Buffalo Women Are the Aid and Comfort of Mrs.
M’Kinley in Her Trouble
Wife of the President Is Surrounded by Many Who
to Do All in Their Power to Relieve the Situation.
Those Who Accompanied Her on Trip to Niagara Falls Tell of
Interesting Things Seen and Done on That Momentous Day.
In this hour of great solicitation
for the recovery of the President of the United States, the hearts
of mil ions [sic] are beating with tender sympathy for his gentle
wife. To women, especially, in case of illness, the one thought
is for home. Every spot in this country, it is true, is home to
the President and his wife. The Milburn home, one of the loveliest
in the land, is theirs for the present.
So it was natural that Mrs. McKinley’s
first thought after she heard of the awful attempt on her husband’s
life was: “If he is able to move, bring him home at once.”
ALL ARE DEAR FRIENDS.
Mrs. McKinley is surrounded by dear
friends, though away from her home city. The women who have been
constantly with her during her few days here have learned to love
her for her naturally gentle sweetne[s]s, and her great courage
in this time of sore trouble. Though Mrs. John G. Milburn, who would
really be the one woman to do the home honors at this time, has
been away from the city, she returned yesterday morning from spending
the summer at East River, Conn. Mrs. William Hamlin took her place,
both as hostess in arranging the home and as representative of the
Women’s Board of Managers of the Exposition.
The Milburn home was given over from
the moment of their arrival entirely to the Presidential party—Mr.
Milburn with his suit case [sic] is dividing his time between George
Sweet’s home and Harry Hamilin’s.
MRS. HAMLIN’S WORK.
Mrs. Hamlin saw that the Milburn
home was in perfect condition to receive the distinguished guests.
It was her hand that decorated the rooms with flowers and placed
a loose bunch of roses on the library table as a remembrance from
the Exposition people and the citizens of Buffalo.
The other Buffalo women who were much
with Mrs. McKinley during the festivities and who are with her still
at this time of her great trial are Mrs. Harry Hamlin, Mrs. Adelbert
Moot, Mrs. John Miller Horton, Mrs. William J. Buchanan and Mrs.
Charles Daniels. A number of these women were talking yesterday
about their trip to the Falls, discussing pleasing and tender little
incidents of the journey. Mrs. Rixey had said that Mr. President,—so
he is called by the members of his home circle,—had never seen Niagara.
Mrs. McKinley was there at the time of the G. A. R. encampment in
the city four years ago, but his time was so taken up with his duties
in Buffalo that he could not attend.
AT NIAGARA FALLS.
“I wish,” said one of the women to
me as they were talking about it, “you could have seen them together,
as they viewed the Falls, Mrs. McKinley pointing out the places
she had seen and gloried in, on her former trip, and Mr. President—well
his face as he looked down the gorge was beyond description. Awe,
reverence and joy lit up his countenance until it was radiant.
“With all one hears about the thought
and tenderness of Mr. President for his wife,” said one of the women,
“no one can realize his care and attention until she has been with
them. I first attended these functions as one honored, to honor
the President of the land, but before I left them the first day
I felt honored in being allowed the privilege of honoring McKinley,
the man and the husband.”
THREE BOYS’ CHEERS.
“I have been wondering,” said another
of the women, “how those three boys at the Falls felt when they
heard of this awful deed.” Turning to me, she explained:
“You see, as we were driving through
Main Street at the Falls three young boys, typical American youths,
came close up to the side of the carriage, lifted their hats with
such earnest enthusiasm, just as boys will, and gave three great
cheers. Then the whole crowd took up the cheer until it swelled
from end to end of the village. Mr. and Mrs. McKinley were simply
delighted about those boys. She spoke of them afterwards. They looked
so happy in being able to be so near Mr. and Mrs. President, and
to have him notice them, and I have several times thought what a
great shock this sad news would be to their bright young boyhood.”
MR. BUCHANAN’S PREMONITION.
“Do you know,” continued another
one of the party, “there is something in premonition. I had never
seen Mr. Buchanan as restless as he was on that trip to the Falls.
He kept strolling about the car, and even when we reached the hotel
for dinner he just walked up and down that dining room constantly.
I asked Mrs. Buchanan what was the matter with him, and she said
laughingly, ‘Isn’t he foolish. He told me he felt as if something
was going to be wrong before they got through.’
STOPPED ON THE BRIDGE.
“A rather strange thing happened
on the International bridge,” continued one of the party, “or at
least it seemed strange until we understood. As we got to the middle
of the bridge the carriages all turned back. When we inquired why,
the answer was, of course, ‘The other half is Canada and the President
is not allowed to set foot on foreign soil during his term of office.’”