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Jan 25 1901


The Evening News, Toronto, Ontario January 25, 1901

In every era, generation, and decade we encounter the "looking backward" mind. It belongs as a rule to the male species, though I have found it encased in female form. It is pessimistic, unprogressive and seemingly useless. It creates nothing save an atmosphere of discontent for itself and annoyance for its associates. It abhors the present, doubts the future and idealizes the past. From such a mind emaciated the following letter recently addressed to me: "One hundred years ago women worked wonders as a sex--bore children like Washington and Jackson and did their work with pleasure. Their homes were their pride and they were WOMEN. To-day a so-called NEW WOMAN appears on the dying century. Brazen, loud mouthed, immodest, opposed to moral, conventional or proper reservation, we find them at Coney Island when ten, and in the Tenderloin at sixteen years of age. There are undoubtedly some women in New York and other places who are virtuous. There are also some in Calvary and Greenwood Cemeteries. More in the latter places than in the former. Man has delved deep in life's mystery, has turned darkness into light, and with grant strides passes over the fields of knowledge; but woman, sacrificing herself upon an altar of greed and crime, is the anchor to the ship Progress."

It is not surprising that the author of the above feels that women of the present era are degenerating when he realizes that one of them brought him into the world!

In every century the world has produced its many great and virtuous women, its few evil and degenerate ones.

Man would never have "gone forward with giant strides" had he not been prepared, aided and supported by noble mothers, wives and daughters.

When woman as a class loses her hold upon principles and morals, man will degenerate and become extinct. He cannot exist and climb without her assistance before and after his birth into this life. The two sexes are one and inseparable in their effect upon humanity. The woman of present day has as many virtues, and no more faults, than her sisters of a hundred years ago. Her manners and habits differ, as do her gowns and bonnets, but her nature remains the same from century to century. The American woman of the eighteenth century was obliged to do work which was quite unnecessary to-day. The spinning-wheel and the hatchel might have been both useful and picturesque, but they would be quite out of place in the present era. Other and more important duties engross women now. Woman was never an angelic being, devoid of human faults, passions and weaknesses, and she is not to day. She will not be to-morrow.

But she is a creature to-day who understands herself and her fellow beings as never before, and, therefore, she is capable of greater usefulness.


We sailed down the track of the moon last night,
My love and I--
Down the trail of silvery, broken light,
Till it merged in sky,
And the misty mountain-tops above
And the deeps below
Were wrapped in the witching charm that love
And the moon bestow,
No wings on our barque, save Time's, yet we flew
Through the shimmering tide;
And the moon climbed high; but we only knew
We were side by side.
And the moon sank low and dark shadows slept
On the river's breast;
But we only knew that our troth we kept
And our love was rest.

--Margaret Robins


Miss Helen Macdonald, of Simcoe Street is visiting in Montreal, and will go on later to Quebec.

The marriage of Mr. Edward Bremner to Miss Edith A Edwards, daughter of Mr. L. C. Edwards of Ottawa, took place very quietly in that city on Wednesday afternoon. The ceremony was performed by the Rev. A. A. Cameron. The bride wore her travelling gown, and after the ceremony Mr. and Mrs. Bremner left for a trip to New York and other cities. Miss Aggie Nairn of "Kelvinside," Jarvis Street is visiting in Montreal.

Miss Mary Payne, of Hamilton is the guest of Mrs. Warwick, of "Sunnieholme," Bloor Street East.

Mrs. Allan Bristol Aylesworth has postponed the at home which she intended to give on Saturday, February 2nd, in St. George's Hall on account of the death of her Majesty the Queen.

Miss Mathews, of St. George Street, has left for New Orleans with Miss Buck. Miss Bowie, Brockville, is the guest of Major and Mrs. Myles of Queen's Park. The engagement is announced of Miss Maude Adam, daughter of Mr. G. Mercer Adam of Akron, Ohio, to Mr. Ernest Andrews, of the Bank of Commerce. Mr. Andrews has left for San Francisco to take charge of the bank's business there.

Epigrams from the pen of Carmen Sylva, Queen of Romania:

The woman who forgives unfaithfulness has ceased to love; true love does not know forgiveness.

Jealousy is the flattery of love. Husband and wife should never cease to be jealous of each other. In man's eyes disappointment in love is but a pretence for seeking amusements without love.

Mistrust a man who doesn't believe in domestic happiness.

Animals move freely in their element; man is often out of his element because he is the slave of habit.

If your wife deceives you it's your own fault.

There is nothing in a man that two smart women can't worm out of him.

You, I, all of us, will throw the first stone on a women who does what a man of honor is freely permitted to do.

A woman that is misunderstood is one who doesn't understand other women.

When a man sets out to destroy things he goes about it like a steer or bear; woman, in the same mood, imitates the gnawing mouse or the spring of a serpent.

Daisies blow in the glad Springtime,
Bringing fancies to you and me;
Summer dreamings and laughing rhyme,
Golden hopes in their leaves read we,
Thoughts in the pansies' hearts I see,
Memories sometimes and vague regret,
But when Wintry winds blow cold and free
In a bunch blooms the modest violet!

Jonquil gay and the beauty rose,
All very well for an evening fete,
Daffodil by the pathway grows,
Hollyhock by the garden gate
Apple boughs where the birdies mate
Blossom in pink with dew all wet,
But when frost grows thick as a rival's hate
In a bunch blooms the modest violet!

Clustered close in their purple tie,
Sweetness veiled in a splendor dim,
Blossom the poets once called shy,
Now you play us the gay flam-flim,
Makes't though our pocketbooks grow slim,
Marry, it is to run in debt!
When icicles lean o'er the window's rim,
In a bunch blooms the modest violet .


In a chapter in Amelia Barr's, book, "Maids, Wives and Bachelors," called "The favourites of men," the author says: "The position of a favourite is no easy one. She has to cultivate qualities, which should be put to better use and bring her more satisfactory results. She must have discrimination enough to value flirting at its proper value; for if she confounds love-making with love and takes everything 'au grand serieux,' her reputation as a safe favourite would be seriously endangered. In short she must be armed at every point, never lay down her arms and never be off watch. It is therefore a position whose requirements, if translated into active business life, would employ the utmost resources of a fertile and energetic man." This is rather a long extract, but it is needed to show Amelia Barr's position on this question. Her position is decidedly not that of the writer. Her arguments appear to refute themselves. It is a debt which society owes to the attractive girl, "the favorite of men," "the flirt," "the coquette," or whatever she is called, that some little justice be done her in this line.

Personally and from close observation I have always felt her to be a sadly abused person.

Mrs. Barr pictures "the favorite" as a seasoned campaigner, with arms and accoutrements ready polished for the fray. She wins by gentle arts, it is true, but still it is with deliberately planned siege that she carries the citadel of the heart of man. Any fair-minded man or woman will agree that to be the favorite of men, there must be spontaneity and charm, and these things no amount of acting can feign successfully. There is a vast deal of difference between a flirty, bright girl and a deliberately designing woman, and it is not fair to the first that she be confounded with her inferior, the second. A girl who attracts men friends (and seems able to keep them, too, strange as it may seem), usually has friends and warm, faithful champions among her own sex. She may not have many, for envy reigns in the hearts of many women, but that she has a few warm female friends will testify to the fact that she is worth loving. A girl who attracts men and is called therefore "a flirt" is as a rule obeying her instincts as surely as a kitten does in frolicing [sic] with a ball of yarn. She has been gifted (unfortunately for herself sometimes), with brightness, a sunny disposition, charm and vivacity, and if she is as a result a drawing star to many, blame an accident of birth--not the girl.

Many men blame such a girl or woman for leading them on, when the fault is all their own in being so egotistical that they could not see that she treated all the other fellows whom she liked in exactly the same way. If she were as designing and planning as Amelia Barr gives her the credit for being, she would very soon lose all her charm for the men she strives to please. If she is a little vain, who can blame her? Admiration is like champagne and mounts quickly to the head, but like champagne you can very soon become accustomed to it.

And it is my opinion, also formed from observation that admiration has not such a debilitating effect on the girl who is used to it as on some other people. Don't be afraid of the attractive girl; remember that "coquetry is the thorn that guards the rose--easily trimmed off when once plucked."


Don't look for the flaws as you go through life.
And even when you find them
It is wise and kind to be somewhat blind
And to seek for the virtues behind them.
For the cloudiest night has a hint of light
Somewhere in its shadows hiding
And it's better far to hunt for a star
Than the spots on the sun abiding

The current of life runs ever away
To the bosom of God's great ocean
Don't set your force 'gainst the river's course
And think to alter its motion
Don't waste a curse on the universe--
Remember it lived before you.
Don't but at the storm with your puny form
But bend and let it pass o'er you.

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Copyright 2002 Whitehern Historic House and Garden
The development of this website was directed by Mary Anderson, Ph.D. and Janelle Baldwin, M.A.
Please direct questions and comments to Mary Anderson, Ph.D.

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