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Mr. Hawes then called upon Charles D. Elliot to act as toastmaster. Mr. Elliot proved himself most adept in his introduction of the various speakers, and first referred to the letters of regret received from Admiral Merry, President Hamilton, of Tufts College, Professors Dolbear, Bolles, and Maulsby, and others who were expected.

The first toast proposed by him was: ‘Somerville, like Rome, sits on her seven hills, each crowned with an historic halo.’1 This was responded to by Mayor Charles A. Grimmons, who was warmly applauded at the close.

He was followed by Major Edward Glines, whose toast was: ‘Massachusetts, the brightest star in the national constellation.’2 Mr. Glines brought the congratulations of Governor Guild as he spoke for the old Bay state in eloquent words. John F. Ayer, former president of the society and founder of the Bay State League, was called upon as the ‘bard of Wakefield’ to speak for the League, and opened his remarks by reading a rhyme merrily dedicated to Mr. Elliot.

Chief James R. Hopkins was asked to speak for ‘The Blessing of the Bay, the First Ship of Our Navy,’ and much interest was created in his remarks as he produced a large piece of log from the old wharf or way in the Mystic River, where the Blessing of the Bay was launched in 1631.

‘In May, 1892,’ he remarked, ‘I left the Central fire station with William A. Perry and William A. Burbank, both members of the fire department. We called at the Forster School for the master, John S. Hayes. Together we went to the shore of the Mystic, near the Wellington Bridge. The time selected was when the tide was low. Getting down to the edge of the water, the mud was scraped from the logs and the axe driven in. The wood was soft, almost pulp, and had a strong odor of marsh gas. After getting all that was wanted, we returned to the Central fire station. There have been made from this wood threes vases and two gavels. One of the gavels is possessed by the Masonic order, another by the Somerville Historical Society. No more of this wood can now be obtained.’

Chief Hopkins referred to the grand ball at the incorporation

1 See page 80.

2 See page 82.

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