The dinner celebrating Sherlock Holmes’s 155th birthday also marked the BSI’s 75th Anniversary. The Baker Street Journal’s correspondent describes “immaculate” proceedings, “splendid” and “occasionally curious” goody bags, and “an orgy of chat and signature-hunting,” which all contribute to “one hectic weekend of frenzied schmoozing at a most literate level.” The account concludes: “The event and the company transcended all.”
Andrew Fusco read the Constitution and Buy-Laws. Michael Kean toasted Mrs. Hudson. Barbara Roisman Cooper toasted Mycroft Holmes. Dana Richards had us raise our glasses to Watson's second wife, and Sébastien Le Page toasted to Sherlock Holmes. Bob Coghill led the responsive reading of the Musgrave Ritual.
Guy Marriott and Nicholas Utechin had some fun kicking off the presentations with a hilarious debate on the Oxford-Cambridge controversy. Andrew Solberg repeatedly insisted that he was Professor Coram discussing how the outside (and inside) world viewed the BSI. David Stuart Davies performed a side-splitting one man radio version of “The Red-Headed League.” Jens Byskov Jensen and Henry Boote (violin and piano respectively) gave us that "Tra-la-la-lira-lira-lay" piece plus a version of Harvey Officer's Baker Street Suite for Violin and Piano.
Twelve deserving Irregulars received their Shilling. Daniel Posnansky was honored with The Two-Shilling Award for extraordinary devotion to the cause beyond the call of duty, particularly for his work on the BSI Archives. Yuichi Hirayama, Doug Elliott, Bill Barnes, John Bergquist, Susan Rice, and Nicholas Utechin received the Editor’s Medal in recognition of their services as editors of books and Christmas Annuals published by the BSI.
Sharon Klinger was toasted as The Woman. Because weather had prevented the 2008 recipient from being present to receive said honor, Priscilla Juvelis was feted, as well.
The evening ended with a masterly reading of Starrett's "221B" by George McCormack.
At the next day’s Sherlockian Cocktail Reception at the New York City Bar Association, Judge Albert Rosenblatt and his daughter, Betsy Rosenblatt, once again performed their remarkable rhyming summation of the previous year and of the Festivities.
Dinner Details: January 9, 2009
Union League Club, New York
Dinner Photo InformationClick 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 2009 BSI Dinner photo (not available at this time, but see the 2009 Table Seat Assignments PDF)
BSI Honours ListInvestitures:
Bill Barnes as The Gloria Scott
Jeffry A. Bradway as A Case of Identity
S. E. Dahlinger as The Bruce-Partington Plans
Greg Darak as The Engineer's Thumb
Allan Devitt as The Dancing Men
Robert Ellis as The Illustrious Client
Walter W. Jaffee as The Resident Patient
Jens Byskov Jensen as The Blanched Soldier
Sébastien Le Page as The Six Napoleons
Michael Pollak as The Blue Carbuncle
Barbara Rusch as The Mazarin Stone
Joel Schwartz as The Three Students
* received Investiture at another event during the year
What is an Investiture?
What is a Two-Shilling Award?
Sharon (Mrs. Leslie) Klinger.
What is The Woman honour?
"Stand with me here upon the terrace..."
(as named at this Dinner, not their year of passing)
Billy Ross (The Abergavenny Murders, 1977)
Shirley Dickensheet (Ivy Douglas, 1993)
Robert H. Steele (The Scowrers, 1959)
Philip Sherman (The Six Napoleons, 1969)
Ralph E. Edwards (Dr. Barnicot, 1963)
Robert H. Schutz (The Arnsworth Castle Business, 1961)
David Galerstein (Bert Stevens, 1972)
Alan C. Olding (Cooee, 1988)
Bruce Montgomery (The Red Circle, 1994)
Joseph Gillies (The Aluminium Crutch, 1962)
John Ruyle (Baron Dowson, 1983)
Paul G. Churchill (Corot, 2006)
Robert Q. Carver (The Case of Mme. Montpensier, 1962)
What is the origin of “standing on the terrace?”
Mattias Boström, "The Humble Dr. Mortimer: On the Real Swedish Pathological Society”
The Baker Street Journal v59 n3 (Winter 2008) pp. 6-11 (available in the eBSJ).
What is the Morley-Montgomery Award?
The BSI Distinguished Speaker Lecture:
John Lescroat, “The Adventure of the Giant Rat of Sumatra”
What is the BSI Distinguished Speaker Lecture?
Reports on the DinnerThe Baker Street Journal v59 n1 (Spring 2009) pp. 6-15 (available in the eBSJ).
Blau, Peter, Scuttlebutt from the Spermaceti Press, (January 2009): 1-2.
List of 2009 BSI Dinner Attendees (PDF)
RecordingsA recording of portions of the 2009 BSI Dinner is available at Harvard as part of the BSI Archive.
Related MaterialRosenblatt, Albert M., and Betsy Rosenblatt, “The Sherlockian Year In Verse: 2008 (sic),” The Baker Street Journal v59 n1 (Spring 2009): 16-18 (available in the eBSJ). The Rosenblatts’ rhyming retrospective, delivered at the January 10, 2009 Sherlockian Cocktail Reception.
Previous dinner: the 2008 BSI Dinner
Next dinner: the 2010 BSI Dinner
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 12/5/2016 by Tamar Zeffren
This page last updated 2/6/2017 by Randall Stock.