A Backward Glance at Eighty eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 234 pages of information about A Backward Glance at Eighty.

Kellogg was an eminently fair man.  He took part in a political convention on one occasion and was elected chairman.  There was a bitter fight between contending factions, but Kellogg was so just in his rulings that both sides were satisfied and counted him friendly.

He was a lovable personality and the embodiment of honor.  He was studious and scholarly and always justified our expectation of an able, valuable paper on whatever topic he treated.  I do not recall that in all my experience I have ever known any other man so unreservedly and universally respected.


It is a salutary experience to see the power of goodness, to know a man whose loveliness of life and character exerts an influence beyond the reach of great intellectual gift or conscious effort.  Joseph Worcester was a modest, shrinking Swedenborgian minister.  His congregation was a handful of refined mystics who took no prominent part in public affairs and were quiet and unobtrusive citizens.  He was not attractive as a preacher, his voice trembled with emotion and bashfulness, and he read with difficulty.  He was painfully shy, and he was oppressed and suffered in a crowd.  He was unmarried and lived by himself in great simplicity.  He seemed to sustain generally good health on tea, toast, and marmalade, which at noonday he often shared with his friend William Keith, the artist.

He was essentially the gentle man.  In public speaking his voice never rang out with indignation.  He preserved the conversational tone and seemed devoid of passion and severity.  He was patient, kind, and loving.  He had humor, and a pleasant smile generally lighted up his benignant countenance.  He was often playfully indignant.  I remember that at one time an aesthetic character named Russell addressed gatherings of society people advising them what they should throw out of their over-furnished rooms.  In conversation with Mr. Worcester I asked him how he felt about it.  He replied, “I know what I should throw out—­Mr. Russell.”  It was so incongruous to think of the violence implied in Mr. Worcester’s throwing out anything that it provoked a hearty laugh.  Yet there was no weakness in his kindliness.  He was simply “slow to wrath,” not acquiescent with wrong.  His strength was not that of the storm, but of the genial shower and the smiling sun.  His heart was full of love and everybody loved him.  His hold was through the affections and his blissful unselfishness.  He seemed never to think of himself at all.

He thought very effectually of others.  He was helpfulness incarnate, and since he was influential, surprising results followed.  He was fond of children and gave much time to the inmates of the Protestant Orphan Asylum, conducting services and reading to them.  They grew very fond of him, and his influence on them was naturally great.  He was much interested in the education of the boys and in their finding normal

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A Backward Glance at Eighty from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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