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honored members who have the confidence and esteem of the Bar Association. I may say some things that may require a diagram to go with them, if so, I will explain them privately to any one that wishes to hear me. But I wish to say the Supreme Court, I now understand, is so constituted that all its members can eat at the same table at the Leland Fiotel. (Laughter and applause.) And when my friend, Judge Carter, said that he had no brief for the members of the Supreme Court, that each one of them could speak for himself, let me say that as I understand it, the complaint, if there have been any complaints, is that each one has been speaking for himself, instead of speaking for the Court after conference together. (Laughter and applause.)
Among the members of this organization I think it but proper for me to say that the entire-listen to me—the entire Democratic delegation from Illinois in Congress is a member of this body. (Laughter and applause.)
The members who have been selected to prominent positions and are now termed the “Old Guard,” have reflected in every instance, I think, credit upon this institution. Two of our honored ex-Presidents are not present on account of sickness, HIon. E. B. Sherman and Judge Wheeler. We regret their absence and extend them our sympathy. No sketch of the Old Guard would be satisfactory that did not name with appreciation the two ex-Secretaries who have done so much to bring this society to its present state of honor and usefulness. You know I mean Judge Gross and Mr. James II. Matheny. (Applause.) And now, having spoken for those who were officers of this institution before I was, I think it but fair that I should tell a personal incident. But before I do that I wish to call the attention of this body to the fact that Judge Treat, of the Springfield Federal Court, was for many years connected with this Society, and reflected honor upon it. To illustrate something of his character: One day I was in his court and a Chicago lawyer had made a brilliant speech there; the judge said to me, “I
knew that lawyer's father in Indiana, his father was a brilliant and honorable gentleman, I think his son has inherited his father's brilliancy." (Laughter.)
And it would not be right, we should not leave out the fact that Gov. John M. Palmer was at one time an officer of this Association and always took a deep interest in its proceedings. He uttered an epigram that is as applicable tonight as it was when he sounded it forth on the prairies of his beloved central Illinois. He said that this government should be as strong as the law and no stronger; and weak as the law, no weaker. A sentiment that could be well applied to the current events around us.
I have often wondered how some of these old guards ever became President of this Association. Uncle Dick Oglesby said, when he was elected to the Senate, that he looked around at the Senators and said to himself, “Ogleshy, you are a lucky man, brought up in poverty, worked your way along the highway of life until here you are a member of the United States Senate; all these are distinguished men,- I wonder, Oglesby, how you ever got here. He said he hadn't been there ten days until he wondered how under heavens some of these other fellows ever got there. (Laughter.) So, after my election as President of this Association,—for I insist that there shall be a fair deal here tonight_I visited the office of Mr. Moses, who was an ardent member, a useful member, an able member of this Association. When I was admitted to his presence, with considerable manner he introduced me to the lady who was his private secretary and said, “This is the Hon. Alfred Orendorff, of Springfield, Illinois, President of the Illinois State Bar Association." I bowed. The lady, looking up, said, "Is it possible?" (Laughter.) And ever since my election and service, as each one has been elected, I have looked him in the eye and said, "Is it possible!" (Laughter.)
My friends, I have talked longer than I expected on behalf of the members of the Old Guard, so called. I would be pleased to speak of the distinguished Thornton, the great chancellor
Tuley and others, but while my theme is inexhaustible, audiences are not so, and therefore I must forbear. (Laughter.) We appreciate the distinction of having a table by ourselves, still more, the distinction of having with us these ladies who have graced and adorned the table of the Old Guard. (Applause.)
PRESIDENT PAGE: I think, considering the fact that this is Friday, and the thirteenth of the month, and that Gen. Orendorff made that speech, that we got off pretty well.
The next number on the program is “Greetings of the American Bar Association to the Illinois State Bar Association,” by the Hon. George R. Peck, President of the American Bar Association, Pretty near as much title as Gen. Orendorff has; I would give him some more if I knew what to call him. I take great pleasure in introducing to you Mr. Peck. (Applause.)
MR. PECK: Mr. President, Ladies and Gentlemen : I should not be fit to be President of the American Bar Association ---in fact I do not know that I am, any way-if I should consume any time at all in performing the most agreeable duty assigned me, of giving you greetings from the American Bar Association. The only reason that I am to speak for the American Bar Association tonight was because I was so fortunate as to be a member of this Association before I was elected to that position. And at the meeting last year at Narragansett, your honored President, your honored President-elect, Judge Holdom, and a few other members of this Association thought it was time for the presidency of that national Association to come to Illinois, and so, as a member of this Association, and as President of that Association, I give you most hearty greetings and a most earnest invitation to attend the coming meeting of the Adierican Bar Association. It is to be held at St. Paul the 29th, 30th and 31st cf next month. It is not very far from Chicago, and perhaps it is not necessary for me to mention the unparalleled advantages of communication between Chicago and St. Paul. (Laughter and applause.)
There is one thing I congratulate myself a good deal upon and that is that in the past year there have been admitted more than four hundred additional members to the American Bar Association, of which Illinois has furnished at least one-third. Now many of you are members of the American Bar Association; all of you are eligible, and I should feel, as President of that Association, that it was only giving me a square deal if the members of this Association who are not members of that would allow the retiring President, or the President-elect, to see that they are voted in before the coming meeting.
Last year we all had the pleasure of listening to the Hon. Alton B. Parker when he delivered the annual address. He is to perform that same duty at St. Paul for the American Bar Association. Many of you who are here, perhaps not so very many, but some who are here, voted for Judge Parker. It is true he was a little shy when they came to count the votes. But you can remember how great a satisfaction and a pleasure there was felt here a year ago. Judge Parker, I saw him in New York the other day, expressed the hope that he would see a good many of the people whom he met here last year, at the meeting at St. Paul. And so, will you not now consider yourselves greeted ? I could not, if I should talk until midnight,—and that would not be very long though, by the way I could not express the heartiness with which I do greet you and ask you to attend the coming meeting. (Applause.)
PRESIDENT PAGE: It has been the practice of the world since history began to shut the door in the face of the setting sun, and open it to the dawning light. This present administration, within the next two or three seconds, is going to see that door shut, because I am now going to introduce to you as my last official act, the Hon. Harrison Musgrave, the President-elect of the Illinois State Bar Association for the year 1907.
MR. MUSGRAVE: Mr. President, Ladies and Gentlemen: At this late hour you do not expect, I am sure you do not desire, that I shall detain you by a speech of any length. I am glad
to have this, my first opportunity, to express to the members of the Association my very deep appreciation of the honor conferred upon me in being elected President of this Association. I am considerably appalled when I think of assuming the responsibilities which have been so lightly borne by the broad shoulders and still broader intellect of our retiring President. (Applause.) But I am somewhat reassured when I consider that the first Vice President of this Association for the next year is the gentleman who for ten years or more has been our tireless and energetic Secretary and Treasurer, and who has done more, I believe, than any other man who was ever a member of the Association, to advance its interests. (Applause.)
I have frequently heard lawyers talk disparagingly of this Association; they say, you meet once a year, you make speeches, you read papers, you pass resolutions, but you never take off your coats and do anything. These men speak in their ignoranci. The Association has done good and fine things, and there is a great field before it in the future. Questions of great importance are pressing upon it. The energetic and able President of the United States has done a great deal in the last two years to make employment for lawyers and fill their pockets with retainers.
As I look upon the gentleman sitting at the head table I am reminded of what a prominent railroad lawyer told me not long ago; I do not know whether in the way of advice or not—that he considered the great future of the lawyer in this country was in the practice of a quasi-criminal nature. (Laughter.) But that is a matter which touches the individual and not the Association.
These important questions are pressing upon us, they ask for action. The delicate and embarrassing question with us is, which of these matters shall we take up and act upon and what not? Sometimes it seems to me that perhaps the country is moving too rapidly; that it is our part to stand for the integrity of our institutions and act as a break rather than as an advance in the forums.