STATE LIBRARY BUILDING
CONCORD, NEW HAMPSHIRE
"TUKSDAY, JANUARY 8, 1895
Published by Authority of the State
EDWARD N. PEARSON, PUBLIC PRINTER
LAWS OF 1895, CHAPTER 125.
JOINT RESOLUTION PROVIDING FOR THE PRINTING OF THE PRO-
CEEDINGS AT THE DEDICATION OF THE STATE LIBRARY BUILD-
ING, JANUARY 8, 1895.
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives in General
That the governor and council be requested to procure the
printing of two thousand copies of the proceedings at the dedi-
cation of the State library building at Concord, January 8, 1895,
including the addresses of William J. Tucker and Ains worth R.
Spofford, with suitable cuts of the exterior and interior of the
r - /f \« . 4 «>Q
Introduction . . . vii
Description of the Building i
Trustees, i 866-1 895 13
Librarians, i 834-1 895 15
Hon. J. S. H. Frink, President of the Day . . 17
Rev. Harry P. Dewey, Invocation ... 22
Hon. Charles H. Burns, of the Building Com-
mission ......... 24
His Excellency Charles A. Busiel ... 26
Hon. Isaac W. Smith, Associate Justice of the
Supreme Court 27
Hon. Parsons B. Cogswell, Mayor of Concord . 38
Hon. George C. Gilmore, Trustee of the Library 40
Rev. William J. Tucker, d. d., President of Dart-
mouth College . 42
Hon. Ainsworth R. Spofford, Librarian of Con-
New Hampshire, in assuming to do for the people
what the people formerly accomplished for themselves,
has made progress only after demonstration that pater-
nalism in government does not trespass upon the theory
and practice of a pure democracy. The progress of
thought and the enlargement of practice have founded
state institutions and generally have granted privileges
and facilities which individually the people could not
secure for themselves. The internal history of the state
library reveals an origin and development in harmony
with a liberal interpretation of the functions of a wise
and comprehensive state administration.
So long as the library remained under the immediate
control and supervision of the legislature its growth was
dwarfed and its functions were limited to a narrow
sphere. In 1866, under more liberal legislation, the
library became an institution with a permanent board
of control, and during the succeeding years it has
profited under the fostering care of the state. Within
thirty years the number of volumes has been increased
tenfold, and the interest of the public has kept an even
pace with the rapid progress of the library.
In the early history of the state, there was no state
library or thought of one. Until 1816 there was no
state house nor any public building in which a state
library could be sheltered. During the first twenty
years under the constitution, the legislature held only
two successive sessions in the same town, and these
were special and not annual sessions. During the
years preceding the establishment of a permanent seat
of government, it is evident the state was not saving and
moving books from town to town. The treasurer was
summoned to attend with the iron chest wherever the
general court pitched its tent, but no library was trans-
ported from one temporary capital to another. The
state had none. If we claim for the institution the
added glory of antiquity, we must admit that in its
imaginative existence it was vehicular. With the com-
pletion and occupancy of a permanent state house, it is
probable that a few books were collected, but it was
several years before the state entertained any thought of
a permanent library, or even reserved a copy of its own
publications for its use. The Journals of the Senate and
House of Representatives, and other volumes, published
by the state, previous to 1826, and now in the state
library, were secured by donation or purchase at a later
For the first time the state library receives mention in
the state records in an act of 1823 appropriating $100
annually for its enlargement. The poverty of the insti-
tution is revealed in an act of 1826 which provided for
the purchase of **one copy of the Journal of the Senate
and House of Representatives for each session since the
adoption of the present constitution."
In 1828 Jacob Bailey Moore was appointed an agent
to prepare a room under the senate chamber for the
accommodation of the state library. Mr. Moore caused
to be arranged a series of shelves in a long, narrow
room across the north end of the state house, and here
the library remained until the autumn of 1864. An act
of 1848 provided for the removal of the library to the
west side of the state house, but no action was taken on
account of a failure of the general court to make an ade-
quate appropriation for the purpose.
In 1828 the whole number of volumes was less than
600. These were packed rather than shelved in limited
accommodations, and the door was securely locked the
greater part of the year. During the succeeding fifteen
years about an equal number of volumes of a miscellane-
ous character was added to the originals, and with them
committed to a continued and solitary confinement.
The only printed catalogue of the state library was
issued nearly fifty years ago. An act approved June
30, 1846, directed the secretary of state, the librarian, ex-
officio^ to print three hundred copies of a catalogue of
the librar}^. The catalogue demonstrates that the col-
lection of statutes and legislative journals of the United
States and of the several states, had been considerably
increased within the few years immediately preceding.
At this date the library also contained nearly 400 law
reports, digests, and works of an elementary character.
In the miscellaneous department there were about 600
volumes of history, biography, and reference books.
At the June session, 1849, Alexandre Vattemare, of
Paris, delivered an address before the legislature, advo-
cating an international exchange of public documents.
The address was printed at the expense of the state, and
a joint resolution was passed directing the librarian to
present Mr. Vattemare **such copies of the Journals of
the legislature and other volumes and pamphlets in his
possession as in his opinion can be consistently thus
appropriated." In exchange the library received in
uniform and substantial bindings 125 volumes in French.
They are silent reminders of a policy suddenly adopted,
and as speedily relinquished.
In 1834, Jacob C. Carter was chosen librarian, and by
annual elections was continued in office until the close of
the session of 1846. During this period, and for many
succeeding years, the library was opened only during
the session and for the sole accommodation of the legis-
lature and the state officers. An act of 1846 changed
the form, but not the spirit, of the control of the library.
The secretary of state became the librarian ex -officio
with authority to appoint a special deputy to open the
library during the session, and in 1857 the deputy secre-
tary of state was made librarian ex-officio, and continued
to discharge the limited duties of the office until 1866.
The state house was re-modelled between the special
session in August, 1864, and the June session, 1866. In
the meantime the books of the state library were stored
in the basement of the city hall. They were removed
from the state house in the autumn of 1864, eighty years
after the adoption of the state constitution. At this time
it could be called a library only by courtesy. At best
it was a broken collection of law books and state
documents with a very few volumes of a miscellaneous
character. The repairs upon the state house provided a
room for the library upon the centre of the west side.
It was left unfinished, and the books remained in storage
until the summer of 1867. During eighty years the
legislature practically retained the immediate control and
supervision of the library. The laws were temporary
in their character and to no one was delegated an
authority to secure any permanent results. Each
annual session legislated for its immediate convenience,
often doing too much for a month and always too little
for a year.
At the June session, 1866, the legislature assembled
in the re-modeled state house. It was the beginning of
an era in the history of the library. The spirit of the
prophet was breathing in the dead bones in the valley,
and the voice of progress called the people to the opened
doors of the library. Under the provisions of the act of
1866 the state library was enlarged from a legislative
convenience to a public institution. The control was
delegated to a perpetual board of trustees, and a more
liberal provision was made for its support. Under this
management the room provided was completed and a
permanent librarian was appointed. The results were
immediate and constant, and the library soon outgrew
the accommodations provided by the trustees. The
situation found frequent expression in the legislature
without results until the session of 1889, in the passage
of a joint resolution authorizing the governor and coun-
cil to procure plans and estimates for the enlargement
of the state house or the erection of a separate building
for the accommodation of the library. Under this
authority the governor and council appointed Charles
H. Burns, John W. Sanborn, Benjamin A. Kimball,
Irving W. Drew, and Charles J. Amidon. The com-
mission held frequent sessions, and industriously prose-
cuted the work of inquiry and investigation. To the
succeeding legislature they recommended a site, and
presented plans and estimates for a new building. The
plan contained provision for a court room and adjoining
rooms for the accommodation of the court and members
of the bar. The recommendations of the commission
were promptly accepted by the legislature, and without
opposition an act was passed authorizing the governor
and council to appoint four commissioners to erect a
l)uilding in accordance with the accepted plans and
upon the proposed site. The commission under the act
of 1889 consisted of five members, and with the knowl-
edge of the desire of Mr. Amidon to be excused from
further service, the building commission under the act
of 1891 comprised four members. The governor and
council appointed Charles H. Burns, John W. Sanborn,
Benjamin A. Kimball, and Irving W. Drew commis-
sioners for the erection of the new building. The plans
accepted were those of A. P. Cutting of Worcester,
Mass., and he remained associated with the commis-
sioners during the construction of the building. The
liberality of the people as expressed in legislation, and
the wisdom of the commissioners are fittingly expressed
in the fair proportions and the spacious accommodation
of an attractive and durable structure.
The state library enters upon a new era of its exist-
ence with hope and confidence. During the past
twenty-eight years, under the management of the
trustees, its growth has been uniform and constant.
It now contains, exclusive of duplicates, 50,000 volumes,
of which 14,000 are in the law department. Including
pamphlets, state and United States documents, it pos-
sesses over 100,000 duplicates. Every year is adding
more volumes than the library contained fifty years ago.
THE STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
The problem as received from the commissioners was
for a building, first, to contain and accommodate the state
library, with ample means for immediate growth within
its walls, and so arranged that a stack room for future
growth could be added, retaining the present structure
for administrative purposes, with reading room of ample
dimensions for its prospective growth for many years to
Second, to provide rooms for the supreme court of the
state, comprising court room, judges' consultation and
private rooms, clerks' and attorneys' room, with such
additional rooms as would naturally grow out of the
development of the scheme, and suitable for offices
under the state government, and the whole to be of the
most substantial character, as nearly fireproof as con-
sistent with available use.
It is not necessary to minutely describe all the intricate
details entering into the construction of the building, but
in any description, however brief, it should not be over-
looked that the foundations are laid deep and strong ;
that the materials were carefully selected and of the best
quality available ; that each and every one of the intri-
cate details have in turn received all, and much more care
and thought than is usually expended upon such prob-
lems ; that the building not only looks strong and per-
manent, but it has really greater strength than is appar-
ent, for by the solid character of the backing of the
2 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
exterior walls and by the tying into them of the solid
masonry partitions, which buttress them in every direc-
tion and add untold strength to its otherwise massive
solidity ; that in heating, lighting, ventilation, and sani-
tation it is the best that expert service can give ; in deco-
ration and ornament it is true to the style selected. That
it is not highly decorated, is true, for both its material
and purpose forbid such a course.
It is situated fronting the state-house grounds from the
north , with a frontage on Park street of 141 feet 6
inches, on State street, 104 feet 2 inches, with a width
of 94 feet 4 inches at the narrowest point through the
library east of the main entrance, with a slight project-
ing tower 24 feet square at the southwest corner, one
story higher than the main building, with a high, pitched
roof; a segmental bay from the centre of the court room
at the west end, and a semi-circular bay at the right of
the main entrance with finish membering into and join-
ing the same. The extreme height of main walls from
grade is 44 feet, with a gable over main entrance 57 feet
in height, and a tower 83 feet in height.
The exterior is wholly of New Hampshire granite
in two colors. The body of the work and basement
entire are of Conway red granite, rock face, except
reveals and mouldings which are fine cut. The trim-
mings comprising all belts, mouldings, pilasters, cor-
nices, copings, entrance steps, etc., are of Concord
gray granite, and wholly dressed work. The backing
of all exterior walls and partitions is of brick laid in
The framing of floors, ceilings, roof trusses, stairs,
columns, entire, are of steel. The floors, columns, ceil-
ings, and roof are filled with burnt clay tiles, with pro-
jecting flanges wholly enclosing metal construction, by
a solid covering of previously burnt materials. The
THE DEDICATION. 3
floors and roof arches are filled and leveled with con-
crete to receive floors and roof covering.
The floors for vestibule, main hall first and second
stories, and border of court room are of marble mosaic,
and all other floors marble tiles.
The roof has a waterproof covering over masonry con-
struction overlaid with seven-eighths inch planed slates
bedded in mastic. Flashing and skylight ribs are of
copper. Skylights are glazed with one-half inch thick,
hammered plate glass, with all windows glazed with
thick, polished plate glass.
The plastering is laid directly to masonry construction.
The door and window trimmings for the vestibule, main
and staircase halls, and court room are of polished mar-
ble ; all other trimmings are of Keene cement. The book
cases and stacks are of iron. Wood is only used for door
and window casements and furniture is mainly quartered
oak, and is of so inconsiderable an amount that the whole
could be burned in any room in the building without
endangering its construction.
The basement has a strong battered wall 6 feet 9 inches
in height, of unusually large stone, springing from a solid
underpinning with projecting wash and terminating with
a belt 3 feet wide of three members, base, die, and sill
course, running entirely around the building.
From this belt of light colored granite spring pilasters
2 feet 6 inches wide projecting 6 inches, with moulded
base and delicately carved capitals, coupled at the
angles, single at each division or bay, around the build-
ing and running up to and supporting the main cornice.
The motive of the main cornice is Grecian, 4 feet in width,
composed of frieze, dentils, egg and dart, bed moulding,
facia and corona. Over the main cornice is a sort of bat-
tlement wall 3 feet 3 inches in height, of red granite
trimmed with gray, forming roof stop.
4 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
The segmental bay at the west end back of the judges'
bench from the court room, is pierced with triple windows
standing high up on massive panels of red granite,
with rugged split faces. The spandrils over the same
windows have similar panels surrounded by ornamental
mouldings. Through the curtain walls between the pilas-
ters are the windows for the first and second stories, with
moulded panels between them, giving the effect of con-
nected windows. The lower ones have stone mullions
and transoms, and the second semi-circular tops.
The rear entrance to the library from the north and
the hatchway to the basement, while absolutely without
ornament, are wonderfully interesting, showing as they
do the massive strength of the work.
The main entrance is from Park street in the south
front, 53 feet from the southwest corner to the centre.
The entrance is composed of thirteen granite steps 20 feet
wide, solidly buttressed at either side and flanked with
massive stone piers 6 feet 3 inches wide up to the height
of first story, from which spring coupled pilasters running
up to and supporting gable cornice above the battlement
walls of the main building. The tympanum, formed by
the pitch of the gable, is richly carved, the central motive
of which is the modified state seal.
Standing between the main piers of the first story and
the pilasters of the second, are four pairs of coupled
columns, one standing back of the other. These columns
are polished and of green granite from Conway quarries.
The lower ones have pedestals membering with the belt
extending around the building, with moulded bases and
delicately carved capitals, and support the massive stone
lintel 2 feet high, 3 feet 9 inches wide, and 18 feet long,
over which rests the die bearing the inscription in polished
letters ** STATE LIBRARY.** The die and its capping
form guard for upper balcony, and from which spring
THE DEDICATION. 5
companion columns supporting the great arch over the
balcony. The portico and balcony over it are faced
with granite with floors and ceilings of solid granite
The motive of the exterior, as it finds expression in its
coursed ashlar walls, mouldings, panels, cornices, pilas-
ters, etc., is of the early Italian renaissance period,
which originated near the end of the fifteenth century, at
a time when the great masters of Italian art had grown
weary of the Byzantine, Gothic, and Romanesque, and
were reaching out into new fields and gaining fresh con-
quests in their chosen profession, receiving their inspira-
tion from Grecian art of 2,000 years before ; their works
were so successful that they have ever since found ex-
pression in the best works of every European country,
and are steadily gaining in favor at home. While in the
whole there is scarcely a new thing in the builders' art,
the adaptation to its purpose is quite unusual in archi-
tecture, and the whole gives the impression of great
solidity as if built for eternity.
From the main porch through double doors of polished
oak surrounded by transoms and side lights, we pass
through a vestibule 5 feet 6 inches by 22 feet, and enter
the main hall by similar doors. This hall is 22 feet by 74
feet 6 inches, running through and receiving its light
from the triple windows over the main staircase in the
rear wall, and forms a dividing line between the two
departments of the building, at the right of which is the
library and at the left the court departments.
From this hall by two pairs of double doors at the
right, we enter the great reading room of the library.
This room is 42 feet wide, 70 feet 8 inches long, and 34
feet 6 inches high ; is flanked on either side by a colon-
nade of six Grecian Doric columns surmounted by a
classic entablature, which supports a similar colonnade
6 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
with Grecian columns with composite capitals, with inter-
secting arches, beams in the first story and arches in
the second story, intersecting with pilasters on the outer
walls of the room, extending up to the main ceiling.
The columns forming the second story colonnade are
connected between them, as well as at the ends, with
marble rails, supported on ornamental wrought iron bal-
ustrade. These columns are 9 feet from the alcove walls,
and are designed to form separating corridors between
the alcoves and the central section of the main reading
room, which is lighted with large windows at the east end
and skylight comprising nearly the whole central section
of the ceiling. The second story colonnade with the
attendant balustrade forms galleries around the room from
which the second story alcoves are reached.
In entering the library at the first door, at the right is
an attendant staircase from the basement to the second
story. Adjoining this is a trustees' room, the extreme
dimensions of which are 16 feet by 30 feet, with the outer
end occupying the semi-circular bay, which is pierced with
a group of five transomed windows. Of the remaining
four alcoves upon the right hand or south side, three are
10 feet 2 inches by 22 feet and the fourth is 13 feet by 22
feet. The three central alcoves on the north side are of
the same dimensions as the south side, while opposite the
trustees' room is a vault 13 feet 6 inches by 16 feet 8
inches, constructed of hard brick with 3-foot walls
laid solid in cement. At the northwest corner of the
library department, and connected with a driveway from
the rear entrance, is a staircase connecting with base-
ment, and with first and second stories.
The alcoves in the library department are each 14 feet in
the clear height, giving the requisite height for two tiers
of bookcases, when the same shall be required, and are
each lighted from end walls by large windows surrounded
THE DEDICATION. 7
by bookcases and provided with reading tables and
chairs, forming a series of reading rooms for classified
The basement immediately under the library depart-
ment has faced and jointed lining walls and. piers of
brick, with a metalithic concrete floor covering the whole
space. The whole is amply lighted and used for book
storage and supplies. Between the basement staircase
and the main library the two alcoves on the right are
fitted for cataloguing purposes.
At the left of the main hall by the first door we reach
the judges' consultation room, 19 feet by 22 feet 3 inches,
through which we reach a private office, 15 feet 8 inches
square, in the space occupied by the tower. From either
of these rooms through a lobby 7 feet by 9 feet 5 inches,
entrance to the court room is formed. Outside of this
lobby is the judges' lavatory, of similar size. Through
the next three doors from the hall, a wide one in the
centre, flanked on either side by single doors, we enter
the court room, 2^ feet by 50 feet by 26 feet 6 inches
high, with a segmental bay in the immediate front. The
windows of the bay stand high up over the judges'
bench, which is located 9 feet from the outer wall.
Connecting with the court room from the northwest
corner of the building is a clerk's room, about 17
feet square, with vault. Adjoining this room and con-
necting with main hall is a similar room for consulta-
At the rear end of the main hall at the right, is the
main staircase, 9 feet wide, constructed of iron and
marble, and leading to the second story, and connecting
directly with the second story reception hall, 22 feet by 57
feet 9 inches, which is surrounded by a finely ornamented
cornice, with semi-circular glazed ceiling with extreme
height of 26 feet. From this hall, through a glazed par-
S STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
tition, the balcony over the main porch is reached. The
light of this room is admirably adapted for the exhibi-
tion of paintings, views, and other objects of art.
Through this room are reached the gallery in the library
and the second story rooms occupying the space used by
the judges in the lower floor, comprising rooms 19 feet by
22 feet 3 inches, 15 feet 8 inches square, and 9 feet 5
inches by 15 feet, and from the landing in the main stair-
case at the north side of the building a room 17 feet by 36
feet, thus completing the appointments of the building.
The heating and ventilating of the building are accom-
plished by a power system, consisting of two horizontal
locomotive boilers with heating coils, and a fan driven
by electric power. These are located under the main
hall, and are absolutely disconnected from the library
department, except the heating conduits. The cold air
is taken from high up in the north wall, and conducted
by the solid masonry conduits to the heating coils
through the fan to the distributing conduits. The sys-
tem includes mixing dampers with thermostats and elec-
tric control, and as computed by the manufacturers is
rated at 25,000 cubic feet of fresh air per minute. By
the electric control a change of two degrees in temper-
ature only is required to open or close the hot and cold
The computation of ventilating flues provides for a
capacity sufficient to change the air in the court room
every ten minutes, and in the library every fifteen
The vestibule, main and staircase halls have a rich
wainscot 5 feet 6 inches high of Sienna marble with base
and cap mouldings, door and window trimmings of
Verona red marble, extending up the main staircase to
the second story, and including the triple windows over
THE DEDICATION. 9
Midway between the doors to the library is a massive
mantel of Grecian design, and like the hall surrounding
it, is of Sienna marble, with Verona red trimmings, the
motive of which is solid paneled pilasters relieved with
decorated mouldings up to and supporting the shelf,
above which spring coupled fluted pilasters with rich
capitals carrying the main entablature.
The space over the shelf between pilasters to the cor-
nice, is filled with a bronze panel bearing the names of
those officials who have been instrumental in the build-
ing's erection, surrounded by symbolic carvings in bas-
The floors of main hall and vestibule are mosaic, of
colored marble, with rich borders and centre pieces.
The space at the rear end of the main hall under the
staircase is occupied for a general lavatory.
In the reading room of the library, opposite the man-
tel in the hall, is the companion fireplace of white mar-
ble, of classic design, the motive of which is two pairs
of entasised composite columns, with delicately carved
capitals 8 feet in diameter, and 7 feet 10 inches high,
supporting classic entablature with decorated mouldings,
with mantel shelf terminating between them. Over the
centre and supported by main entablature is a marble
clock, designed in harmony with the mantel.
The main reading room in the library has Italian mar-
ble wainscot 3 feet 6 inches high, intersecting with the
pedestals of wall pilasters, and matching the independent
pedestals of the main colonnade. All the finish above
the wainscot is of Keene cement, and the floors of the
reading room and alcoves connected with the same are
of marble tiles.
The court-room floor is surrounded by a colored mar-
ble mosaic border, moderatel}^ decorated, with the cen-
tral floor covered with concrete and overlaid with rich
lO STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
carpet. The room has marble wainscot 5 feet i 1-2 inches
in height, intersecting with the two marble mantels at
either end, and with door and window trimmings, the
whole of carefully selected Italian vein marble.
The mantels have coupled Grecian Doric columns,
decorated with egg and dart mouldings, at either side,
Through the main wall back of the columns are
grilled registers connected with main flues for ventila-
The fireplaces are also designed for heating the build-
ing in moderate weather, and supplement the main flues
The room has an intermediate cornice 13 feet from
the floor, forming capping over doors and windows and
encircling the room, from which spring fluted pilasters
with composite Grecian capitals, supporting the main
cornice, which is also decorated with Grecian ornamental
mouldings. From the centre of the court room ceiling
springs an elliptical dome 28 feet in diameter, with
ribbed and paneled soffit springing up to and receiving
light from the ceiling through an ornamental circular
ceiling light 13 feet in diameter. The judges' bench,
standing on marble base 15 feet in height, is of classic
design in solid mahogany.
The furniture throughout is of oak in general har-
mony with the work, and of excellent quality.
The main rooms in the building are provided with
fireplaces with marble mantels of simple design, which
will be found of advantage in heating the rooms in mod-
erate weather, and in aiding materially in the general
ventilation of the building.
The system of artificial lighting is for a combination
of both gas and electricity, and the fixtures were
designed for the building. The wiring for electric lights
THE DEDICATION. II
is a full line of metal-armored conduits starting from the
basement, and from which every wire in the building
can be introduced or removed. The fixtures comprise a
row of lights every thirty inches around the cornice of the
lower colonnade in the library, with brackets from the
walls in the first and second stories. Each alcove is
lighted with independent chandeliers. The second story
hall is lighted in a manner similar to the library, by a
row of lights supported by and suspended from the main
cornice at spring of circular ceiling, rendering the room
suitable for the display of works of art.
The court room has a series of electric lights around
the upper and lower members of the dome, and brack-
ets at the right and left of the judges' bench.
The main hall has brackets on the court room side,
with candelabra of elaborate design at either side of the
Springing from the walls at either side of the portico
and back of the piers and columns, are a pair of solid
bronze brackets carrying electric lights, the models for
which originated in Southern Italy, and their prototypes
used for another purpose will be found in the Metropoli-
tan Museum of Fine Arts, in New York city. They
find so fitting place through the personal efforts of a
member of the commission. The reflected electric light
from them shows with eflect the tri-colored granite, of
which the portico is composed.
When the interior of the building shall have received
the simple color decoration of soft gray, illuminated with
slight touches of higher color and gold to properly
emphasize its details ; when time shall have softened its
exterior tones, and overgrown its lawns with a few
choice vines and shrubs, giving to its exterior the charm
of age ; when the same softening influences shall have
removed from the interior the slight resonance always
12 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
incident to new work ; when the walls and every availa-
ble space shall be filled with cases, and the cases filled
to overflowing with the choicest works of law, literature,
and art ; when the daily throng of those seeking knowl-
edge where knowledge can be best obtained shall be
welcomed; then, and not till then, will the full measure
of its usefulness, and the wisdom of its promoters and of
the commonwealth that so generously provided for it, be
Under the provisions of the Act of 1866, the trustees
(except two of the first appointments) are appointed for
the term of three years, and one is appointed each year.
The following is a record of appointments :
1866. Asa McFarland, declined to serve.
1866. George Stark, for three years.
t866. Nicholas V. Whitehouse, for two years.
1866. Parsons B. Cogswell, for one year.
1867. Parsons B. Cogswell, for three years.
1868. William L. Foster, for three years.
1869. George Stark, for three years.
1870. Parsons B. Cogswell, for three years.
187 1. William L. Foster, for three years.
1872. George Stark, for three years.
1873. Parsons B. Cogswell, for three years.
1874. William M. Chase, for three years.
1875. George Stark, for three years.
1876. Parsons B. Cogswell, for three years.
1877. Wilham M. Chase, for three years.
1878. George Stark, resigned 1879.
1879. William L. Foster, for two years.
1880. William M. Chase, for three years.
1881. William L. Foster, for three years.
1882. Austin F. Pike, for three years.
1883. WiUiam M. Chase, for three years.
1884. William L. Foster, for three years.
1885. Amos Hadley, for three years.
1886. William M. Chase, resigned 1888.
1887. Charles R. Corning, for three years.
1888. Albert S. Batchellor, for one year.
1888. George C. Gilmore, for three years.
1889. Albert S. Batchellor, for three years.
1890. Charles R. Corning, for three years.
1891. George C. Gilmore, for three years.
1892. Albert S. Batchellor, for three years.
1893. Frank S. Streeter, for three years.
1894. George C. Gilmore, for three years.
1895. Albert S. Bachellor, for three years.
1834-1846. Jacob C. Carter, chosen by the legislature.
1846-1847. George G. Fogg, secretary of state, ex-
1847-1850. Thomas P. Treadwell, secretary of state,
1850-1855. John L. Hadley, secretary of state, ex-
1 85 5-1 85 7. Lemuel N. Pattee, secretary of state, ex-
1857-1858. Nathan W. Gove, deputy secretary of state,
1858-1861. Allen Tenney, deputy secretary of state,
1861-1862. George H. Chandler, deputy secretary of
1862-1864. Benjamin Gerrish, deputy secretary of
1864-1865. James H. Burpee, deputy secretary of state,
1865-1866. Nathan W. Gove, deputy secretary of state,
1867-187 1. William H. Kimball, appointed by trustees.
1871-1872. Mitchell Gilmore, appointed by trustees.
1872-1890. William H. Kimball, appointed by trustees.
1890-1894. Arthur R. Kimball, appointed by trustees.
1894 . Arthur H. Chase, appointed by trustees.
The State Library Building was formally dedicated
Tuesday, January 8, 1895. The general arrange-
ments were made by Governor Smith and his Coun-
cil acting in concurrence with the commissioners,
and will be fully set forth in the following narrative
of the proceedings. The audience was large, filling
the spacious building to its utmost limit, and includ-
ed many distinguished guests from New Hampshire
and from other states.
The exercises were formally opened at one o'clock
by Harry G. Sargent, Esq., of Concord, the marshal
of the day, who introduced as president Hon. J. S.
H. Frink, of Greenland. Mr. Frink spoke as fol-
PRESIDENT S ADDRESS.
No ''loyal lover of letters" can approach and enter
this magnificent edifice, which we to-day dedicate to
literature and law, without a feeling of pride and
Without any analysis of the architectural design of
the building, we feel, at once, that it is " comely " to
1 8 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
I know not whether the capitals, those upper mem-
bers of the columns and pilasters that adorn its
outer and inner walls, are Ionic or Doric or Roman-
esque or English, but I do know, that this building
answers the prime purpose of true architecture ; a
beautiful and harmonious adaptation to the purposes
for which it was designed.
There is a realism about it and its appointments,
an apparent absence of surrender of utility to orna-
mentation, such a blending of the beautiful and
the uselul, as to make it very satisfactory to one who
studies its details.
Let me say, however, parenthetically, that obvi-
ously, one of the purposes for which this room was
designed, was not to accommodate this large audi-
Gratifying and acceptable, as is this library building,
yet it is not so much this result of the state's munifi-
cence, and the commissioners' taste, — this beautiful
achievement of stone and mortar, — that awakens our
thankfulness, as the implied assurance of an increas-
ing and abiding interest of our people in the cause of
a higher education and, consequently, a better
From this day the State's Library is assured of an
invigorated and healthier life. The commonwealth,
by the erection and dedication of this building, gives
a pledge of a more active assumption of its duties,
towards this, one of its most worthy beneficiaries.
To be sure, if our little library should enjoy the most
abundant prosperity that its warmest patron could
reasonably expect, it will always remain, com'para-
THE DEDICATION. I9
tively an inconsiderable collection of books ; yet it
will serve well all the purposes of our community.
The. legislator intent upon forecasting the future
from the lessons of the past ; the public official
seeking some guidance in his duty, and the jurist
striving to solve the enigmas of the law ; and who-
ever may be interested in the religious, social,
scientific, or political problems of the day, will find
abundant counselors here, whose advice is wise,
because born of experience.
" That place that does contain
My books — my best companions — is to me
A glorious court, where hourly I converse
With the old sages and philosophers,
And sometimes for variety, I confer
With kings and emperors, and weigh their counsels."
If this event should awaken an interest in his-
torical investigation, the origin of this library will
furnish a subject of interest to our local historians.
It seems to be involved in some obscurity. Ency-
clopaedists and bibliographers credit it with a birth
antedating our state government. Without invest-
igation, and upon general principles, I assume that
this belief is well founded. New Hampshire has
never been credited, historically, with more than she
deserved. In fact, we all know that a disposition
has sometimes been manifested by some of her sister
states to appropriate her renown.
With an editor of our State Papers, who has sub-
dued the most fanciful imagination and grotesque
humor of any story teller in the state, that he might
become the most zealous and accurate of historians ;
20 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
with a new librarian, who has abandoned a profes-
sion, in which he might have succeeded to the honors
of his father, to become a companion of books; and
with an assistant, who imbibed from his revered
parent, — the former custodian of this Hbrary, — a per-
sonal acquaintance with every book and manuscript
contained in it; certainly we ought not to want for
some one who has the ability and interest to pursue
New Hampshire, although far removed from the
great intellectual and commercial centres of our
country, has been a "quasi" pioneer in the encour-
agement of public libraries. Our legislative enact-
ment of 1849, authorizing towns to appropriate money
to establish and maintain libraries within their limits^
was the first public statutory law in the states to this
end. Our legislature has never been niggardly in
its appropriations for public institutions of learning
within the borders of the state. Its munificence has
reached its climax in the erection of this much
needed and greatly admired structure, which will
stand for years as a monument of architectural pro-
priety and state pride.
But we dedicate this building to-day to jurispru-
dence as well as to letters. Many of you have visited
personally the court room. If you have not, I wish
I could give you a pen picture of its many beauties
and conveniences, but I am inadequate to the task.
I can only say in a general way, that in its sym-
metrical proportions, its elegant yet chaste adorn-
ments, and rich but substantial furnishings, it has no
peer in New England, if in this country.
THE DEDICATION. 21
The character of this room and all its surround-
ings is so honestly adapted to the purposes for
which they are intended, that they would seem to
act as constant monitors to its professional occupants,
that ''ways that are dark and tricks that are vain"
are inharmonious with the clear light and wholesome
atmosphere of such an apartment.
Of the site of this building, we can say with the
psalmist, it is "beautiful for situation." It occupies
a prominent place in the most beautiful square in
New England, save Copley square. It is a fit com-
panion for its handsome neighbor, the post-office
and federal court house, and it lies almost in the
embrace of its foster parent, the state house.
The commission to which was entrusted the erec-
tion and furnishing of this building has discharged
its duties. How well, this handsome structure and
its no less handsome furniture tell. "Finis coronat
opus." In the language of our governor's inaugu-
ral, it is a "substantial and commodious structure;"
as "a work of art, instructive," and in "its strength
and durability a living prophecy of the perpetuity of
the institutions it shelters."
Still some modern "Momus" may carp at its archi-
tecture, or its arrangement, or cost.
To the thoughtful and patriotic citizen, such criti-
cism will seem as unreasonable as that of his pro-
genitor, who found fault with Jupiter for not having
placed a window in the breast of man so that his
thoughts could be read. Were "Momus's lattice " in
the breasts of such carpers, their secret thoughts
would reveal the insincerity of their strictures.
22 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
If this building encounters such criticism, it will
be exceptional and transitory. When the ^'chiefest
temple " of all who are actors in the scenes of to-day,
shall be a *' tomb," and other eyes shall behold its
substantial walls, and other voices awake the echoes
of its lofty corridors, and other feet tread its mosaic
walk, it will survive, a beautiful inspiration to wise
thoughts and worthy deeds.
But, ladies and gentlemen, a wise man wrote,
**Let him be sure to leave other men their turns to speak."
Better things await you than I can offer, and with-
out further introduction we will proceed with the
INVOCATION BY REV. HARRY P. DEWEY.
Almighty God, we look to Thee for Thy blessing,
as we enter upon the exercises of this hour, and we
are humbly confident that Thou art pleased to hearken
unto our prayer. We have come to dedicate this
building. Thy hills and forests have furnished it
substance; forces controlled by Thee hold its walls
firm and strong ; seeking to realize in its symmetry
and grace the beautiful which Thou Who art alto-
gether lovely, dost delight in, its designers and work-
men have fashioned it ; and all who have given or
labored with brain or hand for its erection are Thy
children ; but more than all must it be to Thee, that
it is set apart to uses that are righteous and holy.
We are grateful for the means and the skill and the
toil which have made this imposing structure possible.
THE DEDICATION. 23
May Its chaste and noble presence ever purify and
elevate. May it be a persuasive sermon in stone to
all who look upon it, reminding the citizen of the
gracious ends it is appointed to serve, the ends of
truth and justice. Our Father, may we who are
assembled here feel that we are upon sacred ground.
May every utterance of the lip and every thought of
the heart be touched with a feeling of reverence as
we reflect upon the high and exalted uses to which
this edifice is consecrated. And in dedicating it,
may we give ourselves to the cause of truth and
justice, yea, to Thee, who art Perfect Truth, Perfect
Justice. So shalt Thou be pleased to establish the
works of our hands, and the house that is builded
shall not have been raised up in vain. To Thee be
praise and honor and dominion, now and evermore.
The President. — We read in the Scriptures,
** which of you intending to build a tower, sitteth not
down first and counteth the cost, lest happly after
he hath laid the foundation and is not able to finish,
all that behold it begin to mock, saying, this man
began to build and was not able to finish."
The commissioners entrusted with the erection
and furnishing of this building, heeding the Scripture
lesson, have counted the cost and finished. To-day
they render it up to the state complete in all its
We come here to-day not to '' mock," but to thank
Mr. Burns in behalf of the committee will now
24 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
deliver the keys to the governor, and the governor
will respond without further announcement.
Presentation of the keys by Hon. Charles H.
Your Excellency : — The commissioners to whom
was committed the duty of purchasing land and
erecting thereon a suitable building for the accom-
modation of the supreme court and the State Library,
have completed their work. It is now ready for
inspection, dedication, and occupancy. It is hoped by
the commissioners that it will be acceptable to the
people of the state, and a blessing for many years.
This building has been designed and built for prac-
tical and useful purposes. While New Hampshire
was the first state in the Union to empower towns
"to maintain free public libraries by taxation" by a
law enacted by its legislature almost half a century
ago, and providing that such libraries should be
"open to the free use of every inhabitant;" and
while, under the impetus of this beneficent law,
substantial library buildings have been erected and
public libraries established and maintained through-
out the state to the manifest advantage of our peo-
ple, the state found itself in the possession of books,
maps, charts, periodicals, and valuable documents
of all sorts, increasing rapidly, and with no ade-
quate rooms or safety vaults in which to keep them.
It has been obliged to store large quantities in pack-
ages and boxes. In times past, books, papers, and
manuscripts of great value and importance con-
cerning colonial history, and which can now prob-
THE DEDICATION. 25
ably never be supplied, have been lost or destroyed
for want of a place where they could be safely stored.
This large and commodious room, with fireproof
vaults, will furnish ample accommodations for our
valuable library, of which we shall not be ashamed.
This building is to be the home of the supreme
court. Here important questions concerning the
rights of all the people are to be settled. It has not
been creditable to the state that the court has never
until now had a suitable place for its deliberations,
and in which to hold its law sessions. Our citizens
must be justly proud that the tribunal which is both
their guide and guardian is now provided with com-
forts and conveniences to some extent commensu-
rate with its manifest necessities, and with its high
character and usefulness.
This substantial building, erected by the state,
aided materially by the city of Concord in the gift
of a valuable tract of land, supplies these wants in
a manner befitting the dignity and honor of the
commonwealth. The prosperity of a state does not
depend upon the beauty or convenience of its public
buildings, but, rather, upon its men and women of
culture, character, and conscience ; but such build-
ings do contribute in large measure to the cultiva-
tion of the tastes of its people, inspiring them with
grander ideals of strength and beauty. This noble
edifice of ours is to be filled with books containing
the best thoughts of the great thinkers of all ages,
and with ** whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever
things are pure," in art ; it is to be the home of the
highest court of the commonwealth, where justice —
26 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
whose seat, like law, is **the bosom of God" — shall
be dispensed ; and It will become an Indispensable
source of protection, enlightenment, and education
to our citizens, raising higher and still higher the
standards of civilization ; — for law and learning go
hand In hand, and are the most effective of human
instrumentalities in the structure and superintend-
ence of society.
It is, therefore, with pride and satisfaction that, in
behalf of my associates and myself, I deliver to you,
as the custodian of the property of the state, the key
to this beautiful building.
Response by His Excellency Charles A. Buslel :
In behalf of the State of New Hampshire, I accept
from your hand the key to the new state library. In
the discharge of an agreeable duty I am permitted
to express my appreciation of the ability and the suc-
cess of the commissioners who have formulated the
plans and have directed the construction of this ele-
gant and commodious building.
Your labors, in this direction, are happily ended.
The completed building In all Its appointments
reflects your wisdom and your ready appreciation of
the needs of the present and the demands of the
I congratulate the trustees and the patrons of the
library, and the judges and officers of the supreme
court, on the completion of this commodious structure.
By a thoughtful impulse the people have liberally
provided for the future accommodation of the library
and of the court.
THE DEDICATION. 2*J
As we proceed with the services of dedication, the
inspiration of the day should be an invitation to
renewed labor and enlarged usefulness on the part
of all who are the chosen tenants and custodians of
this spacious and attractive temple.
The President: — A portion of this building has
been set aside for the use of the supreme court.
The appointments of the court room are so elegant,
that it is not impossible, that you, gentlemen of the
legislature, may be called upon to make an appropri-
ation to purchase silken gowns for the members of
the court, that their personal adornments may com-
port with those of the room. It was hoped that the
Chief Justice might so favor this judicial embellish-
ment, that he would be present to-day ; but with
characteristic modesty, he has deputed Judge Smith
to represent the court.
Judge Smith, to the regret of all, is soon to retire
from the place he has so long adorned. I know you
will all listen with interest to what may be his last
public judicial utterance.
Judge Isaac W. Smith responded as follows :
Our congratulations are due to the distinguished
gentlemen of the building committee for the success
which has crowned their labors. This spacious
building, beautiful in design, in construction, and in
finish, is a lasting monument of their united wisdom.
We cheerfully acknowledge the estimable value of
their services to the State in the discharge of the
varied and, perhaps at times, perplexing duties
28 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
imposed upon them by the legislature. Their suc-
cess lies not in the fact alone that here is a building
beautiful in its architectural effect, which the eye
views with delight and the mind dwells upon with
pleasure, — but also a building solid as the native
granite of which its walls are built, massive in its
structure, and planned in its minutest details for the
imperative wants and necessities of the State. Their
reward consists in the conscious knowledge that the
service so cheerfully rendered is fully appreciated by
a grateful people.
The state is also to be congratulated, that at
length, after much patient waiting, and after no little
inconvenience from unsuitable, and overcrowded
apartments, it has come into possession of a building
so admirably adapted to the purposes of its construc-
tion. The people, through the legislature, have
brought hither their offerings for its erection, that
they may enjoy accommodations so imperatively re-
quired by their growing wants and increased pros-
perity. Without lavish expenditures of money, they
have provided a building worthy the dignity of the
state, and the intelligence of its people, and in keep-
ing with their simple tastes and frugal habits ; where
there is ** comfort without luxury, and elegance with-
Wilberforce said, in the British House of Com-
mons, ''Wherever the English language is spoken,
men shall be free." He meant the freedom that
comes from minds enlightened by knowledge, and
from hearts inspired by the love of justice. The
framers of our constitution, recognizing this truth,
THE DEDICATION. 29
inserted in the fundamental law of the state this, as
article 82: *' Knowledge and learning generally dif-
fused through a community being essential to the
preservation of a free government, and spreading the
opportunities and advantages of education through
the various parts of the country being highly condu-
cive to promote this end, it shall be the duty of the
legislators and magistrates ... to cherish the
interest of literature and the sciences, and all semi-
naries and public schools," etc. The sources of
knowledge are many and illimitable: the family, the
common school from lowest to higher grades, the
academy, college, seminary, pulpit, press, stump,
and, what interests us at this present moment, the
library, the power of which no man can weigh or
describe. It is sometimes called the ** People's Uni-
versity." Within these alcoves will be deposited for
use of the historian, the scholar, the bibliographer, —
of every one in search of facts, or thirsting for
knowledge, forty thousand books and pamphlets, —
the slow accretion of a century, upon law, theology,
medicine, science, and the arts. The suggestion of
His Excellency, the Governor, in his message to the
legislature of last week, whether some system of
administration may not be found which shall render
its usefulness more general, is deserving of the
fullest consideration, the discussion of which I leave
to those better qualified by study and experience.
I am invited to speak in behalf of my brethren
in acceptance of the apartments provided in this
structure, and this day dedicated to the use and ac-
commodation of the supreme court of the state.
30 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
We turn instinctively to the names of our judges
whose Hves have passed into history. The occasion
does not require nor permit a biographical sketch of
their lives, nor even a review of their judicial work,
were I able to perform that interesting duty. A
brief insight into the times in which they lived, and
the environment by which they were surrounded, is
all that is permissible on this occasion.
In colonial times the practice prevailed of making
judges of men who were not lawyers. It is said that
this practice was general in New England. Paul
Dudley, appointed in 1718, is said to have been the
first person regularly bred to the law, who sat on
the bench in Massachusetts. Of Richard Martyn,
chief-justice of New Hampshire in 1693, 1694, the
late Governor Bell, in his valuable ''History of the
Bench and Bar of New Hampshire," says, '' He ap-
pears to have possessed intelligence and good busi-
ness qualifications, and to have performed his public
trusts acceptibly ; " of William Vaughn, chief-justice
in 1708-1716, '' He was an honest and courageous
supporter of the people's rights and interests, and
was the object of their warm affection and admira-
tion;" of Samuel Penhallow, justice in 17 14-17 17,
and chief-justice in 1717-1726, ''His mental pow-
ers, his education, and his familiarity with public
business rendered him a valuable and excellent
judge;" of George Jaffrey, justice in 1717-1726,
and chief-justice in 1 726-1 732, a graduate of Har-
vard college in 1702, "He was the first man of
liberal education who appeared on the bench in New
Hampshire His long service in public
THE DEDICATION. 3I
offices Indicates the confidence he inspired in his
ability and integrity;*' of Nicholas Gilman, justice
from 1 732-1740, "He performed the duties satis-
factorily;" of Benjamin Gambling, justice in 1733-
1737, that he was characterized by Governor Belcher
as *' knowing and honest;" of Samuel Gilman, jus-
tice in 1 740- 1 747, *' He was a man of the highest
character, and universally respected ; " of Meshech
Weare, justice in 1747- 17 75, chief-justice in 1776-
1782, "During the Revolution he administered
simultaneously the highest offices in the state, legis-
lative, judicial, and executive, — a conjunction of
powers which, under the circumstances, and in a
man of less principle and patriotism, would have
been hazardous in the extreme He
sat thirty-five years upon the bench of the superior
court, where his father and grandfather had sat
before him, — a remarkable succession never paral-
leled ; " of William Parker, justice in 1771-1775,
** By common consent allowed to be at the head of
his profession in New Hampshire ; " of John Went-
worth, justice in 1776-1781, ''a man of intelligent
views, and a sincere patriot ; *' of Josiah Bartlett,
justice in 1 782-1 790, and chief-justice in 1790, phy-
sician, delegate to the Continental congress, signer
of the Declaration of Independence, and president
and governor of New Hampshire three years, *' His
fellow citizens reposed in his honesty and ability,
and he executed the duties of his important stations
with general approbation."
The Revolution, it will be seen, brought with it
new men. Of Samuel Livermore, chief-justice in
32 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
1 782-1 790, William Plumer, Jr., in his scholarly trib-
ute in memory of his father, published in 1856,
says : '' Though bred to the law, he was not inclined
to attach much importance to precedents, or to any
merely systematic or technical rules of procedure.
In a manuscript report which I have of one of his
charges," writes Mr. Plumer, *'I find him cautioning
the jury against paying too much attention to the
niceties of the law, to the prejudice of justice — a
caution of which juries do not ordinarily stand much
John Dudley, justice in 1 785-1 797, was a trader
and farmer. Woodbury Langdon, justice in 1782-
179 1, was a merchant of Portsmouth. Timothy
Farrar of New Ipswich, justice in 1 791-1803, was
originally designed for the pulpit. Of them Plumer
says: ''These judges were men of strong powers
of mind, of large acquaintance with business, and
superior in talents and information generally to
second rate lawyers." Jeremiah Smith, in 1796,
wrote, — "There are now two lawyers on the bench,
but I think they are by no means the two best of the
four. Farrar and Dudley, in my judgment, greatly
overmatch them." Theophilus Parsons of Massachu-
setts, who practised many years in our courts, and
later was chief-justice of that state, said of Dudley, —
** You may laugh at his law, and ridicule his lan-
guage, but Dudley is, after all, the best judge I ever
knew in New Hampshire." Arthur Livermore said
that "justice was never better administered in New
Hampshire than when the judges knew very little of
what we lawyers call law." Plumer writes that Web-
THE DEDICATION. 33
ster told him he had heard the story that a question
on demurrer filed by Mason was put by Dudley to
the jury. Happy the judge who could thus rid him-
self of the decision of a troublesome question of
law, and retain the respect of such men as Parsons
and Jeremiah Smith.
The consensus of opinion is that substantial justice
was done in the determination of questions involving
the property, rights, and liberties of the people ; and
our admiration is increased when we consider that
the bench and bar of the seventeenth and eigh-
teenth centuries had almost no books on legal
subjects. When William Plumer in 1785 entered
the office of John Prentice in Londonderry (after-
wards attorney-general) his law library consisted of
Blackstone's Commentaries, Wood's Institutes of the
Laws of England, Hawkins' Pleas of the Crown,
Jacobs' Law Dictionary, Salkeld, Raymond and
Strange's Reports, the New Hampshire Statutes,
and a manuscript volume of pleas and declarations.
The year previous in the office of Joshua Atherton
in Amherst he was given Coke upon Littleton as
his first initiation into the mysteries of the law.
Plumer (Jr.) is authority for the statement that
when Patrick Henry applied for admission to the
Virginia bar, he was asked by Jefferson what books
he had read, and replied with entire confidence in
the extent of his legal acquirements. Coke upon
Littleton and the Virginia Statutes.
Lord Campbell says that 'Tn the simple and happy
times of Edward I, Glanville, Bracton, and FJeta com-
posed a complete law library." Plumer, writing between
34 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
1 850 and 1854, estimates the number of reports of law
courts then in existence as between 500 and 1,000.
To-day they are estimated at 4,000. In this paucity
of books, judges as well as lawyers looked for the
law as deduced from acknowledged legal principles.
From necessity, they dealt less with authorities and
more with the reason of the law, and attempted to
find the rule in the immutable principles of justice.
The nineteenth century brought with it as judges
men of judicial science. Of Jeremiah Smith, chief-
justice in 1 802- 1 809, and in 18 13-18 16, Bell says he
** did more perhaps for the improvement of the state
than any other man. Like the monarch who changed
a city from brick to marble, he found law without
form and void, and during his connection with the
courts he reduced it to order and harmony. His
genius was constructive ; he had the systematizing
faculty. He did not conceive of the law as a mass
of detached, independent rules ; in his mind it was
a series of requirements, each connected with and
deducible from great central principles. Before his
day the judges were mostly unversed in the technique
of the law, and aimed at what they deemed to be
equitable conclusions. The result was that no man
could foresee with any confidence the issue of any
cause. Judge Smith drew straight the lines which
had been confused or obliterated, and gave the bar
and the public firm ground on which to stand. The
counsel who knew the law began to take his place
above the mere tonguy man who saw nothing
beyond the case in hand. The influence of this
upon the bar and upon the administration of reme-
THE DEDICATION. 35
dial justice could not fail to be of the most benefi-
cial character. Fortunately we have now the evi-
dence of Judge Smith's reformatory work in a dura-
ble form. A volume of his decisions from his own
manuscript has been recently published, which bears
unmistakable testimony to his vigorous and scientific
administration of the law. ... It was unfortu-
nate that it was withheld so long, for if the opinions
contained in it had been at once promulgated, great
expense would have been saved to parties who sub-
sequently litigated the very questions which Judge
Smith had before settled so conclusively."
The state was equally fortunate in the selection of
his successor, William M. Richardson, chief-justice
from 1816 to his decease in 1838. With his induc-
tion into office was commenced the publication of
reports of cases adjudicated in the superior court.
His opinion in the famous Dartmouth College case,
although overruled by the supreme court of the
United States, has always been regarded as one of
the ablest on that side of the question litigated.
Bell says of him, **The judicial ermine received no
stain from his wearing it. He knew no friends and
no enemies while in the seat of judgment, nor any
of the ordinary lines of decisions among men. His
ideal was the very highest." Judge Perley in " East-
man V. Meredith, 36 N. H., 284, 299," speaks of him
as "our own learned and excellent Chief-Justice
Richardson " in connection with Parsons and Shaw
of Massachusetts and Mellen and Shepley of Maine,
'' names which carry with them an irresistible weight
of authority on all legal questions."
36 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
The memory of Joel Parker, justice in 1833-1838,
and chief-justice in 1 838-1 848, is yet green with the
present generation of lawyers. In ability and learn-
ing he was fully the equal of his two distinguished
predecessors. His published opinions in thirteen
volumes of the New Hampshire Reports show his
familiarity both with the authorities and with funda-
mental legal principles, and established our reports
as high legal authority with his cotemporaries.
Smith, Richardson, and Parker formed a trio *' of the
most able and learned of a sequence of jurists rarely
equalled in the annals of any state."
Time forbids more than allusion to their succes-
sors : Gilchrist, scholarly, industrious, popular ;
Woods, even-tempered, patient, and upright ; Perley,
strong, positive, self-reliant, primus inter pares,
whose opinions in style and substance are unsur-
passed in our reports ; Bell, clear-headed, strong-
minded, justum et tenacem propositi virum ; Bel-
lows, the high-minded, gracious gentleman and
learned and conscientious judge; Sargent, careful,
painstaking, and sensible ; and Gushing, the polished
gentleman and scholar, and patient and learned
jurist ; these were the magistrates to whom with
their learned associates New Hampshire entrusted
the enforcement of her laws, and whose memories
we gratefully cherish.
Five times within the century, In the mad passion
engendered of political strife, has the court been
overturned. That this action of the legislative de-
partment was acquiesced in does not render it any
the less deplorable or questionable. It may be per-
THE DEDICATION. 37
mitted, perhaps, to one who looks forward with a
sense of relief from official responsibility to the early
day when he shall again put on the gown of the bar,
to express the hope that henceforth better counsels
will prevail, and the line of separation between the
legislative and judicial departments of the govern-
ment marked out in the fundamental law of the state
be kept intact.
The chief-justice in 1905 will probably write no
better opinions, seated in his upholstered chair at his
table of quartered oak in yonder spacious and com-
modious rooms embellished by art, than did his
predecessor, Chief-Justice Bell in i860, seated in
his plain chair before his table of pine. For the
principles of justice are immutable ; but its growing
spirit inspires the world. Wendell Phillips said that
to be as good as our fathers we must be better. We
cannot cast any dishonor on our fathers; but we
shall honor them best by taking what is best and
not by being content with their limitations. Discon-
tent no less than contentment may be a virtue.
To-day is not as yesterday. It is not a good thing
to think one's work cannot be better done, because
it can be better done. There may be great truths
in law and ethics as in the arts and sciences
not yet attained. Therefore as we this day conse-
crate this beautiful temple to the cause of learning
and justice, may the memories which cluster around
the past incite us and our successors to higher
achievements in the cause of good government, that
this structure in all that it stands for in the pro-
motion of law, order, and knowledge be endeared
38 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
in the hearts of the people as long as it shall
The President: — I believe the whole state (ex-
cepting possibly Manchester) is disposed to credit
the capital city with a generous act in the donation
of a part of the land occupied in connection with this
Mayor Cogswell, in behalf of the city of Concord,
will make to you such suggestions as may seem to
him pertinent in regard to his city's connection with
the selection and purchase of the site of this building.
RESPONSE OF HON. P. B. COGSWELL, MAYOR OF CONCORD.
As a representative of the municipal government
of the capital city, it gives me pleasure to assist in
the dedication of this superb edifice to the noble
purposes for which it is designed. In a spirit be-
fitting part of the motto of our city seal — '' Law,
Education" — the city council responded to the call
of the state library commissioners for additional land
to enable them to carry out more completely their
plans for this library building, by condemning in the
spring of 1892, certain real estate on the north,
extending to Centre street. The awarded damages
to the owners of that property aggregated over
$25,000, and provision for payment thereof was
made by a temporary loan, which was met by the
present city council authorizing an issue of bonds
bearing three and one half per cent, interest. It is
a fact which may possess some historical interest
hereafter, that these are the lowest rate interest-
bearing bonds ever issued by any city or town of
our good old commonwealth, and that most of them
were taken by our own citizens.
When the library commissioners called last spring
for the land taken for a public park, the city council
ordered the speedy removal of the houses situated
thereon, and aided in the construction of substantial
sidewalks on the streets around this building and
its grounds. The city of Concord has thus met all
the calls made upon it by the state library commis-
sioners concerning this edifice, and faithfully fulfilled
all of its obligations relating thereto. I confess to
a feeling akin to pride for our goodly city in that
it has borne its part so well in furthering the aim
of the commissioners to provide a befitting home
for our state library, and suitable apartments for the
administration of justice, guarded by law.
Of the helpfulness and unmeasurable usefulness
of public libraries, it is not my province to speak.
Others who have profited from them, largely and
wisely, will hold your attention with apt and gracious
words concerning them. It only remains for me to
commend the state library commissioners for the
able, faithful, and successful manner in which they
have discharged the duties imposed upon them by
the legislature of 1891; and to congratulate the
trustees of the state library and all its beneficiaries,
and the Supreme Court of our state, that they are
to have so beautiful, commodious, and well-appointed
quarters in the future as this edifice of enduring
granite and marble will afford them. I am sure I
voice the sentiment of all present in expressing the
hope that this building may long escape the crum-
40 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
bling decay incident to age and climate, and that
the state Hbrary to be housed herein may never
suffer from fire, or flood, or other destructive agency,
but that it may continue to grow in interest and
vahie to our city and state for centuries to come,
aye, "to the last syllable of recorded time."
The President: — From this day the active man-
agement and control of this library will be assumed
by its trustees.
The present board is eminently well qualified for
the proper discharge of this important duty, and we
only hope that in the coming years its interests will
always find as intelligent and faithful guardians as
those who are to-day represented by their president,
whom I now have the pleasure of introducing to
you, — Mr. Gilmore of Manchester.
REMARKS BY HON. GEORGE C. GILMORE IN BEHALF OF
THE TRUSTEES OF THE STATE LIBRARY.
Little, I apprehend, is expected of the local man-
agement in the exercises of to-day, our duties being
all of the future, and it would certainly be pre-
sumption on my part to attempt to interest this
large audience by anything I might say, especially
so when our distinguished guests are waiting on the
platform to be heard, — men who have given a life
time to library management. But I cannot forbear
saying a few words to place on record the early
efforts of the inhabitants of the towns in this state
to establish libraries. Dover is undoubtedly entitled
to the honor of having been the first in the list, as
THE DEDICATION. 4I
early as July, 1776, although the charter for her
social library was not granted until December 18,
1792; Rochester's social library chartered February
14, 1794; Portsmouth's and Tamworth's both the
same date, June 14, 1796, the above being the first
four charters granted; from 1792 to 1800, sixty, and
from 1801 to 1883, one hundred and eighty-seven,
making a total of two hundred and forty-seven, and
at the present time only sixty towns are without a
The petitioners for the social library of Tamworth
present the advantages of a library as follows:
"Whereas a general diffusion of useful knowledge
in a land of liberty has a happy tendency to pre-
serve freedom, and make better men and better
The first absolutely free public library is supposed
to be that of the town of Peterborough, in 1833.
The legislature of New Hampshire in July, 1849,
passed an act allowing towns to maintain libraries
by taxation, being the first act authorizing the
people of the several towns to tax themselves to
maintain libraries, in the United States.
The President: — Without any disloyalty to our
own alma mater, we all have a feeling of pride in
our state institution of learning, which is now having
a new birth under its recently appointed president, —
a man known and honored by scholars all over the
I think I may adopt the words of the brilliant
English essayist and historian, in introducing to you
42 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
Rev. Dr. Tucker, president of Dartmouth College,
" He is a man of the world among men of letters,
and a man of letters among men of the world."
Mr. Chairman, Your Excellency, Your Honors,
AND Gentlemen of the Legislature : I ask at once
in your presence, — the question is prompted by the
occasion, — how shall we ensure to the state or
commonwealth, a rightful part in the present revival
of civic pride throughout the country ?
The chief effect of that revival, as we are now
conscious of it, is the glorious assurance of nation-
ality. '* We the people" have at last become the
nation, and we know it. It has not been an easy
matter for us to reach this supreme consciousness.
As late as 1811 Josiah Quincy made this confession
from his seat in congress : " Sir, I confess it, the first
public love of my heart is the Commonwealth of
Massachusetts. There is my fireside ; there are the
tombs of my ancestors." That was the utterance,
not of South Carolina, but of Massachusetts, in the
national house of representatives, twenty-three years
after the adoption of the constitution. No Massa-
chusetts man, no man, I trust, from any state, would
utter that sentiment now. The events of our gener-
ation, in which some of you were actors, have
wrought a mighty change in our opinions and in our
feelings. The nation sits enthroned to-day in the
hearts of the people. The most interesting and the
most inspiring expression of civic pride is this calm
but proud consciousness of nationality. We are
beginning to realize to ourselves the great conception
of Milton : " Not many sovereignties united in one
commonwealth, but many commonwealths in one
united and entrusted sovereignty."
The present revival of civic pride may be seen at
work, if not equally, yet with marked effect, at the
other extreme of our political organization, in the
municipality. Next to the national feeling, the
municipal feeling is at present the strongest. Some-
thing of this feeling is due of course to the recog-
nized peril of the cities. It is in many cases the
sense of danger which tests the depth of our affec-
tion, which may discover the fact itself to us.
Probably no city in the country has had, in proportion
to its importance, less municipal pride than the city
of New York, but he must be less than an alien,
whether resident for longer or shorter time, who does
not now feel the responsibility of citizenship. The
sense of responsibility, however, is not the chief sign
of municipal pride, but rather the increasing sense of
opportunity. The city is beginning to stand for
more than size ; it represents every possible advance
and improvement. The period of silly rivalries and
competitions about numbers has been out-grown,
and account is being taken of solid and substan-
tial growths. Men are seeking to be identified
not only in personal interest, but in reputation and
name with their respective cities. Schools, libraries,
museums, parks, bearing the names of individual
donors, are the visible evidence of an enlarged
municipal enthusiasm ; while the surer though less
conspicuous sign is found in the fact that here and
there a citizen of acknowledged capacity is willing to
44 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
forego further gains in his business or profession,
that he may answer in person the demand for honest
and capable government. The ardent imagination
of Mr. Depew interprets a popular tendency, when
he predicts that the second office in the United
States will soon be that of mayor of greater New
Now in this revival of civic pride, so manifestly
affecting the nation and the city, what of the state,
the old commonwealth, the original substance and
life out of which in due time the nation was born,
and from whose permanent and abounding vitality
cities are now springing forth ? Evidently the day
for the reassertion of rights once surrendered is
forever past, and no encroachment upon the interests
of the growing communities may be allowed. But
the commonwealth remains, worthy of a like place in
the honorable pride of its citizens with that held by
the nation or a city.
And amongst us the opportunity, if not the neces-
sity, for some very practical expression of this pride
of state, is apparent in the fact that the influence of
New Hampshire is not overshadowed by that of a
great municipality within its borders. With us the
state is not in bondage to the city, nor subordinate to
it. Neither can the state throw off its responsibility to
provide for the higher wants of its citizens upon any
one locality, equipped with all the modern appliances
of progress, — the library, the museum, the university.
In few states of the nation are the resources so
variously, if not equally, distributed as in our own.
Every section of it, east and west, south and north,
THE DEDICATION. 45
has a share In its history. The whole state had its
pre-existence in the province. And under the
incoming of the later industries, and the consequent
re-distribution of population, the ancient equality
has not been altogether destroyed. It is the state,
not a city, which still offers the great attraction to
visitors from far and near. It is the state, not any
one locality, which holds undeveloped resources out
of which new industries may spring for the support
of new populations. It is the state at large which
shelters the great schools, which send out the sons of
New Hampshire into other states, and which draw
to their training the sons of all the states. It is, in
a word, the state, the old commonwealth in its
entirety, not a city, not any localized centre, by
means of which we are to maintain the honor of our
inheritance, and keep step with the march of the
I welcome therefore, Mr. Chairman, as a citizen
of New Hampshire, the occasion in which we dedi-
cate in the name of the state another building, the
choicest of its outward possessions, to be henceforth
one more visible reminder of the real presence and
personality of the commonwealth. I rejoice espe-
cially in the object of this building, which shows in
so representative a way the enlarging functions of
the state. It answers in part, by illustration at least,
the question with which I began — how shall we
ensure to the commonwealth its share in the present
revival of civic pride ?
I go on then to speak of the maintenance of the
state library as one of the means through which we
46 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
may show our pride of state, and also as one of the
agencies through which we may develop the higher
interests of the commonwealth. I congratulate my-
self and you that I may restrict my further thought
to this nearer aspect of the present occasion in view
of the scope of the address which is to follow. It is
to the honor of New Hampshire that at the dedica-
tion of its library building, the state may summon
one of its sons from his post at the head of the
It may seem almost too obvious for me to say,
that it is through the agency of the library, that the
state is best able to avail, itself of its own history.
But the full meaning of this statement does not
appear in the utterance of it. The history of a great
past is made available only to the degree in which it
can be reproduced in spirit in the continuous life of
a people. But what is the continuous life of a
people ? What is the continuous life of the people
of New Hampshire ? Not the unbroken succession
of families. Not the local increase of the native
stock. Names once significant in the annals of the
state have disappeared, or appear only in remoter
regions. Families of wide connection and of ex-
tended influence remain as remnants. Others, let
us rejoice, survive in the fullness of their strength,
and gain upon their heritage. But if the state, if
any of the older states, were dependent upon the
original stock it would exist as a fragment of its
former self, unless it could call home its own. The
state continues to live through the incoming of the
new, through constant accessions from various and
THE DEDICATION. 47
unforeseen sources. This continuity of life is abso-
lutely dependent upon the process of assimilation,
the moral part of which lies in the power of the state
to impress its principles, its history, itself, upon
those who may choose to share its fortunes.
Pardon me if I pause to assert and emphasize the
fact, that there are none amongst us upon whom the
great men and the great events of our history are
making a deeper impression, than upon the more
receptive minds of the new population. We ignore
or underestimate this fact in times of social depres-
sion. We forget the philosophy which underlies it.
Noble traditions lose their power when held in too
easy and familiar possession. Inspiration does not
long abide in what has become to anyone the com-
monplace. But the familiar deed springs into new-
ness of life as often as it gains a fresh hearing. It
is not alone the new seed, it is the new soil, which
explains the harvest. Again and again have I
watched the kindling of eager minds, coming from
other states, as I have told the early story of Dart-
mouth, that heroic romance in education, when there
was nothing in personal inheritance or personal
association to waken the mind, nothing but the
contact of an inspiring history with a quick intelli-
gence. We grievously mistake if we suppose that
history appeals only to those who are the natural
heirs to the deeds which it records. History never
fails in its appeal to men as they come and go, pro-
vided the sources are kept full and open, so that it
may be rewritten to the mind of each generation.
Here is the advantage in part of such a library as
48 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
this, in distinction from the ordinary private, educa-
tional, or public library. We build here upon foun-
dations already laid a great storehouse for orig-
inals — documents of every sort illustrative of early
and later history, dispatches, records, reports, ad-
dresses, letters, — nothing of this nature too small or
too remote to be neglected. This is not the mate-
rial for a circulating library. It has another use and
another value. Here is the material on deposit
which gives worth to the current literature of its
kind. You open here a home and a workshop for
the investigator, the scholar, the writer, the man
who is to come hither with knowledge and imagina-
tion, capable of translating this ancient life into the
speech and life of to-day. So you make the history
of the state available in ever recurring variety of
form. For, as I have intimated, it is of the very
genius of history, that it should be written to an age,
and therefore its story continually retold with new
motive and in new setting. The age which sings
the Iliad to the notes of camp and battle and siege,
is not content till it has sung the Odyssey in the
strains of love and home and kindred, the arts of
peace, and the common ways of men. Every con-
siderable period of history presents various aspects.
We want to know them all to know the period. We
want to know, of course, the story of discovery, and
adventure, and war ; we want to know the record of
political struggle, and religious advance, and educa-
tional development, the growth of the arts and
industries. There is the true source and reason of
events, the mere narration of which we sometimes
THE DEDICATION. 49
think makes history. History in Its highest form Is
the discovery of cause and reason ; It Is the explana-
tion of actions and events. We read the memorable
speech of the '' Defender of the Constitution "
through which he postponed secession for thirty
years, and made It thereafter more possible to save
the Union. Is that speech of Mr. Webster's to be
explained by Its own greatness ? Not at all. His
father had made It before him. At that critical hour
when the convention of New Hampshire met to
adopt or reject the constitution, when Its vote to
adopt would complete the number of states neces-
sary to form the Union, when the conventions of
New York and Virginia then in session were anx-
iously waiting the result, couriers having been sta-
tioned by order of Hamilton to carry the news from
Concord to Poughkeepsle, and on to Richmond, In
that convention where the result was in serious
doubt, Colonel Webster arose and uttered this senti-
ment, — the language may show the revision of a
later hand :
'' Mr. President : I have listened to the arguments
for and against the constitution. I am convinced
that such a government as that constitution will
establish. If adopted — a government acting directly
on the people of the states — is necessary for the
common defense and the general welfare. It Is the
only government which will enable us to pay the
national debt, the debt which we owe for the Revolu-
tion, and which we are bound in honor fully and
fairly to discharge. Sir, I shall vote for Its adoption."
50 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
The reply to Hayne was the echo of the speech of
the New Hampshire farmer. It was the same spirit
which urged the adoption of the constitution in that
hour of doubt, which, in the hour of its danger, rose
to its defense. The speech was in the blood.
The constant and honorable boast of New Hamp-
shire has been of the quality of the men whom she
could furnish to the nation. One historian writes of
a given administration, and that one of the best,
that at its time New Hampshire could have furnished
from the number of her own public men, the full
equivalent for those who held the offices of president
and vice-president, and also of those who held seats
in the cabinet. Grant it. Who were behind these
men, and made them possible ? As we have seen in
an illustrious instance, such men do not explain
themselves. You might as well try to explain the
flow of the Merrimack as it sweeps these meadows
on its way to the struggle and toil below, without
pointing to the hills, as to attempt to explain the
public men of the state without going back into the
life of the people. What we ask, therefore, first of
all for this library, is that it shall be made complete
to the last degree in whatever pertains to the history
of the people of the state ; that it shall be a reposi-
tory, not only for public documents, but also for
private papers ; that it shall reach out after all facts,
however transmitted, which have a bearing on vital
questions of state interest ; and that it shall be able
to trace the great events in which the state has had
a part, and the great men whom it has sent forth,
back to the causes which determined or produced
THE DEDICATION. 5 1
them. What we want, in a word, is a library which
will explain New Hampshire.
A more direct, if not equally obvious, use of the
library for the advancement of the state, is to be
seen in the very great aid which it offers toward
intelligent legislation, the interpretation of the laws
and general administration. Doubtless we have in
this use of the library the chief intent of its founders.
The statute under which the library is administered,
provides first that it shall be *'for the use of the
governor and council, officers of the state govern-
ment, the legislature and the clerks thereof, the
judges of the supreme court, and such other persons
as the trustees may determine; " and afterward in
fixing the duties of the trustees, it prescribes that
**they shall procure for the library full sets of the
statutes and law reports of the United States, and
of the several states; histories, including those of
the counties and towns of the state whenever pub-
lished ; maps, charts, works on agriculture, political
economy, the arts and natural sciences, copies of
state papers and publications relating to the material,
social, and religious conditions of the people, or
bearing upon the business and objects of legislation,
and such other works as they may deem suitable,
works of fiction excepted."
Naturally this is a law library in its largest intent
and purpose. The provision which has been made
in this building for the sessions of the supreme
court emphasizes this purpose, as also the mention
of the duty, first among those prescribed for the
trustees, '* of procuring for the library full sets of
52 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
the Statutes and law reports of the United States
and of the several states.'* It is a matter of congrat-
ulation, that in the comparison which this array of
statutes and reports invites, the reports of New
Hampshire hold by common consent so high and
honorable a place. Indeed this was to have been
expected, if we recall the names, which, in the
quaint language of a former generation, '' reflected
the gladsome light of jurisprudence," — the names of
Weare, Bartlett, Langdon, Livermore, Woodbury,
Bell, Smith, Parker, Perley, and so many of their
associates, — an honor one and all to any bench.
It does not fall to my lot to speak of the relation
of the state to its bench or courts, but without
venturing beyond the province of a layman, I may
fitly call attention to the present demand for the
more general knowledge of what may be termed the
literature of the law, the knowledge of statutes and
reports, as indispensable to wise legislation. As
any one can see, the relation between the federal
and state authority is becoming at certain points
complicated and sensitive. No past political condi-
tions have ever involved issues of greater perplexity
than those involved in present economic and indus-
trial conditions. Decisions are rendered almost
every month by some one of the United States
courts affecting the interests of corporations and of
labor in every state of the Union. Not long since,
in a western state, I chanced to listen to an after-
dinner speech from one of the younger judges of
the United States court of appeals, in which, though
a man of remarkable wit, he put aside at once the
THE DEDICATION. 53
pleasantries of the hour that he might impress upon
the company the very great seriousness of the
questions upon which the federal courts were called
upon to pass in determining the rights of property
and the rights of service. The discussion was as
earnest as an utterance of the pulpit. And between
the states the lack of uniformity in the very princi-
ples of legislation is becoming in some cases not
only serious but grievous. One has but to refer in
illustration to subjects so widely removed from one
another as taxation and divorce. At such a time the
value of a state library which gives ready and com-
plete ihformation on all points of current decisions
and statute law cannot be overestimated. A library
with these facilities seems as much a part of the
equipment of the legislature as of the courts. It
has a distinct moral influence. Through its system
of exchange it keeps open communication between
the states. It enables us to realize the closeness of
the fellowship of the body politic. '' If one member
suffers, all the members suffer with it."
The statute, however, which wisely gives prece-
dence to law in the furnishing of the library, makes
generous provision for other subjects which have to
do with the material and social development of the
state. I see no reason why this provision should
not be fulfilled, as far as the annual appropriations
may allow. The teachers of the state have already
asked that a department of pedagogy may be
opened. Why should not requests be urged from
other sources? Why, for example, should not the
library be made tributary to our great industries ?
54 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
Where should one interested in any one of these
expect to look for careful information except to such
a library as this ? Where else within the state could
one hope to find it? Technical departments are to
be found to a certain extent in our educational
libraries, and here and there thQ public library of a
city may provide some books of this character on a
given industry. But to what source ought one to
turn for such discriminating and well-directed in-
formation on the industries of the state as to the
state library ? Here again I must remind you that we
have no great centre to which we can look except to
the state itself. And in so far as the state may see
fit to answer this demand, let us suggest that when-
ever any department of this kind is set up, the fact
be made known, and a classified list of the books in
the department be published and circulated. Grad-
ually and without undue expense, the state library
may become an authority upon many matters of
industrial and economic value.
Allow me the further suggestion that such works
as have to do most immediately with the resources
of the state be duplicated, and distributed at conven-
ient centres, usually in connection with a town
library, but under the control of the state library.
Such a distribution would create among our citizens
a habit of thinking about the state and its interests.
It would provide material in advance for our legisla-
tures. It would add to that general intelligence
which they bring to their duties a special knowledge
on many points, which there is little time to gain
during the session of the legislature- It would be a
THE DEDICATION. 55
Step for the state to take out among the people,
arousing them to a greater interest in their citizen-
ship. Like the attempt of which I have spoken to
make the Hbrary available for recovering the history
of the state, it would make the library more available
for its present and future advancement. A great
library, of any kind whatever, is more than a reposi-
tory. That is its second use. The first and supreme
object is to inform, incite, awaken. Rightly used, it
is one of the creative agencies of civilization.
Assuming that the specific uses of a state library
are such as have been indicated, namely, to give the
state the advantage among its citizens of its own
history, and to aid the state appropriately in the
making and interpretation of its laws, and the devel-
opment of its resources, it remains for me to speak
of the library as standing for the identification of the
state with the whole intellectual life of the people.
In the language of the inaugural address, ''its rela-
tions to our educational system should be intimate."
I take the apt suggestion of the term. Intimacy of
relationship rather than domination or control is the
<:haracteristic of the New England states in their
educational policy. The distinction in educational
policy between the earlier and later commonwealths
is marked. The later commonwealths, almost with-
out exception, have created elaborate educational
systems, culminating in a university, which they sup-
port and control. The earlier commonwealths de-
mand popular education as the basis of citizenship,
and within certain limits they carefully provide for
it, but they seek to arouse the public spirit of indi-
56 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
vidual citizens, and to develop private munificence.
Hence the peculiar phenomena, to be seen on every
hand, attending the intellectual development of New
England ; great schools, colleges, and universities
founded and maintained by endowments ; the for-
tunes of private citizens returning in part to their
native towns in the gift of libraries ; voluntary asso-
ciations springing up in all parts of the community
for the mutual advantage and improvement of their
members. Meanwhile the state is no mere on-
looker, an indifferent or curious spectator, its inter-
ests elsewhere, itself intent on other and lower ends.
The state is the watchful guardian, the solicitous
friend, the helper and patron. Its interest in what-
ever concerns the intellectual life of the people is
active, constant, and altogether beneficent. The
state acts by various methods ; now working through
legislation, as when it reaffirms more vigorously the
principle of compulsory intelligence; now entering
into cooperation with the communities under its
care, as in the library system of our own state and
of Massachusetts ; now granting immunities and
privileges to institutions of learning when necessary
to their freedom, not hesitating if need be to offer
the helping hand ; and now teaching by example, as
by this occasion, and through the dignity and worth
of its own standards, broadening the public thought,
and elevating the public taste. Such by tradition
and by increasing practice, is the New England com-
monwealth in the intimacy of its relationship to the
intellectual life of the people. It was a statesman,
you recall, not a theorist, a mere scholar or poet,
THE DEDICATION. 57
who said, **The state is a partnership in all science,
a partnership in all art, a partnership in every virtue.
And as the end of such a partnership cannot be
obtained in many generations, it becomes a partner-
ship not only between those who are living, but
between those who are living, and those who are
dead, and those who are yet to be born."
It is impossible to overestimate the impression
which the state is able to make upon its citizens
through this noble union, this high partnership in
great interests. Nothing else can rouse them to
such a degree of civic pride.
The state, we must remember, does not always
appear before us in this aspect. So many of its
functions are negative and repressive. It is through
the state that we deal with crime. Much of its leg-
islation is the iteration of the commandments.
There is a majesty in this aspect of the state, and
there is benignity. The other side of law is secur-
ity, order, peace. Still it is not through its repres-
sive force that we respond most heartily to the
power of the state.
Through other functions the state is concerned
chiefly with material interests. These interests are
vital. Nothing concerns any man more than his
daily work, the work itself, and the result of it in
his livelihood. But the actual power of the state to
affect business is far less than that of the general
government. In every state election the issue
broadens into the field of national politics. No citi-
zen looks exclusively to his own commonwealth for
the adjustment of those conditions which determine
his work, his business, or his investments.
58 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
The State is excluded from the province of reli-
gion. The experiment once tried in that direction
will never be repeated. The one reservation which
the individual citizen has made for himself for all
time is liberty of conscience, in every possible ex-
pression of it, and in all its results.
The open field into which the state may enter,
where it may exercise unhindered its higher minis-
try, where it may illustrate this noble partnership, is
education, the development of the intellectual, and
through that, the moral life of the people. The
essential contribution of New Hampshire, as we
fondly believe, to the life of the nation, has been
mental character, not simply brain power, not sim-
ply conscience, but character informed and devel-
oped by the trained mind. That has been the
ground of our boasting. We have no other to
compare with it. It can have no equivalent and no
substitute. We may cherish local associations in
the state with a sentiment which will idealize even
its rugged and barren hills. We may respect the
authority of the state as it guards our rights, and
protects our interests. But the one source of civic
pride for the state is the maintenance of its extraor-
dinary intellectual and moral history. It is the
remembrance of that, and that above all else, which
quickens the blood, and stirs the spirit within us.
Fellow Citizens: May this day which is set apart
in recognition of one of the higher functions of the
state recover and restore to us this former ideal.
And accepting the inspiration and teaching of the
present hour, may we understand better what is the
abiding duty, and what the lasting honor of the
sons of this ancient commonwealth.
Mr. President: As suggested by Dr. Tucker,
the Committee has been especially fortunate in
being able to summon Mr. A. R. Spofford, librarian
of the National library, to address you on this
Lord Bacon's classification of books was, "Some
are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and a few
to be chewed and digested."
They credit Mr. Spofford with having *' chewed
and digested " the greater part of the books in the
National library. He will tell you to-day, something
of what he knows of the books he has devoured.
I have the honor of introducing to you Mr.
Spofford, a native of New Hampshire, but a citizen
Mr. Ainsworth R. Spofford, Librarian of Congress,
delivered the concluding address on
THE WORLD OF BOOKS.
When I was honored by the invitation to take a
part in this memorial service, I felt myself constrained
to respond to the call by two considerations, mainly :
first, as cherishing an active interest in libraries, in
whose service the greater part of my life has been
spent, — and, secondly, as contributing, in some slight
degree, to a discharge of the debt which every man
owes to the region of his nativity. As a son of New
Hampshire, though removed in very early life from
the state, I take pride in all that conduces to her
6o STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
honor, her advancement, and her intellig-ence. As a
librarian, it is most gratifying to me, in revisiting my
native State, to behold this fair temple of learning,
which you have carved out of New Hampshire granite,
and which you are now dedicating to the enlighten-
ment of the legislative body, and of all who may in
the future use its stores. It is equally gratifying to
recall the fact, that at the capital city of our republic,
another great library edifice now nears completion,
constructed of New Hampshire granite, from the
Concord quarries, as pure and white as the marble
walls of the capitol.
But, my friends, while we are justly solicitous to
provide these spacious and fire-proof repositories for
the books of the nation and of the state, and to adorn
their interiors with fitting ornaments and memorials,
we are not to forget the vast importance of filling
them with the best and most useful means of infor-
mation. To what purpose do we dedicate these
splendid temples to science and literature, unless we
are ready to provide liberally from the public funds,
to equip the government library with all the helps
which the legislator needs ? Indeed, when we reflect
that, in the last analysis, our laws are only the pro-
duct of our learning, (taking learning in its largest
sense,) we see that there is almost no knowledge
which can come amiss to those who make the laws.
It is trite enough for me to remind you of the
saying of that staunch Scotch republican, Andrew
Fletcher, who wrote, two centuries ago, that '*if a
man were permitted to make all the ballads of a
nation, he need not care who should make the laws."
THE DEDICATION. 6l
But the profounder meaning of the aphorism comes
to us in the reflection that the sentiments of human
sympathy, justice, virtue, and freedom, which inspire
the best poetry of all nations, become sooner or later
incarnated in their laws. If there are those narrow-
minded enough to think that poetry is out of place in
a legislative library, let them remember the debt the
world owes to its great poets, from Homer down to
Robert Burns. Even that simple little song — with
the refrain —
" Then let us pray that come it may,
As come it will, for a' that,
That man to man, the world o'er,
Shall brothers be, for a' that,"—
may have contributed almost as much to spread
abroad the great doctrine of human equality, as the
British Magna Charta, or the American Declaration
of Independence. So, also, the German race are
deeply indebted to the ballads of Schiller and Korner,
and to the ideas of freedom which they have sown
deep in the minds of men and women for two
generations, for that measure of constitutional liberty
which Germany now enjoys. And if we were to
inquire whether books or battles have contributed
the most to the progress of mankind, let us put into
one scale the military achievements of all the con-
querors, and into the other all the glorious literature
of the world. If you doubt to which side the balance
will incline, take the greatest of the warriors, him
who won more battles than any man known to history,
who marched from conquest to conquest, made him-
self the master of France — then the autocrat of
62 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
Europe, and finally filled the world with his fame.
After sacrificing on the altar of his ambition, the
liberty of the press, the freedom of opinion, the ties
of marriage, the peace and welfare of his country,
and the lives of more than a million Frenchmen, he
went down at last, his many crimes against humanity
all unredeemed by that thin varnish which men call
glory — another witness to the truth, that justice still
rules the world.
All history and all literature conspire to teach
us that there is nothing at last but intellectual and
moral power, that is sacred or enduring among men.
We are the fortunate heirs of the intelligence of ages.
The thoughts and the facts that are garnered up in
books, are endowed with a life that is perennial.
Men may die, and legislators may perish, and libra-
rians are mortal : but libraries and literature are
immortal. Even though the ever-gnawing tooth of
time should one day undermine this beautiful struct-
ure, and its granite walls should crumble to decay, —
yet through the ever-living power of the magic art
of printing, books will survive, and the thoughts of
the mind will far outlast towers of granite, and mon-
uments of marble.
"The art of writing," says a great scholar of our
century, — Thomas Carlyle, ''certainly is the most
miraculous of all things which man has devised. Of
all things which men can do or make here below, by
far the most momentous, wonderful, and worthy, are
the things we call books." And indeed, when we
thoughtfully consider how wide and potential are the
uses of written speech, out of which the world of
THE DEDICATION. 63
books is made, It seems hardly possible to overstate
the debt which we owe to authors. Books are the re-
positories of the wit and the wisdom of mankind. In
their pages are stored the vast results of science, the
long annals of history, the speculations of philoso-
phers, the Imaginations of poets, the discoveries of
inventors, the narratives of travellers and voyagers,
the lives of the illustrious, the laws and politics of
nations, the observations of naturalists, the dreams
of enthusiasts, the fascinating stories of fiction, the
creations of graphic art, the harmonies of music, the
homilies of theologians, the correspondence of men
of letters, the verdicts of criticism, the traditions of
the race, and the manifold languages of the world.
What to read, when to read, and how to read, —
these are questions of vital Importance to each one
of us. While I have not the presumption to sup-
pose that my Ideas upon the choice of reading will
present anything new, I must infer that the invitation
to address you takes for granted on my part such
fitness as a life spent among books and the readers
of books may Imply. All that any one can do for
others is to suggest to them a clue, which, however
feeble, has helped to guide his uncertain footsteps
through that tangled maze of folly and wisdom which
we call literature. And my excuse for venturing to
address you upon a theme at once so exacting and
so important, is that the suggestions which I may
have to offer are the fruit of a candid observation,
and an experience somewhat prolonged.
The art of reading to the best advantage Implies
the command of adequate time to read. The art of
€4 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
having time to read lies in learning- how to make the
most of our days. Days are short, and time is fleet-
ing, but no one's day ever holds less than twenty-
four hours. Engrossing as one's occupation may
be, it need never consume all the time remaining
from sleep, refreshment, and needful exercise. The
trouble is, most persons think that the unappropria-
ted intervals when business waits are too brief and
fragmentary to be of any value to them. They fear
that they will be interrupted before they have done
anything to the purpose, and so they do nothing. No
one can make the most of life who has never learned
the supreme value of moments. The half hour be-
fore breakfast, the fifteen minutes waiting for din-
ner, diligently given to the book one wishes to read,
will finish it in a few days, and make room for
another. It is almost literally true, paradoxical as it
may seem, that the more you have to do, the more
you can do. The idle person never knows how to
get ahead of his work ; the busy one always knows
how. System and a strong purpose will work mira-
cles; will go far toward achieving the impossible.
The busiest men I have known have frequently been
the best informed and the widest readers.
Let us suppose that you are determined to secure
two hours every day for self-culture; that is equiva-
lent to more than seven hundred hours a year — or to
three entire months of working time of eight hours
a day. What could you not do in three months, if
you had all the time to yourself? You could almost
learn a new language, or go far toward writing a
book, if need were; and yet this two hours a day,
THE DEDICATION. 65
which would secure you three months of free time
every year, is frittered away, you hardly know how,
in aimless matters, that lead to nothing.
A famous writer, some of whose books we have
all read, Bulwer-Lytton, devoted only four hours a
day to writing; yet he produced more than sixty vol-
umes of history, poetry, drama, and fiction, of singu-
lar literary merit. The great naturalist Darwin, a
chronic sufferer from a depressing malady, counted
two hours a good day's work; yet he produced results
in the world of science which have made his name im-
mortal. Be not over particular as to hours, or the
time of day, but seize the unoccupied intervals and
you will soon find that all hours are good for the
muse. Have a purpose, and adhere to it with good-
humored pertinacity. Be independent of the meth-
ods and opinions of others. The world of books, like
the world of nature, was made for you ; possess it in
your own way. If you see no good in ancient history,
or metaphysics, let them alone, and read books of
art, or biography, or poetry, or travel. The world of
letters is so related, that all roads cross and con-
verge, like the paths that carry us over the surface
of the globe on which we live. Many a reader has
learned more of past ages from biographies than
from any formal history, and it is a fact that many
owe to the plays of Shakespeare nearly all the
knowledge they possess of the history of England.
I look with some distrust upon many of the so-
called '' courses of reading." A great amount of time
has been consumed in trying to compel the attention
to reading through long and prosy didactic works writ-
66 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
ten in a style the reverse of attractive, but believed to
be packed full of learning. These courses, under-
taken as a task, frequently break down before much
progress has been made, thus ending in discourage-
ment as well as disappointment ; whereas, if a good
book had been selected, written in a fresh and
flowing style, and treating any topic whatever with
adequate knowledge, it would have been eagerly
read and assimilated. Time should be economized
by selecting attractive intellectual pabulum — books
which are known from the start to be full of good
things — capable of nourishing the inner man, and,
like a well-cooked and well-seasoned dish, both
appetizing to the palate and comforting to the soul.
Suffer no man's prescription for a weak or
deformed intellect to sway your choice, if you are
conscious of your own mental strength and sound-
ness. When you are weary or perplexed, who shall
deny you the recreation of a chapter of Pickwick, or
what Doctor Dry-as-dust shall compel you to read
David Hume or Adam Smith, when you crave Ten-
nyson or the Faust of Goethe ?
It is unhappily true that books do not teach the use
of books. It were easier, perhaps, in one sense, to
tell what not to read, than to recommend what
is best worth reading. In the publishing world,
this is the age of compilation — not of creation. If
we seek for great original works, if we must indeed
go to the wholesale merchants to buy knowledge,
since retail geniuses are worth but little, one must go
back many years for his main selection of books. It
would not be a bad rule, perhaps, for those who can
THE DEDICATION. 67
read but little, to read no book until it has been
published at least a year or two. This fever for the
newest books is not a wholesome condition of the
mind. And since a selection must indispensably be
made, and that selection must, for the mass of readers,
be so rigid and so small, why should valuable time be
thrown away upon the untried and unproven writers
of the day ?
As the taste for reading is one of the greatest
of human benefits, so the art of reading to the best
advantage is one of the foremost things to be desired.
One hears with dismay that the statistics of our
popular libraries prove that about seventy-five per
cent, of the books drawn from them are novels.
While such aimless reading to be amused is doubtless
better than no reading at all, it is nevertheless true
that over-much reading of romances, especially at an
early age, enervates the mind, weakens the will,
makes dreamers instead of thinkers and workers,
and fills the imagination with morbid and unreal views
of life. Yet this habit of giving up all leisure hours
to fiction is cultivated, more by the cheapness and
notoriety of such works, and the absence of wise
direction in other fields, than by any native tendency
on the part of the young. People will always read
the most that which is most put before them, if only
the style be attractive.
A two-fold evil follows upon the reading of every
unworthy book; in the first place, it absorbs the time
which should be bestowed upon a worthy one ; and
secondly, it leaves the mind and heart unimproved,
instead of conducing to the benefit of both. As there
68 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
are few books more elevating than a really good
novel, so there are none more fruitful of evil than a
Hazlitt says, '* we owe everything to the authors
of books, on this side barbarism." He who enters a
great library walks among the silent ranks of the
thinkers of all ages. However dull or vapid he may
sometimes find the society of people, that of a well-
selected library is never dull. In the world of books,
your chosen companions will talk to you only when
bidden, and whenever you hold converse with them,
they always have something to say. The appreciative
reader is never less alone than when alone. Sur-
rounded by the spirits of the mighty dead, still
surviving immortally in their works, while their mortal
bodies are but dust, he drinks in the inspiration and
the instruction that dwell among the leaves. His
horizon insensibly widens as he reads, and from being
a resident of Boston, or of Baltimore, or of Washing-
ton, he becomes a citizen of the world.
The reader who has held communion with many
great writers will find his views correspondingly
enlarged, and his mental vision cleared. The be-
setting conceit of opinion, the ignoble strife of warring
sects and schools, are seen in their true light. He has
read to little purpose who has not imbibed a charity
as wide as the world, and an open-mindedness that
is fatal to the slightest taint of bigotry. Much con-
verse with books fills him with a sense of his own
ignorance. The more he comes to know, the wider
opens before him the illimitable realm of what is yet
to be known. In the lowest deep which research the
THE DEDICATION. 69
most profound can reach, there is a lower deep still
unattained, — perhaps, even, unattainable.
But the fact that he cannot by any possibility master
all human knowledge should not deter the student
from making ever advancing inroads upon that
domain. The vast extent of the world of books only
emphasizes the need of making a wise selection from
the mass. One of the commonest and most incon-
siderate of the questions propounded to a librarian is
this : '' Do you ever expect to read all these books
through " ? And it is well answered by propounding
another query — namely : *' Did you ever read your
dictionary through " ? A great library is the scholar's
dictionary — not to be read through, but to be able to
put his finger on the fact or the thought he wants,
just when it is wanted.
He must indispensably learn the art of skipping, —
not only of skipping all the useless books (whose
name is legion) but all the useless pages in which
every book, almost, abounds. This art requires three
things : Keen discernment, a practiced eye, and a
resolute purpose to make the best use of time. As
to the selection, while I am not of those who can see
no merit save in books touched with the hoar frost of
time, I have yet frequent cause to lament the pre-
valent rage for new books, when so many great
masters lie unopened and unread. Schopenhauer
tells us of the paramount importance of "acquiring
the art not to read, or of not reading the books that
occupy the public mind, make a noise in the world,
and reach several editions in their first (and perhaps
last) year of existence." Indeed there is of late, along
70 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
with much good literature, a fearfully increasing
number of books that are not useful. The spawn of
cheap novels of second and third rate writers, the
translations of Zola, Belot, Du Boisgobey, and others
of the French erotic school, and their American
imitators, some of whom surpass them in grossness,
without any of their attractions of style, must be
deplored by all who regard the moral and intellectual
welfare of our people. Such publications degrade
our literature, instead of ennobling and advancing it.
Defend them as men may, with whatever glozing
excuses, the books which belong to the lately preva-
lent bigamy school of fiction are not fit to be written,
and not fit to be read. " The trail of the serpent is
over them all." Let all friends of good literature, and
all teachers and counsellors of the young, never cease
to remember, that " the wisdom that is from above is
Another class of new literature is the sensational,
which tends to vitiate the taste, as surely as the
other does the morals. Why should one read such
specimens of prose-run-mad as the novels of Augus-
ta Evans, or Am^lie Rives, such examples of morbid
intellectual anatomy as the journal of Marie Bashkirt-
seff, or such pictures of over-wrought passion and
vicious life as the stories of Edgar Saltus ? These
books, and others referred to, that tickle the palate
for an hour, and perhaps leave a bad taste in the
mouth, are good books to let alone. They have no
staying qualities. Why waste the precious hours,
which you will never see again, over things fit only
to be forgotten, when the great masters of prose and
THE DEDICATION. 7 1
verse are waiting to endow you with imperishable
wit and wisdom ?
Yet some readers will eagerly devour every novel
of Miss Braddon, or ''The Duchess," or the woman
calling herself *'Ouida," but they cannot appreciate
the masterly fictions of Thackeray. I have known
very good people who could not, for the life of them,
find any humor in Dickens, but who actually en-
joyed the forced wit of Mrs. Partington and Bill Nye.
And you will find many a young lady of to-day who
is content to remain ignorant of Homer and Shakes-
peare, but who is ravished by the charms of Trilby
or the Heavenly Twins. But taste in literature, as
in art, or in anything else, can be cultivated. Lay
down the rule, and adhere to it, to read none but
the best books, and you will before long lose all rel-
ish for the poor ones. Surely we all have cause to
deprecate the remorseless flood of fictitious literature,
in which better books are drowned.
Let no one be dismayed at the multitude of books,
nor fear that with his small leisure, he will never be
able to master any appreciable share of them. Few
and far between are the great books of the world.
The works which it is necessary to know may be
comprised in a comparatively small compass. The
rest are to be preserved in the great literary conserv-
atories, some as records of the past, some as chroni-
cles of the times, and not a few as models to be
avoided. The Congressional Library at Washington
(soon to have its own separate library building) is
our great national conservatory of books. As the
library of the government — that is of the whole peo-
72 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
pie — it is properly inclusive of all the literature which
the country produces, while all the other libraries
are and must be more or less exclusive. No national
library can ever be too large. In order that the
completeness of the collection shall not fail, and to
preserve the whole of our literature, it is put into the
statute of copyright as a condition precedent of the
exclusive right to multiply copies of any book. Ap-
prehension is sometimes expressed that the library
of the United States will become overloaded with
trash, and so fail of its usefulness. 'Tis a lost fear.
The public sense is continually winnowing and sift-
ing the literature of every period, and to books and
their authors, every day is the day of judgment.
Out of all the publications of any year, how many,
think you, ever arrive at the honor of a republication
at all ? How many are thought worthy of a reprint
by the readers of the generation immediately suc-
ceeding ? And will any one learned in the history
of literature tell us how many, out of the innumer-
able candidates for immortality, ever reach it, by the
suffrage of each successive century, calling for con-
tinually new editions ? Is not the fate of at least
ninety-nine in the hundred writers, a swift passport
to oblivion or (which is much the same thing) a
place among the myriads of forgotten volumes which
slumber on the shelves of the great libraries of the
It is the melancholy fate of most writers to survive
their own literary reputation. Not the least among
the evils of that ''furor scribendi'' that rage for writ-
ing which afflicts so large a portion of the human
THE DEDICATION. 73
race, is the utter unconsciousness of its subjects as
to the worthless or ephemeral character of their pro-
ductions. A moderate acquaintance with the litera-
ture of the past would spare these unsophisticated
authors the trouble of putting pen to paper. The dis-
covery that what they are so eager to say has not
only been said before, but a great deal better said
than they can say it, might save them the mortifica-
tion of publishing a neglected volume.
That learned French critic, Bishop Huet, was wont
to say that all which has been written since the
beginning of the world might easily be contained
in nine or ten volumes in folio, provided nothing
were said more than once. This little proviso is the
key to that vast copia librorum under which we
groan. So long as men go on repeating one
another, so long will this redundancy of literature,
which makes the despair of students, continue. All
the ancient classics, both Greek and Latin, may be
readily contained in a single glass case of very mod-
erate dimensions ; but the million-fold echoes and
re-echoes of the ancients which fill these twenty cen-
turies — is there any library, however vast, which will
hold the half of them ?
Yet the world of books, vast and thickly peopled
as it is, presents no anomaly, no exception to the laws
which govern the genesis of nature and the growth
of nations. Everywhere the chaff far exceeds the
wheat. For a hundred blossoms, we gather but one
ripe fruit. This ever-growing human race of ours
goes swarming on, and how many, out of all the
myriads that are born into the world, leave any mark
74 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
of greatness or of goodness to testify that they ever
lived at all ? Shall the world of books be expected
to form the sole exception ?
Shall we not rather use the brain that nature gave
us to make a wise choice of our intellectual com-
panions? And here, let me say, no hard-and-fast
rule can be laid down, good for all readers. While
the world of books seems literally infinite, and we
are ever conscious that our opportunities are finite,
we may at least resolve to waste little time upon
writers who have not proven their claim to live in
literature. Find out how often any author's books
have been re-printed, in successive generations, and
you will have one standard of merit to which the
merely ephemeral writers cannot appeal. The sense
of the world is keen, and the survival of the fittest is
as certain as that art is long.
Next, there is no guide to that reading, which will
both interest and profit the reader, better than the
counsel embodied in these two lines of Shakespeare :
•' No profit grows where is no pleasure ta'en ;
In brief, sir, study what you most affect."
If this precept seems too free, it is to be borne in
mind that a book, in order to be relished and remem-
bered, must have some pleasing qualities to the
reader. Books that are read merely as task-work
profit little, in comparison with those which are
absorbed eagerly, and with a hungry mind. Now
the best books of the world are the histories, the
poems, and the stories which are the best told, — and
which will never want for readers, so long as the
THE DEDICATION. 75
generations of men shall endure. The taste for the
best literature will be formed fast enough, if only the
best be made as accessible as is the trash.
When Shakespeare would depict for us the sov-
ereign value of the intelligence which dwells in the
world of books, he says : " Ignorance is the curse of
God : Knowledge the wing wherewith we fly to
Heaven." And elsewhere, when he would describe
in few words a man deficient in understanding — he
says : ** Sir, He hath never fed of the dainties which
are bred in a book." Gibbon declared — '*A taste
for books is the pleasure and glory of my life : — I
would not exchange it for the wealth of the Indies."^
And we remember the lofty panegyric of Words-
worth's sonnet :
«♦ Blessings be with them, and eternal praise,
Who gave us nobler loves and nobler cares ;
The Poets, who on earth have made us heirs
Of truth and pure delight by heavenly lays."
In the companionship of books we move across
the centuries, and mingle with every race and every
age. They bring us acquainted with the fair forms
of truth and poetry, and reveal to us the genius and
the virtue that have illustrated the annals of man-
kind. Good books are among the few real things of
life : they are almost the only pleasure in which there
is no alloy. ''Some books," says Petrarch, ''teach
us how to live, and others how to die." Through
them, the spirits of the dead, not mortal, but immor-
tal, hold free converse with us. Through them,
each one of us may become endowed with the storied
wisdom of six thousand years. The world of books
76 STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
is a realm as large as the universe, and its noblest
creations take hold on the infinite. They open to
us inexhaustible treasures of learning : they awaken
the reason, they kindle the imagination, they culti-
vate the memory, they refine the taste, they delight
us in health, they comfort us in sickness, they
enliven the fancy, they quicken the conscience, they
purify the soul; they cheer the desponding, they
strengthen the weak, they lighten our cares, they
soften our griefs, they enhance our joys — they ener-
gize and ennoble the mind. They, and they alone,
hold that which is imperishable in man ; that which
survives centuries, conquers oblivion, and triumphs
over the grave.
JOINT RESOLUTION authorizing the governor and council to procure plans
and estimates for additions to the state house.
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court con-
That the governor and council are hereby authorized to expend a sum of
money not exceeding five hundred dollars, to be used in procuring plans and
estimates for additional facilities in the state house for library and other pur-
poses, and also plans and estimates for a separate building to be used for the
same purposes, and submit their report to the next legislature.
That the governor is hereby authorized to draw his warrant for the same out
of any money in the treasury not otherwise appropriated.
Approved August 16, 1889.
AN ACT for the erection of a state library building.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court con-
Section 1. That the sum of one hundred and seventy-five thousand dollars
be and hereby is raised and appropriated for the purchase of two tracts of
land situate on the corner of State and Park streets in Concord, and the erec-
tion of a building thereon, in accordance with the plan of A. P. Cutting, of
Worcester, Mass., referred to in and annexed to the report of the commission
appointed to procure plans and estimates for additional facilities for the pub-
lic library, and other purposes.
Sect. 2. The state treasurer is hereby authorized, under the direction of the
governor and council to borrow said sum of one hundred and seventy-five
thousand dollars on the credit of the state ; and to issue bonds or certificates
of indebtedness therefor, in the name and on the behalf of the state, payable
in twenty years from the first day of July, 1891, at a rate of interest not exceed-
ing four per cent, per annum, payable semi-annually on the first days of Janu-
ary and July of each year ; such bonds to have interest warrants or coupons
attached thereto ; said coupons to be signed by the state treasurer ; said
bonds and coupons to be made payable at such place as the governor and
council shall designate.
Sect. 3. Said bonds shall be designated, " State Library Bonds," and shall be
signed by the treasurer and countersigned by the governor, and shall be
deemed a pledge of the faith and credit of the state. The secretary of state
shall keep a record of all the bonds countersigned by the governor, showing
the number and amount of each bond, the time of countersigning, the time
when payable, and the date of the delivery to the state treasurer. The treas-
urer shall keep a record of all bonds disposed of by him, showing the number
thereof, the name of the person to whom sold, the amount received for the
same, the date of the sale and the time when payable. The treasurer may
negotiate and sell such bonds to the best advantage for the state, but no bond
shall be sold for less than its par value, nor shall such bonds be loaned,
pledged, or hypothecated in any way whatever.
STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
Sect. 4. That His Excellency the Governor, with the advice and consent of
the council, be authorized to appoint four commissioners, only two of whom
shall belong to the same political party, whose duty it shall be to make all con-
tracts necessary for the erection, building, and completion of said state library
building upon the plot of ground named in section 1 of this act, and in accord-
ance with said plan to procure all necessary specifications for the full comple-
tion of said building under said plan. No contract by them made shall be of
any binding force until first submitted to and approved by the governor and
council, nor shall such contract be made until they have advertised for at least
thirty days in not less than three papers in this state for sealed proposals
under said plan and specifications for the entire construction of said building
in one contract, or in several contracts for the different classes of work to be
done, and such contract or contracts shall be made with the lowest responsible
bidders complying with the terms of this act in relation to the amount of bonds
required to guarantee the completion of said contract ; and it shall be the fur-
ther duty of said commissioners to superintend the erection, building, and
completion of said library building, and they shall receive for their services
each the sum of three dollars per day when employed and their expenses, and
their bills shall be approved by the governor and council ; and the governor
shall draw his orders upon the state treasurer for the amounts due from time
to time upon said bills, and the treasurer shall pay the same out of any
money provided for in this act. Said commissioners, or either of them, may
be removed at any time by the governor and council.
Sect. 5. Said commissioners shall have power and authority to purchase for
and on behalf of the state the land recommended by the commission and
named in section 1 of this act, subject to the approval of the governor and
Sect. 6. In case said commissioners shall be unable to purchase such land for
the state at a price which they deem reasonable, they are hereby fully author-
ized and empowered to take and appropriate the same for the use of the state,
for the purpose aforesaid ; and if such land is so taken and appropriated for
the use of the state, said commissioners shall apply to the county commission-
ers for the county of Merrimack to assess the damages to the owner or owners
of such land, and said county commissioners, upon reasonable notice to all
persons interested and a hearing thereon, shall assess and award damages to
the owner or owners of such land, for so much land as the commissioners
hereby appointed shall designate as necessary and convenient for the pur-
poses aforesaid. Said assessment and award of the county commissioners
shall be in writing, and filed in the office of the city clerk of said Concord
within ten days after the same is completed, which shall contain a particular
description by metes and bounds of the land so taken, as well as of the dam-
ages and the persons to whom the same is awarded. And upon payment or
tender to the owner or owners of the land of the sums so assessed, the title to
the land so taken shall be vested in the state.
Sect. 7. Such land-owner, or other party interested, shall have the right to
appeal from said assessment and award to the supreme court in said county of
Merrimack, and to an assessment of said damages by a jury on such appeal, by
filing in the office of the clerk of said court a petition in proper form for that
purpose, within sixty days after the filing of said assessment and award of
said county commissioners in the office of the city clerk as aforesaid.
Sect. 8. The governor shall draw his orders on the state treasurer for the
amounts that may be or become due from time to time, under the contracts of
the commissioners hereby appointed, for the purposes aforesaid, after said
bills shall have been duly approved by the governor and council, to an amount
not exceeding one hundred and seventy-five thousand dollars.
Approved March 12, 1891.
AN ACT in addition and supplemental to chapter 13 of the Laws of 1891, enti-
tled "An act for the erection of a state library building."
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court con-
Section 1. That the sum of seventy-five thousand dollars be and the same is
hereby appropriated for the purpose of completing and furnishing the state
library building and the grounds about the same, to be expended under the
direction of the commission appointed in pursuance of section 4 of chapter 13,
Laws of 1891, entitled an "An act for the Erection of a State Library Build-
ing," and in accordance with said act.
Sect. 2. The state treasurer is hereby authorized, under the direction of the
governor and council, to borrow the sum of seventy -five thousand dollars on
the credit of the state ; and to issue bonds or certificates of indebtedness
therefor, in the name and on the behalf of the state, payable in twenty years
from the first day of July, 1893, at a rate of interest not exceeding four per
cent, per annum, payable semi-annually on the first days of January and July
of each year ; such bonds to have interest warrants or coupons attached
thereto ; said coupons to be signed by the state treasurer ; said bonds and
coupons to be made payable at such place as the governor and council shall
Sect. 3. Said bonds shall be designated " State Library Bonds," and shall be
signed by the treasurer and countersigned by the governor, and shall be
deemed a pledge of the faith and credit of the state. The secretary of state
shall keep a record of all the bonds countersigned by the governor, showing
the number and amount of each bond, the time of countersigning, the time
when payable, and the date of the delivery to the state treasurer. The treas-
urer shall keep a record of all bonds disposed of by him, showing the number
thereof, the name of the person to whom sold, the amount received for the
same, the date of the sale, and the time when payable. The treasurer may
negotiate and sell such bonds to the best advantage for the state, but no bond
shall be sold for less than its par value, nor shall such bonds be loaned,
pledged, or hypothecated in any way whatever.
Sect. 4. All premiums realized from the sale of the state library bonds, issued
under and by virtue of chapter 13, Laws of 1891, and under this act, are hereby
appropriated for the uses set forth in section 1 of this act, and to be expended
by said commissioners agreeably to this act, and said act of 1891.
Sect. 5. The governor shall draw his orders on the state treasurer for the
amounts that may be or become due from time to time, under the contracts of
said commissioners, for the purposes aforesaid, after said bills shall have been
duly approved by the governor and council, to an amount not exceeding the
several sums appropriated by this act, and said chapter 13, Laws of 1891.
Sect. 6. This act is in addition and supplemental to chapter 13, Laws of 1891.
Approved February 14, 1893.
AN ACT in amendment of chapter 8 of the Public Statutes, and chapter 31 of
the Laws of 1893, relating to the state library.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court con-
Section 1. Section 8 of chapter 8 of the Public Statutes is hereby amended so
as to read as follows : " Sect. 8. They may dispose, by sale or exchange, of all
or any part of the surplus state publications, which have been from time to
time deposited in the state library in accordance with the laws of the state,
and of such other books, pamphlets, charts, documents, or duplicates thereof,
as they deem unnecessary for the uses of the library."
8o STATE LIBRARY BUILDING.
Sect. 2. Section 16 of chapter 8 of the Public Statutes is hereby amended to
read as follows : " Sect. 16. The governor, councillors, members, and clerks of
the legislature, during sessions, state officials, the judges of the supreme
court, and such other persons as the trustees shall designate, may take books,
maps, charts, and other documents from the library, subject to such rules and
regulations as the trustees shall prescribe."
Sect. 3. Section 18 of chapter 8 of the Public Statutes is hereby amended by
inserting after the word '* studies," in the last line thereof, the words •' and all
other printed matter of the institution." So that said section shall read as fol-
lows : "Sect. 18. The principal of each college, academy, seminary, or other
institution of learning, incorporated by the laws of this state, shall annually
and before the first day of November of each year, forward to the state libra-
rian for the state library two copies, and to the New Hampshire Historical
Society two copies, of each printed catalogue of its officers and students and
courses of study, and all other printed matter of the institution published dur-
ing the year ending on that date."
Sect. 4. Section 6 of chapter 31 of the Laws of 1893 is hereby amended so as
to read as follows : " Sect. 6. The public printer shall give the state librarian
seasonable notice of every state or department publication that is delivered to
him to be printed, and of the time that same will go to press. Upon receipt
of such notice the state librarian shall notify the secretary of state of the num-
ber of additional copies of every such publication that will be required for sale
or exchange for the benefit of the state library, and thereupon the secretary of
state shall cause such number of copies to be printed, bound, and delivered to
the state librarian, in addition to the number of copies otherwise required to
be printed by law ; provided, however, that such requisition shall be made
while the work may be done without extra expense on account of composition»
and provided that the several state departments shall not receive a less num-
ber of copies for the official distribution than is now authorized by law."
Sect. 5. The residue of all state or department publications remaining in the
hands of the secretary of state after distribution by him as required by law,
shall be forthwith deposited in the state library, to be disposed of as required
Sect. 6. Foreign corporations doing business in this state shall file with the
state librarian on or before the first day of January in each year, all printed
reports of their condition issued by them during the twelve months preceding.
Sect. 7. This act shall take effect upon its passage.
Approved February 13, 1895.