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“But a Step from College to the Judicial Bench”: College and Curriculum in New England's “Age of Improvement”

  • Kenneth Nivison (a1)

Extract

In 1827, two years after its incorporation as a college and six years removed from its founding as a “collegiate institution,” Amherst College revamped its curriculum into what it called a “parallel course of study.” In this new scheme, students were allowed to follow one of two tracks during their college years. Courses in mathematics, geography, logic, rhetoric, the natural sciences, philosophy, and theology were still required of all students, but they were permitted to substitute a variety of new offerings in place of instruction in ancient languages and literature—choices ranging from French or Spanish to drawing or civil engineering. The faculty of the college were clear in their rationale for such a change: echoing the sentiments of the nation's President John Quincy Adams, they argued that theirs was “emphatically an Age of Improvement,” one which necessitated altering the structure of the college course. They warned that if the college did not reform its course offerings it would witness the rise of new institutions better equipped to provide for the needs of young men, threatening the existence of Amherst and other colleges committed to liberal education. “Let our Colleges promptly lead on in the mighty march of improvement,” they stated, “and all will be well; but let them hesitate and linger a little longer, and many of their most efficient friends will go on without them.”

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1 The Substance of Two Reports of the Faculty of Amherst College, to the Board of Trustees, with the Doings of the Board Thereon (Amherst, MA: Carter and Adams Printers, 1827), 4–8; Outline of the System of Instruction Recently Adopted in the College at Amherst, Mass., 1827 (Amherst: Carter and Adams Printers, 1827); Tyler, W. S. History of Amherst College, During its First Half Century, 1821–1871 (Springfield, MA: Clark W. Bryan and Company, 1873), 170–74.

2 Substance of Two Reports of the Faculty, 5.

3 Ibid., 6.

4 For an extended discussion on the changing nature of useful knowledge and education, see Watkinson, James D.Useful Knowledge? Concepts, Values, and Access in American Education, 1776–1840,History of Education Quarterly 30 (Autumn 1990): 351370.

5 For the consensus school interpretation, see Hofstadter, Richard and Metzger, Walter P. The Development of Academic Freedom in the United States (New York: Columbia University Press, 1955); Hofstadter, Richard “The Revolution in American Higher Education,” in Paths of American Thought, ed. Schlesinger, Arthur M. Jr. and White, Morton (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1963). For subsequent work building upon this thought, see Levine, Lawrence The Opening of the American Mind: Canons, Culture, and History (Boston: Beacon Press, 1996), 37–42. For a discussion of the American university movement as a moment of great transformation, see Veysey, Laurence R. The Emergence of the American University (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1965); Bender, Thomas The New York Intellect: A History of Intellectual Life in New York City, From 1750 to the Beginnings of Our Own Time (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1987); Bledstein, Burton J. The Culture of Professionalism: The Middle Class and the Development of Higher Education in America (New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1976); Geiger, Roger To Advance Knowledge: The Growth of American Research Universities, 1900–1940 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1995); Jarausch, Konrad ed. The Transformation of Higher Learning, 1860–1930: Expansion, Diversification, Social Opening, and Professionalization in England, Germany, Russia, and the United States (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1983); Williams, Roger L. The Origins of Federal Support for Higher Education: George W. Atherton and the Land-Grant College Movement (University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 1991).

6 For work challenging the consensus portrait, see Allmendinger, David F. Jr., Paupers and Scholars: The Transformation of Student Life in Nineteenth-Century New England (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1975); Guralnick, Stanley Science and the Ante-Bellum American College (Philadelphia: The American Philosophical Society, 1975); Geiger, Roger L. ed., The American College and University in the Nineteenth Century (Nashville: Vanderbilt University Press, 2000); Burke, Colin American Collegiate Populations: A Test of the Traditional View (New York: New York University Press, 1982); Potts, David B. “Baptist Colleges in the Development of American Society, 1821–1860” (PhD diss., Harvard University, 1967), published by Garland Publishers, New York, 1988; Stevenson, Louise L. Scholarly Means to Evangelical Ends: The New Haven Scholars and the Transformation of Higher Learning in America (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1987); Mattingly, Paul H. “Educational Revivals in Ante-Bellum New England,” History of Education Quarterly 11 (Spring 1971): 39–71; Axtell, James “The Death of the Liberal Arts College,” History of Education Quarterly 11 (Winter 1971): 339–352; Hawkins, Hugh “The University-Builders Observe the Colleges,” History of Education Quarterly 11 (Winter 1971): 353–362; Potts, David B. “American Colleges in the Nineteenth-Century: From Localism to Denominationalism,” History of Education Quarterly 11 (Winter 1971): 363–380; David, F Jr. Allmendinger, “New England Students and the Revolution in Higher Education,” History of Education Quarterly 11 (Winter 1971): 381–389; Whitescarver, Keith “Creating Citizens for the Republic: Education in Georgia, 1776–1810,” Journal of the Early Republic 13 (Winter 1993): 455–479; Lane, Jack C. “The Yale Report of 1828 and Liberal Education: A Neorepublican Manifesto,” History of Education Quarterly 27 (Autumn 1987): 325–338; Pak, Michael S. “The Yale Report of 1828: A New Reading and New Implications,” History of Education Quarterly 48 (February 2008): 30–57.

7 Geiger, The American College and University in the Nineteenth Century, 4.

8 Brooke, John L. Heart of the Commonwealth: Society and Political Culture in Worcester County, Massachusetts, 1713–1861 (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 1989), 262.

9 For a sampling of these thoughts, see Rudolph, Frederick ed., Essays on Education in the Early Republic (Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1965).

10 Rush, BenjaminThoughts upon the Mode of Education Proper in a Republic,“ in Essays on Education in the Early Republic (1786), 9.

11 For the institutionalization movement, see Hall, Peter Dobkin The Organization of American Culture, 1700–1900: Private Institutions, Elites, and the Origins of American Nationality (New York: New York University Press, 1982). For the founding of colleges in this era, see Burke, Collegiate Populations, as well as Tewksbury, Donald The Founding of American Colleges and Universities before the Civil War: With Particular Reference to the Religious Influences Bearing upon the College Movement (New York: Teacher's College Press, Columbia University, 1932).

12 Fitch, Ebenezer Useful Knowledge and Religion, Recommended to the Pursuit and Improvement of the Young; in a Discourse, Addressed to the Candidates for the Baccalaureate in Williams College. September 1, 1799 (Pittsfield, MA: Printed by Chester Smith, 1799?), 29.

13 Atwater, Jeremiah A Sermon, Preached before His Excellency Isasc Tichenor, Esq., Governour, the Honorable Council and House of Representatives of the State of Vermont, at Burlington, on the Day of the Anniversary Election, October 14, 1802 (Middlebury, VT: Huntington & Fitch, for Anthony Haswell Printer to the State, 1802), 39.

14 McKeen, Joseph The Inaugural Address delivered in Brunswick, September 2nd, 1802, by the Rev Joseph McKeen, A.M. & A.A.S. at his entrance on the duties of President of Bowdoin College: with an eulogy, pronounced at his funeral, by the Reverend William Jenks (Portland: Thomas B. Wait & Co., 1807), 78.

15 Ibid., 10.

16 Bates, Joshua An Inaugural Oration, Pronounced March 18, 1818 (Middlebury, VT: J.W. Copeland, 1818), 1314.

17 Labaree, Benjamin Moral Education. Inaugural Address of the Rev. Benjamin Labaree, President of Middlebury College, Delivered May 18, 1841 (Published by request of the Corporation, Middlebury, VT: Ephraim Maxham, 1841), 11.

18 Humphrey, Heman An Address, Delivered at the Collegiate Institution in Amherst, by Heman Humphrey, D.D., on the Occasion of his Inauguration to the Presidency of that Institution, October 15, 1823 (Boston: Crocker and Brewster, 1823), 15.

19 Laws of Williams College, 1795 (Stockbridge, MA: Loring Andrews, 1795), 5–7; Laws of Williams College, 1805 (Stockbridge, MA: H. Willard, 1805), 3; Laws of Williams College, 1815 (n.p., n.d), 5–6; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of The Collegiate Institution, Amherst, Mass (Greenfield, MA: Denio and Phelps Printer, 1822); Laws of Middlebury College (Middlebury, VT: J. W. Copeland, 1823), 4; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Bowdoin College, and the Medical School of Maine (Brunswick, NJ: Joseph Griffin, 1824); Laws of Watervilk College, Maine (Waterville, ME: Printed by William Hastings, 1825), 5–6; Laws of Amherst College, for the Use of the Students (Amherst, MA: Carter and Adams, 1825), 4–5; Laws of Amherst College, 182[8?] (n.p., n.d), 4–6; Laws of Williams College, 1829 (n.p., n.d), 4–6; The Laws of Middlebury College (Middlebury, VT: Printed at the Office of the People's Press, 1839), 5–6; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Amherst College for the Academical Year 1845–6 (Amherst, MA: J.S. and C. Adams Printers, 1845); Laws of Williams College, 1849 (North Adams, MA: Henry Chickering Printer, 1849), 2–4; The Laws and Regulations of Amherst College (Amherst, MA: Press of William Faxon, 1855), 6; The Laws of Middlebury College (Middlebury: Printed at the Register Book and Job Office, 1861), 5; Laws of Williams College, 1863 (Boston: Press of T.R. Marvin & Son, 1863), 5. Unfortunately, no solid evidence exists to show exactly how rigorously these entrance examinations were applied.

20 Winterer, Caroline The Culture of Classicism: Ancient Greece and Rome in American Intellectual Life, 1780–1910 (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2002), 32.

21 Laws of Williams College, 1795, 18–24; Laws of Williams College, 1805, 18–28; Laws of Williams College, 1815, 8–11; Laws of Williams College, 1829, 7–10; Catalogue of the Officers and Students in Williams College, 1854–55 (New York: Baker, Goodwin & Co., 1854), 19–23; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Waterville College (Waterville, ME: W.M. Hastings Printer, 1825), 7–8; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Waterville College, and of the Clinical School of Medicine, Woodstock, Vt., Connected with the College (Hallowell, ME: Glazier, Masters & Co. Printers, 1830), 9–10; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Waterville College, Maine, for the Academical Year 1833–4 (Augusta, ME: Luther Seveance Printer, 1834), 8–10; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Waterville College, for the Academical Year 1843–44 (Hallowell, ME: Glazier, Masters, & Smith, 1843); Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Waterville College, Maine, for the Academical Year 1850–51 (Waterville, ME: Maxham and Wing, 1850), 15–18; The Laws of Middlebury College (Middlebury: T.C. Strong, 1811), 7–8; Laws of Middlebury College, 1823, 6; Laws of Middlebury College, 1839, 9–10; Laws of Middlebury College, 1861, 8; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of the Collegiate Institution, Amherst, Mass., October 1822 (Greenfield, MA: Denio and Phelps Printer, 1822), 10–11; Amherst College, Catalogue of the Corporation, Faculty, and Students, October 1825 (Amherst, MA: Carter and Adams, 1825); Amherst College, Catalogue of the Corporation, Faculty, and Students, November, 1835 (Amherst, MA: J.S. and C. Adams, 1835); Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Amherst College for the Academical Year 1845–6; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Amherst College for the Academical Year 1858–59 (Amherst, MA: Press of John H. Brewster, 1858); Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Amherst College for the Academical Year, 1859–60 (Amherst, MA: Press of Henry Marsh, 1859).

22 Winterer, 10–23; Rudolph, Frederick Curriculum: A History of the American Undergraduate Course of Study Since 1636 (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers, 1977), 2833, 44–53.

23 Taylor, Alan Liberty Men and Great Proprietors: Revolutionary Settlement on the Maine Frontier, 1760–1820 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1990); Jones, Daniel The Economic and Social Transformation of Rural Rhode Island, 1780–1850 (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1992); Brooke, Heart of the Commonwealth; Roth, Randolph A. The Democratic Dilemma: Religion, Reform, and the Social Order in the Connecticut River Valley of Vermont, 1791–1850 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1987); Turner, Lynn W. William Plumer of New Hampshire, 1759–1850 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1962).

24 Jones, The Economic and Social Transformation of Rural Rhode Island, 1780–1850; Barron, Hal S. Those Who Stayed Behind: Rural Society in Nineteenth-Century New England (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1984); Clark, Christopher The Roots of Rural Capitalism: Western Massachusetts, 1780–1860 (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1990); Prude, Jonathan The Coming of the Industrial Order: Town and Factory Life in Rural Massachusetts, 1810–1860 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1983); Frisch, Michael Town into City: Springfield, Massachusetts and the Meaning of Community, 1780–1880 (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1972); Norling, Lisa Captain Ahab Had a Wife: New England Women and the Whalefishery, 1720–1870 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2000); Brooke, Heart of the Commonwealth; Dalzell, Robert Enterprising Elite: The Boston Associates and the World They Made (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1987); Vickers, Daniel Farmers and Fishermen: Two Centuries of Work in Essex County, Massachusetts, 1630–1850 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1994).

25 Minutes of the Trustees, Williams College, 4 April 1785, 3 August 1785, 12 February 1785, 19 August 1788, 25 October 1790, 23 May 1792, 6 August 1793. Archives and Special Collections, Williams College Library.

26 Minutes of the Trustees, Williams College, 3 September 1799, 1 September 1801, 1 September 1802. Archives and Special Collections, Williams College Library.

27 Durfee, Calvin Williams Biographical Annals (Boston: Lee and Shepard, 1871), 4652.

28 For a thoughtful discussion on the impact of ambition among young Americans of this age, see Opal, J. M. Beyond the Farm: National Ambitions in Rural New England (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008).

29 For an examination of the Yale Report and its significance, see Lane, “The Yale Report of 1828 and Liberal Education,” 325–38, and Pak, “The Yale Report of 1828: A New Reading and New Implications,” 30–57. Lane skillfully argues that the Yale Report is best viewed as a “neo-republican manifesto” that defends the liberal curriculum of Yale as essential to providing the mental agility required of republican citizens. Pak attempts to cast the Report as neither defensive of traditionalism, as consensus historians have viewed it, nor as inherently progressive, as revisionists have claimed, but rather as a “realist manifesto” that responded to the demands of the college's clientele.

30 Reports on the Course of Instruction in Yale College; By a Committee of the Corporation and the Academical Faculty (New Haven: Hezekiah Howe, 1828), 6. Hereafter cited as the Report on the Course of Instruction.

31 Ibid.,8.

32 Ibid., 8–9.

33 Ibid., 10.

34 Ibid., 14.

35 Ibid., 16.

36 Ibid., 5.

37 Ibid., 22–23.

38 Lane, The Yale Report of 1828 and Liberal Education,335.

39 The Substance of Two Reports of the Faculty of Amherst College, 7.

40 Laws of Williams College, 1795, 18–24; Laws of Williams College, 1805, 18–28; Laws of Williams College, 1815, 8–11; Laws of Williams College, 1829, 7–10; Catalogue of the Officers and Students in Williams College, 1854–55, 19–23; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Waterville College, 7–8; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Waterville College, and of the Clinical School of Medicine, Woodstock, Vt., Connected with the College, 9–10; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Waterville College, Maine, for the Academical Year 1833–4, 8–10; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Waterville College, Maine, for the Academical Year 1850–51, 15–18; The Laws of Middlebury College, 7–8; Laws of Middlebury College, 1823, 6; Laws of Middlebury College, 1839, 9–10; Laws of Middlebury College, 1861, 8; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of the Collegiate Institution, Amherst, Mass., October 1822, 10–11; Amherst College, Catalogue of the Corporation, Faculty, and Students, October 1825; Amherst College, Catalogue of the Corporation, Faculty, and Students, November, 1835; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Amherst College for the Academical Year 1845–6; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Amherst College for the Academical Year 1858–59; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Amherst College for the Academical Year 1859–60.

41 Huston, James L.The American Revolutionaries, the Political Economy of Aristocracy, and the American Concept of the Distribution of Wealth, 1765–1900,The American Historical Review 98, 4 (October 1993): 1084, 1089–1090.

42 Tappan, Francis Wilder “Notes from Lectures on Political Economy by Prof. Alden, Joseph “ Williams College, 1837. Special Collections Folder, Manuscripts Pertaining to Undergraduate Life, Archives and Special Collections, Williams College Library.

43 Ibid. Howe, Daniel Walker The Political Culture of the American Whigs (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1979), 1122, 138–39. For a discussion of the teaching of political economy at several nineteenth-century colleges, see Barber, William ed., Economists and Higher Learning in the Nineteenth Century (Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Press, 1988).

44 Kellogg, Allyn Stanley notes of Dr. Alden's remarks at Recitations in Paley's Political Philosophy, January 1846, class notes, 1844–1846, Williams College Archives and Special Collections. For an extended treatment of Paley's influence at American colleges in the nineteenth century, see Smith, Wilson Professors and Public Ethics: Studies of Northern Moral Philosophers before the Civil War (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1956).

45 Guralnick, Science in the Ante-Bellum College, viixii, 18–46, 138–59.

46 Cleaveland, Parker An Elementary Treatise on Mineralogy and Geology (Boston: Cummings and Hillyard, 1816).

47 Hanscom, John Henry Diary, 10 November 1844–27 April 1847, George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections and Archives, Bowdoin College.

48 Sumner, Samuel Barstow Notes from Prof. Lassell's Geology Lectures, Class Notes and Autographs Collection, Williams College Archives and Special Collections.

49 Kellog, Allyn Stanley Notes on Lectures by Prof. A. Hopkins, Mechanics, October 1844; Meteorology, June and July 1845; Optics, July and August 1845, Williams College Archives and Special Collections; Rudolph, Frederick Mark Hopkins and the Log: Williams College, 1836–1872 (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1956), 94–96, 137.

50 Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Waterville College, Maine, for the Academical Year 1845–6 (Portland: Published by the Students, Printed at the Advertiser's Office, 1845), 13. The first students enrolled in the Partial Course are listed in Waterville College's 1834 catalogue. The year after it was instituted, it enrolled its greatest number of students—16. Following 1835, the program enrolled a handful or fewer students each year through 1859. See Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Waterville College, Maine for the years 1834–1859, Colby College Archives, Miller Library, Waterville, Maine.

51 “College Education (from the Report of the Faculty for 1855)” in Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Waterville College, for the Academical Year 1857–58 (Boston: Printed by J.M. Hewes, 1857), 25.

52 Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Bowdoin College, and the Medical School of Maine, 1824; Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Bowdoin College, and the Medical School of Maine (Brunswick, ME: Joseph Griffin Printer, 1830); Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Bowdoin College and the Medical School of Maine (Brunswick, ME: Press of Joseph Griffin, 1832); Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Bowdoin College, Maine (Brunswick, ME: Press of Joseph Griffin, 1834); Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Bowdoin College, and the Medical School of Maine (Brunswick, ME: Press of Joseph Griffin, 1848); Catalogue of the Officers and Students of Bowdoin College, and the Medical School of Maine, Spring Term 1858 (Brunswick, ME: Joseph Griffin Printer and Bookseller to the College, 1858).

53 Pamphlet Pertaining to the Removal of Williams College to Northampton, November 1819 (no publication information), Early History Collection (Box 4, Folder 1), Archives and Special Collections, Amherst College Library, 12.

54 Hatch, Nathan O. The Democratization of American Christianity (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1989); Butler, Jon Awash in a Sea of Faith: Christianizing the American People (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1990).

55 Field, Peter S. The Crisis of the Standing Order: Clerical Intellectuals and Cultural Authority in Massachusetts, 1780–1833 (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 1998), 1446.

56 Sassi, Jonathan D. A Republic of Righteousness: The Public Christianity of the Post-Revolutionary New England Clergy (New York: Oxford University Press, 2001), 59.

57 Allmendinger, Paupers and Scholars, 843; Record of Proceedings of Committee on Applications for Benefit of Grant by the General Court of Massachusetts to Bowdoin College, 1816–1832, Board of Trustees and Overseers, General Committee Reports 1835–1993, Volume 1, Archives and Special Collections, Bowdoin College Library; Board of Trustees Minutes, Waterville College, 10 January 1855, Colby College Archives.

58 Pamphlet Pertaining to the Removal of Williams College to Northampton, November 1819 (no publication information), Early History Collection (Box 4, Folder 1), Archives and Special Collections, Amherst College Library; Minutes of the Trustees, Williams College, 2 September 1815, 22 June 1819, 2 November 1819, 11 May 1820, 5 September 1820, 17 July 1821; “Remarks on a Pamphlet Published by a Committee of the Citizens of Berkshire, on the Removal of Williams College” (no publication information), Early History Collection (Box 4, Folder 1), Archives and Special Collections, Amherst College Library; Adolphus Ferry, Williamstown, to Ferry, Charles Granby, Massachusetts, 21 June 1821, Manuscripts about Undergraduate Life, Archives and Special Collections, Williams College Library; Durfee, Calvin A History of Williams College (Boston: A. Williams and Company, 1860), 145–48; Tyler, Willam S. A History of Amherst College During the Administrations of its First Five Presidents, From 1821 to 1891 (New York: Frederick H. Hitchcock, 1895), 13–26.

59 Records of the Trustees of Middlebury College, vol. 2, 27 July 1847, 7 September 1847, Middlebury College Archives; Adams, J. S. Can the Vermont Colleges Be United? (n.p., undated), 14, 23–24; Broadside Concerning a Proposed Union between the University of Vermont and Middlebury College, 1847, Miscellaneous Historical Writings, Publications, Topics, and Correspondence, Archives and Special Collections, Middlebury College; Stameshkin, The Town's College, 141–46.

60 Upham, Thomas to Leonard Woods, 1 August 1846, Leonard Woods, Administrative Records, Bowdoin College Archives.

61 Ellingwood, James to Professors of Bowdoin College, ca. 3 November 1846, Leonard Woods Administrative Records, Bowdoin College Library; Wheeler, Amos E. to Rev. Ephraim Peabody, Thompson, 8 November 1846; Report of Dr. James Ellingwood, Schedule of the College Needs in Relation to Denominational Status, to Leonard Woods, 30 August 1847, Leonard Woods, Administrative Records, Bowdoin College Archives.

62 Report of Dr. James Ellingwood, 30 August 1847; Amos Wheeler to Rev. Ephraim Peobody, 8 November 1846; A Declaration on the Subject of Religious Instruction in the College, and in Relation to its Denominational Position, 2 September 1846, Board of Trustees, General Historical Correspondence, Bowdoin College Archives; Gardiner, Robert H. from Gardiner, Maine, to Leonard Woods, 14 November 1846, 24 November 1846, 26 November 1846, 30 November 1846, Leonard Woods to Gardiner, Robert H. August 1846, 16 November 1846, 19 November 1846, 26 November 1846, Gardiner, Robert H. to Thomas Upham 30 November 1846; “To the Friends and Patrons of Bowdoin College” (n.d.), Board of Trustees, General Historical Records and Correspondence, Bowdoin College Archives; Calhoon, A Small College in Maine, 93.

63 Rudolph, Frederick The American College and University: A History (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1962), 140–41; Rudolph, Curriculum, 39–42; Howe, Daniel Walker The Unitarian Conscience: Harvard Moral Philosophy, 1805–1861 (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1970), 2–4.

64 Tappan, Francis Wilder Notes from Lectures on Moral Philosophy, by Mark Hopkins, Williams College, 1837, Williams College Archives and Special Collections. Hopkins was consistent on this particular point; in the opening of his notes for the same class in 1846, Allyn Stanley Kellogg notes, “How shall the perfection and happiness of man be secured? To discover the ends for which he was made, and the means of attaining these ends, is the object of Moral Philosophy.” Kellogg, Allyn Stanley Notes to Dr. Hopkins's Lectures in Moral Philosophy, February 1846, Class Notes, 1844–1846, Williams College Archives and Special Collections.

65 Kellogg, Allyn Stanley Notes to Dr. Hopkins's Lectures in Moral Philosophy, February 1846; Francis Wilder Tappan, Notes from Lectures on Moral Philosophy, by Mark Hopkins, Williams College, 1837, Williams College Archives and Special Collections; Rudolph, Curriculum, 39–42, 90–94. For a detailed account of moral philosophy at Unitarian Harvard, see Howe, The Unitarian Conscience; for an overview of the various professors and scholars of moral philosophy, see Smith, Professors and Public Ethics.

66 Howe, The Unitarian Conscience, 47; Field, The Crisis of the Standing Order, 111–40; Rudolph, The American College and University, 73–74; Meyer, D. H. The Instructed Conscience: The Shaping of the American National Ethic (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1972).

67 Stearns, William A. Discourses and Addresses at the Installation and Inauguration of the Rev. William A. Stearns, D.D. as President of Amherst College and Pastor of the College Church (Amherst, MA: J.S. & C. Adams, 1855), 91. Stearns might well have been borrowing, not just from his own predecessors, but also from other defenders of the kind of liberal education Amherst sought to provide: his words are eerily similar to those of Henry Cardinal Newman, John the defender of liberal education in the face of rapid specialization in Ireland. Writing three years before Stearns's inaugural, Newman argued that “The man who has learned to think and to reason and to compare and to discriminate and to analyze, who has refined his taste, and formed his judgement, and sharpened his mental vision, will not at once be a lawyer, or a pleader, or an orator, or a statesman, or a physician, or a good landlord, or a man of business, or a soldier, or an engineer, or a chemist, or a geologist, or an antiquarian, but he will be placed in that state of intellect in which he can take up any one of the sciences or callings I have referred to, or any other for which he has a taste or special talent, with an ease, a grace, a versatility, and a success, to which another is a stranger. In this sense, then, and as yet I have said by a very few words on a large subject, mental culture is emphatically usefull.Newman, John Henry The Idea of a University, ed. Svaglic, Jartin J. (Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press, 1982), 125.

68 Tyler, History of Amherst College, 172–73.

He holds a PhD from The Catholic University of America.

“But a Step from College to the Judicial Bench”: College and Curriculum in New England's “Age of Improvement”

  • Kenneth Nivison (a1)

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