Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- August 13, 1879The Orphanage Picnic
The children looked apprehensively at yesterday's threatening clouds, as did the many goodhearted people who took an interest in the picnic for the inmates of Uhlich's Orphanage. But the arrangers of the festival had faith, and let the children start the parade at ten o'clock, according to the original schedule. The tots carried flags, a brass band was in the lead, and the parade was on its way to Ogden's Grove.
The children were not compelled to wear uncomfortable, tight uniforms, but wore clothes of gay colors, a blue sash being the only identifying mark. The little ones marched briskly, quite oblivious of a little shower; their general contentment became quite apparent when the sun appeared.
A crowd soon gathered at the grove, and before long the orphans mingled and played with other children who do not know what it means to be bereft of parents.2
Hartmann's parish was strongly represented as usual, since Uhlich's Orphanage is especially entrusted to this congregation.
In the afternoon, the children's festival was in full sway, laughter and glee being apparent everywhere; mothers and aunts and the few fathers who were present enjoyed the happy, carefree behavior of the youngsters.
About four o'clock the crowd increased noticeably, and grown persons danced to the tunes of the orchestra. Shortly before five o'clock Reverend Hartmann had the orphans gather around him and bade them sing. Then he mounted the platform and addressed the crowd, which listened attentively. He spoke convincingly and referred to Uhlich as a broadminded man who believed in philanthrophy irrespective of creed; he said that all the leaders of the institution adhere strictly to the same attitude. Although the orphanage is maintained by a Protestant organization, children are accepted regardless of their religious affiliation. The youngsters need not wear uniforms, nor 3does the orphanage association intend to cultivate a narrow religious outlook. The intention is to raise the children to become useful members of society, and, under these conditions, the institution can count on the support of all who have the welfare of others at heart. The picnic, which was arranged for a specific purpose, should therefore take on a much broader character, and should be regarded as a public festivity.
The speaker suggested that all present enjoy the delightful day and thus provide the orphans with a happy outlook on life, a day always to remember.
After the speaker had finished, the orphans sang again and the festival continued in its happy way. With the approach of darkness, the orphans returned to the home, but the festival continued until today.
Uncounted lamps illuminated the grounds, where a happy throng enjoyed itself dancing, listening to music, or in conversation. Nothing marred the occasion, 4and the picnic must have been a source of gratification to the arrangers as well as the participants.
At all events, the picnic added a fair sum to the home's fund, and also served to provide a most enjoyable outing, which will be remembered for a long time.
II B 1 c 3, II D 4
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