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Title: Autobiography of Andrew Dickson White — Volume 1

Author: Andrew Dickson White

Release date: June 1, 1998 [eBook #1340]
Most recently updated: April 2, 2015

Language: English


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Autobiography of Andrew Dickson White Volume II

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The ``Military Tract'' of New York. A settlement on the headwaters of the Susquehanna. Arrival of my grandfathers and grandmothers. Growth of the new settlement. First recollections of it. General character of my environment. My father and mother. Cortland Academy. Its twofold effect upon me. First schooling. Methods in primary studies. Physical education. Removal to Syracuse. The Syracuse Academy. Joseph Allen and Professor Root; their influence; moral side of the education thus obtained. General education outside the school. Removal to a ``classical school''; a catastrophe. James W. Hoyt and his influence. My early love for classical studies. Discovery of Scott's novels. ``The Gallery of British Artists.'' Effect of sundry conventions, public meetings, and lectures. Am sent to Geneva College; treatment of faculty by students. A ``Second Adventist'' meeting; Howell and Clark; my first meeting with Judge Folger. Philosophy of student dissipation at that place and time.


My coup d'<e'>tat. Removal to Yale. New energy in study and reading. Influence of Emerson, Carlyle, and Ruskin. Yale in 1850. My disappointment at the instruction; character of president and professors; perfunctory methods in lower-class rooms; ``gerund-grinding'' vs. literature; James Hadley—his abilities and influence, other professors; influence of President Woolsey, Professors Porter, Silliman, and Dana; absence of literary instruction; character of that period from a literary point of view; influences from fellow-students. Importance of political questions at that time. Sundry successes in essay writing. Physical education at Yale; boating. Life abroad after graduation; visit to Oxford; studies at the Sorbonne and Coll<e!>ge de France; afternoons at the Invalides; tramps through western and central France. Studies at St. Petersburg. Studies at Berlin. Journey in Italy; meeting with James Russell Lowell at Venice. Frieze, Fishburne, and studies in Rome. Excursions through the south of France. Return to America. Influence of Buckle, Lecky, and Draper. The atmosphere of Darwin and Spencer. Educational environment at the University of Michigan.


Political division in my family; differences between my father and grandfather; election of Andrew Jackson. First recollections of American politics, Martin Van Buren. Campaign of 1840; campaign songs and follies. Efforts by the Democrats; General Crary of Michigan; Corwin's speech. The Ogle gold-spoon speech. The Sub-Treasury Question. Election of General Harrison; his death. Disappointment in President Tyler. Carelessness of nominating conventions as to the second place upon the ticket. Campaign of 1844. Clay, Birney, and Polk. Growth of anti-slavery feeling. Senator Hale's lecture. Henry Clay's proposal, The campaign of 1848; General Taylor vs. General Cass. My recollections of them both. State Conventions at this period. Governor Bouck; his civility to Bishop Hughes. Fernando Wood; his method of breaking up a State Convention. Charles O'Conor and John Van Buren; boyish adhesion to Martin Van Buren against General Taylor; Taylor's election; his death. My recollections of Millard Fillmore. The Fugitive Slave Law.


``Jerry'', his sudden fame. Speeches of Daniel Webster and Henry Clay at Syracuse on the Fugitive Slave Law ; their prophecies. The ``Jerry Rescue.'' Trials of the rescuers. My attendance at one of them. Bishop Loguen's prayer and Gerrit Smith's speech. Characteristics of Gerrit Smith. Effects of the rescue trials. Main difficulty of the anti-slavery party. ``Fool reformers.'' Nominations of Scott and Pierce; their qualities. Senator Douglas. Abolition of the Missouri Compromise. Growth of ill feeling between North and South. Pro-slavery tendencies at Yale. Stand against these taken by President Woolsey and Leonard Bacon. My candidacy or editorship of the ``Yale Literary Magazine.'' Opposition on account of my anti-Slavery ideas. My election. Temptations to palter with my conscience; victory over them. Professor Hadley's view of duty to the Fugitive Slave Law. Lack of opportunity to present my ideas. My chance on Commencement Day. ``Modern Oracles.'' Effect of my speech on Governor Seymour. Invitation to his legation at St. Petersburg after my graduation. Effect upon me of Governor Seymour's ideas regarding Jefferson. Difficulties in discussing the slavery question. My first discovery as to the value of political criticism in newspapers. Return to America. Presidential campaign of 1856. Nomination of Fr<e'>mont. My acquaintance with the Democratic nominee Mr Buchanan. My first vote. Argument made for the ``American Party.'' Election of Buchanan. My first visit to Washington. President Pierce at the White House. Inauguration of the new President. Effect upon me of his speech and of a first sight of the United States Senate. Impression made by the Supreme Court. General impression made by Washington. My first public lecture—``Civilization in Russia''; its political bearing; attacks upon it and vindications of it. Its later history.


My arrival at the University of Michigan. Political side of professorial life. General purpose of my lectures in the university and throughout the State. My articles in the ``Atlantic Monthly.'' President Buchanan, John Brown Stephen A. Douglas, and others. The Chicago Convention. Nomination of Lincoln. Disappointment of my New York friends. Speeches by Carl Schurz. Election of Lincoln. Beginnings of Civil War. My advice to students. Reverses; Bull Run. George Sumner's view. Preparation for the conflict. Depth of feeling. Pouring out of my students into the army. Kirby Smith. Conduct of the British Government. Break in my health. Thurlow Weed's advice to me. My work in London. Discouragements there. My published answer to Dr. Russell. Experiences in Ireland and France. My horror of the French Emperor. Effort to influence opinion in Germany. William Walton Murphy; his interview with Baron Rothschild. Fourth of July celebration at Heidelberg in 1863. Turning of the contest in favor of the United States. My election to the Senate of the State of New York.


My arrival at Albany as State Senator. My unfitness. Efforts to become acquainted with State questions. New acquaintances. Governor Horatio Seymour, Charles James Folger, Ezra Cornell, and others on the Republican side; Henry C. Murphy and Thomas C. Fields on the Democratic side. Daniel Manning. Position assigned me on committees. My maiden speech. Relations with Governor Seymour. My chairmanship of the Committee on Education. The Morrill Act of 1862. Mr. Cornell and myself at loggerheads Codification of the Educational Laws. State Normal School Bill. Special Committee on the New York Health Department. Revelations made to the Committee. The Ward's Island matter. Last great effort of the State in behalf of the Union. The Bounty Bill. Opposition of Horace Greeley to it. Embarrassment caused by him at that period. Senator Allaben's speech against the Bounty Bill. His reference to French Assignats; my answer; results; later development of this speech into a political pamphlet on ``Paper Money Inflation in France.'' Baltimore Convention of 1864; its curious characteristics; impression made upon me by it. Breckinridge, Curtis, and Raymond. Renomination of Lincoln; my meeting him at the White House. Sundry peculiarities then revealed by him. His election.


My second year in the State Senate. Struggle for the Charter of Cornell University. News of Lee's surrender. Assassination of Lincoln. Service over his remains at the Capitol in Albany. My address. Question of my renomination. Elements against me; the Tammany influence; sundry priests in New York, and clergymen throughout the State. Senatorial convention; David J. Mitchell; my renomination and election. My third year of service, 1866. Speech on the Health Department in New York; monstrous iniquities in that Department; success in replacing it with a better system. My Phi Beta Kappa address at Yale; its purpose. My election to a Professorship at Yale; reasons for declining it. State Senate sits as Court to try a judge; his offense; pathetic complications; his removal from office. Arrival of President Johnson, Secretary Seward, General Grant, and Admiral Farragut in Albany; their reception by the Governor and Senate; impressions made on me thereby; part taken by Governor Fenton and Secretary Seward; Judge Folger's remark to me. Ingratitude of the State thus far to its two greatest Governors, DeWitt Clinton and Seward.


Fourth year in the State Senate, 1867. Election of a United States Senator; feeling throughout the State regarding Senators Morgan and Harris; Mr. Cornell's expression of it. The candidates; characteristics of Senator Harris, of Judge Davis, of Roscoe Conkling. Services and characteristics of the latter which led me to support him; hostility of Tammany henchmen to us both. The legislative caucus. Presentation of candidates; my presentation of Mr. Conkling; reception by the audience of my main argument; Mr. Conkling elected. Difficulties between Judge Folger and myself; question as to testimony in criminal cases; Judge Folger's view of it; his vexation at my obtaining a majority against him. Calling of the Constitutional Convention, Judge Folger's candidacy for its Presidency; curious reason for Horace Greeley's opposition to him. Another cause of separation between Judge Folger and myself. Defeat of the Sodus Canal Bill. Constitutional Convention eminent men in it; Greeley's position in it; his agency in bringing the Convention into disrepute; his later regret at his success; the new Constitution voted down. Visit to Agassiz at Nahant. A day with Longfellow. His remark regarding Mr. Greeley. Meeting with Judge Rockwood Hoar at Harvard. Boylston prize competition; the successful contestant; Judge Hoar's remark regarding one of the speakers. My part in sundry political meetings. Visit to Senator Conkling. Rebuff at one of my meetings; its effect upon me.


Distraction from politics by Cornell University work during two or three years following my senatorial term. Visits to scientific and technical schools in Europe. The second political campaign of General Grant. My visit to Auburn; Mr. Seward's speech; its unfortunate characteristics; Mr. Cornell's remark on my proposal to call Mr. Seward as a commencement orator. Great services of Seward. State Judiciary Convention of 1870; my part in it; nomination of Judge Andrews and Judge Folger; my part in the latter; its effect on my relations with Folger. Closer acquaintance with General Grant. Visit to Dr. Henry Field at Stockbridge; Burton Harrison's account of the collapse of the Confederacy and the flight of Jefferson Davis. Story told me by William Preston Johnston throwing light on the Confederacy in its last hours. Delegacy to the State Republican Convention of 1870. Am named as Commissioner to Santo Domingo. First meeting with Senator Charles Sumner. My acquaintance with Senator McDougal. His strange characteristics. His famous plea for drunkenness. My absence in the West Indies.


First meeting with John Hay. Speech of Horace Greeley on his return from the South; his discussion of national affairs; his manner and surroundings; last hours and death of Samuel J. May. The Prudence Crandall portrait. Addresses at the Yale alumni dinner. Dinner with Longfellow at Craigie House. The State Convention of 1871; my chairmanship and presidency of it. My speech; appointment of committees; anti-administration demonstration; a stormy session; retirement of the anti-administration forces; attacks in consequence; rally of old friends to my support. Examples of the futility of such attacks; Senator Carpenter, Governor Seward, Senator Conklin. My efforts to interest Conkling in a reform of the civil service. Republican National Convention at Philadelphia in 1872; ability of sundry colored delegates; nomination of Grant and Wilson. Mr. Greeley's death. Characteristics of General Grant as President. Reflections on the campaign. Questions asked me by a leading London journalist regarding the election. My first meeting with Samuel J. Tilden; low ebb of his fortunes at that period. The culmination of Tweed. Thomas Nast. Meeting of the Electoral College at Albany; the ``Winged Victory'' and General Grant's credentials. My first experience of ``Reconstruction'' in the South; visit to the State Capitol of South Carolina; rulings of the colored Speaker of the House, fulfilment of Thomas Jefferson's inspired prophecy.


Sundry visits to Washington during General Grant's presidency. Impression made by President Grant; visit to him in company with Agassiz; characteristics shown by him at Long Branch; his dealing with one newspaper correspondent and story regarding another. His visit to me at Cornell; his remark regarding the annexation of Santo Domingo, far-sighted reason assigned for it; his feeling regarding a third presidential term. My journey with him upon the Rhine. Walks and talks with him in Paris. Persons met at Senator Conkling's. Story told by Senator Carpenter. The ``Greenback Craze''; its spirit; its strength. Wretched character of the old banking system. Ability and force of Mr. Conkling's speech at Ithaca. Its effect. My previous relations with Garfield. Character and effect of his speech at Ithaca; his final address to the students of the University. Our midnight conversation. President Hayes; impressions regarding him; attacks upon him; favorable judgment upon him by observant foreigners, excellent impression made by him upon me at this time and at a later period. The assassination of General Garfield. Difficulties which thickened about him toward the end of his career. Characteristics of President Arthur. Ground taken in my public address at Ithaca at the service in commemoration of Garfield.


President Arthur; course before his Presidency; qualities revealed afterward; curious circumstances of his nomination. Reform of the Civil Service. My article in the ``North American Review.'' Renewal of my acquaintance with Mr. Evarts; his witty stories. My efforts to interest Senator Platt in civil-service reform; his slow progress in this respect. Wayne MacVeagh; Judge Biddle's remark at his table on American feeling regarding capital punishment. Great defeat of the Republican party in 1882. Judge Folger's unfortunate campaign. Election of Mr. Cleveland. My address on ``The New Germany'' at New York. Meeting with General McDowell, the injustice of popular judgment upon him. Revelation of Tammany frauds. Grover Cleveland, his early life; his visit to the University; impression made upon me by him. Senator Morrill's visit; tribute paid him by the University authorities. My address at Yale on ``The Message of the Nineteenth Century to the Twentieth.'' Addresses by Carl Schurz and myself at the funeral of Edward Lasker. Election as a delegate at large to the National Republican Convention at Chicago, 1884. Difficulties regarding Mr. Blaine; vain efforts to nominate another candidate; George William Curtis and his characteristics; tyranny over the Convention by the gallery mob; nomination of Blaine and Logan. Nomination of Mr. Cleveland by the Democrats. Tyranny by the Chicago mob at that convention also. Open letter to Theodore Roosevelt in favor of Mr. Blaine. Private letter to Mr. Blaine in favor of a reform of the Civil Service. His acceptance of its suggestions. Wretched character of the campaign. Presidency of the Republican mass meeting at Syracuse; experience with a Kentucky orator. Election of Mr. Cleveland.


Renewal of my acquaintance with Mr. Cleveland at Washington. Meeting with Mr. Blaine; his fascinating qualities; his self-control. William Walter Phelps; his arguments regarding the treatment of Congressional speakers by the press. Senator Randall Gibson; meeting at his house with Vice-President Hendricks; evident disappointment of the Vice-President; his view of civil-service reform; defense of it by Senator Butler of South Carolina; reminiscences of odd senators by Senator Jones of Florida; Gibson's opinion of John Sherman. President Cleveland's mode of treating office-beggars and the like; Senator Sawyer's story; Secretary Fairchild's remark; Senators Sherman and Vance. Secretary Bayard's criticism of applicants for office. Senator Butler's remark on secession. Renewal of my acquaintance with George Bancroft. Goldwin Smith in Washington; his favorable opinion of American crowds. Chief Justice Waite. General Sheridan; his account of the battle of Gravelotte; discussion between Sheridan and Goldwin Smith regarding sundry points in military history. General Schenck; his reminiscences of Corwin Everett, and others. Resignation of my presidency at Cornell, 1885. President Cleveland's tender of an Interstate Railway commissionership, my declination. Departure for Europe. Am tendered nomination for Congress; my discussion of the matter in London with President Porter of Yale and others; declination. Visit to Washington under the administration of General Harrison, January, 1891; presentation of proposals to him regarding civil-service reform; his speech in reply.


Candidacy for the governorship of New York; Mr. Platt's relation to it; my reluctance and opposition; decision of the Rochester Convention in favor of Mr. Fassett; natural reasons for this. Lectures at Stanford University. Visit to Mexico and California with Mr. Andrew Carnegie and his party. President Harrison tenders me the position of minister to Russia; my retention in office by Mr. Cleveland. My stay in Italy 1894-1895. President Cleveland appoints me upon the Venezuelan Boundary Commission, December, 1895. Presidential campaign of 1896. My unexpected part in it; nomination of Mr. Bryan by Democrats; publication of my open letter to sundry Democrats, republication of my ``Paper Money Inflation in France,'' and its circulation as a campaign document; election of Mr. McKinley. My address before the State Universities of Wisconsin and Minnesota; strongly favorable impression made upon me by them; meeting with Mr. Ignatius Donnelly, his public address to me in the State House of Minnesota. My addresses at Harvard, Yale, and elsewhere. Am appointed by President McKinley ambassador to Germany; question of my asking sanction of Mr. Platt; how settled. Renomination of McKinley with Mr. Roosevelt as Vice-President. I revisit America; day with Mr. Roosevelt, visits to Washington; my impressions of President McKinley; his conversation; his coolness; tributes from his Cabinet; Secretary Hay's testimony, Mr. McKinley's refusal to make speeches during his second campaign; his reasons; his re<e:>lection; how received in Europe. His assassination; receipt of the news in Germany and Great Britain. My second visit to America; sadness, mournful reflections at White House; conversations with President Roosevelt; message given me by him for the Emperor; its playful ending. The two rulers compared.


Early ideals. Gradual changes in these. Attractions of journalism then and now. New views of life opened to me at Paris and Berlin. Dreams of aiding the beginnings of a better system of university education in the United States. Shortcomings of American instruction, especially regarding history, political science, and literature, at that period. My article on ``German Instruction in General History'' in ``The New Englander.'' Influence of Stanley's ``Life of Arnold.'' Turning point in my life at the Yale Commencement of 1856; Dr. Wayland's speech. Election to the professorship of history and English literature at the University of Michigan; my first work in it; sundry efforts toward reforms, text-books, social relations with students; use of the Abb<e'> Bautain's book. My courses of lectures; President Tappan's advice on extemporaneous speaking; publication of my syllabus; ensuing relations with Charles Sumner. Growth and use of my private historical library. Character of my students. Necessity for hard work. Student discussions.


Some difficulties; youthfulness; struggle against various combinations, my victory; an enemy made a friend. Lectures throughout Michigan; main purpose in these; a storm aroused; vigorous attack upon my politico-economical views; happy results; revenge upon my assailant; discussion in a County Court House. Breadth and strength then given to my ideas regarding university education. President Tappan. Henry Simmons Frieze. Brunnow. Chief Justice Cooley. Judge Campbell. Distinguishing feature of the University of Michigan in those days. Dr. Tappan's good sense in administration; one typical example. Unworthy treatment of him by the Legislature; some causes of this. Opposition to the State University by the small sectarian colleges. Dr. Tappan's prophecy to sundry demagogues; its fulfilment. Sundry defects of his qualities; the ``Winchell War,'' ``Armed Neutrality.'' Retirement of President Tappan; its painful circumstances; amends made later by the citizens of Michigan. The little city of Ann Arbor; origin of its name. Recreations, tree planting on the campus; results of this. Exodus of students into the Civil War. Lectures continued after my resignation. My affectionate relations with the institution.


Development of my ideas on university organization at Hobart College, at Yale, and abroad. Their further evolution at the University of Michigan. President Tappan's influence. My plan of a university at Syracuse. Discussions with George William Curtis. Proposal to Gerrit Smith; its failure. A new opportunity opens.


Ezra Cornell. My first impressions regarding him. His public library. Temporary estrangement between us; regarding the Land Grant Fund. Our conversation regarding his intended gift. The State Agricultural College and the ``People's College''; his final proposal. Drafting of the Cornell University Charter. His foresight. His views of university education. Struggle for the charter in the Legislature; our efforts to overcome the coalition against us; bitter attacks on him; final struggle in the Assembly, Senate, and before the Board of Regents. Mr. Cornell's location of the endowment lands. He nominates me to the University Presidency. His constant liberality and labors. His previous life; growth of his fortune; his noble use of it; sundry original ways of his; his enjoyment of the university in its early days; his mixture of idealism and common sense. First celebration of Founder's Day. His resistance to unreason. Bitter attacks upon him in sundry newspapers and in the Legislature; the investigation; his triumph. His minor characteristics; the motto ``True and Firm'' on his house. His last days and hours. His political ideas. His quaint sayings; intellectual and moral characteristics; equanimity; religious convictions.


Virtual Presidency of Cornell during two years before my actual election. Division of labor between Mr. Cornell and myself. My success in thwarting efforts to scatter the Land Grant Fund, and in impressing three points on the Legislature. Support given by Horace Greeley to the third of these. Judge Folger's opposition. Sudden death of Dr. Willard and its effects. Our compromise with Judge Folger. The founding of Willard Asylum. Continued opposition to us. Election to the Presidency of the University. Pressure of my own business. Presentation of my ``Plan of Organization.'' Selection of Professors; difficulty of such selection in those days as compared with these; system suggested; system adopted. Resident and non- resident professorships. Erection of university buildings; difficulty arising from a requirement of our charter; general building plan adopted. My visit to European technical institutions; choice of foreign professors; purchases of books, apparatus, etc.


Formal opening of the University October 7, 1868. Difficulties, mishaps, calamities, obstacles. Effect of these on Mr. Cornell and myself. Opening ceremonies of the morning; Mr. Cornell's speech and my own; effect of Mr. Cornell's broken health upon me. The first ringing of the chime; effect of George W. Curtis's oration; my realization of our difficulties; Mr. Cornell's physical condition; inadequacy of our resources; impossibility of selling lands; our necessary unreadiness; haste compelled by our charter. Mr. Cornell's letter to the ``New York Tribune'' regarding student labor. Dreamers and schemers. Efforts by ``hack'' politicians. Attacks by the press, denominational and secular. Friction in the University machinery. Difficulty of the students in choosing courses; improvement in these days consequent upon improvement of schools. My reprint of John Foster's ``Essay on Decision of Character''; its good effects. Compensations; character of the students; few infractions of discipline; causes of this; effects of liberty of choice between courses of study. My success in preventing the use of the faculty as policemen; the Campus Bridge case. Sundry trials of students by the faculty; the Dundee Lecture case; the ``Mock Programme'' case; a suspension of class officers; revelation in all this of a spirit of justice among students. Athletics and their effects. Boating; General Grant's remark to me on the Springfield regatta; Cornell's double success at Saratoga; letter from a Princeton graduate. General improvement in American university students during the second half of the nineteenth century.


Questions regarding courses of instruction. Evils of the old system of assigning them entirely to resident professors. Literary instruction at Yale; George William Curtis and John Lord. Our general scheme. The Arts Course; clinching it into our system; purchase of the Anthon Library; charges against us on this score; our vindication. The courses in literature, science and philosophy; influence of one of Herbert Spencer's ideas upon the formation of all these; influence of my own experience. Professor Wilder; his services against fustian and ``tall talk.'' The course in literature; use made of it in promoting the general culture of students. Technical departments; Civil Engineering; incidental question of creed in electing a professor to it. Department of Agriculture; its difficulties; three professors who tided it through. Department of Mechanic Arts; its peculiar difficulties and dangers; Mr. Cornell's view regarding college shop work for bread winning; necessity for practical work in connection with theoretical; mode of bringing about this connection. Mr. Sibley's gift. Delay in recognition of our success. Department of Architecture; origin of my ideas on this subject; the Trustees accept my architectural library and establish the Department.


Establishment of Laboratories. Governor Cleveland's visit. Department of Electrical Engineering; its origin. Department of Political Science and History. Influence of my legislative experience upon it; my report on the Paris Exposition, and address at Johns Hopkins; a beginning made; excellent work done by Frank Sanborn. Provision for Political Economy; presentation of both sides of controverted questions. Instruction in History; my own part in it; its growth; George Lincoln Burr called into it; lectures by Goldwin Smith, Freeman, Froude, and others. Instruction in American History; calling of George W. Greene and Theodore Dwight as Non-Resident, and finally of Moses Coit Tyler as Resident Professor. Difficulties in some of these Departments. Reaction, ``The Oscillatory Law of Human Progress.'' ``Joe'' Sheldon's ``Professorship of Horse Sense'' needed. First gift of a building—McGraw Hall. Curious passage in a speech at the laying of its corner-stone. Military Instruction; peculiar clause regarding it in our Charter; our broad construction of it; my reasons for this. The Conferring of Degrees; abuse at sundry American institutions in conferring honorary degrees why Cornell University confers none. Regular Degrees; theory originally proposed; theory adopted; recent change in practice.


Admission of women. The Cortland Free Scholarship; the Sage gift; difficulties and success. Establishment of Sage Chapel; condition named by me for its acceptance; character of the building. Establishment of a preachership; my suggestions regarding it accepted; Phillips Brooks preaches the first sermon, 1875; results of this system. Establishment of Barnes Hall; its origin and development; services it has rendered. Development of sundry minor ideas in building up the University; efforts to develop a recognition of historical and commemorative features; portraits, tablets, memorial windows, etc. The beautiful work of Robert Richardson. The Memorial Chapel. Efforts to preserve the beauty of the grounds and original plan of buildings; constant necessity for such efforts; dangers threatening the original plan.


Difficulties and discouragements. Very serious character of some of these. Financial difficulties; our approach, at times, to ruin. Splendid gifts; their continuance, the ``Ostrander Elms''; encouragement thus given. Difficulties arising from our Charter; short time allowed us for opening the University, general plans laid down for us. Advice, comments, etc., from friends and enemies; remark of the Johns Hopkins trustees as to their freedom from oppressive supervision and control; my envy of them. Large expenditure demanded. Mr. Cornell's burdens. Installation of a ``Business Manager.'' My suspicion as to our finances. Mr. Cornell's optimism. Discovery of a large debt; Mr. Cornell's noble proposal; the debt cleared in fifteen minutes by four men. Ultimate result of this subscription; worst calamities to Cornell its greatest blessings; example of this in the founding of fellowships and scholarships. Successful financial management ever since. Financial difficulties arising from the burden of the University lands on Mr. Cornell, and from his promotion of local railways; his good reasons for undertaking these. Entanglement of the University affairs with those of the State and of Mr. Cornell. Narrow escape of the institution from a fatal result. Judge Finch as an adviser; his extrication of the University and of Mr. Cornell's family; interwoven interests disentangled. Death of Mr. Cornell, December, 1875. My depression at this period; refuge in historical work. Another calamity. Munificence of John McGraw; interest shown in the institution by his daughter; her relations to the University; her death; her bequest; my misgivings as to our Charter; personal complications between the McGraw heirs and some of our trustees; efforts to bring about a settlement thwarted; ill success of the University in the ensuing litigation. Disappointment at this prodigious loss. Compensations for it. Splendid gifts from Mr. Henry W. Sage, Messrs. Dean and Wm. H. Sage, and others. Continuance of sectarian attacks; virulent outbursts; we stand on the defensive. I finally take the offensive in a lecture on ``The Battle-fields of Science''; its purpose, its reception when repeated and when published; kindness of President Woolsey in the matter. Gradual expansion of the lecture into a history of ``The Warfare of Science with Theology''; filtration of the ideas it represents into public opinion; effect of this in smoothing the way for the University.


Evolution of the University administration. The Trustees; new method of selecting them; Alumni trustees. The Executive Committee. The Faculty method of its selection; its harmony. The Students; system of taking them into our confidence. Alumni associations. Engrossing nature of the administration. Collateral duties. Addresses to the Legislature, to associations, to other institutions of learning. Duties as Professor. Delegation of sundry administrative details. Inaccessibility of the University in those days; difficulties in winter. Am appointed Commissioner to Santo Domingo in 1870; to a commissionership at the Paris Exposition in 1877, and as Minister to Germany in 1879-1881. Test of the University organization during these absences; opportunity thus given the University Faculty to take responsibility in University government. Ill results, in sundry other institutions, of holding the President alone responsible. General good results of our system. Difficulties finally arising. My return. The four years of my presidency afterward. Resignation in 1885. Kindness of trustees and students. Am requested to name my successor, and I nominate Charles Kendall Adams. Transfer of my historical library to the University. Two visits to Europe; reasons for them. Lectures at various universities after my return. Resumption of diplomatic duties. Continued relations to the University. My feelings toward it on nearing the end of life.


My first studies in History and International Law. Am appointed attach<e'> at St. Petersburg. Stay in London. Mr. Buchanan's reminiscences. Arrival in St. Petersburg. Duty of an attach<e'>. Effects of the Crimean War on the position of the American Minister and his suite. Good feeling established between Russia and the United States. The Emperor Nicholas; his death; his funeral. Reception of the Diplomatic Corps at the Winter Palace by Alexander II; his speech; feeling shown by him toward Austria. Count Nesselrode; his kindness to me. Visits of sundry Americans to St. Petersburg. Curious discovery at the Winter Palace among the machines left by Peter the Great. American sympathizers with Russia in the Crimean War. Difficulties thus caused for the Minister. Examples of very original Americans; the Kentucky Colonel; the New York Election Manager; performance of the latter at a dinner party and display at the Post House. Feeling of the Government toward the United States; example of this at the Kazan Cathedral. Household troubles of the Minister. Baird the Ironmaster; his yacht race with the Grand Duke Alexander; interesting scenes at his table. The traveler Atkinson and Siberia.


Blockade of the Neva by the allied fleet. A great opportunity lost. Russian caricatures during the Crimean War. Visit to Moscow. Curious features in the Kremlin, the statue of Napoleon; the Crown, Sceptre, and Constitution of Poland. Evidences of official stupidity. Journey from St. Petersburg to Warsaw. Contest with the officials at the frontier; my victory. Journey across the continent; scene in a railway carriage between Strasburg and Paris. Delivery of my despatches in Paris. Baron Seebach. The French Exposition of 1855. Arrival of Horace Greeley; comical features in his Parisian life; his arrest and imprisonment; his efforts to learn French in prison and after his release, especially at the Cr<e'>merie of Madame Busque. Scenes at the Exposition. Journey through Switzerland. Experience at the Hospice of the Great St. Bernard, Fanny Kemble Butler; kind treatment by the monks. My arrival in Berlin as student.


Propositions for the annexation of Santo Domingo to the United States. I am appointed one of three Commissioners to visit the island. Position taken by Senator Sumner; my relations with him; my efforts to reconcile him with the Grant Administration; effort of Gerrit Smith. Speeches of Senator Schurz. Conversations with Admiral Porter, Benjamin F. Butler, and others. Discussions with President Grant; his charge to me. Enlistment of scientific experts. Direction of them. Our residence at Santo Domingo city. President Baez; his conversations. Condition of the Republic; its denudation. Anxiety of the clergy for connection with the United States. My negotiation with the Papal Nuncio and Vicar Apostolic; his earnest desire for annexation. Reasons for this. My expedition across the island. Mishaps. Interview with guerrilla general in the mountains. His gift. Vain efforts at diplomacy. Our official inquiries regarding earthquakes; pious view taken by the Vicar of Cotuy. Visit to Vega. Aid given me by the French Vicar. Arrival at Puerto Plata. My stay at the Vice-President's house; a tropical catastrophe; public dinner and speech under difficulties. Journey in the Nantasket to Port-au-Prince. Scenes in the Haitian capital; evidences of revolution; unlimited paper money; effect of these experiences on Frederick Douglass. Visit to Jamaica; interview with President Geffrard. Experience of the Commission with a newspaper reporter. Landing at Charleston. Journey to Washington. Refusal of dinner to Douglass on the Potomac steamer. Discovery regarding an assertion in Mr. Sumner's speech on Santo Domingo; his injustice. Difference of opinion in drawing up our report; we present no recommendation but simply a statement of facts. Reasons why the annexation was not accomplished.


Previous experience on the Educational Jury at the Philadelphia Exposition. Emperor Dom Pedro of Brazil; curious revelation of his character at Booth's Theater; my after acquaintance with him. Don Juan Marin, his fine characteristics; his lesson to an American crowd. Levasseur of the French Institute. Millet. Gardner Hubbard. My honorary commissionership to the Paris Exposition. Previous troubles of our Commissioner-General at the Vienna Exposition. Necessity of avoiding these at Paris. Membership of the upper jury. Meissonier. Tresca. Jules Simon. Wischniegradsky. Difficulty regarding the Edison exhibit. My social life in Paris. The sculptor Story and Judge Daly. A Swiss-American juryman's efforts to secure the Legion of Honor. A Fourth of July jubilation; light thrown by it on the ``Temperance Question.'' Henri Martin. Jules Simon pilots me in Paris. Sainte-Clair Deville. Pasteur. Desjardins. Drouyn de Lhuys. The reform school at Mettray. My visit to Thiers; his relations to France as historian and statesman. Duruy; his remark on rapid changes in French Ministries. Convention on copyright. Victor Hugo. Louis Blanc, his opinion of Thiers. Troubles of the American Minister; a socially ambitious American lady; vexatious plague thus revealed.


Am appointed by President Hayes. Receiving instructions in Washington. Mr. Secretary Evarts. Interesting stay in London. The Lord Mayor at Guildhall. Speeches by Beaconsfield and others. An animated automaton. An evening drive with Browning. Arrival in Berlin. Golden wedding festivities of the Emperor William I. Audiences with various members of the imperial family. Wedding ceremonies of Prince William, now Emperor William II. Usual topic of the American representative on presenting his Letter of Credence from the President to the Prussian monarch. Prince Bismarck; his greeting; questions regarding German-Americans. Other difficulties. Baron von B<u:>low; his conciliatory character. Vexatious cases. Two complicated marriages. Imperial relations. Superintendence of consuls. Transmission of important facts to the State Department. Care for personal interests of Americans. Fugitives from justice. The selling of sham American diplomas; effective means taken to stop this. Presentations at court; troublesome applications; pleasure of aiding legitimate American efforts and ambitions; discriminations. Curious letters demanding aid or information. Claims to inheritances. Sundry odd applications. The ``autograph bed-quilt.'' Associations with the diplomatic corps. Count Delaunay. Lord Odo Russell. The Methuen episode. Count de St. Vallier, embarrassing mishap at Nice due to him. The Turkish and Russian ambassadors. Distressing Russian-American marriage case. Baron Nothomb, his reminiscences of Talleyrand. The Saxon representative and the troubles of American lady students at Leipsic. Quaint discussions of general politics by sundry diplomatists. The Japanese and Chinese representatives. Curious experience with a member of the Chinese Legation at a court reception. Sundry German public men.


My relations with professors at the Berlin University. Lepsius, Curtius, Gneist, Von Sybel, Droysen. Hermann Grimm and his wife. Treitschke. Statements of Du Bois-Reymond regarding the expulsion of the Huguenots from France. Helmholtz and Hoffmann; a Scotch experience of the latter. Acquaintance with professors at other universities. Literary men of Berlin. Auerbach. His story of unveiling the Spinoza statue. Rodenberg. Berlin artists. Knaus; curious beginning of my acquaintance with him. Carl Becker. Anton von Werner; his statement regarding his painting the ``Proclamation of the Empire at Versailles.'' Adolf Menzel; visit to his studio; his quaint discussions of his own pictures. Pilgrimage to Oberammergau, impressions, my acquaintance with the ``Christus'' and the ``Judas''; popular prejudice against the latter. Excursion to France. Talks with President Gr<e'>vy and with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Barth<e'>lemy-Saint-Hilaire. The better side of France. Talk with M. de Lesseps. The salon of Madame Edmond Adam. <E'>mile de Girardin. My recollections of Alexander Dumas. Sainte-Beuve. Visit to Nice. Young Leland Stanford. Visit to Florence. Ubaldino Peruzzi. Professor Villari. A reproof from a Harvard professor. Minghetti. Emperor Frederick III; his visit to the American Fisheries Exposition; the Americans win the prize. Interest of the Prince in everything American. Kindness and heartiness of the Emperor William I; his interest in Bancroft; my final interview with him. Farewell dinner to me by my Berlin friends.


My first sight of him. First interview with him. His feeling toward German-Americans. His conversation on American questions. A family dinner at his house. His discussion of various subjects; his opinions of Thiers and others, conversation on travel; his opinions of England and Englishmen; curious reminiscences of his own life; kindly recollections of Bancroft, Bayard Taylor, and Motley. Visit to him with William D. Kelly; our walk and talk in the garden. Bismarck's view of financial questions. Mr. Kelly's letter to the American papers; its effect in Germany. Bismarck's diplomatic dinners; part taken in them by the Reichshunde. The Rudhardt episode. Scene in the Prussian House of Lords. Bismarck's treatment of Lasker; his rejection of our Congressional Resolutions. Usual absence of Bismarck from Court. Reasons for it. Festivities at the marriage of the present Emperor William. A Fackeltanz. Bismarck's fits of despondency; remark by Gneist. Gneist's story illustrating Bismarck's drinking habits. Difficulties in German-American ``military cases'' after Baron von B<u:>low's death. A serious crisis. Bismarck's mingled severity and kindness. His unyielding attitude toward Russia. Question between us regarding German interference in South America. My citations from Washington's Farewell Address and John Quincy Adams's despatches. Bismarck's appearance in Parliament. His mode of speaking. Contrast of his speeches with those of Moltke and Windthorst. Beauty of his family life. My last view of him.



ITHACA, 1905 Photograph by Robinson, Ithaca

SARATOGA, 1842 From a daguerreotype

CORNELL UNIVERSITY, 1878 Photograph by Sarony, New York


THE HAGUE, 1899 Photograph by Zimmermans, The Hague

OXFORD, 1902 Photograph by Robinson, Ithaca






At the close of the Revolution which separated the colonies from the mother country, the legislature of New York set apart nearly two million acres of land, in the heart of the State, as bounty to be divided among her soldiers who had taken part in the war; and this ``Military Tract,'' having been duly divided into townships, an ill- inspired official, in lack of names for so many divisions, sprinkled over the whole region the contents of his classical dictionary. Thus it was that there fell to a beautiful valley upon the headwaters of the Susquehanna the name of ``Homer.'' Fortunately the surveyor-general left to the mountains, lakes, and rivers the names the Indians had given them, and so there was still some poetical element remaining in the midst of that unfortunate nomenclature. The counties, too, as a rule, took Indian names, so that the town of Homer, with its neighbors, Tully, Pompey, Fabius, Lysander, and the rest, were embedded in the county of Onondaga, in the neighborhood of lakes Otisco and Skaneateles, and of the rivers Tioughnioga and Susquehanna.

Hither came, toward the close of the eighteenth century, a body of sturdy New Englanders, and, among them, my grandfathers and grandmothers. Those on my father's side: Asa White and Clara Keep, from Munson, Massa- chusetts; those on my mother's side, Andrew Dickson, from Middlefield, Massachusetts, and Ruth Hall from Guilford, Connecticut. They were all of ``good stock.'' When I was ten years old I saw my great-grandfather at Middlefield, eighty-two years of age, sturdy and vigorous; he had mowed a broad field the day before, and he walked four miles to church the day after. He had done his duty manfully during the war, had been a member of the ``Great and General Court'' of Massachusetts, and had held various other offices, which showed that he enjoyed the confidence of his fellow-citizens. As to the other side of the house, there was a tradition that we came from Peregrine White of the Mayflower; but I have never had time to find whether my doubts on the subject were well founded or not. Enough for me to know that my yeomen ancestors did their duty in war and peace, were honest, straightforward, God-fearing men and women, who owned their own lands, and never knew what it was to cringe before any human being.

These New Englanders literally made the New York wilderness to blossom as the rose; and Homer, at my birth in 1832, about forty years after the first settlers came, was, in its way, one of the prettiest villages imaginable. In the heart of it was the ``Green,'' and along the middle of this a line of church edifices, and the academy. In front of the green, parallel to the river, ran, north and south, the broad main street, beautifully shaded with maples, and on either side of this, in the middle of the village, were stores, shops, and the main taverns; while north and south of these were large and pleasant dwellings, each in its own garden or grove or orchard, and separated from the street by light palings,—all, without exception, neat, trim, and tidy.

My first recollections are of a big, comfortable house of brick, in what is now called ``colonial style,'' with a ``stoop,'' long and broad, on its southern side, which in summer was shaded with honeysuckles. Spreading out southward from this was a spacious garden filled with old-fashioned flowers, and in this I learned to walk. To this hour the perfume of a pink brings the whole scene before me, and proves the justice of Oliver Wendell Holmes's saying that we remember past scenes more vividly by the sense of smell than by the sense of sight.

I can claim no merit for clambering out of poverty. My childhood was happy; my surroundings wholesome; I was brought up neither in poverty nor riches; my parents were what were called ``well-to-do-people''; everything about me was good and substantial; but our mode of life was frugal; waste or extravagance or pretense was not permitted for a moment. My paternal grandfather had been, in the early years of the century, the richest man in the township; but some time before my birth he had become one of the poorest; for a fire had consumed his mills, there was no insurance, and his health gave way. On my father, Horace White, had fallen, therefore, the main care of his father's family. It was to the young man, apparently, a great calamity:—that which grieved him most being that it took him—a boy not far in his teens—out of school. But he met the emergency manfully, was soon known far and wide for his energy, ability, and integrity, and long before he had reached middle age was considered one of the leading men of business in the county.

My mother had a more serene career. In another part of these Reminiscences, saying something of my religious and political development, I shall speak again of her and of her parents. Suffice it here that her father prospered as a man of business, was known as ``Colonel,'' and also as ``Squire'' Dickson, and represented his county in the State legislature. He died when I was about three years old, and I vaguely remember being brought to him as he lay upon his death-bed. On one account, above all others, I have long looked back to him with pride. For the first public care of the early settlers had been a church, and the second a school. This school had been speedily developed into Cortland Academy, which soon became fa- mous throughout all that region, and, as a boy of five or six years of age, I was very proud to read on the corner- stone of the Academy building my grandfather's name among those of the original founders.

Not unlikely there thus came into my blood the strain which has led me ever since to feel that the building up of goodly institutions is more honorable than any other work,—an idea which was at the bottom of my efforts in developing the University of Michigan, and in founding Cornell University.

To Cortland Academy students came from far and near; and it soon began sending young men into the foremost places of State and Church. At an early day, too, it began receiving young women and sending them forth to become the best of matrons. As my family left the place when I was seven years old I was never within its walls as a student, but it acted powerfully on my education in two ways,—it gave my mother the best of her education, and it gave to me a respect for scholarship. The library and collections, though small, suggested pursuits better than the scramble for place or pelf; the public exercises, two or three times a year, led my thoughts, no matter how vaguely, into higher regions, and I shall never forget the awe which came over me when as a child, I saw Principal Woolworth, with his best students around him on the green, making astronomical observations through a small telescope.

Thus began my education into that great truth, so imperfectly understood, as yet, in our country, that stores, shops, hotels, facilities for travel and traffic are not the highest things in civilization.

This idea was strengthened in the family. Devoted as my father was to business, he always showed the greatest respect for men of thought. I have known him, even when most absorbed in his pursuits, to watch occasions for walking homeward with a clergyman or teacher, whose conversation he especially prized. There was scant respect in the family for the petty politicians of the region; but there was great respect for the instructors of the academy, and for any college professor who happened to be traveling through the town. I am now in my sixty-eighth year, and I write these lines from the American Embassy in Berlin. It is my duty here, as it has been at other European capitals, to meet various high officials; but that old feeling, engendered in my childhood, continues, and I bow to the representatives of the universities,—to the leaders in science, literature, and art, with a feeling of awe and respect far greater than to their so-called superiors,—princelings and high military or civil officials.

Influences of a more direct sort came from a primary school. To this I was taken, when about three years old, for a reason which may strike the present generation as curious. The colored servant who had charge of me wished to learn to read—so she slipped into the school and took me with her. As a result, though my memory runs back distinctly to events near the beginning of my fourth year, it holds not the faintest recollection of a time when I could not read easily. The only studies which I recall with distinctness, as carried on before my seventh year, are arithmetic and geography. As to the former, the multiplication-table was chanted in chorus by the whole body of children, a rhythmical and varied movement of the arms being carried on at the same time. These exercises gave us pleasure and fastened the tables in our minds. As to geography, that gave pleasure in another way. The books contained pictures which stimulated my imagination and prompted me to read the adjacent text. There was no over-pressure. Mental recreation and information were obtained in a loose way from ``Rollo Books,'' ``Peter Parley Books,'' ``Sanford and Merton,'' the ``Children's Magazine,'' and the like. I now think it a pity that I was not allowed to read, instead of these, the novels of Scott and Cooper, which I discovered later. I devoutly thank Heaven that no such thing as a sensation newspaper was ever brought into the house,— even if there were one at that time,—which I doubt. As to physical recreation, there was plenty during the summer in the fields and woods, and during the winter in coasting, building huts in the deep snow, and in storming or defending the snow forts on the village green. One of these childish sports had a historical connection with a period which now seems very far away. If any old settler happened to pass during our snow-balling or our shooting with bows and arrows, he was sure to look on with interest, and, at some good shot, to cry out,— ``SHOOT BURGOYNE!''—thus recalling his remembrances of the sharpshooters who brought about the great surrender at Saratoga.

In my seventh year my father was called to take charge of the new bank established at Syracuse, thirty miles distant, and there the family soon joined him. I remember that coming through the Indian Reservation, on the road between the two villages, I was greatly impressed by the bowers and other decorations which had been used shortly before at the installation of a new Indian chief. It was the headquarters of the Onondagas,—formerly the great central tribe of the Iroquois,—the warlike confederacy of the Six Nations; and as, in a general way, the story was told me on that beautiful day in September a new world of romance was opened to me, so that Indian stories, and especially Cooper's novels, when I was allowed to read them, took on a new reality.

Syracuse, which is now a city of one hundred and twenty thousand inhabitants, was then a straggling village of about five thousand. After much time lost in sundry poor ``select schools'' I was sent to one of the public schools which was very good, and thence, when about twelve years old, to the preparatory department of the Syracuse Academy.

There, by good luck, was Joseph A. Allen, the best teacher of English branches I have ever known. He had no rules and no system; or, rather, his rule was to have no rules, and his system was to have no system. To genius. He seemed to divine the character and enter into the purpose of every boy. Work under him was a pleasure. His methods were very simple. Great attention was given to reading aloud from a book made up of selections from the best authors, and to recitals from these. Thus I stored up not only some of the best things in the older English writers, but inspiring poems of Bryant, Whittier, Longfellow, and other moderns. My only regret is that more of this was not given us. I recall, among treasures thus gained, which have been precious to me ever since, in many a weary or sleepless hour on land and sea, extracts from Shakspere, parts of Milton's ``Samson Agonistes,'' and of his sonnets; Gray's ``Elegy,'' Byron's ``Ode to the Ocean,'' Campbell's ``What's Hallowed Ground?'' Goldsmith's ``Deserted Village,'' Longfellow's ``Psalm of Life,'' Irving's ``Voyage to Europe,'' and parts of Webster's ``Reply to Hayne.''

At this school the wretched bugbear of English spelling was dealt with by a method which, so long as our present monstrous orthography continues, seems to me the best possible. During the last half-hour of every day, each scholar was required to have before him a copy- book, of which each page was divided into two columns. At the head of the first column was the word ``Spelling''; at the head of the second column was the word ``Corrected.'' The teacher then gave out to the school about twenty of the more important words in the reading- lesson of the day, and, as he thus dictated each word, each scholar wrote it in the column headed ``Spelling.'' When all the words were thus written, the first scholar was asked to spell from his book the first word; if misspelled, it was passed to the next, and so on until it was spelled correctly; whereupon all who had made a mistake in writing it made the proper correction on the opposite column. The result of this was that the greater part of us learned orthography PRACTICALLY. For the practical use of spelling comes in writing.

The only mistake in Mr. Allen's teaching was too much attention to English grammar. The order ought to be, literature first, and grammar afterward. Perhaps there is no more tiresome trifling in the world for boys and girls than rote recitations and parsing from one of the usual grammatical text-books.

As to mathematics, arithmetic was, perhaps, pushed too far into puzzles; but geometry was made fascinating by showing its real applications and the beauty of its reasoning. It is the only mathematical study I ever loved. In natural science, though most of the apparatus of schools nowadays was wanting, Mr. Allen's instruction was far beyond his time. Never shall I forget my excited interest when, occasionally, the village surgeon came in, and the whole school was assembled to see him dissect the eye or ear or heart of an ox. Physics, as then understood, was studied in a text-book, but there was illustration by simple apparatus, which fastened firmly in my mind the main facts and principles.

The best impulse by this means came from the principal of the academy, Mr. Oren Root,—one of the pioneers of American science, whose modesty alone stood in the way of his fame. I was too young to take direct instruction from him, but the experiments which I saw him perform led me, with one or two of my mates, to construct an excellent electrical machine and subsidiary apparatus; and with these, a small galvanic battery and an extemporized orrery, I diluted Professor Root's lectures with the teachings of my little books on natural philosophy and astronomy to meet the capacities of the younger boys in our neighborhood.

Salient among my recollections of this period are the cries and wailing of a newly-born babe in the rooms at the academy occupied by the principal, and adjacent to our big school-room. Several decades of years later I had the honor of speaking on the platform of Cooper Institute in company with this babe, who, as I write, is, I believe, the very energetic Secretary of War in the Cabinet of President McKinley.

Unfortunately for me, Mr. Root was soon afterward called away to a professorship at Hamilton College, and so, though living in the best of all regions for geological study, I was never properly grounded in that science, and as to botany, I am to this hour utterly ignorant of its simplest facts and principles. I count this as one of the mistakes in my education,—resulting in the loss of much valuable knowledge and high pleasure.

As to physical development, every reasonable encouragement was given to play. Mr. Allen himself came frequently to the play-grounds. He was an excellent musician and a most helpful influence was exerted by singing, which was a daily exercise of the school. I then began taking lessons regularly in music and became proficient enough to play the organ occasionally in church; the best result of this training being that it gave my life one of its deepest, purest, and most lasting pleasures.

On the moral side, Mr. Allen influenced many of us by liberalizing and broadening our horizon. He was a disciple of Channing and an abolitionist, and, though he never made the slightest attempt to proselyte any of his scholars, the very atmosphere of the school made sectarian bigotry impossible.

As to my general education outside the school I browsed about as best I could. My passion in those days was for machinery, and, above all, for steam machinery. The stationary and locomotive engines upon the newly- established railways toward Albany on the east and Buffalo on the west especially aroused my attention, and I came to know every locomotive, its history, character, and capabilities, as well as every stationary engine in the whole region. My holiday excursions, when not employed in boating or skating on the Onondaga Creek, or upon the lake, were usually devoted to visiting workshops, where the engine drivers and stokers seemed glad to talk with a youngster who took an interest in their business. Especially interested was I in a rotary engine on ``Barker's centrifugal principle,'' with which the inventor had prom- ised to propel locomotives at the rate of a hundred miles an hour, but which had been degraded to grinding bark in a tannery. I felt its disgrace keenly, as a piece of gross injustice; but having obtained a small brass model, fitted to it a tin boiler and placed it on a little stern-wheel boat, I speedily discovered the secret of the indignity which had overtaken the machine, for no boat could carry a boiler large enough to supply steam for it.

So, too, I knew every water-wheel in that part of the county, whether overshot, undershot, breast, or turbine. Everything in the nature of a motor had an especial fascination for me, and for the men in control of such power I entertained a respect which approached awe.

Among all these, my especial reverence was given to the locomotive engineers; in my youthful mind they took on a heroic character. Often during the night watches I thought of them as braving storm and peril, responsible for priceless freights of human lives. Their firm, keen faces come back to me vividly through the mists of sixty years, and to this day I look up to their successors at the throttle with respectful admiration.

After Professor Root's departure the Syracuse Academy greatly declined, Mr. Allen being the only strong man left among its teachers, and, as I was to go to college, I was removed to a ``classical school.'' This school was not at first very successful. Its teacher was a good scholar but careless. Under him I repeated the grammatical forms and rules in Latin and Greek, glibly, term after term, without really understanding their value. His great mistake, which seems to me a not infrequent one, was taking it for granted that repeating rules and forms means understanding them and their application. But a catastrophe came. I had been promoted beyond my deserts from a lower into an upper Latin class, and at a public examination the Rev. Samuel Joseph May, who was present, asked me a question, to which I made an answer revealing utter ignorance of one of the simplest principles of Latin grammar. He was discon- certed at the result, I still more so, and our preceptor most of all. That evening my father very solemnly asked me about it. I was mortified beyond expression, did not sleep at all that night, and of my own accord, began reviewing my Andrews and Stoddard thoroughly and vigorously. But this did not save the preceptor. A successor was called, a man who afterward became an eminent Presbyterian divine and professor in a Southern university, James W. Hoyt, one of the best and truest of men, and his manly, moral influence over his scholars was remarkable. Many of them have reached positions of usefulness, and I think they will agree that his influence upon their lives was most happy. The only drawback was that he was still very young, not yet through his senior year in Union College, and his methods in classical teaching were imperfect. He loved his classics and taught his better students to love them, but he was neither thorough in grammar, nor sure in translation, and this I afterward found to my sorrow. My friend and schoolmate of that time, W. O. S., published a few years since, in the ``St. Nicholas Magazine,'' an account of this school. It was somewhat idealized, but we doubtless agree in thinking that the lack of grammatical drill was more than made up by the love of manliness, and the dislike of meanness, which was in those days our very atmosphere. Probably the best thing for my mental training was that Mr. Hoyt interested me in my Virgil, Horace, and Xenophon, and required me to write out my translations in the best English at my command.

But to all his pupils he did not prove so helpful. One of them, though he has since become an energetic man of business on the Pacific Coast, was certainly not helped into his present position by his Latin; for of all the translations I have ever heard or read of, one of his was the worst. Being called to construe the first line of the Aeneid, he proceeded as follows:

``Arma,—arms; virumque,—and a man; cano,—and a dog.'' There was a roar, and Mr. Hoyt, though evidently saddened, kept his temper. He did not, like the great and good Arnold of Rugby, under similar provocation, knock the offender down with the text-book.

Still another agency in my development was the debating club, so inevitable in an American village. Its discussions were sometimes pretentious and always crude, but something was gained thereby. I remember that one of the subjects was stated as follows: ``Which has done most harm, intemperance or fanaticism.'' The debate was without any striking feature until my schoolmate, W. O. S., brought up heavy artillery on the side of the anti-fanatics: namely, a statement of the ruin wrought by Mohammedanism in the East, and, above all, the destruction of the great Alexandrian library by Caliph Omar; and with such eloquence that all the argumentation which any of us had learned in the temperance meetings was paralyzed.

On another occasion we debated the question: ``Was the British Government justified in its treatment of Napoleon Bonaparte?'' Much historical lore had been brought to bear on the question, when an impassioned young orator wound up a bitter diatribe against the great emperor as follows: ``The British Government WAS justified, and if for no other reason, by the Emperor Napoleon's murder of the `Duck de Engine' '' (Duc d'Enghien).

As to education outside of the school very important to me had been the discovery, when I was about ten years old, of `` `The Monastery,' by the author of `Waverley.' '' Who the ``author of `Waverley' '' was I neither knew nor cared, but read the book three times, end over end, in a sort of fascination. Unfortunately, novels and romances were kept under lock and key, as unfit reading for children, and it was some years before I reveled in Scott's other novels. That they would have been thoroughly good and wholesome reading for me I know, and about my sixteenth year they opened a new world to me and gave healthful play to my imagination. I also read and re-read Bunyan's ``Pilgrim's Progress,'' and, with plea- sure even more intense, the earlier works of Dickens, which were then appearing.

My only regret, as regards that time, is that, between the rather trashy ``boys' books'' on one side and the rather severe books in the family library on the other, I read far less of really good literature than I ought to have done. My reading was absolutely without a guide, hence fitful and scrappy; parts of Rollin's ``Ancient History'' and Lander's ``Travels in Africa'' being mixed up with ``Robinson Crusoe'' and ``The Scottish Chiefs.'' Reflection on my experience has convinced me that some kindly guidance in the reading of a fairly scholarly boy is of the utmost importance, and never more so than now, when books are so many and attractive. I should lay much stress, also, on the hearing of good literature well read, and the interspersing of such reading with some remarks by the reader, pointing out the main beauties of the pieces thus presented.

About my tenth year occurred an event, apparently trivial, but really very important in my mental development during many years afterward. My father brought home one day, as a gift to my mother, a handsome quarto called ``The Gallery of British Artists.'' It contained engravings from pictures by Turner, Stanfield, Cattermole, and others, mainly representing scenes from Shakspere, Scott, Burns, picturesque architecture, and beautiful views in various parts of Europe. Of this book I never tired. It aroused in me an intense desire to know more of the subjects represented, and this desire has led me since to visit and to study every cathedral, church, and town hall of any historical or architectural significance in Europe, outside the Spanish peninsula. But, far more important, it gave an especial zest to nearly all Scott's novels, and especially to the one which I have always thought the most fascinating, ``Quentin Durward.'' This novel led me later, not merely to visit Liege, and Orl<e'>ans, and Cl<e'>ry, and Tours, but to devour the chronicles and histories of that period, to become deeply interested in historical studies, and to learn how great principles lie hidden beneath the surface of events. The first of these principles I ever clearly discerned was during my reading of ``Quentin Durward'' and ``Anne of Geierstein,'' when there was revealed to me the secret of the centralization of power in Europe, and of the triumph of monarchy over feudalism.

In my sixteenth and seventeenth years another element entered into my education. Syracuse, as the central city of the State, was the scene of many conventions and public meetings. That was a time of very deep earnestness in political matters. The last great efforts were making, by the more radical, peaceably to prevent the extension of slavery, and, by the more conservative, peaceably to preserve the Union. The former of these efforts interested me most. There were at Syracuse frequent public debates between the various groups of the anti-slavery party represented by such men as Gerrit Smith, Wendell Phillips, William Lloyd Garrison, John Parker Hale, Samuel Joseph May, and Frederick Douglass. They took strong hold upon me and gave me a higher idea of a man's best work in life. That was the bloom period of the old popular lecture. It was the time when lectures were expected to build character and increase knowledge; the sensation and buffoon business which destroyed the system had not yet come in. I feel to this hour the good influence of lectures then heard, in the old City Hall at Syracuse, from such men as President Mark Hopkins, Bishop Alonzo Potter, Senator Hale of New Hampshire, Emerson, Ware, Whipple, and many others.

As to recreative reading at this period, the author who exercised the strongest influence over me was Charles Kingsley. His novels ``Alton Locke'' and ``Yeast'' interested me greatly in efforts for doing away with old abuses in Europe, and his ``Two Years After'' increased my hatred for negro slavery in America. His ``Westward Ho!'' extended my knowledge of the Elizabethan period and increased my manliness. Of this period, too, was my reading of Lowell's Poems, many of which I greatly enjoyed. His ``Biglow Papers'' were a perpetual delight; the dialect was familiar to me since, in the little New England town transplanted into the heart of central New York, in which I was born, the less educated people used it, and the dry and droll Yankee expressions of our ``help'' and ``hired man'' were a source of constant amusement in the family.

In my seventeenth year came a trial. My father had taken a leading part in establishing a parish school for St. Paul's church in Syracuse, in accordance with the High Church views of our rector, Dr. Gregory, and there was finally called to the mastership a young candidate for orders, a brilliant scholar and charming man, who has since become an eminent bishop of the Protestant Episcopal Church. To him was intrusted my final preparation for college. I had always intended to enter one of the larger New England universities, but my teacher was naturally in favor of his Alma Mater, and the influence of our bishop, Dr. de Lancey, being also thrown powerfully into the scale, my father insisted on placing me at a small Protestant Episcopal college in western New York. I went most reluctantly. There were in the faculty several excellent men, one of whom afterward became a colleague of my own in Cornell University, and proved of the greatest value to it. Unfortunately, we of the lower college classes could have very little instruction from him; still there was good instruction from others; the tutor in Greek, James Morrison Clarke, was one of the best scholars I have ever known.

It was in the autumn of 1849 that I went into residence at the little college and was assigned a very unprepossessing room in a very ugly barrack. Entering my new quarters I soon discovered about me various cabalistic signs, some of them evidently made by heating large iron keys, and pressing them against the woodwork. On inquiring I found that the room had been occupied some years before by no less a personage than Philip Spencer, a member of the famous Spencer family of Albany, who, having passed some years at this little college, and never having been able to get out of the freshman class, had gone to another institution of about the same grade, had there founded a Greek letter fraternity which is now widely spread among American universities, and then, through the influence of his father, who was Secretary of War, had been placed as a midshipman under Commodore McKenzie on the brig-of-war Somers. On the coast of Africa a mutiny was discovered, and as, on examination, young Spencer was found at the head of it, and papers discovered in his cabin revealed the plan of seizing the ship and using it in a career of piracy, the young man, in spite of his connection with a member of the Cabinet, was hanged at the yard-arm with two of his associates.

The most curious relic of him at the college was preserved in the library of the Hermean Society. It was a copy of ``The Pirates' Own Book'': a glorification of the exploits of ``Blackbeard'' and other great freebooters, profusely adorned with illustrations of their joys and triumphs. This volume bore on the fly-leaf the words, ``Presented to the Hermean Society by Philip Spencer,'' and was in those days shown as a great curiosity.

The college was at its lowest ebb; of discipline there was none; there were about forty students, the majority of them, sons of wealthy churchmen, showing no inclination to work and much tendency to dissipation. The authorities of the college could not afford to expel or even offend a student. for its endowment was so small that it must have all the instruction fees possible, and must keep on good terms with the wealthy fathers of its scapegrace students. The scapegraces soon found this out, and the result was a little pandemonium. Only about a dozen of our number studied at all; the rest, by translations, promptings, and evasions escaped without labor. I have had to do since, as student, professor, or lecturer, with some half-dozen large universities at home and abroad, and in all of these together have not seen so much carousing and wild dissipation as I then saw in this little ``Church college'' of which the especial boast was that, owing to the small number of its students, it was ``able to exercise a direct Christian influence upon every young man committed to its care.''

The evidences of this Christian influence were not clear. The president of the college, Dr. Benjamin Hale, was a clergyman of the highest character; a good scholar, an excellent preacher, and a wise administrator; but his stature was very small, his girth very large, and his hair very yellow. When, then, on the thirteenth day of the month, there was read at chapel from the Psalter the words, ``And there was little Benjamin, their ruler,'' very irreverent demonstrations were often made by the students, presumably engaged in worship; demonstrations so mortifying, indeed, that at last the president frequently substituted for the regular Psalms of the day one of the beautiful ``Selections'' of Psalms which the American Episcopal Church has so wisely incorporated into its prayer-book.

But this was by no means the worst indignity which these youth ``under direct Christian influence'' perpetrated upon their reverend instructors. It was my privilege to behold a professor, an excellent clergyman, seeking to quell hideous riot in a student's room, buried under a heap of carpets, mattresses, counterpanes, and blankets; to see another clerical professor forced to retire through the panel of a door under a shower of lexicons, boots, and brushes, and to see even the president himself, on one occasion, obliged to leave his lecture-room by a ladder from a window, and, on another, kept at bay by a shower of beer-bottles.

One favorite occupation was rolling cannon-balls along the corridors at midnight, with frightful din and much damage: a tutor, having one night been successful in catching and confiscating two of these, pounced from his door the next night upon a third; but this having been heated nearly to redness and launched from a shovel, the result was that he wore bandages upon his hands for many days.

Most ingenious were the methods for ``training freshmen,''— one of the mildest being the administration of soot and water by a hose-pipe thrust through the broken panel of a door. Among general freaks I remember seeing a horse turned into the chapel, and a stuffed wolf, dressed in a surplice, placed upon the roof of that sacred edifice.

But the most elaborate thing of the kind I ever saw was the breaking up of a ``Second Adventist'' meeting by a score of student roysterers. An itinerant fanatic had taken an old wooden meeting-house in the lower part of the town, had set up on either side of the pulpit large canvas representations of the man of brass with feet of clay, and other portentous characters of the prophecies, and then challenged the clergy to meet him in public debate. At the appointed time a body of college youth appeared, most sober in habit and demure in manner, having at their head ``Bill'' Howell of Black Rock and ``Tom'' Clark of Manlius, the two wildest miscreants in the sophomore class, each over six feet tall, the latter dressed as a respectable farmer, and the former as a country clergyman, wearing a dress-coat, a white cravat, a tall black hat wrapped in crape, leaning on a heavy, ivory-knobbed cane, and carrying ostentatiously a Greek Testament. These disguised malefactors, having taken their seats in the gallery directly facing the pulpit, the lecturer expressed his ``satisfaction at seeing clergymen present,'' and began his demonstrations. For about five minutes all went well; then ``Bill'' Howell solemnly arose and, in a snuffling voice, asked permission to submit a few texts from scripture. Permission being granted, he put on a huge pair of goggles, solemnly opened his Greek Testament, read emphatically the first passage which attracted his attention and impressively asked the lecturer what he had to say to it. At this, the lecturer, greatly puzzled, asked what the reverend gentleman was reading. Upon this Howell read in New Testament Greek another utterly irrelevant passage. In reply the lecturer said, rather roughly, ``If you will speak English I will answer you.'' At this Howell said with the most humble suavity, ``Do I understand that the distinguished gentleman does not recognize what I have been reading?'' The preacher answered, ``I don't understand any such gibberish; speak English.'' Thereupon Howell threw back his long black hair and launched forth into eloquent denunciation as follows: ``Sir, is it possible that you come here to interpret to us the Holy Bible and do not recognize the language in which that blessed book was written? Sir, do you dare to call the very words of the Almighty `gibberish?' '' At this all was let loose; some students put asafetida on the stove; others threw pigeon-shot against the ceiling and windows, making a most appalling din, and one wretch put in deadly work with a syringe thrust through the canvas representation of the man of brass with feet of clay. But, alas, Constable John Dey had recognized Howell and Clark, even amid their disguises. He had dealt with them too often before. The next tableau showed them, with their tall hats crushed over their heads, belaboring John Dey and his myrmidons, and presently, with half a dozen other ingenuous youth, they were haled to the office of justice. The young judge who officiated on this occasion was none other than a personage who will be mentioned with great respect more than once in these reminiscences,—Charles James Folger,— afterward my colleague in the State Senate, Chief Justice of the State and Secretary of the Treasury of the United States. He had met Howell often, for they were members of the same Greek letter fraternity,—the thrice illustrious Sigma Phi,—and, only a few days before, Howell had presented me to him; but there was no fraternal bond visible now; justice was sternly implacable, and good round fines were imposed upon all the culprits caught.

The philosophy of all this waywardness and dissipation was very simple. There was no other outlet for the animal spirits of these youth. Athletics were unknown; there was no gymnasium, no ball-playing, and, though the college was situated on the shore of one of the most beautiful lakes in the world, no boating. As regards my own personal relation to this condition of things I have pictured, it was more that of a good-natured spectator than of an active accomplice. My nearest friends were in the thick of it, but my tastes kept me out of most of it. I was fond of books, and, in the little student's library in my college building I reveled. Moreover, I then began to accumulate for myself the library which has since grown to such large proportions. Still the whole life of the place became more and more unsatisfactory to me, and I determined, at any cost, to escape from it and find some seat of learning where there was less frolic and more study.



At the close of my year at the little Western New York College I felt that it was enough time wasted, and, anxious to try for something better, urged upon my father my desire to go to one of the larger New England universities. But to this he would not listen. He was assured by the authorities of the little college that I had been doing well, and his churchmanship, as well as his respect for the bishop, led him to do what was very unusual with him—to refuse my request. Up to this period he had allowed me to take my own course; but now he was determined that I should take his. He was one of the kindest of men, but he had stern ideas as to proper subordination, and these he felt it his duty to maintain. I was obliged to make a coup d'<e'>tat, and for a time it cost me dear. Braving the censure of family and friends, in the early autumn of 1850 I deliberately left the college, and took refuge with my old instructor P——, who had prepared me for college at Syracuse, and who was now principal of the academy at Moravia, near the head of Owasco Lake, some fifty miles distant. To thus defy the wishes of those dearest to me was a serious matter. My father at first took it deeply to heart. His letters were very severe. He thought my career wrecked, avowed that he had lost all interest in it, and declared that he would rather have received news of my death than of such a disgrace. But I knew that my dear mother was on my side. Her letters remained as affectionate as ever; and I determined to atone for my disobe- dience by severe and systematic work. I began to study more earnestly than ever before, reviewed my mathematics and classics vigorously, and began a course of reading which has had great influence on all my life since. Among my books was D'Aubigne's ``History of the Reformation.'' Its deficiencies were not of a sort to harm me, its vigor and enthusiasm gave me a great impulse. I not only read but studied it, and followed it with every other book on the subject that I could find. No reading ever did a man more good. It not only strengthened and deepened my better purposes, but it continued powerfully the impulse given me by the historical novels of Scott, and led directly to my devoting myself to the study and teaching of modern history. Of other books which influenced me about this period, Emerson's ``Representative Men'' was one; another was Carlyle's ``Past and Present,'' in which the old Abbot of Bury became one of my ideals; still another was Buskin's ``Seven Lamps of Architecture''; and to such a degree that this art has given to my life some of its greatest pleasures. Ruskin was then at his best. He had not yet been swept from his bearings by popular applause, or intoxicated by his own verbosity. In later years he lost all influence over me, for, in spite of his wonderful style, he became trivial, whimsical, peevish, goody-goody;—talking to grown men and women as a dyspeptic Sunday-school teacher might lay down the law to classes of little girls. As regards this later period, Max Nordau is undoubtedly right in speaking of Ruskin's mind as ``turbid and fallacious''; but the time of which I speak was his best, and his influence upon me was good. I remember especially that his ``Lamp of Power'' made a very deep impression upon me. Carlyle, too, was at his best. He was the simple, strong preacher;—with nothing of the spoiled cynic he afterward became.

The stay of three months with my friend—the future bishop—in the little country town, was also good for me physically. In our hours of recreation we roamed through the neighboring woods, shooting squirrels and pigeons with excellent effect on my health. Meantime I kept up my correspondence with all the members of the family save my father;—from him there was no sign. But at last came a piece of good news. He was very fond of music, and on the arrival of Jenny Lind in the United States he went to New York to attend her concerts. During one of these my mother turned suddenly toward him and said: ``What a pity that the boy cannot hear this; how he would enjoy it!'' My father answered, ``Tell him to come home and see us.'' My mother, of course, was not slow in writing me, and a few days later my father cordially greeted my home-coming, and all difficulties seemed over. Shortly after Christmas he started with me for Yale; but there soon appeared a lion in the path. Our route lay through Hartford, the seat of Trinity College, and to my consternation I found at the last moment that he had letters from our rector and others to the president and professors of that institution. Still more alarming, we had hardly entered the train when my father discovered a Trinity student on board. Of course, the youth spoke in the highest terms of his college and of his faculty, and more and more my father was pleased with the idea of staying a day or two at Hartford, taking a look at Trinity, and presenting our letters of introduction. During a considerably extended career in the diplomatic service I have had various occasions to exercise tact, care, and discretion, but I do not think that my efforts on all these together equaled those which I then put forth to avoid stopping at Hartford. At last my father asked me, rather severely, why I cared so much about going to New Haven, and I framed an answer offhand to meet the case, saying that Yale had an infinitely finer library than Trinity. Thereupon he said, ``My boy, if you will go to Trinity College I will give you the best private library in the United States.'' I said, ``No, I am going to New Haven; I started for New Haven, and I will go there.'' I had never braved him before. He said not a word. We passed quietly through Hartford, and a day or two later I was entered at Yale.

It was a happy change. I respected the institution, for its discipline, though at times harsh, was, on the whole, just, and thereby came a great gain to my own self-respect. But as to the education given, never was a man more disappointed at first. The president and professors were men of high character and attainments; but to the lower classes the instruction was given almost entirely by tutors, who took up teaching for bread-winning while going through the divinity school. Naturally most of the work done under these was perfunctory. There was too much reciting by rote and too little real intercourse between teacher and taught. The instructor sat in a box, heard students' translations without indicating anything better, and their answers to questions with very few suggestions or remarks. The first text-book in Greek was Xenophon's ``Memorabilia,'' and one of the first men called up was my classmate Delano Goddard. He made an excellent translation,—clean, clear, in thoroughly good English; but he elicited no attention from the instructor, and was then put through sundry grammatical puzzles, among which he floundered until stopped by the word, ``Sufficient.'' Soon afterward another was called up who rattled off glibly a translation without one particle of literary merit, and was then plied with the usual grammatical questions. Being asked to ``synopsize'' the Greek verb, he went through the various moods and tenses, in all sorts of ways and in all possible combinations, his tongue rattling like the clapper of a mill. When he sat down my next neighbor said to me, ``that man will be our valedictorian.'' This disgusted me. If that was the style of classical scholarship at Yale, I knew that there was nothing in it for me. It turned out as my friend said. That glib reciter did become the valedictorian of the class, but stepped from the commencement stage into nothingness, and was never heard of more. Goddard became the editor of one of the most important metropolitan news- papers of the United States, and, before his early death, distinguished himself as a writer on political and historical topics.

Nor was it any better in Latin. We were reading, during that term the ``De Senectute'' of Cicero,—a beautiful book; but to our tutor it was neither more nor less than a series of pegs on which to hang Zumpt's rules for the subjunctive mood. The translation was hurried through, as of little account. Then came questions regarding the subjunctives;—questions to which very few members of the class gave any real attention. The best Latin scholar in the class, G. W. S——, since so distinguished as the London correspondent of the ``New York Tribune,'' and, at present, as the New York correspondent of the London ``Times,'' having one day announced to some of us,—with a very round expletive,—that he would answer no more such foolish questions, the tutor soon discovered his recalcitrancy, and thenceforward plied him with such questions and nothing else. S—— always answered that he was not prepared on them; with the result that at the Junior Exhibition he received no place on the programme.

In the junior year matters improved somewhat; but, though the professors were most of them really distinguished men, and one at least, James Hadley, a scholar who, at Berlin or Leipsic, would have drawn throngs of students from all Christendom, they were fettered by a system which made everything of gerund-grinding and nothing of literature.

The worst feature of the junior year was the fact that through two terms, during five hours each week, ``recitations'' were heard by a tutor in ``Olmsted's Natural Philosophy.'' The text-book was simply repeated by rote. Not one student in fifty took the least interest in it; and the man who could give the words of the text most glibly secured the best marks. One exceedingly unfortunate result of this kind of instruction was that it so disgusted the class with the whole subject, that the really excellent lectures of Professor Olmsted, illustrated by probably the best apparatus then possessed by any American university, were voted a bore. Almost as bad was the historical instruction given by Professor James Hadley. It consisted simply in hearing the student repeat from memory the dates from ``P<u:>tz's Ancient History.'' How a man so gifted as Hadley could have allowed any part of his work to be so worthless, it is hard to understand. And, worse remained behind. He had charge of the class in Thucydides; but with every gift for making it a means of great good to us, he taught it in the perfunctory way of that period;—calling on each student to construe a few lines, asking a few grammatical questions, and then, with hardly ever a note or comment, allowing him to sit down. Two or three times during a term something would occur to draw Hadley out, and then it delighted us all to hear him. I recall, to this hour, with the utmost pleasure, some of his remarks which threw bright light into the general subject; but alas! they were few and far between.

The same thing must be said of Professor Thatcher's instruction in Tacitus. It was always the same mechanical sort of thing, with, occasionally, a few remarks which really aroused interest.

In the senior year the influence of President Woolsey and Professor Porter was strong for good. Though the ``Yale system'' fettered them somewhat, their personality often broke through it. Yet it amazes me to remember that during a considerable portion of our senior year no less a man than Woolsey gave instruction in history by hearing men recite the words of a text-book;—and that text-book the Rev. John Lord's little, popular treatise on the ``Modern History of Europe!'' Far better was Woolsey's instruction in Guizot. That was stimulating. It not only gave some knowledge of history, but suggested thought upon it. In this he was at his best. He had not at that time begun his new career as a professor of International Law, and that subject was treated by a kindly old governor of the State, in a brief course of instruction, which was, on the whole, rather inadequate. Professor Porter's instruction in philosophy opened our eyes and led us to do some thinking for ourselves. In political economy, during the senior year, President Woolsey heard the senior class ``recite'' from Wayland's small treatise, which was simply an abridged presentation of the Manchester view, the most valuable part of this instruction being the remarks by Woolsey himself, who discussed controverted questions briefly but well. He also delivered, during one term, a course of lectures upon the historical relations between the German States, which had some interest, but, not being connected with our previous instruction, took little hold upon us. As to natural science, we had in chemistry and geology, doubtless, the best courses then offered in the United States. The first was given by Benjamin Silliman, the elder, an American pioneer in science, and a really great character; the second, by James Dwight Dana, and in his lecture-room one felt himself in the hands of a master. I cannot forgive myself for having yielded to the general indifference of the class toward all this instruction. It was listlessly heard, and grievously neglected. The fault was mainly our own; —but it was partly due to ``The System,'' which led students to neglect all studies which did not tell upon ``marks'' and ``standing.''

Strange to say, there was not, during my whole course at Yale, a lecture upon any period, subject, or person in literature, ancient or modern:—our only resource, in this field, being the popular lecture courses in the town each winter, which generally contained one or two presentations of literary subjects. Of these, that which made the greatest impression upon me was by Ralph Waldo Emerson. Sundry lectures in my junior year, by Whipple, and at a later period by George William Curtis, also influenced me. It was one of the golden periods of English literature, the climax of the Victorian epoch;—the period of Wordsworth, Tennyson, and the Brownings, of Thackeray and Dickens, of Macaulay and Carlyle on one side of the Atlantic, and of Emerson, Irving, Hawthorne, Ban- croft, Prescott, Motley, Lowell, Longfellow, Horace Bushnell, and their compeers on the other. Hence came strong influences; but in dealing with them we were left to ourselves.

Very important in shaping my intellectual development at this time were my fellow-students. The class of 1853 was a very large one for that day, and embraced far more than the usual proportion of active-minded men. Walks and talks with these were of great value to me; thence came some of my best impulses and suggestions to reading and thought.

Especially fortunate was I in my ``chum,'' the friend that stood closest to me. He was the most conservative young man I ever knew, and at the very opposite pole from me on every conceivable subject. But his deeply religious character, his thorough scholarship, and his real devotion to my welfare, were very precious to me. Our very differences were useful, since they obliged me to revise with especial care all my main convictions and trains of thought. He is now, at this present writing, the Bishop of Michigan, and a most noble and affectionate pastor of his flock.

The main subjects of interest to us all had a political bearing. Literature was considered as mainly subsidiary to political discussion. The great themes, in the minds of those who tried to do any thinking, were connected with the tremendous political struggle then drawing toward its climax in civil war. Valuable to me was my membership of sundry student fraternities. They were vealy, but there was some nourishment in them; by far the best of all being a senior club which, though it had adopted a hideous emblem, was devoted to offhand discussions of social and political questions;—on the whole, the best club I have ever known.

The studies which interested me most were political and historical; from classical studies the gerund-grinding and reciting by rote had completely weaned me. One of our Latin tutors, having said to me: ``If you would try you could become a first-rate classical scholar,'' I answered: ``Mr. B——, I have no ambition to become a classical scholar, as scholarship is understood here.''

I devoted myself all the more assiduously to study on my own lines, especially in connection with the subjects taught by President Woolsey in the senior year, and the one thing which encouraged me was that, at the public reading of essays, mine seemed to interest the class. Yet my first trial of strength with my classmates in this respect did not apparently turn out very well. It was at a prize debate, in one of the large open societies, but while I had prepared my speech with care, I had given no thought to its presentation, and, as a result, the judges passed me by. Next day a tutor told me that Professor Porter wished to see me. He had been one of the judges, but it never occurred to me that he could have summoned me for anything save some transgression of college rules. But, on my arrival at his room, he began discussing my speech, said some very kind things of its matter, alluded to some defects in its manner, and all with a kindness which won my heart. Thus began a warm personal friendship which lasted through his professorship and presidency to the end of his life. His kindly criticism was worth everything to me; it did far more for me than any prize could have done. Few professors realize how much a little friendly recognition may do for a student. To this hour I bless Dr. Porter's memory.

Nor did my second effort, a competition in essay-writing, turn out much better. My essay was too labored, too long, too crabbedly written, and it brought me only half a third prize.

This was in the sophomore year. But in the junior year came a far more important competition; that for the Yale Literary Gold Medal, and without any notice of my intention to any person, I determined to try for it. Being open to the entire university, the universal expectation was that it would be awarded to a senior, as had hitherto been the case, and speculations were rife as to what mem- ber of the graduating class would take it. When the committee made their award to the essay on ``The Greater Distinctions in Statesmanship,'' opened the sealed envelopes and assigned the prize to me, a junior, there was great surprise. The encouragement came to me just at the right time, and did me great good. Later, there were awarded to me the first Clarke Prize for the discussion of a political subject, and the De Forest Gold Medal, then the most important premium awarded in the university, my subject being, ``The Diplomatic History of Modern Times.'' Some details regarding this latter success may serve to show certain ways in which influence can be exerted powerfully upon a young man. The subject had been suggested to me by hearing Edwin Forrest in Bulwer's drama of ``Richelieu.'' The character of the great cardinal, the greatest statesman that France has produced, made a deep impression upon me, and suggested the subjects in both the Yale Literary and the De Forest competitions, giving me not only the initial impulse, but maintaining that interest to which my success was largely due. Another spur to success was even more effective. Having one day received a telegram from my father, asking me to meet him in New York, I did so, and passed an hour with him, all the time at a loss to know why he had sent for me. But, finally, just as I was leaving the hotel to return to New Haven, he said, ``By the way, there is still another prize to be competed for, the largest of all.'' ``Yes,'' I answered, ``the De Forest; but I have little chance for that; for though I shall probably be one of the six Townsend prize men admitted to the competition, there are other speakers so much better, that I have little hope of taking it.'' He gave me rather a contemptuous look, and said, somewhat scornfully: ``If I were one of the first SIX competitors, in a class of over a hundred men, I would try hard to be the first ONE.'' That was all. He said nothing more, except good-bye. On my way to New Haven I thought much of this, and on arriving, went to a student, who had some reputation as an elocutionist, and engaged him for a course in vocal gymnastics. When he wished me to recite my oration before him, I declined, saying that it must be spoken in my own way, not in his; that his way might be better, but that mine was my own, and I would have no other. He confined himself, therefore, to a course of vocal gymnastics, and the result was a surprise to myself and all my friends. My voice, from being weak and hollow, became round, strong, and flexible. I then went to a student in the class above my own, a natural and forcible speaker, and made an arrangement with him to hear me pronounce my oration, from time to time, and to criticize it in a common-sense way. This he did. At passages where he thought my manner wrong, he raised his finger, gave me an imitation of my manner, then gave the passage in the way he thought best, and allowed me to choose between his and mine. The result was that, at the public competition, I was successful. This experience taught me what I conceive to be the true theory of elocutionary training in our universities—vocal gymnastics, on one side; common-sense criticism, on the other.

As to my physical education: with a constitution far from robust, there was need of special care. Fortunately, I took to boating. In an eight-oared boat, spinning down the harbor or up the river, with G. W. S—— at the stroke —as earnest and determined in the Undine then as in the New York office of the London ``Times'' now, every condition was satisfied for bodily exercise and mental recreation. I cannot refrain from mentioning that our club sent the first challenge to row that ever passed between Yale and Harvard, even though I am obliged to confess that we were soundly beaten; but neither that defeat at Lake Quinsigamond, nor the many absurdities which have grown out of such competitions since, have prevented my remaining an apostle of college boating from that day to this. If guarded by common-sense rules enforced with firmness by college faculties, it gives the maximum of healthful exercise, with a minimum of danger. The most detestable product of college life is the sickly cynic; and a thor- ough course in boating, under a good stroke oar, does as much as anything to make him impossible.

At the close of my undergraduate life at Yale I went abroad for nearly three years, and fortunately had, for a time, one of the best of companions, my college mate, Gilman, later president of Johns Hopkins University, and now of the Carnegie Institution, who was then, as he has been ever since, a source of good inspirations to me,— especially in the formation of my ideas regarding education. During the few weeks I then passed in England I saw much which broadened my views in various ways. History was made alive to me by rapid studies of persons and places while traveling, and especially was this the case during a short visit to Oxford, where I received some strong impressions, which will be referred to in another chapter. Dining at Christ Church with Osborne Gordon, an eminent tutor of that period, I was especially interested in his accounts of John Ruskin, who had been his pupil. Then, and afterward, while enjoying the hospitalities of various colleges at Oxford and Cambridge, I saw the excellencies of their tutorial system, but also had my eyes opened to some of their deficiencies.

Going thence to Paris I settled down in the family of a very intelligent French professor, where I remained nearly a year. Not a word of English was spoken in the family; and, with the daily lesson in a French method, and lectures at the Sorbonne and Coll<e!>ge de France, the new language soon became familiar. The lectures then heard strengthened my conception of what a university should be. Among my professors were such men as St. Marc Girardin, Arnould, and, at a later period, Laboulaye. In connection with the lecture-room work, my studies in modern history were continued, especially by reading Guizot, Thierry, Mignet, Thiers, Ch<a^>teaubriand, and others, besides hearing various masterpieces in French dramatic literature, as given at the Th<e'><a^>tre Fran<c,>ais, where Rachel was then in her glory, and at the Od<e'>on, where Mlle. Georges, who had begun her career under the first Napoleon, was ending it under Napoleon III.

My favorite subject of study was the French Revolution, and, in the intervals of reading and lectures, I sought out not only the spots noted in its history, but the men who had taken part in it. At the H<o^>tel des Invalides I talked with old soldiers, veterans of the Republic and of the Napoleonic period, discussing with them the events through which they had passed; and, at various other places and times, with civilians who had heard orations at the Jacobin and Cordelier clubs, and had seen the guillotine at work. The most interesting of my old soldiers at the Invalides wore upon his breast the cross of the Legion of Honor, which he had received from Napoleon at Austerlitz. Still another had made the frightful marches through the Spanish Peninsula under Soult, and evidently felt very humble in the presence of those who had taken part in the more famous campaigns under Napoleon himself. The history of another of my old soldiers was pathetic. He was led daily into the cabaret, where my guests were wont to fight their battles o'er again, his eyes absolutely sightless, and his hair as white as snow. Getting into conversation with him I learned that he had gone to Egypt with Bonaparte, had fought at the Battle of the Pyramids, had been blinded by the glaring sun on the sand of the desert, and had been an inmate at the Invalides ever since;—more than half a century. At a later period I heard from another of my acquaintances how, as a schoolboy, he saw Napoleon beside his camp-fire at Cannes, just after his landing from Elba.

There still remained at Paris, in those days, one main connecting link between the second empire and the first, and this was the most contemptible of all the Bonapartes,— the younger brother of the great Napoleon,— J<e'>rome, ex-king of Westphalia. I saw him, from time to time, and was much struck by his resemblance to the first emperor. Though taller, he still had something of that Roman imperial look, so remarkable in the founder of the family; but in J<e'>rome, it always recalled to me such Caesars as Tiberius and Vitellius.

It was well known that the ex-king, as well as his son, Prince J<e'>rome Napoleon, were thorns in the side of Napoleon III, and many stories illustrating this were current during my stay in Paris, the best, perhaps, being an answer made by Napoleon III to another representative of his family. The question having been asked, ``What is the difference between an accident and a misfortune (un accident et un malheur)?'' the emperor answered. ``If my cousin, Prince Napoleon, should fall into the Seine, it would be an ACCIDENT; if anybody were to pull him out, it would be a MISFORTUNE.'' Although this cousin had some oratorical ability, both he and his father were most thoroughly despised. The son bore the nickname of ``Plon-Plon,'' probably with some reference to his reputation for cowardice; the father had won the appellation of ``Le Roi Loustic,'' and, indeed, had the credit of introducing into the French language the word ``loustic,'' derived from the fact that, during his short reign at Cassel, King J<e'>rome was wont, after the nightly orgies at his palace, to dismiss his courtiers with the words: ``Morgen wieder loustic, Messieurs.''

During the summer of 1854 I employed my vacation in long walks and drives with a college classmate through northern, western, and central France, including Picardy, Normandy, Brittany, and Touraine, visiting the spots of most historical and architectural interest. There were, at that time, few railways in those regions, so we put on blouses and took to the road, sending our light baggage ahead of us, and carrying only knapsacks. In every way it proved a most valuable experience. Pleasantly come back to me my walks and talks with the peasantry, and vividly dwell in my memory the cathedrals of Beauvais, Amiens, Rouen, Bayeux, Coutances, Le Mans, Tours, Chartres, and Orl<e'>ans, the fortress of Mont St. Michel, the Ch<a^>teaux of Chenonceaux, Chambord, Nantes, Am- boise, and Angers, the tombs of the Angevine kings at Fontevrault, and the stone cottage of Louis XI at Cl<e'>ry. Visiting the grave of Ch<a^>teaubriand at St. Malo, we met a little old gentleman, bent with age, but very brisk and chatty. He was standing with a party of friends on one side of the tomb, while we stood on the other. Presently, one of the gentlemen in his company came over and asked our names, saying that his aged companion was a great admirer of Ch<a^>teaubriand, and was anxious to know something of his fellow pilgrims. To this I made answer, when my interlocutor informed me that the old gentleman was the Prince de Rohan-Soubise. Shortly afterward the old gentleman came round to us and began conversation, and on my making answer in a way which showed that I knew his title, he turned rather sharply on me and said, ``How do you know that?'' To this I made answer that even in America we had heard the verse:

        ``Roi, je ne puis,
          Prince ne daigne,
          Rohan je suis.''

At this he seemed greatly pleased, grasped my hand, and launched at once into extended conversation. His great anxiety was to know who was to be the future king of our Republic, and he asked especially whether Washington had left any direct descendants. On my answering in the negative, he insisted that we would have to find some descendant in the collateral line, ``for,'' said he, ``you can't escape it; no nation can get along for any considerable time without a monarch.''

Returning to Paris I resumed my studies, and, at the request of Mr. Randall, the biographer of Jefferson, made some search in the French archives for correspondence between Jefferson and Robespierre,—search made rather to put an end to calumny than for any other purpose.

At the close of this stay in France, by the kindness of the American minister to Russia, Governor Seymour, of Connecticut, I was invited to St. Petersburg, as an attach<e'> of the American Legation, and resided for over six months in his household. It was a most interesting period. The Crimean War was going on, and the death of the Emperor Nicholas, during my stay, enabled me to see how a great change in autocratic administration is accomplished. An important part of my duty was to accompany the minister as an interpreter, not only at court, but in his interviews with Nesselrode, Gortschakoff, and others then in power. This gave me some chance also to make my historical studies more real by close observation of a certain sort of men who have had the making of far too much history; but books interested me none the less. An epoch in my development, intellectual and moral, was made at this time by my reading large parts of Gibbon, and especially by a very careful study of Guizot's ``History of Civilization in France,'' which greatly deepened and strengthened the impression made by his ``History of Civilization in Europe,'' as read under President Woolsey at Yale. During those seven months in St. Petersburg and Moscow, I read much in modern European history, paying considerable attention to the political development and condition of Russia, and, for the first time, learned the pleasures of investigating the history of our own country. Governor Seymour was especially devoted to the ideas of Thomas Jefferson, and late at night, as we sat before the fire, after returning from festivities or official interviews, we frequently discussed the democratic system, as advocated by Jefferson, and the autocratic system, as we saw it in the capital of the Czar. The result was that my beginning of real study in American history was made by a very close examination of the life and writings of Thomas Jefferson, including his letters, messages, and other papers, and of the diplomatic history revealed in the volumes of correspondence preserved in the Legation. The general result was to strengthen and deepen my democratic creed, and a special result was the preparation of an article on ``Jefferson and Slavery,'' which, having been at a later period refused by the ``New Englander,'' at New Haven, on account of its too pronounced sympathy with democracy against federalism, was published by the ``Atlantic Monthly,'' and led to some acquaintances of value to me afterward.

Returning from St. Petersburg, I was matriculated at the University of Berlin, and entered the family of a very scholarly gymnasial professor, where nothing but German was spoken. During this stay at the Prussian capital, in the years 1855 and 1856, I heard the lectures of Lepsius, on Egyptology; August Boeckh, on the History of Greece; Friedrich von Raumer, on the History of Italy; Hirsch, on Modern History in general; and Carl Ritter, on Physical Geography. The lectures of Ranke, the most eminent of German historians, I could not follow. He had a habit of becoming so absorbed in his subject, as to slide down in his chair, hold his finger up toward the ceiling, and then, with his eye fastened on the tip of it, to go mumbling through a kind of rhapsody, which most of my German fellow-students confessed they could not understand. It was a comical sight: half a dozen students crowding around his desk, listening as priests might listen to the sibyl on her tripod, the other students being scattered through the room, in various stages of discouragement. My studies at this period were mainly in the direction of history, though with considerable reading on art and literature. Valuable and interesting to me at this time were the representations of the best dramas of Goethe, Schiller, Lessing, and Gutzkow, at the Berlin theaters. Then, too, really began my education in Shakspere, and the representations of his plays (in Schlegel and Tieck's version) were, on the whole, the most satisfactory I have ever known. I thus heard plays of Shakspere which, in English-speaking countries, are never presented, and, even into those better known, wonderful light was at times thrown from this new point of view.

As to music, the Berlin Opera was then at the height of its reputation, the leading singer being the famous Joanna Wagner. But my greatest satisfaction was derived from the ``Liebig Classical Concerts.'' These were, undoubtedly, the best instrumental music then given in Europe, and a small party of us were very assiduous in our attendance. Three afternoons a week we were, as a rule, gathered about our table in the garden where the concerts were given, and, in the midst of us, Alexander Thayer, the biographer of Beethoven, who discussed the music with us during its intervals. Beethoven was, for him, the one personage in human history, and Beethoven's music the only worthy object of human concern. He knew every composition, every note, every variant, and had wrestled for years with their profound meanings. Many of his explanations were fantastic, but some were suggestive and all were interesting. Even more inspiring was another new-found friend, Henry Simmons Frieze; a thorough musician, and a most lovely character. He broached no theories, uttered no comments, but sat rapt by the melody and harmony—transfigured—``his face as it had been the face of an angel.'' In these Liebig concerts we then heard, for the first time, the music of a new composer,—one Wagner,—and agreed that while it was all very strange, there was really something in the overture to ``Tannh<a:>user.''

At the close of this stay in Berlin, I went with a party of fellow-students through Austria to Italy. The whole journey was a delight, and the passage by steamer from Trieste to Venice was made noteworthy by a new acquaintance,—James Russell Lowell. As he had already written the ``Vision of Sir Launfal,'' the ``Fable for Critics,'' and the ``Biglow Papers,'' I stood in great awe of him; but this feeling rapidly disappeared in his genial presence. He was a student like the rest of us,—for he had been passing the winter at Dresden, working in German literature, as a preparation for succeeding Longfellow in the professorship at Harvard. He came to our rooms, and there linger delightfully in my memory his humorous accounts of Italian life as he had known it.

During the whole of the journey, it was my exceeding good fortune to be thrown into very close relations with two of our party, both of whom became eminent Latin professors, and one of whom,—already referred to,— Frieze, from his lecture-room in the University of Michigan, afterward did more than any other man within my knowledge to make classical scholarship a means of culture throughout our Western States. My excursions in Rome, under that guidance, I have always looked upon as among the fortunate things of life. The day was given to exploration, the evening to discussion, not merely of archaeological theories, but of the weightier matters pertaining to the history of Roman civilization and its influence. Dear Frieze and Fishburne! How vividly come back the days in the tower of the Croce di Malta, at Genoa, in our sky-parlor of the Piazza di Spagna at Rome, and in the old ``Capuchin Hotel'' at Amalfi, when we held high debate on the analogies between the Roman Empire and the British, and upon various kindred subjects.

An episode, of much importance to me at this time, was my meeting our American minister at Naples, Robert Dale Owen. His talks on the political state of Italy, and his pictures of the monstrous despotism of ``King Bomba'' took strong hold upon me. Not even the pages of Colletta or of Settembrini have done so much to arouse in me a sense of the moral value of political history.

Then, too, I made the first of my many excursions through the historic towns of Italy. My reading of Sismondi's ``Italian Republics'' had deeply interested me in their history, and had peopled them again with their old turbulent population. I seemed to see going on before my eyes the old struggle between Guelphs and Ghibellines, and between the demagogues and the city tyrants. In the midst of such scenes my passion for historical reading was strengthened, and the whole subject took on new and deeper meanings.

On my way northward, excursions among the cities of southern France, especially Nismes, Arles, and Orange, gave me a far better conception of Roman imperial power than could be obtained in Italy alone, and Avignon, Bourges, and Toulouse deepened my conceptions of mediaeval history.

Having returned to America in the summer of 1856 and met my class, assembled to take the master's degree in course at Yale, I was urged by my old Yale friends, especially by Porter and Gilman, to remain in New Haven. They virtually pledged me a position in the school of art about to be established; but my belief was in the value of historical studies, and I accepted an election to a professorship of history at the University of Michigan. The work there was a joy to me from first to last, and my relations with my students of that period, before I had become distracted from them by the cares of an executive position, were among the most delightful of my life. Then, perhaps, began the most real part of my education. The historical works of Buckle, Lecky, and Draper, which were then appearing, gave me a new and fruitful impulse; but most stimulating of all was the atmosphere coming from the great thought of Darwin and Herbert Spencer,— an atmosphere in which history became less and less a matter of annals, and more and more a record of the unfolding of humanity. Then, too, was borne in upon me the meaning of the proverb docendo disces. I found energetic Western men in my classes ready to discuss historical questions, and discovered that in order to keep up my part of the discussions, as well as to fit myself for my class-room duties, I must work as I had never worked before. The education I then received from my classes at the University of Michigan was perhaps the most effective of all.





My arrival in this world took place at one of the stormy periods of American political history. It was on the third of the three election days which carried Andrew Jackson a second time into the Presidency. Since that period, the election, with its paralysis of business, ghastly campaign lying, and monstrous vilification of candidates, has been concentrated into one day; but at that time all the evil passions of a presidential election were allowed to ferment and gather vitriolic strength during three days.

I was born into a politically divided family. My grandfather, on my mother's side, whose name I was destined to bear, was an ardent Democrat; had, as such, represented his district in the State legislature, and other public bodies; took his political creed from Thomas Jefferson, and adored Andrew Jackson. My father, on the other hand, was in all his antecedents and his personal convictions, a devoted Whig, taking his creed from Alexander Hamilton, and worshiping Henry Clay.

This opposition between my father and grandfather did not degenerate into personal bitterness; but it was very earnest, and, in later years, my mother told me that when Hayne, of South Carolina, made his famous speech, charging the North with ill-treatment of the South, my grandfather sent a copy of it to my father, as unanswerable; but that, shortly afterward, my father sent to my grandfather the speech of Daniel Webster, in reply, and that, when this was read, the family allowed that the latter had the better of the argument. I cannot help thinking that my grandfather must have agreed with them, tacitly, if not openly. He loved the Hampshire Hills of Massachusetts, from which he came. Year after year he took long journeys to visit them, and Webster's magnificent reference to the ``Old Bay State'' must have aroused his sympathy and pride.

Fortunately, at that election, as at so many others since, the good sense of the nation promptly accepted the result, and after its short carnival of political passion, dismissed the whole subject; the minority simply leaving the responsibility of public affairs to the majority, and all betaking themselves again to their accustomed vocations.

I do not remember, during the first seven years of my life, ever hearing any mention of political questions. The only thing I heard during that period which brings back a chapter in American politics, was when, at the age of five years, I attended an infant school and took part in a sort of catechism, all the children rising and replying to the teacher's questions. Among these were the following:

Q. Who is President of the United States?

A. Martin Van Buren.

Q. Who is governor of the State of New York?

A. William L. Marcy.

This is to me somewhat puzzling, for I was four years old when Martin Van Buren was elected, and my father was his very earnest opponent, yet, though I recall easily various things which occurred at that age and even earlier, I have no remembrance of any general election before 1840, and my only recollection of the first New York statesman elected to the Presidency is this mention of his name, in a child's catechism.

My recollections of American polities begin, then, with the famous campaign of 1840, and of that they are vivid. Our family had, in 1839, removed to Syracuse, which, although now a city of about one hundred and twenty thousand inhabitants, was then a village of fewer than six thousand; but, as the central town of the State, it was already a noted gathering-place for political conventions and meetings. The great Whig mass-meeting held there, in 1840, was long famous as the culmination of the campaign between General Harrison and Martin Van Buren.

As a President, Mr. Van Buren had fallen on evil times. It was a period of political finance; of demagogical methods in public business; and the result was ``hard times,'' with an intense desire throughout the nation for a change. This desire was represented especially by the Whig party. General Harrison had been taken up as its candidate, not merely because he had proved his worth as governor of the Northwestern Territory, and as a senator in Congress, but especially as the hero of sundry fights with the Indians, and, above all, of the plucky little battle at Tippecanoe. The most popular campaign song, which I soon learned to sing lustily, was ``Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too,'' and sundry lines of it expressed, not only my own deepest political convictions and aspirations, but also those cherished by myriads of children of far larger growth. They ran as follows:

     ``Oh, have you heard the great commotion-motion-motion
       Rolling the country through?
       It is the ball a-rolling on
       For Tippecanoe and Tyler, too,
       For Tippecanoe and Tyler, too;
       And with them we 'll beat little Van;
       Van, Van is a used up man;
       And with them we 'll beat little Van.''

The campaign was an apotheosis of tom-foolery. General Harrison had lived the life, mainly, of a Western farmer, and for a time, doubtless, exercised amid his rude surroundings the primitive hospitality natural to sturdy Western pioneers. On these facts the changes were rung. In every town and village a log cabin was erected where the Whigs held their meetings; and the bringing of logs, with singing and shouting, to build it, was a great event; its front door must have a wooden latch on the inside; but the latch-string must run through the door; for the claim which the friends of General Harrison especially insisted upon was that he not only lived in a log cabin, but that his latch-string was always out, in token that all his fellow-citizens were welcome at his fireside.

Another element in the campaign was hard cider. Every log cabin must have its barrel of this acrid fluid, as the antithesis of the alleged beverage of President Van Buren at the White House. He, it was asserted, drank champagne, and on this point I remember that a verse was sung at log-cabin meetings which, after describing, in a prophetic way the arrival of the ``Farmer of North Bend'' at the White House, ran as follows:

   ``They were all very merry, and drinking champagne
     When the Farmer, impatient, knocked louder again;
     Oh, Oh, said Prince John, I very much fear
     We must quit this place the very next year.''

``Prince John'' was President Van Buren's brilliant son; famous for his wit and eloquence, who, in after years, rose to be attorney-general of the State of New York, and who might have risen to far higher positions had his principles equaled his talents.

Another feature at the log cabin, and in all political processions, was at least one raccoon; and if not a live raccoon in a cage, at least a raccoon skin nailed upon the outside of the cabin. This gave local color, but hence came sundry jibes from the Democrats, for they were wont to refer to the Whigs as ``coons,'' and to their log cabins as ``coon pens.'' Against all these elements of success, added to promises of better times, the Democratic party could make little headway. Martin Van Buren, though an admirable public servant in many ways, was discredited. M. de Bacourt, the French Minister at Washington, during his administration, was, it is true, very fond of him, and this cynical scion of French nobility wrote in a private letter, which has been published in these latter days, ``M. Van Buren is the most perfect imitation of a gentleman I ever saw.'' But this commendation had not then come to light, and the main reliance of the Democrats in capturing the popular good-will was their candidate for the Vice-Presidency, Colonel Richard M. Johnson, of Kentucky. He, too, had fought in the Indian wars, and bravely. Therefore it was that one of the Whig songs which especially rejoiced me, ran:

     ``They shout and sing, Oh humpsy dumpsy,
       Colonel Johnson killed Tecumseh.''

Among the features of that period which excited my imagination were the enormous mass meetings, with processions, coming in from all points of the compass, miles in length, and bearing every patriotic device and political emblem. Here the Whigs had infinitely the advantage. Their campaign was positive and aggressive. On platform- wagons were men working at every trade which expected to be benefited by Whig success; log cabins of all sorts and sizes, hard-cider barrels, coon pens, great canvas balls, which were kept ``a-rolling on,'' canoes, such as General Harrison had used in crossing Western rivers, eagles that screamed in defiance, and cocks that crowed for victory. The turning ball had reference to sundry lines in the foremost campaign song. For the October election in Maine having gone Whig by a large majority, clearly indicating what the general result was to be in November, the opening lines ran as follows:

   ``Oh, have you heard the news from Maine—Maine—Maine?
     Rolling the country through?
     It is the ball a-rolling on
     For Tippecanoe and Tyler, too.''
                  &c., &c., &c.

Against all this the Democrats, with their negative and defensive platform, found themselves more and more at a disadvantage; they fought with desperation, but in vain, and one of their most unlucky ventures to recover their position was an effort to undermine General Harrison's military reputation. For this purpose they looked about, and finally found one of their younger congressional representatives, considered to be a rising man, who, having gained some little experience in the Western militia, had received the honorary title of ``General,'' Isaac M. Crary, of Michigan; him they selected to make a speech in Congress exhibiting and exploding General Harrison's military record. He was very reluctant to undertake it, but at last yielded, and, after elaborate preparation, made an argument loud and long, to show that General Harrison was a military ignoramus. The result was both comic and pathetic. There was then in Congress the most famous stump-speaker of his time, and perhaps of all times, a man of great physical, intellectual, and moral vigor; powerful in argument, sympathetic in manner, of infinite wit and humor, and, unfortunately for General Crary, a Whig,—Thomas Corwin, of Ohio. Mr. Crary's heavy, tedious, perfunctory arraignment of General Harrison being ended, Corwin rose and began an offhand speech on ``The Military Services of General Isaac M. Crary.'' In a few minutes he had as his audience, not only the House of Representatives, but as many members of the Senate, of the Supreme Court, and visitors to the city, as could be crowded into the congressional chamber, and, of all humorous speeches ever delivered in Congress, this of Corwin has come down to us as the most successful. Long afterward, parts of it lingered in our ``speakers' manuals'' and were declaimed in the public schools as examples of witty oratory. Many years later, when the House of Representatives left the old chamber and went into that which it now occupies, Thurlow Weed wrote an interesting article on scenes he had witnessed in the old hall, and most vivid of all was his picture of this speech by Corwin. His delineations of Crary's brilliant exploits, his portrayal of the valiant charges made by Crary's troops on muster days upon the watermelon patches of Michigan, not only convulsed his audience, but were echoed throughout the nation, Whigs and Democrats laughing alike; and when John Quincy Adams, in a speech shortly afterward, referred to the man who brought on this tempest of fun as ``the late General Crary,'' there was a feeling that the adjective indicated a fact. It really was so; Crary, although a man of merit, never returned to Congress, but was thenceforth dropped from political life. More than twenty years afterward, as I was passing through Western Michigan, a friend pointed out to me his tombstone, in a little village cemetery, with comments, half comic, half pathetic; and I also recall a mournful feeling when one day, in going over the roll of my students at the University of Michigan, I came upon one who bore the baptismal name of Isaac Crary. Evidently, the blighted young statesman had a daughter who, in all this storm of ridicule and contempt, stood by him, loved him, and proudly named her son after him.

Another feature in the campaign also impressed me. A blackguard orator, on the Whig side, one of those whom great audiences applaud for the moment and ever afterward despise,—a man named Ogle,—made a speech which depicted the luxury prevailing at the White House, and among other evidences of it, dwelt upon the ``gold spoons'' used at the President's table, denouncing their use with such unction that, for the time, unthinking people regarded Martin Van Buren as a sort of American Vitellius. As a matter of fact, the scanty silver-gilt table utensils at the White House have been shown, in these latter days, in some very pleasing articles written by General Harrison's grandson, after this grandson had himself retired from the Presidency, to have been, for the most part, bought long before;—and by order of General Washington.

The only matter of political importance which, as a boy eight years old, I seized upon, and which dwells in my memory, was the creation of the ``Sub-Treasury.'' That this was a wise measure seems now proven by the fact that through all the vicissitudes of politics, from that day to this, it has remained and rendered admirable service. But at that time it was used as a weapon against the Democratic party, and came to be considered by feather- brained partizans, young and old, as the culmination of human wickedness. As to what the ``Sub-Treasury'' really was I had not the remotest idea; but this I knew;— that it was the most wicked outrage ever committed by a remorseless tyrant upon a long-suffering people.

In November of 1840 General Harrison was elected. In the following spring he was inaugurated, and the Whigs being now for the first time in power, the rush for office was fearful. It was undoubtedly this crushing pressure upon the kindly old man that caused his death. What British soldiers, and Indian warriors, and fire, flood, and swamp fevers could not accomplish in over sixty years, was achieved by the office-seeking hordes in just one month. He was inaugurated on the fourth of March and died early in April.

I remember, as if it were yesterday, my dear mother coming to my bedside, early in the morning, and saying to me, ``President Harrison is dead.'' I wondered what was to become of us. He was the first President who had died during his term of service, and a great feeling of relief came over me when I learned that his high office had devolved upon the Vice-President.

But now came a new trouble, and my youthful mind was soon sadly agitated. The Whig papers, especially the ``New York Express'' and ``Albany Evening Journal,'' began to bring depressing accounts of the new President, —tidings of extensive changes in the offices throughout the country, and especially in the post-offices. At first the Whig papers published these under the heading ``Appointments by the President.'' But soon the heading changed; it became ``Appointments by Judas Iscariot,'' or ``Appointments by Benedict Arnold,'' and war was declared against President Tyler by the party that elected him. Certain it is that no party ever found itself in a worse position than did the Whigs, when their Vice-President came into the Chief Magistracy; and equally certain is it that this position was the richly earned punishment of their own folly.

I have several times since had occasion to note the carelessness of National and State conventions in nominating a candidate for the second place upon the ticket—whether Vice-President or Lieutenant-Governor. It would seem that the question of questions—the nomination to the first office—having been settled, there comes a sort of collapse in these great popular assemblies, and that then, for the second office, it is very often anybody's race and mainly a matter of chance. In this way alone can be explained several nominations which have been made to second offices, and above all, that of John Tyler. As a matter of fact, he was not commended to the Whig party on any solid grounds. His whole political life had shown him an opponent of their main ideas; he was, in fact, a Southern doctrinaire, and frequently suffered from acute attacks of that very troublesome political disease, Virginia metaphysics. As President he attempted to enforce his doctrines, and when Whig leaders, and above all Henry Clay attempted, not only to resist, but to crush him, he asserted his dignity at the cost of his party, and finally tried that which other accidental Presidents have since tried with no better success, namely, to build up a party of his own by a new distribution of offices. Never was a greater failure. Mr. Tyler was dropped by both parties and disappeared from American political life forever. I can now see that he was a man obedient to his convictions of duty, such as they were, and in revolt against attempts of Whig leaders to humiliate him; but then, to my youthful mind, he appeared the very incarnation of evil.

My next recollections are of the campaign of 1844. Again the Whig party took courage, and having, as a boy of twelve years, acquired more earnest ideas regarding the questions at issue, I helped, with other Whig boys, to raise ash-poles, and to hurrah lustily for Clay at public meetings. On the other hand, the Democratic boys hurrahed as lustily around their hickory poles and, as was finally proved, to much better purpose. They sang doggerel which, to me, was blasphemous, and especially a song with the following refrain:

   ``Alas poor Cooney Clay,
     Alas poor Cooney Clay,
     You never can be President,
     For so the people say.''

The ash-poles had reference to Ashland, Clay's Kentucky estate; and the hickory poles recalled General Jackson's sobriquet, ``Old Hickory.'' For the Democratic candidate in 1844, James Knox Polk, was considered heir to Jackson's political ideas. The campaign of 1844 was not made so interesting by spectacular outbursts of tom-foolery as the campaign of 1840 had been. The sober second thought of the country had rather sickened people of that sort of thing; still, there was quite enough of it, especially as shown in caricatures and songs. The poorest of the latter was perhaps one on the Democratic side, for as the Democratic candidates were Polk of Tennessee and Dallas of Pennsylvania, one line of the song embraced probably the worst pun ever made, namely—

``PORK in the barrel, and DOLLARS in the pocket.''

It was at this period that the feeling against the extension of slavery, especially as indicated in the proposed annexation of Texas, began to appear largely in politics, and though Clay at heart detested slavery and always refused to do the bidding of its supporters beyond what he thought absolutely necessary in preserving the Union, an unfortunate letter of his led great numbers of anti- slavery men to support a separate anti-slavery ticket, the candidate being James G. Birney. The result was that the election of Clay became impossible. Mr. Polk was elected, and under him came the admission of Texas, which caused the Mexican War, and gave slavery a new lease of life. The main result, in my own environment, was that my father and his friends, thenceforward for a considerable time, though detesting slavery, held all abolitionists and anti-slavery men in contempt,—as unpatriotic because they had defeated Henry Clay, and as idiotic because they had brought on the annexation of Texas and thereby the supremacy of the slave States.

But the flame of liberty could not be smothered by friends or blown out by enemies; it was kept alive by vigorous counterblasts in the press, and especially fed by the lecture system, which was then at the height of its efficiency. Among the most powerful of lecturers was John Parker Hale, senator of the United States from New Hampshire, his subject being, ``The Last Gladiatorial Combat at Rome.'' Taking from Gibbon the story of the monk Telemachus, who ended the combats in the arena by throwing himself into them and sacrificing his life, Hale suggested to his large audiences an argument that if men wished to get rid of slavery in our country they must be ready to sacrifice themselves if need be. His words sank deep into my mind, and I have sometimes thought that they may have had something to do in leading John Brown to make his desperate attempt on slavery at Harper's Ferry.

How blind we all were! Henry Clay, a Kentucky slave- holder, would have saved us. Infinitely better than the violent solutions proposed to us was his large statesman- like plan of purchasing the slave children as they were born and setting them free. Without bloodshed, and at cost of the merest nothing as compared to the cost of the Civil War, he would thus have solved the problem; but it was not so to be. The guilt of the nation was not to be so cheaply atoned for. Fanatics, North and South, opposed him and, as a youth, I yielded to their arguments.

Four years later, in 1848, came a very different sort of election. General Zachary Taylor, who had shown ster- ling qualities in the Mexican War, was now the candidate of the Whigs, and against him was nominated Mr. Cass, a general of the War of 1812, afterward governor of the Northwestern Territory, and senator from Michigan. As a youth of sixteen, who by that time had become earnestly interested in politics, I was especially struck by one event in this campaign. The Democrats of course realized that General Taylor, with the prestige gained in the Mexican War, was a very formidable opponent. Still, if they could keep their party together, they had hopes of beating him. But a very large element in their party had opposed the annexation of Texas and strongly disliked the extension of slavery;—this wing of the party in New York being known as the ``Barn Burners,'' because it was asserted that they ``believed in burning the barn to drive the rats out.'' The question was what these radical gentlemen would do. That question was answered when a convention, controlled largely by the anti-slavery Democrats of New York and other States, met at Buffalo and nominated Martin Van Buren to the Presidency. For a time it was doubtful whether he would accept the nomination. On one side it was argued that he could not afford to do so, since he had no chance of an election, and would thereby forever lose his hold upon the Democratic party; but, on the other hand, it was said that he was already an old man; that he realized perfectly the impossibility of his re<e:>lection, and that he had a bitter grudge against the Democratic candidate, General Cass, who had voted against confirming him when he was sent as minister to Great Britain, thus obliging him to return home ingloriously. He accepted the nomination.

On the very day which brought the news of this acceptance, General Cass arrived in Syracuse, on his way to his home at Detroit. I saw him welcomed by a great procession of Democrats, and marched under a broiling sun, through dusty streets, to the City Hall, where he was forced to listen and reply to fulsome speeches prophesying his election, which he and all present knew to be impos- sible. For Mr. Van Buren's acceptance of the ``free soil'' nomination was sure to divide the Democratic vote of the State of New York, thus giving the State to the Whigs; and in those days the proverb held good, ``As New York goes, so goes the Union.''

For years afterward there dwelt vividly in my mind the picture of this old, sad man marching through the streets, listening gloomily to the speeches, forced to appear confident of victory, yet evidently disheartened and disgusted.

Very vivid are my recollections of State conventions at this period. Syracuse, as the ``Central City,'' was a favorite place for them, and, as they came during the summer vacations, boys of my age and tastes were able to admire the great men of the hour,—now, alas, utterly forgotten. We saw and heard the leaders of all parties. Many impressed me; but one dwells in my memory, on account of a story which was told of him. This was a very solemn, elderly gentleman who always looked very wise but said nothing,—William Bouck of Schoharie County. He had white hair and whiskers, and having been appointed canal commissioner of the State, had discharged his duties by driving his old white family nag and buggy along the towing-path the whole length of the canals, keeping careful watch of the contractors, and so, in his simple, honest way, had saved the State much money. The result was the nickname of the ``Old White Hoss of Schoharie,'' and a reputation for simplicity and honesty which made him for a short time governor of the State.

A story then told of him reveals something of his character. Being informed that Bishop Hughes of New York was coming to Albany, and that it would be well to treat him with especial courtesy, the governor prepared himself to be more than gracious, and, on the arrival of the bishop, greeted him most cordially with the words, ``How do you do, Bishop; I hope you are well. How did you leave Mrs. Hughes and your family?'' To this the bishop answered, ``Governor, I am very well, but there is no Mrs. Hughes; bishops in our church don't marry.'' ``Good gracious,'' answered the governor, ``you don't say so; how long has that been?'' The bishop must have thoroughly enjoyed this. His Irish wit made him quick both at comprehension and repartee. During a debate on the school question a leading Presbyterian merchant of New York, Mr. Hiram Ketchum, made a very earnest speech against separate schools for Roman Catholics, and presently, turning to Bishop Hughes, said, ``Sir, we respect you, sir, but, sir, we can't go your purgatory, sir.'' To this the bishop quietly replied, ``You might go further and fare worse.''

Another leading figure, but on the Whig side, was a State senator, commonly known as ``Bray'' Dickinson, to distinguish him from D. S. Dickinson who had been a senator of the United States, and a candidate for the Presidency. ``Bray'' Dickinson was a most earnest supporter of Mr. Seward; staunch, prompt, vigorous, and really devoted to the public good. One story regarding him shows his rough-and-readiness.

During a political debate in the old Whig days, one of his Democratic brother senators made a long harangue in favor of Martin Van Buren as a candidate for the Presidency, and in the course of his speech referred to Mr. Van Buren as ``the Curtius of the Republic.'' Upon this Dickinson jumped up, went to some member better educated in the classics than himself, and said, ``Who in thunder is this Curtis that this man is talking about?'' ``It isn't Curtis, it 's Curtius, ``was the reply. ``Well, now, `` said Dickinson, ``what did Curtius do?'' ``Oh,'' said his informant, ``he threw himself into an abyss to save the Roman Republic.'' Upon this Dickinson returned to his seat, and as soon as the Democratic speaker had finished, arose and said: ``Mr. President, I deny the justice of the gentleman's reference to Curtius and Martin Van Buren. What did Curtius do? He threw himself, sir, into an abyss to save his country. What, sir, did Martin Van Buren do? He threw his country into an abyss to save himself.''

Rarely, if ever, has any scholar used a bit of classical knowledge to better purpose.

Another leading figure, at a later period, was a Democrat, Fernando Wood, mayor of New York, a brilliant desperado; and on one occasion I saw the henchmen whom he had brought with him take possession of a State convention and deliberately knock its president, one of the most respected men in the State, off the platform. It was an unfortunate performance for Mayor Wood, since the disgust and reaction thereby aroused led all factions of the Democratic party to unite against him.

Other leading men were such as Charles O'Conor and John Van Buren; the former learned and generous, but impracticable; the latter brilliant beyond belief, but not considered as representing any permanent ideas or principles.

During the campaign of 1848, as a youth of sixteen, I took the liberty of breaking from the paternal party; my father voting for General Taylor, I hurrahing for Martin Van Buren. I remember well how one day my father earnestly remonstrated against this. He said, ``My dear boy, you cheer Martin Van Buren's name because you believe that if he is elected he will do something against slavery: in the first place, he cannot be elected; and in the second place, if you knew him as we older people do, you would not believe in his attachment to any good cause whatever.''

The result of the campaign was that General Taylor was elected, and I recall the feeling of awe and hope with which I gazed upon his war-worn face, for the first and last time, as he stopped to receive the congratulations of the citizens of Syracuse;—hope, alas, soon brought to naught, for he, too, soon succumbed to the pressure of official care, and Millard Fillmore of New York, the Vice- President, reigned in his stead.

I remember Mr. Fillmore well. He was a tall, large, fine-looking man, with a face intelligent and kindly, and he was noted both as an excellent public servant and an effective public speaker. He had been comptroller of the State of New York,—then the most important of State offices, had been defeated as Whig candidate for governor, and had been a representative in Congress. He was the second of the accidental Presidents, and soon felt it his duty to array himself on the side of those who, by compromise with the South on the slavery question, sought to maintain and strengthen the Federal Union. Under him came the compromise measures on which our great statesmen of the middle period of the nineteenth century, Clay, Webster, Calhoun, and Benton, made their last speeches. Mr. Fillmore was undoubtedly led mainly by patriotic motives, in promoting the series of measures which were expected to end all trouble between the North and South, but which, unfortunately, embraced the Fugitive Slave Law; yet this, as I then thought, rendered him accursed. I remember feeling an abhorrence for his very name, and this feeling was increased when there took place, in the city of Syracuse, the famous ``Jerry Rescue.''


On the first day of October, 1851, there was shuffling about the streets of Syracuse, in the quiet pursuit of his simple avocations, a colored person, as nearly ``of no account'' as any ever seen. So far as was known he had no surname, and, indeed, no Christian name, save the fragment and travesty,—``Jerry.''

Yet before that day was done he was famous; his name, such as it was, resounded through the land; and he had become, in all seriousness, a weighty personage in American history.

Under the law recently passed, he was arrested, openly and in broad daylight, as a fugitive slave, and was carried before the United States commissioner, Mr. Joseph Sabine, a most kindly public officer, who in this matter was sadly embarrassed by the antagonism between his sworn duty and his personal convictions.

Thereby, as was supposed, were fulfilled the Law and the Prophets—the Law being the fugitive slave law recently enacted, and the Prophets being no less than Henry Clay and Daniel Webster.

For, as if to prepare the little city to sacrifice its cherished beliefs, Mr. Clay had some time before made a speech from the piazza of the Syracuse House, urging upon his fellow-citizens the compromises of the Constitution; and some months later Mr. Webster appeared, spoke from a balcony near the City Hall, and to the same purpose; but more so. The latter statesman was prophetic, not only in the hortatory, but in the predictive sense; for he declared not only that the Fugitive Slave Law must be enforced, but that it WOULD be enforced, and he added, in substance: ``it will be enforced throughout the North in spite of all opposition—even in this city— even in the midst of your abolition conventions.'' This piece of prophecy was accompanied by a gesture which seemed to mean much; for the great man's hand was waved toward the City Hall just across the square—the classic seat and center of abolition conventions.

How true is the warning, ``Don't prophesy unless you know!'' The arrest of Jerry took place within six months after Mr. Webster's speech, and indeed while an abolition convention was in session at that same City Hall; but when the news came the convention immediately dissolved, the fire-bells began to ring, a crowd moved upon the commissioner's office, surged into it, and swept Jerry out of the hands of the officers. The authorities having rallied, re-arrested the fugitive, and put him in confinement and in irons. But in the evening the assailants returned to the assault, carried the jail by storm, rescued Jerry for good, and spirited him off safe and sound to Canada, thus bringing to nought the fugitive slave law, as well as the exhortations of Mr. Clay and the predictions of Mr. Webster.

This rescue produced great excitement throughout the nation. Various persons were arrested for taking part in it, and their trials were adjourned from place to place, to the great hardship of all concerned. During a college vacation I was present at one of these trials at Canandaigua, the United States Judge, before whom it was held, being the Hon. N. K. Hall, who had been Mr. Fillmore's law partner in Buffalo. The evening before the trial an anti-slavery meeting was held, which I attended. It was opened with prayer by a bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, Loguen, and of all prayers I have ever heard, this dwells in my mind as perhaps the most impressive. The colored minister's petitions for his race, bond and free, for Jerry and for those who had sought to rescue him, for the souls of the kidnappers, and for the country which was to his people a land of bondage, were most pathetic. Then arose Gerrit Smith. Of all Tribunes of the People I have ever known he dwells in my memory as possessing the greatest variety of gifts. He had the prestige given by great wealth, by lavish generosity, by transparent honesty, by earnestness of purpose, by advocacy of every good cause, by a superb presence, and by natural eloquence of a very high order. He was very tall and large, with a noble head, an earnest, yet kindly face, and of all human voices I have ever heard his was the most remarkable for its richness, depth, and strength. I remember seeing and hearing him once at a Republican State Convention in the City Hall at Syracuse, when, having come in for a few moments as a spectator, he was recognized by the crowd and greeted with overwhelming calls for a speech. He was standing at the entrance door, towering above all about him, and there was a general cry for him to come forward to the platform. He declined to come forward; but finally observed to those near him, in his quiet, natural way, with the utmost simplicity, ``Oh, I shall be heard.'' At this a shout went up from the entire audience; for every human being in that great hall had heard these words perfectly, though uttered in his usual conversational voice.

I also remember once entering the old Delavan House at Albany, with a college friend of mine, afterward Bishop of Maine, and seeing, at the other end of a long hall, Gerrit Smith in quiet conversation. In a moment we heard his voice, and my friend was greatly impressed by it, declaring he had never imagined such an utterance possible. It was indeed amazing; it was like the deep, clear, rich tone from the pedal bass of a cathedral organ. During his career in Congress, it was noted that he was the only speaker within remembrance who without effort made himself heard in every part of the old chamber of the House of Representatives, which was acoustically one of the worst halls ever devised. And it was not a case of voice and nothing else; his strength of argument, his gift of fit expression, and his wealth of illustration were no less extraordinary.

On this occasion at Canandaigua he rose to speak, and every word went to the hearts of his audience. ``Why,'' he began, ``do they conduct these harassing proceedings against these men? If any one is guilty, I am guilty. With Samuel J. May I proposed the Jerry Rescue. We are responsible for it; why do they not prosecute us?'' And these words were followed by a train of cogent reasoning and stirring appeal.

The Jerry Rescue trials only made matters worse. Their injustice disgusted the North, and their futility angered the South. They revealed one fact which especially vexed the Southern wing of the Democratic party, and this was, that their Northern allies could not be depended upon to execute the new compromise. In this Syracuse rescue one of the most determined leaders was a rough burly butcher, who had been all his life one of the loudest of pro-slavery Democrats, and who, until he saw Jerry dragged in manacles through the streets, had been most violent in his support of the fugitive slave law. The trials also stimulated the anti-slavery leaders and orators to new vigor. Garrison, Phillips, Gerrit Smith, Sumner, and Seward aroused the anti-slavery forces as never before, and the ``Biglow Papers'' of James Russell Lowell, which made Northern pro-slavery men ridiculous, were read with more zest than ever.

But the abolition forces had the defects of their qualities, and their main difficulty really arose from the stimulus given to a thin fanaticism. There followed, in the train of the nobler thinkers and orators, the ``Fool Reformers,''—sundry long-haired men and short-haired women, who thought it their duty to stir good Christian people with blasphemy, to deluge the founders of the Republic with blackguardism, and to invent ever more and more ingenious ways for driving every sober-minded man and woman out of the anti-slavery fold. More than once in those days I hung my head in disgust as I listened to these people, and wondered, for the moment, whether, after all, even the supremacy of slaveholders might not be more tolerable than the new heavens and the new earth, in which should dwell such bedraggled, screaming, denunciatory creatures.

At the next national election the Whigs nominated General Scott, a man of extraordinary merit and of grandiose appearance; but of both these qualities he was himself unfortunately too well aware; as a result the Democrats gave him the name of ``Old Fuss and Feathers,'' and a few unfortunate speeches, in one of which he expressed his joy at hearing that ``sweet Irish brogue,'' brought the laugh of the campaign upon him.

On the other hand the Democrats nominated Franklin Pierce; a man greatly inferior to General Scott in military matters, but who had served well in the State politics of New Hampshire and in Congress, was widely beloved, of especially attractive manners, and of high personal character.

He also had been in the Mexican War, but though he had risen to be brigadier-general, his military record amounted to very little. There was in him, no doubt, some alloy of personal with public motives, but it would be unjust to say that selfishness was the only source of his political ideas. He was greatly impressed by the necessity of yielding to the South in order to save the Union, and had shown this by his utterances and votes in Congress: the South, therefore, accepted him against General Scott, who was supposed to have moderate anti- slavery views.

General Pierce was elected; the policy of his administration became more and more deeply pro-slavery; and now appeared upon the scene Stephen Arnold Douglas— senator from Illinois, a man of remarkable ability,—a brilliant thinker and most effective speaker, with an extraordinary power of swaying men. I heard him at vari- ous times; and even after he had committed what seemed to me the unpardonable sin, it was hard to resist his eloquence. He it was who, doubtless from a mixture of motives, personal and public, had proposed the abolition of the Missouri Compromise, which since the year 1820 had been the bulwark of the new territories against the encroachments of slavery. The whole anti-slavery sentiment of the North was thereby intensified, and as the establishment of north polarity at one end of the magnet excites south polarity at the other, so Southern feeling in favor of slavery was thereby increased. Up to a recent period Southern leaders had, as a rule, deprecated slavery, and hoped for its abolition; now they as generally advocated it as good in itself;—the main foundation of civil liberty; the normal condition of the working classes of every nation; and some of them urged the revival of the African slave-trade. The struggle became more and more bitter. I was during that time at Yale, and the general sentiment of that university in those days favored almost any concession to save the Union. The venerable Silliman, and a great majority of the older professors spoke at public meetings in favor of the pro-slavery compromise measures which they fondly hoped would settle the difficulty between North and South and re<e:>stablish the Union on firm foundations. The new compromise was indeed a bitter dose for them, since it contained the fugitive slave law in its most drastic form; and every one of them, with the exception of a few theological doctrinaires who found slavery in the Bible, abhorred the whole slave system. The Yale faculty, as a rule, took ground against anti-slavery effort, and, among other ways of propagating what they considered right opinions, there was freely distributed among the students a sermon by the Rev. Dr. Boardman of Philadelphia, which went to extremes in advocating compromise with slavery and the slave power.

The great body of the students, also, from North and South, took the same side. It is a suggestive fact that whereas European students are generally inclined to radicalism, American students have been, since the war of the Revolution, eminently conservative.

To this pro-slavery tendency at Yale, in hope of saving the Union, there were two remarkable exceptions, one being the beloved and respected president of the university, Dr. Theodore Dwight Woolsey, and the other his classmate and friend, the Rev. Dr. Leonard Bacon, pastor of the great Center Church of New Haven, and frequently spoken of as the ``Congregational Pope of New England.'' They were indeed a remarkable pair; Woolsey, quiet and scholarly, at times irascible, but always kind and just; Bacon a rugged, leonine sort of man who, when he shook his mane in the pulpit and addressed the New England conscience, was heard throughout the nation. These two, especially, braved public sentiment, as well as the opinion of their colleagues, and were supposed, at the time, to endanger the interests of Yale by standing against the fugitive slave law and other concessions to slavery and its extension. As a result Yale fell into disrepute in the South, which had, up to that time, sent large bodies of students to it, and I remember that a classmate of mine, a tall, harum-scarum, big-hearted, sandy-haired Georgian known as ``Jim'' Hamilton, left Yale in disgust, returned to his native heath, and was there welcomed with great jubilation. A poem was sent me, written by some ardent admirer of his, beginning with the words:

``God bless thee, noble Hamilton,'' &c.

On the other hand I was one of the small minority of students who remained uncompromisingly anti-slavery, and whenever I returned from Syracuse, my classmates and friends used to greet me in a jolly way by asking me ``How are you, Gerrit; how did you leave the Rev. Antoinette Brown and brother Fred Douglas?'' In consequence I came very near being, in a small way, a martyr to my principles. Having had some success in winning essay prizes during my sophomore and junior years, my name was naturally mentioned in connection with the election of editors for the ``Yale Literary Magazine.'' At this a very considerable body of Southern students and their Northern adherents declared against me. I neither said nor did anything in the premises, but two of my most conservative friends wrought valiantly in my behalf. One was my dear old chum, Davies, the present Bishop of Michigan, at the very antipodes from myself on every possible question; and the other my life-long friend, Randall Lee Gibson of Kentucky, himself a large slaveholder, afterward a general in the Confederate service, and finally, at his lamented death a few years since, United States senator from Louisiana. Both these friends championed my cause, with the result that they saved me by a small majority.

As editor of the ``Yale Literary Magazine,'' through my senior year, I could publish nothing in behalf of my cherished anti-slavery ideas, since a decided majority of my fellow-editors would have certainly refused admission to any obnoxious article, and I therefore confined myself, in my editorial capacity, to literary and abstract matters; but with my college exercises it was different. Professor Larned, who was charged with the criticism of our essays and speeches, though a very quiet man, was at heart deeply anti-slavery, and therefore it was that in sundry class-room essays, as well as in speeches at the junior exhibition and at commencement, I was able to pour forth my ideas against what was stigmatized as the ``sum of human villainies.''

I was not free from temptation to an opposite course. My experience at the college election had more than once suggested to my mind the idea that possibly I might be wrong, after all; that perhaps the voice of the people was really the voice of God; that if one wishes to accomplish anything he must work in harmony with the popular will; and that perhaps the best way would be to conform to the general opinion. To do so seemed, certainly, the only road to preferment of any kind. Such were the temptations which, in those days, beset every young man who dreamed of accomplishing something in life, and they beset me in my turn; but there came a day when I dealt with them decisively. I had come up across New Haven Green thinking them over, and perhaps paltering rather contemptibly with my conscience; but arriving at the door of North College, I stopped a moment, ran through the whole subject in an instant, and then and there, on the stairway leading to my room, silently vowed that, come what might, I would never be an apologist for slavery or for its extension, and that what little I could do against both should be done.

I may add that my conscience was somewhat aided by a piece of casuistry from the most brilliant scholar in the Yale faculty of that time, Professor James Hadley. I had been brought up with a strong conviction of the necessity of obedience to law as the first requirement in any State, and especially in a Republic; but here was the fugitive slave law. What was our duty regarding it? This question having come up in one of our division- room debates, Professor Hadley, presiding, gave a decision to the following effect: ``On the statute books of all countries are many laws, obsolete and obsolescent; to disobey an obsolete law is frequently a necessity and never a crime. As to disobedience to an obsolescent law, the question in every man's mind must be as to the degree of its obsolescence. Laws are made obsolescent by change of circumstances, by the growth of convictions which render their execution impossible, and the like. Every man, therefore, must solemnly decide for himself at what period a law is virtually obsolete.''

I must confess that the doctrine seems to me now rather dangerous, but at that time I welcomed it as a very serviceable piece of casuistry, and felt that there was indeed, as Mr. Seward had declared, a ``higher law'' than the iniquitous enactment which allowed the taking of a peaceful citizen back into slavery, without any of the safeguards which had been developed under Anglo-Saxon liberty.

Though my political feelings throughout the senior year grew more and more intense, there was no chance for their expression either in competition for the Clarke Essay Prize or for the De Forest Oration Gold Medal, the subjects of both being assigned by the faculty; and though I afterward had the satisfaction of taking both these, my exultation was greatly alloyed by the thought that the ideas I most cherished could find little, if any, expression in them.

But on Commencement Day my chance came. Then I chose my own theme, and on the subject of ``Modern Oracles'' poured forth my views to a church full of people; many evidently disgusted, but a few as evidently pleased. I dwelt especially upon sundry utterances of John Quincy Adams, who had died not long before, and who had been, during all his later years, a most earnest opponent of slavery, and I argued that these, with the declarations of other statesmen of like tendencies, were the oracles to which the nation should listen.

Curiously enough this commencement speech secured for me the friendship of a man who was opposed to my ideas, but seemed to like my presenting them then and there—the governor of the State, Colonel Thomas Seymour. He had served with distinction in the Mexican War, had been elected and re<e:>lected, again and again, governor of Connecticut, was devotedly pro-slavery, in the interest, as he thought, of preserving the Union; but he remembered my speech, and afterward, when he was made minister to Russia, invited me to go with him, attached me to his Legation, and became one of the dearest friends I have ever had.

Of the diplomatic phase of my life into which he initiated me, I shall speak in another chapter; but, as regards my political life, he influenced me decidedly, for his conversation and the reading he suggested led me to study closely the writings of Jefferson. The impulse thus given my mind was not spent until the Civil War, which, betraying the ultimate results of sundry Jeffersonian ideas, led me to revise my opinions somewhat and to moderate my admiration for the founder of American ``Democracy,'' though I have ever since retained a strong interest in his teaching.

But deeply as both the governor and myself felt on the slavery question, we both avoided it in our conversation. Each knew how earnestly the other felt regarding it, and each, as if by instinct, kept clear of a discussion which could not change our opinions, and might wreck our friendship. The result was, that, so far as I remember, we never even alluded to it during the whole year we were together. Every other subject we discussed freely but this we never touched. The nearest approach to a discussion was when one day in the Legation Chancery at St. Petersburg, Mr. Erving, also a devoted Union pro- slavery Democrat, pointing to a map of the United States hanging on the wall, went into a rhapsody over the extension of the power and wealth of our country. I answered, ``If our country could get rid of slavery in all that beautiful region of the South, such a riddance would be cheap at the cost of fifty thousand lives and a hundred millions of dollars.'' At this Erving burst forth into a torrent of brotherly anger. ``There was no conceivable cause,'' he said, ``worth the sacrifice of fifty thousand lives, and the loss of a hundred millions of dollars would mean the blotting out of the whole prosperity of the nation.'' His deep earnestness showed me the impossibility of converting a man of his opinions, and the danger of wrecking our friendship by attempting it. Little did either of us dream that within ten years from that day slavery was to be abolished in the United States, at the sacrifice not of fifty thousand, but of nearly a million lives, and at the cost not merely of a hundred millions, but, when all is told, of at least ten thousand millions of dollars!

I may mention here that it was in this companionship, at St. Petersburg, that I began to learn why newspaper criticism has, in our country, so little permanent effect on the reputation of eminent men. During four years before coming abroad I had read, in leading Republican journals of New York and New Haven, denunciations of Governor Thomas Hart Seymour as an ignoramus, a pretender, a blatant demagogue, a sot and companion of sots, an associate, and fit associate, for the most worthless of the populace. I had now found him a man of real convictions, thoroughly a gentleman, quiet, conscientious, kindly, studious, thoughtful, modest, abstemious, hardly ever touching a glass of wine, a man esteemed and beloved by all who really knew him. Thus was first revealed to me what, in my opinion, is the worst evil in American public life,—that facility for unlimited slander, of which the first result is to degrade our public men, and the second result is to rob the press of that confidence among thinking people, and that power for good and against evil which it really ought to exercise. Since that time I have seen many other examples strengthening the same conviction.

Leaving St. Petersburg, I followed historical and, to some extent, political studies at the University of Berlin, having previously given attention to them in France; and finally, traveling in Italy, became acquainted with a man who made a strong impression upon me. This was Mr. Robert Dale Owen, then the American minister at Naples, whose pictures of Neapolitan despotism, as it then existed, made me even a stronger Republican than I had been before.

Returning to America I found myself on the eve of the new presidential election. The Republicans had nominated John C. Fr<e'>mont, of whom all I knew was gathered from his books of travel. The Democrats had nominated James Buchanan, whom I, as an attach<e'> of the legation at St. Petersburg, had met while he was minister of the United States at London. He was a most kindly and impressive old gentleman, had welcomed me cordially at his legation, and at a large dinner given by Mr. George Peabody, at that time the American Amphitryon in the British metropolis, discussed current questions in a way that fascinated me. Of that I may speak in another chapter; suffice it here that he was one of the most attractive men in conversation I have ever met, and that is saying much.

I took but slight part in the campaign; in fact, a natural diffidence kept me aloof from active politics. Having given up all hope or desire for political preferment, and chosen a university career, I merely published a few newspaper and magazine articles, in the general interest of anti- slavery ideas, but made no speeches, feeling myself, in fact, unfit to make them.

But I shared more and more the feelings of those who supported Fr<e'>mont.

Mr. Buchanan, though personal acquaintance had taught me to like him as a man, and the reading of his despatches in the archives of our legation at St. Petersburg had forced me to respect him as a statesman, represented to me the encroachments and domination of American slavery, while Fr<e'>mont represented resistance to such encroachments, and the perpetuity of freedom upon the American Continent.

On election day, 1856, I went to the polls at the City Hall of Syracuse to cast my first vote. There I chanced to meet an old schoolmate who had become a brilliant young lawyer, Victor Gardner, with whom, in the old days, I had often discussed political questions, he being a Democrat and I a Republican. But he had now come upon new ground, and, wishing me to do the same, he tendered me what was known as ``The American Ticket,'' bearing at its head the name of Millard Fillmore. He claimed that it represented resistance to the encroachments and dangers which he saw in the enormous foreign immigration of the period, and above all in the increasing despotism of the Roman Catholic hierarchy controlling the Irish vote. Most eloquently did my old friend discourse on the dangers from this source. He insisted that Roman Catholic bishops and priests had wrecked every country in which they had ever gained control; that they had aided in turning the mediaeval republics into despotisms; that they had ruined Spain and the South American republics; that they had rendered Poland and Ireland unable to resist oppression; that they had hopelessly enfeebled Austria and Italy; that by St. Bartholomew massacres and clearing out of Huguenots they had made, first, terrorism, and, finally, despotism necessary in France; that they had rendered every people they had controlled careless of truth and inclined to despotism,—either of monarchs or ``bosses'';—that our prisons were filled with the youth whom they had trained in religion and morals; that they were ready to ravage the world with fire and sword to gain the slightest point for the Papacy; that they were the sworn foes of our public- school system, without which no such thing as republican government could exist among us; that, in fact, their bishops and priests were the enemies of everything we Americans should hold dear, and that their church was not so much a religious organization as a political conspiracy against the best that mankind had achieved.

``Look at the Italians, Spanish, French to-day, ``he said. ``The Church has had them under its complete control fifteen hundred years, and you see the result. Look at the Irish all about us;—always screaming for liberty, yet the most abject slaves of their passions and of their priesthood.''

He spoke with the deepest earnestness and even eloquence; others gathered round, and some took his tickets. I refused them, saying, ``No. The question of all questions to me is whether slavery or freedom is to rule this Republic,'' and, having taken a Republican ticket, I went up-stairs to the polls. On my arrival at the ballot-box came a most exasperating thing. A drunken Irish Democrat standing there challenged my vote. He had, perhaps, not been in the country six months; I had lived in that very ward since my childhood, knew and was known by every other person present; and such was my disgust that it is not at all unlikely that if one of Gardner's tickets had been in my pocket, it would have gone into the ballot-box. But persons standing by,—Democrats as well as Republicans,—having quieted this perfervid patriot, and saved me from the ignominy of swearing in my vote, I carried out my original intention, and cast my first vote for the Republican candidate.

Certainly Providence was kind to the United States in that contest. For Fr<e'>mont was not elected. Looking back over the history of the United States I see, thus far, no instant when everything we hold dear was so much in peril as on that election day.

We of the Republican party were fearfully mistaken, and among many evidences in history that there is ``a Power in the universe, not ourselves, which makes for righteousness,'' I think that the non-election of Fr<e'>mont is one of the most convincing. His election would have precipitated the contest brought on four years later by the election of Lincoln. But the Northern States had in 1856 no such preponderance as they had four years later. No series of events had then occurred to arouse and consolidate anti-slavery feeling like those between 1856 and 1860. Moreover, of all candidates for the Presidency ever formally nominated by either of the great parties up to that time, Fr<e'>mont was probably the most unfit. He had gained credit for his expedition across the plains to California, and deservedly; his popular name of ``Pathfinder'' might have been of some little use in a political campaign, and some romantic interest attached to him on account of his marriage with Jessie Benton, daughter of the burly, doughty, honest-purposed, headstrong senator from Missouri. But his earlier career, when closely examined, and, even more than that, his later career, during the Civil War, showed doubtful fitness for any duties demanding clear purpose, consecutive thought, adhesion to a broad policy, wisdom in counsel, or steadiness in action. Had he been elected in 1856 one of two things would undoubtedly have followed: either the Union would have been permanently dissolved, or it would have been reestablished by anchoring slavery forever in the Constitution. Never was there a greater escape.

On March 1, 1857, I visited Washington for the first time. It was indeed the first time I had ever trodden the soil of a slave State, and, going through Baltimore, a sense of this gave me a feeling of horror. The whole atmosphere of that city seemed gloomy, and the city of Washington no better. Our little company established itself at the National Hotel on Pennsylvania Avenue, then a famous hostelry. Henry Clay had died there not long before, and various eminent statesmen had made it, and were then making it, their headquarters.

On the evening of my arrival a curious occurrence showed me the difference between Northern and Southern civilization. As I sat in the reading-room, there rattled upon my ear utterances betokening a vigorous dispute in the adjoining bar-room, and, as they were loud and long, I rose and walked toward the disputants, as men are wont to do on such occasions in the North; when, to my surprise I found that, though the voices were growing steadily louder, people were very generally leaving the room; presently, the reason dawned upon me: it was a case in which revolvers might be drawn at any moment, and the bystanders evidently thought life and limb more valuable than any information they were likely to obtain by remaining.

On the evening of the third of March I went with the crowd to the White House. We were marshalled through the halls, President Pierce standing in the small chamber adjoining the East Room to receive the guests, around him being members of the Cabinet, with others distinguished in the civil, military, and naval service, and, among them, especially prominent, Senator Douglas, then at the height of his career. Persons in the procession were formally presented, receiving a kindly handshake, and then allowed to pass on. My abhorrence of the Presi- dent and of Douglas was so bitter that I did a thing for which the only excuse was my youth:—I held my right hand by my side, walked by and refused to be presented.

Next morning I was in the crowd at the east front of the Capitol, and, at the time appointed, Mr. Buchanan came forth and took the oath administered to him by the Chief Justice, Roger Brooke Taney of Maryland. Though Taney was very decrepit and feeble, I looked at him much as a Spanish Protestant in the sixteenth century would have looked at Torquemada; for, as Chief Justice, he was understood to be in the forefront of those who would fasten African slavery on the whole country; and this view of him seemed justified when, two days after the inauguration, he gave forth the Dred Scott decision, which interpreted the Constitution in accordance with the ultra pro-slavery theory of Calhoun.

Having taken the oath, Mr. Buchanan delivered the inaugural address, and it made a deep impression upon me. I began to suspect then, and I fully believe now, that he was sincere, as, indeed, were most of those whom men of my way of thinking in those days attacked as pro-slavery tools and ridiculed as ``doughfaces.'' We who had lived remote from the scene of action, and apart from pressing responsibility, had not realized the danger of civil war and disunion. Mr. Buchanan, and men like him, in Congress, constantly associating with Southern men, realized both these dangers. They honestly and patriotically shrank from this horrible prospect; and so, had we realized what was to come, would most of us have done. I did not see this then, but looking back across the abyss of years I distinctly see it now. The leaders on both sides were honest and patriotic, and, as I firmly believe, instruments of that ``Power in the universe, not ourselves, which makes for righteousness.''

There was in Mr. Buchanan's inaugural address a tone of deep earnestness. He declared that all his efforts should be given to restore the Union, and to re<e:>stablish it upon permanent foundations; besought his fellow-citizens throughout the Union to second him in this effort, and promised that under no circumstances would he be a candidate for re<e:>lection. My anti-slavery feelings remained as deep as ever, but, hearing this speech, there came into my mind an inkling of the truth: ``Hinter dem Berge sind auch Leute.''

During my stay in Washington I several times visited the Senate and the House, in the old quarters which they shortly afterward vacated in order to enter the more commodious rooms of the Capitol, then nearly finished. The Senate was in the room at present occupied by the Supreme Court, and from the gallery I looked down upon it with mingled feelings of awe, distrust, and aversion. There, as its president, sat Mason of Virginia, author of the fugitive slave law; there, at the desk in front of him, sat Cass of Michigan, who, for years, had been especially subservient to the slave power; Douglas of Illinois, who had brought about the destruction of the Missouri Compromise; Butler of South Carolina, who represented in perfection the slave-owning aristocracy; Slidell and Benjamin of Louisiana, destined soon to play leading parts in the disruption of the Union.

But there were others. There was Seward, of my own State, whom I had been brought up to revere, and who seemed to me, in the struggle then going on, the incarnation of righteousness; there was Charles Sumner of Massachusetts, just recovering from the murderous blows given him by Preston Brooks of South Carolina, —a martyr, as I held, to his devotion to freedom; there was John Parker Hale of New Hampshire, who had been virtually threatened with murder, as a penalty for his opposition to slavery; and there was bluff Ben Wade of Ohio, whose courage strengthened the whole North.

The House of Representatives interested me less. In it there sat various men now mainly passed out of human memory; and, unfortunately, the hall, though one of the finest, architecturally, in the world, was one of the least suited to its purpose. To hear anything either in the galleries or on the floor was almost an impossibility.

The Supreme Court, though sitting in a wretched room in the basement, made a far deeper impression upon me. The judges, seated in a row, and wearing their simple, silken gowns, seemed to me, in their quiet dignity, what the highest court of a great republic ought to be; though I looked at Chief Justice Taney and his pro-slavery associates much as a Hindoo regards his destructive gods.

The general impression made upon me at Washington was discouraging. It drove out from my mind the last lingering desire to take any part in politics. The whole life there was repulsive to me, and when I reflected that a stay of a few years in that forlorn, decaying, reeking city was the goal of political ambition, the whole thing seemed to me utterly worthless. The whole life there bore the impress of the slipshod habits engendered by slavery, and it seemed a civilization rotting before ripeness. The city was certainly, at that time, the most wretched capital in Christendom. Pennsylvania Avenue was a sort of Slough of Despond,—with ruts and mud- holes from the unfinished Capitol, at one end, to the unfinished Treasury building, at the other, and bounded on both sides with cheap brick tenements. The extensive new residence quarter and better hotels of these days had not been dreamed of. The ``National,'' where we were living, was esteemed the best hotel, and it was abominable. Just before we arrived, what was known as the ``National Hotel Disease'' had broken out in it;— by some imputed to an attempt to poison the incoming President, in order to bring the Vice-President into his place. But that was the mere wild surmise of a political pessimist. The fact clearly was that the wretched sewage of Washington, in those days, which was betrayed in all parts of the hotel by every kind of noisome odor, had at last begun to do its work. Curiously enough there was an interregnum in the reign of sickness and death, probably owing to some temporary sanitary efforts, and that interregnum, fortunately for us, was coincident with our stay there. But the disease set in again shortly afterward, and a college friend of mine, who arrived on the day of our departure, was detained in the hotel for many weeks with the fever then contracted. The number of deaths was considerable, but, in the interest of the hotel, the matter was hushed up, as far as possible.

The following autumn I returned to New Haven as a resident graduate, and, the popular lecture system being then at its height, was invited to become one of the lecturers in the course of that winter. I prepared my discourse with great care, basing it upon studies and observations during my recent stay in the land of the Czar, and gave it the title of ``Civilization in Russia.''

I remember feeling greatly honored by the fact that my predecessor in the course was Theodore Parker, and my successor Ralph Waldo Emerson. Both talked with me much about my subject, and Parker surprised me. He was the nearest approach to omniscience I had ever seen. He was able to read, not only Russian, but the Old Slavonic. He discussed the most intimate details of things in Russia, until, at last, I said to him, ``Mr. Parker, I would much rather sit at your feet and listen to your information regarding Russia, than endeavor to give you any of my own.'' He was especially interested in the ethnology of the empire, and had an immense knowledge of the different peoples inhabiting it, and of their characteristics. Finally, he asked me what chance I thought there was for the growth of anything like free institutions in Russia. To this I answered that the best thing they had was their system of local peasant meetings for the repartition of their lands, and for the discussion of subjects connected with them, and that this seemed to me something like a germ of what might, in future generations, become a sort of town-meeting system, like that of New England. This let me out of the discussion very satisfactorily, for Parker told me that he had arrived at the same conclusion, after talking with Count Gurowski, who was, in those days, an especial authority.

In due time came the evening for my lecture. As it was the first occasion since leaving college that I had appeared on any stage, a considerable number of my old college associates and friends, including Professor (afterward President) Porter, Dr. Bacon, and Mr. (afterward Bishop) Littlejohn, were there among the foremost, and after I had finished they said some kindly things, which encouraged me.

In this lecture I made no mention of American slavery, but into an account of the events of my stay at St. Petersburg and Moscow during the Crimean War, and of the death and funeral of the Emperor Nicholas, with the accession and first public address of Alexander II, I sketched, in broad strokes, the effects of the serf system,—effects not merely upon the serfs, but upon the serf owners, and upon the whole condition of the empire. I made it black indeed, as it deserved, and though not a word was said regarding things in America, every thoughtful man present must have felt that it was the strongest indictment against our own system of slavery which my powers enabled me to make.

Next day came a curious episode. A classmate of mine, never distinguished for logical acuteness, came out in a leading daily paper with a violent attack upon me and my lecture. He lamented the fact that one who, as he said, had, while in college, shown much devotion to the anti- slavery cause, had now faced about, had no longer the courage of his opinions, and had not dared say a word against slavery in the United States. The article was laughable. It would have been easy to attack slavery and thus at once shut the minds and hearts of a large majority of the audience. But I felt then, as I have generally felt since, that the first and best thing to do is to SET PEOPLE AT THINKING, and to let them discover, or think that they discover, the truth for themselves. I made no reply, but an eminent clergyman of New Haven took up the cudgels in my favor, covered my opponent with ridicule, and did me the honor to declare that my lecture was one of the most effective anti-slavery arguments ever made in that city. With this, I retired from the field well satisfied.

The lecture was asked for in various parts of the country, was delivered at various colleges and universities, and in many cities of western New York, Michigan, and Ohio; and finally, after the emancipation of the serfs, was re- cast and republished in the ``Atlantic Monthly'' under the title of ``The Rise and Decline of the Serf System in Russia.''

And now occurred a great change in my career which, as I fully believed, was to cut me off from all political life thoroughly and permanently. This was my election to the professorship of history and English literature in the University of Michigan.



Arriving at the University of Michigan in October, 1857, I threw myself into my new work most heartily. Though I felt deeply the importance of the questions then before the country, it seemed to me that the only way in which I could contribute anything to their solution was in aiding to train up a new race of young men who should understand our own time and its problems in the light of history.

It was not difficult to point out many things in the past that had an important bearing upon the present, and my main work in this line was done in my lecture-room. I made no attempts to proselyte any of my hearers to either political party, my main aim being then, as it has been through my life, when dealing with students and the public at large, to set my audience or my readers at thinking, and to give them fruitful historical subjects to think upon. Among these subjects especially brought out in dealing with the middle ages, was the origin, growth, and decline of feudalism, and especially of the serf system, and of municipal liberties as connected with it. This, of course, had a general bearing upon the important problem we had to solve in the United States during the second half of that century.

In my lectures on modern history, and especially on the Reformation period, and the events which led to the French Revolution, there were various things throwing light upon our own problems, which served my purpose of arousing thought. My audiences were large and attentive, and I have never, in the whole course of my life, enjoyed any work so much as this, which brought me into hearty and close relations with a large body of active- minded students from all parts of our country, and especially from the Northwest. More and more I realized the justice of President Wayland's remark, which had so impressed me at the Yale Alumni meeting just after my return from Europe: that the nation was approaching a ``switching-off place''; that whether we were to turn toward evil or good in our politics would be decided by the great Northwest, and that it would be well for young Americans to cast in their lot with that part of the country.

In the intervals of my university work many invitations came to me from associations in various parts of Michigan and neighboring States to lecture before them, and these I was glad to accept. Such lectures were of a much more general character than those given in the university, but by them I sought to bring the people at large into trains of thought which would fit them to grapple with the great question which was rising more and more portentously before us.

Having accepted, in one of my vacations, an invitation to deliver the Phi Beta Kappa Commencement Address at Yale, I laid down as my thesis, and argued it from history, that in all republics, ancient or modern, the worst foe of freedom had been a man-owning aristocracy—an aristocracy based upon slavery. The address was circulated in printed form, was considerably discussed, and, I trust, helped to set some few people thinking.

For the same purpose I also threw some of my lectures into the form of magazine articles for the ``Atlantic Monthly,'' and especially one entitled ``The Statesmanship of Richelieu,'' my effort in this being to show that the one great error of that greatest of all French statesmen was in stopping short of rooting out the serf system in France when he had completely subjugated the serf owners and had them at his mercy.

As the year 1860 approached, the political struggle became more and more bitter. President Buchanan in redeeming his promise to maintain the Union had gone to lengths which startled and disappointed many of his most devoted supporters. Civil war had broken out in Kansas and Nebraska, with murder and massacre: desperate attempts were made to fasten the hold of the pro-slavery party permanently upon the State, and as desperately were these efforts repelled. A certain John Brown, who requited assassination of free-state men by the assassination of slave-state men,—a very ominous appearance,—began to be heard of; men like Professor Silliman, who, during my stay at Yale had spoken at Union meetings in favor of the new compromise measures, even including the fugitive slave law, now spoke publicly in favor of sending rifles to the free-state men in Kansas; and, most striking symptom of all, Stephen A. Douglas himself, who had led the Democratic party in breaking the Missouri Compromise, now recoiled from the ultra pro-slavery propaganda of President Buchanan. Then, too, came a new incitement to bitterness between North and South. John Brown, the man of Scotch-Covenanter type, who had imbibed his theories of political methods from the Old-Testament annals of Jewish dealings with the heathen, and who had in Kansas solemnly slaughtered in cold blood, as a sort of sacrifice before the Lord, sundry Missouri marauders who had assassinated free-state men, suddenly appeared in Virginia, and there, at Harper's Ferry, with a handful of fanatics subject to his powerful will, raised the standard of revolution against the slave-power. Of course he was easily beaten down, his forces scattered, those dearest to him shot, and he himself hanged. But he was a character of antique mold, and this desperate effort followed by his death, while it exasperated the South, stirred the North to its depths.

Like all such efforts, it was really mistaken and unfortunate. It helped to obscure Henry Clay's proposal to extinguish slavery peaceably, and made the solution of the problem by bloodshed more and more certain. And in the execution of John Brown was lost a man who, had he lived until the Civil War, might have rendered enormous services as a partizan leader. Of course, his action aroused much thought among my students, and their ideas came out in their public discussions. It was part of my duty, once or twice a week, to preside over these discussions, and to decide between the views presented. In these decisions on the political questions now arising I became deeply interested, and while I was careful not to give them a partizan character, they were, of course, opposed to the dominance of slavery.

In the spring of 1860, the Republican National Convention was held at Chicago, and one fine morning I went to the railway station to greet the New York delegation on its way thither. Among the delegates whom I especially recall were William M. Evarts, under whose Secretaryship of State I afterward served as minister at Berlin, and my old college friend, Stewart L. Woodford, with whom I was later in close relations during his term as lieutenant-governor of New York and minister to Spain. The candidate of these New York delegates was of course Mr. Seward, and my most devout hopes were with him, but a few days later came news that the nomination had been awarded to Mr. Lincoln. Him we had come to know and admire during his debates with Douglas while the senatorial contest was going on in the State of Illinois; still the defeat of Mr. Seward was a great disappointment, and hardly less so in Michigan than in New York. In the political campaign which followed I took no direct part, though especially aroused by the speeches of a new man who had just appeared above the horizon,—Carl Schurz. His arguments seemed to me by far the best of that whole campaign—the broadest, the deepest, and the most convincing.

My dear and honored father, during the months of July, August, and the first days of September, was slowly fading away on his death-bed. Yet he was none the less interested in the question at issue, and every day I sat by his bedside and read to him the literature bearing upon the contest; but of all the speeches he best liked those of this new orator—he preferred them, indeed, to those of his idol Seward.

I have related in another place how, years afterward, Bismarck asked me, in Berlin, to what Carl Schurz's great success in America was due, and my answer to this question.

Mr. Lincoln having been elected, I went on with my duties as before, but the struggle was rapidly deepening. Soon came premonitions of real conflict, and, early in the following spring, civil war was upon us. My teaching went on, as of old, but it became more direct. In order to show what the maintenance of a republic was worth, and what patriots had been willing to do for their country in a struggle not unlike ours, I advised my students to read Motley's ``History of the Dutch Republic,'' and I still think it was good advice. Other works, of a similar character, showing how free peoples have conducted long and desperate wars for the maintenance of their national existence and of liberty, I also recommended, and with good effect.

Reverses came. During part of my vacation, in the summer of 1861, I was at Syracuse, and had, as my guest, Mr. George Sumner, younger brother of the eminent senator from Massachusetts, a man who had seen much of the world, had written magazine articles and reviews which had done him credit, and whose popular lectures were widely esteemed. One Sunday afternoon in June my uncle, Mr. Hamilton White, dropped in at my house to make a friendly call. He had just returned from Washington, where he had seen his old friend Seward, Mr. Lincoln's Secretary of State, and felt able to give us a forecast of the future. This uncle of mine was a thoughtful man of affairs; successful in business, excellent in judgment, not at all prone to sanguine or flighty views, and on our asking him how matters looked in Washington he said, ``Depend upon it, it is all right: Seward says that they have decided to end the trouble at once, even if it is necessary to raise an army of fifty thousand men;—that they will send troops immediately to Richmond and finish the whole thing at once, so that the country can go on quietly about its business.''

There was, of course, something reassuring in so favorable a statement made by a sensible man fresh from the most accredited sources, and yet I could not resist grave doubts. Such historical knowledge as I possessed taught me that a struggle like that just beginning between two great principles, both of which had been gathering force for nearly a century, and each of which had drawn to its support millions of devoted men, was not to be ended so easily; but I held my peace.

Next day I took Mr. Sumner on an excursion up the beautiful Onondaga Valley. As we drove through the streets of Syracuse, noticing knots of men gathered here and there in discussion, and especially at the doors of the news offices, we secured an afternoon newspaper and drove on, engaged in earnest conversation. It was a charming day, and as we came to the shade of some large trees about two miles from the city we rested and I took out the paper. It struck me like death. There, displayed in all its horrors, was the first account of the Battle of Bull Run,— which had been fought the previous afternoon,—exactly at the time when my uncle was assuring us that the United States Army was to march at once to Richmond and end the war. The catastrophe seemed fatal. The plans of General McDowell had come utterly to nought; our army had been scattered to the four winds; large numbers of persons, including sundry members of Congress who had airily gone out with the army to ``see the fun,'' among them one from our own neighborhood, Mr. Alfred Ely, of Rochester, had been captured and sent to Richmond, and the rebels were said to be in full march on the National Capital.

Sumner was jubilant. ``This,'' he said, ``will make the American people understand what they have to do; this will stop talk such as your uncle gave us yesterday afternoon.'' But to me it was a fearful moment. Sumner's remarks grated horribly upon my ears; true as his view was, I could not yet accept it.

And now preparations for war, and, indeed, for repelling invasion, began in earnest. My friends all about me were volunteering, and I also volunteered, but was rejected with scorn; the examining physician saying to me, ``You will be a burden upon the government in the first hospital you reach; you have not the constitution to be of use in carrying a musket; your work must be of a different sort.''

My work, then, through the summer was with those who sought to raise troops and to provide equipments for them. There was great need of this, and, in my opinion, the American people have never appeared to better advantage than at that time, when they began to realize their duty, and to set themselves at doing it. In every city, village, and hamlet, men and women took hold of the work, feeling that the war was their own personal business. No other country since the world began has ever seen a more noble outburst of patriotism or more efficient aid by individuals to their government. The National and State authorities of course did everything in their power; but men and women did not wait for them. With the exception of those whose bitter partizanship led them to oppose the war in all its phases, men, women, and children engaged heartily and efficiently in efforts to aid the Union in its struggle.

Various things showed the depths of this feeling. I remember meeting one day, at that period, a man who had risen by hard work from simple beginnings to the head of an immense business, and had made himself a multi- millionaire. He was a hard, determined, shrewd man of affairs, the last man in the world to show anything like sentimentalism, and as he said something advising an investment in the newly created National debt, I answered, ``You are not, then, one of those who believe that our new debt will be repudiated?'' He answered: ``Repudia- tion or no repudiation, I am putting everything I can rake and scrape together into National bonds, to help this government maintain itself; for, by G—d, if I am not to have any country, I don't want any money.'' It is to be hoped that this oath, bursting forth from a patriotic heart, was, like Uncle Toby's, blotted out by the recording angel. I have quoted it more than once to show how the average American—though apparently a crude materialist— is, at heart, a thorough idealist.

Returning to the University of Michigan at the close of the vacation, I found that many of my students had enlisted, and that many more were preparing to do so. With some it was hard indeed. I remember two especially, who had for years labored and saved to raise the money which would enable them to take their university course; they had hesitated, for a time, to enlist; but very early one morning I was called out of bed by a message from them, and, meeting them, found them ready to leave for the army. They could resist their patriotic convictions no longer, and they had come to say good-bye to me. They went into the war; they fought bravely through the thickest of it; and though one was badly wounded, both lived to return, and are to-day honored citizens. With many others it was different; many, very many of them, alas, were among the ``unreturning brave!'' and loveliest and noblest of all, my dear friend and student, Frederick Arne, of Princeton, Illinois, killed in the battle of Shiloh, at the very beginning of the war, when all was blackness and discouragement. Another of my dearest students at that time was Albert Nye. Scholarly, eloquent, noble-hearted, with every gift to ensure success in civil life, he went forth with the others, rose to be captain of a company, and I think major of a regiment. He sent me most kindly messages, and at one time a bowie-knife captured from a rebel soldier. But, alas! he was not to return.

I may remark, in passing, that while these young men from the universities, and a vast host of others from different walks of life, were going forth to lay down their lives for their country, the English press, almost without exception, from the ``Times'' down, was insisting that we were fighting our battles with ``mercenaries.''

One way in which those of us who remained at the university helped the good cause was in promoting the military drill of those who had determined to become soldiers. It was very difficult to secure the proper military instruction, but in Detroit I found a West Point graduate, engaged him to come out a certain number of times every week to drill the students, and he cheered us much by saying that he had never in his life seen soldiers so much in earnest, and so rapid in making themselves masters of the drill and tactics.

One of my advisers at this period, and one of the noblest men I have ever met, was Lieutenant Kirby Smith, a graduate of West Point, and a lieutenant in the army. His father, after whom he was named, had been killed at the Battle of Molino del Rey, in the Mexican War. His uncle, also known as Kirby Smith, was a general in the Confederate service. His mother, one of the dearest friends of my family, was a woman of extraordinary abilities, and of the noblest qualities. Never have I known a young officer of more promise. With him I discussed from time to time the probabilities of the war. He was full of devotion, quieted my fears, and strengthened my hopes. He, too, fought splendidly for his country, and like his father, laid down his life for it.

The bitterest disappointment of that period, and I regret deeply to chronicle it, was the conduct of the government and ruling classes in England. In view of the fact that popular sentiment in Great Britain, especially as voiced in its literature, in its press, and from its pulpit, had been against slavery, I had never doubted that in this struggle, so evidently between slavery and freedom, Great Britain would be unanimously on our side. To my amazement signs soon began to point in another direction. More and more it became evident that British feeling was against us. To my students, who inquired how this could possibly be, I said, ``Wait till Lord John Russell speaks.'' Lord John Russell spoke, and my heart sank within me. He was the solemnly constituted impostor whose criminal carelessness let out the Alabama to prey upon our commerce, and who would have let out more cruisers had not Mr. Charles Francis Adams, the American minister, brought him to reason.

Lord John Russell was noted for his coolness, but in this respect Mr. Adams was more than his match. In after years I remember a joke based upon this characteristic. During a very hot summer in Kansas, when the State was suffering with drought, some newspaper proposed, and the press very generally acquiesced in the suggestion, that Mr. Charles Francis Adams should be asked to take a tour through the State, in order, by his presence, to reduce its temperature.

When, therefore, Lord John Russell showed no signs of interfering with the sending forth of English ships,— English built, English equipped, and largely English manned,—against our commerce, Mr. Adams, having summed up to his Lordship the conduct of the British Government in the matter, closed in his most icy way with the words: ``My lord, I need hardly remind you that this is war.''

The result was, that tardily,—just in time to prevent war between the two nations,—orders were given which prevented the passing out of more cruisers.

Goldwin Smith, who in the days of his professorship at Oxford, saw much of Lord John Russell, once told me that his lordship always made upon him the impression of ``an eminent corn-doctor.''

During the following summer, that of 1863, being much broken down by overwork, and threatened, as I supposed, with heart disease, which turned out to be the beginning of a troublesome dyspepsia, I was strongly recommended by my physician to take a rapid run to Europe, and though very reluctant to leave home, was at last persuaded to go to New York to take my passage. Arrived there, bad news still coming from the seat of war, I could not bring myself at the steamer office to sign the necessary papers, finally refused, and having returned home, took part for the first time in a political campaign as a speaker, going through central New York, and supporting the Republican candidate against the Democratic. The election seemed of vast importance. The Democrats had nominated for the governorship, Mr. Horatio Seymour, a man of the highest personal character, and, so far as the usual duties of governor were concerned, admirable; but he had been bitterly opposed to the war, and it seemed sure that his election would encourage the South and make disunion certain; therefore it was that I threw myself into the campaign with all my might, speaking night and day; but alas! the election went against us.

At the close of the campaign, my dyspepsia returning with renewed violence, I was thinking what should be done, when I happened to meet my father's old friend, Mr. Thurlow Weed, a devoted adherent of Mr. Seward through his whole career, and, at that moment, one of the main supports of the Lincoln Administration. It was upon the deck of a North River steamer, and on my mentioning my dilemma he said: ``You can just now do more for us abroad than at home. You can work in the same line with Archbishop Hughes, Bishop McIlvaine, and myself; everything that can be done, in the shape of contributions to newspapers, or speeches, even to the most restricted audiences abroad, will help us: the great thing is to gain time, increase the number of those who oppose European intervention in our affairs, and procure takers for our new National bonds.''

The result was that I made a short visit to Europe, stopping first in London. Political feeling there was bitterly against us. A handful of true men, John Bright and Goldwin Smith at the head of them, were doing heroic work in our behalf, but the forces against them seemed overwhelming. Drawing money one morning in one of the large banks of London, I happened to exhibit a few of the new National greenback notes which had been recently issued by our Government. The moment the clerk saw them he called out loudly, ``Don't offer us any of those things; we don't take them; they will never be good for anything.'' I was greatly vexed, of course, but there was no help for it. At another time I went into a famous book-shop near the Haymarket to purchase a rare book which I had long coveted. It was just after the Battle of Fredericksburg. The book-seller was chatting with a customer, and finally, with evident satisfaction, said to him: ``I see the Yankees have been beaten again.'' ``Yes,'' said the customer, ``and the papers say that ten thousand of them have been killed.'' ``Good,'' said the shop-keeper, ``I wish it had been twice as many.'' Of course it was impossible for me to make any purchase in that place.

In order to ascertain public sentiment I visited certain ``discussion forums,'' as they are called, frequented by contributors to the press and young lawyers from the Temple and Inns of Court. In those places there was, as a rule, a debate every night, and generally, in one form or another, upon the struggle then going on in the United States. There was, perhaps, in all this a trifle too much of the Three Tailors of Tooley Street; still, excellent speeches were frequently made, and there was a pleasure in doing my share in getting the company on the right side. On one occasion, after one of our worst reverses during the war, an orator, with an Irish brogue, thickened by hot whisky, said, ``I hope that Republic of blackguards is gone forever.'' But, afterward, on learning that an American was present, apologized to me in a way effusive, laudatory, and even affectionate.

But my main work was given to preparing a pamphlet, in answer to the letters from America by Dr. Russell, correspondent of the London ``Times.'' Though nominally on our side, he clearly wrote his letters to suit the demands of the great journal which he served, and which was most bitterly opposed to us. Nothing could exceed its virulence against everything American. Every occurrence was placed in the worst light possible as regarded our interests, and even the telegraphic despatches were manipulated so as to do our cause all the injury possible. I therefore prepared, with especial care, an answer to these letters of Dr. Russell, and published it in London. Its fate was what might have been expected. Some papers discussed it fairly, but, on the whole, it was pooh-poohed, explained away, and finally buried under new masses of slander. I did, indeed, find a few friends of my country in Great Britain. In Dublin I dined with Cairnes, the political economist, who had earnestly written in behalf of the Union against the Confederates; and in London, with Professor Carpenter, the eminent physiologist, who, being devoted to anti-slavery ideas, was mildly favorable to the Union side. But I remember him less on account of anything he said relating to the struggle in America, than for a statement bearing upon the legitimacy of the sovereign then ruling in France, who was at heart one of our most dangerous enemies. Dr. Carpenter told me that some time previously he had been allowed by Nassau Senior, whose published conversations with various men of importance throughout Europe had attracted much attention, to look into some of the records which Mr. Senior had not thought it best to publish, and that among them he had read the following:

``—— showed me to-day an autograph letter written by Louis Bonaparte, King of Holland, not far from the time of the birth of his putative son, now Napoleon III. One passage read as follows: `J'ai le malheur d'avoir pour femme une Messalene. Elle a des amants partout, et partout elle laise des enfants.' ''

I could not but think of this a few weeks later when I saw the emperor, who derived his title to the throne of France from his nominal father, poor King Louis, but whose personal appearance, like that of his brother, the Duc de Morny, was evidently not derived from any Bonaparte. All the J<e'>rome Napoleons I have ever seen, including old King J<e'>rome of Westphalia, and Prince Na- poleon J<e'>rome, otherwise known as ``Plon-Plon,'' whom I saw during my student life at Paris, and the eldest son of the latter, the present Bonaparte pretender to the Napoleonic crown of France, whom I saw during my stay as minister at St. Petersburg, very strikingly resembled the first Napoleon, though all were of much larger size. But the Louis Napoleons, that is, the emperor and his brother the Duc de Morny, had no single Napoleonic point in their features or bearing.

I think that the most startling inspiration during my life was one morning when, on walking through the Garden of the Tuileries, I saw, within twenty feet of me, at a window, in the old palace, which afterward disappeared under the Commune, the emperor and his minister of finance, Achille Fould, seated together, evidently in earnest discussion. There was not at that time any human being whom I so hated and abhorred as Napoleon III. He had broken his oath and trodden the French republic under his feet, he was aiding to keep down the aspirations of Italy, and he was doing his best to bring on an intervention of Europe, in behalf of the Confederate States, to dissolve our Union. He was then the arbiter of Europe. The world had not then discovered him to be what Bismarck had already found him—``a great unrecognized incapacity,'' and, as I looked up and distinctly saw him so near me, there flashed through my mind an understanding of some of the great crimes of political history, such as I have never had before or since.[1]

[1] Since writing this I find in the Autobiography of W. J. Stillman that a similar feeling once beset him on seeing this imperial malefactor,

In France there was very little to be done for our cause. The great mass of Frenchmen were either indifferent or opposed to us. The only exception of importance was Laboulaye, professor at the Coll<e!>ge de France, and his lecture-room was a center of good influences in favor of the American cause; in the midst of that frivolous Napoleonic France he seemed by far ``the noblest Roman of them all.''

The main effort in our behalf was made by Mr. John Bigelow, at that time consul-general, but afterward minister of the United States,—to supply with arguments the very small number of Frenchmen who were inclined to favor the Union cause, and this he did thoroughly well.

Somewhat later there came a piece of good fortune. Having been sent by a physician to the baths at Homburg, I found as our consul-general, at the neighboring city of Frankfort-on-the-Main, William Walton Murphy of Michigan, a life-long supporter of Mr. Seward, a most devoted and active American patriot;—a rough diamond; one of the most uncouth mortals that ever lived; but big-hearted, shrewd, a general favorite, and prized even by those who smiled at his oddities. He had labored hard to induce the Frankfort bankers to take our government bonds, and to recommend them to their customers, and had at last been successful. In order to gain and maintain this success he had established in Frankfort a paper called ``L'Europe,'' for which he wrote and urged others to write. To this journal I became a contributor, and among my associates I especially remember the Rev. Dr. John McClintock, formerly president of Dickinson College, and Dr. E. H. Chapin, of New York, so eminent in those days as a preacher. Under the influence of Mr. Murphy, Frankfort- on-the-Main became, and has since remained, a center of American ideas. Its leading journal was the only influential daily paper in Germany which stood by us during our Spanish War.

I recall a story told me by Mr. Murphy at that period. He had taken an American lady on a business errand to the bank of Baron Rothschild, and, after their business was over, presented her to the great banker. It happened that the Confederate loan had been floated in Europe by Baron Erlanger, also a Frankfort financial magnate, and by birth a Hebrew. In the conversation that ensued between this lady and Baron Rothschild, the latter said: ``Madam, my sympathies are entirely with your country; but is it not disheartening to think that there are men in Europe who are lending their money and trying to induce others to lend it for the strengthening of human slavery? Madam, NONE BUT A CONVERTED JEW WOULD DO THAT.''

On the Fourth of July of that summer, Consul-General Murphy—always devising new means of upholding the flag of his country—summoned Americans from every part of Europe to celebrate the anniversary of our National Independence at Heidelberg, and at the dinner given at the Hotel Schreider seventy-four guests assembled, including two or three professors from the university, as against six guests from the Confederate States, who had held a celebration in the morning at the castle. Mr. Murphy presided and made a speech which warmed the hearts of us all. It was a thorough-going, old-fashioned, Western Fourth of July oration. I had jeered at Fourth of July orations all my life, but there was something in this one which showed me that these discourses, so often ridiculed, are not without their uses. Certain it is that as the consul- general repeated the phrases which had more than once rung through the Western clearings, in honor of the defenders of our country, the divine inspiration of the Constitution, our invincibility in war and our superiority in peace, all of us were encouraged and cheered most lustily. Pleasing was it to note various British tourists standing at the windows listening to the scream of the American eagle and evidently wondering what it all meant.

Others of us spoke, and especially Dr. McClintock, one of the foremost thinkers, scholars, and patriots that the Methodist Episcopal church has ever produced. His speech was in a very serious vein, and well it might be. In the course of it he said: ``According to the last accounts General Lee and his forces are near the town where I live, and are marching directly toward it. It is absolutely certain that, if they reach it, they will burn my house and all that it contains, but I have no fear; I believe that the Almighty is with us in this struggle, and though we may suffer much before its close, the Union is to endure and slavery is to go down before the forces of freedom.'' These words, coming from the heart of a strong man, made a deep impression upon us all.

About two weeks later I left Frankfort for America, and at my parting from Consul-General Murphy at the hotel, he said: ``Let me go in the carriage with you; this is steamer-day and we shall probably meet the vice-consul coming with the American mail.'' He got in, and we drove along the Zeil together. It was at the busiest time of the day, and we had just arrived at the point in that main street of Frankfort where business was most active, when the vice-consul met us and handed Mr. Murphy a newspaper. The latter tore it open, read a few lines, and then instantly jumped out into the middle of the street, waved his hat and began to shout. The public in general evidently thought him mad; a crowd assembled; but as soon as he could get his breath he pointed out the headlines of the newspaper. They indicated the victories of Gettysburg and Vicksburg, and the ending of the war. It was, indeed, a great moment for us all.

Arriving in America, I found that some friends had republished from the English edition my letter to Dr. Russell, that it had been widely circulated, and that, at any rate, it had done some good at home.

Shortly afterward, being on a visit to my old friend, James T. Fields of Boston, I received a telegram from Syracuse as follows: ``You are nominated to the State senate: come home and see who your friends are.'' I have received, in the course of my life, many astonishing messages, but this was the most unexpected of all. I had not merely not been a candidate for any such nomination, but had forgotten that any nomination was to be made; I had paid no attention to the matter whatever; all my thoughts had been given to other subjects; but on returning to Syracuse I found that a bitter contest having arisen between two of the regular candidates, each representing a faction, the delegates had suddenly turned away from both and nominated me. My election followed and so began the most active phase of my political life.



On the evening of New Year's Day, 1864, I arrived in Albany to begin my duties in the State Senate, and certainly, from a practical point of view, no member of the legislature was more poorly equipped. I had, indeed, received a university education, such as it was, in those days, at home and abroad, and had perhaps read more than most college-bred men of my age, but all my education, study, and reading were remote from the duties now assigned me. To history, literature, and theoretical politics, I had given considerable attention, but as regarded the actual necessities of the State of New York, the relations of the legislature to the boards of supervisors of counties, to the municipal councils of cities, to the boards of education, charity, and the like, indeed, to the whole system throughout the Commonwealth, and to the modes of conducting public and private business, my ignorance was deplorable. Many a time have I envied some plain farmer his term in a board of supervisors, or some country schoolmaster his relations to a board of education, or some alderman his experience in a common council, or some pettifogger his acquaintance with justices' courts. My knowledge of law and the making of law was wretchedly deficient, and my ignorance of the practical administration of law was disgraceful. I had hardly ever been inside a court-house, and my main experience of legal procedure was when one day I happened to step into court at Syracuse, and some old friends of mine thought it a good joke to put a university professor as a talesman upon a jury in a horse case. Although pressed with business I did not flinch, but accepted the position, discharged its duties, and learned more of legal procedure and of human nature in six hours than I had ever before learned in six months. Ever afterward I advised my students to get themselves drawn upon a petit jury. I had read some Blackstone and some Kent and had heard a few law lectures, but my knowledge was purely theoretical: in constitutional law it was derived from reading scattered essays in the ``Federalist,'' with extracts here and there from Story. Of the State charitable and penal institutions I knew nothing. Regarding colleges I was fairly well informed, but as to the practical working of our system of public instruction I had only the knowledge gained while a scholar in a public school.

There was also another disadvantage. I knew nothing of the public men of the State. Having lived outside of the Commonwealth, first, as a student at Yale, then during nearly three years abroad, and then nearly six years as a professor in another State, I knew only one of my colleagues, and of him I had only the knowledge that came from an introduction and five minutes' conversation ten years before. It was no better as regarded my acquaintance with the State officers; so far as I now remember, I had never seen one of them, except at a distance,—the governor, Mr. Horatio Seymour.

On the evening after our arrival the Republican majority of the Senate met in caucus, partly to become acquainted, partly to discuss appointments to committees, and partly to decide on a policy regarding State aid to the prosecution of the war for the Union. I found myself the youngest member of this body, and, indeed, of the entire Senate, but soon made the acquaintance of my colleagues and gained some friendships which have been among the best things life has brought me.

Foremost in the State Senate, at that period, was Charles James Folger, its president. He had served in the Senate several years, had been a county judge, and was destined to become assistant treasurer of the United States at New York, chief justice of the highest State court, and finally, to die as Secretary of the Treasury of the United States, after the most crushing defeat which any candidate for the governorship of New York had ever known. He was an excellent lawyer, an impressive speaker, earnestly devoted to the proper discharge of his duties, and of extraordinarily fine personal appearance. His watch upon legislation sometimes amused me, but always won my respect. Whenever a bill was read a third time he watched it as a cat watches a mouse. His hatred of doubtful or bad phraseology was a passion. He was greatly beloved and admired, yet, with all his fine and attractive qualities, modest and even diffident to a fault.

Another man whom I then saw for the first time interested me much as soon as his name was called, and he would have interested me far more had I known how closely my after life was to be linked with his. He was then about sixty years of age, tall, spare, and austere, with a kindly eye, saying little, and that little dryly. He did not appear unamiable, but there seemed in him a sort of aloofness: this was Ezra Cornell.

Still another senator was George H. Andrews, from the Otsego district, the old Palatine country. He had been editor of one of the leading papers in New York, and had been ranked among the foremost men in his profession, but he had retired into the country to lead the life of a farmer. He was a man to be respected and even beloved. His work for the public was exceedingly valuable, and his speeches of a high order. Judge Folger, as chairman of the judiciary committee, was most useful to the State at large in protecting it from evil legislation. Senator Andrews was not less valuable to the cities, and above all to the city of New York, for his intelligent protection of every good measure, and his unflinching opposition to every one of the many doubtful projects constantly brought in by schemers and dreamers.

Still another senator was James M. Cook of Saratoga. He had been comptroller of the State and, at various times, a member of the legislature. He was the faithful ``watch-dog of the treasury,''—bitter against every scheme for taking public money for any unworthy purpose, and, indeed, against any scheme whatever which could not assign for its existence a reason, clear, cogent, and honest.

Still another member, greatly respected, was Judge Bailey of Oneida County. His experience upon the bench made him especially valuable upon the judiciary and other committees.

Yet another man of mark in the body was one of the younger men, George G. Munger of Rochester. He had preceded me by a few years at Yale, had won respect as a county judge, and had a certain lucid way of presenting public matters which made him a valuable public servant.

Another senator of great value was Henry R. Low. He, too, had been a county judge and brought not only legal but financial knowledge to the aid of his colleagues. He was what Thomas Carlyle called a ``swallower of formulas.'' That a thing was old and revered mattered little with him: his question was what is the best thing NOW.

From the city of New York came but one Republican, William Laimbeer, a man of high character and large business experience; impulsive, but always for right against wrong; kindly in his nature, but most bitter against Tammany and all its works.

From Essex County came Senator Palmer Havens, also of middle age, of large practical experience, with a clear, clean style of thinking and speaking, anxious to make a good record by serving well, and such a record he certainly made.

And, finally, among the Republican members of that session I may name the senator from Oswego, Mr. Cheney Ames. Perhaps no one in the body had so large a prac- tical knowledge of the commercial interests of the State, and especially of the traffic upon its lakes and inland waterways; on all questions relating to these his advice was of the greatest value; he was in every respect a good public servant.

On the Democratic side the foremost man by far was Henry C. Murphy of Brooklyn, evidently of Irish ancestry, though his immediate forefathers had been long in the United States. He was a graduate of Columbia College, devoted to history and literature, had produced sundry interesting books on the early annals of the State, had served with distinction in the diplomatic service as minister to The Hague, was eminent as a lawyer, and had already considerable legislative experience.

From New York City came a long series of Democratic members, of whom the foremost was Thomas C. Fields. He had considerable experience as a lawyer in the city courts, had served in the lower house of the legislature, and was preternaturally acute in detecting the interests of Tammany which he served. He was a man of much humor, with occasional flashes of wit, his own worst enemy, evidently, and his career was fitly ended when upon the fall of Tweed he left his country for his country's good and died in exile.

There were others on both sides whom I could mention as good men and true, but those I have named took a leading part as heads of committees and in carrying on public business.

The lieutenant-governor of the State who presided over the Senate was Mr. Floyd-Jones, a devoted Democrat of the old school who exemplified its best qualities; a gentleman, honest, courteous, not intruding his own views, ready always to give the fullest weight to those of others without regard to party.

Among the men who, from their constant attendance, might almost be considered as officers of the Senate were sundry representatives of leading newspapers. Several of them were men of marked ability, and well known throughout the State, but they have long since been forgotten with one exception: this was a quiet reporter who sat just in front of the clerk's chair, day after day, week after week, throughout the entire session; a man of very few words, and with whom I had but the smallest acquaintance. Greatly surprised was I in after years when he rose to be editor of the leading Democratic organ in the State, and finally, under President Cleveland, a valuable Secretary of the Treasury of the United States: Daniel Manning.

In the distribution of committees there fell to me the chairmanship of the committee on education, or, as it was then called, the committee on literature. I was also made a member of the committee on cities and villages, afterward known as the committee on municipal affairs, and of the committee on the library. For the first of these positions I was somewhat fitted by my knowledge of the colleges and universities of the State, but in other respects was poorly fitted. For the second of these positions, that of the committee on cities and villages, I am free to confess that no one could be more wretchedly equipped; for the third, the committee on the library, my qualifications were those of a man who loved both to collect books and to read them.

But from the beginning I labored hard to fit myself, even at that late hour, for the duties pressing upon me, and gradually my practical knowledge was increased. Still there were sad gaps in it, and more than once I sat in the committee-room, looking exceedingly wise, no doubt, but with an entirely inadequate appreciation of the argument made before me.

During this first session my maiden speech was upon the governor's message, and I did my best to show what I thought His Excellency's shortcomings. Governor Seymour was a patriotic man, after his fashion, but the one agency which he regarded as divinely inspired was the Democratic party; his hatred of the Lincoln Administration was evidently deep, and it was also clear that he did not believe that the war for the Union could be brought to a successful termination.

With others I did my best against him; but while condemning his political course as severely as was possible to me, I never attacked his personal character or his motives. The consequence was that, while politically we were enemies, personally a sort of friendship remained, and I recall few things with more pleasure than my journeyings from Albany up the Mohawk Valley, sitting at his side, he giving accounts to me of the regions through which we passed, and the history connected with them, regarding which he was wonderfully well informed. If he hated New England as the breeding bed of radicalism, he loved New York passionately.

The first important duty imposed upon me as chairman of the committee on education was when there came up a bill for disposing of the proceeds of public lands appropriated by the government of the United States to institutions for scientific and technical education, under what was then known as the Morrill Act of 1862. Of these lands the share which had come to New York was close upon a million acres—a fair-sized European principality. Here, owing to circumstances which I shall detail in another chapter, I found myself in a contest with Mr. Cornell. I favored holding the fund together, letting it remain with the so-called ``People's College,'' to which it had been already voted, and insisted that the matter was one to be referred to the committee on education. Mr. Cornell, on the other hand, favored the division of the fund, and proposed a bill giving one half of it to the ``State Agricultural College'' recently established at Ovid on Seneca Lake. The end was that the matter was referred to a joint committee composed of the committees on literature and agriculture, that is, to Mr. Cornell's committee and my own, and as a result no meeting to consider the bill was held during that session.

Gradually I accumulated a reasonable knowledge of the educational interests intrusted to us, but ere long there came in from the superintendent of public instruction; Mr. Victor Rice, a plan for codifying the educational laws of the State. This necessitated a world of labor on my part. Section by section, paragraph by paragraph, phrase by phrase, I had to go through it, and night after night was devoted to studying every part of it in the light of previous legislation, the laws of other States, and such information as could be obtained from general sources. At last, after much alteration and revision, I brought forward the bill, secured its passage, and I may say that it was not without a useful influence upon the great educational interests of the State.

I now brought forward another educational bill. Various persons interested in the subject appeared urging the creation of additional State normal schools, in order to strengthen and properly develop the whole State school system. At that time there was but one; that one at Albany; and thus our great Commonwealth was in this respect far behind many of her sister States. The whole system was evidently suffering from the want of teachers thoroughly and practically equipped. Out of the multitude of projects presented, I combined what I thought the best parts of three or four in a single bill, and although at first there were loud exclamations against so lavish a use of public money, I induced the committee to report my bill, argued it in the Senate, overcame much opposition, and thus finally secured a law establishing four State normal schools.

Still another duty imposed upon me necessitated much work for which almost any other man in the Senate would have been better equipped by experience and knowledge of State affairs. The condition of things in the city of New York had become unbearable; the sway of Tammany Hall had gradually brought out elements of opposition such as before that time had not existed. Tweed was already making himself felt, though he had not yet assumed the complete control which he exercised afterward. The city system was bad throughout; but at the very center of evil stood what was dignified by the name of the ``Health Department.'' At the head of this was a certain Boole, who, having gained the title of ``city inspector,'' had the virtual appointment of a whole army of so-called ``health inspectors,'' ``health officers,'' and the like, charged with the duty of protecting the public from the inroads of disease; and never was there a greater outrage against a city than the existence of this body of men, absolutely unfit both as regarded character and education for the duties they pretended to discharge.

Against this state of things there had been developed a ``citizens' committee,'' representing the better elements of both parties,—its main representatives being Judge Whiting and Mr. Dorman B. Eaton,—and the evidence these gentlemen exhibited before the committee on municipal affairs, at Albany, as to the wretched condition of the city health boards was damning. Whole districts in the most crowded wards were in the worst possible sanitary condition. There was probably at that time nothing to approach it in any city in Christendom save, possibly, Naples. Great blocks of tenement houses were owned by men who kept low drinking bars in them, each of whom, having secured from Boole the position of ``health officer,'' steadily resisted all sanitary improvement or even inspection. Many of these tenement houses were known as ``fever nests''; through many of them small- pox frequently raged, and from them it was constantly communicated to other parts of the city.

Therefore it was that one morning Mr. Laimbeer, the only Republican member from the city, rose, made an impassioned speech on this condition of things, moved a committee to examine and report, and named as its members Judge Munger, myself, and the Democratic senator from the Buffalo district, Mr. Humphrey.

As a result, a considerable part of my second winter as senator was devoted to the work of this special committee in the city of New York. We held a sort of court, had with us the sergeant-at-arms, were empowered to send for persons and papers, summoned large numbers of witnesses, and brought to view a state of things even worse than anything any of us had suspected.

Against the citizens' committee, headed by Judge Whiting and Mr. Eaton, Boole, aided by a most successful Tammany lawyer of the old sort, John Graham, fought with desperation. In order to disarm his assailants as far as possible, he brought before the committee a number of his ``health officers'' and ``sanitary inspectors,'' whom he evidently thought best qualified to pass muster; but as one after another was examined and cross-examined, neither the cunning of Boole nor the skill of Mr. Graham could prevent the revelation of their utter unfitness. In the testimony of one of them the whole monstrous absurdity culminated. Judge Whiting examining him before the commission with reference to a case of small-pox which had occurred within his district, and to which, as health officer it was his duty to give attention, and asking him if he remembered the case, witness answered that he did. The following dialogue then ensued:

Q. Did you visit this sick person?

A. No, sir.

Q. Why did you not?

A. For the same reason that you would not.

Q. What was that reason?

A. I did n't want to catch the disease myself.

Q. Did the family have any sort of medical aid?

A. Yes.

Q. From whom did they have it?

A. From themselves; they was ``highjinnicks'' (hygienics).

Q. What do you mean by ``highjinnicks''?

A. I mean persons who doctor themselves.

After other answers of a similar sort the witness departed; but for some days afterward Judge Whiting edified the court, in his examination of Boole's health officers and inspectors, by finally asking each one whether he had any ``highjinnicks'' in his health district. Some answered that they had them somewhat; some thought that they had them ``pretty bad,'' others thought that there was ``not much of it,'' others claimed that they were ``quite serious''; and, finally, in the examination of a certain health officer who was very anxious to show that he had done his best, there occurred the following dialogue which brought down the house:

Q. (By Judge Whiting.) Mr. Health Officer, have you had any ``highjinnicks'' in your district?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. Much?

A. Yes, sir, quite a good deal.

Q. Have you done anything in regard to them?

A. Yes, sir; I have done all that I could.

Q. Witness, now, on your oath, do you know what the word ``highjinnicks'' means?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. What does it mean?

A. It means the bad smells that arise from standing water.

At this the court was dissolved in laughter, but Mr. Graham made the best that he could of it by the following questions and answers:

Q. Witness, have you ever learned Greek?

A. No, sir.

Q. Can you speak Greek?

A. No, sir.

Q. Do you understand Greek?

A. No, sir.

``Then you may stand down.''

The examination was long and complicated, so that with various departments to be examined there was no time to make a report before the close of the session, and the whole matter had to go over until the newly elected senate came into office the following year.

Shortly after the legislature had adjourned I visited the city of New York, and on arriving took up the evening paper which, more than any other, has always been supposed to represent the best sentiment of the city;—the ``New York Evening Post.'' The first article on which my eye fell was entitled ``The New York Senate Trifling,'' and the article went on to say that the Senate of the State had wasted its time, had practically done nothing for the city, had neglected its interests, had paid no attention to its demands, and the like. That struck me as ungrateful, for during the whole session we had worked early and late on questions relating to the city, had thwarted scores of evil schemes, and in some cases, I fear, had sacrificed the interests of the State at large to those of the city. Thus there dawned on me a knowledge of the reward which faithful legislators are likely to obtain.

Another of these city questions also showed the sort of work to be done in this thankless protection of the metropolis. During one of the sessions there had appeared in the lobby an excellent man, Dr. Levi Silliman Ives, formerly Protestant Episcopal Bishop of North Carolina, who, having been converted to Roman Catholicism, had become a layman and head of a protectory for Catholic children. With him came a number of others of his way of thinking, and a most determined effort was made to pass a bill sanctioning a gift of one half of the great property known as Ward's Island, adjacent to the city of New York, to this Roman Catholic institution.

I had strong sympathy with the men who carried on the protectory, and was quite willing to go as far as possible in aiding them, but was opposed to voting such a vast landed property belonging to the city into the hands of any church, and I fought the bill at all stages. In committee of the whole, and at first reading, priestly influence led a majority to vote for it, but at last, despite all the efforts of Tammany Hall, it was defeated.

It was during this first period of my service that the last and most earnest effort of the State was made for the war. Various circumstances had caused discourage- ment. It had become difficult to raise troops, yet it was most important to avoid a draft. In the city of New York, at the prospect of an enforced levy of troops, there had been serious uprisings which were only suppressed after a considerable loss of life. It was necessary to make one supreme effort, and the Republican members of the legislature decided to raise a loan of several millions for bounties to those who should volunteer. This decision was not arrived at without much opposition, and, strange to say, its most serious opponent was Horace Greeley, who came to Albany in the hope of defeating it. Invaluable as his services had been during the struggle which preceded the war, it must be confessed, even by his most devoted friends, that during the war he was not unfrequently a stumbling block. His cry ``on to Richmond'' during the first part of the struggle, his fearful alarm when, like the heroes in the ``Biglow Papers,'' he really discovered ``why baggonets is peaked,'' his terror as the conflict deepened, his proposals for special peace negotiations later—all these things were among the serious obstacles which President Lincoln had to encounter; and now, fearing burdens which, in his opinion, could not and would not be borne by the State, and conjuring up specters of trouble, he came to Albany and earnestly advised members of the legislature against the passage of the bounty bill. Fortunately, common sense triumphed, and the bill was passed.

Opposition came also from another and far different source. There was then in the State Senate a Democrat of the oldest and strongest type; a man who believed most devoutly in Jefferson and Jackson, and abhorred above all things, abolitionists and protectionists,—Dr. Allaben of Schoharie. A more thoroughly honest man never lived; he was steadily on the side of good legislation; but in the midst of the discussion regarding this great loan for bounties he arose and began a speech which, as he spoke but rarely, received general attention. He was deeply in earnest. He said (in substance), ``I shall vote for this loan; for of various fearful evils it seems the least. But I wish, here and now, and with the deepest sorrow, to record a prediction: I ask you to note it and to remember it, for it will be fulfilled, and speedily. This State debt which you are now incurring will never be paid. It cannot be paid. More than that, none of the vast debts incurred for military purposes, whether by the Nation or by the States, will be paid; the people will surely repudiate them. Nor is this all. Not one dollar of all the treasury notes issued by the United States will ever be redeemed. Your paper currency has already depreciated much and will depreciate more and more; all bonds and notes, State and National, issued to continue this fratricidal war will be whirled into the common vortex of repudiation. I say this with the deepest pain, for I love my country, but I cannot be blind to the teachings of history.'' He then went on to cite the depreciation of our revolutionary currency, and, at great length pictured the repudiation of the assignats during the French Revolution. He had evidently read Alison and Thiers carefully, and he spoke like an inspired prophet.

As Senator Allaben thus spoke, Senator Fields of New York quietly left his seat and came to me. He was a most devoted servant of Tammany, but was what was known in those days as a War Democrat. His native pugnacity caused him to feel that the struggle must be fought out, whereas Democrats of a more philosophic sort, like Allaben, known in those days as ``Copperheads,'' sought peace at any price. Therefore it was that, while Senator Allaben was pouring out with the deepest earnestness these prophecies of repudiation, Mr. Fields came round to my desk and said to me: ``You have been a professor of history; you are supposed to know something about the French Revolution; if your knowledge is good for anything, why in h—l don't you use it now?''

This exhortation was hardly necessary, and at the close of Senator Allaben's remarks I arose and presented another view of the case. It happened by a curious coin- cidence that, having made a few years before a very careful study of the issues of paper money during the French Revolution, I had a portion of my very large collection of assignats, mandats, and other revolutionary currency in Albany, having brought it there in order to show it to one or two of my friends who had expressed an interest in the subject.

Holding this illustrative material in reserve I showed the whole amount of our American paper currency in circulation to be about eight hundred million dollars, of which only about one half was of the sort to which the senator referred. I then pointed to the fact that, although the purchasing power of the French franc at the time of the Revolution was fully equal to the purchasing power of the American dollar of our own time, the French revolutionary government issued, in a few months, forty- five thousand millions of francs in paper money, and had twenty-five thousand millions of it in circulation at the time when the great depression referred to by Dr. Allaben had taken place.

I also pointed out the fact that our American notes were now so thoroughly well engraved that counterfeiting was virtually impossible, so that one of the leading European governments had its notes engraved in New York, on this account, whereas, the French assignats could be easily counterfeited, and, as a matter of fact, were counterfeited in vast numbers, the British government pouring them into France through the agency of the French royalists, especially in Brittany, almost by shiploads, and to such purpose, that the French government officials themselves were at last unable to discriminate between the genuine money and the counterfeit. I also pointed out the connection of our national banking system with our issues of bonds and paper, one of the happiest and most statesmanlike systems ever devised, whereas, in France there was practically no redemption for the notes, save as they could be used for purchasing from the government the doubtful titles to the confiscated houses and lands of the clergy and aristocracy.

The speech of Senator Allaben had exercised a real effect, but these simple statements, which I supported by evidence, and especially by exhibiting specimens of the assignats bearing numbers showing that the issues had risen into the thousands of millions, and in a style of engraving most easily counterfeited, sufficed to convince the Senate that no such inference as was drawn by the senator was warranted by the historical facts in the case.

A vote was taken, the bill was passed, the troops were finally raised, and the debt was extinguished not many years afterward.

It is a pleasure for me to remember that at the close of my remarks, which I took pains to make entirely courteous to Dr. Allaben, he came to me, and strongly opposed as we were in politics, he grasped me by the hand most heartily, expressed his amazement at seeing these assignats, mandats, and other forms of French revolutionary issues, of which he had never before seen one, and thanked me for refuting his arguments. It is one of the very few cases I have ever known, in which a speech converted an opponent.

Perhaps a word more upon this subject may not be without interest. My attention had been drawn to the issues of paper money during the French Revolution, by my studies of that period for my lectures on modern history at the University of Michigan, about five years before. In taking up this special subject I had supposed that a few days would be sufficient for all the study needed; but I became more and more interested in it, obtained a large mass of documents from France, and then and afterward accumulated by far the largest collection of French paper money, of all the different issues, sorts, and amounts, as well as of collateral newspaper reports and financial documents, ever brought into our country. The study of the subject for my class, which I had hoped to confine to a few days, thus came to absorb my leisure for months, and I remember that, at last, when I had given my lecture on the subject to my class at the university, a feeling of deep regret, almost of remorse, came over me, as I thought how much valuable time I had given to a subject that, after all, had no bearing on any present problem, which would certainly be forgotten by the majority of my hearers, and probably by myself.

These studies were made mainly in 1859. Then the lectures were laid aside, and though, from time to time, when visiting France, I kept on collecting illustrative materials, no further use was made of them until this debate during the session of the State Senate of 1864.

Out of this offhand speech upon the assignats grew a paper which, some time afterward, I presented in Washington before a number of members of the Senate and House, at the request of General Garfield, who was then a representative, and of his colleague, Mr. Chittenden of Brooklyn. In my audience were some of the foremost men of both houses, and among them such as Senators Bayard, Stevenson, Morrill, Conkling, Edmunds, Gibson, and others. This speech, which was the result of my earlier studies, improved by material acquired later, and most carefully restudied and verified, I repeated before a large meeting of the Union League Club at New York, Senator Hamilton Fish presiding. The paper thus continued to grow and, having been published in New York by Messrs. Appleton, a cheap edition of it was circulated some years afterward, largely under the auspices of General Garfield, to act as an antidote to the ``Greenback Craze'' then raging through Ohio and the Western States.

Finally, having been again restudied, in the light of my ever-increasing material, it was again reprinted and circulated as a campaign document during the struggle against Mr. Bryan and the devotees of the silver standard in the campaign of 1896, copies of it being spread very widely, especially through the West, and placed, above all, in nearly every public library, university, college, and normal school in the Union.

I allude to this as showing to any young student who may happen to read these recollections, the value of a careful study of any really worthy subject, even though, at first sight, it may seem to have little relation to present affairs.

In the spring of 1864, at the close of my first year in the State Senate, came the national convention at Baltimore for the nomination of President and Vice-President, and to that convention I went as a substitute delegate. Although I have attended several similar assemblages since, no other has ever seemed to me so interesting. It met in an old theater, on one of the noisiest corners in the city, and, as it was June, and the weather already very warm, it was necessary, in order to have as much air as possible, to remove curtains and scenery from the stage and throw the back of the theater open to the street. The result was, indeed, a circulation of air, but, with this, a noise from without which confused everything within.

In selecting a president for the convention a new departure was made, for the man chosen was a clergyman; one of the most eminent divines in the Union,—the Rev. Dr. Robert Breckinridge of Kentucky, who, on the religious side, had been distinguished as moderator of the Presbyterian General Assembly, and on the political side was revered for the reason that while very nearly all his family, and especially his sons and nephews, including the recent Vice-President, had plunged into the Confederate service, he still remained a staunch and sturdy adherent of the Union and took his stand with the Republican party. He was a grand old man, but hardly suited to the presidency of a political assemblage.

The proceedings were opened with a prayer by a delegate, who had been a colonel in the Union army, and was now a Methodist clergyman. The heads of all were bowed, and the clergyman-soldier began with the words of the Lord's Prayer; but when he had recited about one half of it he seemed to think that he could better it, and he therefore substituted for the latter half a petition which began with these words: ``Grant, O Lord, that the ticket here to be nominated may command a majority of the suffrages of the American people.'' To those accustomed to the more usual ways of conducting service this was something of a shock; still there was this to be said in favor of the reverend colonel's amendment,—he had faith to ask for what he wanted.

This opening prayer being ended, there came a display of parliamentary tactics by leaders from all parts of the Union: one after another rose in this or that part of the great assemblage to move this or that resolution, and the confusion which soon prevailed was fearful, the noise of the street being steadily mingled with the tumult of the house. But good Dr. Breckinridge did his best, and in each case put the motion he had happened to hear. Thereupon each little group, supposing that the resolution which had been carried was the one it had happened to hear, moved additional resolutions based upon it. These various resolutions were amended in all sorts of ways, in all parts of the house, the good doctor putting the resolutions and amendments which happened to reach his ear, and declaring them ``carried'' or ``lost,'' as the case might be. Thereupon ensued additional resolutions and amendments based upon those which their movers supposed to have been passed, with the result that, in about twenty minutes no one in the convention, and least of all its president, knew what we had done or what we ought to do. Each part of the house firmly believed that the resolutions which it had heard were those which had been carried, and the clash and confusion between them all seemed hopeless.

Various eminent parliamentarians from different parts of the Union arose to extricate the convention from this welter, but generally, when they resumed their seats, left the matter more muddled than when they arose.

A very near approach to success was made by my dear friend George William Curtis of New York, who, in admirable temper, and clear voice, unraveled the tangle, as he understood it, and seemed just about to start the convention fairly on its way, when some marplot arose to suggest that some minor point in Mr. Curtis's exposition was not correct, thus calling out a tumult of conflicting statements, the result of which was yet greater confusion, so that we seemed fated to adjourn pell-mell into the street and be summoned a second time into the hall, in order to begin the whole proceedings over again.

But just at this moment arose Henry J. Raymond, editor of the ``New York Times.'' His parliamentary training had been derived not only from his service as lieutenant- governor of the State, but from attendance on a long series of conventions, State and National. He had waited for his opportunity, and when there came a lull of despair, he arose and, in a clear, strong, pleasant voice, made an alleged explanation of the situation. As a piece of parliamentary tactics, it was masterly though from another point of view it was comical. The fact was that he developed a series of motions and amendments:—a whole line of proceedings,—mainly out of his own interior consciousness. He began somewhat on this wise: ``Mr. President: The eminent senator from Vermont moved a resolution to such an effect; this was amended as follows, by my distinguished friend from Ohio, and was passed as amended. Thereupon the distinguished senator from Iowa arose and made the following motion, which, with an amendment from the learned gentleman from Massachusetts, was passed; thereupon a resolution was moved by the honorable gentleman from Pennsylvania, which was declared by the chair to be carried; and now, sir, I submit the following motion,'' and he immediately followed these words by moving a procedure to business and the appointment of committees. Sundry marplots, such as afflict all public bodies did, indeed, start to their feet, but a universal cry of ``question'' drowned all their efforts, and Mr. Raymond's motion was carried, to all appearance unanimously.

Never was anything of the kind more effectual. Though most, if not all, the proceedings thus stated by Mr. Raymond were fictions of his own imagination, they served the purpose; his own resolution started the whole machinery and set the convention prosperously on its way.

The general opinion of the delegates clearly favored the renomination of Mr. Lincoln. It was an exhibition not only of American common sense, but of sentiment. The American people and the public bodies which represent them are indeed practical and materialistic to the last degree, but those gravely err who ignore a very different side of their character. No people and no public bodies are more capable of yielding to deep feeling. So it was now proven. It was felt that not to renominate Mr. Lincoln would be a sort of concession to the enemy. He had gained the confidence and indeed the love of the entire Republican party. There was a strong conviction that, having suffered so much during the terrible stress and strain of the war, he ought to be retained as President after the glorious triumph of the Nation which was felt to be approaching.

But in regard to the second place there was a different feeling. The Vice-President who had served with Mr. Lincoln during his first term, Mr. Hamlin of Maine, was a steadfast, staunch, and most worthy man, but it was felt that the loyal element in the border States ought to be recognized, and, therefore it was that, for the Vice- Presidency was named a man who had begun life in the lowest station, who had hardly learned to read until he had become of age, who had always shown in Congress the most bitter hatred of the slave barons of the South, whom he considered as a caste above his own, but who had distinguished himself, as a man, by high civic courage, and as a senator by his determined speeches in behalf of the Union. This was Andrew Johnson of Tennessee, a man honest, patriotic, but narrow and crabbed, who turned out to be the most unfortunate choice ever made, with the possible exception of John Tyler, twenty-four years before.

The convention having adjourned, a large number of delegates visited Washington, to pay their respects to the President, and among them myself. The city seemed to me hardly less repulsive than at my first visit eight years before; it was still unkempt and dirty,—made indeed all the more so by the soldiery encamped about it, and marching through it.

Shortly after our arrival our party, perhaps thirty in number, went to the White House and were shown into the great East Room. We had been there for about ten minutes when one of the doors nearest the street was opened, and a young man entered who held the door open for the admission of a tall, ungainly man dressed in a rather dusty suit of black. My first impression was that this was some rural tourist who had blundered into the place; for, really, he seemed less at home there than any other person present, and looked about for an instant, as if in doubt where he should go; but presently he turned toward our group, which was near the southwestern corner of the room, and then I saw that it was the President. As he came toward us in a sort of awkward, perfunctory manner his face seemed to me one of the saddest I had ever seen, and when he had reached us he held out his hand to the first stranger, then to the second, and so on, all with the air of a melancholy automaton. But, suddenly, some one in the company said something which amused him, and instantly there came in his face a most marvelous transformation. I have never seen anything like it in any other human being. His features were lighted, his eyes radiant, he responded to sundry remarks humorously, though dryly, and thenceforward was cordial and hearty. Taking my hand in his he shook it in the most friendly way, with a kindly word, and so passed cheerily on to the others until the ceremony was finished.

Years afterward, noticing in the rooms of his son, Mr. Robert Lincoln, our minister at London, a portrait of his father, and seeing that it had the same melancholy look noticeable in all President Lincoln's portraits, I alluded to this change in his father's features, and asked if any artist had ever caught the happier expression. Mr. Robert Lincoln answered that, so far as he knew, no portrait of his father in this better mood had ever been taken; that when any attempt was made to photograph him or paint his portrait, he relapsed into his melancholy mood, and that this is what has been transmitted to us by all who have ever attempted to give us his likeness.

In the campaign which followed this visit to Washington I tried to do my duty in speaking through my own and adjacent districts, but there was little need of speeches; the American people had made up their minds, and they re<e:>lected Mr. Lincoln triumphantly.



During my second year in the State Senate, 1865, came the struggle for the charter of Cornell University, the details of which will be given in another chapter.

Two things during this session are forever stamped into my memory. The first was the news of Lee's surrender on April 9, 1865: though it had been daily expected, it came as a vast relief.

It was succeeded by a great sorrow. On the morning of April 15, 1865, coming down from my rooms in the Delavan House at Albany, I met on the stairway a very dear old friend, the late Charles Sedgwick, of Syracuse, one of the earliest and most devoted of Republicans, who had served with distinction in the House of Representatives, and had more than once been widely spoken of for the United States Senate. Coming toward me with tears in his eyes and voice, hardly able to speak, he grasped me by the hand and gasped the words, ``Lincoln is murdered.'' I could hardly believe myself awake: the thing seemed impossible;—too wicked, too monstrous, too cruel to be true; but alas! confirmation of the news came speedily and the Presidency was in the hands of Andrew Johnson.

Shortly afterward the body of the murdered President, borne homeward to Illinois, rested overnight in the State Capitol, and preparations were made for its reception. I was one of the bearers chosen by the Senate and was also elected to pronounce one of the orations. Rarely have I felt an occasion so deeply: it has been my lot during my life to be present at the funerals of various great rulers and magnates; but at none of these was so deep an impression made upon me as by the body of Lincoln lying in the assembly chamber at Albany, quiet and peaceful at last.

Of the speeches made in the Senate on the occasion, mine being the only one which was not read or given from memory, attracted some attention, and I was asked especially for the source of a quotation which occurred in it, and which was afterward dwelt upon by some of my hearers. It was the result of a sudden remembrance of the lines in Milton's ``Samson Agonistes,'' beginning:

   ``Oh, how comely it is, and how reviving
     To the spirits of just men long oppressed,
     When God into the hands of their deliverer
     Puts invincible might
     To quell the mighty of the earth, the oppressor,
     The brute and boisterous force of violent men,'' etc.[2]

[2] Milton's ``Samson Agonistes,'' lines 1268-1280.

The funeral was conducted with dignity and solemnity. When the coffin was opened and we were allowed to take one last look at Lincoln's face, it impressed me as having the same melancholy expression which I had seen upon it when he entered the East Room at the White House. In its quiet sadness there seemed to have been no change. There was no pomp in the surroundings; all, though dignified, was simple. Very different was it from the show and ceremonial at the funeral of the Emperor Nicholas which I had attended ten years before;—but it was even more impressive. At the head of the coffin stood General Dix, who had served so honorably in the War of 1812, in the Senate of the United States, in the Civil War, and who was afterward to serve with no less fidelity as governor of the State. Nothing could be more fitting than such a chieftaincy in the guard of honor.

In the following autumn the question of my renomination came.

It had been my fortune to gain, first of all, the ill will of Tammany Hall, and the arms of Tammany were long. Its power was exercised strongly through its henchmen not only in the Democratic party throughout the State, but especially in the Republican party, and, above all, among sundry contractors of the Erie Canal, many of whose bills I had opposed, and it was understood that they and their friends were determined to defeat me.

Moreover, it was thought by some that I had mortally offended sundry Catholic priests by opposing their plan for acquiring Ward's Island, and that I had offended various Protestant bodies, especially the Methodists, by defeating their efforts to divide up the Land Grant Fund between some twenty petty sectarian colleges, and by exerting myself to secure it for Cornell University, which, because it was unsectarian, many called ``godless.''

Though I made speeches through the district as formerly, I asked no pledges of any person, but when the nominating convention assembled I was renominated in spite of all opposition, and triumphantly:—a gifted and honorable man, the late David J. Mitchell, throwing himself heartily into the matter, and in an eloquent speech absolutely silencing the whole Tammany and canal combination. He was the most successful lawyer in the district before juries, and never did his best qualities show themselves more fully than on this occasion. My majority on the first ballot was overwhelming, the nomination was immediately made unanimous, and at the election I had the full vote.

Arriving in Albany at the beginning of my third year of service—1866—I found myself the only member of the committee appointed to investigate matters in the city of New York who had been re<e:>lected. Under these circumstances no report from the committee was possible; but the committee on municipal affairs, having brought in a bill to legislate out of office the city inspector and all his associates, and to put in a new and thoroughly qualified health board, I made a carefully prepared speech, which took the character of a report. The facts which I brought out were sufficient to condemn the whole existing system twenty times over. By testimony taken under oath the monstrosities of the existing system were fully revealed, as well as the wretched character of the ``health officers,'' ``inspectors,'' and the whole army of underlings, and I exhibited statistics carefully ascertained and tabulated, showing the absurd disproportion of various classes of officials to each other, their appointment being made, not to preserve the public health, but to carry the ward caucuses and elections. During this exposure Boole, the head of the whole system, stood not far from me on the floor, his eyes fastened upon me, with an expression in which there seemed to mingle fear, hatred, and something else which I could hardly divine. His face seemed to me, even then, the face of a madman. So it turned out. The new bill drove him out of office, and, in a short time, into a madhouse.

I have always thought upon the fate of this man with a sort of sadness. Doubtless in his private relations he had good qualities, but to no public service that I have ever been able to render can I look back with a stronger feeling that my work was good. It unquestionably resulted in saving the lives of hundreds, nay thousands, of men, women, and children; and yet it is a simple fact that had I, at any time within a year or two afterward, visited those parts of the city of New York which I had thus benefited, and been recognized by the dwellers in the tenement houses as the man who had opposed their dramshop- keepers and brought in a new health board, those very people whose lives and the lives of whose children I had thus saved would have mobbed me, and, if possible, would have murdered me.

Shortly after the close of the session I was invited to give the Phi Beta Kappa address at the Yale commencement, and as the question of the reconstruction of the Union at the close of the war was then the most important subject before the country, and as it seemed to me best to strike while the iron was hot, my subject was ``The Greatest Foe of Republics.'' The fundamental idea was that the greatest foe of modern states, and especially of republics, is a political caste supported by rights and privileges. The treatment was mainly historical, one of the main illustrations being drawn from the mistake made by Richelieu in France, who, when he had completely broken down such a caste, failed to destroy its privileges, and so left a body whose oppressions and assumptions finally brought on the French Revolution. Though I did not draw the inference, I presume that my auditors drew it easily: it was simply that now, when the slave power in the Union was broken down, it should not be allowed to retain the power which had cost the country so dear.

The address was well received, and two days later there came to me what, under other circumstances, I would have most gladly accepted, the election to a professorship at Yale, which embraced the history of art and the direction of the newly founded Street School of Art. The thought of me for the place no doubt grew out of the fact that, during my stay in college, I had shown an interest in art, and especially in architecture, and that after my return from Europe I had delivered in the Yale chapel an address on ``Cathedral Builders and Mediaeval Sculptors'' which was widely quoted.

It was with a pang that I turned from this offer. To all appearance, then and now, my life would have been far happier in such a professorship, but to accept it was clearly impossible. The manner in which it was tendered me seemed to me almost a greater honor than the professorship itself. I was called upon by a committee of the governing body of the university, composed of the man whom of all in New Haven I most revered, Dr. Bacon, and the governor of the State, my old friend Joseph R. Hawley, who read to me the resolution of the governing body and requested my acceptance of the election. Nothing has ever been tendered me which I have felt to be a greater honor.

A month later, on the 28th of August, 1866, began at
Albany what has been very rare in the history of New
York, a special session of the State Senate:—in a sense,
a court of impeachment.

Its purpose was to try the county judge of Oneida for complicity in certain illegal proceedings regarding bounties. ``Bounty jumping'' had become a very serious evil, and it was claimed that this judicial personage had connived at it.

I must confess that, as the evidence was developed, my feelings as a man and my duties as a sworn officer of the State were sadly at variance. It came out that this judge was endeavoring to support, on the wretched salary of $1800 a year allowed by the county, not only his own family, but also the family of his brother, who, if I remember rightly, had lost his life during the war, and it seemed to me a great pity that, as a penalty upon the people of the county, he could not be quartered upon them as long as he lived. For they were the more culpable criminals. Belonging to one of the richest divisions of the State, with vast interests at stake, they had not been ashamed to pay a judge this contemptible pittance, and they deserved to have their law badly administered. This feeling was undoubtedly wide-spread in the Senate; but, on the other hand, there was the duty we were sworn to perform, and the result was that the judge was removed from office.

During this special session of the State Senate it was entangled in a curious episode of national history. The new President, Mr. Andrew Johnson, had been induced to take an excursion into the north and especially into the State of New York. He was accompanied by Mr. Seward, the Secretary of State; General Grant, with his laurels fresh from the Civil War; Admiral Farragut, who had so greatly distinguished himself during the same epoch, and others of great merit. It was clear that Secretary Seward thought that he could establish the popularity of the new administration in the State of New York by means of his own personal influence; but this proved the greatest mistake of his life.

On the arrival of the presidential party in New York City, various elements there joined in a showy reception to them, and all were happy. But the scene soon changed. From the city Mr. Seward, with the President, his associates, and a large body of citizens more or less distinguished, came up the Hudson River in one of the finest steamers, a great banquet being given on board. But on approaching Albany, Mr. Seward began to discover his mistake; for the testimonials of admiration and respect toward the President grew less and less hearty as the party moved northward. This was told me afterward by Mr. Thurlow Weed, Mr. Seward's lifelong friend, and probably the most competent judge of such matters in the United States. At various places where the President was called out to speak, he showed a bitterness toward those who opposed his policy which more and more displeased his audiences. One pet phrase of his soon excited derision. The party were taking a sort of circular tour, going northward by the eastern railway and steamer lines, turning westward at Albany, and returning by western lines; hence the President, in one of his earlier speeches, alluded to his journey as ``swinging round the circle.'' The phrase seemed to please him, and he constantly repeated it in his speeches, so that at last the whole matter was referred to by the people at large, contemptuously, as ``swinging round the circle,'' reference being thereby made, not merely to the President's circular journey, but to the alleged veering of his opinions from those he professed when elected.

As soon as the State Senate was informed of the probable time when the party would arrive at Albany, a resolution was introduced which welcomed in terms: ``The President of the United States, Andrew Johnson; the Secretary of State, William H. Seward; the General of the Army, Ulysses S. Grant; and the Admiral of the Navy, David G. Farragut.'' The feeling against President Johnson and his principal adviser, Mr. Seward, on account of the break which had taken place between them and the majority of the Republican party, was immediately evident, for it was at once voiced by amending the resolution so that it left out all names, and merely tendered a respectful welcome, in terms, to ``The President of the United States, the Secretary of State, the General of the Army, and the Admiral of the Navy.'' But suddenly came up a second amendment which was little if anything short of an insult to the President and Secretary. It extended the respectful welcome, in terms, to ``The President of the United States; to the Secretary of State; to Ulysses S. Grant, General of the Army; and to David G. Farragut, Admiral of the Navy''; thus making the first part, relating to the President and the Secretary of State, merely a mark of respect for the offices they held, and the latter part a tribute to Grant and Farragut, not only official, but personal. Most earnest efforts were made to defeat the resolution in this form. It was pathetic to see old Republicans who had been brought up to worship Mr. Seward plead with their associates not to put so gross an insult upon a man who had rendered such services to the Republican party, to the State, and to the Nation. All in vain! In spite of all our opposition, the resolution, as amended in this latter form, was carried, indicating the clear purpose of the State Senate to honor simply and solely the offices of the President and of the Secretary of State, but just as distinctly to honor the persons of the General of the Army and the Admiral of the Navy.

On the arrival of the party in Albany they came up to the State House, and were received under the portico by Governor Fenton and his staff. It was perfectly understood that Governor Fenton, though a Republican, was in sympathy with the party in the Senate which had put this slight upon the President and Secretary of State and Mr. Seward's action was characteristic. Having returned a curt and dry reply to the guarded phrases of the governor, he pressed by him with the President and his associates to the ``Executive Chamber'' near the entrance, the way to which he, of all men, well knew. In that room the Senate were assembled and, on the entrance of the visitors, Governor Fenton endeavored to introduce them in a formal speech; but Mr. Seward was too prompt for him; he took the words out of the governor's mouth and said, in a way which thrilled all of us who had been brought up to love and admire him, ``In the Executive Chamber of the State of New York I surely need no introduction. I bring to you the President of the United States; the chief magistrate who is restoring peace and prosperity to our country.''

The whole scene impressed me greatly; there rushed upon me a strong tide of recollection as I contrasted what Governor Fenton had been and was, with what Governor Seward had been and was: it all seemed to me a ghastly mistake. There stood Fenton, marking the lowest point in the choice of a State executive ever reached in our Commonwealth by the Republican party: there stood Seward who, from his boyhood in college, had fought courageously, steadily, powerfully, and at last triumphantly, against the domination of slavery; who, as State senator, as governor, as the main founder of the Republican party, as senator of the United States and finally as Secretary of State, had rendered service absolutely inestimable; who for years had braved storms of calumny and ridicule and finally the knife of an assassin; and who was now adhering to Andrew Johnson simply because he knew that if he let go his hold, the President would relapse into the hands of men opposed to any rational settlement of the questions between the North and South. I noticed on Seward's brow the deep scar made by the assassin's knife when Lincoln was murdered; all the others, greatly as I admired Grant and Farragut, passed with me at that time for nothing; my eyes were fixed upon the Secretary of State.

After all was over I came out with my colleague, Judge Folger, and as we left the Capitol he said: ``What was the matter with you in the governor's room?'' I answered: ``Nothing was the matter with me; what do you mean?'' He said: ``The moment Seward began to speak you fastened your eyes intently upon him, you turned so pale that I thought you were about to drop, and I made ready to seize you and prevent your falling.'' I then confessed to him the feeling which was doubtless the cause of this change of countenance.

As one who cherishes a deep affection for my native State and for men who have made it great, I may be allowed here to express the hope that the day will come when it will redeem itself from the just charge of ingratitude, and do itself honor by honoring its two greatest governors, De Witt Clinton and William H. Seward. No statue of either of them stands at Albany, the place of all others where such memorials should be erected, not merely as an honor to the two statesmen concerned, but as a lesson to the citizens of the State;—pointing out the qualities which ought to ensure public gratitude, but which, thus far, democracies have least admired.



At the beginning of my fourth year at Albany, in 1867, came an election to the Senate of the United States. Of the two senators then representing the State, one, Edwin D. Morgan, had been governor, and combined the qualities of a merchant prince and of a shrewd politician; the other, Ira Harris, had been a highly respected judge, and was, from every point of view, a most worthy man: but unfortunately neither of these gentlemen seemed to exercise any adequate influence in solving the main questions then before Congress.

No more important subjects have ever come before that body than those which arose during the early years of the Civil War, and it was deeply felt throughout the State that neither of the senators fitly uttered its voice or exercised its influence.

Mr. Cornell, with whom I had then become intimate, was never censorious; rarely did he say anything in disapproval of any man; he was charitable in his judgments, and generally preferred to be silent rather than severe; but I remember that on his return from a stay in Washington, he said to me indignantly: ``While at the Capitol I was ashamed of the State of New York: one great question after another came up; bills of the highest importance were presented and discussed by senators from Ohio, Vermont, Missouri, Indiana, Iowa, and the rest; but from New York never a word!''

The question now was, who should succeed Senator Harris? He naturally desired a second term, and it would have given me pleasure to support him, for he was an old and honored friend of my father and mother, they having been, in their early life, his neighbors and schoolmates, and their friendship having descended to me; but like others I was disappointed that Senator Harris had not taken a position more fitting. His main efforts seemed to be in the line of friendly acts for his constituents. In so far as these were done for soldiers in the army they were praiseworthy; though it was generally felt that while arising primarily from a natural feeling of benevolence, they were mainly devoted to securing a body of friends throughout the State, who would support him when the time should come for his re<e:>lection. Apparently with the same object, he was a most devoted supporter of New York office-seekers of all sorts. He had pleasing personal characteristics, but it was reported that Mr. Lincoln, referring to the senator's persistency in pressing candidates for office, once said: ``I never think of going to sleep now without first looking under my bed to see if Judge Harris is not there wanting something for somebody.''

Another candidate was Judge Noah Davis, then of Lockport, also a man of high character, of excellent legal abilities, a good speaker, and one who, had he been elected, would have done honor to the State. But on looking about I discovered, as I thought, a better candidate. Judge Bailey, of Oneida County, had called my attention to the claims of Mr. Roscoe Conkling, then a member of Congress from the Oneida district, who had distinguished himself as an effective speaker, a successful lawyer, and an honest public servant. He had, to be sure, run foul of Mr. Blaine of Maine, and had received, in return for what Mr. Blaine considered a display of offensive manners, a very serious oratorical castigation; but he had just fought a good fight which had drawn the attention of the whole State to him. A coalition having been formed between the anti-war Democrats and a number of disaffected Republicans in his district to defeat his re<e:>lection to Congress, it had seemed likely to overwhelm him and drive him out of public life, and one thing seemed for a time likely to prove fatal to him:—the ``New York Tribune,'' the great organ of the party, edited by Horace Greeley, gave him no effective support. But the reason was apparent later when it became known that Mr. Greeley was to be a candidate for the senatorship, and it was evidently felt that should Mr. Conkling triumph in such a struggle, he would be a very serious competitor. The young statesman had shown himself equal to the emergency. He had fought his battle without the aid of Mr. Greeley and the ``Tribune,'' and won it, and, as a result, had begun to be thought of as a promising candidate for the United States senatorship. I had never spoken with him; had hardly seen him; but I had watched his course closely, and one thing especially wrought powerfully with me in his favor. The men who had opposed him were of the same sort with those who had opposed me, and as I was proud of their opposition, I felt that he had a right to be so. The whole force of Tammany henchmen and canal contractors throughout the State honored us both with their enmity.

It was arranged among Mr. Conkling's supporters that, at the great caucus which was to decide the matter, Mr. Conkling's name should be presented by the member of the assembly representing his district, Ellis Roberts, a man of eminent character and ability, who, having begun by taking high rank as a scholar at Yale, had become one of the foremost editors of the State, and had afterward distinguished himself not only in the State legislature, but in Congress, and as the head of the independent treasury in the city of New York. The next question was as to the speech seconding the nomination. It was proposed that Judge Folger should make it, but as he showed a curious diffidence in the matter, and preferred to preside over the caucus, the duty was tendered to me.

At the hour appointed the assembly hall of the old Capitol was full; floor and galleries were crowded to suffocation. The candidates were duly presented, and, among them, Mr. Conkling by Mr. Roberts. I delayed my speech somewhat. The general course of it had been thought out beforehand, but the phraseology and sequence of argument were left to the occasion. I felt deeply the importance of nominating Mr. Conkling, and when the moment came threw my heart into it. I was in full health and vigor, and soon felt that a very large part of the audience was with me. Presently I used the argument that the great State of New York, which had been so long silent in the highest councils of the Nation, demanded A VOICE. Instantly the vast majority of all present, in the galleries, in the lobbies, and on the floor, rose in quick response to the sentiment and cheered with all their might. There had been no such outburst in the whole course of the evening. Evidently this was the responsive chord, and having gone on with the main line of my argument, I at last closed with the same declaration in different form;—that our great Commonwealth,—the most important in the whole sisterhood of States,—which had been so long silent in the Senate, WISHED TO BE HEARD, and that, therefore, I seconded the nomination of Mr. Conkling. Immediately the whole house rose to this sentiment again and again, with even greater evidence of approval than before; the voting began and Mr. Conkling was finally nominated, if my memory is correct, by a majority of three.

The moment the vote was declared the whole assembly broke loose; the pressure being removed, there came a general effervescence of good feeling, and I suddenly found myself raised on the shoulders of stalwart men who stood near, and rapidly carried over the heads of the crowd, through many passages and corridors, my main anxiety being to protect my head so that my brains might not be knocked out against stairways and doorways; but presently, when fairly dazed and bewildered, I was borne into a room in the old Congress Hall Hotel, and deposited safely in the presence of a gentleman standing with his back to the fire, who at once extended his hand to me most cordially, and to whom I said, ``God bless you, Senator Conkling. ``A most hearty response followed, and so began my closer acquaintance with the new senator.

Mr. Conkling's election followed as a thing of course, and throughout the State there was general approval.

During this session of 1867 I found myself involved in two rather curious struggles, and with no less a personage than my colleague, Judge Folger.

As to the first of these I had long felt, and still feel, that of all the weaknesses in our institutions, one of the most serious is our laxity in the administration of the criminal law. No other civilized country, save possibly the lower parts of Italy and Sicily, shows anything to approach the number of unpunished homicides, in proportion to the population, which are committed in sundry parts of our own country, and indeed in our country taken as a whole. In no country is the deterrent effect of punishment so vitiated by delay; in no country is so much facility given to chicanery, to futile appeals, and to every possible means of clearing men from the due penalty of high crime, and especially the crime of murder.

It was in view of this fact that, acting on the advice of an old and able judge whose experience in criminal practice had been very large, I introduced into the Senate a bill to improve the procedure in criminal cases. The judge just referred to had shown me the absurdities arising from the fact that testimony in regard to character, even in the case of professional criminals, was not allowed save in rebuttal. It was notorious that professional criminals charged with high crimes, especially in our large cities, frequently went free because, while the testimony to the particular crime was not absolutely overwhelming, testimony to their character as professional criminals, which, in connection with the facts established, would have been absolutely conclusive, could not be admitted. I therefore proposed that testimony as to character in any criminal case might be introduced by the prosecution if, after having been privately submitted to the judge, he should decide that the ends of justice would be furthered thereby.

The bill was referred to the Senate judiciary committee, of which Judge Folger was chairman. After it had lain there some weeks and the judge had rather curtly answered my questions as to when it would be reported, it became clear to me that the committee had no intention of reporting it at all, whereupon I introduced a resolution requesting them to report it, at the earliest day possible, for the consideration of the Senate, and this was passed in spite of the opposition of the committee. Many days then passed; no report was made, and I therefore introduced a resolution taking the bill out of the hands of the committee and bringing it directly before the committee of the whole. This was most earnestly resisted by Judge Folger and by his main associate on the committee, Henry Murphy of Brooklyn. On the other hand I had, to aid me, Judge Lowe, also a lawyer of high standing, and indeed all the lawyers in the body who were not upon the judiciary committee. The result was that my motion was successful; the bill was taken from the committee and immediately brought under discussion.

In reply to the adverse arguments of Judge Folger and Mr. Murphy, which were to the effect that my bill was an innovation upon the criminal law of the State, I pointed out the fact that evidence as to the character of the person charged with crime is often all-important; that in our daily life we act upon that fact as the simplest dictate of common sense; that if any senator present had his watch stolen from his room he would be very slow to charge the crime against the servant who was last seen in the room, even under very suspicious circumstances; but if he found that the servant had been discharged for theft from various places previously, this would be more important than any other circumstance. I showed how safeguards which had been devised in the middle ages to protect citizens from the feudal lord were now used to aid criminals in evading the law, and I ended by rather unjustly compar- ing Judge Folger to the great Lord Chancellor Eldon, of whom it was said that, despite his profound knowledge of the law, ``no man ever did so much good as he prevented.'' The result was that the bill was passed by the Senate in spite of the judiciary committee.

During the continuance of the discussion Judge Folger had remained in his usual seat, but immediately after the passage of the bill he resumed his place as president of the Senate. He was evidently vexed, and in declaring the Senate adjourned he brought the gavel down with a sort of fling which caused it to fly out of his hand and fall in front of his desk on the floor. Fortunately it was after midnight and few saw it; but there was a general feeling of regret among us all that a man so highly respected should have so lost his temper. By common consent the whole matter was hushed; no mention of it, so far as I could learn, was made in the public press, and soon all seemed forgotten.

Unfortunately it was remembered, and in a quarter which brought upon Judge Folger one of the worst disappointments of his life.

For, in the course of the following summer, the Constitutional Convention of the State was to hold its session and its presidency was justly considered a great honor. Two candidates were named, one being Judge Folger and the other Mr. William A. Wheeler, then a member of Congress and afterward Vice-President of the United States. The result of the canvas by the friends of both these gentlemen seemed doubtful, when one morning there appeared in the ``New York Tribune,'' the most powerful organ of the Republican party, one of Horace Greeley's most trenchant articles. It dwelt on the importance of the convention in the history of the State, on the responsibility of its members, on the characteristics which should mark its presiding officer, and, as to this latter point, wound up pungently by saying that it would be best to have a president who, when he disagreed with members, did not throw his gavel at them. This shot took effect; it ran through the State; people asked the meaning of it; various exaggerated legends became current, one of them being that he had thrown the gavel at me personally;—and Mr. Wheeler became president of the convention.

But before the close of the session another matter had come up which cooled still more the relations between Judge Folger and myself. For many sessions, year after year, there had been before the legislature a bill for establishing a canal connecting the interior lake system of the State with Lake Ontario. This was known as the Sodus Canal Bill, and its main champion was a public-spirited man from Judge Folger's own district. In favor of the canal various arguments were urged, one of them being that it would enable the United States, while keeping within its treaty obligations with Great Britain, to build ships on these smaller lakes, which, in case of need, could be passed through the canal into the great chain of lakes extending from Lake Ontario to Lake Superior. To this it was replied that such an evasion of the treaty was not especially creditable to those suggesting it, and that the main purpose of the bill really was to create a vast water power which should enure to the benefit of sundry gentlemen in Judge Folger's district.

Up to this time Judge Folger seemed never to care much for the bill, and I had never made any especial effort against it; but when, just at the close of the session, certain constituents of mine upon the Oswego River had shown me that there was great danger in the proposed canal to the water supply through the counties of Onondaga and Oswego, I opposed the measure. Thereupon Judge Folger became more and more earnest in its favor, and it soon became evident that all his power would be used to pass it during the few remaining days of the session. By his influence it was pushed rapidly through all its earlier stages, and at last came up before the Senate. It seemed sure to pass within ten minutes, when I moved that the whole matter be referred to the approaching Constitutional Convention, which was to begin its sessions immediately after the adjournment of the legislature, and Judge Folger having spoken against this motion, I spoke in its favor and did what I have never done before in my life and probably shall never do again—spoke against time. There was no ``previous question'' in the Senate, no limitation as to the period during which a member could discuss any measure, and, as the youngest member in the body, I was in the full flush of youthful strength. I therefore announced my intention to present some three hundred arguments in favor of referring the whole matter to the State Constitutional Convention, those arguments being based upon the especial fitness of its three hundred members to decide the question, as shown by the personal character and life history of each and every one of them. I then went on with this series of biographies, beginning with that of Judge Folger himself, and paying him most heartily and cordially every tribute possible, including some of a humorous nature. Having given about half an hour to the judge, I then took up sundry other members and kept on through the entire morning. I had the floor and no one could dispossess me. The lieutenant-governor, in the chair, General Stewart Woodford, was perfectly just and fair, and although Judge Folger and Mr. Murphy used all their legal acuteness in devising some means of evading the rules, they were in every case declared by the lieutenant-governor to be out of order, and the floor was in every case reassigned to me. Meantime, the whole Senate, though anxious to adjourn, entered into the spirit of the matter, various members passing me up biographical notes on the members of the convention, some of them very comical, and presently the hall was crowded with members of the assembly as well as senators, all cheering me on. The reason for this was very simple. There had come to be a general understanding of the case, namely, that Judge Folger, by virtue of his great power and influence, was trying in the last hours of the session to force through a bill for the benefit of his district, and that I was simply doing my best to prevent an injustice. The result was that I went on hour after hour with my series of biographies, until at last Judge Folger himself sent me word that if I would desist and allow the legislature to adjourn he would make no further effort to carry the bill at that session. To this I instantly agreed; the bill was dropped for that session and for all sessions: so far as I can learn it has never reappeared.

Shortly after our final adjournment the Constitutional Convention came together. It was one of the best bodies of the kind ever assembled in any State, as a list of its members abundantly shows. There was much work for it, and most important of all was the reorganization of the highest judicial body in the State—the Court of Appeals—which had become hopelessly inadequate.

The two principal members of the convention from the city of New York were Horace Greeley, editor of the ``Tribune,'' and William M. Evarts, afterward Attorney- General, United States senator, and Secretary of State of the United States. Mr. Greeley was at first all-powerful. As has already been seen, he had been able to prevent Judge Folger taking the presidency of the convention, and for a few days he had everything his own way. But he soon proved so erratic a leader that his influence was completely lost, and after a few sessions there was hardly any member with less real power to influence the judgments of his colleagues.

This was not for want of real ability in his speeches, for at various times I heard him make, for and against measures, arguments admirably pungent, forcible, and far-reaching, but there seemed to be a universal feeling that he was an unsafe guide.

Soon came a feature in his course which made matters worse. The members of the convention, many of them, were men in large business and very anxious to have a day or two each week for their own affairs. Moreover, during the first weeks of the session, while the main matters coming before the convention were still in the hands of committees, there was really not enough business ready for the convention to occupy it through all the days of the week, and consequently it adopted the plan, for the first weeks at least, of adjourning from Friday night till Tuesday morning. This vexed Mr. Greeley sorely. He insisted that the convention ought to keep at its business and finish it without any such weekly adjournments, and, as his arguments to this effect did not prevail in the convention, he began making them through the ``Tribune'' before the people of the State. Soon his arguments became acrid, and began undermining the convention at every point.

As to Mr. Greeley's feeling regarding the weekly adjournment, one curious thing was reported: There was a member from New York of a literary turn for whom the great editor had done much in bringing his verses and other productions before the public—a certain Mr. Duganne; but it happened that, on one of the weekly motions to adjourn, Mr. Duganne had voted in the affirmative, and, as a result, Mr. Greeley, meeting him just afterward, upbraided him in a manner which filled the rural bystanders with consternation. It was well known to those best acquainted with the editor of the ``Tribune'' that, when excited, he at times indulged in the most ingenious and picturesque expletives, and some of Mr. Chauncey Depew's best stories of that period pointed to this fact. On this occasion Mr. Greeley really outdid himself, and the result was that the country members, who up to that time had regarded him with awe as the representative of the highest possible morality in public and private life, were greatly dismayed, and in various parts of the room they were heard expressing their amazement, and saying to each other in awe-stricken tones: ``Why! Greeley swears!''

Ere long Mr. Greeley was taking, almost daily in the ``Tribune,'' steady ground against the doings of his colleagues. Lesser newspapers followed with no end of cheap and easy denunciation, and the result was that the convention became thoroughly, though unjustly, discredited throughout the State, and indeed throughout the country. A curious proof of this met me. Being at Cambridge, Massachusetts, I passed an evening with Governor Washburn, one of the most thoughtful and valuable public men of that period. In the course of our conversation he said: ``Mr. White, it is really sad to hear of the doings at your Albany convention. I can remember your constitutional convention of 1846, and when I compare this convention with that, it grieves me.'' My answer was: ``Governor Washburn, you are utterly mistaken: there has never been a constitutional convention in the State of New York, not even that you name, which has contained so many men of the highest ability and character as the one now in session, and none which has really done better work. I am not a member of the body and can say this in its behalf.'' At this he expressed his amazement, and pointed to the ``Tribune'' in confirmation of his own position. I then stated the case to him, and, I think, alleviated his distress.

But as the sessions of the convention drew to a close and the value of its work began to be clearly understood, Greeley's nobler qualities, his real truthfulness and public spirit began to assert themselves, and more than once he showed practical shrewdness and insight. Going into convention one morning, I found the question under discussion to be the election of the secretary of state, attorney-general, and others of the governor's cabinet, whose appointment under the older constitutions was wisely left to the governor, but who, for twenty years, had been elected by the people. There was a wide-spread feeling that the old system was wiser, and that the new had by no means justified itself; in fact, that by fastening on the governor the responsibility for his cabinet, the State is likely to secure better men than when their choice is left to the hurly-burly of intrigue and prejudice in a nominating convention.

The main argument made by those who opposed such a return to the old, better order of things was that the people would not like it and would be inclined to vote down the new constitution on account of it.

In reply to this, Mr. Greeley arose and made a most admirable short speech ending with these words, given in his rapid falsetto, with a sort of snap that made the whole seem like one word: ``When-the-people-take-up-their- ballots-they-want-to-see-who-is-to-be-governor: that's-all- they-care-about: they-don't-want-to-read-a-whole-chapter- of-the-Bible-on-their-ballots.''

Unfortunately, the majority dared not risk the popular ratification of the new constitution, and so this amendment was lost.

No doubt Mr. Greeley was mainly responsible for this condition of things; his impatience with the convention, as shown by his articles in the ``Tribune,'' had been caught by the people of the State.

The long discussions were very irksome to him, and one day I mildly expostulated with him on account of some of his utterances against the much speaking of his colleagues, and said: ``After all, Mr. Greeley, is n't it a pretty good thing to have a lot of the best men in the State come together every twenty years and thoroughly discuss the whole constitution, to see what improvements can be made; and is not the familiarity with the constitution and interest in it thus aroused among the people at large worth all the fatigue arising from long speeches?'' ``Well, perhaps so,'' he said, but he immediately began to grumble and finally to storm in a comical way against some of his colleagues who, it must be confessed, were tiresome. Still he became interested more and more in the work, and as the new constitution emerged from the committees and public debates, he evidently saw that it was a great gain to the State, and now did his best through the ``Tribune'' to undo what he had been doing. He wrote editorials praising the work of the convention and urging that it be adopted. But all in vain: the unfavorable impression had been too widely and deeply made, and the result was that the new constitution, when submitted to the people, was ignominiously voted down, and the whole summer's work of the convention went for nothing. Later, however, a portion of it was rescued and put into force through the agency of a ``Constitutional Commission,'' a small body of first-rate men who sat at Albany, and whose main conclusions were finally adopted in the shape of amendments to the old constitution. There was, none the less, a wretched loss to the State.

During the summer of 1867 I was completely immersed in the duties of my new position at Cornell University; going through various institutions in New England and the Western States to note the workings of their technical departments; visiting Ithaca to consult with Mr. Cornell and to look over plans for buildings, and credentials for professorships, or, shut up in my own study at Syracuse, or in the cabins of Cayuga Lake steamers, drawing up schemes of university organization, so that my political life soon seemed ages behind me.

While on a visit to Harvard, I was invited by Agassiz to pass a day with him at Nahant in order to discuss methods and men. He entered into the matter very earnestly, agreed to give us an extended course of lectures, which he afterward did, and aided us in many ways. One remark of his surprised me. I had asked him to name men, and he had taken much pains to do so, when suddenly he turned to me abruptly and said: ``Who is to be your professor of moral philosophy? That is by far the most important matter in your whole organization.'' It seemed strange that one who had been honored by the whole world as probably the foremost man in natural science then living, and who had been denounced by many exceedingly orthodox people as an enemy of religion, should take this view of the new faculty, but it showed how deeply and sincerely religious he was. I soon reassured him on the point he had raised, and then went on with the discussion of scientific men, methods, and equipments.

I was also asked by the poet Longfellow to pass a day with him at his beautiful Nahant cottage in order to discuss certain candidates and methods in literature. Nothing could be more delightful than his talk as we sat together on the veranda looking out over the sea, with the gilded dome of the State House, which he pointed out to me as ``The Hub,'' in the dim distance. One question of his amused me much. We were discussing certain recent events in which Mr. Horace Greeley had played an important part, and after alluding to Mr. Greeley's course during the War, he turned his eyes fully but mildly upon me and said slowly and solemnly: ``Mr. White, don't you think Mr. Greeley a very useless sort of man?'' The question struck me at first as exceedingly comical; for, I thought, ``Imagine Mr. Greeley, who thinks himself, and with reason, a useful man if there ever was one, and whose whole life has been devoted to what he has thought of the highest and most direct use to his fellow-men, hearing this question put in a dreamy way by a poet,—a writer of verse,—probably the last man in America whom Mr. Greeley would consider `useful.' '' But my old admiration for the great editor came back in a strong tide, and if I was ever eloquent it was in showing Mr. Longfellow how great, how real, how sincere, and in the highest degree how useful Mr. Greeley had been.

Another man of note whom I met in those days was Judge Rockwood Hoar, afterward named by General Grant Attorney-General of the United States, noted as a profound lawyer of pungent wit and charming humor, the delight of his friends and the terror of his enemies. I saw him first at Harvard during a competition for the Boylston prize at which we were fellow-judges. All the speaking was good, some of it admirable; but the especially remarkable pieces were two. First of these was a recital of Washington Irving's ``Broken Heart,'' by an undergraduate from the British provinces, Robert Alder McLeod. Nothing could be more simple and perfect in its way; nothing more free from any effort at orating; all was in the most quiet and natural manner possible. The second piece was a rendering of Poe's ``Bells,'' and was a most amazing declamation, the different sorts of bells being indicated by changes of voice ranging from basso profondo to the highest falsetto, and the feelings aroused in the orator being indicated by modulations which must have cost him months of practice.

The contest being ended, and the committee having retired to make their award, various members expressed an opinion in favor of Mr. McLeod's quiet recital, when Judge Hoar, who had seemed up to that moment immersed in thought, seemed suddenly to awake, and said: ``If I had a son who spoke that bell piece in that style I believe I'd choke him.'' The vote was unanimously in favor of Mr. McLeod, and then came out a curious fact. Having noticed that he bore an empty sleeve, I learned from Professor Peabody that he had lost his arm while fighting on the Confederate side in our Civil War, and that he was a man of remarkably fine scholarship and noble character. He afterward became an instructor at Harvard, but died early.

During the following autumn, in spite of my absorption in university interests, I was elected a delegate to the State Convention, and in October made a few political speeches, the most important being at Clinton, the site of Hamilton College. This was done at the special request of Senator Conkling, and on my way I passed a day with him at Utica, taking a long drive through the adjacent country. Never was he more charming. The bitter and sarcastic mood seemed to have dropped off him; the overbearing manner had left no traces; he was full of delightful reminiscences and it was a day to be remembered.

I also spoke at various other places and, last of all, at Clifton Springs, but received there a rebuff which was not without its uses.

I had thought my speeches successful; but at the latter place, taking the cars next morning, I heard a dialogue between two railway employees, as follows:

``Bill, did you go to the meetin' last night?'' ``Yes.'' ``How was it?'' ``It wa'n't no meetin', leastwise no P'LITICAL meetin'; there wa'n't nothin' in it fur the boys; it was only one of them scientific college purfessors lecturin'.'' And so I sped homeward, pondering on many things, but strengthened, by this homely criticism, in my determination to give my efforts henceforth to the new university.



During the two or three years following my senatorial term, work in the founding and building of Cornell University was so engrossing that there was little time for any effort which could be called political. In the early spring of 1868 I went to Europe to examine institutions for scientific and technological instruction, and to secure professors and equipment, and during about six months I visited a great number of such schools, especially those in agriculture, mechanical, civil, and mining engineering and the like in England, France, Germany, and Italy; bought largely of books and apparatus, discussed the problems at issue with Europeans who seemed likely to know most about them, secured sundry professors, and returned in September just in time to take part in the opening of Cornell University and be inaugurated as its first president. Of all this I shall speak more in detail hereafter.

There was no especial temptation to activity in the political campaign of that year; for the election of General Grant was sure, and my main memory of the period is a visit to Auburn to hear Mr. Seward.

It had been his wont for many years, when he came home to cast his vote, to meet his neighbors on the eve of the election and give his views of the situation and of its resultant duties. These occasions had come to be anticipated with the deepest interest by the whole region round about, and what had begun as a little gathering of neighors had now become such an assembly that the largest hall in the place was crowded with voters of all parties.

But this year came a disappointment. Although the contest was between General Grant,—who on various decisive battle-fields had done everything to save the administration of which Mr. Seward had been a leading member, —and on the other side, Governor Horatio Seymour, who had done all in his power to wreck it, Mr. Seward devoted his speech to optimistic generalities, hardly alluding to the candidates, and leaving the general impression that one side was just as worthy of support as the other.

The speech was an unfortunate ending of Mr. Seward's career. It was not surprising that some of his old admirers bitterly resented it, and a remark by Mr. Cornell some time afterward indicated much. We were arranging together a program for the approaching annual commencement when I suggested for the main address Mr. Seward. Mr. Cornell had been one of Mr. Seward's lifelong supporters, but he received this proposal coldly, pondered it for a few moments silently, and then said dryly, ``Perhaps you are right, but if you call him you will show to our students the deadest man that ain't buried in the State of New York.'' So, to my regret, was lost the last chance to bring the old statesman to Cornell. I have always regretted this loss; his presence would have given a true consecration to the new institution. A career like his should not be judged by its little defects and lapses, and this I felt even more deeply on receiving, some time after his death, the fifth volume of his published works, which was largely made up of his despatches and other papers written during the war. When they were first published in the newspapers, I often thought them long and was impatient at their optimism, but now, when I read them all together, saw in them the efforts made by the heroic old man to keep the hands of European powers off us while we were restoring the Union, and noted the desperation with which he fought, the encouragement which he infused into our diplomatic representatives abroad, and his struggle, almost against fate, in the time of our reverses, I was fascinated. The book had arrived early in the evening, and next morning found me still seated in my library chair completely absorbed in it.

In the spring of the year 1870, while as usual in the thick of university work, I was again drawn for a moment into the current of New York politics. The long wished for amendment of the State constitution, putting our highest tribunal, the Court of Appeals, on a better footing than it had ever been before, making it more adequate, the term longer, and the salaries higher, had been passed, and judges were to be chosen at the next election. Each of the two great parties was entitled to an equal number of judges, and I was requested to go to the approaching nominating convention at Rochester in order to present the name of my old friend and neighbor, Charles Andrews.

It was a most honorable duty, no man could have desired a better candidate, and I gladly accepted the mandate. Although it was one of the most staid and dignified bodies of the sort which has ever met in the State, it had as a preface a pleasant farce.

As usual, the seething cauldron of New York City politics had thrown to the surface some troublesome delegates, and among them was one long famed as a ``Tammany Republican.''

Our first business was the choice of a president for the convention, and, as it had been decided by the State committee to present for that office the name of one of the most respected judges in the State, the Honorable Platt Potter, of Schenectady, it was naturally expected that some member of the regular organization would present his name in a dignified speech. But hardly had the chairman of the State committee called the convention to order when the aforesaid Tammany Republican, having heard that Judge Potter was to be elected, thought evidently that he could gain recognition and applause by being the first to present his name. He therefore rushed for- ward, and almost before the chairman had declared the convention opened, cried out: ``Mr. Chairman, I move you, sir, that the Honorable `Pot Platter' be made president of this convention.'' A scream of laughter went up from all parts of the house, and in an instant a gentleman rose and moved to amend by making the name ``Platt Potter.'' This was carried, and the proposer of the original motion retired crestfallen to his seat.

I had the honor of presenting Mr. Andrews's name. He was nominated and elected triumphantly, and so began the career of one of the best judges that New York has ever had on its highest court, who has also for many years occupied, with the respect and esteem of the State, the position of chief justice.

The convention then went on to nominate other judges, —nomination being equivalent to election,—but when the last name was reached there came a close contest. An old friend informed me that Judge Folger, my former colleague in the Senate and since that assistant treasurer of the United States in the city of New York, was exceedingly anxious to escape from this latter position, and desired greatly the nomination to a judgeship on the Court of Appeals.

I decided at once to do what was possible to secure Judge Folger's nomination, though our personal relations were very unsatisfactory. Owing to our two conflicts at the close of our senatorial term above referred to, and to another case where I thought he had treated me unjustly, we had never exchanged a word since I had left the State Senate; and though we met each other from time to time on the board of Cornell University trustees, we passed each other in silence. Our old friendship, which had been very dear to me, seemed forever broken, but I felt deeply that the fault was not mine. At the same time I recognized the fact that Judge Folger was not especially adapted to the position of assistant treasurer of the United States, and was admirably fitted for the position of judge in the Court of Appeals. I therefore did everything possible to induce one or two of the delegations with which I had some influence to vote for him, dwelling especially upon his former judgeship, his long acquaintance with the legislation of the State, and his high character, and at last he was elected by a slight majority.

The convention having adjourned, I was on my way to the train when I was met by Judge Folger, who had just arrived. He put out his hand and greeted me most heartily, showing very deep feeling as he expressed his regret over our estrangement. Of course I was glad that bygones were to be bygones, and that our old relations were restored. He became a most excellent judge, and finally chief justice of the State, which position he left to become Secretary of the Treasury.

To the political cataclysm which ended his public activity and doubtless hastened his death, I refer elsewhere. As long as he lived our friendly relations continued, and this has been to me ever since a great satisfaction.

In this same year, 1870, occurred my first extended conversation with General Grant. At my earlier meeting with him when he was with President Johnson in Albany, I had merely been stiffly presented to him, and we had exchanged a few commonplaces; but I was now invited to his cottage at Long Branch and enjoyed a long and pleasant talk with him. Its main subject was the Franco-German War then going on, and his sympathies were evidently with Germany. His comments on the war were prophetic. There was nothing dogmatic in them; nothing could be more simple and modest than his manner and utterance, but there was a clearness and quiet force in them which impressed me greatly. He was the first great general I had ever seen, and I was strongly reminded of his mingled diffidence and mastery when, some years afterward, I talked with Moltke in Berlin.

Another experience of that summer dwells in my memory. I was staying, during the first week of September, with my dear old friend, Dr. Henry M. Field, at Stockbridge, in the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts, and had the good fortune, at the house of his brother, the eminent jurist, David Dudley Field, to pass a rainy evening in company with Mr. Burton Harrison, who, after a distinguished career at Yale, had been the private secretary of Jefferson Davis, president of the Southern Confederacy. On that evening a storm had kept away all but a few of us, and Mr. Harrison yielded to our entreaties to give us an account of Mr. Davis's flight at the surrender of Richmond, from the time when he quietly left his pew in St. Paul's Church to that of his arrest by United States soldiers. The story was most vivid, and Mr. Harrison, as an eye witness, told it simply and admirably. There had already grown out of this flight of Mr. Davis a most luxuriant tangle of myth and legend, and it had come to be generally believed that the Confederate president had at last endeavored to shield himself behind the women of his household; that when arrested he was trying to escape in the attire of his wife, including a hooped skirt and a bonnet, and that he was betrayed by an incautious display of his military boots beneath his wife's flounces. The simple fact was that, having separated from his family party, and seeking escape to the coast or mountains, he was again and again led by his affection for his family to return to them, his fears for them overcoming all care for himself; and that, as he was suffering from neuralgia, he wore over his clothing, to guard him from the incessant rain, Mrs. Davis' waterproof cloak. Out of this grew the legend which found expression in jubilant newspaper articles, songs, and caricatures.

This reminds me that some years later, my old college friend, Colonel William Preston Johnston, president of Tulane University, told me a story which throws light upon that collapse of the Confederacy. Colonel Johnston was at that period the military secretary of President Davis, and, as the catastrophe approached, was much vexed at the interminable debates in the Confederate Congress. Among the subjects of these discussions was the great seal of the Confederacy. It had been decided to adopt for this purpose a relief representing Crawford's statue of Washington at Richmond, with the Southern statesmen and soldiers surrounding it; but though all agreed that Washington, in his Continental costume, and holding in his hand his cocked hat, should retain the central position, there were many differences of opinion as to the surrounding portraits, the result being that motions were made to strike out this or that revolutionary hero from one State and to replace him by another from another State, thus giving rise to lengthy eulogies of these various personages, so that the whole thing resembled the discussions in metaphysical theology by the Byzantines at the time when the Turks were forcing their way through the walls of Constantinople. One day, just before the final catastrophe, Mr. Judah Benjamin, formerly United States senator, but at that time the Confederate secretary of state, passed through Colonel Johnston's office, and the following dialogue took place.

Colonel Johnston: ``What are they doing in the Senate and House, Mr. Secretary?''

Mr. Benjamin: ``Oh, simply debating the Confederate seal, moving to strike out this man and to insert that.''

Colonel Johnston: ``Do you know what motion I would make if I were a member?''

Mr. Benjamin: ``No, what would you move?''

Colonel Johnston: ``I would move to strike out from the seal everything except the cocked hat.''

Colonel Johnston was right; the Confederacy was ``knocked into a cocked hat'' a few days afterward.

In the autumn of that year, September, 1870, I was sent as a delegate to the State Republican Convention, and presented as a candidate for the lieutenant-governorship a man who had served the State admirably in the National Congress and in the State legislature as well as in great business operations, Mr. DeWitt Littlejohn of Oswego. I did this on the part of sundry gentlemen who were anxious to save the Republican ticket, which had at its head my old friend General Woodford, but though I was successful in securing Mr. Littlejohn's nomination, he soon afterward declined, and defeat followed in November.

The only part which I continued to take in State politics was in writing letters and in speaking, on sundry social occasions of a political character, in behalf of harmony between the two factions which were now becoming more and more bitter. At first I seemed to have some success, but before long it became clear that the current was too strong and that the bitterness of faction was to prevail. I am so constituted that factious thought and effort dishearten and disgust me. At many periods of my life I have acted as a ``buffer'' between conflicting cliques and factions, generally to some purpose; now it was otherwise. But, as Kipling says, ``that is another story.''

The hard work and serious responsibilities brought upon me by the new university had greatly increased. They had worn deeply upon me when, in the winter of 1870-71, came an event which drew me out of my university life for a time and gave me a much needed change: —I was sent by the President as one of the three commissioners to Santo Domingo to study questions relating to the annexation of the Spanish part of that island which was then proposed, and to report thereupon to Congress.

While in Washington at this time I saw much of President Grant, Mr. Sumner, and various other men who were then leading in public affairs, but some account of them will be given in my reminiscences of the Santo Domingo expedition.

I trust that it may be allowed me here to recall an incident which ought to have been given in a preceding chapter. During one of my earlier visits to the National Capital, I made the acquaintance of Senator McDougal. His distorted genius had evidently so dazzled his fellow- citizens of California that, in spite of his defects, they had sent him to the highest council of the Nation. He was a martyr to conviviality, and when more or less under the sway of it, had strange ideas and quaint ways of expressing them. His talk recalled to me a time in my child- hood when, having found a knob of glass, twisted, striated with different colors, and filled with air bubbles, I enjoyed looking at the landscape through it. Everything became grotesquely transfigured. A cabbage in the foreground became opalescent, and an ear of corn a mass of jewels, but the whole atmosphere above and beyond was lurid, and the chimneys and church spires were topsy-turvy.

The only other person whose talk ever produced an impression of this sort on me was Tolstoy, and he will be discussed in another chapter.

McDougal's peculiarity made him at last unbearable; so much so that the Senate was obliged to take measures against him. His speech in his own defense showed the working of his mind, and one passage most of all. It remains probably the best defense of drunkenness ever made, and it ran as follows:

``Mr. President,—I pity the man who has never viewed the affairs of this world, save from the poor, low, miserable plane of ordinary sobriety.''

My absence in the West Indies covered the first three months of the year 1871, and then the commission returned to Washington and made its report; but regarding this I shall speak at length in the chapter of my diplomatic experiences, devoted to the Santo Domingo question.



Having finished my duties on the Santo Domingo Commission, I returned to the University in May of 1871, devoted myself again to my duties as president and professor, and, in the mass of arrears which had accumulated, found ample occupation. I also delivered various addresses at universities, colleges, and elsewhere, keeping as remote from politics as possible.

In June, visiting New York in order to take part in a dinner given by various journalists and others to my classmate and old friend, George Washburne Smalley, at that time the London correspondent of the ``New York Tribune,'' I met, for the first time, Colonel John Hay, who was in the full tide of his brilliant literary career and who is, as I write this, Secretary of State of the United States. His clear, thoughtful talk strongly impressed me, but the most curious circumstance connected with the affair was that several of us on the way to Delmonico's stopped for a time to observe the public reception given to Mr. Horace Greeley on his return from a tour through the Southern States. Mr. Greeley, undoubtedly from the purest personal and patriotic motives, had, with other men of high standing, including Gerrit Smith, attached his name to the bail bond of Jefferson Davis, which released the ex-president of the Confederacy from prison, and, in fact, freed him entirely from anything like punishment for treason. I have always admired Mr. Greeley's honesty and courage in doing this. Doubtless, too, an equally patriotic and honest desire to aid in bringing North and South together after the war led him to take an extensive tour through sundry Southern States. He had just returned from this tour and this reception was given him in consequence.

It had already been noised abroad that there was a movement on foot to make him a candidate for the Presidency, and many who knew the characteristics of the man, even those who, like myself, had been greatly influenced by him and regarded him as by far the foremost editorial writer that our country had ever produced, looked upon this idea with incredulity. For of all patriotic men in the entire country who had touched public affairs Horace Greeley seemed the most eminently unfit for executive duties. He was notoriously, in business matters, the easy prey of many who happened to get access to him;— the ``long-haired men and short-haired women'' of the country seemed at times to have him entirely under their sway; his hard-earned money, greatly needed by himself and his family, was lavished upon ne'er-do-weels and cast into all sorts of impracticable schemes. He made loans to the discarded son of the richest man whom the United States had at that time produced, and in every way showed himself an utterly incompetent judge of men. It was a curious fact that lofty as were his purposes, and noble as were his main characteristics, the best men of the State—men like Seward, Weed, Judge Folger, Senator Andrews, General Leavenworth, Elbridge Spaulding, and other really thoughtful, solid, substantial advisers of the Republican party—were disliked by him, and yet no other reason could be assigned than this:—that while they all admired him as a writer, they could not be induced to pretend that they considered him fit for high executive office, either in the State or Nation. On the other hand, so far as politics were concerned, his affections seemed to be lavished on politicians who flattered and coddled him. Of this the rise of Governor Fenton was a striking example. Doubtless there were exceptions to this rule, but it was the rule nevertheless. This was clearly and indeed comically shown at the reception given him in Union Square on the evening referred to. Mr. Greeley appeared at a front window of a house on the Broadway side and came out upon a temporary platform. His appearance is deeply stamped upon my memory. He was in a rather slouchy evening dress, his white hair thrown back off his splendid forehead, and his broad, smooth, kindly features as serene as the face of a big, well-washed baby.

There was in his appearance something at the same time na<i:>ve and impressive, and the simplicity of it was increased by a bouquet, huge and gorgeous, which some admirer had attached to his coat, and which forced upon the mind of a reflective observer the idea of a victim adorned for sacrifice.

He gave scant attention to his audience in the way of ceremonial greeting, and plunged at once into his subject; —beginning in a high, piping, falsetto voice which, for a few moments, was almost painful. But the value of his matter soon overcame the defects of his manner; the speech was in his best vein; it struck me as the best, on the whole, I had ever heard him make, and that is saying much. Holding in his hands a little package of cards on which notes were jotted down, he occasionally cast his eyes upon them, but he evidently trusted to the inspiration of the hour for his phrasing, and his trust was not misplaced. I never heard a more simple, strong, lucid use of the English language than was his on that occasion. The speech was a very noble plea for the restoration of good feeling between North and South, with an effort to show that the distrust felt by the South toward the North was natural. In the course of it he said in substance:

``Fellow Citizens: The people of the South have much reason to distrust us. We have sent among them during the war and since the war, to govern them, to hold office among them, and to eat out their substance, a number of worthless adventurers whom they call ``carpet-baggers.'' These emissaries of ours pretend to be patriotic and pious; they pull long faces and say `Let us pray'; but they spell it p-r-E-y. The people of the South hate them, and they ought to hate them.''

At this we in the audience looked at each other in amazement; for, standing close beside Mr. Greeley, at that very moment, most obsequiously, was perhaps the worst ``carpet-bagger'' ever sent into the South; a man who had literally been sloughed off by both parties;— who, having been become an unbearable nuisance in New York politics, had been ``unloaded'' by Mr. Lincoln, in an ill-inspired moment, upon the hapless South, and who was now trying to find new pasture.

But this was not the most comical thing; for Mr.
Greeley in substance continued as follows:

``Fellow Citizens: You know how it is yourselves. There are men who go to your own State Capitol, nominally as legislators or advisers, but really to plunder and steal. These men in the Northern States correspond to the `carpet-baggers' in the Southern States, and you hate them and you ought to hate them.'' Thus speaking, Mr. Greeley poured out the vials of his wrath against all this class of people; blissfully unconscious of the fact that on the other side of him stood the most notorious and corrupt lobbyist who had been known in Albany for years;— a man who had been chased out of that city by the sheriff for attempted bribery, had been obliged to remain for a considerable time in hiding to avoid criminal charges of exerting corrupt influence on legislation, and whom both political parties naturally disowned. Comical as all this was, it was pathetic to see a man like Greeley in such a cave of Adullam.

During this summer of 1871 occurred the death of one of my dearest friends, a man who had exercised a most happy influence over my opinions and who had contributed much to the progress of anti-slavery ideas in New England and New York. This was the Rev. Samuel Joseph May, pastor of the Unitarian Church in Syracuse, a friend and associate of Emerson, Garrison, Phillips, Gerrit Smith, and one of the noblest, truest, and most beautiful characters I have ever known.

Having seen the end of slavery, and being about eighty years of age, he felt deeply that his work was done, and thenceforward declared that he was happy in the idea that his life on this planet was soon to end. I have never seen, save in the case of the Hicksite Quaker at Ann Arbor, referred to elsewhere, such a living faith in the reality of another world. Again and again Mr. May said to me in the most cheerful way imaginable, ``I am as much convinced of the existence of a future state as of these scenes about me, and, to tell you the truth, now that my work here is ended, I am becoming very curious to know what the next stage of existence is like.'' On the afternoon of the 1st of July I paid him a visit, found him much wearied by a troublesome chronic complaint, but contented, cheerful, peaceful as ever.

Above him as he lay in his bed was a portrait which I had formerly seen in his parlor. Thereby hung a curious tale. Years before, at the very beginning of Mr. May's career, he had been a teacher in the town of Canterbury, Connecticut, when Miss Prudence Crandall was persecuted, arrested, and imprisoned for teaching colored children. Mr. May had taken up her case earnestly, and, with the aid of Mr. Lafayette Foster, afterward president of the United States Senate, had fought it out until the enemies of Miss Crandall were beaten. As a memorial of this activity of his, Mr. May received this large, well painted portrait of Miss Crandall, and it was one of his most valued possessions.

On the afternoon referred to, after talking about various other matters most cheerfully, and after I had told him that we could not spare him yet, that we needed him at least ten years longer, he laughingly said, ``Can't you compromise on one year?'' ``No,'' I said, ``nothing less than ten years. ``Thereupon he laughed pleasantly, called his daughter, Mrs. Wilkinson, and said, ``Remember; when I am gone this portrait of Prudence Crandall is to go to Andrew White for Cornell University, where my anti-slavery books already are.'' As I left him, both of us were in the most cheerful mood, he appearing better than during some weeks previous. Next morning I learned that he had died during the night. The portrait of Miss Crandall now hangs in the Cornell University Library.

My summer was given up partly to recreation mingled with duties of various sorts, including an address in honor of President Woolsey at the Alumni dinner at Yale and another at the laying of the corner stone of Syracuse University.

Noteworthy at this period was a dinner with Longfellow at Cambridge, and I recall vividly his showing me various places in the Craigie house connected with interesting passages in the life of Washington when he occupied it.

Early in the autumn, while thus engrossed in everything but political matters, I received a letter from my friend Mr. A. B. Cornell, a most energetic and efficient man in State and national politics, a devoted supporter of General Grant and Senator Conkling, and afterward governor of the State of New York, asking me if I would go to the approaching State convention and accept its presidency. I wrote him in return expressing my reluctance, dwelling upon the duties pressing upon me in connection with the university, and asking to be excused. In return came a very earnest letter insisting on the importance of the convention in keeping the Republican party together, and in preventing its being split into factions before the approaching presidential election. I had, on all occasions, and especially at various social gatherings at which political leaders were present, in New York and elsewhere, urged the importance of throwing aside all factious spirit and harmonizing the party in view of the coming election, and to this Mr. Cornell referred very earnestly. As a consequence I wrote him that if the delegates from New York opposed to General Grant could be admitted to the convention on equal terms with those who favored him, and if he, Mr. Cornell, and the other managers of the Grant wing of the party would agree that the anti-Grant forces should receive full and fair representation on the various committees, I would accept the presidency of the convention in the interest of peace between the factions, and would do my best to harmonize the differing interests in the party, but that otherwise I would not consent to be a member of the convention. In his answer Mr. Cornell fully agreed to this, and I have every reason to believe, indeed to know, that his agreement was kept. The day of the convention having arrived (September 27, 1871), Mr. Cornell, as chairman of the Republican State committee, called the assemblage to order, and after a somewhat angry clash with the opponents of the administration, nominated me to the chairmanship of the convention.

By a freak of political fortune I was separated in this contest from my old friend Chauncey M. Depew; but though on different sides of the question at issue, we sat together chatting pleasantly as the vote went on, neither of us, I think, very anxious regarding it, and when the election was decided in my favor he was one of those who, under instructions from the temporary chairman, very courteously conducted me to the chair. It was an immense assemblage, and from the first it was evident that there were very turbulent elements in it. Hardly, indeed, had I taken my seat, when the chief of the Syracuse police informed me that there were gathered near the platform a large body of Tammany roughs who had come from New York expressly to interfere with the convention, just as a few years before they had interfered in the same place with the convention of their own party, seriously wounding its regular chairman; but that I need have no alarm at any demonstration they might make; that the police were fully warned and able to meet the adversary.

In my opening speech I made an earnest plea for peace among the various factions of the party, and especially between those who favored and those who opposed the administration; this plea was received with kindness, and shortly afterward came the appointment of committees. Of course, like every other president of such a body, I had to rely on the standing State committee. Hardly one man in a thousand coming to the presidency of a State convention knows enough of the individual leaders of politics in all the various localities to distinguish between their shades of opinion. It was certainly impossible for me to know all those who, in the various counties of the State, favored General Grant and those who disliked him. Like every other president of a convention, probably without an exception, from the beginning to the present hour, I received the list of the convention committees from the State committee which represented the party, and I received this list, not only with implied, but express assurances that the agreement under which I had taken the chairmanship had been complied with;—namely, that the list represented fairly the two wings of the party in convention, and that both the Grant and the anti-Grant delegations from New York city were to be admitted on equal terms.

I had no reason then, and have no reason now, to believe that the State committee abused my confidence. I feel sure now, as I felt sure then, that the committee named by me fairly represented the two wings of the party; but after their appointment it was perfectly evident that this did not propitiate the anti-administration wing. They were deeply angered against the administration by the fact that General Grant had taken as his adviser in regard to New York patronage and politics Senator Conkling rather than Senator Fenton. Doubtless Senator Conkling's manner in dealing with those opposed to him had made many enemies who, by milder methods, might have been brought to the support of the administration. At any rate, it was soon clear that the anti-administration forces, recognizing their inferiority in point of numbers, were determined to secede. This, indeed, was soon formally announced by one of their leaders; but as they still continued after this declaration to take part in the discussions, the point of order was raised that, having formally declared their intention of leaving the convention, they were no longer entitled to take part in its deliberations. This point I ruled out, declaring that I could not consider the anti-administration wing as outside the convention until they had left it. The debates grew more and more bitter, Mr. Conkling making, late at night, a powerful speech which rallied the forces of the administration and brought them victory. The anti- administration delegates now left the convention, but before they did so one of them rose and eloquently tendered to me as president the thanks of his associates for my impartiality, saying that it contrasted most honorably with the treatment they had received from certain other members of the convention. But shortly after leaving they held a meeting in another place, and, having evidently made up their minds that they must declare war against everybody who remained in the convention, they denounced us all alike, and the same gentleman who had made the speech thanking me for my fairness, and who was very eminent among those who were known as ``Tammany Republicans,'' now made a most violent harangue in which he declared that a man who conducted himself as I had done, and who remained in such an infamous convention, or had anything to do with it, was ``utterly unfit to be an instructor of youth.''

Similar attacks continued to appear in the anti- administration papers for a considerable time afterward, and at first they were rather trying to me. I felt that nothing could be more unjust, for I had strained to the last degree my influence with my associates who supported General Grant in securing concessions to those who differed from us. Had these attacks been made by organs of the opposite political party, I would not have minded them; but being made in sundry journals which had represented the Republican party and were constantly read by my old friends, neighbors, and students, they naturally, for a time, disquieted me. One of the charges then made has often amused me as I have looked back upon it since, and is worth referring to as an example of the looseness of statement common among the best of American political journals during exciting political contests. This charge was that I had ``sought to bribe people to support the administration by offering them consulates.'' This was echoed in various parts of the State.

The facts were as follows: An individual who had made some money as a sutler in connection with the army had obtained control of a local paper at Syracuse, and, through the influence thus gained, an election to the lower house of the State legislature. During the winter which he passed at Albany he was one of three or four Republicans who voted with the Democrats in behalf of the measures proposed by Tweed, the municipal arch-robber afterward convicted and punished for his crimes against the city of New York. Just at this particular time Tweed was at the height of his power, and at a previous session of the legislature he had carried his measures through the Assembly by the votes of three or four Republicans who were needed in addition to the Democratic votes in order to give him the required majority. Many leading Republican journals had published the names of these three or four men with black lines around them, charging them, apparently justly, with having sold themselves to Tweed for money, and among them the person above referred to. Though he controlled a newspaper in Syracuse, he had been unable to secure renomination to the legislature, and, shortly afterward, in order to secure rehabilitation as well as pelf, sought an appointment to the Syracuse postmastership. Senator Conkling, mindful of the man's record, having opposed the appointment, and the President having declined to make it, the local paper under control of this person turned most bitterly against the administration, and day after day poured forth diatribes against the policy and the persons of all connected with the actual government at Washington, and especially against President Grant and Senator Conkling.

The editor of the paper at that time was a very gifted young writer, an old schoolmate and friend of mine, who, acting under instructions from the managers of the paper, took a very bitter line against the administration and its supporters.

About the time of the meeting of the convention this old friend came to me, expressed his regret at the line he was obliged to take, said that both he and his wife were sick of the whole thing and anxious to get out of it, and added: ``The only way out, that I can see, is some appointment that will at once relieve me of all these duties, and in fact take me out of the country. Cannot you aid me by application to the senator or the President in obtaining a consulate?'' I answered him laughingly, ``My dear ——, I will gladly do all I can for you, not only for friendship's sake, but because I think you admirably fitted for the place you name; but don't you think that, for a few days at least, while you are applying for such a position, you might as well stop your outrageous attacks against the very men from whom you hope to receive the appointment?''

Having said this, half in jest and half in earnest, I thought no more on the subject, save as to the best way of aiding my friend to secure the relief he desired.

So rose the charge that I was ``bribing persons to support the administration by offering them consulates.''

But strong friends rallied to my support. Mr. George William Curtis in ``Harper's Weekly,'' Mr. Godkin in ``The Nation,'' Mr. Charles Dudley Warner and others in various other journals took up the cudgels in my behalf, and I soon discovered that the attacks rather helped than hurt me. They did much, indeed, to disgust me for a time with political life; but I soon found that my friends, my students, and the country at large understood the charges, and that they seemed to think more rather than less of me on account of them. In those days the air was full of that sort of onslaught upon every one supposed to be friendly to General Grant, and the effect in one case was revealed to me rather curiously. Matthew Carpenter, of Wisconsin, was then one of the most brilliant members of the United States Senate, a public servant of whom his State was proud; but he had cordially supported the administration and was consequently made the mark for bitter attack, day after day and week after week, by the opposing journals, and these attacks finally culminated in an attempt to base a very ugly scandal against him upon what was known among his friends to be a simple courtesy publicly rendered to a very worthy lady. The attacks and the scandal resounded throughout the anti-administration papers, their evident purpose being to defeat his re<e:>lection to the United States Senate.

But just before the time for the senatorial election in Wisconsin, meeting a very bright and active-minded student of my senior class who came from that State, I asked him, ``What is the feeling among your people regarding the re<e:>lection of Senator Carpenter?'' My student immediately burst into a torrent of wrath and answered: ``The people of Wisconsin will send Mr. Carpenter back to the Senate by an enormous majority. We will see if a gang of newspaper blackguards can slander one of our senators out of public life.'' The result was as my young friend had foretold: Mr. Carpenter was triumphantly re<e:>lected.

While I am on this subject I may refer, as a comfort to those who have found themselves unjustly attacked in political matters, to two other notable cases within my remembrance.

Probably no such virulence has ever been known day after day, year after year, as was shown by sundry presses of large circulation in their attacks on William H. Seward. They represented him as shady and tricky; as the lowest of demagogues; as utterly without conscience or ability; as pretending a hostility to slavery which was simply a craving for popularity; they refused to report his speeches, or, if they did report them, distorted them. He had also incurred the displeasure of very many leaders of his own party, and of some of its most powerful presses, yet he advanced steadily from high position to high position, and won a lasting and most honorable place in the history of his country.

The same may be said of Senator Conkling. The attacks on him in the press were bitter and almost universal; yet the only visible result was that he was re<e:>lected to the national Senate by an increased majority. To the catastrophe which some years later ended his political career, the onslaught by the newspapers contributed nothing; it resulted directly from the defects of his own great qualities and not at all from attacks made upon him from outside.

Almost from the first moment of my acquaintance with Mr. Conkling, I had endeavored to interest him in the reform of the civil service, and at least, if this was not possible, to prevent his actively opposing it. In this sense I wrote him various letters. For a time they seemed successful; but at last, under these attacks, he broke all bounds and became the bitter opponent of the movement. In his powerful manner and sonorous voice he from time to time expressed his contempt for it. The most striking of his utterances on the subject was in one of the State conventions, which, being given in his deep, sonorous tones, ran much as follows: ``When Doctor-r-r Ja-a-awnson said that patr-r-riotism-m was the l-a-w-s-t r-r-refuge of a scoundr-r-rel, he ignor-r-red the enor-r-rmous possibilities of the word r-refa-awr-r-rm!''

The following spring (June 5, 1872) I attended the Republican National Convention at Philadelphia as a substitute delegate. It was very interesting and, unlike the enormous assemblages since of twelve or fifteen thousand people at Chicago and elsewhere, was a really deliberative body. As it was held in the Academy of Music, there was room for a sufficient audience, while there was not room for a vast mob overpowering completely the members of the convention and preventing any real discussion at some most important junctures, as has been the case in so many conventions of both parties in these latter years.

The most noteworthy features of this convention were the speeches of sundry colored delegates from the South. Very remarkable they were, and a great revelation as to the ability of some, at least, of their race in the former slave States.

General Grant was renominated for the Presidency, and for the Vice-Presidency Mr. Henry Wilson of Massachusetts in place of Schuyler Colfax, who had held the position during General Grant's first term.

The only speeches I made during the campaign were one from the balcony of the Continental Hotel in Philadelphia and one from the steps of the Delavan House at Albany, but they were perfunctory and formal. There was really no need of speeches, and I was longing to go at my proper university work. Mr. James Anthony Froude, the historian, had arrived from England to deliver his lectures before our students; and, besides this, the university had encountered various difficulties which engrossed all my thoughts.

General Grant's re<e:>lection was a great victory. Mr. Greeley had not one Northern electoral vote; worst of all, he had, during the contest, become utterly broken in body and mind, and shortly after the election he died.

His death was a sad ending of a career which, as a whole, had been so beneficent. As to General Grant, I believe now, as I believed then, that his election was a great blessing, and that he was one of the noblest, purest, and most capable men who have ever sat in the Presidency. The cheap, clap-trap antithesis which has at times been made between Grant the soldier and Grant the statesman is, I am convinced, utterly without foundation. The qualities which made him a great soldier made him an effective statesman. This fact was clearly recognized by the American people at various times during the war, and especially when, at the surrender of Appomattox, he declined to deprive General Lee of his sword, and quietly took the responsibility of allowing the soldiers of the Southern army to return with their horses to their fields to resume peaceful industry. These statesmanlike qualities were developed more and more by the great duties and responsibilities of the Presidency. His triumph over financial demagogy in his vetoes of the Inflation Bill, and his triumph over political demagogy in securing the treaty of Washington and the Alabama indemnity, prove him a statesman worthy to rank with the best of his predecessors. In view of these evidences of complete integrity and high capacity, and bearing in mind various conversations which I had with him during his public life down to a period just before his death, I feel sure that history will pronounce him not only a general but a statesman in the best sense of the word.

The renomination of General Grant at the Philadelphia convention was the result of gratitude, respect, and conviction of his fitness. Although Mr. Greeley had the support of the most influential presses of the United States, and was widely beloved and respected as one who had borne the burden and heat of the day, he was defeated in obedience to a healthy national instinct.

Years afterward I was asked in London by one of the most eminent of English journalists how such a thing could have taken place. Said he, ``The leading papers of the United States, almost without exception, were in favor of Mr. Greeley; how, then, did it happen that he was in such a hopeless minority?'' I explained the matter as best I could, whereupon he said, ``Whatever the explanation may be, it proves that the American press, by its wild statements in political campaigns, and especially by its reckless attacks upon individuals, has lost that hold upon American opinion which it ought to have; and, depend upon it, this is a great misfortune for your country.'' I did not attempt to disprove this statement, for I knew but too well that there was great truth in it.

Of my political experiences at that period I recall two: the first of these was making the acquaintance at Saratoga of Mr. Samuel J. Tilden. His political fortunes were then at their lowest point. With Mr. Dean Richmond of Buffalo, he had been one of the managers of the Democratic party in the State, but, Mr. Richmond having died, the Tweed wing of the party, supported by the canal contractors, had declared war against Mr. Tilden, treated him with contempt, showed their aversion to him in every way, and, it was fully understood, had made up their minds to depose him. I remember walking and talking again and again with him under the colonnade at Congress Hall, and, without referring to any person by name, he dwelt upon the necessity of more earnest work in redeeming American politics from the management of men utterly unfit for leadership. Little did he or I foresee that soon afterward his arch-enemy, Tweed, then in the same hotel and apparently all-powerful, was to be a fugitive from justice, and finally to die in prison, and that he, Mr. Tilden himself, was to be elected governor of the State of New York, and to come within a hair's-breadth of the presidential chair at Washington.

The other circumstance of a political character was my attendance as an elector at the meeting of the Electoral College at Albany, which cast the vote of New York for General Grant. I had never before sat in such a body, and its proceedings interested me. As president we elected General Stewart L. Woodford, and as the body, after the formal election of General Grant to the Presidency, was obliged to send certificates to the governor of the State, properly signed and sealed, and as it had no seal of its own, General Woodford asked if any member had a seal which he would lend to the secretary for that purpose. Thereupon a seal-ring which Goldwin Smith had brought from Rome and given me was used for that purpose. It was an ancient intaglio. Very suitably, it bore the figure of a ``Winged Victory,'' and it was again publicly used, many years later, when it was affixed to the American signature of the international agreement made at the Peace Conference of The Hague.

The following winter I had my first experience of ``Reconstruction'' in the South. Being somewhat worn with work, I made a visit to Florida, passing leisurely through the southern seaboard States, and finding at Columbia an old Yale friend, Governor Chamberlain, from whom I learned much. But the simple use of my eyes and ears during the journey gave me more than all else. A visit to the State legislature of South Carolina revealed vividly the new order of things. The State Capitol was a beautiful marble building, but unfinished without and dirty within. Approaching the hall of the House of Representatives, I found the door guarded by a negro, squalid and filthy. He evidently reveled in his new citizenship; his chair was tilted back against the wall, his feet were high in the air, and he was making everything nauseous about him with tobacco; but he soon became obsequious and admitted us to one of the most singular deliberative bodies ever known—a body composed of former landed proprietors and slave-owners mixed up pell-mell with their former slaves and with Northern adventurers then known as ``carpet-baggers.'' The Southern gentlemen of the Assembly were gentlemen still, and one of them, Mr. Memminger, formerly Secretary of the Treasury of the Confederate States, was especially courteous to us. But soon all other things were lost in contemplation of ``Mr. Speaker.'' He was a bright, nimble, voluble mulatto who, as one of the Southern gentlemen informed me, was ``the smartest nigger God ever made.'' Having been elevated to the speakership, he magnified his office. While we were observing him, a gentleman of one of the most historic families of South Carolina, a family which had given to the State a long line of military commanders, governors, senators, and ambassadors, rose to make a motion. The speaker, a former slave, at once declared him out of order. On the member persisting in his effort, the speaker called out, ``De genlemun frum Bufert has no right to de floh; de genlemun from Bufert will take his seat,'' and the former aristocrat obeyed. To this it had come at last. In the presence of this assembly, in this hall where dis- union really had its birth, where secession first shone out in all its glory, a former slave ordered a former master to sit down, and was obeyed.

In Charleston the same state of things was to be seen, and for the first time I began to feel sympathy for the South. This feeling was deepened by what I saw in Georgia and Florida; and yet, below it all I seemed to see the hand of God in history, and in the midst of it all I seemed to hear a deep voice from the dead. To me, seeing these things, there came, reverberating out of the last century, that prediction of Thomas Jefferson,—himself a slaveholder,—who, after depicting the offenses of slavery, ended with these words, worthy of Isaiah,—divinely inspired if any ever were:—``I tremble when I remember that God is just.''



At various times after the death of Mr. Lincoln I visited Washington, meeting many men especially influential, and, first of all, President Grant. Of all personages whom I then met he impressed me most strongly. At various times I talked with him at the White House, dining with him and seeing him occasionally in his lighter mood, but at no time was there the slightest diminution of his unaffected dignity. Now and then he would make some dry remark which showed a strong sense of humor, but in everything there was the same quiet, simple strength. On one occasion, when going to the White House, I met Professor Agassiz of Cambridge, and took him with me: we were received cordially, General Grant offering us cigars, as was his wont with visitors, and Agassiz genially smoking with him: when we had come away the great naturalist spoke with honest admiration of the President, evidently impressed by the same qualities which had always impressed me—his modesty, simplicity, and quiet force.

I also visited him at various times in his summer cottage at Long Branch, and on one of these occasions he gave a bit of history which specially interested me. As we were taking coffee after dinner, a card was brought in, and the President, having glanced at it, said, ``Tell him that I cannot see him.'' The servant departed with the message, but soon returned and said, ``The gentleman wishes to know when he can see the President.'' ``Tell him NEVER,'' said Grant.

It turned out that the person whose name the card bore was the correspondent of a newspaper especially noted for sensation-mongering, and the conversation drifted to the subject of newspapers and newspaper correspondents, when the President told the following story, which I give as nearly as possible in his own words:

``During the hottest period of the final struggle in Virginia, we suffered very much from the reports of newspaper correspondents who prowled about our camps and then put on the wires the information they had gained, which of course went South as rapidly as it went North. It became really serious and embarrassed us greatly. On this account, one night, when I had decided to make an important movement with a portion of the army early next day, I gave orders that a tent should be pitched in an out-of-the-way place, at the earliest possible moment in the morning, and notified the generals who were to take part in the movement to meet me there.

``It happened that on the previous day there had come to the camp a newspaper correspondent named ——, and, as he bore a letter from Mr. Washburne, I treated him as civilly as possible.

``At daylight next morning, while we were assembled in the tent making final arrangements, one of my aides, Colonel ——, heard a noise just outside, and, going out, saw this correspondent lying down at full length, his ear under the edge of the tent, and a note-book in his hand. Thereupon Colonel took the correspondent by his other ear, lifted him to his feet, and swore to him a solemn oath that if he was visible in any part of the camp more than five minutes longer, a detachment of troops would be ordered out to shoot him and bury him there in the swamp, so that no one would ever know his name or burial-place.

``The correspondent left at once,'' said the President, ``and he took his revenge by writing a history of the war from which he left me out.''

The same characteristic which I had found at other meetings with Grant came out even more strongly when, just before the close of his term, he made me a visit at Cornell, where one of his sons was a student. To meet him I invited several of our professors and others who were especially prejudiced against him, and, without exception, they afterward expressed the very feeling which had come over me after my first conversation with him— surprise at the revelation of his quiet strength and his knowledge of public questions then before the country.

During a walk on the university grounds he spoke to me of the Santo Domingo matter.[3] He said: ``The annexation question is doubtless laid aside for the present, but the time will come when the country will have occasion to regret that it was disposed of without adequate discussion. As I am so soon to leave the presidency, I may say to you now that one of my main thoughts in regard to the annexation of the island has been that it might afford a refuge for the negroes of the South in case anything like a war of races should ever arise in the old slave States.'' He then alluded to the bitter feeling between the two races which was then shown in the South, and which was leading many of the blacks to take refuge in Kansas and other northwestern States, and said, ``If such a refuge as Santo Domingo were open to them, their former masters would soon find that they have not the colored population entirely at their mercy, and would be obliged to compromise with them on far more just terms than would otherwise be likely.''

[3] See my chapter on Santo Domingo experiences.

The President said this with evidently deep conviction, and it seemed to me a very thoughtful and far-sighted view of the possibilities and even probabilities involved.

During another walk, in speaking of the approaching close of his second presidential term, he said that he found himself looking forward to it with the same longing which he had formerly had as a cadet at West Point when looking forward to a furlough.

I have never believed that the earnest effort made by his friends at Chicago to nominate him for a third term was really prompted by him, or that he originally desired it. It always seemed to me due to the devotion of friends who admired his noble qualities, and thought that the United States ought not to be deprived of them in obedience to a tradition, in this case, more honored in the breach than in the observance.

I may add here that, having seen him on several convivial occasions, and under circumstances when, if ever, he would be likely to indulge in what was understood to have been, in his early life, an unfortunate habit, I never saw him betray the influence of alcohol in the slightest degree.

Shortly after General Grant laid down his high office, he made his well-known journey to Europe and the East, and I had the pleasure of meeting him at Cologne and traveling up the Rhine with him. We discussed American affairs all day long. He had during the previous week been welcomed most cordially to the hospitalities of two leading sovereigns of Europe, and had received endless attentions from the most distinguished men of England and Belgium, but in conversation he never, in the slightest degree, referred to any of these experiences. He seemed not to think of them; his heart was in matters pertaining to his own country. He told me much regarding his administration, and especially spoke with the greatest respect and affection of his Secretary of State, Mr. Hamilton Fish.

Somewhat later I again met him in Paris, had several walks and talks with him in which he discussed American affairs, and I remember that he dwelt with especial admiration, and even affection, upon his colleagues Sherman and Sheridan.

I trust that it may not be considered out of place if, in this retrospect, which is intended, first of all, for my children and grandchildren, I state that a personal fact, which was known to many from other sources, was confirmed to me in one of these conversations: General Grant informing me, as he had previously informed my wife, that he had fully purposed to name me as Secretary of State had Mr. Fish carried out his intention of resigning. When he told me this, my answer was that I considered it a very fortunate escape for us both; that my training had not fitted me for such duties; that my experience in the diplomatic service had then been slight; that I had no proper training as a lawyer; that my knowledge of international law was derived far more from the reading of books than from its application; and that I doubted my physical ability to bear the pressure for patronage which converged upon the head of the President's cabinet.

In the Washington of those days my memory also recalls vividly a dinner with Senator Conkling at which I met a number of interesting men, and among them Governor Seymour, who had been the candidate opposed to Grant during his first presidential campaign; Senator Anthony, Senator Edmunds, the former Vice-President Mr. Hamlin, Senator Carpenter, and others. Many good stories were told, and one amused me especially, as it was given with admirable mimicry by Senator Carpenter. He described an old friend of his, a lawyer, who, coming before one of the higher courts with a very doubtful case, began his plea as follows: ``May it please the court, there is only one point in this case favorable to my client, but that, may it please the court, is a chink in the common law which has been worn smooth by the multitude of scoundrels who have escaped through it.''

During the year 1878 I was sent as an honorary commissioner from the State of New York to the Paris Exposition, and shall give a more full account of this period in another chapter. Suffice it that, having on my return prepared my official report on the provision for political education made by the different governments of Europe, I became more absorbed than ever in university affairs, keeping aloof as much as possible from politics. But in the political campaign of 1878 I could not but be interested. It was different from any other that I had known, for the ``Greenback Craze'' bloomed out as never before and seemed likely to poison the whole country. Great hardships had arisen from the fact that debts which had been made under a depreciated currency had to be paid in money of greater value. Men who, in what were known as ``flush times,'' had bought farms, paid down half the price, and mortgaged them for the other half, found now, when their mortgages became due, that they could not sell the property for enough to cover the lien upon it. Besides this, the great army of speculators throughout the country found the constant depreciation of prices bringing them to bankruptcy. In the cry for more greenbacks,— that is, for continued issues of paper money,— demagogism undoubtedly had a large part; but there were many excellent men who were influenced by it, and among them Peter Cooper of New York, founder of the great institution which bears his name, one of the purest and best men I have ever known.

This cry for more currency was echoed from one end of the country to the other. In various States, and especially in Ohio, it seemed to carry everything before it, nearly all the public men of note, including nearly all the leading Democrats and very many of the foremost Republicans, bowing down to it, the main exceptions being John Sherman and Garfield.

In central New York the mania seemed, early in the summer, to take strong hold. In Syracuse John Wieting, an amazingly fluent speaker with much popular humor, who had never before shown any interest in politics, took the stump for an unlimited issue of government paper currency, received the nomination to Congress from the Democrats and sundry independent organizations, and for a time seemed to carry everything before him. A similar state of things prevailed at Ithaca and the region round about Cayuga Lake. Two or three people much respected in the community came out for this doctrine, and, having a press under their control, their influence seemed likely to be serious. Managers of the Republican organization in the State seemed at first apathetic; but at last they became alarmed and sent two speakers through these disaffected districts—only two, but each, in his way, a master. The first of them, in order of time, was Senator Roscoe Conkling, and he took as his subject the National Banking System. This had been for a considerable time one of the objects of special attack by uneasy and unsuccessful people throughout the entire country. As a matter of fact, the national banking system, created during the Civil War by Secretary Chase and his advisers, was one of the most admirable expedients ever devised in any country. Up to the time of its establishment the whole country had suffered enormously from the wretched currency supplied from the State banks. Even in those States where the greatest precaution was taken to insure its redemption all of it was, in time of crisis or panic, fluctuating and much of it worthless. But in other States the case was even worse. I can recall perfectly that through my boyhood and young manhood every merchant and shopkeeper kept on his table what was called a ``bank-note detector,'' which, when any money was tendered him, he was obliged to consult in order to know, first, whether the bill was a counterfeit, as it frequently was; secondly, whether it was on a solvent bank; and thirdly, if good, what discount should be deducted from the face of it. Under this system bank-notes varied in value from week to week, and even from day to day, with the result that all buying and selling became a sort of gambling.

When, then, Mr. Chase established the new system of national banks so based that every bill-holder had security for the entire amount which his note represented, so controlled that a bill issued from any little bank in the remotest State, or even in the remotest corner of a Territory, was equal to one issued by the richest bank in Wall Street, so engraved that counterfeiting was practically impossible, there was an immense gain to every man, woman, and child in the country.

To appreciate this gain one must have had experience of the older system. I remember well the panic of 1857, which arose while I was traveling in eastern and northern New England, and that, arriving in the city of Salem, Massachusetts, having tendered, in payment of my hotel bill, notes issued by a leading New York city bank, guaranteed under what was known as the ``Safety Fund System,'' they were refused. The result was that I had to leave my wife at the hotel, go to Boston, and there manage to get Massachusetts money.

But this was far short of the worst. Professor Roberts of Cornell University once told me that, having in those days collected a considerable debt in one of the Western States, he found the currency so worthless that he attempted to secure New York funds, but that the rate of exchange was so enormous that, as the only way of saving anything, he bought a large quantity of cheap clothing, shipped it to the East, and sold it for what it would bring.

As to the way in which the older banking operations were carried on in some of the Western States, Governor Felch of Michigan once gave me some of his experiences as a bank examiner, and one of them especially amused me. He said that he and a brother examiner made an excursion through the State in a sleigh with a pair of good horses in order to inspect the various banks established in remote villages and hamlets which had the power of issuing currency based upon the specie contained in their vaults. After visiting a few of these, and finding that each had the amount of specie required by law, the examiners began to note a curious similarity between the specie packages in these different banks, and before long their attention was drawn to another curious fact, which was that wherever they went they were preceded by a sleigh drawn by especially fleet horses. On making a careful examination, they found that this sleigh bore from bank to bank a number of kegs of specie sufficient to enable each bank in its turn to show the examiners a temporary basis in hard money for its output of paper.

Such was the state of things which the national banks remedied, and the system had the additional advantage of being elastic, so that any little community which needed currency had only to combine its surplus capital and establish a bank of issue.

But throughout the country there were, as there will doubtless always be, a considerable number of men who, not being able to succeed themselves, distrusted and disliked the successful. There was also a plentiful supply of demagogues skilful in appealing to the prejudices of the ignorant, envious, or perverse, and as a result came a cry against the national banks.

In Mr. Conkling's Ithaca speech (1878), he argued the question with great ability and force. He had a sledge- hammer way which broke down all opposition, and he exulted in it. One of his favorite tactics, which greatly amused his auditors, was to lead some prominent gainsayer in his audience to interrupt him, whereupon, in the blandest way possible, he would invite him to come forward, urge him to present his views, even help him to do so, and then, having gradually entangled him in his own sophistries and made him ridiculous, the senator would come down upon him with arguments—cogent, pithy, sarcastic—much like the fist of a giant upon a mosquito.

In whatever town Mr. Conkling argued the question of the national banks, that subject ceased to be a factor in politics: it was settled; his attacks upon the anti-bank demagogues annihilated their arguments among thinking men, and his sarcasm made them ridiculous among unthinking men. This was the sort of thing which he did best. While utterly deficient in constructive power, his destructive force was great indeed, and in this campaign it was applied, as it was not always applied, for the advantage of the country.

The other great speaker in the campaign was General James A. Garfield, then a member of the House of Repre- sentatives. My acquaintance with him had begun several years before at Syracuse, when my old school friend, his college mate, Charles Elliot Fitch, brought him into my library. My collection of books was even at that date very large, and Garfield, being delighted with it, soon revealed his scholarly qualities. It happened that not long before this I had bought in London several hundred volumes from the library left by the historian Buckle, very many of them bearing copious annotations in his own hand. Garfield had read Buckle's ``History of Civilization in England'' with especial interest, and when I presented to him and discussed with him some of these annotated volumes, there began a friendly relation between us which ended only with his life.

I also met him under less favorable circumstances. Happening to be in Washington at the revelation of the Cr<e'>dit Mobilier operations, I found him in the House of Representatives, and evidently in the depths of suffering. An effort was making to connect him with the scandal, and while everything I know of him convinces me that he was not dishonest, he had certainly been imprudent. This he felt, and he asked me, in an almost heart-broken tone, if I really believed that this had forever destroyed his influence in the country. I answered that I believed nothing of the kind; that if he came out in a straightforward, manly way, without any of the prevarication which had so greatly harmed some others, he would not be injured, and the result showed that this advice was good.

On our arrival at the great hall in Ithaca (October 28, 1878), we found floor and stage packed in every part. Never had a speaker a better audience. There were present very many men of all parties anxious to hear the currency question honestly discussed, and among them many of the more thoughtful sort misled by the idea that a wrong had been done to the country in the restoration of the currency to a sound basis; and there was an enormous attendance of students from the university.

As Garfield began he showed the effects of fatigue from the many speeches he had been making for weeks,—morning, noon, and night; but soon he threw himself heartily into the subject, and of all the thousands of political speeches I have heard it was the most effective. It was eloquent, but it was far more than that; it was HONESTLY argumentative; there was no sophistry of any sort; every subject was taken up fairly and every point dealt with thoroughly. One could see the supports of the Greenback party vanishing as he went on. His manner was the very opposite of Mr. Conkling's: it was kindly, hearty, as of neighbor with neighbor,—indeed, every person present, even if greenbacker or demagogue, must have said within himself, ``This man is a friend arguing with friends; he makes me his friend, and now speaks to me as such.''

The main line of his argument finished, there came something even finer; for, inspired by the presence of the great mass of students, he ended his speech with an especial appeal to them. Taking as his test the noted passage in the letter written by Macaulay to Henry Randall, the biographer of Jefferson,—the letter in which Macaulay prophesied destruction to the American Republic when poverty should pinch and discontent be wide-spread in the country, —he appealed to these young men to see to it that this prophecy should not come true; he asked them to follow in this, as in similar questions, their reason and not their prejudices, and from this he went on with a statement of the motives which ought to govern them and the line they ought to pursue in the effort to redeem their country.

Never was speech more successful. It carried the entire audience, and left in that region hardly a shred of the greenback theory. When the election took place it was observed that in those districts where Conkling and Garfield had spoken, the greenback heresy was annihilated, while in other districts which had been counted as absolutely sure for the Republican party, and to which, therefore, these orators had not been sent, there was a great increase in the vote for currency inflation.

I have often alluded to this result as an answer to those who say that speaking produces no real effect on the convictions of men regarding party matters. Some speaking does not, but there is a kind of speaking which does, and of this were these two masterpieces, so different from each other in matter and manner, and yet converging upon the same points, intellectual and moral.

Before I close regarding Garfield, it may be well to give a few more recollections of him. The meeting ended, we drove to my house on the university grounds, and shortly before our arrival he asked me, ``How did you like my speech?'' I answered: ``Garfield, I have known you too long and think too highly of you to flatter you; but I will simply say what I would say under oath: it was the best speech I ever heard. ``This utterance of mine was deliberate, expressing my conviction, and he was evidently pleased with it.

Having settled down in front of the fire in my library, we began to discuss the political situation, and his talk remains to me among the most interesting things of my life. He said much regarding the history of the currency question and his relations to it, and from this ran rapidly and suggestively through a multitude of other questions and the relations of public men to them. One thing which struck me was his judicially fair and even kindly estimates of men who differed from him. Very rarely did he speak harshly or sharply of any one, differing in this greatly from Mr. Conkling, who, in all his conversations, and especially in one at that same house not long before, seemed to consider men who differed from him as enemies of the human race.

Under Mr. Hayes, the successor of General Grant in the Presidency, I served first as a commissioner at the Paris Exposition, and then as minister to Germany. Both these services will be discussed in the chapters relating to my diplomatic life, but I may refer briefly to my acquaintance with him at this period.

I had met him but once previously, and that was during his membership of Congress when he came to enter his son at Cornell. I had then been most favorably impressed by his large, sincere, manly way. On visiting Washington to receive my instructions before going to Berlin, I saw him several times, and at each meeting my respect for him was increased. Driving to Arlington, walking among the soldiers' graves there, standing in the portico of General Lee's former residence, and viewing from the terrace the Capitol in the distance, he spoke very nobly of the history we had both personally known, of the sacrifices it had required, and of the duties which it now imposed. At his dinner- table I heard him discuss with his Secretary of State, Mr. Evarts, a very interesting question—the advisability of giving members of the cabinet seats in the Senate and House of Representatives, as had been arranged in the constitution of the so-called Confederate States; but of this I shall speak in another chapter.

It should further be said regarding Mr. Hayes that, while hardly any President was ever so systematically denounced and depreciated, he was one of the truest and best men who has ever held our Chief Magistracy. I remember, just at the close of his administration, dining with an eminent German statesman who said to me: ``I have watched the course of your President with more and more surprise. We have been seeing constantly in our German newspapers extracts from American journals holding up your President to contempt as an ignoramus, but more and more I have seen that he is one of the most substantial, honest, and capable Presidents that you have had.''

This opinion was amply justified by what I saw of Mr. Hayes after the close of his Presidency. Twice I met him during conferences at Lake Mohonk, at which matters relating to the improvement of the freedmen and Indians were discussed, and in each he took broad, strong, and statesmanlike views based on thoughtful experience and permeated by honesty.

I also met him at a great public meeting at Cleveland, where we addressed some four thousand people from the same platform, and again I was impressed by his manly, far-seeing grasp of public questions.

As to my after relations with Garfield, I might speak of various pleasant interviews, but will allude to just one incident which has a pathetic side. During my first residence in Germany as minister of the United States, I one day received a letter from him asking me to secure for him the best editions of certain leading Greek and Latin classics, adding that it had long been his earnest desire to re-read them, and that now, as he had been elected to the United States Senate, he should have leisure to carry out his purpose. I had hardly sent him what he desired when the news came that he had been nominated to the Presidency, and so all his dream of literary leisure vanished. A few months later came the news of his assassination.

My term of service as minister in Berlin being ended, I arrived in America in September, 1881, and, in accordance with custom, went to present my respects to the new President and his Secretary of State. They were both at Long Branch. Mr. Blaine I saw and had with him a very interesting conversation, but President Garfield I could not see. His life was fast ebbing out, and a week later, on Sunday morning, I heard the bells tolling and knew that his last struggle was over.

So closed a career which, in spite of some defects, was beautiful and noble. Great hopes had been formed regarding his Presidency, and yet, on looking back over his life, I have a strong feeling that his assassination was a service rendered to his reputation. I know from those who had full information that during his campaign for the Presidency he had been forced to make concessions and pledges which would have brought great trouble upon him had he lived through his official term. Gifted and good as he was, advantage had been taken of his kindly qualities, and he would have had to pay the penalty.

It costs me a pang to confess my opinion that the administration of Mr. Arthur, a man infinitely his inferior in nearly all the qualities which men most justly admire, was far better than the administration which Mr Garfield would have been allowed to give to the country.

Upon my return to the university I was asked by my fellow-citizens of Ithaca in general, as also by the university faculty and students, to give the public address at the celebration of President Garfield's funeral. This I did and never with a deeper feeling of loss.

One thing in the various tributes to him had struck me painfully: Throughout the whole country his career was constantly referred to in funeral addresses as showing how a young American under all the disadvantages of poverty could rise to the highest possible position. I have always thought that such statements, as they are usually presented, are injurious to the character and lowering to the aspirations of young men. I took pains, therefore, to show that while Garfield had risen under the most discouraging circumstances from complete poverty, his rise was due to something other than mere talent and exertion —that it was the result of talent and exertion originating in noble instincts and directed to worthy ends. Garfield's life proves this abundantly, and whatever may have been his temporary weakness under the fearful pressure brought upon him toward the end of his career, these instincts and purposes remained his main guiding influences from first to last.



The successor of Garfield, President Arthur, I had met frequently in my old days at Albany. He was able, and there never was the slightest spot upon his integrity; but in those early days nobody dreamed that he was to attain any high distinction. He was at that time charged with the main military duties under the governor; later he became collector of the port of New York, and in both positions showed himself honest and capable. He was lively, jocose, easy-going, with little appearance of devotion to work, dashing off whatever he had to do with ease and accuracy. At various dinner-parties and social gatherings, and indeed at sundry State conventions, where I met him, he seemed, more than anything else, a bon vivant, facile and good-natured.

His nomination to the Vice-Presidency, which on the death of Garfield led him to the Presidency, was very curious, and an account of it given me by an old friend who had previously been a member of the Garfield cabinet and later an ambassador in Europe, was as follows:

After the defeat of the ``Stalwarts,'' who had fought so desperately for the renomination of General Grant at the Chicago Convention of 1880, the victorious side of the convention determined to concede to them, as an olive- branch, the Vice-Presidency, and with this intent my informant and a number of other delegates who had been especially active in preventing Grant's renomination went to the room of the New York delegation, which had taken the leading part in his support, knocked at the door, and called for Mr. Levi P. Morton, previously a member of Congress, and, several years later, Vice-President of the United States and Governor of New York. Mr. Morton came out into the corridor, and thereupon the visitors said to him, ``We wish to give the Vice-Presidency to New York as a token of good will, and you are the man who should take it; don't fail to accept it.'' Mr. Morton answered that he had but a moment before, in this conference of his delegation, declined the nomination. At this the visitors said, ``Go back instantly and tell them that you have reconsidered and will accept; we will see that the convention nominates you.'' Mr. Morton started to follow this advice, but was just too late: while he was outside the door he had been taken at his word, the place which he had declined had been offered to General Arthur, he had accepted it, and so the latter and not Mr. Morton became President of the United States.

Up to the time when the Presidency devolved upon him, General Arthur had shown no qualities which would have suggested him for that high office, and I remember vividly that when the news of Garfield's assassination arrived in Berlin, where I was then living as minister, my first overwhelming feeling was not, as I should have expected, horror at the death of Garfield, but stupefaction at the elevation of Arthur. It was a common saying of that time among those who knew him best, `` `Chet' Arthur President of the United States! Good God!'' But the change in him on taking the Presidency was amazing. Up to that time he had been known as one of Mr. Conkling's henchmen, though of the better sort. As such he had held the collectorship of the port of New York, and as such, during his occupancy of the Vice-Presidency, he had visited Albany and done his best, though in vain, to secure Mr. Conkling's renomination; but immediately on his elevation to the Presidency all this was changed, and there is excellent authority for the statement that when Mr. Conkling wished him to continue, as President, in the subservient position which he had taken as Vice-President, Mr. Arthur had refused, and when taxed with ingratitude he said: ``No. For the Vice-Presidency I was indebted to Mr. Conkling, but for the Presidency of the United States my debt is to the Almighty.''

The new President certainly showed this spirit in his actions. Rarely has there been a better or more dignified administration; the new Secretary of State, Mr. Frelinghuysen, was in every respect fitted for his office, and the other men whom Mr. Arthur summoned about him were satisfactory.

Although I had met him frequently, and indeed was on cordial terms with him before his elevation to the Presidency, I never met him afterward. During his whole administration my duties in connection with Cornell University completely absorbed me. I was one of the last university presidents who endeavored to unite professorial with executive duties, and the burden was heavy. The university had made at that period its first great sale of lands, and this involved a large extension of its activity; the famous Fiske lawsuit, involving nearly two millions of dollars, had come on; there was every sort of detail requiring attention at the university itself, and addresses must be given in various parts of the country, more especially before alumni associations, to keep them in proper relations with the institution; so that I was kept completely out of politics, was hardly ever in Washington during this period, and never at the White House.

The only matter which connected me with politics at all was my conviction, which deepened more and more, as to the necessity of reform in the civil service; and on this subject I conferred with Mr. Dorman B. Eaton, Mr. John Jay, and others at various times, and prepared an article for the ``North American Review'' in which I presented not only the general advantages of civil service reform, but its claims upon men holding public office. My main effort was to show, what I believed then and believe still more strongly now, that, evil as the whole spoils system was in its effects on the country, it was quite as vexatious and fertile in miseries and disappointments to political leaders. In the natural order of things, where there is no spoils system, and where the bestowal of offices is not in the hands of senators, representatives, and the like, these senators and representatives, when once elected, have time to discharge their duties, and with very little pains can maintain their hold upon their constituents as long as they please. The average man, when he has cast his vote for a candidate and sees that candidate elected, takes an interest in him; the voter, feeling that he has, in a certain sense, made an investment in the man thus elected, is naturally inclined to regard him favorably and to continue him in office. But with the spoils system, no sooner is a candidate elected than, as has been well observed, for every office which he bestows he makes ``ninety-nine enemies and one ingrate.'' The result is that the unsuccessful candidates for appointment return home bent on taking revenge by electing another person at the end of the present incumbent's term, and hence comes mainly the wretched system of rapid rotation in office, which has been in so many ways injurious to our country.

This and other points I urged, but the evil was too deeply seated. Time was required to remove all doubts which were raised. I found with regret that my article had especially incurred the bitter dislike of my old adviser, Thurlow Weed, the great friend of Mr. Seward and former autocrat of Whig and Republican parties in the State of New York. Being entirely of the old school, he could not imagine the government carried on without the spoils system.

On one of my visits to New York in the interest of this reform, I met at dinner Mr. William M. Evarts, then at the head of the American bar, who had been Secretary of State under Mr. Hayes, and who was afterward senator from the State of New York. I had met him frequently before and heard much of his brilliant talk, and especially his admirable stories of all sorts.

But on this occasion Mr. Evarts surpassed himself. I recall a series of witty repartees and charming illustrations, but will give merely one of the latter. Something was said of people's hobbies, whereupon Mr. Evarts said that a gentleman visiting a lunatic asylum went into a room where several patients were assembled, and saw one of them astride a great dressing-trunk, holding fast to a rope drawn through the handle, seesawing and urging it forward as if it were a horse at full speed. The visitor, to humor the patient, said, ``That 's a fine horse you are riding.'' ``Why, no,'' said the patient, ``this is not a horse.'' ``What is it, then?'' asked the visitor. The patient answered, ``It 's a hobby.'' ``But,'' said the visitor, ``what 's the difference between a horse and a hobby?'' ``Why,'' said the patient, ``there 's an enormous difference; a horse you can get off from, a hobby you can't.''

As to civil-service reform, my efforts to convert leading Republicans by personal appeals were continued, and in some cases with good results; but I found it very difficult to induce party leaders to give up the immediate and direct exercise of power which the spoils system gave them. Especially was it difficult with sundry editors of leading papers and party managers; but time has wrought upon them, and some of those who were most obdurate in those days are doing admirable work in these. The most serious effort I ever made was to convert my old friend and classmate, Thomas C. Platt, the main manager and, as he was called, the ``boss'' of the Republican party in the State of New York, a man of great influence throughout the Union. He treated me civilly, but evidently considered me a ``crank.'' He, like Mr. Thurlow Weed, was unable to understand how a party could be conducted without the promise of spoils for the victors; but I have lived to see him take a better view. As I write these lines word comes that his influence is thrown in favor of the bill for reforming the civil service of the State of New York, championed by my nephew, Mr. Horace White, a member of the present State Senate, and favored by Colonel Roosevelt, the governor.

It was upon a civil-service errand in Philadelphia that I met, after a long separation, my old friend and classmate Wayne MacVeagh. He had been minister to Constantinople, Attorney-General in the Garfield cabinet, and, at a later period, ambassador at Rome. At this period he had returned to practise his profession in Philadelphia, and at his hospitable table I met a number of interesting men, and on one occasion sat next an eminent member of the Philadelphia bar, Judge Biddle. A subject happened to come up in which I had taken great interest, namely, American laxity in the punishment of crime, and especially the crime of murder, whereupon Judge Biddle dryly remarked: ``The taking of life, after due process of law, as a penalty for murder, seems to be the only form of taking life to which the average American has any objection.''

In the autumn of 1882 came a tremendous reverse for the Republican party. There was very wide-spread disgust at the apparent carelessness of those in power regarding the redemption of pledges for reforms. Judge Folger, who had been nominated to the governorship of New York, had every qualification for the place, but an opinion had widely gained ground that President Arthur, who had called Judge Folger into his cabinet as Secretary of the Treasury, was endeavoring to interfere with the politics of the State, and to put Judge Folger into the governor's chair. There was a suspicion that ``the machine'' was working too easily and that some of its wheels were of a very bad sort. All this, coupled with slowness in redeeming platform pledges, brought on the greatest disaster the Republican party had ever experienced. In November, 1882, Mr. Cleveland was elected governor by the most enormous majority ever known, and the defeat extended not only through the State of New York, but through a number of other States. It was bitter medicine, but, as it afterward turned out, very salutary.

Just after this election, being in New York to deliver an address before the Geographical Society on the subject of ``The New Germany'' (December 27, 1882), I met a number of distinguished men in politics at the table of General Cullom, formerly the head of the West Point Academy. There was much interesting talk, and some significant political facts were brought out; but the man who interested me most was my next neighbor at table, General McDowell.

He was an old West Pointer, and had planned the first battle of Bull Run, when our troops were overwhelmingly defeated, the capital put in peril, and the nation humiliated at home and abroad. There is no doubt now that McDowell's plans were excellent, but the troops were raw volunteers, with little knowledge of their officers and less confidence in them; and, as a result, when, like the men in the ``Biglow Papers,'' they found ``why bagonets is peaked,'' there was a panic, just as there was in the first battles of the French Revolution. Every man distrusted every other man; there was a general outcry, and all took flight. I remember doing what I could in those days to encourage those who looked with despair on the flight from the battle-field of Bull Run, by pointing out to them exactly similar panics and flights in the first battles of the soldiers who afterward became the Grande Arm<e'>e and marched triumphantly over Europe.

But of one thing the American people felt certain in those days, and that was that at Bull Run ``General McDowell was drunk.'' This assertion was loudly made, widely spread, never contradicted, and generally believed. I must confess now with shame that I was one of those who were so simple-minded as to take this newspaper story as true. On this occasion, sitting next General McDowell, I noticed that he drank only water, taking no wine of any sort; and on my calling his attention to the wines of our host as famous, he answered, ``No doubt; but I never take anything but water.'' I answered, ``General, how long has that been your rule?'' He replied, ``Always since my boy- hood. At that time I was sent to a military school at Troyes in France, and they gave us so much sour wine that I vowed that if I ever reached America again no drink but water should ever pass my lips, and I have kept to that resolution.''

Of course this was an enormous surprise to me, but shortly afterward I asked various army officers regarding the matter, and their general answer was: ``Why, of course; all of us know that McDowell is the only officer in the army who never takes anything but water.''

And this was the man who was widely believed by the American people to have lost the battle of Bull Run because he was drunk!

Another remembrance of this period is a dinner with Mr. George Jones, of the ``New York Times,'' who gave me a full account of the way in which his paper came into possession of the documents revealing the Tammany frauds, and how, despite enormous bribes and bitter threats, the ``Times'' persisted in publishing the papers, and so brought the Tweed r<e'>gime to destruction.

Of political men, the most noted whom I met in those days was Governor Cleveland. He was little known, but those of us who had been observant of public affairs knew that he had shown sturdy honesty and courage, first as sheriff of the county of Erie, and next as mayor of Buffalo, and that, most wonderful of all, he had risen above party ties and had appointed to office the best men he could find, even when some of them were earnest Republicans.

In June of 1883 he visited the university as an ex-officio trustee, laid the corner-stone of the chapel above the remains of Ezra Cornell, and gave a brief address. It was short, but surprised me by its lucidity and force. This being done, I conducted him to the opening of the new chemical laboratory. He was greatly interested in it, and it was almost pathetic to note his evident regret that he had never had the advantage of such instruction. I learned afterward that he was classically prepared to enter college, but that his father, a poor country clergyman, being unable to defray his expenses, the young man determined to strike out for himself, and so began one of the best careers known in the history of American politics.

At this same commencement of Cornell University appeared another statesman, Justin S. Morrill of Vermont, author of the Morrill Bill of 1862, which, by a grant of public lands, established a college for scientific, technical, military, and general education in every State and Territory in the Union. It was one of the most beneficent measures ever proposed in any country. Mr. Morrill had made a desperate struggle for his bill, first as representative and afterward as senator. It was twice vetoed by President Buchanan, who had at his back all the pro-slavery doctrinaires of his time. They distrusted, on various accounts, any system for promoting advanced education, and especially for its promotion by the government; but he won the day, and on this occasion our trustees, at my suggestion, invited him to be present at the unveiling of his portrait by Huntington, which had been painted by order of the trustees for the library.

He was evidently gratified at the tribute, and all who met him were pleased with him. The time will come, I trust, when his statue will stand in the capital of the Union as a memorial of one of the most useful and far-seeing statesmen our country has known.

A week later I addressed my class at Yale on ``The Message of the Nineteenth Century to the Twentieth.'' In this address my endeavor was to indicate the lines on which reforms of various sorts must be instituted, and along which a better future for the country could be developed, and it proved a far greater success than I had expected. It was widely circulated in various forms, first in the newspapers, then as a pamphlet, and finally as a kind of campaign document.

From July to September of that year (1883) I was obliged to be in Europe looking after matters pertaining to the university lawsuit, and, on returning, was called upon to address a large meeting of Germans at the funeral of a member of the German parliament who had died suddenly while on a visit to our country—Edward Lasker. I had known him well in Berlin as a man of great ability and high character, and felt it a duty to accept the invitation to give one of the addresses at his funeral. The other address was given by my friend of many years, Carl Schurz; and these addresses, with some others made at the time, did, I suppose, something to bring to me the favor of my German fellow-citizens in New York.

Still, my main thoughts were given to Cornell University. This was so evident that on one occasion a newspaper of my own party, in an article hostile to those who spoke of nominating me for the governorship, declared: ``Mr. White's politics and religion are Cornell University.'' But suddenly, in 1884, I was plunged into politics most unexpectedly.

As has been usual with every party in the State of New York from the beginning of the government, the Republicans were divided between two factions, one supporting Mr. Arthur for the Presidency, the other hoping to nominate Mr. Blaine. These two factions thus standing opposed to each other, Mr. Theodore Roosevelt, with a few others in various parts of the State, started an independent movement, with the result that the two main divisions of the party, detesting each other more than they detested the independents, supported the latter and elected independent candidates as delegates at large to the approaching Republican Convention at Chicago. Without any previous notice, I was made one of these delegates. My position was therefore perfectly independent; I was at liberty to vote for whom I pleased. Although my acquaintance with Mr. Blaine was but slight, I had always felt strong admiration and deep attachment for him. As Secretary of State, during a part of my residence in Berlin, he had stood by me in a contest regarding the double standard of value in which I had feared that he might waver; and, far more than all this, his general political course had caused me, as it had caused myriads of others, to feel grateful to him.

But I had learned some things regarding his vulnerability in a presidential campaign which made me sure that it would be impossible to elect him. An impartial but kindly judge had, some months before, while expressing great admiration for Mr. Blaine, informed me of some transactions which, while they showed no turpitude, revealed a carelessness in doing business which would certainly be brought to bear upon him with great effect in a heated political campaign. It was clear to me that, if nominated, he would be dragged through the mire, the Republican party defeated, and the country at large besmirched in the eyes of the whole world.

Arrived at Chicago June 2, 1884, I found the political caldron seething and bubbling. Various candidates were earnestly supported, and foremost of all, President Arthur and Mr. Blaine. The independent delegates, led by Theodore Roosevelt and George William Curtis, and the Massachusetts delegation, headed by Governor Long, Senator Hoar, and Henry Cabot Lodge, decided to support Senator Edmunds of Vermont. No man stood higher than he for integrity as well as for statesmanlike qualities and legal abilities; no one had more thoroughly the respect of thinking men from one end of the country to the other.

The delegates having arrived in the great hall where the convention was sitting, a number of skirmishes took place, and a momentary victory was gained by the Independents in electing, as temporary chairman, a colored delegate of great ability from one of the Southern States, over Mr. Powell Clayton of Arkansas, who, though he had suffered bitterly and struggled bravely to maintain the Union during the Civil War, was supposed to be identified with doubtful methods in Southern politics.

But as it soon became evident that the main tide was for Mr. Blaine, various efforts were made to concentrate the forces opposed to him upon some candidate who could command more popular support than Mr. Edmunds. An earnest effort was made in favor of John Sherman of Ohio, and his claims were presented most sympathetically to me by my old Cornell student, Governor Foraker. Of all the candidates before the convention I would have preferred to vote for Mr. Sherman. He had borne the stress of the whole anti-slavery combat, and splendidly; he had rendered great services to the nation as a statesman and financier, and was in every respect capable and worthy. Unfortunately there were too many old enmities against him, and it was clear that the anti-Blaine vote could not be concentrated on him. My college classmate, Mr. Knevals of New York, then urged me to vote for President Arthur. This, too, would have been a fairly satisfactory solution of the question, for President Arthur had surprised every one by the excellence of his administration. Still there was a difficulty in his case: the Massachusetts delegates could not be brought to support him; it was said that he had given some of their leaders mortal offense by his hostility to the River and Harbor Bill. A final effort was then made by the Independents to induce General Sherman to serve, but he utterly refused, and so the only thing left was to let matters take their course. All chance of finding any one to maintain the desired standard of American political life against the supporters of Mr. Blaine had failed.

As we came into the convention on the morning of the day fixed for making the nominations, I noticed that the painted portraits of Washington and Lincoln, previously on either side of the president's chair, had been removed. Owing to the tumultuous conduct of the crowd in the galleries, it had been found best to remove things of an ornamental nature from the walls, for some of these ornaments had been thrown down, to the injury of those sitting below.

On my calling Curtis's attention to this removal of the two portraits, he said: ``Yes, I have noticed it, and I am glad of it. Those weary eyes of Lincoln have been upon us here during our whole stay, and I am glad that they are not to see the work that is to be done here to-day.'' It was a curious exhibition of sentiment, a revelation of the deep poetic feeling which was so essential an element in Curtis's noble character.

The various candidates were presented by prominent speakers, and most of the speeches were thoroughly good; but unquestionably the best, from an oratorical point of view, was made on the nomination of Mr. Edmunds by Governor Long of Massachusetts. Both as to matter and manner it was perfection; was felt to be so by the convention; and was sincerely applauded even by the majority of those who intended to vote for Mr. Blaine.

There was one revelation here, as there had been at many conventions previously, which could not fail to produce a discouraging impression upon every thoughtful American. The number of delegates and substitutes sent to the convention amounted in all to a few hundreds, but these were almost entirely lost in the immense crowd of spectators, numbering, it was said, from twelve to fifteen thousand. In the only conventions which I had ever before seen, including those at Baltimore and Philadelphia and various State conventions of New York, the delegates had formed the majority of those in the hall; but in this great ``wigwam'' there were times in which the most important part was played by the spectators. At some moments this overwhelming mob, which encircled the seats of the delegates on the floor and rose above them on all sides in the galleries, endeavored to sweep the convention in the direction of its own whims and fancies. From time to time the convention ceased entirely to be a deliberative body. As the names of certain favorite candidates were called, or as certain popular allusions were made in speeches, this mob really took possession of the convention and became almost frantic. I saw many women jumping up and down, dishevelled and hysterical, and some men acting in much the same way. It was absolutely unworthy of a convention of any party, a disgrace to decency, and a blot upon the reputation of our country. I am not alone in this opinion. More than once during my official life in Europe I have heard the whole thing lamented by leading liberal statesmen as bringing discredit on all democratic government.

There were times indeed when the galleries sought to howl down those who were taking part in the convention, and this was notably the case during a very courageous speech by Mr. Roosevelt.

I may mention, in passing, that the country then received the first revelation of that immense pluck and vigor which have since carried Mr. Roosevelt through so many political conflicts, borne him through all the dangers of the Santiago campaign, placed him in the governor's chair of the State of New York and in the Vice-Presidency of the United States, leading to the Presidency, which he holds as I revise these lines. At the Chicago Convention, though he was in a small minority, nothing daunted him. As he stood upon a bench and addressed the president, there came from the galleries on all sides a howl and yell, ``Sit down! sit down!'' with whistling and cat-calls. All to no purpose; the mob might as well have tried to whistle down a bronze statue. Roosevelt, slight in build as he then was, was greater than all that crowd combined. He stood quietly through it all, defied the mob, and finally obliged them to listen to him.

Toward the end of the convention this mob showed itself even worse than before. It became evident that large parts of the galleries were packed in the interest of the local candidate for the Vice-Presidency, General Logan, and this mass of onlookers did their best to put down all delegates supporting any other.

No more undemocratic system was ever devised. The tendency of this ``wigwam'' plan of holding great meetings or conventions is to station a vast mob of sensation- seeking men and women in the galleries between the delegates and the country at large. The inevitable consequence is that the ``fog-horns'' of a convention play the most ef- fective part, and that they seek mainly the applause of the galleries. The country at large is for the moment forgotten. The controlling influence is the mob, mainly from the city where the convention is held. The whole thing is a monstrous abuse. Attention has been called to it by thinking Democrats as well as by Republicans, who have seen in it a sign of deterioration which has produced many unfortunate consequences and will produce more. It is the old story of the French Convention overawed by a gallery mob and mistaking the mob whimsies of a city for the sober judgment of the country. One result of it the whole nation saw when, in more recent years, a youthful member of Congress, with no training to fit him for executive duties, was suddenly, by the applause of such a mob, imposed upon the Democratic National Convention as a candidate for the Presidency. Those who recall the way in which ``the boy orator of the Platte'' became the Democratic candidate for the Chief Magistracy over seventy millions of people, on account of a few half-mawkish, half- blasphemous phrases in a convention speech, can bear witness to the necessity of a reform in this particular—a reform which will forbid a sensation-seeking city mob to usurp the function of the whole people of our Republic.

In spite of these mob hysterics, the Independents persisted to the last in supporting Mr. Edmunds for the first place, but in voting for the second place they separated. For the Vice-Presidency I cast the only vote which was thrown for my old Cornell student, Mr. Foraker, previously governor of Ohio, and since that time senator from that State.

In spite of sundry ``defects of his qualities,'' which I freely recognized, I regarded him as a fearless, upright, downright, straightforward man of the sort who must always play a great part in American politics.

It was at this convention that I saw for the first time Mr. McKinley of Ohio, and his quiet self-possession in the midst of the various whirls and eddies and storms caused me to admire him greatly. Calm, substantial, quick to see a good point, strong to maintain it, he was evidently a born leader of men. His speeches were simple, clear, forcible, and aided at times in rescuing the self-respect of the body.

This Republican convention having adjourned, the National Democratic Convention met soon afterward in the same place and nominated Grover Cleveland of New York. He was a man whom I greatly respected. As already stated, his career as sheriff of Erie County, as mayor of Buffalo, and as governor of the State of New York had led me to admire him. He had seemed utterly incapable of making any bid for mob support; there had appeared not the slightest germ of demagogism in him; he had refused to be a mere partizan tool and had steadily stood for the best ideals of government. As governor he showed the same qualities which had won admiration during his previous career as sheriff and mayor. He made as many appointments as he could without regard to political considerations, and it was remarked with wonder that when a number of leading Democratic ``workers'' and ``wheel-horses'' came to the executive chamber in Albany in order to dictate purely partizan appointments, he virtually turned them out of the room. Most amazing thing of all, he had vetoed a bill reducing the fare on the elevated railroads of New York, in the face of the earnest advice of partizans who assured him that by doing so he would surely array against him the working-classes of that city and virtually annihilate his political future. To this his answer was that whatever his sympathies for the working-people might be, he could not, as an honest man, allow such a bill to pass, and, come what might, he would not. He had also dared, quietly but firmly, to resist the chief ``boss'' of his party in New York City, and he had consequently to brave the vials of Celtic wrath. The scenes at the convention which nominated him were stirring, and an eminent Western delegate struck a chord in the hearts of thousands of Republicans as well as Democrats when he said, ``We love him for the enemies he has made.'' Had it been a question simply between men, great numbers of us who voted for Mr. Blaine would have voted for Mr. Cleveland; but whatever temptation I might be subjected to in the matter was overcome by one fact: Mr. Cleveland was too much like the Trojan horse, for he bore with him a number of men who, when once brought into power, were sure to labor hard to undo everything that he would endeavor to accomplish, and his predestined successor in the governorship of the State of New York was one of those whom I looked upon as especially dangerous.

Therefore it was, that, after looking over the ground, I wrote an open letter to Mr. Theodore Roosevelt and other Independents, giving the reasons why those of us who had supported Mr. Edmunds should now support Mr. Blaine, and in this view Mr. Roosevelt, with a large number of our Independent friends, agreed.

I had, however, small hopes. It was clear to me that Mr. Blaine had little chance of being elected; that, in fact, he was too heavily weighted with the transactions which Mr. Pullman had revealed to me some months before the beginning of the convention.

But I made an effort to commit him to the only policy which could save him. For, having returned to the university, I wrote William Walter Phelps, an old friend, who had been his chief representative at Chicago, an earnest letter stating that there seemed to me but one chance of rallying to Mr. Blaine's support the very considerable body of disaffected Republicans in the State of New York; that, almost without exception, they were ardent believers in a reform of the civil service; and that an out-and-out earnest declaration in favor of it by our presidential candidate might do much to propitiate them. I reminded Mr. Phelps of the unquestioned evils of the ``spoils system,'' and said that Mr. Blaine must surely have often observed them, suffered under pressure from them, and felt that something should be done to remedy them; and that if he would now express his conviction to this effect, taking strong ground in favor of the reform and basing his utterances on his experiences as a statesman, it would, in my mind, do much to save the State of New York for the Republicans.

After writing this letter, feeling that it might seem to Mr. Phelps and to Mr. Blaine himself very presuming for a man who had steadily opposed them at Chicago thus to volunteer advice, I laid it aside. But it happened that I had been chosen one of the committee of delegates to go to Maine to apprise Mr. Blaine formally of his nomination, and it also happened that my old student and friend, Judge Foraker, was another member of the committee. It was impossible for me to go to Maine, since the commencement of the university, at which I was bound to preside, came on the day appointed for Mr. Blaine's reception of the committee at Bangor; but Judge Foraker having stopped over at the university to attend a meeting of the trustees as an alumni member of that body, I mentioned this letter to him. He asked to see it, and, having read it, asked to be allowed to take it with him. I consented, and heard nothing more from him on the subject; but the following week, at the Yale commencement, while sitting with Mr. Evarts and Judge Shipman to award prizes in the law department, I saw, looking toward me over the heads of the audience in the old Centre Church, my friend Frederick William Holls of New York, and it was evident from his steady gaze that he had something to say. The award of prizes having been made and the audience dismissed, Mr. Holls met me and said: ``Mr. Blaine will adopt your suggestion in his letter of acceptance.'' Both of us were overjoyed. It looked like a point scored not only for the Republican party, but for the cause which we both had so deeply at heart.

But as the campaign went on it was more and more evident that this concession, which I believe he would have adhered to had he been elected, was to be in vain.

It was perhaps, on the whole, and on both sides, the vilest political campaign ever waged. Accusations were made against both candidates which should have forever brought contempt on the men who made them. Nothing could have been further from the wish of either candidate than that such accusations should be made against his opponent, but each was powerless: the vile flood of slander raged on. But I am glad here to recall the fact that when, at a later period, one of the worst inventors of slander against Mr. Blaine sought reward in the shape of office from President Cleveland, he was indignantly spurned.

In politics I took very little part. During the summer my main thoughts were directed toward a controversy before the Board of Regents, in regard to the system of higher education in the State of New York, with my old friend President Anderson of Rochester, who had vigorously attacked some ideas which seemed to me essential to any proper development of university education in America; and this was hardly finished when I was asked to take part in organizing the American Historical Association at Saratoga, and to give the opening address. This, with other pursuits of an academic nature, left me little time for the political campaign.

But there occurred one little incident to which I still look back with amusement. My old friends and constituents in Syracuse had sent me a general invitation to come over from the university and preside at some one of their Republican mass-meetings. My answer was that as to the ``hack speakers'' of the campaign, with their venerable gags, stale jokes, and nauseating slanders, I had no desire to hear them, and did not care to sit on the platform with them; but that when they had a speaker to whom I cared to listen I would gladly come. The result was that one day I received a letter inviting me to preside over a mass-meeting at Syracuse, at which Mr. McKinley was to make the speech. I accepted gladly and on the appointed evening arrived at the Syracuse railway station. There I found the mayor of the city ready to take me in his carriage to the hall where the meeting was to be held; but we had hardly left the station when he said to me: ``Mr. White, I am very sorry, but Mr. McKinley has been de- layed and we have had to get another speaker.'' I was greatly disappointed, and expressed my feelings somewhat energetically, when the mayor said: ``But this speaker is really splendid; he carries all before him; he is a thorough Kentucky orator.'' My answer was that I knew the breed but too well, and that if I had known that Mr. McKinley was not to come I certainly would not have left my work at the university. By this time we had arrived at the door of the Globe Hotel, whence the speaker entered the carriage. He was a tall, sturdy Kentuckian, and his appearance and manner showed that he had passed a very convivial day with the younger members of the committee appointed to receive him.

His first words on entering the carriage were not very reassuring. No sooner had I been introduced to him than he asked where he could get a glass of brandy. ``For,'' said he, ``without a good drink just before I go on the platform I can't make a speech.'' I attempted to quiet him and to show him the difficulties in the case. I said: ``Colonel ——, you have been with our young men here all day, and no doubt have had a fairly good time; but in our meetings here there is just now need of especial care. You will have in your audience to-night a large number of the more sedate and conservative citizens of Syracuse, church members, men active in the various temperance societies, and the like. There never was a campaign when men were in greater doubt; great numbers of these people have not yet made up their minds how they will vote, and the slightest exhilaration on your part may cost us hundreds of votes.'' He answered: ``That's all very well, but the simple fact is that I am here to make a speech, and I can't make it unless I have a good drink beforehand.'' I said nothing more, but, as he still pressed the subject on the mayor and the other member of the committee, I quietly said to them as I left the carriage: ``If that man drinks anything more before speaking, I will not go on the stage with him, and the reason why I don't will speedily be made known.'' The mayor reassured me, and we all went together into the large room adjoining the stage, I keeping close watch over the orator, taking pains to hold him steadily in conversation, introducing as many leading men of the town to him as possible, thus preventing any opportunity to carry out his purpose of taking more strong drink, and to my great satisfaction he had no opportunity to do so before we were summoned into the hall.

Arrived there, I made my speech, and then the orator of the evening arose. But just before he began to speak he filled from a water-pitcher a large glass, and drank it off. My thought at the moment was that this would dilute some of the stronger fluids he had absorbed during the day and cool him down somewhat. He then went on in a perfectly self-possessed way, betrayed not the slightest effect of drinking, and made a most convincing and effective speech, replete with wit and humor; yet, embedded in his wit and humor and rollicking fun, were arguments appealing to the best sentiments of his hearers. The speech was in every way a success; at its close I congratulated him upon it, and was about to remind him that he had done very well on his glass of cold water, when he suddenly said to me: ``Mr. White, you see that it was just as I told you: if I had n't taken that big glass of gin from the pitcher just before I started, I could not have made any speech.''

``All 's well that ends well,'' and, though the laugh was at my expense, the result was not such as to make me especially unhappy.

But this campaign of 1884 ended as I had expected. Mr.
Cleveland was elected to the Presidency.



The following spring, visiting Washington, I met
President Cleveland again.

Of the favorable impression made upon me by his career as Governor of New York I have already spoken, and shall have occasion to speak presently of his Presidency. The renewal of our acquaintance even increased my respect for him. He was evidently a strong, honest man, trying to do his duty under difficulties.

I also met again Mr. Cleveland's opponent in the previous campaign—Mr. Blaine. Calling on Mr. William Walter Phelps, then in Congress, whom I had known as minister of the United States at Vienna, and who was afterward my successor at Berlin, I made some reference to Mr. Blaine, when Mr. Phelps said: ``Why don't you go and call upon him?'' I answered that it might be embarrassing to both of us, to which he replied: ``I don't think so. In spite of your opposition to him at Chicago, were I in your place I would certainly go to his house and call upon him.'' That afternoon I took this advice, and when I returned to the hotel Mr. Blaine came with me, talking in a most interesting way. He spoke of my proposed journey to Virginia, and discussed Jefferson and Hamilton, admiring both, but Jefferson the most. As to his own working habits, he said that he rose early, did his main work in the morning, and never did any work in the evening; that, having been brought up in strongly Sabbatarian notions during his boyhood in Pennsylvania, he had ever since, from the force of habit, reserved Sunday as a day of complete rest. Speaking of the customs in Pennsylvania at that time, he said that not even a walk for exercise was allowed, and nothing was ever cooked on the sacred day.

I met him afterward on various occasions, and could not but admire him. At a dinner-party he was vexatiously badgered by a very bumptious professor, who allowed himself to speak in a rather offensive manner of ideas which Mr. Blaine represented; and the quiet but decisive way in which the latter disposed of his pestering interlocutor was worthy of all praise.

Mr. Blaine was certainly the most fascinating man I have ever known in politics. No wonder that so many Republicans in all parts of the country seemed ready to give their lives to elect him. The only other public man in the United States whose personality had ever elicited such sympathy and devotion was Henry Clay. Perhaps his nearest friend was Mr. Phelps, to whom I have referred above,—one of the best, truest, and most winning men I have ever known. He had been especially devoted to Mr. Blaine, with whom he had served in Congress, and it was understood that if the latter had been elected Mr. Phelps would have been his Secretary of State.

Mr. Phelps complained to me, half seriously, half jocosely, of what is really a crying abuse in the United States —namely, that there is no proper reporting of the proceedings of the Houses of Congress in the main journals of the country which can enable the people at large to form any just idea as to how their representatives are conducting the public business. He said: ``I may make a most careful speech on any important subject before Congress and it will not be mentioned in the New York papers, but let me make a joke and it will be published all over the United States. Yesterday, on a wager, I tried an experiment: I made two poor little jokes during a short talk in the House, and here they are in the New York papers of this morning.''

During this visit to Washington I met at the house of my classmate and dear friend, Randall Gibson, then a senator from Louisiana, a number of distinguished men among them the Vice-President, Mr. Hendricks, and General Butler, senator from South Carolina.

Vice-President Hendricks seemed sick and sore. He had expected to be a candidate for the Presidency, with a strong probability of election, but had accepted the Vice- Presidency; and the subject which seemed to elicit his most vitriolic ill will was reform in the civil service. As we sat one evening in the smoking-room at Senator Gibson's he was very bitter against the system, when, to my surprise, General Butler took up the cudgels against him and made a most admirable argument. At that moment, for the first time, I felt that the war between North and South was over; for all the old issues seemed virtually settled, and here, as regarded this new issue, on which I felt very deeply, was one of the most ardent of Confederate soldiers, a most bitter pro-slavery man before the Civil War, one who, during the war, had lost a leg in battle, nearer me politically than were many of my friends and neighbors in the North.

Senator Jones of Florida, who was present, gave us some character sketches, and among others delineated admirably General Williams, known in the Mexican War as ``Cerro Gordo Williams,'' who was for a time senator from Kentucky. He said that Williams had a wonderful gift of spread-eagle oratory, but that, finding no listeners for it among his colleagues, he became utterly disgusted and went about saying that the Senate was a ``d——d frigid, respectable body that chilled his intellect.'' This led my fellow-guests to discuss the characteristics of the Senate somewhat, and I was struck by one remark in which all agreed—namely, that ``there are no politics in executive session.''

Gibson remarked that the best speech he had ever heard in the Senate was made by John Sherman.

As regards civil-service matters, I found on all sides an opinion that Mr. Cleveland was, just as far as possible, basing his appointments upon merit. Gibson mentioned the fact that a candidate for an important office in his State, who had committed three murders, had secured very strong backing, but that President Cleveland utterly refused to appoint him.

With President Cleveland I had a very interesting interview. He referred to his visit to Cornell University, said that he would have liked nothing so well as to go more thoroughly through its various departments, and, as when I formerly saw him, expressed his regret at the loss of such opportunities as an institution of that kind affords.

At this time I learned from him and from those near him something regarding his power for hard work. It was generally understood that he insisted on writing out all important papers and conducting his correspondence in his own hand, and the result was that during a considerable period of the congressional sessions he sat at his desk until three o'clock in the morning.

It was evident that his up-and-down, curt, independent way did not at all please some of the leading members of his party; in fact, there were signs of a serious estrangement caused by the President's refusals to yield to senators and other leaders of the party in the matter of appointments to office. To illustrate this feeling, a plain, bluff Western senator, Mr. Sawyer of Wisconsin, told me a story.

Senator Sawyer had built up a fortune and gained a great influence in his State by a very large and extensive business in pine lumber, and he had a sort of rough, quaint woodman's wit which was at times very amusing. He told me that, some days before, two of his most eminent Democratic colleagues in the Senate were just leaving the Capitol, and from something they said he saw that they were going to call upon the President. He therefore asked them, ``How do you like this new President of yours?'' ``Oh,'' answered the senators in chorus, ``he is a very good man—a very good man indeed.'' ``Yes,'' said Senator Sawyer, ``but how do you LIKE him?'' ``Oh,'' answered the senators, ``we like him very much—very much indeed.'' ``Well,'' said Sawyer, ``I will tell you a story before you go to the White House if you will agree when you get back, to tell me—`honest Injun'—whether it suits your case.'' Both laughingly agreed, and Mr. Sawyer then told them the following story: When he was a young man with very small means, he and two or three other young wood-choppers made up an expedition for lumber-cutting. As they were too poor to employ a cook for their camp, they agreed to draw lots, and that the one on whom the lot fell should be cook, but only until some one of the company found fault; then the fault- finder should become cook in his turn. Lots being drawn, one of them, much to his disgust, was thus chosen cook, and toward the close of the day he returned to camp, before the others, to get supper ready. Having taken from the camp stores a large quantity of beans, he put them into a pot boiling over the fire, as he had seen his mother do in his boyhood, and then proceeded to pour in salt. Unfortunately the salt-box slipped in his hand, and he poured in much more than he had intended—in fact, the whole contents of the box. On the return of the woodmen to the cabin, ravenously hungry, they proceeded to dish out the boiled beans, but the first one who put a spoonful in his mouth instantly cried out with a loud objurgation, ``Thunder and lightning! this dish is all salt''; but, in a moment, remembering that if he found fault he must himself become cook, he said very gently, ``BUT I LIKE SALT.'' Both senators laughed and agreed that they would give an honest report of their feelings to Senator Sawyer when they had seen the President. On their return, Sawyer met them and said, ``Well, honest Injun, how was it?'' They both laughed and said, ``Well, we like salt.''

Among many interesting experiences I recall especially a dinner at the house of Mr. Fairchild, Secretary of the Treasury. He spoke of the civil service, and said that a short time previously President Cleveland had said to him, regarding the crowd pressing for office: ``A suggestion to these office-seekers as to the good of the country would make them faint.''

During this dinner I happened to be seated between Senators John Sherman of Ohio and Vance of Georgia, and presently Mr. Vance—one of the jolliest mortals I have ever met—turned toward his colleague, Senator Sherman, and said, very blandly: ``Senator, I am glad to see you back from Ohio; I hope you found your fences in good condition.'' There was a general laugh, and when it was finished Senator Sherman told me in a pleasant way how the well-known joke about his ``looking after his fences'' arose. He said that he was the owner of a large farm in Ohio, and that some years previously his tenant wrote urging him most earnestly to improve its fences, so that finally he went to Ohio to look into the matter. On arriving there, he found a great crowd awaiting him and calling for a speech, when he excused himself by saying that he had not come to Ohio on political business, but had merely come ``to look after his fences.'' The phrase caught the popular fancy, and ``to look after one's fences'' became synonymous with minding one's political safeguards.

I remember also an interesting talk with Mr. Bayard, who had been one of the most eminent senators in his time, who was then Secretary of State, and who became, at a later period, ambassador of the United States to Great Britain. Speaking of office-seeking, he gave a comical account of the developing claims of sundry applicants for foreign missions, who, he said, ``are at first willing to go, next anxious to go, and finally angry because they cannot go.''

On another social occasion, the possibility of another attempt at secession by States being discussed, General Butler of South Carolina said: ``No more secession for me.'' To this, Senator Gibson, who also had been a brigadier- general in the Confederate service, and had seen much hard fighting, said, ``And no more for me.'' Butler rejoined, ``We may have to help in preventing others from seceding one of these days.'' I was glad to note that both Butler and Gibson spoke thoroughly well of their former arch-enemy, General Grant.

Very interesting was it to meet again Mr. George Bancroft. He referred to his long service as minister at Berlin, expressed his surprise that Bismarck, whom he remembered as fat, had become bony, and was very severe against both clericals and liberals who had voted against allowing aid to Bismarck in the time of his country's greatest necessity.

I also met my Cornell colleague Goldwin Smith, the former Oxford professor and historian, who expressed his surprise and delight at the perfect order and decorum of the crowd, numbering nearly five thousand persons, at the presidential levee the night before. In order to understand what an American crowd was like, instead of going into the White House by the easier way, as he was entitled by his invitation to do, he had taken his place in the long procession far outside the gate and gradually moved through the grounds into the presidential presence, taking about an hour for the purpose. He said that there was never any pressing, crowding, or impatience, and he compared the crowd most favorably with any similar body in a London street.

Chief Justice Waite I also found a very substantial interesting man; but especially fascinating was General Sheridan, who, at a dinner given by my Berlin predecessor, Mr. Bancroft Davis, described the scene at the battle of Gravelotte when, owing to a rush by the French, the Emperor of Germany was for a time in real danger and was reluctantly obliged to fall back. He said that during the panic and retreat toward Thionville he saw the Emperor halt from time to time to scold soldiers who threw away their muskets; that very many German soldiers, during this panic, cast aside everything except the clothes they wore—not only their guns, but their helmets; that afterward the highways and fields were strewn thickly with these, and that wagons were sent out to collect them. He also said that Bismarck spoke highly to him regarding the martial and civil qualities of the crown prince, afterward the Emperor Frederick, but that regarding the Red Prince, Frederick Charles, he expressed a very different opinion.

Speaking of a statement that some one had invented armor which would ward off a rifle-ball, Sheridan said that during the Civil War an officer who wore a steel vest beneath his coat was driven out of decent society by general contempt; and at this Goldwin Smith told a story of the Duke of Wellington, who, when troubled by an inventor of armor, nearly scared him to death by ordering him to wear his own armor and allow a platoon of soldiers to fire at him.

During the course of the conversation Sheridan said that soldiers were braver now than ever before—braver, indeed, than the crusaders, as was proved by the fact that in these days they wear no armor. To this Goldwin Smith answered that he thought war in the middle ages was more destructive than even in our time. Sheridan said that breech-loading rifles kill more than all the cannon.

At a breakfast given by Goldwin Smith at Wormley's, Bancroft, speaking of Berlin matters, said that the Emperor William did not know that Germany was the second power in the world so far as a mercantile navy was concerned until he himself told him; and on the ignorance of monarchs regarding their own domains, Goldwin Smith said that Lord Malmesbury, when assured by Napoleon III that in the plebiscite he would have the vote of the army, which was five hundred thousand, answered, ``But, your majesty, your army numbers seven hundred thousand,'' whereupon the Emperor was silent. The in- ference was that his majesty knew a large part of his army to be merely on paper.

At this Mr. John Field, of Philadelphia, said that on the breaking out of the Franco-Prussian War he went to General Grant at Long Branch, and asked him how the war was likely to turn out, to which the general answered, ``As I am President of the United States, I am unable to answer.'' ``But,'' said Field, ``I am a citizen sovereign and ask an opinion.'' ``Well,'' said General Grant, ``confidentially, the Germans will beat the French thoroughly and march on Paris. The French army is a mere shell.'' This reminded me that General Grant, on my own visit to him some weeks before, had foretold to me sundry difficulties of Lord Wolseley in Egypt just as they afterward occurred.

At a dinner with Senator Morrill of Vermont I met General Schenck, formerly a leading member of Congress and minister to Brazil and to England. He was very interesting in his sketches of English orators; thought Bright the best, Gladstone admirable, and Sir Stafford Northcote, with his everlasting hawing and humming, intolerable. He gave interesting reminiscences of Tom Corwin, his old preceptor, and said that Corwin's power over an audience was magical. He added that he once attended a public dinner in Boston, and, sitting near Everett, who was the chief speaker, noticed that when the waiters sought to clear the table and were about to remove a bouquet containing two small flags, Everett would not allow them to do it, and that later in the evening, during his speech, just at the proper point, he caught up these flags, as if accidentally, and waved them. He said that everything with Everett and Choate seemed to be cut and dried; that even the interruptions seemed prepared beforehand.

Senator Morrill then told a story regarding Everett's great speech at the opening of the Dudley Observatory at Albany, which I had heard at the time of its delivery. In this speech Everett said: ``Last night, crossing the Connecticut River, I saw mirrored in its waters Arcturus, then fully at the zenith, and I thought,'' etc., etc.; ``but,'' said Morrill, ``some one looked into the matter and found that Everett, before leaving home, had evidently turned the globe in his study wrong side up, for at that time Arcturus was not at the zenith, but at the nadir.''

At the Cornell commencement of this year (1885) I resigned my presidency of the university. It had nominally lasted eighteen years, but really more than twenty, since I had taken the lead in the work of the university even before its charter was granted, twenty years previously, and from that day the main charge of its organization and of everything except providing funds had been intrusted to me. Regarding this part of my life I shall speak more fully in another chapter.

Shortly after this resignation two opportunities were offered me which caused me considerable thought.

As to the first, President Cleveland was kind enough to write me an autograph letter asking whether I would accept one of the positions on the new Interstate Railway Commission. I felt it a great honor to be asked to act as colleague with such men as Chief Justice Cooley, Mr. Morrison, and others already upon that board, but I recognized my own incompetence to discharge the duties of such a position properly. Though I had been, some years before, a director in two of the largest railway corporations in the United States, my heart was never in that duty, and I never prepared myself to discharge it. Thinking the matter over fully, I felt obliged to decline the place. My heart was set on finishing the book which I had so long wished to publish,—my ``History of the Warfare of Science with Theology,''—and in order to cut myself off from other work and get some needed rest I sailed for Europe on October 3, 1885, but while engaged most delightfully in visits to Oxford, Cambridge, and various places on the Continent, I received by cable an offer which had also a very tempting side. It was sent by my old friend Mr. Henry Sage of Ithaca, urged me to accept the nomination to Congress from that district, and assured me that the nomination was equivalent to an election. There were some reasons why such a position was attractive to me, but the more I thought of it the more it seemed to me that to discharge these duties properly would take me from other work to which I was pledged. Before deciding the question, however, I determined to consult two old friends who were then living in London hotels adjacent to my own. The first of these was my dear old instructor, with whom my relations had been of the kindest ever since my first year at Yale—President Porter.

On my laying the matter before him, he said, ``Accept by all means''; but as I showed him the reasons on both sides, he at last reluctantly agreed with me that probably it was best to send a declination.

The other person consulted was Mr. James Belden of Syracuse, afterward a member of Congress from the Onondaga district, a politician who had a most intimate knowledge of men and affairs in our State. We had been during a long period, political adversaries, but I had come to respect sundry qualities he had more lately exhibited, and therefore went to him as a practical man and laid the case before him. He expressed his great surprise that I should advise with him, my old political adversary, but he said, ``Since you do come, I will give you the very best advice I can.''

We then went over the case together, and I feel sure that he advised me as well as the oldest of my friends could have done, and with a shrewdness and foresight all his own.

One of his arguments ran somewhat as follows: ``To be successful in politics a man must really think of nothing else; it must be his first thought in the morning and his last at night; everything else must yield to it. Heretofore you have quietly gone on your way, sought nothing, and taken what has been freely tendered you in the interest of the party and of the public. I know the Elmira district, and you can have the nomination and the election without trouble; but the question is whether you could ever be happy in the sort of work which you must do in order to take a proper place in the House of Representatives. First of all, you must give up everything else and devote yourself to that alone; and even then, when you have succeeded, you have only to look about you and see the men who have achieved success in that way, and who, after all, have found in it nothing but disappointment.'' In saying this he expressed the conclusion at which I had already arrived.

I cabled my absolute declination of the nomination, and was reproved by my friends for not availing myself of this opportunity to take part in political affairs, but have nevertheless always felt that my decision was wise.

To tell the truth, I never had, and never desired to have, any capacity for the rough-and-tumble of politics. I greatly respect many of the men who have gifts of that sort, but have recognized the fact that my influence in and on politics must be of a different kind. I have indeed taken part in some stormy scenes in conventions, meetings, and legislatures, but always with regret. My true r<o^>le has been a more quiet one. My ambition, whether I have succeeded in it or not, has been to set young men in trains of fruitful thought, to bring mature men into the line of right reason, and to aid in devising and urging needed reforms, in developing and supporting wise policies, and in building up institutions which shall strengthen what is best in American life.

Early in 1891 I was asked by Mr. Sherman Rogers of Buffalo, one of the best and truest men in political life that I have ever known, to accompany him and certain other gentlemen to Washington, in order to present to Mr. Harrison, who had now become President of the United States, an argument for the extension of the civil-service rules. Accompanied by Mr. Theodore Roosevelt and Senator Cabot Lodge, our delegation reached the Executive Mansion at the time fixed by the President, and were received in a way which surprised me. Mr. Harrison seemed, to say the least, not in good humor. He stood leaning on the corner of his desk, and he asked none of us to sit. All of us had voted for him, and had come to him in his own interest as well as in the interest of the country; but he seemed to like us none the better for all that. The first speech was made by Mr. Rogers. Dwelling on the disappointment of thoughtful Republicans throughout the country at the delay in redeeming pledges made by the Republican National Convention as to the extension of the civil service, and reiterated in the President's own speeches in the United States Senate, he in a playful way referred to the conduct of certain officials in Buffalo, when the President interrupted him, as it seemed to me at the time very brusquely and even rudely saying: ``Mr. Rogers, you have no right to impute evil motives to any man. The motives of these gentlemen to whom you refer are presumably as good as your own. An argument based upon such imputations cannot advance the cause you support in the slightest degree.'' Mr. Rogers was somewhat disconcerted for a moment, but, having resumed his speech, he presented, in a very dignified and convincing way, the remainder of his argument. He was followed by the other members from various States, giving different sides of the case, each showing the importance which Republicans in his own part of the country attributed to an extension of the civil-service rules.

My own turn came last. I said: ``Mr. President: I will make no speech, but will simply state two facts.

``First: Down to a comparatively recent period every high school, college, and university in the Northern States has been a center of Republican ideas: no one will gainsay this for a moment. But recently there has come a change. During nearly twenty years it has been my duty to nominate to the trustees of Cornell University candidates for various positions in its faculty; the fundamental charter of the institution absolutely forbids any consideration, in such cases, of the party or sect to which any candidate belongs, and I have always faithfully carried out that injunction, never, in any one of the multitude of nominations that I have made, allowing the question of politics to enter in the slightest degree. But still it has happened that, almost without exception, the candidates have proved to be Republicans, and this to such an extent that at times I have regretted it; for the university has been obliged frequently to ask for legislation from a Democratic legislature, and I have always feared that this large preponderance of Republican professors would be brought up against us as an evidence that we were not true to the principles of our charter. As a matter of fact, down to two or three years since, there were, as I casually learned, out of a faculty of about fifty members, not over eight or ten Democrats. But during these recent years all this has been changed, and at the State election, when Judge Folger was defeated for the governorship, I found to my surprise that, almost without exception, my colleagues in the faculty had voted the Democratic ticket; so far as I could learn, but three besides myself had voted for the Republican candidate.'' President Harrison immediately said: ``Mr. White, was that not chiefly due to the free- trade tendencies of college-men?'' I answered: ``No, Mr. President; the great majority of these men who voted with the Democrats were protectionists, and you will yourself see that they must have been so if they had continued to vote for the Republican ticket down to that election. All that I hear leads me to the conviction that the real cause is disappointment at the delay of the Republican party in making good its promises to improve the public service. In this question the faculties of our colleges and universities, especially in the Eastern, Middle, and Northern States, take a deep interest. In fact, it is with them the question of all questions; and I think this is one of the things which, at that election in New York, caused the most overwhelming defeat that a candidate for governor had ever experienced.'' To this the President listened attentively, and I then said: ``Mr. President, my second point is this: The State of New York is, of course, of immense importance to the Republican party, and it has been carried in recent years by a majority of a few hundred votes. There are more than fourteen thousand school districts in the State, and in nearly every one of these school districts there are a certain number of earnest men—anywhere from a handful to a houseful—who believe that since the slavery question is removed from national politics, the only burning question which remains is the `spoils system' and the reform of the civil service. Now, you have only to multiply the fourteen thousand school districts by a very small figure, and you will see the importance of this question as regards the vote of the State of New York. I know whereof I speak, for I have myself addressed meetings in many of these districts in favor of a reform of the civil service, have had correspondence with other districts in all parts of the State, and am sure that there is a deep- seated feeling on the subject in great numbers of them,— a feeling akin to what used to be called in the anti-slavery days `fanaticism,'—that is, a deep-seated conviction that this is now the most important question before the American people, and that it must be settled in precedence to all others.''

The President received what I had to say courteously, and then began a reply to us all. He took at first rather a bitter tone, saying that he had a right to find fault with all of us; that the Civil Service League had denounced his administration most unjustly for its relation to the spoils system; that he was moving as rapidly in the matter as circumstances permitted; that he was anxious to redeem the promises made by the party and by himself; that he had already done something and purposed to do more; and that the glorifications of the progress made by the previous administration in this respect, at the expense of his own, had been grossly unjust.

To this we made a short rejoinder on one point, stating that his complaint against us was without foundation; that not one of us was a member of the Civil Service League; that not one of us had taken any part in its deliberations; and that we could not, therefore, be made responsible in any way for its utterances. The President now became somewhat more genial, though he did not ask us to be seated, alluding in a pungent but good-natured way to the zeal for reform shown by Mr. Roosevelt, who was standing by, and closing in considerably better humor than he had begun. Although I cannot say that I was greatly pleased with his treatment of the committee, I remembered that, although courtesy was not generally considered his strong point, he was known to possess many sterling qualities, and I felt bound to allow that his speech revealed a man of strength and honest purpose. All of us, even Mr. Roosevelt and Senator Lodge, came away believing that good had been done, and that the President, before his term of office had expired, would do what he could in the right direction; and I am glad to say that this expectation was fulfilled.



During the summer of 1891 came a curious episode in my life, to which, as it was considerably discussed in the newspapers at the time, and as various sensational news-makers have dwelt upon it since, I may be permitted to refer. During several years before,—in fact, ever since my two terms in the State Senate,—various people, and especially my old Cornell students throughout the State, had written to me and published articles in my behalf as a candidate for governor. I had never encouraged these, and whenever I referred to them deprecated them, since I preferred a very different line of life, and felt that the grapple with spoilsmen which every governor must make would wear me out very rapidly. But the election which was that year approaching was felt to be very important, and old friends from various parts of the State thought that, in the severe contest which was expected, I stood a better chance of election than any other who could be named at that particular time, their theory being that the German vote of the State would come to me, and that it would probably come to no other Republican.

The reason for this theory was that I had received part of my education in Germany; had shown especial interest in German history and literature, lecturing upon them at the University of Michigan and at Cornell; had resided in Berlin as minister; had, on my return, delivered in New York and elsewhere an address on the ``New Germany,'' wherein were shown some points in German life which Americans might study to advantage; had also delivered an address on the ``Contributions of Germany to American Civilization''; and had, at various times, formed pleasant relations with leading Germans of both parties. The fact was perfectly well known, also, that I was opposed to the sumptuary laws which had so largely driven Germans out of the Republican party, and had declared that these were not only unjust to those immediately affected by them, but injurious to the very interests of temperance, which they were designed to promote.

I was passing the summer at Magnolia, on the east coast of Massachusetts, when an old friend, the son of an eminent German-American, came from New York and asked me to become a candidate for the governorship. I was very reluctant, for special as well as general reasons. My first wish was to devote myself wholly to certain long-deferred historical work; my health was not strong; I felt utterly unfitted for the duties of the campaign, and the position of governor, highly honorable as it is, presented no especial attractions to me, my ambition not being in that line. Therefore it was that at first I urged my friends to combine upon some other person; but as they came back and insisted that they could agree on no one else, and that I could bring to the support of the party men who would otherwise oppose it, I reluctantly agreed to discuss the subject with some of the leading Republicans in New York, and among them Mr. Thomas C. Platt, who was at the head of the organized management of the party.

In our two or three conversations Mr. Platt impressed me curiously. I had known him slightly for many years; indeed, we had belonged to the same class at Yale, but as he had left it and I had entered it at the beginning of the sophomore year we did not know each other at that period. We had met occasionally when we were both supporting Mr. Conkling, but had broken from each other at the time when he was supporting Mr. Blaine, and I, Mr. Edmunds, for the nomination at Chicago. Our discussion now took a form which somewhat surprised me. The general belief throughout the State was, I think, that Mr. Platt's first question, or, at any rate, his main question, in any such discussion, would be, necessarily, as to the attitude of the candidate toward Mr. Platt's own interests and aspirations. But I feel bound to say that in the discussions between us no such questions were ever asked, approached, or even hinted at. Mr. Platt never asked me a question regarding my attitude toward him or toward his friends; he never even hinted at my making any pledge or promise to do anything or not to do anything with reference to his own interests or to those of any other person; his whole effort was directed to finding what strength my nomination would attract to the party and what it would repel. He had been informed regarding one or two unpopular votes of mine when I was in the State Senate—as for example, that I had opposed the efforts of a powerful sectarian organization to secure the gift of certain valuable landed property from the city of New York; he had also been informed regarding certain review and magazine articles in which I had spoken my mind somewhat freely against certain influences in the State which were still powerful, and it had been hinted to him that my ``Warfare of Science'' chapters might have alienated a considerable number of the more narrow-minded clergymen and their flocks.

I told Mr. Platt frankly that these fears seemed quite likely to be well founded, and that there were some other difficulties which I could myself suggest to him: that I had in the course of my life, made many opponents in supporting Cornell University, and in expressing my mind on various questions, political and religious, and that these seemed to me likely to cost the party very many votes. I therefore suggested that he consult certain persons in various parts of the State who were entitled to have an opinion, and especially two men of the highest judgment in such matters—Chief Justice Andrews of Syracuse, and Carroll Earl Smith, editor of the leading Republican journal in central New York. The result was that telegrams and letters were exchanged, these gentlemen declaring their decided opinion that the matters referred to were bygones, and could not be resuscitated in the coming contest; that they would be lost sight of in the real questions sure to arise; and that even in the election immediately following the vote which I had cast against giving a large tract of Ward's Island to a Roman Catholic institution, I had lost no votes, but had held my own with the other candidates, and even gained upon some of them.

Mr. Platt also discussed my relations to the Germans and to the graduates of Cornell University who were scattered all over the State; and as these, without exception, so far as could be learned, were my warm personal friends, it was felt by those who had presented my name, and finally, I think, by Mr. Platt, that these two elements in my support might prove valuable.

Still, in spite of this, I advised steadily against my own nomination, and asked Mr. Platt: ``Why don't you support your friend Senator Fassett of Elmira? He is a young man; he has very decided abilities; he is popular; his course in the legislature has been admirable; you have made him collector of the port of New York, and he is known to be worthy of the place. Why don't you ask him?'' Mr. Platt's frankness in reply increased my respect for him. He said: ``I need not confess to you that, personally, I would prefer Mr. Fassett to yourself; but if he were a candidate he would have to carry the entire weight of my unpopularity.''

Mr. Platt was from first to last perfectly straightforward. He owed me nothing, for I had steadily voted against him and his candidate in the National Convention at Chicago. He had made no pledges to me, for I had allowed him to make none—even if he had been disposed to do so; moreover, many of my ideas were opposed to his own. I think the heaviest piece of work I ever undertook was when, some months before, I had endeavored to convert him to the civil-service-reform forces; but while I had succeeded in converting a good many others, he remained intractable, and on that subject we were at opposite poles.

It therefore seems to me altogether to his credit that, in spite of this personal and theoretical antagonism between us, and in spite of the fact that I had made, and he knew that I would make, no pledges or promises whatever to him in view of an election, he had favored my nomination solely as the best chance of obtaining a Republican victory in the State; and I will again say that I do not believe that his own personal advantage entered into his thoughts on this occasion. His pride and his really sincere devotion to the interests of the Republican party, as he understood them, led him to desire, above all things, a triumph over the Democratic forces, and the only question in his mind was, Who could best secure the victory?

At the close of these conferences he was evidently in my favor, but on leaving the city I said to him: ``Do not consider yourself as in any way pledged to my support. Go to the convention at Rochester, and decide what is best after you get there. I have no desire for the nomination— in fact, would prefer that some one else bear the burden and heat of the day. I have been long out of touch with the party managers in the State. I don't feel that they would support me as they would support some man like Mr. Fassett, whom they know and like personally, and I shall not consider you as pledged to me in the slightest degree. I don't ask it; I don't wish it; in fact, I prefer the contrary. Go to Rochester, be guided by circumstances, and decide as you see fit.''

In the meantime various things seemed to strengthen my candidacy. Leading Germans who had been for some time voting with the Democratic party pledged themselves to my support if I were nominated, and one of them could bring over to my side one of the most powerful Democratic journals in the State; in fact, there were pledged to my support two leading journals which, as matters turned out afterward, opposed the Republican nomination.

At the convention which met shortly afterward at Rochester (September, 1891), things went as I had anticipated, and indeed as I had preferred. Mr. Platt found the elements supporting Mr. Fassett even stronger than he had expected. The undercurrent was too powerful for him, and he was obliged to yield to it.

Of course sundry newspapers screamed that he had deceived and defeated me. I again do him the justice to say that this was utterly untrue. I am convinced that he went to Rochester believing my candidacy best for the party; that he really did what he could in my favor, but that he found, what I had foretold, that Mr. Fassett, young, energetic, known, and liked by the active political men in various parts of the State, naturally wished to lead the forces and was naturally the choice of the convention—a choice which it was not within Mr. Platt's power to change.

Mr. Fassett was nominated, and I do not know that I have ever received a message which gave me a greater sense of relief than the telegram which announced this fact to me.

As regards the inside history of the convention, Professor Jenks of Cornell University, a very thoughtful student of practical politics, who had gone to Rochester to see the working of a New York State convention, told me some time afterward that he had circulated very freely among the delegates from various rural districts; that they had no acquaintance with him, and therefore talked freely in his presence regarding the best policy of the convention. As a rule, the prevailing feeling among them was expressed as follows: ``White don't know the boys; he don't know the men who do the work of the party; he supports civil-service reform, and that means that after doing the work of the campaign we shall have no better chance for the offices than men who have done nothing—in fact, not so good, perhaps, as those who have opposed us.'' No doubt this feeling entered into the minds of a large number of delegates and conduced to the result.

A few weeks afterward Mr. Fassett came to Ithaca. I had the pleasure of presiding and speaking at the public meeting which he addressed, and of entertaining him at my house. He was in every way worthy of the position to which he had been nominated, but, unfortunately, was not elected.

Having made one or two speeches in this campaign, I turned to more congenial work, and in the early spring of the following year (February 12 to May 16, 1892) accepted an election as non-resident professor at Stanford University in California, my duty being to deliver a course of twenty lectures upon ``The Causes of the French Revolution.'' Just as I was about to start, Mr. Andrew Carnegie very kindly invited me to go as his guest in his own car and with a delightful party. There were eight of us—four ladies and four gentlemen. We went by way of Washington, Chattanooga, and New Orleans, stopping at each place, and meeting many leading men; then to the city of Mexico, where we were presented to Porfirio Diaz, the president of that republic, who seemed to be a man of great shrewdness and strength. I recall here the fact that the room in which he received us was hung round with satin coverings, on which, as the only ornament, were the crown and cipher of Diaz' unfortunate predecessor, the Emperor Maximilian. Thence we went to California, and zigzag along the Pacific coast to Tacoma and Seattle; then through the Rocky Mountains to Salt Lake City meeting everywhere interesting men and things, until at Denver I left the party and went back to give my lectures at Stanford.

Returning to Cornell University in the early summer I found myself in the midst of my books and happy in resuming my work. But now, July 21, 1892, came my nomination by President Harrison to the position of envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary at St. Petersburg. On thinking the matter over, it seemed to me that it would be instructive and agreeable to have a second diplomatic experience in Russia after my absence of nearly forty years. I therefore accepted, and in the autumn of 1892 left America for St. Petersburg.

While in Washington to receive my instructions before leaving, I again met Mr. Harrison, and must say that he showed a much more kindly and genial side than that which had formerly been revealed to me, when I had discussed shortcomings of his administration as regarded the civil service.

My occupancy of this new position lasted until the autumn of 1894, and there was one thing in it which I have always regarded as a great honor. Mr. Harrison had appointed me at about the close of the third year of his term of office; I therefore naturally looked forward to a stay of but one year in Russia, and, when I left America, certainly desired no more. A little of Russian life goes very far. It is brilliant and attractive in many ways; but for a man who feels that he has duties and interests in America it soon becomes a sort of exile. At the close of Mr. Harrison's administration, therefore, I tendered my resignation, as is customary with ministers abroad at such times, so that it would arrive in Washington on the fourth day of March, and then come under the hand of the new President, Mr. Cleveland. I had taken its acceptance as a matter of course, and had made all my arrangements to leave Russia on the arrival of my successor. But soon I heard that President Cleveland preferred that I should remain, and that so long as I would consent to remain no new appointment would be made. In view of the fact that I had steadily voted against him, and that he knew this, I felt his conduct to be a mark of confidence for which I ought to be grateful, and the result was that I continued at the post another year, toward the close of which I wrote a private letter to him, stating that under no circumstances could I remain longer than the 1st of October, 1894. The fact was that the book which I considered the main work of my life was very nearly finished. I was anxious to have leisure to give it thorough revision, and this leisure I could not have in a diplomatic position. Therefore it was that I insisted on terminating my career at St. Petersburg, and that the President finally accepted my declination in a letter which I shall always prize.

During the following winter (1894-1895), at Florence Sorrento, and Palermo, my time was steadily given to my historical work; and having returned home and seen it through the press, I turned to another historical treatise which had been long deferred, and never did a man more thoroughly enjoy his leisure. I was at last apparently my own master, and could work in the midst of my books and in the library of the university to my heart's content.

But this fair dream was soon brought to naught. In December, 1895, I was appointed by President Cleveland a member of the commission to decide upon the boundary line between the British possessions in South America and Venezuela. The circumstances of the case, with the manner in which he tendered me the position, forbade me to decline it, and I saw no more literary leisure during the following year.

As the presidential campaign of 1896 approached I had given up all thoughts of politics, and had again resumed the historical work to which I proposed to devote, mainly, the rest of my life—the preparation of a biographical history of modern Germany, for which I had brought together a large amount of material and had prepared much manuscript. I also hoped to live long enough to put into shape for publication a series of lectures, on which I had obtained a mass of original material in France, upon ``The Causes of the French Revolution''; and had the new campaign been like any of those during the previous twenty years, it would not have interested me. But suddenly news came of the nomination by the Democrats of Mr. Bryan. The circumstances attending this showed clearly that the coming contest involved, distinctly, the question between the forces of virtual repudiation, supporting a policy which meant not merely national disaster but generations of dishonor on the one side, and, on the other, Mr. McKinley, supporting a policy of financial honesty. Having then been called upon to preside over a Republican meeting at Ithaca, I made a speech which was published and widely circulated, giving the reasons why all thinking men of both parties ought to rally in support of the Republican candidate, and this I followed with an open letter to many leading Democrats in the State. It was begun as a private letter to a valued Democratic friend, Mr. Oscar S. Straus, who has twice proved himself a most useful and patriotic minister of the United States at Constantinople. But, as my pen was moving, another Democratic friend came into my mind, then another, and again another, until finally my views were given in an open letter to them all; and this having been submitted to a friend in New York, with permission to use it as he thought best, he published it. The result seemed fortunate. It was at once caught up by the press and republished in all parts of the country. I cannot claim that the gentlemen to whom I wrote were influenced by it, but certain it is that in spite of their earnest differences from President McKinley on very important questions, their feeling that this campaign involved issues superior to any of those which had hitherto existed, led all of them, either directly or indirectly, to support him.

At the suggestion of various friends, I also republished in a more extended form my pamphlet on ``Paper Money Inflation in France: How it Came, What it Brought, and How it Ended,'' which had first been published at the suggestion of General Garfield and others, as throwing light on the results of a debased currency, and it was now widely circulated in all parts of the country.

Mr. McKinley was elected, and thus, in my judgment, was averted the greatest peril which our Republic has encountered since the beginning of the Civil War. Having now some time for myself, I accepted sundry invitations to address the students of two of the greater State universities of the West. It gave me pleasure to visit them, on many accounts, and above all for the purpose of realizing the magnificent advance that has been made by them in becoming universities worthy of our country.

My anticipations were far more than met. My old student and successor at the University of Michigan as professor and at Cornell University as president, Dr. Charles Kendall Adams, welcomed me to the institution over which he so worthily presided—the State University of Wisconsin; and having visited it a quarter of a century before, I was now amazed at its progress. The subject of my address, in the presence of the whole body of students was ``Evolution versus Revolution in Politics,'' and never have I spoken with more faith and hope. Looking into the faces of that immense assembly of students, in training for the best work of their time, lifted me above all doubts as the future of that commonwealth.

From Madison I went to Minneapolis under an invitation to address the students at the State University of Minnesota, and again my faith and hope were renewed as I looked into the faces of those great audiences of young men and young women. They filled me with confidence in the future of the country. At Minneapolis I also met various notable men, among them Archbishop Ireland, who had interested me much at a former meeting in Philadelphia. I became sure that whatever ecclesiastics of his church generally might feel toward the United States, he was truly patriotic. Alas for both church and state that such prelates as Gibbons, Ireland, Keane, Spalding, and the like, should be in a minority!

But my most curious experience was due to another citizen of Minnesota. Having been taken to the State House, I was introduced, in the lower branch of the legislature, to no less a personage than Mr. Ignatius Donnelly, so widely known by his publications regarding the authorship of Shakspere's writings; and on my asking him whether he was now engaged on any literary work, he informed me that he was about to publish a book which would leave no particle of doubt, in the mind of any thinking man, that the writings attributed to Shakspere were really due to Francis Bacon. During this conversation the house was droning on in committee of the whole, and the proceedings fell upon my ear much like the steady rumble of a mill; but suddenly the mill seemed to stop, my own name was called, and immediately afterward came the words: ``Mr. —— of —— and Mr. —— of —— will escort Mr. White to the chair.'' It was a very sudden awakening from my talk with Mr. Donnelly on literature, but there was no help for it. ``Accoutred as I was, I plunged in,'' and, in a long fur- lined coat much the worse for wear and bespattered with mud, was conducted to the speaker, who, after formal greetings, turned me loose on the audience. Naturally my speech revealed what was uppermost in my mind—wonder at the progress made by the State, admiration for its institutions, confidence in its future, pride in its relation to the Union. At the close of this brief talk a few members set up a call for Mr. Donnelly to respond, whereupon he promptly arose, and of all the speeches I have ever heard his was certainly the most surprising. It had seemed to me that my own remarks had glorified Minnesota up to the highest point; but they were tame indeed compared to his. Having first dosed me with blarney, he proceeded to deluge the legislature with balderdash. One part of his speech ran substantially on this wise:

``Mr. Speaker, I ask the gentleman, when he returns to his home, to tell his fellow-citizens of the East what he has seen during his visit to this great State; and, sir, we also wish him to tell them that Minnesota and the great Northwest will no longer consent to be trodden under the feet of the East. The strength of the United States and the future center of American greatness is here in Minnesota. Mr. Speaker, not far from this place I own a farm.'' (Here I began to wonder what was coming next.) ``From that farm, on one side, the waters trickle down until they reach the rivulets, and then the streams, and finally the great rivers which empty into Hudson Bay. And from the other side of that farm, sir, the waters trickle down into the rivulets, thence pass into the streams, and finally into the great Father of Waters, until they reach the Gulf of Mexico. Mr. Speaker, on this plateau are now raised the great men of the Republic. Formerly Virginia was the mother of statesmen; that is so no longer. The mother of statesmen in these days, and of the men who are to control the destinies of this Republic, is Minnesota.''

Never before had I any conception of the height to which ``tall talk'' might attain. It was the apotheosis of blather; but as my eye wandered over the assemblage, I noticed that many faces wore smiles, and it was clear to me that the members had merely wished to exhibit their most amusing specimen.

I felt that if they could stand it I could, and so, having bidden the Speaker and Mr. Donnelly good-bye, passed out and made the acquaintance of the neighboring city of St. Paul, which struck me as even more beautiful than Edinburgh in the views from its principal streets over hills, valleys, and mountains.

At the University of Michigan, in view of my recent visit, I did not again stop, but at Harvard and Yale I addressed the students, and returned home from the excursion with new faith in the future of the country. James Bryce is right when he declares that in our universities lie the best hopes of the United States.

Early in the year following the election I was appointed by the President ambassador to Germany. I had not sought the position; indeed, I had distinctly declined to speak of the matter to any of those who were supposed to have the management of political affairs in the State. It came to me, directly and unsought, from President McKinley; I therefore prized it, and shall ever prize the remembrance of it.

While it was announced as pending, I was urged by various friends to speak of the subject to Mr. Platt, who as the only Republican senator from New York and the head of the Republican organization, was supposed to have large rights in the matter. It was hinted to me that some statement to Mr. Platt on the subject was required by political etiquette and would smooth the President's way. My answer was that I felt respect and friendship for Mr. Platt; that I called at his rooms from time to time socially, and discussed various public matters with him; but that I could never make a request to him in the premises; that I could not put myself in the attitude of a suppliant, even in the slightest degree, to him or even to the President.

The result was that the President himself spoke to Mr. Platt on the subject, and, as I was afterward informed, the senator replied that he would make no objection, but that the appointment ought not to be charged against the claims of the State of New York.

The presidential campaign of 1900, in which Mr. McKinley was presented for re<e:>lection, touched me but slightly. There came various letters urging me to become a candidate for the Vice-Presidency, and sundry newspapers presented reasons for my nomination, the main argument being the same which had been formerly used as regarded the governorship of New York—that the German-Americans were estranged from the Republican party by the high tariff, and that I was the only Republican who could draw them to the ticket. All this I deprecated, and refused to take any part in the matter, meantime writing my nephew, who had become my successor in the State Senate, my friend Dr. Holls, and others, to urge the, name of Theodore Roosevelt. I had known him for many years and greatly admired him. His integrity was proof against all attack, his courage undoubted, and his vigor amazing. It was clear that he desired renomination for the place he already held—the governorship of New York—partly because he was devoted to certain reforms, which he could carry out only in that position, and partly because he preferred activity as governor of a great State to the usually passive condition of a Vice-President of the United States. Moreover, he undoubtedly had aspirations to the Presidency. These were perfectly legitimate, and indeed hon- orable, in him, as they are in any man who feels that he has the qualities needed in that high office. He and his friends clearly felt that the transition from the governorship of New York to the Presidency four years later would be more natural than that from the Vice-Presidency; but in my letters I insisted that his name would greatly strengthen the national ticket, and that his road to the Presidency seemed to me more easy from the Vice-Presidency than from the governorship; that, although during recent years Vice-Presidents had not been nominated to the higher office, during former years they had been; and that I could see no reason why he might not bring about a return to the earlier custom. As to myself, at my age, I greatly preferred the duties of ambassador to those of Vice-President. The Republican party was wise enough to take this view, and at the National Convention he was nominated by acclamation.

Early in August, having taken a leave of absence for sixty days, I arrived in New York, and on landing received an invitation from Mr. Roosevelt to pass the day with him at his house in the country. I found him the same earnest, energetic, straightforward man as of old. Though nominated to the Vice-Presidency against his will, he had thrown himself heartily into the campaign; and the discussion at his house turned mainly on the securing of a proper candidate for the governorship of the State of New York. I recommended Charles Andrews, who, although in the fullest vigor of mind and body, had been retired from the chief-justiceship of the State on his arrival at the age of seventy years. This recommendation Mr. Roosevelt received favorably; but later it was found impossible to carry it out, the Republican organization in the State having decided in favor of Mr. Odell.

During my entire stay in the United States I was constantly occupied with arrears of personal business which had been too long neglected; but, at the request of various friends, wrote sundry open letters and articles, which were widely circulated among German-Americans, showing the injustice of the charge so constantly made against President McKinley, of hostility to Germany and German interests. Nothing could be more absurd than such an imputation. The very opposite was the case.

I also gave a farewell address to a great assemblage of students at Cornell University, my topic being ``The True Conduct of Student Life''; but in the course of my speech, having alluded to the importance of sobriety of judgment, I tested by it sundry political contentions which were strongly made on both sides, alluding especially to Goldwin Smith's very earnest declaration that one of the greatest dangers to our nation arises from plutocracy. I took pains to show that the whole spirit of our laws is in favor of the rapid dispersion of great properties, and that, within the remembrance of many present, a large number of the greatest fortunes in the United States had been widely dispersed. As to other declarations regarding dangers arising from the acquisition of foreign territory and the like, I insisted that all these dangers were as nothing compared to one of which we were then having a striking illustration—namely, demagogism; and I urged, what I have long deeply felt, that the main source of danger to republican institutions is now, and always has been, the demagogism which seeks to array labor against capital, employee against employer, profession against profession, class against class, section against section. I mentioned the name of no one; but it must have been clear to all present how deeply I felt regarding the issues which each party represented, and especially regarding the resort to the lowest form of demagogism which Mr. Bryan was then making, in the desperate attempt to save his falling fortunes.

During this stay in America I made two visits to Washington to confer with the President and the State Department. The first of these was during the hottest weather I have ever known. There were few people at the capital who could leave it, and at the Arlington Hotel there were not more than a dozen guests. All were distressed by the heat. Moreover, there was an amazing complication of political matters at this time, calculated to prostrate the Washington officials, even if the heat had not done so; and, among these, those relating to American control in the Philippine Islands; the bitter struggle then going on in China between the representatives of foreign powers, including our own, and the Chinese insurrectionists; the difficulties arising out of the successful result of the Spanish War in Cuba; complications in the new administration of Porto Rico; and the myriad of questions arising in a heated political campaign, which was then running fast and furious.

Arriving at the White House, I passed an hour with the President, and found him, of all men in Washington, the only one who seemed not at all troubled by the heat, by the complications in China, by the difficulties in Cuba and Porto Rico, or by the rush and whirl of the campaign. He calmly discussed with me the draft of a political note which was to be issued next day in answer to the Russian communications regarding the mode of procedure in China, which had started some very trying questions; and then showed me a letter from ex-President Cleveland declining a position on the International Arbitration Tribunal at the Hague, and accepted my suggestion not to consider it a final answer, but to make another effort for Mr. Cleveland's acceptance. During this first visit of mine, the Secretary of State and the First Assistant Secretary were both absent, having been almost prostrated by the extreme heat. At a second visit in October, I again saw the President, found him in the same equable frame of mind, not allowing anything to trouble him, quietly discharging his duties in the calm faith that all would turn out well. Dining with Secretary Hay, I mentioned this equanimity of the President, when he said: ``Yes; it is a source of perpetual amazement to us all. He allows no question, no matter how complicated or vexatious, to disturb him. Some time since, at a meeting of the cabinet, one of its members burst out into a bitter speech against some government official who had been guilty of gross rudeness, and said, `Mr. President, he has insulted you, and he has insulted me'; thereupon the President said calmly, `Mr. Secretary, if he has insulted ME, I forgive him; if he has insulted you, I shall remove him from office.' ''

Newspapers were teeming with misrepresentations of the President's course, but they failed to ruffle him. On his asking if I was taking any part in the campaign, I referred to a speech that I had made on the Fourth of July in Leipsic, and another to the Cornell University students just before my departure, with the remark that I felt that a foreign diplomatic representative coming home and throwing himself eagerly into the campaign might possibly do more harm than good. In this remark he acquiesced, and said: ``I shall not, myself, make any speeches whatever; nor shall I give any public receptions. My record is before the American people, and they must pass judgment upon it. In this respect I shall go back to what seems to me the better practice of the early Presidents.'' I was struck by the justice of this, and told him so, although I felt obliged to say that he would be under fearful temptation to speak before the campaign had gone much farther. He smiled, but held to his determination, despite the fact that his opponent invaded all parts of the Union in an oratorical frenzy, in one case making a speech at half-past two in the morning to a crowd assembled at a railway station, and making during one day thirty-one speeches, teeming with every kind of campaign misrepresentation; but the President was faithful to his promise, uttered no word in reply, and was re<e:>lected.

Not only at home, but abroad, as I can amply testify, the news of his re<e:>lection was received with general satisfaction, and most of all by those who wish well to our country and cherish hopes that government by the people and for the people may not be brought to naught by the wild demagogism which has wrecked all great republics thus far.

But alas! the triumph was short-lived. One morning in September, while I was slowly recovering from two of the greatest bereavements which have ever befallen me, came the frightful news of his assassination. Shortly afterward, for family and business reasons, I went for a few weeks to the United States, and, in the course of my visit, conferred with the new President three times—first at the Yale bicentennial celebration, afterward in his private office, and finally at his table in the White House. Hard indeed was it for me to realize what had taken place —that President McKinley, whom I had so recently seen in his chair at the head of the cabinet table, was gone forever; that in those rooms, where I had, at four different times, chatted pleasantly with him, he was never to be seen more; and that here, in that same seat, was sitting my old friend and co-laborer. Hard was it to realize that the last time I had met Mr. Roosevelt in that same room was when we besought President Harrison to extend the civil service. Interesting as the new President's conversation was, there was constantly in my mind, whether in his office or his parlors or the dining-room at the White House, one deep undertone. It was like the pedal bass of an organ, steadily giving the ground tone of a requiem—the vanity and evanescence of all things earthly. There had I seen, in the midst of their jubilant supporters, Pierce, Lincoln, Grant, Hayes, Garfield, Cleveland, Harrison, and, finally, so short a time before, McKinley. It seemed all a dream. In his conversations the new President showed the same qualities that I had before known in him—earnestness, vigor, integrity, fearlessness, and, at times, a sense of humor, blending playfully with his greater qualities. The message he gave me to the Emperor William was characteristic. I was naturally charged to assure the Emperor of the President's kind feeling; but to this was added, in a tone of unmistakable truth: ``Tell him that when I say this, I mean it. I have been brought up to admire and respect Germany. My life in that country and my reading since have steadily increased this respect and admiration.'' I noticed on the table a German book which he had just been reading, its author being my old friend Professor Hans Delbr<u:>ck of the Berlin University. At the close of the message, which referred to sundry matters of current business, came a playful postlude. ``Tell his Majesty,'' said the President, ``that I am a hunter and, as such, envy him one thing especially: he has done what I have never yet been able to do—he has killed a whale. But say to him that if he will come to the United States, I will take him to the Rocky Mountains to hunt the mountain lions, which is no bad sport,—and that if he kills one, as he doubtless will, he will be the first monarch who has killed a lion since Tiglath-Pileser.'' I need hardly add that when, a few weeks later, I delivered the message to the Emperor at Potsdam, it pleased him. Many people on both sides of the Atlantic have noted a similarity in qualities between these two rulers, and, from close observation, I must confess that this is better founded than are most such attributed resemblances. The Emperor has indeed several accomplishments, more especially in artistic matters, which, so far as I can learn, the President has not; but both are ambitious in the noblest sense; both are young men of deep beliefs and high aims; earnest, vigorous, straightforward, clear-sighted; good speakers, yet sturdy workers, and anxious for the prosperity, but above all things jealous for the honor of the people whose affairs they are called to administer. The President's accounts of difficulties in finding men for responsible positions in various branches of the service, and his clear statements of the proper line to be observed in political dealings between the United States and Europe where South American interests were concerned, showed him to be a broad-minded statesman. During my stay with him, we also discussed one or two points in his forthcoming message to Congress, and in due time it was received at Berlin, attracting general respect and admiration in Germany, as throughout Europe generally.





As I looked out upon the world during my childhood, there loomed up within my little horizon certain personages as ideals. Foremost of these was the surpliced clergyman of the parish. So strong was my admiration for him that my dear mother, during her entire life, never relinquished the hope, and indeed the expectation, that I would adopt the clerical profession.

Another object of my admiration—to whose profession I aspired—was the village carpenter. He ``did things,'' and from that day to this I have most admired the men who ``do things.''

Yet another of these personages was the principal of Cortland Academy. As I saw him addressing his students, or sitting in the midst of them observing with a telescope the satellites of Jupiter, I was overawed. A sense of my littleness overcame me, and I hardly dared think of aspiring to duties so exalted.

But at the age of seven a new ideal appeared. The family had removed from the little town where I was born to Syracuse, then a rising village of about five thousand inhabitants. The railways, east and west, had just been created,—the beginnings of what is now the New York Central Railroad,—and every day, so far as possible, I went down-town ``to see the cars go out.'' During a large part of the year there was but one passenger-train in each direction, and this was made up of but three or four small compartment-cars drawn by a locomotive which would now be considered ridiculously small, at the rate of twelve to fifteen miles an hour.

Yet I doubt whether the express trains on the New York Central, drawn by hundred-ton locomotives at a speed of sixty miles an hour, produce on the youth of the present generation anything like the impression made by those simple beginnings. The new personage who now attracted my homage was the locomotive-driver. To me his profession transcended all others. As he mounted the locomotive, and especially as he pulled the starting-bar, all other functions seemed insignificant. Every day I contemplated him; often I dreamed of him; saw him in my mind's eye dashing through the dark night, through the rain and hail, through drifting snow, through perils of ``wash- outs'' and ``snake-heads,'' and no child in the middle ages ever thought with more awe of a crusading knight leading his troops to the Holy City than did I think of this hero standing at his post in all weathers, conducting his train to its destination beyond the distant hills. It was indeed the day of small things. The traveler passing from New York to Buffalo in those days changed from the steamer at Albany to the train for Schenectady, there changed to the train for Utica, thence took the train for Syracuse, there stayed overnight, then took a train for Auburn, where he found the train for Rochester, and after two more changes arrived in Buffalo after a journey of two days and a night, which is now made in from eight to ten hours.

But the locomotive-driver was none the less a personage, and I must confess that my old feeling of respect for him clings to me still. To this hour I never see him controlling his fiery steed without investing him with some of the attributes which I discerned in him during my childhood. It is evident to me that the next heroes whom poets will exploit will be the drivers of our railway trains and the pilots of our ocean steamers. One poet has, indeed, made a beginning already,—and this poet the Secretary of State of the United States under whom I am now serving, the Hon. John Hay. Still another poet, honored throughout the world, has also found a hero in the engine-driver, and Rudyard Kipling will no doubt be followed by others.

But my dream of becoming a locomotive-driver faded, and while in college I speculated not a little as to what, after all, should be my profession. The idea of becoming a clergyman had long since left my mind. The medical profession had never attracted me. For the legal profession I sought to prepare myself somewhat, but as I saw it practised by the vast majority of lawyers, it seemed a waste of all that was best in human life. Politics were from an early period repulsive to me, and, after my first sight of Washington in its shabby, sleazy, dirty, unkempt condition under the old slave oligarchy, political life became absolutely repugnant to my tastes and desires. At times a longing came over me to settle down in the country, to make an honest living from a farm—a longing which took its origin in a visit which I had made as a child to the farm of an uncle who lived upon the shores of Seneca Lake. He was a man of culture, who, by the aid of a practical farmer and an income from other sources, got along very well. His roomy, old-fashioned house, his pleasant library, his grounds sloping to the lake, his peach-orchard, which at my visit was filled with delicious fruit, and the pleasant paths through the neighboring woods captivated me, and for several years the agricultural profession lingered in my visions as the most attractive of all.

As I now look back to my early manhood, it seems that my natural inclination should have been toward journalism; but although such a career proves attractive to many of our best university-bred men now, it was not so then. In those days men did not prepare for it; they drifted into it. I do not think that at my graduation there was one out of the one hundred and eight members of my class who had the slightest expectation of permanently connecting himself with a newspaper. This seems all the more singular since that class has since produced a large number of prominent journalists, and among these George Washburne Smalley, the most eminent, by far, among American newspaper correspondents of our time; Evarts Greene, a leading editor of Worcester; Delano Goddard, late editor of the ``Boston Advertiser''; Kinsley Twining, for a considerable time an editor of the ``Independent''; Isaac Bromley, who for years delighted the Republican party with his contributions to the editorial page of the ``Tribune''; Dr. James Morris Whiton, a leading writer for the ``Outlook''; and others. Yet in those days probably not one of these ever thought of turning to journalism as a career. There were indeed at that time eminent editors, like Weed, Croswell, Greeley, Raymond, and Webb, but few college-bred men thought of journalism as a profession. Looking back upon all this, I feel certain that, were I to begin life again with my present experience, that would be the career for which I would endeavor to fit myself. It has in it at present many admirable men, but far more who are manifestly unfit. Its capacities for good or evil are enormous, yet the majority of those at present in it seem to me like savages who have found a watch. I can think of no profession in which young men properly fitted—gifted with ideas and inspired by a real wish to do something for their land and time—can more certainly do good work and win distinction. To supplant the present race of journalistic prostitutes, who are making many of our newspapers as foul in morals, as low in tone, and as vile in utterance as even the worst of the French press, might well be the ambition of leading thinkers in any of our universities. There is nothing so greatly needed in our country as an uplifting of the daily press, and there is no work promising better returns.

But during my student life in Paris and Berlin another vista began to open before me. I had never lost that respect for the teaching profession which had been aroused in my childhood by the sight of Principal Woolworth enthroned among the students of Cortland Academy, and this early impression was now greatly deepened by my experience at the Sorbonne, the College of France, and the University of Berlin. My favorite studies at Yale had been history and kindred subjects, but these had been taught mainly from text-books. Lectures were few and dry. Even those of President Woolsey were not inspiring; he seemed paralyzed by the system of which he formed a part. But men like Arnould, St. Marc Girardin, and Laboulaye in France, and Lepsius, Ritter, von Raumer, and Curtius in Germany, lecturing to large bodies of attentive students on the most interesting and instructive periods of human history, aroused in me a new current of ideas. Gradually I began to ask myself the question: Why not help the beginnings of this system in the United States? I had long felt deeply the shortcomings of our American universities, and had tried hard to devise something better; yet my ideas as to what could really be done to improve them had been crude and vague. But now, in these great foreign universities, one means of making a reform became evident, and this was, first of all, the substitution of lectures for recitations, and the creation of an interest in history by treating it as a living subject having relations to present questions. Upon this I reflected much, and day by day the idea grew upon me. So far as I can remember, there was not at that time a professor of history pure and simple in any American university. There had been courses of historical lectures at a few institutions, but they were, as a rule, spasmodic and perfunctory. How history was taught at Yale is shown in another chapter of these reminiscences. The lectures of President Sparks had evidently trained up no school of historical professors at Harvard. There had been a noted professor at William and Mary College, Virginia,—doubtless, in his time, the best historical lecturer in the United States,—Dr. William Dew, the notes of whose lectures, as afterward published, were admirable; but he had left no successor. Francis Lieber, at the University of South Carolina, had taught political philosophy with much depth of thought and wealth of historical illustration; but neither there nor elsewhere did there exist anything like systematic courses in history such as have now been developed in so many of our universities and colleges.

During my stay as resident graduate at Yale after my return from Europe in 1856, I often discussed the subject with my old friend and companion Gilman, now president of the Carnegie Institution, and with my beloved instructor, Professor Porter. Both were kind enough to urge me to remain at New Haven, assuring me that in time a professorship would be established. To promote this I wrote an article on ``German Instruction in General History,'' which was well received when published in the ``New Englander,'' and prepared sundry lectures, which were received by the university people and by the New York press more favorably than I now think they deserved. But there seemed, after all, no chance for a professorship devoted to this line of study. More and more, too, I felt that even if I were called to a historical professorship at Yale, the old- fashioned orthodoxy which then prevailed must fetter me: I could not utter the shibboleths then demanded, and the future seemed dark indeed. Yet my belief in the value of better historical instruction in our universities grew more and more, and a most happy impulse was now given to my thinking by a book which I read and reread— Stanley's ``Life of Arnold.'' It showed me much, but especially two things: first, how effective history might be made in bringing young men into fruitful trains of thought regarding present politics; and, secondly, how real an influence an earnest teacher might thus exercise upon his country.

While in this state of mind I met my class assembled at the Yale commencement of 1856 to take the master's degree in course, after the manner of those days. This was the turning-point with me. I had been for some time more and more uneasy and unhappy because my way did not seem to clear; but at this commencement of 1856, while lounging among my classmates in the college yard, I heard some one say that President Wayland of Brown University was addressing the graduates in the Hall of the Alumni. Going to the door, I looked in, and saw at the high table an old man, strong-featured, heavy-browed, with spectacles resting on the top of his head, and just at that moment he spoke very impressively as follows: ``The best field of work for graduates is now in the WEST; our country is shortly to arrive at a switching-off place for good or evil; our Western States are to hold the balance of power in the Union, and to determine whether the country shall become a blessing or a curse in human history.''

I had never seen him before; I never saw him afterward. His speech lasted less than ten minutes, but it settled a great question for me. I went home and wrote to sundry friends that I was a candidate for the professorship of history in any Western college where there was a chance to get at students, and as a result received two calls—one to a Southern university, which I could not accept on account of my anti-slavery opinions; the other to the University of Michigan, which I accepted. My old college friends were kind enough to tender me later the professorship in the new School of Art at Yale, but my belief was firm in the value of historical studies. The words of Wayland rang in my ears, and I went gladly into the new field.

On arriving at the University of Michigan in October, 1857, although I had much to do with other students, I took especial charge of the sophomore class. It included many young men of ability and force, but had the reputation of being the most unmanageable body which had been known there in years. Thus far it had been under the charge of tutors, and it had made life a burden to them. Its preparation for the work I sought to do was wretchedly imperfect. Among my duties was the examination of entrance classes in modern geography as a preliminary to their admission to my course in history, and I soon discovered a serious weakness in the public-school system. In her preparatory schools the State of Michigan took especial pride, but certainly at that time they were far below their reputation. If any subject was supposed to be thoroughly taught in them it was geography, but I soon found that in the great majority of my students there was not a trace of real knowledge of physical geography and very little of political. With this state of things I at once grappled, and immediately ``conditioned'' in these studies about nine tenths of the entering class. At first there were many protests; but I said to my ingenuous youths that no pedantic study was needed, that all I required was a preparation such as would enable any one of them to read intelligently his morning newspaper, and to this end I advised each one of them to accept his conditions, to abjure all learning by rote from text-books, to take up simply any convenient atlas which came to hand, studying first the map of our own country, with its main divisions, physical and political, its water communications, trend of coasts, spurring of mountains, positions of leading cities, etc., and then to do the same thing with each of the leading countries of Europe, and finally with the other main divisions of the world. To stimulate their interest and show them what was meant, I gave a short course of lectures on physical geography, showing some of its more striking effects on history; then another course on political geography, with a similar purpose; and finally notified my young men that they were admitted to my classes in history only under condition that, six weeks later, they should pass an examination in geography, full, satisfactory, and final. The young fellows now took their conditions very kindly, for they clearly saw the justice of them. One young man said to me: ``Professor, you are entirely right in conditioning me, but I was never so surprised in my life; if there was anything which I supposed I knew well it was geography; why, I have taught it, and very successfully, in a large public school.'' On my asking him how he taught a subject in which he was so deficient, he answered that he had taught his pupils to ``sing'' it. I replied that if he would sing the answers to my questions, I would admit him at once; but this he declined, saying that he much preferred to accept the conditions. In about six weeks I held the final examinations, and their success amazed us all. Not a man failed, and some really distinguished themselves. They had all gone at the work cordially and heartily, arranging themselves in squads and clubs for mutual study and examination on each physical and political map; and it is certain that by this simple, common-sense method they learned more in six weeks than they had previously learned in years of plodding along by rote, day after day through text-books.

Nor was this mere ``cram.'' Their geographical knowledge lasted and was increased, as was proved at my historical examinations afterward.

I soon became intensely interested in my work, and looked forward to it every day with pleasure. The first part of it was instruction in modern history as a basis for my lectures which were to follow, and for this purpose I used with the sophomores two text-books. The first of these was Robertson's ``Philosophical View of the Middle Ages,'' which forms the introduction to his ``Life of Charles the Fifth.'' Although superseded in many of its parts by modern investigation, very defective in several important matters, and in some things—as, for example, in its appreciation of medieval literature—entirely mistaken, it was, when written one hundred years ago, recognized as a classic, and it remains so to this day. It was a work of genius. Supplemented by elucidations and extensions, it served an admirable purpose in introducing my students to the things really worth knowing in modern history, without confusing them with masses of pedantic detail.

The next text-book which I took up was Dr. John Lord's ``Modern History,'' the same which President Woolsey had used with my class during its senior year at Yale. It was imperfect in every respect, with no end of gaps and errors, but it had one real merit—it interested its readers. It was, as every such work ought to be, largely biographic. There was enthusiasm, a sort of ``go,'' in Dr. Lord, and this quality he had communicated to his book, so that, with all its faults, it formed the best basis then obtainable for further instruction. Its omissions and errors I sought to rectify—as Woolsey, I am sorry to say, had never done to any extent—by offhand talks and by pointing out supplementary reading, such as sundry chapters of Gibbon and Hallam, essays by Macaulay, extracts from Lingard, Ranke, Prescott, Motley, and others. Once a fortnight through the winter, the class assembled at my house socially, ``the more attractive young women of the little city being invited to meet them; but the social part was always preceded by an hour and a half's reading of short passages from eminent historians or travelers, bearing on our classroom work during the previous fortnight. These passages were read by students whom I selected for the purpose, and they proved useful from the historical, literary, and social point of view.

For the class next above, the juniors, I took for textbook preparation Guizot's ``History of Civilization in Europe''—a book tinged with the doctrinairism of its author, but a work of genius; a GREAT work, stimulating new trains of thought, and opening new vistas of knowledge. This, with sundry supplementary talks, and with short readings from Gibbon, Thierry, Guizot's ``History of Civilization in France,'' and Sir James Stephen's ``Lectures on French History,'' served an excellent purpose.

Nor was the use of Guizot's book entirely confined to historical purposes. Calling attention to the Abb<e'> Bautain's little book on extemporaneous speaking, as the best treatise on the subject I had ever seen, I reminded my students that these famous lectures of Guizot, which had opened a new epoch in modern historical investigation and instruction, were given, as regards phrasing, extemporaneously, but that, as regards matter, they were carefully prepared beforehand, having what Bautain calls a ``self- developing order''; and I stated that I would allow any member of my class who might volunteer for the purpose to give, in his own phrasing, the substance of an entire lecture. For a young man thus to stand up and virtually deliver one of Guizot's lectures required great concentration of thought and considerable facility in expression, but several students availed themselves of the permission, and acquitted themselves admirably. This seemed to me an excellent training for effective public speaking, and several of my old students, who have since distinguished themselves in public life, have confessed to me that they found it so.

My next and highest duty was giving lectures to the senior class and students from the law school. Into this I threw myself heartily, and soon had the satisfaction of seeing my large lecture-room constantly full. The first of these courses was on the ``Development of Civilization during the Middle Ages''; and, as I followed the logical rather than the chronological order,—taking up the subject, not by a recital of events, but by a discussion of epochs and subjects,—I thought it best to lecture without manuscript or even notes. This was, for me, a bold venture. I had never before attempted anything in the way of extended extemporaneous speaking; and, as I entered the old chapel of the university for my first lecture, and saw it full of students of all classes, I avowed my trepidation to President Tappan, who, having come to introduce me, was seated by my side. He was an admirable extemporaneous speaker in the best sense, and he then and there gave me a bit of advice which proved of real value. He said: ``Let me, as an old hand, tell you one thing: never stop dead; keep saying something.'' This course of lectures was followed by others on modern history, one of these being on ``German History from the Revival of Learning and the Reformation to Modern Times,'' another on ``French History from the Consolidation of the Monarchy to the French Revolution,'' and still another on the ``French Revolution.'' To this latter course I gave special attention, the foundation having been laid for it in France, where I had visited various interesting places and talked with interesting men who recalled events and people of the Revolutionary and Napoleonic periods. For a text-book foundation I read with my lower classes Mignet's ``History of the Revolution,'' which still remained what Carlyle pronounced it—the best short summary of that great period.

To further the work of my students in the lecture-room, I published an interleaved syllabus of each course, and was, I think, the first person in our country who ever did this in connection with historical lectures. It is a matter of wonder to me that so few professors in these days resort to this simple means of strengthening their instruction. It ought to be required by university statutes. It seems to me indispensable to anything like thorough work. A syllabus, properly interleaved, furnishes to a student by far the best means of taking notes on each lecture, as well as of reviewing the whole course afterward, and to a professor the best means of testing the faithfulness of his students. As regards myself personally, there came to me from my syllabus an especial advantage; for, as I have shown in my political experiences, it gained for me the friendship of Charles Sumner.

I have stated elsewhere that my zeal in teaching history was by no means the result of a mere liking for that field of thought. Great as was my love for historical studies, there was something I prized far more—and that was the opportunity to promote a better training in thought regarding our great national problems then rapidly approaching solution, the greatest of all being the question between the supporters and opponents of slavery.

In order that my work might be fairly well based, I had, during my college days and my first stay abroad, begun collecting the private library which has added certainly to the pleasures, and probably to the usefulness, of my life. Books which are now costly rarities could then be bought in the European capitals for petty sums. There is hardly any old European city which has not been, at some time, one of my happy hunting-grounds in the chase for rare books bearing upon history; even now, when my collection, of which the greater part has been trans- ferred to Cornell University, numbers not far short of forty thousand volumes, the old passion still flames up at times; and during the inditing of this chapter I have secured two series of manuscripts of very great value in illustrating the evolution of modern civilization. My reason for securing such original material was not the desire to possess rarities and curiosities. I found that passages actually read from important originals during my lectures gave a reality and vividness to my instruction which were otherwise unattainable. A citation of the ipsissima verba of Erasmus, or Luther, or Melanchthon, or Peter Canisius, or Louis XIV, or Robespierre, or Marat, interested my students far more than any quotation at second hand could do. No rhetoric could impress on a class the real spirit and strength of the middle ages as could one of my illuminated psalters or missals; no declamation upon the boldness of Luther could impress thinking young men as did citations from his ``Erfurt Sermon,'' which, by weakening his safe-conduct, put him virtually at the mercy of his enemies at the Diet of Worms; no statements as to the fatuity of Robespierre could equal citations from an original copy of his ``Report on the Moral and Religious Considerations which Ought to Govern the Republic''; all specifications of the folly of Marat paled before the ravings in the original copies of his newspaper, ``L'Ami du Peuple''; no statistics regarding the paper-money craze in France could so impress its actuality on students as did the seeing and handling of French revolutionary assignats and mandats, many of them with registration numbers clearly showing the enormous quantities of this currency then issued; no illustration, at second hand, of the methods of the French generals during the Revolutionary period could produce the impression given by a simple exhibition of the broadsides issued by the proconsuls of that period; no description of the collapse of the triumvirate and the Reign of Terror could equal a half-hour's reading from the ``Moniteur''; and all accounts of the Empire were dim compared to grandiose statements read from the original bulletins of Napoleon.

In this way alone can history be made real to students. Both at my lectures and in the social gatherings at my house, I laid out for my classes the most important originals bearing upon their current work; and it was no small pleasure to point out the relations of these to the events which had formed the subject of our studies together. I say ``our studies together,'' because no one of my students studied more hours than myself. They stimulated me greatly. Most of them were very near my own age; several were older. As a rule, they were bright, inquiring, zealous, and among them were some of the best minds I have ever known. From among them have since come senators, members of Congress, judges, professors, lawyers, heads of great business enterprises, and foreign ministers. One of them became my successor in the professorship in the University of Michigan and the presidency of Cornell, and, in one field, the leading American historian of his time. Another became my predecessor in the embassy to Germany. Though I had what might be fairly called ``a good start'' of these men, it was necessary to work hard to maintain my position; but such labor was then pleasure.

Nor was my work confined to historical teaching. After the fashion of that time, I was called upon to hear the essays and discussions of certain divisions of the upper classes. This demanded two evenings a week through two terms in each year, and on these evenings I joyfully went to my lecture-room, not infrequently through drifts of snow, and, having myself kindled the fire and lighted the lamps, awaited the discussion. This subsidiary work, which in these degenerate days is done by janitors, is mentioned here as showing the simplicity of a bygone period. The discussions thus held were of a higher range than any I had known at Yale, and some were decidedly original. One deserves especial mention. A controversy having arisen in Massachusetts and spread throughout the country regarding the erection of a statue of Daniel Webster in front of the State House at Boston, and bitter opposition having been aroused by his seventh-of-March speech, two groups of my student-disputants agreed to take up this subject and model their speeches upon those of Demosthenes and Aeschines on the crown, which they were then reading in the original. It was a happy thought, and well carried out.



It must be confessed that all was not plain sailing in my new position. One difficulty arose from my very youthful, not to say boyish, appearance. I was, indeed, the youngest member of the faculty; but at twenty-four years one has the right to be taken for a man, and it was vexatious to be taken for a youth of seventeen. At my first arrival in the university town I noticed, as the train drew up to the station, a number of students, evidently awaiting the coming of such freshmen as might be eligible to the various fraternities; and, on landing, I was at once approached by a sophomore, who asked if I was about to enter the university. For an instant I was grievously abashed, but pulling myself together, answered in a sort of affirmative way; and at this he became exceedingly courteous, taking pains to pilot me to a hotel, giving me much excellent advice, and even insisting on carrying a considerable amount of my baggage. Other members of fraternities joined us, all most courteous and kind, and the d<e'>nouement came only at the registration of my name in the hotel book, when they recognized in me ``the new professor.'' I must say to their credit that, although they were for a time laughed at throughout the university, they remained my warm personal friends.

But after I had discharged the duties of my professorship for a considerable period, this same difficulty existed. On a shooting excursion, an old friend and myself came, and, being very hungry, asked for bread and milk. My companion being delayed outside, cleaning the guns, the farmer's wife left me and went out to talk with him. I continued eating my bread and milk voraciously, and shortly afterward they entered, he laughing heartily and she looking rather shamefaced. On my asking the cause he declined for a time to state it, but at length said that she had come out to warn him that if he did not come in pretty soon ``that boy would eat up all the bread and milk in the house.'' This story leaked out, and even appeared in a local paper, but never, I think, did me any harm.

Another occurrence, shortly afterward, seemed likely for a time to be more serious. The sophomore class, exuberant and inventive as ever, were evidently determined to ``try it on'' their young professor—in fact, to treat me as they had treated their tutors. Any mistake made by a student at a quiz elicited from sundry benches expressions of regret much too plaintive, or ejaculations of contempt much too explosive; and from these and various similar demonstrations which grew every day among a certain set in my class-room, it was easy to see that a trial of strength must soon come, and it seemed to me best to force the fighting. Looking over these obstreperous youths I noticed one tall, black-bearded man with a keen twinkle in his eye, who was evidently the leader. There was nothing in him especially demonstrative. He would occasionally nod in this direction, or wink in that, or smile in the other; but he was solemn when others were hilarious, unconcerned when others applauded. It was soon clear to me that in him lay the key to the situation, and one day, at the close of the examination, I asked him to remain. When we were alone I said to him, in an easy-going way, ``So, F——, I see that either you or I must leave the university.'' He at once bristled up, feigned indignation, and said that he could not understand me. This I pooh-poohed, saying that we understood each other perfectly; that I had been only recently a student myself; that, if the growing trouble in the class continued, either he or I must give it up, and added, ``I believe the trustees will prefer your departure to mine.'' At this he protested that he had made no demonstrations, to which I answered that if I put him on his honor he would not deny that he was the real center of the difficulty; that the others were, comparatively, men of small account; and that, with him gone, the backbone of the whole difficulty would be broken. He seemed impressed by this view—possibly he was not wholly displeased at the importance it gave him; and finally he acknowledged that perhaps he had been rather foolish, and suggested that we try to live together a little longer. I answered cordially, we shook hands at parting, and there was never any trouble afterward. I soon found what sort of questions interested him most, took especial pains to adapt points in my lectures to his needs, and soon had no stronger friend in the university.

But his activity finally found a less fortunate outcome. A year or two afterward came news of a terrible affair in the university town. A student was lying dead at the coroner's rooms, and on inquiry it was found that his death was the result of a carousal in which my friend F—— was a leading spirit. Eight men were concerned, of whom four were expelled—F—— being one—and four suspended. On leaving, he came to me and thanked me most heartily for what I had done for him, said that the action of the faculty was perfectly just, that no other course was open to us, but that he hoped yet to show us all that he could make a man of himself. He succeeded. Five years later he fell as a general at the head of his brigade at Gettysburg.

In addition to my regular work at the university, I lectured frequently in various cities throughout Michigan and the neighboring States. It was the culminating period of the popular-lecture system, and through the winter months my Friday and Saturday evenings were generally given to this sort of duty. It was, after its fashion, what in these days is called ``university extension''; indeed, the main purpose of those members of the faculty thus invited to lecture was to spread the influence of the university. But I received from the system more than I gave to it; for it gave me not only many valuable acquaintances throughout the West, but it brought to Ann Arbor the best men then in the field, among them such as Emerson, Curtis, Whipple, Wendell Phillips, Carl Schurz, Moncure Conway, Bayard Taylor, and others noted then, but, alas, how few of them remembered now! To have them by my fireside and at my table was one of the greatest pleasures of a professorial life. It was at the beginning of my housekeeping; and under my roof on the university grounds we felt it a privilege to welcome these wise men from the East, and to bring the faculty and students into closer relations with them.

As regards the popular-lecture pulpit, my main wish was to set people thinking on various subjects, and especially regarding slavery and ``protection.'' This presently brought a storm upon me. Some years before there had settled in the university town a thin, vociferous lawyer, past his prime, but not without ideas and force. He had for many years been a department subordinate at Washington; but, having accumulated some money, he had donned what was then known as senatorial costume— namely, a blue swallow-tailed coat, and a buff vest, with brass buttons—and coming to this little Michigan town he had established a Whig paper, which afterward became Republican. He was generally credited, no doubt justly, with a determination to push himself into the United States Senate; but this determination was so obvious that people made light of it, and he never received the honor of a nomination to that or any other position. The main burden of his editorials was the greatness of Henry Clay, and the beauties of a protective tariff, his material being largely drawn from a book he had published some years before; and, on account of the usual form of his arguments, he was generally referred to, in the offhand Western way, as ``Old Statistics.''

In a public lecture based upon my Russian experiences, I had incidentally attacked paternal government, and especially such developments of it as tariffs for protection. The immediate result was a broadside from this gentleman's paper, and this I answered in an article which was extensively copied throughout the State. At this he evidently determined to crush this intruder upon his domain. That an ``upstart''—a ``mere school-teacher''— should presume to reply to a man like himself, who had sat at the feet of Henry Clay, and was old enough to be my father, was monstrous presumption; but that a professor in the State university of a commonwealth largely Republican should avow free-trade opinions was akin to treason, and through twelve successive issues of his paper he lashed me in all the moods and tenses. As these attacks soon became scurrilous, I made no reply to any after the first; but his wrath was increased when he saw my reply quoted by the press throughout the State and his own diatribes neglected. Among his more serious charges I remember but one, and this was that I had evidently come into the State as a secret emissary of Van Burenism. But I recalled the remark of my enemy's idol, Henry Clay, to the effect that no one should ever reply to an attack by an editor, a priest, or a woman, since each of them is sure to have the last word. This feeling was soon succeeded by indifference; for my lecture-rooms, both at the university and throughout the State, were more and more frequented, and it became clear that my opponent's attacks simply advertised me. The following year I had my revenge. From time to time debates on current topics were held at the city hall, the participants being generally young professional men; but, the subject of a tariff for protection having been announced, my old enemy declared, several weeks beforehand, his intention of taking part in the discussion. Among my students that winter was one of the most gifted young scholars and speakers I have ever known. Not long after his graduation he was sent to the United States Senate from one of the more important Western States, and nothing but his early death prevented his attaining a national reputation. He was a man of convictions, strong and skilful in impressing them upon his hearers, of fine personal appearance, with a pleasing voice, and in every way fitted to captivate an audience. Him I selected as the David who was to punish the protectionist Goliath. He had been himself a protectionist, having read Greeley's arguments in the ``New York Tribune,'' but he had become a convert to my views, and day after day and week after week I kept him in training on the best expositions of free trade, and, above all, on Bastiat's ``Sophisms of Protection.'' On the appointed evening the city hall was crowded, and my young David having modestly taken a back seat, the great Goliath appeared at the front in full senatorial costume, furbished up for the occasion, with an enormous collection of books and documents; and, the subject being announced, he arose, assumed his most imposing senatorial attitude, and began a dry, statistical oration. His manner was harsh, his matter wearisome; but he plodded on through an hour —and then my David arose. He was at his best. In five minutes he had the audience fully with him. Every point told. From time to time the house shook with applause; and at the close of the debate, a vote of the meeting being taken after the usual fashion in such assemblies, my old enemy was left in a ridiculous minority. Not only free-traders, but even protectionists voted against him. As he took himself very seriously, he was intensely mortified, and all the more so when he learned from one of my students that I now considered that we were ``even.''[4]

[4] The causes of my change of views on the question of ``protection'' are given in my political reminiscences.

The more I threw myself into the work of the university the more I came to believe in the ideas on which it was founded, and to see that it was a reality embodying many things of which I had previously only dreamed. Up to that time the highest institutions of learning in the United States were almost entirely under sectarian control. Even the University of Virginia, which Thomas Jefferson had founded as a center of liberal thought, had fallen under the direction of sectarians, and among the great majority of the Northern colleges an unwritten law seemed to require that a university president should be a clergyman. The instruction in the best of these institutions was, as I have shown elsewhere, narrow, their methods outworn, and the students, as a rule, confined to one simple, single, cast-iron course, in which the great majority of them took no interest. The University of Michigan had made a beginning of something better. The president was Dr. Henry Philip Tappan, formerly a Presbyterian clergyman, a writer of repute on philosophical subjects, a strong thinker, an impressive orator, and a born leader of men, who, during a visit to Europe, had been greatly impressed by the large and liberal system of the German universities, and had devoted himself to urging a similar system in our own country. On the Eastern institutions—save, possibly, Brown—he made no impression. Each of them was as stagnant as a Spanish convent, and as self-satisfied as a Bourbon duchy; but in the West he attracted supporters, and soon his ideas began to show themselves effective in the State university over which he had been called to preside.

The men he summoned about him were, in the main, admirably fitted to aid him. Dearest of all to me, though several years my senior, was Henry Simmons Frieze, professor of Latin. I had first met him at the University of Berlin, had then traveled with him through Germany and Italy, and had found him one of the most charming men I had ever met—simple, modest, retiring to a fault, yet a delightful companion and a most inspiring teacher. There was in him a combination which at first seemed singular; but experience has since shown me that it is by no means unnatural, for he was not only an ideal professor of Latin, but a gifted musician. The first revelation of this latter quality was made to me in a manner which showed his modesty. One evening during our student days at Berlin, at a reception given by the American minister of that period,—Governor Vroom of New Jersey,—I heard the sound of music coming from one of the more distant apartments. It was a sonata of Beethoven, wonderfully interpreted, showing not only skill but deep feeling. On my asking my neighbors who the performer might be, no one seemed to know, until, at last, some one suggested that it might be Professor Frieze. I made my way through the crowd toward the room from which the sounds came, but before arriving there the music had ended; and when I met the professor shortly afterward, and asked him if he had been the musician, his reply was so modest and evasive that I thought the whole thing a mistake and said nothing more about it. On our way to Italy some months later, I observed that, as we were passing through Bohemia, he jotted down in his note-book the quaint songs of the peasants and soldiers, and a few weeks later still he gave an exhibition of his genius. Sitting down one evening at the piano on the little coasting steamer between Genoa and Civit<a!> Vecchia, he began playing, and though it has been my good fortune to hear all the leading pianists of my time, I have never heard one who seemed to interpret the masterpieces of music more worthily. At Ann Arbor I now came to know him intimately. Once or twice a week he came to my house, and, as mine was the only grand piano in the town, he enjoyed playing upon it. His extemporizations were flights of genius. At these gatherings he was inspired by two other admirable musicians, one being my dear wife, and the other Professor Brunnow, the astronomer. Nothing could be more delightful than their interpretations together of the main works of Beethoven Handel, Mozart, Haydn, Weber, and other masters. On one of these evenings, when I happened to speak of the impression made upon me at my first hearing of a choral in a German church, Frieze began playing Luther's hymn, ``Ein' feste Burg ist unser Gott,'' throwing it into all forms and keys, until we listened to his improvisations in a sort of daze which continued until nearly midnight. Next day, at St. Andrew's Church, he, as usual, had charge of the organ. Into his opening voluntary he wove the music of the preceding evening, the ``Feste Burg''; it ran through all the chants of the morning service; it pervaded the accompaniment to the hymns; it formed the undertone of all the interludes; it was not relinquished until the close of the postlude. And the same was true of the afternoon service. I have always insisted that, had he lived in Germany, he would have been a second Beethoven. This will seem a grossly exaggerated tribute, but I do not hesitate to maintain it. So passionately was he devoted to music that at times he sent his piano away from his house in order to shun temptation to abridge his professorial work, and especially was this the case when he was preparing his edition of Vergil. A more lovely spirit never abode in mortal frame. No man was ever more generally beloved in a community; none, more lamented at his death. The splendid organ erected as a memorial to him in the great auditorium of the university; the noble monument which his students have placed over his grave; his portrait, which hangs in one of the principal rooms; the society which commemorates his name—all combine to show how deeply he was respected and beloved.

Entwined also with my happiest recollections is Brunnow, professor of astronomy and director of the observatory. His eminence in his department was widely recognized, as was shown when he was afterward made director of the Dudley Observatory at Albany, N. Y., and, finally, astronomer royal of Ireland. His musical abilities, in connection with those of Frieze, aided to give a delightful side to this period of my life. There was in him a quiet simplicity which led those who knew him best to love him most, but it occasionally provoked much fun among the students. On one occasion, President Tappan, being suddenly called out of town, requested Brunnow, who had married his daughter and was an inmate of his family, to find some member of the faculty to take his place at morning prayers next day. Thereupon Brunnow visited sev- eral professors, his first question to each of them being, with his German use of the consonants, ``Professor, can you BRAY?'' and henceforward this was added to the many standing jokes upon him in the student world.

I also found at the university other admirable men, and among those to whom I became specially attached was Thomas M. Cooley. When he had become chief justice of the State, and the most eminent writer of his time on the Constitution of the United States, he was still the same man, gentle, simple, and kindly. Besides these were such well-known professors as Fasquelle in modern literature; Williams, Douglass, and Winchell in science; Boise in Greek; Palmer, Sager, and Gunn in medicine and surgery; Campbell and Walker in law. Of these Judge Campbell was to me one of the main attractions of the place—a profound lawyer, yet with a kindly humor which lighted up all about him. He was especially interested in the early French history of the State, to which he had been drawn by his study of the titles to landed property in Detroit and its neighborhood, and some of his discoveries were curious. One of these had reference to an island in the straits near Detroit known as ``Skillagalee,'' which had puzzled him a long time. The name seemed to be Irish, and the question was how an Irish name could have been thus applied. Finally he found on an old map an earlier name. It was <I^>le aus Galets, or Pebble Island, which, in the mouths of Yankee sailors, had taken this apparently Celtic form. Another case was that of a river in Canada emptying into the straits not far from Detroit. It was known as ``Yellow Dog River''; but, on rummaging through the older maps, he discovered that the earlier name was River St. John. To account for the transformation was at first difficult, but the mystery was finally unraveled: the Rivi<e!>re St. Jean became, in the Canadian patois, Rivi<e!>re Saan Jawne, and gradually Rivi<e!>re Chien Jaune; recent geographers had simply translated it into English.

The features which mainly distinguished the University of Michigan from the leading institutions of the East were that it was utterly unsectarian, that various courses of instruction were established, and that options were allowed between them. On these accounts that university holds a most important place in the history of American higher education; for it stands practically at the beginning of the transition from the old sectarian college to the modern university, and from the simple, single, cast-iron course to the form which we now know, in which various courses are presented, with free choice between them. The number of students was about five hundred, and the faculty corresponded to these in numbers. Now that the university includes over four thousand students, with a faculty in proportion, those seem the days of small things; but to me at that period it was all very grand. It seemed marvelous that there were then very nearly as many students at the University of Michigan as at Yale; and, as a rule, they were students worth teaching—hardy, vigorous, shrewd, broad, with faith in the greatness of the country and enthusiasm regarding the nation's future. It may be granted that there was, in many of them, a lack of elegance, but there was neither languor nor cynicism. One seemed, among them, to breathe a purer, stronger air. Over the whole institution Dr. Tappan presided, and his influence, both upon faculty and students, was, in the main, excellent. He sympathized heartily with the work of every professor, allowed to each great liberty, yet conducted the whole toward the one great end of developing a university more and more worthy of our country. His main qualities were of the best. Nothing could be better than his discussions of great questions of public policy and of education. One of the noblest orations I have ever heard was an offhand speech of his on receiving for the university museum a cast of the Laoco<o:>n from the senior class; yet this speech was made without preparation, and in the midst of engrossing labor. He often showed, not only the higher qualities required in a position like his, but a remarkable shrewdness and tact in dealing with lesser questions. Typical was one example, which taught me much when, in after years, I was called to similar duties at Cornell. The present tower and chime of the University of Michigan did not then exist; between the two main buildings on the university grounds there was simply a wooden column, bearing a bell of moderate size, which was rung at every lecture-hour by the principal janitor. One cold winter night those of us living in the immediate neighborhood heard the sound of axe-strokes. Presently there came a crash, and all was still. Next morning, at the hour for chapel, no bell was rung; it was found that the column had been cut down and the bell carried off. A president of less shrewdness would have declaimed to the students on the enormity of such a procedure, and have accentuated his eloquence with threats. Not so Dr. Tappan. At the close of the morning prayers he addressed the students humorously. There was a great attendance, for all wished to know how he would deal with the affair. Nothing could be better than his matter and manner. He spoke somewhat on this wise: ``Gentlemen, there has doubtless been a mistake in the theory of some of you regarding the college bell. It would seem that some have believed that if the bell were destroyed, time would cease, and university exercises would be suspended. But, my friends, time goes on as ever, without the bell as with it; lectures and exercises of every sort continue, of course, as usual. The only thing which has occurred is that some of you have thought it best to dispense with the aid in keeping time which the regents of the university have so kindly given you. Knowing that large numbers of you were not yet provided with watches, the regents very thoughtfully provided the bell, and a man to ring it for you at the proper hours; and they will doubtless be pleased to learn that you at last feel able to dispense with it, and save them the expense of maintaining it. You are trying an interesting experiment. In most of the leading European universities, students get along perfectly without a bell; why should we not? In the interests of the finances of the university, I am glad to see you trying this experiment, and will only suggest that it be tried thoroughly. Of course the rolls will be called in the lecture-rooms promptly, as usual, and you will, of course, be present. If the experiment succeeds, it will enable us to dispense with a university bell forever; but if, after a suitable time, you decide that it is better to have the bell back again to remind you of the hours, and if you will make a proper request to the regents through me, I trust that they will allow you to restore it to its former position.''

The students were greatly amused to see the matter taken in this way. They laughingly acknowledged themselves outwitted, and greeted the doctor's speech with applause. All of the faculty entered into the spirit of the matter; rolls were called perhaps rather more promptly than formerly, and students not present were marked rather more mercilessly than of old. There was evidently much reluctance on their part to ask for excuses, in view of the fact that they had themselves abolished the bell which had enabled them to keep the time; and one morning, about a month or six weeks later, after chapel, a big jolly student rose and asked permission to make a motion. This motion was that the president of the university be requested to allow the students to restore the bell to its former position. The proposal was graciously received by the doctor, put by him after the usual parliamentary manner, carried unanimously, and, a few mornings later, the bell was found in its old place on a new column, was rung as usual, and matters went on after the old fashion.

Every winter Dr. Tappan went before the legislature to plead the cause of the university, and to ask for appropriations. He was always heard with pleasure, since he was an excellent speaker; but certain things militated against him. First of all, he had much to say of the excellent models furnished by the great German universities, and especially by those of Prussia. This gave demagogues in the legislature, anxious to make a reputation in buncombe, a great chance. They orated to the effect that we wanted an American and not a Prussian system. Moreover, some unfortunate legends were developed. Mrs. Tappan, a noble and lovely woman belonging to the Livingston family, had been brought up in New York and New England, and could hardly suppress her natural preference for her old home and friends. A story grew that in an assembly of Michigan ladies she once remarked that the doctor and herself considered themselves as ``missionaries to the West.'' This legend spread far and wide. It was resented, and undoubtedly cost the doctor dear.

The worst difficulty by far which he had to meet was the steady opposition of the small sectarian colleges scattered throughout the State. Each, in its own petty interest, dreaded the growth of any institution better than itself; each stirred the members of the legislature from its locality to oppose all aid to the State university; each, in its religious assemblages, its synods, conferences, and the like, sought to stir prejudice against the State institution as ``godless.'' The result was that the doctor, in spite of his eloquent speeches, became the butt of various wretched demagogues in the legislature, and he very rarely secured anything in the way of effective appropriations. The university had been founded by a grant of public lands from the United States to Michigan; and one of his arguments was based on the fact that an immensely valuable tract, on which a considerable part of the city of Toledo now stands, had been taken away from the university without any suitable remuneration. But even this availed little, and it became quite a pastime among demagogues at the State Capitol to bait the doctor. On one of these occasions he was inspired to make a prophecy. Disgusted at the poor, cheap blackguardism, he shook the dust of the legislature off his feet, and said: ``The day will come when my students will take your places, and then something will be done.'' That prophecy was fulfilled. In a decade the leading men in the legislature began to be the graduates of the State university; and now these graduates are largely in control, and they have dealt nobly with their alma mater. The State has justly become proud of it, and has wisely developed it.

Dr. Tappan's work was great, indeed. He stood not only at the beginning of the institution at Ann Arbor, but really at the beginning of the other universities of the Western States, from which the country is gaining so much at present, and is sure to gain vastly more in the future. The day will come when his statue will commemorate his services.

But there was another feature in his administration to which I refer with extreme reluctance. He had certain ``defects of his qualities.'' Big, hearty, frank, and generous, he easily became the prey of those who wrought upon his feelings; and, in an evil hour, he was drawn into a quarrel not his own, between two scientific professors. This quarrel became exceedingly virulent; at times it almost paralyzed the university, and finally it convulsed the State. It became the main object of the doctor's thoughts. The men who had drawn him into it quietly retired under cover, and left him to fight their battle in the open. He did this powerfully, but his victories were no less calamitous than his defeats; for one of the professors, when overcome, fell back upon the church to which he belonged, and its conference was led to pass resolutions warning Christian people against the university. The forces of those hostile to the institution were marshaled to the sound of the sectarian drum. The quarrel at last became political; and when the doctor unwisely entered the political field in hopes of defeating the candidates put forward by his opponents, he was beaten at the polls, and his resignation followed. A small number of us, including Judge Cooley and Professors Frieze, Fasquelle, Boise, and myself, simply maintained an ``armed neutrality,'' standing by the university, and refusing to be drawn into this whirlpool of intrigue and objurgation. Personally, we loved the doctor. Every one of us besought him to give up the quarrel, but in vain. He would not; he could not. It went on till the crash came. He was virtually driven from the State, retired to Europe, and never returned.

Years afterward, the citizens of Michigan in all parts of the State sought to make amends to him. The great body of the graduates, who loved and respected him, with leading men throughout the commonwealth, joined in a letter inviting him to return as a public guest; but he declined, and never again saw his native land. His first main place of residence was Basel, where, at the university, he superintended the education of his grandson, who, at a later period, became a professor at Heidelberg. Finally, he retired to a beautiful villa on the shores of Lake Leman and there, with his family about him, peacefully followed his chosen studies. At his death he was buried amid the vineyards and orchards of Vevey.

Though I absolutely refused to be drawn into any of his quarrels, my relations with the doctor remained kindly and not a single feeling was left which marred my visit to him in after years at Basel, or my later pilgrimage to his grave on the shores of Lake Leman. To no man is any success I may have afterward had in the administration of Cornell University so greatly due as to him.

In this summary I have hardly touched upon the most important part of my duty,—namely, the purpose of my lecture-courses, with their relations to that period in the history of our country, and to the questions which thinking men, and especially thinking young men, were then endeavoring to solve,—since all this has been given in my political reminiscences.

So much for my main work at the University of Michigan. But I had one recreation which was not without its uses. The little city of Ann Arbor is a beautiful place on the Huron River, and from the outset interested me. Even its origin had a peculiar charm. About a quarter of a century before my arrival, three families came from the East to take up the land which they had bought of the United States; and, as their three holdings touched each other at one corner, they brought boughs of trees to that spot and erected a sort of hut, or arbor, in which to live until their log houses were finished. On coming together in this arbor they discovered that the Christian name of each of the three wives was Ann: hence the name of the place; and this fact gave a poetic coloring to it which was a permanent pleasure to me. It was an unending satisfaction to reflect that no misguided patriot had been allowed to inflict upon that charming university town the name of ``Athens,'' or ``Oxford,'' or ``Socratopolis,'' or ``Anacreonsburg,'' or ``Platoville,'' or ``Emporium,'' or ``Eudaimonia.'' What, but for those three good women, the name might have been, may be judged from the fact that one of the founders of the university did his best to have it called a ``Katholo<e:>pistemiad''!

But there was one drawback. The ``campus,'' on which stood the four buildings then devoted to instruction, greatly disappointed me. It was a flat, square inclosure of forty acres, unkempt and wretched. Throughout its whole space there were not more than a score of trees outside the building sites allotted to professors; unsightly plank walks connected the buildings, and in every direction were meandering paths, which in dry weather were dusty and in wet weather muddy. Coming, as I did, from the glorious elms of Yale, all this distressed me, and one of my first questions was why no trees had been planted. The answer was that the soil was so hard and dry that none would grow. But on examining the territory in the neighborhood, especially the little inclosures about the pretty cottages of the town, I found fine large trees, and among them elms. At this, without permission from any one, I began planting trees within the university inclosure; established, on my own account, several avenues; and set out elms to overshadow them. Choosing my trees with care, carefully protecting and watering them during the first two years, and gradually adding to them a considerable number of evergreens, I preached practically the doctrine of adorning the campus. Gradually some of my students joined me; one class after another aided in securing trees and in planting them, others became interested, until, finally, the university authorities made me ``superintendent of the grounds,'' and appropriated to my work the munificent sum of seventy-five dollars a year. So began the splendid growth which now surrounds those buildings. These trees became to me as my own children. Whenever I revisit Ann Arbor my first care is to go among them, to see how they prosper, and especially how certain peculiar examples are flourishing; and at my recent visit, forty-six years after their planting, I found one of the most beautiful academic groves to be seen in any part of the world.

The most saddening thing during my connection with the university I have touched upon in my political reminiscences. Three years after my arrival the Civil War broke out, and there came a great exodus of students into the armies, the vast majority taking up arms for the Union, and a few for the Confederate States. The very noblest of them thus went forth—many of them, alas! never to return, and among them not a few whom I loved as brothers and even as my own children. Of all the experiences of my life, this was among the most saddening.

My immediate connection with the University of Michigan as resident professor of history lasted about six years; and then, on account partly of business interests which resulted from the death of my father, partly of my election to the New York State Senate, and partly of my election to the presidency of Cornell University, I resided in central New York, but retained a lectureship at the Western institution. I left the work and the friends who had become so dear to me with the greatest reluctance, and as long as possible I continued to revisit the old scenes, and to give courses of lectures. But at last my duties at Cornell absolutely forbade this, and so ended a connection which was to me one of the most fruitful in useful experiences and pregnant thoughts that I have ever known.





To Trinity Hall at Hobart College may be assigned whatever honor that shadowy personage, the future historian, shall think due the place where was conceived and quickened the germ idea of Cornell University. In that little stone barrack on the shore of Seneca Lake, rude in its architecture but lovely in its surroundings, a room was assigned me during my first year at college; and in a neighboring apartment, with charming views over the lake and distant hills, was the library of the Hermean Society. It was the largest collection of books I had ever seen,—four thousand volumes,—embracing a mass of literature from ``The Pirate's Own Book'' to the works of Lord Bacon. In this paradise I reveled, browsing through it at my will. This privilege was of questionable value, since it drew me somewhat from closer study; but it was not without its uses. One day I discovered in it Huber and Newman's book on the English universities. What a new world it opened! My mind was sensitive to any impression it might make, on two accounts: first, because, on the intellectual side, I was woefully disappointed at the inadequacy of the little college as regarded its teaching force and equipment; and next, because, on the esthetic side, I lamented the absence of everything like beauty or fitness in its architecture.

As I read in this new-found book of the colleges at Oxford and Cambridge, and pored over the engraved views of quadrangles, halls, libraries, chapels,—of all the noble and dignified belongings of a great seat of learning, —my heart sank within me. Every feature of the little American college seemed all the more sordid. But gradually I began consoling myself by building air-castles. These took the form of structures suited to a great university:—with distinguished professors in every field, with libraries as rich as the Bodleian, halls as lordly as that of Christ Church or of Trinity, chapels as inspiring as that of King's, towers as dignified as those of Magdalen and Merton, quadrangles as beautiful as those of Jesus and St. John's. In the midst of all other occupations I was constantly rearing these structures on that queenly site above the finest of the New York lakes, and dreaming of a university worthy of the commonwealth and of the nation. This dream became a sort of obsession. It came upon me during my working hours, in the class-rooms, in rambles along the lake shore, in the evenings, when I paced up and down the walks in front of the college buildings, and saw rising in their place and extending to the pretty knoll behind them, the worthy home of a great university. But this university, though beautiful and dignified, like those at Oxford and Cambridge, was in two important respects very unlike them. First, I made provision for other studies beside classics and mathematics. There should be professors in the great modern literatures—above all, in our own; there should also be a professor of modern history and a lecturer on architecture. And next, my university should be under control of no single religious organization; it should be free from all sectarian or party trammels; in electing its trustees and professors no questions should be asked as to their belief or their attachment to this or that sect or party. So far, at least, I went in those days along the road toward the founding of Cornell.

The academic year of 1849-1850 having been passed at this little college in western New York, I entered Yale. This was nearer my ideal; for its professors were more distinguished, its equipment more adequate, its students more numerous, its general scope more extended. But it was still far below my dreams. Its single course in classics and mathematics, through which all students were forced alike, regardless of their tastes, powers, or aims; its substitution of gerund-grinding for ancient literature; its want of all instruction in modern literature; its substitution of recitals from text-books for instruction in history—all this was far short of my ideal. Moreover, Yale was then far more under denominational control than at present—its president, of necessity, as was then supposed, a Congregational minister; its professors, as a rule, members of the same sect; and its tutors, to whom our instruction during the first two years was almost entirely confined, students in the Congregational Divinity.

Then, too, its outward representation was sordid and poor. The long line of brick barracks, the cheapest which could be built for money, repelled me. What a contrast to Oxford and Cambridge, and, above all, to my air- castles! There were, indeed, two architectural consolations: one, the library building, which had been built just before my arrival; and the other, the Alumni Hall, begun shortly afterward. These were of stone, and I snatched an especial joy from the grotesque Gothic heads in the cornices of the library towers and from the little latticed windows at the rear of the Alumni Hall. Both seemed to me features worthy of ``colleges and halls of ancient days.''

The redeeming feature of the whole was its setting, the ``green,'' with superb avenues overarched by elms; and a further charm was added by East and West Rock, and by the views over New Haven Harbor into Long Island Sound. Among these scenes I erected new air- castles. First of all, a great quadrangle, not unlike that which is now developing at Yale, and, as a leading feature, a gate-tower like that since erected in memory of William Walter Phelps, but, unlike that, adorned with statues in niches and on corbels, like those on the entrance tower of Trinity at Cambridge—statues of old Yalensian worthies, such as Elihu Yale in his costume of the Georgian period, Bishop Berkeley in his robes, President Dwight in his Geneva gown, and Nathan Hale in fetters. There was also in my dream another special feature, which no one has as yet attempted to realize—a lofty campanile, which I placed sometimes at the intersection of College and Church, and sometimes at the intersection of College and Elm streets—a clock-tower looking proudly down the slope, over the traffic of the town, and bearing a deep-toned peal of bells.

My general ideas on the subject were further developed by Charles Astor Bristed's book, ``Five Years in an English University,'' and by sundry publications regarding student life in Germany. Still, my opinions regarding education were wretchedly imperfect, as may be judged from one circumstance. The newly established Sheffield Scientific School had just begun its career in the old president's house in front of the former Divinity Hall on the college green; and, one day in my senior year, looking toward it from my window in North College, I saw a student examining a colored liquid in a test-tube. A feeling of wonder came over me! What could it all be about? Probably not a man of us in the whole senior class had any idea of a chemical laboratory save as a sort of small kitchen back of a lecture-desk, like that in which an assistant and a colored servant prepared oxygen, hydrogen, and carbonic acid for the lectures of Professor Silliman. I was told that this new laboratory was intended for experiment, and my wonder was succeeded by disgust that any human being should give his time to pursuits so futile.

The next period in the formation of my ideas regarding a university began, after my graduation at Yale, during my first visit to Oxford. Then and at later visits, both to Oxford and Cambridge, I not only reveled in the architectural glories of those great seats of learning, but learned the advantages of college life in common—of the ``halls,'' and the general social life which they promote; of the ``commons'' and ``combination rooms,'' which give a still closer relation between those most directly concerned in university work; of the quadrangles, which give a sense of scholarly seclusion, even in the midst of crowded cities; and of all the surroundings which give a dignity befitting these vast establishments. Still more marked progress in my ideas was made during my attendance at the Sorbonne and the Coll<e!>ge de France. In those institutions, during the years 1853-1854, I became acquainted with the French university-lecture system, with its clearness, breadth, wealth of illustration, and its hold upon large audiences of students; and I was seized with the desire to transfer something like it to our own country. My castles in the air were now reared more loftily and broadly; for they began to include laboratories, museums, and even galleries of art.

Even St. Petersburg, during my attach<e'>ship in 1854- 1855, contributed to these airy structures. In my diary for that period, I find it jotted down that I observed and studied at various times the Michael Palace in that city as a very suitable structure for a university. Twenty years afterward, when I visited, as minister of the United States, the Grand Duchess Catherine, the aunt of the Emperor Alexander III, in that same palace, and mentioned to her my old admiration for it, she gave me a most interesting account of the building of it, and of the laying out of the beautiful park about it by her father, the old Grand Duke Michael, and agreed with me that it would be a noble home for an institution of learning.

My student life at Berlin, during the year following, further intensified my desire to do something for university education in the United States. There I saw my ideal of a university not only realized, but extended and glorified— with renowned professors, with ample lecture-halls, with everything possible in the way of illustrative materials, with laboratories, museums, and a concourse of youth from all parts of the world.

I have already spoken, in the chapter on my professorship at the University of Michigan, regarding the influence on my ideas of its president, Henry Philip Tappan, and of the whole work in that institution. Though many good things may be justly said for the University of Virginia, the real beginning of a university in the United States, in the modern sense, was made by Dr. Tappan and his colleagues at Ann Arbor. Its only defects seemed to me that it included no technical side, and did not yet admit women. As to the first of these defects, the State had separated the agricultural college from the university, placing it in what, at that period, was a remote swamp near the State Capitol, and had as yet done nothing toward providing for other technical branches. As to the second, though a few of us favored the admission of women, President Tappan opposed it; and, probably, in view of the condition of the university and of public opinion at that time, his opposition was wise.

Recalled to Syracuse after five years in Michigan, my old desire to see a university rising in the State of New York was stronger than ever. Michigan had shown me some of my ideals made real; why might not our own much greater commonwealth be similarly blessed?

The first thing was to devise a plan for a suitable faculty. As I felt that this must not demand too large an outlay, I drew up a scheme providing for a few resident teachers supported by endowments, and for a body of nonresident professors or lecturers supported by fees. These lecturers were to be chosen from the most eminent professors in the existing colleges and from the best men then in the public-lecture field; and my confidant in the matter was George William Curtis, who entered into it heartily, and who afterward, in his speech at my inauguration as president of Cornell, referred to it in a way which touched me deeply.[5]

[5] See Mr. Curtis's speech, September 8, 1868, published by the university.

The next thing was to decide upon a site. It must naturally be in the central part of the State; and, rather curiously, that which I then most coveted, frequently visited, walked about, and inspected was the rising ground southeast of Syracuse since selected by the Methodists for their institution which takes its name from that city.

My next effort was to make a beginning of an endowment, and for this purpose I sought to convert Gerrit Smith. He was, for those days, enormously wealthy. His property, which was estimated at from two to three millions of dollars, he used munificently; and his dear friend and mine, Samuel Joseph May, had told me that it was not too much to hope that Mr. Smith might do something for the improvement of higher instruction. To him, therefore, I wrote, proposing that if he would contribute an equal sum to a university at Syracuse, I would give to it one half of my own property. In his answer he gave reasons why he could not join in the plan, and my scheme seemed no nearer reality than my former air-castles. It seemed, indeed, to have faded away like

``The baseless fabric of a vision''

and to have left

``Not a wrack behind''—

when all its main features were made real in a way and by means utterly unexpected; for now began the train of events which led to my acquaintance, friendship, and close alliance with the man through whom my plans became a reality, larger and better than any ever seen in my dreams —Ezra Cornell.


EZRA CORNELL—1864-1874

On the first day of the year 1864, taking my seat for the first time in the State Senate at Albany, I found among my associates a tall, spare man, apparently very reserved and austere, and soon learned his name—Ezra Cornell.

Though his chair was near mine, there was at first little intercourse between us, and there seemed small chance of more. He was steadily occupied, and seemed to have no desire for new acquaintances. He was, perhaps, the oldest man in the Senate; I, the youngest: he was a man of business; I was fresh from a university professorship: and, upon the announcement of committees, our paths seemed separated entirely; for he was made chairman of the committee on agriculture, while to me fell the chairmanship of the committee on education.

Yet it was this last difference which drew us together; for among the first things referred to my committee was a bill to incorporate a public library which he proposed to found in Ithaca.

On reading this bill I was struck, not merely by his gift of one hundred thousand dollars to his townsmen, but even more by a certain breadth and largeness in his way of making it. The most striking sign of this was his mode of forming a board of trustees; for, instead of the usual effort to tie up the organization forever in some sect, party, or clique, he had named the best men of his town— his political opponents as well as his friends; and had added to them the pastors of all the principal churches, Catholic and Protestant. This breadth of mind, even more than his munificence, drew me to him. We met several times, discussed his bill, and finally I reported it substantially as introduced, and supported it until it became a law.

Our next relations were not, at first, so pleasant. The great Land Grant of 1862, from the General Government to the State, for industrial and technical education, had been turned over, at a previous session of the legislature, to an institution called the People's College, in Schuyler County; but the Agricultural College, twenty miles distant from it, was seeking to take away from it a portion of this endowment; and among the trustees of this Agricultural College was Mr. Cornell, who now introduced a bill to divide the fund between the two institutions.

On this I at once took ground against him, declaring that the fund ought to be kept together at some one institution; that on no account should it be divided; that the policy for higher education in the State of New York should be concentration; that we had already suffered sufficiently from scattering our resources; that there were already over twenty colleges in the State, and not one of them doing anything which could justly be called university work.

Mr. Cornell's first effort was to have his bill referred, not to my committee, but to his; here I resisted him, and, as a solution of the difficulty, it was finally referred to a joint committee made up of both. On this double-headed committee I deliberately thwarted his purpose throughout the entire session, delaying action and preventing any report upon his bill.

Most men would have been vexed by this; but he took my course calmly, and even kindly. He never expostulated, and always listened attentively to my arguments against his view; meanwhile I omitted no opportunity to make these arguments as strong as possible, and especially to impress upon him the importance of keeping the fund together.

After the close of the session, during the following summer, as it had become evident that the trustees of the People's College had no intention of raising the additional endowment and providing the equipment required by the act which gave them the land grant, there was great danger that the whole fund might be lost to the State by the lapsing of the time allowed in the congressional act for its acceptance. Just at this period Mr. Cornell invited me to attend a meeting of the State Agricultural Society, of which he was the president, at Rochester; and, when the meeting had assembled, he quietly proposed to remove the difficulty I had raised, by drawing a new bill giving the State Agricultural College half of the fund, and by inserting a clause requiring the college to provide an additional sum of three hundred thousand dollars. This sum he pledged himself to give, and, as the comptroller of the State had estimated the value of the land grant at six hundred thousand dollars, Mr. Cornell supposed that this would obviate my objection, since the fund of the Agricultural College would thus be made equal to the whole original land-grant fund as estimated, which would be equivalent to keeping the whole fund together.

The entire audience applauded, as well they might: it was a noble proposal. But, much to the disgust of the meeting, I persisted in my refusal to sanction any bill dividing the fund, declared myself now more opposed to such a division than ever; but promised that if Mr. Cornell and his friends would ask for the WHOLE grant—keeping it together, and adding his three hundred thousand dollars, as proposed—I would support such a bill with all my might.

I was led to make this proposal by a course of circumstances which might, perhaps, be called ``providential.'' For some years I had been dreaming of a university; had looked into the questions involved, at home and abroad; had approached sundry wealthy and influential men on the subject; but had obtained no encouragement, until this strange and unexpected combination of circumstances—a great land grant, the use of which was to be determined largely by the committee of which I was chairman, and this noble pledge by Mr. Cornell.

Yet for some months nothing seemed to come of our conference. At the assembling of the legislature in the following year, it was more evident than ever that the trustees of the People's College intended to do nothing. During the previous session they had promised through their agents to supply the endowment required by their charter; but, though this charter obliged them, as a condition of taking the grant, to have an estate of two hundred acres, buildings for the accommodation of two hundred students, and a faculty of not less than six professors, with a sufficient library and other apparatus, yet our committee, on again taking up the subject, found hardly the faintest pretense of complying with these conditions. Moreover, their charter required that their property should be free from all encumbrance; and yet the so-called donor of it, Mr. Charles Cook, could not be induced to cancel a small mortgage which he held upon it. Still worse, before the legislature had been in session many days, it was found that his agent had introduced a bill to relieve the People 's College of all conditions, and to give it, without any pledge whatever, the whole land grant, amounting to very nearly a million of acres.

But even worse than this was another difficulty. In addition to the strong lobby sent by Mr. Cook to Albany in behalf of the People's College, there came representatives of nearly all the smaller denominational colleges in the State, men eminent and influential, clamoring for a division of the fund among their various institutions, though the fragment which would have fallen to each would not have sufficed to endow even a single professorship.

While all this was uncertain, and the fund seemed likely to be utterly frittered away, I was one day going down from the State Capitol, when Mr. Cornell joined me and began conversation. He was, as usual, austere and reserved in appearance; but I had already found that below this appearance there was a warm heart and noble purpose. No observant associate could fail to notice that the only measures in the legislature which he cared for were those proposing some substantial good to the State or nation, and that he despised all political wrangling and partizan jugglery.

On this occasion, after some little general talk, he quietly said, ``I have about half a million dollars more than my family will need: what is the best thing I can do with it for the State?'' I answered: `` Mr. Cornell, the two things most worthy of aid in any country are charity and education; but, in our country, the charities appeal to everybody. Any one can understand the importance of them, and the worthy poor or unfortunate are sure to be taken care of. As to education, the lower grades will always be cared for in the public schools by the State; but the institutions of the highest grade, without which the lower can never be thoroughly good, can be appreciated by only a few. The policy of our State is to leave this part of the system to individuals; it seems to me, then, that if you have half a million to give, the best thing you can do with it is to establish or strengthen some institution for higher instruction.'' I then went on to show him the need of a larger institution for such instruction than the State then had; that such a college or university worthy of the State would require far more in the way of faculty and equipment than most men supposed; that the time had come when scientific and technical education must be provided for in such an institution; and that education in history and literature should be the bloom of the whole growth.

He listened attentively, but said little. The matter seemed to end there; but not long afterward he came to me and said: ``I agree with you that the land-grant fund ought to be kept together, and that there should be a new institution fitted to the present needs of the State and the country. I am ready to pledge to such an institution a site and five hundred thousand dollars as an addition to the land-grant endowment, instead of three hundred thousand, as I proposed at Rochester.''

As may well be imagined, I hailed this proposal joyfully, and soon sketched out a bill embodying his purpose so far as education was concerned. But here I wish to say that, while Mr. Cornell urged Ithaca as the site of the proposed institution, he never showed any wish to give his own name to it. The suggestion to that effect was mine. He at first doubted the policy of it; but, on my insisting that it was in accordance with time-honored American usage, as shown by the names of Harvard, Yale, Dartmouth, Amherst, Bowdoin, Brown, Williams, and the like, he yielded.

We now held frequent conferences as to the leading features of the institution to be created. In these I was more and more impressed by his sagacity and largeness of view; and, when the sketch of the bill was fully developed,—its financial features by him, and its educational features by me,—it was put into shape by Charles J. Folger of Geneva, then chairman of the judiciary committee of the Senate, afterward chief judge of the Court of Appeals, and finally Secretary of the Treasury of the United States. The provision forbidding any sectarian or partizan predominance in the board of trustees or faculty was proposed by me, heartily acquiesced in by Mr. Cornell, and put into shape by Judge Folger. The State-scholarship feature and the system of alumni representation on the board of trustees were also accepted by Mr. Cornell at my suggestion.

I refer to these things especially because they show one striking characteristic of the man—namely, his readiness to be advised largely by others in matters which he felt to be outside his own province, and his willingness to give the largest measure of confidence when he gave any confidence at all.

On the other hand, the whole provision for the endowment, the part relating to the land grant, and, above all, the supplementary legislation allowing him to make a contract with the State for ``locating'' the lands, were thought out entirely by himself; and in all these matters he showed, not only a public spirit far beyond that displayed by any other benefactor of education in his time, but a foresight which seemed to me then, and seems to me now, almost miraculous. He alone, of all men in the United States, was able to foresee what might be done by an individual to develop the land-grant fund, and he alone was willing to make the great personal sacrifice thereby required.

But, while he thus left the general educational features to me, he uttered, during one of our conversations, words which showed that he had arrived at the true conception of a university. He expressed the hope that in the proposed institution every student might find instruction in whatever study interested him. Hence came the legend now surrounding his medallion portrait upon the university seal: ``I would found an institution where any person can find instruction in any study.''

The introduction of this new bill into the legislature was a signal for war. Nearly all the denominational colleges girded themselves for the fray, and sent their agents to fight us at Albany; they also stirred up the secular press, without distinction of party, in the regions where they were situated, and the religious organs of their various sects in the great cities.

At the center of the movement against us was the People's College; it had rallied in force and won over the chairman of the educational committee in the Assembly, so that under various pretexts he delayed considering the bill. Worst of all, there appeared against us, late in the session, a professor from the Genesee College—a man of high character and great ability; and he did his work most vigorously. He brought the whole force of his sect to bear upon the legislature, and insisted that every other college in the State had received something from the public funds, while his had received none.

As a first result came a proposal from some of his associates that twenty-five thousand dollars of the land-grant fund be paid to Genesee College; but this the friends of the Cornell bill resisted, on the ground that, if the fund were broken into in one case, it would be in others.

It was next proposed that Mr. Cornell should agree to give twenty-five thousand dollars to Genesee College on the passage of the bill. This Mr. Cornell utterly refused, saying that not for the passage of any bill would he make any private offer or have any private understanding; that every condition must be put into the bill, where all men could see it; and that he would then accept or reject it as he might think best. The result was that our opponents forced into the bill a clause requiring him to give twenty- five thousand dollars to Genesee College, before he could be allowed to give five hundred thousand dollars to the proposed university; and the friends of the bill, not feeling strong enough to resist this clause, and not being willing to see the enterprise wrecked for the want of it, allowed it to go unopposed. The whole matter was vexatious to the last degree. A man of less firmness and earnestness, thus treated, would have thrown up his munificent purpose in disgust; but Mr. Cornell quietly persevered.

Yet the troubles of the proposed university had only begun. Mr. Charles Cook, who, during his senatorship, had secured the United States land grant of 1862 for the People's College, was a man of great force, a born leader of men, anxious to build up his part of the State, and especially the town from which he came, though he had no special desire to put any considerable part of his own wealth into a public institution. He had seen the opportunities afforded by the land grant, had captured it, and was now determined to fight for it. The struggle became bitter. His emissaries, including the members of the Senate and Assembly from his part of the State, made common cause with the sectarian colleges, and with various corporations and persons who, having bills of their own in the legislature, were ready to exchange services and votes.

The coalition of all these forces against the Cornell University bill soon became very formidable, and the committee on education in the Assembly, to which the bill had been referred, seemed more and more controlled by them. Our only hope now was to enlighten the great body of the senators and assemblymen. To this end Mr. Cornell invited them by squads, sometimes to his rooms at Congress Hall, sometimes to mine at the Delavan House. There he laid before them his general proposal and the financial side of the plan, while I dwelt upon the need of a university in the true sense of the word; upon the opportunity now offered by this great fund; upon the necessity of keeping it together; upon the need of large means to carry out any scheme of technical and general education such as was contemplated by the congressional act of 1862; showed the proofs that the People's College would and could do nothing to meet this want; that division of the fund among the existing colleges was simply the annihilation of it; and, in general, did my best to enlighten the reason and arouse the patriotism of the members on the subject of a worthy university in our State. These points and others were finally embodied in my speech before the Senate, and this having been published in the ``Albany Journal,'' Mr. Cornell provided for its circulation broadcast over the State and thus aroused public opinion.

In this way we won to our support several strong friends in both Houses, among them some men of great natural force of character who had never enjoyed the privilege of much early education, but who were none the less anxious that those who came after them should have the best opportunities. Of these I may name especially Senators Cook of Saratoga and Ames of Oswego. Men of high education and culture also aided us, especially Mr. Andrews, Mr. Havens, and, finally, Judge Folger in the Senate, with Mr. Lord and Mr. Weaver in the Assembly.

While we were thus laboring with the legislature as a whole, serious work had to be done with the Assembly committee; and Mr. Cornell employed a very eminent lawyer to present his case, while Mr. Cook employed one no less noted to take the opposite side. The session of the committee was held in the Assembly chamber, and there was a large attendance of spectators; but, unfortunately, the lawyer employed by Mr. Cornell having taken little pains with the case, his speech was cold, labored, perfunctory, and fell flat. The speech on the other side was much more effective; it was thin and demagogical, but the speaker knew well the best tricks for catching the average man. He indulged in eloquent tirades against the Cornell bill as a ``monopoly,'' a ``wild project,'' a ``selfish scheme,'' a ``job,'' a ``grab,'' and the like; denounced Mr. Cornell as ``seeking to erect a monument to himself''; hinted that he was ``planning to rob the State''; and, before he had finished, had pictured Mr. Cornell as a swindler and the rest of us as dupes or knaves.

I can never forget the quiet dignity with which Mr. Cornell took this abuse. Mrs. Cornell sat at his right, I at his left. In one of the worst tirades against him, he turned to me and said quietly, and without the slightest anger or excitement: ``If I could think of any other way in which half a million of dollars would do as much good to the State, I would give the legislature no more trouble.'' Shortly afterward, when the invective was again especially bitter, he turned to me and said: ``I am not sure but that it would be a good thing for me to give the half a million to old Harvard College in Massachusetts, to educate the descendants of the men who hanged my forefathers.''

There was more than his usual quaint humor in this —there was that deep reverence which he always bore toward his Quaker ancestry, and which seemed to have become part of him. I admired Mr. Cornell on many occasions, but never more than during that hour when he sat, without the slightest anger, mildly taking the abuse of that prostituted pettifogger, the indifference of the committee, and the laughter of the audience. It was a scene for a painter, and I trust that some day it will be fitly perpetuated for the university.

This struggle being ended, the Assembly committee could not be induced to report the bill. It was easy, after such a speech, for its members to pose as protectors of the State against a swindler and a monopoly; the chairman, who, shortly after the close of the session, was mysteriously given a position in the New York custom-house, made pretext after pretext without reporting, until it became evident that we must have a struggle in the Assembly and drag the bill out of the committee in spite of him. To do this required a two-thirds vote. All our friends were set to work, and some pains taken to scare the corporations which had allied themselves with the enemy, in regard to the fate of their own bills, by making them stand that, unless they stopped their interested opposition to the university bill in the House, a feeling would be created in the Senate very unfortunate for them. In this way their clutch upon sundry members of the Assembly was somewhat relaxed, and these were allowed to vote according to their consciences.

The Cornell bill was advocated most earnestly in the House by Mr. Henry B. Lord: in his unpretentious way he marshaled the university forces, and moved that the bill be taken from the committee and referred to the Committee of the Whole. Now came a struggle. Most of the best men in the Assembly stood by us; but the waverers —men who feared local pressure, sectarian hostility, or the opposition of Mr. Cook to measures of their own— attempted, if not to oppose the Cornell bill, at least to evade a vote upon it. In order to give them a little tone and strength, Mr. Cornell went with me to various leading editors in the city of New York, and we explained the whole matter to them, securing editorial articles favorable to the university, the most prominent among these gentlemen being Horace Greeley of the ``Tribune,'' Eras- tus Brooks of the ``Express,'' and Manton Marble of the ``World.'' This did much for us, yet when the vote was taken the old cowardice was again shown; but several of us stood in the cloak-room and fairly shamed the waverers back into their places. As a result, to the surprise and disgust of the chairman of the Assembly committee, the bill was taken out of his control, and referred to the Committee of the Whole House.

Another long struggle now ensued, but the bill was finally passed in the Assembly and came back to the Senate. There the struggle was renewed, all kinds of delaying tactics were resorted to, but the bill was finally carried, and received the signature of Governor Fenton.

Now came a new danger. During their struggle against the bill, our enemies had been strong enough to force into it a clause enabling the People's College to retain the land fund, provided that institution should be shown, within six months of the passage of the bill, to be in possession of a sum such as the Board of Regents should declare would enable it to comply with the conditions on which it had originally received the grant. The Board of Regents now reported that the possession of one hundred and fifty thousand dollars would be sufficient for such a compliance, and would insure the fund to the People's College. Naturally we watched, in much uneasy suspense, during those six months, to see whether Mr. Cook and the People's College authorities would raise this sum of money, so small in comparison with that which Mr. Cornell was willing to give, in order to secure the grant. But our fears were baseless; and on the fifth day of September, 1865, the trustees of Cornell University were assembled for the first time at Ithaca.

Then came to them a revelation of a quality in Mr. Cornell unknown to most of them before. In one of the petitions forwarded from Ithaca to the legislature by his fellow-citizens it had been stated that ``he never did less than he promised, but generally more.'' So it was found in this case. He turned over to the trustees, not only the securities for the five hundred thousand dollars required by the charter, but also gave two hundred acres of land as a site. Thus came into being Cornell University.

Yet the services of Mr. Cornell had only begun: he at once submitted to us a plan for doing what no other citizen had done for any other State. In the other commonwealths which had received the land grant, the authorities had taken the scrip representing the land, sold it at the market price, and, as the market was thus glutted, had realized but a small sum; but Mr. Cornell, with that foresight which was his most striking characteristic, saw clearly what could be done by using the scrip to take up land for the institution. To do this he sought aid in various ways; but no one dared join him, and at last he determined to bear the whole burden himself. Scrip representing over seven hundred thousand acres still remained in the hands of the comptroller. The trustees received Mr. Cornell's plan for dealing with the scrip somewhat doubtfully, but the enabling act was passed, by which he was permitted to ``locate'' this land for the benefit of the university. So earnest was he in this matter that he was anxious to take up the entire amount, but here his near friends interposed: we saw too well what a crushing load the taxes and other expenses on such a vast tract of land would become before it could be sold to advantage. Finally he yielded somewhat: it was agreed that he should take up five hundred thousand acres, and he now gave himself day and night to this great part of the enterprise, which was to provide a proper financial basis for a university such as we hoped to found.

Meanwhile, at Mr. Cornell's suggestion, I devoted myself to a more careful plan of the new institution; and, at the next meeting of the board, presented a ``plan of organization,'' which sketched out the purpose and constitution of such a university as seemed needed in a great commonwealth like ours. Mr. Cornell studied it carefully, gave it his approval, and a copy of it with marginal notes in his own hand is still preserved.

I had supposed that this was to end my relations with Mr. Cornell, so far as the university was concerned. A multitude of matters seemed to forbid my taking any further care for it, and a call to another position very attractive to me drew me away from all thought of connection with it, save, perhaps, such as was involved in meeting the trustees once or twice a year.

Mr. Cornell had asked me, from time to time, whether I could suggest any person for the presidency of the university. I mentioned various persons, and presented the arguments in their favor. One day he said to me quietly that he also had a candidate; I asked him who it was, and he said that he preferred to keep the matter to himself until the next meeting of the trustees. Nothing more passed between us on that subject. I had no inkling of his purpose, but thought it most likely that his candidate was a Western gentleman whose claims had been strongly pressed upon him. When the trustees came together, and the subject was brought up, I presented the merits of various gentlemen, especially of one already at the head of an important college in the State, who, I thought, would give us success. Upon this, Mr. Cornell rose, and, in a very simple but earnest speech, presented my name. It was entirely unexpected by me, and I endeavored to show the trustees that it was impossible for me to take the place in view of other duties; that it needed a man of more robust health, of greater age, and of wider reputation in the State. But Mr. Cornell quietly persisted, our colleagues declared themselves unanimously of his opinion, and, with many misgivings, I gave a provisional acceptance.

The relation thus begun ended only with Mr. Cornell's life, and from first to last it grew more and more interesting to me. We were thrown much together at Albany, at Ithaca, and on various journeys undertaken for the university; and, the more I saw of him, the deeper became my respect for him. There were, indeed, toward the end of his life, some things trying to one of my temperament, and among these things I may mention his exceeding reticence, and his willingness not only to labor but to wait; but these stood not at all in the way of my respect and affection for him.

His liberality was unstinted. While using his fortune in taking up the lands, he was constantly doing generous things for the university and those connected with it. One of the first of these was his gift of the library in classical literature collected by Dr. Charles Anthon of Columbia College. Nothing could apparently be more outside his sympathy than the department needing these seven thousand volumes; but he recognized its importance in the general plan of the new institution, bought the library for over twelve thousand dollars, and gave it to the university.

Then came the Jewett collection in geology, which he gave at a cost of ten thousand dollars; the Ward collection of casts, at a cost of three thousand; the Newcomb collection in conchology, at a cost of sixteen thousand; an addition to the university grounds, valued at many thousands more; and it was only the claims of a multitude of minor university matters upon his purse which prevented his carrying out a favorite plan of giving a great telescope, at a cost of fifty thousand dollars. At a later period, to extinguish the university debt, to increase the equipment, and eventually to provide free scholarships and fellowships, he made an additional gift of about eighty thousand dollars.

While doing these things, he was constantly advancing large sums in locating the university lands, and in paying university salaries, for which our funds were not yet available; while from time to time he made many gifts which, though smaller, were no less striking evidences of the largeness of his view. I may mention a few among these as typical.

Having found, in the catalogue of a London book- seller, a set of Piranesi's great work on the ``Antiquities of Rome,''—a superb copy, the gift of a pope to a royal duke,—I showed it to him, when he at once ordered it for our library at a cost of about a thousand dollars. At another time, seeing the need of some costly works to illustrate agriculture, he gave them to us at a somewhat greater cost; and, having heard Professor Tyndall's lectures in New York, he bought additional physical apparatus to enable our resident professor to repeat the lectures at Ithaca, and this cost him fifteen hundred dollars.

Characteristic of him, too, was another piece of quiet munificence. When the clause forced into the university charter, requiring him to give twenty-five thousand dollars to another institution before he could be allowed to give half a million to his own, was noised abroad through the State, there was a general feeling of disgust; and at the next session of the legislature a bill was brought in to refund the twenty-five thousand dollars to him. Upon this, he remarked that what he once gave he never took back, but that if the university trustees would accept it he had no objection. The bill was modified to this effect, and thus the wrong was righted.

During my stay in Europe, through the summer of 1868, under instructions to study various institutions for technical education, to make large purchases of books, and to secure one or two men greatly needed in special departments not then much cultivated in this country, his generosity was unfailing. Large as were the purchases which I was authorized to make, the number of desirable things outside this limit steadily grew larger; but my letters to him invariably brought back the commission to secure this additional material.

During this occupation of mine in Europe, he was quite as busy in the woods of the upper Mississippi and on the plains of Kansas, selecting university lands. No fatigue or expenditure deterred him.

At various periods I passed much time with Mr. Cornell on his home farm. He lived generously, in a kind of patriarchal simplicity, and many of his conversations interested me intensely. His reticence gradually yielded, and he gave me much information regarding his earlier years: they had been full of toil and struggle, but through the whole there was clear evidence of a noble purpose. Whatever worthy work his hand had found to do, he had done it with his might: the steamers of Cayuga Lake; the tunnel which carries the waters of Fall Creek to the mills below; the mills themselves; the dams against that turbulent stream, which he built after others had failed, and which stand firmly to this day; the calendar clocks for which Ithaca has become famous, and of which he furnished the original hint—all these he touched upon, though so modestly that I never found out his full agency in them until a later period, when I had made the acquaintance of many of his townsmen.

Especially interesting were his references to the beginnings of American telegraphic enterprise, with which he had so much to do.

His connection with it began in a curious way. Traveling in northern New England to dispose of a plow which he had invented, he entered the office of a gentleman who had taken the contract for laying the first telegraphic wires underground between Washington and Baltimore, and found him in much doubt and trouble: the difficulty was to lay the leaden pipe containing the two insulated wires at a cost within the terms of the contract. Hearing this, Mr. Cornell said: ``I will build you a machine which will dig the trench, lay the pipe and wires, and cover them with earth rapidly and cheaply.''

This proposal was at first derided; but, as Mr. Cornell insisted upon it, he was at last allowed to show what he could do. The machine having been constructed, he exhibited it to a committee; but when the long line of horses attached to it were started, it was so thrown about by the inequalities of the surface that the committee declared it a failure. Presently Mr. Cornell took them to the ground over which the machine had just passed, and, showing them a line of newly turned earth, asked them to dig in it. Having done this, they found the pipe incasing the wires, acknowledged his triumph, and immediately gave him and his machine permanent employment.

But before long he became convinced that this was not the best way. Having studied all the books on electricity that he could find in the Congressional Library, he had satisfied himself that it would be far better and cheaper to string the wires through the open air between poles. This idea the men controlling the scheme for a time resisted. Some of them regarded such interference in a scientific matter by one whom they considered a plain working-man as altogether too presuming. But one day Professor Morse came out to decide the matter. Finding Mr. Cornell at his machine, the professor explained the difficulties in the case, especially the danger of shaking the confidence of Congress, and so losing the necessary appropriation, should any change in plan be adopted, and then asked him if he could see any way out of the difficulty. Mr. Cornell answered that he could, whereupon Professor Morse expressed a wish that it might be taken. At this Mr. Cornell gave the word to his men, started up the long line of horses dragging the ponderous machine, guided it with his own hands into a boulder lying near, and thus deranged the whole machinery.

As a natural result it was announced by various journals at the national capital that the machinery for laying the wires had been broken by the carelessness of an employee, but that it would doubtless soon be repaired and the work resumed. Thanks to this stratagem, the necessary time was gained without shaking the confidence of Congress, and Mr. Cornell at once began stringing the wires upon poles: the insulation was found far better than in the underground system, and there was no more trouble.

The confidence of the promoters of the enterprise being thus gained, Mr. Cornell was employed to do their work in all parts of the country; and his sturdy honesty, energy, and persistence justified their confidence and laid the foundations of his fortune.

Very striking were the accounts of his troubles and trials during the prosecution of this telegraphic work— troubles from men of pretended science, from selfish men, from stupid men—all chronicled by him without the slightest bitterness against any human being, yet with a quaint humor which made the story very enjoyable.

Through his personal history, as I then began to learn it, ran a thread, or rather a strong cord, of stoicism. He had clung with such desperate tenacity to his faith in the future of the telegraphic system, that, sooner than part with his interest in it, even when its stock was utterly discredited, he suffered from poverty, and almost from want. While pressing on his telegraphic construction, he had been terribly wounded in a Western railroad accident, but had extricated himself from the dead and dying, and, as I learned from others, had borne his sufferings without a murmur. At another time, overtaken by ship-fever at Montreal, and thought to be beyond help, he had quietly made up his mind that, if he could reach a certain hydropathic establishment in New York, he would recover; and had dragged himself through that long journey, desperately ill as he was, in railway cars, steamers, and stages, until he reached his desired haven; and there he finally recovered, though nearly every other person attacked by the disease at his Montreal hotel had died.

Pursuing his telegraphic enterprise, he had been obliged at times to fight many strong men and great combinations of capital; but this same stoicism carried him through: he used to say laughingly that his way was to ``tire them out.''

When, at last, fortune had begun to smile upon him, his public spirit began to show itself in more striking forms, though not in forms more real, than in his earlier days. Evidences of this met the eye of his visitors at once, and among these were the fine cattle, sheep, fruit-trees, and the like, which he had brought back from the London Exposition of 1851. His observations of the agricultural experiments of Lawes and Gilbert at Rothamstead in England, and his visits to various agricultural exhibitions, led him to attempt similar work at home. Everything that could improve the community in which he lived was matter of concern to him. He took the lead in establishing ``Cascadilla Place,'' in order to give a very gifted woman an opportunity to show her abilities in administering hydropathic treatment to disease; his public library, when I first visited Ithaca, was just completed.

He never showed the slightest approach to display or vanity regarding any of these things, and most of them I heard of first, at a later period, from others.

Although his religious ideas were very far from those generally considered orthodox, he had a deep sympathy with every good effort for religion and morality, no matter by whom made; and he contributed freely to churches of every name and to good purposes of every sort. He had quaint ways at times in making such gifts, and from the many stories showing these I select one as characteristic. During the Civil War, the young women of the village held large sewing-circles, doing work for the soldiers. When Mr. Cornell was asked to contribute to their funds, he declined, to the great surprise of those who asked him, and said dryly: ``Of course these women don't really come together to sew for the soldiers; they come together to gossip.'' This was said, no doubt, with that peculiar twinkle of the eye which his old friends can well remember; but, on the young ladies protesting that he did them injustice, he answered: ``If you can prove that I am wrong, I will gladly contribute; if you will only sew together all one afternoon, and no one of you speak a word, I will give you a hundred dollars.'' The society met, and complete silence reigned. The young men of the community, hearing of this, and seeing an admirable chance to tease their fair friends, came in large numbers to the sewing-circle, and tried to engage them in conversation. At first their attempts were in vain; but, finally, to a question skilfully put, one of the young ladies made a reply. This broke the spell. Of course, the whole assembly were very unhappy; but, when all was told to Mr. Cornell, he said: ``They shall have their hundred dollars, for they have done better than any other women ever did.''

But I ought to say here that this little episode would be grossly misunderstood were it supposed to indicate any tendency in his heart or mind toward a cynical view of womankind. Nothing could be more manly and noble than his reference to her who had stood at his side courageously, hopefully, and cheerily during his years of struggle and want of appreciation. Well might he speak of her, as he did once in my hearing, as ``the best woman that ever lived.'' And his gentle courtliness and thoughtful kindness were also deeply appreciated in other households. His earnestness, too, in behalf of the higher education of women, and of their fair treatment in various professions and occupations, showed something far deeper than conventional politeness.

From the time when I began to know him best, his main thought was concentrated upon the university. His own business interests were freely sacrificed; his time, wealth, and effort were all yielded to his work in taking up its lands, to say nothing of supplementary work which became in many ways a heavy burden to him.

During the summer preceding the opening of the university, this labor and care began to wear upon him, and he was attacked by an old malady which gave him great pain; yet his stoicism asserted itself. Through night after night, as I lay in the room next his at his farm-house, I could hear him groan, and to my natural sympathy was added a fear lest he might not live through this most critical period in the history of the new institution; but, invariably, when I met him next morning and asked how he felt, his answer was, ``All right,'' or ``Very well.'' I cannot remember ever hearing him make any complaint of his sufferings or even any reference to them.

Nor did pain diminish his steady serenity or generosity. I remember that on one hot afternoon of that summer, when he had come into the house thoroughly weary, a young man called upon him to ask for aid in securing school-books. Mr. Cornell questioned him closely, and then rose, walked with him down the hill into the town, and bought the books which were needed.

As the day approached for the formal opening of the university, he was obliged to remain in bed. Care and toil had prostrated me also; and both of us, a sorry couple indeed, had to be taken from our beds to be carried to the opening exercises.

A great crowd had assembled from all parts of the State:—many enthusiastic, more doubtful, and some decidedly inclined to scoff.

Some who were expected were not present. The Governor of the State, though he had been in Ithaca the day before, quietly left town on the eve of the opening exercises. His Excellency was a very wise man in his generation, and evidently felt that it was not best for him to have too much to do with an institution which the sectarian press had so generally condemned. I shall not soon forget the way in which Mr. Cornell broke the news to me, and the accent of calm contempt in his voice. Fortunately there remained with us the lieutenant-governor, General Stewart Lyndon Woodford. He came to the front nobly, and stood by us firmly and munificently ever afterward.

Mr. Cornell's speech on that occasion was very simple and noble; his whole position, to one who knew what he had gone through in the way of obloquy, hard work, and self-sacrifice, was touching. Worn down by illness, he was unable to stand, and he therefore read his address in a low tone from his chair. It was very impressive, almost incapacitating me from speaking after him, and I saw tears in the eyes of many in the audience. Nothing could be more simple than this speech of his; it was mainly devoted to a plain assertion of the true university theory in its most elementary form, and to a plea that women should have equal privileges with men in advanced education. In the midst of it came a touch of his quaint shrewdness; for, in replying to a recent charge that everything at the university was unfinished, he remarked in substance, ``We have not invited you to see a university finished, but to see one begun.''

The opening day seemed a success, but this very success stirred up the enemy. A bitter letter from Ithaca to a leading denominational organ in New York gave the signal, and soon the whole sectarian press was in full cry, steadily pressing upon Mr. Cornell and those who stood near him. Very many of the secular presses also thought it wise to join in the attack, and it was quickly extended from his ideas to his honor, and even to his honesty. It seemed beyond the conception of many of these gentlemen that a Hicksite Quaker, who, if he gave any thought at all to this or that creed, or this or that ``plan of salvation,'' passed it all by as utterly irrelevant and inadequate, could be a religious man; and a far greater number seemed to find it just as difficult to believe that a man could sacrifice his comfort and risk his fortune in managing so great a landed property for the public interest without any concealed scheme of plunder.

But he bore all this with his usual stoicism. It seemed to increase his devotion to the institution, rather than to diminish it. When the receipts from the endowment fell short or were delayed, he continued to advance money freely to meet the salaries of the professors; and for apparatus, books, and equipment of every sort his purse was constantly opened.

Yet, in those days of toil and care and obloquy, there were some things which encouraged him much. At that period all patriotic Americans felt deep gratitude to Goldwin Smith for his courage and eloquence in standing by our country during the Civil War, and great admiration for his profound and brilliant historical lectures at Oxford. Naturally, on arriving in London, I sought to engage him for the new university, and was authorized by Mr. Cornell to make him large pecuniary offers. Professor Smith entered at once into our plans heartily; wrote to encourage us; came to us; lived with us amid what, to him, must have been great privations; lectured for us year after year as brilliantly as he had ever lectured at Oxford; gave his library to the university, with a large sum for its increase; lent his aid very quietly, but none the less effectually, to needy and meritorious students; and steadily refused then, as he has ever since done, and now does, to accept a dollar of compensation. Nothing ever gave Mr. Cornell more encouragement than this. For ``Goldwin,'' as he called him in his Quaker way, there was always a very warm corner in his heart.

He also found especial pleasure in many of the lecture- courses established at the opening of the university. For Professor Agassiz he formed a warm friendship; and their discussions regarding geological questions were very interesting, eliciting from Agassiz a striking tribute to Mr. Cornell's closeness of observation and sagacity in reasoning. The lectures on history by Goldwin Smith, and on literature by James Russell Lowell, George William Curtis, and Bayard Taylor, he also enjoyed greatly.

The scientific collections and apparatus of various sorts gave him constant pleasure. I had sent from England, France, and Germany a large number of charts, models, and pieces of philosophical apparatus, and regarding some of them had thought it best to make careful explanations to him, in order to justify so large an expenditure; but I soon found this unnecessary. His shrewd mind enabled him to understand any piece of apparatus quickly, and to appreciate it fully. I have never had to deal with any man whose instinct in such matters was more true. If a book or scientific specimen or piece of apparatus was necessary to the proper work of a department, he could easily be made to see it; and then it MUST come to us, no matter at what cost. Like the great prince of navigators in the fifteenth century, he was a man ``who had the taste for great things''—``qui tenia gusto en cosas grandes.'' He felt that the university was to be great, and he took his measures accordingly. His colleagues generally thought him over-sanguine; and when he declared that the university should yet have an endow- ment of three millions, most of them regarded him as a dreamer.

I have never known a man more entirely unselfish. I have seen him, when his wealth was counted in millions, devote it so generously to university objects that he felt it necessary to stint himself in some matters of personal comfort. When urged to sell a portion of the university land at a sacrifice, in order to better our foundations, he answered in substance, ``Don't let us do that yet; I will wear my old hat and coat a little longer, and let you have a little more money from my own pocket.''

This feeling seemed never diminished, even under the worst opposition. He ``kept the faith,'' no matter who opposed him.

An eminent and justly respected president of one of the oldest Eastern universities published a treatise, which was widely circulated, to prove that the main ideas on which the new university was based were utterly impracticable; and especially that the presentation of various courses of instruction suited to young men of various aims and tastes, with liberty of choice between them, was preposterous. It is interesting to note that this same eminent gentleman was afterward led to adopt this same ``impracticable'' policy at his own university. Others of almost equal eminence insisted that to give advanced scientific and technical instruction in the same institution with classical instruction was folly; and these gentlemen were probably not converted until the plan was adopted at English Cambridge. Others still insisted that an institution not belonging to any one religious sect must be ``godless,'' would not be patronized, and could not succeed. Their eyes were opened later by the sight of men and women of different Christian denominations pressing forward at Cornell University to contribute sums which, in the aggregate, amounted to much more than the original endowment.

He earned the blessing of those who, not having seen, have yet believed. Though he did not live long enough to see the fundamental principles of the university thus force their way to recognition and adoption by those who had most strongly opposed them, his faith remained undiminished to the end of his life.

But the opposition to his work developed into worse shapes; many leading journals in the State, when not openly hostile to him, were cold and indifferent, and some of them were steadily abusive. This led to a rather wide- spread feeling that ``where there is smoke, there must be fire''; and we who knew the purity of his purpose, his unselfishness, his sturdy honesty, labored long against this feeling.

I regret to say that some eminent men connected with important universities in the country showed far too much readiness to acquiesce in this unfavorable view of our founder. From very few of our sister institutions came any word of cheer; and from some of them came most bitter attacks, not only upon the system adopted in the new university, but upon Mr. Cornell himself. But his friends were more afflicted, by far, than he; all this opposition only served to strengthen his faith. As to this effect upon him, I recall one or two quaint examples. At the darkest period in the history of the university, I mentioned to him that a fine collection of mathematical books was offered us for five thousand dollars. Under ordinary circumstances he would have bought it for us at once; but at that moment, when any addition to his burdens would not have been advised by any of his friends, he quietly said, ``Somewhere there is a man walking about who wants to give us that five thousand dollars.'' I am glad to say that his faith was soon justified; such a man appeared,—a man who was glad to give the required sum as a testimony to his belief in Mr. Cornell's integrity: William Kelly of Rhinebeck.

Another example may be given as typical. Near the close of the first celebration of Founder's Day at one of the college buildings, a pleasant social dance sprang up among the younger people—students from the university and young ladies from the village. This brought a very severe protest from sundry clergymen of the place, declaring dancing to be ``destructive of vital godliness.'' Though this was solemnly laid before the faculty, no answer was ever made to it; but we noticed that, at every social gathering on Founder's Day afterward, as long as Mr. Cornell lived, he had arrangements made for dancing. I never knew a man more open to right reason, and never one less influenced by cant or dogmatism.

To most attacks upon him in the newspapers he neither made nor suggested any reply; but one or two which were especially misleading he answered simply and conclusively. This had no effect, of course, in stopping the attacks; but it had one effect, at which the friends of the university rejoiced: it bound his old associates to him all the more closely, and led them to support him all the more vigorously. When a paper in one of the largest cities in western New York had been especially abusive, one of Mr. Cornell's old friends living in that city wrote: ``I know that the charges recently published are utterly untrue; but I am not skilled in newspaper controversy, so I will simply add to what I have already given to the university a special gift of thirty thousand dollars, which will testify to my townsmen here, and perhaps to the public at large, my confidence in Mr. Cornell.''

Such was the way of Hiram Sibley. Upon another attack, especially violent, from the organ of one of the denominational colleges, another old friend of Mr. Cornell in the eastern part of the State, a prominent member of the religious body which this paper represented, sent his check for several thousand dollars, to be used for the purchase of books for the library, and to show confidence in Mr. Cornell by deeds as well as words.

Vile as these attacks were, worse remained behind. A local politician, who had been sent to the legislature from the district where the ``People's College'' had lived its short life, prepared, with pettifogging ability, a long speech to show that the foundation of Cornell University, Mr. Cornell's endowment of it, and his contract to locate the lands for it were parts of a great cheat and swindle. This thesis, developed in all the moods and tenses of abuse before the legislature, was next day published at length in the leading journals of the metropolis, and echoed throughout the Union. The time for these attacks was skilfully chosen; the Cr<e'>dit Mobilier and other schemes had been revealed at Washington, and everybody was only too ready to believe any charge against anybody. That Mr. Cornell had been known for forty years as an honest man seemed to go for nothing.

The enemies of the university were prompt to support the charges, and they found some echoes even among those who were benefited by his generosity—even among the students themselves. At this I felt it my duty to call the whole student body together, and, in a careful speech, to explain Mr. Cornell's transactions, answering the charges fully. This speech, though spread through the State, could evidently do but little toward righting the wrong; but it brought to me what I shall always feel a great honor—a share in the abuse showered mainly on him.

Very characteristic was Mr. Cornell's conduct under this outrage. That same faith in justice, that same patience under wrong, which he always showed, was more evident than ever.

On the morning after the attack in the legislature had been blazoned in all the leading newspapers—in the early hours, and after a sleepless night—I heard the rattle of gravel against my window-panes. On rising, I found Mr. Cornell standing below. He was serene and cheerful, and had evidently taken the long walk up the hill to quiet my irritation. His first words were a jocose prelude. The bells of the university, which were then chimed at six o'clock, were ringing merrily, and he called out, ``Come down here and listen to the chimes; I have found a spot where you can hear them directly with one ear, and their echo with the other.''

When I had come down, we first investigated the echo of the chime, which had really aroused his interest; then he said seriously: ``Don't make yourself unhappy over this matter; it will turn out to be a good thing for the university. I have long foreseen that this attack must come, but have feared that it would come after my death, when the facts would be forgotten, and the transactions little understood. I am glad that the charges are made now, while I am here to answer them.'' We then discussed the matter, and it was agreed that he should telegraph and write Governor Dix, asking him to appoint an investigating committee, of which the majority should be from the political party opposed to his own. This was done. The committee was composed of Horatio Seymour, formerly governor of the State and Democratic candidate for the Presidency of the United States; William A. Wheeler, Vice-President of the United States; and John D. Van Buren, all three men of the highest standing, and two of them politically opposed to Mr. Cornell.

During the long investigation which ensued in New York and at Ithaca, he never lost his patience, though at times sorely tried. Various disappointed schemers, among these one person who had not been allowed to make an undue profit out of the university lands, and another who had been allowed to depart from a professorship on account of hopeless incompetency, were the main witnesses. The onslaught was led by the person who made the attack in the legislature, and he had raked together a mass of half-truths and surmises; but the evidence on Mr. Cornell's side consisted of a complete exhibition of all the facts and documents. The unanimous report of the committee was all that his warmest friends could desire; and its recommendations regarding the management of the fund were such as Mr. Cornell had long wished, but which he had hardly dared ask. The result was a complete triumph for him.

Yet the attacks continued. The same paper which had been so prominent in sounding them through the western part of the State continued them as before, and, almost to the very day of his death, assailed him periodically as a ``land jobber,'' ``land grabber,'' and ``land thief.'' But he took these foul attacks by tricky declaimers and his vindication by three of his most eminent fellow-citizens with the same serenity. That there was in him a profound contempt for the wretched creatures who assailed him and imputed to him motives as vile as their own can hardly be doubted; yet, though I was with him constantly during this period, I never heard him speak harshly of them; nor could I ever see that this injustice diminished his good will toward his fellow-men and his desire to benefit them.

At the very time when these attacks were at their worst, he was giving especial thought to the problem of bringing education at the university within reach of young men of good ability and small means. I am quite within bounds in saying that he gave an hour to thought upon this for every minute he gave to thought upon the attacks of his enemies.

It was during this period that he began building his beautiful house near the university, and in this he showed some of his peculiarities. He took much pains to secure a tasteful plan, and some of the ideas embodied in it evidently resulted from his study of beautiful country-houses in England. Characteristic of him also was his way of carrying on the work. Having visited several quarries in various parts of the State, in order to choose the best possible building-stone, he employed some German stone- carvers who had recently left work upon the Cathedral of Cologne, brought them to Ithaca, and allowed them to work on with no interference save from the architect. If they gave a month or more to the carving of a single capital or corbel, he made no remonstrance. When he had thus secured the best stone-work, he selected the best seasoned oak and walnut and called skilful carpenters from England.

In thus going abroad for artisans there was no want of loyalty to his countrymen, nor was there any alloy of vanity in his motives. His purpose evidently was to erect a house which should be as perfect a specimen of the builder's art as he could make it, and therefore useful, as an example of thoroughly good work, to the local workmen.

In connection with this, another incident throws light upon his characteristics. Above the front entrance of the house was a scroll, or ribbon, in stone, evidently intended for a name or motto. The words carved there were, ``True and Firm.'' It is a curious evidence of the petty criticism which beset him in those days, that this motto was at times cited as a proof of his vainglory. It gives me pleasure to relieve any mind sensitive on this point, and to vindicate the truth of history, by saying that it was I who placed the motto there. Calling his attention one day to the scroll and to the need of an inscription, I suggested a translation of the old German motto, ``Treu und Fest''; and, as he made no objection, I wrote it out for the stone- cutters, but told Mr. Cornell that there were people, perhaps, who might translate the last word ``obstinate.''

The point of this lay in the fact, which Mr. Cornell knew very well, that he was frequently charged with obstinacy. Yet an obstinate man, in the evil sense of that word, he was not. For several years it fell to my lot to discuss a multitude of questions with him, and reasonableness was one of his most striking characteristics. He was one of those very rare strong men who recognize adequately their own limitations. True, when he had finally made up his mind in a matter fully within his own province, he remained firm; but I have known very few men, wealthy, strong, successful, as he was, so free from the fault of thinking that, because they are good judges of one class of questions, they are equally good in all others. One mark of an obstinate man is the announcement of opinions upon subjects regarding which his experience and previous training give him little or no means of judging. This was not at all the case with Mr. Cornell. When questions arose regarding internal university management, or courses of study, or the choice of professors, or plans for their accommodation, he was never quick in announcing or tenacious in holding an opinion. There was no purse pride about him. He evidently did not believe that his success in building up a fortune had made him an expert or judge in questions to which he had never paid special attention.

During the last year or two of his life, I saw not so much of him as during several previous years. He had become greatly interested in various railway projects having as their purpose the connection of Ithaca, as a university town, with the State at large; and he threw himself into these plans with great energy. His course in this was prompted by a public spirit as large and pure as that which had led him to found the university. When, at the suggestion of sundry friends, I ventured to remonstrate with him against going so largely into these railway enterprises at his time of life, he said: ``I shall live twenty years longer, and make a million of dollars more for the university endowment.'' Alas! within six months from that day he lay dead in the midst of many broken hopes. His plans, which, under other circumstances, would have been judged wise, seemed for a time wrecked by the financial crisis which had just come upon the country.

In his last hours I visited him frequently. His mind remained clear, and he showed his old freedom from any fault-finding spirit, though evidently oppressed by business cares and bodily suffering. His serenity was especially evident as I sat with him the night before his death, and I can never forget the placidity of his countenance, both then and on the next morning, when all was ended.

Something should be said regarding Mr. Cornell's political ideas. In the legislature he was a firm Republican, but as free as possible from anything like partizan bigotry. Party ties in local matters sat lightly upon him. He spoke in public very little, and took far greater interest in public improvement than in party advantage. With many of his political opponents his relations were most friendly. For such Democrats as Hiram Sibley, Erastus Brooks, and William Kelly he had the deepest respect and admiration. He cared little for popular clamor on any subject, braving it more than once by his votes in the legislature. He was evidently willing to take any risk involved in waiting for the sober second thought of the people. He was as free from ordinary ambition as from selfishness: when there was a call from several parts of the State for his nomination as governor, he said quietly, ``I prefer work for which I am better fitted.''

There was in his ordinary bearing a certain austerity and in his conversation an abruptness which interfered somewhat with his popularity. A student once said to me, ``If Mr. Cornell would simply stand upon his pedestal as our `Honored Founder,' and let us hurrah for him, that would please us mightily; but when he comes into the laboratory and asks us gruffly, `What are you wasting your time at now?' we don't like him so well.'' The fact on which this remark was based was that Mr. Cornell liked greatly to walk quietly through the laboratories and drafting-rooms, to note the work. Now and then, when he saw a student doing something which especially interested him, he was evidently anxious, as he was wont to say, ``to see what the fellow is made of,'' and he would frequently put some provoking question, liking nothing better than to receive a pithy answer. Of his kind feelings toward students I could say much. He was not inclined to coddle them, but was ever ready to help any who were deserving.

Despite his apparent austerity, he was singularly free from harshness in his judgments. There were times when he would have been justified in outbursts of bitterness against those who attacked him in ways so foul and maligned him in ways so vile; but I never heard any bitter reply from him. In his politics there was never a drop of bitterness. Only once or twice did I hear him allude to any conduct which displeased him, and then his comments were rather playful than otherwise. On one occasion, when he had written to a gentleman of great wealth and deserved repute as a philanthropist, asking him to join in carrying the burden of the land locations, and had received an unfavorable answer, he made a remark which seemed to me rather harsh. To this I replied: ``Mr. Cornell, Mr. —— is not at all in fault; he does not understand the question as you do; everybody knows that he is a very liberal man.'' ``Oh,'' said Mr. Cornell, ``it's easy enough to be liberal; the only hard part is drawing the check.''

Of his intellectual characteristics, foresight was the most remarkable. Of all men in the country who had to do with the college land grant of 1862, he alone discerned the possibilities involved and had courage to make them actual.

Clearness of thought on all matters to which he gave his attention was another striking characteristic; hence, whenever he put anything on paper, it was lucid and cogent. There seems at times in his writings some of the clear, quaint shrewdness so well known in Abraham Lincoln. Very striking examples of this are to be found in his legislative speeches, in his address at the opening of the university, and in his letters.

Among his moral characteristics, his truthfulness, persistence, courage, and fortitude were most strongly marked. These qualities made him a man of peace. He regarded life as too short to be wasted in quarrels; his steady rule was never to begin a lawsuit or have anything to do with one, if it could be avoided. The joy in litigation and squabble, which has been the weakness of so many men claiming to be strong, and the especial curse of so many American churches, colleges, universities, and other public organizations, had no place in his strong, tolerant nature. He never sought to publish the sins of any one in the courts or to win the repute of an uncompromising fighter. In this peaceable disposition he was prompted not only by his greatest moral quality:— his charity toward his fellow-men, but by his greatest intel- lectual quality:—his foresight; for he knew well ``the glorious uncertainty of the law.'' He was a builder, not a gladiator.

There resulted from these qualities an equanimity which I have never seen equaled. When his eldest son had been elected to the highest office in the gift of the State Assembly, and had been placed, evidently, on the way to the governor 's chair,—afterward attained,—though it must have gratified such a father, he never made any reference to it in my hearing; and when the body of his favorite grandson, a most winning and promising boy, killed instantly by a terrible accident, was brought into his presence, though his heart must have bled, his calmness seemed almost superhuman.

His religious ideas were such as many excellent people would hardly approve. He had been born into the Society of Friends; and their quietness, simplicity, freedom from noisy activity, and devotion to the public good attached him to them. But his was not a bigoted attachment; he went freely to various churches, aiding them without distinction of sect, though finally he settled into a steady attendance at the Unitarian Church in Ithaca, for the pastor of which he conceived a great respect and liking. He was never inclined to say much about religion; but, in our talks, he was wont to quote with approval from Pope's ``Universal Prayer''—and especially the lines:

   ``Teach me to feel another's woe,
        To hide the fault I see;
     The mercy I to others show,
        That mercy show to me.''

On the mere letter of Scripture he dwelt little; and, while he never obtruded opinions that might shock any person, and was far removed from scoffing or irreverence, he did not hesitate to discriminate between parts of our Sacred Books which he considered as simply legendary and parts which were to him pregnant with eternal truth.

His religion seemed to take shape in a deeply reverent feeling toward his Creator, and in a constant desire to improve the condition of his fellow-creatures. He was never surprised or troubled by anything which any other human being believed or did not believe; of intolerance he was utterly incapable. He sought no reputation as a philanthropist, cared little for approval, and nothing for applause; but I can say of him, without reserve, that, during all the years I knew him, ``he went about doing good.''



Although my formal election to the university presidency did not take place until 1867, the duties implied by that office had already been discharged by me during two years.

While Mr. Cornell devoted himself to the financial questions arising from the new foundation, he intrusted all other questions to me. Indeed, my duties may be said to have begun when, as chairman of the Committee on Education in the State Senate, I resisted all efforts to divide the land-grant fund between the People's College and the State Agricultural College; to have been continued when I opposed the frittering away of the entire grant among more than twenty small sectarian colleges; and to have taken a more direct form when I drafted the educational clauses of the university charter and advocated it before the legislature and in the press. This advocacy was by no means a light task. The influential men who flocked to Albany, seeking to divide the fund among various sects and localities, used arguments often plausible and sometimes forcible. These I dealt with on various occasions, but especially in a speech before the State Senate in 1865, in which was shown the character of the interested opposition, the farcical equipment of the People's College, the failure of the State Agricultural College, the inadequacy of the sectarian colleges, even though they called themselves universities; and I did all in my power to communicate to my colleagues something of my own enthusiasm for a university suitably endowed, free from sectarian trammels, centrally situated, and organized to meet fully the wants of the State as regarded advanced education, general and technical.

Three points I endeavored especially to impress upon them in this speech. First, that while, as regards primary education, the policy of the State should be diffusion of resources, it should be, as regards university education, concentration of resources. Secondly, that sectarian colleges could not do the work required. Thirdly, that any institution for higher education in the State must form an integral part of the whole system of public instruction; that the university should not be isolated from the school system, as were the existing colleges, but that it should have a living connection with the system, should push its roots down into it and through it, drawing life from it and sending life back into it. Mr. Cornell accepted this view at once. Mr. Horace Greeley, who, up to that time, had supported the People's College, was favorably impressed by it, and, more than anything else, it won for us his support. To insure this vital connection of the proposed university with the school system, I provided in the charter for four ``State scholarships'' in each of the one hundred and twenty-eight Assembly districts. These scholarships were to be awarded to the best scholars in the public schools of each district, after due examination, one each year; each scholarship entitling the holder to free instruction in the university for four years. Thus the university and the schools were bound closely together by the constant and living tie of five hundred and twelve students. As the number of Assembly districts under the new constitution was made, some years later, one hundred and fifty, the number of these competitive free scholarships is now six hundred. They have served their purpose well. Thirty years of this connection have greatly uplifted the whole school system of the State, and made the university a life-giving power in it; while this uplifting of the school system has enabled the university steadily to raise and improve its own standard of instruction.

But during the earlier period of our plans there was one serious obstacle—Charles James Folger. He was the most powerful member of the Senate, its president, and chairman of the Judiciary Committee. He had already won wide respect as a county judge, had been longer in the Senate than any other member, and had already given ample evidence of the qualities which later in life raised him to some of the highest positions, State and National. His instincts would have brought him to our side; for he was broad-minded, enlightened, and earnestly in favor of all good legislation. He was also my personal friend, and when I privately presented my views to him he acquiesced in them. But there were two difficulties. First, he had in his own city a denominational college, his own alma mater, which, though small, was influential. Still worse for us, he had in his district the State Agricultural College, which the founding of Cornell University must necessarily wipe out of existence. He might rise above the first of these difficulties, but the second seemed insurmountable. No matter how much in sympathy with our main aim, he could not sacrifice a possession so dear to his constituency as the State College of Agriculture. He felt that he had no right to do so; he knew also that to do so would be to sacrifice his political future, and we felt, as he did, that he had no right to do this.

But here came in to help us the culmination of a series of events as unexpected as that which had placed the land- grant fund at our disposal just at the time when Mr. Cornell and myself met in the State Senate. For years a considerable body of thoughtful men throughout the State, more especially of the medical profession, had sought to remedy a great evil in the treatment of the insane. As far back as the middle of the century, Senator Bradford of Cortland had taken the lead in an investigation of the system then existing, and his report was a frightful ex- posure. Throughout the State, lunatics whose families were unable to support them at the State or private asylums were huddled together in the poorhouses of the various counties. Their condition was heartrending. They were constantly exposed to neglect, frequently to extremes of cold and hunger, and sometimes to brutality: thus mild lunacy often became raving madness. For some years before my election to the Senate the need of a reform had been urged upon the legislative committees by a physician —Dr. Willard of Albany. He had taken this evil condition of things much to heart, and year after year had come before the legislature urging the creation of a new institution, which he wished named after an eminent physician of Albany who had in his day done what was possible to remedy the evil—Dr. Beck. But year after year Dr. Willard's efforts, like those of Dr. Beck before him, had been in vain. Session after session the ``Bill to establish the Beck Asylum for the Chronic Insane'' was rejected,— the legislature shrinking from the cost of it. But one day, as we were sitting in the Senate, appalling news came from the Assembly: Dr. Willard, while making one more passionate appeal for the asylum, had fallen dead in the presence of the committee. The result was a deep and wide- spread feeling of compunction, and while we were under the influence of this I sought Judge Folger and showed him his opportunity to do two great things. I said: ``It rests with you to remedy this cruel evil which has now cost Dr. Willard his life, and at the same time to join us in carrying the Cornell University Bill. Let the legislature create a new asylum for the chronic insane of the State. Now is the time of all times. Instead of calling it the Beck Asylum, give it the name of Willard—the man who died in advocating it. Place it upon the Agricultural College property on the shores of Seneca Lake in your district. Your constituents are sure to prefer a living State asylum to a dying Agricultural College, and will thoroughly support you in both the proposed measures.'' This suggestion Judge Folger received with favor. The Willard Asylum was created, and he became one of our strongest supporters.

Both Mr. Cornell's financial plans and my educational plans in the new university charter were wrought into final shape by him. As chairman of the Judiciary Committee he reported our bill to the Senate, and at various critical periods gave us his earnest support. Quite likely doctrinaires will stigmatize our conduct in this matter as ``log-rolling''; the men who always criticize but never construct may even call it a ``bargain.'' There was no ``bargain'' and no ``log-rolling,'' but they may call it what they like; I believe that we were both of us thoroughly in the right. For our coming together in this way gave to the State the Willard Asylum and the Cornell University, and without our thus coming together neither of these would have been created.

But in spite of this happy compromise, the struggle for our university charter, as has already been seen, was long and severe. The opposition of over twenty sectarian colleges, and of active politicians from every quarter of the State where these colleges had been established, made our work difficult; but at last it was accomplished. Preparations for the new institution were now earnestly pressed on, and for a year I gave up very much of my time to them, keeping in constant communication with Mr. Cornell, frequently visiting Ithaca, and corresponding with trustees in various parts of the State and with all others at home or abroad who seemed able to throw light on any of the problems we had to solve.

The question now arose as to the presidency of the institution; and, as time passed on and duties increased, this became more and more pressing. In the previous chapter I have given some account of the circumstances attending my election and of Mr. Cornell's relation to it; but this is perhaps the place for stating one of the difficulties which stood in the way of my acceptance, and which, indeed, greatly increased my cares during all the first years of my presidency. The death of my father and uncle, who had for many years carried on a large and wide-spread business, threw upon me new responsibilities. It was during the Civil War, when panic after panic ran through the American business world, making the interests now devolving upon me all the more burdensome. I had no education for business and no liking for it, but, under the pressure of necessity, decided to do the best I could, yet determining that just as soon as these business affairs could be turned over to others it should be done. Several years elapsed, and those the busiest so far as the university was concerned, before such a release became possible. So it happened that during the first and most trying years of the new institution of Ithaca, I was obliged to do duty as senator of the State of New York, president of Cornell University, lecturer at the University of Michigan, president of the National Bank of Syracuse and director in two other banks,—one being at Oswego,—director in the New York Central and Lake Shore railways, director in the Albemarle and Chesapeake Canal,—to say nothing of positions on boards of various similar corporations and the executorship of two widely extended estates. It was a trying time for me. There was, however, some advantage; for this epoch in my life put me in relations with some of the foremost business men in the United States, among them Cornelius Vanderbilt, William H. Vanderbilt, Dean Richmond, Daniel Drew, and various other men accustomed to prompt and decisive dealing with large business affairs. I recognized the value of such associations and endeavored to learn something from them, but was determined, none the less, to end this sort of general activity as early as it could be done consistently with justice to my family. Several years were required, and those the very years in which university cares were most pressing. But finally my intention was fully carried out. The bank over which my father had presided so many years I was able to wind up in a way satisfactory to all concerned, not only repaying the shareholders, but giving them a large surplus. From the other cor- porations also I gradually escaped, turning my duties over to those better fitted for them. Still many outside cares remained, and in one way or another I was obliged to take part in affairs which I would have gladly shunned. Yet there was consolation in the idea that, as my main danger was that of drifting into a hermit life among professors and books, anything that took me out of this for a limited length of time was not without compensating advantages.

Just previously to my election to the university presidency I had presented a ``plan of organization,'' which, having been accepted and printed by the trustees, formed the mold for the main features of the new institution; and early among my duties came the selection and nomination of professors. In these days one is able to choose from a large body of young men holding fellowships in the various larger universities of the United States; but then, with the possible exception of two or three at Harvard, there was not a fellowship, so far as I can remember, in the whole country. The choosing of professors was immeasurably more difficult than at present. With reference to this point, a very eminent graduate of Harvard then volunteered to me some advice, which at first sight looked sound, but which I soon found to be inapplicable. He said: ``You must secure at any cost the foremost men in the United States in every department. In this way alone can a real university be created.'' Trying the Socratic method upon him, I asked, in reply, ``How are we to get such men? The foremost man in American science is undoubtedly Agassiz, but he has refused all offers of high position at Paris made him by the French Emperor. The main objects of his life are the creation of his great museum at Harvard and his investigations and instruction in connection with it; he has declared that he has `no time to waste in making money!' What sum or what inducement of any sort can transfer him from Harvard to a new institution on the distant hills of central New York? So, too, with the most eminent men at the other universities. What sum will draw them to us from Harvard, Yale, Columbia, the University of Virginia, and the University of Michigan? An endowment twice as large as ours would be unavailing.'' Therefore it was that I broached, as a practical measure, in my ``plan of organization,'' the system which I had discussed tentatively with George William Curtis several years before, and to which he referred afterward in his speech at the opening of the university at Ithaca. This was to take into our confidence the leading professors in the more important institutions of learning, and to secure from them, not the ordinary, conventional paper testimonials, but confidential information as to their young men likely to do the best work in various fields, to call these young men to our resident professorships, and then to call the most eminent men we could obtain for non-resident professorships or lectureships. This idea was carried out to the letter. The most eminent men in various universities gave us confidential advice; and thus it was that I was enabled to secure a number of bright, active, energetic young men as our resident professors, mingling with them two or three older men, whose experience and developed judgment seemed necessary in the ordinary conduct of our affairs.

As to the other part of the plan, I secured Agassiz, Lowell, Curtis, Bayard Taylor, Goldwin Smith, Theodore Dwight, George W. Greene, John Stanton Gould, and at a later period Froude, Freeman, and others, as non-resident professors and lecturers. Of the final working of this system I shall speak later.

The question of buildings also arose; but, alas! I could not reproduce my air-castles. For our charter required us to have the university in operation in October, 1868, and there was no time for careful architectural preparation. Moreover, the means failed us. All that we could then do was to accept a fairly good plan for our main structures; to make them simple, substantial, and dignified; to build them of stone from our own quarries; and so to dispose them that future architects might so combine other buildings with them as to form an impressive quadrangle on the upper part of the university property. To this plan Mr. Cornell gave his hearty assent. It was then arranged, with his full sanction, that the university buildings should ultimately consist of two great groups: the first or upper group to be a quadrangle of stone, and the second or lower group to be made up of buildings of brick more freely disposed, according to our future needs and means. Although this plan has unfortunately been departed from in some minor respects, it has in general turned out well.

Having called a number of professors and seen foundations laid for ``Morrill Hall,'' I sailed in April of 1868 for Europe, in order to study technical institutions, to purchase needed equipment, and to secure certain professors such as could not then be found in our own country. Thus far my knowledge of higher education in Europe had been confined almost entirely to the universities; but now I went carefully through various technical institutions, among them the English Agricultural College at Cirencester, the Agricultural Experiment Station at Rothamstead, the French Agricultural College at Grignon, the Conservatoire des Arts et M<e'>tiers at Paris, the Veterinary School at Alfort, the German Agricultural College at Hohenheim, the Technical School and Veterinary College at Berlin, and others. As to equipment, wherever I found valuable material I bought it. Thus were brought together for our library a very large collection of books in all the principal departments; physical and chemical apparatus from London, Paris, Heidelberg, and Berlin; chemicals from Berlin and Erfurt; the only duplicate of the royal collection of cereals and grasses and the great collection of British patent-office publications from the British imperial authorities; the Rau models of plows from Hohenheim; the Brendel plant models from Breslau; the models of machine movements from London, Darmstadt, and Berlin; the plastic models of Auzoux from Paris; and other apparatus and instruments from all parts of Europe, with diagrams and drawings from every institution where I could find them. During three months, from funds furnished by the university, by Mr. Cornell personally, and, I may be allowed to add, from my own personal resources, I expended for these purposes over sixty thousand dollars, a sum which in those days represented much more than in these.

As to non-resident professors, I secured in London Goldwin Smith, who had recently distinguished himself by his works as a historian and as regius professor of history at Oxford; and I was successful in calling Dr. James Law, who, though a young man, had already made himself a name in veterinary science. It seemed to many a comical juxtaposition, and various witticisms were made at my expense over the statement that I had ``brought back an Oxford professor and a Scotch horse-doctor.'' But never were selections more fortunate. Goldwin Smith, by his high character, his broad and deep scholarship, his devotion not only to his professorship but to the general university work, his self-denial in behalf of the university and its students, rendered priceless services. He bore all privations cheerfully and braved all discouragements manfully. Never were there better historical lectures than his. They inspired us all, and the impulse then given is still felt. So, too, Dr. Law, in his field, was invaluable, and this was soon felt throughout the State. Of him I shall speak later.



On the 7th of October, 1868, came the formal opening of the university. The struggle for its charter had attracted much attention in all parts of the State, and a large body of spectators, with about four hundred students, assembled at the Cornell Library Hall in Ithaca. Though the charter had required us to begin in October, there had seemed for some time very little chance of it. Mr. Cornell had been absent in the woods of the upper Mississippi and on the plains of Kansas, selecting university lands; I had been absent for some months in Europe, securing plans and equipment; and as, during our absence, the contractor for the first main building, Morrill Hall, had failed, the work was wretchedly behindhand. The direct roads to the university site were as yet impracticable, for the Cascadilla ravine and the smaller one north of it were still unbridged. The grounds were unkempt, with heaps of earth and piles of material in all directions. The great quantities of furniture, apparatus, and books which I had sent from Europe had been deposited wherever storage could be found. Typical was the case of the large Holtz electrical machine from Germany. It was in those days a novelty, and many were anxious to see it; but it could not be found, and it was only discovered several weeks later, when the last pots and pans were pulled out of the kitchen store-room in the cellar of the great stone barrack known as Cascadilla House. All sorts of greatly needed material had been delayed in steamships and on railways, or was stuck fast in custom-houses and warehouses from Berlin and Paris to Ithaca. Our friends had toiled heroically during our absence, but the little town—then much less energetic than now—had been unable to furnish the work required in so short a time. The heating apparatus and even the doors for the students' rooms were not in place until weeks after winter weather had set in. To complicate matters still more, students began to come at a period much earlier and in numbers far greater than we had expected; and the first result of this was that, in getting ready for the opening, Mr. Cornell and myself were worn out. For two or three days before my inauguration both of us were in the hands of physicians and in bed, and on the morning of the day appointed we were taken in carriages to the hall where the ceremony was to take place. To Mr. Cornell's brief speech I have alluded elsewhere; my own presented my ideas more at length. They were grouped in four divisions. The first of these related to ``Foundation Ideas,'' which were announced as follows: First, the close union of liberal and practical instruction; second, unsectarian control; third, a living union between the university and the whole school system of the State; fourth, concentration of revenues for advanced education. The second division was that of ``Formative Ideas''; and under these—First, equality between different courses of study. In this I especially developed ideas which had occurred to me as far back as my observations after graduation at Yale, where the classical students belonging to the ``college proper'' were given a sort of supremacy, and scientific students relegated to a separate institution at considerable distance, and therefore deprived of much general, and even special, culture which would have greatly benefited them. Indeed, they seemed not considered as having any souls to be saved, since no provision was made for them at the college chapel. Second, increased development of scientific studies. The third main division was that of ``Governmental Ideas''; and under these— First, ``the regular and frequent infusion of new life into the governing board.'' Here a system at that time entirely new in the United States was proposed. Instead of the usual life tenure of trustees, their term was made five years and they were to be chosen by ballot. Secondly, it was required that as soon as the graduates of the university numbered fifty they should select one trustee each year, thus giving the alumni one third of the whole number elected. Third, there was to be a system of self-government administered by the students themselves. As to this third point, I must frankly confess that my ideas were vague, unformed, and finally changed by the logic of events. As the fourth and final main division, I presented ``Permeating Ideas''; and of these—First, the development of the individual man in all his nature, in all his powers, as a being intellectual, moral, and religious. Secondly, bringing the powers of the man thus developed to bear usefully upon society.

In conclusion, I alluded to two groups of ``Eliminated Ideas,'' the first of these being the ``Ideas of the Pedants,'' and the second the ``Ideas of the Philistines.'' As to the former, I took pains to guard the institution from those who, in the higher education, substitute dates for history, gerund-grinding for literature, and formulas for science; as to the latter, I sought to guard it from the men to whom ``Gain is God, and Gunnybags his Prophet.''

At the close, referring to Mr. Cornell, who had been too weak to stand while delivering his speech, and who was at that moment sitting near me, I alluded to his noble plans and to the opposition, misrepresentation, and obloquy he had met thus far, and in doing so turned toward him. The sight of him, as he thus sat, looking so weak, so weary, so broken, for a few moments utterly incapacitated me. I was myself, at the time, in but little better condition than he; and as there rushed into my mind memories of the previous ten days at his house, when I had heard him groaning in pain through almost every night, it flashed upon me how utterly hopeless was the university without his support. My voice faltered; I could for a moment say no- thing; then came a revulsion. I asked myself, ``What will this great audience think of us?'' How will our enemies, some of whom I see scattered about the audience, exult over this faltering at the outset! A feeling of shame came over me; but just at that moment I saw two or three strong men from different parts of the State, among them my old friend Mr. Sedgwick of Syracuse, in the audience, and Mr. Sage and Mr. McGraw among the trustees, evidently affected by my allusion to the obloquy and injustice which Mr. Cornell had met thus far. This roused me. But I could no longer read; I laid my manuscript aside and gave the ending in words which occurred to me as I stood then and there. They were faltering and inadequate; but I felt that the vast majority in that audience, representing all parts of our commonwealth, were with us, and I asked nothing more.

In the afternoon came exercises at the university grounds. The chime of nine bells which Miss Jenny McGraw had presented to us had been temporarily hung in a wooden tower placed very near the spot where now stands the porch of the library; and, before the bells were rung for the first time, a presentation address was delivered by Mr. Francis Miles Finch, since justice of the Court of Appeals of the State and dean of the University Law School; and this was followed by addresses from the superintendent of public instruction, and from our non- resident professors Agassiz and George William Curtis.

Having again been taken out of bed and wrapped up carefully, I was carried up the hill to hear them. All the speeches were fine; but, just at the close, Curtis burst into a peroration which, in my weak physical condition, utterly unmanned me. He compared the new university to a newly launched ship—``all its sails set, its rigging full and complete from stem to stern, its crew embarked, its passengers on board; and,'' he added, ``even while I speak to you, even while this autumn sun sets in the west, the ship begins to glide over the waves, it goes forth rejoicing, every stitch of canvas spread, all its colors flying, its bells ringing, its heart-strings beating with hope and joy; and I say, God bless the ship, God bless the builder, God bless the chosen captain, God bless the crew, and, gentlemen undergraduates, may God bless all the passengers!''

The audience applauded; the chimes burst merrily forth; but my heart sank within me. A feeling of ``goneness'' came over me. Curtis's simile was so perfect that I felt myself indeed on the deck of the ship, but not so much in the character of its ``chosen captain'' as of a seasick passenger. There was indeed reason for qualmish feelings. Had I drawn a picture of the ship at that moment, it would have been very different from that presented by Curtis. My mind was pervaded by our discouragements— by a realization of Mr. Cornell's condition and my own, the demands of our thoughtless friends, the attacks of our fanatical enemies, the inadequacy of our resources. The sense of all these things burst upon me, and the view about us was not reassuring. Not only were the university buildings unready and the grounds unkempt, but all that part of our domain which is now devoted to the beautiful lawns about the university chapel, Barnes Hall, Sage College, and other stately edifices, was then a ragged corn-field surrounded by rail fences. No one knew better than I the great difficulties which were sure to beset us. Probably no ship was ever launched in a condition so unfit to brave the storms. Even our lesser difficulties, though they may appear comical now, were by no means comical then. As a rule, Mr. Cornell had consulted me before making communications to the public; but during my absence in Europe he had written a letter to the ``New York Tribune,'' announcing that students could support themselves, while pursuing their studies one half of each day in the university, by laboring the other half. In this he showed that sympathy with needy and meritorious young men which was one of his marked qualities, but his proclamation cost us dear. He measured the earnestness and endurance and self-sacrifice of others by his own; he did not realize that not one man in a thousand was, in these respects, his equal. As a result of this ``Tribune'' letter, a multitude of eager young men pressed forward at the opening of the university and insisted on receiving self- supporting work. Nearly all of those who could offer skilled labor of any sort we were able to employ; and many graduates of whom Cornell University is now proud supported themselves then by working as carpenters, masons, printers, accountants, and shorthand-writers. But besides these were many who had never done any manual labor, and still more who had never done any labor requiring skill. An attempt was made to employ these in grading roads, laying out paths, helping on the farm, doing janitors' work, and the like. Some of them were successful; most were not. It was found that it would be cheaper to support many of the applicants at a hotel and to employ day-laborers in their places. Much of their work had to be done over again at a cost greater than the original outlay should have been. Typical was the husking of Indian corn upon the university farm by student labor: it was found to cost more than the resultant corn could be sold for in the market. The expectations of these youth were none the less exuberant. One of them, who had never done any sort of manual labor, asked whether, while learning to build machinery and supporting himself and his family, he could not lay up something against contingencies. Another, a teamster from a Western State, came to offer his services, and, on being asked what he wished to study, said that he wished to learn to read; on being told that the public school in his own district was the place for that, he was very indignant, and quoted Mr. Cornell's words, ``I would found an institution where any person can find instruction in any study.'' Others, fairly good scholars, but of delicate build, having applied for self-supporting employment, were assigned the lightest possible tasks upon the university grounds; but, finding even this work too severe, wrote bitterly to leading metropolitan journals denouncing Mr. Cornell's bad faith. One came all the way from Russia, being able to make the last stages of his journey only by charity, and on arriving was found to be utterly incapable of sustained effort, physical or mental. The most definite part of his aims, as he announced them, was to convert the United States to the Russo-Greek Church.

Added to these were dreamers and schemers of more mature age. The mails were burdened with their letters and our offices with their presence. Some had plans for the regeneration of humanity by inventing machines which they wished us to build, some by devising philosophies which they wished us to teach, some by writing books which they wished us to print; most by taking professorships which they wished us to endow. The inevitable politician also appeared; and at the first meeting of the trustees two notorious party hacks came all the way from New York to tell us ``what the people expected,''—which was the nomination of sundry friends of theirs to positions in the new institution. A severe strain was brought upon Mr. Cornell and myself in showing civility to these gentlemen; yet, as we were obliged to deny them, no suavity on our part could stay the inevitable result—their hostility. The attacks of the denominational and local presses in the interests of institutions which had failed to tear the fund in pieces and to secure scraps of it were thus largely reinforced. Ever and anon came onslaughts upon us personally and upon every feature of the institution, whether actual, probable, possible, or conceivable. One eminent editorial personage, having vainly sought to ``unload'' a member of his staff into one of our professorships, howled in a long article at the turpitude of Mr. Cornell in land matters, screamed for legislative investigation, and for years afterward never neglected an opportunity to strike a blow at the new institution.

Some difficulties also showed themselves in the first working of our university machinery. In my ``plan of organization,'' as well as in various addresses and reports, I had insisted that the university should present various courses of instruction, general and special, and that students should be allowed much liberty of choice between these. This at first caused serious friction. It has disappeared, now that the public schools of the State have adjusted themselves to the proper preparation of students for the various courses; but at that time these difficulties were in full force and vigor. One of the most troublesome signs of this was the changing and shifting by students from course to course, which both injured them and embarrassed their instructors. To meet this tendency I not only addressed the students to show that good, substantial, continuous work on any one course which any one of them was likely to choose was far better than indecision and shifting about between various courses, but also reprinted for their use John Foster's famous ``Essay on Decision of Character.'' This tractate had done me much good in my student days and at various times since, when I had allowed myself to linger too long between different courses of action; and I now distributed it freely, the result being that students generally made their election between courses with increased care, and when they had made it stood by it.

Yet for these difficulties in getting the student body under way there were compensations, and best of these was the character and bearing of the students. There were, of course, sundry exhibitions of boyishness, but the spirit of the whole body was better than that of any similar collection of young men I had ever seen. One reason was that we were happily spared any large proportion of rich men's sons, but the main reason was clearly the permission of choice between various courses of study in accordance with individual aims and tastes. In this way a far larger number were interested than had ever been under the old system of forcing all alike through one simple, single course, regardless of aims and tastes; and thus it came that, even from the first, the tone at Cornell was given, not by men who affected to despise study, but by men who devoted themselves to study. It evidently became disreputable for any student not to be really at work in some one of the many courses presented. There were few cases really calling for discipline. I prized this fact all the more because it justified a theory of mine. I had long felt that the greatest cause of student turbulence and dissipation was the absence of interest in study consequent upon the fact that only one course was provided, and I had arrived at the conclusion that providing various courses, suited to various aims and tastes, would diminish this evil.

As regards student discipline in the university, I had dwelt in my ``plan of organization'' upon the advisability of a departure from the system inherited from the English colleges, which was still widely prevailing. It had been developed in America probably beyond anything known in Great Britain and Germany, and was far less satisfactory than in these latter countries, for the simple reason that in them the university authorities have some legal power to secure testimony and administer punishment, while in America they have virtually none. The result had been most unfortunate, as I have shown in other parts of these chapters referring to various student escapades in the older American universities, some of them having cost human life. I had therefore taken the ground that, so far as possible, students should be treated as responsible citizens; that, as citizens, they should be left to be dealt with by the constituted authorities; and that members of the faculty should no longer be considered as policemen. I had, during my college life, known sundry college tutors seriously injured while thus doing police duty; I have seen a professor driven out of a room, through the panel of a door, with books, boots, and bootjacks hurled at his head; and even the respected president of a college, a doctor of divinity, while patrolling buildings with the janitors, subjected to outrageous indignity.

Fortunately the causes already named, to which may be added athletic sports, especially boating, so greatly diminished student mischief at Cornell, that cases of discipline were reduced to a minimum—so much so, in fact, that there were hardly ever any of a serious character. I felt that then and there was the time to reiterate the doctrine laid down in my ``plan of organization,'' that a professor should not be called upon to be a policeman, and that if the grounds were to be policed, proper men should be employed for that purpose. This doctrine was reasonable and it prevailed. The Cornell grounds and buildings, under the care of a patrol appointed for that purpose, have been carefully guarded, and never has a member of the faculty been called upon to perform police duty.

There were indeed some cases requiring discipline by the faculty, and one of these will provoke a smile on the part of all who took part in it as long as they shall live. There had come to us a stalwart, sturdy New Englander, somewhat above the usual student age, and showing considerable aptitude for studies in engineering. Various complaints were made against him; but finally he was summoned before the faculty for a very singular breach of good taste, if not of honesty. The entire instructing body of that day being gathered about the long table in the faculty room, and I being at the head of the table, the culprit was summoned, entered, and stood solemnly before us. Various questions were asked him, which he parried with great ingenuity. At last one was asked of a very peculiar sort, as follows: ``Mr. ——, did you, last month, in the village of Dundee, Yates County, pass yourself off as Professor —— of this university, announcing a lecture and delivering it in his name?'' He answered blandly, ``Sir, I did go to Dundee in Yates County; I did deliver a lecture there; I did NOT announce myself as Professor —— of Cornell University; what others may have done I do not know; all I know is that at the close of my lecture several leading men of the town came forward and said that they had heard a good many lectures given by college professors from all parts of the State, and that they had never had one as good as mine.'' I think, of all the strains upon my risible faculties during my life, this answer provoked the greatest, and the remainder of the faculty were clearly in the same condition. I dismissed the youth at once, and hardly was he outside the door when a burst of titanic laughter shook the court and the youth was troubled no more.

Far more serious was another case. The usual good- natured bickering between classes had gone on, and as a consequence certain sophomores determined to pay off some old scores against members of the junior class, at a junior exhibition. To do this they prepared a ``mock programme,'' which, had it been merely comic, as some others had been, would have provoked no ill feeling. Unfortunately, some miscreant succeeded in introducing into it allusions of a decidedly Rabelaisian character. The evening arrived, a large audience of ladies and gentlemen were assembled, and this programme was freely distributed. The proceeding was felt to be an outrage; and I served notice on the class that the real of offender or offenders, if they wished to prevent serious consequences to all concerned, must submit themselves to the faculty and take due punishment. Unfortunately, they were not manly enough to do this. Thereupon, to my own deep regret and in obedience to my sense of justice, I suspended indefinitely from the university the four officers of the class, its president, vice-president, secretary, and treasurer. They were among the very best men in the class, all of them friends of my own; and I knew to a certainty that they had had nothing directly to do with the articles concerned, that the utmost which could be said against them was that they had been careless as to what appeared in the programme, for which they were responsible. Most bitter feeling arose, and I summoned a meeting of the entire student body. As I entered the room hisses were heard; the time had evidently come for a grapple with the whole body. I stated the case as it was: that the four officers would be suspended and must leave the university town until their return was allowed by the faculty; that such an offense against decency could not be condoned; that I had understood that the entire class proposed to make common cause with their officers and leave the university with them; that to this we interposed no objection; that it simply meant less work for the faculty during the remainder of the year; that it was far more important for the university to maintain a character for decency and good discipline than to have a large body of students; and that, if necessary to maintain such a character, we would certainly allow the whole student body in all the classes to go home and would begin anew. I then drew a picture. I sketched a member of the class who had left the university on account of this discipline entering the paternal door, encountering a question as to the cause of his unexpected home-coming, and replying that the cause was the outrageous tyranny of the president and faculty. I pictured, then, the father and mother of the home-coming student asking what the cause or pretext of this ``tyranny'' was, and I then said: ``I defy any one of you to show your father and mother the `mock programme' which has caused the trouble. There is not one of you here who dares do it; there is not one of you who would not be turned out of his father's door if he were thus to insult his mother.'' At this there came a round of applause. I then expressed my personal regret that the penalty must fall upon four men whom I greatly respected; but fall it must unless the offenders were manly enough to give themselves up. The result was that at the close I was greeted with a round of applause; and immediately afterward the four officers came to me, acknowledged the justice of the discipline, and expressed the hope that their suspension might not go beyond that term. It did not: at the close of the term they were allowed to return; and from that day ``mock programmes'' of the sort concerned, which in many American colleges had been a chronic evil, never reappeared at Cornell. The result of this action encouraged me greatly as to the reliance to be placed on the sense of justice in the great body of our students when directly and properly appealed to.

Still another thing which I sought to promote was a reasonable devotion to athletics. My own experience as a member of a boating-club at Yale had shown me what could be done, and I think one of the best investments I ever made was in giving a racing-boat to the Cornell crew on Cayuga Lake. The fact that there were so many students trained sturdily in rural homes in the bracing air of western New York, who on every working-day of college life tramped up the University Hill, and on other days explored the neighboring hills and vales, gave us a body of men sure to do well as athletes. At their first contest with the other universities on the Connecticut River at Springfield they were beaten, but they took their defeat manfully. Some time after this, General Grant, then President of the United States, on his visit to the university, remarked to me that he saw the race at Springfield; that our young men ought to have won it; and that, in his opinion, they would have won it if they had not been unfortunately placed in shallow water, where there were eddies making against them. This remark struck me forcibly, coming as it did from one who had so keen a judgment in every sort of contest. I bore it in mind, and was not surprised when, a year or two later (1875), the Cornell crews, having met at Saratoga Lake the crews from Harvard, Yale, and other leading universities, won both the freshman and university races. It was humorously charged against me that when the news of this reached Ithaca I rang the university bells. This was not the fact. The simple truth was that, being in the midst of a body of students when the news came, and seeing them rush toward the bell-tower, I went with them to prevent injury to the bells by careless ringing; the ringing was done by them. I will not deny that the victory pleased me, as many others since gained by the Cornell crews have done; but far more to me than the victory itself was a letter written me by a prominent graduate of Princeton who was at Saratoga during the contest. He wrote me, as he said, not merely to congratulate me on the victory, but on the fine way in which our students took it, and the manly qualities which they showed in the hour of triumph and during their whole stay at Saratoga. This gave me courage. From that day I have never felt any fears as to the character of the student body. One leading cause of the success of Cornell University, in the midst of all its trials and struggles, has been the character of its students: working as they do under a system which gives them an interest in the studies they are pursuing, they have used the large liberty granted them in a way worthy of all praise.

Nor is this happy change seen at Cornell alone. The same causes,—mainly the increase in the range of studies and freedom of choice between them, have produced similar results in all the leading institutions. Recalling the student brawl at the Harvard commons which cost the historian Prescott his sight, and the riot at the Harvard commencement which blocked the way of President Everett and the British minister; recalling the fatal wounding of Tutor Dwight, the maiming of Tutor Goodrich, and the killing of two town rioters by students at Yale; and recalling the monstrous indignities to the president and faculty at Hobart of which I was myself witness, as well as the state of things at various other colleges in my own college days, I can testify, as can so many others, to the vast improvement in the conduct and aims of American students during the latter half of the nineteenth century.



The first business after formally opening the university was to put in operation the various courses of instruction, and vitally connected with these were the lectures of our non-resident professors. From these I had hoped much and was not disappointed. It had long seemed to me that a great lack in our American universities was just that sort of impulse which non-resident professors or lecturers of a high order could give. At Yale there had been, in my time, very few lectures of any sort to undergraduates; the work in the various classes was carried on, as a rule, without the slightest enthusiasm, and was considered by the great body of students a bore to be abridged or avoided as far as possible. Hence such pranks as cutting out the tongue of the college bell, of which two or three tongues still preserved in university club-rooms are reminders; hence, also, the effort made by members of my own class to fill the college bell with cement, which would set in a short time, and make any call to morning prayers and recitations for a day or two impossible—a performance which caused a long suspension of several of the best young fellows that ever lived, some of them good scholars, and all of them men who would have walked miles to attend a really inspiring lecture.

And yet, one or two experiences showed me what might be done by arousing an interest in regular class work. Professor Thacher, the head of the department of Latin, who conducted my class through the ``Germania'' and ``Agricola'' of Tacitus, was an excellent professor; but he yielded to the system then dominant at Yale, and the whole thing was but weary plodding. Hardly ever was there anything in the shape of explanation or comment; but at the end of his work with us he laid down the book, and gave us admirably the reasons why the study of Tacitus was of value, and why we might well recur to it in after years. Then came painfully into my mind the thought, ``What a pity that he had not said this at the beginning of his instruction rather than at the end!''

Still worse was it with some of the tutors, who took us through various classical works, but never with a particle of appreciation for them as literature or philosophy. I have told elsewhere how my classmate Smalley fought it out with one of these. No instruction from outside lectures was provided; but in my senior year there came to New Haven John Lord and George William Curtis, the former giving a course on modern history, the latter one upon recent literature, and both arousing my earnest interest in their subjects. It was in view of these experiences that in my ``plan of organization'' I dwelt especially upon the value of non-resident professors in bringing to us fresh life from the outside, and in thus preventing a certain provincialism and woodenness which come when there are only resident professors, and these selected mainly from graduates of the institution itself.

The result of the work done by our non-resident professors more than answered my expectations. The twenty lectures of Agassiz drew large numbers of our brightest young men, gave them higher insight into various problems of natural science, and stimulated among many a zeal for special investigation. Thus resulted an enthusiasm which developed out of our student body several scholars in natural science who have since taken rank among the foremost teachers and investigators in the United States. So, too, the lectures of Lowell on early literature and of Curtis on later literature aroused great interest among students of a more literary turn; while those of Theodore Dwight on the Constitution of the United States and of Bayard Taylor upon German literature awakened a large number of active minds to the beauties of these fields. The coming of Goldwin Smith was an especial help to us. He remained longer than the others; in fact, he became for two or three years a resident professor, exercising, both in his lecture-room and out of it, a great influence upon the whole life of the university. At a later period, the coming of George W. Greene as lecturer on American history, of Edward A. Freeman, regius professor at Oxford, as a lecturer on European history, and of James Anthony Froude in the same field, aroused new interest. Some of our experiences with the two gentlemen last named were curious. Freeman was a rough diamond—in his fits of gout very rough indeed. At some of his lectures he appeared clad in a shooting-jacket and spoke sitting, his foot swathed to mitigate his sufferings. From New Haven came a characteristic story of him. He had been invited to attend an evening gathering, after one of his lectures, at the house of one of the professors, perhaps the finest residence in the town. With the exception of himself, the gentlemen all arrived in evening dress; he appeared in a shooting-jacket. Presently two professors arrived; and one of them, glancing through the rooms, and seeing Freeman thus attired, asked the other, ``What sort of a costume do you call that?'' The answer came instantly, ``I don't know, unless it is the costume of a Saxon swineherd before the Conquest.'' In view of Freeman's studies on the Saxon and Norman periods and the famous toast of the dean of Wells, ``In honor of Professor Freeman, who has done so much to reveal to us the rude manners of our ancestors,'' the Yale professor's answer seemed much to the point.

The lectures of Froude were exceedingly interesting; but every day he began them with the words ``Ladies and gentlemen,'' in the most comical falsetto imaginable,— a sort of Lord Dundreary manner,—so that, sitting beside him, I always noticed a ripple of laughter run- ning over the whole audience, which instantly disappeared as he settled into his work. He had a way of giving color to his lectures by citing bits of humorous history. Thus it was that he threw a vivid light on the horrors of civil war in Ireland during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, when he gave the plea of an Irish chieftain on trial for high treason, one of the charges against him being that he had burned the Cathedral of Cashel. His plea was: ``Me lords, I niver would have burned the cathaydral but that I supposed that his grace the lord archbishop was inside.''

Speaking of the strength of the clan spirit, he told me a story of the late Duke of Argyll, as follows: At a banquet of the great clan of which the duke was chief, a splendid snuff-box belonging to one of the clansmen, having attracted attention, was passed round the long table for inspection. By and by it was missing. All attempts to trace it were in vain, and the party broke up in disgust and distress at the thought that one of their number must be a thief. Some days afterward, the duke, putting on his dress-coat, found the box in his pocket, and immediately sent for the owner and explained the matter. ``I knew ye had it,'' said the owner. ``How did ye know it?'' said the duke. ``Saw ye tak' it.'' ``Then why did n't ye tell me?'' asked the duke. ``I thocht ye wanted it,'' was the answer.

Speaking of university life, Froude told the story of an Oxford undergraduate who, on being examined in Paley, was asked to name any instance which he had himself noticed of the goodness and forethought of the Almighty as evidenced in his works: to which the young man answered, ``The formation of the head of a bulldog. Its nose is so drawn back that it can hang on the bull and yet breathe freely; but for this, the bulldog would soon have to let go for want of breath.''

Walking one day with Froude, I spoke to him regarding his ``Nemesis of Faith,'' which I had read during my attach<e'>ship at St. Petersburg, and which had been greatly objected to by various Oxford dons, one of whom is said to have burned a copy of it publicly in one of the college quadrangles. He seemed somewhat dismayed at my question, and said, in a nervous sort of way, ``That was a young man's book—a young man's folly,'' and passed rapidly to other subjects.

From the stimulus given by the non-resident professors the resident faculty reaped much advantage. It might well be said that the former shook the bush and the latter caught the birds. What is most truthfully stated on the tablet to Professor Agassiz in the Cornell Memorial Chapel of the university might, in great part, be said of all the others. It runs as follows:

``To the memory of Louis Agassiz, LL.D. In the midst of great labors for science, throughout the world, he aided in laying the foundations of instruction at Cornell University, and, by his teachings here, gave an impulse to scientific studies, which remains a precious heritage. The trustees, in gratitude for his counsels and teachings, erect this memorial. 1884.''

An incidental benefit of the system was its happy influence upon the resident professors. Coming from abroad, and of recognized high position, the non-residents brought a very happy element to our social life. No veteran of our faculty is likely to forget the charm they diffused among us. To meet Agassiz socially was a delight; nor was it less a pleasure to sit at table with Lowell or Curtis. Of the many good stories told us by Lowell, I remember one especially. During a stay in Paris he dined with Sainte-Beuve, and took occasion to ask that most eminent of French critics which he thought the greater poet, Lamartine or Victor Hugo. Sainte-Beuve, shrugging his shoulders, replied: ``Eh bien, charlatan pour charlatan, je pref<e!>re Lamartine.'' This provoked another story, which was that, being asked by an American professor whether in his opinion the Empire of Napoleon III was likely to endure, Sainte-Beuve, who was a salaried senator of the Empire, answered with a shrug, ``Monsieur, je suis pay<e'> pour le croire.'' Agassiz also interested me by showing me the friendly, confidential, and familiar letters which he was then constantly receiving from the Emperor of Brazil, Dom Pedro—letters in which not only matters of science but of contemporary history were discussed. Bayard Taylor also delighted us all. Nothing could exceed, as a provocative to mirth, his recitations of sundry poems whose inspiration was inferior to their ambition. One especially brought down the house— ``The Eonx of Ruby,'' by a poet who had read Poe and Browning until he never hesitated to coin any word, no matter how nonsensical, which seemed likely to help his jingle. In many respects the most charming of all the newcomers was Goldwin Smith, whose stories, observations, reflections, deeply suggestive, humorous, and witty, were especially grateful at the close of days full of work and care. His fund of anecdotes was large. One of them illustrated the fact that even those who are best acquainted with a language not their own are in constant danger of making themselves ridiculous in using it. The Duc d'Aumale, who had lived long in England, and was supposed to speak English like an Englishman, presiding at a dinner of the British Association for the Advancement of Science, gave a toast as follows: ``De tree of science, may it shed down pease upon de nations.''

Another story related to Sir Allan MacNab, who, while commander of the forces in Canada, having received a card inscribed, ``The MacNab,'' immediately returned the call, and left a card on which was inscribed, ``The other MacNab.''

As I revise these lines, thirty-six years after his first coming, he is visiting me again to lay the corner-stone of the noble building which is to commemorate his services to Cornell. Though past his eightieth year, his memory constantly brings up new reminiscences. One of these I cannot forbear giving. He was at a party given by Lady Ashburton when Thomas Carlyle was present. During the evening, which was beautiful, the guests went out upon the lawn, and gazed at the starry heavens. All seemed especially impressed by the beauty of the moon, which was at the full, when Carlyle, fastening his eyes upon it, was heard to croak out, solemnly and bitterly, ``Puir auld creetur!''

The instruction of the university was at that time divided between sundry general courses and various technical departments, the whole being somewhat tentative. These general courses were mainly three: the arts course, which embraced both Latin and Greek; the course in literature, which embraced Latin and modern languages; and the course in science, which embraced more especially modern languages in connection with a somewhat extended range of scientific studies. Of these general divisions the one most in danger of shipwreck seemed to be the first. It had been provided for in the congressional act of 1862, evidently by an afterthought, and it was generally felt that if, in the storms besetting us, anything must be thrown overboard, it would be this; but an opportunity now arose for clenching it into our system. There was offered for sale the library of Professor Charles Anthon of Columbia, probably the largest and best collection in classical philology which had then been brought together in the United States. Discussing the situation with Mr. Cornell, I showed him the danger of restricting the institution to purely scientific and technical studies, and of thus departing from the university ideal. He saw the point, and purchased the Anthon library for us. Thenceforth it was felt that, with such a means of instruction, from such a source, the classical department must stand firm; that it must on no account be sacrificed; that, by accepting this gift, we had pledged ourselves to maintain it.

Yet, curiously, one of the most bitter charges constantly reiterated against us was that we were depreciating the study of ancient classical literature. Again and again it was repeated, especially in a leading daily journal of the metropolis under the influence of a sectarian college, that I was ``degrading classical studies.'' No- thing could be more unjust; I had greatly enjoyed such studies myself, had found pleasure in them since my graduation, and had steadily urged them upon those who had taste or capacity for them. But, as a student and as a university instructor, I had noticed two things in point, as many other observers had done: the first of these was that very many youths who go through their Latin and Greek Readers, and possibly one or two minor authors besides, exhaust the disciplinary value of such studies, and thenceforward pursue them listlessly and perfunctorily, merely droning over them. On their account it seemed certainly far better to present some other courses of study in which they could take an interest. As a matter of fact, I constantly found that many young men who had been doing half-way mental labor, which is perhaps worse than none, were at once brightened and strengthened by devoting themselves to other studies more in accordance with their tastes and aims.

But a second and very important point was that, in the two colleges of which I had been an undergraduate, classical studies were really hampered and discredited by the fact that the minority of students who loved them were constantly held back by a majority who disliked them; and I came to the conclusion that the true way to promote such studies in the United States was to take off this drag as much as possible, by presenting other courses of studies which would attract those who had no taste for Latin and Greek, thus leaving those who had a taste for them free to carry them much farther than had been customary in American universities up to that time. My expectations in this respect were fully met. A few years after the opening of the university, contests were arranged between several of the leading colleges and universities, the main subjects in the competition being Latin, Greek, and mathematics; and to the confusion of the gainsayers, Cornell took more first prizes in these subjects than did all the older competing institutions together. Thenceforward the talk of our ``degrading clas- sical studies'' was less serious. The history of such studies at Cornell since that time has fully justified the policy then pursued. Every competent observer will, I feel sure, say that at no other American institution have these studies been pursued with more earnestness or with better results. The Museum of Classical Archaeology, which has since been founded by the generous gift of Mr. Sage, has stimulated an increased interest in them; and graduates of Cornell are now exercising a wide influence in classical teaching: any one adequately acquainted with the history of American education knows what the influence of Cornell has been in bettering classical instruction throughout the State of New York. There has been another incidental gain. Among the melancholy things of college life in the old days was the relation of students to classical professors. The majority of the average class looked on such a professor as generally a bore and, as examinations approached, an enemy; they usually sneered at him as a pedant, and frequently made his peculiarities a subject for derision. Since that day far better relations have grown up between teachers and taught, especially in those institutions where much is left to the option of the students. The students in each subject, being those who are really interested in it, as a rule admire and love their professor, and whatever little peculiarities he may have are to them but pleasing accompaniments of his deeper qualities. This is a perfectly simple and natural result, which will be understood fully by any one who has observed human nature to much purpose.

Besides this course in arts, in which classical studies were especially prominent, there were established courses in science, in literature, and in philosophy, differing from each other mainly in the proportion observed between ancient languages, modern languages, and studies in various sciences and other departments of thought. Each of these courses was laid down with much exactness for the first two years, with large opportunity for choice between subjects in the last two years. The system worked well, and has, from time to time, been modified, as the improvement in the schools of the State, and other circumstances have required.

In proposing these courses I was much influenced by an idea broached in Herbert Spencer's ``Treatise on Education.'' This idea was given in his discussion of the comparative values of different studies, when he arrived at the conclusion that a subject which ought to be among those taught at the beginning of every course is human physiology,—that is to say, an account of the structure, functions, and proper management of the human body, on which so much depends for every human being. It seemed to me that not only was there great force in Spencer's argument, but that there was an additional reason for placing physiology among the early studies of most of the courses; and this was that it formed a very good beginning for scientific study in general. An observation of my own strengthened me in this view. I remembered that, during my school life, while my tastes were in the direction of classical and historical studies, the weekly visits to the school by the surgeon who lectured upon the human eye, ear, and sundry other organs, using models and preparations, interested me intensely, and were a real relief from other studies. There was still another reason. For the professorship in this department Professor Agassiz had recommended to me Dr. Burt Wilder; and I soon found him, as Agassiz had foretold, not only a thorough investigator, but an admirable teacher. His lectures were not read, but were, as regards phrasing, extemporaneous; and it seemed to me that, mingled with other studies, a course of lectures given in so good a style, by so gifted a man, could not fail to be of great use in teaching our students, incidentally, the best way of using the English language in communicating their ideas to their fellowmen. I had long deplored the rhetorical fustian and oratorical tall-talk which so greatly afflict our country, and which had been, to a considerable extent, cultivated in our colleges and universities; I determined to try, at least, to substitute for it clean, clear, straightforward statement and illustration; and it seemed to me that a course of lectures on a subject which admitted neither fustian nor tall-talk, by a clear-headed, clear-voiced, earnest, and honest man, was the best thing in the world for this purpose. So was adopted the plan of beginning most courses with an extended course of lectures upon human physiology, in which to real practice in investigation by the class is added the hearing of a first-rate lecturer.

As regards the course in literature, I determined that use should be made of this to promote the general culture of students, as had been done up to that time by very few of our American universities. At Yale in my day, there was never even a single lecture on any subject in literature, either ancient or modern: everything was done by means of ``recitations'' from text-books; and while young men read portions of masterpieces in Greek and Latin, their attention was hardly ever directed to these as literature. As regards the great fields of modern literature, nothing whatever was done. In the English literature and language, every man was left entirely to his own devices. One of the first professors I called to Cornell was Hiram Corson, who took charge of the department of English literature; and from that day to this he has been a center from which good culture has radiated among our students. Professor H. B. Sprague was also called; and he also did excellent work, though in a different way. I also added non-resident professors. My original scheme I still think a good one. It was to call James Russell Lowell for early English literature, Bishop Arthur Cleveland Coxe for the literature of the Elizabethan and Jacobean periods, Edwin Whipple for the literature of Queen Anne's time, and George William Curtis for recent and contemporary literature. Each of these men was admirable as a scholar and lecturer in the particular field named; but the restricted means of the university obliged me to cut the scheme down, so that it included simply Lowell for early and Curtis for recent literature. Other lectures in connection with the instruction of the resident professors marked an epoch, and did much to remove anything like Philistinism from the student body. Bayard Taylor's lectures in German literature thus supplemented admirably the excellent work of the resident professors Hewett and Horatio White. To remove still further any danger of Philistinism, I called an eminent graduate of Harvard,— Charles Chauncey Shackford,—whose general lectures in various fields of literature were attractive and useful. In all this I was mainly influenced by the desire to prevent the atmosphere of the university becoming simply and purely that of a scientific and technical school. Highly as I prized the scientific spirit and technical training, I felt that the frame of mind engendered by them should be modified by an acquaintance with the best literature as literature. There were many evidences that my theory was correct. Some of our best students in the technical departments developed great love for literary studies. One of them attracted much attention by the literary excellence of his writings; and on my speaking to him about it, and saying that it seemed strange to me that a man devoted to engineering should show such a taste for literature, he said that there was no greater delight to him than passing from one of the studies to the other—that each was a recreation after the other.

The effort to promote that element in the general culture of the student body which comes from literature, ancient and modern, gained especial strength from a source usually unpromising—the mathematical department. Two professors highly gifted in this field exercised a wide and ennobling influence outside it. First of these was Evan William Evans, who had been known to me at Yale as not only one of the best scholars in the class of 1851, but also one of its two foremost writers. Later, he developed a passion for modern literature, and his influence was strongly felt in behalf of the humanities. His successor was James Edward Oliver, a graduate of Harvard, a genius in his chosen field, but always exercising a large influence by virtue of his broad, liberal, tolerant views of life which were promoted by study of the best thoughts of the best thinkers of all times.

The work of organizing and developing the general courses was comparatively easy, and the stimulus given at the outset by the non-resident professors rendered it all the more so. But with the technical departments and special courses there were grave difficulties. The department of civil engineering, of course, went easily enough; there were plenty of precedents for it, and the admirable professor first elected was, at his death, succeeded by another who most vigorously and wisely developed it: Estevan Fuertes, drawn from the most attractive surroundings in the island of Porto Rico to the United States by a deep love of science, and retained here during the rest of his life by a love, no less sincere, for American liberty—a rare combination of the virtues and capabilities of the Latin races with the best results of an American environment. I may mention, in passing, that this combination came out curiously in his views of American citizenship. He was wont to marvel at the indifference of the average American to his privileges and duties, and especially at the lack of a proper estimate of his function at elections. I have heard him say: ``When I vote, I put on my best clothes and my top hat, go to the polls, salute the officers, take off my hat, and cast my ballot.''

It may be worth mentioning here that, at the election of the first professor in this department, a curious question arose. Among the candidates was one from Harvard, whose testimonials showed him to be an admirable acquisition; and among these testimonials was one from an eminent bishop, who spoke in high terms of the scientific qualifications of the candidate, but added that he felt it his duty to warn me that the young man was a Unitarian. At this I wrote the bishop, thanking him, and saying that the only question with me was as to the moral and intellectual qualifications of the candidate; and that if these were superior to those of other candidates, I would nominate him to the trustees even if he were a Buddhist. The good bishop at first took some offense at this; and, in one of the communications which ensued, expressed doubts whether laymen had any right to teach at all, since the command to teach was given to the apostles and their successors, and seemed therefore confined to those who had received holy orders; but he became most friendly later, and I look back to my meetings with him afterward as among the delightful episodes of my life.

The technical department which caused me the most anxiety was that of agriculture. It had been given the most prominent place in the Congressional act of 1862, and in our charter from the State in 1865. But how should agriculture be taught; what proportion should we observe between theory and practice; and what should the practice be? These questions elicited all sorts of answers. Some eminent agriculturists insisted that the farm should be conducted purely as a business operation; others that it should be a ``model farm''—regardless of balance sheets; others still that it should be wholly experimental. Our decision was to combine what was best in all these views; and several men attempted this as resident professors, but with small success. One day, after a series of such failures, when we were almost desperate, there appeared a candidate from an agricultural college in Ireland. He bore a letter from an eminent clergyman in New York, was of pleasing appearance and manners, gave glowing accounts of the courses he had followed, expatiated on the means by which farming had been carried to a high point in Scotland, and ventured suggestions as to what might be done in America. I had many misgivings. His experience was very remote from ours, and he seemed to me altogether too elegant for the work in hand; but Mr. Cornell had visited English farms, was greatly impressed by their excellence, and urged a trial of the new-comer. He was duly called; and, that he might begin his courses of instruction, an order was given for a considerable collection of English agricultural implements and for the erection of new farm-buildings after English patterns, Mr. Cornell generously advancing the required money.

All this took time—much time. At first great things were expected by the farmers of the State, but gradually their confidence waned. As they saw the new professor walking over the farm in a dilettantish way, superintending operations with gloved hands, and never touching any implement, doubts arose which soon ripened into skepticism. Typical were the utterances of our farm manager. He was a plain, practical farmer, who had taken the first prize of the State Agricultural Society for the excellence of his own farm; and, though he at first indulged in high hopes regarding the new professor, he soon had misgivings, and felt it his duty to warn me. He said: ``Yew kin depend on 't, he ain't a-goin' to do nothin'; he don't know nothin' about corn, and he don't want to know nothin' about corn; AND HE DON'T BELIEVE IN PUNKINS! Depend on 't, as soon as his new barn is finished and all his new British tackle is brought together, he'll quit the job.'' I reasoned that, to a farmer brought up among the glorious fields of Indian corn in western New York, and accustomed to rejoice in the sight of golden pumpkins, diffusion of other cultures must seem like treason; but, alas! he was right. As soon as the new buildings and arrangements were ready for our trial of British scientific agriculture, the young foreign professor notified me that he had accepted the headship of an agricultural college in Canada. Still, he met with no greater success there than with us; nor was his reputation increased when, after the foul attacks made upon Mr. Cornell in the legislature, he volunteered to come to the investigation and testify that Mr. Cornell was ``not a practical man.'' In this the career of the young agriculturist culminated. Having lost his professorship in Canada, he undertook the management of a grocery in the oil-regions of western Pennsylvania; and scientific British agriculture still awaits among us a special representative. Happily, since that day, men trained practically in the agriculture of the United States have studied the best British methods, and brought us much that has been of real use.

Fortunately I had found three men who enabled us to tide our agricultural department over those dark days, in which we seemed to be playing ``Hamlet'' with Hamlet left out. The first of these was the Hon. John Stanton Gould, whom I called as a lecturer upon agriculture. He had been president of the State Agricultural Society, and was eminent, not only for his knowledge of his subject, but for his power of making it interesting. Men came away from Mr. Gould's lectures filled with intense desire to get hold of a spade or hoe and to begin turning the soil.

So, also, the steady work of Professor George C. Caldwell, whom I had called from the State College of Pennsylvania to take charge of the department of agricultural chemistry, won the respect of all leaders in agriculture throughout the State, and, indeed, throughout the country. And with especial gratitude should be named Dr. James Law of the British Royal Veterinary College, whom I had found in London, and called to our veterinary professorship. Never was there a more happy selection. From that day to this, thirty-six years, he has been a tower of strength to the university, and has rendered incalculable services to the State and Nation. His quiet, thorough work impressed every one most favorably. The rudest of the surrounding farmers learned more and more to regard him with respect and admiration, and the State has recently recognized his services by establishing in connection with the university a State veterinary college under his control.

The work of these three men saved us. Apart from it, the agricultural department long remained a sort of slough of despond; but at last a brighter day dawned. From the far-off State Agricultural College of Iowa came tidings of a professor—Mr. J. I. P. Roberts—who united the practical and theoretical qualities desired. I secured him, and thenceforward there was no more difficulty. For more than twenty years, as professor and lecturer, he has largely aided in developing agriculture throughout the State and country; and when others were added to him, like Comstock and Bailey, the success of the department became even more brilliant. Still, its old reputation lasted for a time, even after a better era had been fully ushered in. About a year after the tide had thus turned a meeting of the State ``Grange'' was held at the neighboring city of Elmira; and the leading speakers made the university and its agricultural college an object of scoffing which culminated in a resolution denouncing both, and urging the legislature to revoke our charter. At this a bright young graduate of Cornell, an instructor in the agricultural department, who happened to be present, stood up manfully, put a few pertinent questions, found that none of the declaimers had visited the university, declared that they were false to their duty in not doing so, protested against their condemning the institution unheard and unseen, and then and there invited them all to visit the institution and its agricultural department without delay. Next day this whole body of farmers, with their wives, sons, and daughters, were upon us. Everything was shown them. Knowing next to nothing about modern appliances for instruction in science and they were amazed at all they saw; the libraries, the laboratories, and, above all, the natural-science collections and models greatly impressed them. They were taken everywhere, and shown not only our successes but our failures; nothing was concealed from them, and, as a result, though they ``came to scoff,'' they ``remained to pray.'' They called a new session of their body, pledged to us their support, and passed resolutions commending our work and condemning the State legislature for not doing more in our behalf. That was the turning-point for the agricultural department; and from that day to this the legislature has dealt generously with us, and the influence of the department for good throughout the State has been more and more widely acknowledged.

Of the two technical departments referred to in the origi- nal act of Congress, the second—specified under the vague name of ``Mechanic Arts''—went better, though there was at first much groping to find just what ought to be done. First of all, there was a danger which demanded delicate handling. This danger lay in Mr. Cornell's wish to establish, in vital connection with the university, great factories for the production of articles for sale, especially chairs and shoes, thus giving large bodies of students opportunities for self-support. In discussing this matter with him, I pointed to the fact that, in becoming a manufacturing corporation we were making a business venture never contemplated by our charter; that it was exceedingly doubtful whether such a corporation could be combined with an educational institution without ruining both; that the men best fitted to manage a great factory were hardly likely to be the best managers of a great institution of learning; that under our charter we had duties, not merely to those who wished to support themselves by labor, but to others; and I finally pointed out to him many reasons for holding that such a scheme contravened the act of Congress and the legislation of the State. I insisted that the object of our charters from the State and Nation was not to enable a great number of young men to secure an elementary education while making shoes and chairs; that for these the public schools were provided; that our main purpose must be to send out into all parts of the State and Nation thoroughly trained graduates, who should develop and improve the main industries of the country, and, by their knowledge and example, train up skilful artisans of various sorts and in every locality. Mr. Cornell's conduct in this matter was admirable. Tenacious as he usually was when his opinion was formed, and much as it must have cost him to give up what had become a darling project, he yielded to this view.

New questions now opened as to this ``Department of Mechanic Arts.'' It was clear to me, from what I had seen abroad, that not all the models I had sent from Europe would be sufficient to give the practical character which such a department needed; that its graduates must have a direct, practical acquaintance with the construction and use of machinery before they could become leaders in great mechanical enterprises; that they must be made, not only mathematicians and draftsmen, but skilled workmen, practically trained in the best methods and processes. A very shrewd artisan said to me: ``When a young mechanical engineer comes among us fresh from college, only able to make figures and pictures, we rarely have much respect for him: the trouble with the great majority of those who come from technical institutions is that they don't know as much about practical methods and processes as we know.''

I felt that there was truth in this, but, as things were, hardly dared tell this to the trustees. It would have scared them, for it seemed to open the door to great expenditures demanded by a mere theory; but I laid my views before Mr. Cornell, and he agreed with me so far as to send to us from his agricultural works at Albany sundry large pieces of old machinery, which he thought might be rebuilt for our purposes. But this turned out to be hardly practicable. I dared not, at that stage of the proceedings, bring into the board of trustees a proposal to buy machinery and establish a machine-shop; the whole would have a chimerical look, and was sure to repel them. Therefore it was that, at my own expense, I bought a power-lathe and other pieces of machinery; and, through the active efforts of Professor John L. Morris, my steadfast supporter in the whole matter, these were set up in our temporary wooden laboratory. A few students began using them, and to good purpose. Mr. Cornell was greatly pleased. Other trustees of a practical turn visited the place, and the result was that opinion in the governing board soon favored a large practical equipment for the department.

On this I prepared a report, taking up the whole subject with great care, and brought it before them, my main suggestion being that a practical beginning of the department should be made by the erection and equipment of a small building on the north side of the university grounds, near our main water-power. Then came a piece of great good fortune. Among the charter trustees of the university was Mr. Cornell's old friend and associate in telegraphic enterprise, Hiram Sibley of Rochester; and at the close of the meeting Mr. Sibley asked me if I could give him a little time on the university grounds after the adjournment of the meeting. I, of course, assented; and next morning, on our visiting the grounds together, he asked me to point out the spot where the proposed college of mechanic arts might best be placed. On my doing so, he looked over the ground carefully, and then said that he would himself erect and equip the building. So began Sibley College, which is to-day, probably, all things considered, the most successful department of this kind in our own country, and perhaps in any country. In the hands, first of Professors Morris and Sweet, and later under the direction of Dr. Thurston, it has become of the greatest value to every part of the United States, and indeed to other parts of the American continent.

At the outset a question arose, seemingly trivial, but really serious. Mr. Sibley had gone far beyond his original proposals; and when the lecture-rooms, drafting- rooms, modeling-rooms, foundries, shops for ironwork, woodwork, and the like, had been finished, the question came up: Shall our aim be to produce things having a pecuniary value, or shall we produce simply samples of the most highly finished workmanship, having, generally, no value? Fortunately, Professors Morris and Sweet were able to combine both these purposes, and to employ a considerable number of students in the very best of work which had a market value. The whole thing was thereby made a success, but it waited long for recognition. A result followed not unlike some which have occurred in other fields in our country. At the Centennial Exhibition of 1876, an exhibit was made of the work done by students in Sibley College, including a steam-engine, power-lathes, face-plates, and various tools of precision, admirably fin- ished, each a model in its kind. But while many mechanics praised them, they attracted no special attention from New England authorities. On the other hand, an exhibit of samples of work from the School of Technology of Moscow, which had no merchantable value,—many of the pieces being of antiquated pattern, but of exquisite finish and showily arranged,—aroused great admiration among sundry New England theorists; even the head of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in enthusiastic magazine articles, called the attention of the whole country to them, and urged the necessity of establishing machine- shops in connection with schools of science. The fact that this had already been done, and better done, at Cornell, was loftily ignored. Western New York seemed a Nazareth out of which no good could come. That same straining of the mind's eye toward the East, that same tendency to provincialism which had so often afflicted Massachusetts, evidently prevented her wise men in technology from recognizing any new departure west of them.

At a later period I had occasion to make a final comment on all this. Both as commissioner at the Paris Exhibition and as minister to Russia, I came to know intimately Wischniegradsky, who had been the head of the Moscow School of Technology and afterward Russian minister of finance. He spoke to me in the highest terms of what original American methods had done for railways; and the climax was reached when the Moscow methods, so highly praised by Boston critics, proved to be utterly inadequate in training mechanical engineers to furnish the machinery needed in Russia, and men from the American schools, trained in the methods of Cornell, sent over locomotives and machinery of all sorts for the new Trans-Siberian Railway, of which the eastern terminus was that very city of Moscow which enjoyed the privileges so lauded and magnified by the Boston critics! Time has reversed their judgment: the combination of the two systems, so ably and patiently developed by Director Thurston, is the one which has happily prevailed.

Few days in the history of Cornell University have been so fraught with good as that on which Thurston accepted my call to the headship of Sibley College. At the very outset he gained the confidence and gratitude of trustees, professors, students, and, indeed, of his profession throughout the country, by his amazing success as professor, as author, and as organizer and administrator of that department, which he made not only one of the largest, but one of the best of its kind in the world. The rapidity and wisdom of his decisions, the extent and excellence of his work, his skill in attracting the best men, his ability in quieting rivalries and—animosities, and the kindly firmness of his whole policy were a source of wonder to all who knew him. And, at his lamented death in 1903, it was found that he had rendered another service of a sort which such strong men as he are often incapable of rendering— he had trained a body of assistants and students worthy to take up his work.

Another department which I had long wished to see established in our country now began to take shape. From my boyhood I had a love for architecture. In my young manhood this had been developed by readings in Ruskin, and later by architectural excursions in Europe; and the time had now arrived when it seemed possible to do something for it. I had collected what, at that period, was certainly one of the largest, if not the largest, of the architectural libraries in the United States, besides several thousand large architectural photographs, drawings, casts, models, and other material from every country in Europe. This had been, in fact, my pet extravagance; and a propitious time seeming now to arrive, I proposed to the trustees that if they would establish a department of architecture and call a professor to it, I would transfer to it my special library and collections. This offer was accepted; and thus was founded this additional department, which began its good career under Professor Charles Babcock, who, at this present writing, is enjoying, as professor emeritus, the respect and gratitude of a long series of classes which have profited by his teachings, and the cordial companionship of his colleagues, who rejoice to profit by his humorous, but none the less profound, observations upon problems arising in the university and in the world in general.

As regards this illustrative material, I recall one curious experience. While on one of my architectural excursions through the great towns of eastern France, I arrived at Troyes. On visiting the government agent for photographing public monuments, I noticed in his rooms some admirably executed pieces of stone carving,—capitals, corbels, and the like,—and on my asking him whence these came, he told me that they had been recently taken out of the cathedral by the architect who was ``restoring'' it. After my purchases were made, he went with me to this great edifice, one of the finest in Europe; and there I found that, on each side of the high altar, the architect had taken out several brackets, or corbels, of the best mediaeval work, and substituted new ones designed by himself. One of these corbels thus taken out the government photographer had in his possession. It was very striking, representing the grotesque face of a monk in the midst of a mass of foliage supporting the base of a statue, all being carved with great spirit. Apart from its architectural value, it had a historical interest, since it must have witnessed the famous betrothal of the son and daughter of the English and French kings mentioned in Shakspere, to say nothing of many other mediaeval pageants.

On my making known to the photographer the fact that I was engaged in founding a school of architecture in the United States, and was especially anxious to secure a good specimen of French work, he sold me this example, which is now in the museum of the Architectural Department at Cornell. I allude to this, in passing, as showing what monstrous iniquities (and I could name many others) are committed in the great mediaeval buildings of Europe under pretense of ``restoration.''



In close connection with the technical departments were various laboratories. For these, place was at first made here and there in cellars and sheds; but at last we were able to erect for them buildings large and complete, and to the opening of the first of these came Mr. Cleveland, then Governor of New York, and later President of the United States. Having laid the corner-stone of the Memorial Chapel and made an excellent speech, which encouraged us all, he accompanied me to the new building devoted to chemistry and physics, which was then opened for the first time. On entering it, he expressed his surprise at its equipment, and showed that he had seen nothing of the kind before. I learned afterward that he had received a thorough preparation in classics and mathematics for college, but that, on account of the insufficient means of his father, he was obliged to give up his university course; and it was evident, from his utterances at this time, as well as when visiting other colleges and universities, that he lamented this.

Out of this laboratory thus opened was developed, later, a new technical department. Among my happiest hours were those spent in visiting the various buildings, collections, and lecture-rooms, after my morning's work, to see how all were going on; and, during various visits to the new laboratory I noticed that the majority of the students were, in one way or another, giving attention to matters connected with electricity. There had already been built in the machine-shops, under the direction of Professor Anthony, a dynamo which was used in lighting our grounds, this being one of the first examples of electric lighting in the United States; and on one of my visits I said to him, ``It looks much as if, with the rapid extension throughout the country of the telegraph, telephone, electric lighting, and electric railways, we shall be called on, before long, to train men for a new profession in connection with them.'' As he assented to this, I asked him to sketch out a plan for a ``Department of Electrical Engineering,'' and in due time he appeared with it before the executive committee of the trustees. But it met much opposition from one of our oldest members, who was constitutionally averse to what he thought new-fangled education, partly from conservatism, partly from considerations of expense; and this opposition was so threatening that, in order to save the proposed department, I was obliged to pledge myself to become responsible for any extra expense caused by it during the first year. Upon this pledge it was established. Thus was created, as I believe, the first department of electrical engineering ever known in the United States, and, so far as I can learn, the first ever known in any country.

But while we thus strove to be loyal to those parts of our charter which established technical instruction, there were other parts in which I personally felt even a deeper interest. In my political reminiscences I have acknowledged the want of preparation in regard to practical matters of public concern which had hampered me as a member of the State Senate. Having revolved this subject in my mind for a considerable time, I made, while commissioner to the Paris Exposition of 1878, a careful examination of the courses of study in political and economic science established in European universities, and on my return devoted to this subject my official report. Like such reports generally, it was delayed a long time in the Government Printing-office, was then damned with faint praise, and nothing more came of it until the following year, when, being called to deliver the annual address at the Johns Hopkins University, I wrought its main points into a plea for education in relation to politics. This was widely circulated with some effect, and I now brought a modest proposal in the premises before our trustees. Its main feature was that Mr. Frank B. Sanborn, a graduate of Harvard, Secretary of the Board of Charities of the State of Massachusetts and of the Social Science Association of the United States, should be called to give a course of practical lectures before the senior class during at least one term,—his subjects to be such as pauperism, crime (incipient and chronic), inebriety, lunacy, and the best dealing of modern states with these; also that his instructions should be given, not only by lectures, but by actual visits with his classes to the great charitable and penal institutions of the State, of which there were many within easy distance of the university. For several years, and until the department took a different form, this plan was carried out with excellent results. Professor Sanborn and his students, beginning with the county almshouse and jail, visited the reformatories, the prisons, the penitentiaries, and the asylums of various sorts in the State; made careful examinations of them; drew up reports upon them, these reports forming the subject of discussions in which professor and students took earnest part; and a number of young men who have since taken influential places in the State legislature were thus instructed as to the best actual and possible dealings with all these subjects. I still think that more should be done in all our universities to train men by this method for the public service in this most important and interesting field, and also in matters pertaining generally to State, county, and city administration.

Closely connected with this instruction was that in political economy and history. As to the first of these, I had, some years before, seen reason to believe that my strong, and perhaps bigoted free-trade ideas were at least not so universal in their application as I had supposed. Down to the time of our Civil War I had been very intolerant on this subject, practically holding a protectionist to be either a Pharisee or an idiot. I had convinced myself not only that the principles of free trade are axiomatic, but that they afford the only means of binding nations together in permanent peace; that Great Britain was our best friend; that, in desiring us to adopt her own system, she was moved by broad, philosophic, and philanthropic considerations. But as the war drew on and I saw the haughtiness and selfishness toward us shown by her ruling classes, there came in my mind a revulsion which led me to examine more closely the foundations of my economical belief. I began to attribute more importance to John Stuart Mill's famous ``exception,'' to the effect that the building up of certain industries may be necessary to the very existence of a nation, and that perhaps the best way of building them up is to adopt an adequate system of protective duties. Down to this time I had been a disciple of Adam Smith and Bastiat; but now appeared the published lectures of Roscher of Leipsic, upon what he called ``The Historical System'' of political economy. Its fundamental idea was that political economy is indeed a science, to be wrought out by scientific methods; but that the question how far its conclusions are adapted to the circumstances of any nation at any time is for statesmen to determine. This impressed me much. Moreover, I was forced to acknowledge that the Morrill protective tariff, adopted at the Civil War period, was a necessity for revenue; so that my old theory of a tariff for revenue easily developed into a belief in a tariff for revenue with incidental protection. This idea has been developed in my mind as time has gone on, until at present I am a believer in protection as the only road to ultimate free trade. My process of reasoning on the subject I have given in another chapter.

At the opening of the university there was but little instruction in political economy, that little being mainly given by our professor of moral philosophy, Dr. Wilson, a man broad in his views and strong in reasoning power, who had been greatly impressed by the ideas of Friedrich List, the German protectionist. But lectures were also given by free-traders, and I adopted the plan of having both sides as well represented as possible. This was, at first, complained of; sundry good people said it was like calling a professor of atheism into a theological seminary; but my answer was that our university was not, like a theological seminary, established to arrive at certain conclusions fixed beforehand, or to propagate an established creed; that, political economy not being an exact science, our best course was to call eminent lecturers to present both sides of the main questions in dispute. The result was good. It stimulated much thought, and doubtless did something to promote that charity to opposing economical opinions which in my own case had been, through my early manhood, so conspicuously lacking.

The second of these departments—history—was the one for which I cared most. I believed then, and later experience has strengthened my conviction, that the best of all methods in presenting every subject bearing on political and social life is the historical. My own studies had been mainly in this field, and I did what I could to establish historical courses in the university. The lectures which I had given at the University of Michigan were now developed more fully and again presented; but to these I constantly added new lectures and, indeed, new courses, though at a great disadvantage, since my administrative duties stood constantly in the way of my professorial work. At the same time I went on collecting my historical library until it became, in its way, probably the largest and most complete of its kind in the possession of any individual in the United States. Gradually strong men were drawn into the department, and finally there came one on whom I could lay a large portion of the work.

The story is somewhat curious. During the year 1877- 1878, in Germany and France, I had prepared a short course of lectures upon the historical development of criminal law; and while giving it to my senior class after my return, I noticed a student, two or three years below the average age of the class, carefully taking notes and apparently much interested. One day, going toward my house after the lecture, I found him going in the same direction, and, beginning conversation with him, learned that he was a member of the sophomore class; that he had corresponded with me, two or three years before, as to the best means of working his way through the university; had followed out a suggestion of mine, then made, in that he had learned the printer's trade; had supported himself through the preparatory school by means of it, and was then carrying himself through college by setting type for the university press. Making inquiries of professors and students, I found that the young man, both at school and at the university, was, as a rule, at the head of every class he had entered; and therefore it was that, when the examination papers came in at the close of the term, I first took up his papers to see how he had stood the test. They proved to be masterly. There were excellent scholars in the senior class, but not one had done so well as this young sophomore; in fact, I doubt whether I could have passed a better examination on my own lectures. There was in his answers a combination of accuracy with breadth which surprised me. Up to that time, passing judgment on the examination papers had been one of the most tedious of my burdens; for it involved wading through several hundred pages of crabbed manuscript, every term, and weighing carefully the statements therein embodied. A sudden light now flashed upon me. I sent for the young sophomore, cautioned him to secrecy, and then and there made him my examiner in history. He, a member of the sophomore class, took the papers of the seniors and resident graduates, and passed upon them carefully and admirably— better than I should have ever had the time and patience to do. Of course this was kept entirely secret; for had the seniors known that I had intrusted their papers to the tender mercies of a sophomore, they would probably have mobbed me. This mode of examination continued until the young man's graduation, when he was openly appointed examiner in history, afterward becoming instructor in history, then assistant professor; and, finally, another university having called him to a full professorship, he was appointed full professor of history at Cornell, and has greatly distinguished himself both by his ability in research and his power in teaching. To him have been added others as professors, assistant professors, and instructors, so that the department is now on an excellent footing. In one respect its development has been unexpectedly satisfactory. At the opening of the university one of my strongest hopes had been to establish a professorship of American history. It seemed to me monstrous that there was not, in any American university, a course of lectures on the history of the United States; and that an American student, in order to secure such instruction in the history of his own country, must go to the lectures of Laboulaye at the Coll<e!>ge de France. Thither I had gone some years before, and had been greatly impressed by Laboulaye's admirable presentation of his subject, and awakened to the fact that American history is not only more instructive, but more interesting, than I had ever supposed it. My first venture was to call Professor George W. Greene of Brown University for a course of lectures on the history of our Revolutionary period, and Professor Dwight of Columbia College for a course upon the constitutional history of the United States. But finally my hope was more fully realized: I was enabled to call as resident professor my old friend Moses Coit Tyler, whose book on the ``History of American Literature'' is a classic, and who, in his new field, exerted a powerful influence for good upon several generations of students. More than once since, as I have heard him, it has been borne in upon me that I was born too soon. Remembering the utter want of any such instruction in my own college days, I have especially envied those who have had the good fortune to be conducted by him, and men like him, through the history of our own country.[6]

[6] To my great sorrow, he died in 1900.—A. D. W.

In some of these departments to which I have referred there were occasionally difficulties requiring much tact in handling. During my professorial days at the University of Michigan I once heard an eminent divine deliver an admirable address on what he called ``The Oscillatory Law of Human Progress''—that is, upon the tendency of human society, when reacting from one evil, to swing to another almost as serious in the opposite direction. In swinging away from the old cast-iron course of instruction, and from the text-book recitation of the mere dry bones of literature, there may be seen at this hour some tendency to excessive reaction. When I note in sundry university registers courses of instruction offered in some of the most evanescent and worthless developments of contemporary literature,—some of them, indeed, worse than worthless,—I think of a remark made to me by a college friend of mine who will be remembered by the Yale men of the fifties for his keen and pithy judgments of men and things. Being one day in New Haven looking for assistant professors and instructors, I met him; and, on my answering his question as to what had brought me, he said, ``If at any time you want a professor of HORSE SENSE, call ME.'' I have often thought of this proposal since, and have at times regretted that some of our institutions of learning had not availed themselves of his services. The fact is that, under the new system, ``horse sense'' is especially called for to prevent a too extreme reaction from the evils which afflicted university instruction during my student days.

While it rejoices my heart to see the splendid courses in modern literature now offered at our larger universities, some of them arouse misgivings. Reflecting upon the shortness of human life and the vast mass of really GREAT literature, I see with regret courses offered dealing with the bubbles floating on the surface of sundry literatures— bubbles soon to break, some of them with ill odor.

I would as soon think of endowing restaurants to enable young men to appreciate caviar, or old Gorgonzola, or game of a peculiarly ``high'' character, as of establishing courses dealing with Villon, Baudelaire, Swinburne, and the like; and when I hear of second-rate critics summoned across the ocean to present to universities which have heard Emerson, Longfellow, Henry Reed, Lowell, Whipple, and Curtis the coagulated nastiness of Verlaine, Mallarm<e'>, and their compeers, I expect next to hear of courses introducing young men to the beauties of absinthe, Turkish cigarettes, and stimulants unspeakable. Doubtless these things are all due to the ``oscillatory law of human progress,'' which professors of ``horse sense'' like my friend Joe Sheldon will gradually do away with.

As time went on, buildings of various sorts rose around the university grounds, and, almost without exception, as gifts from men attracted by the plan of the institution. At the annual commencement in 1869 was laid the cornerstone of an edifice devoted especially to lecture-rooms and museums of natural science. It was a noble gift by Mr. John McGraw; and amid the cares and discouragements of that period it gave us new heart, and strengthened the institution especially on the scientific side. In order to do honor to this occasion, it was decided to invite leading men from all parts of the State, and, above all, to request the governor, Mr. Fenton, to lay the corner-stone. But it was soon evident that his excellency's old fear of offending the sectarian schools still controlled him. He made excuse, and we then called on the Freemasons to take charge of the ceremony. They came in full regalia, bringing their own orators; and, on the appointed day, a great body of spectators was grouped about the foundations of the new building on the beautiful knoll in front of the upper quadrangle. It was an ideal afternoon in June, and the panorama before and around us was superb. Immediately below us, in front, lay the beautiful valley in which nestles the little city of Ithaca; beyond, on the left, was the vast amphitheater, nearly surrounded by hills and distant mountains; and on the right, Cayuga Lake, stretching northward for forty miles. Few points in our country afford a nobler view of lake, mountain, hill, and valley. The speakers naturally expatiated in all the moods and tenses on the munificence of Mr. Cornell and Mr. McGraw; and when all was ended the great new bell, which had just been added to the university chime in the name of one most dear to me,—the largest bell then swinging in western New York, inscribed with the verse written for it by Lowell,—boomed grandly forth. As we came away I walked with Goldwin Smith, and noticed that he was convulsed with suppressed laughter. On my asking him the cause, he answered: ``There is nothing more to be said; no one need ever praise the work of Mr. Cornell again.'' On my asking the professor what he meant, he asked me if I had not heard the last speech. I answered in the negative—that my mind was occupied with other things. He then quoted it substantially as follows: ``Fellow-citizens, when Mr. Cornell found himself rich beyond the dreams of avarice, did he give himself up to a life of inglorious ease? No, fellow- citizens; he founded the beautiful public library in yonder valley. But did he then retire to a life of luxury? No, fellow-citizens; he came up to this height (and here came a great wave of the hand over the vast amphitheater below and around us) and he established this UNIVERSE!''

In reference to this occasion I may put on record Lowell's quatrain above referred to, which is cast upon the great clock-bell of the university. It runs as follows:

   I call as fly the irrevocable hours
   Futile as air, or strong as fate to make
   Your lives of sand or granite. Awful powers,
   Even as men choose, they either give or take.

There was also cast upon it the following, from the
Psalter version of Psalm xcii:

To tell of thy loving-kindness early in the morning: and of thy truth in the night season.

While various departments were thus developed, there was going on a steady evolution in the general conception of the university. In the Congressional act of 1862 was a vague provision for military instruction in the institutions which might be created under it. The cause of this was evident. The bill was passed during one of the most critical periods in the history of the Civil War, and in my inaugural address I had alluded to this as most honorable to Senator Morrill and to the Congress which had adopted his proposals. It was at perhaps the darkest moment in the history of the United States that this provision was made, in this Morrill Act, for a great system of classical, scientific, and technical instruction in every State and Territory of the Union; and I compared this enactment, at so trying a period, to the conduct of the Romans in buying and selling the lands on which the Carthaginians were encamped after their victory at Cannae. The provision for military instruction had been inserted in this act of 1862 because Senator Morrill and others saw clearly the advantage which had accrued to the States then in rebellion from their military schools; but the act had left military instruction optional with the institutions securing the national endowment, and, so far as I could learn, none of those already created had taken the clause very seriously. I proposed that we should accept it fully and fairly, not according to the letter of the act, but to the spirit of those who had passed it; indeed, that we should go further than any other institution had dreamed of going, so that every undergraduate not excused on the ground of conscientious scruples, or for some other adequate cause, should be required to take a thorough course of military drill; and to this end I supported a plan, which was afterward carried out by law, that officers from the United States army should be detailed by the Secretary of War to each of the principal institutions as military professors. My reasons for this were based on my recollections of what took place at the University of Michigan during the Civil War. I had then seen large numbers of my best students go forth insufficiently trained, and in some cases led to destruction by incompetent officers. At a later period, I had heard the West Point officer whom I had secured from Detroit to train those Michigan students express his wonder at the rapidity with which they learned what was necessary to make them soldiers and even officers. Being young men of disciplined minds, they learned the drill far more quickly and intelligently than the average recruits could do. There was still another reason for taking the military clause in the Morrill Act seriously. I felt then, and feel now, that our Republic is not to escape serious internal troubles; that in these her reliance must be largely upon her citizen soldiery; that it will be a source of calamity, possibly of catastrophe, if the power of the sword in civil commotions shall fall into the hands of ignorant and brutal leaders, while the educated men of the country, not being versed in military matters, shall slink away from the scene of duty, cower in corners, and leave the conduct of military affairs to men intellectually and morally their inferiors. These views I embodied in a report to the trustees; and the result was the formation of a university battalion, which has been one of the best things at Cornell. A series of well-qualified officers, sent by the War Department, have developed the system admirably. Its good results to the university have been acknowledged by all who have watched its progress. Farmers' boys,—slouchy, careless, not accustomed to obey any word of command; city boys, sometimes pampered, often wayward, have thus been in a short time transformed: they stand erect; they look the world squarely in the face; the intensity of their American individualism is happily modified; they can take the word of command and they can give it. I doubt whether any feature of instruction at Cornell University has produced more excellent results upon CHARACTER than the training thus given. And this is not all. The effect on the State has been valuable. It has already been felt in the organization and maintenance of the State militia; and during the war with Spain, Cornellians, trained in the university battalion, rendered noble service.

Among the matters which our board of trustees and faculty had to decide upon at an early day was the conferring of degrees. It had become, and indeed has remained in many of our colleges down to the present day, an abuse, and a comical abuse. Almost more than any other thing, it tends to lower respect for many American colleges and universities among thinking men. The older and stronger universities are free from it; but many of the newer ones, especially various little sectarian colleges, some of them calling themselves ``universities,'' have abused and are abusing beyond measure their privilege of conferring degrees. Every one knows individuals in the community whose degrees, so far from adorning them, really render them ridiculous; and every one knows colleges and ``universities'' made ridiculous by the conferring of such pretended honors.

At the outset I proposed to our trustees that Cornell University should confer no honorary degrees of any sort, and a law was passed to that effect. This was observed faithfully during my entire presidency; then the policy was temporarily changed, and two honorary doctorates were conferred; but this was immediately followed by a renewal of the old law, and Cornell has conferred no honorary degrees since.

But it is a question whether the time has not arrived for some relaxation of this policy. The argument I used in proposing the law that no honorary degree should be conferred was that we had not yet built up an institution whose degrees could be justly considered as of any value. That argument is no longer valid, and possibly some departure from it would now be wise. Still, the policy of conferring no honorary degrees is infinitely better than the policy of lavishing them.

As to regular and ordinary degrees, I had, in my plan of organization, recommended that there should be but one degree for all courses, whether in arts, science, or literature. I argued that, as all our courses required an equal amount of intellectual exertion, one simple degree should be granted alike to all who had passed the required examination at the close of their chosen course. This view the faculty did not accept. They adopted the policy of establishing several degrees: as, for example, for the course in arts, the degree of A.B.; for the course in science, the degree of B.S.; for the course in literature, the degree of B.L.; and so on. The reason given for this was that it was important in each case to know what the training of the individual graduate had been; and that the true way to obviate invidious distinctions is so to perfect the newer courses that all the degrees shall finally be considered as of equal value and honor. This argument converted me: it seemed to me just, and my experience in calling men to professorships led me more and more to see that I had been wrong and that the faculty was right; for it was a matter of the greatest importance to me, in deciding on the qualifications of candidates for professorships, to know, not only their special fitness, but what their general education had been.

But, curiously enough, within the last few years the Cornell faculty, under the lead of its present admirable president, has reverted to my old argument, accepted it, and established a single degree for all courses. I bow respectfully to their judgment, but my conversion by the same faculty from my own original ideas was so complete that I cannot now agree to the wisdom of the change. It is a curious case of cross-conversion, I having been and remaining converted to the ideas of the faculty, and they having been converted to my original idea. As to the whole matter, I have the faith of an optimist that eventu- ally, with the experience derived from both systems, a good result will be reached.

Another question which at that time occupied me much was that of scholarships and fellowships awarded by competitive examinations versus general gratuitous instruction. During the formation of my plans for the university, a number of excellent men urged upon me that all our instruction should be thrown open to all mankind free of charge; that there should be no payment of instruction fees of any kind; that the policy which prevails in the public schools of the State should be carried out in the new institution at the summit of the system. This demand was plausible, but the more I thought upon it the more illogical, fallacious, and injurious it seemed; and, in spite of some hard knocks in consequence, I have continued to dissent from it, and feel that events have justified me.

Since this view of mine largely influenced the plan of the university, this is perhaps as good a place as any to sketch its development. In the first place, I soon saw that the analogy between free education in the public schools and in the university is delusive, the conditions of the two being entirely dissimilar. In a republic like ours primary education of the voters is a practical necessity. No republic of real weight in the world, except Switzerland and the United States, has proved permanent; and the only difference between the many republics which have failed and these two, which, we hope, have succeeded, is that in the former the great body of the citizens were illiterate, while in the latter the great body of voters have had some general education. Without this education, sufficient for an understanding of the main questions involved, no real republic or democracy can endure. With general primary education up to a point necessary for the intelligent exercise of the suffrage, one may have hopes for the continuance and development of a democratic republic. On this account primary education should be made free: it is part of our political system; it is the essential condition of its existence.

The purpose of university education is totally different. The interest of the Republic is, indeed, that it should maintain the very highest and best provision for advanced instruction, general, scientific, and technical; and it is also in the highest interest of the Republic that its fittest young men and women should secure such instruction. No republic, no nation in fact, possesses any other treasure comparable to its young citizens of active mind and earnest purpose. This is felt at the present time by all the great nations of the world, and consequently provision is made in almost all of them for the highest education of such men and women. Next to the general primary education of all voters, the most important duty of our Republic is to develop the best minds it possesses for the best service in all its fields of high intellectual activity. To do this it must supply the best university education, and must smooth the way for those to acquire it who are best fitted for it, no matter how oppressive their poverty.

Now, my first objection to gratuitous university instruction to all students alike is that it stands in the way of this most important consummation; that it not only does not accomplish the end which is desirable, but that it does accomplish another which is exceedingly undesirable. For the real problem to be solved is this: How shall the higher education in different fields be brought within reach of the young men and women best fitted to acquire it, to profit by it, and to use it to best advantage? Any one acquainted with American schools and universities knows that the vast majority of these young people best fitted to profit by higher education come from the families of small means. What does gratuitous instruction in the university offer them? Merely a remission of instruction fees, which, after all, are but a small part of the necessary expenses of a university course. With many of these young persons—probably with most—a mere remission of instruction fees is utterly insufficient to enable them to secure advanced education. I have alluded to the case of President Cleveland, who, having been well fitted for the university, could not enter. His father being a country clergyman with a large family and small means, the future Chief Executive of the United States was obliged to turn aside to a teacher's place and a clerkship which afforded him a bare support. At the Hamilton College commencement a few years since, Mr. Cleveland, pointing to one of the professors, was reported as saying in substance: ``My old school friend by my side is, of all men, the one I have most envied: he was able to buy a good edition of Vergil; I was not.''

It would not have been at all difficult for him to secure a remission of instruction fees at various American colleges and universities; but the great difficulty was that he could not secure the means necessary for his board, for his clothing, for his traveling expenses, for his books, for all the other things that go to make up the real cost of life at a university. I can think of but one way, and that is, as a rule, to charge instruction fees upon the great body of the students, but both to remit instruction fees and to give scholarships and fellowships to those who, in competitive examinations and otherwise, show themselves especially worthy of such privileges. This is in conformity to the system of nature; it is the survival of the fittest. This was the main reason which led me to insert in the charter of Cornell University the provision by which at present six hundred students from the State of New York are selected by competitive examinations out of the mass of scholars in the public schools, and to provide that each of these best scholars shall have free instruction for four years.

But this was only a part of the system. From the first I have urged the fact above mentioned, namely, that while remission of instruction fees is a step in the right direction, it is not sufficient; and I have always desired to see some university recognize the true and sound principle of free instruction in universities by CONSECRATING ALL MONEYS RECEIVED FROM INSTRUCTION FEES TO THE CREATION OF COMPETITIVE SCHOLARSHIPS AND FELLOWSHIPS, EACH OF WHICH SHALL AMOUNT TO A SUM SUFFICIENT TO MEET, WITH ECONOMY, THE LIVING EXPENSES OF A STUDENT. This plan I was enabled, in considerable measure, to carry out by establishing the competitive scholarships in each Assembly district; and later, as will be seen in another chapter, I was enabled, by a curious transformation of a calamity into a blessing, to carry it still further by establishing endowed scholarships and fellowships. These latter scholarships, each, as a general rule, of two hundred and fifty dollars a year, were awarded to those who passed the best examinations and maintained the best standing in their classes; while the fellowships, each of the value of from four to five hundred dollars a year, were awarded to the seniors of our own or other universities who had been found most worthy of them. In the face of considerable opposition I set this system in motion at Cornell; and its success leads me to hope that it will be further developed, not only there, but elsewhere. Besides this, I favored arrangements for remitting instruction fees and giving aid to such students as really showed promising talent, and who were at the time needy. To this end a loan fund was created which has been carefully managed and has aided many excellent men through the university courses.[7] Free instruction, carried out in accordance with the principle and plan above sketched, will, I feel sure, prove of great value to our country. Its effect is to give to the best and brightest young men, no matter how poor, just the chance they need; and not as a matter of charity, but as a matter of wise policy. This is a system which I believe would be fraught with blessings to our country, securing advanced education to those who can profit by it, and strengthening their country by means of it.

[7] It has since been greatly increased by the bequest of a public-spirited New York merchant.

On the other hand, the system of gratuitous remission of instruction fees to all students alike, whether rich or poor, I believe to be injurious to the country, for the following reasons: First, it generally cripples the insti- tution which gives it. Two or three large institutions which have thought themselves in possession of endowments sufficient to warrant giving gratuitous instruction have tried it, but as a rule have not been able to go on with it, and have at last come to the principle of charging moderate fees. Secondly, it simply makes a present of a small sum to a large number of young men, most of whom neither need nor appreciate it, and who would be better for regarding their university instruction as something worth paying for.

But my main objection to the system of indiscriminate gratuitous instruction is that it does the country a positive injury in drawing away from the farms, workshops, and stores large numbers of young persons who would better have been allowed to remain there; that it tends to crowd what have been called ``the learned professions'' with men not really fitted for them; that it draws masses of men whose good right arms would be of great value in the rural districts, and makes them parasites in the cities. The farmers and the artisans complain of the lack of young men and women for their work; the professional men complain that the cities are overstocked with young men calling themselves lawyers, doctors, engineers, and the like, but really unworthy to exercise either profession, who live on the body politic as parasites more or less hurtful. This has certainly become an evil in other countries: every enlightened traveler knows that the ranks of the anarchists in Russia are swollen by what are called ``fruits secs''—that is, by young men and young women tempted away from manual labor and avocations for which they are fit into ``professions'' for which they are unfit. The more FIRST-RATE young men and young women our universities and technical schools educate the better; but the more young men and women of mediocre minds and weak purpose whom they push into the ranks of poor lawyers, poor doctors, poor engineers, and the like, the more injury they do to the country.

As I now approach the end of life and look back over the development of Cornell University, this at least seems to me one piece of good fortune—namely, that I have aided to establish there the principle of using our means, so far as possible, not for indiscriminate gratuitous higher education of men unfit to receive it; not, as President Jordan has expressed it, in ``trying to put a five-thousand- dollar education into a fifty-cent boy''; but in establishing a system which draws out from the community, even from its poorest and lowliest households, the best, brightest, strongest young men and women, and develops their best powers, thus adding to the greatest treasure which their country can possess.



Still another new departure was in some respects bolder than any of those already mentioned. For some years before the organization of Cornell, I had thought much upon the education of women, and had gradually arrived at the conclusion that they might well be admitted to some of the universities established for young men. Yet, at the same time, Herbert Spencer's argument as to the importance of avoiding everything like ``mandarinism'' —the attempt to force all educationalinstitutions into the same mold—prevented my urging this admission of women upon all universities alike. I recognized obstacles to it in the older institutions which did not exist in the newer; but I had come to believe that where no special difficulties existed, women might well be admitted to university privileges. To this view I had been led by my own observation even in my boyhood. At Cortland Academy I had seen young men and women assembled in the classrooms without difficulty or embarrassment, and at Yale I had seen that the two or three lecture-rooms which admitted women were the most orderly and decent of all; but perhaps the strongest influence in this matter was exercised upon me by my mother. She was one of the most conservative of women, a High-church Episcopalian, and generally averse to modern reforms; but on my talking over with her some of my plans for Cornell University, she said: ``I am not so sure about your other ideas, but as to the admission of women you are right. My main education was derived partly from a boarding-school at Pittsfield considered one of the best in New England, and partly from Cortland Academy. In the boarding-school we had only young women, but in the academy we had both young men and young women; and I am sure that the results of the academy were much better than those of the boarding- school. The young men and young women learned to respect each other, not merely for physical, but for intellectual and moral qualities; so there came a healthful emulation in study, the men becoming more manly and the women more womanly; and never, so far as I have heard, did any of the evil consequences follow which some of your opponents are prophesying.''

A conference with Dr. Woolworth, a teacher of the very largest experience, showed me that none of the evil results which were prophesied had resulted. He solemnly assured me that, during his long experiences as principal of two or three large academies, and, as secretary of the Board of Regents, in close contact with all the academies and high schools of the State, he had never known of a serious scandal arising between students of different sexes.

As I drafted the main features of the university charter these statements were in my mind, but I knew well that it would be premature to press the matter at the outset. It would certainly have cost us the support of the more conservative men in the legislature. All that I could do at that time I did; and this was to keep out of the charter anything which could embarrass us regarding the question in the future, steadily avoiding in every clause relating to students the word ``man,'' and as steadily using the word ``person.'' In conversations between Mr. Cornell and myself on this subject, I found that we agreed; and in our addresses at the opening of the university we both alluded to it, he favoring it in general terms, and I developing sundry arguments calculated to prepare the way for future action upon it. At the close of the exercises Mr. John McGraw, who was afterward so munificent toward us, came to me and said: ``My old business partner, Henry Sage, who sat next me during the exercises this morning, turned to me during your allusion to Mr. Cornell with tears in his eyes, and said: `John, we are scoundrels to stand doing nothing while those men are killing themselves to establish this university.' '' In the afternoon Mr. Sage himself came to me and said: ``I believe you are right in regard to admitting women, but you are evidently carrying as many innovations just now as public opinion will bear; when you are ready to move in the matter, let me know.''

The following year came the first application of a young woman for admission. Her case was strong, for she presented a certificate showing that she had passed the best examination for the State scholarship in Cortland County; and on this I admitted her. Under the scholarship clause in the charter I could not do otherwise. On reporting the case to the trustees, they supported me unanimously, though some of them reluctantly. The lady student proved excellent from every point of view, and her admission made a mere temporary ripple on the surface of our affairs; but soon came a peculiar difficulty. The only rooms for students in those days on the University Hill were in the barracks filled with young men; and therefore the young woman took rooms in town, coming up to lectures two or three times a day. It was a hard struggle; for the paths and roads leading to the university grounds, four hundred feet above the valley, were not as in these days, and the electric trolley had not been invented. She bore the fatigue patiently until winter set in; then she came to me, expressing regret at her inability to toil up the icy steep, and left us. On my reporting this to the trustees, Mr. Sage made his proposal. I had expected from him a professorship or a fellowship; but to my amazement he offered to erect and endow a separate college for young women in the university, and for this purpose to give us two hundred and fifty thousand dollars. A committee of trustees having been appointed to examine and report upon this proposal, I was made its chairman; and, in company with Mr. Sage, visited various Western institutions where experiments in the way of what was called ``coeducation'' had been tried. At Oberlin College in Ohio two serious doubts were removed from my mind. The first of these was regarding the health of the young women. I had feared that in the hard work and vigorous competitions of the university they would lose their physical strength; but here we found that, with wise precautions, the health of the young women had been quite equal to that of the young men. My other fear was that their education with young men might cost some sacrifice of the better general characteristics of both sexes; but on studying the facts I became satisfied that the men had been made more manly and the women more womanly. As to the manliness there could be little doubt; for the best of all tests had been applied only a few years before, when Oberlin College had poured forth large numbers of its young men, as volunteers, into the Union army. As to the good effect upon women, it was easy to satisfy myself when I met them, not only at the college, but in various beautiful Western homes.

Very striking testimony was also given at the University of Michigan. Ten years earlier I had known that institution well, and my professorship there, which lasted six years, had made me well acquainted with the character and spirit of its students; but, since my day, women had been admitted, and some of the results of this change surprised me much. Formerly a professor's lecture- or recitation- room had been decidedly a roughish place. The men had often been slouchy and unkempt. Now all was quiet and orderly, the dress of the students much neater; in fact, it was the usual difference between assemblages of men alone and of men and women together, or, as I afterward phrased it, ``between the smoking-car and the car back of it.'' Perhaps the most convincing piece of testimony came from an old janitor. As I met him I said: ``Well, J——, do the students still make life a burden to you?'' ``Oh, no,'' he answered; ``that is all gone by. They can't rush each other up and down the staircases or have boxing-matches in the lobbies any longer, for the girls are there.''

My report went fully into the matter, favored the admission of women, and was adopted by the trustees unanimously— a thing which surprised me somewhat, since two of them, Judge Folger and Mr. Erastus Brooks, were among the most conservative men I have ever known. The general results were certainly fortunate; though one or two minor consequences were, for a year or two, somewhat disappointing. Two or three of the faculty and a considerable number of the students were greatly opposed to the admission of women, a main cause of this being the fear that it would discredit the institution in the eyes of members of other universities, and the number of the whole student body was consequently somewhat diminished; but that feeling died away, the numbers became larger than ever, and the system proved a blessing, not only to the university, but to the State at large. None of the prophecies of evil so freely made by the opponents of the measure have ever been fulfilled. Every arrangement was made in Mr. Sage's building to guard the health of the young women; and no one will say that the manliness of men or the womanliness of women has ever suffered in consequence of the meeting of the two sexes in classrooms, laboratories, chapel, or elsewhere. From one evil which was freely prophesied the university has been singularly free. It was declared that a great deal of ``spooning'' would result. This has not been the case. Both sexes seem to have been on their guard against it; and, although pleasant receptions have, as a rule, taken place weekly at Sage College, and visits to its residents have been permitted at suitable times, no embarrassing attachments have resulted.

The main difficulties arose from a cause which proved very short-lived. Several of the young women who first applied for admission held high ideas as to their rights. To them Sage College was an offense. Its beautiful parlors, conservatories, library, lecture-rooms, and lawns, with its lady warden who served as guide, philosopher, and friend, were all the result of a deep conspiracy against the rights of women. Again and again a committee of them came to me, insisting that young women should be treated exactly like young men; that there should be no lady warden; that every one of them should be free to go and come from Sage College at every hour in the twenty-four, as young men were free to go and come from their dormitories. My answer was that the cases were not the same; that when young women insisted on their right to come and go at all times of the day and night, as they saw fit, without permission, it was like their right to walk from the campus to the beautiful point opposite us on the lake: the right they undoubtedly had, but insurmountable obstacles were in the way; and I showed them that a firm public opinion was an invincible barrier to the liberties they claimed. Still, they were allowed advisory powers in the management of the college; the great majority made wise use of this right, and all difficulty was gradually overcome.

Closely connected with the erection of Sage College was the establishment of Sage Chapel. From the first I had desired to have every working-day begun with a simple religious service at which attendance should be voluntary, and was glad to see that in the cheerless lecture-room where this service was held there usually assembled a goodly number of professors and students, in spite of the early hour and long walk from town. But for Sunday there was no provision; and one day, on my discussing the matter with Mr. Sage, he said that he would be glad to establish a chapel on the university grounds for the general use of professors and students, if I saw no objection. This proposal I heartily welcomed, but on two conditions: first, that the chapel should never be delivered over to any one sect; secondly, that students should be attracted, but not coerced into it. To these conditions Mr. Sage agreed, and the building was erected.

As it approached completion there came a proposal which opened a new era in our university life. Mr. Dean Sage, the eldest son of him who had given us the women's college and the chapel, proposed to add an endowment for a chaplaincy, and suggested that a clergyman of the Protestant Episcopal Church be appointed to that office. This would have been personally pleasing to me; for, though my churchmanship was ``exceeding broad,'' I was still attracted to the church in which I was brought up, and felt nowhere else so much at home. But it seemed to me that we had no right, under our charter, to give such prominence to any single religious organization; and I therefore proposed to the donor that the endowment be applied to a preachership to be filled by leading divines of all denominations. In making this proposal I had in view, not only the unsectarian feature embodied in our charter, but my observation of university chaplaincies generally. I had noticed that, at various institutions, excellent clergymen, good preachers, thorough scholars, charming men, when settled as chaplains, had, as a rule, been unable to retain their hold upon the great body of the students. The reason was not far to seek. The average parish clergyman, even though he be not a strong preacher or profound scholar or brilliant talker, if he be at all fit for his position, gradually wins the hearts of his congregation. He has baptized their children, married their young men and maidens, buried their dead, rejoiced with those who have rejoiced, and wept with those who have wept. A strong tie has thus grown up. But such a tie between a chaplain and bodies of students shifting from year to year, is, in the vast majority of cases, impossible. Hence it is that even the most brilliant preachers settled in universities have rapidly lost their prestige among the students. I remembered well how, at Geneva and at Yale, my college- mates joked at the peculiarities of clergymen connected with the college, who, before I entered it, had been objects of my veneration. I remembered that at Yale one of my class was wont to arouse shouts of laughter by his droll imitations of the prayers of the leading professors— imitations in which their gestures, intonations, and bits of rhetoric and oratory were most ludicrously caricatured. I remembered, too, how a college pastor, a man greatly revered, was really driven out of the university pulpit by a squib in a students' paper, and how several of his successors had finally retreated into professorships in the Divinity School; and I felt that leading men coming from week to week from the outside world would be taken at the value which the outside world puts upon them, and that they would bring in a fresh atmosphere. My expectations were more than fulfilled. The preachership having been established, I sent invitations to eminent clergymen along the whole gamut of belief, from the Roman Catholic bishop of the diocese to the most advanced Protestants. The bishop answered me most courteously; but, to my sincere regret, declined. One or two bishops of the Protestant Episcopal Church also made some difficulties at first, but gradually they were glad to accept; for it was felt to be a privilege and a pleasure to preach to so large a body of open-minded young men, and the course of sermons has for years deepened and strengthened what is best in university life. The whole system was indeed at first attacked; and while we had formerly been charged with godlessness, we were now charged with ``indifferentism'' —whatever that might mean. But I have had the pleasure of living to see this system adopted at other leading universities of our country, and it is evidently on its way to become the prevailing system among all of them. I believe that no pulpit in the United States has exercised a more powerful influence for good. Strong men have been called to it from all the leading religious bodies; and they, knowing the character of their audience, have never advocated sectarianism, but have presented the great fundamental truths upon which all religion must be based.

The first of these university preachers was Phillips Brooks, and he made a very deep impression. An interesting material result of his first sermon was that Mr. William Sage, the second son of our benefactor, came forward at the close of the service, and authorized me to secure a beautiful organ for the university chapel.[8] In my addresses to students I urged them to attend for various good reasons, and, if for none of these, because a man is but poorly educated who does not keep himself abreast of the religious thought of his country. Curious was it to see Japanese students, some of them Buddhists, very conscientious in their attendance, their eyes steadily fixed upon the preacher.

[8] Sunday, June 13, 1875.

My selections for the preachership during the years of my presidency were made with great care. So far as possible, I kept out all ``sensational preaching.'' I had no wish to make the chapel a place for amusement or for ground and lofty tumbling by clerical performers, and the result was that its ennobling influence was steadily maintained.

Some other pulpits in the university town were not so well guarded. A revivalist, having been admitted to one of them, attempted to make a sensation in various ways— and one evening laid great stress on the declaration that she was herself a brand plucked from the burning, and that her parents were undoubtedly lost. A few minutes afterward, one of the Cornell students present, thinking doubtless, that his time would be better employed upon his studies, arose and walked down the aisle to the door. At this the preacher called out, ``There goes a young man straight down to hell.'' Thereupon the student turned instantly toward the preacher and asked quietly, ``Have you any message to send to your father and mother?''

Our list of university preachers, both from our own and other countries, as I look back upon it, is wonderful to me. Becoming acquainted with them, I have learned to love very many men whom I previously distrusted, and have come to see more and more the force of the saying, ``The man I don't like is the man I don't know.'' Many of their arguments have not appealed to me, but some from which I have entirely dissented, have suggested trains of profitable thought; in fact, no services have ever done more for me, and, judging from the numbers who have thronged the chapel, there has been a constant good influence upon the faculty and students.

In connection with the chapel may be mentioned the development of various religious associations, the first of these being the Young Men's Christian Association. Feeling the importance of this, although never a member of it, I entered heartily into its plan, and fitted up a hall for its purposes. As this hall had to serve also, during certain evenings in the week, for literary societies, I took pains to secure a series of large and fine historical engravings from England, France, and Germany, among them some of a decidedly religious cast, brought together after a decidedly Broad-church fashion. Of these, two, adjoining each other, represented—the one, Luther discussing with his associates his translation of the Bible, and the other, St. Vincent de Paul comforting the poor and the afflicted; and it was my hope that the juxtaposition of these two pictures might suggest ideas of toleration in its best sense to the young men and women who were to sit beneath them. About the room, between these engravings, I placed some bronze statuettes, obtained in Europe, representing men who had done noble work in the world; so that it was for some years one of the attractions of the university.

Some years later came a gift very advantageous to this side of university life. A gentleman whom I had known but slightly—Mr. Alfred S. Barnes of Brooklyn, a trustee of the university—dropped in at my house one morning, and seemed to have something on his mind. By and by he very modestly asked what I thought of his putting up a building for the religious purposes of the students. I welcomed the idea joyfully; only expressing the hope that it would not be tied up in any way, but open to all forms of religious effort. In this idea he heartily concurred, and the beautiful building which bears his honored name was the result,—one of the most perfect for its purposes that can be imagined,—and as he asked me to write an inscription for the corner-stone, I placed on it the words: ``For the Promotion of God's work among Men.'' This has seemed, ever since, to be the key-note of the work done in that building.

It has been, and is, a great pleasure to me to see young men joining in religious effort; and I feel proud of the fact that from this association at Cornell many strong and earnest men have gone forth to good work as clergymen in our own country and in others.

In the erection of the new group of buildings south of the upper university quadrangle, as well as in building the president's house hard by, an opportunity was offered for the development of some minor ideas regarding the evolution of university life at Cornell which I had deeply at heart. During my life at Yale, as well as during visits to various other American colleges, I had been painfully impressed by the lack of any development of that which may be called the commemorative or poetical element. In the long row of barracks at Yale one longed for some little bit of beauty, and hungered and thirsted for something which connected the present with the past; but, with the exception of the portraits in the Alumni Hall, there was little more to feed the sense of beauty or to meet one 's craving for commemoration of the past than in a cotton- factory. One might frequent the buildings at Yale or Harvard or Brown, as they then were, for years, and see nothing of an architectural sort which had been put in its place for any other reason than bare utility.

Hence came an effort to promote at Cornell some development of a better kind. Among the first things I ordered were portraits by competent artists of the leading non- resident professors, Agassiz, Lowell, Curtis, and Goldwin Smith. This example was, from time to time, followed by the faculty and trustees, the former commemorating by portraits some of their more eminent members, and the latter ordering portraits of some of those who had connected their names with the university by benefactions or otherwise, such as Mr. Cornell, Senator Morrill, Mr. Sage, Mr. McGraw, and others. The alumni and undergradu- ates also added portraits of professors. This custom has proved very satisfactory; and the line of portraits hanging in the library cannot fail to have an ennobling influence on many of those who, day after day, sit beneath them.

But the erection of these new buildings—Sage College, Sage Chapel, Barnes Hall, and, finally, the university library—afforded an opportunity to do something of a different sort. There was a chance for some effort to promote beauty of detail in construction, and, fortunately, the forethought of Goldwin Smith helped us greatly in this. On his arrival in Ithaca, just after the opening of the university, he had seen that we especially needed thoroughly trained artisans; and he had written to his friend Auberon Herbert, asking him to select and send from England a number of the best he could find. Nearly all proved of value, and one of them gave himself to the work in a way which won my heart. This was Robert Richardson, a stone-carver. I at first employed him to carve sundry capitals, corbels, and spandrels for the president's house, which I was then building on the university grounds; and this work was so beautifully done that, in the erection of Sage College, another opportunity was given him. Any one who, to-day, studies the capitals of the various columns, especially those in the porch, in the loggia of the northern tower, and in some of the front windows, will feel that he put his heart into the work. He wrought the flora of the region into these creations of his, and most beautifully. But best of all was his work in the chapel. The tracery of the windows, the capitals of the columns, and the corbels supporting the beams of the roof were masterpieces; and, in my opinion, no investment of equal amount has proved to be of more value to us, even for the moral and intellectual instruction of our students, than these examples of a conscientious devotion of genius and talent which he thus gave us.

The death of Mr. Cornell afforded an opportunity for a further development in the same direction. It was felt that his remains ought to rest on that beautiful site, in the midst of the institution he loved so well; and I proposed that a memorial chapel be erected, beneath which his remains and those of other benefactors of the university might rest, and that it should be made beautiful. This was done. The stone vaulting, the tracery, and other decorative work, planned by our professor of architecture, and carried out as a labor of love by Richardson, were all that I could desire. The trustees, entering heartily into the plan, authorized me to make an arrangement with Story, the American sculptor at Rome, to execute a reclining statue of Mr. Cornell above the crypt where rest his remains; and citizens of Ithaca also authorized me to secure in London the memorial window beneath which the statue is placed. Other memorials followed, in the shape of statues, busts, and tablets, as others who had been loved and lost were laid to rest in the chapel crypt, until the little building has become a place of pilgrimage. In the larger chapel, also, tablets and windows were erected from time to time; and the mosaic and other decorations of the memorial apse, recently erected as a place of repose for the remains of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Sage, are a beautiful development of the same idea.

So, too, upon the grounds, some effort was made to connect the present with the past. Here, as elsewhere in our work, it seemed to me well to impress, upon the more thinking students at least, the idea that all they saw had not ``happened so,'' without the earnest agency of human beings; but that it had been the result of the earnest life-work of men and women, and that no life-work to which a student might aspire could be more worthy. In carrying out this idea upon the ``campus'' Goldwin Smith took the lead by erecting the stone seat which has now stood there for over thirty years. Other memorials followed, among them a drinking-fountain, the stone bridge across the Cascadilla, the memorial seat back of the library, the entrance gateway, and the like; and, at the lamented death of Richardson, another English stone carver put his heart into some of the details of the newly erected library.

Meanwhile, the grounds themselves became more and more beautiful. There was indeed one sad mistake; and I feel bound, in self-defense, to state that it was made during an absence of mine in Europe: this was the erection of the chemical laboratory upon the promontory northwest of the upper quadrangle. That site afforded one of the most beautiful views in our own or any other country. A very eminent American man of letters, who had traveled much in other countries, said to me, as we stood upon it, ``I have traveled hundreds of miles in Europe to obtain views not half so beautiful as this.'' It was the place to which Mr. Cornell took the trustees at their first meeting in Ithaca, when their view from it led them to choose the upper site for the university buildings rather than the lower. On this spot I remember once seeing Phillips Brooks evidently overawed by the amazing beauty of the scene spread out at his feet—the great amphitheater to the south and southwest, the hills beyond, and Cayuga Lake stretching to the north and northwest. But though this part of the grounds has been covered by a laboratory which might better have been placed elsewhere, much is still left, and this has been treated so as to add to the natural charm of the surroundings. With the exception of the grounds of the State University of Wisconsin and of the State University and Stanford University in California, I know of none approaching in beauty those of Cornell. I feel bound to say, however, that there is a danger. Thus far, though mistakes have been made here and there, little harm has been done which is irremediable. But this may not always be the case. In my view, one of the most important things to be done by the trustees is to have a general plan most carefully decided upon which shall be strictly conformed to in the erection of all future buildings, no matter what their size or character may be. This has been urged from time to time, but deferred.[9] The experience of other universities in the United States is most instructive in this respect. Nearly every one of them has suffered greatly from the want of some such general plan. One has but to visit almost any one of them to see buildings of different materials and styles—classical, Renaissance, Gothic, and nondescript —thrown together in a way at times fairly ludicrous. Thomas Jefferson, in founding the University of Virginia, was wiser; and his beautiful plan was carried out so fully, under his own eyes, that it has never been seriously departed from. At Stanford University, thanks to the wisdom of its founders, a most beautiful plan was adopted, to which the buildings have been so conformed that nothing could be more satisfactory; and recently another noble Californian—Mrs. Hearst—has devoted a queenly gift to securing a plan worthy of the University of California. At the opening of Cornell, as I have already said, a general plan was determined upon, with an upper quadrangle of stone, plain but dignified, to be at some future time architecturally enriched, and with a freer treatment of buildings on other parts of the grounds; but there is always danger, and I trust that I may be allowed to remind my associates and successors in the board of trustees, of the necessity, in the future development of the university, for a satisfactory plan, suitable to the site, to be steadily kept in mind.

[9] It has now—1904—been very intelligently developed.



Thus far I have dwelt especially upon the steady development of the university in its general system of instruction, its faculty, its equipment, and its daily life; but it must not be supposed that all was plain sailing. On the contrary, there were many difficulties, some discouragements, and at times we passed through very deep waters. There were periods when ruin stared us in the face—when I feared that my next move must be to close our doors and announce the suspension of instruction. The most serious of these difficulties were financial. Mr. Cornell had indeed endowed the institution munificently, and others followed his example: the number of men and women who came forward to do something for it was astonishing. In addition to the great endowments made by Mr. Cornell, Mr. Sage, Mr. McGraw, Mr. Sibley, and others, which aggregated millions, there were smaller gifts no less encouraging: Goldwin Smith's gift of his services, of his library, and of various sums to increase it, rejoiced us all; and many other evidences of confidence, in the shape of large collections of books and material, cheered us in that darkest period; and from that day to this such gifts have continued.

Some of the minor gifts were especially inspiring, as showing the breadth of interest in our work. One of them warmed my heart when it was made, and for many years afterward cheered me amid many cares. As Mr. Sage and myself were one day looking over matters upon the grounds, there came along, in his rough wagon, a plain farmer from a distant part of the county, a hard-working man of very small means, who had clearly something upon his mind. Presently he said: ``I would very much like to do something for the university if I could. I have no money to give; but I have thought that possibly some good elm-trees growing on my farm might be of use to you, and if you wish them I will put them in the best condition and bring them to you.'' This offer we gladly accepted; the farmer brought the trees; they were carefully planted; they have now, for over twenty years, given an increasing and ever more beautiful shade to one of the main university avenues; and in the line of them stands a stone on which are engraved the words, ``Ostrander Elms.''

But while all this encouraged us, there were things of a very different sort. Could the university have been developed gradually, normally, and in obedience to a policy determined solely by its president, trustees, and faculty all would have gone easily. But our charter made this impossible. Many departments must be put into operation speedily, each one of them demanding large outlay for buildings, equipment, and instruction. From all parts of the State came demands—some from friends, some from enemies—urging us to do this, blaming us for not doing that, and these utterances were echoed in various presses, and re<e:>choed from the State legislature. Every nerve had to be strained to meet these demands. I remember well that when a committee of the Johns Hopkins trustees, just before the organization of that university, visited Cornell and looked over our work, one of them said to me: ``We at least have this in our favor: we can follow out our own conceptions and convictions of what is best; we have no need of obeying the injunctions of any legislature, the beliefs of any religious body, or the clamors of any press; we are free to do what we really believe best, as slowly, and in such manner, as we see fit.'' As this was said a feeling of deep envy came over me: our condition was the very opposite of that. In getting ready for the opening of the university in October, 1868, as required by our charter, large sums had to be expended on the site now so beautiful, but then so unpromising. Mr. Cornell's private affairs, as also the constant demands upon him in locating the university lands on the northern Mississippi, kept him a large part of the time far from the university; and my own university duties crowded every day. The president of a university in those days tilled a very broad field. He must give instruction, conduct examinations, preside over the faculty, correspond with the trustees, address the alumni in various parts of the country, respond to calls for popular lectures, address the legislature from time to time with reference to matters between the university and the State and write for reviews and magazines; and all this left little time for careful control of financial matters.

In this condition of things Mr. Cornell had installed, as ``business manager,'' a gentleman supposed to be of wide experience, who, in everything relating to the ordinary financial management of the institution, was all-powerful. But as months went on I became uneasy. Again and again I urged that a careful examination be made of our affairs, and that reports be laid before us which we could clearly understand; but Mr. Cornell, always optimistic, assured me that all was going well, and the matter was deferred. Finally, I succeeded in impressing upon my colleagues in the board the absolute necessity of an investigation. It was made, and a condition of things was revealed which at first seemed appalling. The charter of the university made the board of trustees personally liable for any debt over fifty thousand dollars, and we now discovered that we were owing more than three times that amount. At this Mr. Cornell made a characteristic proposal. He said: ``I will pay half of this debt if you can raise the other half.'' It seemed impossible. Our friends had been called upon so constantly and for such considerable sums that it seemed vain to ask them for more. But we brought together at Albany a few of the most devoted, and in fifteen minutes the whole amount was subscribed: four members of the board of trustees agreed to give each twenty thousand dollars; and this, with Mr. Cornell's additional subscription; furnished the sum needed.

Then took place one of the things which led me later in life, looking back over the history of the university, to say that what had seemed to be our worst calamities had generally proved to be our greatest blessings. Among these I have been accustomed to name the monstrous McGuire attack in the Assembly on Mr. Cornell, which greatly disheartened me for the moment, but which eventually led the investigation committee not only to show to the world Mr. Cornell's complete honesty and self- sacrifice, but to recommend the measures which finally transferred the endowment fund from the State to the trustees, thus strengthening the institution greatly. So now a piece of good luck came out of this unexpected debt. As soon as the subscription was made, Mr. George W. Schuyler, treasurer of the university, in drawing up the deed of gift, ended it with words to the following effect: ``And it is hereby agreed by the said Ezra Cornell, Henry W. Sage, Hiram Sibley, John McGraw, and Andrew D. White, that in case the said university shall ever be in position to repay their said subscriptions, then and in that case the said entire sum of one hundred and sixty thousand dollars SHALL BE REPAID INTO A UNIVERSITY FUND FOR THE CREATION OF FELLOWSHIPS AND SCHOLARSHIPS in the said university.'' A general laugh arose among the subscribers, Mr. McGraw remarking that this was rather offhand dealing with us; but all took it in good part and signed the agreement. It is certain that not one of us then expected in his lifetime to see the university able to repay the money; but, within a few years, as our lands were sold at better prices than we expected, the university was in condition to make restitution. At first some of the trustees demurred to investing so large a sum in fellowships and scholarships, and my first effort to carry through a plan to this effect failed; but at the next meeting I was successful; and so, in this apparently calamitous revelation of debt began that system of university fellowships and scholarships which has done so much for the development of higher instruction at Cornell.

So far as the university treasury was concerned, matters thenceforth went on well. Never again did the university incur any troublesome debt; from that day to this its finances have been so managed as to excite the admiration even of men connected with the most successful and best managed corporations of our country. But financial difficulties far more serious than the debt just referred to arose in a different quarter. In assuming the expenses of locating and managing the university lands, protecting them, paying taxes upon them, and the like, Mr. Cornell had taken upon himself a fearful load, and it pressed upon him heavily. But this was not all. It was, indeed, far from the worst; for, in his anxiety to bring the university town into easy connection with the railway system of the State, he had invested very largely in local railways leading into Ithaca. Under these circumstances, while he made heroic efforts and sacrifices, his relations to the comptroller of the State, who still had in his charge the land scrip of the university, became exceedingly difficult. At the very crisis of this difficulty Mr. Cornell's hard work proved too much for him, and he lay down to die. The university affairs, so far as the land-grant fund was concerned, seemed hopelessly entangled with his own and with those of the State: it seemed altogether likely that at his death the institution would be subjected to years of litigation, to having its endowment tied up in the courts, and to a suspension of its operations. Happily, we had as our adviser Francis Miles Finch, since justice of the Court of Appeals of the State, and now dean of the Law School—a man of noble character, of wonderfully varied gifts, an admirable legal adviser, devoted personally to Mr. Cornell, and no less devoted to the university.

He set at work to disentangle the business relations of Mr. Cornell with the university, and of both with the State. Every member of the board, every member of Mr. Cornell's family,—indeed, every member of the community,— knew him to be honest, faithful, and capable. He labored to excellent purpose, and in due time the principal financial members of the board were brought together at Ithaca to consider his solution of the problem. It was indeed a dark day; we were still under the shadow of ``Black Friday,'' the worst financial calamity in the history of the nation. Mr. Finch showed us that the first thing needful was to raise about two hundred and fifty thousand dollars, which could be tendered to the comptroller of the State in cash, who, on receiving it, would immediately turn over to the trustees the land scrip, which it was all-important should be in our possession at the death of Mr. Cornell. He next pointed out the measures to be taken in separating the interests of the university from Mr. Cornell's estate, and these were provided for. The sum required for obtaining control of the land scrip was immediately subscribed as a loan, virtually without security, by members of the board then present; though at that depressing financial period of the country strong men went about with the best of securities, unable to borrow money upon them. In a few days Mr. Cornell was dead; but the university was safe. Mr. Finch's plan worked well in every particular; and this, which appeared likely to be a great calamity, resulted in the board of trustees obtaining control of the landed endowment of the institution, without which it must have failed. But the weeks while these negotiations were going on were gloomy indeed for me; rarely in my life have I been so unhappy. That crisis of our fate was the winter of 1874. The weather was cold and depressing, my family far off in Syracuse. My main refuge then, as at sundry other times of deep personal distress, was in work. In the little southwest room of the president's house, hardly yet finished and still unfurnished, I made my headquarters. Every morn- ing a blazing fire was lighted on the hearth; every day I devoted myself to university work and to study for my lectures. Happily, my subject interested me deeply. It was ``The Age of Discovery''; and, surrounded with my books, I worked on, forgetful, for the time, of the December storms howling about the house, and of the still more fearful storms beating against the university. Three new lectures having been thus added to my course on the Renaissance period, I delivered them to my class; and, just as I was finishing the last of them, a messenger came to tell me that Mr. Cornell was dying. Dismissing my students, I hurried to his house, but was just too late; a few minutes before my arrival his eyes had closed in death. But his work was done—nobly done. As I gazed upon his dead face on that 9th of December, 1874, I remember well that my first feeling was that he was happily out of the struggle; and that, wherever he might be, I could wish to be still with him. But there was no time for unavailing regrets. We laid him reverently and affectionately to rest, in the midst of the scenes so dear to him, within the sound of the university chimes he so loved to hear, and pressed on with the work.

A few years later came another calamity, not, like the others, touching the foundations and threatening the existence of the university, yet hardly less crushing at the time; indeed, with two exceptions, it was the most depressing I have ever encountered. At the establishment of the university in Ithaca, one of the charter trustees who showed himself especially munificent to the new enterprise was Mr. John McGraw. One morning, while I was in the midst of the large collection of books sent by me from Europe, endeavoring to bring them into some order before the opening day, his daughter, Miss Jenny McGraw, came in, and I had the pleasure of showing her some of our more interesting treasures. She was a woman of kind and thoughtful nature, had traveled in her own country and abroad to good purpose, and was evidently deeply interested. Next day her father met me and said: ``Well, you are pressing us all into the service. Jenny came home yesterday, and said very earnestly, `I wish that I could do something to help on the university'; to which I replied, `Very well. Do anything you like; I shall be glad to see you join in the work.' '' The result was the gift from her of the chime of bells which was rung at the opening of the university, and which, with the additions afterward made to it, have done beautiful service. On the bells she thus gave were inscribed the verses of the ninety- fifth chant of Tennyson's ``In Memoriam''; and some weeks afterward I had the pleasure of placing in her hands what she considered an ample return for her gift— a friendly letter from Tennyson himself, containing some of the stanzas written out in his own hand. So began her interest in the university—an interest which never faltered.

A few years later she married one of our professors, an old friend of mine, and her marriage proved exceedingly happy; but, alas, its happiness was destined to be brief! Less than two years after her wedding day she was brought home from Europe to breathe her last in her husband's cottage on the university grounds, and was buried from the beautiful residence which she had built hard by, and had stored with works of art in every field.

At the opening of her will it was found that, while she had made ample provision for all who were near and dear to her, and for a multitude of charities, she had left to the university very nearly two millions of dollars, a portion of which was to be used for a student hospital, and the bulk of the remainder, amounting to more than a million and a half, for the university library. Her husband joined most heartily in her purpose, and all seemed ready for carrying it out in a way which would have made Cornell University, in that respect, unquestionably the foremost on the American continent. As soon as this munificent bequest was announced, I asked our leading lawyer, Judge Douglas Boardman, whether our charter allowed the university to take it, calling his attention to the fact that, like most of its kind in the State of New York, it restricted the amount of property which the university could hold, and reminding him that we had already exceeded the limit thus allowed. To this he answered that the restriction was intended simply to prevent the endowment of corporations beyond what the legislature might think best for the commonwealth; that if the attorney- general did not begin proceedings against us to prevent our taking the property, no one else could; and that he would certainly never trouble us.

In view of the fact that Judge Boardman had long experience and was at the time judge of the Supreme Court of the State, I banished all thought of difficulty; though I could not but regret that, as he drew Mrs. Fiske's will, and at the same time knew the restrictions of our charter, he had not given us a hint, so that we could have had our powers of holding property enlarged. It would have been perfectly easy to have the restrictions removed, and, as a matter of fact, the legislature shortly afterward removed them entirely, without the slightest objection; but this action was too late to enable us to take the McGraw-Fiske bequest.

About a fortnight after these assurances that we were perfectly safe, Judge Boardman sent for me, and on meeting him I found that he had discovered a decision of the Court of Appeals—rendered a few years before—which might prevent our accepting the bequest.

But there was still much hope of inducing the main heirs to allow the purpose of Mrs. Fiske to be carried out. Without imputing any evil intentions to any person, I fully believe—indeed, I may say I KNOW—that, had the matter been placed in my hands, this vast endowment would have been saved to us; but it was not so to be. Personal complications had arisen between the main heir and two of our trustees which increased the embarrassments of the situation. It is needless to go into them now; let all that be buried; but it may at least be said that day and night I labored to make some sort of arrangement between the principal heir and the university, and finally took the steamer for Europe in order to meet him and see if some arrangement could be made. But personal bitterness had entered too largely into the contest, and my efforts were in vain. Though our legal advisers insisted that the university was sure of winning the case, we lost it in every court—first in the Supreme Court of the State, then in the Court of Appeals, and finally in the Supreme Court of the United States. To me all this was most distressing. The creation of such a library would have been the culmination of my work; I could then have sung my Nunc dimittis. But the calamity was not without its compensations. When the worst was known, Mr. Henry W. Sage, a lifelong friend of Mr. McGraw and of Mrs. Fiske, came to my house, evidently with the desire to console me. He said: ``Don't allow this matter to prey upon you; Jenny shall have her library; it shall yet be built and well endowed.'' He was true to his promise. On the final decision against us, he added to his previous large gifts to the university a new donation of over six hundred thousand dollars, half of which went to the erection of the present library building, and the other half to an endowment fund. Professor Fiske also joined munificently in enlarging the library, adding various gifts which his practised eye showed him were needed, and, among these, two collections, one upon Dante and one in Romance literature, each the best of its kind in the United States. Mr. William Sage also added the noted library in German literature of Professor Zarncke of Leipsic; and various others contributed collections, larger or smaller, so that the library has become, as a whole, one of the best in the country. As I visit it, there often come back vividly to me remembrances of my college days, when I was wont to enter the Yale library and stand amazed in the midst of the sixty thousand volumes which had been brought together during one hundred and fifty years. They filled me with awe. But Cornell University has now, within forty years from its foundation, accumulated very nearly three hundred thousand volumes, many among them of far greater value than anything contained in the Yale library of my day; and as I revise these lines comes news that the will of Professor Fiske, who recently died at Frankfort-on-the-Main, gives to the library all of his splendid collections in Italian history and literature at Florence, with the addition of nearly half a million of dollars.

Beside these financial and other troubles, another class of difficulties beset us, which were, at times, almost as vexatious. These were the continued attacks made by good men in various parts of the State and Nation, who thought they saw in Cornell a stronghold-first, of ideas in religion antagonistic to their own; and secondly, of ideas in education likely to injure their sectarian colleges. From the day when our charter was under consideration at Albany they never relented, and at times they were violent. The reports of my inauguration speech were, in sundry denominational newspapers, utterly distorted; far and wide was spread the story that Mr. Cornell and myself were attempting to establish an institution for the propagation of ``atheism'' and ``infidelity.'' Certainly nothing could have been further from the purpose of either of us. He had aided, and loved to aid, every form of Christianity; I was myself a member of a Christian church and a trustee of a denominational college. Everything that we could do in the way of reasoning with our assailants was in vain. In talking with students from time to time, I learned that, in many cases, their pastors had earnestly besought them to go to any other institution rather than to Cornell; reports of hostile sermons reached us; bitter diatribes constantly appeared in denominational newspapers, and especially virulent were various addresses given on public occasions in the sectarian colleges which felt themselves injured by the creation of an unsectarian institution on so large a scale. Typical was the attack made by an eminent divine who, having been installed as president over one of the smaller colleges of the State, thought it his duty to denounce me as an ``atheist,'' and to do this especially in the city where I had formerly resided, and in the church which some of my family attended. I took no notice of the charge, and pursued the even tenor of my way; but the press took it up, and it recoiled upon the man who made it.

Perhaps the most comical of these attacks was one made by a clergyman of some repute before the Presbyterian Synod at Auburn in western New York. This gentleman, having attended one or two of the lectures by Agassiz before our scientific students, immediately rushed off to this meeting of his brethren, and insisted that the great naturalist was ``preaching atheism and Darwinism'' at the university. He seemed about to make a decided impression, when there arose a very dear old friend of mine, the Rev. Dr. Sherman Canfield, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church in Syracuse, who, fortunately, was a scholar abreast of current questions. Dr. Canfield quietly remarked that he was amazed to learn that Agassiz had, in so short a time, become an atheist, and not less astonished to hear that he had been converted to Darwinism; that up to that moment he had considered Agassiz a deeply religious man, and also the foremost—possibly, indeed, the last—great opponent of the Darwinian hypothesis. He therefore suggested that the resolution denouncing Cornell University brought in by his reverend brother be laid on the table to await further investigation. It was thus disposed of, and, in that region at least, it was never heard of more. Pleasing is it to me to chronicle the fact that, at Dr. Canfield's death, he left to the university a very important part of his library.

From another denominational college came an attack on Goldwin Smith. One of its professors published, in the Protestant Episcopal ``Gospel Messenger,'' an attack upon the university for calling into its faculty a ``Westminster Reviewer''; the fact being that Goldwin Smith was at that time a member of the Church of England, and had never written for the ``Westminster Review'' save in reply to one of its articles. So, too, when there were sculptured on the stone seat which he had ordered carved for the university grounds the words, ``Above all nations is humanity,'' there came an outburst. Sundry pastors, in their anxiety for the souls of the students, could not tell whether this inscription savored more of atheism or of pantheism. Its simple significance—that the claims of humanity are above those of nationality—entirely escaped them. Pulpit cushions were beaten in all parts of the State against us, and solemn warnings were renewed to students by their pastors to go anywhere for their education rather than to Cornell. Curiously, this fact became not only a gratuitous, but an effective, advertisement: many of the brightest men who came to us in those days confessed to me that these attacks first directed their attention to us.

We also owed some munificent gifts to this same cause. In two cases gentlemen came forward and made large additions to our endowment as their way of showing disbelief in these attacks or contempt for them.

Still, the attacks were vexatious even when impotent. Ingenious was the scheme carried out by a zealous young clergyman settled for a short time in Ithaca. Coming one day into my private library, he told me that he was very anxious to borrow some works showing the more recent tendencies of liberal thought. I took him to one of my book-cases, in which, by the side of the works of Bossuet and F<e'>nelon and Thomas Arnold and Robertson of Brighton, he found those of Channing, Parker, Renan, Strauss, and the men who, in the middle years of the last century, were held to represent advanced thought. He looked them over for some time, made some excuse for not borrowing any of them just then, and I heard nothing more from him until there came, in a denominational newspaper, his eloquent denunciation of me for possessing such books. Impressive, too, must have been the utterances of an eminent ``revivalist'' who, in various Western cities, loudly asserted that Mr. Cornell had died lamenting his inability to base his university on atheism, and that I had fled to Europe declaring that in America an infidel university was, as yet, an impossibility.

For a long time I stood on the defensive, hoping that the provisions made for the growth of religious life among the students might show that we were not so wicked as we were represented; but, as all this seemed only to embitter our adversaries, I finally determined to take the offensive, and having been invited to deliver a lecture in the great hall of the Cooper Institute at New York, took as my subject ``The Battle-fields of Science.'' In this my effort was to show how, in the supposed interest of religion, earnest and excellent men, for many ages and in many countries, had bitterly opposed various advances in science and in education, and that such opposition had resulted in most evil results, not only to science and education, but to religion. This lecture was published in full, next day, in the ``New York Tribune''; extracts from it were widely copied; it was asked for by lecture associations in many parts of the country; grew first into two magazine articles, then into a little book which was widely circulated at home, reprinted in England with a preface by Tyndall, and circulated on the Continent in translations, was then expanded into a series of articles in the ``Popular Science Monthly,'' and finally wrought into my book on ``The Warfare of Science with Theology.'' In each of these forms my argument provoked attack; but all this eventually created a reaction in our favor, even in quarters where it was least expected. One evidence of this touched me deeply. I had been invited to repeat the lecture at New Haven, and on arriving there found a large audience of Yale professors and students; but, most surprising of all, in the chair for the evening, no less a personage than my revered instructor, Dr. Theodore Dwight Woolsey, president of the university. He was of a deeply religious nature; and certainly no man was ever under all circumstances, more true to his convictions of duty. To be welcomed by him was encouragement indeed. He presented me cordially to the audience, and at the close of my address made a brief speech, in which he thoroughly supported my positions and bade me Godspeed. Few things in my life have so encouraged me.

Attacks, of course, continued for a considerable time, some of them violent; but, to my surprise and satisfaction, when my articles were finally brought together in book form, the opposition seemed to have exhausted itself. There were even indications of approval in some quarters where the articles composing it had previously been attacked; and I received letters thoroughly in sympathy with the work from a number of eminent Christian men, including several doctors of divinity, and among these two bishops, one of the Anglican and one of the American Episcopal Church.

The final result was that slander against the university for irreligion was confined almost entirely to very narrow circles, of waning influence; and my hope is that, as its formative ideas have been thus welcomed by various leaders of thought, and have filtered down through the press among the people at large, they have done something to free the path of future laborers in the field of science and education from such attacks as those which Cornell was obliged to suffer.



To this work of pressing on the development of the leading departments in the university, establishing various courses of instruction, and warding off attacks as best I could, was added the daily care of the regular and steady administration of affairs, and in this my duty was to co<o:>perate with the trustees, the faculty, and the students. The trustees formed a body differently composed from any organization for university government up to that time. As a rule, such boards in the United States were, in those days, self-perpetuating. A man once elected into one of them was likely to remain a trustee during his natural life; and the result had been much dry-rot and, frequently, a very sleepy condition of things in American collegiate and university administration. In drawing the Cornell charter, we provided for a governing body by first naming a certain number of high State officers—the governor, lieutenant-governor, speaker, president of the State Agricultural Society, and others; next, a certain number of men of special fitness, who were to be elected by the board itself; and, finally, a certain proportion elected by the alumni from their own number. Beside these, the eldest male lineal descendant of Mr. Cornell, and the president of the university, were trustees ex officio. At the first nomination of the charter trustees, Mr. Cornell proposed that he should name half the number and I the other half. This was done, and pains were taken to select men accustomed to deal with large affairs. A very important provision was also made limiting their term of office to five years.

During the first nine years the chairmanship of the board was held by Mr. Cornell, but at his death Mr. Henry W. Sage was elected to it, who, as long as he lived, discharged its duties with the greatest conscientiousness and ability. To the finances of the university he gave that shrewd care which had enabled him to build up his own immense business. Freely and without compensation, he bestowed upon the institution labor for which any great business corporation would have gladly paid him a very large sum. For the immediate management, in the intervals of the quarterly meetings of the board, an executive committee of the trustees was created, which also worked to excellent purpose.

The faculty, which was at first comparatively small, was elected by the trustees upon my nomination. In deciding on candidates, I put no trust in mere paper testimonials, no matter from what source; but always saw the candidates themselves, talked with them, and then secured confidential communications regarding them from those who knew them best. The results were good, and to this hour I cherish toward the faculty, as toward the trustees, a feeling of the deepest gratitude. Throughout all the hard work of that period they supported me heartily and devotedly; without their devotion and aid, my whole administration would have been an utter failure.

To several of these I have alluded elsewhere; but one should be especially mentioned to whom every member of the faculty must feel a debt of gratitude—Professor Hiram Corson. No one has done more to redress the balance between the technical side and the humanities. His writings, lectures, and readings have been a solace and an inspiration to many of us, both in the faculty and among the students. It was my remembrance of the effect of his readings that caused me to urge, at a public address at Yale in 1903, the establishment not only of professorships but of readerships in English literature in all our greater institutions, urging especially that the readers thus called should every day present, with little if any note or comment, the masterpieces of our literature. I can think of no provision which would do more to humanize the great body of students, especially in these days when other branches are so largely supplanting classical studies, than such a continuous presentation of the treasures of our language by a thoroughly good reader. What is needed is not more talk about literature, but the literature itself. And here let me recall an especial service of Professor Corson which may serve as a hint to men and women of light and leading in the higher education of our country. On sundry celebrations of Founder's Day, and on various other commemorative occasions, he gave in the university chapel recitals from Milton, Wordsworth, Tennyson, and other poets of the larger inspiration, while organ interludes were given from the great masters of music. Literature and music were thus made to do beautiful service as yokefellows. It has been my lot to enjoy in various capitals of the modern world many of the things which men who have a deep feeling for art most rejoice in, but never have I known anything more uplifting and ennobling than these simple commemorations.

From one evil which has greatly injured many American university faculties, especially in the middle and western States, we were virtually free. This evil was the prevalence of feuds between professors. Throughout a large part of the nineteenth century they were a great affliction. Twice the State University of Michigan was nearly wrecked by them; for several years they nearly paralyzed two or three of the New York colleges; and in one of these a squabble between sundry professors and the widow of a former president was almost fatal. Another of the larger colleges in the same State lost a very eminent president from the same cause; and still another, which had done excellent work, was dragged down and for years kept down by a feud between its two foremost professors. In my day, at Yale, whenever there was a sudden influx of students, and it was asked whence they came, the answer always was, ``Another Western college has burst up''; and the ``burst up'' had resulted, almost without exception, from faculty quarrels.

In another chapter I have referred to one of these explosions which, having blown out of a Western university the president, the entire board of trustees, and all the assistant professors and instructors, convulsed the State for years. I have known gifted members of faculties, term after term, substitute for their legitimate work impassioned appeals to their religious denominations, through synods or conferences, and to the public at large through the press,—their quarrels at last entangling other professors and large numbers of students.

In my ``Plan of Organization'' I called attention to this evil, and laid down the principle that ``the presence of no professor, however gifted, is so valuable as peace and harmony.'' The trustees acquiesced in this view, and from the first it was understood that, at any cost, quarrels must be prevented. The result was that we never had any which were serious, nor had we any in the board of trustees. One of the most satisfactory of all my reflections is that I never had any ill relations with any member of either body; that there was never one of them whom I did not look upon as a friend. My simple rule for the government of my own conduct was that I had NO TIME for squabbling; that life was not long enough for quarrels; and this became, I think, the feeling among all of us who were engaged in the founding and building of the university.

As regards the undergraduates, I initiated a system which, so far as is known to me, was then new in American institutions of learning. At the beginning of every year, and also whenever any special occasion seemed to require it, I summoned the whole body of students and addressed them at length on the condition of the university, on their relations to it, and on their duties to it as well as to themselves; and in all these addresses endeavored to bring home to them the idea that under our system of giving to the graduates votes in the election of trustees, and to representative alumni seats in the governing board, the whole student body had become, in a new sense, part of the institution, and were to be held, to a certain extent, responsible for it. I think that all conversant with the history of the university will agree that the results of thus taking the students into the confidence of the governing board were happy. These results were shown largely among the undergraduates, and even more strongly among the alumni. In all parts of the country alumni associations were organized, and here again I found a source of strength. These associations held reunions during every winter, and at least one banquet, at which the president of the university was invited to be present. So far as possible, I attended these meetings, and made use of them to strengthen the connection of the graduates with their alma mater.

The administrative care of the university was very engrossing. With study of the various interests combined within its organization; with the attendance on meetings of trustees, executive committee, and faculty, and discussion of important questions in each of these bodies— with the general oversight of great numbers of students in many departments and courses; with the constant necessity of keeping the legislature and the State informed as to the reasons of every movement, of meeting hostile forces pressing us on every side, of keeping in touch with our graduates throughout the country, there was much to be done. Trying also, at times, to a man never in robust health was the duty of addressing various assemblies of most dissimilar purposes. Within the space of two or three years I find mention in my diaries of a large number of addresses which, as president of the university, I could not refuse to give; among these, those before the legislature of the State, on Technical Education; before committees of Congress, on Agriculture and Technical Instruction; before the Johns Hopkins University, on Education with Reference to Political Life; before the National Teachers' Association at Washington, on the Relation of the Universities to the State School Systems; before the American Social Science Association of New York, on Sundry Reforms in University Management; before the National Association of Teachers at Detroit, on the Relations of Universities to Colleges; before four thousand people at Cleveland, on the Education of the Freedmen; before the Adalbert College, on the Concentration of Means for the Higher Education; before the State Teachers' Association at Saratoga, on Education and Democracy; at the Centennial banquet at Philadelphia, on the American Universities; and before my class at Yale University, on the Message of the Nineteenth Century to the Twentieth; besides many public lectures before colleges, schools, and special assemblies. There seemed more danger of wearing out than of rusting out, especially as some of these discourses provoked attacks which must be answered. Time also was required for my duties as president of the American Social Science Association, which lasted several years, and of the American Historical Society, which, though less engrossing, imposed for a time much responsibility. Then, too, there was another duty, constantly pressing, which I had especially at heart. The day had not yet arrived when the president of the university could be released from his duties as a professor. I had, indeed, no wish for such release; for, of all my duties, that of meeting my senior students face to face in the lecture-room and interesting them in the studies which most interested me, and which seemed most likely to fit them to go forth and bring the influence of the university to bear for good upon the country at large, was that which I liked best. The usual routine of administrative cares was almost hateful to me, and I delegated minor details, as far as possible, to those better fitted to take charge of them—especially to the vice- president and registrar and secretary of the faculty. But my lecture-room I loved. Of all occupations, I know of none more satisfactory than that of a university professor who feels that he is in right relations with his students, that they welcome what he has to give them, and that their hearts and minds are developed, day by day, by the work which he most prizes. I may justly say that this pleasure was mine at the University of Michigan and at Cornell University. It was at times hard to satisfy myself; for next to the pleasure of directing younger minds is the satisfaction of fitting one's self to do so. During my ordinary working-day there was little time for keeping abreast with the latest and best in my department; but there were odds and ends of time, day and night, and especially during my frequent journeys by rail and steamer to meet engagements at distant points, when I always carried with me a collection of books which seemed to me most fitted for my purpose; and as I had trained myself to be a rapid reader, these excursions gave me many opportunities.

But some of these journeys were not well suited to study. During the first few years of the university, being obliged to live in the barracks on the University Hill under many difficulties, I could not have my family with me, and from Saturday afternoon until Monday morning was given to them at Syracuse. In summer the journey by Cayuga Lake to the New York Central train gave me excellent opportunity for reading and even for writing. But in winter it was different. None of the railways now connecting the university town with the outside world had then been constructed, save that to the southward; and, therefore, during those long winters there was at least twice a week a dreary drive in wagon or sleigh sometimes taking all the better hours of the day, in order to reach the train from Binghamton to Syracuse. Coming out of my lecture-room Friday evening or Saturday morning, I was conveyed through nearly twenty-five miles of mud and slush or sleet and snow. On one journey my sleigh was upset three times in the drifts which made the roads almost impassable, and it required nearly ten hours to make the entire journey. The worst of it was that, coming out of my heated lecture-room and taking an open sleigh at Ithaca, or coming out of the heated cars and taking it at Cortland, my throat became affected, and for some years gave me serious trouble.

But my greater opportunities—those which kept me from becoming a mere administrative machine—were afforded by various vacations, longer or shorter. During the summer vacation, mainly passed at Saratoga and the seaside, there was time for consecutive studies with reference to my work, my regular lectures, and occasional addresses. But this was not all. At three different times I was summoned from university work to public duties. The first of these occasions was when I was appointed by President Grant one of the commissioners to Santo Domingo. This appointment came when I was thoroughly worn out with university work, and it gave me a chance of great value physically and intellectually. During four months I was in a world of thought as different from anything that I had before known as that wonderful island in the Caribbean Sea is different in its climate from the hills of central New York swept by the winds of December. And I had to deal with men very different from the trustees, faculty, and students of Cornell. This episode certainly broadened my view as a professor, and strengthened me for administrative duties.

The third of these long vacations was in 1879—80—81, when President Hayes appointed me minister plenipotentiary in Berlin. My stay at that post, and especially my acquaintance with leaders in German thought and with professors at many of the Continental universities, did much for me in many ways.

It may be thought strange that I could thus absent myself from the university, but these absences really enabled me to maintain my connection with the institution. My constitution, though elastic, was not robust; an uninterrupted strain would have broken me, while variety of occupation strengthened me. Throughout my whole life I have found the best of all medicines to be travel and change of scene. Another example of this was during my stay of a year abroad as commissioner at the Paris Exposition. During that stay I prepared several additions to my course of general lectures, and during my official stay in Berlin added largely to my course on German history. But the change of work saved me: though minor excursions were frequently given up to work with book and pen, I returned from them refreshed and all the more ready for administrative duties.

As to the effect of such absences upon the university, I may say that it accorded with the theory which I held tenaciously regarding the administration of the university at that formative period. I had observed in various American colleges that a fundamental and most injurious error was made in relieving trustees and faculty from responsibility, and concentrating all in the president. The result, in many of these institutions, had been a sort of atrophy,—the trustees and faculty being, whenever an emergency arose, badly informed as to the affairs of their institutions, and really incapable of managing them. This state of things was the most serious drawback to President Tappan's administration at the University of Michigan, and was the real cause of the catastrophe which finally led to his break with the regents of that university, and his departure to Europe, never to return. Worse still was the downfall of Union College, Schenectady, from the position which it had held before the death of President Nott. Under Drs. Nott and Tappan the tendency in the institutions above named was to make the trustees in all administrative matters mere ciphers, and to make the faculty more and more incapable of administering discipline or conducting current university business. That system concentrated all knowledge of university affairs and all power of every sort in the hands of the president, and relieved trustees and faculty from everything except nominal responsibility. From the very beginning I determined to prevent this state of things at Cornell. Great powers were indeed given me by the trustees, and I used them; but in the whole course of my administration I constantly sought to keep ample legislative powers in the board of trustees and in the faculty. I felt that the university, to be successful, should not depend on the life and conduct of any one man; that every one of those called to govern and to manage it, whether president or professor, should feel that he had powers and responsibilities in its daily administration. Therefore it was that I inserted in the fundamental laws of the university a provision that the confirmation by the trustees of all nominations of professors should be by ballot; so that it might never be in the power of the president or any other trustee unduly to influence selections for such positions. I also exerted myself to provide that in calling new professors they should be nominated by the president, not of his own will, but with the advice of the faculty and should be confirmed by the trustees. I also provided that the elections of students to fellowships and scholarships and the administration of discipline should be decided by the faculty, and by ballot. The especial importance of this latter point will not escape those conversant with university management. I insisted that the faculty should not be merely a committee to register the decrees of the president, but that it should have full legislative powers to discuss and to decide university affairs. Nor did I allow it to become a body merely advisory: I not only insisted that it should have full legislative powers, but that it should be steadily trained in the use of them. On my nomination the trustees elected from the faculty three gentlemen who had shown themselves especially fitted for administrative work to the positions of vice-president, registrar, and secretary; and thenceforth the institution was no longer dependent on any one man. To the first of these positions was elected Professor William Channing Russel; to the second, Professor William Dexter Wilson; to the third, Professor George C. Caldwell; and each discharged his duties admirably.

Of the last two of these I have already spoken, and here some record should be made of the services rendered by Dr. Russel. He was among those chosen for the instructing body at the very beginning. Into all of his work he brought a perfect loyalty to truth, with the trained faculties of a lawyer in seeking it and the fearlessness of an apostle in announcing it. As to his success in this latter field, there may be given, among other testimonies, that of an unwilling witness—a young scholar of great strength of mind, who, though he had taken deep offense at sundry acts of the professor and never forgiven them, yet, after a year in the historical lecture-rooms of the University of Berlin, said to me: ``I have attended here the lectures of all the famous professors of history, and have heard few who equal Professor Russel and none who surpass him in ascertaining the really significant facts and in clearly presenting them.''

In the vice-presidency of the faculty he also rendered services of the greatest value. No one was more devoted than he to the university or more loyal to his associates. There was, indeed, some friction. His cousin, James Russell Lowell, once asked me regarding this, and my reply was that it reminded me of a character in the ``Biglow Papers'' who ``had a dre'dful winnin' way to make folks hate him.'' This was doubtless an overstatement, but it contained truth; for at times there was perhaps lacking in his handling of delicate questions something of the suaviter in modo. His honest frankness was worthy of all praise; but I once found it necessary to write him: ``I am sorry that you have thought it best to send me so unsparing a letter, but no matter; write me as many as you like; they will never break our friendship; only do not write others in the same strain.'' This brought back from him one of the kindest epistles imaginable. Uncompromising as his manner was, his services vastly outweighed all the defects of his qualities; and among these services were some of which the general public never dreamed. I could tell of pathetic devotion and self-sacrifice on his part, not only to the university, but to individual students. No professor ever had a kindlier feeling toward any scholar in need, sickness, or trouble. Those who knew him best loved him most; and, in the hard, early days of the university, he especially made good his title to the gratitude of every Cornellian, not only by his university work, but by his unostentatious devotion to every deserving student.

As to my professorial work, I found in due time effective aid in various young men who had been members of my classes. Of these were Charles Kendall Adams, who afterward became my successor in the presidency of Cornell, and George Lincoln Burr, who is now one of my successors in the professorship of history.

Thus it was that from time to time I could be absent with a feeling that all at the university was moving on steadily and securely; with a feeling, indeed, that it was something to have aided in creating an institution which could move on steadily and securely, even when the hands of those who had set it in motion had been removed.

There was, however, one temporary exception to the rule. During my absence as minister at Berlin trouble arose in the governing board so serious that I resigned my diplomatic post before my term of service was ended, and hastened back to my university duties. But no permanent injury had been done; in fact, this experience, by revealing weaknesses in sundry parts of our system, resulted in permanent good.

Returning thus from Berlin, I threw myself into university work more heartily than ever. It was still difficult, for our lands had not as yet been sold to any extent, and our income was sadly insufficient. The lands were steadily increasing in value, and it was felt that it would be a great error to dispose of them prematurely. The work of providing ways and means to meet the constantly increasing demands of the institution was therefore severe, and the loss of the great library bequest to the university also tried me sorely; but I labored on, and at last, thanks to the admirable service of Mr. Sage in the management of the lands, the university was enabled to realize, for the first time, a large capital from them. Up to the year 1885 they had been a steady drain upon our resources; now the sale of a fraction of them yielded a good revenue. For the first time there was something like ease in the university finances.

Twenty years had now elapsed since I had virtually begun my duties as president by drafting the university charter and by urging it upon the legislature. The four years of work since my return from Berlin had tried me severely; and more than that, I had made a pledge some years before to the one who, of all in the world, had the right to ask it, that at the close of twenty years of service I would give up all administrative duties. To this pledge I was faithful, but with the feeling that it was at the sacrifice of much. The new endowment coming in from the sale of lands offered opportunities which I had longed for during many weary years; but I felt that it was best to put the management into new hands. There were changes needed which were far more difficult for me to make than for a new-comer—especially changes in the faculty, which involved the severing of ties very dear to me.

At the annual commencement of 1885, the twenty years from the granting of our charter having arrived, I presented my resignation with the declaration that it must be accepted. It was accepted in such a way as to make me very grateful to all connected with the institution: trustees, faculty, and students were most kind to me. As regards the first of these bodies, I cannot resist the temptation to mention two evidences of their feeling which touched me deeply. The first of these was the proposal that I should continue as honorary president of the university. This I declined. To hold such a position would have been an injury to my successor; I knew well that the time had come when he would be obliged to grapple with questions which I had left unsettled from a feeling that he would have a freer hand than I could have. But another tender made me I accepted: this was that I should nominate my successor. I did this, naming my old student at the University of Michigan, who had succeeded me there as professor of history—Charles Kendall Adams; and so began a second and most prosperous administration.

In thus leaving the presidency of the university, it seemed to me that the time had come for carrying out a plan formed long before—the transfer to the university of my historical and general library, which had become one of the largest and, in its field, one of the best private collections of books in the United States. The trustees accepted it, providing a most noble room for it in connection with the main university library and with the historical lecture-rooms; setting apart, also, from their resources, an ample sum, of which the income should be used in maintaining the library, in providing a librarian, in publishing a complete catalogue, and in making the collection effective for historical instruction. My only connection with the university thenceforward was that of a trustee and member of its executive committee. In this position it has been one of the greatest pleasures and satisfactions of my life to note the large and steady development of the institution during the two administrations which have succeeded my own. At the close of the administration of President Adams, who had especially distinguished himself in developing the law department and various other important university interests, in strengthening the connection of the institution with the State, and in calling several most competent professors, he was succeeded by a gentleman whose acquaintance I had made during my stay as minister to Germany, he being at that time a student at the University of Berlin,—Dr. Jacob Gould Schurman, whose remarkable powers and gifts have more than met the great expectations I then formed regarding him, and have developed the university to a yet higher point, so that its number of students is now, as I revise these lines, over three thousand. He, too, has been called to important duties in the public service; and he has just returned after a year of most valuable work as president of the Commission of the United States to the Philippine Islands, the university progressing during his absence, and showing that it has a life of its own and is not dependent even on the most gifted of presidents.

On laying down the duties of the university presidency, it did not seem best to me to remain in its neighborhood during the first year or two of the new administration. Any one who has ever been in a position similar to mine at that period will easily understand the reason. It is the same which has led thoughtful men in the churches to say that it is not well to have the old pastor too near when the new pastor is beginning his duties. Obedient to this idea of leaving my successor a free hand, my wife and myself took a leisurely journey through England, France, and Italy, renewing old acquaintances and making new friends. Returning after a year, I settled down again in the university, hoping to complete the book for which I had been gathering materials and on which I had been working steadily for some years, when there came the greatest calamity of my life,—the loss of her who had been my main support during thirty years,—and work became for a time, an impossibility. Again I became a wanderer, going, in 1888, first to Scotland, and thence, being ordered by physicians to the East, went again through France and Italy, and extended the journey through Egypt, Greece and Turkey. Of the men and things which seemed most noteworthy to me at that period I speak in other chapters. From the East I made my way leisurely to Paris, with considerable stops at Buda-Pesth, Vienna, Ulm, Munich Frankfort-on-the-Main, Paris, London, taking notes in libraries, besides collecting books and manuscripts.

Returning to the United States in the autumn of 1889, and settling down again in my old house at Cornell, I was invited to give courses of historical lectures at various American universities, especially one upon the ``Causes of the French Revolution,'' at Johns Hopkins, Columbian University in Washington, the University of Pennsylvania, Tulane University in New Orleans, and Stanford University in California. Excursions to these institutions opened a new epoch in my life; but of this I shall speak elsewhere.

During this period of something over fifteen years, I have been frequently summoned from these duties, which were especially agreeable to me—first, in 1892, as minister to Russia; next, in 1896, as a member of the Venezuelan Commission at Washington; and, in 1897, as ambassador to Germany. I have found many men and things which would seem likely to draw me away from my interest in Cornell; but, after all, that which has for nearly forty years held, and still holds, the deepest place in my thoughts is the university which I aided to found.

Since resigning its presidency I have, in many ways, kept in relations with it; and as I have, at various times, returned from abroad and walked over its grounds, visited its buildings, and lived among its faculty and students, an enjoyment has been mine rarely vouchsafed to mortals. It has been like revisiting the earth after leaving it. The work to which I had devoted myself for so many years, and with more earnestness than any other which I have ever undertaken, though at times almost with the energy of despair, I have now seen successful beyond my dreams. Above all, as I have seen the crowd of students coming and going, I have felt assured that the work is good. It was with this feeling that, just before I left the university for the embassy at Berlin, I erected at the entrance of the university grounds a gateway, on which I placed a paraphrase of a Latin inscription noted by me, many years before, over the main portal of the University of Padua, as follows:

   ``So enter that daily thou mayest become more learned
        and thoughtful;
     So depart that daily thou mayest become more useful
        to thy country and to mankind.''

I often recall the saying of St. Philip Neri, who, in the days of the Elizabethan persecutions, was wont to gaze at the students passing out from the gates of the English College at Rome, on their way to Great Britain, and to say: ``I am feasting my eyes on those martyrs yonder.'' My own feelings are like his, but happier: I feast my eyes on those youths going forth from Cornell University into this new twentieth century to see great things that I shall never see, and to make the new time better than the old.

During my life, which is now extending beyond the allotted span of threescore and ten, I have been engaged after the manner of my countrymen, in many sorts of work, have become interested in many conditions of men have joined in many efforts which I hope have been of use; but, most of all, I have been interested in the founding and maintaining of Cornell University, and by the part I have taken in that, more than by any other work of my life I hope to be judged.





While yet an undergraduate at Yale, my favorite studies in history and some little attention to international law led me to take special interest in the diplomatic relations between modern states; but it never occurred to me that I might have anything to do directly with them.

Having returned to New Haven after my graduation, intending to give myself especially to modern languages as a preparation for travel and historical study abroad, I saw one day, from my window in North College, my friend Gilman, then of the class above mine, since president of Johns Hopkins University and of the Carnegie Institution, rushing along in great haste, and, on going out to greet him, learned that he had been invited by Governor Seymour of Connecticut, the newly appointed minister to Russia, to go with him as an attach<e'>, and that, at his suggestion, a similar invitation would be extended to me.

While in doubt on the matter, I took the train for New York to consult my father, and, entering a car, by a happy chance found the only vacant place at the side of the governor. I had never seen him, except on the platform at my graduation, three months before; but on my introducing myself, he spoke kindly of my argument on that occasion, which, as he was ``pro-slavery'' and I ``anti-slavery,'' I had supposed he would detest; then talked pleasantly on various subjects, and, on our separating at New York, invited me so cordially to go to Russia with him that I then and there decided to do so, and, on meeting my father, announced my decision.

On the 10th of December, 1853, I sailed for England, with Gilman, and in London awaited Governor Seymour, who, at the last moment, had decided not to leave Washington until the Senate had confirmed his nomination; but this delay proved to be fortunate, for thereby opportunity was afforded me to see some interesting men, and especially Mr. Buchanan, who had previously been minister to Russia, was afterward President of the United States, and was at that time minister at the court of St. James. He was one of the two or three best talkers I have ever known, and my first knowledge of his qualities in this respect was gained at a great dinner given in his honor by Mr. George Peabody, the banker. A day or two before, our minister in Spain, Mr. Soul<e'>, and his son had each fought a duel, one with the French ambassador, the Marquis de Turgot, and the other with the Duke of Alba, on account of a supposed want of courtesy to Mrs. Soul<e'>; and the conversation being directed somewhat by this event, I recall Mr. Buchanan's reminiscences of duels which he had known during his long public life as among the most interesting I have ever heard on any subject.

Shortly after the arrival of Governor Seymour, we went on to Paris, and there, placing myself in the family of a French professor, I remained, while the rest of the party went on to St. Petersburg; my idea being to hear lectures on history and kindred subjects, thus to fit myself by fluency in French for service in the attach<e'>ship, and, by other knowledge, for later duties.

After staying in France for nearly a year, having received an earnest request from Governor Seymour to come on to Russia before the beginning of the winter, I left Paris about the middle of October and went by way of Berlin. In those days there was no railroad beyond the eastern frontier of Prussia, and, as the Crimean War was going on, there was a blockade in force which made it impossible to enter Russia by sea; consequently I had seven days and seven nights of steady traveling in a post- coach after entering the Russian Empire.

Arriving at the Russian capital on the last day of October, 1854, I was most heartily welcomed by the minister, who insisted that I should enjoy all the privileges of residence with him. Among the things to which I now look back as of the greatest value to me, is this stay of nearly a year under his roof. The attach<e'>ship, as it existed in those days, was in many ways a good thing and in no way evil; but it was afterward abolished by Congress on the ground that certain persons had abused its privileges. I am not alone in believing that it could again be made of real service to the country: one of the best secretaries of state our country has ever had, Mr. Hamilton Fish, once expressed to me his deep regret at its suppression.

Under the system which thus prevailed at that time young men of sufficient means, generally from the leading universities, were secured to aid the minister, without any cost to the government, their only remuneration being an opportunity to see the life and study the institutions of the country to which the minister was accredited.

The duty of an attach<e'> was to assist the minister in securing information, in conducting correspondence, and in carrying on the legation generally; he was virtually an additional secretary of legation, and it was a part of my duty to act as interpreter. As such I was constantly called to accompany the minister in his conferences with his colleagues as well as with the ministers of the Russian government, and also to be present at court and at ceremonial interviews: this was of course very interesting to me. In the intervals of various duties my time was given largely to studying such works upon Russia and especially upon Russian history as were accessible, and the recent history was all the more interesting from the fact that some of the men who had taken a leading part in it were still upon the stage. One occasion especially comes back to me when, finding myself at an official function near an old general who was allowed to sit while all the others stood, I learned that he was one of the few still surviving who had taken a leading part in the operations against Napoleon, in 1812, at Moscow.

It was the period of the Crimean War, and at our legation there were excellent opportunities for observing not only society at large, but the struggle then going on between Russia on one side, and Great Britain, France, Italy, and Turkey on the other.

The main duties of the American representative were to keep his own government well informed, to guard the interests of his countrymen, and not only to maintain, but to develop, the friendly relations that had existed for many years between Russia and the United States. A succession of able American ministers had contributed to establish these relations: among them two who afterward became President of the United States—John Quincy Adams and James Buchanan, George Mifflin Dallas, who afterward became Vice-President; John Randolph of Roanoke; and a number of others hardly less important in the history of our country. Fortunately, the two nations were naturally inclined to peaceful relations; neither had any interest antagonistic to the other, and under these circumstances the course of the minister was plain: it was to keep his government out of all entanglements, and at the same time to draw the two countries more closely together. This our minister at that time was very successful in doing: his relations with the leading Russians, from the Emperor down, were all that could be desired, and to the work of men like him is largely due the fact that afterward, in our great emergency during the Civil War, Russia showed an inclination to us that probably had something to do with holding back the powers of western Europe from recognizing the Southern Confederacy.

To the feeling thus created is also due, in some measure, the transfer of Alaska, which has proved fortunate, in spite of our halting and unsatisfactory administration of that region thus far.

The Czar at that period, Nicholas I, was a most imposing personage, and was generally considered the most perfect specimen of a human being, physically speaking, in all Europe. At court, in the vast rooms filled with representatives from all parts of the world, and at the great reviews of his troops, he loomed up majestically, and among the things most strongly impressed upon my memory is his appearance as I saw him, just before his death, driving in his sledge and giving the military salute.

Nor was he less majestic in death. In the spring of 1855 he yielded very suddenly to an attack of pneumonia, doubtless rendered fatal by the depression due to the ill success of the war into which he had rashly plunged; and a day or two afterward it was made my duty to attend, with our minister, at the Winter Palace, the first presentation of the diplomatic corps to the new Emperor, Alexander II. The scene was impressive. The foreign ministers having been arranged in a semicircle, with their secretaries and attach<e'>s beside them, the great doors were flung open, and the young Emperor, conducted by his Minister of Foreign Affairs, Count Nesselrode, entered the room. Tears were streaming down his cheeks, and he gave his address with deep feeling. He declared that if the Holy Alliance made in 1815 had been broken, it was not the fault of Russia; that though he longed for peace, if terms should be insisted upon by the Western powers, at the approaching Paris conference, incompatible with Russian honor, he would put himself at the head of his faithful country,—would retreat into Siberia,—would die rather than yield.

Then occurred an incident especially striking. From Austria, which only seven years before had been saved by Russia from destruction in the Austro-Hungarian revolution, Russia had expected, in ordinary gratitude, at least some show of neutrality. But it had become evident that gratitude had not prevented Austria from secretly joining the hostile nations; therefore it was that, in the course of the address, the Emperor, turning to the Austrian representative, Count Esterhazy, addressed him with the greatest severity, hinted at the ingratitude of his government, and insisted on Russia's right to a different return. During all this part of the address the Emperor Alexander fastened his eyes upon those of the Austrian minister and spoke in a manner much like that which the head of a school would use toward a school-boy caught in misdoing. At the close of this speech came the most perfect example of deportment I had ever seen: the Austrian minister, having looked the Czar full in the face, from first to last, without the slightest trace of feeling, bowed solemnly, respectfully, with the utmost deliberation, and then stood impassive, as if words had not been spoken destined to change the traditional relations between the two great neighboring powers, and to produce a bitterness which, having lasted through the latter half of the nineteenth century, bids fair to continue far into the twentieth.

Knowing the importance of this speech as an indication to our government of what was likely to be the course of the Emperor, I determined to retain it in my mind; and, although my verbal memory has never been retentive, I was able, on returning to our legation, to write the whole of it, word for word. In the form thus given, it was transmitted to our State Department, where, a few years since, when looking over sundry papers, I found it.

Immediately after this presentation the diplomatic corps proceeded to the room in which the body of Nicholas lay in state. Heaped up about the coffin were the jeweled crosses and orders which had been sent him by the various monarchs of the world, and, in the midst of them, the crowns and scepters of all the countries he had ruled, among them those of Siberia, Astrakhan, Kazan, Poland, the Crimea, and, above all, the great crown and scepter of the empire. At his feet two monks were repeating prayers for the dead; his face and form were still as noble and unconquerable as ever.

His funeral dwells in my memory as the most imposing pageant I had ever seen. When his body was carried from the palace to the Fortress Church, it was borne between double lines of troops standing closely together on each side of the avenues for a distance of five miles; marshals of the empire carried the lesser crowns and imperial insignia before his body; and finally were borne the great imperial crown, orb, and scepter, the masses of jewels in them, and especially the Orloff diamond swinging in the top of the scepter, flashing forth vividly on that bright winter morning, and casting their rays far along the avenues. Behind the body walked the Emperor Alexander and the male members of the imperial family.

Later came the burial in the Fortress Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, on the island of the Neva, nearly opposite the Winter Palace. That, too, was most imposing. Choirs had been assembled from the four great cathedrals of the empire, and their music was beyond dreams. At the proper point in the service, the Emperor and his brothers, having taken the body of their father from its coffin and wrapped it in a shroud of gold cloth, carried it to the grave near that of Peter the Great, at the right of the high altar; and, as it was laid to rest, and beautiful music rose above us, the guns of the fortress on all sides of the church sounded the battle-roll until the whole edifice seemed to rock upon its foundations. Never had I imagined a scene so impressive.

Among the persons with whom it was my duty to deal, in behalf of our representative, was the Prime Minister of Russia,—the Minister of Foreign Affairs,—Count Nesselrode. He was at that period the most noted diplomatist in the world; for, having been associated with Talleyrand, Metternich, and their compeers at the Congress of Vienna, he was now the last of the great diplomatists of the Napoleonic period. He received me most kindly and said, ``So you are beginning a diplomatic career?'' My answer was that I could not begin it more fitly than by making the acquaintance of the Nestor of diplomacy, or words to that effect, and these words seemed to please him. Whenever he met me afterward his manner was cordial, and he seemed always ready to do all in his power to favor the best relations between the two countries.

The American colony in Russia at that period was small, and visitors were few; but some of these enlivened us. Of the more interesting were Colonel Samuel Colt of Hartford, inventor of the revolver which bears his name, and his companion, Mr. Dickerson, eminent as an expert in mechanical matters and an authority on the law of patents. They had come into the empire in the hope of making a contract to supply the Russians with improved arms such as the allies were beginning to use against them in the Crimea; but the heavy conservatism of Russian officials thwarted all their efforts. To all representations as to the importance of improved arms the answer was, ``Our soldiers are too ignorant to use anything but the old `brown Bess.' '' The result was that the Russian soldiers were sacrificed by thousands; their inferiority in arms being one main cause of their final defeat.

That something better than this might have been expected was made evident to us all one day when I conducted these gentlemen through the Imperial Museum of the Hermitage, adjoining the Winter Palace. After looking through the art collections we went into the room where were preserved the relics of Peter the Great, and especially the machines of various sorts made for him by the mechanics whom he called to his aid from Holland and other Western countries. These machines were not then shut up in cases, as they now are, but were placed about the room and easy of access. Presently I heard Mr. Dickerson in a loud voice call out: ``Good God! Sam, come here! Only look at this!'' On our going to him, he pointed out to us a lathe for turning irregular forms and another for copying reliefs, with specimens of work still in them. ``Look at that,'' he said. ``Here is Blanchard's turning-lathe, which only recently has been reinvented, which our government uses in turning musket-stocks, and which is worth a fortune. Look at those reliefs in this other machine; here is the very lathe for copying sculpture that has just been reinvented, and is now attracting so much attention at Paris.''

These machines had stood there in the gallery, open to everybody, ever since the death of Peter, two hundred years before, and no human being had apparently ever taken the trouble to find the value of them.

But there came Americans of a very different sort, and no inconsiderable part of our minister's duties was to keep his hot-headed fellow-citizens from embroiling our country with the militant powers.

A very considerable party in the United States leaned toward Russia and sought to aid her secretly, if not openly. This feeling was strongest in our Southern States and among the sympathizers with slavery in our Northern States, a main agent of it in St. Petersburg being Dr. Cottman of New Orleans, and its main causes being the old dislike of Great Britain, and the idea among pro-slavery fanatics that there was a tie between their part of our country and Russia arising from the fact that while the American Republic was blessed with slavery, the Russian Empire was enjoying the advantages of the serf system. This feeling might have been very different had these sympathizers with Russia been aware that at this very moment Alexander II was planning to abolish the serf system throughout his whole empire; but as it was, their admiration for Russia knew no bounds, and they even persuaded leading Russians that it would not be a difficult matter to commit America to the cause of Russia, even to aiding her with arms, men, and privateers.

This made the duty of the American minister at times very delicate; for, while showing friendliness to Russia, he had to thwart the efforts of her over-zealous American advocates. Moreover, constant thought had to be exercised for the protection of American citizens then within the empire. Certain Russian agents had induced a number of young American physicians and surgeons who had been studying in Paris to enter the Russian army, and these, having been given pay and rapid advancement, in the hope that this would strengthen American feeling favorable to the Russian cause, were naturally hated by the Russian surgeons; hence many of these young compatriots of ours were badly treated,—some so severely that they died,—and it became part of our minister's duty to extricate the survivors from their unfortunate position. More than once, on returning with him from an interview with the Minister of War, I saw tears in Governor Seymour's eyes as he dwelt upon the death of some of these young fellows whom he had learned to love during their stay in St. Petersburg.

The war brought out many American adventurers, some of them curiosities of civilization, and this was especially the case with several who had plans for securing victory to Russia over the Western powers. All sorts of nostrums were brought in by all sorts of charlatans, and the efforts of the minister and his subordinates to keep these gentlemen within the limits of propriety in their dealings with one another and with the Russian authorities were at times very arduous. On one occasion, the main functionaries of the Russian army having been assembled with great difficulty to see the test of a new American invention in artillery, it was found that the inventor's rival had stolen some essential part of the gun, and the whole thing was a vexatious failure.

One man who came out with superb plans brought a militia colonel's commission from the governor of a Western State and the full uniform of a major-general. At first he hesitated to clothe himself in all his glory, and therefore went through a process of evolution, beginning first with part of his uniform and then adding more as his courage rose. During this process he became the standing joke of St. Petersburg; but later, when he had emerged in full and final splendor, he became a man of mark indeed, so much so that serious difficulties arose. Throughout the city are various corps de garde, and the sentinel on duty before each of these, while allowed merely to present arms to an officer of lower rank, must, whenever he catches sight of a general officer, call out the entire guard to present arms with the beating of drums. Here our American was a source of much difficulty, for whenever any sentinel caught sight of his gorgeous epaulets in the distance the guard was instantly called out, arms presented, and drums beaten, much to the delight of our friend, but even more to the disgust of the generals of the Russian army and to the troops, who thus rendered absurd homage and found themselves taking part in something like a bit of comic opera.

Another example was also interesting. A New York ward leader—big, rough, and rosy—had come out as an agent for an American breech-loading musket company, and had smuggled specimens of arms over the frontier. Arriving in St. Petersburg, he was presented to the Emperor, and after receiving handsome testimonials, was put in charge of two aides-de-camp, who took him and his wife about, in court carriages, to see the sights of the Russian capital. At the close of his stay, wishing to make some return for this courtesy, he gave these two officers a dinner at his hotel. Our minister declined his invitation, but allowed the secretary and me to accept it, and we very gladly availed ourselves of this permission. Arriving at his rooms, we were soon seated at a table splendidly furnished. At the head of it was the wife of our entertainer, and at her right one of the Russian officials, in gorgeous uniform; at the other end of our table was our host, and at his right the other Russian official, splendidly attired; beside the first official sat our secretary, and beside the other was the place assigned to me. The dinner was successful: all spoke English, and all were happy; but toward the end of it our host, having perhaps taken more wine than was his wont, grew communicative, and, as ill luck would have it, the subject of the conversation became personal courage, whereupon he told a story. Recalling his experience as a deputy sheriff of New York, he said:

``When those river pirates who murdered a sailor in New York harbor had to be hanged, the sheriff of the county hadn't the courage to do it and ordered me to hang them. I rather hated the business, but I made everything ready, and when the time came I took an extra glass of brandy, cut the rope, and off they swung.''

The two Russians started back in consternation. Not all their politeness could conceal it: horror of horrors, they were dining with a hangman! Besides their sense of degradation in this companionship, superstitions had been bred in them which doubled their distress. A dead silence fell over all. I was the first to break it by remarking to my Russian neighbor:

``You may perhaps not know, sir, that in the State of New York the taking of life by due process of law is considered so solemn a matter that we intrust it to the chief executive officers of our counties,—to our sheriffs,— and not to hangmen or executioners.''

He looked at me very solemnly as I announced this truth, and then, after a solemn pause, gasped out in a dubious, awe-struck voice, ``Merci bien, monsieur.'' But this did not restore gaiety to the dinner. Henceforth it was cold indeed, and at the earliest moment possible the Russian officials bowed themselves out, and no doubt, for a long time afterward, ascribed any ill luck which befell them to this scene of ill omen.

Another case in which this irrepressible compatriot figured was hardly less peculiar. Having decided to return to America, and the blockade being still in force, he secured a place in the post-coach for the seven days and seven nights' journey to the frontier. The opportunities to secure such passages were few and far between, since this was virtually the only public conveyance out of the empire. As he was obliged to have his passport vis<e'>d at the Russian Foreign Office in order that he might leave the country, it had been sent by the legation to the Russian authorities a fortnight before his departure, but under various pretexts it was retained, and at last did not arrive in time. When the hour of departure came he was at the post-house waiting for his pass, and as he had been assured that it would duly reach him, he exerted himself in every way to delay the coach. He bribed one subordinate after another; but at last the delay was so long and the other passengers so impatient that one of the higher officials appeared upon the scene and ordered the coach to start. At this our American was wild with rage and began a speech in German and English—so that all the officials might understand it—on Russian officials and on the empire in general. A large audience having gathered around him, he was ordered to remove his hat. At this he held it on all the more firmly, declared himself an American, and defied the whole power of the empire to remove it. He then went on to denounce everything in Russia, from the Emperor down. He declared that the officials were a pack of scoundrels; that the only reason why he did not obtain his passport was that he had not bribed them as highly as they expected; that the empire ought to be abolished; that he hoped the Western powers in the war then going on would finish it—indeed, that he thought they would.

There was probably some truth in his remark as to the inadequate bribing of officials; but the amazing thing was that his audience were so paralyzed by his utterances and so overawed by his attitude that they made no effort to arrest him. Then came a new scene. While they were standing before him thus confounded, he suddenly turned to the basket of provisions which he had laid in for his seven days' journey, and began pelting his audience, including the official above named, with its contents, hurling sandwiches, oranges, and finally even roast chickens, pigeons, and partridges, at their devoted heads. At last, pressing his hat firmly over his brows, he strode forth to the legation unmolested. There it took some labor to cool his wrath; but his passport having finally been obtained, we secured for him permission to use post- horses, and so he departed from the empire.

To steer a proper course in the midst of such fellow- citizens was often difficult, and I recall multitudes of other examples hardly less troublesome; indeed, the career of this same deputy sheriff at St. Petersburg was full of other passages requiring careful diplomatic intervention to prevent his arrest.

Luckily for these gentlemen, the Russian government felt, just at that time, special need of maintaining friendly relations with the powers not at war with her, and the public functionaries of all sorts were evidently ordered to treat Americans with extreme courtesy and forbearance.

One experience of this was somewhat curious. Our first secretary of legation and I, having gone on Easter eve to the midnight mass at the Kazan cathedral, we were shown at once into a place of honor in front of the great silver iconostase and stationed immediately before one of the doors opening through it into the inner sanctuary. At first the service went on in darkness, only mitigated by a few tapers at the high altar; but as the clock struck the hour of midnight there came suddenly the roaring of the fortress guns, the booming of great bells above and around us, and a light, which appeared at the opposite end of the cathedral, seemed to shoot in all directions, leaving trains of fire, until all was ablaze, every person present holding a lighted taper. Then came the mass, celebrated by a bishop and his acolytes gorgeously attired, with the swinging of censers, not only toward the ecclesiastics, but toward the persons of importance present, among whom we were evidently included. Suddenly there came a dead stop, stillness, and an evident atmosphere of embarrassment. Then the ceremony began again, and again the censers were swung toward us, and again a dead stop. Everything seemed paralyzed. Presently there came softly to my side a gentleman who said in a low tone, ``You are of the American legation?'' I answered in the affirmative. He said, ``This is a very interesting ceremony.'' To this I also assented. He then said, ``Is this the first time you have seen it?'' ``Yes,'' I answered; ``we have never been in Russia at Easter before.'' He then took very formal leave, and again the ceremony was revived, again the clouds of incense rose, and again came the dead stop. Presently the same gentleman came up again, gently repeated very much the same questions as before, and receiving the same answers, finally said, with some embarrassment: ``Might I ask you to kindly move aside a little? A procession has been waiting for some time back of this door, and we are very anxious to have it come out into the church.'' At this Secretary Erving and I started aside instantly, much chagrined to think that we had caused such a stoppage in such a ceremony; the doors swung open, and out came a brilliant procession of ecclesiastics with crosses, censers, lights, and banners.

Not all of our troubles were due to our compatriots. Household matters sometimes gave serious annoyance. The minister had embraced a chance very rare in Russia, —one which, in fact, almost never occurs,—and had secured a large house fully furnished, with the servants, who, from the big chasseur who stood at the back of the minister's sledge to the boy who blew the organ on which I practised, were serfs, and all, without exception, docile, gentle, and kindly. But there was one standing enemy —vodka. The feeling of the Russian peasant toward the rough corn-brandy of his own country is characteristic. The Russian language is full of diminutives expressive of affection. The peasant addresses his superior as Batushka, the affectionate diminutive of the word which means father; he addresses the mistress of the house as Matushka, which is the affectionate diminutive of the Russian word for mother. To his favorite drink, brandy, he has given the name which is the affectionate diminutive of the word voda, water—namely, vodka, which really means ``dear little water.'' Vodka was indeed our most insidious foe, and gave many evidences of its power; but one of them made an unwonted stir among us.

One day the minister, returning in his carriage from making sundry official visits, summoned the housekeeper, a Baltic-province woman who had been admirably brought up in an English family, and said to her: `` Annette I insist that you discharge Ivan, the coachman, at once; I can't stand him any longer. This afternoon he raced, with me in the carriage, up and down the Nevsky, from end to end, with the carriages of grand dukes and ministers, and, do my best, I could not stop him. He simply looked back at me, grinned like an idiot, and drove on with all his might. It is the third time he has done this. I have pardoned him twice on his solemn pledge that he would do better; but now he must go.'' Annette assented, and in the evening after dinner came in to tell the minister that Ivan was going, but wished to beg his pardon and say farewell.

The minister went out rather reluctantly, the rest of us following; but he had hardly reached the anteroom when Ivan, a great burly creature with a long flowing beard and caftan, rushed forward, groveled before him, embraced his ankles, laid his head upon his feet, and there remained mumbling and moaning. The minister was greatly embarrassed and nervously ejaculated: ``Take him away! Take him away!'' But all to no purpose. Ivan could not be induced to relax his hold. At last the minister relented and told Annette to inform Ivan that he would receive just one more trial, and that if he failed again he would be sent away to his owner without having any opportunity to apologize or to say good-bye.

Very interesting to me were the houses of some of the British residents, and especially that of Mr. Baird, the head of the iron-works which bore his name, and which, at that time, were considered among the wonders of Russia. He was an interesting character. Noticing, among the three very large and handsome vases in his dining- room, the middle one made up of the bodies of three large eagles in oxidized silver with crowns of gold, I was told its history. When the Grand Duke Alexander —who afterward became the second emperor of that name—announced his intention of joining the St. Petersburg Yacht Club, a plan was immediately formed to provide a magnificent trophy and allow him to win it, and to this plan all the members of the club agreed except Baird. He at once said: ``No; if the grand duke's yacht can take it, let him have it; if not, let the best yacht win. If I can take it, I shall.'' It was hoped that he would think better of it, but when the day arrived, the other yachts having gradually fallen back, Mr. Baird continued the race with the grand duke and won. As a result he was for some years in disfavor with the high officials surrounding the Emperor—a disfavor that no doubt cost him vast sums; but he always asserted that he was glad he had insisted on his right.

On one occasion I was witness to a sad faux pas at his dinner-table. It was in the early days of the Crimean War, and an American gentleman who was present was so careless as to refer to Queen Victoria's proclamation against all who aided the enemy, which was clearly leveled at Mr. Baird and his iron-works. There was a scene at once. The ladies almost went into hysterics in deprecation of the position in which the proclamation had placed them. But Mr. Baird himself was quite equal to the occasion: in a very up-and-down way he said that he of course regretted being regarded as a traitor to his country, but that in the time of the alliance against the first Napoleon his father had been induced by the Russian government to establish works, and this not merely with the consent, but with the warm approval, of the British government; in consequence the establishment had taken contracts with the Russian government and now they must be executed; so far as he was concerned his conscience was entirely clear; his duty was plain, and he was going to do it.

On another occasion at his table there was a very good repartee. The subject of spiritualism having been brought up, some one told a story of a person who, having gone into an unfrequented garret of an old family residence, found that all the old clothing which had been stored there during many generations had descended from the shelves and hooks and had assumed kneeling postures about the floor. All of us heard the story with much solemnity, when good old Dr. Law, chaplain of the British church, broke the silence with the words, ``That must have been a family of very PIOUS HABITS.'' This of course broke the spell.

I should be sorry to have it thought that all my stay in the Russian capital was given up to official routine and social futilities. Fortunately for me, the social demands were not very heavy. The war in the Crimea, steadily going against Russia, threw a cloud over the court and city and reduced the number of entertainments to a minimum. This secured me, during the long winter evenings, much time for reading, and in addition to all the valuable treatises I could find on Russia, I went with care through an extensive course in modern history.

As to Russian matters, it was my good fortune to become intimately acquainted with Atkinson, the British traveler in Siberia. He had brought back many portfolios of sketches, and his charming wife had treasured up a great fund of anecdotes of people and adventure, so that I seemed for a time to know Siberia as if I had lived there. Then it was that I learned of the beauties and capabilities of its southern provinces. The Atkinsons had also brought back their only child, a son born on the Siberian steppe, a wonderfully bright youngster, whom they destined for the British navy. He bore a name which I fear may at times have proved a burden to him, for his father and mother were so delighted with the place in which he was born that they called him, after it, ``Alatow-Tam Chiboulak.''[10]

[10] Since writing the above, I have had the pleasure of receiving a letter from this gentleman, who has for some time held the responsible and interesting position of superintendent of public instruction in the Hawaiian Islands, his son, a graduate of the University of Michigan, having been Secretary of the Territory.

The general Russian life, as I thus saw it, while intensely interesting in many respects, was certainly not cheerful. Despite the frivolity dominant among the upper class and the fetishism controlling the lower classes, there was, especially in that period of calamity, a deep undertone of melancholy. Melancholy, indeed, is a marked characteristic of Russia, and, above all, of the peasantry. They seem sad even in their sports; their songs, almost without exception, are in the minor key; the whole atmosphere is apparently charged with vague dread of some calamity. Despite the suppression of most of the foreign journals, and the blotting out of page after page of the newspapers allowed to enter the empire, despite all that the secret police could do in repressing unfavorable comment, it became generally known that all was going wrong in the Crimea. News came of reverse after reverse: of the defeats of the Alma and Inkerman, and, as a climax, the loss of Sebastopol and the destruction of the Russian fleet. In the midst of it all, as is ever the case in Russian wars, came utter collapse in the commissariat department; everywhere one heard hints and finally detailed stories of scoundrelism in high places: of money which ought to have been appropriated to army supplies, but which had been expended at the gambling-tables of Homburg or in the Breda quarter at Paris.

Then it was that there was borne in upon me the conviction that Russia, powerful as she seems when viewed from the outside, is anything but strong when viewed from the inside. To say nothing of the thousand evident weaknesses resulting from autocracy,—the theory that one man, and he, generally, not one of the most highly endowed, can do the thinking for a hundred millions of people,—there was nowhere the slightest sign of any uprising of a great nation, as, for instance, of the French against Europe in 1792, of the Germans against France in 1813 and in 1870, of Italy against Austria in 1859 and afterward, and of the Americans in the Civil War of 1861. There were certainly many noble characters in Russia, and these must have felt deeply the condition of things; but there being no great middle class, and the lower class having been long kept in besotted ignorance, there seemed to be no force on which patriotism could take hold.



The spring of 1855 was made interesting by the arrival of the blockading fleet before the mouth of the Neva, and shortly afterward I went down to look at it. It was a most imposing sight: long lines of mighty three- deckers of the old pattern, British and French,—one hundred in all,—stretched across the Gulf of Finland in front of the fortresses of Cronstadt. Behind the fortresses lay the Russian fleet, helpless and abject; and yet, as events showed during our own Civil War half a dozen years later, a very slight degree of inventive ability would have enabled the Russians to annihilate the hostile fleet, and to gain the most prodigious naval victory of modern times. Had they simply taken one or two of their own great ships to the Baird iron-works hard by, and plated them with railway iron, of which there was plenty, they could have paralleled the destruction of our old wooden frigates at Norfolk by the Merrimac, but on a vastly greater scale. Yet this simple expedient occurred to no one; and the allied fleet, under Sir Richard Dundas, bade defiance to the Russian power during the whole summer.

The Russians looked more philosophically upon the blockade than upon their reverses in the Crimea, but they acted much like the small boy who takes revenge on the big boy by making faces at him. Some of their caricatures on their enemies were very clever. Fortunately for such artistic efforts, the British had given them a fine opportunity during the previous year, when Sir Charles Napier, the commander of the Baltic fleet, having made a boastful speech at a public dinner in London, and invited his hearers to dine with him at St. Petersburg, had returned to England, after a summer before Cronstadt, without even a glimpse of the Russian capital.

I am the possessor of a very large collection of historical caricatures of all nations, and among them all there is hardly one more spirited and comical than that which represents Sir Charles at the masthead of one of his frigates, seeking, through a spy-glass, to get a sight at the domes and spires of St. Petersburg: not even the best efforts of Gillray or ``H. B.,'' or Gavarni or Daumier, or the brightest things in ``Punch'' or ``Kladderadatsch'' surpass it.

Some other Russian efforts at keeping up public spirit were less legitimate. Popular pictures of a rude sort were circulated in vast numbers among the peasants, representing British and French soldiers desecrating churches, plundering monasteries, and murdering priests.

Near the close of my stay I made a visit, in company with Mr. Erving, first secretary of the legation, to Moscow,—the journey, which now requires but twelve hours, then consuming twenty-four; and a trying journey it was, since there was no provision for sleeping.

The old Russian capital, and, above all, the Kremlin, interested me greatly; but, of all the vast collections in the Kremlin, two things especially arrested my attention. The first was a statue,—the only statue in all those vast halls,—and there seemed a wondrous poetic justice in the fact that it represented the first Napoleon. The other thing was an evidence of the feeling of the Emperor Nicholas toward Poland. In one of the large rooms was a full-length portrait of Nicholas's elder brother and immediate predecessor, Alexander I; flung on the floor at his feet was the constitution of Poland, which he had given, and which Nicholas, after fearful bloodshed, had taken away; and lying near was the Polish scepter broken in the middle.

A visit to the Sparrow Hills, from which Napoleon first saw Moscow and the Kremlin, was also interesting; but the city itself, though picturesque, disappointed me. Everywhere were filth, squalor, beggary, and fetishism. Evidences of official stupidity were many. In one of the Kremlin towers a catastrophe had occurred on the occasion of the Emperor's funeral, a day or two before our arrival: some thirty men had been ringing one of the enormous bells, when it broke loose from its rotten fastenings and crashed down into the midst of the ringers, killing several. Sad reminders of this slaughter were shown us; it was clearly the result of gross neglect.

Another revelation of Russian officialism was there vouchsafed us. Wishing to send a very simple message to our minister at St. Petersburg, we went to the telegraph office and handed it to the clerk in charge. Putting on an air of great importance, he began a long inquisitorial process, insisting on knowing our full names, whence we had come, where we were going, how long we were staying, why we were sending the message, etc., etc.; and when he had evidently asked all the questions he could think of, he gravely informed us that our message could not be sent until the head of the office had given his approval. On our asking where the head of the office was, he pointed out a stout gentleman in military uniform seated near the stove in the further corner of the room, reading a newspaper; and, on our requesting him to notify this superior being, he answered that he could not thus interrupt him; that we could see that he was busy. At this Erving lost his temper, caught up the paper, tore it in pieces, threw them into the face of the underling with a loud exclamation more vigorous than pious, and we marched out defiantly. Looking back when driving off in our droshky, we saw that he had aroused the entire establishment: at the door stood the whole personnel of the office,—the military commander at the head,—all gazing at us in a sort of stupefaction. We expected to hear from them afterward, but on reflection they evidently thought it best not to stir the matter.

In reviewing this first of my sojourns in Russia, my thoughts naturally dwell upon the two sovereigns Nicholas I and Alexander II. The first of these was a great man scared out of greatness by the ever recurring specter of the French Revolution. There had been much to make him a stern reactionary. He could not but remember that two Czars—his father and grandfather—had both been murdered in obedience to family necessities. At his proclamation as emperor he had been welcomed by a revolt which had forced him

``To wade through slaughter to a throne—''

a revolt which had deluged the great parade-ground of St. Petersburg with the blood of his best soldiers, which had sent many coffles of the nobility to Siberia, and which had obliged him to see the bodies of several men who might have made his reign illustrious dangling from the fortress walls opposite the Winter Palace. He had been obliged to grapple with a fearful insurrection in Poland, caused partly by the brutality of his satraps, but mainly by religious hatreds; to suppress it with enormous carnage; and to substitute, for the moderate constitutional liberty which his brother had granted, a cruel despotism. He had thus become the fanatical apostle of reaction throughout Europe, and as such was everywhere the implacable enemy of any evolution of constitutional liberty. The despots of Europe adored him. As symbols of his ideals, he had given to the King of Prussia and to the Neapolitan Bourbon copies of two of the statues which adorned his Nevsky bridge—statues representing restive horses restrained by strong men; and the Berlin populace, with an unerring instinct, had given to one of these the name ``Progress checked,'' and to the other the name ``Retrogression encouraged.'' To this day one sees every- where in the palaces of Continental rulers, whether great or petty, his columns of Siberian porphyry, jasper bowls, or malachite vases—signs of his approval of reaction.

But, in justice to him, it should be said that there was one crime he did not commit—a crime, indeed, which he did not DARE commit: he did not violate his oath to maintain the liberties of Finland. THAT was reserved for the second Nicholas, now on the Russian throne.

Whether at the great assemblages of the Winter Palace, or at the reviews, or simply driving in his sledge or walking in the street, he overawed all men by his presence. Whenever I saw him, and never more cogently than during that last drive of his just before his death, there was forced to my lips the thought: ``You are the most majestic being ever created.'' Colossal in stature; with a face such as one finds on a Greek coin, but overcast with a shadow of Muscovite melancholy; with a bearing dignified, but with a manner not unkind, he bore himself like a god. And yet no man could be more simple or affable, whether in his palace or in the street. Those were the days when a Russian Czar could drive or walk alone in every part of every city in his empire. He frequently took exercise in walking along the Neva quay, and enjoyed talking with any friends he met—especially with members of the diplomatic corps. The published letters of an American minister—Mr. Dallas—give accounts of many discussions thus held with him.

There seemed a most characteristic mingling of his better and worse qualities in the two promises which, according to tradition, he exacted on his death-bed from his son —namely, that he would free the serfs, and that he would never give a constitution to Poland.

The accession of this son, Alexander II, brought a change at once: we all felt it. While he had the big Romanoff frame and beauty and dignity, he had less of the majesty and none of the implacable sternness of his father. At the reception of the diplomatic corps on his accession he showed this abundantly; for, despite the strong declarations in his speech, his tears betrayed him. Reforms began at once—halting, indeed, but all tending in the right direction. How they were developed, and how so largely brought to naught, the world knows by heart. Of all the ghastly miscalculations ever made, of all the crimes which have cost the earth most dear, his murder was the worst. The murders of William of Orange, of Lincoln, of Garfield, of Carnot, of Humbert I, did not stop the course of a beneficent evolution; but the murder of Alexander II threw Russia back into the hands of a reaction worse than any ever before known, which has now lasted nearly a generation, and which bids fair to continue for many more, unless the Russian reverses in the present war force on a better order of things. For me, looking back upon those days, it is hard to imagine even the craziest of nihilists or anarchists wild enough to commit such a crime against so attractive a man fully embarked on so blessed a career. He, too, in the days of my stay, was wont to mingle freely with his people; he even went to their places of public amusement, and he was frequently to be seen walking among them on the quays and elsewhere. In my reminiscences of the Hague Conference, I give from the lips of Prince Munster an account of a conversation under such circumstances: the Czar walking on the quay or resting on a seat by the roadside, while planning to right a wrong done by a petty Russian official to a German student. Therein appears not only a deep sense of justice and humanity, but that melancholy, so truly Russian, which was deepest in him and in his uncle, the first Alexander. There dwell also in my memory certain photographs of him in his last days, shown me not long before his death, during my first official stay at Berlin. His face was beautiful as of old, but the melancholy had deepened, and the eyes made a fearful revelation; for they were the eyes of a man who for years had known himself to be hunted. As I looked at them there came back to me the remembrance of the great, beautiful frightened eyes of a deer, hunted down and finally at my mercy, in the midst of a lake in the Adirondacks—eyes which haunted me long afterward. And there comes back the scene at the funeral ceremony in his honor at Berlin, coincident with that at St. Petersburg—his uncle, the Emperor William I, and all about him, in tears, and a depth of real feeling shown such as no monarch of a coarser fiber could have inspired. When one reflects that he had given his countrymen, among a great mass of minor reforms, trial by jury; the emancipation of twenty millions of serfs, with provision for homesteads; and had at that moment—as his adviser, Loris Melikoff, confessed when dying—a constitution ready for his people, one feels inclined to curse those who take the methods of revolution rather than those of evolution.

My departure from Russia embraces one or two incidents which may throw some light upon the Russian civilization of that period. On account of the blockade, I was obliged to take the post from St. Petersburg to Warsaw, giving to the journey seven days and seven nights of steady travel; and, as the pressure for places on the post was very great, I was obliged to secure mine several weeks beforehand, and then thought myself especially lucky in obtaining a sort of sentry-box on the roof of the second coach usually occupied by the guard. This good luck was due to the fact that, there being on that day two coaches, one guard served for both; and the place on the second was thus left vacant for me.

Day and night, then, during that whole week, we rumbled on through the interminable forests of Poland, and the distressingly dirty hamlets and towns scattered along the road. My first night out was trying, for it was very cold; but, having secured from a dealer in the first town where we stopped in the morning a large sheet of felt, I wrapped my legs in it, and thenceforward was comfortable. My companions in the two post-coaches were very lively, being mainly French actors and actresses who had just finished their winter campaign in Russia; and, when we changed horses at the post-houses, the scenes were of a sort which an American orator once characterized as ``halcyon and vociferous.''

Bearing a despatch-bag to our legation at Paris, I carried the pass, not only of an attach<e'>, but of a bearer of despatches, and on my departure our minister said to me:

``The Russian officials at the frontier have given much trouble to Americans of late; and I hope that if they trouble you, you will simply stop and inform me. You are traveling for pleasure and information, and a few days more or less will make little difference.'' On arriving at the frontier, I gave up my papers to the passport officials, and was then approached by the officers of the custom- house. One of these, a tall personage in showy uniform, was very solemn, and presently asked: ``Are you carrying out any specie?'' I answered: ``None to speak of; only about twenty or thirty German dollars.'' Said he: ``That you must give up to me; the law of the empire does not permit you to take out coin.'' ``No,'' I said; ``you are mistaken. I have already had the money changed, and it is in German coin, not Russian.'' ``That makes no difference,'' said he; ``you must give it up or stay here.'' My answer was that I would not give it up, and on this he commanded his subordinates to take my baggage off the coach. My traveling companions now besought me to make a quiet compromise with him, to give him half the money, telling me that I might be detained there for weeks or months, or even be maltreated; but I steadily refused, and my baggage was removed. All were ready to start when the head of the police bureau came upon the scene to return our papers. His first proceeding was to call out my name in a most obsequious tone, and, bowing reverently, to tender me my passport. I glanced at the custom-house official, and saw that he turned pale. The honor done my little brief authority by the passport official revealed to him his mistake, and he immediately ordered his subordinates to replace my baggage on the coach; but this I instantly forbade. He then came up to me and insisted that a misunderstanding had occurred. ``No,'' I said; ``there is no misunderstanding; you have only treated me as you have treated other Americans. The American minister has ordered me to wait here and inform him, and all that I have now to ask you is that you give me the name of a hotel.'' At this be begged me to listen to him, and presently was pleading most piteously; indeed, he would have readily knelt and kissed my feet to secure my forgiveness. He became utterly abject. All were waiting, the coach stood open, the eyes of the whole party were fastened upon us. My comrades besought me to let the rascal go; and at last, after a most earnest warning to him, I gave my gracious permission to have the baggage placed on the coach. He was certainly at that moment one of the happiest men I have ever seen; and, as we drove off from the station, he lingered long, hat in hand, profuse with bows and good wishes.

One other occurrence during those seven days and nights of coaching may throw some light upon the feeling which has recently produced, in that same region, the Kishineff massacres.

One pleasant Saturday evening, at a Polish village, our coach passed into the little green inclosure in front of the post-house, and there stopped for a change of horses. While waiting, I noticed, from my sentry-box on the top of the coach, several well-dressed people—by the cut of their beards and hair, Jews—standing at some distance outside the inclosure, and looking at us. Presently two of them—clearly, by their bearing and dress, men of mark—entered the inclosure, came near the coach, and stood quietly and respectfully. In a few moments my attention was attracted by a movement on the other side of the coach: our coachman, a young serf, was skulking rapidly toward the stables, and presently emerged with his long horsewhip, skulked swiftly back again until he came suddenly on these two grave and reverend men, —each of them doubtless wealthy enough to have bought a dozen like him,—began lashing them, and finally drove them out of the inclosure like dogs, the assembled crowd jeering and hooting after them.

Few evenings linger more pleasantly in my memory than that on which I arrived in Breslau. I was once more outside of the Russian Empire; and, as I settled for the evening before a kindly fire upon a cheerful hearth, there rose under my windows, from a rollicking band of university students, the ``Gaudeamus igitur.'' I seemed to have arrived in another world—a world which held home and friends. Then, as never before, I realized the feeling which the Marquis de Custine had revealed, to the amusement of Europe and the disgust of the Emperor Nicholas, nearly twenty years before. The brilliant marquis, on his way to St. Petersburg, had stopped at Stettin; and, on his leaving the inn to take ship for Cronstadt next day, the innkeeper said to him: ``Well, you are going into a very bad country.'' ``How so?'' said De Custine; ``when did you travel there?'' ``Never,'' answered the inn- keeper; ``but I have kept this inn for many years. All the leading Russians, going and coming by sea, have stopped with me; and I have always noticed that those coming from Russia are very glad, and those returning very sad.''

Throughout the remainder of my journey across the Continent, considerable attention was shown me at various stopping-places, since travelers from within the Russian lines at that time were rare indeed; but there was nothing worthy of note until my arrival at Strasburg. There, in the railway station, I was presented by a young Austrian nobleman to an American lady who was going on to Paris accompanied by her son; and, as she was very agreeable, I was glad when we all found ourselves together in the same railway compartment.

Some time after leaving Strasburg she said to me: ``I don't think you caught my name at the station.'' To this I frankly replied that I had not. She then repeated it; and I found her to be a distinguished leader in New York and Parisian society, the wife of an American widely known. As we rolled on toward Paris, I became vaguely aware that there was some trouble in our compartment; but, being occupied with a book, I paid little attention to the matter. There were seven of us. Facing each other at one door were the American lady, whom I will call ``Mrs. X.,'' and myself; at her left was her maid, then a vacant seat, and then at the other door a German lady, richly attired, evidently of high degree, and probably about fifty years of age. Facing this German lady sat an elegantly dressed young man of about thirty, also of aristocratic manners, and a German. Between this gentleman and myself sat the son of Mrs. X. and the Austrian gentleman who had presented me to her.

Presently Mrs. X. bent over toward me and asked, in an undertone, ``What do you think is the relationship between those two people at the other door?'' I answered that quite likely they were brother and sister. ``No,'' said she; ``they are man and wife.'' I answered, ``That can hardly be; there is a difference of at least twenty years in the young man's favor.'' ``Depend upon it,'' she said, ``they are man and wife; it is a mariage de convenance; she is dressed to look as young as possible.'' At this I expressed new doubts, and the discussion dropped.

Presently the young German gentleman said something to the lady opposite him which indicated that he had lived in Berlin; whereupon Mrs. X. asked him, diagonally across the car, if he had been at the Berlin University. At this he turned in some surprise and answered, civilly but coldly, ``Yes, madam.'' Then he turned away to converse with the lady who accompanied him. Mrs. X., nothing daunted, persisted, and asked, ``Have you been RECENTLY at the university?'' Before he could reply the lady opposite him turned to Mrs. X. and said most haughtily, ``Mon Dieu, madam, you must see that the gentleman does not desire any conversation with you. ``At this Mrs. X. became very humble, and rejoined most penitently, ``Madam, I beg your pardon; if I had known that the gentleman's mother did not wish him to talk with a stranger, I would not have spoken to him.'' At this the German lady started as if stung, turned very red, and replied, ``Pardon, madam, I am not the mother of the gentleman.'' At this the humble manner of Mrs. X. was flung off in an instant, and turning fiercely upon the German lady, she said, ``Madam, since you are not the mother of the gentleman, and, of course, cannot be his wife, by what right do you interfere to prevent his answering me?'' The lady thus addressed started again as if stabbed, turned pale, and gasped out, ``Pardon, madam; I AM the wife of the gentleman.'' Instantly Mrs. X. became again penitently apologetic, and answered, ``Madam, I beg a thousand pardons; I will not speak again to the gentleman''; and then, turning to me, said very solemnly, but loudly, so that all might hear, ``Heavens! can it be possible!''

By this time we were all in distress, the German lady almost in a state of collapse, and her husband hardly less so. At various times during the remainder of the journey I heard them affecting to laugh the matter off, but it was clear that the thrust from my fair compatriot had cut deep and would last long.

Arriving at our destination, I obtained the key to the mystery. On taking leave of Mrs. X., I said, ``That was rather severe treatment which you administered to the German lady.'' ``Yes,'' she answered; ``it will teach her never again to go out of her way to insult an American woman.'' She then told me that the lady had been evidently vexed because Mrs. X. had brought her maid into the compartment; and that this aristocratic dame had shown her feeling by applying her handkerchief to her nose, by sniffing, and by various other signs of disgust. ``And then,'' said Mrs. X., ``I determined to teach her a lesson.''

I never saw Mrs. X. again. After a brilliant social career of a few years she died; but her son, who was then a boy of twelve years, in a short jacket, has since become very prominent in Europe and America, and, in a way, influential.

In Paris I delivered my despatches to our minister, Mr. Mason; was introduced to Baron Seebach, the Saxon min- ister, Nesselrode's son-in-law, who was a leading personage at the conference of the great powers then in session; and saw various interesting men, among them sundry young officers of the United States army, who were on their way to the Crimea in order to observe the warlike operations going on there, and one of them, McClellan, also on his way to the head of our own army in the Civil War which began a few years later.

It was the time of the first great French Exposition— that of 1855. The Emperor Napoleon III had opened it with much pomp; and, though the whole affair was petty compared with what we have known since, it attracted visitors from the whole world, and among them came Horace Greeley.

As he shuffled along the boulevards and streets of Paris, in his mooning way, he attracted much wondering attention, but was himself very unhappy because his ignorance of the French language prevented his talking with the people about him.

He had just gone through a singular experience, having, the day before my arrival, been released from Clichy prison, where he had been confined for debt. Nothing could be more comical than the whole business from first to last. A year or two previously there had taken place in New York, on what has been since known as Reservoir Square, an international exposition which, for its day, was very creditable; but, this exposition having ended in bankruptcy, a new board of commissioners had been chosen, who, it was hoped, would secure public confidence, and among these was Mr. Greeley.

Yet even under this new board the exposition had not been a success; and it had been finally wound up in a very unsatisfactory way, many people complaining that their exhibits had not been returned to them—among these a French sculptor of more ambition than repute, who had sent a plaster cast of some sort of allegorical figure to which he attributed an enormous value. Having sought in vain for redress in America, he returned to Europe and there awaited the coming of some one of the directors; and the first of these whom he caught was no less a person than Greeley himself, who, soon after arriving in Paris, was arrested for the debt and taken to Clichy prison.

Much feeling was shown by the American community. Every one knew that Mr. Greeley's connection with the New York exposition was merely of a good-natured, nominal sort. It therefore became the fashion among traveling Americans to visit him while thus in durance vile; and among those who thus called upon him were two former Presidents of the United States, both of whom he had most bitterly opposed—Mr. Van Buren and Mr. Fillmore.

The American legation having made very earnest representations, the prisoner was soon released; and the most tangible result of the whole business was a letter, very pithy and characteristic, which Greeley wrote to the ``New York Tribune,'' giving this strange experience, and closing with the words: ``So ended my last chance to learn French.''

A day or two after his release I met him at the student restaurant of Madame Busque. A large company of Americans were present; and shortly after taking his seat at table he tried to ask for some green string-beans, which were then in season. Addressing one of the serving- maids, he said, ``Flawronce, donney moy—donney moy— donney moy—''; and then, unable to remember the word, he impatiently screamed out in a high treble, thrusting out his plate at the same time, ``BEANS!'' The crowd of us burst into laughter; whereupon Donn Piatt, then secretary of the legation at Paris and afterward editor of the ``Capital'' at Washington, said: ``Why, Greeley, you don't improve a bit; you knew beans yesterday.''

This restaurant of Madame Busque's had been, for some years, a place of resort for American students and their traveling friends. The few dishes served, though simple, were good; all was plain; there were no table- cloths; but the place was made attractive by the portraits of various American artists and students who had frequented the place in days gone by, and who had left these adornments to the good old madame.

It was a simple cr<e'>merie in the Rue de la Michodi<e!>re, a little way out of the Boulevard des Italiens; and its success was due to the fact that Madame Busque, the kindest old lady alive, had learned how to make sundry American dishes, and had placed a sign in the window as follows: ``Aux Am<e'>ricains. Sp<e'>cialit<e'> de Pumpkin Pie et de Buckwheat Cakes.'' Never was there a more jolly restaurant. One met there, not only students and artists, but some of the most eminent men in American public life. The specialties as given on the sign-board were well prepared; and many were the lamentations when the dear old madame died, and the restaurant, being transferred to another part of Paris, became pretentious and fell into oblivion.

Another occurrence at the exposition dwells vividly in my memory. One day, in going through the annex in which there was a show of domestic animals, I stopped for a moment to look at a wonderful goat which was there tethered. He was very large, with a majestic head, spreading horns, and long, white, curly beard. Presently a party of French gentlemen and ladies, evidently of the higher class, came along and joined the crowd gazing at the animal. In a few moments one of the ladies, anxious to hurry on, said to the large and dignified elderly gentleman at the head of the party, ``Mais viens donc ''; to which he answered, ``Non, laisse moi le regarder; celui-l<a!> ressemble tant au bon Dieu.''

This remark, which in Great Britain or the United States would have aroused horror as blasphemy, was simply answered by a peal of laughter, and the party passed on; yet I could not but reflect on the fact that this attitude toward the Supreme Being was possible after a fifteen hundred years' monopoly of teaching by the church which insists that to it alone should be intrusted the religious instruction of the French people.

After staying a few weeks at the French capital, I left for a short tour in Switzerland. The only occurrence on this journey possibly worthy of note was at the hospice of the Great St. Bernard. On a day early in September I had walked over the T<e^>te Noire with two long-legged Englishmen, and had so tired myself that the next morning I was too late to catch the diligence from Martigny; so that, on awaking toward noon, there was nothing left for me but to walk, and I started on that rather toilsome journey alone. After plodding upward some miles along the road toward the hospice, I was very weary indeed, but felt that it would be dangerous to rest, since the banks of snow on both sides of the road would be sure to give me a deadly chill; and I therefore kept steadily on. Presently I overtook a small party, apparently English, also going up the pass; and, at some distance in advance of them, alone, a large woman with a very striking and even masculine face. I had certainly seen the face before, but where I could not imagine. Arriving finally at the hospice, very tired, we were, after some waiting, invited out to a good dinner by the two fathers deputed for the purpose; and there, among the guests, I again saw the lady, and was again puzzled to know where I had previously seen her. As the dinner went on the two monks gave accounts of life at the hospice, rescues from avalanches, and the like, and various questions were asked; but the unknown lady sat perfectly still, uttering not a word, until suddenly, just at the close of the dinner, she put a question across the table to one of the fathers. It came almost like a peal of thunder-deep, strong, rolling through the room, startling all of us, and fairly taking the breath away from the good monk to whom it was addressed; but he presently rallied, and in a rather faltering tone made answer. That was all. But on this I at once recognized her: it was Fanny Kemble Butler, whom, years before, I had heard interpreting Shakspere.

Whether this episode had anything to do with it or not, I soon found myself in rather a bad way. The fatigues of the two previous days had been too much for me. I felt very wretched, and presently one of the brothers came up to me and asked whether I was ill. I answered that I was tired; whereupon he said kindly, ``Come with me.'' I went. He took me to a neat, tidy little cell; put me into bed as carefully as my grandmother had ever done; tucked me in; brought me some weak, hot tea; and left me with various kind injunctions. Very early in the morning I was aroused by the singing of the monks in the chapel, but dozed on until eight or nine o'clock, when, feeling entirely rested, I rose and, after breakfast, left the monastery, with a party of newly made American friends, in as good condition as ever, and with a very grateful feeling toward my entertainers. Against monks generally I must confess to a prejudice; but the memory of these brothers of St. Bernard I still cherish with a real affection.

Stopping at various interesting historic places, and especially at Eisenach, whence I made the first of my many visits to the Wartburg, I reached Berlin just before the beginning of the university term, and there settled as a student. So, as I then supposed, ended my diplomatic career forever.



Returning from Russia and Germany, I devoted myself during thirteen years, first, to my professorial duties at the University of Michigan; next, to political duties in the State Senate at Albany; and, finally, to organizing and administering Cornell University. But in the early winter of 1870-71 came an event which drew me out of my university life for a time, and engaged me again in diplomatic work. While pursuing the even tenor of my way, there came a telegraphic despatch from Mr. William Orton, president of the Western Union Telegraph Company, a devoted supporter of the administration, asking me whether I had formed any definite opinion against the annexation of the island of Santo Domingo to the United States. This question surprised me. A proposal regarding such an annexation had been for some time talked about. The newly elected President, General Grant, having been besought by the authorities of that republic to propose measures looking to annexation, had made a brief examination; and Congress had passed a law authorizing the appointment of three commissioners to visit the island, to examine and report upon its desirability, from various points of view, and to ascertain, as far as possible, the feeling of its inhabitants; but I had given no attention to the matter, and therefore answered Mr. Orton that I had no opinion, one way or the other, regarding it. A day or two afterward came information that the President had named the commission, and in the following order: Ex-Senator Benjamin F. Wade of Ohio, Andrew D. White of New York, and Samuel G. Howe of Massachusetts. On receiving notice of my appointment, I went to Washington, was at once admitted to an interview with the President, and rarely have I been more happily disappointed. Instead of the taciturn man who, as his enemies insisted, said nothing because he knew nothing, had never cared for anything save military matters, and was entirely absorbed in personal interests, I found a quiet, dignified public officer, who presented the history of the Santo Domingo question, and his view regarding it, in a manner large, thoughtful, and statesmanlike. There was no special pleading; no attempt at converting me: his whole effort seemed given to stating candidly the history of the case thus far.

There was much need of such statement. Mr. Charles Sumner, the eminent senator from Massachusetts, had completely broken with the President on this and other questions; had attacked the policy of the administration violently; had hinted at the supremacy of unworthy motives; and had imputed rascality to men with whom the President had close relations. He appeared, also, as he claimed, in the interest of the republic of Haiti, which regarded with disfavor any acquisition by the United States of territory on the island of which that quasi- republic formed a part; and all his rhetoric and oratory were brought to bear against the President's ideas. I had long been an admirer of Mr. Sumner, with the feeling which a young man would naturally cherish toward an older man of such high character who had given him early recognition; and I now approached him with especial gratitude and respect. But I soon saw that his view of the President was prejudiced, and his estimate of himself abnormal. Though a senator of such high standing and so long in public affairs, he took himself almost too seriously; and there had come a break between him, as chairman of the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, and President Grant's Secretary of State, Mr. Fish, who had proved himself, as State senator, as Governor of New York, as United States senator, and now as Secretary of State, a man of the highest character and capacity.

The friends of the administration claimed that it had become impossible for it to have any relations with Senator Sumner; that he delayed, and indeed suppressed, treaties of the greatest importance; that his egotism had become so colossal that he practically assumed to himself the entire conduct of foreign affairs; and the whole matter reached a climax when, in a large social gathering, Mr. Fish meeting Senator Sumner and extending his hand to him, the latter deliberately rejected the courtesy and coldly turned away.

Greatly admiring all these men, and deeply regretting their divisions, which seemed sure to prove most injurious to the Republican party and to the country, I wrote to Mr. Gerrit Smith, urging him to come at once to Washington and, as the lifelong friend of Senator Sumner and the devoted supporter of General Grant, to use his great powers in bringing them together. He came and did his best; but a few days afterward he said to me: ``It is impossible; it is a breach which can never be healed.''

Mr. Sumner's speeches I had always greatly admired, and his plea for international peace, delivered before I was fairly out of my boyhood, had made a deep impression upon me. Still greater was the effect of his speeches against the extension of slavery. It is true that these speeches had little direct influence upon the Senate; but they certainly had an immense effect upon the country, and this effect was increased by the assault upon him by Preston Brooks of South Carolina, which nearly cost him his life, and from which he suffered physically as long as he lived. His influence was exercised not only in the Senate, but in his own house. In his library he discussed, in a very interesting way, the main questions of the time; and at his dinner-table one met interesting men from all parts of the world. At one of his dinners I had an opportunity to observe one of the difficulties from which our country suffers most—namely, that easy-going facility in slander which is certain to be developed in the absence of any effective legal responsibility for one's utterances. At the time referred to there was present an Englishman eminent in parliamentary and business circles. I sat next him, and near us sat a gentleman who had held a subordinate position in the United States navy, but who was out of employment, and apparently for some reason which made him sore. On being asked by the Englishman why the famous American Collins Line of transatlantic steamers had not succeeded, this American burst into a tirade, declaring that it was all due to the fact that the Collins company had been obliged to waste its entire capital in bribing members of Congress to obtain subsidies; that it had sunk all its funds in doing this, and so had become bankrupt. This I could not bear, and indignantly interposed, stating the simple facts— namely, that the ships of the company were built in the most expensive manner, without any sufficient data as to their chances of success; that the competition of the Cunard company had been destructive to them; that, to cap the climax, two out of their fleet of five had been, at an early period in the history of the company, lost at sea; and I expressed my complete disbelief in any cause of failure like that which had been named. As a matter of fact, the Collins company, in their pride at the beauty of their first ship, had sent it up the Potomac to Washington and given a collation upon it to members of Congress; but beyond this there was not the slightest evidence of anything of the sort which the slanderer of his country had brought forward.

As regards the Santo Domingo question, I must confess that Mr. Sumner's speeches did not give me much light; they seemed to me simply academic orations tinged by anger.

Far different was it with the speeches made on the same side by Senator Carl Schurz. In them was a restrained strength of argument and a philosophic dealing with the question which appealed both to reason and to patriotism. His argument as to the danger of extending the domain of American institutions and the privileges of American citizenship over regions like the West Indies carried great weight with me; it was the calm, thoughtful utterance of a man accustomed to look at large public questions in the light of human history, and, while reasoning upon them philosophically and eloquently, to observe strict rules of logic.

I also had talks with various leading men at Washington on the general subject. Very interesting was an evening passed with Admiral Porter of the navy, who had already visited Santo Domingo, and who gave me valuable points as to choosing routes and securing information. Another person with whom I had some conversation was Benjamin Franklin Butler, previously a general in the Civil War, and afterward governor of Massachusetts—a man of amazing abilities, but with a certain recklessness in the use of them which had brought him into nearly universal discredit. His ideas regarding the annexation of Santo Domingo seemed to resolve themselves, after all, into a feeling of utter indifference,—his main effort being to secure positions for one or two of his friends as attach<e'>s of the commission.

At various times I talked with the President on this and other subjects, and was more and more impressed, not only by his patriotism, but by his ability; and as I took leave of him, he gave me one charge for which I shall always revere his memory.

He said: `` Your duties are, of course, imposed upon you by Congress; I have no right as PRESIDENT to give you instructions, but as a MAN I have a right in this matter. You have doubtless noticed hints in Congress, and charges in various newspapers, that I am financially interested in the acquisition of Santo Domingo. Now, as a man, as your fellow-citizen, I demand that on your arrival in the island, you examine thoroughly into all American interests there; that you study land titles and contracts with the utmost care; and that if you find anything whatever which connects me or any of my family with any of them, you expose me to the American people.'' The President uttered these words in a tone of deep earnestness. I left him, feeling that he was an honest man; and I may add that the closest examination of men and documents relating to titles and concessions in the island failed to reveal any personal interest of his whatsoever.

Arriving next day in New York, I met the other commissioners, with the secretaries, interpreters, attach<e'>s, and various members of the press who were authorized to accompany the expedition. Most interesting of all to me were the scientific experts. It is a curious example of the happy-go-lucky ways which prevail so frequen