian outbreak, the romantic figure of the "Queen of Pamunkey," the arraignment of the Governor, the burning of Jamestown, the death of Bacon, and the far-reaching results of the rebellion. Read from "White Aprons," by Maud Wilder Goodwin (Little, Brown & Co.), and "The Heart's Highway," by Mary Wilkins Freeman (Doubleday, Page & Co.).

Follow with a study of a century of development in Virginia. Read of Lord Culpepper, of[Pg 17] the founding of William and Mary College; mention the absentee governor and his famous lieutenant governor, Sir Francis Nicholson, who first suggested the possible union of the American colonies. Read also: "King Noanett," by F. J. Stimson (Scribner), and "Old Virginia and Her Neighbors," by John Fiske (Houghton Mifflin Co.).


The history of the colony of Maryland is closely connected with that of Virginia. Take the story of the Calvert family, beginning with the first Lord Baltimore. Follow the topic with the coming of Dutch and Swedish colonists, the sending of Herman by Stuyvesant to Maryland and his interesting career.

The important point to notice in all this is the establishment of the manor system. Compare it with the vestries of Virginia, and later compare both these with the patroon system of the Dutch, and the town meeting rule of New England.

Have a paper on the fifth Lord Baltimore and the changes which followed his accession. Read from "Mistress Brent," by Lucy M. Thruston[Pg 18] (Little, Brown & Co.), and "Sir Christopher," by Maud Wilder Goodwin (Little, Brown & Co.).

One entire meeting should follow next on the manners and customs in the Southern colonies. See "Some Colonial Homesteads," by Marion Harland (Putnam), and the chapter in Fiske on customs in "Old Virginia and Her Neighbors."


North Carolina, the next colony on the south to Virginia, was settled largely by refugees, who, discontented at home, came here from other colonies. Read from the visit of George Fox the Quaker, of the difficulties of travel and of the poverty and need of the people.

Colonel James Moore, who came to the help of the people, should have one paper, and Governor Eden another. Read also the extraordinary story of the pirate Blackbeard, the terror of the coast, and his relations with the governor.

After many vicissitudes colonists of the better sort began to arrive, and slowly the colony prospered.

South Carolina, unlike North, was from its beginning settled by rich planters, slave holders,[Pg 19] of distinctly aristocratic habits. Read of Carteret, West, and Sir John Yeamans, and of the constitution known as the "Grand Model," drawn up by John Locke.

Charleston was made the capital in 1681, laid out at the beginning by Culpepper with sites for churches, a town house, an artillery ground and wharves, and at once it became an important place.

The trouble with the Spaniards on the south, and the siege of Charleston by Blackbeard make two excellent topics for papers; a third is the wise government of Nicholson for twenty-five years.


Georgia, the most southerly of the colonies, is famous because of one man, James Edward Oglethorpe, the soldier, statesman, and philanthropist. He planned to make it a refuge for all persecuted Protestants of Europe, one where debtors of good family could come and make an honest living, and where criminals might begin life anew; it was to be the poor man's paradise.

One hundred and fourteen persons came over with him, and in six weeks Savannah was laid[Pg 20] out, and clearing and building begun. The story reads like a romance. All went well till lazy and shiftless immigrants arrived to enjoy the paradise also. Oglethorpe returned to England for a time, taking several Indian chiefs with him. Read of their visit to court. He returned with John and Charles Wesley.

But trouble with Spain was at hand; war followed, and Oglethorpe again went to England and never came back. Slave holding, before prohibited, was now permitted; plantations grew up, commerce developed, and an era of prosperity was established. Read "Doris Kingsley," by Emma Rayner (Small, Maynard & Co.).


Before turning to the north, to the study of the New England colonies, clubs should take rather thoroughly the history of England in the seventeenth century and familiarize themselves with conditions there, and also in Holland.

After this will come the well-known story of the voyage of the Mayflower, the landing of the Pilgrims, and the establishment of the first little settlement. Read of the leaders, John[Pg 21] Carver, William Bradford, Standish, Winslow, and Alden, and of the first winter.

The great advantage Massachusetts had over all other colonies lay in the fact of the great Puritan emigration from England. Earnest, intelligent, devoted people of high ideals made up the great bulk of the settlers.

Note the fact of the growing religious intolerance of the Puritans; one meeting may be spent on this topic. Speak of Ann Hutchinson and Roger Williams, the harsh treatment of the Quakers, and of witchcraft. Have readings showing how the belief in the last grew, and its terrible results. Read from Hawthorne's "Scarlet Letter."

Next take these New England colonies in the order of their settlement, New Hampshire, Connecticut, and Rhode Island, and show the differences in them.

Notice how, in Massachusetts, the vote was given to church members only, while in Connecticut it was given to all citizens. Read of education in New England, of schools, of the founding of Harvard and Yale colleges. Have a paper on Cotton Mather, Thomas Hooker, and Davenport. Describe the Town Meeting. Have a[Pg 22] paper also on the Indians, and discuss the Pequot War, the Deerfield Massacre, and similar events.

Close this study with an appreciation of the character of the men and women of New England. Read from "Men, Women and Manners in Colonial Times," by Sidney G. Fisher (Lippincott), "Customs and Fashions in Old New England," by Alice Morse Earle (Scribner), "Home life in Colonial Days," and "Child Life in Colonial Days," by the same author (Macmillan), and "Soldier Rigdale," by Beulah M. Dix (Macmillan). Several meetings may take up furniture, pewter, china, silver, old coverlets, embroidered linen, and the like. Read "The Quest of the Colonial," by Robert and Elizabeth Shackleton (Century Co.), and "Colonial Furniture in America," by L. V. Lockwood (Scribner).


Between New England and Virginia lay several colonies, the most important, New Amsterdam. Preface its study with one paper on Holland at the time. Then describe the coming of the little Half Moon, the voyage up the Hudson,[Pg 23] and the friendliness of the Indians shown here, as in each of the different colonies at the beginning of their history. Three settlements were soon made, one at Fort Orange, now New York, one at Fort Nassau, now Albany, and a third in New Jersey across from Fort Orange. Tell how in a few years there were farms with stone houses, churches, schools, and a regular system of fur trade with the Indians which brought in huge yearly revenues. Three papers may be on the governors Minuit, Van Twiller, and Kieft, noting their unlikeness, and what each accomplished. A fourth paper may describe the patroon system and compare it with that of other colonies.

The interesting figure of Stuyvesant, and his times, in New Amsterdam, should have a meeting. Others may take up the coming of negro slaves, the establishment of settlements on the Hudson, the trouble with Long Island and its English settlers, the appearance of the English fleet, the surrender of New Amsterdam, and the taking of the oath of allegiance.

Have a description of life in Dutch New York and Albany and on Long Island. The famous siege of Lady Moody's house at Gravesend and[Pg 24] its defense by forty Englishmen is also of interest.

Discuss the topic: What did the Dutch settlers give to the American people? Compare them with the Southern and New England colonists, showing that they gave substantial virtues but lacked the love of beauty shown by the Virginians and the idealism of the Puritans. Read "The Dutchman's Fireside," by J. K. Paulding (Scribner), "Free to Serve," by Emma Rayner (The Page Company), "The Begum's Daughter," by E. L. Bynner (Houghton Mifflin Co.), and "The Bow of Orange Ribbon," by Amelia E. Barr (Dodd, Mead & Co.).


The early history of New Jersey is closely connected with that of New Amsterdam. It was settled by the Dutch; after the coming of the English, however, the land was given by the Crown to the Carterets, and as they were from the Island of Jersey French settlers came over with them. The Dutch, a handful of Puritans, and some Swedes who had settled inland, soon began to quarrel among themselves.

Major Edmund Andros, the governor of New[Pg 25] York, jealous of the growing power of his neighbors, kidnapped the governor of New Jersey and made him a prisoner. Read the story of his trial and return. Turn next to that part of Jersey on the edge of Delaware and notice how it was bought and settled by Quakers. Have a sketch of Fenwick, the pioneer, and of the coming of new colonists, the influence of Penn on the government, and how the two parts of Jersey were taken under the Crown and governors sent from England, who ruled with uncertain success. Note the founding of Princeton College later, and the growth of the colony in prosperity.

Delaware was coveted by three nations: the Dutch claimed it, the Swedes acquired it, and the English were given it. One paper may tell of Minuit and his rule, and another take up the invasion of Peter Stuyvesant, the fall of the fort, and the surrender of the Swedes. Then came ten years of Dutch rule, which is an interesting chapter of history, for the colony came into collision with Maryland. From this point on there is constant bickering and struggle until the coming of the English. Read of Lovelace and his famous house, and the story of Jacobson and how, later, the English almost effaced the[Pg 26] Dutch in Delaware, changing even the names of the towns to English. Read "In Castle and Colony," by Emma Rayner (Stone, Chicago).


The story of the settlement of Pennsylvania by William Penn and his Quaker friends is familiar to every one. Aided by money given by the King and welcomed by the Dutch, who had many settlements, he established himself on fifty thousand acres of land, and sent word to those in England to come to him. The Assembly soon met, and the remarkable document known as the Great Law of Pennsylvania was drawn up; clubs should read the substance of this.

The Mennonites, a religious sect from Germany, soon settled in the colony and greatly influenced its future, as did the Germans who came later from the Palatinate, an industrious, frugal people, who printed the first Bible in America and first protested against slavery. Read from "The Germans in Colonial Times," by Lucy F. Bittinger (Lippincott).[Pg 27]


Some Poets of To-day

Our day is a time when more good verse is being written than ever before, much of it in our own country. The yearly output in English alone is enormous, and much of it is so strong, so original, that club women should certainly familiarize themselves with it.

To study the subject intelligently there may be a preliminary course on modern poetry and its criticism, using these books, in part or whole: "Studies in Poetry and Criticism," by Arthur Symons (Bell), "An Introduction to Poetry," by R. M. Alden (Henry Holt & Co.), "The Enjoyment of Poetry," by Max Eastman (Scribner), and "Lectures on Poetry," by A. C. Bradley (Macmillan).

As the modern poets are studied, have plenty of illustrative readings from the works of each one. Selections will be found in "Poets of the Younger Generation," by William Archer (John Lane Co.), and two volumes edited by Jessie[Pg 28] Belle Rittenhouse, "The Younger American Poets" (Little, Brown & Co.) and "The Little Book of Modern Verse" (Houghton Mifflin). Also "The Lyric Year," edited by Ferdinand Earle (Mitchell Kennerley), will be found helpful. There are three magazines which constantly present the best new work of our poets, Poet Lore, Poetry, and The Poetry Journal.

It is of course extremely difficult to classify the writings of poets, because few devote themselves to one style of verse alone. The writer of dramatic poetry will sometimes write lyrics, and the author of philosophical verse will write poems about nature. But for this study the principal work of each poet has been selected, with references to what else has been done by him.


Before beginning with the regular program for the year clubs should devote one or two meetings, as has been suggested, to the study of poetry as a whole. Then there should follow two more on the history of poetry, showing that all early national expression takes this form; illustrate with readings from the Vedic Hymns[Pg 29] (translated in Warner's "Library of the World's Best Literature"), and the "Song of Miriam" from the Hebrew, in the Bible. Have papers on the great epics, also, with readings from the "Iliad," the "Odyssey," the "Æneid," the "Nibelungenlied," the "Divine Comedy," the Arthurian cycle and "Paradise Lost."

Turning then to the poetry of to-day, notice that its spirit is something quite new. It is individual. It aims at truth and realism. In much of it there is a great moral purpose—the passion for justice.

The form of modern poetry is also largely new. Rhymed monologues, long narratives, and especially dramatic poems are frequent. Read to illustrate this, "The New Poetry," by James Oppenheim, in Volume 22 of Poet Lore.

Following this, take up in several meetings the topic of dramatic poetry.


An early meeting should study the comparison of poetry and prose in plays, and the question, Is poetry acceptable on the stage? What are its limitations? There should also be a paper on[Pg 30] the versified plays of to-day as contrasted with those of two centuries ago. Following these may be a study of several dramatic poets of to-day.

Percy Mackaye has some strong work: "Fenris the Wolf," "Jeanne d'Arc," "The Canterbury Pilgrims," and "The Scarecrow" are all worth reading. Present selections from each. Stephen Phillips, an Englishman, has some splendid, vital dramas. His best is "Paolo and Francesca," but both "Herod" and "Ulysses" are to be studied. Read from all three. His experience as an actor has made his plays especially suited to the stage.

Richard Hovey has chosen the Arthurian cycle as his inspiration, and presents the mediæval spirit with unusual faithfulness; he keeps nearer to Mallory than Tennyson did. Read "The Quest of Merlin," and "The Marriage of Guenever."

Among women poets Sara King Wiley has two dramatic poems of note, "Alcestis," and "The Coming of Philibert." Josephine Preston Peabody (Mrs. Marks) took the Shakespearean prize for "The Piper," which was performed at Stratford. Lately she has written another[Pg 31] drama, "The Singing Man," full of beauty. Read from this, and also from her short poems.


Among the poets of the last generation Keats, Shelley, Browning and Swinburne chose classical themes, and Byron and Tennyson took romantic. Have a paper pointing out this fact. Read from their poems and compare them with those of the poets of the younger set who took the same themes.

Laurence Binyon, an Englishman like Phillips, has written "Persephone" and "Porphyrin" with the classic theme, and "Tintagel" with the romantic. Rhys Carpenter, one of the youngest American writers, has "The Tragedy of Etarre," founded on the Arthurian legend. Helen Coale Crewe has written "Ægean Echoes," and Martha J. Kidder "Æonian Echoes," both full of beauty and promise. Read from these.

A concluding paper might inquire, What is it in these two themes which has always attracted the poets?[Pg 32]


Under this title may be found the work of many of the young poets of to-day. They show sympathy with the workingman, revolt against tyranny and tenderness for suffering. They champion labor and demand the betterment of conditions. This is the "new note," as it is called, and is of immense importance. Clubs should put special study upon it, following it out in the different poems.

John Masefield, of England, one of the most conspicuous writers of our time, voices the protest strongly. His style is often that of the monologue or narrative, and while sometimes it is merely rhymed prose, at other times it is vigorous, picturesque and vivid. Read "The Widow of Bye Street," and "The Everlasting Mercy." Note also his "Daffodil Fields," which is quite different from these and full of peculiar beauty.

Wilfred Wilson Gibson is another poet with a passion for justice. His dramatic monologues are terse, simple, direct. Read from "Daily Bread," and "Fires."

A third poet, Robert Haven Schauffler, takes[Pg 33] also the poor for his subject. His "Scum o' the Earth" is a touching picture. Charles Edward Russell in his "Songs of Democracy" strikes the same note; read his "Essex Street." Edwin Markham, though not among the younger poets, had much the same theme in his earlier "Man with the Hoe," which may be recalled.

William Watson, after writing for years finished, contemplative verse, suddenly, in direct contrast to his other work, wrote "The Year of Shame," amazing England with his demand for justice to Armenia and Greece. Read "How Weary Are Our Hearts." Close this part of the study with brief readings from John Galsworthy's "Moods, Songs and Doggerels," which present, again, sympathy for the oppressed.


Among the many who write this serious and uplifting form of verse may be named George Santayana, who, in his sonnets, and "The Hermit of Carmel," studies the philosophy of life. He has no eye for nature, as most poets have, but always takes up the abstract theme.

Alice Meynell, an Englishwoman, has several volumes of finished verse with the mark of literary[Pg 34] distinction. The devout spirit is noticeable in her work. Read "In Early Spring," and "Regrets."

Anna Hempstead Branch, author of many beautiful short poems and several brief dramas, is strongest in "Nimrod," a long philosophical poem. In this, as in her other writing, the sense of the mystical is marked.

"Soldiers of the Light," by Helen Gray Cone, is remarkable for its artistic, subtle yet uplifting feeling. Louise Imogen Guiney, who has been writing for many years, has some recent verse that is of even more than its usual spirituality; read "The White Sail," and "Tryste Noel." Read also from the poems of Rosamund Marriott Watson, Edwin Arlington Robinson, and Agnes Lee, as well as the lovely verse of Alice Brown.


This is one of the divisions which covers an immense field. Among the many writers who might be chosen for study is Alfred Noyes, the young Englishman who is so often compared with Tennyson. He writes spontaneous, optimistic verse. He loves sunshine and green fields[Pg 35] and children; he is sometimes dramatic, sometimes playful, but always graceful. "The Barrel Organ" and "Forty Singing Seamen" are among his finest lyrics, but "The Flower of Old Japan" is also noteworthy. Study the other work of Noyes, especially his drama, "Drake."

John Vance Cheney has many lovely lyrics, as have William Vaughan Moody, Bliss Carman, Clinton Scollard, Lizette Reese, Edith Thomas, and a long list of others. Read several of each from the books of Miss Rittenhouse.

Madison Cawein writes of nature always with the same touch of freshness. He idealizes everyday things, fields, grass, and flowers; he has what has been called "the romantic love of out-of-doors." Sometimes he strikes a more vigorous tone, as in his "Prayer for Old Age." Read this, and "The Wild Iris."

Arthur Upson has a style peculiar for its dreamy beauty and exquisite finish. His "Octaves in an Oxford Garden" shows him at his best. "Westwind Songs" is also full of delicacy and grace. His last work, a drama called "The City," has these same qualities.

Charles G. D. Roberts has, among many other[Pg 36] things, a collection of verse called "The Book of the Native," with descriptive poems of Canadian forests. His "Afoot" and "The Recessional" are especially charming.

Richard Burton's "Dumb in June" and his later "Quest of Summer" are both full of poetic insight and beautiful expression. These, with his "Lyrics of Brotherhood," are all well worth study. See "Poems," by C. G. D. Roberts (The Page Company), and "Pipes of Pan," by Bliss Carman (The Page Company).


Kipling made a place for himself when he wrote "Barrack-Room Ballads"; the reproduction of the cockney dialect has never been so well done and their humor is inimitable. Read several. In America to-day we have a poet who also does pioneer work—Thomas A. Daly. In his "Madrigali" and "Canzoni" he has used the Italian-American dialect of the streets with a result that is amusing as well as charming.

Gertrude Litchfield, too, has found something new in the dialect spoken by the French Canadians in the northern New England towns. She has written quaintly humorous verses about children.[Pg 37] Read "Les Enfants," "De Circus," and "The Spirit of Christmas."

Robert H. Carr has a little volume called "Cow Boy Lyrics," which perpetuate the fast-passing men of the plains. After reading from these, contrast the verses of James Whitcomb Riley with them. Note also among writers of humorous verse Carolyn Wells, Oliver Herford and Gelett Burgess.


Ireland has always been the home of romance, and recently it has had a strikingly interesting revival of poetry. William Butler Yeats, originally an artist, has a mystical element in his verse which gives it a sort of unearthly quality. His leading narrative poem is "The Wanderings of Oisin." "Baile and Ailinn" is a lover's tale. "The Fiddler of Dooney" is a simple country story. His work has been called "dream drenched." Make a special study of his play, "Land of the Heart's Desire."

George W. Russell writes verse with much of the same wistful nature as that of Yeats. "Homeward Songs by the Way," and "The Divine Vision" are two of his volumes.[Pg 38]

Study also the work of Lady Gregory. Though best known as a playwright she has written interesting verse.

One paper may compare the Celtic verse of to-day with that of the writers of mystical verse in England and America, especially that of Louise Imogen Guiney, and discuss their difference.


There are many little plays written to-day in the form of verse, all lovely, poetic in feeling and style, and many of them of great charm. Among others are "The Rose of the Wind," and "The Shoes That Danced," by Anna Hempstead Branch; "The Butterfly," and "Two in Arcadia" by Lucine Finch; four plays called "The Shadow Garden," by Madison Cawein; and "El Dorado," by Ridgely Torrance.

In addition to the study of all these modern poets, clubs should look up the work of Rabindranath Tagore, the Hindu poet who recently took the Nobel prize for literature; his latest poems (translated) are, "The Crescent Moon" and "The Gardener."

Robert Bridges, the present poet-laureate, also deserves especial mention.[Pg 39]


The World's Islands

There is no subject for clubs more interesting than that of Islands, and none broader in scope; each island or group suggests the study of geology, botany, language, customs, religions, and, above all, history and literature. The encyclopedias, books of travel and current magazines, especially the National Geographic Magazine, will furnish abundant material for papers.


The islands which cluster about the coast of Greece are the most important in history. Some are famous for their art treasures, others have been the birthplace of great poets, others still are associated with legendary heroes and gods. The literature, art, and history of the two groups of the Ægean and Ionian Islands offer study for many months.[Pg 40]

Among the many which might be suggested, these should be given special attention: Ægina, famous for its sculptures; Delos, the Holy Isle, birthplace of Apollo and Artemis, with the Temple of Apollo; Lesbos, the birthplace of Sappho; Corfu, for its varied history; Ceos, the home of two great poets; Samos with its Temple of Hera, and Ithaca, the home of Ulysses. Add to this list Melos, Patmos, Rhodes, Lemnos, and Naxos, each remarkable for something.

In preparing programs have brief readings on each island, either from history or English poetry, or translations from the Greek. Longfellow's "Poems of Places" has poems on many of the islands; the "Odyssey" gives many stories, notably that of Nausicaa, which is laid at Corfu; Samuel J. Barrows has a charming book, "Isles and Shrines of Greece" (Little). Translations of some of Sappho's poems are easily found.

The islands of Crete and Cyprus should have a special meeting to themselves, with emphasis laid on archæological discoveries. Their history is closely connected with that of Greece, though to-day they are both under other than Greek rule.[Pg 41]


Three great islands lie close to Italy and are connected with its history. The first is Corsica. It has a stirring story, especially of the time when it belonged to Genoa, when the great Genoese Towers, still standing, were built to protect it against the Saracens. The fact that Napoleon was a Corsican should be mentioned. Some account of the vendetta should not be omitted and illustrations from Prosper Mérimée's "Colomba" may be read aloud.

Sardinia, lying close to Corsica, is sometimes significantly called the "Backward Island." One point for its study is the feudal system, which continued there until the middle of the nineteenth century, and another the brigandage for which it has been known for ages. See "The Forgotten Isles," by Vuillier, translated by Frederic Breton (Appleton).

The history of Sicily is worth some months of study, for it opens the story of the wars of Rome with Carthage. Consider the varied experience of the city of Syracuse, the prosperity and political importance of Sicily in the Middle Ages, the coming of Victor Emmanuel and Garibaldi, in[Pg 42] later years. Last, note the impoverished condition of the country to-day. Read from Sicily, in the Story of the Nations series (Putnam), and some translations from Thucydides and Theocritus.

Malta, a possession of Great Britain, is of interest especially in connection with the Knights of Saint John. Minorca may be looked up also for a special paper. See "Sicily, the Garden of the Mediterranean," by W. S. Monroe (The Page Company).


The wild, mountainous islands of Scotland are peopled with fishing folk whose language is still mostly Gaelic and whose customs are singularly primitive. Read "A Daughter of Fife," by Amelia E. Barr, to show their strong character. The Hebrides, lower down on the west coast, are wonderfully picturesque. Read William Black's "A Princess of Thule." Mull is remarkable for its beauty and for its Gaelic population and traditions. Iona, a tiny island with a most important early Christian history, has a ruined cathedral and graveyard containing[Pg 43] many striking and very ancient Celtic crosses. Staffa, near by, has a famous basaltic formation and cave.

Most of England's islands are not grouped but stand singly. The Isle of Man, off the west coast, is a somewhat wild place. Read Hall Caine's "The Deemster," to learn of its people. The Isle of Wight, on the south, is a garden spot. Note the famous places and people connected with them and show pictures of Osborne House and Tennyson's home. The Scilly Islands have a romantic past, partly legendary; see Besant's "Armorel of Lyonesse." The Channel Islands, a group, are foreign, quaint, wild, and beautiful. Their history is fascinating and they have been the home of political refugees almost to the present day. Read "The Channel Islands," by J. E. Morris (Macmillan Co.), and "Toilers of the Sea," by Victor Hugo.


Off the west coast of Africa are a few well-known islands. Toward the north lies Madeira, long famous for its wine; to-day it is being developed into a highly successful market garden, supplying England with fruits and vegetables.[Pg 44] Its picturesque population and the old city of Funchal are charming. See "The Story of Madeira," by D. Dimmit (The Methodist Book Concern).

Just below this lie the volcanic islands known as the Canaries, which are thought to be the Fortunate Isles of antiquity. Strangely enough, they seem to have dropped out of history for a time, and were rediscovered in the fourteenth century. To-day they belong to Spain. Show a picture of the Peak of Teneriffe.

The Cape Verde Islands deserve a passing glance, largely because Darwin, in his "Volcanic Islands," makes them interesting. Just below these lies St. Helena, the prison of Napoleon, which should have a separate paper. Read from the "Life of Napoleon," by Sir Walter Scott.

On the opposite coast lies Madagascar, mentioned long ago by Ptolemy. It remained a wild, uncivilized place until a century ago, when it came into touch with trade; since that time it has had a dramatic story. See "Madagascar and Its People," by James Sibree, and "Thirty Years in Madagascar," by T. T. Matthews (Doran).[Pg 45]

Near by lies Mauritius, the Île de France, settled long ago by good French families and well known in modern history. The story of "Paul and Virginia," by Saint Pierre, is laid here, and also that of "My Little Girl," by Besant and Rice. Read both of these.


The islands of the Pacific are so numerous, so important, and so immensely interesting that clubs can well afford to spend months in studying them. The best plan is to take the map and divide the islands into groups.

Take first the lovely Sandwich or Hawaiian Islands, twelve in all. One paper should treat of their natural features, especially the famous volcanoes. Another may take up the early history, speaking of the fact that the people voluntarily abandoned idolatry as absurd and were without religion for years, when they asked that help along this line should be sent to them. The story of the coming of the first missionaries and their work is remarkable. A third paper may be on the visit of the native king and queen to England, a fourth may deal with the leper colony at Molokai, and a fifth may describe the establishment[Pg 46] of the republic, and, later, its annexation to the United States.

Following westward on the map, the Caroline Islands and the Ladrones should be studied; Guam, of the latter group, is now a possession of the United States.

Several meetings should be given to the Philippine Islands, which come next. Papers may be written on some of these topics, among many that might be suggested: description of the islands; the early history; the condition under Spain; the uprising of 1896; the physician, poet and reformer Rizal; the people to-day, their habits and customs; the establishment of a United States Commission and the work of the various bureaus, especially that of education. A discussion may follow: Should the Philippines be made self-governing? Read "The Philippine Islands," by F. W. Atkinson (Ginn).


Contrasted with these islands lie another group of three—Borneo, Sumatra, and Java. The first two have wonderful fauna and flora, hundreds of varieties of native woods and great[Pg 47] natural resources, yet are in a singularly backward condition. Read "Seventeen Years Among the Sea Dyaks of Borneo," by E. H. Gomes (Lippincott). See also many recent magazine articles. Java, lying close to this, is wholly different. It belongs to Holland and is the important colony of the Dutch. Its early history is interesting and the remains of its primitive civilization are being unearthed. Read from "Java, Sumatra, and Other Islands," by A. Cabaton (Scribner). Have one entire meeting given to the beautiful island of Ceylon, before turning south.

New Guinea is near Australia and closely resembles it in striking physical peculiarities. It is but slightly settled, and the Dutch and English divide its ownership; the latter have found it rich in resources and are making it commercially profitable.

Several small groups of islands to the east may be studied next. The Fiji Islands were long known as the home of cannibals, and their turning toward civilization makes an interesting study.

The Friendly Islands, or Tonga group, lie farther south and east; they were inhabited by[Pg 48] a wild and cruel people, now changed into a fairly civilized and educated little nation, with churches and schools; many of the people speak English.

The Society Islands are still farther west. The scenery here is magnificent, with coral formations and atolls, tropical foliage, and great waterfalls; this is called the Garden of the Pacific. The New Hebrides have a special interest from the work of John G. Paton. Read his life by his son (Doran). Close to these last groups lies Samoa, beloved of Stevenson. Clubs should read of it from his books. See "In the South Seas," and his Letters.


Of the three islands near the southern end of Australia, Tasmania, close to the larger country, is as large as Scotland. It was for years one of England's penal colonies, but to-day it stands for everything that is advanced and enlightened; its school system is remarkable and its commerce highly developed. It is practically the home of a part of the English people. Just beyond it lie the two islands that form New Zealand, which, from the point of view of sociology,[Pg 49] is one of the world's places of mark. Read "New Zealand at Home," by B. A. Loughnan (Newnes, London), and "New Zealand in Evolution," by G. H. Scholefield (Scribner); also magazine articles.


Japan, one of the foremost powers of the world to-day, is confined geographically to four principal islands, with hundreds of smaller ones grouped around these. At least four meetings should be given to its study. The first may have a program on the physical features of Japan, its resources, its people; a description of the peasants, their homes and work; the cities, their houses, temples, and shops, with pictures of interest.

The second may present the early history of Japan; its feudal system, its religions, its varied government, down to the opening of the country in 1853. The third and fourth may study the development of the country under foreign ideas; the growth of the army and navy, the establishment of schools, the court life, the extension of commerce, the press, the new standards of government.[Pg 50]

These should be followed by papers or talks on the late wars with China and Russia and their effects. Other meetings should be on Japanese architecture and art and on the different phases of the subject: The Japanese in America. Read from "Japan," by Lafcadio Hearn (Macmillan Co.), "Japanese Life in Town and Country," by George William Knox (Putnam), and "The Lady of the Decoration," and "The Lady and Sada San," by Frances Little (Century Company).


In studying the West Indies it is necessary to use a map at each meeting to keep clearly in mind the location of islands: the Bahamas, the Greater and Lesser Antilles, and the Caribbean or Leeward and Windward Islands. A brief study of Columbus should introduce the whole series. Follow with the story of the Spanish possession, and then take the coming of the English and the Dutch, their colonies, growth of power, and the wars which ensued.

This will bring in the romantic stories of the buccaneers; read of the extraordinary careers of Captain Henry Morgan, the notorious Blackbeard,[Pg 51] and Captain Kidd, and have chapters from novels treating of that time, such as Charles Kingsley's "Westward Ho!" and "To Have and To Hold," by Mary Johnston.

Give the story of each important island: Jamaica, Santa Cruz, the two little republics of Haiti and Santo Domingo, Barbados, and Martinique, the last the birthplace of the Empress Josephine. The topic of slavery should have one paper. Read from the life of William Wilberforce.

Take next Cuba and Porto Rico. Study the war between Spain and the United States, and follow with the conditions to-day. Read from "The West Indies," in the Story of the Nations series (Putnam); "The English in the West Indies," by J. A. Froude (Longmans); and "On the Spanish Main," by John Masefield (Macmillan).


North of the West Indies lies a group of islands famous for their beauty—the Bermudas. Here Shakespeare placed the scene of "The Tempest." The English own the islands and maintain a military station there. Read from[Pg 52] "The Tempest." Follow with a paper on the Azores, in mid-Atlantic.

Circling the North American Continent, clubs will find several separate islands full of interest. Little Staten Island, in New York Harbor, and Long Island are closely connected with our history. Cape Breton Island, on the northern coast of Nova Scotia, holds the old stronghold of Louisburg, and the beauty of the Bras d'Or Lakes is worthy of note. Read "Baddeck and that Sort of Thing," by Charles Dudley Warner (Houghton Mifflin Co.). Newfoundland, rugged and lonely, lies beyond. In spite of its great fisheries on the Banks, its people are poor. Read of the work of Grenfell among them. The Arctic islands farther north present little to study, if we except Iceland, well to the northeast. This is truly a wonderful little place, and clubs should give it one meeting. Its relation to literature is important. Read the little classic, "An Iceland Fisherman," by Pierre Loti (McClurg), and "Bound About the North Pole," by W. J. Gordon (Dutton).

Crossing to the west coast of British Columbia one meeting might be given to the Alaskan Island of Saint Lawrence and others of the[Pg 53] Aleutian group; then, coming down the coast, Queen Charlotte's Island and Vancouver should be noted briefly. On the west coast of South America is the little island of Juan Fernandez, on which the sailor Alexander Selkirk spent five years alone, whose story suggested to Defoe his "Robinson Crusoe."

Just around Cape Horn lies the strange, wild land of Tierra del Fuego, of which little is known. Darwin, however, wrote of it in his "Voyage of a Naturalist," and scientists find in it much of interest.[Pg 54]


The Business of Being a Housekeeper

The following topics have been arranged in ten groups, but as many more may be added by dividing each main group into two, or even three or four. There may be readings at each meeting from the books given for reference, and discussion by club members.


The subject for the first meeting may be the Old Housekeeping and the New. One paper may take the comparison of housekeeping twenty years ago and more and that of to-day. Is there a real difference, or only a seeming one! Are rents, food, and clothing actually higher for the same things, or does life to-day demand that we add to what we then had? Assuming that prices have really gone up, and are to stay there, what can women do to adjust themselves to the fact?

The second paper should speak of the necessity[Pg 55] of a woman's knowing exactly what she can have to spend; of knowledge of her husband's business; of an allowance; of the need of training in keeping within a fixed sum.

The third paper is to be on the budget. That is, on preparing a list of expenses, setting them down in a book, apportioning the income among the items, and then putting down each day and month the actual outgo, and so, year by year, altering and arranging the expenses to meet the income. The discussion should take the form of personal experiences in keeping household accounts.


The introductory paper on this subject may speak of the complex way in which our houses are furnished, and the superfluity of things in them. Also the fact that the day's work of caring for them is not always clearly defined and carried out.

The second paper may treat of the relief of a weekly schedule of work to be done.

The third paper may take the topic of the conservation of a woman's energy, and the carelessness with which she runs up and down stairs[Pg 56] and does unnecessary and foolish things. Mention here the help to be found in vacuum cleaners, modern dusters, carpet sweepers, and other housekeeping helps.

Discuss the question: How shall we make our brains save our bodies?


By way of opening the meeting a brief paper may be read on What Is True Economy? This will point out the fallacy of buying poor foods because they are cheap, wilted vegetables, stale cereals, inferior canned goods, and the like. This may be followed by one on the question of buying. Where shall a housekeeper buy—at a large market or a small one? How can one learn how to buy good and still cheap meats? How can one do with less meat? And is buying in large quantities a good plan?

The third paper may take up markets, their cleanliness; the housewives' leagues of certain cities and their work; what can country women do whose market is limited?

The last paper should speak of the necessity of personal supervision by the housekeeper; of the imprudence of ordering by telephone, and[Pg 57] of the system of giving orders at the door to the grocer.

The discussion may turn on the question of paying cash for everything or charging.


A good beginning is a review of the cooking of our grandmothers, cooking in various parts of the country, and cooking in foreign lands.

Scientific cooking is, first, a knowledge of food values, but it also includes the art of cooking, and both may be presented. Show how an expert cook will use whatever materials she has at hand and will avoid the use of costly ingredients. A good topic here is, How shall we have variety without increasing the expense?

The kitchen as a workshop is the subject of the next paper. Make it plain that one needs a clean, sanitary room, with everything to work with; suggest new utensils, fireless cookers, and so on, and describe the ideal kitchen.

Close with a discussion on the point: How can a woman learn to be a good cook? Mention cooking schools, demonstrations and lectures, the study of magazine articles and the pamphlets sent out by the Department of Agriculture.[Pg 58] Clubs might form cooking classes as an outcome of this meeting.


This topic may be arranged in two parts: the work done at home and the work sent out. Under the first speak of the former methods and how washing and ironing days were dreaded, and the old difficult ways of working. The second paper will take the new ideas, and mention running water, stationary tubs, washing machines, mangles, gas stoves, modern flat-irons, and other appliances for the laundry. Speak of the economy of buying soap, starch, and bluing at wholesale.

At this meeting members may bring in illustrations from catalogues of anything they have seen which promises to help in doing laundry work at home.

The other part of the program would naturally take up the larger aspects of the question. Have a paper on public laundries: Are they sanitary? Is it economical to have shirts done up there rather than at home? Describe the methods of some large laundry.

The last paper would deal with the washerwoman[Pg 59] at one's own home, and at hers. Is it extravagant to hire a day's work when one could really do it one's self? Is it safe to send washing out to a home which may not be clean?

The discussion may be on the point: How shall we reduce the size of the family wash? Are there short cuts in laundry work?


Service in the Home is the general theme for the sixth club meeting.

As in other meetings, it is well to begin with a paper on other days, perhaps from Colonial times down, and to speak of the difference in servants in their social position then and now, and the contrast in wages.

The second paper may mention the scarcity of servants to-day, and the reasons why there are so few; of the dissatisfaction with domestic service; the rise in wages for untrained service; of immigrants; the foreign servants in the West and the negro in the South.

The third paper may be on employment bureaus, references, and the relation of one employer to another; the relation of mistress and servant is most interesting. Speak of the question[Pg 60] of the responsibility of a mistress for her maid's morals, for one, and the old and sick servant, for another.

The last paper may be on the servantless home and how to manage it. This will take up the division of work between parents and children, the possibility of entertaining, the advantages and disadvantages of doing one's own work, and a statement of the saving of money by the plan. Contrast the loss of other things, of time certainly, and possibly of social life and physical strength. Discuss: Is it an extravagance or an economy to hire the hard work of the family?


The first paper on this subject is to discuss the real and apparent difference in the cost of dressing a family a generation ago and now. Are materials more, or less, expensive? Is the cost in the making? Do we have too many clothes? Does not the trouble lie in the fact that we need so many different clothes, thus increasing the size of the wardrobe, rather than in the cost of each individual garment?

The following paper may be on shopping. It should be very practical and suggest that shopping[Pg 61] out of season is economical; that too much shopping is extravagant in time and car fares; that a bargain counter is seldom a good place to buy anything; that good materials wear longer than poor ones.

The last paper may be on ready-made clothing. How is it made so cheaply? What of the conditions under which garments are made? What of ordering by mail? Is the material of any ready-made garment really as good as it looks at first? How does it wear as compared to that made elsewhere?

There should be an excellent discussion on this subject, covering such things as: Home dressmaking; does it pay? Is it an economy to take lessons in dressmaking and millinery? Is making-over always cheap? Does it pay to dye one's gowns? How can we systematize the making of our wardrobes so that sewing shall occupy us only a small part of our time?


There may be at least three excellent papers on this subject; the first one may be on waste of food: Why is America thought by other peoples to be so wasteful? Compare the economies[Pg 62] in the kitchen with those in France. The waste of not knowing how to cook is also a good topic, and the waste of unconscious extravagance. The patronage of the bakery and the delicatessen shop should also be mentioned, and the waste of money involved.

The waste of time may be the title of the next paper, illustrated especially in the kitchen in making fancy dishes or those which require hours of preparation; the waste of time in doing unnecessary fancy-work and elaborate sewing. Note how all this waste of time means to many women the loss of hours to read.

The waste of woman's strength in doing work too heavy for her—lifting, drawing water, and performing other tasks should be especially spoken of in the next paper, and the value of labor-saving devices, of rest and recreation, and of having some help in housework should be made clear.

The discussion should take up other wastes: waste of fuel in furnace and in range; waste of water, of gas, of kerosene; of the wastefulness of destroying a good gown by doing cooking in it; of little losses here and there in all departments of housekeeping.[Pg 63]


This meeting should present the subject of unintelligent doing-without. It should show how foolish it is to economize recklessly everywhere. One paper may be on the table, showing that unpalatable food is unwholesome; one may be on entertaining, expressing the need of having one's friends and one's children's friends in to meals; one may be on doing without comforts of all kinds, and making life merely hard and uninteresting. All these should be very brief and balanced by others expressing the thought that education is a necessity, and that so are some things to make life easy—a little service, a little time, and flowers and books or magazines.

Discuss the whole subject of economy in the home and get suggestions from each member as to what she considers the best place to cut one's expenses.


This is a fascinating subject and the first paper opens up a wide field; it is on Home as a Business Enterprise. This will show that a[Pg 64] home may be merely a school of economics, with all the thought centered on that side of its life; or it may be merely a savings bank, with the idea of laying aside money back of everything. Or it may be an industrial institution with every one working all the time and no recreation or amusement permitted. Show the absurdity of these different positions.

The second paper may take up the trained housekeeper as manager of the home. This may make it plain that if a woman understands her business she should run her house easily, economically, cheerfully, socially. In other words, she will use her brains to make housekeeping intensely interesting and satisfactory.

The third paper should speak of comfort versus elegance in home life; of the rarity of finding the two combined; of furnishing a house simply yet artistically; of entertaining within one's means; of the appreciation of music and books as a necessary part of life; of the ideal family life.

The discussion may take such lines as these: What sacrifices to economy are worth while? What luxuries are necessities? Is benevolence compatible with a small income? Is education[Pg 65] to be regarded as an investment? Are our children growing up thinking that money is the principal thing in the minds of their parents?

If the year's work on domestic economy is to be a success, it should have some practical outcome; perhaps a study class may be organized to develop the ideas of home efficiency, or there may be a reading club to present new ideas in books and magazines and discuss them, or, as has been suggested, there may be a cooking class formed.

Among the books to be consulted are: "Increasing Home Efficiency," by Martha B. Bruère and Robert W. Bruère (Macmillan); "The Modern Household," by Marion Talbot and S. P. Breckinridge (Whitcomb and Barrows); "How to Live on a Small Income," by Emma C. Hewitt (Jacobs); "Home Problems from a New Standpoint," by C. L. Hunt (Whitcomb and Barrows); "Living on a Little," by C. F. Benton (The Page Company); "The Making of a Housewife," by I. G. Curtis (Stokes); "A Handbook of Hospitality for Town and Country," by Florence Howe Hall (The Page Company).[Pg 66]


A Study of Songs

A charming study, not only for a musical club but also for any other, is that of songs. The field is practically limitless, but by careful selection of a program which covers only a part much may be learned and enjoyed. It is essential that the life and times of each composer should be studied, and some of his songs sung. Later on, various periods, or certain themes, may be illustrated by the songs of different composers. Perhaps for some of these records on a good phonograph may be used.

To introduce the subject have a paper on folk songs, which in every nation precede what are known as art songs. Many of these folk songs have come down from very early times, either just as they were or woven into art songs. Follow this with a second paper on the minnesingers and troubadours and their songs. A third paper may speak of an interesting theme[Pg 67] which may be called the local color of songs. The Laplander has his reindeer songs; the Alpine peasant, his songs of the mountains, with the yodel; the Russian has songs of the steppes; the negro, his plantation melodies; the sailor, his chanty; the soldier, his songs of battle and prison. Hunting songs, love songs, funeral dirges, songs of nature, of childhood, of home, of country, all have a literature of their own.

One meeting may take up the subject of the first art songs—which originated about the time of the first operas and were part of them.


The lied, or lyric song, was practically invented in Germany, and by Schubert, the great master of lyric song, though Handel, Haydn, Gluck, Mozart, and Beethoven all wrote arias, or songs, of great beauty and importance. Illustrate by giving one or more songs from each.

The life of Schubert and his genius should have at least one meeting devoted to them. Read the chapter in Finck upon him. Notice what he accomplished in his thirty-one years. Beethoven said of him: "Truly Schubert has[Pg 68] the divine spark." His hundreds of songs are sweet and tender, yet strong and noble. Sing "The Erl-King," written when he was only eighteen, "Hark, Hark, the Lark"; "Death and the Maiden"; "Who is Sylvia?" and "Margaret at the Spinning Wheel."

Mendelssohn's songs, long admired, are now considered rather mediocre with the exception of a few. "On the Wings of the Wind"; "The Volkslied"; "The Venetian Gondolier," and others, are distinctly bright and sunny, fresh and graceful.

Schumann, unlike Schubert and Mendelssohn, wrote songs often sad and even gloomy, but many of them, especially in his song cycles, are gems. Sing, "Du bist wie eine Blume"; and "Der Nussbaum."


Robert Franz, though totally deaf from early in life, wrote songs which other musicians term immortal. His work is strikingly original, the accompaniment woven with the melody of the voice. The simple old folk songs often suggested them and his style, like that of Wagner, is often declamatory. Read his life, and sing[Pg 69] "Leise zieht durch mein Gemueth"; "Bitte"; "Es ragt der alte Eborus," and, "Im Mai." Following the work of Franz take up Brahms, Jensen, Wagner, and Strauss, and the many other German song writers.

Grieg is called "the king of Scandinavian song writers." His work is often half wild, half melancholy, but always original. He followed the spirit of the folk songs of his country. He is sometimes spoken of as the Norwegian Chopin and is also compared with our own MacDowell. Sing, "The First Primrose"; "The Minstrel's Song," and others.


Hungary gave Liszt to the world, and his sixty songs are of exceeding value. His music closely represents the words of his songs, suggesting falling rain, or sighing winds, or even the hum of bees. Sing "Kennst du das Land?" "The Lorelei"; "King of Thule"; "Wanderer's Night Song."

Chopin, born in Poland, wrote fresh, charming little folk songs, dramatic lyrics and romantic melodies. The seventeen which we possess have an emotional range wider than that of any[Pg 70] other composer's songs. "Poland's Dirge," one of his most famous works, is called the most funereal song in existence.

Paderewski, also a Pole, has only recently begun to write songs, but those he has done are charming—quaint, romantic and full of national color.

Rubinstein belongs both to Poland and Russia, but is chiefly identified with the latter country. He wrote many songs, not all of them works of genius, but many most beautiful and strong. See his cycle of "Persian Poems;" "The Earth at Rest;" "Good Night."

Tschaikowsky and Dvorak have also written Slavic music, rather sad, suggestive of folk songs and full of power. See the former's "None but a Lonely Heart," and, "The Czar's Drinking-House;" and the latter's "Gipsy Songs."


France, unlike Germany, has never had genuine art songs. Of chansons, romances and other light songs there is an abundance, but its serious work has been rather in the line of opera. Gounod, however, has many lovely things, some[Pg 71] of them popular: "Oh, That We Two Were Maying;" "Maid of Athens," and others, are well known. Delibes shows a distinct German influence in his song-writing. "Nightingale," and "Regrets," have high merit. Godard has more than a hundred songs to his credit, many delightful: the "Arabian Song;" "Farewell;" "The Traveler," are among the best. A French woman song writer, Mdlle. Chaminade, is distinctly popular to-day, but her work is not considered by critics to be strikingly original.

Italy has never been interested in art song; indeed, except for the folk songs of the street, there are few, if any, except such as are found imbedded in operas and are distinctly a part of them. Tosti, to be sure, has written many songs and so have other Italian composers of our day, but nothing which stands among the great lyric songs of the world.

In England the ballad is the musical form of the song, and here this nation excels. The ballads are strong, sincere and beautiful. Clubs should have a number of meetings on the ballads of England, Scotland, and Ireland. Sullivan has written some lovely songs, and so have Goring Thomas, Stanford, and Cowen. There[Pg 72] is a new English school of merit, with fresh and original ideas. Sing Thomas's "Spring Is Not Dead" and "A Summer Night." "La Belle Dame Sans Merci," by Stanford, is an excellent piece of work. Mackenzie has followed Brahms more or less; sing "Hope," his best song.


Until recently we in America, like the English, have written but few lyric songs. But to-day we have a large number of such composers, and there are those in other nations who think that the best work of our time is being done in this country.

Prof. John K. Paine has written only a few songs. Among them are: "Moonlight," and "The Matin Song," both charming.

Arthur Foote has written forty songs—among them, "On the Way to Kew," and, "In Picardie"—and is sometimes compared with Franz. Clayton Johns has a hundred songs, his "Winter Journey" being suggestive of Russian music; "Were I a Prince Egyptian," is good. Reginald de Koven is called the most popular of America's song writers; his settings of verses by Eugene Field are familiar, and his best known[Pg 73] song, "Oh, Promise Me," has had great popularity.

G. W. Chadwick, the director of the New England Conservatory, has written seventy-five songs, some of them most original. "Allah" is the best known and probably his strongest; but, "Before the Dawn;" "Bedouin Love Song;" and "Green Grows the Willow," are also fine.

Ethelbert Nevin is a well-known and admired writer of lyrical songs. Walter Damrosch, Horatio Parker, the late Gerrit Smith, Victor Herbert, and many others have been steadily turning out good work.

Edward MacDowell, however, is America's most distinguished song writer, and his early death was lamented as a national calamity among music lovers. Like Grieg in having a Scotch strain in his blood, his work also shows a certain resemblance to that of the Norwegian. His music is highly polished, always interesting and never imitative. Two lovely settings of old words are noticeable: "Ye Banks and Braes o' Bonnie Doon," and "Kennst Du das Land?" "The Pansy" and "The Mignonette," are the best of a group of six flower pieces; "Menie" is[Pg 74] remarkable for its tender sadness and delicacy; but his most popular song is "Thy Beaming Eyes." Critics consider his most scholarly work to be his eight settings of verses by Howells, and "The Sea." See "National Music of America and Its Sources," by L. C. Elson (The Page Company), and "American Composers," by Rupert Hughes (The Page Company).


In addition to studying this great subject by countries, and by special treatment of the masters of song writing individually, clubs may be interested to look up and sing many of the old English songs suggested under such heads as these in H. K. Johnson's "Old Familiar Songs" (Henry Holt):

Memory: "Ben Bolt;" "I Remember, I Remember."

Home: "My Old Kentucky Home;" "The Suwanee River."

Exile: "Lochaber No More;" "My Heart's in the Highlands."

Sea: "A Life on the Ocean Wave;" "Rocked in the Cradle of the Deep."

Nature: "The Ivy;" "The Brook."[Pg 75]

Sentiment: "The Last Rose of Summer;" "Stars of the Summer Night."

Unhappy Love: "Kathleen Mavourneen;" "Bonnie Doon."

Happy Love: "Annie Laurie;" "Meet Me by Moonlight Alone."

Humor: "Comin' Through the Rye;" "Within a Mile of Edinboro' Town."

Convivial: "Drink to Me Only with Thine Eyes;" "Landlord, Fill the Flowing Bowl."

Martial: "Scots Wha Hae;" "March of the Men of Harlech."

National: "Rule Britannia;" "Hail Columbia."

Books to consult: "Songs and Song Writers," Henry T. Finck (Chas. Scribner's Sons); "Makers of Song," Anna A. Chapin (Dodd, Mead & Co.); "Stories of Famous Songs," S. J. A. Fitzgerald (Lippincott).

Collections of all the songs mentioned here, and many more, may be found by writing to music publishers. Public libraries have also cyclopedias of music which will help in writing the biographies of musicians. See "Great Composers and Their Work," by L. C. Elson (The Page Company).[Pg 76]


Some of the World's Famous Buildings

Like so many subjects suggested for club work, the one presented here may be expanded indefinitely. Each of the great buildings given should serve to introduce the subject of architecture and history.

Material will be found in good histories; in the encyclopedia, especially the Encyclopedia Britannica, and in the many books on architecture. Among the most useful in the way of description are: "Historic Buildings Described by Great Writers," and "Turrets, Towers and Temples," both by Esther Singleton (Dodd, Mead & Co.), and "Wonders of Art and Archæology," by M. Lefevre (Scribner). Ferguson's "History of Architecture" (Dodd, Mead & Co.) is also valuable. At each meeting there should be illustrations shown of the buildings studied.[Pg 77]


The earliest of the world's great buildings, and in some respects the most remarkable of them all, is the Great Temple of Karnak, at Thebes, in lower Egypt, built about 1600 b. c.

Introductory papers should describe the country and its rulers, its development and religion. Speak especially of the power of the monarchs and the nation of slaves. Show pictures of pyramids, obelisks, gates and temples. Speak of Thebes, described by Homer as "hundred-gated." Compare with Memphis.

Then follow with one paper on the great ruins on the left bank of the Nile at Thebes, and read Shelley's sonnet on the fallen Colossus there. Crossing to the right bank, describe the ruins at Luxor, and so come to the vast and overwhelming Temple of Karnak itself.

Note the avenue of sphinxes, the forest of columns which led to the river bank, the huge fallen capitals, on each of which a hundred men can stand. Give some idea of the immensity of the Hall and what it must have been like when the roof was on, and the whole area of two hundred[Pg 78] and seventy acres was in its perfection. Read the description by Amelia B. Edwards in "Turrets, Towers and Temples."


To realize the beauty and value of the Parthenon at Athens, clubs must first study the history of Greece from the time of Themistocles and the Persian wars, through the rule of Aristides and Cimon when, it is believed, the building of the Parthenon was begun. The Age of Pericles, when art was at its height, needs two or more meetings; it was then that the temple was finished.

A good picture of the Acropolis at Athens should be shown to keep the buildings distinct; the one in Lefevre's book is excellent. Read the description of a procession to the temple by John Addington Symonds, in "Sketches in Italy."

One paper should discuss the architecture of the Parthenon; another should mention the sculptures and paintings; a third may give its later history, noting that while it was intact until 1687 its history from that time has been one of destruction. Mention the injuries done[Pg 79] by collectors, especially Morosini and Lord Elgin. What of the ethics of the removal of the sculptures? Close with a descriptive reading on the Parthenon as it is to-day.

Studies of other Grecian temples will be found in the "Isles and Shrines of Greece," by S. J. Barrows (Little, Brown & Co.).

There is a remarkable little collection of poems called "The Englishman in Greece" (Clarendon Press) which will give delightful material for illustrating this program with verse from famous writers.


The picture of the Coliseum at Rome brings with it the wonderful story of the imperial city at the height of its splendor, and also in its decay. Have meetings on Rome under Vespasian and Titus, who together built the Coliseum. It was completed in 80 a. d., ten years after the destruction of Jerusalem.

One paper may describe its architecture, its arches, its massive stone walls, its successive tiers of seats, its divisions for the people and the court, its interesting exits. It covered five acres of land and seated eighty-six thousand people;[Pg 80] compare with the great stadium at Harvard to-day.

Follow with papers on the Roman games; at the dedication of the Coliseum these lasted a hundred days. Have one also on the gladiatorial fights and one on the Christian massacres, many of which took place here. Read from "Ben Hur" (Harper), the Chariot Race. Show, if possible, Gabriel Max's picture, "The Last Token." Then take the gradual destruction of the building by Goths and Vandals, and by the people of Rome themselves. Read from Gibbon's "Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire" his description of the building and the events which took place there; and also from the Coliseum, by Dickens, in "Historic Buildings."

Other buildings which may also be studied are the Pantheon, the Arch of Titus, Pompey's Theater, and the Temple of Jupiter Capitolinus, all in the early history of Italy. Clubs may follow the meetings on these buildings with two others on the more modern but no less remarkable St. Peter's, at Rome, that colossal edifice in the transept of which it is said that a cathedral could stand. Read from the description in "Wonders of Architecture."[Pg 81]


Among the many great architectural remains in Germany perhaps the most interesting is the Castle of Heidelberg, standing on a hill three hundred feet above the town. It was begun toward the close of the thirteenth century, and is divided into two palaces and a hall, all of different periods. The extraordinary thing about it is the fact that nearly every style of architecture has been employed in its construction and adornment, yet it remains a thing of beauty. In the Palace of Frederick IV there are chiseled sculptures of five emperors, two kings and nine palatines; in the Palace of Otho Heinrichs there is a lovely Italian façade, with Greek demi-gods and nymphs, Hebrew heroes, and Roman Cæsars. There are four granite columns given by the Pope to Charlemagne, which were transferred from palace to palace before they were finally brought here. One writer has said that there is renown for ten artists in this castle, all of them unknown.

Study the history of Germany in connection with this building, the different palatine emperors who lived here, the wars in which it[Pg 82] played a part, and the great events of which it was the scene. Read the description by Victor Hugo in "Turrets, Towers and Temples."

Clubs should also take up the Cathedral of Cologne, the Castle of the Wartburg, the Dragonfels, and the church at Aix-la-Chapelle.


The Mosque of St. Sophia at Constantinople is the great example of Byzantine art. Its history begins in the latter days of Roman history. Constantine, Theodosius, and Justinian all were connected with it. Read of the part each emperor took. Study next the rise and development of its style of architecture; note how uninteresting is its exterior, how curious the material of which it is built, and how wonderful its interior is. Note especially its marvelous dome, its pillars, built of marble and mosaics, its galleries and seats, so unusual in a great church. Take up the history of its greater columns, some from the Temple of the Sun at Baalbek, built by Aurelian, others from the Temple of Diana at Ephesus, and still others from Thebes, Athens, Rome, and Alexandria. This[Pg 83] one topic of the columns could fill a meeting.

The use of color in the church should be emphasized; greens, blues, reds, black and white, rose and gold all mingle here in the decoration. Lamps, globes of crystal, even ostrich eggs, are suspended from the ceiling. Carpets and rugs, inlaid lecterns, painted sentences from the Koran are all of interest, but perhaps most remarkable are the scenes of Moslem life and worship at all hours.

As to the history of the great church,—that covers all of the Middle Ages, and extends even to our own day. Christians and Mohammedans have fought for it; it has withstood sieges and bombardments, and known massacres and pillage. Read from many sources; one good description by De Amicis is found in "Turrets, Towers and Temples."


On a hill-top in Spain in the fortified suburb of Granada is the famous palace of the Moorish kings, the Alhambra. A large part of it was torn down by Charles V to make way for a palace which he began but never finished; it has[Pg 84] suffered from neglect, from spoliation, from bombardment, from earthquakes and from fire; yet it still remains to-day an exquisite and unique piece of architecture. The whole place is easily divided into its parts, and papers may describe them separately. The entrance with its great vestibule and the inner portal, one with a gigantic hand and the other with a key, around which emblems cluster fascinating legends, may be the first subject; then will follow others on the Hall of the Ambassadors, the Court of the Fish Pond, the Court of the Lions, the Hall of the Two Sisters, and the Hall of the Abencerrages. The Court of the Lions is the most beautiful, with its alabaster fountain resting on the crouching lions; the Hall of the Abencerrages witnessed a famous massacre; show pictures of these two rooms. Notice how everywhere there are the vaulted ceilings of carved cedar wood, the bubblelike domes, the mosaics, the tilings, the arabesques, the delicate tracery of color, and the marvelous lace work of wood and marble. The deep well of icy water is also to be mentioned, and the repeated fountains; the glorious views from the various windows and arches are also famous. Read several chapters[Pg 85] from Washington Irving's "Alhambra," and also from "Spain and the Spaniards," by De Amicis (Coates).

The Giralda and the Alcazar, both of Seville, should also be studied as other Moorish remains; and if there is time there may be one meeting on the Escurial.


The Kremlin is the citadel of Moscow and is built on very much the same lines as the Alhambra, for a wall surrounds it and it contains many important buildings. Here are churches, palaces, and towers. Clubs should spend several meetings on this place, for it is of immense importance in Russian history. Have one paper on the Bell Tower; pass from this to the Cathedral of the Assumption, and describe its massive interior and the painted walls, with the figures whose aureoles, breastplates, necklaces, and bracelets are of precious stones; mention also the burial place of the Metropolitans. Follow with another paper on the cathedral of the Archangel, and a fourth on the new palace, which holds the art treasures of Russia, its famous manuscripts, paintings and jewels. The library,[Pg 86] museum and university should also be described, the whole place forming a wonderful group of buildings.

Read the description by Théophile Gautier, in "Turrets, Towers and Temples." See also "The Russian Empire of To-day and Yesterday," by N. O. Winter (The Page Company). Give the description of a coronation.


The history of the great church of Notre Dame in Paris goes back into pagan times. A heathen temple once stood on its site, and later a Christian basilica. The present church was begun in the twelfth century. Clubs should first take up its architecture, which is not pure Gothic but transitional, and understand how it differs from many of the beautiful pure Gothic French cathedrals. Some of its many striking features are its three deep porches in front, the massive square towers, the delicate gallery, with its openwork arches, which supports a heavy mass of stone, and the huge rose window.

The history of the church is of the deepest interest. One paper may be on the curious fact that, though the French kings were crowned at[Pg 87] Rheims, an English king, Henry VI, was crowned in Notre Dame, and give a description of the times and the event. Note also the great Te Deum sung here in 1431 when Paris was retaken.

During the French Revolution this was the Temple of Reason, and a travesty on the usual religious services was performed. Napoleon, wishing to impress Europe, summoned the Pope to Paris, and was here crowned Emperor of the French, but by his own hands. All these and other historical points are to have papers.

Read parts of Victor Hugo's novel, "Notre Dame." Study also other French churches, especially the cathedrals of Amiens, Rouen, Chartres and Rheims. Read "Rambles in the French Châteaux," by F. M. Costling (The Page Company), "Old Paris," by H. C. Shelley (The Page Company).


The Tower of London has a more intimate connection with the history of England than any other building. Tradition says, probably erroneously, that it was begun by the Romans; certainly, however, the oldest part, the White[Pg 88] Tower, dates back to 1078. Have a picture or plan shown which makes clear how it is built,—with walls, a moat and various towers and the Keep. Then take in chronological order all the great events which occurred here, giving several meetings to their study. Kings were crowned, held court here, and were imprisoned. Queens died or were beheaded. Famous prisoners spent years in its dungeons. Describe the square place in the court where the executioner's block stood; show the Bloody Tower, and give the events which occurred there. Notice the gate connected with this, and also the Traitors' Gate. Tell of the Tower to-day, and its collection of armor and jewels.

In "Abbeys, Castles and Famous Halls of England and Wales," by Timbs and Gunn (Warne of London), there is an excellent résumé of the history of the Tower. Or, a good English history, such as Green's, will give it.

Take also the history and description of Westminster Hall and Abbey, St. Paul's, the different cathedrals of England and other famous buildings. If possible add the famous buildings of Scotland, Edinburgh Castle, Holyrood,[Pg 89] Stirling, and others. Wales has many famous ruins, notably Carnarvon, Conway and Harlech. Ireland has, among others, Ross Castle.


India has many notable temples and ruins, but for sheer beauty nothing can compare with the Taj Mahal, at Agra. Built in the seventeenth century by the Emperor Shah-Jehan as a mausoleum for his favorite wife and himself, it required the work of twenty thousand men for more than twenty years to complete it. It has been called a masterpiece of art, "a poem in stone."

A portico of red sandstone admits one to a long terrace built of white marble blocks, with wonderful gardens on each side and a canal reflecting the dark cypress trees. The tomb stands among these, reflected in the water. It is an octagonal building rising to a great dome, with smaller ones with minarets. All is built of marble and covered with exquisite carvings and inlays of flowers of turquoise and onyx, with sentences from the Koran in black marble. It is all simple, harmonious, and exquisitely beautiful. Within, in the bare central space are the[Pg 90] two plain tombs, covered with what is like a pall of carved, lacy marble. The whole forms one of the art treasures of the Orient.[Pg 91]


Four Short Programs



Each of the six masterpieces of fiction suggested for this program must be read by the members of the club in preparation for their presentation at the different meetings. The plots and characters must be familiar, to have intelligent discussion.

When studying each book begin with a sketch of the life and work of the author; follow with an outline of the plot of the book and a description of each of the principal characters. Readings from all the books and criticisms upon them may be found in "Warner's Library of the World's Best literature."


A French book, "Les Miserables," is one of the best known books of history as well as literature,[Pg 92] for it has to do with many vital social questions and reforms. Notice Victor Hugo's descriptive powers and discuss whether the book shows a knowledge of actual life or is largely theoretical. As it is the moral purpose of the book which has given it vitality, study the attitude of society toward the outcast and the criminal as the author gives it. Does the artist in him at times overpower his moral sense? Compare the treatment of the criminal then and at the present time. In spite of the faults of construction, how does the book rank as literature?

Goethe's "Wilhelm Meister" stands in the front rank among German novels. Give an outline of the book. Is there a plot? Is the book an autobiography? If not, how far does Goethe give his own experiences? Is the book a study in realism or does it deal with the unnatural? In what does the power of the book lie? What has the author to say of education, religion and esthetics? Is there a moral purpose, and are any problems settled?

Tolstoy's "Anna Karénina" is of the greatest literary importance, for its author was the founder of the modern realistic school. Have[Pg 93] several papers on the leading characters. What is the mainspring of Anna's character? Is the comedy character, Oblensky, satisfactory? Is Tolstoy really capable of humor? Is Levin a mouthpiece for Tolstoy's own views of life? Study the social side of Russian life. Are the problems of Anna the same as those which confront women in other lands to-day? Notice what famous men have said of this book: Matthew Arnold declared it "less a work of art than a piece of life." In a final meeting discuss the subject of realism in fiction compared to idealism, with examples of each class of work. Study and compare the writings of James, Howells, and Arnold Bennett with Tolstoy's.

"Don Quixote" is not only the masterpiece of Spain, but a book with unique qualities. Discuss, Does it give an unbiased picture of the people? Is Don Quixote a madman, or does the author intend to show under his extravagances some philosophy of life? What does the author satirize? Does he successfully combine the real and the grotesque, or lean too far toward the latter? Is the book a parable? If so, what does it teach?[Pg 94]


Among the greatest works in English fiction, "Adam Bede" stands out conspicuous by setting forth the eternal question of moral values. In the study of the characters note that Dinah was drawn from life. Notice the development of character in Adam and Hetty.

How does the standard of morals differ in our day from that in the time in which the book is placed? Study the writer's humor and show how it serves to relieve the somberness of the book. Was George Eliot really a humorist? Above all, notice the great moral purpose which inspired the writer. Does her picture differ from that of Dickens in "David Copperfield"?

"The Marble Faun" is worthy of serious study. It is the American masterpiece of fiction. Observe in this book that Hawthorne gave the story such a faithful setting that it may be used as a guidebook to Rome. The style of the book is remarkable; its exquisite simplicity deserves more than a passing notice. Discuss the mingling of the real and the mystical. Note especially the effect of the murder on the different characters.[Pg 95]

The remarkable character analysis in this work is one of the author's famous points. The main theme of the book—Is sin really an element in human education?—should be discussed. Does Hawthorne answer the question?

If these books lead to the study of others, the following are among the best to select: Daudet's "The Nabob;" Goethe's "The Sorrows of Werther;" in connection with Don Quixote, Le Sage's "Gil Blas;" Tourguenieff's "Smoke;" Thackeray's "Henry Esmond;" and in our own literature of the present time, Edith Wharton's "House of Mirth," and Margaret Deland's "Iron Woman."



Among the live questions of the day marriage and divorce are conspicuous. Our ideas, as well as our laws, are undergoing radical changes. Women should certainly be intelligent upon this great subject, and this outline will give them material for at least six meetings upon it.

Begin with an account of marriage in ancient times; follow with the customs of different countries[Pg 96] down to the present day. Notice that marriage is distinctly a social institution.

One meeting should raise the question, Upon what should marriage be based? Among other things these three points should be emphasized: it must be based on love; on physical and mental fitness; and upon mutual interests, especially those which center in the children. Negatively, it should not be based upon mere emotion nor upon a desire for wealth or social advantages.

Discuss the relation between grown children and parents in making a marriage-choice; the age for marriage; the so-called international marriages; frivolous marriages, and other points which will readily suggest themselves. Have club members speak of what they consider the conditions for a happy marriage, and the necessity to-day of training all young men and young women for marriage. Notice that as marriage is a social institution, society is bound to safeguard it in every possible way.

Turning to divorce, begin this with a study of its history down to the present time. Follow with a résumé of the laws of divorce in the different countries. Note that America leads the world in the number of its divorces, which are[Pg 97] two hundred a day. Give the laws in some of the states; point out that South Carolina gives no divorces, that New York gives them for one cause only; that Indiana gives most of all. Mention some of the evils which arise from the difference of state laws.

One meeting should take the subject of the changing sentiment toward divorce. Ellen Key significantly says that one reason for it is our weak moral fiber, which avoids all unpleasantness. Another cause is undoubtedly the tendency toward individualism. Illustrate with readings from Ibsen's "A Doll's House" at this point. A third cause is the increasing desire for ease and luxury and pleasure of all kinds, which makes a man or woman leave one environment for another which promises more. Have papers or talks on these themes:

Shall divorce be free where love has gone? Read from Ellen Key.

Should divorce be given on other than statutory cause? If so, on what?

Does separation take the place of divorce in most cases?

Would the addition of a civil ceremony to the religious make divorces less frequent?[Pg 98]

Would the attitude of society toward hasty marriages, should they be discountenanced, be helpful?

What should be the proper attitude of the State toward divorce? Are the Courts of Domestic Relations of value in preventing them?

Would Divorce Courts, dealing with this whole matter intelligently, be helpful?

What should be the attitude of the church toward divorce?

What is the effect of divorce on children in the home? Has the child a right to one father and one mother even though their attitude toward each other is strained? What is the moral effect on a child in the latter case?

Especially make a point of the question: How much should the individual sacrifice for the good of society? Here read "The Iron Woman" (latter part), by Margaret Deland.

Among the many books on these two subjects read these especially: "Love and Marriage," by Ellen Key (Putnam); "Marriage and Divorce," by Rev. J. H. Holmes (B. W. Huebsch); "Woman and the Law," by G. J. Bayles (Century Co.); "Marriage as a Trade," Hamilton[Pg 99] (Moffat, Yard & Co.); "Women and To-morrow," George (Appleton).

Have reviews also of "Together," by Herrick (Grosset), and "Marriage," by Wells (Duffield).



The subject of Child Labor is one of the vital questions of to-day, and every woman should study and know the conditions, particularly in her own State. Begin with an introductory paper on child labor in the mills of England in the nineteenth century. Read from Mrs. Browning's "Cry of the Children."

Study the present conditions in America; the mining, canning, glass-blowing, and factory work occupations, particularly in the South; the tenement-house trades, such as nut-shelling and the making of artificial flowers. Discuss the many evils to which the children are exposed, the lack of rest and exercise, the unsanitary surroundings. Study the street trades; boot-blacking, newspaper selling, peddling, and the work of the messenger boy; also that of the child on the stage, the conditions under which he must[Pg 100] work; the legislation governing these, and the enforcement of the laws.

Take up the causes of child labor, the poverty, and the need to increase the family income; the employer's attitude toward child labor; the indifference to school. Discuss, How can the school obtain and hold the child? and the vital importance of education. Find out whether the compulsory education law is enforced in your own locality. Speak of the teaching of trades in schools; industrial education by the State; the economic value of education. Read and discuss the state laws on child labor. Are they enforced? Should public opinion against child labor be aroused? Read the reports of exhibitions: Could the club have some sort of an exhibit?


The effects of child labor are of far-reaching importance. Read the statistics of accident and disease, the stunting of growth, the effect on the child's mentality and morals from articles in Survey. What percentage of child criminals come from the laboring classes? The effect of child labor on the home should be discussed,[Pg 101] its tendency to disintegrate; note the physical deterioration, and the unfitness for parenthood in the child who has labored, the loss of vital force in the children mentally and physically in the following generations, and the lowering of standards of American citizenship which must follow.

On each point have readings from pamphlets published by the National Child Labor Committee, 105 East Twenty-second Street, New York City, which will be sent to any one who writes and asks for them. The following will be especially helpful: Child Employing Industries, Child Labor, Child Problems, Child Workers of the Nation, Compulsory Education in the South.

The Survey has quantities of articles on all the topics. In addition, read from these books:

"Child Labor in City Streets," E. N. Clopper. (Macmillan.) "The Cry of the Children," Mrs. B. Van Vorst. (Moffat, Yard.) "Solution of the Child Labor Problem," S. Nearing. (Moffat, Yard.) "The Children in the Shadow," E. K. Coulter. (McBride, Nast & Co.) "Through the Mill," F. K. Brown. (Pilgrim Press, Boston.) "Juvenile Offenders," W. D. Morrison. (Appleton.)[Pg 102]



Toward spring clubs which have taken a heavy subject all winter will enjoy a program of ten meetings on our own writers about nature. The life of each should first be fully studied, and there may be many readings from books.

The story of John James Audubon is as interesting as the most romantic novel. Study this in full and describe his great book, "Birds of America"; read from his granddaughter's (Maria B. Audubon) "Life of Audubon" (Scribner).

Henry David Thoreau is a unique figure in our literary history. Read some of his poems; also Stevenson's sketch in "Familiar Studies;" and from "Thoreau," by F. B. Sanborn (Houghton Mifflin Co.).

John Burroughs is the most popular of our nature writers. Read "Wake Robin," "Birds and Poets," and "Indoor Studies" (Houghton Mifflin Co.).

John Muir though not an American by birth, was our chief scientific writer about nature.[Pg 103] Read from "The Mountains of California" (Century Co.); "Our National Parks" (Houghton Mifflin Co.).

Stewart Edward White writes of the mountains and forests. Read: "The Forest" (Doubleday, Page), and "The Pass" (Outing Co.).

Select chapters from Ernest Thompson Seton's "The Biography of a Grizzly" (Century Co.), "Lives of the Hunted" (Scribner).

Read from Theodore Roosevelt's "The Hunting Trips of a Ranchman," "Hunting the Grizzly" (Putnam), and "Good Hunting" (Harper).

Read briefly of Henry C. McCook's life, and then from "Nature's Craftsmen" (Harper), and "Tenants of an Old Farm" (Jacobs).

Read selections from the books of Mabel Osgood Wright and Olive Thorne Miller.

Have readings from "The Nature Lovers' Treasury," by Carrie T. Lowell (The Page Company).[Pg 104]


Central and South America and the Canal

There is a certain romantic interest about the history of Central and South America and a uniting of ancient and modern history there which makes its study peculiarly attractive. Sufficient material is given for an entire year's work, and the many books written recently upon them give ample references.


Starting with Central America, the first meeting may be upon its physical features, illustrated with a map. It is believed that originally there may have been a great archipelago uniting the two continents, earthquakes possibly throwing them together. The Cordillera, or mountain chain, which lies the length of the peninsula, is of unusual wildness and beauty, with volcanoes here and there. The long slopes from the sea to the mountain tops give great variety of[Pg 105] climate and productions, remarkable in so small a country. Describe at length the flora and fauna.

This will introduce the great subject of the ancient remains of a highly civilized race. There are huge pyramids, vying with those of Egypt, walls built without plaster yet of amazing durability, temples with carvings and colored picture-writing of wonderful beauty, all the subject of great interest to archæologists. Show photographs of these, and discuss whether they were connected with the remains in Egypt or were a spontaneous development of an aboriginal race.

After this take up the coming of the European and the result. In 1513 Balboa saw the great Pacific Ocean spread out before him. Wading into its water he took all the land upon its shore in the name of Spain—which was the entire territory from Alaska to Cape Horn. Read:—Keats's sonnet "On first looking into Chopman's Homer," with its reference to the "peak in Darien."

Spain proceeded to take possession of the country to the immediate north and south, and kept it until 1821; it stamped its peoples indelibly[Pg 106] with its mark and made it more Spanish than Western in customs, religion and morals. Notice the curious fact that a canal across Panama was suggested by Spain in 1551. Follow the history of these centuries until Spain lost its ownership; then speak of the federal republic, and later of the founding of the different republics as they are to-day. This will take several meetings.


From this point study each little republic by itself, beginning with Guatemala, the farthest north, adjoining Mexico, and resembling it in many ways.

Here the feature of prime importance is the natural forests of rare woods; the soil is also unusually fertile and can be made to produce remarkable crops under cultivation. The cities are modern; Guatemala City has tree-planted avenues, a beautiful plaza, electric lights, schools and churches. Manufactures and trades are interesting, especially the wood-carving and embroidery work. Give an idea of the people, native and foreign, the government, education, and relation with other countries.[Pg 107]

Nicaragua, territorially the largest of the little republics, is interesting because of its connection with the early plans for the great canal. It was chosen in 1876 in Washington, President Grant determining upon it after many years of investigation. Read in "Panama," by Bunau-Varilla, of this period. Mention also the three interesting towns connected by railway, and the great plantations near them.

Honduras is a remarkable place in many ways; describe its capital, with its law courts, its university and schools of industry; also the wonderful mines, so few of them developed.

British Honduras is by no means so interesting; but its form of government should be noticed. One curious little fact is that it is recorded that one year all the pine trees on crown lands were sold to an American for a cent apiece.

Salvador is a wild, mountainous, picturesque place, situated in a district which volcanoes constantly threaten. Its main city, San Salvador, has many buildings of note.

Costa Rica has a history of absorbing interest. Its great wealth of minerals, trees, pearl fisheries and other resources early made it[Pg 108] famous in Spain. Its climate is delightful, its population mostly foreign, education is free, and there is complete religious liberty. Discuss what causes the difference between this republic and some of the others.


Panama, the little republic of only ten years, is sufficiently important commercially to be noticed, yet its fame will always rest upon its great canal. Clubs should give a number of meetings upon this subject, for it is of world-wide interest, and the future of South America, and largely our own, is closely connected with it.

The early dream of such a canal should first be followed out from its inception till the time of the formation of the early company by De Lesseps in 1881, through the failure of this with its disastrous financial effect in France. New plans were made which were to enlist the help of Russia, but these failed also. Study the idea of the Nicaraguan canal, its abandonment; the negotiations with Colombia; the treaties made; the difficulties with the different South American countries; the recognition of Panama by the[Pg 109] four great powers; the ratification by the Senate of the Hay-Bunau-Varilla treaty, the making of plans for the canal on different lines, and, last, its actual beginning.

Here there should be a paper on the physical conditions at Panama, the deadly climate, the yellow fever, the malarial mosquitoes, the lack of sanitation, and all that was carried out under Goethals and Gorgas to make it possible for the work to be done. Read descriptions of the town of Panama after the new conditions were established. Show a map of the Canal and describe its principal features and also show pictures from magazines and books. Close these meetings with a discussion on two questions: the tolls, and the possible fortifying of the Canal. Give some idea also of the result of the building of the Canal upon the different nations.


The study of South America should be taken in a leisurely way, for each part is valuable. Begin with a map talk, pointing out the divisions, the mountains, rivers and cities, and the great fertile plains.[Pg 110]

The ancient history of the land will come first. Read from Prescott the description of the Incas in Peru and their remarkable civilization, and show pictures of the remains of temples and walls. Contrast these with the ruins in Central America and point out the striking differences.

Then give several meetings to the coming of the Spaniards and the results, not only to the Incas but to the entire country. Read of the Buccaneers and other adventurers, and have read some chapters from Charles Kingsley's "Westward Ho!"

After this, take each of the countries in turn and thoroughly study its history down to to-day. There are certain divisions which it will be well to follow: first, the Republics of the River Plate, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay; the Republics of the Andes, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia and Chili; the Republics of Colombia and Venezuela; the United States of Brazil; and last, the Guianas.

The River Plate is of remarkable interest; it makes the great prairies or pampas fertile and so is the basis of the wealth of the country.

Argentina, and, in a lesser degree, Uruguay and Paraguay, are dependent upon it.[Pg 111]


Argentina is one of the wonders of the new world, so rapid has been its rise from obscurity to immense material importance. It is considered the first of the South American states. Study the singular mingling of the races which has produced an entirely new type of nationality and patriotism.

The subject of ranches and the life there may be the topic of one paper; another may take up the life in the capital, Buenos Ayres, with its contrasts between great poverty and greater wealth, for the ports are filled with steamers from all parts of the world, and the docks crowded with the very poorest Italian immigrants. The wide boulevards, theaters, opera house, clubs, newspaper offices, and public buildings are on a scale of unusual magnificence. Notice that in many respects the city is like Paris.

Speak of the pleasure-loving character of the people, of horse-races and lotteries, of extravagance in all kinds of sport. Notice the excellent sanitation and the unusually high cost of living. Follow with a description of the other[Pg 112] two river republics, and compare with Argentina. Have a paper here on Patagonia.


The republics of the Andes are less important commercially than those of the lower lands, but in many respects they are of greater interest. The mountains give to them their distinctive character and importance; they are the great storehouse of the people, giving them mineral wealth, forests, and, on the slopes, fertile tracts of land, except on the coastward side, where the peculiarity of the lack of rain makes the country sterile. In Peru the whites and Indians and half-breeds form three distinct classes, and this is true of all the republics of the Andes.

Give a description of Lima, the quaint city which dates from the time of Pizarro, show pictures of the old cathedral and the plaza of infamous memories of persecutions, existing from 1573 until 1813. Contrast this simple, and by no means wealthy, city with those of the Plate country.

Close with a sketch of Cuzco, the capital of the old Inca empire, built almost twelve thousand[Pg 113] feet high on a mountain top, and speak of the railroad which goes there, and of the wonderful mountain bridges.


Ecuador, the smallest of the mountain republics, is a land of contrasts: of volcanoes, mountain gorges, tropical forests and snowfields, bleak plains and fertile valleys. Its chief city, Quito, lies exactly on the Equator; it is a city built in the old Moorish style, with red-tiled roofs and narrow streets. The character of its people is interesting, for picturesque Indians in native dress throng the town on feast days, mingling with the very poor natives and the richer class who wear Paris costumes. The republic is not in a high state of development, but the Panama Canal is expected to bring prosperity to it.


Bolivia is a place of great possibilities; its mineral wealth, its commerce, its forests, all mean that sooner or later it will be developed. To-day it is much like its neighbor, Ecuador. One of its chief interests lies in its history.[Pg 114] Read of Simon Bolivar and what he did for his country; he is often called the Washington of South America.


Chili is the most progressive of the mountain republics; the people call themselves the "British," or the "Americans" of their continent. It is the most united of the South American republics, with a strong patriotic feeling. The education, the customs, even the navy, are all on European lines. Unfortunately, it is held back in every way by an enormous illiterate and very poor class, the bulk of the population. Describe Valparaiso. Read of its early history, and of Drake and Hawkins. Speak briefly also of the suburb which has gardens, casinos, concert halls and all the effect of European life, and the sea-side resort near it, Vina del Mar.


Colombia and Venezuela are of great importance, far more so commercially than the republics of the Andes. Notice their commanding position, and describe Bogota, with its university, its mint, library, and botanical gardens,[Pg 115] and Caracas in Venezuela, even more modern in every way, and more beautifully situated. The story of Bolivar is closely connected with Caracas. The wealth of both these northern states, however, lies largely in pastoral industries and the great river which waters the country will mean much when its powers are developed. But economically and in point of education, neither yet are what one would expect from their situation and opportunities.


Brazil is a land associated with romance; one of great rivers and mighty forests, of wealth, of slavery, of misery and of progress. It is larger than the United States (not including Alaska), and its future must be of immense importance. Its history includes that of its empire, which should make the topic of one meeting, for it is of great interest. The early struggles of the republic, the abolishment of slavery, and the establishment of a government founded on our own, may all be studied.

The influence of the Portuguese in Brazil has been marked, especially in its literature, music and art. Notice how beautiful the situation is[Pg 116] of the city of Rio Janeiro, and show pictures of its streets and great buildings, with their over-ornamentation.

Study the River Amazon in one meeting; the coffee plantations, and the cotton and rubber industries in another.

Follow these meetings with one on the Guianas, another on the various islands which lie along the coast, especially the Falkland Islands and Tierra del Fuego.


Among the many topics which will suggest themselves for discussion are these: What can be said of education in Latin America? What is the percentage of those who can read and write, and why is it so low? What of higher education? What is the relation between church and state and what has the church done for education? What can be said of the morals of the Latin Americans? What is the position of woman? How is she educated and trained? What is her home efficiency? Compare South American cities with those of France, England and America and point out the great differences.[Pg 117]

What can be said of literature, art, music and science? Where does South America show her strength, and where her weakness?

Among the many excellent reference books these are suggested: "The Republics of Central and South America," by C. Reginald Enock (Scribner). "Panama, the Creation, Destruction and Resurrection," by Philippe Bunau-Varilla (Constable and Sons, London). "Panama and the Canal To-day," by Forbes Lindsay (The Page Company). "The Panama Canal," by J. Saxon Mills (Thomas Nelson, London and New York). "South America," by James Bryce (Macmillan). "Conquest of Peru," by W. H. Prescott (Lippincott).[Pg 118]


The Work of the Rural Club


Letters have come from the Far West, from Nova Scotia, from remote districts in the South, and from ranches in Canada asking much the same question: "Is it possible to carry on a women's club when we are far away from any public library and have few books, if any, in the community?"

If any group of women need a club it is the women on farms and ranches and in little villages, whose lives are monotonous, who have no lectures or concerts to attend and few magazines or new books to read. They, above all the rest of us, need intellectual stimulus. And their question may be answered with a positive affirmative: Yes; it is perfectly possible to have a club, one doing excellent work, with no library at hand. Many examples of what can be done might be given, but one will stand for them all: In a singularly isolated spot in New[Pg 119] England a club was began ten years ago with a handful of farmers' wives and daughters living within an area of a dozen miles. They used what material they had at hand; they added to it; they studied simple things at first, and later took up more difficult subjects; and then they did practical work for their community. To-day that club is made up of many well-read women of all ages who have acquired what may truly be called a liberal education, and the whole neighborhood has been raised and enlightened by what they have done for it in a hundred ways. And they had nothing more to begin with than any group of women has under similar conditions. Any woman who feels the need of a club can start one, and once started it will grow of its own volition and justify its existence.


Let us suppose that some country woman decides to start a club. She is not quite sure what steps to take, but she invites some of her neighbors to meet with her and talk it over. Probably they will agree to begin very simply, merely meeting once a week or so and reading aloud—feeling their way to other things. This[Pg 120] is the right sort of a beginning, for in a very short time they will have gained sufficient confidence in themselves to plan something better. At this point some one may suggest that at the next meeting each woman shall bring in a written list of the books she owns. When this is done it will probably be found that there are many good ones to use. There will probably be a set of Dickens, volumes of Longfellow, Tennyson, and Whittier, a few biographies, including one of General Grant, a book or two of travel and scattered volumes of all kinds, novels, histories, and school books, and possibly an encyclopedia.

This list has great possibilities for club study, especially if there is the encyclopedia, so essential for reference. With a very small membership fee, perhaps five cents a month, one new book may be bought every three months; with ten club members this can be done.

When the club is fairly going it may decide to select Dickens's novels to study, as a sort of popular beginning; a simple plan of work would be as follows:

Divide the club into committees of two, and to each give one novel to read and thoroughly[Pg 121] master. Meanwhile the president may study the life of Dickens. If she has no book to use she should write to the State Librarian and try to secure a traveling library with this and other needed books in it; or at least she may get, if not a library, one or two volumes, sent by mail. At the first regular meeting she should give a sketch of Dickens's life and show any pictures of the author in the book. She should also try to find in an English history pictures of Canterbury, London, and other places associated with his life, and Westminster Abbey, where he is buried.

By the next meeting the first committee should be ready to give an afternoon program on one novel, say "David Copperfield." One member may tell the story of the book, mentioning the various characters; another may take these up in part and describe them. Then there should be readings, not only by these two members but by others to whom they have been given, illustrating the main points of the story. After the meeting the book should be loaned to some one who will read it and pass it on to the rest. And so with each novel in turn. There should be a discussion at each meeting, and[Pg 122] members should tell why they admire or dislike this character or that, and what great moral lesson Dickens points out in each book, and so on. Such a study might well occupy an entire year and be extremely interesting.

Or suppose the club decided to study Longfellow's poems. Again the first meeting is to be on the life of the poet; the second will take up the first of the group of American poems, "Hiawatha," and have it read aloud; the discussion following may be on the types of Indians drawn by Longfellow and inquire: Are they true to life? The next meeting will be on "Miles Standish," with a paper or talk on the Puritans in England and America, and a description of the first winter in the colony.

The third meeting will take "Evangeline," with a paper on the Acadians. Later should come other poems of our own country, on slavery, and on village life, with readings from these, and from "The Wayside Inn." Later still, his translations should be read and discussed, and his little dramas. The season should close with an afternoon in which each club member should read her favorite poem. If clubs can buy one book it will be found delightful[Pg 123] at this point to read aloud "A Sister to Evangeline," by Chas. G. D. Roberts (The Page Company).

Or, if the autobiography of General Grant were to be studied, a committee should go over the table of contents and divide it up into several parts; his early life; his experiences at West Point; the years between that and the Civil War; the great campaigns and battles in which he took part, and the great men on both sides with whom he came in contact, especially Lincoln and Lee; his Presidency; his trip around the world; his business venture, its ending; the writing of his book; his death and burial. All of these points should be illustrated with pictures where that is possible, and each meeting should have a discussion on the period presented. The one copy of the book must of course be loaned in turn to the different committees, but each one is not to read it all but only the part assigned, so there would be plenty of time for preparation. Such a study would open many different topics, especially those bearing on the war and on Grant's trip, and would be of a definitely educational nature.

Of course every magazine the club can get[Pg 124] should be searched for articles of value for reference. One member might make it her work to go over them each month and make out a list, copying the titles on a large sheet of paper, which could be hung up on a door at each club meeting; or a card catalogue might be kept. In a short time this would make a real, if small, reference library. History, essays, articles on science, sketches of travel, and poems would all be of some use sooner or later.

Other subjects may be treated in the same way as those suggested. History, especially different periods in English history, makes delightful study, and books on nature, and travel, and phases of woman's life and work are easy to get and interesting. Nature study, gardening, bee raising, the care of poultry and other practical subjects may be introduced with the other work.


And then, aside from working for their own development, there is the other work a club can undertake, that for the community, which is of immense value. The newly coined phrase one hears to-day in connection with farm life is:[Pg 125] Better farming, better business, better living. How to help bring about these three great ends is one of the best things a club can study.

The first subject which will come up will be: What are the principal difficulties we have to meet in our homes, and how can we overcome them?

At this point a book should be read aloud in the club, a chapter at a meeting, with discussion afterward; it is, "The Report of the Commission on Country Life," and is a presentation first, of the farm problems, and, second, of how to meet them. The chapters on the work of the farmer's wife, with its difficulties, will be of especial interest, but all of it is important to read, for hygiene in the home, gardening, the school and church, social life, and many other topics of practical interest are dealt with there and will suggest lines of study for the club.

The first topic to treat is that of home hygiene: discussion of how better ventilation of sleeping rooms, better protection from flies, better cooking, better sanitation can be secured. This will probably occupy several meetings. Then will come the topic of beautifying the home, and this will suggest the cleaning up of[Pg 126] the farm yard as the first step to take. Later on, when community work is begun, this will lead to a house-to-house visitation with the request that all the neighborhood should make their premises more inviting in the same way.


After this the public school will be studied. The building may need repairs and modernizing, especially the outbuildings, the playground and the surroundings of the schoolhouse. A chapter in the Report will be of inestimable value next, for it points out the need of a redirected education, one which will give the child of the farm some study of nature, of agriculture, health, sanitation, domestic science and similar subjects which fit his life. It suggests that the school-teacher and district superintendent should be called to conferences on this subject and asked to help in carrying out plans for the betterment of the school.

The next thing for the club to do is to make a social center of the schoolhouse. The crying need of farmers' families is for social life. True, the grange tries to supply this, but the women's club can also help by having lectures[Pg 127] and concerts and addresses at the schoolhouse, with stereopticon shows, dances, tableaux, and whatever will make the community happier and better. They may also carry out the suggestion of the Commission that the school should be brought into direct contact with the State Agricultural College, and professors should come to give demonstrations on farms, and traveling lectures on orchards, dairies, farm pests and other topics should be given.


When the time for the county fair comes the club may have, as one Illinois club did, a series of talks on all sorts of live topics, given by experts to all who would come, the men as well as the women. Farm Life in the Old World, The Farm Boy and the Farm Problem, Bringing Home and School Together, Home-Making for Men and Women, were given, and also practical demonstrations on preserving, bread and butter making, and other domestic subjects. Besides these there was a fruit and vegetable show with prizes, given by the children.

Then there is the beautifying of the little village.[Pg 128] The club may clean it up, plant shade trees and shrubbery, freshen up the paint of the railroad station and make its driveway attractive, take charge of the cemetery lots which are neglected, make a common in the middle of the town if possible, and have flowers and trees there, and, most important of all, create a sentiment among the people which will lead to abolishing the loafing places about town.

The club may also help the village church or, rather, churches. These are a problem in every farming community, for there are usually too many for the population, and no one of them is well supported. It may be that some clubs may be successful in having a union church; but, if not that, at least they can frown on the spirit of jealousy between the churches and establish coöperation. The buildings may be freed from their mortgages, the interiors freshened, the choirs improved, the minister's house papered, the Sunday school modernized, the women's societies assisted. There is always plenty to be done to help a struggling country church.

A town library may be started by the gift of one book by each family, and club women may[Pg 129] take turns in giving out the books one day a week and providing entertainments to raise money to buy more.

Clubs may also help the town celebrate fête days: Arbor Day, the Fourth of July, Harvest Home, and the birthdays of local celebrities or of Washington and Lincoln. The schoolhouse may be used for such meetings.

The motto of every rural club should be: Coöperation. As one kind of work is taken up after another it will soon be seen how much women can do if they work together for the good of all. The little club nucleus may draw to itself the men of the community, the young people, and even the children, and together they may build up something fine, something of substantial value. Country life has its problems, but far more, it has its great, glorious opportunities.

These are some of the helpful books to be bought, or borrowed from the State Library:

"The Report of the Commission on Country Life." (Sturges and Walton.) "Coöperation Among Farmers," John Lee Coulter. (Sturgis and Walton.) "The Rural Problem in the United States," Sir Horace Plunkett.[Pg 130] (Macmillan.) "How to Live in the Country." E. P. Powell (Outing Publishing Co.) "A Self-Supporting Home" and "The Earth's Bounty." Kate V. St Maur. (Macmillan.)[Pg 131]


The History of England

In studying the subject presented, for general reference use "The Short History of England" by E. P. Cheney (Ginn & Co.), and Halleck's "English Literature" (American Book Company). All topics can also be looked up in the Encyclopædia Britannica.


Begin with some idea of the prehistoric conditions in Great Britain, and have a map study. Follow with a sketch of the Druids, the Celts and their folk lore and the Arthurian legends.

The Roman conquest comes next. Read Tennyson's "Boadicea." Discuss: What did Rome give England of permanent value?

The early Saxons will bring in the coming of St. Augustine to England and the history of early Christianity there. Read of Cædmon at Whitby and the Venerable Bede, as the beginnings of English literature.[Pg 132]

Following this will be the stories of Alfred and his reforms, of Edward the Confessor, and Harold. Read from the "Death of Columba" (Bede's Ecclesiastical History, Bohn's Library), Bulwer's "Harold," and "Beowulf" (translation in Riverside Literary Series, Houghton Mifflin & Co.).


The economic and political changes of this time should be especially emphasized. Domesday Book, Magna Charta, the development of the feudal system, chivalry, the rise in power of the nobles, the hardships of the poor, the Normans on the Continent, and the Crusaders, with their effect on commerce, are all to be taken up. Have readings from Charles Kingsley's "Hereward the Wake," Scott's "Talisman," and Maurice Hewlett's "Richard Yea-and-Nay."

The list of the Plantagenet kings is long and their reigns are full of interest, but the main emphasis here, as under the Normans, belongs to the development of the nation. Take the subjects of the building of universities; the growth of Parliament; the increase of learning among the people; and Chaucer, with the[Pg 133] "Canterbury Tales" as pictures of the life of the times.

In studying Edward III read of his relations with Scotland and France, and give an account of his famous battles. With the reign of Richard II comes the Peasants' Revolt. Discuss: How did it represent the spirit of the age?

An interesting account may be given of Henry IV and Henry V. Give some idea of the Wars of the Roses, and close the period with an account of the Princes in the Tower, Caxton and printing, and the English Bible. Read from Shakespeare's Henry IV, Henry V, Henry VI, and Richard III; also Stevenson's "The Black Arrow," Rossetti's "The King's Tragedy," De Quincey's "Joan of Arc."


At this point the story of Modern England begins. Under Henry VII notice the attempts of pretenders to the throne. Read of some of the famous men of the time.

Henry VIII is one of the best known characters in history. Speak of his tyrannical rule, his matrimonial ventures, his quarrel with the Pope and its results; the Field of the Cloth of[Pg 134] Gold; of the English Reformation, Tyndale's New Testament and More's "Utopia." Tell of the brief reign of Edward VI.

Mary and the terrible persecutions follow this, with the connection of England and Spain. Notice the fate of Cranmer, Ridley, and Latimer; read the tragic story of Lady Jane Grey.

The reign of Elizabeth is one of the wonderful periods of history. Have papers on her religious and political policies; her relations with Mary, Queen of Scots; the war with Spain; relations with Holland; the Invincible Armada, and kindred subjects. From a literary standpoint the age is of supreme importance, with Shakespeare heading a long list of famous names. Discuss the Elizabethan stage. Have brief sketches of Marlowe, Ben Jonson, Bacon, and Spenser, with readings.


The study of the Stuarts begins with James I.

When studying Charles I, take up the struggle of the King with Parliament, the "forced loans," the King's favorites, and the beginning of the Civil War.[Pg 135]

At this time Cromwell becomes the most conspicuous figure in European history. Have several meetings on the Commonwealth, and a study of Cromwell as a man and a leader. Notice that Home Rule in Ireland first comes into prominence. Subjects for papers may be: Milton and his influence; Lovelace and his verses; The Women of the Civil War (see Traill's "Social England"). Read also from Carlyle's "Cromwell," "Evelyn's Diary" and Browning's "Strafford."

With Charles II disaster came again to England. Read from "Old St. Paul" by Wm. Harrison Ainsworth (Everyman's Library). Have a paper on James II and another on the coming to England of William and Mary, the Battle of the Boyne and the new régime. Read from Bunyan's "Pilgrim's Progress," Dryden's "Annus Mirabilis," Scott's "Peveril of the Peak," Blackmore's "Lorna Doone."

The time between this period and that of the Victorian Age should have several meetings. Study the Bill of Rights and its effect; also the reign of Queen Anne, the writers and the politics of the day.[Pg 136]


Then turn to the Georges and give an account of their curious court life.

The reign of George III touches on our own history. Take up our Revolution and that of France. Notice the great industrial changes in England, and read from Adam Smith's "Wealth of Nations." Napoleon, the war in Spain, Wellington and Waterloo, England and the Slave Trade, and Lord Nelson, should all be emphasized.

Study among others, the painters Gainsborough, Romney, and Reynolds; have one meeting on these and another on the furniture of the times and its famous makers, and Wedgwood china. See "The Secret History of the Court of England," by Lady Hamilton (The Page Company).


Several meetings must certainly be given to the reign of Victoria, one of the most celebrated in history. The first paper may deal with her as a woman in her home. Then take up the politics of the times. Have papers on the different[Pg 137] wars: the opium war in China, that in Afghanistan, the Crimea, the Sepoy rebellion, General Gordon and his work.

Add to these, papers on the expansion of England's colonies and their development; social and moral progress; the Reform Bill; the growth of democracy; the increase of industry through invention, and the great expansion in scientific fields, physics, biology, botany, medicine, and sociology.

The Victorian period is remarkable for its writers. Trace the development of the novel as shown in the works of Thackeray, Dickens, and George Eliot, with readings. The trend of poetry and the influence of Tennyson, Browning, and Swinburne may follow this, and then have the Pre-Raphaelite movement with its ideals of art and poetry, and a study of the Rossettis. The essayists must be noticed, especially Macaulay, Carlyle, Ruskin, and Pater, and the subject of painting and music studied with its various exponents.


Last of all comes the study of England in our own time. Begin with papers on Edward VII[Pg 138] and George V, and their ministers, especially noticing Lloyd-George and Asquith; speak of the Welsh Disestablishment Bill, the Education Bill, and the Ulster Question. Notice the English laws concerning women and children; speak also of suffrage. Close with the great war which began in 1914, its causes, leading men and principal events.

Have several meetings on the novelists, poets, playwrights, and artists of to-day. A special study might also be made of the cathedrals of England. See "The Cathedrals of England," by Mary J. Tabor (The Page Company).[Pg 139]


Woman's Problems of Work


The outline given here may be amplified by taking up in the same general way the conditions of life of women in several representative countries, both the rich and poor, the workers and the women of leisure, closing the year with an outlook on the whole woman question of the world.

The first point to be taken up is the life of the primitive woman. She was the great laborer. The man hunted and fished and fought, and the woman sowed and reaped, did the drudgery of the home, made clothing, prepared food, and bore the responsibility. As civilization slowly crept in she relinquished many of her out-of-door tasks and developed greater ability to meet the steadily increasing problems within doors.

Notice where savagery still persists, women remain in the same condition as in primitive[Pg 140] times. Read of the African women, and the Bushmen of Australia.

The study of the Hebrew women is the next point, for they advanced from a comparatively obscure position to one of honor. The Greek women may be compared with them. Read of the life of the Roman women. Next will come the study of the Anglo-Saxon women, working with their hands, but intelligent and forceful. Study the women of the next period, that of the Crusades. Read of the romantic lives of some, and follow with a paper on the women in convents and their occupations. From this point on, women's work remained much the same for the leisure class; but as life grew socially more complex, work became more intricate and varied.

The study of cottage industries may be mentioned here. Have several papers showing the life of the time our own colonies were established, and the work done by women. The important thing to be noticed is that all women worked; idleness was not in fashion. They spun and wove, they knitted and dyed, they made candles and table linen, and cotton and woolen clothing. Some few still carried on cottage[Pg 141] industries or taught dames' schools, and a few managed farms or kept shops or taverns; but most of them were employed in the home exclusively.

About the middle of the nineteenth century came the great world-wide industrial revolution which forever changed women's work, and for a time the work of men. Read of the introduction of machines into the English districts where the hand looms had been in use. Have papers or talks on conditions everywhere in this transition period. This was the beginning of the great work of women in factories. Especially in New England, factory work became a large part of life. Daughters of farmers, of shop-keepers, of the owners of the mills themselves, and many school-teachers in vacation, were employed from five o'clock in the morning until seven o'clock in the evening. There was no social stigma put upon them. Read from the early history of Mount Holyoke.

Mill towns were considered models of quietness and morality because of the presence of hundreds of women. Their life was full of intellectual stimulation; lyceums brought the best lecturers: Emerson, Lowell, and other great[Pg 142] writers and orators often spoke; the women edited and published little newspapers of their own. Lucy Larcom was a mill girl; read her poem called "An Idyl of Work," and her paper published in the Atlantic Monthly, volume 48, called "Mill Girls' Magazines."

But the hours of work were too long, the boarding houses too poor, the pay too meager. Gradually the American girl was replaced by the foreigner, and this period of work was at an end.

From this point factory work, as we know it, will open before the club. Study it especially in relation to cigar and cigarette and candy making, and in clothing industries of all sorts. Describe conditions as factory inspection has discovered them; notice the unsafe buildings, the long hours, heavy fines, and low pay. Discuss what should be done to remedy such evils. Have some of these questions taken up: Should Women Enter Trade Unions, or Is Organization Unnecessary? Do Strikes Pay? Should Women Insist on Compensation for Injuries and Old-Age Pensions? Can a Woman Work All Day and Still Bear Healthy Children and Bring Them Up Properly? Should There[Pg 143] Be Mothers' Pensions? What of Night Work for Women? Describe the life of the night scrub-woman in a city. Read "The Long Day."

Turning to the work of women in shops, notice that it was about 1859 when the first women took this up. Compare the conditions then with conditions to-day. Describe welfare work. Discuss the "living wage," and question whether this should not depend on competence. What of lack of recreation and social life? Does the low wage drive girls to immorality? What can be done locally to better conditions in our shops?

This all leads up to the enormous subject of women's work to-day. It is said that three hundred lines of work are open to them, and clubs should select what they prefer to study. Among the many books of reference to be found on these and similar topics are: "Woman and Labor," Olive Schreiner (F. A. Stokes Co.); "Women and Economics," Charlotte Perkins Stetson (Small, Maynard); "Women in Industry," Edith Abbott (D. Appleton & Co.); "The American Business Woman," J. H. Cromwell (G. P. Putnam's Sons); "Women's Share in Social Culture," Anna G. Spencer (Mitchell Kennerley);[Pg 144] "The Long Day," D. Richardson (Century Co.); "Woman and Social Progress," Scott and Nellie Nearing (The Macmillan Co.); "The Girl Who Earns Her Own Living," Anna Steese Richardson (Dodge); "How Women May Earn a Living," Helen C. Candee (The Macmillan Co.); "The Business of Being a Woman," Ida M. Tarbell (The Macmillan Co.); "Mrs. Julia Ward Howe and the Suffrage Movement," by Florence Howe Hall (The Page Company).[Pg 145]


Women's Problems of Work—Continued


Clubs may begin this study with the problems of the woman in the tenement. There is the home itself. She is hampered by a small, crowded space in which to bring up the family; there is insufficient light and air, it is too cold in winter and too hot in summer; there are few conveniences for washing or cooking; beds are generally uncomfortable, the walls are cumbered with clothing, there is no space for the children to play and no privacy.

The first paper may describe the home in detail and be followed with a reading from "How the Other Half Lives," by Jacob Riis.

The next paper may take up certain difficulties of management the woman in the tenement must contend with. If she takes in work, tailoring, or flower making, or anything of the kind, space is even less than before. If she goes out[Pg 146] to work, the care of the house falls on the children, who are overworked and neglected. She seldom knows how to buy economically, or cook appetizingly, or make clothing for her family. If the husband loses work, she must feel the stress of need. All the tenement life tends to send the children to the streets for amusement and air, the husband to the saloon for entertainment. The boys are apt to grow up without the instincts of home, and the girls often become immoral.

The third paper may present some solutions of her various problems. There are laws requiring space and air in tenements, and landlords who neglect their buildings may be made to better them; the work of the Legal Aid Association in these and other respects is to be studied.

Then women of the tenements should be brought into touch with Friendly Visitors and settlements, taught to clean up, to sew, to buy, to cook, to make home attractive. The children must be put into day nurseries if the mother goes out; the school teacher must come in to advise about the growing children; the music settlement may possibly give a hand; certainly[Pg 147] the classes for boys and girls in the settlements, and the libraries, and evenings of recreation there may help them. The Little Mothers' Aid Association, and the fresh air work, the recreation piers, the small parks, and many other helps may be drawn upon. All these and others should be described.

Read from the report of the "Housing Reform," published by the Charities Publication Committee at 105 East Twenty-second Street, New York; also from the pamphlet on "Remedial Loans," National Federation of Remedial Loan Associations, 31 Union Square, New York, and the report of the Little Mothers' Aid Association, 236 Second Avenue, New York, and from material from the National Federation of Settlements, 20 Union Park, Boston.


The second meeting may be on the subject of the sick poor, in country and city. One paper may be on personal experiences among the poor in country districts—what their conditions are, what is lacking, how to help them without injuring their pride. Discuss how relief can be given without pauperization. If possible have[Pg 148] some one speak of the work in the country, such as is done by the neighborly settlement of Keene Valley, New York.

The state of things among the city poor is even worse than in the country. Mention the trouble if the man of the house is sick and out of work, and there is no other wage earner. Speak of the state of things when there is a new-born baby; describe the sick child alone all day with few toys or none, and the chronic invalid in the slums. Read "The Lady of Shallott," by Elizabeth Phelps Ward in Little Classics.

The third paper or talk may present the brighter side of the picture. It may tell of what individuals have done in great gifts for hospitals, clinics, and work for cripples and babies, of pure milk and free ice, of dispensaries, of food for convalescents, of floating hospitals, and parties of mothers and babies at the seashore. Read from descriptions of these and other helpful society work.

Notice also what is being done in teaching consumptives to live on the roof, in keeping babies safely on the fire escape, in the work of the visiting nurse, the care of the cancerous poor,[Pg 149] and the general wave of helpfulness going out in every quarter. Information on all these points and others may be had by writing to the charity organization of any large city, or to a settlement. Club women should make practical these two subjects—of the tenement-house woman and the sick poor—by discussing what the club can do to help.


The third problem for study is that of the woman who works for pay in the home. This naturally falls into two divisions:

There is first the woman who takes in sewing, either by the piece or by wholesale, making trousers or cloaks, or artificial flowers, or conducting any of the home trades. Have a presentation of each of these, with the hours spent on the work, the pay, the effect on health, and the lack of care the children receive.

The second part of the subject is that of domestic service. One paper should be on employment bureaus, their worth, the morals of many of them, and the laws governing them.

A second brief paper may be on references[Pg 150] and their ethics. The subjects of the supply and demand of servants, of the relation of mistress and maid, of the hours of work, of wages, of the maid's room, her time off, her friends, the care of sick and old servants, may all follow. Discuss: What can be done to give us better servants? Do servants' unions help matters or make them worse? Are clubs for servants desirable? Can employers combine to make relations between mistresses and maids better?


Work in the factory is the problem which follows next. The sweatshop work is of great importance. Note how many women are away from home all day; how there is a season of overwork and a dull season without pay; the steady use of the sewing machine, with or without power; the poor ventilation and sanitation of the shops; the dim light, causing loss of eyesight; the fines; the effect of noise and confusion on the nerves of the women; all these are of deep interest. Read from the reports of the National Consumers' League, to be obtained by writing to Mrs. Florence Kelley, 106 East Nineteenth Street, New York, and let the club women[Pg 151] decide to insist on the use of the white label on the garments they buy.

The work of manufactories and mills may be divided into as many papers as there is time; there is the work of women in the canneries with its hours of labor and often with night work; the work in mills, the danger from machinery, and the impaired health of employees. Read from "Woman and the Trades" by Elizabeth B. Butler, published by the Russell Sage Foundation, 105 East Twenty-second Street, New York. Discuss the condition of women workers in mills and manufactories, and the strength of their children. Where mills are near at hand clubs may find out if the machinery is protected, if there is accident insurance or an employers' liability, and whether there are pensions.

There may be a paper, to close the subject, on strikes of women workers and how much they have accomplished. Read from "Fatigue and Efficiency," by Josephine Goldmark.


The problem of child labor properly comes under the problems of women, for the mother is[Pg 152] responsible for the child's health and development. The first topic is that of the child at home who must take the mother's place, do the housework, care for the children, assume the responsibility. What of her health and schooling?

Then there is the child who does paid work at home, extracts nut meats, makes artificial flowers and the like. What of its pay? Is it a fair one? What of the effect of long hours of confinement?

Street occupations come next; these are largely taken by boys, and the work of the newspaper seller, the district messenger, the boot-black, the errand boy, should all be studied. Is their health impaired? Are their morals endangered? Are the boys educated?

The work of children in mills and factories is often most distressing. Conditions in glass factories, mines, canneries, silk mills, in the shrimp industry, and in the Southern cotton mills are all to be studied. Note the great numbers of children so employed: in Pennsylvania in 1914, 33,000; in Massachusetts, 12,000; in North Carolina, 10,000, and in other States large numbers. Discuss the future of such children.[Pg 153] Compare the work of bound-out children on farms and in the country generally. Read Mrs. Browning's "Cry of the Children" and E. K. Coulter's "Children in the Shadow."

One meeting should take up the laws of the State on child labor. See "Some Ethical Gains Through Legislation," by Mrs. Florence Kelley, which gives valuable material on this point, and a pamphlet by Josephine Goldmark, called "Child Labor Legislation," published by the American Academy of Political and Social Science, Philadelphia. The Child Labor Committee at 105 East Twenty-second Street, New York, will send pamphlets free of charge.


The next great problem of woman's work to-day is that of the workers in retail shops. This may be made extremely interesting if the chairman of the program will arrange to have the club members interview in advance a number of shop girls, and find out something of the conditions under which they work, of their pay, their home life and other points, and give personal reports.

One paper or talk may be on the usual hours[Pg 154] of work, the kind of work done, the hours of overwork, the pay, the prospect of advancement. A second paper may be on the rest-room, the noon hour, the luncheon provided for pay, and especially on what is known as "welfare work," which many large shops do.

A third paper may discuss the relation of the girls to their employers, or to the floor walker; telling of care or tyranny, of fines, of the sanitary conditions of cloak rooms, of the effect on health of long standing.

This may be followed by a third paper on the cost of a shop girl's living; of room rent, food, clothing, car fares and recreation; how does the result compare with her pay? Discuss the minimum wage. Is it fair to pay alike the competent and incompetent? Is immorality due to a low living wage? Can a girl save for illness? Read "An Unfinished Story," by O. Henry, in "The Four Million." (Doubleday.)

Have different women suggest what can be done to help the shop girl. Describe what is called "preventive work," done largely by girls from college in the evening, and the work of the Y. W. C. A., and settlements. What can club women do by way of personal acquaintance and[Pg 155] interest? What of short shopping hours and early Christmas shopping?

Read from a paper called "The Club Worker," published by the National League of Women Workers; address, Hotel Savoy, New York; and from "Saleswomen in Mercantile Stores," by Elizabeth B. Butler, published at 105 East Twenty-second Street, New York.


The problems of the business woman in a larger way will naturally follow this. One paper may speak of women who are managing farms and ranches, others who have become the heads of business houses or real estate offices; some who are chemists, or designers or decorators; those who have tea rooms, who buy for importing houses or engage in catering. The work of the great army of stenographers and private secretaries would also come under this topic.

Present the different fields of work, and illustrate with examples as far as possible, and then discuss these and similar questions: Do women naturally incline to business? Is their home training at fault for the many mistakes[Pg 156] of the average woman? Should fathers see that their daughters understand something of banking, of keeping accounts, of investments, of managing an income? How much should a girl know of business? Should every girl be able to earn a living?


The problems of a professional woman may be made the subject of several meetings. Present the lives of the doctor, the nurse, the lawyer, the professor, the school teacher, the writer, the artist, the musician, and discuss in each case the difficulties she has to contend with.

Such questions as these may follow: Should professional women marry? Are their home lives well developed? Are they fitted for the career of the law? Do writers and artists tend to become bohemians? What are the relations of men and women in the same profession?


The last subject for the year's study is the relation of women and the State. One paper may take up some of the laws which govern her,[Pg 157] concerning property; a second may speak of divorce, and show the diversity of the laws of different States; a third may tell of the influence of women on legislation, of lobbying and appearing before committees. The desirability of placing women on certain state and municipal boards such as health, sanitation, care of defectives, vice commissions, reformatories, and schools should be fully presented.

The subject of equal suffrage will develop from this last topic of the year and both sides should be taken up as fully or as slightly as the club desires. Reports of the progress of suffrage in different States, what has been accomplished where it is established, and kindred themes, will suggest themselves. Read from Olive Schreiner's "Woman and Labor" (Stokes); Ellen Key's "The Woman Movement" (Putnam); and Ida Tarbell's "The Business of Being a Woman" (Macmillan).[Pg 158]


Some Great Men of Our Time


Ten club meetings are planned here, but as many more may be arranged by taking up the work of other men along the same lines as those mentioned.

The great sculptor of our day is Auguste Rodin. He was born in Paris in 1840, studied at the Petit École and later with Barye. From the latter he gained the double idea that statuary should suggest action and be literally life-like. Some of his statues are "St. John the Baptist," "The Hand of God," "The Thinker," "Adam and Eve." "The Bronze Age," now in the Luxembourg, caused a heated controversy, the charge being made that a plaster cast of the model had been used. Rodin is a pronounced realist and his figures are filled with force. He has inspired this generation of sculptors with a new conception of their work.[Pg 159]

Read from "The Life and Work of Rodin," by Frederick Lawton (Scribner). For other meetings on modern sculpture study the work of St. Gaudens, Lorado Taft, MacMonnies, Niehaus, Mrs. Vonnoh, Miss Yandell, Mrs. Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney and others.


Edmond Rostand, the dramatist, represents the literary playwright. He was born in 1869, and educated in Paris. His first play, "Les Romanesques," was staged in 1894. The next year came "La Princesse Lointaine," and two years later "La Samaritaine." But the height of Rostand's brilliant career was reached when he presented "Cyrano de Bergerac," a heroic comedy which took the artistic and literary world by storm. "L'Aiglon" followed this, and Rostand was then honored with an election to the French Academy.

"Chantecler" appeared in 1910; it was an attempt to imitate Aristophanes by putting birds and animals on the stage, but though largely advertised it was not a success.

Read from the study of Rostand in E. E. Hale's "Dramatists of To-day" (Holt). Have[Pg 160] a number of selections read from "Cyrano" and "L'Aiglon." A meeting on Maeterlinck should follow this, and another on Ibsen, with criticism, comparisons, and readings.


The man who has made philosophy popular to-day is William James. He was born in New York City, educated in London, Paris, Boulogne, and Geneva, and then in the scientific and medical schools of Harvard; he became professor of psychology and philosophy there. His chief books are "Principles of Psychology," "The Will to Believe," "Human Immortality," "Varieties of Religious Experience," "Pragmatism," and "A Pluralistic Universe." He died in 1910.

Professor James, like his brother, Henry James the novelist, was a man of letters. He dealt with the fundamental problems of human life in a distinctly fresh way and wrote of them in a style of singular clearness, vivacity, and humor. His philosophy is based on the idea that truth is that which has the value of truth to us.

Many clubs would enjoy a whole year of study[Pg 161] of James's books. At least there should be several meetings for readings from "The Will to Believe," and "Pragmatism," and from the biography, "William James," by Emile Boutroux (Longmans).

Study also the work of the French philosopher, Bergson, and that of the German, Eucken, recent visitors to America.


Gen. William Booth was, religiously, one of the notable figures of our times; but aside from that he was one of the greatest organizers of his generation. Born in Nottingham, England, in 1829, he early became a Wesleyan Methodist, but later independent. He founded the society which developed into the great Salvation Army, modeled after the English Army, but involving a discipline even more strict.

At first Booth met bitter opposition: churches where he had preached formerly were closed to him; he was called a mountebank and accused of having brought religion into contempt; but he steadily won favor for obviously great good done. In 1890 he published his book, "In Darkest England and the Way Out," suggesting social[Pg 162] and religious methods of helping the very poor. This book made his work respected by intelligent men everywhere. He died in 1912. Telegrams of sympathy were sent to his family by kings and emperors, presidents, governors, and great men of all nations. His funeral was a wonderful spectacle.

Read from the "Life of General William Booth," by G. S. Bailton, published by Doran, and have several papers written on different phases of the work of the Army. Read the poem: "General William Booth enters Heaven," by Nicholas Vachel Lindsay (Mitchell Kennerley).

Another great religious leader of the times was Dwight L. Moody; have a meeting on his evangelistic work and the Northfield schools.


Clubs will be interested to follow this study with one of a man who inspired as great a work as Booth, and founded as important an institution—Arnold Toynbee, the originator of the social settlement.

Toynbee was born in London in 1852. He spent ten years at Oxford as undergraduate,[Pg 163] tutor and lecturer, and there came under the influence of Buskin's social teachings. He took a deep interest in trades unions, and worked for better hours, more sanitary homes, open spaces in cities, and free libraries.

In 1875 he took lodgings in Whitechapel, one of London's worst slums, in order to live among the poor and help them in a neighborly way. On account of his delicate health he was unable to continue there long; but his example brought other Oxford men, and when he died in 1883 they organized a social university settlement and called it Toynbee Hall. This was the first fully equipped institution of the kind, and at once it attracted attention everywhere and was immediately followed by the establishment of others in England and America, and later in all lands. To-day in the United States alone there are more than five hundred such settlements.

Read "Arnold Toynbee," by F. C. Montague, published by the Johns Hopkins University Press, and see the "Handbook of Settlements," by R. A. Woods, published by the Sage Foundation, New York. Clubs may also have a meeting on Jane Addams and Hull House, and read[Pg 164] chapters from the book, "Twenty Years at Hull House," by Miss Addams (Macmillan).


Thomas Edison is one of the greatest inventive mechanical geniuses who ever lived. His life story is outwardly uneventful. He was born in Ohio in 1847, and at twelve became a train boy; he took advantage of an empty express room in a car and printed a little newspaper called The Grand Trunk Herald, and also carried on chemical and electrical experiments there. These came to an end when he set fire to the car accidentally, and was dismissed by the angry conductor.

He learned telegraphy and practiced it in several cities, coming after a time to New York. There he invented a printing telegraph machine, known as "the ticker," to record stock quotations. This brought him in forty thousand dollars and enabled him to set up his famous laboratory at Menlo Park, in New Jersey.

His first really great invention was the quadruplex telegraph, which makes it possible to send four messages over one wire at the same time. Next came the carbon transmitter. Edison's[Pg 165] third great work was the discovery of the carbon filament for the incandescent light, and his next the phonograph, which has developed into extended and various use. His work on the cinematograph has brought moving pictures into a conspicuous place not only for amusement but for education.

Read from "Edison—His Life and Inventions," by F. L. Dyer (Harper). Clubs interested in modern discoveries, should take up in this connection the work of Marconi and the Wright brothers; there is material here for several meetings.


No study of the men of our time would be complete without considering one of the famous financiers of the present age of wealth. Among a group of several, J. Pierpont Morgan stands easily first as the greatest organizer.

Born in Connecticut in 1837, he studied in Boston and later in Germany, and at the age of twenty became a banker. His first large business deal, however, was in the acquisition of a railroad, taking it from the hands of an infamous ring who controlled it and reorganizing[Pg 166] it. After this he adopted the syndicate method for floating bonds.

He financed many trunk lines of railway, the ocean steamship business, the coal and railway business of Pennsylvania, the Guarantee Trust Company, with a capital of $150,000,000, and the United States Steel Corporation, with a capital of $1,400,000,000. It is said that he controlled three billion dollars of railway properties.

The secret of Morgan's success lay in his skill in estimating railway values, his unerring memory, and his extraordinary genius for detail. He had immense determination and force hidden behind a profound reticence. His aims were broad and his outlook was over the country as a whole. His fame rests on his ability both as a financier and as a great collector, for he used much of his enormous wealth in building up one of the world's great collections of books, manuscripts, pictures, and curios.

Read from "The Life Story of Pierpont Morgan," by Carl Hovey (Sturgis and Walton). Study the lives of other financiers of our time, comparing and contrasting them, taking especially[Pg 167] the two men of great wealth, Rockefeller and Carnegie.


William Thomson, later Sir William, and later still Baron Kelvin, the greatest exponent of physical science in our age, was born in Belfast in 1824, the son of a teacher of mathematics. At twenty-two he was made professor of natural philosophy at Glasgow, and he held this position for more than fifty years.

In 1851 he read his first paper before the Royal Society; its subject was "The Dissipation of Energy," and it was the original statement of the law now universally accepted. He made many leading discoveries concerning elasticity, electricity, heat, vortex motion, and magnetism, and was recognized as the leading authority upon them. He was also a practical inventor, with fifty-six patents to his credit. He devised the instrument which made ocean telegraphy practical, the device now universally used for measuring electricity, the present form of the marine compass, the tide gauge, and the deep sea sounding apparatus. He was knighted for his work in 1866 and made Lord Kelvin in[Pg 168] 1892, besides receiving countless honors from universities, academies, and governments. He died in 1907.

Read from "Lord Kelvin," by Andrew Gray, in the English Men of Science series. Clubs may also study the work of Sir William Ramsay and the Curies.


The finding of the North and South Poles is among the great events of our times. The discoverer of the former was Robert E. Peary, who was born in 1856 in Pennsylvania, was educated at Bowdoin College, and became an engineer in the United States Navy, ranking as lieutenant. In 1886 he explored Greenland and five years later headed an expedition to that country and proved that it is an island.

Four northern trips succeeded this, the latter two under the auspices of the specially formed Peary Arctic Club. He was then given the rank of commander and was made president of the American Geographical Society. In 1905 and 1908 he went north in the ship Roosevelt, and on the latter trip the Pole was reached April 6, 1909.[Pg 169]

Clubs should read Peary's own book, "The North Pole," published by Stokes, and also the book written by his wife, "The Snow Baby," the story of the little daughter who was born in the Far North. Read also the account of the claims of Doctor Cook to have found the Pole.

The South Pole was discovered by Roald Amundsen, who was born in Norway in 1872. Like Peary, he became a naval lieutenant. In 1891 he made observations of the East Greenland currents, and two years later he gave nineteen months to observations connected with the magnetic pole. In 1904 he made the Northwest Passage.

In 1910 there was a race to discover the South Pole, between the British, led by Scott, who perished after reaching the goal, and the Danish, led by Amundsen. The latter sailed in the little ship Fram, landed on the Great Ice Barrier, marched rapidly on more than eight hundred miles and, December 16, 1911, reached the South Pole.

Read the discoverer's own account: "The South Pole," published by Keedick. Clubs may make a serious study of polar expeditions, which have been many, and of their stories of[Pg 170] bravery and tragedy. Read the books of Sven Hedin.


The construction of the Panama Canal is one of the striking engineering feats of to-day, and its success is owing mainly to George W. Goethals. He was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1858, was graduated at West Point, and began his career as a second lieutenant of engineers. He taught at West Point for a time, and was chief of engineers during the Spanish-American War and also a member of the Board of Fortifications. After 1907 he was chief engineer of the Panama Canal, and it is his work here that has made him famous. To secure efficiency great power was placed in his hands. He was chairman of the Isthmian Canal Commission, president of the Panama Railway, and governor of the Canal Zone. He had forty thousand men working under him in different departments.

The completed canal cost $375,000,000 and is one of the most colossal engineering achievements of history.

Read "Panama, Past and Present," by Farnham[Pg 171] Bishop (The Century Company), "Panama and the Canal To-day," by Forbes Lindsay (The Page Company), and "Old Panama," by C. L. G. Anderson (The Page Company). Clubs should study also the history of the canal in past years and especially the story of De Lesseps.[Pg 172]


The Literature of the Bible

The study of the Bible, not from a theological or critical point of view but from that which is solely literary, makes a fascinating subject for clubs. Many distinguished writers have treated it in this way, and by using their books in connection with the suggested Bible readings clubs will find a year all too short to do justice to the subject.


The first meeting will be on the Creation, with three main topics for papers,—the Creation narrative, the idyl of the Garden of Eden and the entrance of sin,—with readings from Genesis to illustrate each point. The emphasis should be laid on the simplicity, dignity, and naïveté of these early chapters, and their high literary value as a poetic attempt to describe the origin of the world. Compare with this Hebrew account that found in the Babylonian myths on[Pg 173] the clay tablets discovered in the ruins of Nineveh, and also the Chaldean account of the victory of their chief god Marduk over chaos. These will be found in "The Religion of the Babylonians and Assyrians," by Morris Jastrow, Jr. (Ginn & Co.). Read these, and also Milton's account in "Paradise Lost."

The next meeting should take up the leading men of early times, beginning with Noah.

Notice the recurrence of the story of the Flood in the primitive legends of many lands. Look up the Deucalion story in Greek mythology, and see the Hindu, Australian, and American Indian myths on this point, and read the translation of the Chaldean account of the Deluge. The period closes with the story of the Tower of Babel, which is to be read from the Bible.

A study of the Patriarchs follows next. Abraham's life should be read, wholly or in part, and a picture should be drawn of him as a wealthy Oriental, pastoral chief, and the immense importance of his character in the thought of Jews, Moslems, and Christians. Select and read some of the traditions embedded in the Koran.

To introduce the topic of Isaac read first the[Pg 174] charming love story of the wooing of Rebekah. Then read the story of the selling of Esau's birthright, and Jacob's dream. Compare the characters of the brothers.

The most complete story in the Bible from a literary standpoint is that of Joseph. After the description of his childhood give the outline of his earlier dreams and their result, his life in Egypt and his prison dreams, his release, the visit of his family, and his later life. This will all lead up to the topic of the next meeting.


The civilization of early Egypt is of great interest, and material for a study will be found in Breasted's "History of the Ancient Egyptians" (Scribner), and the "Short History of Ancient Egypt," by Newberry and Garstang (Dana Estes). To illustrate, read quotations from "The Book of the Dead," in "Literature of All Nations" (Hawthorne's Library).

Show pictures of the Pyramids, the Sphinx, the Nile, and any others which may be obtained, and have a talk on the relations between masters and slaves at this time.[Pg 175]

The story of Moses the Deliverer may be introduced by reading from the Bible the account of the finding of the baby by the princess, and his adoption. Tell of his later history and his resolution to be the leader of his people, and read of the passage of the Red Sea, and Miriam's Song of Triumph. Follow by descriptions of episodes of special interest in the wanderings in the desert, the golden calf, the story of Korah and that of Balaam.

One paper should take Moses as a Lawgiver for its subject, with a brief outline of the remarkable Hebrew legislation; notice that this was what kept the Jews as a separate race. Have an estimate of Moses, comparing him with other great national leaders. Show a picture of Michael Angelo's statue; have recited the farewell of Moses to his people, given in Monitors "Modern Reader's Bible," in poetical form. The old poem "The Burial of Moses," by Cecil F. Alexander, in Warner's "Library of the World's Best Literature," may also be given.

Next will come the study of Joshua the Conqueror. At this meeting have a map of Palestine and use it to show the settling of the Hebrews[Pg 176] in the land. Read the story of the expedition of the spies and its result, the siege of Jericho and, last, Joshua's farewell. Compare Moses and Joshua, and show the differences in their character and work.


The hero stories of the nation come in at this point. Deborah and Sisera is a subject often used in poetry and painting, and the song of Deborah, one of the earliest pieces of verse in history, should be given. The story of Gideon, full of picturesque detail, and the pathetic story of Jephthah's daughter may be read, as well as the many references to the latter in literature. The curious story of Samson will follow this, and Milton's Samson Agonistes may be read in part. Close the study of the period with a reading of the entire book of Ruth, one of the most charming of Oriental idyls.

At the meeting following this last one, compare the Bible heroes with those of other nations of the same time, particularly those described by Homer. Bulfinch's "Age of Fable" may be used as a basis for the study.[Pg 177]


This is one of the historical sections of the Bible, and is mostly in prose. In studying it a good plan is to have some one write a paper briefly outlining the period and giving the main events clearly. Then the different men of importance should have separate studies. One of the first is that of Saul, and at its beginning comes in the lovely little story of Samuel, which may be read, together with the short Song of Hannah.

The account of the anointing of Saul may be given, and in this connection note that the old custom is still in use to-day in the coronation of kings. Have a reading from Browning's "Saul" and discuss the two points of view.

Next will come the story of David and Goliath, the anointing of David, the feud between Saul and David and the idyllic story of the affection of David and Jonathan. Brief readings from all of these should illustrate the papers or talks upon them. Notice the other famous friendships in history, and compare them with that of the two Hebrews.

The subject of witchcraft may be briefly[Pg 178] touched upon in connection with the old story of the Witch of Endor, and its singular persistence through the history of all nations down to the present time.

David's lament over Saul and Jonathan should be read and compared with other elegies, and also that over the death of Absalom; notice the difference in spirit between them.

The life of Solomon is full of unusual touches. Read his dream, the story of the judgment about the infant, and then the majestic dedication of the Temple, the last, one of the stately pieces of literature of the Bible. The visit of the Queen of Sheba may be read after this, and the allusions to it in literature noted.


The divided kingdoms furnish many episodes of literary value. The stories of Elijah and Elisha have a marked dramatic quality; the incident of Naaman and Gehazi is a bit of romance; the fall of Samaria is a tragedy, as is the fall of Jerusalem, about one hundred and fifty years later. There is a bit of interesting work which some clubs might like to undertake, the comparison of the literary style of Kings and Chronicles,[Pg 179] one colored by the prophetic and the other by priestly ideas.

The subject of the Exile may be used in one meeting, as it relates itself to a considerable part of Hebrew literature, especially in poetry. One prose passage may be read, the brief book of Esther, which has always been of great importance to the Jews, and full of interest.


This has no regular rhyme, nor is it divided into feet like the classical poems of Greece and Rome. Instead it has a certain stately sweep, a rhythm, which is the very essence of poetry. In structure it may be compared to Walt Whitman's rhythmical prose.

As the stage was unknown to the Hebrews, the drama was strange to them also. The book of Job is the principal poetic exception to this, although some authorities place the Song of Solomon as a versified drama also. Observe here the difference between the Hebrews and Greeks, and give reasons for it.

Occasional bits of ancient folk song may be found in the historical parts of the Bible: read the "Song of the Well" (Numbers xxi, 18), the[Pg 180] "Song of Lamech" (Genesis IV, 23) and the "Song of the Bow" (II Samuel, I, 18-27). The riddles of Samson also come under the head of folk song.

The poetry of the Bible divides into two classes: lyrical poetry, such as the Song of Solomon, Lamentations, the Psalms, and certain passages in the prophets; and the so-called wisdom poetry—Proverbs, Job, and Ecclesiastes. The latter, however, come more properly under the head of philosophy. Notice one of the peculiarities of Hebrew verse, especially in this last division, the curious parallelism which is constantly found.

The extent of the book of Psalms is so great that selections are difficult to make. But by taking Moulton's "Modern Reader's Bible" (Macmillan & Co.), and Courtney's "The Literary Man's Bible" (Crowell), and Henry Van Dyke's "Story of the Psalms" (Scribner), the best will be found, and these should be read. Notice especially the wonderful imagery, so characteristic of the Oriental mind.

Many great poets have worked on the book of Psalms, trying to make transcriptions and[Pg 181] translations, and it will be most interesting to look up some of them. Clement Marot, Martin Luther, Milton, Addison, Sir Philip Sidney, and many others have used them, and any hymn book will show how many familiar hymns are based on them. Programs might be illuminated by choir music, such as "Had I the Wings of a Dove," "How Lovely are Thy Dwellings Fair," "The King of Love My Shepherd Is," and a hundred other lovely songs, the themes all taken from Psalms.


Prophecy has been called the most typical part of Hebrew literature, and as such it should receive especial study. But prophecy does not mean prediction, but teaching, especially the teaching of morals.

A good way of handling this subject is to divide it into three parts, one on Isaiah, one on Jeremiah, and a third on Ezekiel, briefly describing the historical conditions under which they were written, with readings from each. The minor prophets might also have three papers, with readings showing the quality of each.

The conscientious severity of the prophets as[Pg 182] the great moral teachers of their times should be emphasized, and their relation to our modern ethical ideas may be touched upon. Matthew Arnold's "Isaiah of Jerusalem" may be read in this connection. Carlyle is often spoken of as embodying the spirit of the Hebrew prophets. One paper might speak of the connection between the prophets and Puritanism. A meeting might be given to the great oratorios which have been written upon themes drawn from the writings of the prophets, with selections.


The philosophy of the Bible is embodied in the books of Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Job. These are what are called "late" books, and lack the fiery quality of the more original period of the prophets. The prudential, cautious spirit of Proverbs should be illustrated with quotations.

Ecclesiastes represents the hesitating, somewhat skeptical aspect of human thought, and is in some respects the book of the Bible which comes nearest to the modern temper. Plumtre's handbook on Ecclesiastes (Cambridge University Press) has in its appendix comparisons[Pg 183] between this book, Shakespeare, Tennyson, and Omar Khayyám which are interesting to refer to.

Carlyle called the book of Job the greatest literary creation of history, for it first deals with the problem of human suffering. Professor Genung has arranged this book in dramatic form, and clubs should read this aloud, in part at least.


Coming to the New Testament, it may be divided into three parts: History, correspondence, and allegory. The history comprises the four Gospels and Acts. A preliminary paper might show the varying points of view of the authors and compare their literary styles. Read from Matthew part of the Sermon on the Mount, noting his Jewish outlook always; from Mark, part of chapter III, showing him as the historian of action; from Luke (the writer was a physician), the story of the Good Samaritan; from John the philosophical prologue and the parable of the vine, displaying his mystical mind. Make a special study of the literary quality of the parables.[Pg 184]

From Acts may be read passages showing the historian's vivid descriptions; see the riot at Philippi, Paul's address at Athens, and the shipwreck.

Letters form the greater part of the New Testament. Those of Paul should be arranged chronologically, and a brief account given of the circumstances under which each was written.

Some of the striking passages in the Epistles should be read, such as chapter XIII in I Corinthians which has been called a Hymn in Praise of Love. The whole of the little Epistle to Philemon may be read, to show the position of the early church on slavery. Reference should be made to the fact that Matthew Arnold said that Paul stood among the seven greatest literary men of history.

The book of Revelation is of immense interest. Have a preliminary paper on the position of Jews and Christians at this time in relation to the Romans, and show the necessity of concealing the meaning of the book. Follow this with another on the allegory in literature: Spenser's "Faërie Queene" and Bunyan's "Pilgrim's Progress" are two famous examples of its use. After this read some of the famous[Pg 185] passages from the Revelation; notice the extraordinary wealth of imagery and the stately beauty of its style.


To these meetings on the direct study of the Bible may be added almost as many more on subjects nearly related to it.

One of these is the Bible in art. From the early days of the catacombs to the present time, themes have been drawn from it for paintings and sculpture, mosaics and glass. The old masters' work was almost wholly based on Bible stories or sacred subjects. The study of Italian art shows this in its most marked form, and many pictures should be shown. Notice also such books as "The Bible in Art" by Estelle M. Hurll, and "The Bible Beautiful," by the same author (The Page Company), and "The Gospel Story in Art," by John La Farge (Macmillan), as well as reproductions of the Tissot pictures.

The Bible in music is a theme already suggested, but meetings may be arranged on this by themselves, or each program may have selections appropriate to the day.[Pg 186]

As a source of literary inspiration the use of the Bible is world-wide. From Milton and his successors to Browning and Tennyson, all have drawn largely from its wealth. The titles of novels, as well as their plots, have largely been taken from the same source. Roll calls might take up this topic.

What great men have said about the Bible is an interesting subject. "The Women of the Bible" is the title of a book. Shakespeare's use of the Bible has also been noticed, and could be used extensively.[Pg 187]


The Age of Queen Anne


The reign of Queen Anne, the last sovereign of the House of Stuart, is one of the important epochs in English history. McCarthy says it ranks with that of Pericles in Greece, of Augustus in Rome, and of Elizabeth in England. In war, in politics, in the spread of social democracy, and above all in literature, this was truly a remarkable period.

In order to understand the times several meetings should be given to a comprehensive view of Europe. The reign of Louis XIV and a sketch of his court will fill one meeting. One on Spain should follow; a third may take up Germany, Poland, Austria, and the Holy Roman Empire, and what it stood for. After these have a fourth presenting the question of the balance of power in Europe. Discuss the English Pretender in France. Follow with brief papers on Peter the Great and Charles XII of Sweden.[Pg 188]


Turning now to England, Queen Anne and her court may be taken up in detail. Anne lacked the force of the Tudors and the attractive temperament of the Stuarts. She had neither the brains of her predecessor, William, nor the Teutonic dullness of the Georges who followed her; but she was, above all things, distinctly English. She loved her people; she believed in Protestantism; she was kind, affectionate and good; she possessed all the domestic virtues. Yet she was by no means a strong character. Her reign owes nothing of its brilliance to its queen. In everything she had to be guided, and the power of the individuals who governed her is one of the curious facts of the time. One paper may present her home life, with its simplicity. Contrast the court life of this period with that which had preceded it. Read selections from "Henry Esmond."


The Duke and Duchess of Marlborough should be the theme of two papers. The latter had an extraordinary influence upon Anne and dictated[Pg 189] her court policy. Read of the letters they exchanged, signed "Mrs. Morley" and "Mrs. Freeman." The Duke was a man in whom weakness and strength united. Have the paper on his character show his self-interest, his treachery even, and his notorious parsimony; contrast these qualities with those which redeemed the man. Note his wonderful military genius.


After this will come the subject of the Grand Alliance, which will serve as an introduction to the great topic of the European wars which occupied the Continent for years. In studying this use a map at each meeting, and have papers on Marlborough in Flanders; the campaigns of the armies in Germany, Bavaria, and the West Indies; the war in Spain; the persecution of the Huguenots and Camisards and, finally, a summing-up of the struggle.

The next stages of the war may be divided into the Year of Victory and the Year of Defeat. If time allows, follow the war to its close.

The next great subject under Queen Anne's[Pg 190] reign is that of the extension of power in England of the two great parties, the Whigs and Tories. Notice how the ministry changed from time to time, and who its leaders were. See how Anne, under the influence of a favorite, Mrs. Masham, gave her support to the Tories, and how this finally led to the Peace of Utrecht, which concluded the war.

Observe here the alienation which rose between the Duchess of Marlborough and the Queen, also the disgrace of Marlborough; read his letter of defense, and have a sketch of his later life. Show pictures of Blenheim Palace.

Following these events comes the Union of Scotland, Ireland and Wales with England, a topic full of interest. Discuss the bargain each country made; what did she lose and what did she gain? What results were brought about later?

The unpopularity of the Union in Scotland had one direct result, that of the rising in favor of the Young Pretender. Have a paper on this romantic episode. Observe how it led to the establishment of the Protestant Succession.

In closing this period study as many of the[Pg 191] great leaders of English political life as possible, notably Walpole, Bolingbroke and the Earls of Oxford and Shrewsbury.


Turning now from war and politics, there may be a delightful study of the literature of the time, for the period was one of great intellectual originality.

Dean Swift, the greatest English satirist, may be taken up first, his life, his work and his influence. Read from "The Tale of a Tub."

Addison may be studied as a man, a poet, an essayist and a dramatist. It was, however, as one of the two authors of The Spectator that he was most remarkable. Writing in collaboration with his friend Steele he gave his paper a world-wide popularity. Read from "Sir Roger de Coverley" and from comments upon it from some writers. Note also the founding of The Tatler, and point out the differences between that and The Spectator.

Alexander Pope was one of the geniuses of the time. Give a sketch of the man and his eccentricities. Read from the "Rape of the Lock," the "Dunciad," and the "Essay on[Pg 192] Man"; also from his other poems, and his translations from Homer.

The life of Lady Mary Wortley Montagu should be discussed, with readings from her still celebrated "Letters." The work of Daniel Defoe must also be noticed.

Addison was famous as a dramatist, and his "Cato" was believed at that time to be the forerunner of a new and brilliant era in the drama; it was received in London with enthusiasm.


But it was perhaps the rise of the English novel which made the time most notable. Samuel Richardson wrote "Pamela," the first novel in which the interest centered exclusively upon the heroine, and followed it with "Clarissa Harlowe," which was immediately popular all over the English-speaking world. Both books were intended as moral tales by their author, whose sympathy with women was genuine and intelligent. The work done in science by Bishop Berkeley, and that of Sir Isaac Newton, with an account of the great controversy, should be studied. Take up also the music of Handel,[Pg 193] then living in London, and the art of Wren, who was completing St. Paul's.

A study of the many famous clubs and coffee houses frequented by the writers of the day should be made here. There is much of interest in the life of the times, the duels, the gambling, the coaches and quaint inns and hostelries.

London itself is a most interesting subject; it was just being rebuilt after the great fire, and its churches should be especially noted as they almost wholly conform to the ideas of Wren. Describe the prisons, especially Newgate and the debtors' prisons.

There is an abundance of material on all these subjects, and many pictures. The book on coaching suggested below will give many ideas on vehicles and inns. Chapters in McCarthy's history will be found readable also. Among other reference books are these:

"Social life in the Reign of Queen Anne." J. Ashton. (Scribner.)

"Queen Anne and Her Court." P. F. Ryan. (Dutton.)

"The Reign of Queen Anne." Justin McCarthy. (Harper.)[Pg 194]

"John and Sarah, Duke and Duchess of Marlborough." Stuart J. Reid. (Scribner.)

"Coaching Days and Coaching Ways." W. Outram Tristram. (Macmillan.)

"Among English Inns." Josephine Tozier. (The Page Company.)[Pg 195]


Our Educational System

In order to understand the state of education in our land to-day it is necessary to know something about the beginnings in our early history. So the first meeting should be on the founding of schools in Colonial and Revolutionary days.

One paper should tell of the earliest grant of money made by Parliament in 1619 for a university in Virginia. The Indian wars prevented the carrying out of the plan for a time, and meantime the first schoolmaster came over to the Dutch of New Amsterdam and opened a school in Brooklyn. The Boston Latin School was begun in 1635, two years later, and schools were opened also in Dorchester and New Haven. Notice that in many of these early schools provision was made to educate Indian children free of charge. Rhode Island had the first public school, founded at Newport in 1640. Throughout the colonies the schools were endowed with[Pg 196] lands and money and later taxes were given for their support, but tuition was always paid.


The Colonial colleges rose from the spirit of forty men, all educated at Cambridge, England, who lived in the New England colonies. John Harvard, a young minister, gave his library of two hundred and sixty volumes and half his estate of seventeen hundred pounds to found Harvard College.

The University of William and Mary rose in Virginia at this time, richly endowed at once with money, a tobacco revenue, and lands; this was the direct outcome of the school originally planned sixty years earlier.

Yale was founded in 1700, each trustee giving a few books as a guarantee; but it had been originally planned as early as 1647, when John Davenport had a lot set apart for a college in New Haven. Its early years were full of hardship; it existed at New Milford for fifteen years, and was not settled at New Haven until 1718, when it received a bequest of five hundred pounds from Elihu Yale.

All the colonies had grammar schools and a[Pg 197] few had dame schools. The Massachusetts law of 1647 provided that when a town had one hundred families or householders they must set up a school under penalty of a fine. One paper should deal with the interesting topic of these early schools, their discipline, their curricula, their teachers. Notice especially the famous teacher Ezra Cheever, who compiled a Latin book and taught in many places for seventy years. His salary, a large one, was sixty pounds a year.

Another paper may be on the lack of school advantages for girls in early times. A few went to the dame schools, but many to none at all. It was not until Revolutionary times that the Moravians established a girls' school at Bethlehem and girls were admitted to the Penn School in Philadelphia and the Female Academy there; and in 1785 a girls' school was opened at Greenfield, Connecticut, and the Medford School near Boston in 1789.

Read from the opening chapter of "Education in the United States," by B. G. Boone (Appleton) and from "Old Town Folks," by Harriet Beecher Stowe.

Close this meeting with a talk on early education[Pg 198] in general; show how poor the school system was in the early days of the nineteenth century; speak of private schools for boys and girls, of schoolhouses and playgrounds and their gradual improvement. Mention the founding of each great college and where possible show pictures of them from old books and catalogues. Speak of famous educators and college presidents, and also of such women as Mary Lyon; read from her life recently published. Discuss the former attitude of men toward women's education with that of to-day.


Education to-day usually begins in the kindergarten, so the second meeting may begin with this topic by presenting a paper on Froebel, his ideas and methods, the adoption of his system of early education all over the world. Have a brief discussion follow it, showing some of the possible disadvantages of the work. Are children paid too much attention? Are they over-amused? Is it a benefit to children in their later education to have it begun in the kindergarten?

The second paper should turn at once to the[Pg 199] Montessori method of teaching. It should explain exactly what it is and show how it differs from the kindergarten. There is abundance of material in present day magazines to make it perfectly plain. Speak of the rapid advance children make in development under this new system. Then have again a brief discussion: Is the Montessori system adapted to American children? Is it a benefit to them? Is it wise to develop the mind of a young child rapidly? What is the effect in its later education? Compare the system with that of the kindergarten. See: "Dr. Montessori's Own Method," by herself (Stokes), and "A Guide to the Montessori Method," Ellen Yale Stevens. (Stokes.)

Close this meeting with a talk by a trained kindergarten teacher, if possible, who can set before the club members the advantages of her work. If there is time, have some short stories read: "The Madness of Philip," by Josephine Baskam Bacon, and one from "Little Citizens," by Myra Kelly (both by Doubleday Page). Some songs of childhood will also be delightful between the papers or talks, and perhaps some little kindergarten children may come and sing also.[Pg 200]


The next subject, that of the public school, is so large that a number of meetings should be devoted to it. Although only four papers are outlined here, there is sufficient material given for a dozen and more.

The first paper may speak of the early days of public schools and their inadequacy in the light of to-day, of their lack of sunshine and air, the poor buildings, the insufficient exits and arrangements for safety from fire. Then follow with a description of our great schools of to-day, showing pictures of them and noticing their beautiful architecture, their perfect equipment. The whole system of discipline and oversight should be spoken of.

The cost to the State of the public school is an interesting theme. Notice in this connection that the United States has the shortest school day, week, and year of any civilized country. Discuss the fact.

The second paper should speak of the curriculum of the public school, and give a clear idea of what is covered by the child. Discuss: Is it too comprehensive? Is it sufficiently practical?[Pg 201] Does it fit the child for business and home life?

The third paper should be on the health of the school child as the club members know of it. Is the building in which he studies clean, well-ventilated, and sanitary? Does he have too much home work? Is there a doctor to supervise the children's eyes, ears, throats, and general condition? Is there an oversight against contagion? Is the common drinking cup used? Is there a fund for cheap food for the very poor children?

The playgrounds and plays should be the next topic. These should be large, fitted to the needs of boys and girls, and there should be a teacher of athletics. Basket ball, foot and base ball, and games of all sorts should be encouraged, and a spirit of rivalry between schools fostered. Discuss: Are athletics neglected or overdone? Do our growing girls receive the care they need in this regard? If the playgrounds of the school are inadequate, can they be supplemented? Are the playgrounds used in summer time?

A brief paper following this may speak of the morals of the public school, the dangers and safeguards, and discuss the relation between[Pg 202] teachers and parents in this regard. Is hygiene taught? Is a high standard of purity held up always?

Follow this by a presentation of the value to a school of a club for parents and teachers; one may be established if there is none, perhaps. Beautifying the schoolhouse and schoolroom, having a library and a few pictures and casts, and making school life attractive are suggestions to be worked out, and the value of teaching sewing, cooking, the care of babies to girls, and manual training to boys.


The subject of the high schools will naturally succeed this and the first paper may take up the question, Why do so few boys and girls go to high school? Is it only because so many go into business life? Is the preparation for college adequate? Is the general course too cultural and not sufficiently practical for a boy who is going into business? Are sufficient numbers of courses offered?

The next paper may speak of vocational training, or fitting boys and girls for their work in life, teaching girls to sew, cook, and care for[Pg 203] children, and boys to farm, to learn the principles of business, and manual training. What has been done along these lines, and what is still to be done?

The third paper may speak of vocational guidance or the aid given in finding work for graduates suitable for them, and following them up in it. Material for this may be had from the Vocational Guidance Association of New York, part of the Public Education Association, 38 W. Thirty-second Street.

Many other topics will grow out of the discussion of school problems. Some to be discussed are these: Equal pay for men and women teachers; the married teacher in the school; the personal influence of the teacher; the efficiency of the school; the training in citizenship. It is urged that club women have members of their Board of Education and school teachers speak to them on as many subjects pertaining to school as possible, and become better fitted to coöperate in the work of the schools.


The next meeting of the club may have a varied program: one paper will be on schools[Pg 204] for the defectives, the blind, deaf and dumb and feeble-minded. A second will take up the use of the school buildings for evening classes and lectures, for parents of school children, for men and women who need a broader education, and for foreigners. Some idea may be given of the great work done in this way in our large cities in the way of instruction and recreation. A third paper may speak of the numberless aids to schools in the way of libraries, museums, nature classes, and special instruction. A final paper may be on Schools for Teachers, and the work done there. Some teacher should describe this. Have some readings from "The Wider Use of the School Plant," by Clarence A. Perry (Sage Foundation).


A very interesting meeting may be arranged on private schools. This will have a paper or talk on college preparatory schools for boys, showing how thorough the training is. It will raise such questions as these: Are standards of character higher than in the public schools? Is the training in athletics valuable? Do boys go from them to college better prepared to meet[Pg 205] the life there than from the high school? Is there a lack of democracy about them? Do they send a yearly clique to college?

The paper next to this would be on the finishing school for girls, and will raise the questions: Are the standards of education sufficiently high? Is a mere smattering given? Is too much attention paid to social preparation? What advantages has the finishing school?

The following paper would take up military schools, first the small private ones, then West Point, giving the life at each, the training, the advantages and disadvantages. Show pictures of West Point.

A paper on naval schools would come last, especially on Annapolis, and would follow the same lines as the paper on West Point.

The final paper should be on technical schools, those where mining, electricity, engineering, architecture, and other subjects are taught. There are great institutes in Pittsburgh, Boston, and elsewhere, from which catalogues may be obtained to show exactly what work is done there.

Modern schools of domestic science and business colleges should be considered.[Pg 206]


Colleges and universities is the next subject for the club. The best known of the colleges may be described and pictures shown, and the difference between a college and a university made plain. Denominational colleges should especially be spoken of, and the little colleges of the West and South. The value of the small college in bringing students near their teachers may be pointed out. Some of our great men have come from these little colleges, and they may be mentioned.

The next paper should be on the university. The leading endowed universities are to be named, their history studied, and their peculiarities noted. The famous presidents, professors, and graduates of each should be spoken of also. The curriculum, the athletics, the ideals of each university may also be taken up. Notice that those universities which have private endowments often stand for culture rather than practical work.

The third paper should take the State Universities, and show the difference between them and the endowed universities. They stand distinctly[Pg 207] for what is practical, and it is here that most technical work is done and specialties, such as agriculture, forestry, domestic science, and others, are taught. Discuss the relative values of the two; is there a tendency more and more toward having the State give the whole education? How do our great endowed universities compare with those of England and Germany?


One meeting should be on women's colleges, taking them in the order of their establishment, and showing how they have developed. Have descriptions of each and tell of its special aims. Discuss the value of a college training for women, and its faults. Speak of coeducational colleges and State Universities; have they advantages over the rest? Does a college woman lose interest in her home? Does she marry early, or does she drift into a career?

Have some college woman address the club on work done in the line of higher education of women, and its results. See "The College Girl of America," by Mary C. Crawford (The Page Company).[Pg 208]


Postgraduate work, the topic for the next meeting, includes that done in medical, law, and theological schools, and the work for degrees. Representative schools may be selected as the subject for papers, and speakers from these should be had to tell of them to the club, if possible.

The final meeting on education may take up some of the new ideas of work, such as the opening of the school of journalism at Columbia University, and other attractive fields of study. Summer assemblies may be spoken of, and their value, especially to those who have had few opportunities for study early in life. Correspondence schools may also be mentioned and their work discussed. Are they really as useful as they seem at first sight? Notice that many of them are able to give important help on special lines. Musical festivals, lecture courses, illustrated talks on travel, and other of the many opportunities offered to the public may also be spoken of.

There is an abundance of material to be found on all educational subjects in a good encyclopedia.[Pg 209] On special topics there are the educational journals, the educational department of the Survey, and magazine articles constantly. The Educational Bureau at Washington will give information and material on request. The excellent book "Citizenship and the Schools," by J. W. Jenks (Holt), should be read, and "Education for Efficiency," by E. Davenport (Heath), and the life and work of Horace Mann.[Pg 210]


Special Programs on Great Men and Women

Often a club finds it best to break into its ordinary routine of work by having a special program. The birthday of a great writer, artist or musician offers a good subject for such a meeting, and the following programs are arranged to suggest such names with a brief outline of work on each.

Some clubs may like to select from the names given two or more for each month and so arrange a program for an entire year. In this case it is a good plan to take alternate writers, musicians and artists, giving a day to each one.


History, music and literature may be represented by the life and work of Queen Elizabeth, General Lafayette, Dvorak, and our own Eugene Field, who were all born in September.[Pg 211]

Divide the age of Elizabeth into several topics: the Court and the Queen's favorites; discoverers; wars; Mary, Queen of Scots; and the great literary men of the time, Shakespeare, Ben Jonson, Spenser, and others. Have readings on all these.

The story of Lafayette begins with the American Revolution; then the Revolution in France and the part he played in it. Follow his career and friendships, and the relations between France and America. Close with a sketch of Lafayette's visit here after the war, and read a description of it. (See the Diary and Letters of Gouverneur Morris.)

A good musical program can be arranged by having first a paper on the composer, Dvorak, with comparisons of his work and that of his contemporaries, and then several selections played from his compositions.

Last, the life and work of Eugene Field will be found delightful. Have a paper on his home life, his whimsical personality, his friends; read from his prose, and have some of his verses sung. Compare his poems with Stevenson's "Child's Garden of Verse."[Pg 212]


In this month art, drama and music are offered, in the works of Sir Christopher Wren, Sheridan and Verdi.

In art Wren was a prominent figure in his century. Living when London was being rebuilt after the great fire, he stamped his genius on no less than fifty churches, and built St. Paul's, his own great monument. He was called a "rare and early prodigy of universal science." His friendships are among the most interesting points to be studied.

Richard Brinsley Sheridan wrote the "Rivals" and "The School for Scandal," two plays which stand unequaled for humor and clever satire. Read of their presentation, and of Sheridan as manager and theater owner. Turn from this to his career as a parliamentarian and read his speech at the trial of Warren Hastings, which marked him as one of our most brilliant orators. Notice his death in poverty and his burial in Westminster Abbey. Read from his plays.

Verdi wrote "Ernani," "La Traviata," "Riggoletto" and "Aïda." Speak of his long and[Pg 213] interesting life, and his remarkable work. Note that his influence over others was of unusual force. Have a musical program from his operas.


Martin Luther, Schiller, Oliver Goldsmith and George Eliot all have birthdays to remember at this time.

Luther was the greatest of the Protestant Reformers, and has left his mark not only on Germany but on the whole world. Read of his early peasant life, his education, his career as priest and teacher. Then notice his trip to Rome and its results, and follow him through his struggles with Emperor and Pope. Discuss his work as a whole. Read from his Letters.

Schiller, the great German dramatist and poet, is honored and beloved both in his native land and elsewhere. Give the story of his struggles with poverty in exile, his love affairs, his professorship, his marriage and invalidism. Notice especially his friendship with Goethe. Read from his ballads, but especially from his dramas, "Die Jungfrau" and "Wilhelm Tell."

Oliver Goldsmith, the eccentric genius, poet,[Pg 214] essayist, dramatist and novelist, should have special study, for he is a unique figure. Mention his school days, his vagabond pilgrimage through Europe, his work as a struggling hack writer; his remarkable friendships; read from "The Deserted Village," "The Vicar of Wakefield," and "She Stoops to Conquer."

The life and work of George Eliot are familiar to most club women, yet they are always a delightful study. Papers may tell of her home life and training as a free-thinker; of her translations, her marriage and its social consequences, and her work as writer. Read from "Scenes from Clerical Life," and from "Adam Bede." Discuss her philosophy, her moral purposes, her humor, her realism; have several readings from both prose and poetry.


The special meeting should be on the subject of the Christmas Birthday. Describe the Christmas customs in mediæval times, and read of the Yule log, the waits, the boar's head, and other customs, and show pictures of baronial halls. Have following papers on Christmas in various lands; one paper may be on the Christmas[Pg 215] Spirit. Read from Christmas stories, and have carols sung.


There are four famous birthdays in January, those of Joan of Arc, Mozart, Molière, and Tennyson, illustrating history, music, drama and poetry.

Of late so much has been written of Joan of Arc that there is an abundance of material on her. Give a sketch of her personality, and show what she did. Read also appreciations from different writers. Show pictures of some of the statues of her, and, if possible, one of the picture by Bastien Lepage, called "Joan of Arc Listening to the Voices," in the Metropolitan Museum in New York.

Mozart was a child prodigy at six years and maintained his ability through a long life. Hampered, like most musicians, with poverty, he still had many friends, wrote excellent music, played at various courts and enjoyed a career full of interest, if not always of success. He died in poverty, and no one knows where he is buried. Show a copy of the well-known picture of him playing at court.[Pg 216]

Molière, the great French dramatist, presents a study which should fill more than one meeting. Speak of his early life as a strolling player, his failure as a tragedian and his success in comedy. Sketch the stage of the period. Have scenes read from (translations of) "Tartuffe," "Le Misanthrope," and other plays. Compare him with other dramatists. (See his life by Chatfield-Taylor.)

Tennyson, the representative poet of the Victorian age, gives opportunity for a charming meeting. Sketch his calm, delightful life; show his interest in science and all modern ideas. Read from his ballads; his other short poems; his longer poems, especially "In Memoriam," the "Idylls of the King" and the "Dream of Fair Women," and compare them. If possible, sing some of his verses, many of which are set to music.


Among many birthdays of famous men and women four may be chosen: those of Madame de Sévigné, Charles Lamb, Dickens and Mendelssohn.

Madame de Sévigné lived at a time when there[Pg 217] were many conspicuous people at the court of Louis XIV, and she was the friend of them all; Turenne and Condé, however, may be especially noticed. Her fame rests on her Letters, which she wrote to her daughter with no idea any one else would ever see them. They have slight pretension to literary quality, yet they are among the classics of French literature. Have several selections from them read, illustrating the times and the court life.

Charles Lamb and his friends will make the subject of more than a single meeting. Give his life as a Blue Coat Boy and his early friendship with Coleridge at school. Speak of him as a clerk in the East India House, with his evenings at the Cat and Salutation. Tell of his family troubles and of his sister Mary; then of his literary career, his life in the Temple, his friendships with the Lake Poets and others. Notice the peculiar gentle charm which is associated with him. Read from his essays; give "Dream Children" as a whole.

Charles Dickens is a name to conjure with. Sketch his early life; read from many of his books, and point out his humor, pathos, tragedy, comedy, and realism; show his love of caricature[Pg 218] and its place in his methods. He is called to-day The Prince of Story Tellers by well-known critics. Have each club member bring in and read her favorite passage from his books.

Mendelssohn stands alone among musicians, for he was born to a comfortable lot in life, was successful in whatever he undertook, happy in his home and renowned abroad. His relations with his sister, his position at the German courts, his various trips to England and what he accomplished there will furnish topics for papers. If he seldom touched the deeper side of life, yet what he gave was always good of its kind. Illustrate this program with many selections from both his instrumental and vocal music.


Michelangelo, and in later times Mrs. Browning, and our own William Dean Howells, were born in March.

Michelangelo was the most distinguished sculptor of the modern world, the most brilliant representative of the Italian Renaissance. Show the assistance Lorenzo the Magnificent gave art at this time. Notice Michelangelo's[Pg 219] earlier work; speak of the curious way in which he, a sculptor, was compelled to paint the frescoes in the Sistine chapel; then how he became an architect, a builder of fortifications, a sculptor again, and finally the architect of St. Peter's. Show pictures of his best-known statues, and also of the frescoes.

Mrs. Browning is our best known and loved English woman poet. Her life is inseparable from that of her poet-husband, yet it has great individuality. Have papers on her early life, her marriage, her life in Florence and her work. Read from the "Sonnets from the Portuguese," addressed to her husband, from "Aurora Leigh" and from her shorter poems.

Howells is considered the most distinguished of our modern American prose writers, the leader of the realistic school which has so largely influenced recent work. He has written much besides his novels, but they are perhaps best known. Notice his ability to portray character; the delightful ease and naturalness of his style and his humor and truth in character drawing. Read from "The Rise of Silas Lapham," and "A Modern Instance." Read also from his sketches of travel.[Pg 220]


Study Hans Christian Andersen, Murillo, Wordsworth and Charlotte Brontë, whose birthdays come in this month.

Andersen's life is full of a simple interest, and a sketch of it may be followed by many readings from his books, especially from "A Picture-Book Without Pictures," "Tales for Children," and "The Ice Maiden." Notice that most of his work was illustrated from incidents from his own experience, which makes it natural.

Murillo, the Spanish painter, the friend of Velasquez, painted in three different styles, but he used only two classes of subjects; papers may work out this suggestion and illustrate it from his well-known pictures. Show copies of the "Assumption of the Virgin," his best-known religious work, and of others of the same style. Notice the beauty and charm of his children.

Wordsworth should certainly have more than one meeting given to him. Write of his quiet country life, of his wife and sister Dorothy; of his many friends; show his different styles of[Pg 221] verse and read poems from each; read also his best-known sonnets.

Charlotte Brontë is one of the unusual English women writers. Write of her home life on the moors with her talented family, her work, especially "Jane Eyre," so full of striking romance, and her early death. Read several scenes from "Jane Eyre."


Dante, Andubon, Browning and Brahms belong to May.

Dante's story, his life in Florence, his love for Beatrice, his military service, his exile and death all need plenty of time to study. His fame as a poet is unrivaled in its power and beauty of language. Have sketches of his life, his times and his work, and read what critics have said of it. Read also from translations of the "Vita Nuova" and the "Divina Commedia," in their translations. (See Longfellow's.)

The work of our own Audubon is better known to-day than when he was living. His life story is most romantic; read this, and show what he accomplished. Have shown some[Pg 222] copies of his famous pictures of birds. Compare him with other naturalists.

Robert Browning did what no other poet has done; when he was twenty years old he found the theme for his life work, the development of the human soul; this is the key to his verse.

Read of his life in England and in Italy; speak of his friendships; study his philosophy; discuss his versification; show his different styles of work; have many illustrative readings. Compare him with other poets. Have some of his songs sung which are set to music; read also "Pippa Passes."


Now come the birthdays of the musicians, Gounod and Schumann, and also of the patriot Nathan Hale, the teacher Thomas Arnold, and the novelist Thomas Hardy.

Hale is one of those men of whom we are always learning more. Have papers on his early life, his years at Yale, the events which led to his capture and his execution; show a picture of the statue in the City Hall Park of New York. Compare him with André. Give selections from different writers showing their estimate of him.[Pg 223]

Thomas Arnold is the ideal for all teachers, and so an excellent subject for a meeting. Tell of his home; of Rugby as he found it; of his ideas for the school and for the individual boys; mention some of the great men he trained; read from "Tom Brown at Rugby" and show pictures of the school.

Hardy is one of the great Victorian novelists, a writer of somber, realistic and pessimistic stories of great power. Read of Wessex and its moors and wind-swept fells in the "Return of the Native." Notice the homely humor in all his books. Read from his most artistic work, "Far from the Madding Crowd," and from "Tess of the D'Urbervilles," his most dramatic. Compare him with other writers of the day. Discuss his philosophy.[Pg 224]


Programs from Clubs


A Virginia club has studied this group of painters:

Italian Artists: Raphael, Titian, Correggio.

Flemish Artists: Van Eyck, Rubens, Van Dyck.

Dutch Artists: Frans Hals, Rembrandt, Ruysdael.

Spanish Artists: Velasquez, Murillo, Fortuny.

German Artists: Dürer, Holbein, Hoffman.

French Artists: Rosa Bonheur, Corot, Millet.

English and American Artists: Sir Joshua Reynolds, Millais, Sargent.

The Girls' Club of Upper Montclair, New Jersey, was started several years ago as a department of the Woman's Club. Its membership includes[Pg 225] girls in the grade below the high school and the girls who have left school and have not gone to college or into business. The attendance has grown so that one winter there was only one meeting when the number did not reach a hundred.

The meetings are held every Monday afternoon at three-thirty and some well-known speaker gives a short talk. Sometimes a musical is given. After the lecture there is dancing for a half hour and light refreshments are served by the girls.

The club has two unique features: first, it has no officers, but is managed by a committee of five ladies, all mothers of high school students. The girls are willing to help at all times, but those who know girls realize that most clubs are "officered" to death. Another unique feature is that there are no dues. There are many minor expenses, such as printing and traveling expenses of the guests, and the first three years the Woman's Club met these, but later the Girls' Club became self-supporting. One afternoon entertainment was given for the children and one evening entertainment for the "grown-ups," making enough to pay all the yearly expenses[Pg 226] and present the Woman's Club twenty-five dollars as a gift for their building fund.

The club now has started a prize competition in bread-, cake- and dressmaking, offering a first prize of five dollars and a second prize of two dollars and fifty cents.

A club that is doing practical work is following this varied program:

Roll call: Kitchen appliances and conveniences.

Paper: Household accounts. Are they essential?

Paper: System in household work, and economy of time.

Demonstration: Sandwiches and canapés.

Roll call: Helpful suggestions for housework.

Paper: Fireless cookers and their usefulness.

Demonstration: The fireless cooker.

Roll call: Waste; what is it?

Paper: The household waste.

Paper: Fuel and fuel economy.

Demonstration: Paper-bag cookery.

Roll call: Emergency luncheon menus.[Pg 227]

Paper: Modern problems in the home. The servant problem.

Paper: The seamstress problem.

Paper: The nurse, or the hospital?

Paper: The guest.

Demonstration: How to shape croquettes and seal molds.

Roll call: Supper ideas.

Paper: A balanced dietary.

Paper: Suitable combinations of foods.

Paper: Food values.

Demonstration: Supper dishes.

Roll call: Ways of serving fruit.

Paper: Soups and soup-making.

Paper: Planning the menu for a formal luncheon.

Demonstration: Laying the luncheon table.

Roll call: A chafing-dish menu.

Paper: Planning the meals so as to reduce cost.

Paper: The chafing dish; is it practical?

Demonstration: A chafing-dish luncheon.

Roll call: Where shall we market?

Paper: Marketing and the cheaper cuts of meat.

Paper: The old market and the new.[Pg 228]

Discussion: Is it more economical to buy bread or make it, for a small family?

Demonstration: A luncheon costing twenty cents per capita.

Roll call: Breakfast dishes.

Paper: The adjustment of home duties to social requirements.

Discussion: Fats; lard, butter, butterine, etc.

Demonstration: Cakes made with different shortenings.

Roll call: How shall we replenish the preserve closet in winter?

Paper: Sweeping made easy.

Paper: Labor-saving devices.

Demonstration: New labor-saving devices.

A teachers' club in the West has an excellent travel and study program based upon books of current interest.

Roll call: Current Events. Paper: "Through the Heart of Patagonia."

Roll call: Unique Customs of Countries. Paper: "Changing China."

Roll call: Quotations from Doctor Grenfell. Paper: "The Possibilities of Labrador."[Pg 229]

Roll call: Persian Epigrams. Paper: "Modern Persia."

Roll call: Anecdotes of Famous People. Paper: "The Passing of Korea."

Roll call: Conundrums. Paper: "Tripoli the Mysterious."

Roll Call: Selections from Spring Poems. Paper: "Turkey and the Turks."

Roll call: Epigrams. Paper: "The Balkan States."

One of the most interesting clubs in New England has a membership of farmers' wives and daughters, scattered around for ten miles. It has astonishingly clever programs, prepared with few library helps. Each program is clearly written on a small folder, adorned with a Perry picture bearing on the subject of the day. One program was:

Our Friend the Horse. Music; Current Events; paper, "Horses, Past and Present"; reading, "The Council of Horse," by Gay; reading, "The Blood Horse," by Barry Cornwall; reading, "The Leap of Roushan Beg," by Longfellow; paper, "Some of the Horses in Bookland"; reading, "How They Brought the Good News from Ghent to Aix," by Browning.[Pg 230]

Another meeting, a social one, had for its subject:

Tea. Paper, "Tea Culture"; "Tea in literature"; reading, "The Boston Tea Party," by Holmes; reading from "Cranford," The Tea Party; toasts, presented by members, drunk in tea.

A program for the year on Domestic Science begins each month with a roll call, answered by Helpful Hints. Here is one meeting:

Roll call: Helpful Hints on Vegetables and Soups.

Paper: Furnishing a Dining-room.

Paper: Furnishing a Bedroom.

Discussion of certain recipes (read aloud).

Practical demonstration.

Another meeting was even more interesting:

Roll call: Helpful Hints for the Kitchen.

Paper: The Evolution of the Modern House.

Paper: The Woman Who Cleaned Atlanta.

Notes on Meats and Deep-fat Frying, by members.

Discussion: Made-over Dishes.[Pg 231]

Practical demonstration.

Discussion: Use of butter substitutes.

A charming yearbook has come from Flatbush, Long Island:

The Ocean. Importance of the Ocean; Life in the Deep; Sea Animals; Whales and Whaling; Turtles and Tortoise Shell; Sharks, Sword Fish, Sea Serpents; Modes of Fishing in Various Countries; The Sponge; Pearls and Pearl Diving; Sea Gardens, Sea Weeds and Mosses; Shells; Superstitions and Folklore; Coral; Birds of the Sea; Phenomena of the Ocean; Influence of the Sea on Poetry and Music; Marine Painting; Deep Sea Explorations; Evolution of Sea Craft; Famous Navigators; Pirates; History of the Battleship; Naval Heroes; Polar Explorations; The Life Saving Service; Light-houses and Beacons; Roll Call, answered by Fish Stories.

A new idea from Tacoma, Washington, is a Query Club. The members write on slips of paper the questions they wish answered and the president gives the slips to a committee of three to prepare the answers for the next meeting of the club.[Pg 232]

A club in the West doing practical work reports:

It has the promise of a city market.

It has made a study of the state pure-food laws.

It has personally inspected dairies and ice cream factories, and studied the state laws of weights and measures, and had lectures on them.

It has had a weights and measures exhibition at the state fair, and is working on a new weights and measures law.

It has written to the Secretary of Agriculture for valuable bulletins on household economics, to be distributed among the women of the state.

A club in Illinois which has addresses before it made by "ministers, doctors and school superintendents," as well as papers by members, has studied these topics:

Pure Food; Juvenile Courts; Industrial Homes; The School as a Home; The Home as a School-Maker; Books by Age and Temperament; The Psychology of Success and Failure; Environments: natural, civic, esthetic and ethical; The Psychology of Occupation and Dress;[Pg 233] Playgrounds, Games and Systematic Recreations; Woman's Place in Civic Improvement; The Conservation of Health; and, What the People Have a Right to Expect of the High School. Other clubs will find these may easily be expanded into many interesting sub-topics, and many of them may be used as suggestions for practical work in the home town or city of the club.

A Kentucky woman's club, meeting fortnightly all the year round, has for its current subject Rome and Italy. The meetings open with a roll call, followed by from two to four papers, sometimes varied with readings, music and discussions. For the responses at the roll call such themes are suggested as: Something about Italy; An ancient Roman and something about him; Quotations from Shakespeare's "Coriolanus"; Something About statuary you have seen; Quotations from Marcus Aurelius; Quotations from or about Petrarch; Quotations from "Romola."

The themes for papers are; Italy in Roman Times; Legends; The Eternal City; The Romans; The Republic; Early Literature;[Pg 234] Early Art; Michelangelo; Italian Opera; Statesmen; Master Minds; Philosophy; Naples; Growth of Ecclesiastical Power; Dante; Humanism; Italian Art; Italian Musicians; The Renaissance; 1492 and Its Triumph; A Battlefield for Aliens (modern Italy, 1530-1796); Patriots; Sicily; Modern Romans. One meeting is given to an annual reception.

A club of three hundred members in the East is divided into standing committees, each member being on as many as she chooses. They are: Literature, music and drama, art, science, sociology, home and social relations, education, and hospitality.

One year this program was presented:

Education. Address: The function of story-telling in modern education, with illustrative stories.

Music and Drama. Address by an actor-manager: Behind the scenes; Music.

Art. Address: Japanese arrangement of flowers; Music.

Home and Social Relations. Society; Early colonial life; Southern society; Intellectual society; Society to-day (four papers).[Pg 235]

Sociology. Two addresses: The Probation Court, and, the Children's Court, both by officers.

Literature. Address: Lincoln and the people; Music.

Science. Address with lantern slides: The wild birds and how to attract them.

A club in Pennsylvania prefaces its year book with these ten commandments:

1. Thou shalt have no other clubs before this one.

2. Thou shalt not worship any false thing.

3. Remember thy club engagement.

4. Honor thy club sisters.

5. Thou shalt not murder the King's English.

6. Thou shalt not covet office.

7. Thou shalt be prepared for roll call.

8. Thou shalt not at the eleventh hour begin to hunt material for thy paper.

9. Thou shalt not speak in meeting when thy sister has the floor.

10. Thou shalt diligently keep these commandments so that thy club days be lengthened, and thy fame spread unto the uttermost parts of clubdom.[Pg 236]


What Clubs Are Studying


From many club year books that have been examined the following programs are selected:

Here is the program of a Louisiana club which has studied the history of its own State—a very good thing to do: The Early Settlers in Louisiana; Founding of New Orleans; Spanish Dominion; Jackson Square and the Cabildo; Louisiana's Part in the Revolution; The Great Purchase; The Battle of New Orleans; The Carnival and Mardi Gras; The French Quarter; Louisiana Folk Tales; The Evangeline Country; The State's Resources; Forestry; Mines and Minerals; Products; The History of the Levees; Bird Life in Louisiana; Louisiana Law; The Code; Laws of the Home; Legal Status of Women, and Their Influence in Municipalities. It is hoped that this program[Pg 237] was illustrated with the many delightful stories of life in New Orleans which have been written.

A club in Idaho has an interesting connection with the Commercial Club of the city made up of business men, and works with them by having occasional meetings together. Some of the topics studied this year are these:

Aids to the Public School System; Social Centers and Open Air Schools; Parent and Teacher Associations; Encouraging Home Industry; The Idaho Health Bill; What the Government Is Doing for Women and Children; City Sanitation; Market Inspection; Uniform Marriage and Divorce Laws; The Proposed Compensation Act for Criminals; Interstate Commerce; Property Rights of Women; Juvenile Courts; Conservation of Natural Resources; Civic Improvements; Pure Food.

A Vermont club which has existed for many years has in its year book a list of all the subjects studied for the past ten. Some of these are: Colonial America, Later American History, Short Studies on Great Subjects, Russia and Japan.[Pg 238]

In addition to these studies the club has had lectures on American Indians, The Moving Picture Show, Forestry, Humane Education, Travels in the Penal Settlements of Siberia, and The Land of Evangeline; most of these have been illustrated. This club numbers a hundred members.

A Western club has taken up Shakespeare in a remarkably thorough way. It has had five plays for the year's work, and one act of each play has been read at each meeting, followed by a paper relating to it, and a discussion. One part of their work is this: Antony and Cleopatra—Act I, The History of the Play and Its Setting; Act II, Paper on Egyptology; Act III, Paper on Cleopatra and Her Influence. Other plays are studied in the same way.

A Georgia club gave the first half of the year to the study of Shakespeare's women, and the latter half to this program on American Painters: The Early Painters, to 1865; Whistler and LaFarge; Landscape and Marines; Figures; Miniature Painters; American Illustrators; Stained Glass Designers. A noticeable[Pg 239] feature of the year book is the printing at the back of an excellent bibliography, giving a list of all the books needed in the work.

From Ohio comes a program on Welfare Study and Vocations for Trained Women; The Boy Problem; The Girl Problem; Local Civics; Foods; Women in Business (three meetings); Women in Arts and Professions (three meetings), and Handicraft (three meetings).

An Alabama club has a year book on Spain of more than usual attractiveness. Each topic is unusually well developed: The Land of Spain; The Dawn of History in Spain; The Moors; The Age of Adventure; Kings; Spain in Its Glory; The Church; Cities; Social Life; Industries and Occupations; Spanish Women; Art and Literature; Spain To-day.

A New York club has this study in Conservation: Water Power, the History of Its Development; State Laws; Reclamation of Arid Lands; Government Dams; The Laws of Water Rights; Our Fisheries; Our Forests; Forestry Service; Our Mineral Wealth; Conditions in Mining Districts; Laws of Mining; Conservation[Pg 240] of Human Energy; Labor Laws; Protection of Workers; Compensation; Abandoned Farms; Scientific Farming; Life Saving Service; Government Lands; Homestead Claims.

A delightful year book has the title "Studies in English History," with this program: Life Among the Early Saxons; Alfred the Great; The Norman Conquest and Its Influences; Edward the Third and Chivalry; Chaucer and His Tales; The Wars of the Roses; Henry the Eighth and the Reformation; The Glory of Elizabeth's Reign; Puritans and Cavaliers; Oliver Cromwell and His Times; The Romance of the Stuarts; William of Orange, Queen Anne, and the Literature of the Times; Art of Reynolds and Gainsborough; The Romantic Movement in Literature; The Reform Bill of 1832 and the Rise of Democracy; The Age of Victoria; Life and Society; English Essayists and Novelists.

The charm of this study lay not only in the subjects given, but in the readings which illuminated each monthly program, chosen from the best literature bearing on the general subject.[Pg 241]

A teachers' club has a program with no definite title, but with a certain geographical and historic value, and at the same time deals with subjects in which the members take a professional interest. Each meeting begins with a roll call answered sometimes by description of unique customs in different countries, and sometimes by anecdotes of famous people, and often by epigrams, or selections from poems of the season. Some of the subjects studied are: Changing China; The Possibilities of Labrador; Persia; The Passing of Korea; Tripoli the Mysterious; Abyssinia of To-day, and The Balkan States. The topics of special interest to the teacher: The Montessori Method; The Binet Tests for the Feeble-Minded; The Status of the Teacher; Systematic Study in the Elementary Schools; The Teaching of Arithmetic.

One excellent program sent by an Ohio club is on a unique plan. There are seventeen members, and to each was given one current topic, on which she reported each month. Municipal Affairs, Magazines, Our State, Literature, Hygienics, Suffrage, Art, Domestic Science, Politics, Foreign News, Science, Agriculture,[Pg 242] Education, Religion and Philanthropy, the Drama, and Famous Men were those selected. The year's program was wholly upon social and economic questions: The Dawning of Economic Consciousness; Economics in Relation to Citizenship; New Methods in Public Schools; Organized Charities; Cost of Living in Relation to Criminology; Prison Reform; The Tramp Question; United States Courts; History of Money; Panics; Municipal Ownership. There were several papers under each of these heads, and the whole seems most practical and interesting.

In contrast with this well-constructed program comes one from an Illinois club which shows a certain confusion. There are committees on Parliamentary Law, Domestic Science, Dramatic Art, Travel, Music and Physical Culture. Meetings are held weekly and, among others, these subjects have been presented: Our Local Pioneers; Mexico; Home Environment; Mother and Child; The American Colonies; Domestic Science with Demonstration; American Art; and Travel in Japan. This is by far too varied a program, and if only one[Pg 243] main subject had been taken, say The American Colonies, members of the club would have found at the end of the year that they had gained more than they possibly could have from the casual treatment of so many.

A New York State club offers this unusual Musical Program. (The study meetings are illustrated by musical numbers, and between such meetings are others on the latest events in the musical world. A large chorus is also sustained by the club, which gives concerts at intervals.)

American Music. Our Favorites; Folk Songs and Indian Music; Women Musicians; Nevins and MacDowell; Operas; Ballads.

Foreign Music. German and Austrian Music; Great Britain's Music; Russian Music; Polish and Hungarian Music; Italian Music; French Music; Comparison of Foreign and American Music.

An Ohio club has an unusually good set of Current Topics, for study in connection with a year's program on Nature:

Women's Clubs; Inventions; Education;[Pg 244] War; Music and Musicians; Famous Personalities; Our Cabinet; France; Commerce; Agriculture; The Religious World; Our Foreign Affairs; Germany; Mexico; South America; China; Canada; Immigration; Philanthropy; Municipal Affairs; Art and Artists; Panama Exposition; Aviation; Panama Canal; Russia; Turkey and Italy; Scientific News; British Affairs; Current Literature.

One of these topics is taken up at the close of the study program at each meeting.

A club in Pennsylvania has this somewhat unusual program:

The American Government.

Colonial Times. Reading, Colonial Heroes.

Territory Gained by the Revolution. Reading, "Paul Revere's Ride."

The Constitution. Reading, The Amendments.

The Louisiana Purchase and the Acquisition of Florida. Reading, The Department of Agriculture.

The Monroe Doctrine. Reading, The Pan-American Union.[Pg 245]

The Annexation of Texas; the Mexican Cession. Reading, The Weather Bureau.

Settlement of the Oregon Boundary; The Gladsden Purchase. Reading, The Post Office Department.

The Alaska Purchase: Alaska of To-day. Reading, from Beach's Silver Horde.

Hawaii. Reading, The Smithsonian Institution.

Porto Rico. Reading, The Patent Office.

Cuba. Reading, The Interstate Commerce Commission.

The Philippines. Reading, Our Insular Possessions.

The Panama Canal. Reading, The Public Health.

Expansion. Reading, The White Man's Burden.

The Executive Department. Reading, The State Department.

The Judicial Department. Reading, The Civil Service Department.

The Legislative Department. Reading, Library of Congress.

The United States Army. Reading, The Treasury Department.[Pg 246]

The United States Navy. Reading, The National Capital.

Discussion: Woman Suffrage.


"WE PLEDGE OURSELVES to use our united strength to make better homes, better schools, better surroundings, better scholarship, and better lives; to work together for civic health and civic righteousness; to preserve our heritage—the forests, and the natural beauties of the land; to procure for our children an education which fits them for life—the training of the hand and the heart as well as the head; to protect the children not our own, who are deprived of the birthright of natural childhood; to obtain right conditions and proper safeguards for the women who toil."

[Pg 247]


Brief One Day Programs


Their Beginning and Growth; The Story of Toynbee Hall.

The Work for Women; Cooking and Sewing Classes.

The Work for Girls; Dancing Classes.

The Work for Men; Coffee and Reading Rooms; Men's Clubs for Discussion.

The Work for Children; Free Kindergartens; Fresh Air Work.

The Work for Babies; The Crèche; Good Milk; Ice.

Playgrounds in Cities.

Jane Addams and Hull House.

These topics will all promote discussion, and it is possible that personal experiences may be brought out which will be exceedingly interesting. Plenty of good material for papers will be found in magazine articles.[Pg 248]


I. The Problem Presented: Papers or talks on

(1) The increase in the price of food-stuffs.

(2) The increase in rents.

(3) Higher wages of servants.

(4) The more complex social life and greater demand for luxuries. Music.

II. The Problem Discussed:

(1) Possible reduction in the expense of food by simple living.

(2) The movement of city people to the country.

(3) Is the elimination of the servant possible?

(4) How far is woman responsible for the state of things, and what can she do to reduce social expenditure?


The beautiful country; the Lakes of Killarney; the northern coast; pictures. A brief résumé of Ireland's history; St. Columba; St.[Pg 249] Patrick. Historic features; cathedrals and churches; the Round Towers. The Irish poet, Moore. Music: "The Harp That Once Through Tara's Halls;" "Those Evening Bells;" "The Last Rose of Summer;" "Oft in the Stilly Night." Brief sketches of some of Ireland's great men—Burke, Sheridan, O'Connell, Swift, Goldsmith, etc. Music: Moore's "Canadian Boat Song."


Description and pictures of the village of Ayr; the House Where Burns Was Born; the Brig o' Doon.

Sketch of Burns's life.

Songs: "The Banks and Braes of Bonny Doon;" "My Heart's in the Highlands;" "Whistle and I'll Come to You, My Lad."

Reading from "Tam o' Shanter."

Reading of four short poems: "Highland Mary"; the "Mountain Daisy"; "Mary Morison," etc.

Reading from "The Cotter's Saturday Night."

Songs: "Comin' Through the Rye;" "John Anderson, My Jo, John;" "Auld Lang Syne."[Pg 250]


Papers and talks on: Our Grandmothers' Ideas of Woman's Place and Our Own; Woman as a Wage-Earner; The Mother as a Business Woman; Music; The Conscience of the Woman Purchaser; Would Woman's Social Usefulness Be Increased by the Ballot? Music.


Paper or talk on the earliest painters; crude representations on walls and canvas. Botticelli and his pictures; illustrate with photographs. Raphael; sketch of his life; his pictures; illustrate with well-known examples, such as the "Sistine Madonna" and the "Madonna of the Chair." The Madonnas of Murillo; "The Immaculate Conception." The modern Madonnas; pictures by Gabriel Max and others. The Madonnas of Burne-Jones and his school. Intersperse with suitable Christmas music.


Papers: Its Early History. Remains of Oldest Buildings: Bits of the Roman Wall, St. Bartholomew's Church, St. Stephen's Hall,[Pg 251] The Jerusalem Chamber, The Tower, with William the Conqueror's Church. Literary London: The City in Shakespeare; Johnston and the Clubs; Milton and Addison; Dickens's London. Famous Landmarks: Parliament Buildings, Westminster Abbey, The Churches, St. Paul's, The Tower, Grey Friars, The Royal Palaces, The Museums, The Art-Galleries, The Parks.


Song: "Hark, Hark, the Lark!"

Reading: From "Our Neighbors, the Birds," by Mabel Osgood Wright.

Reading or recitation: Shelley's "To a Sky-Lark."

Paper: "The Birds and the Milliner."

Reading: From "The Tragedies of the Nests," by John Burroughs.

Song: "Spring Hath Waked the Song-Bird," by Mendelssohn.

Reading: From "Bird Courtship," by John Burroughs.

Recitation: "The Robin Singing in the Rain," by Kate Upson Clark.

Song: "Swing, Robin, Swing."[Pg 252]

For some of these readings others may be substituted if preferred. Here are a few suggestions, which can readily be amplified: "Baby Days" and "The Tricks and Manners of a Cat-Bird," by Olive Thorne Miller; "Bird Life and Its Romance," by John Lea, and numerous magazine articles which may be found in an "Index to Periodical Literature," contained in all public libraries.

Among the many poems appropriate to the occasion are: "O, Swallow, Swallow, Flying, Flying South," from Tennyson's "Princess" and Wordsworth's "To a Sky-Lark."

Some lovely songs are: "From Twig to Twig," by Rubinstein; "The Passage Birds' Farewell," by Mendelssohn, and "The Nightingale," by Schumann. Liza Lehman has also written some fascinating bird songs, including "The Wood Pigeon," "The Yellowhammer" and "The Owl."

A really valuable paper on "Bird Music" might be written; material for this will be found in any good reference library, for it is a subject which has interested several musicians. A delightful discussion could easily be arranged by the chairman of the day on "Personal Experiences[Pg 253] with Birds," with brief talks by members on what they have actually observed in the way of nest building or feeding of young birds, or how they have tamed some bird.


Paper on Our Grandmothers' Ways (disregard of what is to-day considered as essential).

The Sanitary Nursery; carpets or rugs; cribs; ventilation; the preparation of foods for children; the care of milk; the baby's bottle; disinfection.

The Sanitary Kitchen; sinks and floor corners; mops and dish-cloths; refrigerators.

The Butcher and Grocer; pure food.

The Family Table; discussion on new ideas; vegetarianism; the use and abuse of cereals; how to meet the high cost of living sensibly.


Paper: A Child's Right to a Perfect Body.

Paper: The Child's Sleep. Arrangements for Perfect Sleep; Hours for Sleep.

Discussion: Shall the Baby Sleep Out of Doors?[Pg 254]

Paper: The Child's Dress; Healthfulness; Simplicity; the Plague of Clothes.

Paper: The Child's Food. The Education of Mothers on This Line; the Milk-Supply in Town and Country.

Discussion: A Child's Health as Affected by Its Surroundings.

Paper or Talk: The City Child and the Country Child.

Should music be made a feature of these meetings, there are settings of Stevenson's, Eugene Field's and Riley's child verses which would be especially appropriate.


Paper on Longfellow's Early Home and Life.

Talk: His Married Life; His Children.

Reading: The Children's Hour.

Paper on Longfellow as Harvard Professor.

Readings from His American Poems: "Hiawatha," "Evangeline," "Courtship of Miles Standish."

Paper: Foreign Honors; Westminster Abbey.

His Translations: Norwegian, "The Saga of King Olaf"; Swedish, "King Christian"; German,[Pg 255] "The Happiest Land"; French, "A Quiet Life"; Spanish, "Coplas de Marigue."

Talk: At Mount Auburn.


Paper or talk on Froebel and the Kindergarten. The Kindergarten in the Public School. The Sanitation of Our Public Schools. Discipline in the School. The Relations of Teacher and Parent. Beautifying the School-Building and Grounds.

The discussion might also be on such topics as Social Life Versus School Life; The Health of High-School Girls; Athletics and Study, etc.

The topic in the program of "Froebel and His Work" might be taken up by a trained kindergartner; perhaps the head of a high school might come in and speak on the Health of the High-School Girl, and some teacher interested in art might tell what could be done to beautify the school-building with pictures, plaster casts and growing plants, the grounds outside with trees and vines. By dividing the subject into Primary Schools and High Schools, and arranging the topics under each and adding to them, two programs could easily be made out of this one.[Pg 256] Or, a meeting could be held, following this one, on college life, in its various aspects; college for girls; athletics; training for life in college and outside, and the relation of college boys and girls to their homes.


Give to six members the names of four or five good magazines, and ask one to speak of some of the essays in them; another to take up the travel articles; a third the poetry; a fourth the popular science, and a fifth the short stories. Let each give a brief résumé of the one which seems best of all to the speaker, and have a sixth read some of the lighter and more humorous bits of prose and verse from the various magazines.

The chairman of the day might also prepare a short discussion by four of the members, each one speaking for two minutes at the close of the program on such subjects as "Do We Read Too Many Magazines?" "Do They Affect Our More Serious Reading?" "The Growth of the Short Story" and "Which Magazine Seems on the Whole the One Best Worth Taking in a Family, and Why?"

Some one might also speak on the subject of[Pg 257] "What Each Magazine Seems to Stand For"; one perhaps has most literary quality, one bright fiction, and so on. A very clever talk might be given also, comparing the magazines now with those published thirty years and more ago, with some idea of the writers of that time and the general character of the articles.


Business; reports of secretary and treasurer.

Paper or talk on The First Thanksgiving Day.

Reading from "Old Town Folks," by Harriet Beecher Stowe; Getting Ready for Thanksgiving.

Reading or recitation from "Miles Standish."

Paper or talk on The New England Meeting-House.

Personal reminiscences of childhood Thanksgiving Days.

Recitation from Whittier's "Thanksgiving Day."

If possible hang up a large picture of the "Return of the Mayflower," or other appropriate picture in the room.[Pg 258]


Thomas Nelson Page: Readings from "The Old South," Chapter I; "An Old Virginia Sunday;" "The Old Gentleman of the Black Stock," Chapter V.

James Lane Allen: Readings from "A Home of the Silent Brotherhood," "Two Gentlemen of Kentucky."

Richard Malcolm Johnston: Readings from "Dukesborough Tales."

The Poet of the South, Sidney Lanier: Selections from his biography, by his wife. Short poems: "Life and Song," "The Stirrup Cup," "A Song of the Future," "A Ballad of the Trees and the Master."

George W. Cable: Reading from "'Sieur George."

Ruth McEnery Stuart: Readings from "Sonny," "The Second Wooing of Salina Sue," "Thanksgiving on Crawfish Bayou."

The program may be interspersed by plantation songs: "Old Black Joe," "The Suwanee River," "My Old Kentucky Home," "Camptown Races" and others.[Pg 259]


I. Music: Ballad.

II. Talk or paper: The child's right to a welcome.

III. Discussion by three members:

(1) Squabbling and how to deal with it.

(2) Unselfishness.

(3) Equal rights for boys and girls.

IV. Music: Child songs.

V. Paper: The family evenings: Parents and children.

VI. Discussion:

(1) Reading aloud.

(2) Games and music.

VII. Paper: Parents as friends.

VIII. Talk, followed by general experiences.


Commencement and Afterward.

The Relation of Parents to the Grown Daughter.

The Training for Housekeeping.

Friends and Entertaining.

Preparations for a Life-Work Away from Home.[Pg 260]

The Married Daughter.

The Unmarried Middle-Aged Daughter.

A general discussion.


Song: "Noël," by Gounod.

Reading from Dickens: the story of Scrooge's Christmas.

Paper or talk on Curious Christmas Customs (in England, Germany, Sweden, etc.).

Song: "When from the East the Wise Men Came," by Bullard.

Reading from "Sonny," by Ruth McEnery Stuart.

Reading from Howells's "Christmas Every Day."

Song: "The Virgin's Lullaby," by Dudley Buck.

Reading: "George Washington Jones, A Christmas Gift That Went a-Begging," by Ruth McEnery Stuart.

Song: "Over the Hills of Bethlehem," by Neidlinger.

Interest will be added to this meeting, of course, by decorating the club rooms with Christmas greens and lighting with candles.[Pg 261]


Home Life in Virginia (paper or talk). Reading from "The Virginians," by Thackeray.

The Love Story of Washington.

Mt. Vernon; Martha Washington's Housekeeping. (Illustrated with pictures of Mt. Vernon.)

The First Inaugural Ball.

Lafayette's Return to America.

Brief items of interest given by members, of family traditions of these and other events.

Close with two patriotic songs: "The Star-Spangled Banner," "Columbia, the Gem of the Ocean" or "America."


Paper or talk on The Origin of the Arthurian Legend.

Brief outline of the story of the Round Table.

Reading from Lowell's "Vision of Sir Launfal."

Reading from Sir Thomas Malory's "Morte d'Arthur."

The story of Glastonbury and Avalon; description of the abbey.[Pg 262]

The legend of the Holy Thorn.

Readings from Howard Pyle's "Story of King Arthur and His Knights."

Reading from the "Idylls of the King;" "The Passing of Arthur."

The chairman in charge of the meeting may procure from her picture-dealer or from the nearest large city inexpensive prints of the Abbey paintings of the Holy Grail in the Boston Public Library, and these, mounted on large sheets of white paper, may be hung about the room.[Pg 263]


How to Make a Year Book

Many clubs find it difficult to make year books which shall be clear and comprehensive, and yet cover briefly the entire field they have selected. This is a simple plan:

After the club has agreed on a subject the committee appointed to draw up the year book should meet, bringing with them all available helps, books, maps, magazine articles and cuttings from papers.

With these before them, the committee must lay out in general the main topics for the club to study, dividing it into as many parts as there will be meetings during the year. (In some instances, as where a historical subject is chosen, the Table of Contents in some book of reference will be found helpful.)

Under each of the main divisions of the whole four or five subdivisions should then be made out, corresponding to the number of papers desired on a given day.[Pg 264]

Last of all, either at the close of the work planned for each meeting, or at the end of the book, there should be given a list of reference books.

As an example of a year book, one is given here on the history of England, which will be found worked out in detail in Chapter XII of this book.





1. Geological and Prehistoric Britain; Relics of the Stone Age.
2. Physical Character of the Country, Scenery, Climate, Products.
3. The Druids and Their Remains; Stonehenge, etc.
4 The Celts; Divisions of the Race, folk lore, etc.
5. The Arthurian Legends.

Suggested Readings,—

Tennyson's "Idylls of the King."
Sir Thomas Malory.
[Pg 265]




1. Julius Cæsar.

Invasion of England.
Roman remains in England.
Roman Roads as they are to-day.

2. Early Saxon Kings.

Augustine's Conversion of Kent.
Columba at Iona.
Aidan at Holy Island.
Cædmon at Whitby.
Venerable Bede.

3. Alfred and the Danes.

The Danelaw.
Alfred's Reforms.

4. The Last Saxon Kings.

Edward the Confessor.
Founding of Westminster Abbey.
(Have a paper on the Abbey if you wish.)
[Pg 266]

Suggested Readings,—

Death of Columba from Bede's Ecclesiastical History. (Bohn Library.)
Tacitus' "Agricola."
Bulwer's "Harold."




1. The Normans and the Conquest.

Normans on the Continent.
Domesday Book.
Bayeux Tapestry.

2. The Feudal System.

(See "Ivanhoe," opening chapter.)
Castles, Chivalry, Cathedrals, Cruelties.

3. The Struggle with the Papacy.

Thomas à Becket.

4. England and the Crusades.

5. The Great Charter.

Suggested Readings,—

Chas. Kingsley's "Hereward the Wake."
Scott's "Talisman."
Maurice Hewlett's "Richard Yea and Nay."
[Pg 267]

Read the story of the murder of Thomas à Becket from Dean Stanley's "Memorials of Canterbury." Have some one who has seen the Domesday Book and the Magna Charta describe them.




1. The Universities and the Friars.

Roger Bacon.

2. The Guilds and Fairs.

3. The Jews in England.

Arrival, Special Laws, Famous Jews in English history.

4. The English Parliament.

Places where it has met.
Compare with our form of government.
Describe present buildings.

5. Wallace and Bruce.

Suggested Readings,—

Marlowe's "Edward II."
Jusserand's "Way-faring Life in the Middle Ages."
Jessopp's "Coming of the Friars."
Jane Porter's "Scottish Chiefs."
[Pg 268]




1. Edward and Scotland.

Death of Bruce, Balliol.

2. Edward and France.

Creçy, Calais, Poitiers.

3. The Black Prince.

The Black Death.

4. Wiclif.

Story of the English Bible. Lollardy.

5. Chancer.

Mediæval Romances.
The Troubadours.

Suggested Readings,—

Froissart's Chronicle.
Chaucer's "Canterbury Tales."




1. The Peasants' Revolt.

Langland's "Piers Plowman."

2. Henry IV and Henry V.

Their characters, their Queens.
[Pg 269]

3. Henry VI

The Wars of the Roses.

4. Joan of Arc.

5. Edward IV and Richard III.

"Warwick, the Kingmaker."
The Princes in the Tower.

Suggested Readings,—

Shakespeare's "Henry IV," "Henry V," "Henry VI," "Richard III."
Stevenson's "Black Arrow."
Rossetti's "The King's Tragedy."
De Quincey's "Joan of Arc."




1. Henry VII.

Perkin Warbeck.
Sebastian Cabot.
Dean Colet.

2. Henry VIII.

His Wives, Field of Cloth of Gold.
Quarrel with the Pope, More's "Utopia."
Tyndal's New Testament.
[Pg 270]

3. Edward VI.

Book of Common Prayer.
Boys' Schools in England.

4. Mary.

Philip of Spain.
Archbishop Cranmer.

Suggested Readings,—

More's "Utopia."
Shakespeare's "Henry VIII."
Scott's "Marmion."
Tennyson's "Queen Mary."




1. Lady Jane Grey, and Mary, Queen of Scots.

2. Foreign Relations.

The Armada, Holland.

3. The Stage.

Shakespeare, Marlowe, Ben Jonson.

4. Literature.

Lyly, Spenser, Bacon.

5. The Adventurers.

Raleigh, Drake, Frobisher, Sir Philip Sidney.
[Pg 271]

Suggested Readings,—

Chas. Kingsley's "Westward Ho!"
Scott's "Kenilworth."
Sidney's "Defense of Poesie."
Spenser's "Faërie Queene."
Bacon's Essays.




1. James I, The Man.

Birth, character, pedantry. The King James Version of the Bible.

2. The Gunpowder Plot.

3. England and the New World.

Landing of the Pilgrims.
Raleigh's Expeditions, etc.

4. Charles I.

Divine Right of Kings and Parliament.
Lane, Hampden, Pym.

5. Milton.

Suggested Readings,—

Scott's "Fortunes of Nigel."
Milton's "L'Allegro."
Hobbes' "Leviathan."
Longfellow's "Miles Standish."
[Pg 272]




1. Oliver Cromwell and Puritanism.

2. Ireland and Its Problems.

Home Rule.

3. Blake and the English Navy.

4. The Women of the Civil War.

(See Traill's "Social England," Vol. IV, p. 315.)

Suggested Readings,—

Carlyle's "Cromwell."
Evelyn's Diary.
Shorthouse's "John Inglesant."
Browning's "Strafford."




1. Charles II.

Character, Continental Experiences.
General Monk, The Triple Alliance.
The Plague and the Fire.

2. Science.

The Royal Society.
[Pg 273]

3. Literature and the Stage.

Milton's Epic.
The Dramatists.

4. James II.

The Bloody Circuit.
Siege of Londonderry.
Coming of William of Orange.
The Battle of the Boyne.

Suggested Readings,—

Bunyan's "Pilgrim's Progress."
Pepys' Diary.
Evelyn's Diary.
Dryden's "Annus Mirabilis."
Defoe's "History of the Great Plague."
Scott's "Peveril of the Peak."
Blackmore's "Lorna Doone."
Conan Doyle's "Micah Clarke."




1. William and Mary.

Bill of Rights.
Bank of England.
[Pg 274]

2. Anne.

Politics in England.
Union of Scotland, Ireland and Wales with England.
The young Pretender.
The Pamphleteers.

3. George I and George II.

Sir Robert Walpole.
Jacobin plots.
South Sea Company.
Clive in India.
French and English in America.

4. Literature.

Addison and Steele.

Suggested Readings,—

Thackeray's "Henry Esmond."
Scott's "Waverley."
Southey's "Battle of Blenheim."
Addison's "Sir Roger de Coverley."
Defoe's "Robinson Crusoe."
Johnson's "Rasselas."
[Pg 275]




1. The Industrial Revolution.

Wedgewood, Hargreaves, Watt.
Adam Smith's "Wealth of Nations."

2. The American Revolution.

The Parliamentary Leaders.

3. The French Revolution.

Burke's "Reflections."
The War in Spain.
Wellington and Waterloo.
Nelson (Lady Hamilton).

4. England and the Slave Trade.

William Wilberforce.

5. Art of the Period.





The Adams brothers.
[Pg 276]

Suggested Readings,—

Hugo's "Les Miserables" (Battle of Waterloo).
Dickens' "A Tale of Two Cities."
Campbell's "Ye Mariners of England."
Wolfe's "Burial of Sir John More."
The Junius Letters.
Macaulay's "Warren Hastings."
Wilkes' "North Briton, No. 45."
Thackeray's "Four Georges."




1. Victoria, The Woman and the Queen.

Personality, husband, children, homes.

2. Victoria's Prime Ministers and their Policies.

Palmerston, Gladstone, Disraeli.
The Period of Reform.
Free Trade.

3. Victorian Wars.

Opium War in China.
[Pg 277]Sepoy Mutiny.
Khartoum and Chinese Gordon.
Boer War.

4. The British Empire.

New Zealand (Democracy).
South Africa.

Suggested Readings,—

Victoria's "Leaves from the Journal of Our Life in the Highlands."
Disraeli's "Lothair" and "Coningsby."
Morley's "Life of Gladstone."
Tennyson's "Charge of the Light Brigade."
Kipling's "Barrack Room Ballads."




1. The Growth of Democracy.

2. Industry and Invention.

3. Science.

Tyndall, Huxley, Darwin, Spencer.

4. Literature.

Poets, Novelists, Essayists, Historians, Dramatists.
[Pg 278]

5. Art.

Painting, Sculpture, Architecture.
Decorative Art (William Morris).

Suggested Readings,—

Lecky's "Democracy."
Huxley's "Lay Sermons."
Darwin's "Origin of Species."
Add Selections from the Victorian poets and novelists.




1. Edward VII and George V.

As men, monarchs; their Queens.

2. Lloyd-George and Asquith.

Welsh Disestablishment.
Education Bill.
The Ulster Question.

3. Woman Suffrage in England.

Both Points of View.
English laws regarding women.

4. The European War of 1914.

Modern war weapons and devices.

5. Novelists, poets and playwrights of to-day in England. (See English literature.)[Pg 279]

General References.

Encyclopædia Britannica and its year books, and bibliographies.

For literature, Halleck's "English literature" (American Book Co.).

For History, "A Short History of England," by E. P. Cheyney (Ginn & Co.).

For books not in your town library, write the State Librarian at your State Capital.

[Pg 280]


A Model Constitution

The following outline of a Constitution is given, to be followed by clubs according to their need.




This Club shall be called The Woman's Club.



The objects of this Club shall be to study history, sociology, civics, art, music and any other subjects chosen, to improve our locality and to promote sociability among the members.



Section 1. The membership shall consist of not more than fifty women.

Section 2. Names of candidates for membership,[Pg 281] having been nominated and seconded at a regular meeting, shall be submitted to the Membership Committee and, upon a favorable report, shall be elected, upon receiving a majority of the votes of the members present.

Section 3. Any member who has been absent from three consecutive meetings without excuse, may be dropped from the roll by a vote of the majority present at a regular meeting.

Section 4. The dues shall be one dollar a year payable in advance at the first regular meeting in the autumn. Any member having dues unpaid for six months may be dropped from the roll by a vote of the majority present at a regular meeting.



Section 1. The Club shall meet regularly on the second Tuesday afternoon of each month from September to June inclusive at places designated by the Place Committee.

Section 2. The May meeting shall be the Annual Meeting for hearing reports from all officers and Standing Committees and for electing the same.[Pg 282]

Section 3. Any regular meeting may be postponed by the President with the concurrence of the Vice President and Secretary.

Section 4. Special meetings may be called at any time by the President with the concurrence of the Vice President and Secretary.



Section 1. The officers shall be a President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer, their duties being such as are customary for such officers.

Section 2. The officers shall be elected by ballot at the May meeting each year. They shall hold office until their successors are elected.



Section 1. The Standing Committees of five each shall be elected annually by ballot at the May meeting; they shall be as follows: Membership, Program, Place and Hospitality.

Section 2. The Membership Committee shall consider all names nominated for membership and report to the Club.[Pg 283]

Section 3. The Program Committee shall have charge of the arrangement of the program of each regular meeting and also of a year book to be issued to the members at the June meeting.

Section 4. The Place Committee shall arrange the location of the meetings of the Club and make announcement at least one meeting in advance.

Section 5. The Hospitality Committee shall attend to the social life of the Club.

Section 6. A Nominating Committee shall be appointed by the President at the April meeting to report nominations of officers and committees at the May meeting.


Order of Business

The order of business at the regular meetings shall be: Call to Order, Secretary's Report, Reports of Committees, Business, Program.



The Constitution may be amended at any meeting of the Club, by a two-thirds vote of the[Pg 284] members present, notice of amendments proposed having been given at the preceding meeting of the Club.

[Pg 285]


Rules of Order for Clubs

An important element in club life is the training it gives in the management of business in committees and public meetings. It is indispensable that every club should learn how to work under regular rules. Jefferson said that they secure "accuracy in business, economy in time, order, uniformity and impartiality."


As a guide, every club should possess a copy of some accepted book of order, to which to refer in cases of difference of opinion as to proper procedure, and the law of the book should be received as final. Officers and members should familiarize themselves thoroughly with the details of such a manual. "Parliamentary Usage for Woman's Clubs" by Emma A. Fox (Doubleday, Page) is satisfactory and up to date.[Pg 286]


A small preliminary difficulty to some is how to organize an as yet unorganized club. The first step is for any one present to rise and nominate some body for temporary chairman, and when this is seconded, to ask those in favor of the person named to say "aye" and the opposed "no" and to turn over the meeting then to the person named. As it is only a temporary office there is not likely to be any negative vote.


Persons unfamiliar with club methods sometimes are puzzled as to ways of voting. There are several. The simplest is for the President to put a motion by saying "Will those in favor of the motion say aye," and later, "Will those opposed say no." Then she judges which of the two classes is most numerous. If she cannot decide, she may ask to have the vote repeated by raising the hand or by rising, in which case she puts the motion as before, asking those who favor the motion to raise the right hand or to rise. After having the Secretary or tellers count them, she asks those opposed to do the[Pg 287] same and has them counted. In case the vote is taken by voice and a member differs from the President's decision as to which side prevailed, she may request a rising vote. In case of every vote the President should declare the result by saying either "the motion is carried," or "the motion is lost." The President herself does not vote, except when the number of the ayes and that of the noes are even, when she casts the deciding vote. If the vote is by ballot, tellers are appointed who distribute slips of paper upon which the members write yes or no, and the ballots are counted by the Secretary or the tellers, and the result is handed in writing to the President who reads it aloud and declares the result. In voting for new members some clubs use a box with white balls for the affirmative and black balls for the negative. After being placed in the box, these are counted by the Secretary and the result is declared by the President as before.


At every meeting the President shall have before her a written outline of the business to be considered.[Pg 288]

It should be understood that the function of the presiding officer is simply to keep the meeting going in an orderly way. She cannot make motions, and ought not to make remarks on any motion. If she desires to do so, she should call upon some one else to preside temporarily.


The only proper way to carry on business is to "have a motion before the house." No subject can be discussed unless two persons agree to bring it up, one making the motion and the other seconding it. After that the President calls for remarks and "gives the floor" to one person, calling her name. While she "has the floor" she is the only person entitled to speak. Interruptions, remarks or questions are out of order, unless with the speaker's permission, which should be asked for only through the President. Much disorder is caused by two or more persons trying to speak at the same time, and it is the duty of the President to prevent this by rapping with her gavel (if this should be necessary) and saying "Will the club please come to order."[Pg 289]


It is considered bad form for any one person to speak twice on the same motion. It is supposed that when the speaker has the floor she will say what she has to say and then give way to others. But if a member wishes to speak a second time on a subject, because some new phase of it may have come up in remarks made after her first speaking, she should ask the President if she may be allowed to speak again, and, if no one objects, it is proper for her to do so. The value of such rules is that they prevent the discussion from becoming a mere general conversation. Also they train speakers to get their ideas well in hand before speaking and to be brief.


Sometimes a discussion threatens to run on interminably, and in that case there are ways by which the club can limit it. This may be done by setting an hour at which the debate shall close and the motion be put. When that time arrives the person speaking must be interrupted by the President and the vote taken. In such cases it is sometimes voted that each speaker[Pg 290] shall be limited say to five minutes, and when the five minutes are up the President must interrupt the speaker and give the floor to the next one.

Or debate may be ended by somebody moving "the previous question," and if this is seconded, the President, without permitting any discussion whatever, must put it to vote, and if two-thirds favor "the previous question" that means that the original motion must now be put without any further remarks.

Still another way of ending a debate is to move to lay the motion under discussion "on the table." If this is seconded, it must be put by the President without allowing any discussion. If the majority vote to lay the matter on the table, that means that consideration of it is postponed to some future meeting. If no one at a later meeting moves to have it taken from the table, it remains there indefinitely, which means that it is practically dead.

Still another way to end a debate is to move to adjourn. This is always in order and takes precedence of every other motion, and, if carried, ends the session. The business left unfinished must be taken up at the next meeting.[Pg 291]

The President should familiarize herself thoroughly with the rules of order and be able to decide on the moment which motions take precedence of others.


A President may take a position sometimes, in controlling the meeting, which seems unwise or unfair to some. In that case it is always in order for one of those differing with her to say "I move an appeal to the club," and if another says "I second the appeal," the President is bound to put the motion saying "Those in favor of the appeal will say aye"; and then "Those opposed will say no," and if "the ayes have it" the President's decision is reversed and she must abide by the action of the club without remark.


In organizations that have much business to transact, it is customary to turn over many of its details to committees, regular or special. It is their duty to confer on these matters, to ask the opinions of other members privately if they are so inclined and having digested the[Pg 292] business in point thoroughly to present a definite report upon it at a meeting of the club. If the committee has the full confidence of the club, its report is likely to be accepted without any, or at least much, debate and so time is saved in the club meetings.

In meetings of committees the Chairman occupies the same position as the President in the larger club meetings and the committee business may be carried on in the same orderly manner. However, most committee meetings are likely to be more like a conference or informal conversation and strict rules of order are often a hindrance rather than a help under such circumstances. But, in any case, when the members of the committee have discussed the subject as fully as they wish, the result should be carried out by a formal motion, seconded and carried by vote. To save controversy it is best to have this final motion put into writing. It then becomes the report of the committee to the club.


In an election of officers and committees it is usual to have a Nominating Committee bring in[Pg 293] a complete "slate" or list of nominations. To save time, frequently some one moves that "the Secretary cast a ballot for the persons named." If this is seconded and unanimously carried, the Secretary takes the "slate" just read, and laying it on the table says "I hereby cast a ballot for the persons nominated." But if one person dissents from this motion, ballots must be passed and the vote taken with them.

The nominations made by a Nominating Committee, it should be understood always, do not exclude any member of the club (when seconded, of course) from making other nominations if she wishes, and opportunity should be given to do so. In case two or more nominations are made for any office, voting must be by ballot.


Sometimes a matter may come up to which it is not wise to give publicity. In that case by motion the club may "go into executive session," which means that all persons not members of the club should retire from the room (unless exceptions are made by special vote) and then the club business is carried on in secret. It is supposed to be a point of honor[Pg 294] that no member of the club should give out information concerning anything said or done in executive session.

To persons unused to orderly business in assemblies, such rules as have been described may seem at first to be unnecessary and an annoying limitation on freedom of speech. But really they are not so. They tend to prevent excited controversy, secure justice to everybody in the end, and assist in getting the business of a club done.


[Pg 295]


Africa, Islands of, 43

Central, 104
Costa Rica, 107
Guatemala, 106
Honduras, 107
Nicaragua, 107
Salvador, 107
Latin, 116
Books, Famous, 94
Colonies, 14
Government, 244
Nature Writers, 102
Songs, 72
South, 109
Argentina, 111
Bolivia, 113
Brazil, 115
Chili, 114
Colombia, 114
Ecuador, 113
Peru, 112
Venezuela, 114

Amundsen, 168

Andersen, Hans Christian, 220

Anne, Queen
Age of, 187
Literature, 191
Marlboroughs, The, 188
Novel, Rise of the English, 192
Queen, The, and Her Court, 188
Wars under, 189

Appeals in Club Meetings, 291

British, 87
Buildings, Famous, 76
Egyptian, 177
German, 81
Greek, 78
Michelangelo, 218
Moorish, 83
Notre Dame, 86
Roman, 79
Russian, 85
Saint Sophia, 82
Taj Mahal, 89
Wren, 212

Argentina, 111

Arnold, Thomas, 222

Art, Madonna in, 250

Arthur and the Round Table, 261

Artists, 224

Audubon, 221

Authors, see Writers

Azores, 51

[Pg 296]Bermuda, 51

Birds, 251

Bolivia, 113

Famous, 91
French, German, Russian, Spanish, 91
English and American, 94

Booth, William, 161

Borneo, 46

Brahms, 221

Brazil, 115

Brontë, Charlotte, 220

Browning, Elizabeth Barrett, 218
Robert, 221

Burns, 249

Canal, Panama, 108

Carolina, North and South, Colonies, 18

Celtic England, 131, 264

Central America, 104

Home, in the, 259
Labor of, 90, 151
Mother and Daughter, 259
Physical Side of, 263

Chili, 114

Christmas, 214, 260

Clothing, 60

North American Colonies, in, 196
Postgraduate Work, 208
Universities, and, 206
Women's, 207

Colombia, 114

Colleges in, 196
Colonial Meeting, 261
North American, 14

Committees, Club, 291

Community Improvement, 6
Country, in the, 124
Subjects to Investigate, 7

Composers, see Musicians

Conservation, 239

Constitution, Model, for Clubs, 280

Cooking, 57

Costa Rica, 107

Cromwell, 134, 272

Dante, 221

Debate in Clubs, Closing, 289

Delaware, Colony, 24

Dickens, 216

Divorce and Marriage, 95

Domestic Science, 54, 226, 230

Drama, Writers of
Browning, 221
Goldsmith, 213
Molière, 215
Schiller, 213
Sheridan, 212

Druid England, 131, 264

False, 63
Waste and, 61

Ecuador, 113

Edison, 164

Colonial, 106
Postgraduate Work, 208
[Pg 297]Universities and, 206
Women's, 207
Meeting on, 255
High, 202
Kindergartens, 198
Public, 200
Country, in the, 126
Private, 204
Special, 203
System, Our, 195

Architecture, 87
Books, Famous, 94
History, 131
Cromwell, 134, 272
Druids, Celts, Romans, Saxons, 131, 265
Georges, 136, 275
Norman and Plantagenet, 132, 266
Present, 137, 278
Stuarts, 134, 271, 272
Tudors, 133, 210, 269
Victoria, 136, 276, 277
Islands of, 42
London, 250
Songs of, 70
Year Book on, 264
Commonwealth, 272
Country and Races, 264
Edward III, 268
Elizabeth, 270
George III, 275
Henry III and Two Edwards, 267
James I and Charles I, 271
Normans and Angevins, 266
Restoration, The, 272
Revolution, The, 273
Richard II and III, 268
Roman and Early, 265
To-day, 278
Tudors, 269
Victoria, 276, 277

Egypt, Architecture, 77

Elections, Club, Rules for, 292

Eliot, George, 213

Elizabeth, Queen, 134, 211, 270

Executive Session, in Clubs, 293

Fiction, see Novel

Field, Eugene, 210

Food, Economy in, 56

Books, Famous of, 91
Songs of, 70

Franz, Songs of, 68

Georges, The Four, 136, 273, 275

Georgia, Colony, 19

Architecture, 81
Books, Famous, 91
Songs, 67

Goethals, 170

Goldsmith, 213

Gounod, 222

Great Men of Our Time, 158
Amundsen, 168
Booth, William, 161
Edison, 164
[Pg 298]Goethals, 170
James, William, 160
Kelvin, 167
Morgan, J. Pierpont, 165
Peary, 168
Rodin, 158
Rostand, 159
Toynbee, 162
and Women
Andersen, Hans Christian, 220
Arnold, Thomas, 222
Audubon, 221
Brahms, 221
Brontë, Charlotte, 220
Browning, Elizabeth Barrett, 218
Robert, 221
Dante, 221
Dvorak, 210
Eliot, George, 213
Elizabeth, Queen, 210
Field, Eugene, 210
Goldsmith, 213
Gounod, 222
Hale, Nathan, 222
Hardy, Thomas, 222
Howells, 218
Joan of Arc, 215
Lamb, 216
Lafayette, 210
Luther, 213
Mendelssohn, 216
Michelangelo, 218
Molière, 215
Mozart, 215
Murillo, 220
Schiller, 213
Schumann, 222
Sévigné, 216
Sheridan, 212
Tennyson, 215
Verdi, 212
Wordsworth, 220

Architecture, 78
Islands, 39

Grieg, Songs of, 68

Guatemala, 106

Hale, Nathan, 222

Hardy, Thomas, 222

Bible, 172
Heroes, 176
Nation, Making the, 174
Philosophy, 182
Poetry, 179
Prophecy, 181

Heroes, Bible, 176

Purposes of, 63
Woman's Work for Pay in, 149

Honduras, 107

Horse, The, 229

Business of, 54
High Cost of Living, 248
Sanitation and Hygiene, 253
Systematic, 55

Ireland, 248

African, 43
Azores, 51
Bermuda, 51
[Pg 299]Borneo, 46
English, 42
Grecian, 39
Japanese, 49
Java, 46
Mediterranean, 41
New Zealand, 48
Oceanica, 45
Program on the World's, 39
Scotland, 42
Sumatra, 46
Tasmania, 48
West Indies, 39

Program on, 233
Songs, 70

James, William, 160

Japanese Islands, 49

Java, 46

Jewish, see Hebrew

Joan of Arc, 215

Kelvin, 167

Kindergartens, 198

Lafayette, 210

Lamb, 216

Laundry, The, 58

Literature, see Books, Novel, Poetry, Writers
Anne, under Queen, 191
Bible, 172
Beginnings, 172
Divided Kingdom and Exile, 178
Heroes, 173
Nation, Making a, 174
New Testament, 183
Philosophy, 182
Poetry, 179
Prophecy, 181
Related Subjects, 185
Undivided Kingdom, 177

Living, High Cost of, 248

London, 250

Longfellow, 254

Louisiana, 236

Luther, 213

Madonna in Art, 250

Magazine Meeting, A, 256

Marlboroughs, The, 188

Marriage and Divorce, 95

Maryland, Colony, 17

Mediterranean Islands, 41

Mendelssohn, 216

Michelangelo, 218

Mills, Women Workers in, 150

Molière, 215

Moorish Architecture, 83

Morgan, J. Pierpont, 165

Mother and Daughter, 259

Motions in Clubs, Rules for, 288

Mozart, 215

Murillo, 220

Brahms, 221
Dvorak, 210
Gounod, 222
Grieg, 68
Mendelssohn, 216
Mozart, 215
Schumann, 222
[Pg 300]Verdi, 212

Nature Writers, 102

New Amsterdam, Colony, 22

New England Colonies, 20

New Jersey, Colony, 24

New Testament, 183

New Zealand, 48

Nicaragua, 107

Norman England, 132, 266

Notre Dame, 86

Novel, Beginnings of English, 192

Ocean, The, 231

Oceanica, 45

Order, Rules of, for Clubs, 285

Organizing Clubs, 286

Panama and the Canal, 108

Peary, 168

Pennsylvania, Colony, 26

Peru, 112

Philosophy, Hebrew, 182

Celtic, 37
Classical and Romantic Themes, with, 31
Dialect and Humorous, 36
Dramatic, 29
Little Plays, 38
Hebrew, 179
Lyrics, 34
Nature, 34
Philosophical and Mystical, 33
Protest, of, 32

Poets, see Writers
To-day, Some, of, 27

Poverty, The Sick Poor, 147

President of a Club, Duties, 287

Prophecy, Hebrew, 181

Programs from Clubs, 224

Public Schools, 200
Country, in the, 126

Rodin, 158

Architecture, 79
Roman England, 131, 265

Rostand, 159

Rules of Order for Clubs, 285

Clubs, 118
Club Talks by Experts, 127
Community Work, 124
Public School, 126
Starting Rural Clubs, 119

Saint Sophia, Mosque of, 82

Salvador, 107

Sanitation, Household, 253

Schiller, 213

Schumann, 222

Scotland, Islands of, 42

Schools, see Education
Country, 126
High, 202
Kindergartens, 198
Private, 204
Public, 200
Special, 203

Service, Domestic, 59

Social, 247
Toynbee, 162

[Pg 301]Sévigné, Madame de, 216

Sheridan, 212

Slavic Songs, 69

Social Service, 10
Settlements, 247

Songs, Study of, 66
American, 72
English, 70
Franz, 68
French, 70
German, 67
Grieg, 68
Italian, 70
Old, 74
Slavic, 69

Southern Writers, 258

Spain, 239
Books of, 91

Speaking in Clubs, Rules, 289

State and Woman, 156

Stuart England, 134, 271

Sumatra, 46

Taj Mahal, 89

Tasmania, 48

Tennyson, 215

Thanksgiving Meeting, 257

Toynbee, 162

Tudor England, 133, 269

Universities and Colleges, 206
Postgraduate Work, 208

Venezuela, 114

Victoria, Queen, 136, 276, 277

Virginia, Colony, 15

Voting in Clubs, 286

Wars under Queen Anne, 189

West Indies, 50

Business, The, 155
Colleges for, 207
Great Women, 210
Home, Work for Pay at, 149
Mill Workers, 150
History of Her, 139
Work, of Her, 139, 145
To-day, 145
Professional, The, 156
Shop Girls, 153
Sick Poor, 147
Social Relations, 250
State, and the, 156

Wordsworth, 220

Work, see Woman, Children

Wren, 212

Writers, see Books, Literature, Novel, Poetry, Poets, Southern
Andersen, Hans Christian, 220
Audubon, 221
Brontë, Charlotte, 220
Browning, Elizabeth Barrett, 218
Robert, 221
Burns, 249
Dante, 221
Dickens, 216
Eliot, George, 213
Field, Eugene, 210
Goldsmith, 213
Hardy, Thomas, 222
[Pg 302]Howells, 218
Lamb, 216
Longfellow, 254
Molière, 216
Schiller, 213
Sévigné, Madame de, 216
Sheridan, 212
Tennyson, 215
Wordsworth, 220

Year Book, How to Make a, 263

End of the Project Gutenberg EBook of The Complete Club Book for Women, by 
Caroline French Benton


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