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2." This is exclusive of graduate students
in Natural Sciences. The number of gndn-
ate students now in attendance is 63. The
recent establishment of several Fellowshsps
will do much toward stimulating grnioair
study ; but what is most needed is piovibCB

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for a number of University Professors who
should devote themselves exclusively to this

It would be impossible, within the limits
of this paper, to mention the many gifts, in
the shape of endowment funds, building
funds, scholarships, books, money, specimens,
apparatus, etc., which have contributed to
the rapid advance thus briefly sketched in
all departments of the University. It is
worthy of note, however, that Yale owes
nearly all that she has to private liberality.
The gifts of the commonwealth of Connecti-
cut to the college do not, all told, exceed
$100,000, if we except $135,000, the product
of 'the sale of public lands granted to the
Scientific School as the State Agricultural
Institute. The productive property of the
University, according to the last Treasury
Exhibit, is about $1,500,000. If to this be
added the value of the land, and the amount
that has been spent in buildings, books,
apparatus, etc., the University may be
roughly estimated as worth five millions of
dollars — a small sum, if we consider what
has been accomplished with it. Indeed, the
history of the college is a story of unceasing
struggle with poverty — almost with bank-
ruptcy ; of self-denying effort by its oflUcers,
and of a system of small and patient econo-
mies on the part of its financial managers.

In addition to the buildings belonging to
the separate departments ought perhaps to
be mentioned the College Gynmasium, and
the building opposite it on Library street,
occupied by graduate students ; the elegant
new boat-house of the Yale Navy on Mill
River, and the halls of the Skull and Bones,

Scroll and Keys, Psi Upsilon, and Delta
Kappa Epsilon Societies.

About the years 1869-71 appeared what
was called "the Young Yale movement,"
a rather vaguely expressed, though clearly
shown, dissatisfaction among the younger
graduates with the conservatism of the col-
lege government. It was urged especially
that there was too large a clerical element
in the corporation, and that the Alumni
ought to be represented. There was much
controversy in and out of print, Dr. Leonard
Bacon taking a prominent part on the Old
Yale, and Mr. WUliam Walter Phelps on the
Young Yale, side. Finally, in accordance
with a suggestion of President Woolsey,
made as long ago as 1866, the State agreed
to relinquish a share of its claim in the gov-
ernment of the college, and the six Senior
Senators were replaced by an equal number
of gentlemen, chosen, one each year, by
the Alumni at their annual Commencement

In speaking of the influence which the
college has had on the intellectual develop-
ment of the country, a comparison naturally
suggests itself between Yale and the sister
University at Cambridge. Founded under
similar auspices, and for similar purposes,
the two have diverged widely m spirit
Cambridge, with the neighboring city of
Boston, IS widely known, not only as the
seat of Harvard College, but as the center
of most that is best in American letters.
New Haven can claim no such distinction.
There has always been in the training given
at Yale a certain severity. Discipline, rather
than culture; power, rather than grace;


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"light," rather than "sweetness," have been,
if not the aim, at least the result of her teach-
ings. Her scholars have been noted for
solid and exact learning. Perhaps Dwight
and Woolsey on one hand, and Everett and
Felton on die other, may be taken as the
types of Yale and Harvard Presidents. This
difference is owing to many causes. Har-
vard has had at her back a wealthy and
cultivated city. Boston is the chief point
on this continent where the electric sparks
have been taken off from the current of
European thought. Yale, on the contrary,
has been situated in a small provincial city,
with little " atmosphere " beyond what the
college itself might impart to the town.
Again, the Unitarian and Transcendental
movements in Massachusetts during the first
half of this century, whatever may have been
their effect on the Church, undoubtedly stim-
ulated literary activity.

The course of study at the two colleges
has been much the same. The influences
of place have differed toto coslo. The imag-
ination and the feelings may be chastened,
but they cannot be aroused to original
expression by any scheme of study. For
this there are needed fresh and joyous
impressions from without; a free and even
audacious reception and interchange of new
thought. These impulses the Massachusetts
come-outers of the last generation had and
profited by.

Before the recent changes in its system.


Harvard was a not very large and by no
means popular college, drawing most of its
students from Eastern Massachusetts. Its
Alumni settled largely in Boston and neigh-

boring towns, and there thus grew up aboit
the college a cultivated body of its sons^ and
in time a school of brilliant writers. Of


Yale the reverse has been true She has
not kept her boys at home. They came
from all over the country, largely from New
York and the West, and, before the war,
from the South ; and afto- graduation they
cut loose from Alma Mattf's
apron-strings, and were scattered
more widely than before. This,
which has been her weakness, his
also been her strength. She has
a national character, and her
investments are everywiiere.

Yale is by no means defiaem
in distinguished names in poetry,
fiction, criticism, and belles-ktnes
generally, numbering among her
graduates of the present ccnrarr
Pierpont, Hillhouse, Cooper,* Pcr-
civai, Willis, Bushnell, Judd (tbe
author of "Margaret,'') Biisted.
Mitchell, Winthrop, and Stedman.
with others perhaps less &flKH&
But the centiifugal force of Nc«
Haven is shown in the fact that d
this list only three have resided
there since their graduation, uii
these at different times. There has nevtr
been a Yale school of writers since Af

* Non-graduate, class of iSo6l

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Revolutionary "Pleiades" already men-

Biit in the literature of knowledge, in the
professions, in business, politics, and practi-
cal life, Yale's record is a proud one. In
scholarship she is represented by such names
as Webster, Worcester, Woolsey, Hadley,
and Whitney ; in science and invention by
Silliman, Morse, Whitney, Dana, and Chau-
venet; in divinity by Edwards, Hopkins,
Emmons, Dwight, and Taylor ; in the State
and at the bar by Grimke, Mason, Kent,
Calhoun, and Evarts. The class of 1837,
e, g.^ contributed to the number of prominent

Presidents." She has f-jnished Presidents
to Princeton, Columbia, Dartmouth, Wil-
liams, Amherst, Trinity, Middlebury, Cor-
nell, and the Universities of Vermont, Cali-
fornia, Pennsylvania, and many others.
Presidents Barnard of Columbia, White of
Cornell, Oilman of the Hopkins University,
and Chancellor Stills of the University of
Pennsylvania, are all graduates of Yale.

This paper has been devoted mainly to
tracing the growth of the university as an
educational institution. The social life of
the undergraduates falls outside our com-
pass. Much might be written of the old col-


men now in public life the names of the
Hon. William M. Evarts, Chief-Justice*
Waite, Attorney-General Pierrepont, and
Governor Samuel J. Tilden.

Vale is, in a sense, the daughter of Har-
vard. Her founders and early Presidents
and tutors were of necessity Harvard men.
But the younger college has since been far
more active in founding and officering new
colleges — a work, be it said, which has
proved to be of doubtful expediency. Yale
may be called, like Virginia, " Mother of

lege commons, of the Bully Club, of Town
and Gown fights, of Linonia and Brothers
and the Secret Societies ; of the ceremonies
of Presentation Day ; of college journalism
and college boating, and of many other cus-
toms, traditions, and institutions, but they
would easily fill a chapter by themselves.
Probably at no other American college has
so distinctive a social life been developed as
at Yale, nor one so rich in humorous and
picturesque traits. This life has never been
adequately described. In conclusion, it

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may be permissible to quote what has else-
where been written as expressing the hopes
and aspirations of " Young Yale."

"Wc care not that the dawn should throw
Its flush upon our portico;
But rather that our natal star,
Bright Hesper in the twilight far,
Should beckon toward the distant West
Which he— our Berkeley — loved the best;

Whereto, his prophet line did say,
* The course of empire takes its way. *
And in the groves of that young land
A mighty school his wisdom planned.
To teach new knowledge to new men —
Strange sciences undreamed of then.
She comes — had come, unknown, before —
Though not on 'vext Bermoothes* shore;
Yet will she not her prophet fail —
The Old— the New— the same dear Yale.*'



Lakes Superior, Huron, Michigan, Erie,
and Ontario cover an area of some ninety
thousand square miles of surface. Superior,
the largest body of fresh water on the globe,
with its area of 32,000 square miles; Hu-
ron, with its 21,000; Michigan, with its
22,000; Erie, with its 9,000; and Ontario,
with its 6,300, make a very formidable array
of fresh-water receptacles for this chain
alone ; while there yet remain an innumer-
able multitude of smaller but similar bodies
dispersed through the great north-west terri-
tory of the Hudson-Bay country.

Here is a vast and comparatively unpro-
ductive region, penetrated in every direction
by streams of greater and less magnitude.

interspersed with lakes and bays, which, in
many cases, cast their broad mantle of
waters for himdreds of miles; Among these
many lakes there are to be found some
which cover an area of 10,000 square miles
of surface, and others which stretch away
for 300 miles in length, and spread out
in their primitive grandeur for from 50 to
100 miles in width. Here also can be found
long chains of miniature lakes of considera-
ble dimensions, and many which eclipse even
Ontario itself; while of the endless lines of
rivers there is one at least which will bear
quite a favorable comparison to the great
Mississippi ; and an area of some 400,000
miles is drained by the tributaries of Lake

* Whether the great lakes are the true reservoirs from which our Northern wells, springs and subter-
ranean streams receive their constant supply of water, is a question of sufficient interest and significance to
merit a thoughtful consideration. The data upon which the advocates of this theory found their conclusions
are certainly manifold and forcible, and though there may be breaks in the line of evidence, the facts as now
established would seem to favor the views which the author of this paper now proposes to define and defend.


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Winnipeg alone. While much of
the outpouring of these waters is
directed toward the Polar Sea and
through the valley of the Mississippi,
yet there is a vast voliune which, it
is believed, is checked in its course
over the surface to the south and
east, by the elevations beyond Lakes
Superior and Huron, and seeks an
exit, as some think, by subterranean
channels through the crust of the
earth. It is also possible that some
of the water escapes by contact
with the deep recesses of Superior
and Huron into their gigantic reser-
voirs ; while other channels, fissures,
and crevices in the earth's crust
probably carry away in other direc-
tions, in their course, an unceasing
flow for man's ultimate benefit and

The depth of penetration of some
of this chain of great lakes into the
solid matter of the earth's surface
affords a good illustration of their adaptation
as recipients of a great influx from subter-
ranean sources.

The surface of Lake Superior is some 600
feet above the sea-level, and we find its bed
descending 573 feet below the level of the
Atlantic; whUe Ontario, with a surface ele-
vation of 235 feet above, descends to an
equal distance below the level of the
Atlantic. That there exist channels of com-
munication with some of these lakes has
long been believed and admitted by many.


And that a great subterranean influx into
the upper lakes exists, there is little doubt,
as a comparison of the discharge through
the mighty St. Lawrence with the limited
supply from the country bordering on the
upper lakes clearly demonstrates, leaving
the problem to be settled in the mind as to
where this vast volume does come fix>m, in
its course to the ocean. Again, the dis-
charge through the St Lawrence is equal to
double the volume poured into Ontario
through the Niagara, or into Erie through


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the St* Clair; suggesting that, from the
shallowness of Ldce Erie, and the great
depth of Superior and Huron, a subterranean
channel may connect Superior and Huron
with Ontario, giving to the latter, through
this source, to be discharged by the St Law-
rence, a greater volume than is given through
St Clair or the Niagara. It is also a well-
demonstrated fact that the volume of water
escaping from the lakes through the mighty
St. Lawrence is far greater than the amount
discharged from the upper lakes into Ontario
by the proper channels — the St. Clair and
Niagara; and it is also well settled that the
supply to Lake Erie from the St Clair is
about equaled by its discharge through the
Niagara ; showing that it receives from no
subterranean source any perceptible surplus
of waer. And this is generally attributed to
its comparative shallowness, as compared
with the greater depth of Superior, Huron,
and Ontario.

There are those also who entertain the
belief that while Lakes Superior and Huron
are su|^lied largely through such subter-
ranean channels on the one hand, they suffer
severely through losses by similar channels
at some point m their vast expanse. Here,
in the Illinois Valley, in the track of this old
surface current, which at no remote period
poured its transparent flood through this
valley, reaching as it did from bluff to
bluff, and carrymg a volume of a hundred
feet in depth, coming down from this
very territory, from these identical lakes of
this wilderness above — the plainly marked
traces now lie above the drift, bearing
striking evidences of what it was then,
when intact and uninterrupted by changes in
the earth's surface. And if it can be demon-
strated as to what these sources of supply
could then muster up, and that the same
average discharge still continues through
other but unseen channels, then is it not
possible that the causes which brought about
this recession of the waters of the lakes,
and finally closed this old oudet, wrought
other and corresponding changes by which
a new passage was supplied for the escape
of the outpouring of this region — ^in other
words, may not Sie same territorial convul-
sions which elevated the plateau at the foot of
Lake Michigan, and shut oflf the outflow into
the valley below, have opened up subterran-
ean passages through which these waters find
such easy access in their course to the sea ?

It requires but a casual glance at the sur-
roundings of the south-eastern shore of Lake
Michigan, and the level plateau stretching

far away into northern Indiana, to convince
even the most skeptical that, at no distait
period, the waters of the old lake rc^ed be-
fore the angry blasts fiom^this vast regioD
of ice and snow to the north-west, lashing
the south-eastern shore with terrific fiiry, be-
fore a gale of prehistoric rime, and piiiDg
up ftionuments of scattered waste which to-
day mark the track of its expended force.
And here are found, too, the imprints of its
track as the waters sped on through its chan-
nel, at the present foot of the lake, and
made their exit into the vaUey below. A
trip around the south-eastern sh<»e of Lake
Michigan, over this plateau in Indiana, %^
lowing the old track of this current stiU hi-
ther down the valley itself, cannot but bring
the conviction that here was the beamilnl
river — that mighty current which cM Indian
traditions have handed down to us sore-
centiy. And there are other finger-marks
of human tracing, which go still fuxtfaer to
prove that these changes were wrought since
the advent of man. Some fifteen years sincev
an old Ottawa chief, '' Siabbona,** died on
the banks of the Illinois River, in Gfupcfy
County, at an advanced age. Tlte writer,
amon^ others, has often heard hini spei^ of
a tradition which came fiom his fore&thas,
that they fcmnerly paddled their canocsfion
bluff to bluff; and that the present vaOcj
was then the bed of a d^ river of pive
crystal water; and, according to that tradi-
tion, and estimating the height of the watet,
as indicated by the well-worn lines on the
rocks, it shows that the plateau and manh
at the present foot of the lake were thai sub-

There are further proofe that old Shab-
bona was right

A trip over to the south-east corner of
Lake Michigan, near Michigan City, reveiis
to us huge mountains of sand which hare
been drifted about for years, and nuich re-
duced in height

This sand is fiom the lake, and is des&hr
washed, and interspersed with shells of tiie
present period. There they lie, some 500
feet high ; many far inland, and all in the
track of those fierce gales which swept the
lake fiom the north-west These arc dck
mere heaps of loose sand, the natural aces-
mulation of successive storms, but mountaii&

Far inland, and direcdy in the track of
these prehistoric gales, a broad expanse of
level land appears; very unlike the ussal
formation, as seen throughout ths great
country. The surfiice resembles die lom
unbroken swell of die Pacific. For mdes

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away, and stretching far into Indiana, the
surface recedes and swells in a continuous
unbroken line, each line having a trend
north-east and south-west, marking with
exactness the great swell as it coursed over
these shallows. The eye wanders in the


distance, as the long undulating lines disap-
pear toward the horizon. As &r as the eye
can reach, these stretch in lines of geomet-
rical precision, ridges and alternate depres-
sions extending over this shallow plateau.
Each line is marked by a stunted growth
of cedars or shrubs, and each depression,
like a miniature canal, is filled with water.

The position of these mountains of sand,
and their still impressive dimensions, tell a
fearful tale of lavishly expended force; of
gales which once rent the very earth, and
scattered its solid matter into heaps; of
waves which swept this old lake in terrific
grandeur, piling up monuments for the
fixture and spending their force far inland,
only to fall m the valley below. History
bears no record of the time when this pla-
teau was submerged, and when the region
of the Calumet, Kankakee, Desplaines,
Mazon, and Vermilion was as the delta of
the Mississippi, carrying the waters of the
great basins beyond into the general recep-
tacle below. But here are the truthful indi-
cations, and the additional fact that, as the
mountain waves dashed along, they followed
this shallow plateau, like a ground-swell,
and left a track which to-day marks its
way with indisputable characters.

As we pass along the old channel into
the valley of the Illinois, a casual examina-
tion of the rocks and blufis along its margin,
reveals the presence of well-marked, and, in
many cases, deeply worn, water lines upon

their faces, marking, with scientific precision,
the course of the old current. In many
cases where these rocks were soft and easily
disintegrated, deep caverns have been cut
and worn far into their interior, at the
same time preserving the parallel line of the
current throughout the entire length of the
penetration. Here and there a solitary rock
stands isolated in the center of a field, or
over on yonder marsh, far away from either
bluff, often having an inverted coniform
shape, worn away at its base, and standing
apparently poised upon some more tenacious
bed rock, which has resisted the grinding
force of the lake ciurent.

Nowhere along this valley are there indi-
cations more striking than at Buffalo Rock,
five miles below Ottawa. Here we not
only have the water lines in bold outline,
but the depth of this great stream becomes
plainly apparent Here the perpendicular
face of the rock stands fi-onting the stream.
Though somewhat washed and weather-
beaten, the lines are well defined.

Far up on its face, a hundred and fifty
feet, are the deeply worn lines, interrupted
in their course of disintegration by the pres-
ence of a seam of more tenacious formation.


which stands conspicuously out fi-om the
fece of the rock, apparently a disinterested
party to the destructive forces ' then at
work, while here and there an outcropping
of limestone breaks the uniformity of the
well-drawn lines, when, suddenly, a short

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bend in the line sends it far into the rock,
cutting its lateral course deeper into the
Hoiicr sandstone, only to be arrested again
and again by the sudden trend of some
more obstinate stratification.

Lower down the valley, some three miles


below Buffalo Rock, " Starved Rock" looms
up, a conspicuous figure in the studies of
this interesting valley. Disconnected fix)m
the surrounding rocks, it stands prominently
before you; the placid waters of the Illinois
flow at its foot ; but it will for many years
continue to carry the deeply cut scars which
through its long battle with the lake current
it bore so nobly, and which for centuries it
has treasured up for oiu- study.

On a marsh, above Bufi&lo Rock, stands
a beautifiil specimen of a water-worn rock,
far above the present level of the stream.
The soft character of these rocks would seem
to indicate that but a few centuries have
passed since this great current flowed and
coursed through this valley, for even the
storms of the past century have made great
havoc upon their faces, and in time will wear
away every trace of this great outlet

It is a well-known fact that, throughout
the extent of this valley, at no great depth,
are vast basins and subterranean streams of
pure water, in all respects corresponding in
Its general characteristics to the water of
Lake Superior, containing the same common
ingredients in solution, save where, in its
passage to the surface, it may have passed
through the coal measures, and become
impregnated with sulphuretted, hydrogen.

Or when, coming, as it does, firom its source,
charged with carbonic acid, it may have
passed, in its course to the surface, through
the various limestones, and become charged
with the carbonates of lime or magnesium ;
or, again, by infiltration through a Uiin seam
of bog ore or iron pyrites, it springs forth,
bitter with impregnations of iron or its sul-
phates. But, where it finds its way to the
surface through the sandstone and superna-
tant strata of gravel, it becomes shorn of its
chemical properties, and bursts forth in its
virgin purity fi-om the hidden recesses. The
unlimited outpouring of this crystal water is
too well known here to require comment.
Away up in Wisconsin, in the track of this
under-ground current, these waters reach the
siuface in unprecedented profiision. At
Waukesha, where the Niagara limestones
crop out in strange contrast with the regular
stratifications, it comes rushing to the sur-
face in huge volumes. The writer was pres-
ent at the digging of one of the many wells

Online LibraryFrancis HallThe Century, Volume 11 → online text (page 138 of 163)