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the Sky and in scattered lines, while prairie fires are controlled and limited, orchards, farms, and houses have out up and closed in the once vast illimitable views.
   In those days, it was quite an adventure to go west forty or fifty miles from the Missouri among the buffalo. Those who went out on hunts that far were looked upon as men of mettle and spirit. And in truth no one could tell just what the Indians might do. Luckily they never disturbed us; but we knew that a few bottles of whiskey and a revengeful spirit might stir them up to do mischief, in case any white man had done them harm. My short experience with Indians has taught me, that some white man always begins the trouble. Seeing Henry Fontenelle's letter reminds me, that he told me the very same facts as are contained therein, as to the origin of the name, Omaha, in the summer of 1856, at Fort Calhoun, while be and several Indians were lying out on the prairie, which had been then staked out as a townsite, near Steven's Hotel, a double log cabin. Some of us took a trip out to the town of Fontanelle, and were surprised at its size. It must have had twenty cabins or shanties, some of which were large enough to have two rooms and were quite aristocratic, as we thought. One of the most glorious views in the world, was to stand at the edge of the table land on which the town stood, and look far off over the expanses of the Elkhorn and Platte Valleys, and of the other streams that came winding thither. "I believe I will just run down to the stream there, and dip my hands in, just to say I have been in the Elkhorn," said one of our party about 8 o'clock p.m. A citizen looked at him in surprise and said, "You won't get back before night." "Why?" "Well, how far do you think it is to that point?" "Oh, perhaps a quarter mile." "It's three miles at least." I do not know the distance, but I am sure appearances are very deceiving.


BY H. W. CALDWELL. [Read before a meeting of the Society, January 8, 1889.]

   The Kansas-Nebraska bill, under which Nebraska was organized as a territory, became a law on the twenty-seventh of May, 1854. Settlement began immediately, and in less than a year, - on January 16, 1855, - its first territorial legislature was convened. The Hon. T. B. Cuming was at that time acting governor. In his first message he calls attention to the necessity of making careful provision for education, at the same time expressing the hope that Nebraska might profit by the experiences of the older states. This part of his message was referred to the committee on schools, a committee as we shall see later exceedingly prolific in charters for universities. The fitness and wisdom of its course however may well be questioned. During this first session charters were granted to Nebraska University located at Fontenelle; to Simpson University. a school to be founded at Omaha City; to the Nebraska City Collegiate and Preparatory Institute. The character and aims of these universities will be discussed later in this paper; at present it is enough to remark that they were like the Hydra of old; when Hercules smote off one head three more were ready to grow in its place. The proof of this is found in the next session of the legislature. In the Session of 1855-'56, not only does Simpson University ask for a renewal of its charter, but it is now supported by the Nemaha University at Archer, by Washington College at Cuming City, by the Plattsmouth Preparatory and Collegiate Institute, and by the Western University at Cassville, Cass county. A joint resolution also passed the territorial




legislature asking Congress for a land grant for Nebraska University. But to show that the demands for higher education were insatiable it is only necessary to notice that the legislature meeting January 5, 1857, added to the above list, the Brownville College and Lyceum, the Salem Collegiate Institute (a name that we recognize by this time,) the Rock Bluffs Academy (notice the modesty of the title,) the University of Saratoga, Dakota Collegiate Institute, Nebraska University at Wyoming, the Omadi Collegiate Institute, St. Mary's Female Academy, the University of St. John, the Omaha Medical University, and finally an act amending the charter of the Western University. In the fall session, in the same year, 1857, a few more universities and institutes were added to our already pretty complete list. The University of Nebraska, Wyoming College, DeWitt Collegiate Institute, Falls City College, the Literary Association of the Elkhorn, the Dodge County Lyceum and Literary Association, and finally, last but not least, the Nebraska Historical Society, were incorporated during this session. The supply seems nearly to have equalled the demand in 1858, as the territorial legislative records show only two new universities incorporated in this year: the Dempster Biblical Institute, and the Lewis and Clark College. The great demand from this time on was to secure land endowments. Joint resolutions were sent to Congress asking for 15,000 acres of land for Simpson University, and 20,000 acres for the University at Fontenelle, and the Marine Hospital at Bellevue - with its branch at Nebraska City, Two marine hospitals for the sailors on the Missouri - just think of it!
   From the number of charters granted during these three years, one might suppose that the legislators had little time for other work, until he learns that they had one form of charter for all applicants; that the only labor necessary to perform, was to substitute a new name in the formula, when the charter was ready for action. The genesis of this patent charter has thus far eluded discovery; however it has some provisions that may well engage our attention for a moment. In general these early universities were joint stock companies. Several of them seem to have been undertaken as financial ventures on the part of their incorporators; others to advertise the towns where they were located. The charter provided for a certain number of trustees - from five to twenty - under whom was placed



the control of the university or college. The object as set forth was "to promote the general educational interests and to qualify students to engage in the several pursuits and employments of society, and to discharge honorably and usefully the various duties of life." The powers granted were those usual to educational institutions; to sue and be sued, to hold property, to prescribe and regulate the courses of study, to fix the rates of tuition, to appoint a president and professors, and to fix their compensation, and other powers of a similar nature. These boards of trustees were frequently self-perpetuating, and their charters authorized them to remove a trustee on a two-thirds vote of all the members. Sometimes the trustees were elected by the stockholders, as in the case of the Nemaha University at Archer.. The capital stock, exclusive of lands, varied from $100,000 to $200,000; and the value of a share from $50 to $100. A very interesting feature in all these early charters is found in the clause forbidding the holding of land in perpetuity in excess of 1,000 acres; lands received through donations or otherwise above that amount were to revert to the donor after ten years, if not sold within that time. In the later charters no such provision is found, showing that the fear of the formation of large landed possessions had passed away. The charters also provided that these schools should be open to all denominations of Christians, but leave one in doubt whether the intention was to include non-Christians, as well. The clause reads as follows: "The said college shall be open to all denominations of Christians; and the profession of any particular religious faith shall not be required of those who became its students."
   Simpson University received, on January 23, 1856, a new charter which marked the first break from the set forms before adopted. The control of the university was now placed in the Methodist Episcopal Church. The trustees were to be chosen at the annual conference for a term of four years, one-fourth retiring each year. In addition to the ordinary collegiate instruction, provision was made for the departments of theology, law, medicine and agriculture. Both sexes were to be admitted on terms of, equality. In the charter of the Brownville College, - one of whose charter members was our honored president, the Honorable R. W. Furnas, - the amount of land which might be held by the school was, for the first time, left unlimited. Provision was made for the annual election of one-third




of the trustees. In the Salem Collegiate Institute the object as set forth was "to build up and maintain in Salem an institution of learning of the highest class for males and females, to teach and inculcate the Christian faith and morality of the sacred scriptures, and for the promotion of the arts and sciences." In the charter of the University of Nebraska at Saratoga, there is a curiosity, in the provision which requires that "the trustees must, before entering upon their duties, take an oath to support the constitution of the United States and the provisions of this act." Cassville, whose site it would now require a Schliemann to discover, seems in those early days to have been an especially favored spot, as the Methodists were to establish a University and the Congregationalists a Seminary there. An act for the establishment of a Seminary, at Peru, Nemaha county, to be under the control of the Methodist church, was passed January 11, 1860. This Seminary was actually put into operation, and in later years developed into the State Normal school. A new provision was introduced into the charter, providing that the buildings and the grounds not exceeding forty acres in extent, should be free from taxation. The charter required that the buildings should be erected and the school begun within a period of five years.
   The establishment of a University at Columbus, Platte county, in this year, 1860, shows how rapidly the population was extending westward. With the exception of some modifications in the charters, and the founding of two or three Seminaries, the University at Columbus closes the list until near the end of the civil war. All Souls College was established at Bellevue, Sarpy county, February 15, 1864. Among the list of incorporators is found the name of Rev. O. C. Dake, Professor of English Literature in the University of Nebraska, from its beginning in 1871, to his death in the spring of 1875. In this same year there was chartered the Nemaha Valley and Normal Institute at Pawnee City. For several years it was under the charge of Professor J. M. McKenzie, afterwards State Superintendent of Education. The buildings in this cast were already in existence when the charter was granted, the first example of the kind in the history of the state. Its property to the amount of $50,000 was to be free from taxation.
   From this time on it becomes more difficult to trace the progress of the schools of higher education, for in 1864, a general act was



passed which permitted colleges and universities to be organized without special legislative charters. After 1860 for several years the civil war so far absorbed the attention of the people, that little thought was given to the subject of the school interests of the state. During several years very little legislative action, either for the common schools, or for the schools for higher education, shows itself on the statute books. As the war drew to a close there seemed to be a revival of interest, and the second stage in the territory's intellectual activity began, when general legislation took the place of the special enactments of its earlier years.
   A very unique piece of legislation passed in 1865, providing for the Johnson County Seminary, deserves a moment's attention. In brief its terms were as follows: the county commissioners of Johnson county were authorized to levy and raise a tax of $1,000 per year for each of the five succeeding years, for the purpose of erecting a building for educational uses at Tecumseh. The government was placed in the hands of the county commissioners and six trustees chosen by the electors of the county. This board had the usual powers, and was authorized to elect a secretary and a treasurer from its own members. The building was to be erected whenever the trustees thought that the funds on hand were sufficient to justify it. A peculiar provision authorized the use of certain rooms in the building, at the discretion of the trustees, for the purpose of holding therein district and county court, for the use of the county treasurer, the county clerk, and some other specified county officers, but for no other purposes whatsoever. Evidently the newness and the poverty of the country were tempting the people of the county to secure a court house and a school house at the least possible expense. This proposition was submitted to a vote of the people, but apparently must have been defeated for nothing has been found thus far in the Johnson county records of any further proceedings under it.
   This brief account of the history of higher education in the territorial period should not be closed without calling attention to the spirit shown. The anxiety of every town, in many cases even while yet a paper town to have the name of enjoying the benefits of the higher education, seemingly indicates the general high character of the early immigrants. While much of this history seems ludicrous, and to as we look back upon it absurd, yet there is abundant evi-




dence that to them much of it was very real. One of the reasons for this university fever, if it may be so called, is to be found in the fact that so many young men fresh from college or seminary were among the early settlers in the territory. Another, undoubtedly, is found in the mania for land speculation which ran to a high degree during those years. The names of educated men abound everywhere among the charter members of these colleges and universities; and without attempting to mention the names of all such men, Rev. O. C. Dake, Hon. A. J. Poppleton, Hon. J. M. Woolworth, Hon. J. Sterling Morton, Hon. R. W. Furnas, Hon. David Butler and many more nearly as well known should always be kept in mind.
   The Methodist church exhibited the greatest activity in this educational field, but some of the other churches were only a little less active. Scarcely a town that had aspirations to be the metropolis of its section, and what one had not? but had its university or its collegiate institute among its attractions. Of course it is true that very few of these schools ever passed beyond the paper or charter stage, yet we cannot help honoring the spirit of those who recognized the value of the higher culture. The great mistake which they made in their plans was that they failed to recognize the need for concentration. This mistake has long been a hinderance to the cause of higher education in our country, and especially in our own state. Within the past few months it has been recognized and acted upon that the higher schools should be only few in number, and a that they should have the strongest endowments possible. Practically, perhaps little of permanent value in education was produced by this early spirit. Yet that this enthusiasm for education was sufficient to leaven the state, when it became one, and to secure the passage of an act for the present State University within two years after it was admitted in 1867, can be called no small influence.


   The bill chartering the University of Nebraska, known as S. F., No. 86, was introduced into the senate, February 11, 1869, by Mr. Cunningham, of Richardson county. On the same day it was referred to the Committee on Education, the Hon. C. H. Gere, now regent and editor of the State Journal, chairman. The committee reported it back the next day with amendments. It was passed and sent to the House on the thirteenth. Under the suspension of the



rules it was read a first and a second time the same day and referred to the Committee on Schools. On the fifteenth the bill was read the third time, passed and sent to the governor who signed it, and it became a law on that day, the last day of the session. Thus in four days after its first introduction the bill was a law. Was the rapidity of its passage a premonition of the rapidity of the development of the University?
   The building was provided for by S. F., No. 32, a bill to provide for the sale of unsold lots and blocks on the town-site of Lincoln, and for the erection and location of a State Lunatic Asylum, and a State University and Agricultural College. This bill was amended February 12, 1869, on motion of Mr. Tullis, of Lancaster county, by striking out the words "Lunatic Asylum," before the words "University and Agricultural College," and inserting them after "State University and Agricultural College."


   The charter has been amended several times, but as it has never been thoroughly revised, it is now in a very chaotic condition. In the original charter provision was made for a board of twelve regents; nine of them to be chosen by the legislature in joint session, three from each judicial district. In addition to these nine, the Chancellor, the Superintendent of Public Instruction and the Governor were members ex-officio. The members of the first board were appointed by the governor. This method of choosing regents was probably adopted from Iowa, for that was the only state in the west where such a system prevailed. However, jealousy of the chancellor's influence soon entered into the minds of some, so in 1875, an amendment was passed providing that he should not hereafter be a member of the board of regents. This amendment separated Nebraska from its neighboring western states where the chancellor was uniformly a member of the managing board. At the same time provision was made that an increase in the number of judicial districts should not increase the number of members. By the constitution of 1875 an entire change was made, and a board of six regents was created to be elected by a direct vote of the people. Undoubtedly the Michigan influence was predominant in the convention, for in all the neighboring states, except Iowa, at that time the regents were nominated by the governor and confirmed by the Senate.




   In accordance with the terms of the original charter the board elected a secretary who, in addition to the duties incident to that position, was to fill the office of librarian for the first five years after the organization of the board. The records do not show that these conditions were ever complied with. The first secretary was Mr. A. F. Harvey, the father of the University bill. The original charter also provided for a treasurer who was to have charge of and to keep all university moneys, and pay out the same on the proper orders. In 1870 a supplementary act was passed placing the control of the endowment funds in the hands of the State Treasurer, and leaving only the income to be handled by the University Treasurer. Five years later the office of University Treasurer was abolished, and the State Treasurer made custodian of all the funds.
   The general management and government of the University is placed by the constitution in the hands of the Board of Regents. They are to elect a chancellor "who shall be the chief educator of the institution." These words are somewhat ambiguous, but probably a reasonable interpretation would make them mean that he is to be the chief executive, to make known and to carry out the will of the faculty, to see to the general interests of the University, and to call the attention of the faculty to them on the one band, and the attention of the regents to them on the other. In other words he should be regarded as the chief administrator. An absolute monarchy in education does not coincide with our theories or our nature, any more than it does in politics. In some colleges, especially in the south the tendency is to do away with the office and to allow the faculty to choose some one of their own number to act for them in those cases where the whole body cannot well act. The regents are to elect the "prescribed" number of professors and tutors and a steward. The use of this word "prescribed" has no meaning whatever in our charter as it now stands. In the Iowa charter, which may be the basis of our own, the word is the "requisite" number which perhaps may be the word intended in our charter. There is however another explanation possible. In the charter of 1869, the names of the chairs were fixed, and the number of professors for each definitely limited. In such case the word "prescribed" could properly be used; but since, by the amendment of 1877, the number and designation of the chairs has been left to the regents, the word has evidently lost all meaning.



   The regents prescribe the duties and fix the salaries of the profession and tutors. Here again the present indefiniteness, to say the very least, of the charter is seen. Under the decision of the supreme court that the legislature must appropriate the money, and, of course, if it sees fit, may limit its use to a specific purpose, the power of the regents to fix salaries is practically nullified. A nominal salary of $4,000 may, as in one case has already been done, be reduced to $2,500, and might be reduced to nothing just as well, as far as the principle is concerned.
   In the words of the original charter the regents could remove only "upon the proof of written charges, and after a chance for a defense had been given." By an amendment of 1875, the regents were given "power to remove the chancellor or any professor whenever the good of the University shall require it," leaving of course the regents to be the judges when such a case occurs. There does not, seem to be any doubt of the wisdom of this amendment, but the object for which it was passed may well be questioned.
   The charter of 1869 provided for six colleges: the college of literature, the sciences and arts; of law, of medicine, of agriculture, and of the practical sciences, surveying and mechanics; of fine arts. The last department was not to be opened till the annual income had reached $100,000. The amendment of February 19, 1877, reduced the colleges to five by the union of the Agricultural College with that of the practical sciences. By the same amendment the time when each department should be opened was left to the discretion of the regents. However this last provision may at any time be made a practical nullity, so long as the funds of the university are subject to control by the legislature, for it may simply refuse to make provision for support and the. regents are helpless. Again, no far-reaching plans may be matured safely and acted upon, so long as there is no secure income which the regents may depend upon, to carry into execution plans which it takes years to perfect.
   The charter states that no course of study shall be adopted, nor series of text-books used, without the approval of the regents. The first provision is now and has been a practical nullity from the first, for the preparation of the courses has uniformly been left to the faculty, subject to final revision and adoption by the regents. The clause regarding text-books seems to be both indefinite and unwise. What




constitutes a series of text-books is doubtful; also no one is so competent to decide what books, if any, should be used as is the specialist in each department. The claim that it prevents collusion between professor and publisher merits no consideration. Again it does not seem right to burden the regents, men who receive no pay for their services, with such details. The faculty of each college are authorized to grant rewards of merit to their own students. The regents, in their meeting of March 18, 1873, empowered the chancellor to offer prizes, under this provision, but the resolution was reconsidered at the next meeting and the order rescinded.
   A matriculation fee of five dollars is provided for in the charter. Tuition and other fees are left to the discretion of the regents, with a curious proviso, however. Any person *paying or whose parents pay thirty dollars school taxes per year to the state, shall not pay any other tuition fee for the period of four years than the five dollars matriculation fee. Such discrimination ought not to be endured, for it gives the rich man's son free tuition, and compels the poor man's son to pay for his schooling when he has probably already paid fully as much in proportion to means as the richer man. Of course under the present plan of free tuition it makes no difference, but this may not always last, since already in a number of states an annual fee of from ten to fifty dollars is charged. This clause also provides that the graduates of high schools with diplomas from the county superintendents to that effect, may be admitted to the college without further examination. Here we have expressed the fact that the University is only the crowning feature of the public schools. The plan that Hamilton in his ideal University wished, and that Jefferson proposed for the University of Virginia, is in a general way realized. A democracy at the basis; and from this common school democracy, the best are selected, by the natural law of the survival of the fittest, for the state's higher education, and the very best training is provided for them. In Missouri an elaborate system secures or attempts to secure, the best intellects in each county for the state university. In New York, Iowa and some other states, each senator or representative is entitled to send one or more youths to the University, whose tuition is free. The selection is frequently made after a competitive examination, and thus the best intellects are secured from all parts of the state.



   The charter says that the regents shall purchase the text-books and shall furnish them to the students at cost. Various attempts were made in the early days of the University to live up to this requirement, but nothing seems to have been accomplished except to make arrangements with the book-dealers to secure a certain per cent. reduction for the students. Several committees were appointed, and several reports were made, but the problem seems to have been too complex to solve satisfactorily, and it was finally abandoned entirely. The regents may donate text-books and on a two-thirds vote may give financial aid to worthy students, who shall give security to repay the same within five years. Apparently no attempt has ever been made to use this power; in part perhaps because the funds of the university have been too limited; in part because it has been felt that when tuition was given free enough had been done. In the session of the board of June 13, 1871, the tuition of students from other states was fixed at eight dollars per term, but in 1873, on the recommendation of Chancellor Benton, the University was made free to all who were qualified to do its work satisfactorily. An incidental fee of two dollars per term was imposed on all students from June 1876 to June 1879. With these two exceptions no charges have been made in the University of Nebraska except for laboratory expenses. In very few, if in any of the other state universities, are the terms so liberal for the student.
   "Age, sex, color or nationality shall not debar from its privileges" are the words of the charter; but it adds that provision for the education of females apart from males, "in separate apartments or buildings shall be made, provided however that persons of different sexes, of the same proficiency of study, may attend the regular college lectures together." The Kansas charter uses language still more explicit in both cases seems to have been that the sexes would be educated apart. This view is strengthened when it is known that Mr. A. F. Harvey, the author of the Nebraska bill, was a southern man, hence naturally would have strong leanings for separate schools for the sexes. There was no debate on the bill, therefore, the view of the legislators on the subject cannot be discovered. Whatever may have been the expectation, the election of Mr. A. R. Benton as chancellor secured co-education, for his whole past experience had been in schools where that principle pre-




vailed. No demand has ever been made that this clause should be carried out, and the minutes of the regents do not show that any one ever even so much as recognized that there was such a provision in the law.
   It has already been remarked that the charter is in chaos, and needs a thorough revision. Before passing to other subjects let us notice a few more of its absurdities. In the first place the wording of the various amendments is not consistent with the original charter, neither are they in harmony with each other. Parts of the same section may still be in force, while other parts of it have been superseded by a more recent amendment. In one place we read, the university fund is hereby appropriated to the use of the university, yet there is no such fund described as the University fund. The funds are designated as (1) the endowment fund and (2) the regents fund. The former cannot be used for any purpose whatever, and one section forbids the latter from being used for building purposes. The vagueness of the language leaves it uncertain whether this prohibition has been superseded or not. If not then there is no building fund available should any one see fit to test the matter.
   It would seem to be clear from the wording of the charter that the legislature had intended to leave the control of the income of the endowment funds wholly in the hands of the regents, but the supreme court has held that not a cent of this income can be used till specifically appropriated by the legislature. Their reasoning rests almost wholly on general principles, almost entirely ignoring the terms of the charter. As before noticed an amendment of 1875 made the state treasurer the custodian of the university funds. Now the supreme court says that the state treasurer does not hold these funds as treasurer of the Board of Regents, but as state treasurer, hence, since the regents have no corporate power over these funds, they can have no control of them. This reasoning may be satisfactory to a lawyer, but to a layman a three-fold repetition of the phrase "these funds are hereby appropriated to the University" would seem to outweigh A. However this control can now probably be obtained only by means of a new charter. It would seem from the dilapidated condition of the charter, that it ought not to be difficult to secure a revision. Most of the other western states put the control of these funds in the hands of the regents, while in Nebraska, where the con-



nection of the regents with the people is most intimate, such control is denied them.


   The first newspaper mention, I have found, of the University is in an article of November 21, 1868, in the Nebraska Commonwealth, the Hon. C. H. Gere, editor, entitled "Lincoln and Its Surroundings." In this article occurs this sentence: - "The State University and Agricultural College are located in Lincoln, and ample endowments are provided, and the necessary buildings will probably be erected the coming season." It will be noticed that this was written before the formal act establishing the university was passed; but in the act locating the capital, provision was made for establishing the University and Agricultural College at the new capital, Lincoln. Governor Butler in his message of January 9, 1869, called attention to the necessity of taking immediate action for the organization of the University and Agricultural College, and the acceptance of the land donation of Congress, which by the terms of the gift must be accepted within three years from the admission of the state; and the buildings must be erected and the school opened within five years. In an editorial in the Commonwealth of January 16, 1869, it is said that one of the most important subjects before the legislature will be "to make provision for the erection of the University and for the sale of lots to secure funds for it." The bill provided that out of the proceeds of the sale of lots - the State at the time owned about 2,000 - $50,000 was to be used to build an insane asylum, $16,000 to finish the dome (doom?) of the capitol, and $100,000 for the erection of the University. June 5, 1869, the sale of lots began, and the first day 105 lots were sold for about $30,000. The next day the Commonwealth remarks that "now the completion of the State University and Agricultural College is assured." Eleven days later the paper announced the arrival of Mr. R. D. Silver who will immediately put in a large plant for manufacturing brick for the university - the capacity of the plant was to be 12,000 brick per day. The plans of Mr. J. M. McBird, of Logansport, Indiana, were accepted on June 2, and on August 14, the Commonwealth contains an editorial description of the plans for the new building, classing the style of architecture as Franco-Italian. The same issue of the paper an-




nounces that the excavation for the basement of the University was completed.
   On August 18, 1869, the contract for the erection of the building was let to Silver & Son, for $128,480; soon afterwards the troubles which followed the University for so many years began. Even the Brownville Advertiser, a good friend of the University, thought the policy of letting a contract for $28,480 more than the appropriation, unwise. The State Journal came to the defense of the regents, arguing that it was better policy to begin the erection of a building of sufficient size and well suited to its uses, even if it were necessary to have an additional appropriation, than to spend $100,000 on a building that would soon have to be torn down because unsuited to the needs of the future. The corner stone was laid on September 23, 1869; two days later a glowing account of the ceremonies appeared in the State Journal. The exercises were in the hands of the Masons with Major D. H. Wheeler as master of ceremonies. A brass band from Omaha, imported for the occasion, headed the procession. In the evening a grand banquet was given. Governor Butler made a few remarks, and Mr. Wheeler a short speech. Then Attorney General Seth Robinson gave an address on "Popular Education," but as most of it concerned Greece and Rome, and very little of it related to Nebraska, any further reference to it may be omitted here. The banquet - thanks to the good ladies of Lincoln - was enjoyed by fully a thousand people, dancing being indulged in from ten till four o'clock. This was the beginning, but the end was not yet, as Lincoln people well know. The regents visited the building, and after inspection approved the plans and construction, on January 6, 1871, but before a student had ever entered its doors, the cry was raised that it was insecure. June 13, 1871, three professional architects were employed to examine the building thoroughly. Their report was made June 23, and pronounced the building safe for the present, and probably for years to come. This probability they thought could be made a certainty by a few repairs that would not be very expensive. These repairs were made, and September 6, the University was opened with an enrollment of about ninety students the first week. However the rumor of the insecurity of the building would not down, so March 18, 1873, a special meeting of the regents was called to consider further repairs. After a report from another set of archi-



tects, a new foundation was ordered to be put under the chapel. The foundation walls, as they were torn out were to be examined by an architect under the direction of the attorney general, General J. R. Webster, who reported that the foundation had not been built in accordance with the contract. The Chancellor in his report of June 26, 1877, again called the attention of the board to the condition of the building. Four architects were now employed, one from Omaha, one from Nebraska City and two from Lincoln. On the strength of their report, the regents resolved, July 6, 1877, to tear down the building and to erect a new one at a cost of $60,000; $40,000 of this amount to be raised by Lincoln. Work was to commence immediately on securing the above amount. The citizens of Lincoln were not satisfied, so they sent to Chicago and to Dubuque for architects who examined the building and pronounced it easily repaired. A committee of Lincoln's citizens met the regents on August 15. From the new light thus secured, the resolution to tear down was reconsidered. A new foundation with some other repairs was ordered, and the bill of $6,012 was paid by Lincoln. Various attempts have been made to secure all appropriation to reimburse the city for this outlay, but all have ended in failure. At the same time the roof was repaired at an expense of $1,625; but the water still found its way through, till finally in 1883 a slate roof was put on and this "leak" stopped. Just after the reconsideration of the resolution to tear down the building, a committee came from Nebraska City to present a bid for the re-location of the University at that point. This was the last public scarp, although several thousand dollars have since been spent in replacing the inner foundation walls and in making other necessary repairs. Undoubtedly the faulty construction of the building delayed the growth of the University considerably; certainly it used up much of its funds that were greatly needed else. where.


   In 1869, June 3d, a committee consisting of regents C. S. Chase, State Superintendent Beals, and Rev. D. R. Dungan was appointed to secure the names of persons suitable for Chancellor. A. R. Benton was elected on the second ballot. H. S. Tappin, J. D. Butler, E. B. Fairfield and A. Burns each received one vote on the first ballot. January 6, 1870, the Chancellor's salary was fixed at $5,000 per an-




num; a year later the reduction of salaries began. The first motion was to reduce this salary to $3,000, but the motion was lost by a vote of five to two; on the next day a motion was carried to fix the Chancellor's salary at $4,000, and the professors at $2,000 a year. The first faculty was elected April 4, 1871: Ancient Languages, A. H. Manley; Mathematics, H. E. Hitchcock; English Literature, O. C. Dake; the Sciences, H. W. Kuhne. Mr. Kuhne declined and recommended Rev. Samuel Aughey who was unanimously elected at the June meeting. Prof. Hitchcock declined at first, but being reelected at the December meeting, to begin his services in the fall of 1872, he was finally prevailed upon to accept. June 13, 1871, G. E. Church was elected tutor at a salary of $1,000. The first faculty was completed, September 6, 1871, by the election of Mr. S. R. Thompson to the chair of agriculture. Prof. Thompson was not to enter upon his duties for at least one year, in order to have time to visit other Agricultural Colleges. Perhaps it ought to be added that at the same time a thousand pound bell was ordered; perhaps it ought to be included in the list of the faculty, for it has performed functions not much less important, and has had many a prank played upon it that entitles it to recognition. The first assistant employed was in the department of chemistry. Chancellor Benton on June 23, 1874, offered to pay $500 toward securing an instructor in the sciences provided the regents would pay a like amount. The arrangement was made and G. E. Bailey was chosen for the position. Time and space forbid any attempt to trace the growth of the faculty from this modest beginning of four professors and one tutor, till it reaches its present development when twelve professors, two associate and two adjunct professors, two instructors, two tutors, two lecturers and the principal of the Latin school, besides assistants in the laboratories, and the teachers of art and music are all crowded with work to their utmost capacity. To write the history of this development would not all be pleasant work, for the present prosperity and harmony have not been reached without many a bitter struggle; and the best history that some phases of it can have is oblivion.


   Two sharply marked principles have governed in the formation of the courses of study. The first period was characterized by an al-



most inflexible course of study. There were practically no electives; the classics and mathematics formed the back-bone of the entire work. A term or two of history and of English literature, a couple of years of French or German, and a text-book study of two or three of the sciences were introduced without any expectation of acquiring more than a mere outline knowledge of these subjects. Apparently they were not supposed to be able to give mental culture. The scientific course even was not arranged to give a consistent mental development; its object was to give a practical knowledge to practical men. In short, whether for better or for worse, the ordinary college course of the Renaissance type, only slightly impregnated with the modern scientific and historic spirit, was the only one recognized as worthy to be considered a culture course.
   The second period begins in 1880, and marks in entire revolution in ideas. The elective idea was introduced, and the principle recognized that all studies may be made about equally valuable for purposes of mental culture; hence the courses were planned with reference to continuity of work in each line.. The pamphlet announcing this change says: "The elective system is the one that insures the greatest interest and profit in every study, and it is the only system that allows a student to become a special scholar in any one department while still leaving to him the option of a general education." This plan prepared by the faculty was approved by the regents December 16, 1880. To carry it out in detail the year was divided into semesters, instead of into three terms as before, and recitations continued six days in the week. The classical and scientific students had no recitations on Saturdays; the literary none on Mondays. All recitations except in chemistry were held in the forenoons as had uniformly been the case up to this time: This semester plan lasted only one year, 1881-1882; then a reaction took place and the three term system was restored. Against this change Professors Emerson, Church, Woodbury and Howard protested for they knew that it was blow at the recently introduced elective system. Finally a compromise was reached by which the elective principle was saved and the three terms restored. This was accomplished by introducing afternoon recitations, and putting the electives largely in the latter part of the day. At present, 1889, the courses are prescribed throughout the Freshman and Sophomore years; in the Junior year




about three-eights is elective, while in the senior year in the general courses, nearly the entire course is optional with the student. By this plan two results are reached. In the first place general culture, and at the same time a fixed plan of work, are secured for the first two years of the student's course. During the last two years he may specialize in some one or two fields of investigation, and thus gain some practical experience in original or semi-original work similar in kind to that he will have to perform in later years when in active life. Secondly this plan tends to accuracy and to concentration; it avoids superficiality to some extent at least, the special bane of a course that attempts to cover the entire field of modern knowledge.


   (1) Modern Languages. The development in the department of modern languages has been especially marked. In the first catalogue the following announcement was made: The German language is of such importance in science and letters that it properly claims a place in a course of liberal education, therefore it is made a part of the university course." Seemingly it had no place for its own sake. No provision however was made for instruction in it, other than "to hand it round" as circumstances necessitated. French was not mentioned at all in the first catalogue, but the second catalogue made up for the omission as a short quotation from it will prove. "Since French is the language of diplomacy, of tourists, and of foreign courts, it is unnecessary to urge its practical importance. But it has another side. It is as remarkable for its capabilities in the finish of style as French taste is in matters of fashion and in objects of Vertu. The French mind is singularly perspicuous. Its conceptions are clear and its statements elegant. It has produced a literature that, in criticism, is unrivaled, and in lyric poetry, romance, historical narrative, and scientific exposition, is necessary to all who aim at thorough and extensive scholarship."
   Mr. Harrington Emerson on the nomination of Chancellor Fairfield was elected, on June 21, 1876, to the chair of modern languages. The course was soon extended, and both French and German were required, while Italian, Spanish and Modern Greek were offered as electives. In 1879-80 Mr. Fossler, then an undergraduate gave some help in German. From 1884 to the present, two men have been



giving their entire time to the subject, and at present under Professor Edgren's direction it is one of the strongest courses in the University, offering nearly the entire range of modern languages.
   (2) English Literature. The apparent change in this department has not been quite so marked as in the department of modern languages, but the real change has been perhaps fully as great. From the first there was nominally an instructor in literature, while in fact, he was really occupied in giving instruction in other subjects. In early years in German and French; later in logic and history. In the catalogue for the year 1873-74, a year selected at random, omitting the preparatory course, one term of rhetoric and one of English literature in the junior year, or about 120 hours all told, included the entire possible culture in English with the exception of a very little work in essays and rhetoricals. When this is compared with the present course which requires the entire time of two men, where it is possible to take eleven different lines of work for a full year each with two exceptions, where to finish the possible work would require about 910 hours, or almost five full college years of five hours per week, besides a course in essays and oratory more extended by far than formerly; some idea then can be formed of the growth of the University in this department.
   (3) History. The development of the department of history, as is well and generally known, is due almost wholly to the untiring and successful work of Professor Geo. E. Howard. A careful comparison of the courses here with those of other western schools will convince any one that this department is second to very few; and the only state universities that outrank it are those of Michigan and California. Other universities have good men and good courses. In Kansas, Professor Canfield is able and is doing good work, but he has to care for political economy as well as history. The University of Missouri does nothing, that of Iowa very little. Professor Jesse Macy, at Grinnell, is able, but he has only part of his time to devote to history. In Wisconsin, Professor Allen, one of the ablest historians in the country has till very recently united Latin and history. The work of Professor Knight, in Ohio, deserves commendation. But in none of these schools have two men had their entire time for this work as has been true here since the election of H. W. Caldwell in 1883, as Professor Howard's assistant. It may be said unhesitat-

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