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England college. At certain Western col- A condemnation, on the part of the students, leges, however, a case of drunkenness is seld is meted out against the former vice similar dom known to occur. This is true with re- to that which is felt regarding the latter, but gard to Oberlin, one of whose rules is, as it as a rule far more severe and more just. is also the rule of other colleges both East College faculties, also, manifest much greatand West, summarily to expel the student er rigor in dealing with it than with drunkguilty of intoxication. At the University of enness. Michigan, with five hundred students in the The causes of the difference in the moral college, and double this number in the uni- condition of the students in most large colversity, cases of drunkenness,” one of its leges, the majority of which are located in professors writes me, “are exceedingly rare." or near cities, and that of the students of
College opinion regarding the immorality small colleges situated in the country, are of intemperance varies to as great a degree numerous and diverse. They are found to as the proportion of men in different insti- exist both in the pre-college training of the tutions who are addicted to the habit. In students, and in the character and surroundmost country colleges of the East, where the ings of the colleges. temptations to indulgence are the fewest, The chief consideration relating to the preintemperance is reprobated as a vice and college influence of the students at large city crime. Inflammation of the eyes, except as colleges, is the fact that the vast majority of occasioned by the midnight study of Greek, them were brought up and reside in cities. is regarded as a “scarlet letter” of disgrace. About one-half of the Harvard men reside The intemperate student is not only shunned in Boston (within a radius of eight miles of by his classmates, but if, “ while the fit is on Beacon Hill), New York city and Brooklyn. him," he chance to reel before a professor's The homes of a large part of the other half eyes, he is at once compelled to drink the are in cities of the size of Worcester and hemlock of summary dismission. In West- Cleveland. Only a small proportion of the ern colleges the case is similar. Though whole number, therefore, reside in country among Western students mere drinking is towns. Nearly one-half of the Yale stunot so harshly frowned upon as in some of dents, also, live in cities of at least fifty the Puritan colleges of the East, yet drunk- thousand population; and one-fifth have enness is as severely anathematized in the homes in New York city and Brooklyn. But University of Wisconsin as in the University in country colleges the large majority of the of Vermont. But among the students of students were born, bred, and live “sub our largest and in many respects best col- tegmine fagi”—under the vine and fig tree. leges of the East, there is a tendency, which Three-fifths of the Bowdoin men reside in exists in spite of all the efforts of the gov- the country towns of Maine. Williams selerning boards to crush it out, to look upon dom has more than three or four Boston or drunkenness as a rather necessary escapade New York men in a class. Illinois college, of hot-blooded youth. It is seldom that in according to a recent catalogue, has not a these colleges indulgences in liquor costs the single student from Chicago. At Michigan tippler the loss of either a friend or an ac- University, three-fifths of the students reside quaintance. The college officers, however, in the state, and the state contains only one are inclined to deal severely with him, and large city. Dartmouth, Amherst, Middleeither the disgrace of a reprimand or a tem- bury, Beloit, in fact all country colleges, porary suspension is the penalty he usually draw the majority of their students from the pays for his offense.
country. In regard to that vice from which the col- The fact that so large a proportion of the lege, as well as the community, suffers irre- students at certain of our colleges are cityparable injury, it is impossible to write in a bred, affects the question of their morality public journal. It is very gratifying to say in various ways. Not a few of these stuthat a much smaller proportion of college dents are immoral on entering college. The men are addicted to it than to drunkenness. pre-college influences, outside of their own
homes, have for many of them been excel- forth in so bold relief as in classes of twenty lent preparatory schools for Sophomoric dis- or fifty. A single black sheep in a flock of sipation. Even the home influences, in not twenty is a more prominent object than are a few cases, have failed to outweigh the evil ten in a flock of two hundred. The notoriattractions of the gambling table and its ac- ety, therefore, sure to follow his dissipation, cessories. At one of our large colleges, it is may debar a student at a small college from estimated that six-sevenths of the immoral vice; but its comparative absence in a large men reside in cities of at least twenty-five college may urge the student into dissolute thousand inhabitants. But it is seldom that habits. a student from the country, when he enters In a large college, once more, the esprit a country college, is immoral. Not only the de corps is strong. The immoral men are purity of his home but all the associations sufficiently numerous to form a ring for muof his country life have been elevating. tual “aid and comfort,” and they buckle Vice in its various forms is to his eyes “a themselves to each other by common habits painted ship on a painted ocean." The and aims. But the two or three men of evil Freshman, therefore, at large city colleges, propensities in a small class feel nothing of is usually more disposed to dissoluteness that assurance which numbers give. than his brother at small country colleges. their loneliness they are more inclined to
The students at large colleges in the city find cheer in their Plato than in drinking are wealthier. As the city is wealthier than from the flowing bowl of punch. the country, so the average student at large The situation of colleges in and near large city colleges receives a larger income than cities presents numerous opportunities for the average student at the country college. vicious indulgences. If Yale were located It is needless to say that money is not only at Williamstown, Harvard at Hanover, Cothe sine qua non to indulgence in Sopho- lumbia at Ithaca, the moral character of moric peccadillos, but it is also the immedi- their students would be elevated in as great ate occasion of dissipation. A wealthy stu- a degree as the natural scenery of their lodent with an annual allowance of $2,500 is calities would be increased in beauty. Small an excellent Faust for some Mephistopheles. towns like Brunswick, Hanover, WilliamsBut a poor student, stinted to $300 annually, town, Amherst and Ann Arbor, offer few cannot “afford" to be immoral.
opportunities for either the formation or in
dulgence of evil habits. “Gold were as good as twenty orators, And will, no doubt, tempt him to anything."
But a consideration of far greater impor
tance than either the moral condition of our City-bred men, again, are not, as a class, colleges or the causes that influence college as diligent students as men from the coun- men into dissolute courses is the methods try. Undoubtedly there are as fine scholars, by which this moral condition may be eleas hard workers, at Yale and Harvard from vated and purified. All the various means New York and Boston as there are at Wil- which tend to promote moral reformations liams and Middlebury from some Vermont in the community tend thereby to produce village. But considered as a body, students corresponding results among college stuwho are accustomed to the luxuries of city dents. There are, however, certain methods life are as familiar with the card table as with whose observance would especially tend to the study table; and are as well fitted to root out college immoralities. Most of the apply the principles of geometry to a game methods which I venture to suggest are folof billiards as to demonstrate its proposi- lowed to a greater or less extent in the large tions on the black-board.
majority of the colleges, but a stricter enOur large colleges are, moreover, from the forcement of certain of them could not, in fact that they are large, subject to vices from any college, fail to be of the highest service which the small colleges are inherently free. both to the college and the community. In classes of one hundred and fifty or of two First. The inquiry regarding the morals hundred men, immoralities do not stand of those applying for admission should be more critical. It is a requirement at most, flatter themselves with the pleasant fiction if not all colleges that the applicant pre- that a police officer has no right to venture sent a certificate, signed by his teacher or on to the college campus to arrest a lawsome other 66
responsible person," of his breaking student. There is no reason why "good moral character.” But this certifi- the municipal law should not touch the discate, for the purpose for which it is designed, orderly collegian as well as any disorderly may not be worth the paper on which it citizen. And its force, properly exerted, is written ; for of its signers the college would undoubtedly allay certain of the evils often knows nothing. A student, therefore, to which college men are addicted. of the most depraved tendencies has no Fifth. The moral condition of most coldifficulty in making his character appear to leges would be greatly elevated by more his college examiners as white as he chooses. intimate association of the professors and I know a case in which a graduate of one of the students. The intimacy of this associthe Phillips academies, of most dissolute ation is far more easily gained in a small habits, presented himself for admission at than a large college. But the moral influa New England college with a certificate ences with which every college, large as well signed by a classmate whose character prob- as small, desires to surround her men, would ably was hardly superior to his own. To be vastly augmented by means of personal insure, therefore, the certainty of excluding association of instructors and students. The immoral men, the college should require that precise methods that may be adopted for the certificate of the applicant be signed accomplishing this purpose differ in differonly by those of whose right to sign it is, ent institutions, but some method should be either directly or indirectly, cognizant. employed in every college by which the pro
Second. The college officers should ex- fessor can directly influence the moral as well ercise more strict supervision over students as the intellectual character of his students. of evil tendencies. A college officer should Sixth. It should hardly be necessary to not only have a room in each college dormi- suggest that the moral character of college tory, as is now the custom, but he should be officers ought to be worthy of the highest especially alert for detecting any disorderly respect of the men under their charge. practices committed by the men under his But in certain of our colleges, students are
willing to acknowledge that the moral charThird. Whenever what is judged to be acter of some of their professors neither sufficient evidence is offered that a student command nor deserve their esteem. A colis guilty of heinous offences, he should be lege whose professors are known to be imsummarily expelled. By remaining in col- moral cannot demand moral purity of its lege he usually takes to himself seven others Freshman. The upright character of the worse than himself, and his last end, includ- professor is the first condition for demanding that of his companions, is worse than ing upright character in the student. his first. The summary expulsion of half Seventh. The seventh and last method a dozen men from certain of our colleges that I beg to suggest for promoting the for habitual tippling, would to a large de- morality of college life is the refusal of his gree wipe out the evil.
degree to any student of dissipated habits. Fourth. Students should be, as any citi- If it is true, as is currently reported, that zen, amenable to the civil law. From this Harvard at her last commencement refused law in petty offences custom makes them to bestow degrees upon certain men on the substantially free. It is only a short time ground of their notorious dissoluteness, the since that a police officer in a college town example may be followed with profit by endeavored to obtain entrance to a room in other colleges. The liability to lose that bit which he knew disorderly practices were of parchment, for gaining which he is spendbeing committed. Defied by the students, ing four years, acts as a fitting restraint he was obliged to appeal to a college pro- upon the immoral inclinations of any underfessor. The students at one of our colleges graduate.
There are, however, not a few considerar other colleges an increase of the amount of tions in regard to the moral welfare of our the work would be of use in restraining colleges which lighten up the picture that from vicious indulgences. may appear in certain points lamentably The moral condition of American colleges dark.
is, so far as the writer's knowledge extends, The age of the men on entering college is far superior to the condition of the English now, and has been during the century, stead. Universities of Cambridge, and, judged by ily increasing. With age comes that self-con- Cambridge, of Oxford, also. In his “ Five trol and that consciousness of responsibility years in an English University,” Mr. Bristed which are the best barriers to dissoluteness. says: (Revised Edition of 1874, pp. 413, At Harvard the average age of admission is 414) “The reading (hard-working] men now about eighteen and a half years, and are obliged to be tolerably temperate, but during the last score of years the average among the rowing men there is a great deal has risen six months. (President Eliot's of absolute drunkenness at dinner and supReport for 1874-75.) With this increase of per parties. .. The American graduyears and of consequent maturity, the risk ate is utterly counfounded at the amount of temptation into evil habits diminishes. of open profligacy going on all around him
There was probably, moreover, never a at an English University; a profligacy not time in the history of American colleges confined to the rowing set, but including when their standard of scholarship was so many of the reading men and not altogether high as it is at present. Students are now sparing those in authority.” obliged to work with that carefulness and Into a condition of such moral depravity thoroughness which tend to wean them from American colleges have never fallen; and dissolute courses.
In many colleges they there is no valid reason to believe they can find no time to be immoral; but in ever will fall into it.
C. F. Thwing.
THE CREW OF THE SAM WELLER.*
BY JOHN HABBERTON,
AUTHOR OF “HELEN'S BABIES," "THE JERICAO ROAD," "THE SCRIPTURE CLUB OF
VALLEY REST," ETC.
ble respect. He appeared on deck, as he THE Deacon's hope and promise that the had done every Sunday during the trip, clad Sam Weller would reach New Orleans early in the peculiar combination of white linen, enough on Sunday morning to enable the black satin and shiny black cloth in which crew to go to church was not verified." The well-to-do church members in the West alboat lost several hours by grounding on the ways made themselves uncomfortable and point of an island near Baton Rouge, so the awkward on Sundays. Usually he displayed bells rang for morning service an hour be- his Bible also upon deck, but on this particfore the spires of the Crescent City were ular day he seemed to have some different sighted. But the Deacon was not going to form of worship on his mind. The whole disregard any portion of the day merely be- crew was on deck, ready to work the boat cause he happened to be out of reach of by means of the great sweeps to that porchurch privileges. The current of the river tion of the levee which the Deacon might did not cease running on Sunday, so the old select. Soole was casting up, for the fifman allowed the boat to drift upon it, but tieth time, a column of figures chalked otherwise he observed the day with all possi- upon the deck and representing his pro•Copyright, 1877; by John Habberton.
spective transaction in coffee; Tanker was
observing an occasional sugar-house chim- villages adjoining the Crescent City on ney which shot up against the horizon, and the north were sighted, and the Deacon's idly guessing from which one his own hogs- thoughts drifted on until they grew despehead of sugar might come, while Lugwine rate. He had pleaded steadily with this lay upon the deck and tenderly caressed the man without success; was there anything bundle of large bamboo canes cut a few left to be done but to warn him? And how days before. But the Deacon's heart was much attention was he likely to pay to any upon treasures of a different order. He warning, this man who believed principally looked upon his stranger hand who stood in himself ? No, the Deacon thought it betaloof from the others and seemed to be tak- ter to speak to him kindly and avoid religing in all of the scenery through his quick ious topics entirely, trusting to leave behind bright eyes, and the old man groaned in him, at the last, something to make the soul. His own authority over Brown would young man's memory of him kinder than it cease within a very few hours, and then was likely to be while it consisted princiwhat would become of the fellow? These pally of unpalatable religious exhortations. men who believed so strongly in themselves The Deacon approached Brown, and said: were of just the sort to go to horse-races, to “You're at liberty to leave whenever you go to the theater on Sundays, to gamble, like after the boat reaches shore, you know, even to take part in duels, the Deacon thought for the cargo is sold, an' the consignees' with a shudder. Yet what could be done to watchman will take charge as soon as we prevent him? Should he make another ef- get to the levee. You're welcome to make fort, and if so, what sort of one? He had your home aboard as long as you're in the tried upon Brown every argument that he city and the boat ain't pulled to pieces, ** had ever heard brought to bear upon any though I s'pose naturally you'll look up
betsinner. Certainly they were intellectually ter accommodations. An'I want to say to correct, for the wisest heads in the church you, knowin' it's your just due, an' hopin' had originally constructed them, and other it'll give you some satisfaction to know it, wise heads had been using them ever since. that you've been the best flatboat hand I've There was a passage of Scripture that hit ever had in
my life." Brown exactly, thought the Deacon with a “ Thank you; thank you,” responded sensation not far removed from satisfaction, Brown cheerily. “I've tried to do my duty, “ He that being often reproved, hardeneth but I'd no idea that I'd succeeded so well. his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and I guess I'll leave the boat, however, when that without remedy.” But it was too bad; we go ashore, for I may be able to find some the Deacon mentally reconstructed the young people in the city whom I know.” man's immortal part as he stood there star- “I s'pose," ventured the Deacon, looking ing at him, and groaned to think how able directly into the water, as if Brown were a prayer-meeting leader and how useful a swimming alongside, “ that we won't see Sunday-school man the church was losing you at Brackelsville again ?" by Brown's perseverance in his willful course. “I don't know, really,” said Brown, “my He could easily imagine him standing up in plans are not formed as definitely as I the basement of the little church at Brack- should like them to be. I may remain here, elsville, after some familiar hymn had been but I think I shall return to the East." sung, and making a prayer which, in the “Well,” said the Deacon, come an' see distinctness and fervor which could not help us; come to my house if you go West any characterizing it, would be a perfect shower time; I'll promise not to talk religion to of refreshing to those who languished in the you always, as I know I have done on this spiritual desert which was so feebly watered trip. I didn't mean to worry you—" by the brethren who had the matter in “Oh, don't apologize," laughed Brown. charge—the Deacon would admit that he “ Business is business, and religion is one of himself was no more able than the rest.
* Flatboats are unable to re-ascend the river and But the boat drifted along, and the little are therefore sold as old lumber, and are broken up.