2: The Kind Hearted Band
Once Maggie had decided to create her Kind Hearted Band she went to the organizing of it to the manner born. She had a set of rules which the children all had to agree to
1 To be truthful in all circumstances
2 To yield cheerful obedience to parents, teachers, and guardians.
3 To protect all things weaker than themselves.
4 To be kind and gentle to all birds and animals.
5 Bad Language must never be used.
Those rules wouldn't go amiss today.
She wrote a 'Chat with Children' every week. Sometimes it was very whimsical and full of fairies and pixies, little stories and poems too numerous to note and transpose, sometimes little pieces on general knowledge and homilies, ie October 7th 1893:
My Dear Cousins, I have been reading about a little fly. To give it its Greek name is to call it Ephemera, which in plain English means 'lasting but one day'. The name we give it is Mayfly. I fancy it has got this name because it is always dancing in the sunlight, but its Greek name is more suitable for its life lasts only a few hours. Those born in the morning die before night and those born in the night die before morning. I will not enter into any particulars about this little fly, except to say that it is a pretty six legged creature with beautiful gansy rain bow-hued wings. They harm no one and no one harms them. They are creatures of a day and live while it is theirs to live and die without a murmur. Nice little philosophers to take things as they come and be contended. And that is just what I am not going to do. I have been thinking for the past few weeks about some members of the Band whom seem never to think about me and the Kind Hearted Band Is it possible that their interest in the Band is like the life of the Ephemera - lasting but a day? Surely I'm mistaken. I hope they will help me to banish the thought by writing to me very soon. Etc etc.
And there is an awful lot about the children's attitude to the poor. On October 27th 1894 Maggie writes in her Chats with Children column:
"We have had our day - I mean our day of sunshine and flowers. Once more we must face winter. I am sure that is no great ordeal to most of us; on the contrary, a great deal of solid comfort and pleasure can be extracted during the long winter evenings, when by cheerful fireside we seek to amuse or instruct ourselves.
Winter is a very cosy season to those who are well off and have kind sympathetic parents but it is a time of sore trial to our poor little waifs and strays. I often wonder how they manage to live through it. I have seen little boys and girls selling chips, matches, bootlaces and other trifling things at all hours of the evening. They roam about our streets, shivering; their tattered garments are sodden with rain, which while it sends chill to their little hearts glistens upon their faces, and gives a delicate pink to their pallor of cheeks.
How do those little ones survive? Do they ever think of what the changing seasons mean to them? If they ever think of winter at all it must be with a shudder. I am so sorry that the world is so hard for them and very often their kith and kin treat them harshly, even cruelly. I know the poor we have (and perhaps will always have) with us, but lately I did not believe there was so much cruelty and gross negligence in our midst, as recent proceedings of the local branch of the National Society of the Prevention of Cruelty to have brought to light.
These instances show us, dear cousins, how much misery and suffering can be crowded into the little lives ant that we should never neglect, when opportunity occurs of practically proving that we are all members of the Kind Hearted Band. I know very well it is not always in our power to give, but we can be kind in words and if not in deeds and kind words to those who seldom hear them go a very long way indeed to promoting happiness."
After the Treat in January 1892 she writes about a boy called George Handforth who had 'sent' (I think his mum was having a clear out) her an overcoat, a jacket, 3 pairs of stockings and 50 copies of the parish magazine! And says
I cannot help saying that if our little cousin George, age 6, continues fostering such kind thoughtfulness towards the poor, no future would be too bright to prophesy for him when he grows to manhood.
Well actually, if he was 6 in 1892, he would be 28 in 1914 - I don't think the future would look all that bright.
Michael Bartholomew, in his biography of H V Morton, quotes "H V Morton's earliest memories were of the
"sound of mill girls' clogs as they clattered off to work in the morning."
He says that is probably a little too stereotypical by way of Gracie Fields' films. Actually I think it may have been true. The Mortons lived on the main road in Ashton at the time, with a tram stop and line just across the square. Along with Hugh Mason's statue (the only statue in Ashton for nigh on a hundred years) and indeed on January 30th 1897, Maggie writes in her column:
"What a beautiful white world we woke up to on Sunday morning! At least all the world I could see from my window looked pure and white. The monument in the Square erected to the memory of Mr Hugh Mason was quite transformed. The cold looking figure (ooh loosing brownie points there - Hugh Mason was the former Liberal MP) was softened and beautified with a border of fleecy snow. The iron railings surrounding it were wreathed in snow and a carpet of snow spread all over the Square. The housetops were all white and snow tipped all the spires of St Peter's church making a typical old fashioned winter scene which I thought was beautiful."
But harking back to her theme on the poor she continued:
"towards mid day a man, woman and child all looking weary and footsore came across the Square, they halted opposite my house and enquired of a person passing the way to some place, the person answered them and pointed the way down Stockport Road, and they set off again.
As they stood near my window I had time to notice that the woman had a baby tightly held under her shawl and also that all three wore very old boots. Then my admiration for the snow cooled down for I thought these are not only poor people who are forced to walk in the snow today footsore and weary with perhaps no hope of warmth and comfort when they have travelled the dreary way and reached their destination. Ah little friends, if only we knew the one hundredth part of suffering the very poor have to endure in weather such as this the more sensitive of us would make ourselves miserable over the state of affairs which we are utterly powerless to improve. Still it sets us wondering.
On Monday I had two callers, one young lady who was wishing the frost would continue so there would be a couple of weeks of 'rattling good skating'. The other caller was a poor woman begging a garment for her delicate child and she was wishing the weather would change and become a little warmer for she said "if it does not, I'm afraid my little child will die." It is enough to make you wonder." --
"I did not forget you my dear little friends, when I was admiring the snow clouds above and the snow carpet under my feet. I remembered that many of you have to get up and leave the house to reach the mill at six o'clock in the morning. I imagine I saw some of you trotting along leaving your footprints in the snow. I also remembered that when your day's work was over you returned to bright, warm homes and mother waiting with something nice and warm for your tea and she would tell you the day's news.
Perhaps Mr and Mrs. Somebody had called and then your mother would tell you what they had chattered about and you might tell mother some fun about snowballing. So the evening passes peacefully."
Then after lulling the readers into a sweet reverie she goes for the killer punch to raise monies,
"Now little cousins this is the time to think about and act for the poor children round about us. We cannot take them from their poor homes and give them perpetual warmth and brightness; but we can do this for a few hours by giving them the treat which they have begun to look forward to already. I want to give it to them very soon. So, dear little friends, do send me your subscriptions and thereby enable me to do it."
What an operator.
Bartholomew goes on saying that H V Morton had written:
"As a small boy I remember seeing our kitchen full of crossing sweeper boys, their brooms in the scullery, sitting down to a great meal of bread and jam or bread and dripping."
Now that well might have been the case also for on February 10th 1894. Maggie writes talking about one of the little girls who sell chips for firewood:
"Well now since I last chattered to you I have interviewed the little girl who sells chips from door to door. You are not amused I hope, interviewing is quite the correct thing nowadays. She comes quite a lot to warm herself at my kitchen fire."
Maggie goes to remark about the little girl's thick Ashton accent which she can't totally transcribe but she continues:
"Yes we get breakfast sometimes but not until we have sold some chips but when we gets no breakfast we gets a good dinner."
Maggie asked her what constitutes a good dinner.
"Well I calls twopenny worth of tatter 'ash a good dinner."
And could she manage twopenny worth herself?
"No, that's between the three of us. There's a new cook shop opened as I knows and they make a splendid tatter pie and they gives us a good measure. It's a bit from our house but it's worth going when you gets a lot."
Maggie asks how much money the little girl could make in a day.
"Well yesterday sister and me took 1 shilling and 1 penny not counting the money you gid me. I calls that a rather good day 'cos things is bad just now."
Maggie goes on
"Poor little girl. I think things are always bad for her but the blessing is she does not know it. She went down the yard as blithely as if the world held nothing but happiness. And as the yard door shut I could hear her singing 'Daisy, daisy'. A day or two she came back and insisted on me taking two bucketfuls of chips for three halfpennies instead of twopence and said 'you knows that day I warmed myself at your fire. Well it was the best day ever we had. I took eleven pence myself, and my sister took nine pence. My Mammie says you are lucky.' I scarce need tell you I took the chips."
Well she did have canny Scots blood in her.
There were also comments on current events, ie: in 1896:
My Dear Cousins, This truly delightful weather makes one feel inclined to put off until tomorrow what aught to be done today. You remember what a hot sunshiny day last Sunday was? Well remembering that makes it difficult for us to think about another part of the world - I do not mean at the North Pole - people were shivering in fur lined coats and snow some inches deep covered the streets. This is the kind of weather that they were enjoying last Sunday in Moscow, the magnificent capital of Russia, which will soon be en fete for the coronation of the Tzar. Russia with its gorgeous palaces stocked with priceless treasures and wonderful wealth of gold is all too poor to purchase one fine day.
No gold cannot bribe the snows to melt or coax the sun to shine. Ah it is well that this is so otherwise the poor would have perpetual winter. As it is the children of the poorest people fairly revel in the sunshine. You can see them any day on the outskirts of Stamford Park and also on the Moss rolling on the grass and dancing in the sunshine - drinking in health with every breath they take. Etc etc.
Very John Craven and Newsround but perhaps a little more preachy.
Some of it is very interesting to aficionados of the H V Morton Appreciation Society because she is obviously writing about him as a small boy, ie June 29th 1895
My dear Cousins, I think I will tell you what I did the other day. I went for a little picnic. We were not a large party. My companions were two young gentlemen. (H V M would be 3 in a month's time.) The elder of the two of them told me in a very consequential manner that he was past four years old now the other was not three yet.
Our conversation was very interesting if not very brilliant. My little friends' ideas were very much bigger than themselves; the younger one for some reason best known to his little self, is afraid of trains therefore when he grows trains are to be abolished in this way; They are all to be pushed over a high bank and left there with no one to speak to them. I told him it would be a serious thing if there were no trains, because I said people who have friends living far away could not go to visit them and to be clearer I said "you could not go to see your Grandma and aunties if there were no trains." "Oh yes," he said "we could all go on bicycles." "Or," chimed his friend, "you could all go in cabs," adding "I'm not afraid of trains, but I'm older than baby."
And the little four year old gave himself an attitude that would do credit to a politician. I was taken into their confidence and told many secrets, but these I am not going to disclose even to you, my Cousins. But oh! If their ideas were facts what a fairy land our world would be. Dear little fellows! I felt so glad that I would not (if I could) vanish their illusions or take from them their beautiful dreams. It is most interesting listening to what I call 'Baby prattle', It has one merit which talk of older children often lack, that of originality and freshness.
I was amused on Wednesday afternoon by the youngest of these boys. He was sitting watching a thunderstorm and all at once he turned and asked me what was the matter with everything outside. I said "thunder and lightning, pet." Of course, immediately he asked what thunder and lightning meant. I hesitated for a moment to find words simple enough to explain and to fill up the gap which my hesitation caused, I said "what is it like?" Without a moment's pause he said "why, like the stars were fighting each other and the moon was growling at them." But back to my picnic. I was sent hither and thither without the respect which my superior size and age would have commanded.
She was due to give birth to her daughter Marguerite in the August.
First I was politely ordered to descend into a ditch to pick a particularly nice buttercup then to climb an elder tree, next I had to wheel a small barrow which had become troublesome owing to its fulness; last but by no means least, I was requested to eat the crust of a much handled bread and butter, because the donor said "it's too hard for my teeth," The crust, I explained, would be splendid for the sparrows thereby escaping the little titbit.
But I enjoyed myself immensely. The sun shone out in all its dazzling brilliancy and the skylarks seemed to be vying with each other to see which could produce the sweetest note. How dreadful to think that hundreds of thousands of these sweet throated birds are annually slaughtered to gratify the palates of so called epicures.
Obviously some child psychology was being applied come the Christmas re young Harry's fear of trains because on December 21st she hopes that all the members of the K H B are being good whilst waiting for Santa Claus (and I noticed she uses the term Santa Claus many years before Coca Cola reckon they invented it) and that she knew of a little boy who would do almost anything to please Santa Claus just now.
The reason being he wished Santa Claus to bring him a steam engine and his sock is not big enough to admit it. However this difficulty has been surmounted by him arranging to borrow his father's stocking for use on Christmas Eve. It's fun to imagine young Harry going to sleep that Christmas Eve secretly worrying that Santa Claus would know all about the arrangement for the disposal of the steam engine in his Papa's sock.
The following week she notes in a Chat to Children! that their Grandma in Scotland has died in Scotland. She always expects a death over Christmas but this one was very sad for her family. Nothing beats saying it like it is.
On May 8th 1897 young Harry has obviously been annoying her,. She writes a poem entitled 'The limit':
A boy can climb a slippery tree
Where man would surely fall
A dog who barks at you and me
Will let him pull his tail
He takes a swim when it's so cold
We'd never reach the shore
He's capable of feats untold
BUT he cannot shut the door.
With rubber and a wooden frame
He makes a gun with skill
Enables him to bring down game
Your rifle cannot kill
His bent pin catches more
A wondrous thing a boy can do
But he cannot shut the door.
Oh dear, naughty boy.
The Chats to children column is every week, even when she is on her annual holiday, which usually takes a month and is mostly in Scotland. Whilst in Scotland in 1894 she is given a sick lamb to look after and writes wondering how it will fare when she goes back to Ashton as she doesn't know of much grass for it to it - fortunately the problem doesn't occur as the lamb conveniently dies.
In early October 1895 she is back staying in Gourock. It is 4 miles from Greenock and she goes on a steamer to Rothesay; she is no stranger to the place when she was young they had a summer house in Port Bannatyne from there they had been on a picnic to Ettrick Bay, paddling and wading out on the sandy shore. Later on in October 26th she is talking of leaving Scotland (the land of cakes! She doesn't explain) after visiting a card factory and ordering all her Christmas cards. I wonder if she is having trouble with young Harry who is not all that pleased to be usurped by his baby sister on her first visit to her Scottish relatives because she includes the poem; -
Do as you are told to do
By those wiser far than you
Do and say
What use is this may be
I am sure I cannot see
Do not sulk and do not sigh
Though it may seem in vain to try
All the ends you cannot see
Do your duty faithfully
When at length you come to know
Why was ordered thus and so
You will say
Glad am I that when to me
I can trust and cheerfully
- Just obey
1896 when she writes about missing the opening of the Manchester Ship Canal and Queen Victoria visiting Manchester when she rather unexpectantly (she was talking about returning to Scotland only the week before) goes to Llandudno in May / June 1896, and she catches up with Victoria when she notes the Queen's regatta going by and visiting on board a ship in the regatta herself.
She does write complaining about being kept to her agreement to write in February 1894;-
Dear Cousins, I aught to sit down and have a very long chat but I'm sadly afraid I will not be able to do that today as I'm exceptionally busy. I seem to be trying to race with myself all this week and in all parts of the town and I only just caught myself some time for few words with you. I am out of breath and can hardly speak, though it makes no difference to the Editor, who is like Shylock and keeps me to my bond with regards to 'copy' and, as I cannot clog the wheels of the Herald or delay an issue, I must say what I have to say to you with the best grace I can command.
And she often has odd digs at the Editor and her readers. On March 17th 1894 she whinges when the price of fame gets to her -
I want to say a word to the cousins and numerous friends of the K H B who know me personally. It has happened of late that some of the cousins called on me at my house and I was unable to see them. They must not be offended at this or judge me harshly. One person indeed, I am told seemed to consider me remiss in my duty. This is unkind. I do the work involved in connection with the K H B to the best of my ability and purely for love. I get no pay (neither in money or kind) and consequently it cannot be a mere matter of duty. I feel a great deal more for the welfare of the K H B than that, and to a certain extent I do not spare myself. But whilst I'm pleased to see anyone who calls on me (especially those who have helped me) my friends must remember that I DO HAVE DUTIES - I have my literary work to do and my home life to brighten.
But she was fast becoming something of a local celebrity, as reported in Chats with the children, October 21st 1893
My Dear Cousins,
I have at last paid my long promised visit to the Infirmary and the Children's hospital. A hospital as a rule is not considered a very cheerful place, and yet the impression my visit left on my mind is quite the reverse of gloomy. The matron (Miss Chapman) received me very kindly and as we chatted over a cup of tea in her cosy sitting room I could see that her heart was wholly and entirely in her work.
Presently we set out along the well-lighted corridor and first visited the children's ward. As we stood at the door my feeling was of surprise. I have often heard how well the children were cared for, and how bright and comfortable the wards were made, but I was not prepared for such a cheerful and really pretty sight as the one that met my view.
It is a long room with a polished wood floor, and a very lofty ceiling and numerous windows so arranged that they give a nice subdued light. In the centre there was a table on which were some lovely flowers and down each side there is a row of little cots, nearly all of them occupied.
Oh! how the dear little eager faces looked up at us! Each of them had a smile for the matron though some were sickly smiles and a shy look for me. Some of the little patients were well enough to be allowed sit up, others of them were lying down in what looked tome rather uncomfortable positions but that was rendered necessary for their complaints.
One little girl, suffering from and ailment of her foot, had some sort of arrangement with a weight attached to it. I was told that was the only way the little thing did not feel acute pain. Some of you will remember a street accident in Ashton a week or two ago where a little boy got run over. I saw him: he was so bright and animated when the matron spoke to him. The cause of his delight was that he had, with some help from his nurse, hopped across the room for the first time that day.
Poor little chap. It does seem pitiful he must hop through life for his foot and a portion of his leg also had to be amputated. But his nurse told me that he had been so brave and patient all through the operation.
One little fellow is rather a noisy character and sometimes makes a terrible row with a very innocent looking puff puff. Clanging the engines and carriages together until nurse has to take them from him for fear he would annoy the other patients. This brave boy wants to know if he can take the toys "whoam" when he goes.
Of the other little patients some of them are too ill and some too shy to speak to me but all of them were happy and contented. One more look at the sweet pale faces and the door of the children's ward closed silently behind me. Dear little creatures; their homes are not all easy and comfortable , and perhaps in future years of their pleasantest remembrances may be the weeks spent under the kindly and friendly guardianship of the Children's hospital.
We next visited the women's wards. This was indeed a pleasant sight, what with a cheerful fire and pretty screens and the scarlet flannel jackets that the patients wore who were sitting up in bed all combined a sight to be seen and remembered. All the patients looked up cheerfully and smiled at us as we went from bed to bed speaking a few words to each.
The matron knew all of their complaints and had a special word of comfort for all. I felt very deeply for three cases amongst the women. One was a mother fretting because she had been obliged to leave her dear wee baby who was only three months old. Her sorrow was so natural that I felt that artificial comfort would avail her nothing and I would have done almost anything if I could have placed her baby in her arms at once. As it was I could only speak the most commonplace phrases and tell her that her fretting would only retard her recovery and keep her longer from her loved ones.
One of the other cases was that of a discontent; she was discontented because she could not walk about. "I have nothing to do" she said, "but lie her and think about all the times I have run about as happy and healthy as anyone of you, and now I have nothing to do but lie here and think all day. Isn't it dreadful?" And she looked at me with such a woebegone face that I felt compelled to tell her about an old woman I used to visit in Scotland who could neither see nor speak thinking thereby of making her more contented with her lot but I doubt if I made any impression.
One more patient I will stop to tell you about. There was an old woman who seemed to think nobody wanted her because she was old and useless. "You may do" she said "as long as you be able but when you are old you are not wanted". She too is difficult to persuade that in human nature there is more tolerance and greater sympathy that she ever had any idea of.
The Men's wards are equally as nice and comfortable as the other wards. I had never been in a men's ward before and felt quite prepared to see a lot of discontented faces because we are accustomed to hear and sometimes see how impatient the stronger sex are during sickness. But here I was disappointed. The men could not have greeted us with kinder smiles or more patient faces.
One of them said to me with a smile, "Oh I wish it were tomorrow." "Do you?" I said. "Why?" "May be," he said, "the Doctor will tell me I can get up tomorrow." He was tired of being confined to his bed, poor fellow.
In another ward there were two boys; one was able to be up and he was sitting at the bedside of the other and they were enjoying themselves playing dominoes. I talked about our Canon Leonard Taylor and was very pleased to hear that he was better and had gone to Buxton.
After going through the wards I was allowed to peep into the nurses' bedrooms, into the kitchens and washouts and even into the scullery. Neatness and cleanliness were their characteristics and order reigned supreme reflecting great credit on the powers that be.
One more room I must tell you about: it was like a doll's house. Little low couches were about the room and a large low table was in the centre. This was covered with toys of every description. As the door opened the first thing you saw was a lovely little dolly with arms out as if to say "please love me" and I'm quite sure it got plenty of hugs and kisses from the little patients when they were well enough to leave the ward and go into the room to play.
Now I wonder if you can tell me what little luxury I have mentioned that was in the women's ward and not the children's? Do you give up? Well the little children who were well enough had no nice little bed jackets to slip on and keep their shoulders warm. This was not considered a necessity because the wards were nicely warmed and we do not suppose there were any draughts. Otherwise I'm sure they would be supplied. But it is a little luxury that would add to the comfort of the patient and also to the artistic appearance of the ward.
In speaking to the matron after our tour around the place she told me that she is wishful, in fact she is very anxious to form a ladies' committee, which I think will be an excellent thing for if the committee consisted of thirty ladies and each one made say a flannelette bed jacket and a pair of soft slippers each year that would be very little indeed for each lady to do. But it would be sufficient to keep a little patient well supplied with what we consider a necessity for our sick ones at home. And I am quite sure that our ladies in Ashton would willingly supply those articles if their interests were aroused.
And to that I would recommend a visit to the Children's Hospital for the sight of the sick children and the care which is taken of them will not fail to arouse the sincerest sympathy and deepest interest. One thing surprised me on inquiring about the admittance of patients. I was told each patient had to bring what is called a 'Recommend' from a subscriber to the Infirmary. I thought that was rather a pity because in so many cases it may be a difficult thing to procure. We will just imagine a case. A poor woman has a child very sick, the doctor attending, as they often do without any thought of fee for their services, begins to see that the little one is not likely to recover surrounded as it is with noise and perhaps dirt and most assuredly not sufficient nutritive food. He tells the mother that the little one will receive better care in the hospital and advises her to procure a 'recommend' and take the child in. The poor woman goes from one subscriber to another and perhaps after all does not succeed. Meanwhile the little one is suffering and perhaps dying.
I was very sorry when my visit came to a close and as I shook hands with the matron I felt almost inclined to say "just let me peep into the children's ward again." As I drove home I wished so earnestly that I could have taken a few hundred sleepy cousins with me to have a look too.
Maggie has another go at the Editor in April 1895 when he refuses to allow her to set a competition, ie bees and trees and flowers and towers, but she says she knows for certain the Editor likes other things about spring (this is said in confidence) things like spring chicken, spring potatoes and even spring onions but NOT poems or spring sonnets. He says the rhyming couplets are too predictable.
She sets competitions all the time and some of them are most ingenious. For instance, in March 1895 the children are asked to bake a loaf and take them to be judged at the Herald offices one Saturday morning. 11 girls turn up and she is quite firm in who she chooses and there is no pandering - well you all tried so all get some praise and a prize - no there is one winner and that is that. And then the loaves are collected and duly sent to the hospital for distribution. She has painting, essay and poetry competitions and prints the prize winners efforts in her column and shows some of the paintings in a shop in Stamford Street. During the period of our beloved H V M's birth (July 1892) she ran a flower arranging competition and her brother who was visiting from Scotland gives his own special prize because one display had caught his eye. The flowers were duly sent on to the matron to dispense with. Maggie stands no nonsense she gave the children one week for an essay -
"I will give a prize book to the cousin who sends me the best written account of our Treat. Papers must reach me at the Herald office not later than 4 o'clock on Friday January 20th. It gives you only a short time to write it and will thus be fresh in your memory and will thus be easier."
No wonder her son H V M could always meet his deadlines.
She obviously took some stick re her prizes. Initially she gave dental equipment courtesy of the company Denticura (who have huge advertisements in the paper every week). She wrote on March 12th 1892 protesting re remarks made in the opposition Ashton paper the Reporter re the dental goods saying surely anything that helped children to look after their teeth was a good thing. She often offered Chrysloleum paintings made by herself. This is quite an elaborate complicated process of painting very much in vogue at the end of the 1890s.
But it is the fund raising through the column that is the most impressive. She raises hundreds of pounds just by charging the members to join and urges them nigh on every week to recruit more friends and cousins. They write in as I've said, with their names and addresses (all of which is published) and state how much they have sent. She is years ahead of Cancer research and their pink ribbon campaigns. On June 2nd 1892 she writes
My Dear Cousins, How near we are to Whitsuntide and I do hope this lovely weather will continue so that on Friday you may all have a nice turnout.
Do you know what I have been thinking? Well I thought how nice it would be if the members of the Kind Hearted Band had some sort of badge or medal to wear upon such occasions. Unfortunately we have none yet but there is time enough. "Rome wasn't built in a day."
As I was thinking of this it came into my mind that it would answer the same purpose if all the cousins wore a particular colour of ribbon, say pink, just a little bit would do fastened on the left shoulder and in our boy cousins their button- holes. It would serve three purposes. First the cousins would be able to recognize each other, second it would show everyone that you belonged to a particular band and third it would enable me to recognise you all for I shall be somewhere looking on, never fear.
She then follows on with an admonishment which, given the circumstances, must have been very hard for the poor parents of the said child to read;-
I daresay many of you have heard of the sad accident which befell a little boy named Dixon last Saturday at Mossley. His mother warned him not to go and play near water but not heeding her warning he went and was drowned. Poor little fellow. His thoughtlessness has caused his mother great sorrow! Oh if children would only think and pay heed to their parents there would not be so many sorrowing mothers in the world. I do not think for a moment the dear little fellow meant to willfully disobey his mother. It was pure thoughtlessness on his part from which resulted a mournful accident. I sincerely sympathise with his mother although I do not know her.
Well ! She then goes on in a very matter of fact way to tell of a letter she has had from a grateful mother of a hospital patient she visited and finishes by reminding the Band about wearing the pink ribbon.
In May 1894 she encourages all the members of the K H B again to wear pink ribbons at the Whit week walks (a very Lancashire tradition) - where there are massive turn outs of 10,000 people or more. The following week although she is on holiday in Scotland ('resting and recuperating') she tells of reports coming back to her of how successful the campaign had been and it had been noted just how many people had worn the pink ribbon.
But her best fund raising offer (in my opinion) was February 1894 she offers for sale photographs of herself taken by a 'lady' photographer living 4 doors down in 9 Chester Square. This lady, Alice Moss, was professionally known as Mrs E Moss - taking her husband Elijah's name. I wonder how many people have the photograph in their family collection and try in vain to fit a Cousin Maggie onto their tree. I would dearly love to obtain a copy of it but so far I have drawn a complete blank.
With the monies raised she organizes the girls to make quilts and bedjackets for the children in the hospital supplying all the materials which she distributes from the Herald's offices on Saturday mornings. And after a great deal of agonizing over many weeks as to the boys not pulling their weight she finally coerces a Mr. Wood in Stalybridge with his assistant John Wint to help the lads make wooden screens for around the cots.
But most of her monies are for the Treats and to endow a cot.