Originally published in the January/February 2020 edition of Res Ipsa Loquitur
Late last year, President Rebecca Graham announced the recognition of the Clearwater Bar Association’s 90thAnniversary. One of the ways we were going to celebrate was to share some of the old documents and notes from deep in the archives of the CBA office at our monthly meetings. Our January membership meeting was jam-packed with New Year announcements and the “State of the Bar” address given by Bar President John Steward. So I will share a few historical tidbits here.
With Oyster Roast season upon us, here is a portion of a letter sent by Judge Howard Rives back in March 2005 when we were looking for material for the 75thanniversary. Judge Rives, father of current member Howard P. Rives, was president in 1951. Sadly, Judge Rives passed away June 5, 2005, shortly after writing this letter. Thankfully, we have preserved some of his Clearwater Bar memories:
“Judge Bird requested that the Roast be held as nearly as possible to the full moon in February to add special beauty to his grove and property there. His beloved neighbor, Ted Kamensky, was the person in charge of the roasting of the oysters, with full power to press any bystanders into service as needed to tend to the bi-valves cooking merrily on the coals. His expertise was taught to B.J. Driver, who for many subsequent years performed that vital duty. Finch and Mosely were the coffee detail and Milton Jones for many years rendered invaluable service with the hams. To the wife of the president fell the heavy duty of assuring adequate tableware, salads, bread, desserts and other miracles not assigned elsewhere. Unusual, but true, *HH Baskin, Jr., in his year as President caused to be filed in the Clerk’s Office an affidavit carefully setting forth the then appropriate qualities of each item the oyster roast needed for the event so as to preserve that information for his successors.”
If you have any old CBA memorabilia or want to contribute to our memory archives, let us know.
*H.H. Baskin, Jr., father of Hamden H. Baskin III, and grandfather of Randall Baskin, both current CBA members, was president in 1954.
The author is a past president of Clearwater Bar Association and practices family law in Dunedin.
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