Annual Meeting

    November, 1951

    THE Annual Meeting of the Society was held at the Algonquin Club, No. 217 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, on Thursday, 21 November 1951, at half after six o’clock in the evening. As the President, Augustus Peabody Loring, Jr., had died on 1 October 1951, Vice-President Morison took the chair.

    With the consent of those present, the reading of the records of the last Stated Meeting was omitted.

    Mr. Alfred Porter Putnam, of Salem, was elected to Resident Membership, and Captain William Robert Chaplin, an Elder Brother of the Trinity House, London, was elected to Corresponding Membership in the Society.

    The Treasurer submitted his Annual Report as follows:

    Report of the Treasurer

    In accordance with the requirements of the By-laws, the Treasurer submits his Annual Report for the year ending 14 November 1951.

    Statement of Assets and Funds, 14 November 1951





    Loan to Principal



    Investments at Book Value:

    Bonds (Market Value $151,718.44)



    Stocks (Market Value $200,667.75)



    Savings Bank Deposit



    Total Assets







    Unexpended Income



    Total Funds



    Income Cash Receipts and Disbursements

    Balance, 14 November 1950










    Annual Assessments



    Sales of Publications



    Sale of Waste Paper



    Total Receipts of Income







    New England Quarterly



    Editor’s Salary



    Secretarial Expense



    Annual Dinner



    Postage, Office Supplies and Miscellaneous



    Notices and Expenses of Meetings






    Auditing Services



    Massachusetts Historical Society



    General Expense



    Safe Deposit Box



    Interest on Sarah Louise Edes Fund added to Principal



    Interest on Albert Matthews Fund added to Principal



    Total Disbursements of Income



    Balance of Income, 14 November 1951



    James M. Hunnewell


    Report of the Auditing Committee

    The undersigned, a Committee appointed to examine the accounts of the Treasurer for the year ended 14 November 1951, have attended to their duty by employing Messrs. Stewart, Watts and Bollong, Public Accountants and Auditors, who have made an audit of the accounts and examined the securities on deposit in Box 91 in the New England Trust Company.

    We herewith submit their report, which has been examined and accepted by the Committee.

    Willard G. Cogswell

    Arthur S. Pier

    Auditing Committee

    The Treasurer’s Report was accepted and referred to the Committee on Publication.

    On behalf of the Committee appointed to nominate officers for the ensuing year the following list was presented; and a ballot having been taken, these gentlemen were unanimously elected:

    • President Hon. Robert Walcott
    • Vice-President Samuel Eliot Morison
    • Richard Mott Gummere
    • Recording Secretary Robert Earle Moody
    • Corresponding Secretary Zechariah Chafee, Jr.
    • Treasurer James Melville Hunnewell
    • Member of the Council for Three Years Reginald Fitz

    After the meeting was dissolved, dinner was served. The guests of the Society were Mr. Arthur Stanton Burnham, Major General C. G. Helmick, Mr. Frank Mitchell, Rear Admiral Hewlett Thebaud, Mr. T. H. Thomas, Mr. Norman Dahl. The Reverend Henry Wilder Foote said grace.

    After dinner, the Annual Report of the Council was read by Mr. Zechariah Chafee, Jr.

    Report of the Council

    THE Society held four meetings during the year. The annual dinner took place on 21 November 1950, and there were three afternoon meetings. On 28 December 1950, at the Club of Odd Volumes, Mr. Robert Peabody Bellows read a paper, “Whither Away? The Search for the Frame of the First King’s Chapel.” On 15 February 1951, at the same Club, Mr. Wendell S. Hadlock read a paper, “The Islesford Museum and Some of Its Aspects.” On 26 April 1951 we met in the evening at No. 2 Gloucester Street as the guest of the President, who was lamentably kept away by illness. The two papers were read by Rev. Joseph R. Freese, S.J., on “Writs of Assistance,” and by Mr. Jerome D. Green, on “Milford Haven: a Colony of Massachusetts in Great Britain.”

    Volume 35 of the Publications, covering transactions of meetings for the years 1942–1946, appeared in the summer. Frederick B. Allis, Jr., is completing the editing of the Maine land grant papers left to the Society by George Nixon Black of Ellsworth. To these he is adding many valuable documents from the Bingham estate and elsewhere, so that the volumes of Collections, which will be our next publication, will contain new and valuable material concerning the District of Maine. The Council has recently recommended a proposal by Mr. Sumner C. Powell to edit a volume of Collections containing the seventeenth-century records of the town meetings of Sudbury, Massachusetts, with annotations concerning the settlement of the town and the systems of land tenure that were familiar to the settlers.

    The Society has continued its support of the New England Quarterly of which it is joint publisher.

    The adoption of new By-laws at the last Annual Meeting, which made important changes in the classes of membership, resulted in the election of a number of new members and the transfer of a number of old members to new classes. The following gentlemen have been elected in the past year:


    • John Phillips Coolidge
    • Bertram Kimball Little
    • David Britton Little
    • David Pingree Wheatland
    • Stephen Wheatland
    • Gordon Thaxter Banks
    • Buchanan Charles
    • I. Bernard Cohen
    • Dennis Aloysius Dooley
    • William Henry Harrison
    • David Milton Kendall McKibbin
    • David Thompson Watson McCord
    • Richard Donald Pierce
    • Vernon Dale Tate
    • Stephen Thomas Riley
    • Robert Dale Richardson
    • Douglas Swaim Byers
    • Earle Williams Newton


    • Bernhard Knollenberg
    • Marion Vernon Brewington
    • Henry Beston


    • Arthur Adams


    • Julian Parks Boyd
    • Douglas Southall Freeman

    With the abolition of the ancestral requirement all Associate Members were transferred to Resident or Non-Resident Membership, while other changes in the By-laws resulted in the transfer of several Resident and Corresponding Members to the new class of Non-Resident Members.

    With great regret we report that seven members have died during the year.

    Ogden Codman, Resident, 1908, Corresponding, 1946, was one of our earliest members at the time of his death on 8 January 1951 in France where he had lived for many years. Distinguished both as an architect and as a student of the history of architecture, he had a great knowledge of the history of Boston, its buildings and its families.

    Harold Hitchings Burbank, Resident, 1927, died 7 February 1951 in his sixty-fourth year. Going from Dartmouth to Harvard, he became a Doctor of Philosophy in 1915 and was at once made Chairman of the Board of Tutors in History, Government and Economics. He directed the introductory course in the principles of economics for more than twenty years. He loved teaching economics, but he cared even more about developing the minds of young men. Few Harvard professors have ever worked with as many students individually as he did. For thirty years he carried on a research project into the evolution of the colonial property tax in a group of Massachusetts towns, but left it unfinished because his students and his department always came first.

    Robert Francis Seybolt, Corresponding, 1933, died 5 February 1951 at the age of sixty-three. A graduate of Brown University with his doctorate from Columbia, he taught the history of education for thirty-eight years, first at the University of Wisconsin and since 1920 at the University of Illinois. Among his many publications were his translation of the Autobiography of a Wandering Scholar of the Fifteenth Century and several books on schools in the New England colonies and New York. He enriched our Proceedings with scholarly information about the schoolmasters of colonial Boston and the ministers at its town meetings.

    George Gregerson Wolkins, Associate, 1937, Resident, 1950, died 2 March 1951. Descended from a Danish ship-captain who settled in Boston a century ago, coal merchant and scholar, contributor of many papers to the Massachusetts Historical Society and for ten years its difficult and devoted Treasurer.

    William Gwinn Mather, Corresponding, 1927, died 5 April 1951 in his ninety-sixth year. An iron and steel manufacturer in Cleveland since 1878, trustee of three colleges, president of the Cleveland Museum of Art—a range of interests that his ancestor Cotton Mather would have admired. A collector of the works of the Mather family, he placed scholars and librarians permanently in his debt by inspiring the publication of the magnificent bibliography of their writings.

    Richard Clipston Sturgis, Resident, 1916, was transferred to Corresponding Membership in 1933, when upon his retirement from the active practice of architecture, he moved to Portsmouth, New Hampshire. There he died on 8 May 1951 in his ninety-first year. Born in Boston in 1860 of a family famous in the China trade, he graduated from Harvard in 1881 and then studied architecture in England. To his native city of Boston he gave the Federal Reserve Bank and other notable buildings, and motorists driving along the Charles River are delighted by the Perkins Institution for the Blind, whose inmates will never know the beauty of its tower. For this Society he designed in the First Church in Boston the doorway honoring Thomas Hutchinson, who as governor and historian served Massachusetts well, and the memorial rail to Henry Herbert Edes, our founder and chief benefactor.

    Augustus Peabody Loring, Jr., Resident, 1931, Recording Secretary for thirteen years, President of this Society since 1946, died 1 October 1951. A great citizen and a good friend.

    The report was accepted and referred to the Committee on Publication.

    Vice-President Morison paid brief but eloquent tribute to the Society’s late President, Augustus Peabody Loring, Jr. Mr. David McCord read a group of witty and ingenious poems. Mr. Julian Parks Boyd then addressed the Society and its guests upon “The Black Affair of Westover.”