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Rev. John Foster Tucker


This newspaper clipping from around 1902, New London, Connecticut, mentions
Mrs. Robert B. Crocker, W. L. Hawkins, Eugene B. Lawrence, Abel P. Tanner, and
my grandfather, John Foster Tucker. It recounts a gathering of church members to
thank their minister.



The reception tendered Rev. J. F.  Tucker last evening in Unity Hall by his friends was a very pleasant affair. About  200 people were present, representing members of the Unitarian society,  Women's Alliance and Unity Club. 

The Unity Club's card tables were arranged about the hall and a large table in the center was prepared for the officers of the club and the honorary guests. Previous to the serving of refreshments  entertainment was furnished by the Unity orchestra of four pieces, which gave several selections, and solos by Mrs. Robert B. Crocker and Mrs. Spiera. Both the soloists were encored and warmly  applauded by the appreciative audience. 

                     Young women of the club served ice  cream and cake to those present and 
                     when these had been enjoyed the feature of the evening was sprung. 

                     First Vice President Eugene B. Law rence introduced President W. L. 
                     Hawkins who presented Rev. J. F. Tucker a prettily bound volume of the Cape Cod 
                     Ballads. President Hawkins said he was delegated by the members of the 
                     Unitarian society, Women's alliance and Unity club to present this gift, which 
                     Mr. Tucker would receive in the spirit in which it was given, which was that 
                     of appreciation of Mr. Tucker's work among the people. The fact that there 
                     was an envelope containing $102 inside the volume was not apparent from the 
                     outside. Rev. Mr. Tucker replied appropriately to the presentation, wishing all present 
                     might have as good a time as he anticipated having in the reading of the ballads, and 
                     thanking the people for the gift. 

                     President Hawkins then introduced Abel P. Tanner to address the gathering. Mr. Tanner          
                     said that there had been an air of mystery about President Hawkins for some days, which 
                     reminded him of the story of the minister who was called to pray at a Masonic function. 
                     The minister was opposed to secret orders, but could not well refuse to offer prayer and he did
                     so in the following words: ”Oh Lord we pray for something, we know not what. If it's
                     good, bless it; if it's bad, cuss it, world without end, Amen.” Mr. Tanner then
                     recalled the first time he met Rev. Mr. Tucker about six years ago. Mr. Tucker then
                     came into his office without ceremony and began talking in the incisive way natural 
                     to him. When he went out, Mr. Tanner said to himself, there is a straight-forward, candid man, 
                    who will always say what he means. Years had passed since then and he had become better 
                     acquainted with Mr. Tucker. He had sometimes differed with him, though always
                     pleasantly, and he was glad the world was not all like, for if it were we should
                     perish on the dead level of uniformity. Never during these years had Mr. Tanner
                     had occasion to change or revise the judgment pronounced on first meeting Mr.
                     Tucker. He knew Mr. Tucker was wishing he would not speak in this way and that
                     the latter would like to choke him off, but Mr. Tucker was not in perfect command
                     on the present occasion. It is not often than the opportunity to eulogize a man is
                     given before the man's death, and the speaker was going to take this opportunity
                     lest he be unable at another time. 

                     Mr. Tanner said: “There sits in your midst of citizen of this town who would take his
                     coat off and give it to a man in need or would give his last dollar that some
                     suffering man might have food. I am glad there are a few such men. I don't know
                     that charity is always best, as those who are always helped lost the power to help
                     themselves, but it is well there are some men of Mr. Tucker's class. If there is
                     another world where charity is remembered and virtue is rewarded, these men will
                     there wear crowns.” 

                     After these remarks the affair became informal and those present greeted Mr.
                     Tucker. A general social session completed the evening, and at last a number of
                     the members gathered about the piano and sang college and other songs. 


This file was contributed for use by the New London County CTGenWeb Project  by:
Mark Bramlette

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