The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Columns

July 29, 2013

Onesiphorai Reading Club celebrating a centennial in Franklin

As kids, it’s a joy to be read to by an adult. As adults, we then read to our kids. As for adults reading to adults, there’s not an abundance of that going on locally. In recent years we’ve had creations such as books on tape or CD, but it’s not the same as someone being in the same room, reading to one another.

There is an exception in Franklin, where a group meets every two weeks, just as it has done for the past 100 years, to read aloud, discuss current events and almost as importantly enjoy a delicious homemade dessert. 

The Onesiphorai Reading Club recently celebrated its centennial of the first meeting, which was held on Thursday, Feb. 20, 1913 at Mrs. Lulu Stilson’s home. For those unfamiliar trying to pronounce it, that’s “on-a-sa-fry,” which is a Greek word that can mean “working together,” or “profitable or helpful.”

Current Club President Louise Hebbard said the Onesiphorai Reading Club had its origins in the “Thimble Parties” held in the early 20th century at various homes in Franklin, where sewing was the main activity. Hebbard says that had you been a young woman in Franklin, you might get invited to a party. At that time, most women were mothers with children and spent most of their time at home with family responsibilities. The women still desired to keep up with news and current events, which at the time involved reading, as there wasn’t the Internet, television or radio. At these gatherings, the women sewed and listened to each other read.

At Lulu Stilson’s home, 14 women met for the purpose of organizing a literary and social club. While sewing may have been included, the first object was to read and encourage reading of good literature, and second to promote sociability among its members. Elizabeth S. Rowell was elected first club president, with Helen G. Maurer as secretary-treasurer. The name Onesiphorai was adopted at the third meeting on March 13, 1913.

Text Only
Big Chuck D'Imperio
Cary Brunswick

Chuck Pinkey
Guest Column
Lisa Miller

Mark Simonson

Rick Brockway
Sam Pollak
William Masters
  • Schreibman tops Chris Gibson on women's issues

    As the time to vote draws near, we need to remember how money can run politics more than we can. Raising funds is a prominent (if not the dominant) task of getting elected. Raising issues is also crucial, but those efforts are subject to distortion and fear-mongering.

    September 18, 2012

  • Republicans feelentitled to allthey can garner

    An entitlement is a legal benefit available from the government to individuals who are within a defined category of recipients, such as needing insurance for unemployment or health services.

    September 4, 2012

  • Romney focuses on self; Obama emphasizes unity

    Mitt Romney criticizes President Obama for saying a person's success is rooted in his community, and is not all his alone. Romney belittles this with his belief in individual initiative. He is better at the put-down than the push-up.

    August 21, 2012

  • Romney shows little regard for common man

    The Republicans in Congress have voted over and over, 33 times, redundantly and uselessly, to rescind what they call Obamacare.

    August 7, 2012

  • Scouts' gay ban creates problem where none exists

    The Boy Scouts of America's "emphatic reaffirmation" of its vow to exclude any and all homosexuals from its hallowed ranks is ill-considered and pathetic, especially in view of its having reviewed the matter for two years.

    July 24, 2012

Additional Content
Join the Debate
Helium
Additional Resources
CNHI News Service
Poll

Are you more or less religious than your parents?

More religious
Less religious
About the same
     View Results