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Full text of "[City documents, 1847-1867]"

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Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2010 with funding from 

Boston Public Library 



http://www.archive.org/details/citydocuments566roxb 



City Document — No. 6. 
REPORT 



OF THE 



JOINT SPECIAL COMMITTEE 



ON THE SUBJECT OF THE 



DONATION OF HON. LINUS B. COMINS 



TO ONE OF THE PUBLIC SCHOOLS OF EOXBUKY. 




ROXBURY: 
NORFOLK COUNTY JOURNAL PRESS. 

1856. 



CITY OF KOXBURY. 



In Common Council, Feb. 25, 1856. 

Ordered, That Messrs. Nichols, Bumstead, and Perkins be a Com- 
mittee, with such as the Board of Aldermen may join, to ascertain 
what sum of money, if any, may be in the hands of the Government, 
or may have been expended in any manner, being the whole or a por- 
tion of any donation from the Hon. Linus B. Comins. 

Sent up for concurrence. 

JOSHUA SHAVER, Clerk. 

In Board of Aldermen, March 17, 1856. 

Concurred. And the Mayor and Alderman Robinson were joined. 

JOSEPH W. TUCKER, City Clerk. 

In Board of Aldermen, March 31, 1856. 

Report read ; and it was ordered that it be laid upon the table, and 
twelve hundred copies be printed for distribution. 

JOSEPH W. TUCKER, City Clerk. 



CITY OF ROXBURY. 
In Boaed op Aldermen, March 31, 1856. 

The Joint Special Committee, to whom was referred an 
order adopted by the City Council, instructing them " to 
ascertain what sum of money, if any, may be in the hands 
of the Government, or may have been expended in any 

- manner, being the whole or a portion of any donation 
from Hon. Linus B. Comins," have attended to their 
duty, and respectfully ask leave to submit the following 
facts : 

- It appears by a letter dated January 21, 1855, laid be- 
fore the Board of School Committee on the 31st of Janu- 
ary, and addressed by Hon. Linus B. Comins to Hon. 
Bradford K. Peirce, Chairman of the Board of School 
Committee, that Mr. Comins enclosed to the Committee 
the sum of one hundred dollars, to be expended in a library 
of reference, &c, for the benefit of the teachers and pupils 
of the " Comins Grammar School for Girls." Also the 
Sum of five hundred dollars, to be held in trust ; — the 
Chairman of the Board of School Committee, the Mayor 
of the City, and the President of the Common Council to 
be, ex officio, trustees of the fund; — the income to be ex- 
pended annually in prizes to the scholars in the " Comins 
Grammar School for Girls," in such manner as the School 
Committee shall direct. 

It also appears, by a series of resolves adopted by the 
Board of School Committee, March 14, 1855, that the 



4 REPORT. 

Board accepted the donation of the one hundred dollars, 
and appointed a committee to secure the object of the 
donor in the purchase of books ; the Board also accepted, 
on its part, the trust of the donation of five hundred dol- 
lars, to be funded in accordance with the wishes of the 
donor, the annual interest to be expended on the library of 
the school, under the direction of the Trustees of the fund, 
in accordance with the suggestions of Mr. Comins, as con- 
tained in a second letter from that gentleman, dated March 
8th, 1855. 

It also appears in evidence before the Committee, that 
the Chairman of the Board of School Committee, being 
also one of the Trustees, ex officio, deposited the five hun- 
dred dollars in the hands of the Treasurer or Agent of the 
American Sunday School Union, and took his note on de- 
mand and on interest, for the same. This note was subse- 
quently deposited with Joseph W. Dudley, City Treasurer, 
for safe keeping, by the Chairman of the Board of School 
Committee, and his receipt was taken for the same. 

It has also been ascertained, that when the annual inter- 
est on the note for five hundred dollars became due, the 
Chairman of the Board of School Committee expended 
the amount — thirty dollars — in the purchase of books 
for the school, according to the resolve passed by the 
School Committee on the 14th of March. These books, 
with the books originally purchased with the sum of one 
hundred dollars, referred to above, are now in possession 
of the school. The note for five hundred dollars, given by 
the Treasurer or Agent of the American S. S. Union, still 
remains deposited for safe keeping with Mr. Dudley, and 
the Chairman of the present Board of School Committee 
holds his (Mr. Dudley's) receipt for the note. 

It is understood that the individuals designated by Mr. 
Comins to hold the fund in trust, in conjunction with the 
Chairman of the School Committee, were duly notified of 
the same by the Clerk of that Board. It also appears, 



CITY DOCUMENT. — No. 6. 5 

from a statement made by the Chairman of the School 
Committee for the past year, that he communicated his 
mode of investing the five hundred dollars, to one of the 
gentlemen designated by Mr. Comins as one of the trus- 
tees — the Mayor of the City — soon after the fund was 
invested. Also that he conferred with the same gentleman 
on the subject of depositing the money with the City Treas- 
urer as a permanent loan to the City Government ; also 
that the interest of the money was expended in a manner 
to meet his approval. The gentleman referred to, however? 
states explicitly that he never accepted the trust — never 
acted as a trustee — and does not regard himself in any 
way responsible for any action in relation to the fund or 
the disposition of the income arising therefrom. The other 
gentleman designated as one of the trustees — the Presi- 
dent of the Council — accepted the trust, but never attend- 
ed any meeting of the Trustees, or took any action, or was 
conferred with in relation to the disposition of the fund. 

But whatever may have been the action of the Trustees 
of the fund, or of the Board of School Committee, such 
action cannot affect the relation of the City Council to- 
wards this donation for " the Comins Grammar School for 
Girls." It was evidently the intention of the donor, that 
the City Council should have no control over, or disposi- 
tion of, this money. The subject has never even engaged 
the attention of the City Government, in any shape, until 
the present year. There is no allusion to it in any record 
of the proceedings of either Board ; and the conclusion is 
inevitable, that no sum of money, " being the whole or a 
portion of any donation from the Hon. Linus B. Comins," 
has ever been in the hands of the City Council, or expend- 
ed in any manner by either branch of that body ; — but that 
the Board of School Committee, having on their part ac- 
cepted the trust; and those Trustees, indicated by the 
donor, who have also accepted the trust on their part — if 



6 REPORT. 

any — have hitherto had the entire and exclusive manage- 
ment and regulation of the donation, and of the interest 
arising from the fund ; — and will undoubtedly continue to 
adopt such measures in relation to that subject, as may 
seem to them wise and expedient. 

JOHN S. SLEEPER, 
J. P. ROBINSON, 
R. C. NICHOLS, 
T. L. D. PERKINS. 



PUBLIC LIBRARY 

OF THE 

CITY OF BOSTON. 



ABBREVIATED REGULATIONS. 

. One volume can be taken at a time from the 
Lower Hall, and one from the Bates Hall. 
Books can be kept out 14 days. 

A line of 2 cents for each volume will be 
incurred for each, day a book is detained more 
than 14 days. 

Any book detained more than a week be- 
yond the time limited, will be sent for at the 
expense of the delinquent. 

No book is to be lent out of the household 
of the borrower. 

The Library hours for the delivery and re- 
turn of books are from 10 o'clock, A. M., to 
8 o'clock, P. M., in the Lower Hall ; and from 
10 o'clock, A. M., until one half hour before 
sunset in the Bates Hall. 

Every boQk must, under penalty of one dol- 
lar, be returned to the Library at such time 
in August as shall be publicly announced. 

The card must be presented whenever a 
book is returned. For renewing a book the 
card must be presented, together with the 
book, or with the shelf-numbers of the book.