How New York Welcomed The New Century

There will be gatherings of various kinds all day. The Young Men’s Christian Association will hold a big meeting in Carnegie Hall, at which Gov. Roosevelt will speak. The association will gather this afternoon at its own hall, 23rd Street and 4th Avenue, in connection with the great 20th century gospel campaign. W. R. Moody, son of the evangelist, will be among the speakers.

The movement calls for a week of prayer at this time. The prayer designated for to-day is on “Our Present Pressing Duty,” and is as follows:

“That we may be brought to understand the present condition and needs of ourselves and others, and the character of the new forward movement that will meet the requirements of the opening century.”

The Red Cross Association has postponed its watch night meeting until next March.

Among the letters that will not be read will be one prepared by Mark Twain for the occasion, but withdrawn by him (see sidebar for additional explanation). It is as follows:

Mark Twain’s Salutation

A salutation speech from the 19th century to the 20th, taken down in shorthand by Mark Twain:

I bring you the stately matron named Christendom, returning bedraggled, besmirched and dishonored from pirate-raid in Kiao-Chow, Manchuria, South Africa + the Philippines, with her soul full of boodle, and her mouth full of pious hypocrisies. Give her soap + a towel but hide the looking glass.

— Mark Twain, New York, Dec. 31, 1900

The humorist in asking for his greeting back wrote:

“The list of greeters thus far issued by you contains only vague generalities and one definite name, mine — “Some kings and queens and Mark Twain.” Now, I am not enjoying this sparkling solitude and distinction, which has not been authorized by me and which makes me feel like a circus poster in a graveyard, or like any other advertisement improperly played.”

There will be booths in the Garden at which actresses garbed as Red Cross nurses will sell flowers.

The Century labor dinner at Arlington Hall, 19 St. Mark’s Place, will be one of the noteworthy events of this evening. Intelligent reformers, men who love their fellow man, will participate in the exercises.

Among the speakers will be W. D. Bliss, Ernest H. Crosby, Bishop Potter, Henry George, Jr., Edwin Markham and Dr. H. Heber Newton.

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