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The Dreamers
by Edna von der Heide

A poet slept and dreamed that he
Had reached the mountain peak; –
And as he cast his eye below,
He dreamed that he could speak, –
And all the world heard what he spoke;
But lo – in anguish he awoke.

A minstrel slept and dreamed that he
Alone had power to sing; –
And as he struck his waking lyre,
Awoke each mortal thing; –
But suddenly a chord he broke –
And wondering, he, too awoke.

An artist slept, and sleeping dreamed
That by his work, alone
He reached that mountain of success
Each mortal calls his own; –
But some one praised his finished stroke –
His palette fell, and he awoke.

A monarch slept and dreamed that he
In peace ruled o’er the world,
That war its raging voice had ceased
And freedom’s flags unfurled;
But, as he slept, – a traitor spoke,
And with a sigh – the king awoke.

A wounded soldier slept and dreamed
That all his pain had fled, –
That there was ever love below,
Nor grave, nor death to dread –
And as he slept – a trumpet broke –
In life eternal, he awoke.

Entered for laureatship.

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The National Convention of 1915
by Vincent B. Haggerty

The annual convention of the National Amateur Press Association opened for me when I called up George Houtain from the Grand Central Station at 9:30 Friday morning and was informed that the whole crowd were up to the Edwin Hadley Smith Collection at Columbia and if I would hurry up there I would find them. George gave me directions what subway to take, but knowing something of the ways of New Yorkers and Brooklynites, I took the other subway and got there all right. If I took the one I was told to take, I’d be going yet. When I reached Columbia, I looked all around but no party I found, so I found my own way to the Collection, to find that no one had arrived before me. I busied myself among the papers for about an hour, when Miss Hoffman arrived. She informed me that she was to welcome the visitors but that she was an hour late. However, as no other visitors came for another half hour, she was forgiven.

At noon, we visited Grant’s Tomb on Riverside Drive, and had our pictures taken for the first time by Mr. Hutchinson. There were about a dozen in the party and we had a nice time meeting old friends and getting acquainted with new ones. After a ride down town on the bus, we lunched at the “Automat Restaurant” at 46th street and Broadway. This was certainly a new experience to me. Imagine dropping a nickel in the slot and getting a cup of coffee, three nickels in another slot and you get a plate of egg salad, another nickel in the slot and a piece of pie pops out at you. I had heard of this restaurant and was glad of the chance to see it in action.

The first session of the convention opened about three o’clock in the Hotel St. George, Brooklyn, being called to order by Miss Von der Heide, the ranking officer present, who appointed Mr. Heins First Vice-President. He assumed the chair and presided until Mr. Sandusky arrived the next day.

It is hard to understand why President Ayres remained entirely away from the convention. It would seem that pressure of business would not keep him away from the evening sessions or the banquet, but he never put in an appearance, even for a minute. This was all the more strange because he appeared to be running Miss Von der Heide’s campaign for President, yet he was absent at the convention where the most important work was to be done in her behalf.

It is not my purpose here to treat of the business of the convention, as that will appear in the official minutes. It is sufficient to record here that the convention attended strictly to all the business before it, giving each matter the closest attention as it arose, and I think it will be admitted, acted wisely in most everything. The campaign for office was, of course, the center of attention, but Mr. Houtain’s election was early conceded, and all attention was centered on the minor offices, as it was understood that Miss Von der Heide could be Official Editor if she would take it, which she was prevailed upon to do.

In the evening, the Blue Pencil Club held an open meeting for the benefit of the visitors, and a very interesting and varied program was enjoyed. Every member contributed something to the occasion, and the introductions by the Literary Director, Mr. Giellerup, were spicy and illuminating. It is hoped that all the papers read at this meeting will be published so that the members at large can see what this Club is doing along literary lines. I have attended many meetings of the Blue Pencil Club and can truthfully say that the program presented that night is the same kind of a program that is followed at every meeting, and the various papers contributed are always of the same high standard.

After the meeting, instead of an open caucus, which has seemed the rule in recent years, the supporters of each candidate held their separate caucus. The one held by the Houtain supporters was a short one and broke up at about one o’clock. Charlie Heins missed the last train to his home in the wilds of New Jersey and had to walk home, a distance of fourteen miles. That he did not stop on the way is attested by the fact that he arrived home at 3:00 A. M. according to his story the next morning.

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The last day of the convention was by far the most interesting. In fact, during the six conventions of the N. A. P. A. I have attended I have never spent a day so full of surprises and unique features. The business session in the morning was not unusual; merely the usual features of the closing session, such as announcement of the presidential appointments, etc. At twelve o’clock, we all adjourned to the sun parlor on the roof of the hotel, where the official convention picture was taken. The usual amount of fussing and primping by the girls took place, while the fellows pulled their ties in shape and tried to get next to the girls they liked. However, the photographer finally got us “mugged” and after collecting the usual stipend, he departed on his way and we departed on ours.

Luncheon was partaken of at the “Constantinople,” a Turkish restaurant on East 42nd Street, New York. Here the unique features began. Not being familiar with Turkish meals, I can’t tell what we ate, but Isaacson and Morton seemed to know the names of the dishes, while Butler even seemed to know what they were made of. For me, it was sufficient to know that it tasted good. The meal was enlivened by some “canned” Turkish music, which might have been all right in Turkey but it didn’t appeal to us.

Leaving the restaurant, we wended our way across Madison Square, where the trouble began. There were two Hobo meetings in progress, and we stopped for a moment. Fatal error! Morton could not resist the call of the wild and soon he had a full fledged meeting in progress telling the bedraggled specimens of humanity the meaning of Amateur Journalism. They didn’t seem to know what he was talking about, but they heartily approved of his looks and his fiery manner, and he was cheered to the echo. Not satisfied with this, we prevailed, after a good deal of urging, on Butler to take a stand, and after one of the hobos had brought the official soap box, Mr. Butler turned loose his flow of eloquence and wit. He was doing fine and seemed about to get a few new members, but when he gave the address of our Secretary to the crowd, Miss Outwater remembered that the neighbors were particular about the class of visitors, so we passed Butler the high sign that the cops were fast approaching and he desisted. Charley Issacson wanted to take up a collection for the publicity fund, but Houtain didn’t want any tainted money.

But we want it recorded here and now, that the same may go down in history, that the first open air meeting of the National Amateur Press Association was held in Madison Square, New York, on Monday, July 4, 1915, and that the speakers were James F. Morton Jr., and William T. Butler. Let it be recorded further, that as soon as Mr. Morton began to speak, the crowd deserted the other speakers in the square, and gave rapt attention to his scholarly discourse.

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We then paid a visit to the studio of Mrs. Harry Payne Whitney and gave the “once over” to the exhibition of Society of Friends of Young Artists. That these artists were young, we can readily believe; also, that they must have friends to get these pictures exhibited. Mr. Butler, who seemed to be somewhat of an authority on Futurists, attempted to explain some of the pictures of Mr. Houtain, but as far as could be learned by a bystander, his success was somewhat doubtful. Charley Heins discovered that all the pictures represented some form of work; I’ll take his word for it. It looked to me as if they had put some paint in a hose and squirted it on canvas and made a picture. Still, I have no doubt that some in the crowd understood the pictures. That bunch of amateurs were the most talented I ever tagged after, and you couldn’t mention a subject that someone in the crowd couldn’t tell you all about it.

We then inspected McDougal Alley, but they must have cleaned up the Alley before we got there, for there wasn’t a blessed thing to see. Every one in the crowd with a camera took a picture of every one else, and I’ll bet a box of candy against a hole in a doughnut that we’ll never see one of the pictures. The Safety Pin Club were the most popular; they must have had their pictures taken sixteen times. Eddie Cole and Miss Hoffman, who are on the waiting list of the club, had their pictures taken twelve times. We confirmed bachelors were “taken” once, but we do not despair. Look at Edwin Hadley Smith. After what he did, there is hope for all of us.

We then found ourselves in front of Guido Bruno’s Studio on Washington Square, and there spent one of the most interesting half hours of the whole convention. The walls of his “garret” were covered with an exhibition of book plates, which was very interesting to all, and especially so to Miss Gerner, who has a book plate of her own. We sat around the room, with Kleiner, Adams and Basinet occupying the post of honor in the middle of the room, seated on Bruno’s coffin. Bruno was a most entertaining host, telling us the story of his life and the various magazines he published. He has some secret that we are not possessed of, for he told us that every time he is “broke” he starts a magazine. Every time we are broke, we stop one. He also told us some of the history of Washington Square, and especially of the house were he resided. After explaining the exhibition of book plates, he listened attentively to our explanation of Amateur Journalism. We then viewed his collection of books and pamphlets and purchased copies of a magazine “Greenwich Village” which he publishes. He is a likable character and worth cultivating.

We then waited for an hour more or less, for a bus to Riverside Drive, but the long ride more than repaid us for the wait. An excellent view of the fashionable part of New York, as well as part of the Hudson River, is to be had, and as we were all together on top of the bus, it was one of the most enjoyable trips of the convention.

The party then adjourned to Chinatown for dinner, after which a trip to Coney Island was enjoyed, but as I did not accompany them on this excursion, this part of the program will be left to others to describe. I took leave of the party at the Chatham Square L station, to carry away with me the most vivid memories of a few days spent with congenial friends amid pleasant surroundings, and to look forward to the time when we shall meet again at Boston, 1916.

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Editorial
by Vincent B. Haggerty

It is customary at the birth of all magazines, amateur and otherwise, to say a few words about the publication, giving the reasons for its existence and something of its ideals and aspirations. As Leisure Hours is not published to fill any long felt want on the part of the public, it is difficult to give a valid reason for its existence, unless the desire of the editor to be again numbered among the amateur publishers, from whose ranks he has been so long absent, can be considered a sufficient excuse. But, mindful of the reply of Thomas R. Marshall, when asked why he opened a law office after the age of seventy, the editor believes that after a man has spent twenty years in amateur journalism, neither excuse nor apology is necessary for any desire to break into print.

In selecting Leisure Hours for the name of this publication, the editor does not know whether he is encroaching upon territory preempted by some famous magazine of the past, or some publication of the present which he has not happened to see. The name seems so good and so appropriate that it must have been used before, but it seems to fit the present occasion. The names of former publications of the editor, such as Cavalier, Pilgrim, Spectator, Square Deal, etc. have lost their charm, and Idle Hours, the name of the magazine published in collaboration with Ernest H. Morris, did not correctly describe the few hours snatched from the cares of business, which, when used to issue an amateur paper, are far from idle.

Having apologized, or neglected to apologize, for the paper and the name, a few words about the leading article might be in order. This was hurriedly written eleven years ago, and has reposed in my desk since. Apparently it is incomplete, as there seems to be no mention of the second and most exciting day of the convention. Many of the outstanding figures of that convention seem to have received no mention in the article; for what reason, I do not know. While many incidents and people stand out in my memory today, and might make interesting reading, I cannot at this time reconstruct the entire story or regain the atmosphere under which the article was written, and have thought it best to publish the article as it is, without correcting, improving or changing it in any way.

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In July, the members of the National will assemble at Philadelphia to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the organization. I expect to attend this celebration and hope to meet all my old amateur friends and make some new ones. It will be the eleventh National convention which I have attended, but I know I will enjoy it just as much as I did the first one. It looks as if there will be enough of a political contest to make the election interesting, and the Sesqui Centennial celebration will supply enough sight seeing to make the convention a social success.

The United Amateur Press Association of America, under the leadership of Dr. C. F. Noel, the President, seems to be enjoying a very active year. With the old war horse, Roy Erford, at the helm of the official organ, the association appears to be rapidly regaining its important position in the amateur world, and its next convention at Seattle promises to be a big success. I am sorry that the high cost of railroading prevents my being present at the convention and herewith extend my best wishes for a good convention.

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Leisure Hours
Volume 1, Number 1, June 1926

An amateur magazine, published occasionally by Vincent B. Haggerty, Jersey City, N. J.

Harry R. Marlow, Printer, Warren, Ohio

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