Tuesday, February 5, 2013

QUESTION OF PRECEDENCE. A Story Current in Social Circles Regarding the Bradley Martin Ball.

A Story Current in Social Circles Regarding the  Bradley Martin Ball. The New York Times - February 5, 1897

  The old and dangerous question of precedence at a social entertainment has, if the gossip in city clubs and drawing-rooms can be relied on, nearly led to the withdrawal from participation in the coming Bradley Martin ball of' Mrs. Ogden Mills, the leader of that most exclusive set in New York society which Ward McAllister dubbed "the 150." The story runs to the effect that Mrs. Mills called upon Mrs. Bradley Martin soon after the latter had issued invitations to her ball, and informed her that she had arranged to organize one of the opening quadrilles which are to be such a feature of the ball, and that she expected it to be danced the first. Mrs. Martin is said to have replied that, she had promised the first quadrille to Mrs. Frederic Bronson. It is further related that at this point Mrs. Mills declared that she should not be able to attend the ball.

  The situation was a perplexing one to Mrs. Martin, but is said to have been solved by Mrs. Bronson, to whom Mrs. Martin related the occurrence. Mrs. Bronson, who is a daughter Mr. Gracie King, and a sister of Mrs. John King Van Rensselaer, is a Colonial Dame, and holds her head as high as Mrs. Mills does hers. Mrs. Bronson is said to have suggested to Mrs. Martin that Mrs. Astor, Sr., should have the first quadrille, and that, she was entirely willing to allow Mrs. Mills to have the second. Mrs. Martin gladly accepted the suggestion,, and a messenger boy carried a little note from Mrs. Bronson to Mrs. Mills. Mrs. Mills was soothed, and now it is said that the quadrilles will be: First,  Mrs.  Astor, Sr.'s; second, Mrs. Mills's, whose participants will wear the Incroyable costumes of the Directory; third, Mrs. Bronson's, in which the dancers will wear costumes of the period of Louis XV., and, fourth, Mrs. Baylies's, who has selected the period of Louis XVI. for the costumes of its participants.

  Click HERE to read the news about the ball from "yesterdays" paper.


  1. Utter complete silliness, the social machinations of that era. Those poor souls took themselves awfully seriously.