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The 1956 BSI Dinner group photo

Sixty five Irregulars and guests gathered for the Master’s 102nd birthday, under the supervision of Charles Honce, who stood in for Christopher Morley as pro-tempore Gasogene-cum-Tantalus. Canonical toasts, reports on Irregular activities, and disputations in the Canon followed. Robert Keith Leavitt presented what Buttons-cum-Commissionaire Edgar W. Smith termed the evening’s piece-de-resistance: an analysis of “The Second Most Dangerous Man in London.” This “elicited, in the course of its delivery, the discovery of two equally dangerous men in New York.”

Eight members received their Irregular Shilling.  Scion Society accounts from Detroit to Denmark were submitted. Thayer Cumings of the Five Orange Pips of Westchester County presented the annual quiz.  Dr. Julian Wolff took first place, with A. Carson Simpson, Nathan L. Bengis, and James Iraldi so close behind that “the lucrative prizes had, perforce, to be physically divided.”

At ten minutes to midnight, James Nelson proposed the toast to “The Founder.” Ten minutes later, at the close of this auspicious occasion, Robert G. Harris proclaimed the tribute to “To the Best and Wisest Man Whom We Have Ever Known.”

Dinner Details: January 6, 1956
Cavanagh’s Restaurant, New York, NY

Dinner Photo Information

Click on the above photo to see a larger version of it, and maximize your browser window to see the most detail.

Key to People in the 1956 BSI Dinner photo (PDF)

BSI Honours List

Doyle W. Beckemeyer as Young Stamford
Paul S. Clarkson as The Red Leech
William Swift Dalliba as Count Von und Zu Grafenstein
Dean W. Dickensheet as Vamberry, the Wine Merchant
Rollin V. Hadley Jr. as Ricoletti of the Club Foot
John Holzapfel as The Papers of Ex-President Murillo
George Kreuzberger as Archie Stamford, the Forger
Will Oursler as The Abbey Grange
What is an Investiture?

Two-Shilling Award:
Not awarded until 1962.
What is a Two-Shilling Award?

The Woman:
Not identified; possibly none.
What is The Woman honour?

"Stand with me here upon the terrace..."
(as named at this Dinner, not their year of passing)
James Montgomery (“The Red Circle”)
What is the origin of “standing on the terrace?”

Morley-Montgomery Award:
Not awarded until 1959.
What is the Morley-Montgomery Award?

Reports on the Dinner

1956 BSI Dinner Minutes (digitized images at Harvard)

The Baker Street Journal v6 n2 (April 1956) pp. 106-108.  (available in the eBSJ)

List of 1956 BSI Dinner Attendees (digitized image at Harvard)

Key to People in the 1956 BSI Dinner photo (PDF)


None available online at this time.

Related Material

1956 Dinner Menu (digitized images at Harvard)
Cover and interior. Sequence 51-54

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For an index to all BSI Dinners and photos, see our BSI Dinner Summary list.

The BSI Archive is located at the Houghton Library at Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts. Archival material may be used by any qualified scholar, subject to the normal rules and regulations of the Library. For links to a detailed finding aid and related information, see our BSI Archive at Harvard page.

Page composed on 1/28/15 by Tamar Zeffren
Page updated 7/9/15 by Randall Stock.
This page last updated 10/8/19 by Randall Stock.