Time For Java 250!

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oldjava4Through 250 years of wars, politics, development, weather, science, arts, sports and education in Connecticut, there was the social news. Reports on people and their parties, cotillions, galas, coming-out parties, balls, socials, celebrations, festivals and fetes have been a “must read” during the Courant’s long history. On Wednesdays during February we are revisiting some of these social reports on the balls, parties, dinners, fundraisers from years past.


In 1840…

The two hundredth anniversary of the adoption of the first constitution of Connecticut, by the towns of Windsor, Wethersfield and Hartford in 1639, was celebrated on Tuesday April 21st, 1840, the anniversary of the election of John Haynes as the first governor of the State, by a public oration and dinner, under the direction of a Committee of the Connecticut Historical Society. The venerable Noah Webster, Lld, a native of Hartford and a lineal descendent of John Webster, one of the six magistrates chosen with Gov. Haynes at the first election in Connecticut, was selected the orator of the day. (April 24, 1840)

In 1913….Society Dances At the Assembly

The climax of the social season of 1913 was reached last evening when the 1913 Assembly was held at the Hartford Club, the function proving to be one of the most brilliant affairs that have been given in the city in many years. Over 400 persons visited the club during the evening and the display of gowns and jewels was probably the most lavish that will be seen this winter. Among those who entertained at dinner preceding the Assembly were the following: Mrs. Richard M. Bissell, Mrs. Morgan Gardner Bulkeley, Mrs. James L. Goodwin, Mrs. Henry Roberts, Mrs. Charles L. F. Robinson, Mrs. John T. Robinson, Mrs. Bernard T. Williams, Mrs. Archibald. G. Mellwaine Jr., Mrs. Charles Gill, Mrs. F. C. Billings, and Mrs. Lewis D.Parker. (Dec. 20, 1913)

In 1915…. Bridge Party A Spring Success

One of the prettiest and most successful affairs given this spring was the subscription luncheonoldjava3 and bridge yesterday afternoon for the benefit of the Connecticut Association Opposed to Woman Suffrage, which was largely due to the hospitality of Mrs. William E. A. Bulkeley, Mrs. Albert S. Cook and Mrs. Charles G. Bill, who opened their homes on Sycamore Road for the occasion. The arrangements were made by the city enrollment committee, of which Mrs. Frederick T. Simpson is chairman. Contributions were given to such an extent that no expense was involved in the preparation of the luncheon, which was attended by more than 200 people. Following the luncheon, which was served at one o’clock, the guests visited the homes which were open to all, and were prettily decorated with spring flowers. At 2 o’clock, more than five tables were arranged for bridge, which lasted until 5 o’clock. (May 16, 1915)

In 19oldjavatob52….First Royal Appearance Is Made by Queen at Armory Coronation Ball

Tobacco netting billowing from the rafters of the State Armory Friday night transformed the drillshed into a gorgeous spectacle for the second annual Coronation Ball highlighting the Cigar Valley Festival. Pale green panels embossed with shades predominated the scene. There were light blues, Cotillion blues, Yale blues and navy blues. As always, black gowns were dramatic with white draping and the white bouffant swayed gracefully around the floors. The queen’s throne towered 10 feet above the dance floor, backed by a 35-foot pylon of pale rose topped with a tomahawk and peace pipe, entwined with colored Indian feathers, flanked on either side with totem poles, shading from a deeper rose to a ruby red. On the lower dais, two orchestras, Jimmy Dorsey’s and Paul Landerman’s, played for the dancing continuously throughout the event. Gov. Lodge played the principal role of the evening in crowning Queen Marilyn Geigl. Preceding the Ball, the Lodges entertained at a dinner party for Maj. Gen. and Mrs. Frederick G. Reincke, Rear Admiral and Mrs. Arthur Graham Hall of New London, State Police commissioner and Mrs. Edward J. Hickey, Mr. and Mrs. Prescott Bush, Mr. and Mrs. William A. G. Minot of Greenwich, Mr. and Mrs. Justin Sturms of Westport and Mr. and Mrs. Colbert K. Barrows of West Hartford. (Sept. 13, 1952)

In 1954….Opera Guild Ball Hartford

Society arrived glamorously gowned at the first annual Connecticut Opera Guild Ball Saturday oldjava1Evening Nov. 13 at the Hotel Statler. One of the highlights of the social season, the affair was most unique with members of the Simsbury Light Opera Co. and students from Hartford School of Music, attired in costumes from various operas, ushering guests to their tables. Guests of committee members were Metropolitan opera stars and during the evening Dorothy Wilson from the Met entertained with arias. (Nov. 21, 1954)

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