fr3jv^ BOSTON 1 A Mffi!
iirTTrSiK;'''' condita a.d. ^^J/MiiM
li 111,.. ,„i^i M^Ox,,^^ DO^^M^)i'H;il
THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
\J KJ \J U U I L-* I' ' •
PROCEEDINGS OF THE DEDICATION
FOUNTAIN ON EATON SQUARE,
OCTOBER 24, 1885,
IN MEMORY OF
THEODORE LYMAN, JR.,
Mayor of Boston in 1834-35.
PRINTED BY ORDER OF THE CITY COUNCIL.
Biographical Sketch .......... 13
Description of the Fountain ........ 21
The Dedication ........... 27
The Contribdtors ........... 61
Boston, October 28, 1885.
Hon. Nahum Capen : —
My dear Sir, — The interesting and successful dedication of the
Lyman Fountain at Dorchester, October 24, was an occasion of wliich
many citizens of Boston and other places desire a more complete
history than has been given, and to this end I have been requested
to collect and arrange the speeches, letters, and other material having
reference to the event. The story and commemorative purpose of
the fountain may be familiar to the Boston public of to-day, but, to
give this memorial lasting value, it should contain a statement of the
origin, construction, and motive of this conspicuous tribute to an
eminent citizen. To your zeal and wise counsel Boston is primai'ily
indebted for this beautiful testimonial to a public benefactor, and I
appeal to you for a statement of such facts as you may think proper
Very truly yours,
ROBERT G. FITCH.
Mt. Ida, Dorchester, Nov. 18, 1885.
My dear Sik, — In reply to your inquiry respecting the origin of
the Lyman Fountain I could say much, but I am limited by the oc-
casion to express m3self briefly.
It was my great privilege to enjoy the friendship and confidence of
Theodore Lyman, Jr., at an early period of my manhood, though he
was twelve years my senior.
He was a gentleman of a very superior mind, highly cultivated, and
enriched by extensive and practical knowledge. It was graced with
those genial amenities which give charm to character and influence to
8 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
counsel. While he was an independent thinker, and of firm con-
victions, he was modest in estimating his own opinions, and scrupu-
lously just in his judgment of otliers. With all the dignity natural to
the highest standard of honor and self-respect, he was graciously
attentive to all classes who approached him for aid or advice. His
polished manner and habits of intelligent good-will and candor
gained him many admiring friends, who always found him a patient
listener and a safe adviser. He flattered no one, and no one pre-
sumed to flatter him, for he saw no merit in conduct not based upon
truth and duty.
His first appearance before the public was in his work on the
"Political Condition of Italy," published in 1818, an interesting
book of singular merit and much wisdom. In 1820 he delivered an
oration on the Fourth of July before the town authorities of Boston,
in which may be found instructive examples of patriotic foresight in
regard to the imperative duties and needs of the American republic.
He was a member of the House of Representatives of Massachusetts
from 1820 to 1823, and of the Senate in 1824, always making
for himself a noble record of usefulness. In 1826 he published a
work entitled "The Diplomacy of the United States, — being an
Account of the Foreign Relations of the Country, from the first
treaty with France, 1778, to the present time," an able and impor-
tant work of two volumes, octavo, which passed to a second edition in
1828. This work evinced great labor and accuracy, and afforded a
just idea of the author's comprehensive mind, and of his views as to
This was a period when men of the past, and young men of the
da}', gave their special attention to the nature of political parties,
and to the principles which led to their organization. General
Lyman was not slow to understand the crisis, and he did not hesitate
to leave the party with which he had been identified, and to give his
influence in favor of Andrew Jackson for the presidency. That he
was not influenced by any selfish or ambitious motives in such a
change may be inferred from the fact that after the election he de-
clined to be a candidate for any office witiiin the gift of the Federal
Government, though eminently fitted for tlie highest.
When he consented to be a candidate for the mayoralty
of Boston he was influenced bv disinterested motives to serve the
city, and to assert the diguity of his character, which had been mis-
represented by thoughtless partisans.
Knowing him so well, and having personal knowledge of his
motives and views of public duty, I became an admirer of his noble
character. I respected and honored him as a man, and loved him as
a friend. By his considerate munificence he became a public bene-
As he was the first to propose the introduction of water into the
city of Boston, I felt that a proper monument to his memory would
be a Fountain, and as Eaton square, in Ward 24, was a sightly
and beautiful spot, I selected it as an eligible locality upon which to
But in giving these details, which are mostly personal to myself, I
beg to ask attention to the interesting fact, which affords me much
gratification, that so many influential citizens of Boston have cheer-
fully cooperated with me in collecting the means to secure a result
which has been received with so much popular favor. And in this
connection I desire to commend the very prompt action of the City
Government in v^oting an appropriation from the Phillips Fund,
which gave success to the Memorial which has been dedicated.
These creditable acts, and the list of contributors, make an essential
part of the monument.
Let the Fountain be looked upon not only for its beautiful display
of the graceful streams and cascades of water in the sunlight, but
as a standing lesson in honor of human goodness to be found in the
examples of Theodore Lyman, Jr., in his public and private life.
Ever faithfully yours,
Robert G. Fitch, Esq., Boston, Mass.
Theodore Lyjian, Jr., in honor of Avliose memory the Lyman
Fountain was erected, was born in Boston, February 20, 1792.
From a memoir prepared by his son, Colonel Theodore Lyman,
at the request of the New England Historic Genealogical So-
ciety, are obtained the leading focts of his ftimily history and
He was of the sixth generation from Richard the Pilgrim,
who with his ftimily came to New England in 1631, in the
ship that brought John Eliot. Richard's son John, born in
England in 1623, married Dorcus Plum in 1654, and settled in
Northampton, where his son Moses, born February 20, 1662,
also lived. His son, of the same name, was born in 1689 and
married Mindwell Shelton in 1712. He was the tatheroften
children, of whom Isaac, born February 25, 1725, was sent to
Yale College, graduating in 1747. Three years later he mar-
ried Ruth Plummer, of Gloucester, and was settled over the
Parish in Old York, Me., where he remained during his life,
and where his son Theodore was born, January 8, 1753.
This son, in his early manhood, came to Boston and
achieved conspicuous success as a merchant. For his second
wife he married, in 1786, Lydia Williams, a niece of Colonel
Thomas Pickering. The subject of this sketch was the second
son of this marriage. He received his early education at
Phillips Academy, Exeter, N.H., and graduated at Harvard
College in 1810. He manifested strong literary tastes, in
which he was encouraged by his lather, who, in 1812, sent him
14 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
to Edinburgh to study at its University. Here he remained
about two years, living in the family of Rev. Robert Morehead,
a learned and eminent graduate of Oxford, and under that
tutelage he formed close and lasting friendships with many
men then and afterward distinguished in British letters and
politics, among them the Alisons and Francis Jeffi-ey. The
associations of those two years of his plastic youth did much to
broaden and strengthen a mind acutely susceptible to all culti-
vating and refining influences. His subsequent correspondence
with Mr. Morehead and his family, in which familiarly appears
pleasant gossip about friends and acquaintances common to
both, has been published, and is very interesting.
In the spring of 1814 he visited France and spent several
months there, during which time the first restoration of the
Bourbons by the allied armies took place, and upon his return
to America, in the autumn following, he published a spirited
account of his observations and impressions. Mr. Lyman and
Edward Everett were college classmates and life-long: friends.
At this time Mr. Everett had gone to Gottingen for a course
of severe classical study, and between the two young men,
during their separation, there passed much interesting corre-
spondence. One of j\Ir. Lyman's letters contained a very vivid
and graphic description of the great gale in Boston in the
autumn of 1815. Another, written in 1816, after an illness of
a number of months, which almost snapped the thread of life,
was devoted to an admirable analysis of his own psychological
processes, as he felt his way back from utter helplessness and
exhaustion to his normal strength and activities. For the
more complete restoration of his health, Mr. Lyman made a
second trip across the Atlantic, arriving in London in June,
1817, where he remained for some months. His purpose was
to join Mr. Everett at Gottingen, but before doing that he took
a run through the Low Countries, Prussia, and Central Ger-
many, meeting many famous men of letters, among them
AVolf, Goethe, and von Kotzebue, of whom he left interesting
BIOGKAriilCAL SKETCH. 15
notes. His impressions were in no instance second-hand.
They were original and strong, and not always in harmony
with the popular pictures created by the literary hero-worship
of the day. At Paris, again, he became intimate with Hum-
boldt, dcPouqueville, Gallatin, Gerard, the painter, La Fayette,
and many others.
In the autumn of 1818 Mr. Lyman and Mr. Everett left
Paris to pass the winter in Italy ; thence in early spring they
passed through various countries and capitals of Southwestern
Europe, and some sections at that time but little travelled by
Americans. In the autumn of 1819 Mr. Lyman returned
home and set himself to putting Ijefore the public the results of
his observation and study. In 1820 he published a work of
much merit entitled " The Political State of Italy." The title
was hardly comprehensive enough for the mattter. True, it
discussed with thoroughness and accuracy the forms of govern-
ment, finances, and dominant political influences that entered
into the complex history of the various petty kingdoms and
principalities of Italy at that time ; but the author, from the
richness of his varied material, enlarged the field to include the
constitution of society, its customs, superstitutions, traditions,
ambitions, and even its food and raiment. It was altogether
the freshest and most reliable picture of Italian life at that time
that the public possessed. It displayed remarkable original
research, and was a most valuable addition to the substantial
literature of the day. In 1820, also, Mr. Lyman delivered the
Fourth of July oration before the town authorities of Boston,
in which he discussed the future of the republic, and treated
grave problems of government with great skill and wisdom.
In 1826 appeared the first edition of his most important work,
" The Diplomacy of the United States," which showed the
characteristics of his earlier writings in more conspicuous
But literature made onl}^ a part of Mr. Lyman's busy
career. He was much interested in public affiiirs of all kinds.
16 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
and especially in the State militia. From 1820 to 1823 he
was aide-de-camp to Governor Brooks, and from the latter
date to 1827 he commanded the Boston Brigade, and b}^ his
strict discipline made it a body of troops creditable to the
city and State. In politics he also took an active interest.
From 1820 to 1825 he was a member of the Massachusetts
Legislature, occupying a seat in the Senate in 1824. His
family traditions in politics were Federal, but he joined the
opposition to John Quincy Adams, supporting first Crawford
and then Jackson for the presidency. In 1834 and 1835 he
was Mayor of Boston, and gave the city a dignified, fearless,
and able administration, during a period that called for
unusual qualities in her chief magistrate.
The several rows of now beautiful trees on the Common
that radiate from the foot of Joy street, and those which
throw their grateful shade across the walk between the head
of Park street and West street, were planted under his direct
superintendence, while he urged the immediate introduction
of pure water, and presented to the Council calculations and
estimates bearing upon his recommendations. Though four-
teen years elapsed before his ideas were carried out, his wise
suggestions first gave public spirit an impulse in this direction.
But during his terms as chief magistrate, his ability to deal
with sudden and grave emergencies was thoroughly tested,
as well as his taste and judgment in beautifying and improving
the city. Whatever may be thought of the population of
Boston to-day as compared with that time, it is certainly more
law-respecting and less inclined to violent outbreaks now than
then. The burning of the Catholic convent at Charlestown,
the inflammable condition of the public mind toward the
Catholic institutions of the city, and the mob demonstration
from which Garrison barely escaped with his life, were
formidable situations under Mayor layman's administration ;
but he handled them with admirable tact and success ; for it
was due to his sagacity, presence of mind, and firmness, that
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH. 17
the results were no more terrible. Mr, Garrison promptly
declared that " under God he owed his life to the Mayor," and
the same might have been said of many other lives which
would have been sacrificed had a weak or timid man been in
the Mayor's place.
His public life closed with his second term as INIayor. In
1835 he lost his eldest daughter, a child of great promise ;
and in the following year his wife, whom he loved with
the full strength of his manly nature, also died. This
double bereavement almost overpowered him. The cloud
never entirely lifted, but the philanthropic spirit, always
characteristic of him, shone out more 1)rightly than ever.
Henceforth he devoted his time, talents, and money to elevat-
ing and alleviating the conditions of others. He became
profoundly interested in the question of raising the poor
and criminal classes, and especially youthful criminals whose
natures had not grown rigid in vice and depravity.
In the spring of 1846 a Legislative committee reported
a resolution for the erection of a State Manual Labor School,
authorizing the Governor to appoint three commissioners to
cause buildings to be erected suitable for the accommoda-
tion of three hundred scholars. The resolution was passed
the same spring, and ten thousand dollars appropriated for
the purpose. The commission was created, and Hon. Alfred
D. Foster, of Worcester, was placed at its head. General
Lyman wrote to him ai)pr()ving the plan and offering it his
aid. JNIr. Foster replied requesting General Lyman to give
his views generally upon the plan to be adopted in reference
to such a school. General Lyman at once expressed his
opinion that the sum ap})r()})riat(!d by the State was too
small for the [)urpose, and otfered ten thousand dollars more
on the modest condition that the name of the donor should
not be puldicly known. Near the close of the year he
offered, through Mr. Foster, five or ten thousand dollars
additional for the same purpose if the State would advance
18 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
au equal sum. Two years later, when the school was dedi-
cated, Hon. Emory Washburn alluded in eloquent terms to
the still unknown source of the munificence that had made
it possible to accomplish so much. That was the beginning
of the State Reform School at Westboro', the model of many
similar institutions since erected in other States. General
Lyman lived to see the work well established and to be as-
sured of its success. He was seized with a mortal illness
while travelling in Europe in 1849, and survived his return
to Brookline, the home of his later years, only a few days.
He expired Jul}^ 18, 1849. It was then found that he bad
devised the further sum of fifty thousand dollars to the school,
making in all a gift to his native State of $72,500. He left
also to the Farm School $10,000 and to the Massachusetts
Horticultural Society $10,000.
Within the limitations of a sketch like this it is impossible
to more than suggest what ought to l)e said of its distinguished
subject. As one of the early Mayors of Boston, he made a
record that will honoral)ly endure while the city continues to
have traditions and a history. He was brave, noble, and un-
selfish, and his life was a blessing to his city and generation.
He sought his service and accepted his trusts in those fields
where he thought he could do the most good. He could easily
have been a famous man in national history. He preferred to
be an eminently useful one in the city where he was born.
No honors that this generation or the generations to come
can confer upon his memory will be too large for its deserts.
Whatever helps to keep that memory green, and the character
of General Lyman before posterity, for the example it ought
to be, will serve as a memorial with living power, and l)e a
perpetual public benefit.
There seems to have been a special propriety in selecting a
fountain as the form of a memorial of a man wlio was distin-
o:uished for pul)lic spirit and public 1)enefactions. Among the
institutions of civilization, in all ages, fountains have held a
conspicuous and honorable rank. Pausanias asks if that can
properly be called a city which has "neither ruler, gymnasium,
forum, nor fountain." In mythology, in romance, in history,
and in religion, even the Christian religion, the fountain has
maintained a constant prominence. When Greece and Rome
stood at the head of the world's civilization, their fountains
were numerous and frequently elaborate. There was a super-
stitious reverence for their kindly office, which associated
them with deities, nymphs, and heroes. They were refresh-
ing and beautifying agencies, and miraculous qualities of heal-
ing and transformation were frequently attriluited to them. In
the decline of these two great types of ancient civilization the
fountains suffered no degradation. In the evolution of barba-
rian nations the fountain maintained its place and mingled its
traditions with all the variations of pagan ])elicf. When in
turn that began to be supplanted by the Christian faith, the
early fothcrs were too wise or perhaps too reverent to antago-
nize the spiritual idea of which the fountain had so long been the
visible sign, but employed it with much success in spreading
the new light by substituting a saint for a pagan divinity.
Even after this became unnecessary, the custom was continued,
and in some portions of the Christian world it still exists. A
22 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
history of the fountains of Europe, could it be faithfully writ-
ten, would be as interesting and instructive as a history of its
temples, cathedrals, castles, palaces, or its most celebrated
monumental memorials. It w^ould be a history of art, of wor-
ship, of national gratitude, of poetic fanc}^ of spiritual evolu-
tion, of race distinctions. In short, the history of civilization
miffht almost be constructed with the fountain as the central idea.
Eaton square, the site of the Lyman Fountain, is a most in-
viting situation for a work of this kind. It is a sightly and
beautiful spot and the centre of beautiful environs. It lies in
historic Dorchester, one of the gems in the resplendent circle
of new Boston, whose attractions are rapidly filling it with a
resident population of wealth and taste. It is easy of access,
and the enterprise that is constantly responding to the demands
of the public by developing increased conveniences of travel,
will make it every year more accessible. The idea of setting
up a handsome fountain upon this most eligible square, to help
perpetuate the name and commemorate the eminent services of
one of Boston's most distinguished citizens and unselfish bene-
factors, originated with Hon. Nahum Capen. A result has
been achieved for which the city has abundant reason to thank
him and the other gentlemen who entered so heartily and gen-
erously into the plan, which seemed to receive tlie approval
and substantial encouragement of almost every man to whom it
When the private subscription was closed, the following
contributors were appointed a committee to petition the city
for an amount to be added from the "Phillips Fund," viz. : —
Hon. Marshall P. Wilder, H. II. Hunnewell,
Abbott Lawrence, J. Ingersoll Bowditch,
Fred. L. Ames, S. D. Warren,
Wm. Perkins, Samuel Atherton,
Henry L. Pierce, Nahum Capen,
and Mr. Capen was authorized to present the petition to the
THE FOUNTAIN. 23
City Government, which was referred to the Committee on
the Common. The sums asked were promptly recommended
and unanimously granted.
The fountain is a highly ornamental structure of original
design and fine proportions, and is believed to be the highest
and handsomest fountain in the New England States. Its en-
tire altitude is twenty-six feet. The basin is of Monson granite,
and thirty-three feet in diameter. The first pan is twelve feet
and six inches in diameter ; the second pan six feet and eight
inches. The surmounting group of figures represents Venus,
Cupid, and swan, while the figures about the pedestal stand for
the four seasons. The supply of water is from three pipes
attached to a three-inch main, a sixty-pound pressure providing
ample force. One of these pipes discharges through the swan's
mouth and through four dragons on the first pedestal and four
griffins, between the first and second pans. Another furnishes
a supply for one hundred and forty-four jets in the rim of the
first pan, and eighty in the second, while the third pipe feeds
the four cascades at the base of the pedestal. The water from
the jets does not overflow the pan, but discharges through four
gargoyle heads. The fountain proper is of In'onzed iron and
zinc, and was designed and constructed by Mr. M. D. Jones,
of Boston. His experience as a designer and builder of foun-
tains in various parts of New England has been extensive, but
this is one of his most ambitious undertakings as well as one
of his most successful achievements. The basin Avas con-
structed by Mr. John Kelly, a Boston contractor. In its
playing power the fountain has fully realized all expectations.
Mr. Dooguc, City Forester, has taken a deep interest in the
work, and the city authorities generally have seemed to
a})prcciate this valuable and conspicuous addition to our rapidly
enlarging system of city adornment. Built with almost no
expense to the city, the small amount needed for its protection
and repair will ])v l)ut a trifle compared with the delight that it
will constantly furnish.
THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
Cut into the granite basin is this legend : —
IN MEMORY OF
THEODORE LYMAN. JR.,
MAYOR OF BOSTON IN 1834-35.
And upon a Ijronze plate attached to the l)asin is the following
inscription : —
FOUNTAIN AS A MEMORIAL
BY NAHUM CAPEN,
DESIGNED AND CONSTRUCTED
M. D. JONES. BOSTON.
BY WILLIAM DOOGUE, CITY FORESTER,
ACCEPTED AND DEDICATED
HUGH O'BRIEN, MAYOR,
OCTOBER 24, 1885.
By common consent there is no more beautiful month in the
year than October, and Saturday, the 24th, when the L3aiian
Fountain was dedicated, was one of the most typical and beau-
tiful days of that sensuous and enchanting season. The foun-
tain was in perfect order, and the best eflect was obtained.
The City Forester had deftly and tastefully concealed the new-
ness of its immediate surroundings with a wealth of tropical
luxuriance. Handsome equipages were drawn up on all sides of
Eaton square, and a large and interested company of prominent
persons was in attendance. The arrangements contemplated
delights for the ear as well as for the eye, and a carefully pre-
pared musical programme, interpreted by the Germania Band,
added interest and enjoyment to the general exercises, which
were conducted in the followins: order : —
Prepared by J. G. Lennon.
1. "Marciie de la Reine de Saba" ...... Gounod.
2. Pilgrim So\g of Hope ........ Batiste.
PRESENTATION OF THE FOUNTAIN BY THE COMMITTEE
ON THE COMMON TO HIS HONOR
HUGH O'BRIEN, MAYOR.
THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
'The Fountain" (Lines by the Hon. James Russell Lowell; Music, a
Descriptive Fantasy, composed expressly for the occasion, adapted to
the words, and conducted by the composer) . . Calixa Lavallee.
[Dedicated to the lion. Nahum Capen, and sung by Mrs. F. P. Whitney.]
Into the sunshine.
Full of the light,
Leaping and flashing
From morn till night !
Into the moonlight.
Whiter than snow,
Waving so flower-like
When the winds blow !
Into the starlight
Eushing in spray,
Happy at midnight,
Happy by day !
Ever in motion.
Blithesome and cheery.
Still climbing heavenward,
Never aweary : —
Glad of all weathers,
Still seeming best,
Upward or downward,
Motion thy rest ; —
Full of a nature
Nothing can tame,
Changed every moment.
Ever the same ; —
Darkness or sunshine
Tliy element ; —
Glorious fountain !
Let my heart be
Fresh, changeful, constant,
Upward, like thee !
4. " Dkeams on the Ocean" Waltzes
5. a. j Selections fkom Oceron .
b. I Hallelujah, from Messiah
C. a. ( Grand Polonaise
i. \ Coronation March
7. a. Selections of Popular Airs,
b. March from Tannhauser,
c. National Hymn, "America."
Dedicated to the Hon. Nahnm Gapeni
Words by the Hon. James Rossell Lowell.
Music by Calua Lavallee.
T-T^f iffn ^ ^
^■'#- | » up:
THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
m r^^~^s w^
#-^ (*. - 1- ^
1. In - to the sun - shine,
2. Glad of all weath - ers,
In - to the
Glad of all
sun-shine full of the light,
weath-ers still seeming best,
Leaping and flash - ing,
Upward and downward,
^ — J^
Leaping and flashing from morn till night,
Upward and downward motion thy rest,
b ff ^ ;^
-« — ^
^« i - -^-^-d-W-
^-m — *-
In - to the moon - light,
Full of a na - ture,
Whi - ter than
Noth - inof can
Izznqjn:^ i 1 1 giin^^z 'l^i'^' d T^ i -^^-q
-~1 — « —
THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
snow, Wav - ing so flower-like Waving
tame, Chang'd ev - 'ry mo - raent, Ev -'ry
when the winds blow, In - to the starlight. Rushing in
moment ev - erthe same, Ceaseless as - pir - ing. Ceaseless con
Happy at mid • night, Happy by day, Ever in
Darkness or sun - shine, Thy el - ements, Ceaseless as -
.>. — --
-t> • <^
mo-tiou, Blithsome and cheery, Still climbing Heavenward, Never a
pir-ing. Ceaseless con - tent, Darkness or sun - shine, Thy el - e •
■ <^ * -
i — ^-
Hs — jS I r- ^
In - to the sun - shine,
Glo- ri - OU3 fouu - tain.
In - to the
Glo - ri - ous
THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
sun-shine full of the light,
fountain let thy heart be,
Leaping and flash - ing,
Fresh, changeful, con - stant,
fr— gi — S — :J — ^-
Flashing from morn
Constant up - ward
thee . . .
■t g i :^
THE DEDICATION. 33
PRESENTATION OF THE FOUNTAIN.
Mt. Ida, Dorchester, Mass.,
October 24, 1885.
Mv DEAR Sir, — I luivc the liouor to enclose a list of the names
of the contributors to the fund to erect a fountain on Eaton square.
Ward 21, in honor of Theodore Lvnian, Jr., Mayor of Boston in
1834-35, and in their belialf to report to j^our lionorable committee
that the fountain is completed, and ready for acceptance and dedi-
Two thousand dollars (S2,000) have been subscribed, collected,
and deposited. Your Board very promptly voted from the Phillips
Fund the sum of 84,050, and for incidentals §175, and the amount
of means has been provided for the full payment of all demands
connected with said fountain and its dedication.
I am, very respectfully.
Your obedient servant,
Hon. J. II. Mullane,
Chairman of Committee on the Common, Boston, Mass.
Boston, October 24, 1885.
To His Honor Hugh O'Brien, J/ayo/-.- —
Sir, — The Committee on the Common have tlie honor to present
the communication of Nahum Capen, who represents the contributors
to the Lyman Fountain, and to ask your acceptance of said fountain
as the unencumbered property of the City of Boston.
J. H. Mullane,
E. F. Leighton,
CiiAS. II. Allen,
J. D. W. French,
Wm. Tailor, Jr.,
CiiAS. W. Whitcomb,
Michael G. Lynch,
o4 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
Mayor O'Briex accepted the fountain in the following
appreciative address : —
Mr. Chaieman, Ladies and Gentlemex^ — I ac-
cept the gift on behalf 'of the city, and thank the
gentlemen who have had charge of the erection of the
fountahi, for the faithful and creditable manner in which
they have performed the work.
Boston is renowned for her beautiful suburbs, and
the artistic fountain you have erected in Eaton square
will make this section of our city more attractive than
ever. We are indebted to the munificent gift of Jona-
than Phillips, who gave by his Avill to the city of
Boston, in 1860, the sum of twenty thousand dollars,
as a trust fund, the income of which shall be annually
expended to adorn and embellish the streets and j^ublic
places in said city, for a portion of the money used in
the erection of this fountain, and also to the generosity
of the public-spirited citizens of Dorchester and of
the city for the balance.
It is also very proper that the fountain should be
named after one of the distinguished Mayors of Boston.
Fifty years ago Theodore Lyman filled the position
with great ability and distinction, and we might say
that we are now celebrating his semicentennial as
Mayor. He Avas a gentleman blessed with a large
property, and was a munificent benefactor of charita-
ble institutions. Li his day and generation he was a
public benefactor, and it is proper that Boston should
honor h's memory. I am happy to know that his son,
grandson, and great-grandson are now on the platform.
It is a name that ought to be handed down to posterity.
THE DEDICATION. 35
I take great interest in the affairs of Dorchester. It
is a section of the city that is growing rapidly, and we
are now making extensive im23rovements here, expend-
ing more money for sewers and streets than in any
other section. While doing this practical and necessary
Avork we also pay some attention to the ornamental,
and I again congratuhite the citizens of the Dorchester
District on the completion of their elegant fountain.
After concluding his own speech, Mayor O'Erien read the
following from Hon. Marshall P. Wilder.
Mr. Mayor, — As I dare not expose myself to public
speaking in the open air at this cold season of the
year, I send you a copy of what I would say were I able
to be pi'esent to-day at the dedication of the Lyman
Most gladly would I be with you and particijoate in
the ceremonies of this occasion which is to commemo-
rate the services and the worth of him whose name it
bears, and, also, to thank you for your noble eftbrts to
reform the administration of our city affairs.
The Mayor remarked that when he commenced reading the
speech of Mr. Wilder he was not aware of the contents. If he
had been aware of the complimentary nature of the remarks,
his modesty would have suggested that it should he read by
some one else.
We do not sing from the same psalm-book of religion
or politics, but " handsome is that handsome does," and
I commend you for what you have done in this line of
your duty. Pardon this digression, and let me say
36 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
that I rejoice in the erection of this fountain to bear the
name of one with whom I was well acquainted, and for
whose memory I have great respect.
I knew Gen. Theodore Lyman from the day when
William Lloyd Garrison was mobbed in the streets of
Boston, fifty years ago this very week, and also from
the time when he made his first suggestions in regard
to the introduction of water into this city. He was a
generous, enterprising, patriotic, and benevolent gentle-
man. He gave us money to sustain our Horticultural
Society in its early history, and at his death he left us
ten thousand dollars more. He gave fifty thousand
dollars to found the State Reform School at Westboro',
and was ever ready to lend a helping hand for the i-elief
of sufi'ering humanity. His memory will be cherished
for generations to come as a benefactor of mankind.
I knew the father of General Lyman, one of the old
merchant princes of Boston, to whom we were greatly
indebted in his day for our intercourse and trade with
China. I have the honor to know the present Theodore
Lyman, w^io honors this occasion with his presence to-
day. I would like to know his promising son, the
fourth Theodore Lyman in lineal descent, and I hope it
may be continued through many years to come. It is
good blood, and the more we have of it the better it
will be for us. I believe in the good policy of erecting
public fountains, and opening public parks, provided the
abutters are not too highly taxed for what is no benefit
to them, and here I beg to express my gratitude to
Hon. ^N^ahum Capen for the idea of erecting this foun-
tain in our good old town of Dorchester, and which he
has so successfully brought forth to-day.
THE DEDICATION. 37
But I will not prolong this speech. Suffice it to say
that I give a hearty welcome to every measure which
has for its object the promotion of the health, hapi)i-
ness, and salvation of mankind.
Long may this fountain stand to commemorate the
name of Theodore Lyman, and be a comfort and bless-
ing to the generations that are to follow us. And Avhen
we have done with earth, may we at last meet around
that fountain of living waters of which if a man drink
he shall thirst no more.
Hon. EoBERT C. WiNTiTROP, who was present as a deeply
interested spectator and listener, not expecting to participate
in the exercises, was next called upon, and responded as
follows : —
You have taken me, Mr. Mayor, entirely by surprise.
I came here Avithout a dream of being recognized, and
with no purpose even of venturing at all on this plat-
form. Yet I cannot be insensible to your kind and
complimentary notice of my presence, nor fail to
respond to your call in a few off-hand words.
I am glad of an opportunity to bear testimony to the
sterling qualities of a friend whom I so much valued as
the late Theodore Lyman. He was somewhat my
senior, but I knew him intimately for many years, and
the longer I knew him the more I respected him. I
recall him as a young aide-de-camjJ of Governor John
Brooks, of revolutionary renown. I recall him as the
Captain of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Com-
pany. I recall him as the Commander of the Boston
Brigade. I recall him as one of the early Mayors of
38 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
our city. I was associated with him for several years
as a vestryman of old Trinity Church. He was a
model soldier, an admirable magistrate, a gentleman of
singuLnr elegance, and a citizen of great public spirit.
His history of the diplomacy of the United States
will preserve his name in our libraries, and his large
benefactions have identified it with more than one of
our public institutions of education and charity. I re-
joice that it is now freshly inscribed w^iere all w^ho
drinlv at this fountain, or who gaze with admiration
on its sparkling spray, will be reminded of so exemplary
and excellent a man.
Following Mr. Winthrop came Eev. Peter Roxax, who
said : —
Ladies and Gentlemen, — At the request of my
venerable and enterprising neighbor, Mr. Capen, I con-
sented to be one of those w^ho would address a few
words to you on this occasion. My esteemed friend,
Mr. Capen, must have concluded that a clergyman
would not look much out of place even at the christen-
ing of a fountain — hence the invitation.
The celebration in which we are engaged to-day
must indeed be replete with satisfaction to the peoj^le
of Dorchester, but especially so to those who I'eside in
the immediate vicinity of the Lyman Fountain, the
dedication of which will also add a new chapter to the
already famous history of Meeting-House Hill. As
you gazed on this beautiful fountain 3 ou no doubt ob-
served that the four seasons of the year were repre-
sented by four large figures. This indeed was a very
THE DEDICATION. 39
happy and appropriate idea of the designer of the foun-
tain; for, let me say for the ])enefit of the strangers
amongst us, that no better place could be selected than
Eaton's square to give a practical illustration of the
four seasons of the year. Why, occasionally Ave have
the whole four Avithin the twenty-four hours of the
day. I sincerely hope that Mr. Jones has built this
fountain as strong as he has graceful, because it will
have to contend with the very stormy elements which
do us the honor of an occasional visit. The thought
often came into my mind that the cave of the winds of
which Virgil wrote must have been located upon Meet-
ing-House Hill ; at any rate, imitating the seven cities
of the Old World, that vied with each other for the
honor of giving birth to Homer, we might put in a very
strong claim for the honor of possessing the stormy
mansion of old ^olus.
The good temperance people amongst us (and their
name is legion) will take unto themselves a special
gratification at the erection of this water fountain, and
will claim a victory for their sound temperance prin-
ciples. Here let it be remembered stood the old Eaton
tavern, which, in years gone by, must have been a veri-
table oasis in the desert to the weary travellers from
the surrounding towns. Here they stopped just to talk
matters over, and here, after being somewhat refreshed
by the conversation, they resumed their journey toAvards
the metropolis of ]N e^v England. When the old tavern
was removed, and the land upon which it stood came
into the hands of the city, some of us remember the
friendly and very interesting contest which arose con-
cerning the name to be given to the square. The many
40 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
friends of old Captain Eaton maintained that it should
be called after him, whilst the opposition, which was
chiefly composed of the temperance people, claimed
that it should not, for the reason that the old tavern
must have been given up at some time or another to
the sale — well, of ginger ale, and perhaps of ale that
might give you ginger, and therefore, a different and a
better name should be given to the square.
Thus the discussion went on and waxed warm, until
the aldermanic wisdom, which is always proverbial in
our city for its profundity, stepped upon the scene and
overruled the objection of the temperance people by
giving to the square its present name. I can easily
imagine how to-day the good temperance people will
claim their victory, and will point with some pride to
the fact, that where formerly stood the old Eaton
tavern now stands this beautiful water fountain.
I notice by the inscription upon the stone in fi'ont of
us that this fountain is erected in memory of one of the
many honored and respected Mayors of our city.
Mayor Lyman not only governed this city wisely and
well, but to him belongs the special credit of first pro-
posing for the people of Boston a plentiful suppl}^ of
good water. His first message, a few weeks after his
inauguration, in 1834, was an exhaustive and elaborate
document on the introduction of water into Boston.
He urged upon the members of the Common Council
the great necessity of furnishing the people with a
steady supply of pure and soft water. Thus was taken
the initial step, by Mayor Lyman, in that system of
water supply which has proved to be of such vast im-
portance and utility to our city.
THE DEDICATION. 41
But this was not the only prominent act of his ad-
ministration: there were many, but, for the present, it
will be sufficient for me to recall to your minds the bold
and fearless stand which he took against the mob which
threatened the life of Garrison, and to remind you of
his no less heroic and patriotic endeavor to quell the
Ti'uckmen's riot, which, however, to his great sorrow
and regret, ended in the bui-ning of the Ursuline Con-
vent. On the day following this lamentable aifair on
Mount Benedict, Mayor Lymau called a meeting in
Faneuil Hall of the law-abiding members of the com-
munity, and at that meeting he with many others
denounced in scathing terms the vandalism of the
rioters. I am informed by good authority that Mayor
Lyman held the opinion that the State should have
made compensation to the Ursuline nuns for the de-
struction of their convent by the Truckmen's riot.
On this very pleasant and happy occasion I can
assure you that I am pleased to be one of your number,
and, in closing my remarks, I have no hesitation in say-
ing that this fountain, though grand and beautiful, does
not confer too much honor upon a character so distin-
guislied as that of Theodore Lyman, Jr.
Hon. Levekett Saltonstall was then introduced, and
spoke as follows : —
"We are asseml^led on this lovely autumn day to ded-
icate this fountain, which, while it decorates and adorns
oiu' beautiful city and refreshens the senses with the
brightness and music of its cr^^stal spray, stands as a
monument of human goodness, to make a record of
42 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
a public benefactor, of a man to be remembered for his
many acts of beneficence. His memory is thus prop-
erly honored, and his example may be imitated. It is
not true that " republics are ungrateful," for as time
passes on we are, with statues, monuments, and por-
traits, handing down to posteritj the names and the
forms of the good and great men who have consecrated
their lives or their fortunes to the public weal. States-
men, warriors, naval heroes, philanthropists, — all adorn
the public squares, parks, and government buildings of
our cities. Aye, not only those who have recently, or
within even the present generation, blessed us, and the
older genei'ations, but we are placing in enduring
bronze and granite the venerated forms of Winthrop,
Harvard, and others, who, t\YO centuries and a half ago,
exiled themselves from their luxurious homes to lay the
foundations of this glorious republic in the savage
wilderness. Let other lands place on towering pedes-
tals the forms of kings, queens, and ruthless conquerors;
be it our delight thus to rescue fi-om oblivion the cher-
ished names and memories of those who lived, not for
themselves, but for their country and their fellow-men.
I know not whether it be by design or by some
happy chance that the Fiftieth anniversary of Garrison's
escape from the Boston mob occurs in the same week
as the dedication of this fountain to the gentle but
courageous man who rescued him at the imminent peril
of his own life; but it is a most striking coincidence.
I am not old enough to remember that eventful day,
but have heard many a time the exciting story from the
lips of those who witnessed the terrible scene of the
blind fury of the mob, the calm bearing of the victim of
THE DKUICATION. 43
their frenzy, of the brave, determined action of Mayor
Lyman, who twice or thrice rescued him, ahnost single-
handed, and saved his city from indelible disgrace.
One would rather face an army with bannei's, at the
head of his own legions, than to stand before a mob like
that and tell them it was only over his lifeless body
that they could reach the object of their senseless
wrath. This would mark the man: it showed the fine
temper of the steel in his composition. But the work
of his prematurely declining days, as he quietly and
modestly — scarce letting his left hand know what his
right hand was doing — thought out and perfected his
scheme for a Reform School for Boys, deferring till his
death all knowledge as to who was the benefactor to
whose heart and mind and generous hand this noble
charity was due, completes the portraiture of his admi-
rable character. A pure, loving, devoted man, of
unusual grace of bearing and manly beauty, Theodore
Lyman used the gifts of God as His steward, and not
for his own indulgence. On his deathbed he was true
to the motives which had actuated him through life.
His last act Avas for the relief of others, especially for
the rescue of the young and erring. Better then than
statue of bi-onze or marble this fountain, with its gush-
ing streams and sparkling jets of water, an emblem of
his life and of the deeds of chai-ity flowing from his
pure and generous heart. So long as our city endures
may his name there inscribed be an incentive to the
young to form their chai'acters after his heroic mould.
And may it revive among men something of that cliiv-
alric spirit, that pure and lofty motive, which so distin-
44 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
At the close of Mr. Saltonstall's speech a basket of flowers
of exquisite beauty was handed to His Honor the Mayor, from
some unknown person or persons, to be presented to Mr.
His Honor received it, and in his happiest manner said : —
It is quite evident, in closing these interesting dedi-
catory services, that the benediction shonld come
from Mr. Capen. He, of all others, has been most
interested in the Lyman Fountain, and it is through
his active and persevering labors that it has been com-
pleted. In recognition of his valuable services this
splendid basket of flowers has been handed me to be
presented to him, — which I now have the pleasure of
On receiving this unexpected testimony, Mr. Capen said : —
Mr. Mat OK, — AVhen I came here I had decided to be
only a listener to what was said on this interesting
But, these appeals, irresistible to me, in the language
of jflowers, in the sparkling streams from the fountain
before us, in the numerous evidences of appreciation
of what has been done, overpowers the determination
of prudence to be silent in the presence of others who
are so much more able to speak on such occasions as
I will not attempt, in language, to explain the deep
gratification I feel that so many of our influential
citizens have approved the memorial Avhich for years
THE DEDICATION. 45
has occupied my mind and affection to perpetuate the
memory of a distinguished public benefactor whose
name and examples should never be forgotten. All
who have honored this occasion with their presence
have my best thanks and good wishes.
[From His Excellency Gov. Robinson.]
Boston, October 21, 1885.
Hon. Naiium Capen : —
Dear Sir, — I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your
invitation to attend the dedication of the Lyman Fountain, on Eaton
square, Dorchester, on the 24th instant, and beg to express my
thanks for your courtesy. An engagement with the Executive
Council will necessitate my absence from Boston for two or three
days, covering the date j'ou name ; therefore I shall be unable to
I am yours, very rcs[)ectfully,
GEO. D. ROBINSON.
Hon. Nahum Capen
[From IIou. ex-Mayor Gaston.]
Boston, October 23, 1885.
Dear Sii;, — I have been lioping and expecting to reply in person
to your kind invitation to be present at the dedication of the Lyman
Fountain to-morrow, but circumstances, until now unforeseen, will
The purpose of the occasion connnands my most cordial sj'mpathy,
and I regret my inability to participate more directly in the exercises
commemorative of so honorable and eminent a citizen and public
servant as the late General Theodore Lyman, Jr.
Very truly yours,
50 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
[From Hon. ex-Mayor Pierce.]
Boston, Nov. 2, 1885.
Hon. Nahcm Capen : —
My dear Sir, — I sincerely regret that other engagements pre-
vented rae from taking part in the ceremonies of the dedication
of the L3anan Fountain.
General Lyman's magnificent public benefactions and his many
admu'able qualities of mind and heart deserve to be commemorated in
enduring form, and I can imagine no more pleasing form than the
Yours very truh',
HENRY L. PIERCP:.
[From Hon. cx-Muyor Rice.]
Boston, October 24, 1885.
Hon. Nahum Capen : —
Dear Sir, — I gratefully acknowledge your cordial invitation to
attend the dedication of "The L3Mnan Fountain," but find that, after
an absence of all this week, I am unable to accept it. Trusting the
occasion will be one of much interest to its participants,
I am yours, very truly,
ALEXANDER H. RICE.
[Fromj.Hon. ex-Mayor Green.]
Boston, October 24,^1885.
Hon. Naiium Capen : —
Dear Sd;, — I have just returned from Groton, after an absence of
a few days, and find your courteous invitation to be present at the
dedication of the Lyman Fountain this afternoon. I need not say
that I should take great pleasure in attending the exercises, but the
accumulation of urgent business will |)revent.
Yours very truly,
SAMUEL A. GREEN.
[From Hon. cx-lMavor Cobb.]
235 BoYLSTON Street,
Boston, October 20, 1885.
Hon. Nahum Capen : —
My dear SIr, — I thank you for the courtos}^ of the invitation to
be present at the dedication of the Lyman Fountain, and I regret that
an engagement previously made to go in another direction will pre-
vent me from uniting with my fellow-citizens on this occasion.
I remain, very respectful^.
Your obedient servant,
SAMUEL C. COBB.
[From Hon. ex-Mayor Lincoln.]
Mt. Everett, Dorchester, Nov. 29, 1885.
Hon. NahuiM Capen : —
Dear Sir, — I regret that circumstances prevented my attendance
at the dedication of the Lyman Fountain on the 24th nit. I have a
great respect for the memory of Gen. Lyman, blessed with for-
tune, education, high character, native talent, and because his career
was eminentl}- useful to his fellow-citizens. Few of his generation
possessed more public spirit, whicli lie illustrated by word and deed.
His name should be gratefully cherished by the people of this city
and Commonwealth. Any tiibute to his worth, however and wherever
situated, is appropriate and well-deserved.
Yours ver}' truly,
F. W. LINCOLN.
[From Hon. ex-Mayor Prince.]
311 Beacon Street,
Boston, October 23, 1885.
Hon. Nahum Capen : —
My dear Sir, — When I accepted your kind invitation to attend
the dedication of the Lyman Fountain to-morrow I overlooked a
promise, previously made, to dine with the Middlesex County Demo-
cratic Club, who have a reception and dinner in honor of the nominees
of the Worcester Convention .
52 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
It would give me much pleasure to be present on the interesting
occasion, for I always entertained great respect and regard for Mr.
Lyman, both as a man and a magistrate, and it is appropriate that
art should perpetuate his claims to popular remembrance.
Intelligent and cultivated, with a strong will and inflexible courage,
he was fitted for any station to which he might aspire.
He was distinguished by his handsome person, dignified bearing,
and graceful manners. He was popular with every class of the com-
munity, because of his courteous demeanor to all, and his considerate
regard for the rights of all. As Mayor of Boston he faithfully dis-
charged his official duties, and was the right man in the right place on
occasions which called for the exercise of great tact, judgment, and
firmness. It is not extravagant to say that our citizens generally,
irrespective of political differences of opinion, recognizing his private
worth, and appreciating his official services, hold his memory in
Regretting that I cannot be in two places at the same time, and
hoping that you will all enjoy the exercises of the occasion,
Believe me very truly yours,
FREDERICK O. PRINCE.
[From Hon. ex-Mayor Palmer.]
RoxBURY, October 22, 1885.
Hon. Naiium Capen : —
My dear Sir, — I regret that circumstances will deprive me of
the pleasure of joining you and others on the 24th inst. to honor
the memory of Gen. Theodore Lyman, Jr. He was a benefactor of
the cit}' and State. He lived an active and eminently useful life, and
left an example that cannot be too prominently kept before posterity.
I trust the dedication will be in every way successful.
Very truly yours,
[From Hon. A. A. Lawrence.]
Brookline, Oct. 22, 1885.
Hon. Nahum Capen : —
Dear Sir, — It would give me great pleasure to be present at the
meeting designed to honor the memory of the late Mr. Lyman ; he
deserved it all. He was the true type of a })nblic spirited Christian
gentleman. Such men should not be forgotten, and your work in
this particular will long be appreciated.
AMOS A. LAWRENCE.
[From Abbott Lawrence, Esq.]
5 COMJEONWEALTH AVENUE,
Boston, October 26, 1885.
Hon. Nahum Capen : —
My dear Sik, — I regret extremely that I was unexpectedly pre-
vented from being present at the dedication of the Lyman Fountain
on Saturday. It would have given me pleasure to have participated
in the appropriate and interesting ceremonies of the occasion. I well
remember Mr. LAnnan — his elegant person and dignified bearing.
He was a most efficient Mayor, — during a period of great political
agitation and excitement — a public benefactor, and a highly culti-
vated and accomplished gentleman. He commanded the love and
respect of all who knew him.
To you we are largely indebted for the beautiful fountain which
perpetuates his name, and which, I trust, may long stand as a memo-
rial of his exemplary and useful life.
Believe me faithfully 3'ours,
[From O. W. Holmes, jNI.D.]
296 Beacon St., Boston, Oct. 21, 1885.
Hon. Nahum Capen : —
My dear Sir, — I regret that it will not be in my power to attend
the dedication of the Lyman Fountain. With man}' thanks for the
cordial invitation which yon have sent me,
I am, dear sir,
Verv trulv yours,
O. W. HOLMES.
54 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
[From Hou. J. Russell Lowell.]
SODTHBOROUCxII, Mass., Oct. 23, 1885.
Dear Mr. Capen : — I regret that it will not be iu 1113' power to
be present at the ver}- interesting ceremony to which you have been
kind enough to invite me.
J. R. LOWELL.
[From President Eliot.]
Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.,
October 22, 1885.
Hon. Nahum Capen : —
Dear Sir, — I am directed by the President of the University, in
reply to your kind invitation for Saturday, to say that he regrets
that he will be unable to accept on account of an imperative engage-
ment which cannot be broken.
Very truly yours,
GEO. R. NUTTER,
[From Boston Water Board.]
Office of the Boston "Water Board,
Boston, October 20, 1885.
Hon. Nahum Capen : —
Dear Sir, — Your kind invitation to this Board to attend the
dedication of the Lyman Fountain is received. We regret to inform
you that other engagements will prevent our attendance.
Thanking you for your kind remembrance, we are
Very trul}' yours,
BOSTON WATER BOARD,
By W. E. Swan, Clerk.
[From Hon. Frederick L. Ames.]
Boston, October 23, 1885.
Hon. Nahum Capen: —
Dear Sir, — I have your kind invitation to attend the dedication
of the Lyinau Fountain at Eaton square to-morrow, and regret very
much that, owing to the funeral of a friend taking place that after-
noon in the country-, I shall be unable to be present.
FREDERICK L. AMES.
[From William Amokv, Esq.]
Boston, December 8, 1885.
Hon. Naiium Capen : —
My dear Sir, — On a beautiftd day in October I went at your
invitation to witness the dedication of the tasteful, beautiful, and
appropriate fountain monument, erected by the city and friends, to
do honor to the memory of Gen. Lj-man, there to witness the
eligibiUty of situation, so well selected, and skilful taste, so creditable
to the artist, in the plan and construction of the fountain itself. I
very much admired the judgment exhibited in selecting a fountain of
such beautiful proportions, so suitably symbolic of one of the first
pioneers, who, in his mayoralty, led to the introduction of a supply
of water into the city of Boston, and was struck by the superior
appropriateness of such a monument to the common attempt, almost
always a failure, even when executed by the most distinguished
sculptors in any country, to represent in marble or bronze the face
and form of the person to be celebrated.
I thank you for your request to send you a brief note to be incor-
porated with the proceedings on that occasion, in Dorchester, a few
But a brief note must fail to satisfy the ardent loyalty of my
memory of one whom I so much respected and esteemed as a man, a
friend, a patriot, and a citizen ; and as, on the other hand, a letter
prolonged to the measure of my interest in the subject might, by
lengthening the report of your proceedings, perhaps serve to impair
that combined brevity and completeness which I considered amono-
the merits of the occasion, I shall endeavor to condense what I
have to say into the smallest possible compass consistent with my
feelings; and I nm glad of the opportunity, by your permission,
briefly and gratefully to scatter a few simple flowers on the grave of
one whom I had so long known and admired, and whose memory I
am sure we all delight to honor.
56 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
As a boy at school, and stndeut at Cambridge, though the differ-
ence of more than ten years in our ages prevented anything amount-
ino- to an intimacy between us then, still, from my friends and his
companions, I was taught to think him, as I afterwards found him,
a man of rare qualities, fitting him for that success, both public
and social, which he so exceptionally enjoyed in after life. I
had heard his praises sounded, and known his example held up as
a pattern to his juniors, in all the essential qualities which elevate
and embellish such men as reach the celebrity to which he after-
From the lips of one of my family — I believe his classmate and
chum at Harvard — he was so enthusiastically eulogized for his manly,
noble traits of character and iutelligence as to excite in boys of the
time an ambition to imitate him ; and l)y another, also of my family,
a few years younger, who travelled with him in Europe, Mr. William
H. Prescott, he was uniformly pronounced the most disinter-
ested of men. This is high praise, considering that travelling to-
gether for any length of time is the severest test of disinterestedness
to which any man could be subjected.
In 1823, the year of my graduation from Harvard, I had from time
to time the opportunity to form my own opinion of the truth of the
eulogistic records in relation to Gen. Lyman as displayed in his
subsequent varied, responsible, and difficult relations in society and
the world, and I found that the impressions obtained from the
friends of his youth were more than confirmed by my later experi-
At that time, being myself an officer in tlu; Boston Light Infantry,
I came occasionally into contact with him as brigadier-general of
the militia, when he w:>s the observed of all observers, for his manly,
military air, and masterly skill as commanding officer ; and also, as
well as I can remember, reputed to be the first to introduce into the
service many important reforms and improvements, and to perform
all the duties of his otHce with signal zeal and ability, substituting for
the prevailing want of punctuality on all field-days (so wittily de-
scribed by Washington Irving in " Salmagundi," in New York) a
promptness and discipline hitherto unknown.
I recall with pride the courage, vigor, and discretion he displayed
at the time of the Garrison Riot in saving the life of Garrison at the
risk of his own, which then excited in the minds of the most sen-
sible part of this community the most intense admiration.
The initiatory steps taken by him while Mayor, which may be said
to have led, several years later, to the introduction of a suppl3' of
soft water into this now great metropolis, are fairly attributable, in a
measure, to his enterprise and foresight ; and the blessing bestowed
on this great community will ever reflect upon his reputation and
memory the greatest imaginable and constantly increasing honor.
Subsequently, associated with him as vestr3--man at Trinity Church,
I was again charmed with his conduct and opinions, always earnest,
consistent, independent, but kind, as a perfect Christian gentleman.
In order not to trespass upon the time allowed me by your permis-
sion, I must now confine myself to a simple allusion to, or enumera-
tion of, such salient qualities of his character in public, social, and
domestic life as have culminated in the continued love and respect
for Mr. L3'man, and in this display of lioraage, about a third of a
century after his death, iu the erection of this beautiful monument by
To his distinguished appearance, his handsome face and figure, it
would be superfluous to allude, except to rescue from the libellous
effect of his photograph, in the " Memorial History of Boston," a
false impression of his personal advantages, as it fails to do him
justice, and as it is triumphantly contradicted by the original living
representations now extant.
His public spirit, always prominent in this coramunit}', as shown
by his fostering care, in office and out of office of all our public in-
stitutions of benevolence, reform, charity, or education, and often
assisted b\' generous contributions from his own purse, entitled him,
and will ever secure to his naiue, the warm love and attachment
which clings to it still, after more than a third of a century . He
possessed a rare combination of that fortiter in re et suaviter in modo,
without the union of which force loses half its strength and suavity
all its power.
His interest in literature, art, architecture, and horticulture, and
his readiness to impart to others in the same pursuits the benefits of
his knowledge in these departments, did much to encourage tlie im-
provement and embellishment of the private residences aiid public
parks of Boston and vicinity.
58 THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
His death, everywhere lamented, took place about 1850, and, I
think, may fairly be called premature, though his life slightl}' ex-
ceeded half a century. Possessing, as he did, in so eminent a
degree, that unflinching courage, untiring industry, strong will,
wisdom and discretion, and with so conscientious an ambition to
benefit mankind, and to serve his country, his death, at such a
critical moment, so short a time before the Civil War, may be consid-
ered a public calamity, and therefore premature.
His patriotic spirit never slept ; and had it been his fate to survive
the Rebellion, his judgment, decision, and firmness would have
rendered him a most eminent and intelligent, wise and useful
counsellor, in both the State and nation, during the arduous period of
the reconstruction of the Union. Who will venture to suggest how
much more brilliant, and how much more brief might have been the
"conduct of the war," — the War Department being under the
administration of such a man, and possibly free from the ignorant
inteference of partisan politicians?
In his social and domestic relations he was without a superior, or,
possibly, an equal ; and he exercised in both an influence still per-
ceptible in his family, relations, and friends.
Without doubling the length of this notice, already too long, I
have no room for enlarging on the benefits secured to the past and
present, and sure to continue in the future, of this Commonwealth, by
the aid, pecuniary and personal, from Mr. Lyman in founding,
endowing, and organizing the Farm School, on Thompson's Island, in
Boston Harbor, and the Reform School, in Westboro', where annually
hundi-eds of boys are rescued from crime and poverty by the disci-
pline and care of those schools, and prepared for lives of usefulness,
in prosperous positions, among the members of this community.
I cannot close without venturing to express the thanks of the
family and friends of Mr. Lyman, as well as in behalf of his fellow-
citizens, for your interest and industry in aiding to procure and
dedicate this fountain, and to congratulate you upon the taste,
discretion, and success with which your efforts have been deservedly
W. A INI OR Y.
The following is a list of contributors to the fund for erect-
ing a fountain on Eaton square, Ward 24, in honor of Theodore
Lyman, Jr., Mayor of Boston in 1834-35 : —
Rev. P. Ronan,
J. S. Gill,
Henry L. Pierce,
Geo. W. Coleman,
A. N. Burbank,
Marshall P. Wilder,
John P. Spaulding,
H. S. Carruth,
E. A. White,
Saml. B. Pierce,
E. T. Loring,
F. L. Tileston,
AVm. T. Adams,
Lewis P. Bird,
R. L. Barstow,
N. Sawyer & Son,
S. S. Pierce & Co.,
J. H. Upham,
W. L. Harris,
Mrs. A. A. Q. Tucker,
H. D. Dupee,
Mrs. Richard Baker, Jr.,
Fred L. Ames,
J. Ingersoll Bowditch,
H. H. Hunnewell,
S. D. Warren,
Amos A. Lawrence,
THE LYMAN FOUNTAIN.
Mrs. M. F. Mallon,
Mrs. Walter Baker,
E. J. Bispham,
C. R. Eliot,
Mrs. Henry Callender,
Geo. W. Boynton,
Jos. S. Hyde,
Dr. Wm. P. Leavitt,
Jas. E. Swan,
Wm. W. Swan,
D. J. Cutter,
Dr. L. M. Lee,
Wm. G. Libby,
J. H. Pierce,
Robt. C. Winthrop,
J. L. Little,
Alex. H. Rice,
H. P. Kidder,
A. P. Martin,
J. W. Ricker,
T. O. H. P. Burnham,
Wm. B. Bird,
J. H. Beal,
Thos. A. Dunbar,
P. H. Sears,
R. T. Paine, Jr.
N. J. Bradlee,
Jordan, Marsh, & Co.,
Andrew G. Weeks,
Norcross & Bro.,
Edwd. Nahum Capen.
w.wi ■■ ^iiio iiiaii^i tat l\j II ic llUldl y
from which it was borrowed.