New York Times, October 22, 1893
CHICAGO. Oct. 21.—The crowning event in the celebration of Manhattan Day took place in Festival Hall. There were gathered Gotham’s most illustrious orators and prominent citizens from all walks of life. The speakers praised and cajoled and bantered Chicago by turns, and the New York people who composed a large part of the magnificent assembly, relished the oratory, the wit, and the good-natured sallies. Chauncey Depew’s reception was enough to make him hold his head a little higher, and he smiled while the audience cheered and clapped their hands at every brilliant sentiment and witty remark which he made. Gen. Horace Porter and Congressman John R. Fellows made brilliant sentiment and laughter-provoking addresses, exactly suited to the occasion and the character of tbe audience.
The great galleries of the half were faced with silken flags of all the American States and the nations of the earth. interspersed with the national emblem. The front of the platform was richly draped with the American colors and decorated above with floral pieces. In the platform chairs were seated many distinguished men and women from Manhattan Island. In the centre of the front group was Mayor Gilroy of New-York, and on either side sat Chauncey M. Depew, Seth Low, President of Oolumbia College; Gen. Horace Porter, Archbishop Corrigan, Mayor Harrison, the Rev. Dr Brown of St. Thomas’s Church; NewYork, Chaplain of tho Old Guard; Congressman John R. Fellows, Agnes Booth, Controller Theodore W. Myers of New-York, ex-Mayor Grant of New-York, Lyman.T. Gage, Treasurer Seeberger, Richard Croker, Tammany’s chief; Joseph J. O’Donohue, City Chamberlain of New-York; Street Commissioner W. M. Andrews. Commissioners Tappan, Porter, and Edward C. Sheehy, Judges Dunne and Ryan, John H. V. Arnold, John D. Crimmins, and Senator Jacob Cantor. Many members of the New-York Board of Aldermen and the Manhattan Committee of One Hundred. as well as members of the Chicago Common Council and the Sons of New-York Society. Boxes were reserved for the families and friends of Mayor Gilroy, ex-Mayor Nolan of Albany, President Higinbotham. and Mayor Harrison.
Back of the platform was arranged the Columbian Chorus of 800 voices, conducted by William L. Tomlins, and Innes’s Thirteenth Regiment Band of New-York, which awoke the echoes of the hall with their patriotic melody. Everyone of the 7,000 seats was taken before the exercises began, and hundreds of people were turned away from the doors. The band began the programme with the overture to “William Tell,” which was followed by prayer by Chaplain Brown of the Old Guard. Mayor Harrison was well received when he arose to address words of welcome to the New-York people on behalf of the World’s Fair City. He spoke of the great success of the fair and declared that much of it was due to the collective and individual efforts of the sons of New-York. whose genius was exemplified in every portion and all departments of the exposition. The home of the State of New-York on the grouuds had always been the scene of the most generous hospitality, and it was one of the most popular efforts which the exposition contained. The Mayor then alluded pleasantly to the good feeling existing between the two great cities of the Western world and closed with a warm encomium on the wealth and worth of the Empire State.
There was a great outburst of democratic enthusiasm when the Mayor of Chicago turned to the Mayor of New-York and presented him to the audience as presiding officer of the exercises. Mayor Gilroy’s speech was frequently applauded by his fellow-citizens. He said:
Ladies and Gentlemen: It is with feelings of profound pleasure that I reciprocate the greetings of Mayor Harrison. and express the gratitude of all NeW-Yorkers for the kind manner in which they were conveyed. It is an honor, indeed, for New-Yorkers to be present upon this memorable occasion; and we have more than ordinary satisfaction in testifying to our appreciation of the energy, industry, and liberality which distinguished the people of Chicago in getting up this magnltlcent exposition. There can be no doubt that the result of such expositions as this wlll bring together all the people of all countries in closer communion. New-York has been indeed anxious to obtain the location of the World’s Fair, but, although a New-Yorker of New-Yorkers, I cannot help expressing the bellef that it would be dl1ficult, if not impossible, for New-York or any other city on the globe to have exceeded the magnificence of this great fair. It is not alone Chicago that is to be congratulated; it is the whole country, and indeed the whole civilized world, of which this great exposition is but an epitome. We take pride as New-Yorkers in being a portion of that great country the genius ot which has made such an exhibition possible.
No one who has ever visited the great White City can ever forget it; and the spectacle of the Court of Honor, illuminated by electric ltghts with its fountains playing, surrounded by buildings of superb architectural construotion is a dream of beauty materialized. There is one sad reflection connected with the White City; it is that within a few weeks, or months, at furthest, these magnificent specimens of architectural art, together with all that they contain of human greatness and civilization, shall have passed away. I cannot help but think that any outlay, however great, that would tend to preserve these magnificent buildings in monumental marble would be an expenditure for which the country would receive a hundredfold in the liberal education which our population would receive in visiting them, and in the expansion ot mind and elevation of thought which they would evoke.
We have here the best efforts of mankInd from all portions of the globe—architecture in its grandest forms; the marvelous possibilities of electrical science as shown by the human voice transmitted so as to be heard upon a ray of electric light; the beautiful and astonishIng productions of manufactures and the liberal arts; machine power which challenges the admiration of mankind; the best prodUcts of the fruits of the earth. In fact, this great exposition, with all its wealth of the products of civilization and progress, closes an era and marks an epoch. It is the transfiguration of man’s industry and man’s effort. It Is a subject to which it would be impossible for me to do justice. It is only fitting that I should pay this passing tribute to its greatness and its grandeur. There are others to follow who are better fitted and more capable of doing justice to this magnificent theme, and to them I will leave the pleasant task.
Again, ladles and gentlemen, as the chief magistrate of the Empire City of this country, I welcome you to the White City created by the metropolis of the West, and hope and believe that the renewed intercourse will bring these two cities more closely together in a bond of union and brotherly love.
New-York’s Chief Magistrate was followed by the brilliant and eloquent Gen. Horace Porter, who made a great hit. His speech was in the right vein and aroused the audience to enthusiastic applause and waving of handkerchiefs. He said, in part:
As in ancient times all roads led to Rome, so at the present time all roads lead to Chicago. To-day the city of the seaboard comes to lay its tribute of admiration and respect at the feet of the city of the lakeside. Therefore, in what I shall have to say, my story wlll be a “Tale of Two Cities.” When Manhattan Day was designated and consecrated as a day in which the City of New-York was to offer its testimonial of appreciation to the great exposition, her citizens aroused en masse to make their pilgrimage to the fair. The numbers that have come have been limIted only by the limit of transportation.
My first and most agreeable duty is to express to the officers of the exposition and to the people of Chicago, in the name of the people of NeW-York. their profound acknowledgments and their deep sense of gratitude for the cordial and unbounded welcome which has been extended to them. Your people have vied with one another in pressing the cup of greeting to our lips ere we could remove the stains of travel from our garments. We have come to unite with you in the celebration of four centuries of history. We stand here to-day entranced with the grandeur of the achievements, inspired by the majesty of events. We find ourselves within the border of a State which did not exist at the time of the inauguration of our National Government, but which now contains a single city with a population nearly half as great as that of all the thirteen original States. We are enchanted by the sight ot this phantom city, phantom-like in color, phantom-like in the suddenness with which it has appeared before the eyes of men. We find its buildings, palaces, its grounds and gardens, its lakes, lagoons, and islands, a picture of gay fairyland, looking as if it had been summoned into being by the magic wand of an enchantress. We are almost awe-stricken as we stand within the shadows of these majestic temples of art. Every branch of every science. and of every art, seems to have been laid under contribution in the achievement of these marvelous results.
You have taught us that art is more God-like than science. for, while science discovers. art creates. If an Emperor could stoop to pick up the brush dropped by a Titian, If Meissonier could kiss the slipper once worn by a Michael Angelo, all men may bow to art. The art works upon which we gaze to-day speak a universal language and impart a lasting pleasure to all. They appeal to our highest senses and awake our noblest emotions. They are an eternal benediction. They induce the power of reflection, and inspire us with the majesty of the creative faculty. They cause us to realize more fully than ever before Lytton’s definition of art:
“The effort of man to express the ideas suggested to him by nature, of a power above nature, whether that power lie within the recesses of his own being in that great first power of which nature, like himself, is but an effect.”
Manhattan Day at the Fair
Scenes and Incidents of New York’s Formal Tribute of Praise to Chicago.
Then the Coiumbian chorus Ringers were waived from their seats by the baton of Director Tomlins to sing “The Star-Spangled Banner,” and every one in the audience stood up and joined in the chorus. At its conclusion, Agnes Booth, with much dramatic force and sympathy with the sentiment poetically expressed, recited the ode, “New-York to Chicago,” composed by Joseph I. C. Clarke of New-York.
NEW YORK TO CHICAGO
Queen of the West, whose arms outspread
Give welcome to the world,
Where lifts in sunshine thine imperial head,
Joy in thy glance and vigor in thy tread,
For thee our flag’s unfurled,
Hail ! ‘mid thy lofty piles that rise —
Dreams of divinest art,
Dreams ages dared not realize
Until the flash of thy brave eyes
Bade them to life to start
In majesty whose sight enthralls,
In beauty born of light,
Swift rose thy spacious palace halls,
Pillars and domes and sculptured walls,
A miracle in white,
Lo, as thy giant labors ceased,
The nations entered in
With world-culled wonders to thy feast.
Now come we from the sunrise East
To hail the next of kin,
Then Mayor Gilroy said: “I now take pleasure in introducing to you ‘Our Chauncey,'” and the rafters rang with the applause and hurrahs and “tigers,” which were redoubled when the familiar face and form of the famous New-Yorker was seen at the edge of the platform. He bowed his acknowledgements again and again, and a smile encircled his features as he began his address.
“Ladies and gentlemen,” said he, “here we are!’ And the audience let loose a boisterous shout of approval as they viewed Dr. Depew and his New-York friends on the platform intermingled with Chicago’s leading men. “The Mayor of this great city,” continued the speaker, as he cast a glance at Chicago’s “Our Carter, “called me ‘Dupee’ to-day, and a man who was introduced to me at the fair on New-York State day, said, said, ‘What is your name?’ Such, my friends is the irony of fate and the reward of greatness. [Laughter] Three cents an acre was paid for Chicago, and Manhattan Island was sold for $4. This teaches us that honesty is the best policy.” With this laughable prelude
Mr. Depew continued in part as follows:
Our interests as a Republic have been specially concentrated in the celebrations of the several States of the Union. When Illinois or Pennsylvania, Ohio or Wisconsin, Kansas or Missouri, California or Oregon, Georgia or South Carolina, or any of the newer sisters of the West have done their best, the exhibit of their exceUence and development has sent thrills of honest prIde and joy through the Empire State of New-York. It has been a pride and joy shared by all the States when each one has, demonstrated its claims for distinction and exhibited its growth. The lesson has been enforced over and over again, until it has become the morning and evening salutation in every household in this broad land, that we are one people, the citizens of one great Republic, and that whatever there is in any department of civilization or liberty which constitutes the peculiar merit of any State is the common property of all the Commonwealths of the American UnIon.
We entered into the contest with Chicago seeking to have the World’s Fair located in New-York. I speak within bounds when I say that there is to-day no one In New-York who is not glad that Chicago succeeded in that struggle. There is no one in New-York who fails to appreciate the burden which was assumed and the sacrifices necessary to carry it to completion.
With a thousand miles to traverse each way, we could not be expected to bring here our hundreds of thousands of viSitors, but I speak authoritatively for the 3,000 000 people who constitute the metropolis, in conveying to Chicago their cordial congratulations upon her unequaled success in this great undertaking. The world needed a demonstration ot what the American people, in a new country, under new conditions, and without traditions, could accomplish, and they have had it. Not only has this exhibition excited the interest of all nations and tribes of men, but the wonderful gatherIng of 700,000 citizens of a single city only fifty years of age, to show their confidence in their town and their welcome to its guests, has been the talk of London and Paris, of Vienna. and Berlin. It has been discussed under the shadow of the pyramids and has accelerated thought and action on the banks of the Ganges.
There Is no rivalry, and can be none, between New-York and Chicago.
The United States, stretchfng as it does from ocean to ocean, requires two commercial capitals. one for the coast and the other for the interior. The capital on the coast, which must necessarily be the capItal of the continent, has been fixed for half a century. The capital of the interior has been located by this fair. Chicago is to be the centre gathering the products of the fields and of the mines, and New-York the reservoir for their distribution through the country and abroad. All hall Chicago! All hail New-York!
The bits of applause which interrupted Mr. Depew’s remarks at frequent intervals rounded into a terrific storm of approval as the speaker concluded. He took his seat, but was compelled to rise twice and bow in response to the applause. whioh continued until the big chorus rose in their seats, and assisted by the band, sang Keller’s American hymn.
Col. John R. Pellows was the next speaker. His eloqueuce. tuned to a song of praise for the glories of the White City, was heartlly greeted by the vast assemblage. After the Columbian Chorus had sung “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” Seth Low, President of Columbia College, spoke In part as follows:
Fellow-citizens of Chicago and New-York: When Gov. Dongan, the second of the English Governors of the Province of New York, granted a new charter to the City of New-York in 1670 or thereabouts (I give the date from memory,) he spoke of the city in that instrument as already an ancient city. From this ancient and historic city, which saw the last of the British soldiery depart when the War Of Independence had been won, which saw this Federal Government established by the inauguration of George Washington as the first President of the United States whose gates, at the portal of the continent swing inward for the needy and oppressed of Europe and outward into the boundless opportunities of the New World—from such a city we have come to bear greetlngs and congratulations to this masterful and marvelous city by the great lake. No exhibit at this fair is to be compared with Chicago itself. Built and rebuilt in little more than half a century, it stands to-day as truly one of the wonders of the world as the pyramids of Egypt.
When Aladdin’s palace sprang into being in a night, one window was left unfinished. The most skillful artificers of the realm, with all the jewels of the kingdom at their command worked for a year to complete this window. When It was done it did not compare with the rest of the palace, which a higher order of genius had completed in a single night. Something like this, I think, must be sald of the general setting and effect of every other World’s Fair, compared with the unique beauty and poetry of the White City. It is little, I know, in the eyes of the citizens of Chicago to say that Chicago has surpassed every other city which embarked on a Similar undertaking. One should rather say, perhaps, that Chicago has surpassed herself. But that, fellow citizens, is precisely what has not been done. This fair is simply Chicago’s energy and daring, translating into beauty the strength of the Republic.
Fellow-citizens of Chicago, it has been the pleasure of New-York to aid in every way the success of this exposition. How much the architects, the artists, and the merchants of New-York have contributed to its success this is not the place to say. As the exposition draws to a close amid signs of popular appreciation justly its due, New-York has but a single word to say. We congratulate you and we thank you, citizens of Chicago. You have made us more proud than ever to be Americans.
The exercises closed with the singing of “My Country, ‘Tis of Thee” by the chorus and audience and the benediction, pronounced by Archbishop Corrigan.
The. principal parade, which was a combination of all the military and civic bodies present, took place after the exercises. In the line were the Old Guard, the First Regiment of Illinois, the Chicago Hussars, the Sons of New-York, and the Democratic Marching Club of Cook Connty, in addition to the military bands They made the circuit of the WhIte City and passed in review before the New-York State Building. On the reviewing stand in front of the splendid structure were Gen. Nelson A. Miles of the U. S. A., Brig. Gen. Wheeler of the Illinois militia, the two Mayors, and the Manhattan Day committees. The military bodies passed on and returned to the Terminal Plaza, where tbey disbanded after giving a dress parade.
The display of fireworks was arranged by Pain on the lake shore. Among the new set pieces were “Liberty Enlightening the World,” a huge portrait of Mayor Gilroy, the Brooklyn Bridge, Father Knickerbocker, and a female figure representing Chicago with a motto underneath:
She Can’t Be Beaten.
The entire lake front was illuminated with over 200 floating and changing lights. The entire Midway Plaisance was aglow with the same illumination, and New-York’s building dazzled the eyes of thousands with floods of colored fairv lamps and electric lights inside and out.
The New-York State Building