GOOD THINGS COLUMN
Now that the Town meeting and School meeting have had their day, we can settle down to life again with the pleasant consciousness of duty done. Who would live in the city where all the grave responsibility of running affairs would be taken from us by professional politicians? In town every one has opportunity to air grievances and express desires, with what cogency and eloquence he may summon. Together, we save the country; the popular vote is supreme, and the glories of democracy, simon pure, are annually illustrated.
The best things are saved to us. The schools have got what they ask for; Supervision, from which there can be no valid reason for departing, has been championed; the sidewalk, after some protest, is permitted to grow; the proposal to improve the station square has been approved; even a town dump is assured. And the man who to date, knows most about how to run the town, may still steer our complicated affairs with the skill acquired from long practice.
One of the best things in town is town meeting. It is a school for good nature. It is a safety valve, where discontent may blow itself. It is an annual education in social enterprise. It is the place to study human nature. One thing which stands out clearly from consideration of these meetings is the fact that in them, as everywhere, know what you are talking about, and can show that you know, you can usually put things over.
A marshalling of facts followed by some clear practicable plan wins the day. Sometimes there is weakness in the array of facts, and uncertainty in presentation, but if there is no one who can do better in the opposition, the day is won. Time and confusion would be saved, if upon every article which comes up for consideration, we could get at first the point of view of the man who happens to know most of the matter and who is most concerned with introducing the particular article.
One of the good things advocated in this column some weeks ago, (and it may be confessed, advocated without much hope that it would really be brought about) seems now quite within reach.
The widening of Lafayette road near the station is now; buy vote of the town and the courtesy of the Boston and Main officials, assured.
Furthermore, the Railroad officials are willing to do the generous thing toward beautifying the station yard. They will furnish material for filling to make a park in the yard; they will furnish shrubbery for decoration, and will maintain the park in good condition for the future, once it is completed. With a large oval lawn in the yard, surrounded by a circular drive, and crossed by a concrete walk from the station to the street, we shall have a very attractive spot in the most conspicuous place in town. The plan involves some labor which can not fairly be expected of either the Railroad or the town. It remains for some public spirited men to give some time to men and teams this spring, to make the station park an accomplishment we may all take delight in, and a permanent improvement in the right direction.
There will be further opportunity for improvement toward attractiveness and safety, in the enlarged square at the intersection of High street and Lafayette road. If in place of the tub and pump which are now decorating the place, and a means of diverting traffic to the east and west of the fountain in the interest of safety.
Perhaps a popular subscription would assure meeting the expense. Some of our public spirited organizations might well head the subscriptions. In regard to these proposals the Union will be glad to publish letters from those interested, which might bring out good ideas as to methods and plans along the line of these improvements.
"If cloudy Candlemas day in leap year be,
and the woodchuck his shadow cannot see,
back to his ground hole he goes to stay,
for winter will last till All Fools' day"
The seniors of Hampton academy, who are spending ten days in Washington D.C., report a good time, and are delighted with the trip and scenery.
The Electric Railroad management should be congratulated on the very efficient manner in which they have kept the road open during the many severe snow storms this winter. What would we do without the electric cars?
The Young Woman's class in church school, of which Miss Etta Blake is a member, are sending her this week Friday, a Sunshine Box for her pleasure during her convalescence.
A.S. True's house on the Exeter road has been rented through the office of H. L. Tobey, to Mrs. Stanton of Boston, who will take possession April 1.
Mrs. George W. Lane was brought from Salem, Mass., on Saturday last, to be buried in Hampton, her native place. The funeral services were held in the Methodist church, where she and Mr. Lane were, for many years, members and faithful workers. The funeral services were conducted by the Rev. Jacob Spaulding, of Salisbury, Mass., a former pastor and friend of the deceased. Mrs. Lane was born in Hampton nearly eighty six years ago, the daughter of David Towle. She was a teacher here, for a number of years before her marriage; many of her pupils still remember her as a fine teacher. Mrs. Lane leaves a husband, four children, grandchildren, and many personal friends, to mourn her loss.
Pheasants are very common nowadays, in all parts of the town; they are to be seen in the streets daily. However, you cannot trap one, as there is a fine. I wonder sometimes, why these laws are so flagrantly violated. For instance, there is a law that tobacco in any form shall not be sold to minors, and it is done daily. There is a law against gambling, and the boys gamble in one form or another daily, and many other harmful things from which our young people are not protected as well as the birds are.
Miss Emma Shelton spent the week end with her mother and brother. Miss Shelton is as very successful teacher of mathematics in Massachusetts.
The Whist club is entertained at the home of Mrs. John Janvrin Thursday afternoon.
Mrs. Susan Chesley died in Portsmouth last week. She was one of the oldest members of the W. R. C., of Hampton.
Miss Adeline C. Marston spent last week in Boston and Somerville, visiting friends.
Mr. and Mrs. Fred Harrison, who have been spending the winter in the South, have returned home after passing a very delightful season. They were equally pleased to reach good old Hampton and find real winter in the shape of a big snow storm.
The poor robins are surely receiving a cold reception this spring of 1916, and it would be well for all of us to see that they have a banquet every day in the back yard. The menu consisting of dry cereals, bread crumbs, suet and crack corn would no doubt be appreciated by the whole family in birddom. The writer saw one man in town go knee deep in snow to place a plate of food for a little blue jay. Next morning he came back with five other companions for breakfast. It we keep their hearts warm and stomachs full they will repay us in song -- not far off.
A special meeting of the grange is called for Thursday evening. This has been the third evening that has been set apart for Deputy Pray to visit Ocean Side grange and severe storms have prevented his coming each time.
Dr. M. F. Smith is still in Roxbury with friends. His friends here will be glad to know that he is somewhat better.
The Monday club was pleasantly entertained at the home of its new member, Mrs. Scott Noyes, on March 20.
Leston Holmes, a student of Philips Exeter academy, has been obliged to forfeit studies for two weeks on account of severe throat trouble. This means a loss hard to make up for any student. We extend our sympathy.
As time goes on the interest in the Masco contest increases. All contestants are eagerly awaiting results, to see who will be the fortunate winners in the race for the motor cycle and piano now on exhibition at Garland's Pharmacy.
The winter of 1916 must be the good old fashioned winter we have heard so much about. March 23, all roads blocked full from side to side. Two new road agents are doing their best to have things kept in proper shape, yet it means a lot of work and worry. Our sidewalks have been kept in splendid condition and Charles Brown is doing good work. Don't get discouraged -- only nine more snow storms.
Mrs. Elizabeth Berry, who is visiting her sister, Mrs. John York of Kensington, has been very sick. She has been very sick, but last reports were that she was improving in health. She is Hampton's grand old lady.
Miss Dorothy Smart is confined to her home with a severe cold. Miss Pollard will attend to her school for a few days.
Mrs. J. Frank Marston is able to sit up a little; her many friends hope for a greater gain, soon.
Winnicummet Village Improvement society will hold a public whist party at Elmwood farm Monday evening, March 27 at 8 o'clock, weather permitting.
Mrs. Elizabeth F. Akerman, who was threatened with pneumonia, is still confined to her bed, but is doing well.
The many friends of Miss Etta Blake are pleased to hear that she is recovering her health in the Sanitarium, in Methuen.
W. T. Keene will move his family into the house recently vacated by Martin Jones, the old Perkins homestead. Their many friends are glad that they will not leave town.
The drama presented by the high school class, written by M. W. Dunbar, will be given at Seabrook next Saturday evening.
Don't forget the fair next week Wednesday and Thursday evenings, March 29 and 30, by Winnicummet Council, Jr. O. U. A. M. Wednesday evening the North Hampton members, under the efficient management of Irving W. Marston, will present 'No trespassing,' a drama in three acts, by Evelyn Gray Whiting. This is a play of unusual human interest. And the parts are all good. Thursday evening the Hampton members will give a Minstrel Show with a chorus of about twenty voices, under the direction of M. W. Dunbar and Harry I. Noyes. A strong rivalry exists between the members of the respective towns which will insure two evenings entertainment of unusual merit. Both sides promise, especially the minstrels, to spring some surprises that will "astonish the natives."
ANNUAL SCHOOL MEETING
The annual school meeting was held at the town hall on Monday evening. The meeting was called to order by Abbott L. Joplin, and the following officers were elected for the ensuing year: moderator, Abbott L. Joplin; clerk, Joseph B. Brown; member of school board for three years, Charles M. Batchelder; treasurer, Frank E Marston. The same auditors were elected as those chosen by the town. The following appropriations were made: For the high school $ 1,500 00; for high school supplies, $400; for school supplies and repairs, $200; for salary of district superintendent, $250; for transportation of school children, $600: to provide fire escpaes for the high school and center school, $ 300.
There was little discussion necessary before passing most of the appropriations as recommended. As concerned school supervision, Mr. Batchelder and Mrs. Warren for the school board very strongly emphasized the importance, and praised the results of supervision. Much discussion was given the matter of transportation. It was brought out that the fair adjustment of the matter of transportation was a very troublesome matter for the Board, because of the difficulty of making any definite limitation to the service without seeming discrimination. The Board earnestly sought definite instruction, and many present gave theirs views. No plan being proposed that seemed to meet general approval, the committee was finally left to struggle with the problem as best they could.
The need of fire escapes on some of the school buildings was brought to the attention of the voters and seemed to bring out nothing but the evident desire that the children should have more adequate protection from the danger of fire and consequent panic. Albert K. Church was able to give the advice of experts, who recommended covered stairways on the exterior of the buildings, as the most practical expedient for this situation. It was finally voted to appropriate $300 for the building of such fires escapes.
Charles M. Batchelder, for the board, asked that adjournment be taken for four weeks, to Monday evening, April 17 at seven o clock. He explained that this was done at the wish of Supt. Morrison of the State Board. In the meantime it was understood, some of the state officials would visit Hampton schools, and that suggestions might be forthcoming which would require some action on the part of the district. It was voted to adjourn as moved by Mr. Batchelder.
John Wingate is quite ill. He is suffering from a severe attack of acute indigestion, causing heart trouble.
Miss Georgia Marston and James Marden spent Sunday with Mr. and Mrs. Sheldon Marston, in North Hampton.
Mrs. Mary J. Lamprey, who has had several severe hemorrhages recently, is somewhat better.