HERE is, unfortunately, no space available in which to chronicle the very numerous festivals held in the public schools on the occasion of the birthday of Thomas Edward Brown the great Manx poet, on the 5th of May. It should, however, be explained that the committee of the Manx Society, at a recent meeting, decided to provide funds to pay for the production of enlarged portraits of Brown, framed copies of which were decided to be given to all the public schools. This movement was made all the easier owing to the initial steps taken by a small Committee of Ramsey gentlemen, headed by Messrs. Crennell, Corkhill, Clague, and Caine. The northern committee, in addition to providing funds to meet the cost of portraits for their district, purpose erecting next month a suitable tablet upon the house in which Brown lived while resident in Ramsey.
The entire cost will probably reach £30, towards which the Ramsey committee will probably collect £12; so that many admirers of Brown who can so do have the opportunity to help the Manx Society to meet the balance.
The portrait is a very fine one, and is executed in the process known as intaglio photogravure by the Manchester Guardian printing office. Copies were duly handed over to each school, public and private, from King Williams College down to the smallest and most remote ; and it may be said that in every school the attention of the children was drawn to the beautiful character of Browns poetry as well as to its lofty and patriotic sentiment. Readers of MANNIN will be pleased to learn that a very notable feature of all the gatherings was the profuse decoration of the rooms by gorse in bloom. Inspiring speeches, mostly of a patriotic character, were made by a band of about fifty speakers, many of whom recited poems suitable for the occasion. The meetings were well organised by Miss Morrison (Peel and district), Mr. W. Cubbon (Douglas and district), Mr. P. W. Caine ( Ramsey and district), and Messrs. J. J. Kneen and H. P. Kelly (Castletown and district).