“The corner stone of the addition which is being built by the Union league on Chapel street was laid with fitting exercises at 4:30 o’clock yesterday afternoon. Professor W. E. Chandler, treasurer of the club, presented the trowel in a few fitting remarks to President George B. Martin, who, after a few appropriate words, laid the stone, after which the throng which had occupied the platform which had been erected in front of the club building entered the club building. A lunch was then served to the large number present under the direction of J. W. Morse, the club steward. After having partaken of the refreshments and cigars having been lighted, President Martin as toastmaster introduced the speakers. The first speaker was Governor-elect Chamberlain of Meriden. He spoke briefly, saying that he considered it a great honor to be present on so important an occasion in the history of the club. He said he expected to have attended a banquet last evening in Meriden, but had come to this city first, after which he intended to be in attendance at the event in Meriden. He said: ‘I am here first because I wanted to come. Secondly, because I wished to witness the event, become acquainted with the members and listen to the speakers.’ He then spoke of the great republican victory in this state, after which he thanked the club for its kind invitation to him to attend.
Professor Jenkins, president of the Graduates’ club, made a few remarks, saying that the club which he represented as well as he himself personally wished the league every success.
Jacob B. Ullman spoke in a like manner for the Harmonie club, and President H. G. Carmichael also for the Young Men’s Republican club.
General George H. Ford as president of the Quinnipiack club said in the course of his remarks: Old Quinnipiack and his younger maiden league have recently been found flirting, exhibiting more than ordinary fondness for each other. Some predicted an engagement between them. A wedding feast with combined fortunes and a royal residence as the outcome. But the old adage, ‘That true love never runs smooth’ repeated itself and like many old lovers that do not marry, but are contented to express their fondness for each other with the words, friend, brother, sister. We bring our cordial greetings, our hearty congratulations, our high esteem and abiding friendship and deposit them with the archives that you have placed in the box and sealed in your corner stone to-day and with benediction and praise for your zeal, we bid you Godspeed in your onward march and prosperity.
President Martin then called on Judge Lynde Harrison to say something about the Union League club and its history. Judge Harrison began by telling one or two humorous stories. He then stated that the club was organized eighteen years ago for the purpose of providing a social organization where men who stood by the principles of the republican party that maintained the union could meet. Its first president, the late Thomas R. Trowbridge, and A. H. Kellam were active in the organization and the first name suggested was the Union league. It was finally determined to call it the Republican league. The speaker congratulated the club in the change of name to the Union league, especially as the house stands on the premises where Roger Sherman lived so many years. Roger Sherman with Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams and Philip Livingston were the committee appointed in June, 1776, to draft the Declaration of Independence. Sherman was therefore one of the five fathers of our union. Forty years ago the time came when it was necessary to establish Union League clubs to help save the union. Philadelphia began in 1862, New York followed in 1863. New Haven and Chicago have followed and today the Union leagues of these cities with similar organizations in different parts of the country stand hand and hand for the support of those principles which the republican party maintains, the principles needed for the support of our union and its flag forever. It is our pleasant duty to hand this club down with its principles and purposes unimpaired to the generations that will follow us.
Frank C. Bushnell, on behalf of the club, then presented to Professor Chandler a large silver loving cup lined with gold and inscribed with the following:
‘Presented to W. E. Chandler, treasurer of the Union League club, at the celebration of the laying of the corner stone of the club November 18, 1902, by the members of the club.” Professor Chandler replied by thanking the club and saying that he would ever cherish the gift.
Among those present were: Eli Whitney, Jacob B. Ullman, Charles E. Graham, Samuel Smith, Congressman N. D. Sperry, P. G. Wallmo, L. E. Whiting, ex-Mayor Farnsworth, Prentice W. Chase, Samuel E. Hoyt, Henry A. Warner, General George H. Ford, Judge Dow, Thomas Hooker, W. S. Thompson, County Commissioner Thompson, Max Adler, Julius Twiss, ex-Mayor Peck, Michael Sonnenberg, F. L. Gaylord of Ansonia, Representative-elect Gruener, W. J. Atwater, E. I. Atwater, General E. S. Greeley, Attorney S. E. Hoyt, Dr. Skinner, C. Hooker, George A. Ailing, C. W. Scranton, John Booth, Edward Merrill, Walter K. Newport, B. N. Blatchley, Dr. Henry Keys, F. C. Briley, G. B. Bunnell, Wilson H. Lee, John S. Fowler, Postmaster Parsons of Waterbury, Frank Seward, John Coe of Meriden, Sidney Downs of Derby, Luzerne Ludington and James Todd.”
-Excerpt and (top) image courtesy of the Library of Congress, Chronicling America, New Haven Daily Morning Journal and Courier, Wednesday, November 19, 1902
CORNER STONE LAYING — Of The Union League Club’s New Building
Will Take Place This Afternoon With Appropriate Ceremonies — Governor Elect Chamberlain Will Attend and Possibly Governor McLean — Other Guests
“All arrangements are practically completed for the ceremony in connection with the laying of the corner stone of the Union League club’s new building. l3overnor-elect Chamberlain will be in attendance. The stone will be laid at 4:30 o’clock this afternoon by George B. Martin, president of the Union league, and will be witnessed by a large number of invited guests, including the membership of the club in full ranks.
Following the ceremony at the new building, the club will give a reception at its home on Chapel street, at which informal speeches will be made by prominent citizens. The affair is entirely informal. President Martin will preside and the speakers will be Judge Lynde Harrison for the league, General George H. Ford, president of the Quinnipiack club, Max Adler for the Harmonie club, President Jenkins of the Yale Graduate club, and probably also General E. E. Bradley for the chamber of commerce. President Martin received a letter last night from Governor-elect Chamberlain, accepting the invitation and announcing that he would with much pleasure attend. Mayor Studley has also signified his acceptance. Governor McLean has been invited and United States Senator Platt. Owing to Governor McLean’s ill health and Senator Platt’s absence in Washington it is not expected they will attend.
The ceremonies at the corner stone laying will be brief in view of the fact that the weather may be unpleasant and the general exercises will be inside. The corner stone will admit a copper box six inches wide, fourteen inches long and four inches deep and in it will be deposited a copy of the Journal & Courier and one each of the other city dailies; also pamphlets pertaining to the history of the Union league and a few other souvenirs — as many as the limited space in the box will permit.”
-Excerpt courtesy of the Library of Congress, Chronicling America, New Haven Daily Morning Journal and Courier, Tuesday, November 18, 1902
ALDERMANIC COMMITTEES – Met Last Evening in the City Hall at Hearings.
One Was the Committee on Railroads and Bridges and It Listened to Suggestions as the Necessity of Sending for the Railroad Commissioners to Act in Complaints Against the Fair Haven & Westville Railroad and the Other Was the Committee on Buildings and Building Lines.
“A meeting of the aldermanic committee on railroads and bridges was held last evening in room 10 of the city hall in order to hold a hearing for the purpose of compelling the Fair Haven and Westville Railroad company to properly equip its cars with air brakes or other necessary appliances providing for the safety and comfort of its passengers. The committee was composed of Aldermen Cornelius H. Conway, chairman; William O’Keefe, Charles J. Hilton and Nicholas P. Corcoran, and they listened to the representations that were made.
Ex-Alderman Henry Donovan was the only one who appeared before the committee. He said that the meeting was in line with the coroner’s recommendations made at the time of the frightful accident at Double Beach, in which a motorman was killed and about twenty people more or less seriously injured. He said that, in view of the prevailing conditions, the railroad commissioners of the state ought to be summoned to investigate matters. He said it was a well known fact that the conductors and motormen were compelled, if they wanted employment, to report at the car barns as early as 5 o’clock in the morning and they might perhaps have to be there at times until noon before they could get a car and get work, and then they would not perhaps get more than one or two hours; and they sometimes were waiting fourteen or fifteen hours and then they would not get more than from two to four hours work in the day. The aldermen had no power to act in the premises, but they did have the power to call the attention of the railroad commissioners, who did have the power to act in the premises. He said also that something ought to be done in the way of providing air brakes and double tracks over the route. There were several other imperfections in the management of the road. There ought to be proper signals placed on the cars and on the road. At the time of the late accident near Short Beach the coroner recommended that such improvements be made.
There were questions asked by Aldermen Hilton, Conway and Corcoran of the speaker as to the customs on other roads and the usages which prevail. There being no other persons who desired to speak the committee went into executive session. They were there about fifteen minutes and when they came out they reported that the committee had determined to call on the officials of the road and ask them what they were willing to do to remedy the grievances that were complained of and that they would report at the meeting following the next meeting of the board of aldermen. It was said that they did not wish to go to the trouble of summoning the railroad commissioners here if they could induce the railroad company to act as was requested.
The committee oh building lines met last night in the ante room of the board of aldermen. The committee was composed of Aldermen C. H. Hilton, chairman; G. Clifford Foote, John W. Hine, James F. Galligan and N. P. Corcoran. It was called for the purpose of taking action on a petition which was as follows:
‘The undersigned petitioners residents and property owners respectfully represent that the public necessity and convenience require the establishment of building lines four feet back from the street line in the central part of the city, especially that section known as the original nine squares bounded by State, George, York and Grove streets, except that the said four feet may be used for protected-cellar stores or areas or for platform and slips to first floor and also for show windows to stores, extensions, flags and- cornices about the first floors. They therefore respectfully ask your honorable body to order said work to be done as above and as in duty bound will ever pray. Dated at New Haven.’
H. A. Warner, 1044 Chapel street.
When the meeting was called to order … Martin read the following letter which was written and submitted by Henry A. Warner:
‘New Haven, Aug. 29, 1902.
Mr. Chairman and Members of the Building Committee on Buildings and Building Lines — As I feel the importance of the subject before you I wish to be allowed to submit my views in writing for your consideration, but first, allow me to refer to misrepresentations by the papers of my reasons for the petition. It was not to ask you for special vote to protect my property or to antagonize neighbors, but for the general good of the city.
My attention was called a few weeks ago to the matter by finding that the plans for a contemplated building called for extending it to the extreme street line instead of four feet back, as the rest of buildings on both sides of it were already built.
There was nothing to prevent its being done, as there was no building line east of York street on Chapel street, and few in any part of the city; and even where they were located they were frequently ignored or special permit obtained to have rules suspended.
I called on the mayor and other officials, who approved of something being done, if possible.
In nearly every case a front outside cellar entrance is necessary and frequently steps beyond buildings for doorways to upper floors. Surely these ought not to be on the sidewalk devoted to public use.
With scarcely an exception new buildings have been set back four feet, except on Chapel street between Orange and State, and where old buildings were altered and made to conform to adjacent ones.
It’s possible a land owner can use every inch without regard to the public or adjoining property, and that only special state legislation can control it; and it seems as though it was time to consider the matter and see what the real condition is.
Our city has grown greatly of late years and sidewalks are becoming too cramped for the large numbers who use them, yet encroachments are increasing and ought not to be allowed.
The subject is being agitated in other cities, and trust, now that your attention has been called to it, a general plan will soon be adopted so that our streets may have a uniform line of buildings, especially, in the central business section.
If petition is granted a permit for future buildings to street lines would be withheld, at least until special reasons could be shown.’
HENRY A. WARNER.
Remarks were made by George B. Martin, the president of the Union League club;. William Hooker Atwood, of the board of aldermen on the committee on finance; Lawyer Richard M. Tyner and A. G. Snell. Mr. Warner also spoke in support of his position. Mr. Martin said that the Union League club had made preparations to extend their building to the sidewalk lines, but that objection had been made to it by Mr. Warner. They had obtained a permit to enlarge the building and while there were other instances of buildings being allowed to come up to the line, it looked as if objections were made to the proposition of the Union League to extend its lines. If they had room in the rear it would not make so much difference, but it would be destructive of their plans.
Mr. Atwood made remarks upon the same lines. He thought that the Union League ought not to be discriminated against, and that partiality ought not to be shown to any one owner as against another.
Lawyer Tyner spoke in the same vein, as did A. G. Snell. Mr. Warner spoke in reply and said that he had no feeling against the gentlemen of the Union League club, and that he objected only on principle, and that the matter would eventually have to be dealt with and that it was only for the benefit of the citizens.
There being no further remarks to be made, the committee went into executive session and decided to take the matter into consideration and have another special meeting on Monday evening at 7:30.”
-Excerpt courtesy of the Library of Congress, Chronicling America, New Haven Daily Morning Journal and Courier, Saturday, August 30, 1902
“Architect Richard Williams is at work preparing specifications for the addition to the Union League club house. Plans for the addition have been accepted.”
-Excerpt courtesy of the Library of Congress, Chronicling America, New Haven Daily Morning Journal and Courier, Thursday, August 21, 1902
UNION LEAGUE IMPROVEMENTS.
About $30,000 Raised and at the Disposal of the Committee.
“In conversation with a prominent member of the Union league club last night it was stated that the amount necessary for the contemplated improvements at the club house had been subscribed with $10,000 more, so that at present time the committee has the plump sum of $30,000 at its disposal, with which to complete the improvements. Nearly all of the plans and necessary arrangements for the work have been completed and it is probable that a start on the addition will be made in a few weeks.
In front of the present building, and connected with it an imposing four story building will be erected. A fine quality of brick will be used in its construction, making it an attractive addition to that fine part of the city.
On the ground floor front will be a large hall suitable for a banquet or a political meeting and this will be a feature that has always been such a needed one at the Union League.
On the second floor a hall of smaller size and several new card and smoking rooms will be added and on the two upper floors will be found rooms en suite and single for the accommodation of the members and their guests. This will be a most convenient and much needed addition.
The cafe of the Union league has always been unsurpassed, but with the improvements and additions that the committee have in mind the results in that line will be even better than before. The plans are so arranged that an elevator can be put in at any time. This matter of an elevator is not yet decided upon. The new building will be an honor to the league.”
-Excerpt courtesy of the Library of Congress, Chronicling America, New Haven Daily Morning Journal and Courier, Thursday, July 17, 1902
Of the Union League Club House Practically Decided Upon.
“It has been practically decided to greatly enlarge the present Union League club house. Although this announcement is somewhat premature it is quite certain that the plans will take definite form in the near future. A committee to consider the proposed changes and report to the board of governors of the club has been appointed. It consists of Judge Ailing, J. Wilder Howe, George B. Martin, Marcus P. Smith, William Hooker Atwood, and F. H. Benton. This committee has as yet held no meetings, but is understood that a general plan has been outlined and the committee will meet in a short time to consider the same and possibly plans may be presented at that time. It is also stated that the change may be that of extending the present front of the building to the street line, and adding several stories in height. The increased membership of the club makes these changes imperative.
It may also be true that the proposed consolidation of the Union league and the Quinnipiack clubs may have had something to do with the movement to enlarge the present quarters, and that if the consolidation should be consummated there would be a building commodious enough to accommodate the much increased membership.”
-Excerpt courtesy of the Library of Congress, Chronicling America, New Haven Daily Morning Journal and Courier, Tuesday, March 25, 1902