through this display of grandeur, you
entered the theatre which seated over two hundred people, and where
plays were given twice a year by the First Parish Friendly
Society. Another con-versation piece of this gorgeous villa was the
master bathroom and its sunken tub, draped with yellow
curtains. Horace Sears got rich quick and his taste
showed it !
Besides giving the Bennett family a raw deal in the settlement
of my grandfather's business affairs, an account of which is not within
the scope of this volume, he also left a will which was
most disappointing to his niece and his nephews. He had been
their rich bachelor uncle and they expected to inherit a substan-
tial fortune, but such was not to be. Instead, they each received
a legacy, very much smaller than what they thought it should
have been, while all of his real estate, including the great mansion,
was left to a business partner, Harry Bailey.
A nephew, Frank Sears, seemed especially upset. My mother, however,
felt certain that she could heal all the differences and
misunderstandings by having the Baileys and Frank Searses get together
and talk things over quietly, so she invited both families
to dinner. The Baileys arrived first and were sitting in the parlor when
the Searses arrived. Mr. Sears was hardly in the house
when he saw who was there. He told my mother that he was very sorry but
he simply could not stay under the circumstances;
then taking his hat and his wife he made a rapid departure.
A number of years later Mrs. Frank Sears made a momentous decision.
She announced to Aunt Sophy, "Sophy — I've decided to bury the hatchet.
I'm inviting Helena Bailey to join our Shakespeare Club."
Mrs. Bailey, whose husband inherited the Sears house, was