This section is from the book "The Steward's Handbook And Guide To Party Catering", by Jessup Whitehead. Also available from Amazon: Larousse Gastronomique.
"The progressive dinner has leaped at one bound into popular favor. This new freak of New York festivities imposes on each geust of the masculine persuasion the duty of moving at the end of each course one seat to the left, until he has completed the circuit of the dinner table, tarrying for a brief period at the side of each lady of the party. When he has safely comp'eted the hazardous voyage and has steered once more into the haven of refuge provided by his first love, there he may rest till the chairs are pushed back and a final adjournment taken. A much moie careful choosing of guests to harmonize each with all is sure to be the result of this last of fashion's mandates, so a woman who has obeyed it tells me, if the notion of the week is to endure even for a fortnight, for a single discordant note mars the effect of all. Any sandwiching in of dull folk or prosy folk is sure to be revealed in this puss in the corner game".