An online project under the direction of the CAPE ANN MUSEUM
Historical Materials: Gloucester Buildings & Businesses
"The Lyceum was established in 1830, with the chief design of developing the talents of its members in lectures, essays, and debates. To this end of its formation, the labors of that wise and earnest friend of education, Reb. Hosea Hildreth, constantly tended; but it soon lost the character of a school which he wished to give it, and became only a vehicle for the entertainment of its members through the medium of popular public lectures. The institution no longer retains even this feature, and preserves only its corporate existence as the custodian of an excellent library, which, by the efforts of public-spirited citizens of the town, acting under the immediate stimulus of a generous offer by a native [Samuel Sawyer] residing in Boston, was formed, and placed in its care, in 1854. This library contains about two thousand volumes. . ." (1)
Lane became a member of the Lyceum in the mid-1840s and served as director in 1849, 1851, 1852, and 1858. He also helped with fundraising events. A card of thanks from the ladies who held a fundraiser for the Lyceum Library appeared in the 2.27.1858 Cape Ann Advertiser: "To Messrs. F.H.Lane, Addison Center and John Trask for their arduous and truly artistic labors in preparation of Tableaux."
1. John J. Babson, History of the Town of Gloucester Cape Ann, Including the Town of Rockport (Gloucester, MA: Procter Brothers, 1860), p. 558.
Newsprint, various dates, from bound volume owned by publisher Francis Procter. Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck.
“A CARD. – The Ladies engaged in the late Fair held for the aid of the Lyceum Library, tender their sincere thanks to all that have aided them in this enterprise. More especially would they express their sense of obligation to the Chelsea Continentals, and the Gloucester Cornet Band, for their pleasing musical entertainment; and to Mr. FITZ LANE for the very generous present of a beautiful production of his pencil [unclear if painting, drawing or print], and for his efficient aid in designing and executing the arrangements for the Fair.
To the members of the Lyceum, and all interested in this Institution, they are happy to announce that their very liberal patronage of the Fair has resulted in the attainment of the object for which it was held, and that they are now able to avail themselves of the generous donation proffered them, on certain conditions, by a friend of the Library. Gloucester, April 29th, 1856.”
Sawyer Free Library, Gloucester, Mass.
From bound volume owned by publisher Francis Procter
Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck
Description of the Ladies Festival in support of the Lyceum Library (Lane helped with the tableaux).
"LADIES' FESTIVAL. – The Festival under the direction of the ladies interested in the Lyceum Library, which took place on the evenings of the 22d and 23d inst., was a complete success. On both evenings the 'Mammoth Sail Loft' was filled to its utmost capacity, and all present enjoyed themselves in participating and witnessing the various amuseuments. The Tableaux were very fine, the great objection to this part of the entertainment was the difficult of getting a good view, on account of the loft not being of sufficient height for the erection of a stage high enough for all to command a good prospect. As it was the 'tall ones' had a decided advantage, while the 'short ones' were obliged to satisfied with a description by their more fortunate friends..."
Another column from this day (not pictured here) describes Lane's involvement in Tableaux.
Sawyer Free Library