William Richards Castle William Roscoe Thayer.

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confidence, and ready resource. Another man is fascinated by the
problem^ he is lost in working out a theory. Truth alone satisfies him.
Put him in science and research. A third is immature, restive, changing
constantly. Give him responsibility under wise supervision. A fourth is a
logical, orderly fellow, precise and conscientious. Institutional work, ad-
ministrative or public health work will satisfy him. A fifth is dexterous,
precise, clear-eyed, and cool of head, with a love for the dangerous, risk-
ing, but with judgment Surgery is his bent A sixth comes with excuses
of one kind or another. He asks for a *^ soft snap." Every job offered
has its outs. Could you but know, someone is supporting him. He is the
'* hobo " higher up. Alcohol may be his trouble. He is dangerous in
medicine. A seventh has a social instinct, a human touch, he is consci-
entious and well-informed. Books are not distasteful, be expresses himself
well, his tendencies are altruistic. He is hard to classify, for he is well
rounded. Let him try teaching.

In conclusion, may we hazard a look into the future and take warning
of some unmistakable signs ? Departments of health, public health nurs-
ing, dispensary and hospital work, i.e., organized preventive and curative
medicine, are growing by leaps and bounds, for they represent efficient,
economical, systematic methods, they keep up with the times, and they
give the advantages of the group at moderate cost ; they have the social
point of view to provide the needs of the community, they are flexible
enough to meet changing needs.

What, then, are the opportunities for the medical man of the future ?
The following statement is one suggestion among the many. Irving
Fisher, the economist, says in a personal communication : —

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1916.] How Medical School Graduates Fare. 488

'* The great preventable wastes in this world are, I believe, wastes which
can be prevented only, or chiefly, by hygiene. Crime, vice, insanity,
disease, death, and poverty could be wonderfully reduced by applying
hygienic knowledge, even the little already available. The economic cost
from wrong habits and conditions of living is, I am convinced, on the
basis of such fragments of evidence as are obtainable, so colossal that even
workers in this field would be astonished if the whole picture could be

*^ The medical profession is, naturally, the body of men through whom
this waste is to be checked. With the increased knowledge concerning
hygiene and the rapidly increased interest in it, the medical profession
has an oppoHunity greater than ever before. Their art is being securely
based today on exact science.

" In order to rise to the occasion the profession must keep abreast of
recent contributions to their subject, not only in surgery and therapeutics,
but also and even more in preventive medicine and in the study of the
physiology of common habits — the use of alcohol, tobacco, tea, coffee ;
the amount, ingredients, and proportion of a wholesome dietary; the
outlines of a well-balanced daily regime with its due proportion of work,
rest, sleep, and play. It must take an interest in public hygiene, indus-
trial hygiene, school hygiene, dental hygiene, domestic hygiene, individ-
ual hygiene, and all other applications. It must learn to apply its art
to the upbuilding of vitality instead of simply to the repairing of sick
bodies. The doctor must supplant the unintelligent physical trainer. A
demand for his services must be created by the widespread circulation
of the principle of medical reexaminations in general, similar to the
dental reexaminations in particular, which are becoming customary.

^* Lastly, he must acquire a sense of his own individual responsibility
to live a life beyond criticism in respect to hygiene, the use of drugs, in-
cluding alcohol, and the adherence to a high ethical code in that impor-
tant borderland between hygpene and morality. He must have the cour-
age of his convictions, the willingness to practice what he preaches, and
the determination to lead in the fight against immorality, alcoholism,
and other evils connected with his profession instead of condoning these
and following current customs in order to increase his practice. In short,
he must not prostitute his practice even by acqaiescence in wrong cus-
toms, much less subservience to the interests of the forces which it is his
professional duty to fight."

The pamphlet has elicited many interesting comments, among which

the following seems especially worthy of notice, coming, as it does, from

a leader in the profession and Secretary of the Massachusetts Board of

Registration in Medicine. Dr. Walter P. Bowers comments as follows : ^

1 Bo$ton Medical and Surgical Journal, Jannary 6, 1916, p. 26.

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484 Hou) Medical School Graduates Fare. [March,

*' One very important and well accepted belief which seems to be sub-
stantiated by many of the letters, is that graduates of medical schools are
not finislied products. Possibly this must always be so, but theoretically,
in the ordinary routine work of the doctor, it should not

*' If a man settles in a community where he is expected to know sim-
ple therapeutic problems, and do minor surgery, and does not feel sure
of himself in the presence of a case of dysentery, or cannot amputate a
finger creditably, he has not been properly prepared, and must use his
patients for study and practice. This is not fair, and sometimes the in-
telligent layman detects the impostor and assumes that medicine is less
scientific than it really is. Medicine will never take its proper place in
the world until a carefully regulated system of advancement of young
practitioners is adopted.

*' It is certainly true that young men should not spend from four to six
years in study, only to find that they are unfitted temperamentally to prac-
tise. Admission to a school is almost always secured by the attainment
of a certain minimum preliminary educational standard. If a person could
be admitted to a school for a limited time, during which every effort
should be made to demonstrate wliat the practice of medicine really is,
and what it ought to be, for the purpose of determining whether a cer-
tain candidate might reasonably expect to be adapted to the vocation,
with the understanding that he should withdraw if not approved, some
misfits might be avoided, and there would be less grumbling later on
about the inadequate returns and unfair competition, for no man should
enter medicine unless he can look beyond the physical hardship, and also
the financial return, which is too often the only pei'sonal measure of

" Under any system the men of unusual ability will climb, but we need
a plan whereby the honest and efficient person, without great ability, can
do work that he is fitted to do, to the end that he may serve the public
up to, but not beyond his own efficiency, and fill his social niche.

'* In justice to the public, one wonders oftentimes what methods may
be employed in the future to determine the real value of a man's work,
and the question arises as to the advisability of requiring some end result,
or checking system, on the work of the private practitioner. If it is ne-
cessary in the case of a hospital, why not even more so for the great
mass of people who do not make use of hospitals ?

'* The public as a class is wholly incapable of correctly estimating the
quality of medical service, and one may be pardoned for the suspicion
that supervision, exercised very little beyond the student days, is in-

'* In law, one man's work has usually to be scrutinized by his opponent,
but in the chamber of the sick there is often no check on incompetence.

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1916.] Student Politics in Anti-Federalist Days. 485

** Why should not medical schools, and the profession, teach that the
hest practice of medicine in the home, requires team wprk in all impor*
tant cases ? This is advocated hy certain individuals. Why not have it
established as an approved custom, so that the young man would be ex-
pected to work with groups of older men, and be advanced according to
his efficiency.

" This is Utopian, and contrary to the ambitions of the average be-
ginner, but seems to the writer to be sound."



Examples of ** Town and Gown " altercations have been frequent in
the history of Harvard as well as of every other College. Barely, how-
ever, has the element of politics been introduced into these struggles.

But, back in the old super-heated days of the Federalists and Anti-
Federalists (or Jacobins as they were termed), at the close of the 18th
century, it appears from the Boston newspapers of that era that an inter-
esting conflict with the students in and after a Cambridge town-meeting
was actually construed as a political attack.

For the proper anderstanding of the following curious episode, it should
be recalled that Harvard College in 1799 was Federalist to the back-
bone in politics, — scholars, teachers, and governing boards. Joseph Story
(who graduated the year before) wrote later of the College at that time :
^* Party spirit ran excessively high, and indeed with almost irresponsible
fury. The students became exceedingly interested in the grave questions
then before the country." Cambridge town was largely Anti-Federalist in
politics (as was the '' Dr. Hill " referred to below). The <' Judge Dana "
was Francis Dana (H. C, 1762) Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of
Massachusetts, — one of the most savage and bitteivtongued of the Fed-
eralist politicians and well hated by his opponents.

The episode, as shown in the newspapers, begins with an article contrib-
uted to Uie staunch Federalist paper of Boston, the Columbian CerUinel^
April 3, 1799, by "Lookers On" and appearing under the headline
" Jacobinic Tyranny. "

The publie haye already been Sflquftinted with some very eztraordiiiaxy oondnot m
some of the town meetings of Gunbrid«:e. The following facts onght to be known. It
has always been the onstom for the yonng gentlemen of the UniTersity to attend these
meetings as spectators. On Monday members were there as nsoal and behaved with
perfect qniet and decency. Before the polls began Dr. Hill moTcd that all who were
not voters should go out ; he expressed himself more particnlarly by saying he meant

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486 Student Politics in Anti-Federalist Days. [Ma?di,

the joaag (vntimneB of Coflag*. Jodg* Dbba oliMrred tliat Hb/tj did not mpprnt to
ittcommodatbevotii; IwfcDr. Hill ■oonwJIadmwtttheooiwtabiM byaMneandoidwd
them to forae the young gemtiemen ont ; and thkwM Moordins^ done with mnehTio-
lenee, eapeoiidly by Major Bxown, the new made eonetable. The yoanff men hnsaed
when ikej got out on the iteps and woold haTe gone away without any farther affbvt
of the eoQrtables : but thit did not oontent the new made eonetable ; he attacked the
■cholan, knocking down ieTerai^ and he and hie amietant, one Smith, beat eeTend
■hamefully ; Riohardeon, the other eonetable, ezpreeud a deep regret that hie lame-
nees prevented him joining them in the b mine e i . He therefore Tented himaelf by
uttering the meet indecent refleetioae on the college and the go v emo r e ef it who were
preeent. Judge Dana endearored to check hie ineolenoe, but Dr. HiU awwered the
Chief Juetice with an indecency exceeding anything we erer remember to have heard
in a town meeting. He actually told him he waa an enoourager of dieorder and impro-
priety ; and all becaoie the Judge attempted to check the inedbnce of the oonetaUe
Hichardaon towarda the goTemora of the college. The young gentlemen, the meet hurt
by the ineolenoe of Brown and hia aaaiataiit, were named Naeon and Knap, Saltonatall
and Bayley.^ In all thia boainem it ahonld be known that the aoholara made no diatu^
banoe in the honae or reaiatanoe out of it. We are glad to hear that the frienda of aome
of thoae yoatha mean to proeecuto. Now let the Prime ItuHgaior of thia ahamafnl
outrage come forward and diaproTC one tittle of the above atatoment.

The Mcunej of the abore aeeount wm challenged bj the Seleetmen
of Cambridge in a letter to the CmtinO, April 10, 1799, as foUowt:

The town meeting waa unuaually full and complaint being made that there wae not
room to aocommodato the votera unleaa the aeata were cleared of thoae mkko had no
right to Toto, the Selectmen who by the Conatitationare ^ipmnted theModeratora of the
meeting repeatedly requeated all who were not Totera to retire from the aeata. This
waa but in part complied with — the Conatablea were then directed to canse the aeati
to be cleared which they effected. The number of Totera atill increased and complaint
wsa again made that they could not get into the houae while eo much of it waa taken
up by peraona who had not a right to veto. Upon thia a motion waa made that the Town
meeting ahonld be adjourned to the Meeting houae. Thia waa oppoeed by Judge Dana
sa nnneceamry and the Selectmen being of <qiinion that the House was snfieient to ae-
eommodato the qualified Totera, those who were not eo were desired to leave it. This
reasonable request wss repeatedly made without any effect ; the Selectmen were then
constrained to force a compliance and they proceeded to compel the persons unqualified
to Toto to go out.

This was done without any other TiolMiee than what was necessary snd which the
nature of the eaae required. With reapeot to the conduct of Mr. Brown, one of the
conatobles, after a second enquiry by the Seleetmen, it appeara that the aaaertion that
he attacked the Scholars and knocked down aeveral ia utterly without any foundation.

As to the conduct of Doctor EUll, one of the Srieetmen, it ia tme that he upon the
idea that Jud^re Dana aeaumed the powera of the preaidinff oAcera on thia occaaion,
obaerved to him that he had better address himself to the Selectmen if he had anything
to/offer on the subject, and thereby aet an example of good order and regularity. In
this we suppose he stands perfectly jostifled by the stotion in which the Constitution
had placed him.

With regard to any affray that took place in the street betw e en one Smith snd soms
undergraduates of the College It eama neither within the dbaeaf ation or eogniasnee
of the Selectmen.

1 Tliree of theee were Aeshmen, members of the Class of 1801 —Newman Knapp,
Reuben Nsson, Leverett Saltonstall ; Bayley's name does not i^pear in the Quinquen*
nial Catalogue.

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1916.] Student FolUicB in AnO-FedendUt Days. 487

Shortly after, the stadentB, apparently incensed at the verbal, attacks
made on them in the towx^meeting by Dr. Hill, proceeded to break the
windows of Dr. Hill's hoose. Thereupon, the Indeipendent ChnmieUy
the strennons Anti-Federalist party organ of Boston, published an article,
ApHl 11} 1799, claiming that the student attack was made for political
reasons and was du^ to their opposition to Dr. Hill's Anti-Federalist ten-

Dootor HDl'i hooM Ib CimbridgewM asMiidted one aisrkt kit week by the friends
of '* order " and " good government " snd its windows and their oaaementB shattered.
What wonderful profioienti are these yoong eophiets I No doubt this will aaeiat the
eleemoeynary elaims of the College at the next General Court. The Doetor was nnfor>
tmiately of opinion that in a qneatbn tonehing the pretenaioos of the Sorereiga
States eaeh of them had a ti^t to declare iti own sentiment.

The Columbian CmUin$l of April 13, 1799, retorted with a license in
the use of language which exeellenily iUustratee the exaggerated serioua-
ness and the extent of vituperation of the politics of thoee days :

AH the retnms now aoming m are completely Federal. Of the 40 Senators ehosea
not more than 4 or are in any wise tainted with Jacobin putridity.

The Chromde inrinuates that the Collegians beat in Dr. ffill's windows and that it
waa on aooount of his poUtioal principles. If the scholars did break his windows it was
not for his sentiments, but his personal insult. He, in his place aa Selectman, Town
CHerk, Asseasor, caUed them ** young rascals*' and gave orders (though the youngest
of the board) for their being forced out, which ended in bangs, kicks, and bruises.
Who would ihink of attacking any large school of any body of lads 14 years of age to
ao? Attack a hornet's nest and then blubber and cry that they stung you I Fie upon it
Dr. •— * I Enjoy your sentiments and political opinions and nobody will molest yon ;
bat mend your manners and ayoid personal abuse or you will get a tap on the knuckles,
so long aa human nature is aa it is.

Poor Dr. Hill's windows hsTC been broken and his cssementi shattered, says ths
CkromcU, There are three conjeoturea reflecting the authors of this unjustifiable ai^
sault. The first is that it was done by the scholars in rengeance for his applying to
them in the town meeting the epithet of ** young rasssls" ; and for the beating which
sereral of .them actually receiyed from the Constable. The second conjecture is that
his windows were broken by the *' bushel of potatoes " party, which, odd aa it may
appear, were Jacobins. The third conjecture is that it was a deep Jacobinic trick done
to injure the young Federalists of the Uniyersity, as well aa to prop a dying cause and
a falling man. But, after all, should it be found that the young students adopted that
mode of resentment, they ought to be told that such atiodous noctnmal assaults injure
the objects less than the agents of them.

It is the boast of Federslists to be the adToeates of ocder sad of the sacred rights of
pcoperty. Dark and secret attacks should be left to Jacobins who seldom work any
other way. Were erery man who receiTcs an affront to attack the house of the adver-
ssry and thereby endanger his life, what would it lead to?

The reign of anarchy and Jacobinism would soon commence.

It is hoped Dr. Hill will find out the assaulters whether they be scholsrs, potato men
OS parenticides, to effect which a very different method is recommended to him thsa
that pursued by his brethren the Seleotmea in sscertuaing the outrage of Brown

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488 Student Politics in Anti-Federalist Days. [March,


A still more striking example of the intrusion of politics into College
affairs is to be found in the Boston newspapers ten years later, jnst before
the outbreak of the War of 1812. Massachusetts then had a Republican
(Anti-Federalist) Governor, Elbridge Gerry, (H. C. 1762,) who owned and
lived in the liouse in Cambridge later owned by James Russell LowelL
He was very hotly and savagely attacked by the Federalists on all pos-
sible occasions ; and in the fall of 1811, his Thanksgiving Proclamation
had given rise to great acrimony, for it contained a eulogy of President
Madison's Administration, which was regarded with severe condemnation
by Massachusetts Federalists. It was bitterly hard for their clergymen
to read from the pulpit a proclamation containing praise to the Lord

who oontinnes to bleai as with a National GoTemment and Admimstration whose
wisdom, virtue and firmneai have not been oironmvented, oormpted or appalled by tha
arts, seductions or threats of foreign or domestic foes, bat whose patriotic efforts have
nnif ormly and manifestly resulted from an ardent desire to promote the public welfare
and happiness.

It was apparently also hard for Federalist students in College to listen to
these and other Republican sentiments, for it appears that at a Sunday ser-
vice when Rev. Dr. Abiel Holmes (father of Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes)
was reading the Gk>vemor'8 proclamation — as stated in the Independent
Chronicle of Nov. 7, 1811,

he was disturbed and insulted by a scraping of a part of the soholarB in the gallery.
The next day a general class meeting of college men was called, when a majority voted
condemnation of the conduct ; and also voted that an apology should be made to the
minister for the act of indecency. These young men would do themselves no discredit
if they carried their apology further than to the minister.

The Chronicle of Nov. 21 added this paragraph :

There is this addition to the account that one of the reasons that induced the scholars
to oonunit such an indecency in the Lord^s house and on the Lord's day was the shock
they suffered at hearing politics from the sacred desk ! I This is too bad, when from
that very desk they heard Osgood's famous political phillippic 1 1 Instead of being Mr-
prised into the act of indecency, it is well known that the riot was premeditated and
talked of by some hot-headed boys, some days before the proclamation was read.

The Federalist Columbian Centinel treated the students* actions with
lightness, but virulently assailed the Proclamation in an article, Nov. 13,
1811, entitled ''Thanksgiving Farrago."

It is asserted in a late Chronicle that while the Rev. Dr. Holmes of Cambridge was
reading the Proclamation for Thankagiving, he was disturbed and insulted by the
scraping of a part of the University scholars in the gallery, and that they afterwards
apologized for their conduct. That the scholars should ever attempt to insult a clergy-
man in any place, we wiU not believe ; and no man who reveres the institution of pub-
lic worship wiU ever countenance any indecorous conduct in the House of God ; and if
the young gentlemen were betrayed by their feelings into any involnntary conduot

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1916.] Student Politics in AntirFederalist Days. 489

whioh even a tifcopkant cf power could ooiiBtme into an insolt on the Preacher, or a die-
tnrhance of divine service, we are glad they were called npon to make an apology and
that they had the magnanimity to offer one. But we are mnch mortified to hear that
•noh a divine, as we have always considered Dr. Holmes to he, should have consented
to read the parts of the gubernatorial farrago qf virulence^ Uliherality and petty epirit
whioh could not hut have wonnded the honest feelings of the young men, from whom
the juvenile emotion complained of proceeded, and which a malignatU tool of the Ex-
ecutive has taken the mean advantage to denounce, as an attempt to insult a Puhlio
teacher and an outrage on the decorum of divine worship.

The Chronicle of Nov. 14, contained an account of the apology which
the College authorities required the students to make ; but it appears that
this apology itself contained political reflections on Groyernor Gerry which
met witli opposition among the Republican students :

Soon after the indecent transaction in the meeting house, the scholars were sent for
to a tutor^s room and advised to mention among their classmates that it was the wish
of the college government that they should make a written apology to the Rev. Dr.
Holmes for their indecorous hehavior in the place of worship. This was accordingly
done, and it was agreed to wait on the President and inform him of their intention and
ask of him permission to call a general class meeting on the husiness. This request
the President granted, and at the same time told them that heside condemning their
conduct as it required, the time and the place, he adviud them to insert the reaeons which
^betrayed them into this act of indecency. A class meeting was called and a committee
from different classes was chosen, who retired ahout two hours and then returned with
the draught of their apology for the approbation of their fellow students. It was at
this time known to a few that the draught had been inspected by the President before
it was laid before the scholars, and, of course, went to them with his approbation. The
adoption of the paper created high dispute. The Republican lads, who compose about
a fifth part of the College, agreed in the apology to the minister in its fullest extent,
but condemned the insulting remarks respecting the Proclamation. In this they were
joined by several Federal youths. When the Republicans found their opponents in-
flexible, they proposed to have those sign it only who approved the paper. This was
overruled by the majority who carried the vote for expressing it as the sense of the
whole body of ttudenU, which included those who statedly attended the Episcopal
Church as well as those who sat in the pews in the body of the Meeting-house. Every
one of the scholars agreed as to the propriety of making the apology to the minister
and to the President ; but about $ixty of them declared against the passage which inr
decently reflected on the Qovemor of the Commonwealth and head of the University,

Online LibraryWilliam Richards Castle William Roscoe ThayerThe Harvard graduates' magazine → online text (page 66 of 103)