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THE MASTERS ASSOCIATION.
The Boston Masters' Association is composed of all the principals of the Normal, Latin, High, and Grammar Schools, employed in the city of Boston. This Association meets once a month, at the call of the superintendent of schools, for the discussion of educational questions, and for conference in regard to the management of the schools. These meetings are held at the rooms of the school committee, and are followed by a dinner at Parker's.
Here it was that the Boston masters were brought into the most intimate relations with Dr. Philbrick. Here, more than anywhere else, that they learned to appreciate his wisdom, his power in practical affairs, his patience, his thorough appreciation of good work and honest endeavor, and his constant effort to dignify the office of the teacher and make it honorable and desirable. Here, too, it was that the simple honesty of his nature most showed itself, and that warm-hearted generosity which
gave due credit to all his co-workers in the cause of education. Here were cemented those bonds of personal friendship which united superintendent and teachers into a band of faithful friends working for the common good of the schools. Here, in short, he learned to respect and love the Boston masters, and here they learned to regard him as the ideal superintendent.
The March meeting of this Association was given up to a commemoration of the work and character of Dr. Philbrick. Among the addresses that evening were the following:
ADDRESS OF C. GOODWIN CLARK.
Mr. Superintendent and Brother Masters :
In offering these resolutions for the committee, I wish to add a few personal words of appreciation of the character and characteristics of our beloved and lamented friend.
My acquaintance with Mr. Philbrick began in New Britain, Conn., in the winter of 1852. I had charge of the grammar department of the model school connected with the Normal School, when he was appointed to the principalship, and the following year I became a student of the Normal School, and came daily under his teaching and influence. It has been my good fortune since that time to be on terms of friendship, to go to him for advice, and, for the last twenty-five years, to co-operate with him to do the best thing for the schools of Boston.
His deep personal interest in the students of New Britain attached them to him. He set before them a high ideal, and inspired them with needed confidence. His enthusiasm was contagious, and aroused in them a zeal for improvement and for the doing of worthy work for a
noble calling. No matter how short the interview, they left him with enlarged views and nobler aspirations. He was like a charged “ Leyden jar” ; whatever teacher came in contact with him received a spark, and he was an unimpressible dullard who was not improved by contact.
I called on him once during a serious illness, when visitors were a hindrance; but his interest in the work in New Haven, where Prof. Moses True Brown and myself had been sent to do pioneer work in reorganizing the school system of that city, was unabated, and his faithful wife had to check him for exceeding his strength in cheering and counseling us.
Mr. Philbrick had common sense in an uncommon degree, which men call wisdom. He was a needed and appreciated counselor in educational affairs. His growth in wisdom was continuous and symmetrical, like the growth of a tree, and as we who have been long associated with him have grown in years and experience, we have not outgrown his judgment, but have appreciated it more and more. His consecration to education was complete. In him was illustrated the saying of the Great Teacher, “ If thine eye be single thy whole body shall be full of light.”
It is human for ignorance and inexperience to speak lightly and perhaps disparagingly of our official superiors, whom we do not know or cannot appreciate. I have heard such remarks regarding Mr. Philbrick, and it has been interesting to note the changed opinions of such when placed in responsible positions. “I did not