- Introductory Note
- Chapter 1: A University Dream That Failed
- Chapter 2: Hamilton versus Rochester
- Chapter 3: The Year of Decisions: 1850
- Chapter 4: A College Opens
- Chapter 5: Portrait of a President
- Chapter 6: A Critical Decade
- Chapter 7: The Civil War Era
- Chapter 8: Continuity and Growth
- Chapter 9: University Gallery
- Chapter 10: The End of an Age
- Chapter 11: Hill and the Interregnum
- Chapter 12: Collegians and Graduates in the 'Nineties
- Chapter 13: Enter the Ladies
- Chapter 14: Rhees of Rochester
- Chapter 15: Widening Horizons
- Chapter 16: Men and Women
- Chapter 17: Sunshine and Shadow
- Chapter 18: The Birth of a Music Center
- Chapter 19: Voices of Music
- Chapter 20: Shaping the Medical Center
- Chapter 21: Sons of Aesculapius
- Chapter 22: Oak Hill Becomes the River Campus
- Chapter 23: The Changing College
- Chapter 24: Beyond the Curriculum
- Chapter 25: Hail, Farewell, Hail
- Chapter 26: The Depression Decade
- Chapter 27: Undergraduates and Graduates in the 'Thirties
- Chapter 28: Music and Medicine in the 1930's
- Chapter 29: The Impact of Pearl Harbor
- Chapter 30: Education for Victory
- Chapter 31: Women, Music and Medicine in Wartime
- Chapter 32: Valentine: The Last Phase
- Chapter 33: The First Century Ends
- Chapter 34: The Coming of de Kiewiet
- Chapter 35: Reunion of the Colleges
- Chapter 36: River Campus Panorama
- Chapter 37: In Pursuit of Excellence
- Chapter 38: Undergraduate Life Beside the Genesee
- Chapter 39: The Eastman School -- The Postwar Years
Chapter 3: The Year of Decisions: 1850
In the annals of mankind, 1850 was by no stretch of the imagination a year of world-shaking importance, yet it had noteworthy features. A wave of humanitarian ferment--deep and widespread--nourished by Christian ethics, swept over the United States. Temperance, denunciation of the use of tobacco, collectivist Utopias, feminism, betterment in the care of the insane and prisoners, relief for victims of a terrible Irish famine, world peace--each of these causes claimed its spirited partisans. Yet they were dwarfed by the crusade against Negro slavery and in the South by multiplying threats of secession from the Union, uttered in the halls of Congress and outside. Except for extremists on both sides, the historic Compromise of 1850 tended to cool sectional passions; as the event proved, a civil conflict was postponed for a decade.
In the midst of the torrid debate on the Compromise, President Zachary Taylor of Mexican war fame passed away and Millard Fillmore took up residence in the White House; his second wife, parenthetically, bequeathed part of her estate to the University. That governmental operations were on a decidedly small scale is amply attested by the fact that expenditures for the year amounted to approximately $43,000,000; income exceeded outgo by nearly ten percent! Indian tribesmen on the frontiers to the West were still an annoyance and arrested settlement in areas where they were strong. A piratical band of Americans invaded Cuba in 1850 with the object of annexing the "Queen of the Antilles" to the United States, but the adventure, which had interesting affinities with the "Bay of Pigs" fiasco of 1961, quickly disintegrated. An Anglo-American treaty of 1850 foreshadowed the cutting of a ship canal through Central America from the Atlantic to the Pacific.
On the international horizon of 1850 a tense situation developed when France and imperial Russia protested indignantly against a British blockade of the port of Athens and seizure of Greek shipping in retaliation for an assault upon an alleged subject of Queen Victoria. In the British Isles, movements for improving human welfare, akin to those operating in the United States, were pointed toward suffrage extension, a ten hour working day in factories, help for the distressed rural population, elimination of religious tests for members of parliament (a Jew, Baron Rothschild, was allowed to take his seat after swearing allegiance on the Old Testament alone), and the suppression of the trade in African slaves. English-speaking countries were greatly excited in 1850 about the mystery of a British Arctic expedition, led by Sir John Franklin, which in two small ships had sailed forth five years before to seek the Northwest Passage. British and American search crews found traces of the lost vessels in 1850, though nine years more elapsed before the discovery of gaunt skeletons testified to the melancholy fate that had befallen the resolute Franklin and his heroic seamen.
Large sections of the European continent were rapidly recovering from revolutionary upheavals in 1848, which had ephemeral reverberations in the United States. By reason of revolts in the Danube Valley, Emperor Francis Joseph had been seated on the venerable throne of the Hapsburgs and, like his British counterpart, Queen Victoria, he would wield the scepter for many decades to come. That artful adventurer, Louis Napoleon, occupying the French presidential chair, was ambitiously broadening the scope of his office, despite militant protestations from a portion of the Paris press.
Germany and Italy were both simply geographical expressions, not yet national states. As a concession to the revolutionary impulse, the King of Prussia in 1850 granted a constitution of sorts to his subjects, while in the Italian peninsula Pope Pius IX returned to the papal dominions from which he had fled in 1848 and Count Camillo Cavour, a key figure in the eventual unification of his fatherland, assumed the prime ministership of Piedmont. Ever a mystery wrapped in an enigma, tsarist Russia with its large fighting services seemed to menace the security of the countries to the west, but in fact the stage was being readied for the Crimean War which would reveal that the European colossus had feet of clay.
Farther away, Africa remained very much an unknown quantity, a dark continent, except for the Mediterranean littoral, the southern extremity, and fringing coastal districts which European imperialisms claimed as their glittering preserves; India stood out as the fairest jewel in Victoria' s glittering crown. Normally somnolent and static, China was upset in 1850 by the beginnings of the terribly destructive Tai Ping rebellion, while Japan blissfully clung to isolation in its tight little islands, almost hermetically sealed from the rest of the world.
In the department of science, 1850 saw the discovery of several new planets, Robert W. von Bunsen, a chemist at the University of Marburg, devised the "Bunsen burner" and the Königsberg physiologist, Hermann L. F. Helmholtz, invented his celebrated ophthalmoscope, a tool of the utmost importance for medicine.
Creative contributions to culture would alone have made 1850 memorable. Prelude or the Growth of a Poet's Mind by William Wordsworth appeared shortly after his death and Alfred Tennyson's In Memoriam was published, enshrining aspirations to be eternally cherished:
Ring out old shapes of foul disease,
Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;
Ring out the thousand wars of old,
Ring in the thousand years of peace.
Charles Dickens completed the immortal David Copperfield and a mixed-up Russian refugee in Britain, Alexander Herzen, started to issue (and never finished) his revealing autobiography, My Past and Reflections. Across the Atlantic, "the flowering of New England" yielded Representative Men by Ralph Waldo Emerson, The Scarlet Letter, best-loved of Nathaniel Hawthorne's novels, and Herman Melville was applying the finishing touches to his epic saga, Moby Dick.
Camille Corot exhibited the famous "Matinée" in Paris and the majestic Lohengrin by Richard Wagner had its premiere performance - in Weimar, still redolent with the memories of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Queen's University in Dublin obtained a charter and universities at Sydney, New South Wales and Rochester, New York, started on their historic careers.
According to one contemporary survey and estimate, the United States as of 1850 boasted 233 colleges and universities, attended by 27,159 learners, and 1,657 teachers--on an average seven in each institution--offered instruction; faculty salaries hovered around $1,000 a year. On an average, again, the income per college was $8,225, of which less than a fifth came from endowment resources. This critical commentator deplored the multiplication of centers of alleged higher education, in response to the quest of communities for cultural prestige or to Protestant denominational exuberance. 1
Because of competition for students, qualifications for admission and standards of academic performance were deplorably low; youths were "treated like school-boys and they are school-boys." College degrees, the writer charged, were not worth the parchment on which they were inscribed. As for trustees, they were chosen solely because of their influence, real or assumed, and those among them who were not actually disinterested were incompetent to manage institutions of learning. The author of this indictment appealed to state legislatures to cease granting college charters with reckless abandon and to churches to stifle sectarian impulses--without propounding persuasive formulae on precisely how these ends should be achieved.
The original, or "Presbyterian", scheme for a seat of higher learning beside the Genesee had not succeeded; similar was the outcome of plans to move Madison University thither. Yet the idea of a university for Rochester, strengthened if anything by frustrations and diversity, would not be denied. The third adventure of mind and spirit became a reality.
When it seemed apparent that the removal of Madison University could not be brought off, the principal sponsors of that project applied to the Regents of the University of the State of New York for a provisional charter to set up a distinct and independent collegiate institution at Rochester. The petition was addressed to the Regents on the recommendation of ex-Governor William L. Marcy, a removalist, who believed that an application to the state legislature would invite stubborn, possibly fatal, opposition from the friends of Madison. The charter was sought in order to establish "an institution of the highest order for scientific and classical purposes"; and the Regents were informed that the college would be located "at or near" Rochester, that plans were in train to raise funds to a total of at least $130,000 of which $ 30,000 would be expended on a site and buildings and the rest would form a permanent endowment, and they were given a list of New Yorkers who would function as trustees. These men would appoint a president and professors, and authority to confer academic degrees was requested.
On January 31, 1850, the Regents issued the desired charter, on the understanding that the indicated financial arrangements would be completed in two years; if the goal were not attained by then, "a reasonable period of grace" would be allowed, but if the money had not been raised at the end of the time extension the charter would become null and void.
When it was certain that Madison University would not be transferred, some pledges that had been made for a center of higher learning in Rochester were canceled, but after the issuance of the provisional charter the campaign to collect funds increased in tempo. A U. of R. fund-raising committee of six Baptists called upon "every Baptist in this great state... to join with your brethren in establishing a memorial before God and men, worthy of your principles.... not to speak of those peculiar and precious Theological truths, held by us... the great principle of Soul Liberty.... To this great principle our Literary Institution will be consecrated." Either money or merchandise would be welcomed, and it was stated that tuition charges would be waived for at least forty students preparing to be preachers. 2
A persuasive editorial in the Rochester press solicited financial support on the grounds that "for the honor of our city we ought to establish an institution that will compare with Yale and Cambridge and furnish in the coming generation her share of Poets, Orators, and Statesmen." An anonymous "Mr. O." reasoned that an investment of $130,000 would pay the city handsome dividends, for merchants would profit from supplying the everyday necessities of faculty, and students and the value of real estate would move up. It would be much cheaper, too, for a local family to educate a son in Rochester than to enroll him in an eastern college. "At the same time the youths would be under the parental eye and the sacred restraint and influences of home. " Beyond all that, a university would contribute materially to elevating and refining the tone of society and would enhance the national reputation of the aspiring Genesee community. Rochesterians were told that the liberality with which they subscribed would influence potential donors elsewhere. 3
So elated was John N. Wilder by the response to calls for subscriptions that he thought the goal might well be increased to $200,000. For the moral effect, he wished professors at Madison University who had expressed an interest in transferring to Rochester to make contributions. "The question is often asked, he wrote, "'Will the faculty come? ... You all might subscribe $100 apiece or more or less - the payment or non-payment of it can be fixed to suit yourselves." It would be helpful in the fund campaign, he added, if the Madison professors prepared a short statement on behalf of an endowment. 4
Primarily to aid in the financial appeal, Wilder and William N. Sage collaborated in writing and publishing The Annunciator. Five issues of this neatly printed, four-page paper appeared between April 1850 and October 1851, and several thousand copies were distributed gratis to Baptist ministers and potential donors all over New York state. The slogan proclaimed on the masthead "Attempt great things. Expect great things." Apart from periodic reports on the progress of the campaign for subscriptions, The Annunciator carried articles designed to counteract denunciations of the Rochester enterprise that issued from quarters sympathetic to the imperiled Madison University. The paper also diffused information on the degree to which the Baptist denomination lagged behind other American Christian communions in providing facilities for the higher culture of the mind and ran inspirational articles under such headings as "Farmers Educate Your Sons" and "An Educated Ministry Needful." When the University went into actual operation, The Annunciator printed accounts of professors, building, equipment, and the like; an occasional sober advertisement was tucked in between news columns.
Meanwhile, on May 11, 1850, an educational meeting of New York Baptists convened at Rochester to mature plans for the new university and a separate school of theology. Among those in attendance were four Madison professors and Chester A. Dewey, who offered the closing prayer. The board of trustees was confirmed and urged to take immediate steps to engage a faculty and to open the university as soon as practicable; committees to devise a curriculum and to gather funds were named. 5
Journalistic encouragement for the university undertaking also came from an influential Baptist periodical, the New York Recorder. One glowing article read in part: "Rochester is. . . precisely the spot for a university. It has the requisite social advantages without the dissipating luxuries of the great marts of commerce. It has a sober and religious population--a population which will both appreciate a good university and take proper care of it. We are glad that the university is to wear the name of the city. We believe the liberal interest manifested by the citizens in its establishment a pledge that it will abide in their hearts and share their prosperity... What a region for a university is western New York! What a blessing that divine Providence left it open for occupation at such a juncture! All that region is interested in this enterprise. This university comes with a blessing to every man's door. Its influence will be felt... in every department of life, in every vocation, and at every home. The project attempted is not a work for one generation, but for children's children." 6
Subscription agents scoured the Rochester area and indeed New York state as a whole on the hunt for money. Volunteer collectors, "enterprising and energetic gentlemen," included Professor Raymond of Madison and that experienced veteran,Chester Dewey. Newspaper man and pillar of the First Baptist Church, Alvah Strong, recounted in his Autobiography, "I myself went with Messrs. Wilder and Sage...from store to store and from house to house, in city and country, soliciting subscriptions to the University." 7
Supplementing the labors of unpaid workers, hired collectors--Baptist preachers with time to spare, some of whom had formerly solicited help for Madison University, and students at that institution--roamed far and wide to get money, even invading territory which the university at Hamilton regarded as its exclusive domain. Whenever it seemed likely to prove effective, agents unblushingly told potential contributors that the mission of the Madison rival had come to an end.
Subscription blanks explained that pledges would not be valid unless $130,000 were pledged. If and when the objective was reached then a quarter of each pledge would be due in cash and the balance might take the form of interest-bearing notes to be redeemed within three years, but some donors preferred to pledge payment in installments over a longer period. The Annunciator published lengthy lists of contributors and the amounts that each donor subscribed. A quota of $65,000 for Monroe County was reported to have been exceeded in Rochester alone.
Heading the contributors was Wilder himself with a promise of $10,000 (only about sixty percent of which was actually paid because of financial reverses he suffered), Deacon Oren Sage, who ranked second to none in rallying the Baptists of western New York to the university cause, entered his name for $1,000, and scores of other men, representing "the wealth, intelligence, influence and piety" of the Flour City, pledged lesser sums. Baptists were the most numerous contributors, but other Protestant denominations were well represented and several public-spirited Roman Catholics subscribed. Baptists in the adjoining community of Wheatland, the many-branched family of pioneer settler Rawson Harmon pacing the field, turned in $6,000. Banker Roswell S. Burrows of Albion promised $2,000 and the children of Judge Daniel C.(?) Munro of Elbridge near Syracuse, who had habitually been a benefactor of Madison University, arranged to endow a professorship in Greek at a cost of $8,000 - the first named chair in the history of the University. James S. Wadsworth of Geneseo indicated that his pledge of $1,000 would be enlarged if the university authorities would agree to lay out the institution on a tract of land in which he had an interest. In a splendid demonstration of the partnership between Rochester and western New York, in an unmistakable vote of confidence in the university idea, pledges in the amount of about $100,000 were secured. Baptists of New York City and vicinity raised $25,000, and the grand total was announced as approximately $142,000--the objective was then increased to $150,000. It is "difficult to discover, rejoiced a leading organ of Baptist opinion, "how, with ordinary care in its management, the University need ever be involved in debt."8
Persuaded that the financial stipulations of the provisional charter had been satisfied with reasonable adequacy, the State Regents on February 14, 1851 replaced the original instrument with a formal charter. It was prescribed, however, that the charter would be revoked unless within five years the University presented evidence that it had accumulated an endowment of $100,000. The document itself--still in perfect condition--is a handsomely bound piece of bookmaking, printed artistically on the finest parchment with illumined gilt borders on each page and diverting devices --landscape sketches, ancient and up-to-date edifices, et cetera. 9
Since the conditions of the 1851 charter were not fulfilled within five years, the University trustees petitioned for an extension of five years. Though many subscriptions had not been fully paid, the trustees reported slightly over $40,000 in investments, which, together with pledges that it was considered would be honored and property owned by the University, showed about $165,000 on the books.
Because the University was already carrying on instruction successfully, and because its officers had displayed "great zeal and faithfulness" in procuring funds, the Regents in 1856 agreed to a five-year extension to obtain an endowment fund of $100,000. On January 10, 1861 the trustees disclosed assets valued at $190,000 at least, though less than $55,000 were in the investment portfolio. Nonetheless, the Regents accepted the interpretation that their terms had been complied with "substantially, although not literally," and accordingly declared the university charter to be permanent. 10
Years before, the trustees endeavored to enlarge institutional resources by a subvention from the state government. Early in 1851, Governor Washington Hunt encouraged them to ask for $5,000 a year from general state funds. In a formal request to the legislature, dated February 12, 1851, the trustees pointed out that the university was a going concern and that subscriptions to the endowment fund had come from more than seven hundred donors "embracing the representatives of all classes of our population more completely than any college which has ever received the encouragement of the legislature."
The petition directed attention to the unique emphasis in the Rochester curriculum on "a liberal education in the practical sciences...extending through the entire period of college residence" and enrolling a dozen students. Existing university facilities would be inadequate in a year or two and no money was available for buildings, equipment, and library; hence, the application for a large appropriation of state aid. As a clinching argument, it was pointed out that western New York had never received public assistance for higher education in proportion to its population; the U. of R. deserved to share equally with New York colleges which for years had been recipients of state bounty.
Bills to implement the request were presented in the Assembly in Albany, one authorizing a substantial lump sum grant, and a second promising the University $6,000 a year for two years out of a general fund for colleges in the state. 11
Spurred on by visions of obtaining as much as $50,000, representatives of the University applied their powers of persuasion on Senators and Assemblymen. For a time prospects for enactment of the measure looked bright, but then certain lawmakers favored voting funds for an agricultural college, which would form the nucleus of a state university, while others wished to concentrate public moneys for education on improving the common schools.
At a moment when the embers of the removal quarrel were still quite hot, partisans of Madison University either worked undercover against financial a grant to Rochester or, alternatively, sought for the institution at Hamilton the equivalent of whatever might be given to the college beside the Genesee. Some legislators expressed, the view that Madison, since it was "weaker and deserted," deserved assistance far more than its youthful rival to the west. The Senate voted a modest appropriation for Rochester, but the Assembly killed the measure, and the trustees laid the subject of state aid on the shelf for several years. 12
By the terms of the university charter, a board of trustees, not to exceed twenty-four, constituted the corporate body legally responsible for the management of the institution; it was vested with general authority on overall policies concerning administration, faculty, buildings, and finance, the last always the most urgent perplexity. Trustees came together infrequently to listen to and remark upon the annual report of the chief educational officer, to hear the story of the treasurer on the state of finances, and to vote degrees, including honorary awards. Election of the university president and of members to fill vacancies were very important duties of the trustees; a large part of the decision-making responsibility of the Board was in fact delegated to a powerful executive committee of nine set up first September 16, 1850.
Of the twenty-four original trustees twenty-one belonged to or were adherents of the Baptist denomination;13 two members worshipped as Episcopalians, and a third was a Presbyterian. Most of the Baptist trustees had served the institution at Hamilton and several of the trustees residing in Rochester had been involved in the "Presbyterian" project for a center of higher education in their city. At least nine of the first trustees had earned academic degrees and one more had studied for several years in a college.
Half of the trustees were business men of one kind or another, three were lawyers by profession, two were farmers, four or possibly five were Baptist ministers, leaving two whose vocations can not be ascertained. Eight of the men were Rochesterians, four had homes in Albany, three resided in New York City, and nine at other places in New York State. 14
With one exception all the members of the original executive committee lived in Rochester, and the last came from Albion, only fifty miles away. John N. Wilder, who had been chosen president of the Board, a responsibility he exercised until his premature death in 1858, served as chairman of the executive committee. The better to look after University affairs, Wilder moved his family to Rochester, living for a time in a showplace of the inner city, the imposing Child mansion on Washington Street (in 1968 the quarters of the Bureau of Municipal Research). He gave receptions to benefit the infant college, entertained its guests, and lodged some faculty men until they found suitable houses. No aspect of university life lay outside the range of Wilder's concern, and when the treasury ran low he generously dipped into his own pocket to tide over distressed professors or to satisfy importunate creditors. Tendered the presidency of the University, which he considered the greatest compliment that had ever come to him, Wilder declined because of business involvements. After resuming residence in Albany in order to handle his personal interests, Wilder continued to participate actively in all the doings of the institution beside the Genesee.
Instead of Oren Sage, who concentrated his energies on developing the Theological Seminary once the college had been fairly launched, his son, William N., thirty-one years old, accepted a trusteeship and acted as secretary of the executive committee; the secretary of the Board as well, Sage soon took on the chores of treasurer also. For forty years he rendered inestimable service in these capacities; the modest compensation he was paid passed largely to the keeper of the University financial records. Sage did more. He methodically collected newspaper clippings about the college and pasted them in voluminous scrapbooks, which are indispensable sources of information for the historian. Of him it was authoritatively said, "the first twenty years of growth and prosperity on the part of the University were greatly due to the skill, judgment, and self-sacrificing labor of William N. Sage." 15
Another influential individual on the executive committee in the formative period was the universally respected Frederick Whittlesey, Yaleman, lawyer, public servant, and prominent Rochester Episcopalian. Instrumental, too, in winning community cooperation in the making of the University was Everard Peck; a publisher, banker, and a Presbyterian, Peck was on terms of closest intimacy with Wilder, to whom he was related by marriage.
Baptists in the first executive group included civic-minded David R. Barton, a well-to-do Rochester tool manufacturer, Elon Huntington, who faithfully served the University year in and year out until his death in 1899 at the patriarchal age of ninety-one, Elijah F. Smith, sometime mayor of the city, and Edwin Pancost, son-in-law of Oren Sage, his partner in a shoemaking firm, and, like him, keenly interested in education, though he had himself only attended an elementary school. Roswell S. Burrows, who had studied at Yale and prospered as a banker in neighboring Albion--and who made liberal benefactions to the University--rounded out the executive contingent.
Another outstanding original trustee and no doubt the most cultivated and sophisticated of all was Robert Kelly, who had thought long and constructively about educational subjects and had extensive and, varied practical experience in education both in New York City and across the state. A graduate of Columbia College with highest honors, he accumulated an ample fortune by the age of twenty-nine, retired from business, and devoted himself to the public weal. Lover of books that he was and an expert in languages, Kelly impressed men who knew him well as an industrious, accurate, and mature scholar. To a sharp sense of duty to society and acumen in finance, he united sound judgment on educational policy and commitment to wide diffusion of opportunities for learning. A loyal and dedicated friend of the embryonic U. of R., Kelly contributed especially to the shaping of curricular plans; on one winter journey from Manhattan to Rochester to deal with university problems, he arrived in the Genesee city with both ears frozen. 16
Services rendered by Kelly, the executive committee, and to a lesser extent by other trustees in the exceptionally busy year of 1850 were of incalculable value for the budding academic adventure.
Selection of an executive officer for the University and organization of the teaching force stood high on the trustee agenda. At one point, President Francis Wayland of Brown, who was not entirely happy with the state of affairs there, was urged to consider coming to Rochester for five years so "that you may get things arranged for another man;" Wayland preferred, however, to stay in Providence. Since no decision on the Rochester presidency could immediately be reached, Judge Ira Harris of Albany, a trustee, honors graduate of Union College, and prominent Baptist, was persuaded to assume the unsalaried dignity of chancellor, a title he wore until his death in 1875 and then the office was abolished. Known for his deep interest in extending educational opportunities and having a reputation as a scholar, public man, and effective orator, the tall and impressive Harris was a capital choice as nominal head of the University and as presiding dignitary at the early Commencements, (A United States Senator during the Civil War, Harris bedeviled President Lincoln by his relentless quest for patronage). 17
It was never intended that Harris should be anything more than a temporary appointee, Trustee sentiment inclined to favor as president a man who occupied a commanding position in society, not a clergyman, a business executive--Robert Kelly for example. "Would he [Kelly] take pride," one trustee inquired, "in bringing his business talents to make the best college in America? ... We want to build up--to endow, to make a strong college..." A colleague chimed in that Kelly's financial experience would stand him in excellent stead as president, and besides "he would devote himself [to the college] gratuitously for a few years until it was well established. But Kelly had other ideas for himself, though he wanted as chief executive at Rochester a layman of "influence and business tact." 18
After a considerable exchange of views in the spring of 1851, the trustees offered the presidency to Professor Barnas Sears, who, as the former President of the Newton Theological Institution and secretary of the Massachusetts Board of Education, had a fine reputation as a scholar, and teacher. An alumnus of Brown and an ordained minister, Sears ranked second only to Wayland among Baptist educators in America, and personal qualities of tact and geniality equipped him to fill the Rochester post capably. The invitation of the trustees held out a maximum salary of $1,800, and specified that if Sears responded affirmatively he should undertake the presidential duties immediately; but after no little hesitation, he decided that it would be "doing wrong" to accept. Four years later Sears assumed the Brown presidency, proving himself a traditionalist in educational philosophy, but a competent administrator, and a successful money-raiser. 19
Reporting for an ad hoc trustee Committee on the Internal Concerns of the institution, Kelly thought the University suffered severely for want of a president, who would implement the plans for instruction, and for lack of a permanent professor of mathematics and natural philosophy of "great experience and thorough training, "who would, strengthen the scientific curriculum of the college. The search for a president went on, but the problem of faculty personnel was rather easily resolved. 20
The genesis of the U. of R.is closely linked to the exodus of the ablest professors from Madison University. This sequence was no novelty, for England's Cambridge similarly was indebted to Oxford, Leipzig University to Prague, the University of Budapest to Tyrnau, to cite merely random examples. On September 16, 1850, the trustees formally elected Professors Kendrick, Richardson, and Raymond, who, since they had labored together at Hamilton, knew the strengths and little foibles of each other.
The supreme gift of Madison to Rochester was Professor Asahel C. Kendrick, teacher of Greek, who served as executive officer until a president was found, and on two subsequent occasions he carried administrative responsibilities in the absence of the president. Just when Kendrick was poised for flight to Rochester an attractive invitation was extended him to take the Greek professorship at Brown. The temptation to accept an appointment at that well-established institution, in contrast to the pioneering labor that would be required at Rochester, was strong, and Kendrick was sufficiently interested to inquire about living costs in Providence--a friend assured him that a family could lead a genteel existence on $1,000 a year, provided it was content with a single servant! After pondering the Brown offer "till my head and heart swelled and ached," Kendrick decided to cast in his fortunes with the new Genesee venture; in the first phase of his residence he found Rochester "oppressively lonely." Invitations that came along to leave Rochester Kendrick turned down and he remained in the classroom until 1881, when a heart condition obliged him to restrict his activity to small groups meeting in his home; his name stood on the faculty roll until his death in 1895.21
Tall, spare in frame, stoop-shouldered, smooth-shaven, and recurrently in poor health, Kendrick nevertheless earned an assured place among the immortals of the University faculty. His kindly and gentle nature, a steady flow of wit and wisdom, his simplicity and candor, a mellow voice, and resourceful scholarship endeared him to generation after generation of undergraduates and to an elite company of Rochester townsmen; by students and alumni he was exalted into a legend while he yet lived.
Upon his return from a trip for health reasons to the South, Kendrick was hailed:
We welcome thee back to the cloister again, The greatest of Grecians, the noblest of men--
We followed thee on thy meandering track--
And our hearts and our lips say,
'Thrice welcome thee back.'
Cordiality of that order should not, however, create the impression that Kendrick was wholly exempt from undergraduate, pranks. "Not often were any of the boys so rude,"one student reported, "as to play tricks upon him, and when they did, his gentle reproof, showing that his feelings were hurt, was more effective than the severer words of other instructors...." Given the nickname "Kai Gar" (which his son Ryland M., 1889, inherited), Kendrick was rapturously saluted at college gatherings for decades; for the funeral service of this "princely scholar" and "inspired interpreter", alumni ordered a large wreath of white roses with "Kai Gar" spelled out in crimson flowers.
In the classroom, Kendrick avoided the word-splitting and pedantry of conventional classical education in favor of a humanistic appreciation of the language, history, and culture of historic Greece as the path to full self-development and harmony. He "never cared about learning for mere learning's sake," a perceptive and admiring student has written, "but only as it became a guide and beautifier of life." His principal biographer tells us, "He used the riches of linguistic resources in the pagan classics in order to unseal the mysteries of the Christian classics. 22
Prolific as an author, Kendrick wrote many articles and reviews, particularly for Baptist publications, books on the Greek language and literature, biographies, and, familiar as he was with the best in western literature, he compiled anthologies of poetry, among them pieces that he personally translated from European languages; and he composed original verse, too. He freely expressed his opinions on controversial public questions--Negro slavery and free trade, for example--in the newspapers and in public addresses. His reports on observations and reflections during a trip to Europe, Greece especially, in 1852-53 enjoyed extensive circulation. Kendrick had lively reservations, however, about Americans attending French and German shrines of learning and research, for he believed that social and moral influences in American colleges afforded them an advantage over their European contemporaries. Not only were young men who went abroad to study partially denationalized," but likely to fall victims to "free thinking, dissipation, and moral lawlessness." So far had professorial competence advanced in the United States that students were given "the best results of foreign scholarship without the evils and dangers of a foreign residence," Kendrick thought. 23
By reason of contributions to classical philology, Kendrick won election as President of the American Philological Association and his international reputation as a scholar was enhanced by membership on a commission to prepare a revised version of the Bible. Asahel, meaning "a creature of God," was an appropriate name for this devout Christian who could be seen regularly on Sunday at the First Baptist Church of Rochester, bearing a shawl over his shoulders when the weather was inclement. Though an ordained minister, who filled pulpits frequently, Kendrick never held a pastorate; occasionally, he offered courses at the Rochester Theological Seminary. His immediate family and its relatives formed a sort of literary academy.
At the death of the cultivated savant, the University faculty extolled "his broad and thorough scholarship...his irreproachable life..." as "one of the most precious legacies" bequeathed by "the best beloved of all who aided in laying...the foundations of the U. of R." "He will be enrolled for all time," declared a trustee resolution, "as one of the great founders and benefactors of the U. of R." Three generations of Kendrick's descendants earned degrees at the college and in 1913 his name was appreciatively attached to the first dormitory erected by the college and in 1968 to a second in the River Campus complex.
Like Kendrick, John F. Richardson, an able and enthusiastic professor of Latin, emigrated from Hamilton. If he was a stickler for accuracy in work and notorious for the stiff assignments he handed out to students, he was also a tolerant and understanding teacher whose kindliness grew into a proverb. Richardson pioneered in using the Roman system of Latin pronunciation, a method he explained in The True Roman Orthoepy (1859); ridiculed by some Latinists of the time, what came to be spoken of as "the Rochester method" attracted the applause of other scholars and eventually gained the approbation of the American Philological Association. The author was delighted that his book was praised by the eminent British statesman, William E. Gladstone.
Blessed with a family of nine girls and a boy, Richardson helped to maintain them by raising vegetables and fruit in the spacious garden adjacent to his East Avenue residence (apparently, the Methodist Home for the Aged as of 1968). Ill health obliged him to stop teaching a year before he died, and he left his family in dire poverty. 24
From the Madison faculty also came John H. Raymond, professor of Rhetoric and Belles-lettres, a man of broad culture and endowed with a nice sense of humor. He had been in the vanguard of the removalists, lobbying for the Rochester interest at Albany and in Baptist circles and stumping New York state to obtain funds for the U. of R. It was not a case, however, of all work and no play, for he took time out in Brooklyn to listen to the "Swedish Nightingale," Jenny Lind, whom he pronounced not merely lovely but divine. Once settled in Rochester, Raymond was soon complaining bitterly about the heavy load of instruction he had to carry, yet he mustered plenty of energy to promote the anti-slavery cause. As well as helping fugitive Negroes make their way to Canada, he delivered innumerable public addresses on the slave iniquity and contrived to prevent Senator Daniel Webster, who had supported the Compromise of 1850, from addressing the University students. There was a decidedly restless streak in Raymond's make-up -- as a youth he had been expelled from Columbia College for insubordination--and after five years beside the Genesee, he moved off to Brooklyn to found a technical school; before very long he accepted the presidency of the new Vassar College, where his ability as an organizer and administrator had ample scope. 25
Appointed to the professorship of chemistry and natural philosophy, Chester Dewey stood out as the patriarch in the original U. of R. faculty. Sixty-six years of age, he had long been the unchallenged leader among professional educators in his adopted city and a consistent and resourceful exponent of the university idea. By reason of his outstanding success as principal and teacher at the Rochester Collegiate Institute, his public lectures on science, and popular articles on scientific topics that peppered the Rochester press, Dewey was a greatly beloved figure in the community. Throughout his lengthy career he found time to preach somewhere almost every Sunday and four honorary degrees in divinity were conferred upon him. All in all, this selfless, courteous gentleman of benign countenance was the most conspicuous personality of the pioneer teaching corps. His tenure lasted thirteen years and after that he maintained a nominal connection with the University staff until his death in 1867. 26
In a letter accepting the U. of R. professorship Dewey commented, "To secure the prosperity and success of the University, its faculty must be a body of workers. I assure you...of the employment of all the powers I can bring to its aid." And he faithfully kept his promise. 27 For decades as a volunteer meteorologist he sent daily weather observations to the state bureau in Albany and he accumulated a remarkably fine collection of botanical specimens. His voluminous writings for scholarly scientific journals, notably on sedge grasses, North American plants, and ethnology, marked him as a scientist of real distinction. And he lectured periodically at New England medical schools, belonged to several learned societies, and counted among his friends the foremost naturalists of the age, quarreling on points of science with some of them. To honor the distinguished professor, certain California plants were assigned the name Deweya. Though he was acquainted with the Darwinian theorem on evolution, he declined to accept it, apparently because it seemed irreconcilable with his theological convictions. Nothing annoyed Dewey so much perhaps as to hear skeptical opinions about religion. "Well, Doctor, if geology does not lie, an undergraduate once remarked, "the world was not created in six days." Removing his glasses, Dewey deliberately replied, "...There is nothing in science which really opposes revelation."
It is not surprising that this sire of fifteen children displayed a keen interest in students. The range of his instructional versatility extended across botany and geology, chemistry and physiology, with a modicum of astronomy thrown in, doubtless to balance the earth and the heavens. So long as his physical powers were in good shape, Dewey excelled in the classroom, and inspired several learners to seek careers in scientific work--rather a novelty in the America of that era. A bag slung over his shoulder and a hammer in hand, Dewey was a familiar figure in the Genesee country trudging along with undergraduates on the quest for natural knowledge. For one student, the professor was "a living, walking dictionary and reporter of scientific knowledge." "In our venerable and beloved Dr. Dewey," declared an undergraduate publication, "we have Oliver Goldsmith's Village Schoolmaster outdone, for
Although we listen oft, greater our wonder grows
How one such head as his, can carry all he knows." 28
His teaching capacity declined sharply before the distinguished savant felt compelled to quit the recitation hall. "We have Chemistry under Dr. Dewey," a young man confided to his fiancee, "it is glorious sport .... He has a funny sort of habit of asking a question and answering it himself .... Sometimes when his back is turned from us in performing an experiment we all leave the room." 29 For anyone acquainted with undergraduates of a century later, the observation is apposite: "The more students change, the more they remain the same." Older men, however, in the University family and in the city venerated Dewey to the end of his life as a sage and a saint. In a moving eulogy on him and his accomplishments, we read, ''His intellectual life was a beautiful commentary on the remark of Gibbon, that it is a greater glory to science to develop and perfect mankind than it is to enlarge the boundaries of the known universe.'" 30 It was highly fitting that the name of the first University scientist should have been selected to adorn the structure on the River Campus of 1930 in which biology, botany and geology were pursued.
Unable to attract the person they most wanted, the trustees appointed E. Peshine Smith as acting professor of mathematics and natural philosophy. A Rochester lawyer trained at Harvard, Smith taught for only one year and then went on to win distinction as a writer on economics and government and as a public official in Washington and Japan. The very important task of offering instruction in mathematics was assigned in 1851 to young Isaac F. Quinby, who remained on the faculty until 1884. Educated at West Point, Quinby ranked sixth in his class at graduation, well ahead of his classmate and lifelong friend, Ulysses S. Grant. Before coming to Rochester Quinby had fought in the Mexican War and in the late fifties he supervised government construction jobs during months the summer months in Wisconsin and Missouri. Service in the Civil War interrupted his professorial career, and after peace was restored he never resumed full-time teaching, preferring to apply part of his energies as a marshal for the federal government and as an official surveyor for the city of Rochester.
For one thing, Quinby taught calculus, the subject most dreaded by students, and wrote a book on calculus, which was too abstruse to achieve wide adoption. Teaching science, too, Quinby delighted to set forth laws underlying natural phenomena with exactitude and in comprehensive formulas; experimental illustrations, the use of instruments, or suggestions on the practical application of what was taught were alien to his philosophy of education. A master of pre-laboratory methods of college instruction, he placed a premium on hard thinking and the disciplinary value of what was taught.
Dull and laggard undergraduates often felt the lash of his soldier's tongue, but Quinby was no storybook martinet for he interlarded his teaching with a brand of dry humor that became proverbial. But he never learned to maintain order in the classroom, which was described as "generally a perfect bear-garden." Anecdotes that have a folklorish tinge gathered around him, as, for example, when calculus students plugged the keyhole of the recitation room door so that the General would be unable to unlock it. He outwitted the culprits, however, got the door open, and beamed benignly as the disappointed youths trooped to their seats. His General Grant style beard, his addiction to alcohol and tobacco, joined with uncanny accuracy in hitting a spittoon, made Quinby a perfect specimen for undergraduate wit and caricature. 31
Coming from Madison University in the great emigration, Albert H. Mixer taught modern languages chiefly at the U. of R. with the title of tutor, the equivalent essentially of a twentieth century instructor. In the formative stage of the college French and German had only a small and uncertain status in the educational offerings, but in 1855 a distinct department of modern languages was created, presided over by Mixer. Always on intimate terms with undergraduates he helped to organize literary societies, winning thereby student admiration and affection--psychic reward that somewhat compensated for a small salary. He forsook Rochester for several years in order to study in Europe and to teach at the first University of Chicago.
Returning to the Genesee city in 1867, Mixer advanced to professorial rank and offered instruction in the French and German languages until he retired thirty-seven years later. Students, even lazy ones who were goaded to activity by withering sarcasm, held this earnest, inspiring master in high esteem. For all his natural reserve, Mixer fought vigorously to gain for modern languages a secure niche in the curriculum and he warmly championed the admission of women to college studies. Not only did he write language manuals for instruction, but for a time he even succeeded in having textbooks in French prescribed by other Rochester departments of learning; it was not a satisfactory experiment. At his death a faculty resolution extolled Mixer as man, friend, and a strong influence for sincere scholarship and noble character. ''His sense of the essentially religious and moral significance of education was well-nigh a passion with him...." 32
Rounding out the original teaching staff, two more emigres from Hamilton, Professors Conant and Maginnis, devoted part of their time to undergraduates, though their main responsibilities lay in the Rochester Theological Seminary, to be remarked upon later. The former held an interim appointment in the college to teach intellectual and moral philosophy, until a president was chosen and assigned this discipline regarded as the quintessence of learning and wisdom in American colleges. Afflicted with bodily infirmities, Maginnis passed away two years after arriving in Rochester. Reverenced for his erudition, effectiveness as a teacher, and amazing capacity for work, Conant offered elementary instruction in the Hebrew language and literature to undergraduates for four years and then concentrated on instruction at the school of theology for three more years. Familiar with German university techniques and eminent as a philologist, he attained international repute by publishing a standard Hebrew grammar and translations of the Scriptures. 33
At any college, teachers are quite as important (if not indeed more so) than the subjects taught; the value of any curriculum is directly proportional to the knowledge of the professors and their skill in imparting instruction. Teachers at the infant U. of R. were a singularly able group, men devoted to their calling, who gave strength and stability to the new educational adventure and they set high academic standards - a precious legacy to the twentieth century. If Dewey is excepted, the senior professors were comparatively young when appointed: Kendrick forty-one, Richardson a year older, Raymond thirty-six, Quinby thirty-one, and, save for Raymond, they served remarkably long periods.
The eminence of Dewey, Kendrick, Raymond, and Quinby (Conant, too) is attested by their presence in the Dictionary of American Biography, containing sketches of 13,633 distinguished Americans who made not "average or merely typical" but significant contributions to the life of the Republic. (For comparative purposes, volume 34 of Who's Who in America (1966) lists over 60,000 biographies in brief.) It seems a plausible hypothesis that the U. of R. in the first stage of its history surpassed every other college of America at any period in the proportion of its faculty eventually found worthy of inclusion in this elite biographical compilation.
Professors had to be intellectually versatile for they occupied settees not chairs, and they carried exacting schedules--class recitations, occasional lectures, papers to evaluate, chapel talks to deliver in rotation, faculty meetings, reading and writing, and cultivation of cordial and mutually profitable relations with townspeople. Salaries for the senior professors were set at $1,200, equal to the compensation of their counterparts at Brown, and substantially higher than at Amherst or Oberlin, for example, or at Madison. What are commonly referred to as fringe benefits, so much prized a century later--medical care, sabbatical leaves, waivers of tuition for children, retirement security--were of course totally unknown. Despite their differences in personal traits, the men of the first faculty generally endeared themselves to the youths who sat under their tutelage. Strong ties of affection attached younger learners to older learners and were warmly reciprocated--and the bonds of college years often endured, in itself compensation to the teaching corps for self-sacrificial labors.
On August 12, 1850, Robert Kelly, in the name of a trustee committee formally invited Professors Kendrick, Raymond, and Conant to share responsibility for shaping the plan of study to be followed at the University. They accepted and Dewey also participated in the ensuing discussions and conclusions.
Curriculum may be translated as "running a race." The makers of the educational patterns for the new University departed, up to a point, from conventional courses, and partly acquiesced in generally preferred schemes of instruction. The traditional emphasis in the American college on classical humanism and Christian ethics had been given classic utterance in a Yale report of 1828. "The two great points to be gained in intellectual culture," the document proclaimed, "are the discipline and the furniture of the mind, expanding its powers and storing it with knowledge." Widely circulated, the essence of the Yale philosophy largely determined curricular offerings in American higher education until after the Civil War.
On the assumption that all minds were basically alike, it followed that all students required uniform training in a set of literary studies embracing the classics of Greece and Rome, mathematics, and philosophy. The classics would teach fine literary tastes and skill in exposition; mathematics was calculated to develop powers of reasoning, while moral and intellectual philosophy would sharpen judgment, quicken the conscience, and deepen allegiance to the Christian faith.
But competing currents were abroad in the domain of educational planning. More exact understanding of European, especially German, ideas and ideals in mature learning fruitfully stimulated thought in the trans-Atlantic Republic. Certain colleges ventured, indeed, to introduce courses in science to their curriculum and to permit students to choose, within narrow limits, the subjects they wished to study. Historic theories of higher learning, that is to say, faced challenges from the doctrines that different minds required different training, that living languages and science should be taught, and that the principle of election of studies should be applied, allowing students to tailor their programs to their intended vocations and to foster individual qualities of mind and spirit. The accent in learning, this school of thinking also advocated, should be less otherworldly, more secular.
A fresh atmosphere in higher education, deviation from the ministerial orientation, it may be recalled formed a cardinal objective of the partisans of removal from Hamilton to Rochester. Stimulus in that direction was imparted by the foremost educational thinker of the Baptist denomination, Brown's President Wayland; his ideas on reform in collegiate training rose to a climax in a veritable "trumpet blast" of March 28, 1850, just when he was at the peak of his national reputation. Specifically, Wayland recommended broadening of course offerings, the introduction of elective or optional studios in the spirit of freedom, and of studies that would bring young men to grips with contemporary society and its needs. Though the Wayland proposals, which were glorified as "the new system" or the "new education," contained little that was truly novel, they nonetheless created a considerable sensation in American academic dovecots; they were prophetic, they foreshadowed the wave of the future. 34
"Try to establish an institution that will teach what people will pay for learning," the Brown executive counseled John N. Wilder. "Try the application of science to the arts ... this will support itself and aid the professional school." 35 That advice Robert Kelly, planner-in-chief of the Rochester program of instruction, scarcely needed, for he had had a hand in establishing the institution that evolved into the City University of New York City, which experimented with elective studies, and he had pondered to good purpose on educational philosophies, Wayland's among them. While the curriculum for Rochester was germinating, Kelly visited Providence in order to deepen his understanding of the Wayland agenda and undertook a mission of investigation to Harvard.
Deliberations by the joint trustee-faculty committee at Rochester flowered in a Plan of Instruction to be Pursued in the Collegiate Department, approved on September 16, 1850, by the trustees. It was a document of remarkable prescience and foresight--formidable, too, running into fifty closely printed pages. Without claiming originality for their production, the authors (Kelly mostly, it appears) insisted that they had devised "an enlargement of the usual boundaries of college education;" theirs was a clarion call to place the new University in the front rank of progressive academic centers. Fundamentally, the Plan followed three lines of inquiry: the origins of collegiate training; its present status; and ways and means of improvement.
The Plan abounds in quotable quotes, mostly of enduring relevance to the college enterprise. For instance, the lure of money-making "will long continue to be the main obstacle in the way of inducing our youth to persevere... in the laborious work of a complete education. Here is one of the drawbacks ... of our extraordinary prosperity." Again, ''The whole of life is one long process of education to those who will receive and profit by its lessons.... High education is a very expensive article, and if it were disposed of at its full cost... few purchasers would be found besides the children of wealth." Yet mature training "furnishes a simple process, by which the artificial barriers of wealth and pride may be broken down, the various portions of society commingled, social discontents repressed, and the sentiment of republican equality kept alive."
Moreover, the Plan stated that the principal purpose of college training "is to educate the powers of the mind, to expand, to strengthen, and to refine it, to train it in habits of thought and industry, and to fit it for its own work in future life." And finally, "Morals based upon Religion... are to be the teachings of this Christian school... the spirit of religion must be felt throughout all the instruction here communicated...."
An enthusiastic Rochester editor rejoiced that the University program of instruction would enable rich and poor alike to have their sons educated and that practical as well as academic subjects would be taught. ".... We look for a better time," he mused, "when learning shall no longer be divorced from toil, and when the poor may aspire to the pleasures and the elevating consolations of science and literature." In a searching assessment of "Mr. Kelly's Report," a leading journal of Baptist opinion made the pertinent comment that "the very fashion which has grown up... to call our colleges universities shows the prevalence of the university idea. We take the higher name because it is more attractive and gives a nobler promise... " In spite of its title, the Rochester institution continued to be exclusively a college in fact during the first seven decades of its existence. 36
Boiled down, the Plan envisaged two main courses of study. The first prescribed an orthodox, classical "race to be run" with a Bachelor of Arts degree for learners who breasted the tape. But candidates for Bachelor of Science award would focus upon scientific studies, higher mathematics, living languages, and English literature. As a third opportunity, qualified young men who wished to study part-time in particular departments without seeking a degree might enroll in an "eclectic" program. Examined from a different point of view, the Rochester pattern eliminated obligatory study of the classics after the Sophomore year, enabled a candidate to earn a B.A. without advanced mathematics, or a B.S. without Greek or Latin, and allowed for considerable election of subjects beginning in the Junior year.
It all looked impressively grand on paper, but insurmountable obstacles prevented sustained, integral implementation of the "Kelly" plan. That everlasting plague, shortage of money, made it impossible to secure the necessary teaching staff, equipment, and library facilities; it is open to doubt, moreover, whether the emigre professors from Madison University really believed in the validity of the "new system. " Besides, most students at the U. of R. elected the classical curriculum of established tradition, and the offerings for the B.S. were not fully organized. At the outset, the classics made up nearly half of the studies of every undergraduate, and for two decades never less than a third. Mathematics was a staple. Elective subjects listed in the University catalogue were plentiful, but few seem actually to have been elected. 37
Several Baptist leaders who were active in the university movement also helped to plant a theological seminary in Rochester as an independent educational unit. In May of 1850, a New York Baptist Union for Ministerial Education Society was formed in Rochester with a view to setting up an institution to train educated men for the pulpit. Plans moved forward simultaneously with the work of establishing the university and both institutions began instruction at the same time, the Theological Seminary renting sections of the University building.
No organic links connected the two educational establishments. It was later written, "The University and the Seminary are twins--they came into the world together. They are not Siamese twins, organically and inseparately united..." Each institution had its own board of trustees, administration, and teaching staff, though professors in each faculty sometimes gave instruction in the other. In the early phase of U. of R. life, while the catalogues of college and Theological Seminary were printed separately, they were circulated under the same cover. Many men who graduated from the University proceeded to the Seminary for training in theology, and young men newly come from Germany combined studies in both institutions.
There was a good deal of rivalry between University and Seminary--furtive at, times--for financial assistance from charitably disposed Baptists, and no little ill-will resulted from the competition. "The founders of the University," a president of the Theological Seminary stated, "in raising money... had found it convenient to give great prominence to the value and need of ministerial education.... The popular impression was... that the theological school was an organic part of the University. The confusion of ideas prevailed... among the friends and faculty of the University. "Legacies and gifts really intended for the Seminary," a second executive officer complained, "were through misunderstanding paid over to the University." Friction ensued and the presidents of the two institutions, once intimate friends, turned into jealous competitors. 38
From time to time, University trustees and other interested citizens deliberated on advancing toward authentic university status by adding a school of law, or medicine, or agriculture, but nothing in fact resulted. In May of 1850, the Central Eclectic Medical College, which had just moved, from Syracuse to Rochester sought a link-up with the University; the trustees of the College were well-known, Rochesterians, though none of them was, active in the university cause. For a brief interval the College, which stressed the perils of heavy doses of drugs, prospered, enrolling fifty-three students in 1850-51, ten of them women. But the University trustees, who had quite enough problems keeping their institution afloat, decided against a medical department "at present," and the Eclectic College, torn by internal dissension, soon faded into oblivion. 39
On the other hand, the University struck up a loose association with the Rochester Collegiate Institute, located in the south-west section of the present (1968) Midtown Plaza, which readied youths for college. In February, 1851, fire destroyed the building, and such apparatus and equipment as survived was donated to the University, part of it for use by Professor Dewey, formerly principal of the Institute. A successor "Grammar School" was founded under the auspices of the University and partly financed by it, but that connection lasted only a few years; at least a third of the freshmen admitted to the University in 1852 and 1853 had been pupils at the Grammar School. Scarcity of cash prevented the trustees from setting up an independent secondary school to prepare pupils for the U. of R. 40
Indispensable preliminary arrangements to get the provisionally chartered University of Rochester underway had been completed in 1850. Trustees had accepted appointment and had elected an executive committee and a chancellor, as temporary head of the college, from their own ranks. The necessary funds had been generously subscribed, though finances looked better on paper than in the eye of the treasurer, and an ambitious program of collegiate instruction had been adopted. Yet remaining were the tasks of finding a home for the institution and equipping it, the enrollment of students, and putting the college into actual orbit.
Footnotes to Chapter 3
- Abraham Suydam, "American Colleges," The University Quarterly, IV (1861), 196-20. Suydam taught at Columbia College in New York City.
- The Annunciator, April 4, 1850.
- RDA, January 16, March 13,19,1850; R DD, February 9, 2l, March 15, 1850.
- J.N. Wilder to A. G. Kendrick, March 3, 1850. Kendrick Papers.
- RDD May 13, 1850; R DA, May 14, 1850; The Annunciator, June 20, 1850.
- Quoted in Rosenberger, R and C, pp. 109-110.
- Ibid., p. 111.
- See the several issues of The Annunciator, and R DA, August 27, 1850; R DD, September 9, 23, 1850. New York Recorder, January 1, 1851.
- RDD, February 20, April 30, 1850. See, Charter and By-laws of the U. of R. (1951), 4-5. Rush Rhees to Donald G. Tewksbury, January 10, 1931. Rhees Papers.
- Charter and By-Laws of the U. of R. (1951), 7-8.
- Documents of the Assembly of the State of New York, 74th Session (1851), vol. III, no. 68. RDD, February 18, 1851. John N. Wilder to Martin B. Anderson, July 16, 1851. Anderson Papers, Rhees Library Archives.
- James Edmunds to E. Peshine Smith, March 29, 1851; Smith Sheldon to W. N. Sage, February 10, March (several items), July 4, 1851; James Edmunds to W. N. Sage, February 10, 20, 27, March 13, 1851; C. B. Corson to Oren Sage, March 17, June 19, 1851; L. H. Morgan to W. N. Sage, June 17, 25, 1851. Sage Papers.
- Former Governor William L. Marcy, most widely known of the trustees, and Robert Kelly, the trustee most thoroughly versed in matters of higher learning, habitually attended Baptist churches without becoming members. A complete list of the trustees from 1850 to 1926 may be found in Bulletin of the U. of R., June, 1928 (hereafter cited as General Catalogue), ix-xiv.
- RDA, March 13, 1850.
- Rosenberger, R and C, p. 154.
- Edgar S. Van Winkle, Robert Kelly (New York, 1856); Alexander S. Leonard, Robert Kelly (New York, 1857)---eulogistic assessments of the man and his accomplishments.
- Pharcellus Church to W.N.Sage, August 29, 1858. Sage Papers. "Ira Harris," DAB, VIII (1932), 310.
- James Edmunds to William N. Sage, April 12, 1851; Smith Sheldon to W. N. Sage, probably April 1851. Sage Papers.
- J.N. Wilder to Barnas Sears, May 22, 1851; B. Sears to J. N. Wilder, June 16, 1851. Rhees Library Archives. S. S. Greene to W. N. Sage, December 30, 1851. Sage Papers.
- July 12, 1851. Rhees Library Archives.
- DAB, X (1933), 328; Florence H. Cooper, An American Scholar (New York, 1913); Rochester Daily Union and Advertiser, (hereafter cited as R U&A) October 22, 24, 1895. Francis Wayland to Asahel C. Kendrick, March 15, 1850; Kendrick to Wayland (?), August 3, 1850; Kendrick to W. N. Sage, August 6, 1850. Kendrick Papers.
- Pithonian Caduceus, 11, 623; James H. Hudnut, Campus, XXVI (1900), 4; Rossiter Johnson, "Reminiscences of Dr. Kendrick, " Interpres, XXXVIII (1896), 113; Cooper, op. cit., p. 135.
- University Record. February 1874, p. 33.
- RU&A, February 11, 1868.
- DAB, XV (1935), 412-413;1 Lloyd, op. cit. 246-254. J. H. Raymond to John N. Wilder, July 18, 1851. Rhees Library Archives.
- See chapter one, note 4. R DD, December 17, 1867; RU&A, December 17, 19, 1867. Martin B. Anderson, "Sketch of the Life of Prof. Chester Dewey," Proceedings of the University Convocation (Albany, 1868), pp. I2I-132; Henry Fowler, The American Pulpit (New York, 1856), pp. 49-64.
- Chester Dewey to John N. Wilder, August 28, 1850. Sage Papers.
- RDD, December 17, 1867; Interpres, June, 1860, 4.
- Quoted in Otto H. Olsen, Carpetbagger's Crusade (Baltimore, 1965), p. 8.
- Anderson, op. cit. , p. 123.
- DAB, XV (1935), 306. "History of the Departments of the U. of R., 1850-1900, " pp. 35-46; Rochester Morning Herald, September 19, 1891; R U&A, September 18, 19, 1891; H. Dean Quinby, "Quaint Quinby Quips from Bygone Days," Rochester Alumni Review, I, no. 2 (Dec-Jan, 1923), 29.(Hereafter the graduate publication, which appeared under various titles, is cited as RAR.)
- Interpres, XXVII (1888), 86-87; Campus, XXXIII, February 13, March 12, 1908 - the latter reveals some quaint ideas of Mixer on contemporary secular problems; Croceus, I (1909), 31.
- RDD, October 10, 1852. DAB, IV (1930), 337.
- In a series of acute analyses, Chester Dewey appraised Wayland's philosophy for Rochesterians. RDA, June 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 1850. See, also, ibid. , June 5, 1848, and WaIter G. Bronson, The History of Brown University (Providence, 1914). pp. 258-323, passim.
- Francis Wayland and Herman L. Wayland, A Memoir of the Life and Labors of Francis Wayland (2 vols., New York, 1868), II, 70.
- The Plan of Instruction to be Pursued in the Collegiate Department (Rochester, 1850), pp. 7, 8, 17-19, 34-35. RDA, October 25, 1850. Anon., "Mr. Kelly's Report," The Christian Review, XVI (1851), 126-136, esp. p.136. Professor Kendrick served as an adviser to this publication. See also, William Kelly to Rush Rhees, March 28, April 9, 1923. Rhees Papers. Rhees to William Kelly, March 30, April 14, 1923. Ibid.
- It is interesting to know that the chief sponsor of Cleveland University, which also began instruction in 1850, claimed that the curriculum there matched the Rochester adventure in "the new education." Cleveland University collapsed in a few years. Elbert J. Benton, Cleveland (3 parts, Cleveland, 1943-46), III, 34-36.
- Augustus H. Strong, Historical Discourse at the Fiftieth Anniversary of the Rochester Theological Seminar (Rochester, 1900), pp. 22, 33-34. Elias H. Johnson, ed., Ezekiel Gilman Robinson, An Autobiography (New York, 1896), p. 52. As a postscript to the great removal dispute, in 1928 the theological seminaries of Madison become Colgate and of Rochester were merged, and four years later the hyphenated school moved to a magnificent new campus crowning a Rochester hilltop.
- Betsy C. Corner, "Rochester's Early Medical School," RHSP, VII (1928), 141-152. Ibid., "Early medical education in western New York...," New York State Journal of Medicine, LV (1955), 3156-3164.
- John R. Russell, "New Light on the University's Grammar School," RAR, XX (1941-42), no. 2, 11. J. N. Wilder to W. N. Sage, April 27, 1854. Sage Papers. Z.(?) Freeman to M. B. Anderson, January 20, 1855. Anderson Papers, Box III.