Persuasions #4, 1982 Page 3
Almost 200 members attended our 1982 Annual General Meeting in Toronto this past October. Along with a full program of speakers and discussion groups, members heard Juliet McMaster speak on “Hospitality in the Novels.” The next morning, Toronto’s own Enid Hildebrand read a paper on “Jane Austen’s Legal Lore.” The exciting response by those present clearly demonstrates the importance of JASNA in furthering the study of Jane Austen.
Mary Millard and her committee are to be congratulated for their hard work and attention to details. Already Mary has met with Lorraine Hanaway who will be in charge of the 1983 Meeting in Philadelphia. Mark your new calendar for this event of the year and plan to be with us there.
In an effort to encourage members to get together more often than our Annual General Meeting, the Society has regional groups under the direction of Co-ordinators. Currently we have twenty-one of these in North America. I encourage every member of the Society to support and develop local activities.
Understandably, the Society gets mail – lots of mail – from its members. Aside from the bulk mailings, I sent out nearly 700 letters and cards this past year. There were letters to those inquiring about JASNA, letters to those joining, letters to members who send in questions and suggestions to the Society. Letter-writing may be a lost art to the general public, but our members have lost none of their skill. I propose that we petition the Post Office in the U.S. and in Canada to issue a “JASNA Commemorative” stamp in recognition of our efforts.
Each year the Society reminds its members of the plight of the little church in Jane Austen’s Steventon where some forty families struggle to maintain the village church. This year some 142 members have sent a total of $1,014.50 to us for the restoration of St. Nicholas’s Church. In addition the New York City Chapter has sent $100 and Canada $112.50 to Steventon. I hope members will continue their support of this concern of the Society (see page 5).
One of our English members, Sir David Waldron Smithers, has had his Jane Austen in Kent published by Hurtwood Publications. George Holbert Tucker, a member from Virginia has written that his A Goodly Heritage: A History of Jane Austen’s Family has been accepted by Carcanet Press in London for publication in 1983. Congratulations to them both!