The Pearl Wedding Anniversary
There is something beautifully solemn about these later anniversaries, making them almost sacred ceremonies.
As many times the favored parties are young in heart, however, it is most fitting that they celebrate these occasions, particularly when there are sons and daughters who can assist and participate in the enjoyment.
If the daughters of the family are society girls, this entertainment will also serve to cancel most of their obligations to their friends. The usual form of “At Home” cards are sent out handsomely engraved on fine, heavy paper having a lustrous, pearly finish. With each invitation enclose two cards, one inscribed “Miss Vandine,” and the other “Miss Isabel Vandine,” so that not only the married friends of the family will be present, but also the youthful set.
At the pearl wedding of Mr. and Mrs. Vandine the young folks attended to the decorations, and the hall was first to undergo treatment. A dado of sail-cloth was arranged upon the walls and finished at top with a rope fastened to a thin strip of wood that was secured temporarily in the desired position. Large fish nets were hung upon the walls from the dado almost to the ceiling, and in their meshes were placed sponges, bunches of seaweed and a variety of shells.
The same ingenious and unique effects were carried out in the decoration of the parlors and dining-room.
The table was quite in keeping with the occasion and its surroundings. Over the white damask was spread a net of silver tinsel, and down the center was laid a broad scarf of sea-green satin edged with lace. A large round mirror was laid in the middle of the table; on each of the oblong mirrors at either side of this was placed a scallop-shell boat drawn by swans.
At each guest’s plate was a souvenir, in the shape of a dainty shell, on which was painted a small sea view or a spray of seaweed together with the date of the entertainment. The menu included as many products of the sea and stream as possible, and was as follows:
- Blue Point Oysters on the Half Shell.
- Green Turtle Soup.
- Shrimp Salad.
- Canvas-Back Duck.
- Mushroom Timbale.
- Lobster Croquettes.
- Maraschino Punch.
- Sea Shell Lemon Ice.
- Crescent Rolls.
- Salted Almonds.
In the center of each plate on which the oysters were placed was a cup made of half a lemon rind containing grated celery mixed with lemon juice.
Pearl gifts are usually expensive; hence it is that mother-of-pearl is entirely appropriate for less costly presents for a pearl wedding.
Jean Wilde Clark, Ed., "Wedding Anniversaries: The Pearl Wedding," in Weddings and Wedding Anniversaries: A Book of Good Form in the Conduct of Marriage Ceremonies . . . with Added Chapters about the Various Anniversaries, New York: The Butterick Publishing Company, 1910, p. 120.