The Ashland Daily Tidings


Talent, Oct. 5, 1885   
Mr. Editor:--
  The dedication of the U. M. L. Hall on the 4th was an enjoyable affair. It being the first meeting of the kind ever held in Southern Oregon, people came from far and near, some from curiosity, no doubt, but most from sympathy with the cause of mental liberty.
  The hall was well filled long before the time for the opening of the exercises, and when all had arrived many were obliged to remain outside and listen by the windows.
  Exercises opened with instrumental and vocal music by the Talent Glee Club, following which were brief introductory remarks by the chairman, W. J. Dean, together with the reading of a short paper signed by the directors, setting forth the aims and objects of the association. After a song entitled "Lover of truth, Awake from thy Sadness," Gen. E. L. Applegate delivered a discourse on the "Universal Mental Liberty." No abstract or summary could do justice to Mr. Applegate's speech. It was scholarly, replete with historical citations and intensely logical throughout. It be issued in pamphlet form and carefully read by all who persist in considering free thought synonymous with vice and immorality. Following was a "Picnic Song," a pleasing reminder that even free-thinkers cannot live on feasts of reason alone, but that cookies, sandwiches, chicken "fixin's," etc., etc., that come forth from the picnic basket, should in no wise be ignored. Without delay the audience repaired to Mr. Beeson's orchard, where on the grassy lawn, the air redolent with the perfume of over-hanging fruit, dinner was served. And we did all eat were filled, and I don't how many baskets full of the fragments were taken up. By the way, Mr. Beeson's dogs were all scared off the place by such a crowd, leaving a watermelon patch near by dangerously exposed. But we didn't confiscate one watermelon -- that one was left for manner's sake, and it wasn't ripe, anyhow. Mr. Editor, you should have been there; such occasions are rare.
  The afternoon exercises consisted of short stirring addresses by Prof. J. N. Hall, Gen. Applegate, W. J. Dean, Father Beeson and a Baptist clergyman whose name I did not learn, followed by select readings by A. Hubbell, B. F. Myer and Father Beeson; also the reading of communications from W. F. Benjamin of Roseburg and Mrs. A. S. Duniway of the New Northwest.
  The following resolution was passed: Resolved, that the address delivered by Gen. E. L. Applegate was an eloquent, clear and logical exposition of the subject of Universal Mental Liberty; that it was an address that should not only be heard but read and studied, and that he be requested to furnish a copy for publication to one or more of the county papers and also to the Oregonian.
  The closing song "Hail to Thee, Liberty," was sung with spirit and elicited hearty applause. The music, both instrumental and vocal, which was frequently interspersed was excellent. In fact the Talent Glee Club, consisting of the Breese family of this place, assisted by Dr. Kahler of Phoenix, produce music that any city of ten thousand inhabitants could justly boast of.
  As far as could be ascertained all present were pleased with the day's proceedings, many of the ladies carrying away flowers from the vases as souvenirs of the occasion. Many and earnest were the congratulations we received on having reared so beautiful a structure and dedicated it to so noble a purpose.
W. J. Dean, Asist. Sec.