Page:Notes and Queries - Series 11 - Volume 9.djvu/328

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NOTES AND QUERIES, [ii s. ix. APRIL 25,


(1866), where Richer's daughter Maud is called a daughter of "Richard de Aquila " (p. 386). Why the family name should be so frequently left in its Latinized form is a mystery.

As T have referred to Kipling's books, and have no doubt that many readers agree with me that stories about children are much more interesting when we know the children's ages, may I be allowed to record that the author most kindly informed mo that Dan's age at the beginning of the Puck stories would be between nine and tenĀ ? Una's age is, of course, mentioned in ' Marklake Witches.' G. H. WHITE.

St. Cross, Harleston, Norfolk.


BIRMINGHAM STATUES AND MEMORIALS.

(See ante, pp. 202, 243, 282.)

THE Joseph Chamberlain Fountain in Chamberlain Square, immediately behind the Town Hall, was inaugurated on 26 Oct., 1880, from the design of John Henry Cham- berlain (died 1883), a Birmingham architect and publicist of marked ability and much personal charm. The " Memorial," which cost about 2,900?., occupies approximately the site of the temporary hustings formerly a feature of Parliamentary elections. On an occasion of its use in the later sixties, Mr. Chamberlain (a Londoner by birth, but then a young man coming to be regarded as a rising politician) was among the supporters of John Bright, George Dixon, Philip Henry Muntz, and other prominent political leaders. (It may not be generally known that the architect of the Hall was T. Hansom, whose name was given to the " Han- som "cab.) This was the last hustings elec- tion in Birmingham, and the roof of the Library f rom which the scene below could be viewed was occupied by many spectators, among them a member of the staff of the Library, who steadied himself by clutching a large stone ball then decorating the parapet by way of an architectural adornment. The huge ball broke away from its moorings, and fatal disaster seemed inevitable. By a dexterous movement, however, the cause of the breakage had the presence of mind to wrench the moving mass back on to the roof, and it fell with a crash through a sky- light into the Reference Library, instead of upon the throng crowding the street below. (The mention of this accident recalls another which occurred during the building of the


Hall in the early thirties, when two workmen were killed by the failure of a pulley-block while engaged in hoisting some stonework. They were buried in St. Philip's Churchyard, and a base of a pillar worked by one of them, a mason, for a colonnade of the Hall, was used as their tombstone, and may still be seen. )

The Chamberlain Fountain bears in a central niche a medallion portrait by Thomas Woolner, R.A., together with an inscription recording Mr. Chamberlain's eminent services to the town from 1869 on- wards, more particularly during his occupa- tion of the Mayoral chair, to which he was thrice elected. It is surmounted by an octagonal spire 65 ft. in height, and shortly after its erection a modification was mad in the arrangement of the basin and steps.

There is as yet no adequate memorial to Mr. Chamberlain. This might well be erected some day in Corporation Street, the great central thoroughfare driven by him and his associated townsmen through a slum district of unthinkable squalor. Speaking of this improvement, Mr. Chamber- lain once saidĀ :

" This will make Birmingham the richest borough in the kingdom sixty or seventy years hence. It is the only occasion for which I wish to live beyond the ordinary term of human life, in order to' see the result of this improvement, and hear the blessings which will then be showered upon the Council of 1875, which had the courage tc- inaugurate this scheme."

Among men not natives of Birmingham who have risen into prominence with its growing importance was George Dawson (1821-76), also a Londoner. He was the son of Jonathan Dawson, a Baptist school- master of 36, Hunter Street, Brunswick Square, at whose " academy " the brothers of Charles Dickens (Forster's ' Life,' ch. iii.) were at one time pupils, and also Charles himself, if a writer in Edgbastonia of March, 1885, may be trusted. Dawson came to Birmingham in 1844 as a Baptist minister, and soon attracted a large congregation by reason of his eloquence and force of character. Leaving the denomination under circum- stances honourable both to it and to himself, he founded in 1846 the "Church of the Saviour," with no doctrinal tests, fixed creeds, nor professions of faith, and, remain- ing there to the day of his sudden death, exerted a powerful influence for good upon the intellectual life of the town. His strenuous public career as an uncom- promising Radical was brilliant and me- teoric, but his church dwindled into insigni- ficance with his removal. The building