Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Smithfield Eclectic Society

The first meeting to inaugurate the Smithfield Eclectic Society took place in the Smithfield Institute Hall, in March 1885. The first President Mr Blake sen, thought that by holding meetings, and discussion, it would be the means of doing a great good. The society met fortnightly to debate topics and hear papers being read.  

Similar societies had been credited with forming young men for public positions. The society teaches one how to study, express their views and how to not take offence if an opposite view is presented.

The first topic for debate was “Is the Government justified in sending forces to Soudan.'

On the second anniversary in 1887, the society celebrated with a social, to which a number of guests were invited. About seventy assembled in the Institute, many of them coming from Gawler and other places. Tables were set out for draughts, &c, which were fully occupied, while the remainder of the guests separated into groups for conversation, or indulged in the much favoured parlour games.

The subject for debate, ' Rail v. Road, ‘Protection and free trade’, “The government experimental farm”, ”The advisability of amalgamating the East and West Munno Para District Councils”, “How to make institutes more attractive”, “Should women occupy public positions?”.

No record of the society was found after 1900.

1885
President Joseph Blake
Vice President John Alexander

1886
President John Alexander
Vice President John Roberts
Secretary Mr Williams and treasurer
Committee Smith, Gavin Scoular and Blake

1887
President John Alexander

1889
President Joseph Blake

1895
President J Hogarth
Secretary and Treasurer W H Moss

1896
President Joseph Blake
Vice President G. Beaumont
Secretary and Treasurer W. H Moss
Committee: G & M McGee, R. Ballard, F. Andrews
Editor Manuscript magazine G. McGee
Auditor A.J Moss, A. Hoole

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