"Noted Is Tribute to Mrs. Duniway Part 1," Oregonian, October 23, 1912, 1.
NOTED IS TRIBUTE TO MRS. DUNIWAY
Birthday Party Unique in Oregon History
PROMINENT FOLK DO HONOR
H. L. Pittock, Governor West and Others on Platform.
SUFFRAGIST WRITES HYMN
Author, Singer and Composer Loudly Applauded at Gipsy Smith Auditorium as Last Beautiful Notes Die Away.
Seated in a comfortable armchair beneath the figures “78” in evergreen against the white background of the decorations, with many of the most distinguished citizens of Oregon, men and women, seated at either side, and facing an audience of 1500 friendly faces, Mrs. Abigail Scott Duniway, pioneer Oregonian and suffragist, was tendered a “brithday [sic] party” at the Gipsy Smith auditorium last night as perhaps has never been given to another woman in the state.
When Mrs. Duniway appeared and was wheeled across the platform, which was tastefully decorated with evergreens and Autumn leaves, to her place of honor in the easy chair, she was long applauded, acknowledging the ovation with graceful inclinations of her gray-haired head. To her right sat her son, W. C. Duniway, and to her left, her son, Ralph Duniway, with their families.
Others who sat at the left of the guest of honor were: H. L. Pittock, F. V. Holman, Governor West, C. W. Fulton, J. A. Jeffrey, F. W. Cottrell, Robert A. Miller and A. E. Clark. At the right were many prominent suffragists, including Mrs. Mae Arkwright Hutton of Spokane; Mrs. Frederick Eggart, Miss Emma Wold and Mrs. H. M. Senn.
Mrs. Coe Presides
Mrs. Henry Waldo Coe, president of the State Equal Suffrage League, who presided, announced that the programme would be opened with the singing of the new suffrage hymn of which Mrs. Duniway is the author and for which Mrs. A. E. Clark composed the accompaniment. With Mrs. Clark at the piano, Mrs. Jane Burns Albert, in a sweet, clear soprano, sang the three stanzas of the hymn, which are as follows:
God of our fathers, by whose guiding hand,
We all were led to this Pacific land,
To raise on high the standard of the free,
We women bow with reverence unto Thee.
Good men and women came together here,
With strenuous effort and courageous cheer,
They toiled and builded on the Western shore
An empire that shall last forevermore.
God of our fathers, we are half the race,
By men forgotten till this year of grace,
When they in majesty arise and say,
“All shall be free in an approaching day”
Great is Applause
As the last beautiful notes died away its author and the singer were vigerously applauded, and great armfuls of yellow carnations were handed to the platform and piled at Mrs. Duniway’s feet.
The first speaker was Frederick V. Holman, who gave an historic perspective of the life of Mrs. Duniway, whom he called a “noble, grand and glorious woman.” He told how she crossed the plains to Oregon in 1852, when she was 18 years old, and touched upon the hardships and privations that tried the hearts and tested the strength of those who dared the wilderness in the middle years of the last century.
“Those were people who were willing and able to do and dare and to suffer in order to accomplish,” said Mr. Holman. “They turned their faces unflinchingly to the West, without doubt that they would get there. It took just the same courage as was required of the pioneers to inspire and sustain Mrs. Duniway in her early work for the great cause of equal suffrage.
Pioneers Never Faltered
“The pioneers never faltered in their long march, nor has she. But the hands that never wearied in building and developing are tired now, and in her hands we must place the ballot, as a tribute and a reward to this courageous, forcible and yet withal gentle worker for the rights of women.”
Mrs. Hutton, a prominent worker in the suffrage ranks in Washington, was next introduced by Mrs. Coe.
The Spokane visitor paid one of the greatest tributes of the evening to Mrs. Duniway, concluding her remarks as she laid a magnificent bouquet of yellow carnations at the aged leader’s feet.
Washington Gives Greetings
Mrs. Hutton said:
“Friend, champion of women’s political enfranchisement, in the Nation and the world, mother of woman’s suffrage in the Northwest, I bring you greetings from Washington women on this, your seventy-eighth birthday. Your labors for nearly half a century for the emancipation of your sex have borne fruit. You have lived to see the ballot given to the women of six states of this glad free West.
“Ere the ides of November wax and wane your beloved Oregon will be added to the list that will complete the chain of free states from Canada to the Gulf. You have lived to see heathen China become a republic and her women
(Concluded on Page 14)
NOTED IS TRIBUTE
Birthday Party for Mrs. Duniway Most Unique
SUFFRAGIST WRITES HYMN
Author, Singer and Composer Loudly Applauded at Gipsy Smith Auditorium as Last Beautiful Notes Die Away.
(Continued From First Page)
given the ballot. You have beheld the flag that represents justice to women wave over the mountain peaks of Alaska, welcoming the sons and daughters of the world to the treasure-house of the mother lode, and pour her products into the channel of commerce.
“You have seen Portland grow from a frontier village to the largest city in the Northwest. On the fifth of November the men of Oregon will forge a key of gold with which the 2,00,00 women voters of the Pacific Coast states must unlock the portals of the Nation and make all women free. What more fitting spot could be found for the culmination of your life’s work, for the inauguration of a forward movement to make this burning question a national issue and enfranchise all the women of the National. Here, where the memories of your girlhood, wifehood and motherhood linger like the blossoming fragrance from your rose-laden city, and the resting place of the companion of you life’s joys and sorrows; here, ‘mid scenes of your greatest activities and achievements in this great cause, for the betterment of the race; here, ‘where rolls the Oregon,’ where Bryant placed his Thanatopsis; here, where a noted lecturer said, ‘the finite pray, the infinite listens, and the immensity looks on’; here we have gathered tonight to do you honor, and to show to you and the world that we appreciate your efforts.
Pioneers Now Honored
“These chrysanthemums represent the development of flower life. In your time you have seen them grow from a ragged wayside weed until today they are the triumph of the floral kingdom. You can remember when the woman suffrage movement comprised a few struggling women, who were ridiculed and villified for their opinions. You have watched its progress and helped in it development, until it has become a respected reform, an assured fact, and the pioneers in the cause honored women of the world.
“Mrs. Abigail Scott Duniway, we, your daughters in the cause you have mothered, and whose untiring efforts have so greatly aided in making possible our political freedom, I present you these chrysanthemums in the name of the enfranchised womanhood of Washington.”
Mrs. Mary Cartwright, who said that she came as an old pioneer of Oregon to give greetings from California, recalled memories of the early struggles of Mrs. Duniway.
Men Called to Account
“It is enough to make some of the men blush to remember how they treated her sentiments in those early days,” said Mrs. Cartwright.
She told how the women of California, having been given the ballot, are fast becoming proficient in its use, how they are studying civil government and public questions and how they are already helping the men to solve the problems that arise. Mrs. Cartwright told of admiring the work of Mrs. Duniway and of her sympathy in her early reverses and disappointments.
A letter from Judge Stephen A. Lowell, of Pendleton, was read by B. Leo Paget and was warmly applauded at several places. Judge Lowell referred to Mrs. Duniway as “Oregon’s most distinguished woman” and assigned her a place in history with Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucretia Mott and Susan B. Anthony. He admonished all who admired Mrs. Duniway, her life and work that the greatest tribute that can be paid her, that will please her more than anything that can happen, is to vote for the suffrage amendment two weeks hence.
A telegram from Governor Hawley of Idaho, to Mrs. Coe expressed his warmest congratulations on Mrs. Duniway having attained her 78th birthday, together with the hope that election day will see Oregon swing into the suffrage column.
Governor Carey, of Wyoming, congratulated Mrs. Duniway in a telegram read by Mrs. Coe and extended best wishes for the success of the suffrage cause in Oregon.
B. Lee Paget, Prohibition candidate for United States Senator, directed attention to the fact that his was the first party that had gone on record as favoring votes for women and with that abandoned any mention of party to make an earnest appeal for equal suffrage. Mr. Paget said that he hoped that Mrs. Duniway would be permitted to exercise the right of the ballot. He expressed his contempt for the man who fails to vote and for the woman who does not desire the right to vote he confessed that, in a modified way, he classified the same.
A.E. Clark Pays Tribute
A. E. Clark, Progressive candidate for the United States Senator, declared that great movements need great leaders, not leaders who can achieve victory alone, but leaders who can face defeat unflinchingly time after time and be patient until the final triumph. Such a leader was Mrs. Duniway, he said, who, after 50 years of defeat, had never turned from nor struck her colors to the enemy. “One of the greatest citizens of Oregon and of the world”. Was the speaker’s eloquent estimate of Mrs. Duniway, and he predicted from the fruition of her labors in the adoption of equal suffrage amendment.
A telegram from Senator Jonathan Bourne expressed his sorrow a being unable to pay honor in person to one who in striving for the recognition due her sex, had done so much to advance the entire cause of human progress.
Mayor Cotterill, of Seattle, dated his conversion to the cause of woman’s suffrage from the time he became acquainted with his mother. He related hearing Mrs. Duniway speak to Tacoma 28 years ago, when he had first come to Washington, telling how the territory had suffrage for three years, only to lose it by a hair splitting Supreme Court decision. In the 21 year struggle for votes for women that followed the attainment of statehood in 1889 he gave due credit to Mrs. Duniway for her able assistance and he expressed his gratitude for her life and labors, trusting that life and those labors will be crowned with the victory which they merit on November 5.
And if the cause of equal suffrage is indeed, as so many of the speakers predicted, victorious at the polls, Governor West, in his talk announced that he would violate precedent to extent of writing the Gubernatorial proclamation that is required by law to announce the new condition of things, not in the State Capitol at Salem, but in the parlor of Mrs. Duniway’s home in Portland. Then instead of depositing the first copy of the proclamation with the Secretary of State, he will deposit it with Mrs. Duniway, as a token of her life-long labors in making it possible for him to have written it. Then, returning to Salem, the Governor will write another copy of the proclamation which he will deposit in due form with the Secretary of State.
A pioneer not only of the Northwest, but of the world of human thought and endeavor, was ex-Senator Fulton’s characterization of the guest of the evening. The speaker, in reminiscent vein, recalled with pride that as a member of the State Senate in 1880, under Mrs. Duniway’s suggestion and guidance, he had had the honor of introducing the first resolution in favor of equal suffrage in the Oregon Legislature. The pioneer women of Oregon were lauded by Mr. Fulton, who said that “if we would properly evidence our appreciation of the greatest courage and purest patriotism ever shown, we would, on some historical spot, dedicate to the greatest heroines the world has ever known, the pioneer women of Oregon, a monument of the whitest stone, as a perpetual reminder, were any needed, of their greatness and glory.”
A message of congratulation from the National convention of the W.C.T.U was handed in and acknowledged by Mrs. Coe.
Colonel Robert G. Miller, who spoke on behalf of the Native Daughters and Native Sons of Oregon, has the same birthday as Mrs. Duniway, his mother telling him as he put it that he “came to Oregon October 22, 1854,” He eulogized the evening’s guest as a splendid type of splendid race, and for the organization of native Oregonians, of which he was formerly president he extended the hope that the realization of her dreams is not far distant.
Following the speaking, Mrs. Duniway was greeted on the platform by hundreds of her old friends, who, as they clasped her hand, made glad her heart with warm words of congratulations and well-wishing.
1912 October Permalink