TWELFTH OF JULY CELEBRATION.
Last night the members of the Loyal Orange Lodge, No. 23, Ashburton, celebrated the 12th July by a dinner in Shearman’s Hotel. The tables were laid at half-past eight, immediately after the arrival of the last train from Christchurch, where some 15 or 20 of the Ashburton brethren had been taking part in the great demonstration during the day. About 80 sat down to dinner, which was purveyed in Host Shearman’s best style. Most of the Orangemen wore the sashes, etc., of the Order, and the officers the badges of their positions. The chair was occupied by Bro. St. Hill, the Worshipful Master of the Lodge, the vice-chair being filled by Bros. S. B. Nelson, and G. M. Robinson. After the toast of Her Majesty had been honored with due loyalty, proposed as it was in a patriotic speech by the Chairman, Bro. G. M. Rohin-
son proposed the “ charter toast ” of the Lodge. The memory of William the Third called to their
recollection the privilege of freedom of thought they possessed, and the perfect immunity they stood in from the power of all who would arrogate to themselves the right of thinking for them. The toast having been acknowledged, Bro. S. B. Nelson gave that of “ the Grand Master of the Orange Institution of Great Britain, the Earl of Inniskillen. ” This toast having been drunk, Mr. Minnis recited ‘ ‘ the Breaking of the Boom. ” The Chairman then gave ‘ ‘ the health of the Grand Master and officers of the Middle Island, coupled with the name of Bro. S. B. Nelson, Deputy Grand Master of the Middle Island.” Bro. Nelson replied, complimenting the Lodge on its turn out of members, and comparing the attendance that night and the demonstration that day in Christchurch with 14 years ago, when only four attended the celebration dinner. The “little one had become a thousand ” indeed. After
the Mayor and Borough Council had been toasted —Bros. St. Hill and Robinson responding—“the Friendly Societies” were given, Messrs. Zouch, and Scott, responding for the Foresters and Oddfellows. “ The Officers of the Lodge ” were then proposed in complimentary terms by Bro. Sealy. The Lodge, he said, was one of great importance requiring good men at its head, and he thought the very best of the lodge had been chosen. The Lodge had increased with great rapidity, for it was only three years old, yet for numbers it took no mean stand amongst the Lodges of the Colony. The Chairman replied for himself and officers, but was not prepared to admit that the very best men in the Lodge were in office. It was owing to the enthusiasm of, and to the aid given by private members that the Lodge was what it was. He had seen a very large number of young members initiated since the last 12th of July, and he hoped to see many more. Perhaps the best proof of the Lodge’s stability was it funds, and he was happy that they were in a position to Jend a helping hand to
any poor brothers who may require aid. Other toasts followed, and throughout the evening songs by various members enlivened the time.
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