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Archaeologia Cantiana -  Vol. 70  1956  page 41
The Origin and First Hundred Years of the Society

By Frank W. Jessup, Honorary General Secretary   continued

knowledge where progress has been made, thanks to the efforts of the Society and of its members; this is evident, for example, in the fields of prehistory, of the Roman occupation, of the Saxon conquest and settlement, of medieval political, social, ecclesiastical and economic history. It is impossible to demonstrate, in the same way, how the Society has been a source of pleasure to tens of thousands of our fellow county-men and -women, or to estimate the number of valued friendships which have grown from common membership of the Society. These things, as well as the additions to knowledge, deserve to be remembered in any attempt to assess what the Society has achieved. "One of the charms of archaeology at least, like that of natural history," wrote the Rev. Professor Brewer in Volume I of Archaeologia Cantiana, "consists in its eminently social nature." It is one of its charms that still remains.
   The Society has shared the experience of many voluntary organizations of being joined in some of its activities by public, statutory, bodies. Here there is nothing to be regretted; we must rather rejoice that public bodies have accepted responsibilities which the Society undertook faute de mieux, and was not always able to discharge effectively. The establishment of museums, the control of building developments and the preservation of sites and buildings of archaeological and historical importance, the collection and 

storage of muniments and records, and the publication of municipal and legal records are examples of fields where the efforts of archaeological societies have been augmented by those of government departments and local authorities. But even in these fields the work of the Society has not become superfluous, as the public authorities have themselves recognized, and the cordiality of the relationship which exists between such bodies as the Ministry of Works, the County Council, and the Town and District Councils, on the one hand, and the Society on the other, is a subject for gratification. Especially must we value the continuous friendly co-operation with Maidstone Museum, an institution whom we greet affectionately in this, our common centenary, year.
   To speak of the Society’s having achieved this, or having done that, is, in a sense, misleading, for the achievement is that of its members. The Society is not some self-activating mechanism, but a body which for its progress and its success is entirely dependent upon the efforts of its members. The Kent Society has been supremely fortunate in the number of distinguished archaeologists, antiquarians and historians whose loyalties it has commanded. To mention those still active would be invidious; those who are no longer with us include such men as Larking, Roach Smith, R. C. Hussey, John Brent, Godfrey-Faussett, Edward Pretty, Dowker, George Payne, Scott Robertson, J. C. Robertson, James Greenstreet, A. J. Pearman, Robert Furley, A. A. Arnold,

Page 41

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