The Anniversary Supper of the St. Andrew’s Society of St. John.

Article Title
The Anniversary Supper of the St. Andrew’s Society of St. John.
Page Number
Article Type
Article Contents
The Anniversary Supper of the St. Andrew’s Society of St. John. This Society celebrated St. Andrew’s Day by a supper in the Park Hotel. The President, P. Robertson Inches, Esq., M.D., occupied the chair; the Vice Presidents were A.C. Jardine and James Knox, Esqrs. Among the guests and others, who occupied prominent places, were the Rev. Dr. Waters, Chaplain, Rev. Dr. Macrae, Senators Macfarlane and Boyd, Hon. T.W. Anglin, M.P. Hon. William Wedderburn, Mayor Ray, Dr. Tuck, Recorder of St. John, Ald. Skinner, Representatives of the News, Globe, Sun, and Telegraph. Letters of apology were received from Hon. Mr. Burpee, Mr. Weldon, M.P., Gen. Warner, Sheriff Harding, etc. The attendance was unusually large, and the company a very spirited one. The tables were ornamented with flowers and bannerets, and presented a brilliant appearance. Flowers were provided for button-holes, etc. The bagpipes were in full force and played their part well during the evening. Grace was said by the Chaplain. The following is a copy of the bill of fare, which we may say en passant, was most elegantly printed at the Globe office: -- Oysters on Shell. Potage. Julienne. Consomme of Chicken. Sardines. Poisson Salmon Cutlets, Mashed Potatoes. Relevee. Boiled Chicken, with Truffles. Roast Sirloin of Beef, aux Champignons. French Peas. Young Turkeys, Oyster Dressing. Asparagus. Entrees. Haggis. Vols Au Vent of Oysters. Potato Croquettes. Rotis. Roast Partridge. Squabs on Toast. Mallard Duck. Saratoga Potatoes. Lobster Salad. Pate De Foie Gras. Entremets. Fruit Jelly. Clear Jelly. Charlotte Russe. Lemon Pie. Mince Pie. Chocolate Cream Pie. Creamed Macaroons. Italian Cream. Fruit Cake. Pound Cake. Jelly Cake. Glaces. Tutti -Frutti. Chocolate Ice Cream. Dessert. Fruit. Bon-Bons. Celery and Cheese. Coffee. Chocolate. It would be impossible to speak too highly of the supper. It was most admirable in every respect. Well served and would do credit to any hotel. After it had been fully discussed, THE PRESIDENT called the meeting to order, and before proposing the first toast made a few remarks appropriate to the occasion, and expressive of regret on account of the absence of the gentlemen above referred to and others. The toasts as given were arranged as follows: -- 1. The Queen – “God Save The Queen.” 2. The President of the United States – “Hail Columbia.” 3. The Governor General and The Princess Louise – “The Campbells are Coming.” 4. The Lieutenant Governor – “Hail to the Chief.” 5. The Senate, House of Commons and Local Legislature. 6. The Day, and all who Honor it, “Blue Bells of Scotland.” 7. The Mayor and Corporation of St. John – “Braw, braw Lads o’ Gala Water.” 8. Our Guests – “Auld Lang Syne.” 9. The Land o’ Cakes and Brither Scots – “Home Sweet Home.” 10. Absent Members – “Here’s to them that’s away.” 11. The Fair Daughters of New Brunswick – “Woo’d an’ Married and a.” 12. Stirring Memories of Wallace, Knox and Burns -- “Scots, wha hae.” 13. The Press – “Jolly Good Fellows.” In giving the formal toasts, the president introduced them, with brief but happy remarks. It is needless to say that they were all duly honored. When they came to that of the Lieut. Governor, it elicited a reply from the Provincial Secretary, who said that since Confederation New Brunswick had a series of able constitutional Governors, but none more so than the present Governor, so long and so intimately connected with St. John. (Applause.) “The Senate,” brought Senator Macfarlane to his feet, who expressed the pleasure he always had in meeting a body of brother Scots, but especially on St. Andrew’s Day. Though they had been called clannish, on such occasions, Scotchmen were wont to welcome those of other nationalities and blood, rejoicing in hospitality and good fellowship. At present the Scotchmen of Canada were proud that the position of Governor General was filled by one of their countrymen, the Irish nationality having had two successive Governor Generals. On behalf of his own branch, he said it had been called by various names, some even went so far as to call them, “old ladies,” (laughter) and others declared that they were “too much governed” (some voices, “that’s so.”) He would not go into these questions, as Senator Boyd was to speak, and he could do justice to them. He (Senator M.) was proud to welcome to the Senate of Canada, in the person of Mr. Boyd, a man whose fame had gone before him (applause) and such was the general feeling in the Senate. He thanked them for the hospitality extended to him (cheers.) Senator Boyd followed, in a few pleasant and witty remarks, in which he took the ground that as he had managed to secure the presence of Senator Macfarlane, he had about done his duty. There was Mr. Anglin, who was a good speaker, and who spoke a good deal in the House of Commons, ready to give a speech. There was Mr. Elder, who was anxious to speak, and there were others. He might speak further on, if he caught the inspiration, but meanwhile he thanked them on behalf of the Senate. (Cheers). Mr. Anglin returned thanks for the House of Commons. It was true that he spoke occasionally in that assembly, but he seldom placed himself in the front of a debate; with the characteristic modesty of Irishmen (laughter) he waited for others to lead off, and was content to come in at the end, using his privilege as a representative. (Applause.) His forte was not in story-telling, nor in circulating stories of any kind. (Laughter and cheers.) He was content to make a plain, unvarnished statement of facts. In regard to the topics open for discussion that evening, he felt restricted. If they could take up the Railway question, which Senator Boyd might soon have to help settle, he might say something; if they could only tackle the N.P. (laughter) he might make something of a speech, but as it was he felt restricted. He could only express his pleasure at being present, as he had often been before on a meeting of the St. Andrew’s Society. He had before mentioned that he had some Scottish blood in his own veins, his grandmother being Scotch. (Great applause.) Referring to the fact that Ireland had supplied two Governor Generals, while now we had that office filled by a distinguished Scotchman, whom he highly eulogized, one, however, who had some Irish blood in his veins -- (cheers) -- he said such was the case, but it was not the Governor General, but the First Minister who shaped the policy of the Administration and governed the country, and they would not object to have an Irishman come to the front. Formerly the contention was not whether an Irishman or a Scotchman would be Premier, but which Scotchman would it be. Referring to the House of Commons, he briefly characterized that body, and concluded by returning thanks on its behalf. (Cheers.) Mr. Elder, who was loudly called for, but who wished to devolve the duty on the Provincial Secretary or Mr. Willis, replied for the House of Assembly. He said he was greatly pleased when he heard the President propose “The Senate and The House of Commons of Canada,” as he wanted to drink the health of that body, but when the President tacked on, “The Legislature of New Brunswick,” he was deprived of that pleasure. He thought that they ought to have heard a little more from the representatives of Parliament, in the first place. There was Mr. Boyd, one of the most eloquent men in Canada. They had seen how he evaded speaking at any length; he had not even cast any light on the Deceased Wife’s Sister question, on which so many Senators had distinguished themselves. (Cheers and laughter.) Leaving that matter, he could say that he always had pleasure in being present on the gatherings of the St. Andrew’s Society, and he had new pleasures and experiences that evening. It was the first time that he had heard the bagpipes play the National Anthem, and the fact confuted the idea that they had got such a Jacobite cant in the days of the Stuarts that they were incapable of doing so (laughter). The President had remarked how enthusiastically Scotchmen drank the Queen’s health. It was very true that they did so, but then there was an idea that Scotchmen would do the same with any such toast if it could only be drunk in good liquor. (Laughter and cheers.) And yet the Scotch were ready to adapt themselves to new conditions; it looked to-night as if they were almost prepared for the Scott Temperance Act, and that being the appearance of things, he was pleased that Mr. Murdoch had not brought on his anchor ice on St. Andrew’s Day. (Applause.) The appearance of a gathering of this kind always attracted his attention, and yet he thought their gatherings annually showed less of the true Scottish element; and were so much the less picturesque – that was owing to the readiness with which Scotchmen took on civilization in favorable circumstances (Roars of laughter and cheers); Scotchmen were capable of great development, “when caught young” – he meant no offence; why, Mr. President, you and the other young men present have had so many corners rubbed off you would not pass for more than Scotch-Irish, as they designate some Irishmen in the United States. (Applause.) Apart from the personnel of their Society, he thought it entitled to high praise as a charitable body, which accomplished a great deal of good and also as a National Society. There was something sacred about nationalities, about the men who figured in them and the mission which they had. Their likeness and those of the great men who appeared in them remained unaffected by time, as we said of the dead, that “they never grow old,” but ever seemed to us to retain the forms in which we knew them, so it was with the great nationalities, and that of Scotland was one of the greatest of these. Their record remained forever. A short time ago, that popular young nobleman, Lord Roseberry, speaking as Lord Rector of the University of Aberdeen, had made two points on the Scottish nationality. The first was that when they were a nation they were always poor, and when they ceased to be a nation they were almost always rich. Yet Lord Roseberry pointed out that in both the Scots acted a great part. They were poor because they were constantly fighting for independence, and permitting a vast tract of country to be ravaged by their foes, in order to maintain it; but when the danger was past, when they became part of another nation, then they applied themselves to the arts of peace, and to the scientific and mechanical discoveries by which the acquisition of wealth was promoted. These points were well taken. It was in the period of comparative poverty that Scottish patriotism and heroism and valor and chivalry shone forth resplendent, a rich inheritance for all generations of men; it was then that Scotland taught England and the world the principles of civil liberty, fighting even against her sceptered rulers when they dared to infringe the rights of the people. (Applause.) It was impossible to over-estimate the works which Scotland had thus done for the British Isles, and for mankind. This Society represented the principles of that great nationality, and in its sphere here he hoped would be able to help in leavening our young nationality with a happy union of the two principles; the romantic and utilitarian going hand in hand, the one giving high ideals, the other illustrating the best phases of modern progress. (Cheers.) The belief had been expressed that the age of chivalry and patriotism had suffered an eclipse, and that we now only lived for buying and selling and getting gain. It had been charged on a countryman of his own – no doubt very maliciously – that “he thanked God he had a country to sell” – that was clearly a calumny, (laughter and cheers) but there was some reason to fear that the simple faith and pure disinterestedness of other days were not always exemplified now. It would be a great thing for Canada to bring those principles into operation, along with the principles most characteristic of a utilitarian age. (Cheers.) Mr. Willis followed, complimenting some of the previous speakers on their eloquent remarks, and giving a most humorous account of an occasion when Senator Macfarlane passed himself off for the Lieut. Governor of New Brunswick, in London, Ontario, (that gentleman not having arrived) and of the speech he made on that occasion. All Scotchmen would have been proud of it. He spoke highly of Scottish achievements, while claiming Irish blood for himself. He proposed to let the Acts of the Local Legislature speak on their behalf, but heartily returned thanks for the toast. (Applause.) Dr. Inches gave a sketch of the Society’s operations before preparing the next toast; we pass them and will return to them again. He gave “The Day and all who Honor It,” to which the Rev. Dr. Macrae replied, in a very able and most practical address, to which we cannot do justice this morning but which we should be pleased to see published entire. He first spoke of the reasons which caused the 30th of November to be celebrated; they were involved in obscurity; he next touched on the mythical story and legends of St. Andrew and how he came to be a Scottish Saint, making this point, that Scotland did not choose any even of its great heroes to be the Patron Saint of the country, but did choose the Christian apostle; that was the golden thread that gave coherence to Scottish history. They gathered not even as a mere narrow nationality, but as members of the human family professing the Christian religion. He then asked, who were those who honored the day, and where did they honor it? He might rather ask where did they not honor it, and he graphically depicted the ubiquity of Scotchmen and the universality of the observance of the day. He showed how emphatically Sir Charles Dilke, in his Greater Britain, had remarked on this subject, and said they might claim like St. Paul to be citizens of no mean country. Scotland’s emblem was a thistle, its motto was “who dare touch me,” but its people were versed not only in the arts and sciences, but they had produced poets who gave songs to the people. (Cheers.) A well repressed enthusiasm burned beneath the tartan. They readily blended with the sister race, and helped to carry on the great work of civilization. Speaking of the men who honored the day; those who did so were among our greatest statesmen. Gladstone, the greatest of the modern statesmen, (No, no, drowned in cries of yes, yes and cheers), honored it; great poets and preachers without number honored it; the leading statesmen of Canada honored it. They could all respect the honesty and ability of Alexander Mackenzie (great cheering) and the astuteness and statecraft of Sir John Macdonald. (Cheers and laughter.) Besides this, the Governor General was a Scotchman, who made our Queen a proud woman by marrying her daughter. (Cheers and laughter.) The men who were carrying on the Canada Railroad to the Pacific were mostly Scotchmen, who honored the day; he had little doubt they would look out for themselves while they might benefit the people. In New Brunswick, Scotchmen held their own in all walks of commerce, but he asked what they had done to show, in any permanent way, that Scotchmen lived here. Referring to the proposed Loyalist movement, he said some thought that to be one of those Loyalists was to have a sort of civil pre-eminence, but while they honored them for honoring their ancestors, they must remember that loyalty was common to the settlers of this country of different nationalities, and he wished to the Scotchmen as well as the Loyalists join in erecting some beneficient evidence that they had lived in this country. He hinted that there might be co-operation in creating a Memorial of the founding of the city. He made an appeal to the Scottish nationality to set about such works in a practical way, and was cheered to the echo as he sat down. Mr. Gorrie followed by a song, admirably sung. The vice-president, Mr. Jardine, proposed “The Mayor and Corporation” in a neat speech. The Mayor spoke for the Corporation in a happy and excellent speech of some length, as did Ald. Skinner in one of his best speeches, making the point that it was the race that made the country, and that even if an exodus existed, the best men stayed behind, and would make St. John a great city, one of the greatest in Canada. The Mayor and Alderman were much cheered. Dr. Tuck spoke for “Our Guests” in his usual effective manner, and Mr. Ellis made a short speech on the same subject. “The Land of Cakes,” elicited a song from Mr. Duncan. “Absent Members” was feelingly given by Mr. Lindsay; Mr. Straten spoke on behalf of “The Ladies,” and the Rev. Dr. Waters delivered a most stirring and eloquent speech, and withal a very sensible one, on “Stirring Memories,” etc. We regret extremely that we cannot give this speech. It was followed by “The Press,” which elicited a short but witty speech from Mr. Ellis. Soon after this most brilliant and successful gathering broke up, one of the best of the kind ever held in St. John.