Saturday, April 23, 2016

Ima's mysterious 1918 notebook, continued

[The next notebook page is a large, hurried scrawl about a possible furniture purchase.]

9 chairs Rush
       with new
      Bottomss of Flag
            at 10 Each
            Crated Read
            to Shipp at

      And clock
      case at 10.00
      with hands--

[Next comes a reading list, after what appears to be a page or pages torn out.]

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Summer 1918: The mysterious notebook

[Suddenly copied into the notebook, part of Robert Browning’s 1841 verse drama, Pippa Passes, describing a sunrise.]

Fast and more fast
O’er night’s brim, day boils at last
Boils, pure gold, o’er the cloud cap’s brim,
Where spurting and suppress’d it lay--
For not a froth-flake touched the rim
Of yonder gap in the solid gray
Of the eastern cloud, an hour away;
But forth one wavelet, then another, curled,
Till the whole sunrise, not to be supprest,
Rose, reddened, and its seething breast
Flickered in bounds, grew gold, then overflowed the world.

         from Pippa Passes                            

After missing pages in the notebook, part of a poem copied.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Mia's Summer 1918 Notebook, continued.

[Symphony notes, continued] 

Organization of orchestra:
How many men?
Day or night?
How financed?

Average pay by rehearsals

per week?
Industrial workers as musicians?
How used in other cities?

Community singing
Orchestra conductor?
Band master

Oratorio conductor:
City & orchestra organizations?

Sunday concerts
Home Talent
Visiting Lecturers

City appropriations for Sunday entertainment
Expense of orchestra
Receipts expected from performances, subscriptions

Deficit proportionate to attendance?

[A page or pages appear to have been torn out]

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Notes from Ima's 1918 Notebook

[After a page cut out of the steno notebook, the following page contains only this unidentified  passage]

If the people are to hold the key to power, if they would rule they must serve, and if they would be the heirs of time they must begin to think in terms of eternity.


[More symphony research notes]


Population: white
Philanthropic expenditures
Citizens in labor & industry:

Liberty Loan:
Amusement Exp:
Auditorium attendance:
Municipal position on board.
Co-operation or subsity for b. & o.?
How many band instruments available
Salaries of band men?
Uses of band?  
Highest exp. in U.S. for music? (or.)

       Ima, then president of the Houston Symphony she had helped to found in 1913, was on a working vacation,  planning to ask questions about orchestras in other cities.
         But something was about to ruin that pleasant trip.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Bayou Bend Collection: 50th Anniversary March 5!

On March 5, 1966, a ceremony opened the Bayou Bend Collection as the American Decorative Arts Wing of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.

         “Texas, an empire in itself, geographically and historically, sometimes seems to be regarded as remote or alien to the rest of our nation. I hope in a modest way Bayou Bend may serve as a bridge to bring us closer to the heart of an American heritage which unites us.”
         --Ima Hogg, at the dedication ceremony, March 5, 1966.

Bayou Bend will be open for free tours on Saturday, March 5.

This event is free! Drop in to attend. 

Last admission to the house is 4 p.m. and last admission to the gardens is 4:30 p.m.      


Saturday, February 27, 2016

J.S. Hogg, down but never out, April 1905

In April 1905, Jim Hogg wrote a newsy letter to his nephew:

         . . . Last Thursday is the first time I have been to my desk since early in January. I got my neck cracked on the railroad on the 26th of January, within about forty miles of this place. The rigors or convulsions followed in quick succession, and in the course of a few days an abscess about the base of my brain or somewhere in my neck set up. From the injury I lost consciousness which continued for something over a month. The torture and misery that I suffered could only be described by some or all of the four doctors who attended me. They could not reach the abscess from the exterior, but finally had to cut it from five different places through my mouth. I am not entirely well, though I am gradually recovering my strength. This explains what would otherwise appear to be negligence in answering the letters which have accumulated. . . .
         For the past two years luck seems to have turned against me. Beginning with Ima’s affliction [she had injured her knee, but recovered], which lasted nearly a year; then came Tom, then Mike, so that upon the whole my anxiety of mind and loss of time, as well as expenses, have taken all of the “music” out of me. While these afflictions were on I sustained very heavy losses in many quarters. If I finally recover, as I now believe I will, from the illness which yet afflicts me, I have no fear of the future or of results. The outlook is certainly cheering and cheerful. My children are scattered so that I do not know whether I can ever get them together again.
         Will has a fine position with the best prospects of any young man that I know of in St. Louis. He has a fine salary and almost limitless financial backing. He and Ima both stayed with me during my illness here. Of course, Ima is yet my running mate and if it is possible has improved every day. Mike is yet in Lawrenceville, but is not very well on account of a spell of measles which he has not yet recovered from. Tom is out on a cattle ranch seventy miles west of Kerrville. I have moved here and am boarding at the hotel. . . .

On March 3, 1906, Jim Hogg died peacefully of a heart attack in his sleep. 21 days short of his 55th birthday.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Before Ima's 1905 romance, Governor Hogg has a fateful accident.

The year of Ima’s “Sweetheart” romance, her father had a serious injury.

 In late January [1905] a fateful accident took place. On January 26, ex-Governor Hogg, en route by train from Varner to Houston, was involved a collision. The passenger car in which he was riding rammed into another car, and Hogg was thrown violently to the floor. At first the injuries seemed to be only bruises, and Ima continued her socializing in Austin. She gave a “German” (a ball) on February 3, honoring her visiting San Antonio friends. But Ima’s Austin social whirl was halted and the family’s life took an unexpected turn two days after Ima's party, when she received a telegram that her father was seriously ill in Houston. An abscess had formed at the back of his neck, and he was about to have surgery.
 “Of course I rushed to him,” Ima wrote later.
To reach and treat the abscess, as Hogg later told his physician nephew, William Davis, Houston doctors “had to cut it from five different places in my mouth.” [1]These surgical procedures weakened his already strained heart, and Ima became his devoted nurse. He was critically ill and bedridden “for practically eight weeks,” as Ima wrote to Mike in Lawrenceville. But by March their father was much improved and able to travel with Ima and Tom to San Antonio for a stay at the Menger Hotel--but not for long.
---The Hoggs of Texas: Letters and Memoirs of an Extraordinary Family (2013).

It was mostly downhill from there.