Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Article about Daniel Barenboim, child prodigy from the 1950's

This is an interesting page of her scrapbook from the 50's. She interviewed the parents of Daniel Barenboim a musical prodigy from Buenos Aires, Argentina, who is now the Musical Director of the Berlin State Opera. In 1958 he was 15 years old and performing concerts all over the world. Margaret asked his father Enrique about the difficulties of raising a prodigy. Enrique is quoted as saying, "I am trying to prove through Daniel and my other pupils that I am against neurotic, hysterical cases that are associated with artist's in general."

On this page is a card from the artist Alec Borenstein to Daniel. He was also a child prodigy from Tel Aviv. I am not sure why it was in Margaret's possession, or what the connection is between him and Daniel, but it's dated 1960. She has several envelopes with stamps postmarked from Israel and a card from Daniel Barenboim's family wishing a happy New Year. There is an illustration of Daniel on the page by an artist named Kantor dated 1958, Tel Aviv.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

The rise of the first Nicholas Longworth, and Louise Harrison Snodgrass, composer

These two articles include some interesting Cincinnati History. The first is about the second land owner of the house on Pike Street, where the Taft Museum resides. The first owner was Martin Baum. The second owner was Nicholas Longworth who bought the house in 1830. He is the grandfather of Nicholas Longworth the congressional member from Cincinnati, who served from 1903 to 1913 and married Alice Lee Roosevelt (the daughter of President Theodore Roosevelt) on February 17, 1906 at the White House.

Margaret describes his grandfather as a wit with a vivid personality. He was a lawyer who received a large parcel of land from one of his clients. The client, Joel Williams a tavern owner, was accused of stealing sheep. Mr. Longworth successfully defended him against this charge. Mr. Williams promised to pay him two copper stills for his services. However, after Mr. Williams won the case, he decided to keep the stills for his new distillery. He offered Mr. Longworth the 33 acres around Western Row in exchange. Mr. Longworth retired after 25 years of law practice. In his retirement, he successfully cultivated Caltawba and Isabella vines.

She recounts a funny story about Longworth. Once a man came asking for a donation to help a poor widow with a large number of children. Mr. Longworth said, "I shan't give a cent. Such persons always find plenty to relieve them. I shall assist none but the idle, drunken vagabonds that nobody else will help. If you meet with any such cases, call upon me."

The second article on this page is about Louise Harrison Snodgrass. She was a famous Cincinnati composer who wrote the song "London girl". This song was apparently sung over 100 times by the great Lawrence Tibbett. She was in Chicago for the Penwoman's Congress. Her daugher, Anne English was also in town. Anne was back in Cincinnati from New York after performing with the Provincetown Players in the Village.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year's eve 1934, after repeal of prohibition, and the first football games of the season for Xavier University and University of Cincinnati

Margaret Dunlop wrote (click here to read the article) about the opening of football season at XU and UC in 1934. She attended the UC Bearcats game against Rio Grande and wrote, "Why, with all the good 5 cent cigars there are in the market, does the man next to you at a football game prefer one made of a pencil shaving filler with a shoe leather wrapper?" Margaret wasn't much of a sports fan, but she always found a charming way to write about an event. "Don't ask where the fascination with football lies. Anyone must admit that part of the fun in watching the game is the idea of the thing-- like being a debutante, or a screen star, or having a million dollars." So, she wasn't exactly a sportswriter, but she included an interesting history of the late 19th century UC Bearcats, when Albert H. Morrill was the captain (he also ran for Vice Mayor of Cincy in 1911), and the Bearcats beat Ohio State 34 to 0.

The other article on this page is about the first New Year's Eve party in Cincinnati post the Repeal of Prohibition in 1933. Margaret attended a party at the Cincinnati Country Club, and it was much more subdued than one would have expected. Everyone sang songs and wore paper hats, but no one blew any whistles or noisemakers at midnight as they had in past years. One song she missed was the old favorite, Sweet Adeline. (MP3 embedded above) Also absent that year were the ping pong tables in the taproom. She wrote, "We missed the tables this year. The little elusive white ball that bounces so gayly under tables and chairs, keeping the players forever on their hands and knees, has an endless fascination." The repeal also changed Cincinnati society's attitude towards alcohol. Margaret wrote, "Between songs in the taproom, conversation turned to the proper way of serving wine and other beverages. Repeal has brought about a certain delicacy of feeling that has made the thought of bathtub gin and straight alcohol a thing to be abhorred."

Margaret Dunlop's 1934 wedding announcements

Here are Margaret's wedding announcements from the Cincinnati Post (click here to read full article), and the Cincinnati Times-Star including a wedding picture of her and Robert Weaver. Here is one with a beautiful photo of her, also from the Times-Star. The Times Star printed a very detailed description of the wedding. I love how they refer to her as the Bride-Elect. They were married on November 2, 1934 at the Church of the Advent.

German Christmas customs, Glendale parties

Here she describes the Christmas customs of Nuremberg, Germany. "On Christmas Eve the Christ Kind delivers gifts to the children on a golden chariot pulled by white horses." She writes, "The children remain in their rooms, their eyes tightly closed. They never dream of peeping, for if they did, the Christ Kind would blow out their eyes."

On this same page, there is another article about parties in the village of Glendale. She also mentions Van Nes Allen, the eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. Stanley Allen. Van Nes Allen was planning a trip to the American Cape Mt. Mission in Liberia. He wrote a book about this trip called "I Found Africa" that was published in 1939.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Musty time recalls niceties of yesteryear.

On this page she writes about the upcoming New Year's celebrations of 1934 and the history of wearing white on your wedding day. Favorite quote from this post is "If I am unfaithful, the cup will fill to overbrimming and the tea pouring over the sides will crack the thin china. Then you will know I have broken faith."

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Cruise to Bermuda!

This post (click here to read full article) chronicles a cruise to Bermuda. Among the passengers were Dr. William Beebe a deep sea explorer who made some of the first films of deep sea life. In 1934 he made a record descent of 923m (3,028 ft) at Non-Such Island which was one of the destinations of this trip. The year of this post is not shown, but perhaps his record descent occurred during this trip!

Waldo Frank's America Hispana

Here (click to read full article) she reviews the book America Hispana by Waldo Frank, published in 1931. Margaret was fascinated by this book. She summed it up with this wonderful passage, "America Hispana lies like some huge animal asleep in the sun, but it is stirring to an ever keener wakefulness. Let invaders beware the day it rises. It will seem less docile when the binding chains are broken. Mr. Frank sees the future of South America in the development of the people. It is only when the people have acquired the knowledge of their oppressors that they can assert their independence. When the last page is finished and the book lies closed in the reader's lap, America Hispana is no longer a vague country down south somewhere, but a newer America than the United States, fast becoming a vital factor in the reckoning of world affairs."
I think this article appeared in print on November 17th, 1934, because on this page of her scrapbook, she posted an "on this day" item from the paper in 1990 about Lyndon Baines Johnson and Claudia Alta Taylor's (Lady Bird Johnson) wedding in 1934. If it was printed on November 17th, it was only two weeks after her wedding.

Speedway race and Glendale players

This post includes articles are about a performance by the Glendale players to benefit Maple Knoll, Home for the Friendless which was a home for indigent woman that was founded by Mrs. Lydia Beecher, the step mother of Harriet Beecher Stowe and still exists today.
The other article is about a stock car race at Cincinnati-Hamilton track.

Republican Women's fundraiser, Leonard Limousin court artist of Francis I, Latonia Derby

This post (click here to read full article) includes a very interesting article about the artist Leonard Limousin. One of his enamels of Francois De Cleves, Duc de Neves, hangs at the Taft Museum. In the article, she described how court artists were treated in the 1500's. They were ranked as craftsmen, a status lower than servants and if their work was worthy enough, they were promoted to the status of court valet. In describing the multifarious duties of the court artist, she quoted Poussin, "I shall never understand what is desired of me, for it is impossible to work at the same time at front pieces of books, a virgin, the picture for the congregation of St. Louis, at the designs for the gallery, and for the king's tapestry. I have only a feeble head and am not aided by anyone."