In Steinberg’s Behalf
Except affording a few hide-bound Thiele champions the privilege of cachinnating, we can see no sense or reason in the attacks made on Mr. Steinberg by Sans Gene and its editor. With the thinking person they are of small consequence, for when one stops and compares the respective standing of Mr. Steinberg and Mr. Barnard, one is amused at the temerity of the latter. It seems to worry Mr. Barnard that the editor of Dilettante should consent to run for office in the National. But who has a better right to do so? Has not Dilettante’s editor a record of thirteen years of activity to his credit; has he not been an exponent of his hobby early and late, in season and out, in health and sickness? He is and was active; and is not activity a necessary qualification to hold office? Then why ridicule Mr. Steinberg for standing for his own? It is his right and privilege.
Mr. Barnard’s repeated attacks are amusing if nothing more, and his pompous declaration that “Sammy’s sun has set” is positively ridiculous. Sammy’s sun will set when he desires it to be so, and not before, Mr. Barnard to the contrary notwithstanding. Were Mr. Barnard older in the ranks he would know that in June, 1891, and January 1892, Oscar Mueller and E. M. Phillips devoted complete issues of Truth to reading Mr. Steinberg out of the ‘Dom; that in the latter year Hope Reed Cody and Oscar Reum endeavored to do the same thing in News Letter. These men were far more able to accomplish the task than is Mr. Barnard, yet they failed to do it. It were better for Mr. Barnard to retain his head in the matter and count the cost of his actions.
S. J. Steinberg has published nine hundred and thirty-one pages of reading matter, exclusive of official organs, and in them has given more space to the writings of our authors and critics than any other editor in the work. In the first year of Dilettante’s issuance he printed and circulated one hundred and two pages, which is more than Mr. Barnard has given to the ‘Dom in his entire connection with amateur journalism. In addition he has given the National Association one of the best volumes of the National Amateur it has ever had. A volume replete in contemporary and historic value. A volume in which the old timer and present day amateur can find much that is instructive and interesting.
And that is the sort of man Mr. Barnard raises his voice against in loud acclaim! In the old days activity used to count for much; today bluster takes its place. Let Mr. Barnard train his guns on a less active devotee, and he will be more sure of hitting the mark. Amateurdom is tired of his senseless war on Mr. Steinberg.
Alfred J. Robinson.
August 21, 1902.
People and Things
Folks seen on a trip east and happenings there or thereabouts.
Continued from August issue.
by John Travis Nixon
Point-of-Order Butler was a prominent person at all sessions. I don’t know that he is a member of the National, or that he ever wrote even a line for an amateur paper; but he knows it all – of that there is no mistake. Butler couldn’t sit down. He stood up and went round the room, prompting people how to make motions and then telling the chairman what to do. He ought to be caged. Any museum keeper should be willing to pay well for him as a drawing attraction.
The manipulation of the proxies, to throw out the Peltret votes, was the most deliberate piece of rascality that has ever been perpetrated in amateur journalism.
The report of the proxy committee which was read to the convention was given as a “partial report,” and was signed only by the chairman and secretary. When Moss started to read it, I called his attention to the fact that it was not properly gotten up. There were many members of the Wills party who did not understand the program. Burger was up in front, facing the gang, where he could tell them what was what. Wills was conveniently out of the room.
I protested that the report was not regular and could see no good to come from its reading. The report itself states that the work was not finished, and before it was read I placed in Burger’s hands copies of Starring’s complete reports during the year, for the lack of which all proxies of new members were being held up. I refused to allow Moss to read the document as a report of the proxy committee, and warned the convention that its action in accepting this “report” and proceeding with an alleged “election” was an illegal procedure. But the convention willed otherwise and went ahead.
People voted in favor of putting on the table all unopened proxies who did not understand the motion at all. Afterward some of these gentlemen asked what disposition had been made of these proxies. They did not seem to understand. They voted blindly, following their leader – to “victory” – at the expense of honesty and justice.
After the election I shook hands with Peltret and told him from my heart that I would rather go down in honorable defeat than to gain a dishonest victory; I would rather be Peltret than Wills.
As I am writing these rambling notes a letter reaches me from the late treasurer which seems to fit in here. It is appended:
Grand View, Tenn., July 22, 1902.
My Dear Friend:
I have sent the money to Wedge – $70.25, the one dollar being the annual dues of Arthur L. Robinson, which I received too late to include in my report. I sent him a receipt.
I am indeed sorry I was the means of cheating 100 fellow members out of their just rights. I shall always regret this stain on my record. I sent my annual report to Houtain and commanded him to place the same in your hands without fail. I thought of sending it direct to you at your hotel, but was afraid you might not call for your mail and it would be delayed; now I wish I had done so.
I feared some kind of trickery and tried to arrange my report so there could be no doubt about it. I acknowledged the dues of every single applicant sent me by Alderman. I also sent the books to Houtain with my report, and the name of every applicant appeared therein and every name was given credit for one year’s dues. I would have written every name in full, but at the close of the month I was very busy making out reports for some parties here. But if they would not believe the report or the books, they would not have believed anything else. I can’t see how they could dodge the fact that they had voted to admit these members and thereby said that their dues had been paid, as all members must be paid up before they can be voted upon.
As to my not sending the money to the convention, that was absurd. It has never been done to my knowledge, unless the treasurer was present. That money was trusted to me and I would not send it to a rotten political gang to tamper with. I believe I did right in not sending it.
At Nashville we had no report, books or money from the treasurer, yet we counted the proxies; but then we had no Smith and Burger. Such fellows should be expelled from the N. A. P. A.
It will be noticed that Starring instructed Houtain to turn his report over to the chairman of the convention, which he did not do. On the other hand he turned it over to the proxy committee. He did not turn over the books, which Starring claims were sent with the report, and he claimed that the books were not there. Between the words of the two men amateurdom will accept that of the retiring treasurer, and Houtain may explain where the books were left and why.
Houtain is a most pleasant fellow personally, and it is a matter of regret to many that he has mixed himself up in these questionable transactions and thus cast a shadow over his entire career. It will indeed take hard work for him to atone for the mistakes of the past.
The most prominent moment in the career of Maxwell Mayer as an amateur, so far, was when he stood up in the convention hall and loudly exclaimed that he would himself prefer charges of misappropriation of funds against Louis M. Starring, because he did not send the money in the treasury to the convention. Mayer is wide awade, a good talker and apparently honest. I believe that when he understands how he and other honest men were duped by Burger, he will be as earnest in denouncing measures he then upheld as he was on the other side. If Mayer can write like he can talk he should be active.
Surely I have said enough harsh things. But there is one person yet to note in this manner. Albert E. Cull was chosen by the Wills gang to do a certain class of dirty work, and did it in a manner to win the admiration of Charley Burger and the detestation of every fair-minded person. Cull acted the spy for Wills, going with the Peltret men and claiming to be a Peltret supporter. He finally incorporated his talk about Peltret’s crowd into an affidavit, said to cover eighteen pages, which Charles Burger kept in his pocket and tapped significantly quite frequently during the convention. Cull is a bright young man, apparently with good sense, and we cannot understand how he could act the sneak and cur in this manner. He can hardly hope to ever live down the record he has made, though I do not believe he at all understood how he will be looked on.
This paragraph was written before reading ‘Squito, and it is but justice to Mr. Cull to say that our informants as to his dirty work are his friends Burger and Moss.
And now it is certainly time to say a few good words for somebody or other – to give a few pleasant recollections of the memorable gathering, of which I have many.
Franklyn-Curtiss Wedge arrived while the convention was in session and found it necessary to vote before he had been introduced. He has stated all along that he did not want any fuss, but he certainly seems at home in one. Wedge is a boy, yet a man. He is buoyant and boyish, but in the closing hour of the convention rose to the might of matured manhood, grasped the situation as probably none other in the room, and took the chairmanship when the weak president at the beck of scheming politicians refused to carry on the work of the convention.
Bernard J. Goldstein is quiet, yet his bright, open countenance attracted me very much.
Foster Gilroy is a clever auburn-haired youth, with twinkling eyes that pronounce him full of fun. I had scarce a dozen words of conversation with him, but am sure he is companionable and witty. Gilroy’s presence helped his candidacy, which cannot be said of Walter Goff. While Goff is a bright young fellow, he made a poor impression on the attendants. Had his banquet speech been before the election his vote would have been larger.
Stars and Stripes. Established 1883.
Founded by Frederic Heath.
Published monthly in the interests of the National Amateur Press Association
and especially of the Alumni membership: 50c per year.
Entered as second class mail matter Dec. 10, 1901.
John T. Nixon, publisher, Crowley, La.