The Kellogg Family

By Rev. Day Otis Kellogg


I look upon two of my literary operations with considerable pleasure. Rev. Dr. E. A. Washburn of New York, Phillips Brooks, then of Philadelphia, C. A. L. Richards, now of Providence, Henry C. Potter, now bishop, and myself started in New York a paper called "The Living Church." W. G. Sumner now of Yale College, was to be its editor, and Dr. John Cotton Smith of New York bore the expense of its publication and circulation by substituting it once a month for the issue of "The Protestant Churchman" which he then controlled. The paper was Broad Church and it made a stir although there were but twelve issues of it, for it brought to light and to some respect the existence of a fast spreading critical spirit among the younger Episcopal Clergy. This was in 1868 when I lived in Providence. The Broad Churchmen never were good organizers, but they were not snarlers like the Evangelical porcupines.

About the same time the editor of the "Providence Evening Press" permitted me to write for his editorial columns, and thus began a connection which lasted as long as that editor controlled the paper. He used to print about a column and a half each week from my pen and wherever I went he always received and used my articles. The accounts of the Centennial Exposition in that newspaper were from my pen. The connection lasted nearly ten years and brought me in about $3,000 and then the paper was sold to new parties.

For two years I was on the editorial staff of the "Philadelphia Press" (1877-9) when Forney terminated my connection with it shortly after an article appeared in it, in which I had sharply criticised the financial report of the Pennsylvania R. R. Company because it revealed nothing, being like the trustees' reports to the annual meeting of District 44 in Cumberland County.

About two years ago I fell in with Prof. R. E. Thompson of Philadelphia, with whom I have done considerable hard work. He was then editing the "Penn Monthly," a magazine that deserved to live and would have lived in any other community half as large as poor sterile Philadelphia. I wrote four or five articles for that publication, chiefly on sociological topics. We soon went with locked arms into the Charity Organization movement in that city. I was the chairman of the committee to report a plan, appointed in the Board of Trade rooms in 1877. It was on my nomination that Professor Thompson, Dr. Charles Cadwalader and one or two others went upon that committee because it was my intention, if I had the opportunity, to selact them to draw up our report. The chance was given me and I did appoint them, and was associated with them in their conferences. When the report was made in June, 1878 they were carried over with me into the new organization of which I was the first and a hard-worked organizing secretary, amongst whose duties it fell to propose and to edit the little organ of that society "The Monthly Register," a journal still in active usefulness. I record these facts with the more detail because it has been widely said that the Charity Organization Society of Philadelphia grew out of a Germantown association and found its chief promoters there. This is far from being true. Several currents set together in the meeting at the Board of Trade rooms, and one or two of them I can trace partly to my articles in the "Philadelphia Press," partly to my attitude in the Episcopal Convention of the diocese, and partly to the associates I had formed in carrying on certain humane enterprises of our own. The plan was drawn by a committee of five, not counting myself, of which a majority were my own personal acquaintances with whose views I was in accord, and whom for that reason I placed in the positions they held, by virtue of my appointing power as chairman of the general committee whose agent they were. Some day these facts may have historical importance. For this reason, I will further add, that while Mr. Philip C. Garrett was a faithful and often judicious counselor from the start, and Rev. Charles G. Ames, a later coadjutor of splendid working capacity, Prof. Robert E. Thompson of the University and Dr. Charles Cadwalader were the mainstay of the cardinal principles and policy adopted, and were the chief promoters of Charity Organization in Philadelphia. The features which the Germantown representatives forced upon us, such as the immediate creation of ward branches, self-controlled and supplying relief with a weak and dependent central authority, inverting the true order of a propaganda, which we essentially were, were not acceptable to us, and have had since to be modified, and it will take years yet before the undesirable consequences are outgrown. However, the work we all did together was most amiably compromised as we went on; earnest advocacy of individual views never marred the courtesy or cordiality of the colleagues. Our progress was phenomenal, we outgrew our assimilating strength; and I shall never cease to rejoice in the fine modulations, the gratuitous diligence and the splendid cohesion of spirit and mind which linked us together in the first two years of our Charity Organization work.

About 1880, Prof. Thompson became editor in chief of "The American," a protectionist, critical and literary paper drawing its sustenance from the purse of Wharton Barker, when there is otherwise famine in the locker. I have always been one of its contributing writers to the extent of two or three columns a month. "The Atlantic Monthly'* has paid me for four or five magazine articles. "The Critic" of New York has let me speak a few times to its public, and for about a year and a half I had access to "Bradstreet's Journal" in New York to tell what I knew about the economics of charity and penology. Such are the ripples in my wake; not much very solid or permanent in shape outside of the "Britannica." In these volumes my more prolonged articles appear over my own signature. Quite as much more from my pen is not acknowledged.

In 1861 I married on the tenth of April, Sarah Cornelia Hall in Virginia and got my bride away just one day before the Civil War began at Fort Sumpter, a war which almost immediately drove her mother and sisters from their home and to the north, and dispossessed them of it forever. The house, known to thousands of soldiers from its shape as the octagon house, stood on the road leading to the Seminary about two miles back of Alexandria. It fell within the Union lines, was put to hospital and officers' uses, and survived the war, only in a time of profound peace to be burned by an incendiary in its owner's sight, while she was on an errand in 1865 to sell it. But the family were not Virginians. Both father and mother were natives of western New York. She of sound Yankee stock and he of Pennsylvania ancestry. Her family were Lawrences from Genesses. My wife's father, Dr. Charles Hall was a Presbyterian clergyman who spent nearly all his professional life in the secretaryship of the Home Missionary Society of New York which, at that time, was the joint missionary agency for the western operations of the Congregationalists and New-School Presbyterians. I have heard his old friends speak of him as a man of very solid and exact attainments, as of engaging sweetness and devoutness, and as the object of reverent love to all who had the happiness to know him. He died at Newark, N. J. in the maturity of his powers in 1854, and his family removed to Virginia to follow the fortunes of a gifted and brilliant son, Charles, who soon after drowned in the Potomac, leaving his mother and three sisters exposed to the rapacity of a semi-civilized community.

We have had five children. Our only daughter, Edith, died in October, 1873 at the age of nine and a half years in Lawrence, Kansas. Our first born, Charles B. Kellogg, was twenty-six years of age when we laid the beauty of his glorious youth in Siloam Cemetery, October, 1887. Lawrence was born in Providence, R. I. in 1870. Oliver Dimon in Lin wood, Dela ware Co., Pa. in 1878, and little Edward Washburn, who bears the name of my old friend, Rev. Dr. Washburn of New York, was born in Vineland, 1883.

Perhaps this too long record will have no interest to anyone but my children and not even to them. I feel that it is almost too personal in its reminiscences for the eye of the stranger, and yet in view of the fact that the tablets of my cerebric archives will crumble soon, while those of the Vineland Historical Society will be renewed from time to time, I decide to entrust to them these recollections as a kind of inheritance of which my children should not be irreparably deprived.