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A Paper on the First Common Council of Brooklyn Read by Deputy
Surrogate Jesse B. VOORHIES - Mayor HALL's first Message Prophetic.
The Society of Old Brooklynites met last evening at the Surrogate's office
with Vice-President A. H. OSBORN in the chair. There was considerable talk on
old times, and a committee was appointed to take into consideration the
celebration of the one hundredth anniversary of the evacuation of New York
by the English, which celebration will be on November 25 next.
Mr. Judah B. VOORHIES of the Surrogate's office, then read a paper on the
Common Council of Brooklyn. The first Board consisted of the following
First Ward - Gabriel FURMAN and Conklin BRUSH.
Second Ward - George D. CUNNINGHAM and John M. HICKS.
Third Ward - James WALTERS and Joseph MOSER.
Fourth Ward - Jonathan TROTTER and Adrian HEGEMAN.
Fifth Ward - William M. UDELL and Benjamin R. PRINCE.
Sixth Ward - Samuel SMITH and William POWERS.
Seventh Ward - Clarence D. SACKETT and Stephen HAYNES.
Eight Ward - Theodore POLHEMUS and John S. BERGEN.
Ninth Ward - Robert WILSON and Moses SMITH.
George HALL was elected Mayor, Cyrus P. SMITH, clerk and Attorney,
John S. DOUGHTY City Treasurer, William C. SMITH, Street Commissioner,
and John SEAMAN Street Inspector. The following extract from Mayor HALL's
first message to the Common Council is as appropriate now as in "ye olden
"Every false step in the outset of our proceedings will naturally produce an
unnecessary expenditure of the people's money, as well as the mortification
of having to do over what was but half done, or improperly done, at the
commencement. Saving the example of other cities before us we should
endeavor to avoid whatever has caused an useless expenditure to them, and
in all our improvements carefully select only such parts of them as time and
experience have proved worthy of imitation. I would, indeed, hope that in the
exercise of the powers with which we have been clothed under our new
organization, the rights of individuals may be so constantly kept in view as
form a barrier against any combination which the selfish purposes of a few
designing men might bring to act in concert against them."
These words were uttered forty-eight-years ago, and a careful reading of the
foregoing extract shows that is was indeed prophetic.
Mr. VOORHIES' paper was interesting from beginning to end, and when he had
finished reading he was given a vote of thanks.
Transcribed by Carol Granville
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