All human experience thrilled her; the choreman, the dressmaker, the postman, the caller; one and all, she hung on their words.
After a halfhour with her, seeing her face alight with sympathy, her delicate lips often actually forming the words as he spoke them, the dullest person might go away on air, feeling himself a born raconteur
. What she said once of Mr. Emerson
, “He always came into a room as if he expected to receive more than he gave!”
was true of herself.
To return to the clubs!
At a biennial meeting of the General Federation in Philadelphia
, she said: “What did the club life give me?
Understanding of my own sex; faith in its moral and intellectual growth.
Like so many others, I saw the cruel wrongs and vexed problems of our social life, but I did not know that hidden away in its own midst was a reserve force destined to give precious aid in the righting of wrongs, and in the solution of discords.
In the women's clubs I found the immense power which sympathy exercises in bringing out the best aspirations of the woman nature.... To guard against dangers, we must do our utmost to uphold and keep in view the high object which has, in the first instance, called us together; and let this be no mere party catchword or cry, as East against West
, or North against South.
We can afford to meet as citizens of one common country, and to love and serve the whole as one.”
She believed firmly in maintaining the privacy of club life.
“The club is a larger home,” she said, “and we wish to have the immunities and defences of home; ”