ILLINOIS HISTORICAL SURVEY
They do rest from their labors,
and their works do follow them.
LEWIS G. STEVENSON.
They do rest from their labors,
and their works do follow them*
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
Mrs. Letitia Green Stevenson was born January 8th, 1843
at Allegheny, Pennsylvania, where her father, Dr. Lewis War-
ner Green, was president of the Presbyterian Theological
Seminary. Her mother was Mary Fry Green.
When Mrs. Stevenson was but a small child, her parents
removed to Danville, Ky., where her father became the presi-
dent of Center College, and there she lived to young woman-
hood. It was there she met Mr. Stevenson, who afterward
became her husband. Her father was a scholarly man, hav-
ing been educated abroad, which was an unusual attainment
at that time.
On reaching young womanhood, Mrs. Stevenson's edu-
cation was broadened by a course at a school at Walnut Hill,
near Lexington, Ky., and later in New York.
FROM MRS. STEVENSON'S MEMOIRS
' ' The incident of my girlhood days which made the most pro-
found impression was the attempted secession of the Southern
States from the Federal Union in 1861; the attack upon Fort
Sumter, and the inauguration of the Civil War.
Our home, at that time, was in Danville, Kentucky, the bor-
der line between the conflicting forces. My father was then Pres-
ident of Center College, and an ardent Union man. However, his
heart turned with solicitude towards his students, many of whom
were from the South and joined the southern army. The exigen-
cies of guerrilla warfare placed us at the mercy of the constantly
changing bands of marauders, while the Federal and Confeder-
ate troops took turns in occupying the town. At no time, how-
ever, during the four years were we greatly intimidated or
harmed. In the army on either side were our nearest of kin and
dearest of friends, and we felt and were safe under their consid-
"At the outset of the war I was at Miss Haynes' School, No.
10 Gramarcy Park, New York City. I returned home to find the
college, as well as every public building, converted into barracks
or hospitals. In the wake of the dreadful war soon followed sor-
row, sickness, desolation and death. Though these terrible days
can never be forgotten, we are thankful to an over-ruling provi-
dence for a re-united country, and for the belief that the ties of
kinship and friendship are perhaps stronger for having been so
rudely sundered for a time."
On the death of her father, Mrs. Stevenson came to Illinois
and lived at Chenoa with her sister, Mrs. Matthew T. Scott, whose
4 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
husband was at that time a prominent citizen and farmer. She
remained there until her wedding, on Dec. 20, 1866, to Mr. Adlai
E. Stevenson, then a rising young lawyer of Metamora, the
county seat of Woodford county.
Mr. and Mrs. Stevenson lived for the first year of their mar-
ried life at Metamora, and then Mr. Stevenson, having formed a
law partnership with his cousin, James S. Ewing, removed to
Bloomington and began that career of professional life which
was to be marked with distinction.
A considerable number of the years of Mrs. Stevenson's life
were spent in Washington, while her husband was occupying posi-
tions of political responsibility, as an executive in the postoffice
department and as vice-president. She also traveled abroad with
him when he went to Europe as a member of the monetary com-
mission. In these years, however, she always returned to her
home city whenever the opportunity offered, and neither emi-
nence nor widened responsibilities could remove from her affec-
tions the ties which bound her to Bloomington.
It was as the president general, the highest office in the gift
of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revo-
lution, that Mrs. Stevenson achieved perhaps her highest per-
sonal distinction. She served four times in that high office. She
was elected for the first time on Feb. 22, 1893, after a short in-
terim following the death of Mrs. Benjamin Harrison, the first
president general, who died in the fall of 1892. She was re-
elected on Feb. 22, 1894, and then after the term of Mrs. John W.
Foster, which followed her own, Mrs. Stevenson was chosen to the
same office for the third time, on Feb. 22, 1896, and again in 1897.
On her retirement from her second term, in 1895, the congress
of the D. A. R. adopted the following resolution : "That this con-
tinental congress of the Daughters of the American Revolu-
tion * * * * does hereby create the office of honorary president
general, to be filled only by retiring presidents general : that
Mrs. Letitia Green Stevenson, the retiring president general, be
asked to accept that honorary office."
As the wife of the vice-president of the United States for four
years, from 1893 to 1897, Mrs. Stevenson occupied a position of
social prominence in the nation's capital which required womanly
qualities of the highest type to acceptably and creditably fill.
That she more than met the expected duties and responsibilities
was testified by the large circle of eminent women with whom
she in those years mingled. She presided at the head of Mr.
Stevenson's Washington home with that graciousness and poise
which could spring only from inborn aristocracy, in the truest
sense of that word.
On the retirement of Mr. Stevenson from the vice-presidency,
he and Mrs. Stevenson returned again to Bloomington, where
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON $
Mrs. Stevenson found it her delight to live and work in the inter-
est of the best in the community.
As the former head of the society of the Daughters of the
American Revolution, there is considerable interest in the gen-
ealogical line from which Mrs. Stevenson sprang.
She was a descendant of Joshua Fry and Capt. James Speed,
of Virginia, and Dr. Thomas Walker, of Kentucky. Joshua Fry
was a soldier in the Continental service. Capt. Speed was shot
thru the body at Guilford. He recovered and moved to Ken-
tucky in 1872, and took part in the formation of that state. Dr.
Thomas Walker was commissary general of the Virginia troops
in the Braddock campaign in 1870. During the revolution he
was a member of the house of burgesses. He was one of the first
explorers of Kentucky.
Mrs. Stevenson's mother was the daughter of Thomas Walker
Fry and Elizabeth Smith Fry.
Thomas W. Fry was the son of Joshua and Peachy Walker
Fry. Joshua Fry was born about 1760, served as a lad in the
revolutionary war, and after the war, moved to Kentucky and
engaged in teaching his own and his neighbors' children. He was
of distinguished education for a man of that time. Peachy
Walker, who married Joshua Fry, was the daughter of Dr.
Thomas Walker, who occupied many positions of honor in the
earlier history of the colony and was known as a skillful and
scientific engineer. He was intimately associated in private and
public relations with George Washington and Thomas Jefferson ;
was the guardian of Jefferson, a member of the Virginia house
of burgesses, and of the committee of safety, member of the Vir-
ginia convention of 1789 to consider the constitution; commis-
sioner to survey the boundary line between Virginia and North
Carolina, known as "Walker's line."
Of all the characteristics of Mrs. Stevenson's life, none were
better recognized nor will be longer remembered by those of the
circle of friends who knew her best, than her eminence as a home
maker. The Stevenson home has for years been a model of the
best and true in domestic regulations, as all well knew who have
been brought within the reach of its uplifting influence and its
.hospitable charm. It has been a home where husband and wife
vied one with the other in that true courtesy which is the heart of
kindliness and respect, and the children gave to the parents that
filial honor and deference which form the seeds of right living
in maturer years. To her as to few women has fallen the part
of walking side by side with her husband in his political activi-
ties, while at the same time sustaining so well her more truly
feminine duties. And whether the successive political campaigns
ended in victory or defeat, Mrs. Stevenson's cheerfulness and
poise were always undisturbed.
O LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
The chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution in
this city was organized at a meeting called by Mrs. Stevenson at
her own home. There were eighteen women present at the first
meeting. The chapter, when its charter was secured, was given
the name of the woman who was chiefly instrumental in its f orm-
Mrs. Stevenson was made the first president of the Woman's
club of this city, a position which she held for four years. She
called the first meeting for the organization of the Day Nursery,
&nd was active in that philanthropy until her health failed. She
was long a member of the Second Presbyterian church, and was
active in the home and foreign missionary societies. Several years
ago Mrs. Stevenson organized a local chapter of the Army and
Navy league, and was its first president.
During the period of her illness this community and her many
friends thruout the country had awaited news from Mrs. Stev-
enson's bedside with anxiety and the daily hope that it might
be of more hopeful tone. The width of her circle of friends, and
the love in which she was everywhere held, was illustrated by the
daily and numerous tokens of flowers which came to her home.
The rooms were almost constantly supplied with a profusion of
beautiful bouquets, some of them from long distances, and each
testifying to the thoughtful remembrance of a friend and the
wish that their fragrance and beauty might brighten and cheer
the patient sufferer.
The passing of Mrs. Stevenson takes from the life of this city
a woman whose position has been one of prominence, and whose
name and ability are known and recognized thruout the state and
EDITORIAL IN THE BLOOMINGTON BULLETIN, DECEMBER 26
We often speak of the first lady of the nation or state in allud-
ing to the wife of the president or governor, and in the death of
Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson, Bloomington has lost its ranking repre-
sentative, yet in the absence of Mrs. Stevenson we shall first
mourn the wife, mother, neighbor and friend.
Mrs. Stevenson, whose splendidly rounded life closed last
night, had been a national figure, both as the wife of a distin-
guished public man and also as a natural leader in large activi-
ties. Residence in Washington as the wife of a congressman, as-
sistant postmaster general and vice-president, gave avenue for
the impression on contemporaneous American life of a charming
personality, and association in the highest capacity with the
Daughters of the American Revolution gave evidence of great
executive and constructive ability.
But as great and just as has been Bloomington 's pride in Mrs.
Stevenson as a national figure, it has been in her home life and
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON 7
unaffected democracy of sympathy and association with the old
neighbors that Bloomington loved and honored her most, and
that is why there are today so many moist eyes beyond the fam-
Deepest sympathy goes out to Mr. Stevenson. The former
vice-president has ever been a lover of home and the beautiful
companionship with his wife has been nothing short of the imag-
inative ideal of romance, so rarely realized in every day life.
The last honors from those who had known her long and loved
her much, were paid to Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson on Sunday after-
noon, December 28, 1913, in rites at the Second Presbyterian
church, ere the mortal part was consigned to the inevitable "dust
The funeral services were held in the church where she had at-
tended worship for many years. The attendance of friends was
ample testimony to the wide circle of friends in this city, and
many people were here from other cities. The auditorium was
filled during the services.
The whole pulpit platform was one immense bank of flowers,
each piece being a testimonial of love from some friend or some
society. The casket rested at the chancel almost hidden in this
wealth of floral offerings.
Members of Letitia Green Stevenson chapter of the Daughters
of the American Revolution assembled to the number of nearly
a hundred and were seated together at the front of the church.
This is Mrs. Stevenson's home chapter, bearing her own name,
and from which she arose to become the head of the national so-
ciety during four terms.
The services were impressive. After an invocation by Eev.
J. N. Elliott, the pastor, several appropriate passages of scrip-
ture were read by Rev. Martin D. Hardin of the Third Pres-
byterian church in Chicago, who is a son-in-law of Mrs. Steven-
son. Dr. Elliott and Rev. Mr. Hardin then each paid short trib-
ute to Mrs. Stevenson, and the services were dismissed with the
benediction by Rev. M. Hardin.
DR. ELLIOTT'S ADDRESS
Rev. J. N. Elliott spoke as follows : "In the home she loved,
in the city which she also loved, with dear ones near at hand, at
peace with God, and in perfect charity with the world, on the
evening of Christmas day, Mrs. Stevenson peacefully fell asleep.
Succeeding upon the suffering of many weeks, there came to her
8 LKTITIA GREEN STEVENSON
repose and heavenly rest. During her long illness, daily solici-
tous inquiries bespoke the earnest wishes of her many friends
that she might recover her health, and that her life might be pro-
longed. But it has been ordered otherwise, and to the great sor-
row of her beloved ones is added the sorrow of hosts of friends,
both in her home city and thruout the land, that she has been
' ' She was a woman greatly beloved. Whether amidst the ac-
tivities of public life, with its many responsibilities and exactions,
or in the quieter circle of old friends and neighbors ; whether as
president general of a great patriotic society, or in quiet attend-
ance upon a home or foreign missionary meeting, or teaching a
class in Sunday school, as she formerly used to do, she was always
the same capable, sympathetic, kind-hearted, helpful Mrs. Stev-
enson, endearing herself to all by her graciousness and amiability
and by the nobleness of her life and character.
' ' Gifted with splendid mental endowments, she added talent
to talent and grace to grace, until one beheld in her the fulfilment
of the poet's tribute to his queen :
" 'A thousand claims to reverence closed in her, as mother,
wife and queen. '
' ' One who knew her well said, ' If Mrs. Stevenson ever spoke
an uncharitable word concerning any one, it had never come to
his knowledge. ' Her gentleness made her strong, and her strength
made her gentle. Serene both in disappointment and victory,
patient in suffering, unfaltering in Christian cheerfulness, cour-
ageous at the approach of death, her life was transparently beau-
tiful, filled with ministeries of comfort and abounding in good
' ' She was above all a loyal and devoted wife and mother. For
forty-seven years she and her honored and now sorely bereaved
husband walked life's pathway in mutual love and helpfulness,
and the surviving children whom God gave to them, live to
call them blessed. Besides her husband, son, two daughters and
grandchildren, of her father's family she is survived by one sis-
ter, Mrs. Matthew T. Scott. In this time of bereavement, it is
their priceless privilege to look up thru their tears and thank
God for the gift of so noble a wife, mother and sister, whose home-
love and companionship made life radiant with happiness and
' ' Thruout her whole life Mrs. Stevenson was a sincere Chris-
tian. Her Saviour, her Bible and her church were ever near to
her heart. With large experience of the world she discerned
and valued the immeasurable worth of Christian truth and
Christian living, arid with unaffected simplicity she walked by
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON 9
faith in the Son of God. Upon this Christian faith the virtues
and graces of her life were built, and in the comfort of this faith
she gently fell asleep. She will be missed more than we can pos-
sibly express, her memory will live as an example of all that is
truly great and noble in womanhood.
"But we realize, my friends, that for her life has not ended,
but only begun. Death is transition; sleep is rest; the tomb is
the gateway into the larger perfect life. The power of death
has been destroyed ; victory over the grave is certain.
' ' On this side of the border-land, the followers of Christ use
the present tense when they say, ' Thanks be to God who giveth
us the victory thru our Lord Jesus Christ.' On the other side,
no doubt the glorified saints use the past perfect tense, and say
' Thanks be to God who has given us the victory thru our Lord
Jesus Christ. ' Spoken in tears, it may be, yet we are able to say
of the beloved dead, At peace God's holy peace. Seen as in a
mirror darkly, yet we are able to say Light God's heavenly
light. Weary and heavy laden, we may hear a calm, majestic,
friendly voice saying, ' Come unto me and I will give you rest. '
" 'Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from henceforth ;
yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labors; for
their works follow with them. '
"At evening time, no gathering night, 'It shall be light.'
God's holy light, His word our sight At evening time.
"At evening time above the shroud the rain-bow cloud.
God's pledge of care : Trust finds Him there.
"At evening time He gives repose from earthly woes; Why
should we fear ; Day-dawn is near At evening time. ' '
EEV. ME. HAEDIN'S TALK
' ' The good and beautiful life is never an accident. We do not
live in a chaotic world ruled by chance. In vain we look for the
sixty-fold harvest on the wayside, or the shallow ground. The
fruitful character has drawn its nourishment from the eternal
sunshine, the gracious rain, and the good soil, unchoked, as truly
as the abundant yield in nature is the product of unimpeded,
elemental forces with this difference only : in nature, choice is
not there. The grain is passive. It has no will of its own. In
personality, the fruitful life has exercised choice ; has listened to
reason and conscience; has willed faith; and has consciously
chosen to be responsive to God and the gracious influences of His
divine spirit. Human life is a garden, or a desert waste, just as
there has been a will or no will at one with moral truth of God.
And as the broadest and deepest rivers are those having their
source high up amid the immaculate snows of the everlasting
hills, so personality is broad and deep, strong and beautiful, joy-
IO LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
ous and life-giving, just as it remembers its eternal source and
consciously feels itself reaching back and up in unbroken con-
tinuity to God.
THE LITE IDEAL
"We are gathered here to pay honor to such a life. A life
issuing from God, a life never forgetting its Source, a life that
was as silent and deep, as unostentatious, and almost as self -for-
getful in its flowing as the river ; a life, along whose course from
the beginning to its union with the great sea, flowers of love
bloomed, and all beautiful deeds of kindness sprung into being
as naturally as violets grow on grassy banks. Knowing Mrs.
Stevenson, as it was my blessed privilege to know her, I cannot
but feel that we honor her most acceptably when we attempt to
meet our inevitable grief in the faith by which she lived. When
we let her life speak to us of those deeper realities, on which her
own soul rested, and out of the personal knowledge of which
came those rare and beautiful traits of character, which so en-
deared her to us all. Her inheritance was a noble one. Before
her had gone generations of God-fearing fathers and mothers.
She was a child of the covenant, and a daughter of the manse.
Her father, Dr. Lewis W. Green, was not only one of the most
gifted ministers of his generation in the church, brilliant as an
orator and educator, but was a man of singularly deep religious
' ' In those tender years, when as a child the roots of character
are forming Mrs. Stevenson grew up in a cultivated, Christian
home. Religious faith and trust and love and obedience came nat-
urally to her as things beautiful and more to be desired than ru-
bies. These were inseparable from her being, and came to hold her.
Her character was the outgrowth of a life hid with Christ in God.
She found God in Jesus Christ, and with an unwavering faith
committed her own being and all that was dear to her to His
keeping. She hoped to find no more precious Saviour, no one
whose life could better serve as Guide to heaven, and Comforter
on the way thither. She could conceive of no fuller truth of
God than that for which her own heart aspired when she prayed
with her Lord, 'Our Father, which art in heaven, hallowed be
Thy name, Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is
in heaven. '
' ' To know the will of the God and Father of our Lord, Jesus
Christ, was her highest hope ; and to do that will, her joyous daily
task. For religion with her, as in all genuine souls, was not a
thing merely to be talked about, or speculated over, but a life to
be lived; a life of the Spirit, radiating happiness; a life light-
ening the yoke of toil and the dull cares of the day, a life making
the home a home indeed, an earthly bit of heaven, with heaven 's
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON I I
love and heaven's peace, resting there like summer's twilight; a
life that goes out beyond the home in gracious unaffected, neigh-
borliness to rejoice with those that rejoice, and to weep with those
that weep ; a life that knows and finds its share of all those works
that make for the common good in the church, the city, and the
world; a life that appreciates such personal honors as come un-
sought, but holds these at their true value, neither exaggerating
or underestimating their significance; a life that meets success
without undue elation, and disappointments and sorrows without
being utterly cast down in a word, a life which seeks to live over
again, by faith, here amid modern conditions, the strong and
wise, and deathlessly divine life of Him who walked in Galilee,
and by what He was and taught and did has brought to this old
tear-stained earth of ours all that it knows of a spirit which is at
rest with God.
* ' This, I say, was the conception of religion which was at the
basis of Mrs. Stevenson's character. How well she realized her
ideal, our own overflowing hearts today bear eloquent testimony.
To those of us who knew her best, she was as one set apart ; beau-
tiful in childhood, rare and fragrant in girlhood, radiant in
young womanhood and dewy as the breath of the morning, even
when her hair was silvered. As child, as woman, as friend, as
daughter, as sister, as wife, as mother, she brought only happi-
ness ; she gave only joy, and has made it easier for us all to be-
lieve that nothing is so good as goodness ; nothing so pays as kind-
ness ; nothing so radiates as faith ; nothing so abides as love.
' ' ' And I heard a voice out of heaven, saying unto me, write ;
blessed are the dead which die in the Lord. Yea, saith the spirit,
that they may rest from their labors ; and their works do follow
" 'I am the resurrection and the life; he that believeth in
me, tho he were dead, yet shall he live; and whosoever liveth,
and believeth in me, shall never die. '
" 'And there shall be no more curse, but the throne of God
and of the Lamb shall be in it, and His servants shall serve Him,
and they shall see His face, and His name shall be in their fore-
" 'And there shall be no night and there they need no candles,
neither light of the sun, for the Lord giveth them light, and they
shall reign forever and ever. ' ' '
1 2 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
IN THE ISSUE OF THE DAUGHTERS OF THE AMERICAN REVOLU-
TION MAGAZINE FOR JANUARY 1914, APPEARED THIS
TRIBUTE TO MRS. STEVENSON, WRITTEN BY HER NIECE,
MRS. JULIA SCOTT VROOMAN (MRS. CARL VROOMAN)
Mrs. Letitia Green Stevenson, wife of former Vice-President
Adlai E. Stevenson, and for four terms President General of the
National Society, Daughters of the American Revolution, as well
as its first Honorary President General, passed away in the se-
rene peace of a deathless Faith, on Christmas night at her home
in Bloomington, Illinois.
Of distinguished Revolutionary ancestry, Mrs. Stevenson,
through Lawrence Washington and Mildred Washington, his wife
was a lineal descendant of Augustine Warner, the grandfather of
George Washington. She grew to girlhood in Danville, Ken-
tucky, where her father, Dr. Lewis Warner Green, one of the
most brilliant orators and scholars of the South, was President
of Center College. On December 20, 1866, she was married in
Chenoa, Illinois, from the home of her sister, Mrs. Matthew T.
Scott, to Mr. Adlai Stevenson. Soon after their marriage Mr.
and Mrs. Stevenson moved to Bloomington, Illinois, where they
have since made their home, and where four children were born
to them, three of whom survive her, Mr. Lewis Green Stevenson,
Chairman of the Board of Pardons, Mrs. Martin D. Hardin, wife
of a distinguished Chicago clergyman, and Miss Letitia Steven-
During the first few years of her life in Bloomington, Mrs.
Stevenson devoted herself wholeheartedly and entirely to her
husband and children and friends. When later she went to
Washington her official position as wife of a Congressman, As-
sistant Postmaster General and Vice-President, gave abundant
opportunity for the impression upon contemporaneous American
life of her charming personality, while the four years of her wise
and inspiring leadership of the Daughters of the American Rev-
olution furnished striking evidence of commanding executive,
diplomatic and constructive ability.
The fact that Mrs. Stevenson and Mrs. Scott, two sisters liv-
ing in the same town, were both elected and reelected to the high-
est office in the gift of women of America is unique in the history
of our organization, while their splendid administrations have
added new lustre to the Society which has so signally honored
The passing of our beloved second President General, whose
impress on this Society was so potent in its formative years, and
whose love and interest in it has never flagged, will bring genuine
grief to thousands of Daughters all over this country who had an
abiding love and reverence for this strong and gracious spirit,
liETITIA GREEN STEVENSON I $
whose life was a supreme embodiment of radiant, self -forgetful
womanhood. Physically, mentally and spiritually, she was like
a flower. To her it was natural to be sympathetically tactful and
wisely helpful to all with whom she came in contact, as it is for a
rose to exhale its sweetness. No one who has been privileged to
know her, be it ever so slightly, has failed to feel if not entirely
to comprehend that here indeed was one of those gifted souls
who has pushed up and back the boundaries of our poor human
nature and revealed to us some of the rarer, higher and more
exquisite potentialities of the race.
Almost the last act of Mrs. Stevenson's life was the comple-
tion of a history of the Daughters of the American Revolution,
which has just been published. A concise, impartial and illum-
inating record, this little book goes forth bearing her farewell
message to the ' ' Daughters ' ' and the great Society she loved and
served with such a lavish measure of devotion.
AT THE MEMORIAL MEETING HELD IN HONOR OF MRS. STEVEN-
SON BY THE NATIONAL CONGRESS, D. A. R., IN MEMORIAL
CONTINENTAL HALL, ON TUESDAY EVENING, APRIL 21,
1914, MRS. GEORGE A. LAWRENCE, STATE REGENT OF ILLI-
NOIS, SPOKE AS FOLLOWS:
In the little town of Allegheny, Pennsylvania, Letitia Green-
Stevenson was born in January, 1843, with a splendid endow-
ment of heritage.
Behind her as she lay cradled there were generation after
generation on both sides of the family of sturdy, loyal, educated,
cultivated and progressive ancestors, and the potentialities of her
future career were very great to her at the very dawn of life.
Hers was a lineage most royal and one that was to be upheld
as became a queen.
Her father, Dr. Green, when she was but a child, removed to
Danville, Ky., to assume the presidency of Center College, lo-
cated at that place, and her years from early girlhood to young
womanhood were passed within the molding and controlling in-
fluence of that institution; and what an inspiration for uplift
and for good it was to her, and to the great number of her con-
temporaries that thronged its halls and fell within its benign
influence! I venture the assertion that no institution of any-
where near its size can point with pride to a more distinguished
alumni. They have adorned the Bench, National and State, and
given dignity to the Bar of the entire country. They have added
power and eloquence to the Pulpit, and in the galaxy of Ameri-
can divines many trace back to that institution. Among the
alumni of this college may be found six Moderators of the Gen-
eral Assembly of the Presbyterian Church of the United States ;
14 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
five United States Senators; two Vice-Presidents of the United
States ; one Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States ;
a number of Governors of States, and more than a score of Col-
lege Presidents. It has added to the refinement and culture of
the entire South and West, and still lives, a monument to those
men and women that gave it its impulse and direction.
Amid such influences, under such inspirations, can it be won-
dered that the bud blossomed into the perfect flower? It was
here that she met the man, then a student at Center College,
whom she afterwards married. Their union of hearts was a per-
fect one. Four children, three of whom survive her, brought
blessings to this father and mother, and shed the sunshine of love
into their home. They were early trained to honor and respect
God, Home and Country, as the best things in life, and are now
proving themselves worthy of esteem both in their public and
private lives. These are the faithful mother's rewards, for the
sacrifice and consecration devoted to their education and direc-
tion that began at the mother's knees.
When Mr. Stevenson was called to the National Capital the
accumulated treasures of mind and heart, product of the schol-
arly environment of Center College, the social charms of her
Kentucky home, and the practical lessons of the struggle for
home, family and success in Illinois, found full opportunity for
their exercise, and we find her filling with dignity, grace anl suc-
cess all the exacting requirements, both social and political, of
her position at Washington.
Mrs. Stevenson was always to be found at the side of her hus-
band. In all his varied activities, social, professional, political
and official, she was to him a source of power and of support.
Cultured, benign, diplomatic, in any and every crisis, her poise
was undisturbed. The rigid requirements of high official posi-
tion were met by her, with unfailing ability and distinction, that
could only have been possible by the heredity and training I have
She was a consistent Christian woman, a member of the Pres-
byterian Church, which she served faithfully in all its lines of
activity and of work; the mission field, Sabbath School, and
other means of uplift and work for God.
Few have discerned the immeasureable worth of Christian
truth and Christian living as did Mrs. Stevenson, and well did
she in God's service "fight the good fight."
And now I am come, briefly, to speak of her association with
our own beloved organization, the Daughters of the American
Mrs. President Harrison was the chosen leader in the ' ' Pion-
eer days" of the organization; Mrs. Stevenson was elected Pres-
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON I 5
ident General in 1893 and her four-year term of service has been
fitly called the "formative period." During it, was established
as a constitutional principle, that the lineal and not the collateral
line of descent should be the sole qualification of our member-
ship, and she attained recognition both social and political that
has remained to this day. During the year 1893-94 our mem-
bership increased 1,950 ; during the year 1894-5, 3,488.
It was during this "formative period" that many of the real
things for which we, as an organization stand, were suggested
and carried on to successful conclusion or very materially ad-
vanced. Memorial Hall had been a hope and dream of "the
Pioneers." Under Mrs. Stevenson a beginning was made toward
its realization. The monument to the memory of Washington in
Paris ; to the Ship Prison Martyrs in New York, and the begin-
ning of legislation for the protection of the flag were a part of her
administration, and I can bring no higher tribute to her modesty
and fairness than to mention the high words of encomium and of
praise with which she speaks of the Daughters who as a commit-
tee or otherwise brought about these great results. A real gentle-
woman! Determined to give honor where honor was due. In
her published "Brief History of the Daughters of the American
Revolution, ' ' and her account of her own administration, little is
said of what she did, but it is filled with grateful and hearty rec-
ognition of what her committees and co-workers did.
This little book, which should be in the hands of every Daugh-
ter, was her last work. It was her hope expressed in the fore-
word, ' ' that in coming years when my pen is laid aside, and my
voice is still, that many of the 'Daughters' will turn trustingly
to these pages for facts" * * * *
Her pen is laid aside and her voice is stilled, and the Daugh-
ters will not only turn trustingly to her for facts, but for new
courage, a higher purpose and a more exalted consecration and
devotion to the cause she served.
The title of Honorary President General was again conferred
upon her in 1898 and from that time until her death she has
lived and served in honor and with honor among us.
She belonged to this work by the very nature of her tem-
perament and endowment.
Her love of patriotism came next to her God and her family
and home. To the good and growth of the Daughters she gave
her best contributions of business judgment, social tact and pres-
tige and that other great quality of love towards all, that made
her deeply loved and the loss of which in her death has left a
void that never can be filled : and when her Chapter met in mem-
orial services after her death, letters of appreciation and affec-
tion came to them from every side, bearing to family and Chap-
ter in words most tender and most beautiful their message of re-
gret, of admiration and of love.
1 6 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
I have but imperfectly sketched the life and career of our
Beloved. She belonged to her family and home? Yes! she be-
longed to her Chapter and State? Yes! but in a larger sense
she belonged to the Nation and we can and do all feel that she
I shall never forget the deep impression made upon my mind
and heart as I entered the great church at her home city where
on Sabbath afternoon her funeral services were held. Packed to
the doors with sympathetic mourners of every condition and
class, for her death was not a loss to any distinct class but to hu-
manity. And as the words of eulogy and appreciation fell from
the lips of pastor and of funeral orator, a hush was over the
great audience that spoke yet more eloquently than they, of the
place she held in the hearts of the people among whom she lived
and whom she served. It was an hour of grief and yet an hour of
exaltation. For by the recital of her virtues and her victories
were others inspired likewise to achieve the crown she so justly
wears. We felt that on the birthday of our King, Mrs. Letitia
Green Stevenson heard the voice we could not hear, saw the hand
we could not see, but as we waited on the shores of the eternal
sea, we knew the Master was calling her and that her hand
rested in His. At eventide her eyes saw Heaven 's glory and she
was at rest beneath the palms of Paradise.
TESTIMONIAL FROM THE WOMAN'S CLUB
The following testimonial to the memory of Mrs. Adlai E.
Stevenson was adopted by the Woman 's club of Bloomington at a
regular meeting held in their rooms on the 7th day of January,
"It is most appropriate that this, the Woman's club of Bloom-
ington, should offer its tribute of honor, appreciation and love to
the memory of its first president, *Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson, who
has so recently been taken from our midst.
"We are not unmindful of the fact that the beautiful life and
character of this most lovable of women has been truly and elo-
quently portrayed both by pulpit and press, and all that has been
said, the members of this club most feelingly endorse, realizing
as they do how impossible it would be to exaggerate the virtues
of this noble woman, whose kindly heart and rare intellectual en-
dowments made her the charm of every circle in which she moved.
What has already been publicly said, leaves us to speak mainly
of her relations to this association.
"This club was organized nearly seventeen years ago, at a
time when women were growing more and more eager for self-
improvement, and were beginning to realize that their whole
duty was not done when they looked carefully after the health
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON 1 7
and comfort of their own families and homes, but that there was
a great outside world which also needed their services, and they
were learning, too, that this social service could best be given
through organization. In preparing a constitution and forming
this organization, Mrs. Stevenson 's wide experience as president-
general of the Daughters of the American Revolution, her famil-
iarity with parliamentary rules and her boundless enthusiasm in
the cause, peculiarly fitted her to be one of the greatest assistance
in the work to be accomplished. For her services in this regard,
the club owed her a debt of gratitude which could not easily be
paid. During the four years that she honored this club by pre-
siding over its meetings, she was fair and just to all, and treated
everyone with the utmost kindness and courtesy.
"When Mrs. Stevenson retired from active official duty in
the club, as a token of appreciation for her invaluable services
and esteem for her many virtues of both head and heart, she was
made President Emeritus, by unanimous consent, an honor that
has been conferred upon no other president.
"Throughout a long and eventful life our beloved friend held
many important official and social positions, and it is known to
all that she discharged every duty that came to her with ability,
tact and kindness, which gained for her a distinction throughout
our land unsurpassed by any other woman of her time. While
she was known and appreciated by the intellectual and social
circles beyond the limits of her own state, it was here in Bloom-
ington, at her own home, where the greater part of her beautiful
life was spent, that she was most dearly loved and will be longest
"The members of this club, who knew her so intimately and
well, are deeply grieved at her death and join with those nearest
and dearest to her in mourning her loss. ' '
GERTRUDE L. FIFER,
FROM THE D. A. R. MAGAZINE, MARCH, 1914
Shortly before the death of Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson, former
President General and much loved and honored woman, there
came from the press a little book which reached her many friends
in time to be a Christmas greeting and a farewell remembrance
from one who had started on the Long Journey.
This little volume, bound in the blue and white of the Na-
tional Society, is a brief history of the Society, which will make
for itself a place among the membership of the organization be-
cause of its practical worth, as well as through the admiration
I 8 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
so many felt for the accomplished author, who of all others may
be said to have possessed the intimate knowledge and the abil-
ity so blended as to make such a work complete.
The book is concise and strong in its brevity and at the
same time has that delightful touch of personal intimacy which
makes each page a friendly message. It tells of the matters
and things that will not only interest the members of the great
and widely growing organization, but any one who cares to
know of the forces which gave birth to this real power in the
world. The origin, the founders, who they were and what
were their lives and their characteristics, the chief incidents
of the administration of each President General these are all
told in the keen cut way that is indicated by the line from
Shakespeare that Mrs. Stevenson takes for the motto of her
book : ' ' An honest tale speeds best, being plainly told. ' '
In a gracefully written preface, Mrs. Stevenson pointed to
her readers the reasons why the book has been set before them.
As the oldest living President General in point of service in the
National Society, and the second to hold the high office, it
seemed fitting that she should place for the future a record
that should briefly embrace the more important points in the
history of the society. She had not intended to write an ex-
haustive treatise of all that has been done and planned. As
she says in her preface :
"Such a work would take more years to complete than re-
main to me upon earth, and tomes of ponderous volumes that
no mortal in these strenuous days could take time to read. It
may be that in coming years, when my pen is laid aside and
my voice is still, that many of the 'Daughters' will turn trust-
ingly to these pages for facts, which I shall endeavor to make
authentic. In a spirit of perfect fairness and impartiality, at
peace with all the world, with 'malice toward none and charity
for all, ' I transmit to the future as well as to the present mem-
bers of the National Society, these words of truth, in so far as
I have been able to gather the facts. ' '
The book is dedicated by its author to Letitia Green Stev-
enson Chapter of the D. A. R. of Bloomington.
AT A MEETING OF THE LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON CHAPTER
D. A. R. HELD IN BLOOMINGTON, JANUARY 8, 1914, MRS.
CAPEN PRESENTED AND READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLU-
"Your committee, appointed to prepare and present a trib-
ute to the memory of Letitia Green Stevenson, who, on Christ-
mas night, passed to the better land, respectfully report :
"Our chapter was organized by her and to her constant
labors and oversight we are brought to our present prosperity
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON 19
and enviable position. In all her relations of life she was a
model of gentleness and grace, the ripest product of southern
and western culture and refinement one of those rare spirits
whom Providence, at times far apart, seems to delight to con-
fer upon a community.
"A noble woman, nobly planned,
To warn, to counsel, to command. ' '
"Hers was an unfailing dignity, adorned with kindness, wis-
dom, courage, and high regard for the wishes and feelings of
others, always manifested and controlled by lofty patriotic
"It has been said the greatest of earth's benefactors are
the founders of states. The same is true of the one who laid
the foundations and built the superstructure of the society that
bears her honored name. We are blessed in having so beau-
tiful a character in our founder. She has consecrated and
sanctified our work for all to come. A solemn duty is placed
upon all of us to carry on what she has begun, to see to it
her self-denying efforts shall continue to bear fruit in future
days, ever to look up to her as an example of all that is true
and good, ever to do as we think would meet her approval, were
she still with us that her influence shall continue.
"For four terms the highest honor of the National Society
of the Daughters of the American Revolution were conferred
upon her. The great success that crowned her efforts was due
largely to her unvarying tact, zeal and administrative ability,
but more than all to personal charm of mind and heart.
"In her high position, in public and in private life, she
always lived up to exalted ideals, and enjoyed the complete confi-
dence of every one who had the privilege of her acquaintance,
hospitality and companionship."
' ' The worker dies ; her work remains. ' '
MRS. JOHN H. BURNHAM
MRS. JONATHAN H. CHENEY
MRS. RALPH E. BROWN
MRS. CHARLES L. CAPEN.
2O LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON CHAPTER
DAUGHTERS OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION
MRS. ADLAI E. STEVENSON
A memorial service commemorative of the life and the passing
away of Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson at her home in Bloomington,
Illinois, December 25, 1913, was held at the home of her sister,
Mrs. Matthew T. Scott, Thursday afternoon, February 12, 1914.
Mrs. Sain "Welty, chairman of the Memorial Committee, presided.
The letters were read by different members of the Chapter.
Mrs. Welty: Dear friends and the Letitia Green Stevenson
Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution: We are gath-
ered today in loving reverence to pay tribute to one whose name
we have the great honor and privilege to bear Letitia Green
Stevenson. As a woman her life was a constant expression of all
that was true and noble ; as an officer, and member of our organi-
zation, her loyalty and faithful service will ever be a source of
inspiration to us.
Dr. J. N. Elliott of the Second Presbyterian Church of
Bloomington offered prayer.
MRS. HARVEY O. DE MOTTE, WHO SERVED AS THE THIRD RE-
GENT OF THE CHAPTER, TOLD OF MRS. STEVENSON'S PART
IN THE FORMATION OF THE CHAPTER
In view of the fact that the Letitia Green Stevenson Chapter,
Daughters of the American Revolution, owes not only its name,
but also its very existence to the beloved one in whose memory
we are met this afternoon, it seems eminently proper that a brief
history of the organization of this chapter be given at this time.
During the early years of the organization of the National
Society of the D. A. R., Mrs. Stevenson, as wife of the Vice-
President of the United States, resided in Washington. It was
also during her residence there that the honor of being elected
President General of the National Society of the D. A. R. came
Mrs. Stevenson, having the blood of the heroes of the Revolu-
tion in her veins, and being moved by a desire that the women of
her beloved home city should be recognized as second to none in
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON 2 I
the land in patriotism and loyalty to the true principles of pa-
triotism, on her return home called a public meeting for ladies, to
be held at her home, for the purpose of explaining to them the
object of the Society of the Daughters of the American Revolu-
tion, and the extent of its work during the past three years.
A large number of ladies responded to the call. They, real-
izing that "reform in patriotic reverence and sentiment was an
actual need in the American home," and believing that women
should have a large part in bringing about such a reform, de-
cided at once to organize a Chapter.
In a short time, fourteen ladies had proved their eligibility to
membership and the application for permission to organize a
Chapter was forwarded to the National Society in "Washington.
To Mrs. Dr. Parke belongs the honor of proposing the name
of Letitia Green Stevenson to be the name of the newly organized
Our chapter is unique in being the only one which for many
years bore the name of the person still living for whom it was
named. It was undoubtedly the leadership and influence of Mrs.
Stevenson which gave our chapter the prestige it has held from
the beginning. With queenly bearing Mrs. Stevenson often stood
in our midst to counsel and encourage, and always with that calm
dignity that commands respect, holds the attention, and at the
same time wins the love of all.
With the inspiration of such a leader surely only the highest
ideals and purest motives should ever control the workings of
TRIBUTE BY MBS. ERNEST MAMMEN, REGENT OF THE CHAPTER
Today, though I greatly regret my inability to be with you in
person, I am indeed with you in spirit.
From out our broad land have come numerous messages of
love and praise, tributes from friends and fellow workers of our
beloved and lamented Honorary President General, Mrs. Adlai
These expressions denote but in a small way the far reaching
extent of her sweet influence. While from North, South, East,
and West, come messages of love for her with sorrow for her loss,
we, of her own chapter, mourn her loss as the inner circle, the
home of friends in whose hearts she is forever enshrined.
We, Daughters of Letitia Green Stevenson Chapter, can in
no way do too great honor to the sacred memory of her whose
name we bear.
Her spirit of patriotism inspired the organization of this chap-
ter, whose interest she always bore upon her mind and heart.
Constantly forgetful of herself and oftentimes at a sacrifice of
her own physical strength, she helped us in many ways, and was
22 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
always determined to give her best. Her ear was ever alert to
hear our needs, her wise counsel always given. She not only
loved the work. She loved us.
How often have we been the happy recipient of her kind and
gracious hospitality, in her own beautiful and well ordered home.
How often by her gentle loving words, were we cheered and
strengthened, leaving her presence with feelings of gratitude, rev-
erence and love, for her who was not only the center and joy of
our chapter, but also of her peaceful home. From her, we gained
inspiration for greater effort, for better home making, for broad-
Her loyalty to the high principles of patriotism and good citi-
zenship, and to many lines of work for which our organization
stands, her persistent effort, her faithfulness to duty, and deep
love for home and family ties, her splendid devotion to, and pride
in, the achievements of her honored sister, her devotion to our
chapter, all these should be and are to us an inspiration. Her
gracious influence lives on in the hearts of those who love her.
Her last and crowning act of love and loyalty to us was the
dedication to this chapter of that into which she had worked her
best thought and effort, her beautiful book. This may be to
each of us an ever present reminder of her life, which was in the
painful hours of the last hard months, as well as in the brighter
days spent in loving thoughtfulness, in self-sacrifice for the good
of those she loved, the beautiful life of our own dear lamented
Mrs. Stevenson. So while we grieve at her loss, and sympathize
most tenderly with all her loved ones, let us keep before us these
high ideals and work on in the same spirit of loyalty and love,
until with tasks completed we shall greet her in a joy which has
TRIBUTE BY MRS. JAMES B. TAYLOR, OF EUGENE, OREGON, THE
FIRST REGENT OF THE CHAPTER
It is with a full heart that I sit down to pay my last tribute to
Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson. Back of all official acquaintance and
relations, there were personal ties of friendship stretching over
many years. Being near neighbors with many common interests
and sympathies, I was often in her home and she in mine. We
were personal friends ; and nothing in all the years happened to
ruffle that friendship and perfect cordiality. To me she was
always full of response and full of kindness.
Under her regime as President General of the D. A. R., I was
selected first regent of the chapter which chose and wears her
name for its own. In all the perplexities and stresses of three
years of official relations, my experience was a perfect replica of
what I had found her to be in private life. The same gracious
personality I had met by her fireside shone out under official
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON 2 3
conditions. I can but remember it all as one of the blessed and
tender and much-to-be-appreciated associations of my life. It is
an honor to be associated with one so able; and, afterward, a
fragrant memory to look back to her personal graces.
Now that she is gone from us, I join with others of her
Daughters of Letitia Green Stevenson Chapter, D. A. R., in lay-
ing a tribute of love and appreciation on her grave. As we inher-
ited her name, may we inherit her high sense of honor, her deep
conscientiousness, her motherly care and faithfulness for those
who belonged to her, and her absolute loyalty to our Society.
Like a greeting from the other world came to me her book
after the message of the wires told me she had crossed the borders.
It helped make me feel that she is still with us, to help us and in-
spire us as indeed her spirit is.
TRIBUTE BY MRS. JOHN C. AMES, OF CHICAGO, FORMER STATE
REGENT, AND NOW VICE-PRESIDENT GENERAL FOR ILLI-
It is with profound sorrow that Illinois records another visita-
tion of the Grim Reaper into the ranks of the Daughters of the
American Revolution. Again we are bereft of one of our most
brilliant and best loved members, Mrs. Adlai B. Stevenson.
On December twenty-fifth, when the whole Christian world
was filled with happiness, celebrating the birth of our Saviour,
after an illness of several months, our beloved Honorary Presi-
dent General quietly entered "that undiscovered country," and
joined the choir invisible in singing the glad hosannahs to Christ,
whom she so conscientiously followed all her life.
Mrs. Stevenson has held a warm place in the hearts of the
Daughters of the American Revolution since the organization of
the Society. She was elected three times to the office of Presi-
dent General, being the second and fourth woman to occupy that
position. In the years which intervened between the organization
and the day of her passing away, she was at all times our ' ' Guide,
Philosopher and Friend. ' '
Her last work for the Daughters was putting into book form
her personal knowledge of the early history of the National
Society. A valuable book, prized not only as a reference book,
but as the work of the heart, head and hand of our much be-
loved Honorary President General.
A summary of Mrs. Stevenson's life is in itself the finest
eulogy that could be written of any woman. She was a Christian
gentlewoman, and whether abroad or standing at the side of her
illustrious husband, receiving the homage of the people of our
Nation, or quietly teaching her Sunday School class in her home
church, she was always the same sweet, gracious, womanly
24 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
woman. To those nearest and dearest to her we offer our ten-
To the Letitia Green Stevenson Chapter, which had so firm a
hold upon her affections, to you also we extend our sympathy.
May the memory of her loving counsel and beautiful example
be an incentive to live for the highest and best that life can give.
It was the duty of your State Regent and Vice President Gen-
eral to bring before the National Board N. S. D. A. B., the
official notice of the passing of our Honorary President General
into the "Life Eternal. ' ' It was with grateful hearts we listened
to words of love and praise from friends who had worked with
her for many years.
Everywhere Mrs. Stevenson has been known her loss will be
felt. But our loss is her gain, and can be no better expressed
than by the little verse with which Mrs. Stevenson closes the
chapter recording the death of our first President General Mrs.
Caroline Scott Harrison:
"Death is another life. We bow our heads at going out, we
think and enter straight another golden chamber of the King's,
larger than this we leave, and lovelier."
TRIBUTE BY MRS. GEORGE A. LAWRENCE, OF GALESBURG,
STATE REGENT OF ILLINOIS
Your state regent and five thousand Daughters of the Ameri-
can Revolution in Illinois, on this Memorial Day to Mrs. Steven-
son, would reverently draw our flags to half mast to show our
appreciation, respect and love for her. Sweet and solemn are the
thoughts that come as we think of her beneficent life. She was
peculiarly yours, at the same time she was ours. She lives in such
a rare and beautiful way in what she was to us and what she was
Many are the letters telling of the inspiration Mrs. Adlai E.
Stevenson was when she was our President General. She was
loving, kind, patient, courageous, diligent and careful in every
detail of every cause that came before her when she was the
head of our organization. She was imbued with a deep sense of
justice, and also possessed a heart keen to all human sensibilities.
To her, administration of justice was a high duty and a human
exercise of power. She was ever a thinker and a student, seeking
for the truth at all times. She was thorough, keen, tenacious, and
her unflinching loyalty won for her the admiration and friend-
ship of all with whom she was associated. Daughters felt that
Mrs. Stevenson was worthy of their trust. She was considerate,
kindly, companionable. She made and kept many close friend-
ships, and proved her loyalty by acts of sympathy and helpful-
ness. In civic betterment she was a support ; her accurate insight
LETITIA GEEEN STEVENSON 2 5
into human nature, her business ability and sound judgment gave
her prestige and made her opinions of value in municipal, edu-
cational and charitable affairs. No wonder that Mrs. Stevenson
was a power ; no wonder that our national and state organization
were proud of and loved her, for such examples of womanhood
As she saw chiefly the good in those around her, and as her
outlook upon the world delighted in the signs of better things
for her National Society and for humanity ; as her mind was pure,
as she made herself felt on the side of right and justice ; as she
served her God, her country, her home, so may our souls be
stirred by desires and resolves to go and do as she has done live
in deeds worthy our day and generation.
Illinois Daughters shall meet and shall miss the sweet pres-
ence of our Mrs. Stevenson, but written upon the tables of our
hearts is that which will never die. We thank God for having
given to the Daughters of the American Revolution such a friend,
such a helper, such a leader as was our Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson.
TRIBUTE BY MBS. ELLEN HARDIN WALWOBTH, OF SARATOGA
SPRINGS, N. Y., THE ONLY LIVING FOUNDER OF THE NA-
TIONAL SOCIETY OF THE DAUGHTERS OF THE AMERICAN
REVOLUTION, ALSO HONORARY VICE-PRESIDENT GENERAL
It is with mingled sadness and pleasure that I recall the first
days, when, as "Daughters," we could claim Mrs. Adlai E.
Stevenson as our President General and leader, at a most critical
period of our history.
We had lost, by death, our first and notable President General,
Mrs. Benjamin Harrison, and through a reverence for her mem-
ory, and because the time would be short till the meeting of our
Continental Congress, no one had been appointed to take her
place, though an appeal had been made for such action. Great
anxiety was felt by our Founders and leaders lest the platform
that had been established in the appointment of Mrs. Harrison
as President General, thus granting us an affiliation with the gov-
ernment of our country, should be abandoned or endangered.
The vital amendment of lineal descent, which question had been
inserted in the Constitution after it left the hands of our Found-
ers, was pending exciting conditions.
The transfer of the sovereign power of our organization from
the Board of Management to the Continental Congress, as rep-
resenting the people (the members) was yet under its experi-
mental strain. You can therefore, imagine with what relief and
exultation these leaders received the gracious reply of Mrs. Stev-
enson that she would accept the nomination they had offered
to her. She was elected with but a nominal opposition, and finally
26 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
by the same unanimous vote that carried her into the same high
office again and again and again. She was eminently fitted, as
by a special Providence, for the responsibilities before her; born
in Pennsylvania, of old Kentucky and Virginia lineage, and her
mature years spent as a resident of the progressive, enthusiastic
Empire State of the grand middle west, who could so readily as
she heal the wounds of the civil war, and embrace in her loving
soul the heart-sore South, and the exulting North, and seal that
union which was a main reason for the organization of our
Her husband, the Vice-President of the United States, whose
high character and wise statesmanship was known and recognized
in every corner of the land, was devoted to her, and ready to up-
hold all of her patriotic efforts.
Mrs. Stevenson was a woman of classical education, a rare
endowment twenty years ago ; and she had the strength of char-
acter and breadth of view that well-directed culture gives. In per-
son her presence was commanding, yet gentle ; she had a fascinat-
ing smile that won the timid and hesitating. She was also gifted
with the power of wise selection and discriminating intuition that
places the right person to lead an important work, as illustrated
in her choice of Mrs. Stranahan to preside, at intervals, in the
Second Continental Congress; Mrs. Hogg, as her adviser in
question of lineal descent ; Mrs. S. V. White, that marvelous phil-
anthropist, to initiate the "daughters" work in the superb monu-
ment to the Prison Ship Martyrs; Mrs. Dempster to emphasize
our determination to save the Stars and Stripes from desecra-
tion; and Mrs. Shepard, to organize the all-important task of
giving material life to our dream of a marble palace for our
' ' memorial and Home ' ' in the Capitol of our Nation.
These appointments were like an inspiration, and still more
so was the skilled and sagacious way in which she, herself, led
our National Society at the World's Columbian Exposition, be-
ing on record with Mrs. Palmer, Mrs. Henrotin and the group
of women notable in that event, of American women. We were
proud of our President General, standing in the glare of the
' ' Great White City, ' ' in the presence of the assembled world.
Do you wonder then that when our gracious and popular
President General, Mrs. J. W. Foster, declared that it was im-
possible for her to serve in that office more than one year, that
we turned eagerly to our true and tried leader, Mrs. Stevenson,
and that again, at much personal sacrifice of ease and leisure,
she gratified the hopes and demands of her loving "Daughters" ;
and that we, upon seeing her once more presiding, "went wild
with enthusiasm ; ' ' such a spontaneous ovation has rarely ever
been given to any woman, as the applause with which we then
gave expression to our joy and affection.
LETIT1A GEEEN STEVENSON 2 7
Under her gentle sway we continued to prosper, we out-grew
the little church at the corner of 14th and L streets; we out-
grew the Columbia Theatre, at 12th and F streets; we out-
grew the Chase Opera House on Pennsylvania Avenue. Under
her influence we developed and defined closely our methods of
work. We inaugurated the printed Statute Book to give per-
manence and value to the decrees of the Continental Congress.
We began the publication of the now invaluable Lineage Book,
and also the Directory.
In the Sixth Continental Congress her firm and fair rulings
sustained the defenders of the Constitution of the Society, which
was threatened with a sweeping revision that would have changed
Thus in many ways did she help to lay the foundations of
this grand society of American women deep and strong; her
efforts are impressed on its principles; her name should be
"writ large" on the pages of its history. Its membership can
look to her record for an example of justice and gentleness and
breadth of vision equalled it is true, by that of her gifted and
honored sister, Mrs. Scott, our other President General (for
their names are indelibly linked in the history of this Society),
whose strong hand guided wisely the many untried and new
members of a later day; and whose generous ways decked our
marble palace with a regal wealth of flowers, and brought into it
the highest officers of the Government of the United States to
pay their homage to the memorial we women have wrought to
the Founders of the Great Republic those officers now serve.
Truly the contrast is great between the palatial Home of our
Society now, and the ' ' dark, steep stairway, ' ' our beloved Second
President General, Mrs. Stevenson, climbed to "the little narrow
room over the Biggs Bank," where she first presided over the
Board of Management.
"Ah, then the Captain of our ranks has fallen!
And 'twas she our Second President General,
'Twas she who then our slender columns led,
Gathering a mighty force to win the fight,
Keeping our Country's Flag always in sight,
'Twas she who worked with us in our great cause,
And from every heart let our applause
Ring forth afar, Oh, Daughters, fair and proud!
But hush, hush ye, sing ye no longer loud;
Soft be your sounded praises like memory's minor lay,
For she of whom we sing tonight has gently passed away,
Only the great example of her life, so great and true,
Like a whispered benediction rests on me and rests on you I"
28 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
TRIBUTE BY MRS. WILLIAM D. CABELL, OF CHICAGO, HONOR-
ARY PRESIDENT PRESIDING
The death of Mrs. Stevenson has carried sadness into many
hearts. None who knew her can fail to grieve over the passing
from out of their lives of that sweet and gracious personality.
To me the loss is very great, as we were united in sentiment
during the critical early days of the organization of our great
Society the Daughters of the American Revolution. I have
always greatly valued her harmonizing influence upon very com-
plicated and even antagonistic conditions evident in those times,
and it has been a source of permanent satisfaction to me that
through the devotion of my personal friends in the Society, I was
able to contribute towards her first election to the high office she
filled so well. When, at the election by the Second Continental
Congress, February, 1893, my name was among those urged for
the office of which I was discharging the duties, I prevailed upon
my friends to permit me to withdraw it openly, and to transfer
their votes to Mrs. Stevenson, whom I had already named to them
as the proper successor to Mrs. Harrison, and my judgment in
this matter was confirmed, not only by Mrs. Stevenson's first ten-
ure of office, but by her unanimous re-election after the one inter-
vening administration of Mrs. Foster. Such a re-election, under
such circumstances, was the truest possible testimonial to the
beautiful qualities of one whom so many united to value and to
That the honor and welfare of our Society, unique in its or-
ganization and its aims, may be always upheld by the leadership
of such women as its two earliest presidents, Mrs. Harrison and
Mrs. Stevenson, is the profound wish of the woman who in per-
son presided over its first meeting for formal organization on
October 11, 1890.
TRIBUTE BY MRS. JOHN W. FOSTER, OF WASHINGTON, D. C.,
HONORARY PRESIDENT GENERAL
It has been one of the highest privileges of my life to have
enjoyed the friendship and companionship of Mrs. Stevenson
for many years, from her first temporary residence in Washing-
ton up to the time of her death and for a portion of her visit in
foreign lands. In the intimate relationship we sustained during
that period I came to know and value the high and noble qualities
of her character. Her family relations were ideal. She gave
her unreserved devotion to her husband in high office. She was
a thorough American, a patriot who fully appreciated the bless-
ings which our forefathers had secured to us as a people and as
individuals, and as a twice elected President of our National
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON 29
Society, and in her personal relations was an efficient worker to
honor the memory and perpetuate the principles of the heroes
of the Revolution. As a member of society her influence was al-
ways on the side of pure and noble aspirations, and in her inter-
course with those about her she never failed to spread a genial
and loving spirit. Above all, she was a sincere and earnest Chris-
tian, and with becoming modesty, she obeyed her Master's com-
mand to so let her light shine before men, that they saw her
works and glorified her Heavenly Father.
Though she has gone from our presence, she still lives
amongst us in the memory of her noble life.
TRIBUTE BY MRS. DANIEL MANNING, OF ALBANY, NEW YORK,
HONORARY PRESIDENT GENERAL
Mrs. Adlai Stevenson was a woman of rare sweetness of
character and strong personality. Every responsibility that
came to her she met with charming grace and dignity. As
wife of Post Master General or Vice-President of the United
States and as President General of the D. A. R., she won dis-
tinction for her executive ability and devotion to the upbuilding
of the society. She was a loyal friend and I send this little
tribute to one I loved through a long and happy association.
TRIBUTE BY MRS. DONALD McLEAN, OF NEW YORK CITY, HON-
ORARY PRESIDENT GENERAL
Over twenty years ago, there journeyed to Washington (in
my own person) a young woman, inexperienced in aught save
social life, ignorant of the whys and wherefores, the ways and
means of woman's organized activities; but instinct with the
respect for upright dealings and filled with an inner love of truth,
justice and honor (the priceless heritage of an unstained an-
cestry) and these qualities needed but the magic touch of a
noble leader, to awaken them to action, and to arouse the fealty
and loyalty of an enthusiastic soul. Such leader arose before
these mine eyes, in the full beautitude of her precious person-
ality a loved and loving, a wise and generous President General
Daughters American Revolution, Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson.
This writer believes that Mrs. Stevenson, whose serene and
lovely face, framed in its golden hair, indicated the nobility of
nature and the rightful pride of an indomitable soul, wielded
an influence far beyond that which she herself realized. A boon
she was to women and to the Society D. A. R., which needed
her, reposed confidence in her superlative ability and gave devo-
tion to her presence, which presence at once illumined and stilled
the mind and soul of the assembled multitude.
3O LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
Feeling these things so keenly as does the writer, may she
relate the fact already upon the records of the Society that it
was upon the motion of Mrs. Donald McLean of New York,
that Mrs. Stevenson's election to a third term (not consecutive)
as President General, was made unanimous and to Mrs. Steven-
son came this honor for the first and last time in the history of
the D. A. R.
Added to her own gifts was the sure foundation of her hus-
band 's wisdom and supporting strength.
Even these few words inadequate in statement (and of a
brevity necessitated by the fact that others, too, desire to lay
memorial words about her imperishable memory), cannot be
transcribed without a word of gratitude to him who, as her hus-
band, gave himself even tho Vice-President of these United
States, the Hon. Adlai E. Stevenson, to this organization, which
can never fail to hold him in grateful recollection.
The last gift from Mrs. Stevenson's own dear hands came as
"Hail and Farewell" to this Daughter (one of her successors
as President General National Society D. A. E.), viz., the "Brief
History National Society Daughters of the American Revolu-
tion," an invaluable record of our D. A. R. days, in the first
quarter century of the society 's existence.
Whatever the future may bring of effort or activities it con-
not recall her nor eclipse her estimable achievements.
' ' We may go to her she cannot return to us. ' '
God comfort those she has left and reunite us, one and all, in
a glorious immortality.
TRIBUTE BY MRS. MIRANDA B. TULLOCH, OF WASHINGTON,
D. C., WHO SERVED AS TREASURER GENERAL AND VICE-
PRESIDENT GENERAL DURING MRS. STEVENSON'S ADMIN-
It is a peculiar satisfaction to me to pay my tribute of re-
spect and love for Mrs. Stevenson. She was a woman of sweet
and winning personality, possessing rare gifts of mind and heart.
She was a devoted wife and mother, loyal to her friends, true
to her convictions and thoroughly imbued with patriotism and
love of courtesy. Her services as President General of the
Daughters of the American Revolution cannot be overestimated.
Although the Society had been ably guided from its inception,
yet it was in a formative period when Mrs. Stevenson was elected
president, and required great skill and thought to guide and di-
rect its affairs. Daughters were ambitious and restless, fond of
parliamentary discussions. Although there was a constitution
and by-laws, much wearisome time was spent in interpreting
them. It was a great delight to me when I saw the dignified par-
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON 3 1
liamentarian of the United States Senate sitting at the right hand
of Mrs. Stevenson. He had been instructed by the Vice Presi-
dent, her ever devoted and courteous husband, to assist her and
decide all difficult questions, feeling assured she needed a par-
liamentarian more than he did. Since that time a parliamentar-
ian has been employed by Congress.
While Mrs. Stevenson, in her "History of the National So-
ciety of the Daughters of the American Revolution" describes
receptions and social events of others, she modestly omits her
own delightful receptions.
I recall one among the many given by her to the National
Society then in session, resident Daughters and visitors. This
was February 22nd, 1894, in the parlors of the Normandie, from
4 to 6 P. M. The rooms were beautifully decorated, flags were
draped above the doorways, and caught back with* clusters
of flowers. A great number of palms and cut flowers adorned
the rooms. In the tea room the decorations were of red and
on the table a large center piece of scarlet tulips. The collation
of salads and ices was served by dainty young ladies, who were
also pages in the Congress. Mrs. Stevenson was always taste-
fully gowned. On this occasion she received in a dress of white
satin, trimmed with ermine and crystal lace. The guests, after
greeting Mrs. Stevenson, were presented by her to her husband,
the Vice-President. She was ably assisted by her National of-
ficers, and other prominent women attending the Congress.
It was my good fortune to serve under her leadership in two
capacities, first as Treasurer General, later as Vice President Gen-
eral. As Treasurer General, I came to know and appreciate the
sterling qualities she possessed. She was ever faithful to the
duties of her office, and labored to place the Society on a firm
foundation. She was anxious that funds should be conserved
so that in the near future we could possess a home worthy of
those who made this nation free and independent. She advised
me personally or by letter to use tact and discretion with mem-
bers or chapters who did not realize the importance of promptly
fulfilling their obligations.
I have some autograph letters from her which I greatly treas-
ure. I will close this brief tribute by quoting a portion of a let-
ter from her, written February 6th, 1894, in response to a letter
of sympathy from me, which embodies the guiding principle
which influenced her life.
"Your letter of sympathy has been a great comfort to me,
and from the depths of a sad heart I thank you for it. But it is
not backward but forward we all must look, they, our loved ones,
cannot come to us, but we can go to them. So surely do I believe
in the resurrection of those who die in the Lord that it already
begins to be a sweet and cheering thought that the now sainted
32 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
daughter who was so eminently the home daughter, will be the
daughter sainted and glorified to welcome us home as one by
one we all sooner or later gather on the shore."
Her spirit has taken flight from this fragile tenement of clay,
and from the mystery of life her soul has passed within the
greater mystery of life eternal.
TRIBUTE BY MBS. DANIEL LOTHROP, OF BOSTON, MASSACHU-
SETTS, FOUNDEE OF THE ORGANIZATION OF THE CHILDREN
OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION
Seasons come and go with unvarying regularity, filled with
work for human hands and hearts. Never a day passes without
some fulfillment of this work by which the world is benefited.
Enrichment is it for any life to be able to visualize the part of
the world's work lying directly at the door of such a life. Double
enrichment when the work is acknowledged, picked up and done.
A willing soul meets the Lord half way in this matter of
picking up work for the world's betterment. Such willingness
presupposes long areas of the past, getting ready to meet the
Lord half way. No one is immediately prepared for such glorious
co-operation; Frances Ridley Havergal's prayer is good to re-
member : ' ' Prepare me, oh God, for what Thou are preparing for
As well try to leap into a swirling current, without the swim-
mer 's preparatory regimen of daily training. Who dares the
test of any trial without first battling with the elements that
threaten. Each soul that comes out unscathed from the strain
of circumstance, of environment, of all the baffling antagonisms
of life that surround every human being from the cradle to the
grave, does so by virtue of his or her equipment by long and pa-
tient training. He meets his or her duties by the way; simply
accepts them and passes on to higher work. Such is a rare
When I first met Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson so many years ago,
I classified her at once as one of these rare souls. Long acquain-
tance only increased my belief that she had merited such classifi-
cation. She won my attention by the sweet womanliness that
shone from her face and was revealed in her voice. I do not mean
that sweetness in face and voice carrying with it the thought
of mere amiability. Mrs. Stevenson was far from being that type
of woman. Here was the Christ-like sweetness of life and de-
meanor that permeated the deep strength of the inner life. Here
was a nature trained by years of experience to pick up those
great duties that lay in her path. When she was urged to accept
the duty of guiding the Daughters of the American Revolution,
did she shrink from the task? Mrs. Stevenson took the work as
LJETITIA GREEN STEVENSON 33
from the hands of the Lord. And through all the years in which
she guided us, she never faltered, but worked on in that co-
operation with the Master.
The next thing that I noticed in studying Mrs. Stevenson
was her great ability. How gentle she was, but oh, how strong
and executive ! Oh, do not let us forget the trials and struggles
of those pioneers the early workers in our great organization!
It is not given to us to fully realize them; only those who
were part and parcel of those early days can do so. But we can
tell the story for those who followed the pioneers, till every
young Daughter knows it by heart.
What Mrs. Stevenson did to hold us together and guide us,
was most admirable work, and we are reaping the benefits today.
We can never be grateful enough for her administration those
two earlier terms, and again, those two additional ones when she
was recalled by the insistent desire of the National Society to be
Then I came into contact with her in the matters pertaining
to the Great Cause which I had proposed and originated at the
Congress D. A. R., in 1895 The National Society of the Chil-
dren of the American Revolution ; oh, how I trembled to intro-
duce that Cause ! for it was in the early days, remember, when
all our energies were strained to properly project and equip our
own organization. But the voice of the Lord rang through my
soul telling me to do it, and I had but to obey.
How kind she was! How receptive to the need of such a
cause being upheld by the D. A. R. Here the soul of the woman
shone forth and her belief in the fundamental principle of life
that puts a duty upon women especially, to safeguard the youth
of our Country, made me love her then and there.
There were so many obstacles in the way of the Cause. So
few of the D. A. R. at first saw its need. Others thought it
might be postponed, for the better forging ahead of the work
of the D. A. R. itself. Some royal souls saw the time was ripe
for the work to begin, realizing, oh, how true that was that we
could best advance the interests of the D. A. R. by looking out
for the childhood of the Nation and the National Society of the
Children of the American Revolution was born into the world !
I ever found dear Mrs. Stevenson one of those royal souls
who in every way in her power bade me God-speed in my work
for this Cause. And one of the sweetest flowers of my remem-
brance that shall never wither, is the friendship with her that it
brought me, and the insight into her rare and gracious spirit
that was pure as a child's, and radiant with the strength and
beauty of true womanhood.
34 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
TRIBUTE BY MRS. THOMAS MORGAN, OF SAVANNAH, GEORGIA,
FORMER STATE REGENT OF GEORGIA, AND ONE OF MRS.
STEVENSON'S MANY DEVOTED SOUTHERN FRIENDS
Fully realizing that my talent is too feeble to meet adequately
the sad and honorable part accorded me in the Memorial Meeting
to be held today, yet affectionate admiration and high apprecia-
tion of difficult services nobly rendered will help me to offer a
simple, heartfelt tribute to the memory of a distinguished woman
four times called upon to assume the leadership of the large af-
fairs of a great Society a Society which has won the approving
attention of the Nation, which has in many directions eased the
burdens of appealing humanity and added a new grace and pur-
pose to further enhance the joys and usefulness of the American
When I first met Mrs. Stevenson I was fresh from my dear
old Southland, and was held somewhat tight in the grip of con-
servatism, was loyal to its long established customs and tradi-
tions, in which "woman's sphere" is clearly defined by the un-
written code of conventions. My associates, when they heard I
would attend the Continental Congress, and as State Regent of
Georgia, advocate certain measures, exclaimed, "Why will you
go and make a speech in public : none of the women of your peo-
ple ever did such a thing before."
When Mrs. Stevenson, gracefully and graciously, came upon
the stage, and assumed the duties of her high office, I realized
with a swelling heart, and quick sympathy, that a woman could
meet the new conditions facing her sex, could cross the threshold
of her home and enter into the busy activities of a larger world,
illustrate the potentialities of women to be useful as citizens, as
patriots in the uplift work of our common country, respond to
any reasonable call for co-operation in altruistic endeavor, and
be the same woman who typifies the highest ideals of wife, mother
and social leader. She can be this and something more by ad-
dition, not by substitution.
Mrs. Stevenson was a beloved and successful President Gen-
eral. The society over which she presided with so much tact, ease,
and ability, developed wonderfully along many lines during her
It may be claimed she was not directly concerned and active
in all these developments and improvements, but undoubtedly her
calm judgment, her gentle but strong insistence on the right, her
decisions never controlled by the personal equation or circum-
stance, her strict construction of the law, that defines the duties
of those holding the trusts and offices of the Society, were a
compelling and illuminating influence throughout the length and
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON 3$
breadth of the organization, and kept its pulse from at any time
reaching a dangerous temperature.
As our President General, Mrs. Stevenson accorded every
right and privilege to the least known member of the Continental
Congress, she put herself in helpful touch with the most timid
delegate ; but all recognized her as an aristocrat, ' ' one of the fine
minority"; with this recognition the membership rested easy in
the thought that high birth carries an inherent sense of obliga-
tion on the part of the possessor to give her best; with Mrs.
Stevenson, her position as President General quickly developed
her latent talent for generalship, and she marshalled her forces
promptly to the achievement of the plans and purposes of the
Perhaps she had her failings. If so, I never saw them. Be-
ing human and called to an unique and exalted public station, she
formed a shining mark, but if criticisms were aroused, which I
never heard, the shadow soon disappeared before the sunshine
and blue sky she left all along her pathway. She was gentle,
sympathetic, courteous, just and strong; womanly and tender,
as she needs must have been by birth and training, and yet
formed to fill completely the enormous position to which she was
She has fallen asleep and now rests in sweet peace in the
House of Everlasting Silence.
The hearts of the members of the Society she loved well and
served faithfully, are full of an enduring regret that she will no
more move among us to encourage us in well doing.
We will keep lovely memories of her in our hearts unfading
immortelles that bear tribute to a good and distinguished
woman, an exquisite lady, a President General who ruled over a
great body of women with a gentleness that was never weakness,
with justice that was always tempered by consideration, with
ability that was always womanly even in its sturdy manifesta-
tions, with a righteousness that crowned her with love and ad-
miration while she abided among us, and is earning a richer
reward, now that she has been called Upward.
TRIBUTE BY MISS AMARYLLIS GILLETT, FORMERLY OF ELK-
HART, ILLINOIS, BUT NOW OF WASHINGTON, D. C., WHO
HAS SERVED AS LIBRARIAN GENERAL
Appreciating the privilege of paying a tribute to the lovely
and winning personality of our noble leader, who has so recently
passed to the life beyond, I will say that from my earliest recol-
lections, I have known and valued Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson as
a typical exponent of gracious womanhood.
Possessed of a feminine charm which won all hearts, she
presided with equal grace at the hearthstone, by the side of her
36 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
honored husband in the limelight of official life, and in the halls
of fame as leader of our greatest patriotic order of women.
It is from the potent example of such women that a new type
of woman is known and exalted in our nation, or, rather it is
woman today again acknowledged as she was in Revolutionary
times, a factor in the wondrous progress of our Western world.
They who live in the ideal but work in the real life to develop and
proclaim pure patriotism.
(A list of the resolutions from Chapters throughout the coun-
try bearing upon the beautiful character of Mrs. Stevenson was
read by Mrs. Carl Vrooman.)
TEIBUTE BY DR. JOHN W. DINSMORE, OF SAN JOSE, CALIFOR-
NIA, WHO WAS FOR TWENTY YEARS PASTOR OF THE SEC-
OND PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH OF BLOOMINGTON; CONTRI-
BUTES HIS LOVING APPRECIATION OF MRS. STEVENSON'S
LIFE AND CHARACTER
I have been informed by your Eegent that it is your purpose
to hold a memorial service in honor of that blessed woman for
whom your chapter is named, and who has lately departed out of
this world ; and I have been requested to send a tribute to her
memory to be presented at this meeting.
I am thankful for the privilege of laying a modest chaplet on
the grave of this honored and beloved woman. And I beg you
to accept what I here say as coming from myself not only, but no
less from my dear wife, who has been deeply and tenderly at-
tached to Mrs. Stevenson for many long years. Indeed, it voices
the feelings of all my children, too, who were taught from their
earliest childhood to hold her in the highest respect and admira-
I have known Mrs. Stevenson for more than forty years.
When I made her acquaintance she was in the bloom and beauty
of her early wifehood and motherhood. I soon came to regard
her with great admiration for the singular charm of her per-
sonality, and with warm appreciation of the uncommon grace,
beauty and nobility of her character. These feelings grew in
depth and strength through all the passing years, and were never
more alive than at the end.
Mrs. Stevenson was well-born and well-bred. Through a line
of worthy progenitors, she inherited integrity, valor and gentle
blood. Her father was an eminent and eloquent minister of the
gospel, a man of high character, wide reputation and great in-
fluence. Her queenly mother is still remembered by many of
you, for, who that ever knew her can forget her ?
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON 37
In consequence, Mrs. Stevenson had the advantage of the best
education and the best social and religious environment from the
first. So she grew up, combining in herself, and in striking pro-
portion and symmetry, those charms of body, mind and heart
which made her singularly attractive, and which called forth not
only the admiration but the spontaneous affection, of all who
fell under the wholesome spell of her presence. There was noth-
ing whatever of the bold, the self-assertive, or mannish in her
nature ; all that was utterly alien and hateful to her ; but there
was a combination of gentleness and strength, of modesty and
high spirit, which was at once striking and beautiful. She was
called to fill many and various positions in her life in the home,
in society, in the church, and in the larger sphere of public life
into which she accompanied her honored husband, and yet she
never held a position which she did not dignify and adorn.
Beauty of person, brightness of mind, breadth of intelligence,
soundness of principle, sweetness of disposition, vivacity, cour-
age, unflinching loyalty and devotion to whatever person or thing
she set her heart upon, were all blended and balanced in her as
they are in but few. Upon her husband and children, first of all,
then upon near kindred and close friends, she lavished the wealth
of her rich and affectionate nature without reluctance or reserve.
Indeed, upon all with whom she came in contact there fell the
impression of simplicity, sincerity, and all-pervasive good-will,
which at once won reciprocal sympathy and friendship. Often
and for long periods of time, she was a great sufferer from in-
tense bodily pain, but from these baptisms of agony she always
emerged with a spirit which was neither broken nor soured.
Over all she was a serene and undoubted victor.
Mrs. Stevenson was born to an inheritance and citizenship
in the Commonwealth of Christ. She had a birthright in the
Kingdom of Heaven. This high dignity and great blessing she
openly claimed for herself in her early girlhood, and she stead-
fastly held to it, prized it and rejoiced in it to the end. The
Risen and Glorified Christ she implicitly trusted as her Saviour,
and reverently adored as her Lord. She accepted with joy the
responsibilities of the Christian life, discharged its duties with
fidelity, and bore its trials with meekness and fortitude. His
grace was sufficient for her. On Christmas night last, her sweet,
chastened, modest and sainted spirit ascended out of the realm
of shadows and suffering, into His presence, and she saw face to
face, Him whom she had long loved and adored. Dear, suffering,
sainted and victorious Friend, All Hail, and Farewell; till the
shadows vanish and the darkness disappears !
Through the sacred portals of the home where she so long
reigned as queen I shall not here and now attempt to pass.
Into that sanctuary no outsider, however near, may presume to
38 LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
enter. It is enough to say that her husband praises her in the
gates, and her children and grandchildren rise up and call her
blessed. Now, in the bitter grief and lonesomeness of the separa-
tion, they must feel a pathetic and solemn pride that they had so
much to give up. A great multitude mingle their tears with
theirs, and besides there are many hundreds, probably thou-
sands, near and far away, on earth and some in heaven, who
gratefully acknowledge the blessed touch of her gracious min-
Dear Ladies: I beg you to dismiss all suspicion that these
words are in any sense or degree fulsome or extravagant. Those
who know me know well that it is not my habit to speak idle and
wanton words in praise of the dead; least of all to speak such
words of a dear and cherished friend. That would be a desecra-
tion of her memory. For more than twenty years I was her
pastor, and for more than forty I have been her friend, and these
are the words of truth and soberness. During all these years
myself and my family have enjoyed the close and affectionate
friendship of her who has gone and of her family. Let my right
hand forget its cunning, and my tongue cleave to the roof of my
mouth, if I ever forget their gracious offices of love to me and
Let me close this paper by avowing my assured faith in the
sweet words of quaint old George Herbert :
These eyes again thine eyes shall see ;
These hands again thy hands enfold,
And all sweet pleasures to be told
Shall everlasting be.
(Mrs. Stevenson did not confine her interests to the Daugh-
ters of the American Revolution, but found a place in her great
heart and mind for the work of the Woman's Clubs throughout
MRS. CAROLINE F. J. KIMBALL, A FORMER REGENT OF THE
CHAPTER SPOKE OF MRS. STEVENSON'S INTEREST IN THE
WOMAN'S CLUB OF BLOOMINGTON
We knew her as
' ' A perfect woman, nobly planned
To warn, to comfort, and command. ' '
When to any community comes the loss of such a one as was
our much loved Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson, many strings of the
harp of life are touched and the vibrations echo from many
A perfect type of ideal womanhood, born for leadership and
command, she gathered about her many women who gladly fol-
lowed wherever she led.
LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON 39
One of the largest movements with which she identified her-
self, and to which she gave generously of her thoughts, her time,
and her strength, was the Woman 's Club of Bloomington.
This was organized March 22, 1897, at a time when women
were beginning to heed the calls to social service in aid of those
outside of the home, and to feel that such service could be best
rendered through organization.
Mrs. Stevenson, pre-eminently a home-maker, but neverthe-
less one who never evaded a responsibility or a duty, heard the
call, and headed the movement for a union of the women of our
city, for co-operative work for themselves individually and for
the civic body.
For four years she served as president of the club. Those
four years saw steady progress along all lines of activity, and
when at the end of this period she felt that she must retire and
leave the burden to other hands it was with the greatest regret
that her resignation was accepted.
At the same time she was unanimously and enthusiastically
elected President Emeritus.
To her work in the early years of its existence, the club is
greatly indebted. Because of her leadership, her example and
her counsel we are better women and better citizens, with a wider
view of our responsibilities.
An able parliamentarian, a wise and judicious presiding of-
ficer, her beautiful personality, her gracious bearing and her
never failing courtesy endeared her to every member. With the
poet we would say :
' ' Grace was in all her steps, heaven in her eye,
In every gesture dignity and love."
MRS. MATTHEW T. SCOTT, HONORARY PRESIDENT GENERAL,
OFFERED A SISTER'S TRIBUTE
Through the vista of years, my thoughts turn to a line of
distinguished women, whose ability and fidelity, dedicated to the
objects, traditions and ideals of our Society, have lent it lustre
and deathless fame. A deeper touch, a tenderer thrill throbs
through every fibre of my being, as today I bring my leaf to the
wreath of memory, which gathers every leaf, every flower, every
petal of this sacred hour, in a garland of everlasting remem-
Especially tender and pathetic for me is this service, sacred
to the memory of the lovely and sainted woman, whose historic
name our beloved chapter bears. The spirit of Letitia Green
Stevenson lingers in our beautiful city, a fragrant memory and
our chapter is honored in the name which links us closely with
4O LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON
one of the most beloved women in our country a name that
wherever it is spoken, has become a synonym for feminine charm,
dignity and tact.
Not only is the impress of her beautiful character and her fine
personality stamped upon this splendid Letitia Green Stevenson
chapter but upon the great organization of which she was the
second President General. Her image is an abiding inspiration,
and her memory will become one of those beautiful finger-marks
in the path of time, that even the years cannot obliterate.
My personal feeling is too deep for utterance, as I recall the
passionate loyalty to our great Society, and its highest interests
which inspired this noble and devoted woman.
For me the loss of her counsel and sympathy, her confidence
and her affection, is unspeakable. The fragile frame held a spirit
so true, so radiant with that sincerity which is a cordial to the
soul that I bow my head in sorrow that no words can express.
Through the last months of suffering and weakness faithful
unto death her great heart still turned to her beloved D. A. R.
Society, and the great interests it represents.
I am sure I may be forgiven in this pathetic hour, for speak-
ing of her devotion to myself, which was a tower of strength, a
strong staff I leaned upon, a resource in trial that never failed
The loss and the grief are ours. "She has passed serenely
where, beyond these voices, there is peace. ' ' And of her it may
truly be said, "Before she closed her eyes for the last time, she
found upon the record of her stewardship no act of injustice,
no failure of duty, no shadow of wrong, nor anything that
would leave a blot upon her soul or a stain upon her memory."
Dr. J. N. Elliott offered the closing prayer.
MRS. SAIN WELTY MRS. HARVEY C. DEMOTTE
MRS. ERNEST MAMMEN MRS. CAROLINE F. J. KIMBALL
MRS. HERBERT M. ROLLINS MRS. RALPH E. BROWN
Passed Artay at tKe
Presbyterian Hospital of Chicago
Morning of June 14, 1914
42 ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON
EDITORIAL FEOM THE BLOOMINGTON BULLETIN, JUNE 16
In sombre contrast to the home-comings of other days was
the scene at the railway station last night where relatives and
friends gathered to accompany the body of former Vice-Presi-
dent Stevenson to the hearth that had been the stage of so many
charming and memorable hospitalities, but now hushed by the
hand of death.
On more than one great national occasion Mr. Stevenson had
been welcomed home from victories which brought high honor to
his city, and the greeting of waving flags, blaring bands and
cheering hosts was like the tributes given conquering generals of
Bloomington is justly proud of the high achievements of a
universally loved and respected citizen who brought fame to the
community in which he lived. Gaining almost the supreme am-
bition of the American citizen and standing for full half a cen-
tury in the limelight as a state and national figure, it was but
natural that Bloomington should have felt a pride and pro-
prietary interest in his career, but it is as a friend and neighbor
that he was best loved and is most deeply mourned in his home
city, and a higher tribute could not be paid a public man. The
tall commanding figure and courtly grace of one of the last of
the gentlemen and statesmen of the old school, with the pleasant
smile and cordial greeting for townspeople, big and little, will be
singularly missed from the streets of Bloomington. His home
life was something ideal in mutual affection, his wife, who so
lately went before, having realized the highest type of woman-
hood, and the gatherings there on occasions of notable visitors
or local entertainment are events that will never be effaced from
memory. Mr. Stevenson's wonderful memory which served him
so well in affairs of state was especially felicitous in the matter
of after-dinner talks or informal conversation and his fund of
intimate stories of men and events and his captivating manner of
telling them made his presence at any social event a joy. His
fame in this regard was nation wide and during his many years '
residence in Washington and travels on public business he was in
constant demand. Fortunately his reminiscences of the great
men of America covering more than fifty years will not be lost,
his book ' ' Something of Men I Have Known, ' ' being a priceless
legacy to history, as treating the great figures of the most stirring
times in a vein wholly apart from prosaic statistics.
Mr. Stevenson's gentle and lovable disposition and keen but
kindly wit coupled with an integrity in public and private life
that never felt a breath of scandal, made it possible for him to
accomplish a miracle. He was possibly the only man in America
who loomed large and who was an intense partisan in the days
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 43
when oratory on the stump was fiercely bitter, who was able to
go through the hardest fought campaigns in the forefront of bat-
tle and still emerge without a personal enemy. So general was
the feeling of friendship and respect that he was twice elected to
congress as a Democrat in a strongly Eepublican district, and
came within a hairsbreadth of carrying the state of Illinois as a
Democrat in a presidential year when the head of the Repub-
lican ticket went in on an overwhelming majority. So general
was the respect and affection that the demonstrations from time
to time when he was the central figure in great political contests
were Bloomington mass meetings rather than Democratic rallies.
While Mr. Stevenson goes out from a perfectly rounded life
rich in honors and ripe in years and passes to the reward of one
strong in the faith of his fathers, nevertheless Bloomington parts
with him with deep sorrow. Time had not dulled his wit or dead-
ened his interest in matter of the moment and the younger gen-
eration had not learned to look upon him as an old man.
Perhaps no finer concluding chapter could be given any man
than to have grown old so gracefully and beautifully that the
world did not know it.
EDITORIAL FROM THE BLOOMINGTON PANTAGRAPH, JUNE 15
In the passing of Hon. Adlai Ewing Stevenson, Bloomington
loses its best known and most honored citizen. Coming to this
community from Kentucky as a youth in the fifties, he grew rap-
idly into the confidence of his fellow citizens and this confidence
gained him high public honors, altho he was allied with the party
which has been in the minority most of the time since the civil
As much as anything else the life of Mr. Stevenson illustrated
the power and influence of personality in reaching prominence in
public affairs. First of all he was a gentleman under every con-
dition and even in the days when party lines were strictly drawn
and party feeling ran high he numbered his following far beyond
his party's strength. This was demonstrated by his election to
congress twice in a strong Republican district and by the narrow
margin of his defeat in two other instances.
In the first Cleveland administration Mr. Stevenson was hon-
ored with the important appointment of first assistant postmaster
general. By 1892 he had become a national figure and in that
year was nominated and elected to the second highest office in the
gift of the American people the vice presidency. Again in 1900
he was the candidate of his party for the same office. In 1908,
as Democratic candidate for governor of Illinois, he was defeated
by scant thousands in a heavy Republican year.
Although public demands upon him were many, Mr. Steven-
44 ADLAI EWING STEVENSON
son found time during his later years to write a book of reminis-
cences of his long public life, which ranks high in its particular
field. Free from rancor and political prejudice this volume pos-
sesses an intimate quality which reflects many of the characteris-
tics of Mr. Stevenson and discloses the impulses which resulted
in its author's many achievements.
Mr. Stevenson 's life spanned the most eventful and important
period of American history. It began under the era of slavery,
witnessed the great sectional agitation which brought on the civil
war, saw the overthrow of the rebellion and the restoration of the
union on a stronger basis than ever before and was contemporary
with the great development period of the nation. In all this time
he was a more or less prominent and active figure.
Mr. Stevenson was a model citizen in all the walks of life
affectionate and devoted to his family, deeply interested in his
community and solicitous for the welfare of his state and his
country. Full of honors, he lived far past his allotted three score
and ten, but has died too soon, in the opinion of all who knew
A PROCLAMATION PUBLISHED JUNE 16th
The nation has lost one of its noblest sons, and we his neigh-
bors feel keenest his passing away. Bloomington is in tears. The
tenderest child, the bent old, those occupied in the professions
and in business feel alike the spell of sorrow. There was only one
Mr. Stevenson. Our loved city shall not have his like again. To
him who has so exalted our community we cannot do enough
By virtue of my office as Mayor of Bloomington I commend
the business men of Bloomington in their purpose to close their
doors tomorrow between the hours of 2 and 4 o'clock when the
funeral will be in progress.
Mayor of the City of Bloomington.
Under the slanting rays of the afternoon sun of a beautiful
June day, they lowered to its last earthly house the mortal part
of Adlai E. Stevenson, while all the city mourned in the pres-
ence of its people, and all the state paid honor through the pres-
ence of its highest officials, and the nation sent its tribute of
respect in the persons of some of its distinguished present and
The simple service of burial a word of scripture and a breath
of prayer followed several hours of more formal honors given
ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON 45
as the last meed of sorrow for the passing of a man whom his
neighbors and fellow citizens ever held in high esteem.
Early in the afternoon, incoming trains from several direc-
tions brought here a group of public men from all parts of the
Governor and Mrs. Dunne, the Governor's Staff and all the
State Officers were present from Springfield; also, former Vice
President, Charles W. Fairbanks, of Indianapolis, Indiana, Ex-
Secretary of the Interior, David B. Francis, of St. Louis, who
was a member of the Cleveland Cabinet at the time Mr. Stev-
enson was Vice President. The Iroquois Club of Chicago sent
a large delegation. In addition there were many relatives and
friends from a distance.
At 12:30 o'clock the funeral party left the Stevenson home,
and proceeded to the court house, where the body of Mr. Steven-
son lay in state from that time until 2 :45 p. m. The procession
from the residence to the court house was led by the famous 1892
Stevenson escort of forty members, Company D, Fifth Infantry,
Illinois National Guard, the pallbearers and the honorary pall-
THOUSANDS VIEWED BODY
The bier which was surrounded by a profusion of floral offer-
ings rested near the northwest corner of the main corridor of the
court house. Above it on the walls were draped silk flags and
from the west arch of the corridor nearly directly over the casket
was draped a large American flag.
A guard of honor of eight members of Company D guarded
the body, one holding an American flag, draped with crepe.
Another guard of soldiers stationed at the entrance and the
exit assisted in ushering the crowds thru the county building
and Sheriff Reeder and his deputies, stationed at the east en-
trance, kept the crowd in proper line of march so that there was
no confusion whatever. From the hour that the casket found a
resting place in the corridor of the county building until 2:45
o 'clock there was a steady stream of humanity which wended its
way past the bier of the departed, to catch one fleeting glance of
the countenance of the deceased statesman. It is conservatively
estimated that fully 7,000 people viewed the body.
When the hour of the funeral services at the church arrived,
there were hundreds of people who had congregated at the east
door, who could not be admitted to the building by reason of lack
of time in which to allow them to pass thru. The court house
yard was filled with people and the streets in the uptown district
were packed almost to their capacity.
The funeral procession formed at the west side of the court
house square and the body was taken from the west entrance.
The Bloomington band led the procession and played softly
46 ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON
' ' Dolore, ' ' a funeral dirge by Pettee. Next in order came Rev.
J. N. Elliott of the Second Presbyterian church and Rev. Edgar
D. Jones of the First Christian church, followed by the pallbear-
ers and the honorary pallbearers. Then came Vice-President
Fairbanks, Gov. Edward F. Dunne, Ex-Gov. Fifer, President
David Felmley, and many other notables of which mention is
made elsewhere. Then came the members of the McLean County
Bar Association; the Stevenson escort, officers and employes of
the People's Bank, and Mayor Costello and the members of the
city council and officials of the city administration. A platoon
of police handled the crowd along the line of march and also
guarded the entrances at the church during the hour of the fun-
SERVICES IN THE SECOND PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
REMARKS OF EDGAR DE WITT JONES
For more than two decades Bloomington, Illinois, has been
known this nation over as the home of Hon. Adlai E. Stevenson.
Because of him more than any other man the name of the city
we love has gone the world round. Verily it is true that ' ' none
of us liveth to himself and none dieth to himself." In the life
and death of Mr. Stevenson his fame and glory are shared with
the nation he served, the state he honored, and especially with
the city where his home has been for half a century.
Mr. Stevenson's public career was long, varied and distin-
guished. Congressman, assistant postmaster general, vice presi-
dent of the United States, member of the monetary commission
to England, France and Germany, nominee of his party for vice
president in 1900 and 1908 candidate for governor of Illinois in
what was the most extraordinary campaign of his entire career
such in barest outline was our first citizen's life in the nation.
Singularly strong and praiseworthy were certain qualities in
Mr. Stevenson's life as a public man. First, and foremost, is the
fact that throughout his long and notable career he ever wore
the white flower of a blameless life. Active as he was in a po-
litical period characterized by campaigns of personalities and
incriminations and marred sometimes by methods now discred-
ited Mr. Stevenson kept his heart pure. Through forty years of
public service and a score of successful campaigns he bore his
escutcheon unspotted to the end.
Mr. Stevenson was a party man, but not a partisan. In a day
when prejudice and rancor were rife and party spirit ran riot,
Mr. Stevenson preserved that fine large charity which ' ' vaunteth
not itself" and "thinketh no evil." Here at home in the midst
of campaigns of widespread interest and elections fraught with
intense excitement he was never known to engage in controversy
or arguments with his fellow townsmen who differed with him
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 47
politically. Moreover he numbered among his closest friends
many men of political views other than his own. This of itself
is an extraordinary tribute to a nature which was large and gen-
erous and possessing a perfect genius for friendship.
Mr. Stevenson's friends in public life included the most dis-
tinguished leaders of the last thirty or forty years. Congress-
men, senators, justices of the supreme court, cabinet officers
presidents, with them he mingled alike, honoring and being hon-
ored. Fortunately these rich and varied experiences are in a
measure treasured up for us and for those who shall come after
us, in his fascinating book, ' ' Something of Men I Have Known, ' '
a volume that will be read with interest and profit by thousands
yet to be.
Bloomington was justly proud of its first citizen and de-
lighted to do him honor. No notable event in this city was com-
plete without Mr. Stevenson's presence and participation. How
often his voice has been heard at great gatherings, in conventions,
at banquet boards and in memorial meetings. This comfort-
able home on Franklin park square has been our city's golden
milestone, where all our main traveled streets converged. When
our friends came from afar their visits were consummated when
they had called upon our first citizen. How wide the doors. How
generous the hospitality of that home ! How unfailing the cour-
tesy of that genial host! How courtly his manner! All in all
we shall not look upon his like again.
And now he is gone Bloomington can never be again just what
it was when Mr. Stevenson was alive. The old homestead on the
park square will be eloquent in its loneliness. We shall miss the
courtly figure from our streets and seek in vain the outstretched
hand of greeting. But nothing, thank God! can deprive us of
Today loving friends and neighbors will lay our chief citizen
to rest by the side of the wife of his youth and not far from that
illustrious group of his old-time friends, who have gone on be-
fore David Davis and Matthew T. Scott; Isaac Phillips and
Gen. McNulta; Lawrence Weldon and Robert Williams, and in
the years to come what the tomb of Clay is to Lexington, what
the shrine of Jefferson is to Monticello, so shall the grave of
Stevenson be to Bloomington.
REMARKS OF REV. J. N. ELLIOTT
"If we were assembled here to give public welcome to Mr.
Stevenson, returning from the fulfillment of the labors of state
or from the completion of some mission abroad, what an occasion
of rejoicing it would be, for he was a man whom it was a delight
to honor. But we have come with sadness and tears to take leave
of him, and to perform for him the last rites of earth.
48 ADLAI EWING STEVENSON
"It is an occasion of sorrow. Bloomington mourns, the state
and the nation mourn, friends are bereft and loved ones are
bowed in grief. His life among us gave happiness and conferred
distinction, his presence brought cheer, his words mingled wis-
dom and kindness, his genial humor beguiled us in the social
hour. We are all poorer because of his decease.
This is also an occasion of peace and comforting memories.
He sleeps in our presence in the quiet majesty of death, his spirit
having returned to God. We recall with pride and greatest satis-
faction that after a long life and a distinguished public career
his name is handed down to his family and to his country un-
tarnished by a single discreditable or dishonorable act. Upon the
record of his private and public life his name shall remain a
synonym for honor, justice and integrity.
We recall, too, that he walked in the light that does not fail.
Early Christian teachings did not depart from him. He paid sin-
cere reverence to the things of God and ever listened to the voice
of an enlightened and sensitive conscience. For him, life was
more than fame ; the soul than the things that a man possesses.
Every pastor of this church had in him a loyal parishioner, a
kind and helpful friend, and he was ever ready to give a hearty
word of encouragement. He was charitable toward the failings
of others. In the unfailing light of revelation he lived, and in its
serene peace he passed into its clearer shining and fuller dis-
In the letter presented to Mr. Stevenson by the senate of the
United States when retiring from the presidency of that distin-
guished body, there in a sentence which seems to me to most aptly
describe him. I quote in part: "We have observed the signal
ability, fidelity and impartiality, as well as the uniform courtesy
and kindness toward every member of this body, which have
characterized your official action." This truly describes him to
us all signal ability, fidelity and impartiality, uniform courtesy
Nearly six months ago a similar scene of sorrow was witnessed
here. His beloved wife, the revered Mrs. Stevenson of every
blessed memory, was borne hence whither we bear him today.
That sad event fell heavily upon him, and we have thought he
has been lonely ever since her going. But he was brave and hope-
ful. Then his own strength failed ; and they who were united in
life were not long separated in death. Side by side they shall
sleep, their work ended, their day of life here done, the glory
and the happiness of the future theirs to share together forever.
Rev. Mr. Elliott closed with words of comfort for the family.
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 49
BY REV. MARTIN D. HABDIN
It will fall to the lot of few of us ever to pay deep and
loving personal tribute to a fuller or nobler life than that of
Mr. Stevenson. In every relationship where men owe moral
obligation to their God and fellows, he did his part nobly. It
can be truthfully said of him that no one ever knew him well
without being made not only better but happier for that
knowledge. His pathway through nearly four score years was
one of light.
It is, therefore, eminently fitting that this hour should be
spent in thinking over those characteristics and qualities of
mind and heart which made his life rich in service to his fam-
ily, his friends, his city, his state and nation.
Born in Kentucky nearly 79 years ago, from Scotch-Irish
parentage, he had his early childhood in an old-fashioned Pres-
byterian home of simplicity and unaffected piety. In later life
many honors came to him; but among all his mementoes, he
cherished nothing more highly than the little Bible which was
given to him when he was ten years of age, for a perfect recita-
tion from memory of the Shorter Catechism. His boyhood was
spent in a home where the family altar was as faithfully sought
to give spiritual nourishment, as the breakfast table to give
food to the body. From the deeper influences of that old-fash-
ioned, God-fearing home, his life never departed. The lessons
learned there entered into the very fibre of his soul; and to
glorify God and keep His commandments, was the deep, under-
lying purpose that gave strength and dignity, purity and honor
to his whole career. Life to him was the gift of God. Duty
to him was to do the Will of God, and he never consciously set
himself against the eternal moral order.
Sixty-one years ago as a lad he came with his parents to
the then little village of Bloomington. From his early boyhood
he had an eager, passionate love of books, and here he fitted
himself for college. He entered Center College at Danville,
Kentucky, and remained until his junior year, when on account
of the death of his father, he was called home, as the eldest
son, to assume the care of his widowed mother and younger
brothers and sisters. At his father's bedside he promised to
look after and care for those who looked to him for protection,
and no promise ever made was more faithfully kept.
With his alert and eager mind and wonderfully retentive
memory, he soon had fitted himself for entrance into the prac-
tice of law. Once in his life 's profession, his advance was rapid,
and he early attained the reputation of being one of the strong
men at the bar which had been familiar with the pleadings of
Lincoln and Douglas and many other men of scarcely inferior
5O ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON
"With a genius for making close personal friends, in a dis-
trict which was overwhelmingly of the opposite party, he was
elected state 's attorney. In this position he began the formation
of that wide acquaintanceship with men and measures which
made him one of the recognized leaders of his party in the state,
and a little later sent him as a representative to congress. His
standing in the state, his wide personal popularity, and his ster-
ling worth as a man led Mr. Cleveland, during his first adminis-
tration, to appoint him first assistant postmaster general. Here,
with that growing capacity for grappling men to him with hooks
stronger than those of steel, he won a popularity with the men
of his party which made him the natural candidate for vice-
president with Mr. Cleveland in the campaign of 1892. It was
in no small degree due to his name on the ticket that that year,
for the first time since the war, Illinois cast her electoral vote for
the Democratic party.
"As vice-president of the United States he filled this high
office with honor, efficiency and dignity, retiring from his seat as
presiding officer of the senate not only with respect, but with the
affection of all the senators, regardless of party affiliation.
"While Mr. Stevenson was a man of deep convictions and
fought hard for those political principles which he believed best,
there was ever in his soul such a sense of justice, such a natural
tendency not to overstep the bounds of reason, such a clear con-
sciousness of the difference between principles and personalities,
such freedom from mere ranting partisanship, that he never
made a personal enemy out of any political opponent. It can
be said of him that in all his political career ; through all his po-
litical battles sometimes winning, sometimes losing he never
came out of a conflict without the personal esteem of his oppo-
nent. Some of his warmest personal friends, the men whom
he loved best and who loved him best, were among those who
had been opposing nominees for office. Such a fact, rare in
the annals of American politics, is a tribute unspeakably beau-
tiful to the purity and rectitude of a big soul and a truly
Those of us who knew Mr. Stevenson well know that ho
had a remarkable memory. But deep in oblivion, from which
even no faintest echo ever resounded, he buried forever out of
consciousness every reminder of unfairness or unMndness from
his fellowmen. Where he could not speak well of men his lips
Mr. Stevenson's public career was one of fidelity and honor,
wide service and more than ordinary success. Beginning as a
poor boy with no help further than of his own native ability
he climbed, step by step, until he had reached to within one
of the highest office in the gift of the American people. In
every position he measured fully up to the responsibilities of
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 5 I
his office, and in an age which has seen many a business and
political reputation tarnished, no breath of suspicion was ever
breathed against any of his private or public acts. During his
more than fifty years of public service his name has remained
a synonym for stainless honor a great heritage this to his family
and friends and fellow citizens.
But it is not of Mr. Stevenson as a public character that we
today think most. High as were his honors, and wide as was
his knowledge of public men and public measures, and sub-
stantial as were his contributions to the political history of his
time, to those of us who knew him best the man himself was
greater than any or all of his achievements. His was an out-
standing personality which gave grace to his position, rather
than a life which borrowed its interest from place.
' ' The charm of Mr. Stevenson was not in the fact that he had
attained conspicuous honors, but rather in his breadth of knowl-
edge, in his remarkable familiarity with all the minutest details
of American history, in his wide and sympathetic understanding
of men, and in his ability ever to forget himself and give himself
unreservedly to the pleasure of those who were in his company.
As a conversationalist he was without a rival, and when the day's
work was over, to spend an evening with him was an education,
inspiration and delight which no man of refinement could ever
In his autobiography, Ambassador Andrew D. White made
the statement that of all the public or literary men he had ever
known, Mr. Stevenson was the most delightful reconteur. With
a memory which was ever the wonder of his friends, and a grace
and accuracy of expression quite full of charm, and a quiet, bub-
bling, incessant humor that can never be forgotten, he would talk
of men and times gone by with a fascination that sped the hours
as on magic wings. Under his touch the incident which would
have been lost to a less sympathetic nature took on some bright
glow of life and color, and proved as fascinating as a romance.
He looked at life with eyes full of charity, and when the years
had ripened, his mind was stored with a vast wealth of mem-
ories, quaint, grave and serious, interesting, instructive and
charming, luminous, humorous and kindly.
"He ever gave one the impression of a heart from self set
free; of a soul at peace with God and man; of a mind in the
serene liberty of a large knowledge of the world. He was at
home in many of the broad ranges of human thought and en-
deavor. It is only such a life from self set free which can read-
ily and naturally have room in it for all those kindly courtesies
which were characteristic of Mr. Stevenson. His sympathies
were broad and generous. He found a real joy in doing kindly
things, and no human being ever appealed to him for help in
52 ADLAI EWING STEVENSON
vain where it was within his power to meet the request and so
rare and gracious was his tact and so genuine his love, that he
always left the recipient with a feeling that it had been he who
had granted the favor. For his friends he was ever ready for
any sacrifice. He loved young men, and many are the men to-
day who owe not a little of what they are to the start which he
helped to give them.
Mr. Stevenson's nature was one of supreme good will and
graciousness. One of the marked evidences of that kindliness was
to be found in his rare and winsome humor. His like in this
sphere many of us will never see again. With men of dominat-
ing selfishness, humor becomes a thing of satire words barbed,
or with a sting in them. They fly forth to maim and to wound,
and leave some heart bleeding. But when humor is the gift of
such a temperament as that of Mr. Stevenson's a tender, pure
and gracious soul it is made to play about life with the light
and winsome joy of a magician's wand. And there is not one
of us here today who knew Mr. Stevenson well, who cannot
recall the times when with rare power he drove away from
leaden hearts dull care, lifted heaviness of spirit, and made us
feel anew that, after all, it's a kindly, good world in which we
dwell. A man with such a power goes through life radiating
sunshine. He held the wine of gladness to our lips and bade
us drink to the health of all happiness and good will.
"But with all his bubbling humor, how completely he escaped
the dangers which go with such a gift, of vulgarity on the one
hand and mere frivolity on the other. Such a wealth of apt and
telling stories, and among them all not one that could not have
been told unblushingly in the presence of his mother! Such a
continual play of witticisms, and not one which did not have in
it wholesomeness and pure joy.
Yes, we cannot measure the good, the health of spirit, the
restorations to wholesome hopefulness coming from such a man
and glorifying what otherwise would be "the dreary inter-
course of daily life. " He made his cheer a real ministry to the
hearts of men. Where he was yokes grew magically easy and
"Another manifestation of his spirit of good will was to be
found in his courtliness. He was ever the perfect gentleman of
the old school. His bearing in the presence of women was that
of one who felt, not merely assumed, the rightfulness of those
gentle amenities which go so far toward keeping life upon the
high plane of beauty and honor. The very wave of his hand was
incarnate courtesy. Truly a gentle man.
"It would not be becoming in me here today to lift far the
veil of privacy in Mr. Stevenson's home life. But I trust I am
not transgressing when I say that, if those of you who knew him
ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON 53
as friend and neighbor and fellow citizen have many reasons for
honoring and deeply admiring his character, those of us who
knew him in the circle of his own family can but hold his mem-
ory in sacred devotion. He was not one man in public and an-
other at home. If there was a difference at all, it was that here
his kindliness was incessant ; here his courtesy was at its finest ;
here his humor played constantly, like the dancing shafts of sum-
mer sunlight through the leaves of the trees; ere his mind and
heart overflowed in a thousand genial forms of grace that will
make his children, while life lasts, rise up and call his name
blessed. His morning greetings were like the coming of sum-
mer's day; his goodnights were benedictions rich in heaven's
peace and love. He made the word 'Father' as broad and shel-
tering, secure and serene to our minds as the all-embracing sky.
"But when I say these things concerning Mr. Stevenson in
the home, our minds are led to that other solemn hour, when
we were gathered here, little more than five months ago, to pay
tribute to his dear life 's partner. His full and strong life could
not have been without hers. Her radiant personality would have
been incomplete without him. Together they made a Christian
home which will long be remembered by those who knew its
inner life, as one of those ideal social forces, the beauty and good
of which God alone can measure.
When we stop to think of the far-reaching effect, in example
and direct moulding power, of the home, what it means to pos-
terity and to civilization, and the upholding of all high ideal-
ism I think we can count among Mr. and Mrs. Stevenson's
greatest achievements the fact that, together, they lived a life of
such singular beauty and devotion, that by their united love and
service, they have helped us all to hold deeper reverence for two
of God's holiest institutions, marriage and home. So completely
one were they that when Mrs. Stevenson passed on he was never
afterward himself. His body was here, but 'where your treasure
is, there will your heart be also.' And whatever sorrow there
may be here today, I cannot but feel that it is vastly overbalanced
by the joy over there, where life's majority ever will be.
' ' This, in briefest outline, was the temper of the brave, good
spirit which has gone home to God. His race on earth is run.
His sun has set. But in the hush of this hour, with its mellow
afterglow, we feel the sacred peace and presence of God.
' ' This is the life we honor, that of a man whose personality
was rich in those spiritual qualities that unite our humanity in
indissoluble bonds of affection ; those qualities of soul which give
life a meaning and a hope too vast for even four score years. We
see him as a youth, eager for knowledge, with frank, open heart,
ready to welcome life; as a young man, industrious, energetic,
and forging ahead into an ever larger share of the common re-
54 ADLAI EWING STEVENSON
sponsibilities of community and state ; as a man of maturity, com-
ing into the rich rewards of friendship, honor and power; as a
man of old age, ripe in tenderness, sympathy and wisdom. His
was a singularly happy life ; happy in the conscious love of his
fellowmen. He was singularly well poised. He had ambition
without selfishness or sordidness; fidelity to principles without
bitterness, or partisanship ; great cordiality without wearing his
heart on his sleeve ; an irrepressible and irresistible humor with-
out frivolity ; a profound sense of life 's seriousness without heav-
iness; dignity without dullness or distance; honor without
haughtiness or condescension; broad culture without pedantry,
and a nature profoundly religious, without cant or bigotry.
''In the highest sense he was what I should call a child-
hearted Christ-hearted man, whose life adds dignity and
breadth to our common humanity, whose stay on earth was an
unbroken benefaction, and whose going for many of us has made
heaven nearer and dearer. If he could speak to us now I believe
his word would be, 'Say not good night, but in some brighter
clime, bid me good morning. ' '
THE CONGRESSIONAL RECORD OF MONDAY, JUNE 22, HAS THE
FOLLOWING REGARDING MR. STEVENSON
Mr. Rainey Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent to ad-
dress the House for five minutes on the subject of the late Adlai
The Speaker The gentleman from Illinois asks unanimous
consent to address the House for five minutes on the life and
character of the late vice president, Adlai E. Stevenson. Is there
There was no objection.
Mr. Rainey Mr. Speaker and gentlemen of the House, sev-
enty-nine years ago Adlai E. Stevenson was born in the State of
Kentucky. At an early age he came with his parents to Illinois,
but returned soon after to Kentucky, and in 1856 he graduated
at Centre College, in Danville, Ky. During his college career
there developed the romance which lasted through his long life
and just after his graduation he married Miss Letitia Green, the
daughter of the president of the college which conferred his de-
gree upon him. She remained his faithful companion in all the
vicissitudes of his long life until a few months ago, when she
preceded him to the tomb.
In the early part of his career Adlai E. Stevenson was con-
temporaneous with Lincoln, Douglas, Logan, McClernand, Og-
lesby, and those other great sons of Illinois who long ago pre-
ceded him to the silent tomb. His active career in national poli-
tics commenced before most of the Members of the House were
ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON $$
born. In 1864 he was a presidential elector on the Democratic
ticket. In 1874 he was elected from the Bloomington (111.) dis-
trict to the office of Representative in Congress. Two years later,
in 1876, he was re-elected. In 1884 he led the Illinois delegation
to the Democratic national convention, the convention which
named Grover Cleveland. From 1885 until 1889 he was first
assistant postmaster general. From 1893 until 1897 he was vice
president of the United States. His active career continued al-
most until the day of his death. Five years ago he was the Demo-
cratic candidate in Illinois for governor of Illinois when long
past the allotted age of three score and ten. He commenced to
practice law in the late fifties in Metamora, 111., and after that he
practiced law in Bloomington, 111., and his firm, the firm of
Stevenson & Ewing, was for a long period of years one of the
best-known law firms in the state of Illinois. He was successful
in his business career, and long ago, years ago, when labor first
commenced to organize and was demanding recognition, he rec-
ognized the right of laboring men to organize in the great coal
industries, in which he was an important factor in that section
While he was active in political life, ready always to give his
services to his country, when his country demanded his services,
he was a successful business man, honest and fair in all his rela-
tions with his fellow men. While he was a contemporary with
those great Illinoisans I have mentioned, who long ago preceded
him to the tomb, he was always young. Those of us who knew
him best never thought of him as growing old. As his old friends
died he renewed his activities and acquaintances among the
young, and he retained his full physical and mental vigor up
until the very last. Last Saturday the Illinois delegation all of
them signed the telegram sent a telegram to him at the hospital
in Chicago where for some months he had been ill, expressing
our hope for his speedy recovery and expressing our sympathy
for him on account of his serious illness. His son wired back
that the message had been read to him and that he appreciated
the fact that he was remembered here in the National House of
Representatives, where he had served for four years ; here in the
capitol, where he served for eight years as assistant postmaster
general and as vice president of the United States. A few hours
later his great heart ceased to beat. He died yesterday morn-
ing, Sunday, June 14, 1914.
Throughout his long and useful career no suspicion of dis-
honor or dishonesty ever attached to his name. On behalf of the
Illinois delegation in congress I desire to pay this last tribute of
respect to his memory. His life work is over ; full of years and
of honor, with unfaltering step he approached the end. In the
state which produced a Lincoln, a Douglas, a Logan, and an Alt-
56 ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON
geld, we consider him one of our greatest citizens. His soul has
gone back beyond the stars to God, who gave it. Tomorrow his
body will be buried by the friends of his long career. Great
mind, generous soul, kind friend, adieu. May the earth press
lightly upon the heart of Adlai E. Stevenson of Illinois.
DEATH OF FORMER VICE-PRESIDENT
Resolution of the U. S. Senate.
Immediately after the death of Mr. Stevenson was announced
in the Senate, Senator James Hamilton Lewis submitted the fol-
lowing resolution, which is copied from the Journal of the
"Resolved, That the Senate has heard with profound regret
of the death of Hon. Adlai E. Stevenson, former Vice President
of the United States and former Presiding Officer of the United
Resolved, That as a mark of respect to the memory of the dis-
tinguished official, whose life has been filled with honorable and
distinguished service to his Nation, the Senate do now adjourn.
The Senate proceeded, by unanimous consent, to consider the
The resolutions were unanimously agreed to;
The Senate adjourned."
REV. DR. J. W. DINSMORE OF SAN JOSE, CALIF., FOR MANY
YEARS PASTOR OF THE SECOND PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
OF BLOOMINGTON, OF WHICH FORMER VICE-PRESIDENT
STEVENSON WAS A MEMBER, IS QUOTED AS FOLLOWS IN
THE SAN JOSE MERCURY:
The death in the Presbyterian hospital, Chicago, on Sunday
last of the Hon. Adlai E. Stevenson, marks the close of the
earthly life of a man who will be sincerely mourned by great
numbers of people all over the land. Many of your readers have
known him as a public official, and a considerable number have
known him as an acquaintance and friend. Many will recall his
visit to San Jose while he was vice-president of the United States.
This little tribute to his memory, therefore, may not be out of
place in your columns. It is written by one who knew him long
and well. For more than twenty years he was my parishioner,
and for more than forty years he was my close and cherished
friend. I had many reasons for being strongly attached to him
and his family, and this attachment was not in the least dimin-
ished by the wide separation of our homes during these recent
years. Our frequent meetings and our steady correspondence
kept our friendship alive and warm.
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 57
Mr. Stevenson was by descent a North. Carolinian, by birth a
Kentuckian, and of that sturdy Scotch-Irish race which has cut so
deep into our history. When a youth he removed with his fa-
ther's family to Bloomington, 111., and there lived the rest of his
days. He was a man of high character, of strict morals and of
unquestioned repute as a gentleman and a Christian. He bore
through life and carried to his grave an unsullied name. He
was much in public life, always an active and strenuous politician
in the good sense of that term, and consequently often engaged
in fierce political contests, and yet his bitterest adversaries never
had the effrontery to accuse him of meanness, crookedness or per-
fidy. In his early manhood he was happily wedded to a scion
of one of the most noted families of Kentucky, with large and in-
fluential connections, and herself a woman of high spirit not only,
but of singular charm and loveliness. She was a great inspira-
tion and help to him until her death a few months ago. As he
was himself in broken health, he never rallied from the shock
and sorrow of that separation. During recent months he has
been a great sufferer and I am assured that he bore his sufferings
with great fortitude and patience.
Mr. Stevenson was what is called an uncommonly popular
man, personally and socially. He had many political adversa-
ries, but probably very few personal enemies. He was an out-
and-out democrat, and lived in a congressional district which
was overwhelmingly republican, and yet twice at least he was
elected to congress by stiff majorities. Thousands of republicans
voted for him on personal grounds. When he was candidate for
vice-president on the ticket with Cleveland in 1892, Illinois for
the only time in forty-eight years, went democratic, and it was
attributed chiefly to the popularity of Stevenson.
His courtesy and suavity were such that, in denying an ap-
plicant, while he disappointed him, he seldom offended him. I
recall sitting one day for several hours in his private office in
Washington and being greatly interested and amused by the
singular tact he showed in dealing with heated contestants for
postoffices. He could give the place to but one, and yet he man-
aged it so deftly that those whom he turned down seemed to
leave in comparative good humor, feeling sorry that he felt so
sorry in being obliged to disappoint them.
He was a remarkably genial, companionable, obliging and
affectionate man, devoted to his family and never going back on
his friends. In the retirement and sorrows of the last few years
he has been the center of deep and warm sympathy and affection
on the part of many thousands, not merely of his own commun-
ity, but all over this broad land. For myself I feel painfully
bereft by his going away, and shall remember him while I live
with strong affection as a true, high-minded and honorable man,
and as a devoted and steadfast friend.
58 ADLAI EWING STEVENSON
A MEMORIAL FOR HON. ADLAI E. STEVENSON WAS HELD BY
MEMBERS OF THE McLEAN COUNTY BAR ASSOCIATION ON
THE MORNING OF JUNE 28 IN THE COURT HOUSE AT
There was a fine representation of the organization present,
besides many other friends and admirers of the departed illus-
trious statesman and fellow townsman.
Hon. C. D. Myers, judge of the circuit court, presided at
the meeting and in the outset a report was read from the com-
mittee on resolutions by Governor Joseph W. Fifer, which was
followed by very touching tributes from John T. Lillard, Charles
L. Capen, John A. Sterling, A. E. DeMange, Thomas Kerrick,
Hal M. Stone, Judge R. M. Benjamin, Frank Gillespie, and
Judge C. D. Myers.
The following was the report of the committee on testimonial
and resolutions as presented by Gov. Fifer:
Adlai Ewing Stevenson was born in Christian county, Ken-
tucky, October 23rd, 1835, and died at the Presbyterian Hospital
in Chicago, June 14th, 1914. Of revolutionary stock, his ances-
tors were prominent in the war for American independence. He
was of Scotch-Irish descent, and belonged to a race distinguished
for learning, patriotism and high courage.
When a mere lad he moved with his father's family to Bloom-
ington, Illinois, which city down to the day of his death, he was
always proud to call his home, with the exception of ten years,
when he resided at Metamora, Illinois. He was educated in the
public schools, at the Illinois Wesleyan University, and finally at
Center College, at Danville, in his native state. While attend-
ing the latter institution he was unexpectedly called home by
the sudden illness of his honored father, who died soon there-
after and much to his regret, he never found it possible to com-
plete the college course he had set for himself. By the parting
injunction of a dying father he was left the care of a widowed
mother and six children. How well he discharged his duty in
this behalf it is not necessary for us to speak, for it is known
and appreciated by this entire community.
He studied law and was admitted to the McLean county bar
in 1858, and soon thereafter entered upon the practice of his
profession at Metamora, then the seat of government of Wood-
He was not long in winning a place in the front ranks of a
bar distinguished for the number of its able men. It was here
that he met Judge Eichmond, Judge Barns, Judge Read and
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 59
many others of equal ability. It was here too, that he met Col.
Robert G. Ingersoll, the greatest wit and orator of his time, and
a friendship was formed between them which ended only in the
latter 's death.
Mr. Stevenson's scholarly attainments, his thorough knowl-
edge of the law and above all his kindness of heart and genial
social disposition, brought him both business and friends. He
was soon recognized as the most popular young man in that sec-
tion of the state and public office came to him apparently with-
out effort. He was appointed Master in Chancery and later was
elected State 's Attorney of his Judicial District and the able and
faithful manner in which he discharged the duties of these im-
portant positions was the subject of private and public comment
long after he left the county.
His increasing knowledge of the law, his growing business,
and above all his expanding intellect caused him to seek a wider
field for the exercise of his genius and in 1868 he returned to
Bloomington and formed a law partnership with the Hon. James
S. Ewing, his cousin. He then began a legal and political career
unequalled by that of any other citizen of our county.
Deeply versed in the best English literature, and a profound
student of the law, he soon became recognized as one of the ablest
lawyers of the state. As a lawyer he was profound rather than
technical. He cared nothing for mere forms, but everything for
substance. As an advocate he had but few equals and no su-
periors at the bar and there are adversaries now living who can
remember the dread and anxiety experienced by them as he
arose to deliver his closing address to the jury in some hotly con-
tested case. The firm of Stevenson & Ewing practiced law as-
siduously for more than twenty years. The records of this court
and the high courts of review are the silent but eloquent wit-
nesses to the success of this firm.
Our friend was not only a successful lawyer, but he under-
stood and appreciated the importance and dignity of the profes-
sion of which he was so great an ornament, and he looked to the
law as the means by which our free institutions are to be per-
petuated and the rights and liberties of the individual citizen
In a public utterance he said: "It is all important, never
mere so than now, that the people should magnify the law. Out-
rages have been perpetrated in the name of justice appalling to
all thoughtful men. It need hardly be said that all this is in
total disregard of individual rights and utterly subversive of
lawful authority. By the solemn adjudication of courts and
under the safeguards of law, the fact of guilt is to be established
and the guilty punished. The sure rock of defense in the out-
stretched years as in the long past will be the intelligence, the
60 ADLAI EWING STEVENSON
patriotism, the virtue of a law-abiding, liberty-loving people. To
a degree that cannot be measured by words, the temple of justice
will prove a city of refuge. "The judiciary has no guards, no
palaces, or treasuries, no arms but truth and wisdom and no
splendor but justice."
This splendid sentiment expressed in the above quotation is
worthy to be inscribed as an epitaph upon his monument and by
its utterance he has made posterity his debtor.
Well as Mr. Stevenson's abilities and standing as a lawyer
were recognized throughout our great state by the bench and bar,
it was as a statesman that he rendered his greatest public serv-
ice and as a statesman he was most widely known and will be
most lovingly and gratefully remembered by millions of his fel-
To one possessed of such rare gifts and in a country like ours,
a political career was inevitable. Mr. Stevenson's first political
success came in 1874, when he was triumphantly elected to the
44th Congress from a district wherein the opposing party had an
overwhelming majority. He was in 1878 elected a member of
the 46th Congress, overcoming as he did before, a very decided
party majority against him.
When Mr. Cleveland came to the presidency in 1885, so prom-
inent was Mr. Stevenson in the counsels of his party by reason of
his able and efficient service in the congress of the United States
and his commanding abilities as a statesman, that he was prac-
tically without opposition selected as assistant postmaster gen-
eral, the duties of which position he discharged with fidelity and
ability and to the satisfaction of his party and the country. His
ever widening influence and increasing popularity made him in
1892 his party's candidate for vice president of the United
States and the success of his party in that memorable campaign
especially in his own state, is by competent judges largely
ascribed to the fact that his name appeared upon the ticket.
He was easily one of the most popular as he was one of the
ablest presiding officers the senate of the United States ever had,
and his ability and his absolute fairness while exercising the pow-
ers of that great office are still the subject of comment by public
men at the capitol of the nation.
A few months after Mr. Stevenson's retirement from the sen-
ate he was appointed by President McKinley a member of a com-
mission to visit England, France, and Germany in the interest of
So wide and varied is the public career of our friend that
we find it impossible in this place to do justice to all his important
public acts. One, however, we feel should not be passed over
without emphasis as it marks him as a statesman and patriot of
the first magnitude.
ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON 6 1
All will remember the dispute that arose over the result oi
the presidential election in 1876. Inflammatory speeches were
made, much ill will arose and the clouds of civil war once more
hung dark and heavy in our political horizon. The cooler heads
of both parties in congress proposed the passage of a bill creating
an electoral commission to decide by the peaceful means of arbi-
tration the rights of the respective claimants for the high office
of president. Mr. Stevenson, to this measure, gave his powerful
and enthusiastic support. He not only advocated the passage of
the measure in a powerful speech delivered in congress, but he
also advocated the acceptance of the decision of the Commission
after the result had been declared. On this latter phase of the
question he said :
"Let this vote be now taken and the curtain fall upon these
scenes forever. To those who believe as I do that a grievous
wrong has been suffered, let me entreat that this arbitrament be
abided in good faith, that no hindrance or delay be interposed to
the execution of the law, but by faithful adherence to its man-
dates, by honest efforts to revive the prostrate industries of the
country, by obedience to the constituted authorities, we will show
ourselves patriots rather than partisans in this hour of our coun-
These are brave, patriotic words, spoken by one deeply in
sympathy with the happiness and welfare of his country.
In 1866 Mr. Stevenson was married to Miss Letitia Green, a
lady of culture and refinement, whose family was distinguished
for high intellectual attainments and great moral worth. To
this union four children were born, three of whom survive, and
have become worthy members of the community in which they
Such in simple words and in brief outline is the life, the
character and public services of our friend whose death comes
to us all as a personal sorrow and for whom we profoundly
Mr. Stevenson lived in the most interesting and important
epoch in our national history. No one enjoyed a wider acquaint-
ance with public men. He knew Lincoln and Douglas, and in
fact nearly all of those of our times whose names are associated
with the history of our country. Possessing rare literary ability
he has preserved in his unique and interesting book, entitled
"Something of Men I Have Known," his recollection of those
who were active in public affairs during the stormiest period of
our country's history and as the men of whom he speaks pass
from the stage of action his book will be read by the youth of
the country with ever increasing interest and profit.
Were we to give a reason for Mr. Stevenson's phenomenal
success we should do so in this single sentence: He was a man
62 ADLAI EWING STEVENSON
of a kind heart. Armed to an unusual degree with the weapons
of wit and sarcasm he seldom or never used them to the discom-
fiture of others.
He was never elected to a public office that he did not over-
come by his popularity a majority party. He never defeated an
adversary who was not afterwards his warm personal friend. He
never held an office that he did not adorn and add dignity to the
position by his ability and his courteous and obliging disposition
and manners. His friends and neighbors, those who knew him
intimately, can never forget his unfailing kindness and consid-
eration for all who came within the sunshine of his presence and
his interest in all that made for their welfare ; nor can they ever
forget his quick sympathy in times of trouble.
So closely was his life united with that of his beloved wife
that when she passed to her eternal rest his brave spirit was not
able to bear life's burdens alone . For nearly fifty years she had
stood devotedly by his side. Together they created an ideal home
from which radiated an influence for good that can never be
measured. They had rejoiced together in times of victory and
they had borne with fortitude the disappointments of life which
sooner or later come to us all.
He died as he had lived, a Christian gentleman in the un-
shaken belief in a better life beyond the grave.
For a long half century Mr. Stevenson stood in the focus of
public attention. The fierce light of public criticism beat against
his armor and found no flaw. No stain ever touched his gar-
ments, and not even the breath of suspicion ever rested upon his
good name. Full of years and full of honors, with friends and
loved ones about him, he lay down weary and broken beneath a
monument of public gratitude and affection greater and more
enduring than any of masonry or bronze.
We know that monuments made by human hands must soon
decay and fall. We know too that the friends who knew and
loved him in life must soon pass away and that through the on
stretching centuries of the great future the memory of his name
must perish from the earth, but the influence of his useful, ex-
alted and unselfish life can never die. His course shall be on-
ward and upward forever and this, let us believe, is the immor-
tality that awaits all who love and serve their fellow men.
JOSEPH W. FIFEB,
JAMES E. EWING,
THOMAS C. KERRICK,
JOHN T. LILLARD,
CHARLES L. CAPEN,
Committee of the McLean County Bar Association
on Testimonial and Resolutions.
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 63
ATTEE THE BEADING OF THE RESOLUTIONS THE HON. THOMAS
0. KERRICK SPOKE AS FOLLOWS:
The memorial prepared and presented by Governor Fifer and
which will become an enduring record of this court, is in no
respect or degree an exaggerated eulogy of its subject.
Those of us who knew Mr. Stevenson familiarly for more than
the average length of human life willingly testify that the merits
of the man are in no wise overstated in that truthful epitome of
his life and character.
It is needless for me to enlarge upon what is embodied in the
memorial and what has been said by other speakers regarding
Mr. Stevenson's illustrious public career in its national aspects.
The knowledge of that is more than nation wide and its honors
I choose rather to speak of him, briefly, in his nearer relations
to us in a lesser and more localized sphere. Mr. Stevenson's
pleasing and forceful personality was such that even in a period
in which political party lines were commonly regarded as well
nigh impassable walls he turned seemingly well-organized major-
ities in his Congressional district into disorganized and defeated
But brilliant and successful as he was his public life in that
and in the larger national field I doubt not that next to his own
kindred, those who admired and loved him most and most deeply
mourn his loss are his neighbors, his townspeople, and the host
of long-time intimate personal acquaintances and friends of his
every-day life, conspicuous among whom are the surviving mem-
bers of this bar who for many years met and associated with him
while he was actively practicing law in this court.
Practicing law as did Mr. Stevenson and also many others of
this bar during the years of Mr. Stevenson's greatest activities
as a lawyer, is an exceedingly arduous and wearing and, at times,
almost exasperating occupation.
Sometimes in the heat and excitement of forensic warfare
the combatants become worked up to an almost dangerously high
pitch of feeling.
Mr. Stevenson was not, nor is any high-class trial lawyer, al-
ways exempt from exhibiting considerable belligerency of man-
ner and speech towards opposing counsel, or occasionally express-
ing a not very exalted opinion of their knowledge of the law and
memory of the facts in the case on trial, but I never knew him to
impugn the motives or question the honesty of an adversary or
to say or do anything even under great provocation that would
create in his opponent a lasting feeling of resentment or ill-will.
I recall a spontaneous gathering at Mr. Stevenson's home,
twenty-nine years ago, on the eve of his departure for Washing-
64 ADLAI EWIKG STEVENSON
ton to assume the duties of Assistant Post Master General under
the first administration of President Cleveland, at which gather-
ing practically all the members of the McLean County bar were
At that time nine-tenths or more of the members of this bar
were ardent and militant republicans, yet notwithstanding the
then recent national defeat of their party ; notwithstanding the
many political bufferings and bruises they had received at the
hands of Mr. Stevenson in his triumphal campaigns for con-
gressional honors, and the chastisements he had at times adminis-
tered to many of them in the forum, every laudatory remark of
the speaker who presented to Mr. Stevenson the gift of the bar
in token of the high esteem in which he was held by its members,
was cheered quite as lustily and heartily by every republican as
by any democrat. And I well remember, too, that while respond-
ing Mr. Stevenson's eyes were overflowing with tears and that
his emotion was such that it was with the greatest difficulty that
he could control his voice sufficiently to express his heartfelt
thanks and appreciation.
Between Mr. Stevenson and his brother-members of the Mc-
Lean County bar the ties of friendship and high fraternal re-
gard were never broken nay, not even strained.
Distinguished and highly honored as he was in the years of
his greatest activity I think that Mr. Stevenson was never more
admirable, never more lovable, than in the evening of his life, in
the years of his semi-retirement but not of suspended usefulness.
Years, it is true, which brought to him the inevitable diminution
of physical vigor and much, very much, of sad bereavement and
most poignant grief, but years which, withal, seemed to bring out
in even bolder relief his greatness of soul, his illimitable kindness
of heart and the undimmed luster of his splendid intellect.
Often, no doubt, the obsequies of the distinguished dead have
been attended with pomp and circumstance that were absent from
his, but few, indeed, have been so sincerely loved in life and
mourned in death as was he, by the multitudes who passed in
reverent silence beside his bier.
In his life his brethren of this bar one and all admired and
loved him. In his death we shall not cease to honor and revere
REMARKS OF JOHN T. LILLARD BEFORE THE McLEAN COUNTY
CIRCUIT COURT, CONVENED IN MEMORY OF ADLAI E. STEV-
I cannot permit this occasion to pass without making my con-
tribution. Mr. Stevenson was for forty years my beloved friend.
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 65
In August, 1873, I was, as a youth, the favored bearer of a
letter of introduction to Adlai E. Stevenson. The man I thus
met was then thirty-eight years of age, blond, clear-eyed, tall,
erect, well groomed. How vivid to me now is the picture.
Mrs. Stevenson, then in the very bloom of young womanhood,
endowed with a wealth of physical, mental and heart charm, was
a royal consort to her knightly husband.
These words of praise might seem superlative to strangers.
To us they express the simple truth.
I never knew Mr. Stevenson's father. I knew his mother
well. Her son was much like her. It is not surprising that such
a mother might have such a son. We can in part conjecture the
prayers for his future which this God-loving and son-loving
mother mingled with her cradle songs and ministrations over her
fair-haired boy. Her prayers were richly answered.
His success as a lawyer which was earnestly wished for as he
entered upon that profession, came promptly and with unusual
She must have asked for her son bodily and mental health.
For nearly four score years the people of this community wit-
nessed in this citizen the highest type of a sound mind in a sound
If his mother yearned for her son to hold as she believed in
the tenets of her religion, in this again her hopes were fulfilled.
Layman, as he was, without preachment or display, he was al-
ways the defender of the Faith.
If she prayed for him to be honored, loved and trusted by
his home people and community, these hopes were modest, even
as she was modest, for he became trusted, honored and loved,
by his State and by the nation, as he was at his home town.
If she cherished ambition for him to acquire position, polit-
ical honors, leadership of men, the realization was far beyond
reasonable anticipation. He, in addition to many other public
offices, occupied with dignity and honor to himself and his
country, the high executive office held by Jefferson, John
Adams, John C. Calhoun, John C. Breckenridge the highest
office but one ever held in a republic.
The Bar of McLean County is deeply gratified that such a
man was for more than half a century one of us, and at all
times, even in the moments of his highest exaltation, he was as
unobtrusive as the youngest and humblest member of this bar.
From the time he enrolled Mr. Stevenson was always a mem-
ber of this bar. We, as a body and as individual lawyers, are
all and each sharers in his varied achievements, and they were
many for his professional, forensic and social honors fully
equalled his brilliant political successes.
If kindliness of heart and love of fellow man was invoked
66 ADLAI EWING STEVENSON
upon the head of this man when his young life began, we all
know how abundantly that invocation was answered. It was
not in him to merely stop, listen and answer appeals. His walk
was not confined to the highways of life. In by-ways and un-
frequented paths he made frequent excursions and there min-
istered to hungry mouths and hungry hearts. He was, instinc-
tively, no respecter of persons, clan or station. His big heart
reached out to his fellows everywhere. The Good Samaritan
was his unconscious prototype. He contributed to the binding
up of wounds, whether of friend or foe or stranger.
Kindliness was the musical key note to Mr. Stevenson's en-
tire life and accomplishments. Of the political rewards, high
official positions, public and private honors which he received
we are justly proud. Gentleness of character and delicacy of
kindliness in private life and everywhere the lavish gift of na-
ture was the quality which adorned and distinguished Mr.
Stevenson throughout his life, even more than his high honors
and official positions could possibly distinguish him. Many
have shared with him in political honors. Few indeed are those
enriched by nature with the personal magnetism, loveliness of
character, social charm and helpfulness to fellow men, as was
Adlai E. Stevenson. It seems to me as if the divine modeler
of human clay, when he fashioned this friend of ours and se-
lected his quality and attributes, was minded to give to the
world a rare man, stamped by the Master Artist with distinctive
He sleeps secure to fame. The annals of his times record his
life in the nation's history. He is enshrined in affectionate mem-
ory so long as memory shall last.
SPEECH OF CHAKLES L. CAPEN AT BAB MEETING
When I was a boy and in my early manhood, the McLean
County Bar consisted of old-time country lawyers, one of the
younger being Mr. Stevenson. These lawyers regarded their
profession as a sacred trust, and valued it chiefly for the oppor-
tunities it gave for greater service to the community, and for
the honors thereby obtained. They were active leaders in what-
ever tended to better things. The public welfare and prosper-
ity were their chief concern. They recognized their license to
practice imposed added duties and believed that a lawyer, how-
ever eminent and successful, if only a lawyer, was but one-ninth
of a man.
Their books were few, but these were fundamental, read
and re-read until they became part of their intellectual being.
They applied their mental powers in applying these principles
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 6/
to the cases in hand, and thus constantly grew in scholarly
strength to a degree we of later days can hardly appreciate.
They lived up to high ethical ideals; they recognized and
obeyed the duty of fairness and courtesy towards all; they ap-
preciated that justice is ' ' the chief concern of man, ' ' and that
they were her ministers.
One result was many of them were sought as leaders in
politics and as office-holders. The people trusted and relied
upon them. We do not read of corruption in campaigns or in
office in those days. Upon the rostrum great questions were
discussed by candidates and others, and the appeal was to rea-
son and conscience. Politics then was regarded "the grand-
est word in the language," and "the politician the most use-
ful of mankind."
To these old-time country lawyers we owe a debt we should
always remember with gratitude. They held the foundations
of our jurisprudence, and were a large factor in bringing about
our heritage. It is eminently true of them that "the compara-
tive civilization of a country can be measured by the relative
power and influence of its bar."
Another characteristic of the old-time country lawyer was,
he was a student in solid literature ; in history, particularly of
his own country and state, in what had been achieved in the
past, the works of the earlier masters, ancient and modern ; in
the science of government, the biographies of great men. They
knew these pursuits were necessary for the adequate study and
solution of present problems. In all this, Mr. Stevenson was
diligent and thoro. Especially in his later years, there was not
any one in the United States who had a prof ounder or wider
knowledge of men and measures, of the philosophy of public
affairs and acquaintance, largely personal, of the publicists,
than had he. This not only gave him great help in official life,
but developed him as a lawyer.
We, the later generation of lawyers, have different ideals,
with the consequence that the community does not have the
same confidence or respect for us our predecessors enjoyed.
And so we shall not do Mr. Stevenson full justice when memory
recalls the high rank of Mr. Stevenson as a lawyer, unless we
bear in mind he was one of the truest examples of the old-time
country lawyer; or when we think of his labors and achieve-
ments in public life, unless we recognize he was a politician of
the old school, with its lofty and ennobling standards.
68 ADLAI EWING STEVENSON
IN THE JOURNAL OF THE PROCEEDINGS OF THE CITY COUNCIL
OF CHICAGO FOR THE REGULAR MEETING HELD JUNE 15,
IS A COMMUNICATION FROM MAYOR HARRISON, ADVISING
THE DEATH OF THE HON. ADLAI E. STEVENSON, AND REC-
OMMENDING THE ADOPTION OF A RESOLUTION OF APPRE-
CIATION OF HIS WORTH, CHARACTER AND PUBLIC SER-
VICES. UNANIMOUS CONSENT WAS GIVEN FOR THE CON-
SIDERATION OF THE RESOLUTION AND ALDERMAN HEALY
MOVED THAT IT BE ADOPTED. THE MOTION WAS CARRIED
UNANIMOUSLY BY A RISING VOTE. THE TEXT OF THE
RESOLUTION WAS AS FOLLOWS:
"Whereas, The Hon. Adlai E. Stevenson, former vice-pres-
ident of the United States, departed this life in this city on the
14th day of June, 1914, after having been a citizen of the state
of Illinois for almost half a century ; and,
"Whereas, Gen. Stevenson's high character and ability and
the attractiveness of his personality were recognized thruout
the entire nation and his long continued, distinguished and
honorable public services culminating in the vice-presidency of
the United States have reflected great credit upon the state of
"Whereas, In the death of Gen. Stevenson the state of Illi-
nois has lost one of her most honored and distinguished citi-
zens; now, therefore, be it
' ' Resolved, That the city of Chicago, by its council, hereby
expresses its high appreciation of the character, worth and pub-
lic services of the late Gen. Stevenson and its sense of loss and
sorrow at his death, and its sincere sympathy for his family
in their bereavement ; and be it further
"Resolved, That this resolution be spread upon the records
of the city council and that a copy thereof suitably engrossed
be forwarded to Gen. Stevenson's family."
RESOLUTIONS OF THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS OF McLEAN
"Whereas, during the last month, the final summons has
called from earth our illustrious townsman, Adlai E. Stevenson,
who closed a matchless career full of honor and rich in all of
the attributes of exalted manhood a career notable alike for
its purity, energy and statesmanlike ability; and
"Whereas, he occupied many posts within the gift of his
country, from prosecuting attorney, back in his young manhood
at Metamora, to the office of vice-president of our great nation,
ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON 69
and discharged the duties of all these offices with that fidelity
to the public welfare that is an essential to the perpetuation of
the republic, and tho many differed with him politically, yet
as a man in the best and widest sense he had the highest
respect of all, and measured up to that high standard which we
point to as an ideal ; and,
"Whereas, in his death our city, county, state and nation has
sustained the loss of one of its most loved and honored sons,
and we, in McLean county, feel his departure in a closer and
deeper sense for he was one of us in spirit and in truth ; there-
fore, be it
"Resolved, that as a mark of the esteem in which Adlai E.
Stevenson was held by this honorable body, and the people of
the community, that we spread upon the records of this body
this brief appreciation of his great worth, his upright life and
his masterful attainments, and, be it further
"Resolved, that we extend our condolences to his family,
and that copies of these resolutions be furnished to them. ' '
Dated at Bloomington, 111., this 25th day of June, 1914.
D WIGHT E. FEINK.
TELEGRAM FROM PRESIDENT WILSON
Washington, D. C. Mrs. Wilson joins me in offering to you
and the members of your family our deepest sympathy in your
hour of sorrow. May the memory of your father's distinguished
service to the state and nation go far to mitigate the loss you
have sustained. Woodrow Wilson.
AN APPRECIATION BY THE SECRETARY OF STATE BRYAN
The death of ex- Vice-president Stevenson removes from the
political life of the nation one of the great democrats of this
generation, a man of high character and of the broadest sympa-
thies. He used his rare ability and rich experience on the side
of the people. To the sturdy qualities of an enlightened states-
man he added the charms of a fascinating personality. His
multitude of friends share the sorrow that overwhelms his family.
We shall not see his like again.
1892 - 1896
After an absence of four years from Washington, Mr. Stev-
enson returned to the capital as presiding officer of the senate
on March 4, 1893. He recalled with pleasure the fact that dur-
ing the entire time of his service as vice-president, no decision
of his as presiding officer was ever reversed by the senate.
7<D ADLAI EWING STEVENSON
Twice only was there an appeal from his decisions and in both
cases the decision of the chair was sustained by the three-
Upon the wall of Mr. Stevenson's library hangs the farewell
letter addressed to him on his retiring as presiding officer of the
senate. This letter bears the signature of every senator then in
that body. The body of the letter was written by Senator George
F. Hoar, of Massachusetts, one of the ablest and most winning
men that he had ever known, said Mr. Stevenson. He was the
worthy successor to Daniel Webster as senator.
U. S. SENATE'S LETTER TO MR. STEVENSON
UNITED STATES SENATE
Washington, D. C., Feb. 27, 1897.
Hon. Adlai Stevenson.
Sir : The discharge of the important duties incident to your
great office as President of the Unites States Senate has, for the
last four years, brought us into an association with you very
close and constant.
During this long period we have observed the signal abil-
ity, fidelity and impartiality, as well as the uniform courtesy
and kindness toward every member of this body, which have
characterized your official action.
Your prompt decision, dignified bearing, just interpretation
and enforcement of the Rules of this Chamber have very much
aided us in our deliberations, and have won from us an ac-
knowledgment of that high respect and warm personal esteem
always due to the conscientious performance of public duty.
Desiring to give you some expression of these sentiments,
and to testify our appreciation of your valuable services to the
Senate and the country, we take pleasure in tendering you the
accompanying set of silver as a memento of our continued
friendship and regard.
MR. STEVENSON'S FAREWELL ADDRESS BEFORE THE SENATE.
ON THE OCCASION OF THE HON. A. E. STEVENSON'S RE-
TIREMENT FROM THE VICE PRESIDENCY, MARCH 4, 1897, HE
DELIVERED THE FOLLOWING FAREWELL ADDRESS BEFORE
THE SENATE, GIVING HIS VIEWS REGARDING THE VICE
PRESDENCY. HE SAID IN PART:
"Chief among the favors political fortune has bestowed
upon me, I count that of having been the associate and known
something of the friendship of the men with whom I had so
long held official relation in this chamber. To have been the
presiding officer of this august body is an honor of which even
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON ft
the most illustrious citizen might be proud. I am persuaded
that no occupant of this chair, during the one hundred and
eight years of our constitutional history, ever entered on the
discharge of the duties pertaining to this office more deeply
impressed with a sense of the responsibilities imposed, or with
a higher appreciation of the character and dignity of the great
"During the term just closing questions of deep import to
political parties and to the country have here found earnest and
at times passionate discussion. The chamber has indeed been
the arena of great debate. The record of four years of parlia-
mentary struggles, of masterful debates, of important legisla-
tion, is closed and passes now to the domain of history.
"I think I can truly say, in the words of a distinguished
predecessor, ' In the discharge of my official duties I have known
no cause, no party, no friend. ' It has been my endeavor justly
to interpret and faithfully to execute the rules of the senate. At
times the temptation may be strong to compass partisan ends
by a disregard or a perversion of the rules. Yet I think it safe
to say the result, however salutary, will be dearly purchased
by a departure from the method prescribed by the senate for
its own guidance. A single instance as indicated might prove
the forerunner of untold evils.
"It must not be forgotten that the rules governing this
body are founded deep in human experience ; that they are the
result of centuries of tireless effort in legislative hall, to con-
serve, to render stable and secure the rights and liberties which
have been achieved by conflict. By its rules the senate wisely
fixes the limits to its own power. Of those who clamor against
the senate and its mode of procedure it may be truly said,
' They know not what they do. ' In this chamber alone are pre-
served, without restraint, two essentials of wise legislation and
of good government the right of amendment and of debate.
Great evils often result from hasty legislation, rarely from the
delay which . follows full discussion and deliberation. In my
humble judgment the historic senate, preserving the unre-
stricted right of amendment and debate, maintaining intact the
time-honored parliamentary methods and the amenities which
unfailingly secure action after deliberation, possesses in our
scheme of government a value which cannot be measured by
words. The senate is a perpetual body. In the terse words of
an eminent senator now present, ' the men who framed the con-
stitution had studied thoroly all former attempts at Republi-
can government.' History was strewn with the wrecks of un-
successful democracies. Some time usurpation of the executive
power had brought popular governments to destruction. To
guard against these dangers, they placed their chief hope in the
72 ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON
senate. The senate which was organized in 1789, at the inaug-
uration of the government, abides and will continue to abide,
one and the same body, until the republic itself shall be over-
thrown or time shall be no more.
"Twenty-four senators who have occupied seats in this
chamber during my term of office are no longer members of
this body. Five of that number Stanford, Colquit, Vance,
Stockbridge and Wilson 'shattered with the contentions of
the great hall,' full of years and of honors, have passed from
earthly scenes. The fall of the gavel will conclude the long and
honorable terms of service of other senators, who will be borne
in kind remembrance by their associates who remain.
' ' I would do violence to my feelings if I failed to express my
thanks to the officers of this body for the fidelity with which
they have discharged their important duties and for the kindly
assistance and for the unfailing courtesy of which I have been
ME. STEVENSON'S PORTRAIT UNVEILED BLOOMINGTON,
NOVEMBER 26, 1914
In the presence of several hundred people, filling all the
available space of the reading room and the art annex of the
Public Library, the curtain was withdrawn on Thanksgiving
afternoon from the life-sized oil portrait of the late Adlai E.
Stevenson. Coincident with the formal unveiling of this work
as a permanent feature of the Russell art room, there were de-
livered a number of short addresses from citizens who had
known Mr. Stevenson in life, recalling some of the outstanding
features of his notable career.
The ceremony of the afternoon was strictly an affair just
among ourselves. It was a tribute of Bloomingtonians to a dis-
tinguished Bloomingtonian, and it had more of the personal ele-
ment in it than characterized the more formal eulogies pro-
nounced at the services immediately following Mr. Stevenson 's
death last June.
Immediately following the brief talks by several citizens the
company of listeners gathered, standing, in the art room itself,
and centered their gaze upon the center of the east wall, where
was draped a blue curtain. Rev. J. N. Elliott, who had acted as
master of ceremonies, then introduced Adlai E. Stevenson, Jr.,
son of Mr. and Mrs. Lewis G. Stevenson, and grandson of the
man in whose honor the meeting was held. Young Stevenson
slowly pulled the cord which withdrew the curtain from the
portrait, displaying the painting set in a strong light. As the
familiar features of Mr. Stevenson were shown there were quiet
yet sincere expressions of admiration for the masterly quality
of the work.
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 73
The portrait shows Mr. Stevenson as Bloomington knew
him in the vigor of his manhood, during the last quarter cen-
tury of his life. Mr. Arvid Nyholm, the painter, caught the
spirit of the man in admirable form. The expression and pose
While the audience was standing taking its first view of
the unveiled portrait Miss Nellie Parham read the following
letter, written by Mr. Stevenson in answer to her query last
winter on behalf of the citizens, as to whether he would consent
to the proposition for having his portrait painted and hung in
Bloomington, 111., Feb. 10, 1914.
Dear Miss Parham:
Your very kind letter just received. I am deeply touched
by your suggestion as to my portrait. I can only say that what-
ever my friends do in the matter will be to me a gratification to
Again thanking you and with the kindest regards to your
mother and sister, I remain,
ADLAI E. STEVENSON.
THE PERSONAL TRIBUTES
The formal ceremonies of the afternoon were begun at 3 :30
by Rev. J. N. Elliott, pastor of the Second Presbyterian church,
of which Mr. Stevenson was a member. Dr. Elliott explained
in brief the significance of the occasion and then introduced
one after another Hon. James S. Ewing, Governor Joseph W.
Fifer, Mrs. Sarah Fitzwilliam, Mrs. M. T. Scott and Rev. Mar-
tin D. Hardin, each of whom spoke briefly sentiments of appre-
ciation of Mr. Stevenson's life and character.
MR. EWING SPEAKS
Hon. James S. Ewing was the first speaker of the afternoon,
and he said in part :
"Mr. Stevenson and I were fast friends all of our lives. As
well as being a kinsman, we were always associated in our
everyday and business life. We lived in adjoining houses when
boys, went to school together, were classmates, in business to-
gether and for a quarter of a century were law partners. He
never did any business whatever, great or small, that I did not
know something of it in some way ; we always consulted each
other and exchanged confidences and suggestions. He was pos-
sessed of sterling qualities and worth to the community that
74 ADLAI EWING STEVENSON
honors his memory. He kept the faith, and fought a good fight
in every respect. He kept his faith in God and the church, in
man and in himself. He made friends wherever he went, and,
most of all, he kept them, and could there be a nobler tribute
paid to any man than the citizens of Bloomington today are
paying? > His portrait is placed in the art department of the
public library, where it may be viewed by generations to come,
who will no doubt study the noble face and read in it the noble
character of the man whom Bloomington honors. How true
the quotation and how it applies to Mr. Stevenson, 'A good
name is rather to be chosen than great riches,' and his was a
name without blemish and spotless in uprightness and integ-
GOVERNOR FIFER'S REMARKS
Hon. Joseph W. Pifer, a life-long friend and near neighbor
of Mr. Stevenson, said :
"I am glad indeed to be here on this most interesting occa-
sion. I am glad of this opportunity to voice my appreciation of
the high character and standing of my old neighbor and friend,
who has past on to try the realities of another world.
"Mr. Stevenson's career was eminently successful. From
humble beginning, without wealthy and influential friends to
urge him forward, he climbed step by step until he reached the
second highest position in the gift of the most enlightened and
progressive people in the world. He held many places of trust
and confidence, the duties of which he discharged with singu-
lar fidelity and ability. Thruout his long and busy life he en-
joyed the confidence of the people in an unusual degree, and
that confidence he never violated or betrayed. His whole life
emphasizes the fact that the basis, the indispensable basis, of all
true greatness is integrity of character, and that without it all
seeming success will turn to ashes at last.
' ' Great as Mr. Stevenson was as a public man and a states-
man ; distinguished as a wit and orator as we know him to have
been, it was at his own fireside, surrounded by those whom he
most tenderly loved, that he showed those rare qualities of love
and sympathy which endeared him to us all.
"I knew Mr. Stevenson intimately for nearly fifty years,
and during the greater portion of that time a warm personal
friendship existed between us, which admitted of no secrets.
The memory of this friendship I shall cherish, while I live, as a
most sacred possession.
"The gift of this beautiful portrait by the good people of
Bloomington emphasizes in a more emphatic manner than any
words of mind can do, the tender and affectionate regard in
which he was held by this entire community.
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 75
' ' The memory of our friend will remain with us to the end,
and as the years come and go, there are those who will turn
aside from the busy walks of life to plant a flower and shed a
tear upon his grave. We believe, too, as coining generations
look upon this beautiful portrait, and call to mind his life of
sacrifice and service, they will receive new inspiration and hope
in the performance of life's duties."
MRS. SCOTT'S TRIBUTE
"Mr. Stevenson's career is proof of the fact that in this
great republic, even in the whirl and swirl of political life vir-
tue and kindliness and disinterested devotion to duty are still
the best means of rising to civic distinction and preeminence.
"But by those of us who knew Mr. Stevenson intimately
and personally, he is remembered now, not as congressman,
cabinet officer, or vice-president, but as a beloved friend and
kinsman, whose loyalty of heart, geniality of spirit and incom-
parable charm of speech and manner, made his presence a con-
stant delight and benediction.
"J^shines, in his famous argument against granting the
crown to Demosthenes summing up the whole matter said :
' Most of all, fellow citizens, if your sons ask whose example they
shall imitate, what will you say ? For you know well, it is not
music, nor the gymnasium, nor the schools that mould young
men, it is much more the public proclamations, the public ex-
ample. * * * Beware, therefore, Athenians, remembering
posterity will rejudge your judgment, and that the character
of a city is determined by the character of the men it crowns."
"From this point of view, Bloomington is to be congratu-
lated upon the fact that in Mr. Stevenson she adds a shining
name to the list of her distinguished sons, whose honors were
never sullied by any unworthy deed, and whose power was
never used except to advance the cause of right, and to bring
peace and happiness to all those within the radius of their
' ' This is no time to mourn his passing. Rather today, as we
unveil this beautiful portrait in the city which he loved we,
who so loved him, lift up our hearts in deep thanksgiving, that
to us was vouchsafed the privilege of his friendship and com-
panionship ; that to us there remains the abiding inspiration of
his memory, the afterglow of a luminous life.
"Identified with the grand state of his adoption, his blood
full of its spirit his heart beat and burned to the music of its
greatness. He glowed with pride in its truly great people, and
their historic achievements in every province of human activ-
ity. We, who in life were close to him, are grateful to those
who have done him such honor in word and deed. ' '
76 ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON
MRS. FITZWILLIAM'S TRIBUTE
Mrs. Sarah E. Raymond Fitzwilliam, for many years super-
intendent of the public schools of Bloomington, delivered a feel-
ing tribute to her lifelong friend. She said that the qualities
which most stand out in Mr. Stevenson's life are these: Upright-
ness, fidelity to his trusts, steadfastness, kindly sympathy, and a
perpetual, unclouded, sunny cheerfulness. He never obtruded
his occasional hours of sadness upon others. His face never
showed the darker side of life, nor his voice, nor his step, nor
As we recall again that face which some of us have watched
under many and varied circumstances for years and decades of
years, do we ever remember when it was not to us and to all
who looked upon it a continuous benediction? He was a man,
modest, generous, just, of clean hands and pure heart, self-
denying and self-sacrificing, of integrity so absolute that the
breath of suspicion, even, never sullied his reputation. He
never had any tracks to cover up nor opinions or motives to
conceal. He was charitable to the needy, forgiving injuries
and injustices, brave, fearless, heroic, with prudence ever gov-
erning his impulses and wisdom ever guiding his valor. He
was true to his friends, true to his country, true to himself, ever
gratefully recognizing a divine aid in all that he attempted and
accomplished. For several years while I was acting in the ca-
pacity of superintendent of your city schools, your distin-
guished citizen, Mr. Stevenson, was a member of the board
of education. I have often in the hours of need and uncer-
tainty sought his advice, and never in vain. To his generous
sympathy and wise counsel I attribute much that I was able
to accomplish. Mr. Stevenson had a strong penchant for polit-
ical life and experiences. Tho of a variant political faith with
myself I was always gratified when he won, and to all intents
and purposes cast my vote on his side. As the presiding officer
of the United States senate he wrung from many a rock-ribbed
Republican of old New England their sympathy and regard.
He was always a lover of the beautiful in art and possessed
some notable historic objects of superb material. But neither
this refinement of taste nor his daily life lifted him above will-
ing labor and the tenderest sympathy for those who were rude
When his active public labors were ended he showed himself
beautifully grand and heroic by returning to the scenes of his
manhood 's prime. Here he retired for the last time to his family
home in sight of the spot made sacred to his toils, his prayers,
his joys and triumphs. Here he was surrounded by his old as-
sociates and study, responsibility and professional activity.
ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON 77
At the close of the day the sun flashes its radiance upon the
clouds above and beyond, with all its beauty and glory, and sud-
denly sinks behind the western hills. Serenely to his final rest
Mr. Stevenson passed, after life's blessings all enjoyed, life's
labors done. Bloomington, his home city, has justly thought that
the work of his life was not wholly local, but that his name is a
treasure also of the state and nation, his death a common be-
The canvas on which his face is so truthfully portrayed is
to signalize the gratitude of the generation for whom he la-
bored and whom he knew a commemorative object. This mem-
orial rite is not a tribute of official service ; it is an homage to
personal character. The citizens of Bloomington have given
generously for this grand consummation. As you stand before
this rarely perfect portrait of this townsman and distinguished
friend, we believe your apostrophe will be: "Oh, that those
lips had language ; Voice only fails. ' '
REV. MARTIN D. HAKDIN'S TBIBUTE
Rev. Martin D. Hardin, of Chicago, son-in-law of Mr. Stev-
enson, said that he appreciated the privilege of being present
and the courtesy of being asked to make brief remarks. This
beautiful picture adds to our many causes for thanksgiving.
In the first place we all owe a debt of gratitude to Mr. Nyholm
for this brilliant piece of work. Solely as a work of art, it is
worthy of a prominent place in any gallery. But the artist has
given us not merely a striking piece of work in its light and
tone finish ; he has caught and preserved for all time to come
the spirit and expression of Mr. Stevenson 's noble face. Those
who come after us looking upon this picture must needs know
and feel something of what manner of man he was, and as we
who knew him look there it seems almost as if he himself were
about to speak to us.
This picture is again beautiful and a cause of gratitude be-
cause it is an embodiment of a beautiful spirit in the life of this
community. The finished life is never the product of isolation.
It is possible only where the good and noble find an answering
nobility in other lives. We cannot imagine a Longfellow with-
out a Cambridge, or an Emerson without a Boston. Either of
these men in some other environment would have been differ-
Mr. Stevenson, with the passing of the years, developed into
one of the rarest and most winning personalities in the Amer-
ican life of his day, and something of this was due to the fact
that he lived among those who appreciated him, who loved him
and by that love made him more lovable. Communities do not
always appreciate their most gifted sons. I have been reading
78 ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON
the life and letters of Goldwin Smith, who spent his last thirty
years in Toronto. Tho his was one of the most richly endowed
intellects of his age, he was a stranger and a foreigner in his
adopted city. He was a lonely man, lonely in his domestic cir-
cle, lonely in his political convictions, lonely in his ideals. As
he sat there in his arm chair before the fire you felt an insulat-
ing atmosphere between him and you. Much of this loneliness
was due to his lot falling among people who did not appreciate
him and of whom he could say to them : ' ' I have never been at
home among this people, and have no friends here."
As I look today at this beautiful picture I cannot help but
contrast Goldwin Smith's bitterness and sadness in old age
with the growing peace and happiness and mellow charm, like
Indian summer, which came to Mr. Stevenson as his evening
years were spent among a people who honored him and his
dear life 's companion.
This picture is beautiful to me because of the happiness
which its planning brought to Mr. Stevenson himself. It has
never been my privilege to know a more appreciative nature
than his. He never forgot or overlooked any acts of courtesy
and he never took them as if they were his due. At the end
of his life he had a child's heart, and while honor and favors
were often bestowed upon him, his heart never grew proud or
calloused, but responded like the broad prairies about us with
greater wealth and bounty to every shower and added ray of
He never tired of relating the worth of the men here whom
he had known and loved, and to talk to him was to see and
know and admire Judge David Davis, General McNulta, Mr.
Williams, Judge Lawrence Weldon, nay the whole Blooming-
ton bar for the last half century, or to feel personal acquaint-
ance with and admiration of Matthew Scott, the elder Funks,
Mr. Kerrick, Dr. Dinsmore, and all the men who in business or
professional lines helped to mold the delightful city which he
loved as no other spot on earth. God richly endowed him with
the power of appreciation, and only those who were granted
the privilege of his more intimate relation could ever know
how dear to him were the many evidences that he lived among
his old friends, the wine of whose heart bettered with the pass-
ing years. It gives me great pleasure to say to this company
that among the countless evidences of love and loyalty by the
people of this city, nothing ever touched him more deeply or
gave him greater pleasure, simply because it was a beautiful
kind of farewell abiding pledge and token of undying love,
than the movement to have this portrait painted and hung here
in the public library. In the name of his family, let me deeply
thank all who have had any part in its conception and reali-
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 79
PRESIDENT JOHN W. COOK
The culminating feature of the sixteenth annual meeting of
the Illinois State Historical society at Springfield was an address
by President John W. Cook of the Northern Illinois State Normal
school, DeKalb, 111., on "The Life and Services of Adlai E.
Stevenson." President Cook from early manhood was a close
friend and warm admirer of Mr. Stevenson, and spoke with
authority, and the address will be a valued addition to the ar-
chives of the society. Following are excerpts from President
"I trust that I may be pardoned a word by way of intro-
duction. In centering our thought upon a single character and
endeavoring to render him that recognition to which he is
justly entitled it is wise to discover the especial field of service
which gave him his opportunity and which furnishes the stand-
ards for the judgments of his fellow men. If he has won only
local distinction one set of estimates will be employed. If the
field is coterminous with that of the state another standard
must be employed. If he has risen to national prominence it is
evident that he must be viewed from a wider angle, as he will
be called upon to balance larger counterweights in the scales
that are held by the blindfolded goddess. Moreover, as men
succeed men in places of great honor and corresponding re-
sponsibilities there are inevitable comparisons and consequent
judgments. Let us trust that the volumes that issue from this
admirable society shall be far more than mere tributes of af-
fection, manifestations of local pride, or exhibitions of indis-
criminate hero worship. They should have all of the reliability
possible under condition of nearness, intimate association, and
warm personal regard. The subject of this brief sketch was
distinguished locally ; he attained such prominence in the state
of his adoption as to be the candidate of his party for the most
conspicuous office within gift; he twice represented his dis-
trict in the national congress; his supreme achievement was
his promotion to a position in which only a single life inter-
vened between him and the noblest political dignity within the
gift of men. It thus appears that he is to be estimated not from
a single point of view but from many and it is in these suc-
cessive stages of final development that we are to see the ex-
planation of the ultimate character that conducted itself with
such charm, dignity and grace as to win the admiration of all
who knew him.
Adlai Ewing Stevenson was born in Christian county, Ken-
tucky, on the twenty-third day of October, 1835. He belonged
by descent to the Scotch-Irish race and was thus handicapped
at the beginning of his career with the responsibility of living
up to the repute of that distinguished body of immigrants.
8O ADLAI EW1NQ STEVENSON
They were lowland Scotch by descent and Irish by territorial
location. "Within the three-quarters of a century between 1650
and 1725 there was a liberal emigration of that vigorous stock
from their ancient home to the province of Ulster, in Ireland.
There was never a drop of Irish blood in their veins. Indeed,
the main relation which these two peoples bore to each other
was that of perpetual hostility. They were at one in their ad-
miration of the militant spirit and won at least the respect of
each other as foemen worthy of their steel. They were the
steadfast followers of the reformation leaders, adored Calvin
and Knox, were Presbyterians to a man, took their convictions
of whatever character thoroughly to heart and actually lived
upon their religious ideas. Persecution by those about them
led them to abandon their old home and to take chances with
another stock rather than to be in a perpetual quarrel with
their kin-folk. Wherever they have gone in the new world
they have illustrated in a new way the value of adherence to
great ideas in all of the real issues of life. So remarkable has
been the career of these men of Ulster that whenever there has
appeared a great leader in our American life there has been a
half suspicion that if you were to scratch his skin you would
find a Scotch-Irishman under it. It would burden this page to
mention a tithe of the illustrious names that grace our annals
and whose bearers claim this distinguished descent.
In his early youth his parents removed from Kentucky to
Illinois. His early life in Kentucky, his family training, his
return to the home of his childhood and the associations of his
college life at a highly impressionable age taught him certain
of the social arts that are more notably accented and more
highly prized in the South than in the less conventional North.
He had now enjoyed for a time a taste of those liberating cul-
tures of which so much was made in the last century in nearly
or quite all of the institutions of higher training. It was prob-
ably due to this happy circumstance that he developed that ex-
treme fondness for the noblest literature which he so trans-
parently displayed through the years of his intensest activity
and which he so freely indulged in the later years of his hon-
orable retirement from public duties. To the end of his long
life he sought the companionship of books and thus enjoyed
the ministry of those rare spirits whose luster brightens from
age to age. It was a sobering task that awaited him, but it
was undertaken courageously and accomplished successfully.
Who shall say that in the light of his later life it was not as
well as to have lingered in those academic associations that are
so delightful in retrospect but not always so tempering in their
ADLAI EWINQ STEVENSON 8 1
As this young man stands at the beginning of his active
professional career he possesses the promise and potency of
what he was to become. At no time in his life was there any
striking transformation of character. He exhibited a persistent
growth in the qualities that marked him as a young man. To
one who has spent his life in attempting to aid young people
in the realization of their inherent possibilities a study of this
sort is peculiarly engaging. Inheritance, early environment,
the later play of social forces, the awakening of new ambitions,
the coming to consciousness of already formed preferences of
alignment preferences unconsciously formed ordinarily are
full of meaning. Throughout my long acquaintance with him
I was always impressed with the shaping influences of these
experiences upon him. At twenty-three he was a striking figure
physically. He had an erect carriage, a grace of movement that
appeared in an alert and characteristic walk, a peculiarly at-
tractive courtliness of manner, that accounted in large part for
his remarkable personal popularity, and a certain dignity of
character that suggested a sense of worth and self respect.
In the summer of 1858 he removed to Metamora, the county
seat of an adjoining county, where he was to remain for the
succeeding ten years. His coming into the little community
which he had chosen for his home was distinctly an event in
its history. Although the county was sparsely settled and
schools were few and means of transportation were practically
limited to the saddle horse and the wagon, there was a good
degree of intelligence, a native shrewdness, a discriminating
judgment among the people. Many a man who signed his name
with a cross held not inconsiderable estates that he had won
by his own sagacity and was regarded with warm respect by
his neighbors. The newspaper and the book were yet to as-
sume much of the dignity with which the later years have
crowned them. The county seat was several miles from the
nearest railroad, but cases were not unknown to its tribunal
that attracted to the little village the ablest lawyers of central
and northern Illinois. The presiding judges were capable men
and well versed in the law. Robert G. Ingersoll, already fa-
mous for the brilliancy of his wit, the eloquence of his argu-
ments and the breadth of his legal knowledge, was a familiar
figure in the little court room. One Abraham Lincoln, who
lived at the capital of the state and rode the Bloomington-Dan-
ville circuit, with David Davis, Leonard Swett and others of
their peers, occasionally found himself at Metamora. It was a
good place for the young man. He was not lacking in political
partisanship and the lines were sharply drawn in the intensity
of the political situation, yet he was so amply endowed with
tactfulness and kindliness of spirit that he was scarcely less
82 ADLAI EWTNG STEVENSON
popular with his political opponents than with his political
It would have been a most interesting experience to gather
from those charming visits which it was my valued privilege
to enjoy, a fuller and more detailed story of his Metamora days.
In his "Something of Men That I Have Known," he describes
the country lawyer of three score years ago. Personally he
belonged to a somewhat later period yet he was intimately ac-
quainted with many of the actors and throughout understood
the spirit of the time. Books were few and were the constant
companions on the circuit. The modern and familiar law li-
brary at the county seat may have been a dream of the future
but it was not a reality of the time. Judges and lawyers were
alike pilgrims and traveled together as in ancient Canterbury
The coming to the county seat of a group of eminent attor-
neys was an event to be looked forward to with warm interest.
When court adjourned for the day and the wits were fore-
gathered for an evening of social enjoyment there was a rivalry
quite as intense as that of the court room but it was far more
cordial. Mr. Stevenson's remarkable skill as a social enter-
tainer must have been acquired in large part in the charming
encounters of those historic evenings.
Fine native gifts, a clear sense of their worth, the discipline
of education, the dignity of service, spotless integrity, an un-
tiring industry, a profound respect for certain fundamental
convictions that the race has built into the substructure of a
superior society these are elemental qualities that underlie
any true success. And these are qualities that were easily dis-
tinguishable traits in the possession of this man while he was
yet on the near side of the thirties, the time when men ordi-
narily have only begun to take on those permanent forms which
are to mark them throughout their lives.
In 1866 occurred the crowning event of his life. He was
married to Letitia Green, the daughter of Lewis Warner Green,
D. D. At the time of her birth her father was president of the
Presbyterian Theological Seminary, at Allegheny, Pa. While
she was but a child the family removed to Danville, Ky., where
Dr. Green became the president of Center College. It was while
Mr. Stevenson was a student at that institution that an ac-
quaintance began which ripened into affection and resulted in
the marriage of these congenial spirits. It is not easy to speak
of this gifted woman with the moderation that one should em-
ploy to avoid seeming extravagance of characterization. She
had been reared in a cultivated home. The doors of liberal cul-
ture had therefore been open to her. Her life from childhood
to womanhood had been spent in the intellectual atmosphere
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 8$
of a college community. Her associations had been mainly
with, those who were devoting their lives to the acquisition and
enjoyment of the finest things that can occupy one's attention.
She had interested herself in the serious and solid cultures
rather than in the more superficial accomplishments usually
sought by those who anticipate social careers. Her experiences
had developed that sense of personal dignity and worth that
are the crown of fine womanhood. She was simple and sincere
and able to appreciate worth wherever it might manifest it-
self, though clad in homespun and denied the cultural disci-
plines that are often the mark of gentle breeding. She was
abundantly prepared for any position to which she might be
called in the large range of our American life. She had fol-
lowed the leadings of her affections and had linked her des-
tinies with those of this young man who was making a notable
place for himself in the practice of his profession. Like him
she was destined to distinguished honors. Like him, she bore
those honors with that modesty and charm that have given
her a permanent and revered position in the traditions of the
Daughters of the American Revolution.
It was shortly after the resumption of his interrupted
Bloomington life that I came to know him and that a friend-
ship began that continued to the end. While not a lawyer I
belonged to a family of lawyers and that helped me to indulge
my fondness for their companionship. I was a frequenter of the
courts and a seemingly welcome guest at their offices. It was a
most gratifying fact that I was also remembered upon those
occasions when they celebrated their social inclinations by ban-
quets and similar formalities. I was thus drawn into relations
that were personally delightful and that gave me a vantage
ground to estimate accurately the character of whom I am try-
ing to write. I may properly add that I was never a member
of the political party to which Mr. Stevenson belonged, al-
though I cannot recall any incident in which that was a matter
of the slightest significance so far as our personal relations
were concerned. These things are worth saying, perhaps, as
the warmth of my admiration might otherwise be explained in
part by political considerations.
These were charming years for Mr. Stevenson from 1892 to
the close of the Cleveland administration. One dwells with
fond delay upon the ideal harmony of the man and the place.
His courtliness of manner, his affectionate nature, his genial
wit, his incomparable tact, his ripened intellect, his matured
judgment, his rich experience in public life these all contri-
buted to the production of a presiding officer of unsurpassed
fitness for a body of men selected for the supreme legislative
84 ADLAI EWING STEVENSON
dignity in our system of government. Nor can one forget that
in his home was one who was equally fitted to bear her part
in meeting the social demands of the wife of the vice president
of the United States. With an unaffected dignity that came
from gentle birth and noble culture, and from having shared
the struggles of her husband in his memorable ascent from his
modest beginnings to the lines of succession in which he took
his place among the illustrious men that preceded and followed
him, she shed the pure lustre of her charming character upon
his home and honored him by her ideals of womanly worth.
It is interesting to read the chapter on the vice-presidency
on the chatty and entertaining book to which reference has
been made. It covers a bare half-dozen pages, and one would
not suspect its author of having been one of those of whom he
wrote, except from the presence of the brief address with which
he closed his connection with the distinguished body, over
whose deliberations he had presided for a quadrennium.
Repeated reference has here been made to "Something of
Men I Have Known. ' ' This is Mr. Stevenson 's most gracious
gift to those who have known him and admired him and who
hold him in affectionate remembrance. Its pleasing humor ; its
charming, gossipy style, so free from the conventionalities of
historical literature; its estimate of men whose names are
household words, as determined by familiar personal contact;
its record of the impressions made upon his mind as he met
these men in the freedom of personal intercourse these fea-
tures are vivid reminders of charming visits at his home, where,
in the seclusion of his library, his talk ran like a rippling brook
that sparkles under the sunshine. There are also re-tellings
of old traditions, Flemish pictures of quaint characters, real-
istic sketches of early experiences, revealing anecdotes, that,
like flash-light snap-shots, caught perishing and passing in-
cidents that gave vivid interpretations of the old life that with-
out them could not be adequately understood. In my treasure
house I have old letters from old friends whose voices are si-
lent; pictures of faces that once looked into mine, memories
of rare companionships with the richness of incomparable gems
about them. This volume is like old letters, cherished pictures,
The encomiums that were called forth by his death will of
themselves fill a volume. There is scant room for them here.
They have one burden that weighs far more than all the rest.
It is of supreme interest to observe that when the end has come
far less is said of the honors that he won at the bar; of the
political dignities with which he was crowned, than of the
things that forever abide. It is so charmingly expressed by
Hon. Proctor Knott, of Kentucky, long an intimate associate,
that it may well be quoted.
ADLAI EWING STEVENSON 85
''Mr. Stevenson comes as near filling my highest ideal of a
model gentleman as anyone that I have ever known. I do not
allude to his attainments as a lawyer, to his ability as a states-
man, nor to any of these varied talents which have given him
such distinction among the prominent men of the times. These
are known and conceded by intelligent people everywhere. I
refer to the gentle virtues so constantly illustrated in all of the
relations of his private life the unaffected kindness of disposi-
tion, the purity of thought, the guileless candor, the fealty to
truth, the harmless mirth, the forgetfulness of self, the tender
regard for the rights and feelings of others and the genuine
sympathy with all around him, which make him the prince of
companions and the paragon of friends, which clothe his pres-
ence with perpetual sunshine and fill his household with do-
mestic affection and happiness. A professed believer in the
sublime truths of the Christian religion, he never by word or
deed affords grounds for even a suspicion of the sincerity of
his faith. ' ' There is more to the same effect. This tribute to
his friend was not written by Mr. Knott when his heart was
wrung by separation but years before the shadows grew long
toward the west.
The voice of the press was musical with the same story.
Those who stood by his bier to speak the last words of fare-
well dwelt finally upon the same theme. And now that the
book is ended and that the hooded angel with the sleepy pop-
pies in her hand has clasped the ' ' brazen covers ' ' and that the
passions of men have died away, and the rivalries are for-
gotten, and the ambitions are dropped like the neglected play-
things of a child, the deep conviction of the supreme value of
character compels the reverent attitude of silence. And so it
is that this man with the kind heart and the genial face and
the gentle grace of courtesy, with the honors that he won and
with the affectionate approval of his fellow men, takes his
place in the permanent annals of his time.
UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS-URBANA
IN MEMORIAY: LETITIA GREEN STEVENSON, AD