This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V21", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
A great blow to the success of the Nashville meeting is the death of the energetic Secretary, W. C. Flagg, last Autumn. It requires a great deal of correspondence and general hard work in advance to make a meeting go off at once to good work, and as this will be out of the question this season, it will require a more than usual effort on the part of those who recognize the great national, importance of this society to make everything work prosperously. It will be well for those who have important facts or information not to wait on invitations to offer them as is so often the case with the best pomological workers.. The question of a succession to Mr. Flagg will not be among the least important ones of the session. The preparation of the volume of the proceedings, demands greatgood judgement as well as pomological knowledge. As this requires the co-operation of the president, some one within reach of the other at the work will be a consideration. For this, as well as for eminent fitness in every respect no one would be more acceptable to the great body of pomologists than Mr. Robert Manning. In the event of the services of Mr. Manning not being obtainable, no one would be more acceptable than Mr. P. J. Berckmanns, of Ga. The venerable President Wilder, will of course be re-elected. We do not know whether either of these estimable gentlemen will serve.
There are others no doubt quite as worthy to All the honorable office. We only name these in order that the subject may begin to receive attention.
We have before us a note from Mr. Berckmans, and other Southern friends of the American Po-mological Society, expressing their opinions that in view of the fact that two successive meetings of the society have been held in the Southern States, and for other reasons, they would be perfectly willing to see some Northern location substituted for the one named at the last meeting. If there is to be a change why not have it in Boston? It would be a graceful compliment to President Wilder, who has done so much to make the society the very useful body it is conceded to be.
Having concluded President Wilder's excellent address in our last, it only remains to place on record that it was on the whole a very successful meeting. The detail work will of course be given in the regular proceedings, which will be compiled by the Secretary.
Dr. Warder was elected chairman from among the Vice Presidents present, and filled the position admirably. When the election of officers came up, Col. Wilder's resignation was considered. No one wished to accept it; but in view of his increasing age and infirmities, it was suggested that if some one could be elected to aid him, it would be no more than honor due to his long and efficient services. In case the President cannot attend, the constitution of the Society now provides that some one of the Vice Presidents present shall be chosen; but it was suggested that it would be much better that a permanent "First" Vice President should be chosen, who then would be prepared with an address in advance, in case of any disability in the President. The office was therefore made, and Mr. P. Barry elected to the new office. Dr. Warder then vacated the chair, and Mr. Barry took the chair. This vacating of the chair immediately on the election, and the induction of the new President, in the middle of a session, always seems absurd to us, and we do not understand under what parliamentary rule it is practiced. Why not all the other elective officers and committees resign, or rather be replaced? Some of the committees would probably like this, especially the committee on examining fruits.
On this occasion Mr. Berckmans, Dr. Hape, Mr. Bateham, Sylvester Johnson, Mr. Watson, and Dr. Burnett, gave the best part of three days of continual hard work, several miles away from the place of meeting. They are among the best informed and most useful members, and the meeting took the benefit of what they knew. On the other hand they came there as others did to profit by what the other members said, but were kept in exile most of the time. Some objection was made to these tremendous exhibitions of fruit at these meetings, but Mr. Barry ruled that the Society offered no premiums, and had no right to interfere. The admirable exhibit of fruit no one would wish to see curtailed, but perhaps some one can devise a plan of relieving men who come hundreds of miles to learn and enjoy, from such a serious task. This is within the province of the Society. Mr. Barry, like Dr. Warder, is an admirable presiding officer, and a great amount of work was got through with in a very pleasant manner.
Col. Wilder was elected President, Robert Manning, Secretary, and E. V. Busswell, Treasurer. The Society could have made no better selection. They are all admirably fitted for their several positions. Mr. Manning with a modesty which did him credit, objected to his own election, because it did not seem exactly right that all these three officers should be residents of Boston, - but the meeting seemed to think, and we heartily agree, that this unity of residence is an advantage. It is beneficial that the leading officers should have frequent intercourse, and this is inconvenient where they live hundreds of miles apart. Mr. Saunders, Mr. Hussman, Prof. Beal, Dr. Warder, Mr. Campbell and others read papers which created useful discussions. These with the remarks of members will appear in the Proceedings. Mr. Meehan's remarks were oral. By a special vote of the association he was asked to prepare them for publication. But he explained that the reason he had not prepared a written address, was from sheer want of time to do it.
By some oversight, no vote was taken on the place of next meeting, but it was generally understood that Boston was to be the place. Some discussion occurred on the importance of a National Horticultural, as well as Pomological Society; but no one seemed to have any plan that commended itself to the members present. Mr. Samuel Parsons' plan was to have meetings in the off-years of the biennial sessions of the Pomological Society, and to hold the meetings always at Washington. No arrangements were to be made for exhibitions, but only papers and reports read and then handed over to the Department of Agriculture for publication, should the society not have means of its own to do it.
The visits to the nurseries and gardens of Rochester, as well as the intercourse between so many intelligent gentlemen were very profitable, and an entertainment on a very liberal scale at the Power's Art Gallery, closed one of the most useful sessions of the society.
The only event that seemed to mar the pleasures of the members was the gathering of a botanical specimen of a Canada thistle by one gentleman to take to Missouri, which some insisted was equivalent to inviting the " old sarpent" to enter Eden; and the charging of members of the society 35 cents each to see their own fruits, - because the President of some park had only been asked for free tickets, who gave the authority which it afterwards seemed only the Board of Directors, who were not consulted, had power to grant. But these little rough spots often meet people when clambering through the world, - and on the whole the members departed to their homes well pleased with their Rochester visit.