AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF JOHN FRITZ 313
¦ The Toastmaster: — It is too bad to break up this beautiful occasion, but I am afraid we wiU have to do it. Mr. Fritz asks me to express his thanks to you for your attendance, and to express to the speakers his thanks for the many graceful things that they have said about him, and we wiU part with one toast which needs no spokesman: " Mrs. Fritz and the ladies, God bless them aU."
THE BANQUET AS SEEN BY ONE IN THE GALLERY.
That unique caravansary, the incomparable Waldorf- Astoria, never opened its spacious gates to, or harbored within its waUs, a more intelUgent and all-round refined and high-toned company than graced and dignified its haUs on the auspicious thirty-first day of October, 1902. They numbered by the hundreds and had come from the East and from the West, from the North and from the South, neither for business nor profit, enticed by no self- interest; theirs was an errand of pure pleasure, not, as vulgarly understood, in " tripping the light fantastic toe through the mazes of the dizzy dance," not to burn incense at the shrines of wealth, not to worship at the feet of beauty, not to pour libations in the welcome of some con¬ quering hero, or sacrifice hecatombs to celebrate the victory of some poUtical chief, but simply to honor a modest friend, a good man " eighty years young," whom they loved, and whom they long since affectionately christened, " Unser Fritz."
At the appointed hour this distinguished company, 600 strong, was throngflig the elegant and brilUantly flluminated lobby of the Banqueting HaU, doing homage and offering hearty congratiflations to the hero and the heroine of the hour; for, as in aU weU-organized and desirable assem¬ blages, this was not for men alone. As the best work since time immemorial has been accompUshed by the united