Wednesday, March 1, 2017

For the 75th Birthday of William Dean Howells

Mrs. Coates was in attendance at a dinner celebrating the 75th birthday of writer William Dean Howells (1 March 1912) held at Sherry's in NYC on 2 March 1912. The event was hosted by Harper's Weekly editor, Col. George Harvey. Also in attendance was President William Howard Taft, who gave an opening address. Mrs. Coates also wrote a poem in honor of the occasion:

Seventy-five glad years of blessing,
     And the hope of blessing more;
Memories the heart caressing,
     Dreams that beckoning wait, before;
Life—full life, made rich by giving:
     Life that can create, and lend
To the poor—delight in living,
     To the lonely—many a friend
Wisdom that can teach through laughter—
     Seeming but to entertain,
Or through pathos which, thereafter,
     Leaves no dull, regretful pain;
Years of blessing, years of kindness,
     And the courage that can smile
Though the eyes be dim to blindness
     With a sorrow, hid the while,—
These are thine, thou selfless schemer,
     Chanter of brave carmina:
These thy gifts to us, dear dreamer,—
     Traveler from Altruria.
"For the Birthday of William Dean Howells" by Florence Earle Coates. Published in The Unconquered Air (1912).

Mrs. Coates also wrote "The Singer"—alternatively titled "A Traveller from Altruria"—based on Howells' Utopian novel, A Traveler from Altruria (1894).

William Dean Howells
(1837-1920)

1 comment:

  1. Quite a nice article! Thank you very much for this post. At one of local party venues in Atlanta we hosted a family party on our grandparent’s 75th anniversary. It was a surprise party for them and invited their old college friends too. They loved our surprise a lot!

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