William Arba Ellis.

Norwich University, 1819-1911; her history, her graduates, her roll of honor (Volume 1) online

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Second Year. Fall term, Analytical Geometry, Chemistry,
Logic; Spring term. Differential and Integral Calculus, Geology,
Physiology, Natural History commenced; Summer term. Analyti-
cal Mechanics, Mineralogy, Laws of Nations, Natural History,

Third Year. Fall term. Acoustics and Optics, Psychology,
Constitution of the United States; Spring term. Astronomy,
Intellectual Philosophy, Philosophy of the Mind, Political Econ-
omy, Kame's Elements commenced; Summer term. Navigation,
Civil Engineering, Kame's Elements completed. Field practice
with Instruments.


First Year. Fall term. Algebra, Geometry, Roman History;
Spring term. Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry, Mensuration,
Descriptive Geometry, History of Greece; Summer term, Algebra,
Geometry, Surveying, Navigation, Shades and Shadows, English

Second Year. Fall term. Analytical Geometry, Rhetoric,
Chemistry; Spring term, Differential and Integral Calculus,
Geology, Physiology, Natural History; Summer term. Analytical
Mechanics commenced; Mineralogy, Laws of Nations.

Third Year. Fall term. Analytical Mechanics completed
Logic, Constitution of the United States, Political Economy
commenced. Psychology; Spring term. Acoustics and Optics,
Political Economy completed, Intellectual Philosophy, Philosophy


of the Mind, Kame's Elements; Summer term, Astronomy, Civil
Engineering and Field Practice, Kame's Elements, Rhetoric.


First Year. Fall term, Algebra, Geometry, Roman History,
English Philolog}^, Drawing; Spring term, Algebra, Geometry,
Trigonometry, Mensuration, Descriptive Geometry, Grecian His-
tory, Drawing; Summer term, Algebra, Geometry, Surveying,
Shades and Shadows, History of England, Drawing.

Second Year. Fall term, Analytical Geometry, Chemistry,
History of Civilization, Physiology, Rhetoric, French Grammar;
Spring term. Differential and Integral Calculus, Geology, Democ-
racy of America, French, Williams' Conversations, Perrin's
Fables, Drawing; Summer term, Calculus completed. Mechanics
commenced. Mineralogy, Political Economy, Constitution of the
United States, French, Paul and Virginia, Fasquelle's Grammar,

Third Year. The same studies were given as in the senior
year in the classical department. (See classical course for 1865.)
The following list of text books were used during 1847-66 :


Arnold's Prose Composition; Andrew's and Stoddard's Hark-
ness Grammar; Lincoln's edition of the various Latin Authors;
Leverett's Lexicon.

Text books same as used in 1843-46. See Chapter III.


Wells' and Fowler's Grammar; Whatley's and Campbell's
Rhetoric; Graham's English S3'nonyms; Shaw's English Literature;
Russell's Elocutionist.


Chouquet's Spelling Lessons; Fasquelle's Grammar; WiUiams'
Conversations; Perrin's Fables; Michelet's History; Poitevin's
Grammar; Paul and Virginia, Moliere.



Smith's, Minific's and Keightley's History of Greece; Rogers',
and Taylor's Manual of History; Guizot's History of Civilization;
Keightley's and Liddell's History of Rome; Hume's History of


Davie's Mathematics; Mahan's Civil Engineering; Gillespie on
Roads and Railroads; Minifie's Mechanical Drawing; Church's
Differential and Integral Calculus; Bartlett'sAnalytical Mechanics;
Olmsted's and Bartlett's Astronomy.


Lyell's Geology; Silliman's, Turner's and Rogers' Chemistry;
Dana's Mineralogy; Bartlett's Natural Philosophy, Acoustics,
and Optics; Wood's Class Books on Botany; Cutters Anatomy
and Physiology.


Whatley's Lessons on Reasoning and Logic; Taylor's Edition,
Locke's Conduct of the Understanding; Stewart's Philosophy of
the Mind; Paley's Evidences; Wayland's Moral Science; Cousin's
Psychology; Mahan's Litellectual Philosophy; Hickock's Moral
Sciences; Kame's Elements; Reed on the Intellectual and Active
Powers; Say's and Bartlett's Political Economy; Cousin's and
Story's Constitution of the LTnited States; Chidman's Natural
and Political Laws; Wheaton's International Law.


O'Connor, Mahan on the Science of War and Fortification;
Jomini's Art of War; Duane's Manual of Engineer Troops ;Scott's
Infantry Tactics.

During this period an effort was made to increase the useful-
ness of the library. Dr. Ira Davis served as librarian until 1852,
when he was succeeded by Professor Jackman. Instructor
Shattuck served as librarian during 1862-63; Professor Chamier,
1863-64; Instructor Kent, 1864-65, and Professor Shattuck,


111 1854, it wa.s voted by tlic trustees to have tlie library
opened three days each week. In 1856, Professor Horace Webster
presented the University a valuable collection of maps. In I860,
the trustees voted that each member of the trustees be " requested
to present or cause to be presented to the library ten volumes of
books." The trustees generously responded to this call. Profes-
sor Shattuck secured many donations to the library during his
term of service.

In 1862, a magazine club was formed Ijy the cadets, and a
reading room was maintained by the club until 1866.

During 1848-66, students were not admitted under fourteen
years of age. Candidates for entrance to the College or Classical
course were reciuired to pass examinations in the common school
studies. Algebra, to simple equations, Latin and Greek grammar
and Latin and Greek readers. In 1850, Caesar, Sallust, the first
six books of ^ irgil, the Greek Testament, four Gospels and Acts,
Algebra, through the equations of the first degree, were added to
the requirements for admission.

In 1851, Virgil's ^Eneid was added, and in L852 Cicero's
Select Orations and Homer's Iliad, two books or an equivalent.

During LS60-65, the requirements for admission were: Latin
grammar, Latin reader, Sallust, Cicero's Select Orations, first
six ])0()ks of Virgil; Greek grammar, Greek reader, four books;
Xenephon's Anabasis, Homer's Iliad, two books or an equivalent;
Arithmetic and Algebra through the equation of the first degree.

During LS48-49, candidates for the Scientific course were
examined in the common school studies and Algebra as far as
simple equations. In 1859, an examination in Algel:)ra through
equations of the first degree was required.

During 1848 and 1849, the academic year was divided into
four sessions of eleven weeks each. There were three regular
terms. Fall, Spring and Summer; a special term was given in the
Winter. We quote from the catalogue published in 1849: "The
fourth oi' Winter term is devoted to such studies as may enable
delinciuent students to recover their standing in their respective
classes; to studies of the [Modern Languages and Literature;
and to studies in the Philosf)phy of History, more extensive than
could otherwise be pursued."'

During 1850-54. the year was divided into four terms, Fall,
Winter. Spring and Summer. The Fall term began in Septeml^er;
the Winter term in November; the Spring term in Feljruar}-;
and the Summer term in Mav.


During 1855-65, the year was divided into three terms,
Fall, Spring and Summer, beginning respectively in September,
January and May.

Dvtring 1847-57, a vacation of three weeks was given in the
Winter term, December to January, and one of two weeks was
given at the end of the Spring term; and the Summer vacation,
lasting four weeks, began at Commencement. During 1857-65
a vacation of four weeks came at the end of the Fall term; one
of two weeks at the end of the Spring term. In the Summer of
1858-62, and 1864, a vacation of four weeks was given; in 1863
and 1865, five weeks, and in 1866, six weeks.

The military organization was continued during 1847-66
without change. The work of this department was kept up to
the standard set by Captain Partridge and Col. T. B. Ransom.
The teaching at the University was not to lead the cadets to adopt
a military career, but to become good citizens and be ready in
case of necessity to fight for the defense of our country. The
following quotation from the catalogue published in 1850 shows
that the University authorities fully appreciated the physical
benefits the cadets received in the various drills:

"The old Gnostic idea, that the body is the enemy of the mind, and should
be mortified and macerated as such, is exploded; and it is thought to be the
part of a wise system of instruction to train, improve and discipline the body,
so that it may be able to co-operate with the mind to execute its highest and
best purposes. At the same time, the students are under a military organi-
zation called Cadets, dressed in uniform and drilled in military exercises.
This drill is an agreeable relaxation to the student, strengthens the frame
and fits liim for his mental studies, whilst those habits of prompt, strict obe-
dience and regularity, which always distinguish the soldier, are acquired,
invaluable to him in his collegiate course, and in the great business of his
after life. These habits of promptness and love of order are thus wrought
into his character, and are found to distinguish the graduates of this insti-
tution throughout their lives, whether they pursue literature, embark in
commerce, or adopt any of the learned professions. Experience proves that
men who are trained to arms know best when and how to use them. The
love of war is not instilled into the young men of Norwich University, nor are
they found to prefer the profession of arms more than any others of the same
age and station, however educated; but they are here to acquire a strength
of body and manly carriage seldom found amongst merely academic students .
Under tliis system of regular exercise, it is found that young men can per-
form the same amount of study in three years that usually occupies four in
other colleges, and the number of recitations is arranged accordingly. In
proof that young men educated under military discipline do not necessarily
adopt the profession of arms, let the highest military institution in the country
be examined. West Point Academy itself, whilst it produces some of the best


soldiers in the world, has at the same time furnished about as many ministers
of the gospel in proportion to its number of graduates as any literary institu-
tion in this country, and those distinguished as much for love of peace and
good order as for piety and learning."

The cadets, in rotation, served as officers, non-commissioned
officers, officers of the guard, officers of the day and commandants
of parade. The only regular cadet officer was the adjutant,
whose duties were little different from those of a first sergeant,
and who fell into ranks with a rifle like any private, at all drills.
He called the rolls, marched the battalion to meals and church,
made frequent inspections of quarters and grounds, read the re-
ports of himself and the officer of the day at morning parade for
prayers, and performed certain clerical duties required by the
president. Two adjutants were usually appointed annually,
one holding office from the beginning of the college year to the
middle, and the other from the middle of the year to Commence-

The military instruction consisted, as it does to-day, of
artillery and infantry drills, but more attention was devoted to
fencing than has been since the institution removed to Northfield.
On the walls of nearly every room were grouped, foils, wooden
cutlasses and fencing poles. Small sword, sabre and bayonet
fencing made an important part of the winter drills and an in-
teresting portion of the annual commencement exercises.

Strict military discipline was maintained. The immediate
supervision of the discipline and all matters pertaining to order
was in charge of the officer of the barracks, who had quarters
in the barracks. He was assisted in the preservation of order by
the cadet adjutant. A short drill was given Ijefore breakfast
and the regular drill hour extended from 4 to 5 p. :\i.

In the fall of 1860 there was a partial change in the method of
electing officers. We give the "Regulations" in full.

Article I. Beginning with the fall term of 1860, the Mihtary
seniority of each cadet shall be reckoned by the number of times
he has attended Company, Battalion, and Artillery Drills and
Guard Duty.

Art. II. When a cadet has passed regularly through the
Company and Battalion drills of the Spring, Summer and Fall
terms of a year, he shall have a claim to office; which office he shall
receive by appointment, in order of his seniority. But no cadet
shall have a claim to office in a branch of drill through which he has
not passed.


Art. III. When a company or battalion is officered, the
whole set of officers shall be appointed at the same time. Their
term of holding office shall be during five successive drills. Their
appointment and rank shall be according to their Military seniority
and their posts as established in the United States Tactics. The
professor of Tactics, if he thinks advisable, may fill the posts of
commissioned officers from the senior class, and the posts of ser-
geants, from the juniors.

Art. IV. Should an officer's post be vacant at the time of
any drill or pai'ade, the officer in charge of the drill may fill such
vacancy for the time, without regard to seniority.

Art. V. When a set of officers shall have held office during
the prescribed time, they shall return to the ranks.

Art. VI. On public occasions, as commencement and ex-
cursions, officers, if possible, shall be appointed wholly from the
graduating class.

Art. VII. The power to appoint regular officers for drill
shall be vested in the professor of Tactics.

Art. VIII. Each absence from regular drills, shall receive
demerit marks as follows, viz.: commissioned officers twenty; non-
commissioned officers, fifteen; privates, ten.

Art. IX. When on drill, all disorderly conduct will receive
such punishment as the professor of Tactics shall judge proper.

Art. X. The number designating the demerit marks of a
cadet, relative to drill, shall be deducted from the number denoting
his seniority, and the remainder shall be his true seniority.

Art. XI. The military standing of each cadet shall be
given in the term report issued by the president of the University.

Captain John M. Stanyan. '50, in a letter written in 1896,

" Drills, — who can forget the loading of a musket in seventeen movements?
(ieneral Jackmau wouki sometimes drill us almost beyond our endurance, so
interested would he become. We soon found that if we were at shoulder arms,
a slight dropping of the gun butts from the hips would attract his attention
and he would command, 'Order Arms, Rest,' — with an apology."

Captain Stanyan gives the history of the term, "Hay-foot,
straw-foot" as follows;

"We of those days well recollect Scott's company drill commencing with
the 'goose stej)'. Who has told of theCrowninshields? Is the story true which
is related of one of those brothers? It is said that on drilling a squad of farm-
ers' boys, he attached hay and straw to their ankles, and on being reprimanded
said that the young men did not readily catch on to the command, 'Left,
Right' and that those attached farm products appealed more directly to their


auakeniiig intclligonce, loadino; them to mark time correctly. At least the
phrase 'haj' foot, straw foot' is well known in army circles to the remotest post."

The cadets wore a blue uniform. The drill coat was cut swal-
low tailed, and was covered with three rows of jjuttons of Univer-
sity design, and similar to the ones later used in Northfield; the
collar was trimmed with gold lace. The trousers had a black
velvet stripe, two inches wide down the outside seam. The service
coat was single breasted and buttoned with a row of nine buttons.
The cap was the regulation United States Army, and having a gold
plated eagle and the letters "N. U." in silver in front. White
trousers were worn in the summer.

In 1862, the custom of wearing class "stripes" was begun
We quote from the Reveille of April 1862:

"The straps for a student in the senior year of the Cla.ssical or Scientific
course in the University shall be of dark blue cloth, in the shape of a rectangle,
one and three-3ighths inches wide by four long, bordered with an embroidery
of gold bullion one fourth of an inch wide. Inside of the embroidery at each
end there shall l)e one gold embroidered bar, of the same width as I he border,
placed parallel to the ends of the straps, at a distance from the border equal
to its width; at the middle of the .straps there shall be two .silver, eijuilateral
triangles, one having an angle to one end of the strap, the other to the other end.
"For juniors of both courses, the same as seniors, except there shall be no
bar. For sophomores the same as juniors, except there shall be no embroidery
on the ends of the rectangle. For freshmen, the same as sophomores except
there shall be no triangles. The embroidery shall be the same kind as that
used on the army strap; an imitation of metal may be used if prefernnl."

In November, 1850, the state legislature of Vermont voted to
loan the University two field pieces. The guns were taken to the
University in the summer of 1851. Dunbar Ransom, '51, who had
been for some time a cadet at the United States Military Academy,
took charge of the artillery drill.

In November, 1852, the state legislature authorized the loan of
two heavier cannon, than the ones issued to the University in 1850,
and in the summer of 1853, they were taken to the University.
These gims w^ere in use at "N. U." until 1906, when Maj.
Henry W. Hovey, U. S. A., the commandant, ordered them
spiked. They are now housed in the cannon shed on the campus
In the summer term of 1851, Cadet John B. Pike of Lebanon, N. H.,
raised the money for the erection of a flag pole in front of the
University buildings.

During this period several practice marches were made.
General Dodge gives the following account of the marches made
during the time he was a cadet:


"The trips made during my attendance at the University were — first,
to St. Johnsbury, Vt. We visited the Fairbanks scale works and on our return
to Norwich, wo reached Thetford on Sunday, and camped on the common.
A protest was made against our camping there by the ministers as it
would interfere with the services of the church fronting the common. Our
commanding officer refused to remove the camp and there were no ser\dces
held in the church. A large crowd of people visited us.

" We made our next trip to Fort Ticonderoga. We marched up the White
River, via Montpelier to St. Albans, and from there took the boat to the fort.
We returned to Burlington by boat and marched back to Norwich via Mont-
pelier. We were under the command of our adjutant, S. N. Fifield.

"The Engineering Corps made several trips to different towns and sur-
veyed them. We surveyed White River Junction, Hartford, Woodstock,
Thetford and Windsor. I have among my papers my plans of some of those
surveys. We used the compass generally and took the measurements and
directions of the roads and put on the maps every house and every farm, the
streams, topography, etc. This was for the field work of the class. We also
laid out a line of railroad. I think it was on one of the streams near Northfield,
about three or four miles long, to give the engineering class the use of instru-
ments. There is where I learned the use of the level and transit and compass
so that I was competent to take these instruments in the field."

We give accounts of trips taken in 1853 and 1854, from the
pen of Col. H. O. Kent, '54:

"A notable event of those days was the visit to Fort Ticonderoga. By
rail to Winooski, just out of Burlington, marching up the hill, topping its
crest to look down upon the city and beautiful Lake Champlain; forming around
Ethan Allen's grave in the Cemetery on the liill, and marching to quarters in
town, the observed of all; the trip down the lake on the Francis Saltus, the
occupancy of Ticonderoga, and our reception along the line, were things to
evoke pleasant memories after the lapse of many years. The formation was
a battalion of four companies, Major (as he was then entitled) Jackman in

"We were invited, and went to Claremont, N. H., July 4, of the same
year. Shall those of us who were there ever forget how Major Jackman, when
the battalion was formed at the High Bridge, two miles out, was kicked and
disabled by Marshal Jari-is' horse; how Ainsworth, adjutant, took command;
how we escorted Hon. John S. Wells of New Hampshire, the orator, and the
dignitaries of the day; and how when drawn up for dress parade at sunset,
before thousands of people, a little anxious at the absence of our familiar
commander, Major Jackman appeared riding in an old-fashioned gig, halted
on our front, borrowed a ramrod to serve as a sword, delved his left hand deep
in his trousers jjocket and brought out the old silver watch and glanced at it,
and assumed command with 'Attention, Battalion!' How we did drill!
The crack of the gun butts, as they came down as one, lingers in my memory

On July 4, 1858, the corps marched to Woodstock, Vt., and
took part in the celebration given by that town. They took part
in the parade and gave several exhibition drills. They were


hospitably entertained l)y the citizens. They returned to Nor-
wich, July 5.

The corps were invited b}^ the town of Fairlee to assist in the
Fourth of July celebration in 1859 and Robert E. Hitchcock, '59,
was selected by the cadets to lead them. He borrowed of Mrs.
T. B. Ransom, the historic sword carried by Colonel Ransom in
his charge up the heights of Chapultepec.

Captain Curtis in writing of this march pays the following
tribute to the memory of Lieutenant Hitchcock:

"Dear old Bob, can any cadet of 1857, '.58 and '59 forget his handsome,
resolute features, and his military dignity? He was made of the same stuff as
General Ransom and General Dodge, and had he lived, would have divided
honors with them. Appointed a second lieutenant of marines, June 5, 1861,
he had barely joined his company when he was ordered to take it into action
at Bull Run, and fell in a charge, the first blood for Vermont, and the first
sacrifice of 'Old X. U.' on her country's altar."

We give an account of the march to Mt. Ascutney, Vt., from
the University Quarterly of Juty, 1861:

" On June 20, 1861, a detachment of the cadets started on an excursion to
Mount Ascutney, near Windsor, Vermont. We arrived at Windsor by the
noon train, and spent the afternoon in walking about the beautiful \dllage.
In the evening the Windsor Cornet Band offered its services, and escorted by
it, the cadets marched through the principal streets of the town. The band
played martial music very finely. At 9 o'clock p. m., the night roll call took
place, the guard was mounted and the cadets entered upon camp duty in Wind-
sor House Hall. Early on the morning of June 21, they marched three miles
from Windsor, to the foot of the mountain, halted there till the quartermaster
delivered to each man his baggage, and then they climbed the mountain, each
on his own hook. The summit reached, the view therefrom well paid for the
labor of the a.scent. Mount Ascutney is 3,320 feet high, and from its top the
vinv is very extensive and very beautiful. The night was spent tolerably
in the summit house. We rose early on June 22, de.scended the mountain,
made a short halt at the base, then formed the company and marched back to
Windsor \illage. The whole distance from the summit to the village is six
miles; the cadets were less than one hour and a half marching this, exclusive
of the rest at the foot of the mountain. The cadets returned to "N. U." on the
afternoon train, June 22. The rations served out during the excursion were
obtained by the quartermaster from Mr. Simond.s, of the Windsor House, and
were much better than the usual soldier's fare. George A. Converse was the
commanding officer of the excursion. Charles E. Steele, quartermaster;
Henry E. Alvord, captain of the corps of cadets; J. B. Thompson and W. R.
Hoyt, sergeants; John W. Parsons, officer of the day."

The expenses at the University for the years 1847-54, were:
tuition, $7 a quarter; room rent, $2.50 a quarter; incidentals
SI. a quarter; board and washing SI. 75 a week; lights and


Online LibraryWilliam Arba EllisNorwich University, 1819-1911; her history, her graduates, her roll of honor (Volume 1) → online text (page 13 of 61)