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PREFACE.

THE following sketch was undertaken at the request of a friend, who was desirous to insert a brief notice of the origin, history and present condition of Yale College, in a statistical account of New Haven, which he designed to publish. As the Compiler proceeded in his task, he found the materials so abundant, and many of the facts connected with the annals of the College so interesting, that he experienced much embarrassment in abridging the narrative within his intended limits, without doing injustice to the subject. Although he had failed in his original design, he concluded that some facts had been gathered, that might be deemed interesting to the patrons of literary institutions, and particularly to the Alumni of the College. He is conscious of the imperfections of the sketch in many particulars, but believes that in matters of fact, it will be found generally correct. As to opinions; he deems it an act of justice to the officers of the institution, to discharge them from all responsibility. They may possibly dissent, from some sentiments advanced in the progress of the narrative; but as the sketch has, in its historical parts, been drawn without consultation with any members of the faculty, they are not chargeable, either for expressions of praise or censure.

The compilation of a work, in relation to a literary institution, would have better fitted the habits and pursuits of an academician; but if the facts in relation to the College, presented in the following pages, shall in any degree awaken public interest in behalf of a venerable establishment, for whose prosperity, in common with his fellow alumni, the writer feels an affectionate solicitude, his ambition will be fully gratified.

In witnessing the rapid advancement of the arts and sciences in our favored country, it has always been among the most cher

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ished of the Author's hopes, that YALE COLLEGE, situated as it is, in a salubrious climate, in a city of attractive beauty, and in the heart of an intelligent population, would continue, as a fostered child of the government, to flourish in increasing vigor and usefulness; that an academy of fine arts, particularly for instruction in architecture, painting, sculpture, engraving and designs for manufacturers, might eventually form a branch of the venerable stock, and that this "City of Gardens," as it has justly been styled, might become not only a favored seat of science but a school of cultivated taste. The Professorships of Anatomy, Chemistry and Botany, already successfully and reputably established, in addition to the advantages of extensive libraries, would greatly lessen the expenses of an independent institution for the cultivation of the fine arts.

New Haven numbers among its citizens, gentlemen, in the several departments to which we have alluded, who enjoy a valuable reputation in their several pursuits, and a union of their efforts under the auspices of the College, would add dignity and influence to their exertions. The efforts of Mr. Augur, in sculpture; the Messrs. Jocelyn, in painting and engraving, and Mr. Town in ornamental architecture, are well known among gentlemen of taste, and have greatly contributed to advance the culture of those arts.

In allusion to the cultivation of the fine arts, it has been remarked with no less truth than beauty, by Mr. Webster of Massachusetts, that "Just taste is not only an embellishment of society, but it rises almost to the rank of the virtues, and diffuses positive good throughout the whole extent of its influence. There is a connexion between right feeling and right principles; and truth in taste is allied to truth in morality."

́But the present condition of the University, perhaps forbids the further indulgences of these illusive hopes, and our desires must be merged in the deeper solicitude, that no narrow system of false economy may overshadow the counsels of an enlightened legislature or check the growth of this noble seminary. May our government long feel the truth of the sentiment, expressed

PREFACE.

with characteristic energy, by the illustrious Clinton;—“It cannot be too forcibly inculcated nor too generally understood, that in promoting the great interests, of moral and intellectual cultivation, there can be no prodigality in the application of the public treasure."

Some of the matters embraced in the following treatise, are so obviously removed from the usual pursuits of the Author, and exhibit such higher claims to science than he can pretend to advance, that justice, as well to himself as to the learned friends who have aided him in the compilation of the APPENDIX, induces him to note his obligations.

For the Register of Health, &c. he is indebted to the friendship of Doctor Henry D. Bulkley, the Secretary of the Medical Association of New Haven, who was aided in his investigations by Doctor Virgil M. Dow, his predecessor in office.

The valuable botanical sketch, is the joint production of Doctors Eli Ives, William Tully, and Melines C. Leavenworth. It probably exhibits the most complete statement, in regard to this region, as to that branch of science, that has been published.

For the interesting mineralogical article, and statements with regard to the Cabinet, he tenders his thanks to Assistant Professor Shepard, of the chemical and mineralogical department.

Professors Silliman, Olmsted, and Beers, have severally furnished, on the application of the Compiler, statements of the apparatus attached to their departments.

In collecting the materials for the early history of the College, it became necessary to examine the Colonial and City records, and it affords the Author pleasure in bearing witness to the ready kindness and intelligent zeal, with which the preceptor of his youth, and the friend of his maturer years, Elisha Munson, Esq. the respectable town clerk of New Haven, aided him in all investigations. Mr. Munson possesses much of the ardor and all the intelligence, of an accomplished antiquary.

In closing this prefatory article, it is proper to explain some references as to authorities. In quoting the authority of Doctor Dwight in support of his statements, the Author has only men

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tioned his name with the addition of page. The work referred to, is a statistical account of New Haven, compiled and communicated by Doct. Dwight to the "Connecticut Academy of Arts and Sciences," in 1811. He has in some instances mentioned as an authority during the Presidency of Doctor Stiles, a "Literary Diary." All quotations from the "Diary" of Doctor Stiles, have been taken from the extracts of his biographer, Doctor Holmes. In drafting a sketch of President Dwight's character, most of the materials have been extracted from the preface to his system of Theology, published since his decease. It is believed that acknowledgments have been made in the progress of the narrative for all other important obligations.

On a review of his sketch, the writer perceives, that he has not alluded in terms sufficiently explicit, to an alteration in the original constitution of the College. The religious test formerly required of the officers, has been abrogated by an ordinance of the Corporation, and for several years past, scientific gentlemen, of various christian denominations, have been elected to academic offices.

Even before the abrogation of the test, gentlemen of other religious denominations were occasionally elected. Since the abrogation of the test, the field of literary competition for academic offices has been enlarged. As an evidence that no unfriendly sectarian feelings now exist, it may be mentioned that the printed forms of prayer, adopted by the Episcopal Church, have been used when desired, in the services of the chapel, and with the full approbation of the Faculty.

After the preceeding remarks were made, it was suggested to the author, that a distinguised gentleman, who has exhibited in his life, a rare union of active patriotism as a soldier, and successful exertions as an artist, had proposed to deposit a very valuable collection of paintings in the gallery devoted to the Fine Arts. The writer's opinion need not be expressed, that such a deposit would add greatly to the attractions of the university. It is hoped that no difficulties may occur, to prevent the completion of arrangements in this interesting matter.

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