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274 The National Music of America.
might be called the actual father of the modern musical " Convention," the successor of the old "singing-school." He presented a musical library to Yale University,1 and in many other ways led, along the religious path, to a higher musical development.
With Doctor Mason one may mention Thomas Hastings, Nathaniel D. Gould, Gen. H. K. Oliver, and Geo. J. Webb. These musical reformers had certain tools to work with which the pioneers had not; choral societies and orchestras were beginning to appear in New England, and soon led to similar organisations in other parts of the country.
The most important of the early organisations was the Handel and Haydn Society, which found its chief nucleus in the choir of Park Street Church, Boston, a religious society still existing in its original edifice, at the corner of Park and Tremont Streets.
1 Ritter's " Music in America," p. 175.