Sunday, August 28, 2011

Time and Again

After finding the article about tree planting in 1914, I got curious about the Civic Improvement League and decided to learn more about it. A little time spent on the invaluable Fulton History site yielded this article from the Hudson Evening Register for March 11, 1915, which reveals some of the other projects undertaken by the league and gives insight into the nature of the organization.


Annual Meeting--Milk Station and Playground to be Run This Summer.

The summer milk station and the playground work will be continued this season by the Civic Improvement league, which made such a success of both of these movements last year. This was decided upon at the annual meeting of the association which was held at the Court house last night and the interest shown in the various features of this league promised well toward a successful season to come. County Judge McNamee, President of the organization was in the chair. Reports of committees were received, Mrs. Gillette telling most entertainingly of the work done by the playground committee, and Mrs. Bradley, Dr. Collins and Dr. Van Hoesen telling equally encouraging stories of what had been accomplished at the milk station. Mr. Esselstyn reported for the transportation committee and Mr. DeLamater and Judge McNamee for the Hudson Harbor association. Mrs. DeLamater told of the tree committee's work and the good results that had followed their efforts to have trees sprayed and more planted.

The following were elected Directors for three years: Mrs. Arthur Gifford, Mrs. John Gillette, Mrs. O. H. Bradley, Mrs. William J. DeLamater and Robert W. Evans, these to serve with the ten other directors, whose terms did not expire.

The meeting also discussed some buildings in Hudson where the condition [the next line of type of annoying undecipherable] the possibility of improving of [incomplete word] condition, as well as the need for a building code, a need that is especially felt now with so many buildings being built and being planned.

At the conclusion of the annual meeting the Board of Directors met and elected the following Officers:
President--Daniel V. McNamee.
Vice President--Mrs. John W. Gillette.
Secretary--Mrs. William J. DeLamater.

Some dues were collected for the ensuing year and the treasurer expressed a wish that all members should pay up promptly so that there would be a fund available at once for any emergencies. The dues are only $1, and the public is invited to join the association.

An article that appeared in the Evening Register for April 8, 1915, indicates that the City of Hudson called upon the Civic Improvement League for help in acquiring a baler to enable the City to bale and sell waste paper. Mention of waste paper "blowing about the street" and the suggestion that arrests should be made of "persistent violators, who throw out loose their waste paper and others who make a dumping ground of the alleys for their ashes" give a sense of the magnitude of the problem.

A hundred years later Hudson is still dealing with some of these same issues. Perhaps it's time to re-create a Civic Improvement League. 

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