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AUTOBIOGRAPHY
OF
ANDREW DICKSON WHITE

WITH PORTRAITS

VOLUME I

NEW YORK
THE CENTURY CO.
1905


Copyright, 1904, 1905, by
THE CENTURY CO.
- -
Published March, 1905


THE DE VINNE PRESS


TO
MY OLD STUDENTS
THIS RECORD OF MY LIFE
IS INSCRIBED
WITH MOST KINDLY RECOLLECTIONS
AND BEST WISHES


TABLE OF CONTENTS

PART I - ENVIRONMENT AND EDUCATION
CHAPTER I. BOYHOOD IN CENTRAL NEW YORK - 1832-1850

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.


CHAPTER II. YALE AND EUROPE - 1850-1857

My coup d' 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.


CHAPTER XVI. UNIVERSITY LIFE IN THE WEST -
1857-1864

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.


PART IV - AS UNIVERSITY PRESIDENT
CHAPTER XVII. EVOLUTION OF ``THE CORNELL IDEA'' -
1850-1865

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.


CHAPTER XVIII. EZRA CORNELL - 1864-1874

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



Online LibraryAndrew Dickson WhiteAutobiography of Andrew Dickson White — Volume 1 → online text (page 1 of 50)