This section is from "The Horticulturist, And Journal Of Rural Art And Rural Taste", by P. Barry, A. J. Downing, J. Jay Smith, Peter B. Mead, F. W. Woodward, Henry T. Williams. Also available from Amazon: Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste.
This Society made arrangements, at the close of last year, to hold informal or conversational meetings for the discussion of topics connected with Horticulture. A set of rules for the proper conducting of the meetings, were adopted; and, with a view to preserve a full report of the proceedings for the use of the Society, R. R. SCOTT was requested to act as Secretary to the meetings. Reports have been published, in a condensed form, in the American Agriculturist; but, as the topics are of more intercut to the Horticultural readers, I will furnish a report, at your suggestion, commencing with the first conversation, should you decide upon devoting space to it.
Mr. P. B. Mead, Secretary of the Society, was present on behalf of the Society, who propose to unite with the State Agricultural Society in the Horticultural Department of the Exhibition. The list of premiums prepared by P. Barry, Esq., Editor of the Horticulturist, Rochester, at the request of the Executive Committee,, was considered, and after additions and amendment, was adopted.
"The general Premium List was also taken up and adopted with various additions and amendments to the original report.
"The appointment of Judges was then taken up, and the list having been again considered, the "The Secretary was directed to prepare 3000 copies of the Premium list for distribution, and 1000 copies of a Circular calling the attention of the public to the united Exhibition to be held.
"The President was directed to correspond with the Railroad and Steamboat Companies, in relation to the usual arrangements for the transportation of stock and articles free, and visitors at reduced rates.
" Adjourned to the first Thursday in June.
"New York, Friday, May 5th B. P. JOHNSON, Cor. Secretary".
We are pleased to receive the circular of this society regarding the Fall Exhibition of 1859 - the 14th, 15th and 16th of September. There are premiums consisting of silver plate, silver medals, money and certificates. We shall be glad to hear on this occasion that the merchants and their families turn out to patronize the Society. In London, fashion, from the queen to the millionaire, gives eclat by personal attendance, and what is better, they all seem to understand the articles on the tables, and to appreciate the excellent. New York should wake up to the importance of this matter, if she expects to gain full credit for the love of nature in her efforts to have a grand Park; without it she is liable to be accused of mere ostentation.
President, John Groahon. Vice-Presidents, Peter Cooper, Henry A. Heiser, Henry A. Hurlbut, James E. Cooley, H. M. Schieffelin. Treasurer, Jame* Knight, M. D. Recording Secretary, George H. Hansell. Corresponding Secretary, Thomas Hogg. Librarian, John C. Hart. Library Committee, Jas. Knight M.D., J. K. O'Keeffe. Premium Committee, John C. Hart, Wm. Fitzpatrick. Fruit Committer, Wm. S. Carpenter, William Cranstoun, John C. Hart. Committee on Flowers and Plants* William Cranstoun, Wm. J. Davidson, John C. Hart. Committee on Vegetables, Andrew Bridgeman, William Mitchell, Charles Ross. Committee on Seeds, D. L. Eigenbrodt, M. D.f James Knight, M. D., Isaao Buchanan. Finance Committee, John Groshon, Charles Vandervoort, Edward SchelL
To the Editor of the Horticulturist : Recent allusion in your pages to the importance of a society devoted to the encouragement of horticulture in the city of New York, recalls the efforts made some years ago to secure that object. Do we live so rapidly in this country as to forget in the brief space of ten years the existence of an incorporated society, holding extensive annual displays of fruits and flowers, at which the most gifted of New York divines and orators were at times induced to expatiate on the value to the community of such means of pure recreation and enjoyment ? Are the active members of that association no longer to be met with in the leading thoroughfares of that great city ? Are the names of Shepherd Knapp and Wilson G. Hunt forgotten among your merchants ?
It was the boast of the very indefatigable Secretary, that the old Society, though in a very faint condition, would survive at least as long as he should. He still lives. What has befallen his ward ?
My object in touching this topic is to point out the difficulties which stand in the way of a metropolitan horticultural society, or rather to warn the restorers of the Society, whoever they may be, of the incongruous elements which are generally called together in the formation of such societies; to hint the question whether the practice of paying money premiums to gardeners for the exhibition of their employers' fruits and plants is a safe and proper mode of proceeding ? Is the emulation produced between gardeners of a healthy nature, and worthy of encouragement? Is not the interest of the commercial horticulturists the controlling power in all such societies ? Are such exhibitions and displays, as are generally produced by our horticultural societies, promotive of the real progress of horticulture ?
We do not propose at this time to offer our own views on these important points, but should the editor of the Horticulturist desire the data on which we would discuss these questions, we shall freely furnish the same. Having been temporarily an active and enthusiastic member of the New York Horticultural Society, we should like to learn the causes of its failure from those who ran the machine in the later days of its operation. Can not your worthy friend P. B. M. give us some light ?
A Cosmopolitan Member.