Page images
PDF
EPUB

tist, but knew all the science of his time; ples. The human race, commencing from Aristotle was not only a scientist, but he was a common origin, was soon scattered, each also a philosopher and a critic of art. It tribe separated and isolated; and yet not too would seem, therefore, that this plant of cul- much isolated, so as to be cut off from the ture grew rapidly, reached one stage of its influence of others. In these cradles of progress, flowered and fruited, but alas! be civilization the development of the races cause it was so quick in its growth, it ex- and the formation of national character hausted itself in fruiting, and died. But its took place, some in one direction and some seed remained. It again sprung up, and has in another, until these different characters been growing for the last two thousand were developed to their highest degree; and years. It has been growing in all directions; then comes the process of integration. pushing its branches in the most diverse Every nation now brings its precious matter ways, and is even now making ready again into the common fund, and thus only can for flowering and fruiting. And may we the highest type of humanity be reached. not believe that this time it will be like a The ideal nation must combine everything perennial tree, fruiting and flowering every that is valuable in any race and in any nation. year, unexhausted and inexhaustible? As in Another illustration: All individuals also the one case, rapid growth and simple struc- commence alike. It is possible that the eye ture was followed quickly by decay, so in of the mother may detect a difference bethe other, in proportion as its growth has tween babies, but we who are not mothers been long, in proportion as its elements are cannot see any difference. They are all more various, in the same proportion, evi. alike. Then from this common original, dently, will be the length of its life; and if isolated within the walls of the sanctuary of it only unite within itself all the elements of the household, inclosed as it were in an egghumanity, then its life will be co-extensive shell, necessary for intellectual embryonic with the life of humanity itself.

development, isolated and separate, the Only last night I heard a gentleman now process of intellectual growth goes on, some present say, that if a subject was proposed in one direction and some in another; the to a man with whom he was well acquainted, individuality is developed to the highest he readily anticipated how he would treat degree; but at a certain point, not too early, it. I suspect, therefore, that a good many not prematurely, all of these perfected rehere present already suspect the direction sults must be brought in contact and put in which I am drifting. I am sure that the into the common fund of society, and thus gentleman to whom I refer already antici- only the highest society can be formed. pates that I see in all this an illustration of So it is, it seems to me, with culture. Comthe law of evolution. For what is evolution? mencing with Greek unity, it differentiated Evolution is a process of successive differ- first into science, literature, and art, then entiations and integrations; and every differ- into all the different departments of each

entiation is for the purpose of gathering and of these in order to perfect details. And 1 preparing material for integration upon a now at last must come the union of all

higher and nobler plane. Now in the most these in a common culture. It is impossi

perfect type of evolution these two processes ble that the best results of culture can be d go constantly together, and the growth is attained in any other way. k steadily progressive. But in the higher Or I might put it still another way. This

kinds of evolution and in the progress of is sometimes called a hard-working age.

man there are periods of differentiation and It is a hard-working age. It is an age b gathering of materials, and periods of inte in which the struggle for life becomes

gration and unification on a higher plane- greater and greater, until it is hard to see periods of growth and periods of fruitage. what will be the final result. But it I can make myself clearer by some exam- seems to me that the solution of the prob

VOL. I.-:5.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

0

race

lem is in the direction in which we have build this glorious temple. But at least we been looking. Life is not only a season of may add our mite—we may at least bring a work, it is also a season of noble enjoyment few bricks for the building. and worship. We never can attain this until all departments of intellectual activity “Our Readers.” are combined ; until the law of mutual help that I spoke of shall prevail-help between

REMARKS BY JUDGE BOALT. nations, mutual help between individuals, I learn from what our kind host has said, men and women, mutual help between all and from the toast to which he has requested departments of intellectual activity. Our

Our me to respond, that I am the only reader was put here on this earth naked, present; all the rest are contributors. I houseless, exposed to what seems an un- had hoped that the contributors read each friendly environment. It must make its others articles. The reflection that I am own environment. The race has made its the only reader among so many contribuown environment-customs, habits, laws, tors is not calculated to inspire any particular government, political institutions, science, courage. I hope, therefore, that I, standart, religion : it has made these its most ing here alone among you, will be tenderly important environment. In other words, treated. But outside, I am not alone it cannot live beastlike in the open air: it There are plenty of readers who are not must build a house, not only for protecting, here. The constituency which I represent but also in which to enjoy life, and to wor- is large and it is rapidly growing, and I hope ship the author of our being.

the next time the magazine's friends meet Now, the Greeks built such a house, and that that constituency will require more than in it they enjoyed life; in it they also wor- one to make response for it. I think it is shiped the God of Nature in their own way; a good plan to have a toast to the readers of but the house became soon too small for the the magazine. It strikes me that it is a rapidly growing humanity. It must be pulled good omen that the readers should be condown; it has been pulled down and de- sulted. I think I have known in my exstroyed. And now we are scattered abroad perience quite a number of magazines that in all directions, gathering material and fin- have departed this life too early because they ishing details, and in the mean time living in followed the cranks of their conductors rathshanties. But now at last it seems to me we er than the wishes of their readers. It is a are bringing together these details with the good plan to look to the readers as well as purpose of building up a great and glorious to the contributors. I do not sympathize temple. Already has commenced the laying with that view which takes the editor and the of the foundations of that temple. Already editorial sanctum as comprising the magazine. I see in the air its glittering dome and its You must take the readers into account, splendid spires. Alas! it is only in the air. upon whom ultimately must depend the But remember, never temple was built on success or welfare of your magazine. I do solid ground until first it was built in the air. not pretend to be aware of the thoughts of Clear conception must precede true execu- my constituency; I cannot tell you how tion.

they will behave, but I am sure they will Now, I am sure that this which I have giv- behave pretty nearly as well as you will. en is the tendency of the intellectual move- But I say it seems to me to be wise to conment of the age. I believe that the true sider the readers. The fact is, when you mission of such an enterprise as that we in- get down to the bottom, the readers make augurate to-night is to help on this consumma- the magazine. We have you write; we tion. I am not so foolish as to imagine that tell you to write, and we don't care to read we, assembled here together, are to bring you if you don't write what we want. It is on the golden age--that we shall indeed a great mistake not to consider the readers.

all art.

Contributors put too much on themselves; tedious work. A man's successes may be there is too much said in favor of the said to consist of his casualties--a poem, creative faculty, and too little in favor of the or an essay, or a piece of music; every receptive faculty. It is as good to be able time you shoot well you wing somebody, and to understand a good thing and to know a by and by your wounded will make a roomgood thing, a fine thing, or a beautiful ful. That is the way appreciation comes; thing, as it is to create it; and it requires the it is the only way it ought to come. But same faculty which enables the author to only being a reader, I ought not to spend so create it. You might say, perhaps, that much time. I can only say, on behalf of there was more labor to the man who cre- the readers, I wish you all success. I wish ated a thing that was worthy of appreciation, you the brightest welfare, and I hope you but I assure you it is a good deal of labor will deserve the brightest welfare. I wish to hunt up something that is worthy of appre- to thank you for being, as it were, invited ciation and applause. I was just saying that in here as a sort of a masculine midwife at the readers make the magazine—they make the new birth of the magazine that is to

Now here is a painting by Crayon; wear a crown that is already famous; and if he handles colors as if he had squeezed a pluck and that undying bravery that is not rainbow into vials, and understood their in- afraid of obstacles will win, I know you will most nature, and as if he were entitled to have success. play with sunbeams. He has a faculty of drawing a sprig or a leaf in such fashion “The Publishers of the OVERLAND.” that they look like the escaped toys of some vagrant breeze. Well, what makes Crayon

REMARKS OF HON. J. H. CARMANY. paint so deliciously? It is because he has It is just seven years since the publication my warm sympathy and appreciation. Just of THE OVERLAND MONTHLY ceased. It so with Viola: he never would pour out was published for a period of seven and a such delicious sounds unless it were for my half years—from July, 1868, to the close of urging him and appreciating him into sud- 1875-the whole series numbering fifteen den enthusiasm, when melody runs from volumes, of which Mr. Roman published him like a brook. So it is with all art. I the first two. Of its inception, Mr. Roman want to say right here, You need not be can fully acquaint you, but it remains for afraid that if you appreciate your readers me to give you a brief history of its rise and they will fail to appreciate you. One great fall.

One great fall. This will necessarily lead me to speak error is in the fear of overshooting. I have more particularly of Mr. Harte, around heard a great many men in California speak- whom, I must admit, centered all the phe. ing of overshooting their audiences, but in nomenal success that was attained by this my brief experience I have never discovered literary undertaking. At the time I purthat these unlucky marksmen were too chased this periodical from Mr. Roman,

The reason why these over- some little difficulty was experienced about shooters do not hit is because there is not the retention of Mr. Harte as editor. Why force enough in their balls to cause them to he was disposed to hold off or be somewhat ricochet after they first strike the ground. indifferent I could never learn; but it was We are going to read other magazines; we finally satisfactorily adjusted by the mediaare going to compare one with the other; we tion of Mr. George B. Merrill, a most intiare going to keep you up as well as we can mate friend of Mr. Harte's at that time. to your work. But do not be afraid. Appre- As the publication of the third volume prociation is like art; it is like everything else ceeded, I became fully aware of the controlworth having ; it takes a long time to get it. ling literary position Mr. Harte occupied One brave endeavor must follow another towards the magazine, which finally so brave endeavor; it is long and sometimes strongly developed itself through his sudden

numerous.

popularity that the importance of his re- ment to dramatize “The Luck" for Mr maining with the magazine was a constant Barrett. The negotiation was closed by subject of anxious thought on my part. his asking me, “Shall I ask $2,500?” to The production of those unique and truly which I answered, “Yes”; which he did, but wonderful Californian sketches, commenc- the work remains to be done to this very ing with “The Luck of Roaring Camp,” day. As admiring visitors reached our city, attracted marked attention in the literary Harte was sought after and lionized; among world; but it was not until “Plain Language them came one Colonel Head, of Chicago, from Truthful James” made its appearance who became warmly attached to him, and that he advanced to the foremost rank of was most anxious to "locate" him in that literary fame. In this connection it may be city. I am satisfied that, when Mr. Harte stated that those remarkable sketches, which finally left, he had no settled convictions all pronounce the best work of his life so where he would make his abiding place in far — viz., “The Luck of Roaring Camp,” the East, though Chicago was the ostensible "The Outcasts of Poker Flat," "Miggles," locality; for shortly before leaving he asked “The Idyl of Red Gulch,” “Brown of Cal- me what I would take for the OVERLAND averas," and "Tennessee's Partner," and the (I naming $13,000 as the price); and the poems of "San Francisco from the Sea," subsequent action of prominent citizens of “Her Letter," "The Mountain Heart's-ease," Chicago, under the guidance of Colonel “Dow's Flat," "Chiquita," "Jim," and Head, upon Mr. Harte's arrival in that city, others—all appeared before “The Heathen fully convinces me that he was delegated to Chinee,” and the latter, under one impulsive ascertain what the publication could be public movement, carried him up with the bought for, with a view to its removal to tide. It was published in the fifth volume, Chicago. Further proof of this is found in which was the last under his editorial care. the fact that at that famous dinner projected When the halls of Congress resounded with in his honor, at which he did not appear, the apt words of the poem; when the literary the sum of $15,000 was distributed in world deluged the author and publisher checks of $500 apiece, under thirty covers, with the most complimentary letters; when as a surprise to the distinguished guest, as the news agents in the East doubled their the sum requisite to accomplish this removal. orders for the magazine--it was then that the Harte was always a slow producer of most serious notes of alarm reached the ears “copy,” as we printers coldly and unartistiof the publisher. While the wave of popu- cally term it. When he announced the fact larity was rising higher and higher, Bancroft that he wanted space for a sketch in the next & Co. were desirous of purchasing the maga. issue, I plied him early and late, so as to zine, for which I did not and would not name make it possible to complete the magazine a price, being so well satisfied with the prop- at the stated monthly date for its issuance. erty: all of which received Mr. Harte's in- As an example of the great attention he gave dorsement, though he would not at that to his productions, particularly in closing time give me any assurance of remaining; them, I submit some "proof” of his which I and while Mr. Roman was constantly in- came across the other day. quiring about its rapidly increasing circula- It is a fine point to decide whether the tion, and regretting that he had sold it to critical transition period of the magazine from me, the East was becoming more and more Mr. Roman into my hands—for I question clamorous to acquire this new and rising lit- whether another number would have been erary star.

Letters from all the prominent issued after the close of the first year of its publishers sought his services. I remember existence if I had not purchased it-did or an offer from Horace Greeley of fifty dollars did not give Mr. Harte the full measure of per letter, no matter as to length or subject. his opportunity for literary fame. The opporI was cognizant of the telegraphic arrange- tunity would at least have been delayed, and

[ocr errors]

The world yet swaying, when the clay
Which shrined it here has passed away!
Then to these loftier monarchs still,
How proud indeed the hand to fill
And bear the cup should be—to raise
And bind upon their brows the bays !

perhaps have passed forever. It has been often asserted that I did not appreciate Mr. Harte, and that I, more than any one, was the cause of his leaving. When the wave of popularity was mounting higher and higher, I suggested to him that we take a trip East on a lecture tour, the financial management to be in my hands. He was quite pleased with the idea, and I have no doubt we would have returned with increased fame for him and greater prosperity for the magazine. I I would have given but one opportunity to each community to see and hear him, thus undoubtedly making a grand success. Mr. Bartlett, Mr. Williams, and several others kindly consented to manage the magazine in the mean time. But the plan failed; and as a final proposition, being so well assured of the success of the publication under his editorial care, I offered him a salary of $5,000 per annum, payable monthly; $100 for every story, and $100 for every poem he contributed, together with a quarter interest in the magazine.

It has been asserted, with a great deal of truth, that the OVERLAND evolved a new literature of this western world; to the establishment of which, from a less artistic point of view, though quite solid in its nature, I contributed no less a sum than $25,000 over and above all receipts of its publication; and the entire right, title, and interest of which for a not quite corresponding sum of money!

a --I now vest in the brilliant and persevering young editor, who, I hope, will be able to bring it to its full standard of excellence and consequent financial success.

“Our poets." Do we claim alone
What time and country make our own?
Hear but the echoes, saint and few,
Struck from our western lyre?-too new
And strange, as yet, with voice and word
To sound the full, harmonious chord.
Not so: from the far past, else dumb
And sealed to us, their voices come.
Beyond the mystic veil of death
They sound the words of hose and faith.
About our daily pathways, clear
And sweet, their living tones we hear;
They lend our groping fancy wings
To soar aloft with nobler things;
They lift the lonely heart; they give
The sinking soul new strength to live.

Beneath these golden western skies,
Who knows what later bard may rise-
What king of Song, to which our own
Is but the feeble undertone,
The faint bird-twitterings of morn,
Ere melody's full burst is born;
Is as the tender, slender shoot
Pushed upward from the buried root,
To that which in its crowning hour
Unfolds the full and perfect flower.

Hail to the Master! In what far,
Dim hour may rise his natal star !
Within whose sleeping brain lies furled
The epic of our fair New World.
His be our unwon laurels; his
The perfect music which we miss,
Set to the onward march sublime
Of Progress with the steps of Time.
O, master touch! O, master voice !
How shall thy world in thee rejoice-
Worthy by Homer's self to stand
And clasp divinest Shakspere's hand.

“Our Poets."

MISS COOLBRITH'S POEM. To worthier hands this task should fall Than mine-the least among you all.

In Eastern lands, to the great kings
Of old, the precious offerings,
The frankincense, and balm, and myrrh,
Were borne by th' noblest messenger.
Greater the kings of Thought's domain ;
Than royal blood, the royal brain-
Which rules no single, feeble clime,
Unbound of place, or tongue, or time,

Prof. Kellogg, in a very happy speech, responded to the toast, “The Friends of the OVERLAND,” recalling the chief names that had been associated with the magazine as benefactors—Mr. Roman and Mr. Carmany as publishers; Mr. Harte, Mr. Avery, and Mr. Bartlett as editors; Gov. Stanford, Mr. Ralston, Mr. Baker, and others who had given financial help; and concluded with a warm expression of gratitude to the host of

« PreviousContinue »