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To My Wife 



The endowment of Amherst College today provides more 
than half the income necessary for the College's operations. 
Without it the College would collapse, unless saved by gov- 
ernment grants. The care of the endowment is the responsi- 
bihty of the Trustees. It is their most serious responsibility, 
except for the rare occasions when the choice of a new pres- 
ident devolves on the Board. The detailed work of handling 
the finances of the College is the work of the Treasurer, who 
reports to the Board through the Finance Committee of the 
Board. How well the Trustees of Amherst exercise their re- 
sponsibility for the care of the College's endowment depends 
on the character and ability of the Treasurer and on the char- 
acter and ability of the Finance Committee. 

A college president works in the limelight. His actions are 
under constant scrutiny of faculty, trustees, undergraduates, 
and alumni. He is a public figure. A college treasurer's work, 
on the other hand, is done in the privacy of his office and in 
the meetings of the Finance Committee. How well he and 
the Finance Committee manage the endowment is not read- 
ily apparent except after careful analysis. 

The historians of the College have told us little of the work 
of the nine treasurers of Amherst and of the members of the 
Board who have served the College on its Finance Commit- 
tee. How was the slender endowment invested in earlier 
days, what rate of income did it produce for the College, 
who were the men who determined investment policy, how 
carefully did they scrutinize the work of the treasurer's of- 
fice? These are interesting questions, important questions. 
In effect, how well did the Trustees of the College exercise 
their prime responsibility for the care and preservation of the 


College's endowment and for the prudent management of the 
finances of the institution during its life of almost a century 
and a half? These questions the alumni of Amherst are enti- 
tled to ask, the public is entitled to ask; for the College to- 
day is seeking from its alumni and friends substantial gifts 
toward its support each year. The purpose of this study is to 
give such answer as the existing records afford. 

Stanley King 
Amherst, Massachusetts 





Chapter I 

































Notes on Source Material 


Appendix 1 

Charity Fund - 1822 



Charity Fund - 1828 



College Investments - 1875 



College Investments - 1896 



College Investments - 1948 


6 Summary of Sales of Securities 1933-1948 231 

7 Analysis of Endowment Funds 1933-1948 232 

8 Surplus or Deficit Record 1899-1946 234 

9 Summary of Gifts by Administrations 236 

10 Alumni Fund 1906-1949 237 

11 Members of Prudential Committee 238 

12 Members of Finance Committee 244 

Index 251 


Chapter One 

Treasurer Paul D. Weathers closed his books on June 30, 
1948, for it was the close of the college year. A representa- 
tive of a New York firm of accountants was on hand to begin 
the careful audit of the college books. The auditor counted 
the cash in the till and set down the total. He added the bal- 
ances in the bank accounts. The result of this simple opera- 
tion in arithmetic showed him that the College had total cash 
resources of $1,156,252. The following morning the auditor 
would accompany the treasurer and the comptroller to the 
vaults of the Springfield Safe Deposit & Trust Company to 
open the safe rented by the College and count the securi- 
ties. There they would find tied in neat bundles the certifi- 
cates representing the endowment of the College and of the 
Folger Shakespeare Library, with a total book value of over 
twenty million dollars. Later computations would indicate 
that the market value of the portfolio was some 15^2% in ex- 
cess of the book value. As they examined and counted the 
certificates, they would find some seven million dollars in 
government bonds, some seven million dollars more in the 
common stocks of industrial corporations, in addition to rail- 
road bonds and stocks, public utility bonds and stocks, bank 
stocks and insurance stocks. It takes time to count the certifi- 
cates of 32,000 shares of Socony-Vacuum, 20,000 shares of 
Standard Oil of California, and 18,000 shares of Standard 
Oil of New Jersey. And the treasurer and comptroller and 
the auditor would spend most of the business day in the 
vaults of the bank. 

Several months later the treasurer would present to the 


Board of Trustees of the College his annual report accom- 
panied by the certificate of Lybrand, Ross Bros. & Mont- 
gomery, auditors. The assets held by the Board of Trustees 
for the benefit of the College and the Folger Shakespeare 
Library would appear at a book value of over $33,000,000. 
The debts which had been paid during the first few days of 
July were under $4,000. The total effective income of the 
College (excluding the Folger) for the year just closed had 
been $2,050,778; almost a quarter more than the entire en- 
dowment of the College when I graduated. 

Paul D. Weathers is the ninth treasurer of Amherst Col- 
lege. From his desk in Walker Hall he can talk at will with 
the members of the Finance Committee in Boston, New 
York, and Minneapolis, who guide him in investment policy. 
A dozen brokers, with memberships on all the exchanges of 
the country, stand ready to execute his buying and selling 
orders given by telephone. Every day he is in touch by tele- 
phone with the current position of the market on the New 
York Stock Exchange. His buying and selling orders in the 
course of a year often amount to two million dollars. Each 
month the treasurer visits New York and Boston for consulta- 
tions with bankers and specialists in investment research. 

The College has come a long way since the day when John 
Leland was elected the first treasurer. The country has come 
a long way. It is one hundred and twenty-nine years since 
the College opened its doors to its first class in 1821. To un- 
derstand the conditions which faced the men who founded 
Amherst, and raised its first endowment, so pitifully small, 
we must look back a century and a quarter to find the social 
and economic context in which they worked. What was the 
condition of the country in 1821, what was the town of Am- 
herst like when the College came into being? 

James Monroe had just been inaugurated for his second 
term as President of the United States when Amherst Col- 
lege opened its doors for its first class in 1821. The genera- 
tion which signed the Declaration of Independence, fought 
the War of the Revolution, made up the Continental Con- 
gress, and framed the Constitution was passing out of power. 

Monroe was the last president of this generation. The coun- 
try now extended from the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mex- 
ico, and from the Atlantic to the Pacific. The twenty-four 
states which comprised the Union had a population of a 
little less than ten million; Massachusetts ranked seventh, 
with just over half a million. West of the Mississippi, the 
Missouri Territory extended to the Rocky Mountains, and 
west of the mountains was the Oregon Country held jointly 
with Great Britain under the Convention of 1818. Florida 
had just been added to the United States by the treaty with 
Spain of 1819 which had been ratified by the Senate on 
Washington's birthday in 1821. And one of Monroe's first 
acts was to appoint Andrew Jackson to the Governorship of 
Florida. In the same summer Stephen Austin started for San 
Antonio to carry forward a program of colonization which 
was to have momentous results later. 

Monroe had not served a year of his second term when 
serious trouble developed with Russia. Before 1816 Russia 
had had no settlement south of fifty-five degrees on the Alas- 
kan coast, but in that year she established a settlement in 
the Hawaiian Islands and another a short distance from San 
Francisco. Then in February 1822 the Russian Minister in 
Washington handed the Secretary of State a copy of an Edict 
of Czar Alexander claiming jurisdiction over all the north- 
west coast of America down to the fifty-first parallel, and 
forbidding foreign vessels to land or in fact to come within 
one hundred Italian miles. When the Secretary of State pro- 
tested this unilateral act and asked why the boundary was 
not negotiated by treaty, the Russian Minister curtly replied 
that he had no authority to discuss the matter. 

In 1821 Liberia was founded by The American Society for 
the Colonization of the Free People of Color of the United 
States, an organization promoted by public-spirited citizens 
of which Bushrod Washington was president and thirteen 
well-known men were vice presidents. 

The country was in the midst of a severe depression, fol- 
lowing the panic of 1819. The United States Bank was in dif- 
ficulty as early as 1818, but the storm broke in full force in 


1819. The prices of wheat, corn, and cotton dropped within 
a few months to about half their former levels. The most 
acute distress occurred in the Middle Atlantic States, in the 
South, and in the Ohio Valley. Banks suspended, commercial 
paper paid 3% per month, urban rents were cut almost in 
half, and farm lands suffered an even greater drop in value. 
The country had never known such widespread unemploy- 
ment; in New York City a tenth of the population was re- 
ceiving poor relief. The prisons were filled to overflowing. 
New England was not so hard hit as some parts of the coun- 
try. In some states special laws were passed to protect debt- 
ors. When a Kentucky court declared such a law unconstitu- 
tional, the legislature abolished the court and created a new 
one. While the depression lasted longer in the West than else- 
where, by 1823 conditions were again about normal on the 
eastern seaboard. 

In the eastern cities, workmen were beginning their first 
attempts at organization. The years of rapid industrial growth 
had produced problems which called for reform. The work- 
ing day was from sunrise to sunset, with two breaks for 
meals. In the summer, work began at four; at ten in the morn- 
ing an hour was taken for lunch, and at three in the afternoon 
another hour was taken for dinner. After that, work went on 
until sunset. This meant a working day of some thirteen 
hours. An unskilled laborer was fortunate if he received sev- 
enty-five cents a day. Many were glad to work for thirty- 
seven or even twenty-five cents a day in winter. On the ca- 
nals and turnpikes, fifteen dollars a month and found was 
considered good pay in summer and one-third that in win- 
ter. And it was not uncommon for men to work for their 
board in winter. The employment of women was restricted 
to a few occupations, and fifty cents a week was a good av- 
erage wage for women at the time. 

Gas as a method of street lighting was adopted by Boston 
in 1822 and in New York in 1823. But elsewhere lamps were 
the only method in use. Town councils were loath to sanc- 
tion the use of so dangerous an innovation and one likely 
to injure the business of the candlemakers and oil dealers. 

There were similar problems in the introduction of a new 
fuel, anthracite coal, for the heating of houses. In New York 
the company marketing coal at first found householders so re- 
luctant to discard andirons and spend money for grates that 
they met the situation by giving grates to new customers un- 
til the economy of the new fuel was demonstrated. 

Meanwhile, travel had been revolutionized in the score of 
years since the turn of the century. The spread of steam nav- 
igation and the development of a system of turnpike roads on 
which federal and state governments and private enterprise 
had been pouring money had made journeys both speedier 
and more comfortable. The old delays had gone forever. 
Stagecoaches of the latest model rolled along at an average 
speed of six miles an hour. Not more than six or seven pas- 
sengers were allowed to ride on a single coach. The allow- 
ance of baggage had increased from fourteen pounds to 
twenty-eight pounds; and baggage was now chained to the 
coach or watched so that it could not be stolen. Stage jour- 
neys still began at three or four in the morning, but were usu- 
ally completed by six in the afternoon. While certain towns 
in Connecticut still attempted to enforce the state's Blue 
Laws forbidding travel on the Sabbath, the coach drivers 
would gallop their horses through the town, paying no 
attention to the feeble shouts of the town tither. He did 
his duty, the citizens were satisfied, and the coach rolled on 
its way. 

It was under these conditions that Amherst College was 
founded. It was under these conditions that the founders of 
the College raised the Charity Fund of $50,000 which consti- 
tuted the only endowment of the College when it opened its 
doors in 1821. The Fund was in promissory notes, not in 
cash, and no one could predict whether the generous donors 
to the Fund would be able to meet the notes when they fell 
due. The College's real strength was not in these notes of 
dubious value, nor in the single building. South College, but 
in the stout hearts and the indomitable faith and the tireless 
efforts of a handful of men, citizens of the town of Amherst, 
who set out to found a college in spite of everything. Their 


zeal was that of men with an almost fanatic devotion to a 
cause which they believed had the blessing and approval of 
Divine Providence. 

In 1821 Amherst was one of twenty-three small towns in 
Hampshire County. The census the year before gave it a 
population of 1917, a little more than the average of the 
towns in the county, a little more than Greenfield, a little less 
than Northampton, the shire town. It was primarily an agri- 
cultural community and largely self-sufiicient. The staple 
crops were wheat, Indian corn, rye, oats, barley, and flax, 
peas, beans, and pumpkins. 

The only factory of which we have a record was situated 
in 1795 on Mill River near the present Cushman railroad sta- 
tion and in 1821 was owned and operated by the two Roberts 
brothers who engaged in the manufacture of writing paper 
on a small scale. Most of the work was done by hand, and the 
finished product was carted to Albany by teams. The busi- 
ness remained in the same family until 1894, when the mill 
was destroyed by an incendiary fire. 

In 1814 the first manufacturing corporation was incorpo- 
rated in the town, to spin cotton yarn by machinery, under 
the name of the Amherst Cotton Factory. The corporation 
was owned by ten men with an investment of one thousand 
dollars each, and acquired a three-story wooden building at 
" Factory Hollow " in North Amherst which had been erected 
by Ebenezer Dickinson, a well-to-do farmer. Dickinson had 
had no business experience and had been forced to sell, but 
a few years later he broke into his former factory and stole 
a quantity of cotton yarn. The yarn was found in his attic, 
and he fled to Ohio, but not before leaving a curse on " The 
Hollow." The Amherst Cotton Factory did not prosper and a 
little later was in liquidation. 

In 1830 Peter Ingram established a small woolen mill on 
Mill River; the business was reorganized after the panic of 
1837, but the mill was destroyed by fire in 1847. Two other 
woolen mills were built, but both were later lost by fire. 

Early in the century Amherst became a center for the man- 
ufacture of pahn-leaf hats. The palm leaf was brought to Bos- 

ton in vessels trading in the West Indies, forwarded over the 
tracks of the Boston & Worcester Raihoad and the Western 
Railroad to Palmer, and carted to Amherst. Here it was dis- 
tributed among the farmers' families in the town and the sur- 
rounding towns, split by hand, braided, sewed, and sold to 
local merchants. In 1829 Leonard M. Hills moved to Am- 
herst from Connecticut, and began to develop the business in 
a systematic way. Mills were built, and by 1871 Amherst be- 
came the leading center of the industry in the country. Sub- 
sequently the business was liquidated. From time to time 
other manufacturing enterprises were developed in the town, 
but Amherst has continued to be primarily an agricultural 
and college community. 

Noah Webster was a resident of Amherst at the time and 
was chairman of the Board of the Collegiate Institute. His 
description of the town at the time of the founding of the 
College is the best contemporary account we have, and the 
dictionary-maker indulged in prophecy which has been 
borne out by the history of the town during the century and 
a quarter which has intervened. " The town of Amherst," 
said Mr. Webster, " must from its position forever be an ag- 
ricultural town. It can be neither a shire town nor a commer- 
cial or manufacturing town. From its situation with regard 
to Connecticut River, and the neighboring towns, it can not 
be the center of a great commerce, and its streams of water 
will never support great manufacturing establishments. Its 
inhabitants must be chiefly laboring farmers, who, dispersed 
over the town and occupied in their own pursuits, can have 
no particular connection with the students; of course no en- 
mity will probably bring them into collision, and produce 
those quarrels and riots which have frequently disturbed the 
peace of some other colleges." Webster's historical manu- 
script did not appear in print for twenty-five years, but it was 
copied in longhand by direction of the Board of Trustees 
of the College. This copy still exists in the archives of the 

The town's connection with the outside world in 1821 was 
of course by stagecoach. Three days a week a stage left 


Earle's Hotel on Hanover Street, Boston, at two in the morn- 
ing for Amherst, returning to Boston on the following day. 
To the west, the town was connected by stage over " the 
northern route " with Albany; and the Brattleboro-Hartford 
stage passed through Amherst. At Hartford a traveler could 
continue his journey to New York by water. The bridge 
across the Connecticut River between Hadley and North- 
ampton had been completed by private enterprise in 1807, so 
that travel to and from Northampton was comparatively 
easy, though the road was soft and muddy most of the 

Railroads did not exist here or anywhere, and this fact 
was of course one of the reasons for the founding of the Col- 
lege. The people of Hampshire County wanted an educated 
ministry, they wanted an opportunity for their sons to secure 
a college education; and Harvard and Dartmouth and Yale 
were so far away that few could afford to attend them. It was 
not until 1836 that the Western Railroad was incorporated to 
run from Worcester, the terminus of the recently built Bos- 
ton & Worcester Railroad, to Albany. In 1839 it was opened 
to Springfield and three years later to the Hudson River, op- 
posite Albany. The Northampton & Springfield Raihoad was 
incorporated in 1842, and the Greenfield & Northampton 
Railroad in 1845. In 1850 the New London Northern Rail- 
road was opened from New London to Palmer, and three 
years later the rails were extended to Amherst by the Am- 
herst & Belchertown Railroad. I may add that my grandfa- 
ther, William N. Flynt of Monson, who was a member of the 
Massachusetts legislature in 1848, was the leader in securing 
a Massachusetts charter for the New London Northern, 
against strong opposition. It was not until 1887 that the Mas- 
sachusetts Central Railroad was completed from Boston to 
Northampton by way of Amherst. 

There was no bank in Amherst in 1821 when the College 
was founded. In 1825 the Sunderland Bank was incorporated 
under state law, and in 1831 it moved to Amherst as the 
Amherst Bank. Its capital was $10,000. Ten years later a 
crisis developed in the aff^airs of the bank, precipitated by 

embezzlement by the cashier, and the following year it sur- 
rendered its charter. For nearly a quarter of a century the 
town had no banking facilities of any kind. Then in 1864 the 
First National Bank of Amherst and the Amherst Savings 
Bank were opened within a few months of each other. 


Chapter Two 


The founders of the College set up a dual organization 
which continued for over a hundred years : Amherst College 
and The Charity Fund. The fundamental law of the College 
is the charter granted by the legislature of the Common- 
wealth. It covers four printed pages, and is entitled Acts of 
1824, Chapter 84. An Act to Establish a College in the Town 
of Amherst. The fundamental law of The Charity Fund cov- 
ers eleven printed pages, and is entitled A Constitution and 
System of By-laws for the Raising and Managing a Perma- 
nent Charitable Fund, as the Basis of an Institution in Am- 
herst, in the County of Hampshire, for the Classical Educa- 
tion of Indigent Young Men of Piety and Talents, for the 
Christian Ministry. The governing board of the College was 
The Board of Trustees; of The Charity Fund, The Board of 
Overseers. Under the constitution the legal title to the assets 
of the Fund was to rest in the Trustees of the College when 
it was incorporated, and the Trustees were responsible for in- 
vesting and reinvesting the Fund. The Board of Overseers of 
seven members constituted the " guardians of the Fund." In 
case the Board of Overseers determined that the Trustees of 
the College were departing from their duty in respect to the 
Fund they were directed to present the matter to the Su- 
preme Judicial Court of Massachusetts. The financial officer 
of the College was and is the Treasurer; the financial officer 
of The Charity Fund was at first called the Financier and 
later the Commissioner. During the first half century, the of- 
fices of Treasurer of the College and Financier of The Char- 
ity Fund were held by difterent individuals, except for half 


a dozen years when John Leland held both positions. Since 
1878, the Treasurer of the College has been Commissioner 
of The Charity Fmid. In 1941, by unanimous vote of the 
Trustees of the College and of the Overseers of The Charity 
Fund, and with the unwritten approval of the Attorney Gen- 
eral of the Commonwealth, The Charity Fund became an in- 
tegral part of the college endowment like the other funds of 
the College, and the dual organization came to an end. 

The Charity Fund is older than the College. The Constitu- 
tion and By-laws were dated May 1818, three years before 
the College opened its doors, and the Fund was raised in the 
twelve months following. The goal was a fund of fifty thou- 
sand dollars. Pledges and gifts were secured from some two 
hundred and seventy-five subscribers. The largest subscrip- 
tion was for three thousand dollars and was paid by the 
transfer to the College of land in Maine; the smallest was for 
five dollars. All were from residents of New England, most 
from towns in Massachusetts. There were no subscriptions 
from the residents of Boston or Worcester, the two largest 
cities in the state; only two from Springfield, of one hundred 
dollars each. But from Hadley, Sunderland, Conway, Attle- 
boro, Southbridge, Wrentham, Greenwich, Hardwick, Heath, 
and dozens of other small towns came the pledges which 
made the College possible. The individual subscriptions to 
the Fund had totaled some thirty-seven thousand dollars, and 
the balance of fifteen thousand dollars was pledged by sev- 
eral Amherst men who bound themselves jointly and sever- 
ally to raise the amount within two years. Three of these 
guarantors are described in the bond as " gentlemen," three 
as lawyers, one as " clerk," one as " innholder," and one as 
" husbandman." The three described as " gentlemen " were 
in fact farmers, and David Parsons, described as " clerk," was 
the pastor of the local Congregational Church. 

For some years a number of the subscribers paid simply 
the interest on their subscriptions; some of the subscribers, 
because of changed circumstances, were unable to meet their 
pledges. The land in Maine, given by Dr. Rufus Cowls of 
Amherst, and "estimated by him at $3,000" was too far 


away to be handled by the Trustees and was exchanged for 
land in Pelham worth about $700. There was 100 acres of 
wild land in Craftsbury, Vermont, carried at an estimated 
value of $400 on which it was difficult to realize. There was 
also woodland in Sunderland, woodland in Amherst, and a 
farm in Amherst, all turned over in payment of subscriptions. 
By 1828 the Fund had shrunk to $44,633, of which over $13,- 
000 consisted of notes of the original donors which had not 
yet been paid. 

The Constitution and By-laws, which are said to have been 
passed on by Jeremiah Mason and Daniel Webster, two of 
the best-known lawyers in the country, both practicing in 
Portsmouth, New Hampshire, provided that the Fund should 
be invested " only in productive real estate, in the bonds of 
the United States or of Massachusetts or other government 
bonds, or in mortgage notes secured by real estate." Five- 
sixths of the income was to be paid to the College (as soon 
as established) for scholarships for students preparing for 
the ministry, and the remaining one-sixth of the income was 
to be added each year to the principal. And the Constitution 
adds that " the principal of the fund shall be sacred and in- 
tangible, not subject to be diminished by any exigency, the 
act of God excepted," and provides for the most careful scru- 
tiny by the Board of Overseers to see that the purposes and 
conditions of the Fund are observed with meticulous care 
from year to year by the Trustees of the College. 

Some of the early records of the Fund were destroyed by 
fire when the building in which the college treasurer had his 
office was burned in 1838. All of the books and papers in the 
hands of the secretary of the Board of Overseers passed 
through the great Boston fire in 1872, and were taken from 
the ruins in a good state of preservation. But while most of 
the financial records of the College before 1870 are gone, we 
have today almost complete the records of the Charity Fund 
from 1828 down to the present. We know too that the Char- 
ity Fund was the only endowment of the College when the 
College opened in 1821, and that for a quarter of a century 
it remained substantially the only endowment. Its early rec- 

Olds are therefore particularly significant in any study of the 
endowment of the College. 

The report dated September 20, 1828 is signed by Lucius 
Boltwood, Auditor, It recites that " of the original fund there 
is at this time 

Invested in real estate $12,478.72 

Notes for money loaned and secured by mortgage 18,725.00 
Notes and Bonds of the original donors 13,429.61 

$44,633.33 " 

The real estate includes: 

Nine acres on which the college buildings are erected $1,800.00 
3/2 acres adjoining the above 450.00 

President's House lot 84'A rods 284.88 

as well as land in Pelham, Sunderland, Hadley, Amherst and 
Craftsbury, Vermont. 

In other words, the Charity Fund owned the land on 
which the college buildings were located, as well as the 
house lot on which the president's house stood. The presi- 
dent's house was not of course the present house, which was 
not built until 1834, but the first house for the president, 
located approximately where the Psi U House now stands. 
Later the new president's house was mortgaged to the Fund. 

And among the notes held by the Fund are listed the fol- 

April 1, 1826 Note and mortgage Trustees of Amherst 

College $10,000.00 

Feb. 5, 1827 Note and mortgage Trustees of Amherst 

College 559.83 

April 1, 1827 Note and Mortgage Trustees of Amherst 

College 300.00 

April 1, 1828 Note and mortgage Trustees of Amherst 

College 300.00 

The Trustees paid interest at 6% on these notes. 

And so for many years, in fact until 1843, the Charity 
Fund owned the college campus, held a mortgage on most of 
the college buildings, and held the notes of the Trustees of 


Amherst College, some secured by mortgage, some unse- 
cm"ed. The amomits varied from year to year; m 1846 the 
Charity Fund held the notes of the College for some $12,- 
465. By 1847 they had all been paid off, though on occasion 
in later years, at least as late as 1875, the College borrowed 
from the Charity Fund. 

What are we to say about the action of the Trustees in 
their use of the Charity Fund during these years? Hitchcock, 
who was a member of the faculty throughout this period and 
who succeeded to the presidency of the College in 1846, has 
expressed his opinion with his usual candor. " I must think," 
he says, " the right to do this was very questionable. For it 
was in fact converting money which had been obtained for 
educating indigent young men, to other purposes, since there 
was no adequate security, and had the whole enterprise 
failed I doubt not this course would have been quoted as a 
perversion of funds." " The College after a long and desper- 
ate struggle," he continues, " triumphed over its pecuniary 
embarrassments, and was able therefore to pay all its indebt- 
edness to The Charity Fund, and hence the correctness of 
this course was never called in question." Hitchcock un- 
doubtedly expressed himself with equal vigor in conversa- 
tion at the time, but these caustic words were his consid- 
ered opinion at a later date when he put them in print for 
circulation among the alumni and friends of the College. 

A careful study of the Constitution of the Fund and re- 
flection on all of the facts which have come down to us in the 
records lead me to the opposite conclusion. The purchase of 
the college campus was an investment in productive real es- 
tate, and the College paid rent. The principal loans to the 
College were secured by mortgage, and the College paid its 
interest promptly. At no time, as far as I can find, did the to- 
tal obligation of the College to the Fund amount to as much 
as a third of the conservative value of the security pledged. 
And the income of the Fund was at all times handled with 
scrupulous care in accordance with the terms of the Consti- 
tution; one-sixth was added annually to the principal, and 
the remainder used for scholarships for ministerial students. 

The purpose of the donors is expressed with great clarity and 
is repeated in the Constitution: the education of indigent 
young men of talent for the ministry at the collegiate insti- 
tution at Amherst. It was not for their education at some col- 
lege selected by the Board. And to educate them at Amherst, 
it was necessary that the institution be kept alive. The Am- 
herst Board then and later included in its number lawyers of 
unquestioned ability and character. Hitchcock, on the other 
hand, had no training in the law; he was a scientist; and he 
had a prejudice amounting almost to a fixation against bor- 
rowing money. Undoubtedly he saved the College from ex- 
tinction in 1846 when he became president. But it seems 
equally clear that if his views had prevailed in the 1820's and 
the 1830's, the College would not have lived a decade, and 
his great talents would have found an outlet in some other 
institution, perhaps in Yale or Dartmouth. Furthermore, the 
policy of making loans from the Charity Fund to the Col- 
lege was approved not only by the Trustees of the College, 
but, in addition, by unanimous vote of the Board of Over- 
seers of the Fund itself. Their vote passed on August 23, 
1825 reads as follows : " Resolved, by the Board of Overseers 
that it corresponds with their views of the object for which 
the Charity Fund was formed as expressed in the Constitu- 
tion for the Financier to loan to the Trustees of Amherst Col- 
lege any part of said funds upon such ample security for the 
same as would be required of any individual or any other 
body of men." 

The early investment policy of the Charity Fund seems 
to be open to just criticism on another score however. The 
Constitution provided explicitly that all personal loans 
should be secured by mortgage on real estate; and in spite of 
this clear mandate, loans were made without this collateral. 
Finally criticism was brought to the governing boards. At 
the annual meeting of the Overseers of the Fund in 1839, a 
committee was appointed " to report to the Trustees in writ- 
ing that they were dissatisfied with the manner in which the 
funds had been invested." 

If we were dependent on the official record, we should 


know nothing of the reasons which led the Overseers to take 
this action. Their written communication to the Trustees has 
not been found. The present writer, however, received some 
years ago from an alumnus some correspondence found in an 
old trunk which belonged to his great-grandfather, Thomas 
Bond, who was a member of the Board of Overseers at the 
time. The correspondence is deposited in the Hitchcock Me- 
morial Room. 

Thomas Bond ( 1777-1852 ) had been a merchant in West 
Brookfield, Massachusetts, and had retired at the age of 
forty-eight with a comfortable fortune and moved to Spring- 
field. He first became interested in the College through his 
West Brookfield minister. Dr. Snell, who had received, in 
1828, the first honorary degree of Doctor of Divinity con- 
ferred by the College. Bond was a member of the Board of 
Overseers for thirteen years, secretary of the Board at the 
time of this correspondence, and a generous benefactor of 
the College. The letters were addressed to him by Hezekiah 
Wright Strong, an Overseer, and George Grennell, a Trus- 
tee. Strong ( 1768-1846 ) had been intimately associated with 
Colonel Graves and Samuel Fowler Dickinson in the found- 
ing of the College, had personally selected the site for the 
College, and was an Overseer from 1821 until his death. For 
many years he was the Amherst postmaster. Grennell ( 1786- 
1877) graduated from Dartmouth and practiced law in 
Greenfield. He held successively the offices of District At- 
torney, member of the Legislature, member of Congress, and 
Judge of Probate. He was elected to the Amherst Board by 
the Legislature and served from 1839 until 1859. In 1858 the 
College conferred on him the honorary degree of Doctor of 

Overseer Strong's letters were written in language that is 
more vigorous than diplomatic. The Overseers were in fact 
deeply concerned about Lucius Boltwood, who as Financier 
of the Charity Fund was investing the principal of the Fund. 
Boltwood was said to be living expensively, and to be spend- 
ing at least twelve hundred dollars a year, while his cash in- 
come was supposed to be not more than five hundred dollars. 

He was said to be speculating in government lands in Michi- 
gan, and he had loaned nine hundred dollars from the Char- 
ity Fund to a McFarland, taking as security a mortgage on 
Michigan land. The Overseers were the more disturbed be- 
cause Boltwood was responsible in the first instance to the 
Prudential Committee of the Board of Trustees and several 
of this committee were supposed to have invested privately 
in government land in Michigan. It was said, for example, 
that President Humphrey had invested one thousand dollars, 
General Mack ten thousand dollars, and Luke Sweetser five 
thousand dollars, and these three gentlemen constituted a 
majority of the Prudential Committee. It was also pointed 
out that Boltwood had resigned the presidency of the Am- 
herst Bank because of a difference of opinion with his direc- 
tors on the investment of the funds of the bank. Certainly 
the correspondence shows a lively interest in the safety of the 
Charity Fund, and a watchful scrutiny of the habits of the 

Grennell's letter, written ten weeks later, contained an in- 
formal report to the Overseers on the action of the Pruden- 
tial Committee. It is a model of calm, objective statement of 
facts. After expressing appreciation for " the very earnest so- 
licitude " of the Overseers, he says that the Prudential Com- 
mittee has gone over the investments of the Charity Fund 
made by the Financier, and has taken action in regard to 
those considered inadequately secured. " The Committee re- 
quired increased, and as we believed adequate, security to 
be given for the notes of Mr. Sweetser & Mr. Boltwood. . . . 
The Committee found a note in the Financier's hands of 
$900 against C. M. McFarland — attempted to be secured by 
a mortgage of an undivided half of 1400 acres of land in 
Michigan. . . . The Committee were dissatisfied with this 
loan and intended security, and directed, so far as they have 
power to do it, that the Financier should, if possible, effect a 
change of the security, so as to make the note safe, or to use 
his endeavors to enforce a payment of the note. . . . The 
Committee expressed a decided opinion that no moneys of 
the Fund should be loaned on mortgage of real estate lyiug 


without this Commonwealth, for obvious reasons." And later 
in the letter Trustee Grennell points out that the few unse- 
cured notes held by the Fund were for old subscriptions, 
and " require some attention." 

Under the standards of today the loans by the Financier to 
himself and to Sweetser of the Prudential Committee would 
be subject to immediate criticism. It is interesting to observe 
that no comment is made on this point in 1839. Both loans 
were paid in full. The McFarland loan of $900 was a total 
loss, and the Fund was not able to realize on the half interest 
in 1400 acres of Michigan land. 

There were other reasons for dissatisfaction with the in- 
vestment policy of the Financier which are not mentioned in 
the correspondence and which became apparent before two 
years had passed. In the year 1831-32 the Financier had 
bought seven shares of stock in the Amherst Bank at par. 
Two years later he reported that he had added to his invest- 
ment in bank stock, and now held twelve shares in the Am- 
herst Bank and forty shares in the Northampton Bank, all 
bought at par of $100 per share. By 1836 the Fund's holding 
of bank stocks had increased another thousand dollars by 
the purchase of ten more shares in the Amherst Bank. Thir- 
teen per cent of the Fund's capital was now invested in bank 
stock, for which there was no authority in the Constitution. 
And four per cent was invested in notes of individuals unse- 
cured by mortgage. The report of the Financier for August 
20, 1840 lists the Fund's investments as follows: 

Real estate: 

College lot 


Woodland Sunderland 


Woodland Craftsbury, Vt. 


$ 2,780 

Bank Stocks: 

40 shs Northampton Bank 


22 shs Amherst Bank 



Notes secured by mortgage 


Notes on personal security 





This report was presented to the Trustees of the College at 
their annual meeting on August 24, 1840 and was referred by 
the Board to a committee composed of Trustees Vaill, Cal- 
houn, and Foster, Dr. Vaill was a retired minister who had 
devoted himself for some time to raising money for the Col- 
lege. William B. Calhoun was a graduate of Yale, a leading 
lawyer in Springfield, and had already served ten years in 
the Legislature of the Commonwealth, the last two years as 
Speaker of the House, and was now serving his district in the 
Congress of the United States. The Springfield Republican 
in referring to him said that " the one superior element in his 
character and life was its high moral quality," and he was 
said to have the finest library of religious and theological 
books in the region. Alfred D. Foster was a graduate of Har- 
vard and a lawyer in Worcester who devoted most of his 
time and talents to public and civic aflFairs. Four years later 
he was to resign from the Amherst Board because he could 
not send his own son to Amherst, but his colleagues per- 
suaded him to withdraw his resignation. It was obviously 
a strong committee. The committee recommended the ap- 
proval of the Financier's Report and general approbation of 
his investment policy except the McFarland loan. But the 
point of the report is in the final sentence that " all future 
loans should be secured by mortgage of land of at least three 
times the amount of the loan independent of any buildings, 
and in the future all funds should be invested in this way." 

Obviously there was nothing to be done about the shares 
in the Amherst Bank. A year later the Financier reported 
them as " value uncertain, say $1,100." and the next year 
they were charged off. The Fund recovered some $457, or 
about twenty per cent, on the liquidation of the bank. The 
loss of some $1,650 on an investment would seem small to us 
today. But a century ago it meant a loss of nearly four per 
cent of the capital of the Fund. 

The following year, that is in 1841, the College Board 
amended its vote of the year previous so that it should not 
apply to loans to the College; and then voted that in future 
the Financier should submit his loans and collateral to the 


Prudential Committee for approval by a majority of the 

The stock in the Northampton Bank was held in the Fund 
until 1879, when it was sold at par to the College. It had 
yielded a good return in dividends meanwhile. 

In 1858 a committee reported to the Trustees of the Col- 
lege that all notes in the Charity Fund seemed properly se- 
cured except one, and that was for $170 and was a gift. The 
Trustees directed the Commissioner of the Charity Fund to 
have appraisals made in advance on land offered as collat- 
eral for a loan from the Fund. And at the same meeting the 
Trustees authorized a loan from the Charity Fund to the 
College for three thousand dollars, in addition to the loan of 
two thousand dollars already made to meet a debt of the Col- 
lege for new building, falling due the following April. 

In 1862 the Trustees of the College directed the Commis- 
sioner of the Charity Fund to invest all funds available dur- 
ing the coming year in bonds of the Commonwealth, or of 
Boston, or of the United States, and to consult with Trustee 
Alpheus Hardy in making such investments. And the policy 
was continued throughout the war. By 1867 the Charity 
Fund held $37,000 U.S. governments and only $23,000 notes 
secured by mortgage. And in 1870 the Fund sold $35,500 
governments at a premium of about ten per cent, and in- 
vested the proceeds in good 7% mortgages. 

With the exception of this patriotic concentration on gov- 
ernments, and the Northampton Bank stock, the Charity 
Fund stuck closely to personal loans secured by mortgage. 
These loans were made by the Financier or Commissioner 
very much as they would have been made by a Savings Bank. 
They provided an interest return of six per cent, and some- 
times of seven per cent. In 1851, for example, the Fund con- 
tained forty-nine individual loans of an average amount of 
$1,000. The largest was $4,000 and the smallest $100. In 1875 
there were fifty-seven loans of an average amount of $1,200. 
The largest was $5,000 and the smallest $200. While there 
was no chance for appreciation, the ratio of loss was very 
low, and on default the Commissioner could take the land 

on foreclosure and realize what he could. Meanwhile, the ad- 
dition of one-sixth of the income each year to principal was 
building up the Fund. When Treasurer Austin Dickinson be- 
came Commissioner of the Fund in 1878, the principal had 
risen from some forty-six thousand dollars to over seventy- 
six thousand dollars. But the policy of investing in personal 
loans secured by mortgage continued down into this cen- 
tury, when it was discontinued in favor of prime first mort- 
gage bonds in larger blocks. On June 30, 1948 the principal 
of the Fund stood at $118,197.42. 

There were four Financiers (or Commissioners) in the 
first half century of the Fund: Rufus Graves, 1822 to 1826, 
John Leland, 1826 to 1833, Lucius Boltwood, 1833 to 1866, 
and Luke Sweetser, 1866 to 1877. All were residents of Am- 
herst who had been closely associated with the College from 
its earliest days. Colonel Graves (1758-1845) was born in 
Sunderland, and graduated from Dartmouth. For a time he 
was a lecturer in chemistry at Dartmouth. He moved to Am- 
herst perhaps as early as 1817 and engaged in a number of 
business ventures, all of which proved financial failures. He 
was the first lecturer in chemistry at the Amherst Collegiate 
Institution, as the College was called before it received its 
charter in 1825. But he is remembered as one of the two most 
influential men in the founding of the College. He was never 
a trustee; he did not have the temperament to make a good 
trustee; but he was a member of the Prudential Committee, 
appointed by the Trustees, for two years and was Financier 
of the Charity Fund until 1826. The crusading qualities 
which carried him through the struggles for the College and 
which led his neighbors to wonder whether he was not in 
fact beside himself were not the qualities required after the 
College was in existence. 

He was succeeded by John Leland, the first Treasurer of 
the College, whom I must discuss in more detail a little later 
in this story. Leland served as Financier for seven years at a 
salary of $200 per annum ( his salary as Treasurer of the Col- 
lege was $300 per annum ) . 

Lucius Boltwood, who had audited the accounts of his 


predecessor, was elected Financier in 1833 and served for 
thirty-three years. His entire life of eighty years (1792- 
1872 ) was spent in Amherst, and Professor Tyler, who wrote 
the semicentennial history of the College in 1872, says that 
Mr, Boltwood doubtless knew more of the history of the in- 
stitution at firsthand than any living man, Boltwood gradu- 
ated from Williams College in 1814, studied law in the office 
of Samuel Fowler Dickinson of Amherst, and practiced his 
profession in his native town for the remainder of his life. He 
was a trustee of Amherst Academy for almost half a century 
and was for most of the time secretary of the Board. He was 
secretary of the Board of the College from 1828 to 1864, and 
Financier of the Charity Fund for a third of a century, at a 
salary of two hundred dollars a year. At the first commence- 
ment of the College after it received its charter, he received 
the degree of Master of Arts, ad eundem, the first conferred 
by the College. And in the early days of the College he of- 
ten lent his personal credit to secure funds for the strug- 
gling institution. He resigned his post as secretary of the 
Board at the time when his son, then the college librarian, 
was involved in a controversy with the president and the 
Board. When the Liberal Party was founded in Massachu- 
setts, he was its first candidate for Governor at a time when 
" such a candidacy was deemed a reproach," says Tyler. 

Luke Sweetser, who succeeded Boltwood as Commis- 
sioner, was the leading merchant of the town. Born in Athol, 
he moved to Amherst in 1821, just as the College was open- 
ing. He was a member of the Prudential Committee of the 
Board every year from 1833 to 1864, secretary of the com- 
mittee for the entire period, and for most of that time its 
agent and executive. He was the most active member of the 
Building Committee for Appleton Cabinet and East Col- 
lege, and was in addition a generous donor. For nearly half 
a century he was an active worker for the College. 

Between 1822 and 1941 there were some thirty-seven 
members of the Board of Overseers. Their duty was to ex- 
amine the reports submitted to them and to determine 
whether the Trustees of the College were carrying out the 

true purposes of the Fund. As a matter of fact, the duties of 
the Overseers were nominal, and the oflBce was largely hon- 
orific. In the early days it was in fact diflBcult to get a quorum 
at the annual meeting. The members of the Board of Over- 
seers in 1941, when the Fund was merged with tlie Consoli- 
dated Funds of the College, were Messrs. Bixler, '82, Moody, 
'92, Esty, '93, Robinson, '96, Hammond, '00, Boyden, '02, and 
Whitcomb, '04. Paul D. Weathers was the last Commissioner 
of the Charity Fund. 

The Charity Fund in the early days was called " the sheet 
anchor of the College," and such it was. Without it there 
would have been no college. For a quarter of a century it was 
the only endowment the College had. It will continue to 
grow from year to year; it will continue to provide scholar- 
ships for indigent young men of talent. Preference will be 
given in the award of its scholarships to students who are 
preparing for the Christian ministry. But as the endowment 
of the College has grown from decade to decade, the rela- 
tive importance of the Charity Fund has of course decreased. 
Today it is only one of the many funds which support the 
work of the College. 


Chapter Three 

JOHN LELAND, Treasurer 

John Leland was elected treasurer o£ the College at the 
first meetmg of the Board of Trustees on April 13, 1825. He 
was born in Peru, Massachusetts, in 1793, the son of a coun- 
try minister who served his hill-town parish well on a salary 
of two hundred dollars a year. In 1820 John Leland moved 
from Peru to Amherst, and began to take an active part in 
raising funds for the College. He served as treasurer of the 
College for fourteen years, including the four years before 
the College received its charter, at a salary which never ex- 
ceeded $300. It was in fact the same as that paid the first 
full-time janitor. From 1826 to 1833 Leland, as we have seen, 
was also Financier of the Charity Fund at a salary of $200 
a year. He was a deacon in the village church for fifteen 
years; senator from Hampshire County in 1833-1834; and 
representative in the legislature in 1847. Upon his resigna- 
tion as treasurer in 1835 he moved to Roxbury, but in a few 
years returned to Amherst to spend the rest of his life. 

Leland as Financier of the Charity Fund collected the 
subscriptions to the Fund, attempted to sell the real estate 
given to the Fund in payment of subscriptions, paid the taxes 
on the real estate, and loaned the Fund to individuals in the 
vicinity on the security of first mortgages on real estate. As 
Treasurer of the College he collected the term bills from the 
students three times each year, and was affectionately known 
by them as " Deacon Term-bill." He was directed by the 
Board to " make suitable provisions for the entertainment of 
the Trustees and the Board of Overseers previous to the 

meetings, also to provide suitable rooms for holding their 
sessions, and to make arrangements for public dinners on 
Commencement Day." And, in addition, he was to make 
" permanent and economical arrangements for the entertain- 
ment of all committees appointed by the Board." Of course 
he kept the books of account of the College in which he re- 
corded all receipts and disbursements, but, unfortunately, 
none of these survived the fires which plagued the college 
treasurers in the last century. 

His heaviest responsibility was the payment of the bills of 
the College. Receipts from students were inadequate then, 
as they have been ever since, to maintain a college like Am- 
herst. Fifty-nine young men were enrolled in the College its 
first year. The tuition of thirty dollars a year covered room 
rent, lights, etc., in addition to tuition itself. If all the stu- 
dents paid full tuition, the income from fees would amount 
to only $1,800, while the salaries of the president and the 
three professors made a total of $3,600. To keep the College 
alive the treasurer was forced to borrow money, and he con- 
tinued to borrow throughout his entire term of office. In addi- 
tion, the Trustees asked him to raise money for the Thirty 
Thousand Dollar Fund. How much labor and vexation this 
must have caused him, the reader can imagine by inspecting 
any page in his books, a specimen of which appears in the 
appendix of Tyler's History of the College. " The small sums 
of which much of it was made up by contributions from cent 
and mite societies of women and children was a fruitful 
theme of ridicule in the legislature." And of course many of 
the subscriptions were never collected. 

In addition to his other duties, Leland was a member of 
the Prudential Committee, inspector of buildings, grounds, 
and repairs, the working member of the Building Commit- 
tee, and in fact the responsible ofiicer of the College in all 
non-academic matters. The College was not only spending 
for current operating more than it took in, but it was carry- 
ing on a building program as well. Leland was a constant 
borrower for the College, and he borrowed where he could. 
Often he had to guarantee the college note, and at times he 


pledged his own credit to the full amount of his own prop- 
erty. By 1827, two years after the College received its char- 
ter and six years after it opened its doors, the debt had 
mounted to over $30,000. Leland had borrowed over $10,000 
from the Charity Fund, $3,000 from the Sunderland Bank, 
$2,000 from the widow of President Moore, $600 from the 
wife of President Humphrey, and $4,000 from a John Hop- 
kins of Northampton. In addition to devoting most of his 
time to the affairs of the College and pledging his personal 
credit, he gave more money to Amherst than any other per- 
son residing in the town. But there was a limit even to Le- 
land's resources of time and strength, and in 1829 Dr. Vaill 
was given a permanent appointment to solicit gifts. In 1832 
President Humphrey headed a group to solicit $50,000 from 
the public, and at another time an effort was made to raise a 
fund of $100,000. But as Hitchcock remarks, " the most vigor- 
ous efforts of the agents were barely SLifficient to keep the 
wheels in motion, and pay, often tardily, the rather small sal- 
aries of the officers and the interest on the debt." Without 
the Herculean labors of Dr. Vaill and Treasurer Leland and 
their associates, the College must have become bankrupt. 

Behind the treasurer were the Trustees; seventeen men in- 
cluding the president of the College who was ex officio a 
member of the Board. The charter required that the Board 
at all times include seven clergymen and ten laymen. Five 
vacancies were filled by the legislature, and this practice con- 
tinued for haff a century, until the charter was amended, 
and the five places formerly filled by the vote of the legisla- 
ture were thereafter filled by vote of the alumni. In the early 
days of the College, many of the men chosen by the legisla- 
ture took little active part in college affairs; some took no 
part. Travel was diSicult and a journey from the eastern part 
of the state to Amherst was a matter of some moment. 

The Trustees, faced with the mounting debts of the Col- 
lege, hoped for some financial aid from the Commonwealth 
of Massachusetts, which had made grants to both Harvard 
and Williams on occasion. In 1827, two years after the grant- 
ing of the charter, they therefore appealed to the legislature 

for a grant of money; the appeal was unsuccessful. Again in 
1831, and again in 1837, they presented appeals, with no bet- 
ter success. Williams College in its turn presented appeals to 
the legislature in 1837 and in 1839 and in 1842, without suc- 
cess. Finally, in 1846, the Trustees of Amherst once more 
prepared the customary petition. The president of the Sen- 
ate was now William B. Calhoun of Springfield, who had 
been a trustee of the College since 1829. The chairman of 
the Joint Committee to which the petition was referred was 
Jonathan C. Perkins, an alumnus of the class of 1832. There 
were at least two other Amherst men on the Committee and 
several other alumni in the legislature. In March 1847, the 
governor signed a bill granting the College the sum of five 
thousand dollars annually for five years. 

Two years later, in 1849, the College again made an appeal 
to the legislature for financial assistance, this time in com- 
pany with Harvard and WiUiams. President Hitchcock jour- 
neyed to Boston, where he conferred with President Sparks 
of Harvard and President Mark Hopkins of Williams. The 
three presidents decided to ask Edward Everett to repre- 
sent them before the legislative committee. Everett had re- 
cently retired from the presidency of Harvard; he was one of 
the leading orators of his time. His presentation of the case 
for the three colleges was subsequently printed and a copy is 
in the archives. It did not persuade the legislators, and, as we 
read it today, we are compelled to agree with their decision, 
for he presented no facts to sustain his appeal. 

The College subsequently received two further grants 
from the Commonwealth. In 1859 a bill was passed granting 
a portion of the money received from the sale of the Back 
Bay lands in Boston, which had recently been filled in by the 
State, to five institutions, including both Amherst and Wil- 
liams. The share of each college was twenty-five thousand 
dollars, to be paid when the college raised an equal amount 
from other sources. Amherst met this condition in 1861, when 
Dr. Walker gave $25,000 to found the Walker Professorship, 
and in 1863 the Amherst treasurer received the grant from 
the Commonwealth. In the same year, the legislature made 


a grant to the College of $2,500 for Dr. Hitchcock's Depart- 
ment of Natural History. Since 1863, Amherst has received 
no grants from either state or federal government, and, so far 
as I can find, has made no request for such aid. These early 
subventions from government, however, came at a time when 
the College was sorely in need of help to keep it solvent. And 
the College's record since has abundantly justified the confi- 
dence of the members of the legislature who piloted the bills 
through committee and enactment. 

It will be interesting to consider what trustees exercised 
responsibility and leadership in the business and financial 
problems of the early college. At the first meeting of the 
Board, held on April 13, 1825, the first business transacted 
was the election of officers. The next was the election of 
a " Prudential Committee." The duties of this committee, 
which for many years was the only standing committee of the 
Board, are defined in the By-laws of the Board adopted at 
its next meeting. The Committee was " to take general su- 
perintendence of the business of the College, to watch over 
its pecuniary interests, and advise with the Treasurer and 
Financier as to the discharge of the duties of their respective 
ofiices, and to require from these officers whenever deemed 
expedient a statement of their accounts or a delivery of the 
money and other property of the college in their possession, 
and generally to do what the Trustees themselves would do 
were they in session in the protection of the sound interests 
of the college." The Prudential Committee functioned ac- 
tively for nearly half a century, and, to some extent at least, 
until the 1890's. Many of its duties were assumed by the Fi- 
nance Committee, which was formally established in 1873, 
and by 1896 the Prudential Committee is not mentioned in 
the list of standing committees of the Board. 

The membership of the Prudential Committee elected in 
1825 is significant. It included President Humphrey and four 
hard-headed laymen: Strong, Smith, Graves, and Leland. 
Only the president and Lewis Strong were actually members 
of the Board. Leland was Treasurer and later Financier as 
well, and was of course the working member of the commit- 

tee. Lewis Strong ( 1785-1863 ) was a Northampton lawyer, 
a graduate of Harvard, and son of a former governor of the 
Commonwealth. Chief Justice Parsons of the Massachusetts 
Supreme Judicial Court said of him, "he is the strongest 
lawyer in all the western counties." Strong attended every 
meeting of the Board until his resignation in 1833, and was 
a member of the Prudential Committee throughout this 

The fourth member of the earliest Prudential Committee 
was a country banker, Nathaniel Smith ( 1759-1833 ) of Sun- 
derland, founder and for many years president of the Sun- 
derland Bank. Smith was a trustee from 1821 to 1825, before 
the College received its charter, but by mistake his name 
was omitted from the list of trustees included in the char- 
ter of the College. Nonetheless, the Board appointed him to 
the Prudential Committee, and in 1828, when the first va- 
cancy occurred in the Board, he was formally elected a trus- 
tee and served until his death in 1833. He continued on the 
Prudential Committee until a year before his death. He was 
l^y far the largest pecuniary benefactor of the College during 
its first ten years. " As nearly as can be ascertained," says a 
note of President Humphrey, " Mr. Smith whose property, it 
is presumed, never exceeded thirty thousand dollars, had 
contributed about eight thousand dollars to the College be- 
fore his death, and his will contained a legacy of four thou- 
sand dollars more." In addition, he was one of President 
Humphrey's closest advisers, and the bank of which he was 
president often loaned money to the College. On his death, 
the president preached a sermon delineating his character, 
which was entitled The Good Arimathean, taking his text 
from Luke 23:50. Mr. Smith's wife was a sister of Colonel 
Graves, and both Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Graves were active in 
behaH of the College. Mr. Smith was long remembered in 
Sunderland as " the poor man's treasurer and the widow's 
friend." We have seen that the Sunderland Bank, of which 
Smith was president, moved to Amherst and became the 
Amherst Bank in 1831, and that the following year the Char- 
ity Fund began its acquisition of stock in the bank. The fol- 


lowing year Mr. Smith died, long before the defalcations of 
the cashier ruined the bank in the next decade. 

And the Prudential Committee included Colonel Graves, 
whom we have already met in a preceding chapter. He re- 
mained on the committee only two years. 

The name of another lay trustee, not a member of the Pru- 
dential Committee, stands out dramatically in the story of 
the early finances of the College. Because of his cosmopoli- 
tan background, which contrasts with the parochial experi- 
ence of many of the early Board, because he was the first and 
for many years the only trustee chosen from New York City, 
and because of his dramatic qualities of personality, Samp- 
son Vryling Stoddard Wilder (1780-1865) was vividly re- 
membered by his early colleagues on the Board. He served 
from 1824 till 1841. Starting as a clerk in his native town of 
Lancaster, Massachusetts, he later moved to Boston and 
opened a mercantile business of his own. It was while he was 
still a clerk in Mrs. Henley's store on Main Street in Charles- 
town that he participated in making medical history. The use 
of vaccination for smallpox had recently been discovered in 
England, and was introduced in this country by a Boston 
physician. There were strong prejudices against its use here 
on religious grounds, and the Boston physician consulted his 
minister, as he was unable to find any person whatever who 
would volunteer to submit to be vaccinated. The minister 
took the physician at once to Mrs. Henley's store and intro- 
duced him to young Wilder. Wilder promptly rolled up his 
sleeve and was the first person in the United States to be vac- 
cinated. Happily, there were no ill eflFects. The three sons of 
the minister were the next to volunteer to serve as guinea 
pigs. Wilder's reputation for integrity and his charm of man- 
ner gained the confidence of William Gray, the merchant 
prince of Salem, who made him the agent for his business in 
Europe, and he is said to have made over a hundred thou- 
sand dollars for Gray. Between 1803 and 1823 Wilder re- 
sided most of the time in Paris, making immense purchases 
of silks and other French goods for different American and 
English houses. He crossed the ocean sixteen times, and the 

crossings in the sailing vessels of the day were not the com- 
mon occurrences they later became in the age of steam. He 
represented the United States at the marriage of the Em- 
peror Napoleon, as our Minister was sick and unable to be 
present. He was present when the victorious allies marched 
into Paris. And he even developed a plan for Napoleon's es- 
cape to this country in one of the Wilder vessels, and oflFered 
Napoleon shelter in his own country home in Bolton, Massa- 
chusetts. Returning to this country in 1823, he opened busi- 
ness in Wall Street, became the first president of the Ameri- 
can Tract Society, and a trustee of the Collegiate Institution 
at Amherst which had not yet secured a charter. 

One of his most important and most dramatic services to 
the College was performed in 1824. The legislature had ap- 
pointed an Investigating Committee to visit Amherst, with 
the power to subpoena witnesses and papers and to report 
on whether a charter should be granted the young institu- 
tion. It had been said by the opponents of the College that 
the subscriptions to the Charity Fund would never be paid 
in full, that many had been obtained by false representa- 
tions, and that, according to the College's own showing, it 
did not have funds sufficient to sustain a college. The oppo- 
sition was led by a representative from the Berkshires and by 
one from the town of Northfield whom Tyler describes as 
a " rum-selling Unitarian minister." When the Committee 
opened its hearings in Amherst, the College produced the 
notes which had been given to the Charity Fund. The first 
was signed by a resident of Danvers. One of the lawyers 
asked, " Who is this Mr. P. who signs this note? Who knows 
anything about his responsibility? " " Will you let me look at 
that note? " said Mr. Wilder, who was present as a trustee. 
After looking at it for a moment, he took a wallet from his 
pocket, and said, " Mr. Chairman, I will cash that note," and 
laid down the money. The second and third notes that were 
questioned he cashed in the same way. The chairman then 
interposed and said, " We did not come here to raise money 
for Amherst," and after that, few objections were raised to 
the soundness of the pledges to the Charity Fund. President 


Humphrey remarked in one of his historical sketches that the 
investigation was worth more to the College than a subscrip- 
tion of $10,000. Unfortunately, we do not know how much 
money Mr. Wilder brought up to Amherst from New York 
for this hearing. The legislative committee made its report in 
the autumn and the charter was granted. 

An earlier and unsuccessful effort of Mr. Wilder's for the 
College, he himself told later. Soon after his election to the 
Board, President Humphrey persuaded him to call on his old 
business friend, William Gray of Salem. Gray was a Unitar- 
ian and had been lieutenant governor of the Common- 
wealth. Colonel Graves had been working on him for several 
months in the hope of a generous subscription and also of 
converting him to the orthodox faith of Congregationalism, 
but without success in either aim. Wilder, with the authority 
of the Board, then called on Mr. Gray and told him that if he 
made a gift of $30,000 to the College, the College would 
change its name to Gray College and would set aside two 
rooms where his descendants could have free tuition, room, 
board, lights, etc., in perpetuity. Gray declined. When the 
charter was granted, Mr. Gray was named a trustee, but he 
died before taking office. The sequel, as told by Mr. Wilder, 
is equally dramatic. 

Seven years after the death of Mr. Gray, two men called 
on Mr. Wilder in Wall Street to beg that he use his influence 
to secure free tuition at Amherst for a grandson of William 
Gray, whose father had spent his large patrimony in seven 
years and was now a physical wreck with eleven children 
dependent on him. Mr. Wilder replied that the college funds 
provided free tuition only for young men of hopeful piety 
preparing for the ministry, and that as young Gray did not 
have this profession in mind, he could do nothing for him. 
" On these gentlemen retiring from my office, " says Wilder, 
" I was left with a sorrowful heart, reflecting on the mutabil- 
ity of all earthly calculations, yet consoled with the cheering 
thought that the wise designs of God will, through all, be 

Mr. Wilder was a constant attendant at all meetings of the 

Amherst Board; probably the trip by boat from New York to 
Hartford and by stagecoach from Hartford to Amherst was 
of httle moment to a man who had crossed the North Atlan- 
tic so often in sailing vessels in all seasons of the year. On sev- 
eral occasions when the College was in desperate straits, he 
became personally responsible for large sums for its relief. 
One method by which he and others assisted the College fi- 
nancially was to give the treasurer a note which the treasurer 
then discounted at the bank. When the note came due, the 
treasurer was expected to find funds to take it up without 
calling on the maker of the note. After Wilder's death such a 
note of his turned up in the files of the College, and the Trus- 
tees directed the treasurer to cancel it instead of presenting 
it as a claim against Wilder's estate. 

When financial misfortune at last overtook him, he re- 
signed from the Board on the ground that he could no longer 
contribute as he had done in the past. President Humphrey's 
letter in accepting the resignation is a touching tribute of the 
feeling of the Board for one who had been with them " in 
six troubles, yea in seven." 

Another trustee whom the College relied on in financial 
matters was Israel E. Trask (1773-1835). Born in Brimfield, 
he studied law in Richmond, Virginia. Later he served in the 
army that marched to suppress the insurrection in Western 
Pennsylvania known as the Whiskey Rebellion. And then, on 
the advice of Alexander Hamilton, he moved to Natchez, 
Tennessee, to practice law. On the purchase of Louisiana by 
President Jefferson, he was appointed to conduct the negoti- 
ations with the French authorities, and when Governor Clai- 
borne went in with United States troops to take possession. 
Colonel Trask accompanied him as his aide. After practicing 
law for a few years in New Orleans, his health failed, and he 
returned to New England, to reside first in Brimfield and 
then in Springfield. He was a member of the Board from 
1821 to 1835, during which time he missed only one meeting 
of the Board. 

In 1835 John Leland resigned the ofiice of treasurer of the 
College. It was two years before the panic of 1837 broke. 


But the College was still in debt, as it had been almost from 
the beginning. The most valiant efforts of the treasurer and 
Dr. Vaill and President Humphrey and their colleagues had 
succeeded only in keeping the infant institution afloat. Hitch- 
cock suggests that Leland's work, indispensable as it was, 
was not adequately appreciated at the time. Subsequent 
treasurers have worked tirelessly for the College and at in- 
adequate salaries, but none, so far as I know, has pledged his 
personal credit in addition, and, beyond that, has made large 
financial gffts to the institution. Leland did this although he 
had a large and invalid family to support. On his resignation, 
the Board passed a resolution of appreciation which seems 
today peculiarly inadequate and indeed perfunctory. After 
briefly noticing " his long and faithful service " the Board 
thanks him " for the lively interest which he has ever taken 
in the prosperity of this Institution." The word " prosperity " 
in the resolution must have seemed ironic to the retiring 
treasurer who had struggled manfully for fourteen years to 
meet each college note when it fell due and who, through no 
fault of his own and no lack of prudent foresight on his part, 
had watched the College slip further and further into debt. 
Happily, he lived on for nearly thirty years, and for most of 
the time in Amherst, in the shadow of the college which he 
had tended and nourished in its infancy. When he died, in 
1864, Amherst College was well founded and well estab- 


Chapter Four 


In 1835 Edward Dickinson was elected treasurer of the 
College to succeed John Leland, and began a service which 
was to continue without interruption for thirty-eight years. 
When he took office the College was deeply in debt, as we 
have seen, and its expenditures each year were running ahead 
of its income. It had no endowment except the Charity Fund, 
its buildings were in a sad state of disrepair, its friends were 
in grave doubt as to whether the College could in fact sur- 
vive. At the end of his term the College had assets of over a 
million dollars. Its endowment, including the Charity Fund 
(which now amounted to $72,000), was valued at $595,000. 
Its annual income was approximately $50,000, of which $28,- 
000 was from student fees and $22,000 from endowment in- 
come. " The best financier in the corporation," says Tyler, 
"has publicly announced, as the result of careful examina- 
tion for many successive years, that, as Treasurer of Amherst 
College, Dickinson has never lost a dollar. And one of the 
sharpest and shrewdest of the Board of Overseers declares 
that after the most prolonged and patient scrutiny of Dick- 
inson's books and accounts, only a single error of less than a 
hundred dollars could be detected, and that error was against 
himself." Edward Dickinson was a good treasurer; he was 
also the most distinguished citizen of Amherst of his day. He 
is now known as the father of a daughter Emily who seems 
reasonably assured of poetic immortality. 

Edward Dickinson was the son of Samuel Fowler Dickin- 
son, one of the founders of the College. Samuel was bom in 


Amherst in 1775, the son of a farmer in East Amherst, pre- 
pared for college with Judge Strong of Amherst, and gradu- 
ated from Dartmouth at the age of twenty, receiving the sec- 
ond appointment, the Salutatory Oration. A year later he 
had a severe illness which was the means of his conversion. 
He studied for the ministry, but, deciding he needed a more 
active life, changed to the study of the law. He ranked 
among the best lawyers in Hampshire County, was a repre- 
sentative of Amherst in the General Court, and later a mem- 
ber of the Massachusetts Senate. He was one of the found- 
ers of Amherst Academy and later one of the two most 
important men in the founding of the College. As Tyler says, 
" If Col. Graves was the hand, Esq. Dickinson was, the head 
in the founding and rearing of Amherst College! When South 
College was being built, Mr. Dickinson pledged his private 
property to the bank to obtain money to continue the work. 
His own horses hauled the material for weeks at a time, and 
if he had no one available to drive them, he took the reins 
himself. He boarded many of the workmen, and sometimes 
paid their wages out of his own pocket. And at last became 
financially embarrassed and actually poor. And in his pov- 
erty he had ' the additional grief of feeling that his services 
were forgotten.' He later became Steward of Lane Seminary 
in Cincinnati and afterwards of Western Reserve College." 

Edward was born in Amherst on January 1, 1803, edu- 
cated in the public schools of Amherst and in Amherst Acad- 
emy, was a member of the first junior class of the College, 
but transferred to Yale for his senior year and took his degree 
in 1823. He needed a degree and Amherst did not have the 
right to grant degrees until 1825. He studied law for two 
years in his father's ofiice and a third year at the Northamp- 
ton Law School, and began practice in Amherst in 1826. His 
practice continued for almost fifty years; he became the lead- 
ing lawyer in the town; represented the town in the legisla- 
ture on two occasions; for two years was a member of the 
Massachusetts Senate; for two years a member of the Gov- 
ernor's Council; and for one term a member of Congress. 

" Edward Dickinson," says Tyler, " made enemies by his 

unbending firmness of purpose and his great freedom and 
boldness of speech under excitement; but no enemy, whether 
personal or pohtical, has ever questioned the integrity of his 
character, the purity of his life, or the breadth, depth, and 
intensity of his public spirit." He retired as treasurer in 1873 
and died a year later. 

Dickinson's initial salary as treasurer was $300 per an- 
num, the same as his predecessor's. When he retired, nearly 
forty years later, his salary had increased to $666.67. 

When Dickinson took office, economic conditions were de- 
teriorating in the country as a whole. There was a crop fail- 
ure in 1835, and two others in 1837 and 1838. In May 1837 
the panic broke, with the suspension of the New York banks. 
In the summer of 1838, specie payments were resumed, but 
another reaction set in. Banks failed by the hundreds, unem- 
ployment spread, and prices fell. In 1841 the United States 
Bank suspended again, and was liquidated with the total loss 
of the stockholders' money. It was not until 1843 that busi- 
ness began to improve, but recovery was slow until 1845. 
Railroad construction was undertaken on an unprecedented 
scale, foreign capital came to this country, and for ten years 
we had a period of sustained prosperity known as the Golden 
Age. While New England suffered less than other sections of 
the country in the panic of 1837, it was a most trying time for 
a young treasurer of a struggling college. Happily, both the 
College and its treasurer survived. 

I have been unable to find any of the books of account or 
other official records kept by Treasurer Dickinson. We have, 
however, the minutes of the Prudential Committee for this 
period, and they illustrate dramatically in what sore financial 
straits the College was. At its meeting in March 1834, the 
Committee authorized the treasurer to borrow $300 to buy 
wood. In July 1837, it authorized him to borrow $500 from 
the town. In April 1838, it authorized him to borrow $2,000. 
In August 1839, the Committee requested the Trustees " to 
direct in what manner funds shall be raised to pay the debts 
of the College." In June 1841, the Committee authorized the 
treasurer to borrow from the Charity Fund. In May 1842, it 


authorized him to borrow $100 from S. F. Cutler. And in July 
of the same year, it authorized him to place a mortgage on 
the college buildings. 

At the same meeting in 1842, there is a feeble suggestion 
of better things to come; the College receives thirty shares 
of the Randolph ( Massachusetts ) Bank, but the donor is to 
retain the income during his lifetime and that of his wife. 
And in October 1842 there is another bright spot; the treas- 
urer is authorized to loan on good security any money that 
may be paid in for professorships. 

But in August 1843 the Committee was forced to author- 
ize the treasurer to place a mortgage on the president's house. 
And in February 1845 there is further borrowing from the 
Charity Fund. 

Tyler tells us of the Herculean eflPorts being made during 
this period to save the College from complete collapse. In 
1841 the debts of the College, he says, had reached an aggre- 
gate of $15,000, and were increasing at the rate of three or 
four thousand dollars each year. In this emergency the Trus- 
tees drafted Dr. Vaill, himself a trustee, as agent of the Col- 
lege. Vaill resigned his pastorate in Brimfield and accepted 
the post, at a salary equal to a professor's salary. For four 
years he spent his entire time in soliciting gifts for the Col- 
lege. In August 1845 he was able to report subscriptions, 
conditional and unconditional, of $67,000, of which he had 
collected and paid into the treasury $51,000. And three years 
later, after the close of his agency, he reported the collec- 
tion of $4,433 additional. Many of the subscriptions were 
made on the condition that the College raise a total of 
$100,000. To meet this condition required $33,000 more. The 
resourceful Dr. Vaill was able to report that David Sears, a 
Boston merchant, was giving the College a fund of $10,000; 
that a benevolent individual had placed the College in his 
will for $11,000; and that he had a letter from another indi- 
vidual saying he had " the full intention " of founding a pro- 
fessorship by a gift of $15,000. The majority of tlie subscrib- 
ers, Tyler says, accepted this as meeting the condition of a 
$100,000 fund, and made their subscriptions unconditional. 

" But," adds Tyler, " deduct from the $51,000 which had 
actually been paid into the treasury by Dr. Vaill, the debt 
which was reported to the legislature in 1838 as $15,000, the 
excess of the outgoes above the income in the interval of 
seven years at the rate of three or four thousand dollars a 
year, and the salary and expenses of the agent which ex- 
ceeded $4000, and it will be seen that very little remained." 
And in a footnote Tyler adds that no one seems to have 
known just what the amount of the college debt was, an 
oblique commentary on the system of bookkeeping employed 
by the College at the time. My own guess is that Treasurer 
Dickinson knew at all times just how much the College owed; 
but as part of the debt was to outsiders and part to the Char- 
ity Fund, and as there was some question in the minds of 
Hitchcock and others as to the propriety of the action of the 
Prudential Committee lq borrowing from the Charity Fund, 
the treasurer was embarrassed to make a positive statement 
as to the amount of the debt. We know that Dickinson was 
a man of stubborn uprightness, he was a competent lawyer; 
and the borrowing from the Charity Fund had begun before 
he became treasurer and was continued by order of the Pru- 
dential Committee, to which committee he was responsible. 
In any event, the College's situation was so desperate that 
the president had no alternative but to tender his resigna- 
tion to the Board. At a special meeting of the Board in 
Worcester in January 1844, the Board accepted President 
Humphrey's resignation. The critical situation of the College 
was now so widely known that the two men whom the Board 
successively elected to the presidency of the College de- 
clined the post. 

But at the Worcester meeting " the first gleam of sunshine 
from without dawned upon the College in the darkness," 
says Tyler. David Sears, the Boston merchant, gave the Col- 
lege $10,000. This was not only the largest donation, but the 
first donation of any considerable magnitude that had ever 
been given at one time by a single individual. It was the be- 
ginning of Mr. Sears' Foundation of Literature and Benevo- 


And a year later, on April 14, 1845, Edward Hitchcock 
was inducted into office as president of the College. On the 
day of his inauguration, the Board accepted the gift of Sam- 
uel Williston of $20,000 to found a professorship of Rhetoric 
and Oratory. A little later Mr. Williston offered $10,000 more 
to found another professorship, provided the gift was 
matched, and Samuel A. Hitchcock of Brimfield gave the nec- 
essary $10,000. The Board named this the Hitchcock Profes- 
sorship of Natural Theology and Geology. Mr. Hitchcock's 
share was paid by the delivery to the College of ten shares 
of the stock of the Hamilton Woolen Company which he had 
bought two years before at par. Later, probably in 1850, 
when Hitchcock thought these securities might fall below 
par, he added two thousand dollars to the gift. Mr. Williston 
then oflFered $20,000 more to found a professorship of Greek 
and Hebrew, and the Board named this the Graves Profes- 
sorship. These gifts of Mr. Williston's amounted to $50,000. 
They were secured by President Hitchcock, who knew that 
Mr, Williston had made a bequest of this amount to the Col- 
lege in his will, and suggested that he anticipate the gift. 
The president in return offered to change the name of the 
College to Williston, but Mr. Williston suggested that no 
action be taken during his lifetime. 

In 1847 the College received its first grant from the State 
of $25,000. The vote of the Board was as follows: 

Voted, That $4000 of the funds of the College, and enough 
more from the $25,000 lately given by the State, to amount to 
$12,465 be appropriated to the immediate payment of the col- 
lege debt; which those sums would entirely cancel. 

And voted, That of the remainder of the $25,000 bestowed by 
the State, an adequate sum be devoted to the endowment of the 
Professorship of Chemistry and Natural History; which will 
hereafter take the name of the Massachusetts Professorship of 
Chemistry and Natural History. 

" See how altered was the condition of the College! " ex- 
claims Hitchcock. Its debt was paid; it had four endowed 
professorships and the Sears Fund; and it had a new building, 

the Woods Cabinet. No wonder that when the president 
made announcement of these gifts to the student body after 
evening prayers, " the cheering was long and loud." 

We may note in passing that in spite of the reduction in 
the debt by the money raised by Dr. Vaill, there was still a 
debt of over $12,000 in 1847. Never again was the College in 
such desperate straits; financial problems it was to continue 
to have; other presidents would operate for years with 
mounting deficits; other treasurers would borrow money; 
vigorous pruning of expenses would often be necessary; but 
never again would there be grave doubt as to whether the 
College could go on. In 1847 the future of Amherst College 
was assured. Hitchcock saved the College from certain ex- 
tinction. A new era opened. 

The way he did it was relatively simple. President Hum- 
phrey had lost control of the situation. When income de- 
creased, he had been unable to reduce expenses. Each year 
he had spent more than he had taken in; each year the situa- 
tion became more hopeless; each year new efforts were made 
to beg money from the friends of the College; and each year 
the friends of the College became more and more loath 
to contribute to an institution which seemed unable to 
straighten out its ov^ni finances. Hitchcock balanced the 
budget by securing the agreement of his colleagues on the 
faculty to accept as compensation what was left at the end 
of the year after paying the operating expenses of the year. 
The interest on the college debt was not to be paid from cur- 
rent receipts, according to the agreement, and therefore ac- 
cumulated till the debt was liquidated. We have still in the 
files the memorandum in Hitchcock's handwriting contain- 
ing an estimate of expected income, an estimate of operat- 
ing expenses, and an estimate of distribution of the remain- 
der between president and professors. The parties agreed 
that the salary of the president should be 125% of the salary 
of a professor. They became partners in a co-operative enter- 
prise. Each had the same incentive to save every unnecessary 
expense for the College. At once the budget was in balance. 
And throughout his term as president he made it a rule 


which for him had almost a reUgious sanction, to spend no 
money for the College until the money was in hand. At the 
same time he discontinued the general solicitation of funds 
through an agent, and he never resumed this practice. The 
members of the Congregational churches in the towns of 
Massachusetts were no longer dunned every year for a con- 
tribution to the College; they soon saw that the College was 
a going concern. Hitchcock was as deeply religious as his 
predecessor, but he was a realist through and through. He 
was dyspeptic, crotchety, and pessimistic; he had none of the 
sanguine temperament which characterized the men who 
founded the College. They trusted in the Lord, and expected 
the ravens to feed the sons of the prophet who were gath- 
ered on " the consecrated eminence "; he trusted equally in 
the Lord, but not in the ravens. He insisted that the College 
pay its way each year. They founded the College; he placed 
it on sound foundations. They begged from the churchgoing 
public until they wore out this generous clientele; he pre- 
sented the opportunity to a few men of large property to es- 
tablish permanent funds to support the professorships. Men 
who were unwilling to pour money into a well that seemed 
to have no bottom recognized the integrity of his manage- 
ment of the finances of the College. Bruce Barton a hundred 
years later spoke of a gift toward the endowment of the Col- 
lege as " an investment in immortality." Hitchcock used the 
same argument, though probably not the same words. It was 
nearly eighty years before the College made another general 
appeal for funds; and then the appeal was to the alumni of 
the College, and was primarily for additional endowment. 

We have in the files the first statement of the assets of the 
College. It is undated, but was prepared in 1847 by Presi- 
dent Hitchcock and certified by him. It is entitled " State- 
ment of the Funds, Buildings, Libraries, etc., of Amherst 
College " and may be summarized as follows : 

" 1. Charity Fund $51,807 

2. Williston Professorship 20,000 

3. Hitchcock Professorship 20,000 

4. Graves Professorship 20,000 

5. Legislative grant of $25,000 of which first in- 
installment of $5,000 aheady paid; second in- 
stallment anticipated to pay debts. Balance 
$13,333 will endow Massachusetts Professor- 

6. Stimson Fund (3,333) 

7. Sears Fund 12,700 

8. About $4,000 in funds not active, but subject to 
life estates 

9. Real Estate: 

1. Parsons House 2,000 

2. President's House 5,000 

3. Chapel 10,000 

4. 3 Dormitories 24,000 

5. New cabinet and observatory 8,000 

10. Philosophical and chemical apparatus 

11. Library 15,000 volumes 

12. Number of students 150 " 

We are not accustomed to seeing students listed as an asset 
in a financial statement, but Hitchcock was a realist and 
knew that their fees helped to pay the costs of operating the 

Three men made large gifts to the College's endowment at 
this time: David Sears of Boston, Samuel Williston of East- 
hampton, and Samuel A. Hitchcock of Brimfield. Each was a 
wealthy man according to the standards of the day; each 
made generous subsequent gifts to Amherst; and Williston 
served as trustee of the College for a third of a century. 

David Sears ( 1787-1871 ) was one of the richest men of his 
day in Boston. His father had come up to Boston from Cape 
Cod and made a fortune in trade with the East Indies and 
China. David graduated from Harvard, and before he was 
thirty inherited his father's estate of some eight hundred 
thousand dollars, which was said to be the largest amount 
ever inherited in New England by a single individual. His 
property was increased by his marriage to the daughter of 
Jonathan Mason. He built himself one of the finest houses 
on Beacon Street, overlooking Boston Common, a house 
now occupied by the Somerset Club, and lived as a young 


man of fashion. As he grew older, he made generous gifts to 
rehgious and educational causes, developed what is now the 
section of Longwood, lived the life of a courtly gentleman, 
and served for a time on the Board of Overseers of Harvard. 
He never visited Amherst, although often invited. His inter- 
est in the College was enlisted by the self-denial and sacri- 
fice of the faculty at the time when they were struggling des- 
perately, with Hitchcock, to save the College. 

His first gift established the Sears Fund of Literature and 
Benevolence, the first permanent fund for general purposes 
given to the College. It comprised a piece of land at the cor- 
ner of Leverett and Barton Streets, Boston, valued at $5,000 
and subject to a lease running till 1928. At the same time, 
Mr. Sears gave the College $5,000 in cash. The deed of gift, 
which is long and complicated, provided that one-half the 
income should be added each year to the principal, " pro- 
vided that the donor or his representatives do not exercise 
the right of demanding this half which is reserved to them." 

In 1847 Mr. Sears deeded to the College another piece of 
Boston real estate, on Brattle Street. This was subject to a 
lease running to 1919; the rent was " fourteen ounces, eight 
pennyweight and eighteen grains of pure gold; or two hun- 
dred and sixteen ounces and two grains of pure silver in coins 
of the United States of America, on the premises to be deliv- 
ered, in four equal and quarter yearly payments." 

In 1872 the annual income of the fund was some $2,300, 
and the accumulated cash capital just under $25,000. The 
Leverett Street property was sold by the College in the 
1920's for $2,997, and the Brattle Street property has re- 
cently (1946) been sold for $9,000. In 1948 the Sears Fund 
as a whole amounted to about $260,000. Sears later gave the 
College a mystery box, not to be opened until 1950, which 
now rests in the vaults of the treasurer's office. 

David Sears died in 1871, nearly thirty years after his 
gifts to the College. During his lifetime he never made de- 
mand on the College for one-half the income. But in 1872 his 
eldest son, David, Junior, made such a demand, which he re- 
newed the following year. The demand was referred to the 

Finance Committee of the Board, and President Stearns 
called on young Mr. Sears and so did Alpheus Hardy, a dis- 
tinguished trustee. Hardy was, in fact, managing the Sears 
family trusts. Hardy, speaking for the Board, refused the de- 
mand of young Sears and asserted the right of the College to 
the entire income. In a few months the junior Sears himself 
died. No further demand was made by the Sears heirs and 
the matter was dropped. 

More than a third of a century passed and all of the men 
who were involved in the negotiations of the 1870's had been 
gathered to their fathers. In 1909 the trustees of the Sears 
real estate trusts advised the College that they intended to 
make a demand, and the College retained counsel. The Col- 
lege was represented by Arthur H. Wellman of the class of 
1878. Wellman took an opinion from John Chipman Gray, 
then and for many years one of the most learned professors 
at the Harvard Law School and senior member of the firm of 
Ropes, Gray, Boyden and Perkins of Boston. Gray was re- 
puted to know more about the rule against perpetuities than 
any other lawyer in the United States or England, and his 
acquaintance with the intricacies of the ancient law of prop- 
erty was legendary in the Law School. Gray charged the 
College two hundred and fifty dollars for his opinion, a copy 
of which I have secured and placed in the official archives. 
To assist him in the formal presentation of the College's case, 
Wellman retained C. M. Rogerson, a leader of the Boston 
bar. In 1911 suit was brought against the College by the 
Sears trustees in the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachu- 
setts, and the matter was referred by the court to Roland W. 
Boyden as Master. Boyden was a partner of Gray and a law- 
yer of great ability and integrity. Years later Charles B. Rugg, 
now a trustee of the College, joined Boyden's firm at Boy- 
den's invitation. Unfortunately, Boyden as Master ruled 
against the College, and the College filed exceptions to his 
report. The dispute involved accumulated income of some- 
thing like seventy thousand dollars, as well as the determina- 
tion of the right to future income. In 1918 the Supreme 
Court handed down its decision in favor of the College. The 


opinion was written by Judge Crosby and concurred in by 
his colleagues. Chief Justice Rugg, '83, who had recently be- 
come a trustee of the College, took no part in the decision. 

The case involved a number of highly technical questions 
of law which we need not go into. In efiFect, the Court held 
that the rights of the Sears interests were barred by the Stat- 
ute of Limitations and by laches, so far as the Brattle Street 
property was concerned, and that no question would arise in 
regard to the Leverett Street property until the expiration of 
the ground lease in 1928. Judge Crosby's opinion makes it 
clear that in the judgment of the court the Sears interests 
had a clear right to one-half the income on demand in 1872 
and 1873, but that as they dropped the matter for a third of 
a century, their rights were extinguished. The curious reader 
will find the case reported in 229 Massachusetts Reports at 
page 374, Amory vs. The Trustees of Amherst College. 

Samuel Williston (1795-1874) was the antithesis of David 
Sears. Born in Easthampton, the son and grandson of Con- 
gregational ministers, he early went to work on a farm to 
supplement the family income, as his father's salary never 
exceeded three hundred dollars a year. He often said in later 
life, when his own gifts to the College had exceeded $150,- 
000, that as a youth he felt his father was excessively char- 
itable in giving a few dollars to aid the College out of the 
meager savings from his small salary. Samuel began to work 
on a farm when he was ten and continued till he was sixteen, 
when his wages amounted to seven dollars a month. At six- 
teen his schooling ceased altogether, but at nineteen he 
walked most of the way from Easthampton to Andover, car- 
rying all he had in a single bundle, to seek admission to Phil- 
lips Academy as a scholarship boy. He won a scholarship, 
but his eyesight failed him almost at once, and he was forced 
to resign. As a clerk in West Springfield and later in New 
York, he was unsuccessful because of eyesight and poor 
health, and he returned to Easthampton to become a farmer. 
In 1826 his wife commenced the business of making cloth- 
covered buttons at home, and gradually extended the work 
to her neighbors. As the demand grew, Williston transferred 

the household business to a factory basis, and with the help 
of machinery designed by his brother-in-law, Joel Hayden, 
made a large fortune. The total amount of his benefactions 
was over two million dollars. Most of it went to the founda- 
tion and support of Williston Seminary in Easthampton. In 
1841 he was elected a trustee of Amherst by the Massachu- 
setts legislature, and he served continuously as a member of 
the Board for thirty-three years. Tyler says of him, " Amherst 
is his foster child; she owes him her preservation, her very 

Joel Hayden, the brother-in-law, is famous in Amherst his- 
tory as the donor of Sabrina. Originally placed in the Hay- 
den garden in Haydenville, Sabrina caused such criticism 
because of her lack of draperies that Hayden solved the 
problem by presenting her to the College. 

The third large donor at this time was Samuel Austin 
Hitchcock (1794-1873) of Brimfield, Massachusetts. His par- 
ents' circumstances were such that he had only a district 
school education, although he would have given a good deal 
for a single term in Monson Academy, to which many Brim- 
field boys went. He engaged in manufacturing in South- 
bridge, Massachusetts, and then became a merchant in Bos- 
ton. He retired early to Brimfield, watched his investments, 
and made large gifts to education, primarily permanent 
funds for scholarships. His gifts to Andover Theological Sem- 
inary had a nominal value of some $120,000 and to Amherst 
a nominal value of $175,000. His final gift to Amherst, made 
a few months before his death and when he was seventy- 
eight years old, consisted of railroad bonds of a par value of 
$100,000, to found the Hitchcock Fund for Scholarships and 
Kindred Purposes. The gift was made at the time of the semi- 
centennial celebration at the College, and was said by Tyler 
at the time to be " the largest sum that ever came at once 
into the treasury of Amherst College." Such a gift must have 
been received with great enthusiasm by the college body, 
and old Mr. Hitchcock must have been deeply affected by 
the response his gift evoked. Before the Trustees could send 
appropriate acknowledgment through the president. Hitch- 


cock had died. The Amherst Student, in reporting his death, 
added that he left an estate of three milHon dollars. It is too 
bad that we cannot leave the matter there, but financial facts 
are stubborn. We shall see later that most of Mr. Hitchcock's 
gifts to this College were in securities of doubtful value, on 
most of which the College was unable to realize. 

We must return now to 1847 when the first gifts from 
Sears, Williston, and Hitchcock, and the subvention from the 
Commonwealth gave the College four endowed professor- 
ships and a Literary and Benevolent Fund, and when the 
debts of the College were finally extinguished. The College 
now had an endowment fund of about $100,000 in the hands 
of the treasurer, as well as the Charity Fund in the hands 
of the Commissioner, which had by this time mounted to 
$52,207. Total resources of $152,000 in addition to its plant, 
and no debts! More important, the budget was in balance, 
and Hitchcock kept it in balance. The treasurer was author- 
ized under a recent vote of the Prudential Committee to loan 
on good security the money in his hands. This was the 
normal form of investment at the time in Amherst. The 
Commissioner of the Charity Fund was making similar in- 
vestments. There was no savings bank; in fact there was no 
bank at all in the town. The college treasurer would have 
no difficulty in finding borrowers who could give adequate 
security by mortgage. Furthermore, he did not have so much 
to invest as the figures given above indicate. The Sears gift 
included only $5,000 in cash; Mr. Williston did not wish to 
take money out of his business and so followed the custom of 
the time by giving his notes and paying the interest until he 
was ready to liquidate the principal; and the College re- 
ceived at this time twenty shares of Hamilton Woolen Com- 
pany at par in payment of a gift of Mr. Hitchcock. 

One of the early investments made by Treasurer Dickin- 
son is of special interest and has, I believe, been misinter- 
preted. It was a loan of $10,000 to the Northampton Associa- 
tion of Education and Industry, made in 1846 and secured 
by a first mortgage on 305 acres of land in what is now the 
city of Florence, including buildings, mills, water power, 

flumes, and " geering," all part of the property of the defunct 
Northampton Silk Manufacturing Company. In the previous 
decade silk culture and silk manufacture were developing 
rapidly in this country aided by encouragement from federal 
and subsidy from state governments. A group of capital- 
ists embarked on an ambitious project in this field in North- 
ampton. In two years, with the encouragement of the state 
bounty, the planting of mulberry trees increased severalfold. 
In 1838 the mulberry bubble burst, and the company was 
forced to suspend. Then in 1841 the property was acquired 
by the recently formed Northampton Association of Educa- 
tion and Industry, a transcendentalist community embodying 
many of the proposals of Fourier, the French " apostle of so- 
cial harmony." The community resembled in many ways the 
ones established at about the same time at Brook Farm and 
at Hopedale. One of the leaders of the Northampton group 
was George W. Benson, a brother-in-law of William Lloyd 
Garrison. Annual conferences were held in which representa- 
tives of Brook Farm, Hopedale, and Northampton partici- 
pated and exchanged reports on progress. 

Differences of opinion developed among the members, 
some withdrew, the remainder found it impossible to secure 
adequate capital, and by the summer of 1846 the Associa- 
tion was in debt to the amount of $40,000 and short of work- 
ing capital. At this point the loan of $10,000 was negotiated 
with Amherst College, secured by a first mortgage on a large 
part of the productive real estate of the Association. The sig- 
natures to the mortgage were witnessed by Edward Dickin- 
son. That the security was adequate is indicated by the fact 
that the loan was paid with interest and the mortgage dis- 
charged of record on August 2, 1853. 

At about the same time Benson, who had been president 
of the Association, bought from the Association for $24,500 
the property not mortgaged to Amherst. He foraied a cor- 
poration in which he was joined either then or later by Sam- 
uel Williston and his brother and by Joel Hayden, and the 
mills were used for cotton manufacture. The Northampton 
Association of Education and Industry was dissolved, and 


the community which had developed under the name of 
Bensonville changed its name to Florence and continued to 
grow as the century advanced. 

For the story of this transcendentalist experiment in 
Northampton I am indebted to a monograph by Alice E. Mc- 
Bee, published in the Smith College Studies in History. The 
author is, however, in error in saying that Amherst College 
threw good money after bad, and in describing the security 
taken by the College as a third or fourth mortgage. The Col- 
lege made only one investment; this was made when the ex- 
periment was about to be wound up; it was secured by a first 
mortgage; and it was paid in full. And the implication that 
the investment was made to encourage an idealistic experi- 
ment in socialism is, I believe, entirely without foundation. 
Such a use of college funds would have been highly im- 
proper. That Samuel Williston was an active member of the 
Amherst Board, that he was one of the hardest-headed busi- 
nessmen in Western Massachusetts, that his own mills were 
only a few miles away, seem to me conclusive evidence that 
this loan, made when the experiment was in extremis, was 
made solely on the basis of a sound investment with ade- 
quate collateral. 

By 1847, when President Hitchcock established the Col- 
lege on a firm financial foundation, the Board had changed. 
Only one of the original members of the Board, Dr. Vaill, still 
remained. One by one the others had retired during the quar- 
ter century of the College's life, and their places had been 
taken by new men. Of these, several were to play a signifi- 
cant part in guiding the finances and business affairs of the 
College. They were men of larger affairs, men in touch with 
the expanding business of the country and participating in 
this expansion, and men in touch with the investment market 
in Boston where they were investing their own funds and 
those entrusted to them in the stocks of manufactiuing cor- 
porations and railroads and banks. But, except for Governor 
Bullock, they were not Amherst graduates. Boston was be- 
coming an important financial center; it was financing many 
of the railways, most of the textile manufacturing corpora- 

tions; its bankers were dealing in government securities; and 
it was loaning money for the development of the West. For 
the next fifty years and more, the finances of the College 
were to be guided largely by Massachusetts trustees whose 
financial connections were with Boston rather than with 
New York. The first of these new trustees was Samuel Willis- 
ton, of whom we have already spoken. The next was Henry 
Edwards, who was elected to the Board in 1844 and served 
continuously until 1884, 

Henry Edwards (1798-1885) was born in Northampton 
and educated in the Northampton schools. He was of the 
same family as Jonathan Edwards. After an apprenticeship 
in Boston and New York stores, he opened an importing busi- 
ness in Boston. For five years he resided in Paris. On his re- 
turn to Boston he held a number of oflBces, was an active 
merchant on Kilby Street, and was an indefatigable worker 
for Amherst. When elected to the Amherst Board he was a 
member of the firm of Edwards & Stoddard, and was reputed 
to be worth $100,000. He had recently inherited substantial 
property by the death of his father-in-law, Samuel Dorr. He 
is described by a contemporary in 1846 as " a man of activ- 
ity, promptness, and business talent, and a pillar of the Or- 
thodox church." While Williston, who lived close to the Col- 
lege, served often on building committees of the Board, 
selected contractors, and watched over the progress of work 
under construction, Edwards was watching the College's in- 
vestments. Edwards' town house was at 34 Commonwealth 
Avenue, Boston, and his summer home in the Berkshires; on 
his way back and forth he would stop off at Amherst to con- 
fer on investment policy with the college treasurer. 

In 1852 Alexander Hamilton Bullock was elected to the 
Board, and in 1855, Alpheus Hardy. They both were to play 
an active part in the management of the College's finances. 
Bullock (1816-1882) was the fourth alumnus of the College 
to be elected to the Board. Born in Royalston and graduat- 
ing from Amherst in 1837, he spent his life in Worcester in 
the practice of the law. He was successively state representa- 
tive, state senator, judge, mayor of Worcester, and governor 


of the Commonwealth. He received the degree of Doctor of 
Laws both from Amherst and from Harvard and was a trus- 
tee of Amherst for thirty years. For most of that time he was 
an active member of the Finance Committee. His portrait 
hangs in Converse Memorial Library. 

Alpheus Hardy ( 1815-1887 ) was elected to the Board in 
1855 and served for twenty-two years. A close personal 
friend of President Stearns, he was elected to the Board at 
the first meeting after Stearns took office. Born in Chatham, 
Massachusetts, he studied for a short time at Phillips Acad- 
emy, Andover, but was forced to resign because of sickness. 
At nineteen he went into business for himself in Boston, and 
developed a large and prosperous shipping and importing 
business. In addition, he was entrusted with the care and ad- 
ministration of ten large estates, including the Sears estate, 
and was an active member of the Boards of Andover Semi- 
nary, Phillips Academy, and the American Board of Commis- 
sioners for Foreign Missions. Throughout his service on the 
Amherst Board, he was one of the most valued members of 
the Finance Committee. His Boston home was at 35 Brim- 
mer Street and his offices at 181 State Street. 

He gave the fund for the Hardy Prize in Public Speaking, 
and made other gifts to the College. One of his generous im- 
pulses was to have a profound effect in the Orient. One of 
his sailing ships trading in the Far East brought to this coun- 
try a young Japanese of good family who had left his coun- 
try when it was a capital offense for a Japanese to emigrate. 
After talking with the young man, he sent him to Phillips 
Academy at Andover, and then to Amherst College. Joseph 
Hardy Neesima graduated from the College in 1870 and 
from Andover Theological Seminary four years later. He 
later founded and was the head of Doshisha University in 
Kyoto, Japan, and received Amherst's highest honorary de- 
gree in 1889. Mr. Hardy resigned from the Amherst Board in 
1871 and again in 1873, but was persuaded by his colleagues 
to withdraw his resignation on both occasions. In 1877 he re- 
signed again and finally. He died as the result of an acci- 
dent in 1887. 
[52 1 

Edward Dickinson had been treasurer less than a decade 
when the western part of the state became excited by the 
prospect of raihoad transportation. In 1842 a charter was 
granted to the Northampton & Springfield Railroad Corpora- 
tion, for the purpose of building a road " commencing at a 
point within one mile of the Court House (Northampton), 
crossing the Connecticut River near Mt. Holyoke " and pro- 
ceeding south to Springfield. The inhabitants of the towns 
on the east side of the river then called a convention at 
Sweetser's Hall in Amherst, as a result of which efforts were 
made to secure a charter for the Hampshire & Franklin Rail- 
road to connect with the Northampton & Springfield at Hock- 
anum and to run north to Millers Falls. The charter was se- 
cured in 1845 and Luke Sweetser, the leading merchant in 
Amherst, was one of the incorporators. Sweetser, we have 
seen, was a member of the Prudential Committee of the 
Board from 1833 till 1864, secretary of the committee during 
his entire term, and " was more than any other member, the 
agent and executive of the committee." When the town of 
Amherst learned that the plans for the Northampton & 
Springfield Railroad had been changed and that the road 
was to be built on the west side of the river to Holyoke, great 
indignation was aroused, and the men behind the Hampshire 
& Franklin Railroad went to the legislature and secured in 
1846 a charter for the Mt. Holyoke Railroad Company to run 
from Hockanum south to Willimansett and there join the 
Northampton & Springfield Railroad. Sweetser was again one 
of the active participants in this venture. Another meet- 
ing was held in Sweetser's Hall in Amherst, and called 
to order by Edward Dickinson. Professor Snell of Amherst 
addressed the meeting, reporting on the practical route for 
constructing a railroad around the western end of Mt. Hol- 
yoke and illustrating his talk with drawings. Subscription 
books were opened and in six weeks the citizens of Amherst 
had subscribed for $90,000 of the stock. The Northampton & 
Springfield Railroad was opened for travel on December 13, 
1845. In 1846 the Hampshire & Franklin Railroad and the 
Mt. Holyoke Railroad, neither of which had raised enough 


money to start construction, decided to unite. John Leland, 
former treasurer of the College, and Luke Sweetser were 
elected directors and surveys were begun. In spite of heroic 
efforts to raise the necessary funds, the leaders of the proj- 
ect were forced to surrender their charter. 

Amherst began again, and in 1848 some of its citizens se- 
cured a charter for the Amherst Branch Railroad Company 
to run from a point in Amherst within half a mile of the Col- 
lege to the tracks of the railroad in Northampton. Subscrip- 
tion books were opened and Amherst citizens subscribed for 
$31,000 of the stock. Edward Dickinson brought the matter 
to the attention of the Board of Trustees of the College in 
his treasurer's report in 1848. The Board referred the matter 
to a committee composed of Trustees Tappan, Calhoun, and 
Armstrong. The committee recommended that the College 
subscribe $15,000 " on condition that it (the Amherst Branch 
Railroad ) be adopted by the Connecticut River Railroad ( a 
combination of the Northampton & Springfield and the 
Greenfield & Northampton) and made a part of same: pro- 
vided the Prudential Committee can find means to pay the 
assessments to that amount." The Board at its annual meet- 
ing on August 8, 1848 accepted the report and adopted its 
recommendation. This project too was abandoned, because 
the necessary funds could not be raised. The Hampshire & 
Franklin Express announced that the road would cost $160,- 
000 and that not more than $40,000 was subscribed. And at 
the next annual meeting of the Board of the College ( August 
7, 1849 ) the trustees rescinded their vote on the ground that 
the conditions had not been met. 

That there was a sharp division of opinion in the Amherst 
Board is indicated by the next minute at this meeting. The 
Board's committee reported that it " regards the investment 
of the funds of the College in New Railroad projects as a sub- 
ject of great delicacy & one requiring the utmost care." " Al- 
though Railroad projects," the committee continued, " are 
well worthy the attention of business men, yet we think a 
very strong case should be made out, to render proper the 
investment of the funds of our literary and benevolent insti- 

tutions in new projects of this kind. We do not mean to be 
understood as expressing any opinion upon the investment 
of funds in old and well established Railroad corporations." 
The old and well established railroad corporations were of 
course still in their infancy; the Boston & Worcester had 
been open only fourteen years and the Boston & Albany was 
still nearly a score of years in the future. 

The town of Amherst still had no railroad when in 1850 a 
railway was opened from New London to Palmer. In 1851 
Edward Hitchcock, Edward Dickinson, and Luke Sweetser 
were among the incorporators of the Amherst & Belchertown 
Railroad. Hitchcock was president of the College and Dick- 
inson was treasurer. The charter empowered the corporation 
to build from Palmer through Amherst to Montague. At the 
annual meeting of the College trustees on August 11, 1851 
the Board authorized the Prudential Committee to invest 
$5,000 of college funds in the stock of the Amherst & Belcher- 
town Railroad. In spite of the caution urged by the more 
conservative members of the Board, the combination of the 
president, the treasurer, and the secretary of the Prudential 
Committee carried the day. In February of the following 
year, at a meeting in Sweetser's Hall, it was announced that 
funds had been raised to build the section from Palmer to 
Amherst. Ground was broken at once, and on May 14, 1853 
the first passenger train was run over the line. The locomo- 
tive was named Amherst. The first paying passenger on the 
road is said to have been Edward P. Crowell, then a col- 
lege senior and later one of the College's best loved pro- 

Two years later, at the annual meeting of the Board on 
August 6, 1855, the committee appointed to review the re- 
port of the treasurer, made up of Trustees Calhoun and Al- 
den, " regret to find so large a portion of the college funds 
is invested in Railroad stocks, and recommend that they be 
disposed of, as soon as it can be done, without too great a 
sacrifice, and invested in securities of a more reliable and 
permanent value." But there was doubtless no satisfactory 
market for the Amherst & Belchertown stock without heavy 


sacrifice. In another two years the road was in grave finan- 
cial trouble, and in January 1858 the road was sold and 
passed into possession of the bondholders. New stock was 

At a special meeting of the Amherst Board of Trustees 
held in Boston on July 23, 1858, the Board appointed a com- 
mittee made up of Trustees Hardy, Williston, and Judge Per- 
kins to confer with the directors of the railroad at the re- 
quest of the directors. And at an adjourned meeting, upon 
hearing the report of the committee, the Amherst trustees 
voted to authorize the treasurer to invest $3,500 in the new 
stock of the Amherst & Belchertown. Three years later the 
Amherst Board directed the treasurer to charge off as a loss 
the fifty shares of old stock belonging to the Professorship of 
Rhetoric and Oratory, and " whenever the funds of the Col- 
lege permit," the treasurer was to restore the fund to its orig- 
inal amount. In 1864 the Amherst & Belchertown was ab- 
sorbed by the New London Northern on the basis of two 
shares of New London Northern for three shares of Amherst 
& Belchertown. And at the annual meeting of the Amherst 
Board on July 10, 1865, the treasurer was authorized to pur- 
chase three thousand dollars of the bonds of the New Lon- 
don Northern, " or if the Prudential Committee thinks best 
five thousand dollars." 

The College seems to have bought $5,000 of new stock and 
$3,000 of the bonds. The bonds carried interest at 6% and 
were paid at maturity in 1885. The College received $3,200 
par value of stock in the New London Northern which it 
held until 1912, when it was sold for $6,640. The College had 
invested some $13,000 in the project, for which it ultimately 
recovered $9,640. It had been fortunate. For as we look back 
today, with the advantage of hindsight, we realize that the 
conservative wing of the Board was wise in believing that 
these new railway projects were businessmen's investments 
rather than proper investment channels for trust funds. 

The railway today is in active operation as a part of the 
Central Vermont, which in turn is controlled by the Cana- 
dian National Railroad. Its passenger service from Amherst 

is limited, but every night its heavy freights rumble through 
the town hauling its cars from its Canadian connections to 
tidewater at New London. And the coal supply of the Col- 
lege comes north over the line to the college sidetrack. 

In 1854 Hitchcock was succeeded by Stearns in the presi- 
dency. The minutes of the Board for the August 1854 meet- 
ing contain the following interesting paragraph. The Treas- 
urer's Report and the Charity Fund Report were referred to 
a committee consisting of Dr. Alden and Mr. Edwards. The 
committee on the following morning asked that the two re- 
ports be approved, and then added that " in view of the 
great increase of labor in the Treasurer's department, they 
recommend that his salary be fixed hereafter at Six Hundred 
dollars, and that his salary for the past year be made up to 
the same sum. 

" The committee further recommend the annual appoint- 
ment of a Financial Committee whose duty it shall be to ad- 
vise the Treasurer in making investments, and annually to 
examine all securities representing the funds of the College 
in the care of the Trustees, and make, in concurrence with 
the Treasurer such changes in the investments as the safety 
of the funds and the interests of the College may require — 
and report their doings annually to the Trustees." 

The Board approved, and elected a Financial Committee 
consisting of Mr. Child, Mr. Williston, and Mr. Edwards. 

Mr. Williston and Mr. Edwards we already know. Linus 
Child ( 1802-1870 ) was a member of the Board from 1844 to 
1856. Born in Woodstock, Connecticut, a graduate of Yale in 
the Class of 1824, he was a practicing lawyer in Southbridge, 
Massachusetts, from 1827 to 1845. He then moved to Lowell, 
where he was in charge of the Boott Manufacturing Com- 
pany for seventeen years. He then resumed the practice of 
his profession in Boston. He was a trustee of Phillips Acad- 
emy at Andover, of Andover Theological School, of the 
American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions. He 
was a wise counselor, in whom President Stearns placed great 

In 1855 the College acquired its first substantial invest- 


ment in New England textile stocks. The first modern cotton 
mill in this country had been built in Waltham in 1814. Dur- 
ing the following haK century cotton mills and woolen mills 
sprang up in New England along the banks of our principal 
rivers, and particularly along the banks of the Merrimac 
River. In Lowell and Lawrence and Nashua and Manchester 
new mills were built, and cotton manufacturing had become 
by 1860 the leading industry in the country. It was in the 
New England textile industry that the corporate form of or- 
ganization was first generally employed. On the death of 
Samuel Appleton of Boston, his trustees offered the College 
$10,000 for the construction of Appleton Cabinet, and paid 
this gift by a check for $200 and the transfer to the College of 
stocks in eight New England textile corporations which had 
been " apprised " a few months before at $10,000. The list in- 
cluded Amoskeag, Appleton, Merrimac, Stark, Hamilton, 
Suffolk, Massachusetts, and Manchester Print Works. In 
most cases the College received only a single share, but the 
shares had a par of $1,000. Amoskeag, for example, was taken 
at $1,120 per share and Merrimac at $1,300 per share. The 
Board authorized Trustees Bullock and Child to receive the 
stock in behalf of the College. And the Board also seems to 
have decided to hold the securities and sell other assets to 
pay the construction costs of the new building. Even in 1858, 
three years later, the Board voted to defer the sale of manu- 
facturing stocks, and instructed the treasurer to consult with 
Trustee Hardy as to the proper time for selling. Other gifts 
and legacies came to the College in New England textile 
stocks; the legacy of Dr. Walker, ten years later, included 
stock in twelve such companies. And for more than fifty years 
the College continued to have a substantial investment posi- 
tion in this field. 

Samuel Appleton, a New Hampshire farm boy, had first 
worked as a laborer in Maine. Later he moved to Boston, en- 
tered the dry goods business, became an importer, and later 
a manufacturer. He accumulated a fortune estimated at a 
million dollars, and, having no children, he was said to give 
away more money each year than any other man in Boston. 

After ten years of unbroken prosperity, during which rail- 
road construction had continued at a high rate, particularly 
in the West, our economy suffered a sharp contraction, which 
is known as the Crisis of 1857. The initial incident was the 
failure of the Ohio Life & Trust Company, with liabilities of 
about seven million dollars. Its credit had been very high 
and it had borrowed heavily in the New York market. The 
loss of the steamship Central America with over a million of 
gold enhanced the stringency. There were many failures, 
and in September the banks of Philadelphia, Baltimore, and 
Washington suspended. Stocks fell over forty per cent and 
within a fortnight twenty thousand people were thrown out 
of work in New York City alone. By October, the New York 
banks (with one exception) suspended, followed in a few 
days by the Boston banks. The crisis was brief, liquidation 
was rapid, and by spring 1858 money was easy and business 
was resuming. 

The first half of the century had seen the westward expan- 
sion of the country, the development of railroad and steam- 
boat transportation, the growth of textile manufacturing in 
New England, the increasing use of the corporate form of 
organization for the expanding business of the country, and 
the rise of the Stock Exchanges. The first association which 
preceded the Stock Exchange had been fonned in 1792. Dur- 
ing the half century the markets in New York and Boston and 
Philadelphia had developed. In the 1850's the securities 
traded in on the New York market were first railroads, then 
governments, then banks, insurance companies, gas and coal 
companies. In Boston, the New England textile stocks 
formed the most important security traded in, to be followed 
later by copper mining companies. The first half of the cen- 
tury also witnessed an amazing growth in education at the 
college level. In 1800 it is estimated there were some twenty- 
four colleges in the country, with a total student enrollment 
of between one and two thousand. By 1860 the number of 
colleges had risen to two hundred and fifty. 

In the last days of 1861 the banks suspended again. This 
suspension was not necessary, but was taken mistakenly as a 


preparation for war. The panic of 1861 was sharp and short, 
and by the autumn of 1862 it was over. 

The war resulted in changes in the investment pohcy of 
the College. The College bought substantial blocks of United 
States government bonds paying six per cent interest, and in 
January 1863 the Board authorized Alpheus Hardy to col- 
lect the interest regularly on its governments. At the same 
time the Finance Committee recommended that the treas- 
urer make no more individual loans; that he collect those out- 
standing; and that he invest thereafter in " such stocks as the 
treasurer thinks best." The vote of the Board, however, spe- 
cifically excepted small loans secured by endorsement made 
to those connected with the College. 

In 1866 the Board revised this action which had left with 
the treasurer the discretion as to the stocks he should buy. It 
now provided that no investments should be bought or sold 
without the approval of the Finance Committee. In addition, 
it voted to instruct the treasurer to register all government 
bonds. It defined the treasurer's duties to include " all ex- 
terior secular duties and business of the College." And in 
1872 the Board directed that all funds except registered 
bonds be deposited in safe deposit vaults in Boston, and that 
no person should have access to the college vault except the 
treasurer and Henry Edwards of the Board. 

We have seen that in 1847, at the end of its first quarter 
century, the College was free from debt and had total re- 
sources of approximately $150,000 in addition to its plant. 
Between 1847 and 1872, when the College celebrated its 
semicentennial, it received some thirty-three permanent 
funds, having a total value of some four hundred thousand 
dollars, in addition to gifts for buildings and for current ex- 
penses. These funds are listed in the order of their establish- 
ment in the Report of the Finance Committee of 1923. They 
include the Moore Beneficiary Fund of $9,000, the Walker 
Instructorship of $10,000, the Walker Professorship of $26,- 
476, the Samuel Green Professorship of $30,000, the Stimson 
Fund of $19,900, the Williston Contingent Fund of $76,024. 
Each of these funds deserves comment. 

Dwight Morrow used to say that the Moore Beneficiary 
Fund was, in his judgment, the most sacred fund possessed 
by the College. It was established in 1858 by bequest of 
President Zephaniah Swift Moore, the first president of the 
College. President Moore served the College from 1821 until 
his death in 1823 at a salary of $1,200 a year. He left his 
widow $4,000, with the right to use both income and prin- 
cipal as she needed. Mrs. Moore used none of the principal 
and only a part of the income, so that at her death, some 
thirty-five years later, the fund amounted to $9,000. Of the 
income, one-third is to be added to the principal annually. 
The remainder is to be used in aiding ministerial students, 
who may be selected and shall be approved by the Brook- 
field Association of Ministers, to which Association a report 
of the fund shall be sent each year. The original amount of 
$9,000 had increased by annual increment to $33,077 on 
June 30, 1948. 

The Walker Instructorship in Mathematics and the Walker 
Professorship of Mathematics and Astronomy were estab- 
lished in 1861 and 1862 by Dr. William J. Walker of Boston 
by gifts of $10,000 for the foi-mer and $26,476 for the latter. 
And the Walker Legacy of $151,020 came to the College in 
1866 by bequest of Dr. Walker for the promotion, study, and 
advancement of mathematical sciences and for the critical 
study of the Latin language. The Walker Prize Fund of 
$6,000 was a gift of Dr. Walker in 1863 to provide prizes 
in the Department of Mathematics. These gifts of nearly 
$200,000 were in addition to Dr. Walker's gifts for Walker 

Dr. William J. Walker of Charlestown was one of the col- 
orful donors to the College, as well as one of the most gener- 
ous and one of the most difficult. After his graduation from 
Harvard in 1810, he studied medicine both in this country 
and in France, and then returned to Boston to practice his 
profession for some thii-ty years. By the judicious investment 
of his savings he made a substantial fortune. He was impa- 
tient, imperious, and large-hearted. It took a gentle, patient, 
and understanding president to negotiate with the doctor, 


and President Stearns had all of these qualities. Walker had 
intended to devote his fortune to his alma mater, Harvard, 
but Harvard objected to some of the numerous restrictions 
he insisted on imposing, and Walker turned elsewhere. In 
1861 President Stearns received a letter from him proposing 
a gift to endow a professorship of mathematics and astron- 
omy. Either just before this letter, or just after it. President 
Stearns made his first call on Dr. Walker. The doctor re- 
ceived him in his well-furnished study in his Boston home; 
but the doctor was completely without clothes except for a 
pair of slippers. The doctor was practicing nudism at home 
for his health. President Stearns was so taken aback that he 
almost forgot what he had come to talk with the doctor 
about. Fortunately, he recovered himself and went on with 
the conversation without comment on the unconventionality 
of his rich host. Later in their acquaintance Stearns tried to 
raise the question of the doctor's religious views, which were 
reported to be unorthodox, only to be cut off with the state- 
ment by the doctor, " I am an Ishmaelite." 

In 1865 Dr. Walker died, leaving a will naming Amherst 
one of four residuary legatees with the Natural History So- 
ciety, Tufts College, and Massachusetts Institute of Tech- 
nology. The will was contested by the heirs, and the Amherst 
Board appointed a committee made up of President Stearns, 
Alpheus Hardy, and Henry Edwards to make settlement. As 
finally adjusted, the heirs received some $300,000 from the 
estate, leaving something over $600,000 to be divided among 
the four institutions. For many years Professor William Cole 
Esty, the first Walker Professor of Mathematics and Astron- 
omy of the Amherst faculty, used to tell the story of the good 
president's first call on the generous doctor. 

The Samuel Green Professorship of Biblical History and 
Interpretation and of the Pastoral Care was established in 
1867 by a donor who desired to remain anonymous during 
his lifetime. He was John Tappan. Born in Northampton, he 
went to Boston and made his fortune in the wholesale im- 
porting business. He became a partner at twenty-two, and 
twenty-two years later retired from business. On a return 

voyage from England in 1805, the vessel on which he was 
traveling struck an iceberg and sank, with the loss of twenty- 
seven persons. Tappan, after three days' exposure in an open 
lifeboat with the remainder of the passengers and crew, was 
picked up by a westbound ship and saved. This experience 
made a radical change in his religious life. He left the Uni- 
tarian Church of Dr. Channing, and became one of the 
founders of the Union Church in Essex Street, of which the 
Reverend Samuel Green became pastor. Tappan became in- 
terested in Amherst because of his interest in temperance. In 
1829 Tappan offered a prize for the best essay on " Narcotic 
and Alcohol Substances," and the prize was won by Profes- 
sor Hitchcock of Amherst, later President Hitchcock. Tappan 
was a trustee of the College from 1834 to 1854. A contempo- 
rary chronicler describing the four Tappan brothers remarks, 
" These Tappans are a remarkable family. They came from 
Connecticut River. Benjamin Tappan, late United States Sen- 
ator from Ohio, seems to differ from the rest of the family, in 
being a radical and not much of a believer in religion; while 
all the other brothers are very conservative and very pious. 
John Tappan is the only one who has succeeded in keeping 
his property." 

Tappan's gift to establish the chair was $30,000. The use of 
the fund was very minutely specified in the deed of gift and 
many conditions were imposed. In 1877 Tappan's heirs de- 
manded a return of the gift on the ground that the College 
had violated the terms by leaving the chair vacant for twelve 
months. Suit was brought against the College, and the mat- 
ter was referred to Henry Hyde, the Boston trustee. In 1879 
the treasurer reported to the Board that the suit had been 
withdrawn on an agreement made by Hyde in behalf of the 
College that the College would pay the bill of the plaintiff's 
counsel. The chair had meanwhile been filled by the appoint- 
ment of Dr. Thomas P. Field of the class of 1834, father of 
Judge Harry Field, '80. In 1905 the Supreme Judicial Court 
of Massachusetts issued a decree on petition filed by the Col- 
lege that " the Trustees of Amherst College shall for the pres- 
ent use the income of said fund for the purpose of paying for 


preaching before the students of said college, the preachers 
to be chosen from clergymen who are not professors of said 
college." From 1905 to 1946 the income was used to pay the 
stipends of the visiting clergymen who preached on Sunday 
in the college church. 

The Stimson Fund came as a bequest from Caleb Stimson 
of Boston. Little is known of him and we do not know how 
his interest in Amherst was aroused. He died during the 
Humphrey administration, but the fund did not come into 
possession of the College until 1852, after the death of a 
brother and nephew who had life interests. It amounted to 
$16,000, and the income is restricted to aid in the education 
of indigent, pious young men for the ministry. 

The Williston Contingent Fund was established in 1871 by 
a gift of Mr. Williston of $50,000, and the use of the income 
was unrestricted. This fund we must discuss somewhat later. 

By 1872 the College's endowment had risen to nearly six 
hundred thousand dollars, an increase of nearly fourfold in 
the quarter century. And its total assets, including campus, 
buildings, books, and collections, were estimated by Treas- 
urer Dickinson to be over a million dollars. The treasurer 
made a statement in summary form for Professor Tyler, who 
wrote the semicentennial history of Amherst, as follows: 

Funds whose income is available for the payment 

of salaries and other current expenses $250,000 

Scholarships 50,000 
Hitchcock donation for scholarships and kindred 

purposes 100,000 

Library 43,000 

Bonds of State of Virginia, unavailable at present 40,000 

Miscellaneous specific appropriations 40,000 

Charity Fund 72,000 


Estimated income of funds for general purposes 22,000 

Estimated income of Students' College bills 28,000 

Estimated expenses, salaries, etc. 54,000 

Estimated deficiency for current year 4,000 


The following year Edward Dickinson retired as treasurer 
of the College at the age of seventy. He had witnessed, and 
been an active participant in, the early struggles of the Col- 
lege as it sank lower and lower into debt; and he had han- 
dled the finances of the College for a quarter century after it 
freed itself from debt. He now had the added satisfaction of 
seeing his son, Austin Dickinson, succeed him in the office of 
treasurer. It had been a long, uphill struggle from the days 
when his father and Colonel Graves conceived the idea of a 
college at Amherst. Now the third generation of the Dickin- 
son family entered the service of Amherst College. A year 
after his retirement, Edward Dickinson died in Boston. 

Edward Dickinson had been a good treasurer, but he was 
not a good accountant. I have come across a memorandum 
in our files written by an old man in North Amherst in 1931 
which throws some light on the bookkeeping of the College 
in Edward Dickinson's day. " When Edward Dickinson, Esq., 
died, he was succeeded by Mr. Wm. Austin Dickinson. The 
latter when he assumed the treasurership, found the College 
Books in a badly mixed up condition. The books were in a 
diary like style and bonds and so on were stufiFed here and 
there in envelopes. Mr. W. A. D. got my brother Wm. to undo 
the tangle and start things, in a ship shape double entry way 
— and Wm. did so — took all his odd and spare time for most 
or all of a year. When brother got through, Mr. Hobbs from 
the Savings Bank became the Bookkeeper. When Wm. fin- 
ished the job a Boston Public Accountant — expert — was en- 
gaged to review the work and report to the Trustees. After 
this 60 year Mr. Piper ( accountant ) had worked an hour on 
the accounts he remarked to Mr. Dickinson, ' The man who 
started this set of books for you knew his business," — and an 
hour later, remarked: 'The man who started these books 
was an old Betty — more particular than necessary.' " Public 
accountant Piper's comments shed a light on his own stand- 
ards of bookkeeping, for they are not satisfactory according 
to present practice. 


Chapter Five 


William Austin Dickinson was born in Amherst in 1829, 
prepared for college at Amherst Academy and Williston 
Seminary, graduated from the College in the class of 1850 
and from the Harvard Law School in 1854; and he practiced 
law in Amherst from 1854 till his death in 1895. He served as 
treasurer of the College for twenty-two years, from 1873 un- 
til his death. As treasurer, he handled the college finances, 
directed the work on the buildings and grounds of the Col- 
lege, superintended all new construction, planted the col- 
lege grove, set out the trees on the town common. Fuess de- 
scribes him as " high-strung, lavish, born to lead," and adds 
that he "had about him a picturesque quality, as he ap- 
peared in his light-colored driving coat, his yellow, wide- 
brimmed planter's hat, and his orange-wood cane." His wife, 
" Sister Sue," made their home on Main Street one of the 
social centers of the town, where distinguished visitors were 
entertained, receptions given, and where there was always 
good conversation. Next door lived Austin's sister Emily, 
who had withdrawn from the world and who lived her own 
life behind the high hemlock hedge. Amherst had changed 
since the days of President Humphrey. 

Austin Dickinson's friendship with Mrs. Mabel Loomis 
Todd, wife of Professor Todd, who brought out the first vol- 
umes of Emily Dickinson's poems, his gift to her of a house 
lot in Amherst, the lawsuit which resulted, and the feud 
which divided the town for a generation are no part of this 
story. Austin's mother was a Norcross, and so connected by 
marriage with my forebears. My grandmother was a frequent 

house guest of his sister Lavinia and knew all the Dickin- 
sons; and so, as a youngster, I heard many Dickinson stories, 
which, fortunately, I promptly forgot. We are concerned 
here with Austin Dickinson, treasurer of the College. 

Austin Dickinson succeeded his father as treasurer at a 
diflBcult time. In the eight years since the close of the war 
there had been a big influx of foreign capital, and railroad 
mileage in the United States had doubled. But the reckoning 
fell due in 1873. The panic began in September and culmi- 
nated in the failure of the Philadelphia banking house of 
Jay Cooke & Co., which had become involved in the financing 
of the Northern Pacific Railroad. The New York Stock Ex- 
change closed for ten days. The New York banks suspended 
cash payments. Prices fell, unemployment rose, failures were 
numerous. The money panic was soon over, but the depres- 
sion which followed lasted four years. Manufacturing cor- 
porations in which the College had invested funds reduced 
their dividends, bonds defaulted their interest, and, on the 
other side of the account, students who had been paying 
their way were in need of scholarship help if they were 
to remain in college. In December 1873 the Amherst Board 
announced the election of Austin Dickinson as college 

By 1875 the situation of the College was so serious that 
the Board asked its Finance Committee — Messrs. Bullock, 
Hardy, and Edwards — to make a study of the finances of the 
College and to present a report with recommendations. The 
Board had defined the duties of its Finance Committee in a 
resolution two years earlier. It was " to advise and direct the 
treasurer in the administration of his office, making them- 
selves acquainted with the financial condition and interests 
of the Treasury so thoroughly that the chances of loss, if not 
rendered impossible, shall be reduced to a minimum." 

The committee spent two days in Amherst, consulting 
with the president, the treasurer, and a number of the pro- 
fessors. It presented a formal report to the Board under date 
of October 27, 1875, prepared and signed by Alexander Bul- 
lock in behalf of the committee, and Governor Bullock had 


the report printed in Worcester. The report deals first with 
the office of the new treasurer. " It is only just that they 
should say," reports the committee, " that the Treasurer has 
begun his official duties in a manner which commands their 
strong and cordial approval. He has opened a new set of 
books in which the accounts of the College are kept intelli- 
gible and perspicuous, and all his methods of conducting the 
business of his office appear to be well conceived and well 

" In the opinion of the Committee," the report continues, 
" it should henceforth be held by the Trustees to be one of 
the duties of the Treasurer, not merely to act the part of a 
recording accountant, but to act as well the part of an ad- 
visory officer over our finance. He must be permitted and he 
must be expected, not merely to audit and pay, but originate 
and suggest. . . . The position of the Treasurer is obviously 
delicate. He resides by the side of a large corps of Professors, 
whose several demands upon the treasury cannot always be 
in accord, whilst they are pressed upon him by them, each 
as paramount. Under the encouragement and support of the 
Trustees it should be his duty to listen to all of them with an 
impartial mind, and then he should submit his recommenda- 
tions to this Board without fear, without favor and without 
reserve. But it must never be forgotten that he is not an of- 
ficer of the Faculty nor responsible to them, but the officer of 
the corporation and responsible to the Trustees." 

This of course is sound doctrine, and it apparently needed 
to be made explicit. The budget was out of hand; President 
Stearns, gentle and conciliatory, was seventy years old and 
had only a few months to live; someone had to trim the 
expenses of the College with a vigorous and impartial hand, 
and with the complete support of the trustees. Someone had 
to say, in eflPect, to the faculty that the College would spend 
for current expenses no more than it took in as income. This 
difficult and unpleasant job was assigned to the treasurer, 
doubtless out of consideration for the aging president who 
would normally have exercised the powers of his office to 
bring the budget into balance. 

The report continues with a dehghtful paragraph on the 
faculty. " In his conferences with some of the members of the 
Faculty the chairman of this Committee has been freslily re- 
minded, that each one of them is found ready to solicit ap- 
propriations for his own department, whilst he may not be so 
ready to concede the claims of other Professors and depart- 
ments. This is not to be regretted; for in the fields of learn- 
ing he is perhaps the ideal Professor whose sense of justice 
towards other departments is subordinated to his enthusiasm 
for his own. ... If Plato and Bacon were professors to- 
gether in the richest university of Christendom, each of them 
would seek to absorb its entire revenues. . . . Let then each 
Professor be encouraged to come for all he can get for his 
own field of study; . . . and when the Board shall have 
made their appropriations, in the exercise of their best intel- 
ligence, and according to the extent of resources at their 
command, — then it cannot be doubted that the heads of de- 
partments at Amherst will make it their duty and pleasure, 
without discontent and with the decorum of liberal scholars, 
to accept the results as justice." This too is sound doctrine. 
And I am happy to say that during my years in the presi- 
dent's office I received the utmost co-operation of the faculty 
of the College when I made up the budget each year. What 
the faculty wanted was an impartial arbitrator who knew the 
work of the College in detail but whose only allegiance was 
to the College as a whole. I never referred such matters to 
the Board or to a committee of the Board as many of my 
predecessors had done. They doubtless did it to place the re- 
sponsibility on the ultimate authority which is exercised by 
the Board. I relieved the Board of what is in any event an 
onerous task, and I think the faculty were better satisfied and 
better served because I knew the College in detail better 
than the Board could, and I had no ties or allegiances to any 
particular department. 

The Finance Committee presented a summary statement 
of the investments of the College as of August 1, 1875, which 
I must give in fuU. 







and Prizes 


Real Estate (exclusive of that 

used for college purposes ) 


$ 34,700 

$ X 

$ 34,700 





U.S. Bonds 




R.R. Bonds 




City Bonds 




State Bonds 




R.R. Stock 




Bank Stock 




Mfg. and other Stocks 




Notes Receivable 




Wm. Reed's legacy ( not yet 

available) 5,000 




Amount of Charity Fund 


" The financial condition of Amherst College at this mo- 
ment," says the Committee, " is not the most cheering, 
though it is by no means desperate." At the beginning of the 
current financial year the College was in debt over tvs^enty- 
eight thousand dollars. It had borrowed the money, not from 
the banks, but from its own funds, as follows : 

From the Sears Fund 

$ 5,300 

From the Stimson Fund 


From the Charity Fund 


From the Walker Legacy Fund 


From the College Church 


From Alfred Norcross 


And for the excess of expense over income 

last year 



" No mention is made of the Bank notes given from time to 
time by the Treasurer to enable him to pay salaries with 
promptness, for these notes are provided for out of income 
and are not an enduring encumbrance." The College was 


borrowing from its own funds and was paying interest. The 
annual interest item was noted as $2,150. Fortunately, we 
have available the report of the treasurer of the College for 
1875. This gives the first complete list of the college invest- 
ments now available, and is printed in full in the appendix. 
The description of the separate items is of course inadequate, 
and the amounts given are par values. We do not know the 
cost of the different securities. 

The committee points out that the College holds some 
$175,000 of securities which are paying no return, and that 
" the future of this entire group of investments is as uncer- 
tain, not to say unpromising, as the future of anything can 
be." The committee was correct in its judgment, and we are 
grateful to it for its direct and unqualified estimate. But the 
committee did not add the pertinent fact that all but $10,000 
of these securities of dubious value had been received by the 
College as gifts, and that the treasurer had been unable to 
liquidate them. It is diflBcult to trace the facts through the 
ancient books of account, but I have succeeded in doing so 
for most of the investments in question. Here is the story. 

A total of $30,500 of the securities came to the College 
from the estate of Dr. Walker. Many of these survived the 
depression and became sound investments later. But the 121 
shares of the Vermont & Canada Railroad and the five shares 
of New England Glass did not. The Vermont & Canada Rail- 
road was in constant litigation for six years with the Vermont 
Central, and paid no return whatever. In 1883 the College 
exchanged this stock for $4,000 par value 5% bonds of the 
Consolidated Railroad of Vermont, guaranteed by the Ver- 
mont Central. And in another reorganization in 1899, these 
in turn were exchanged for a like amount of first mortgage 
bonds of the Central Vermont Railway Co. In 1911 the Col- 
lege sold its Central Vemiont bonds at about 92, realizing 
some $3,680 on Dr. Walker's gift of 121 shares of Vermont & 

A total of $133,000 of the securities in question came to the 
College as gifts from Samuel A. Hitchcock. This included 
$33,000 par value of the bonds of the State of Virginia and 


$100,000 par value of the bonds of a small railroad iii Ver- 
mont. First let us look at the Virginia bonds. In 1864 Hitch- 
cock gave the College $6,000 par value of these bonds which 
he valued at the time at $3,000. But both he and the trustees 
must have known in the closing year of the war that the 
bonds of Virginia were of the most doubtful value. In 1869 
Hitchcock gave the College $27,000 more. His total gifts of 
Virginia bonds were in the neighborhood of $50,000. After 
the war the question as to whether the state should repudi- 
ate payment became a political question in the Virginia leg- 
islature for some years. In 1876 Henry Edwards of the Fi- 
nance Committee (he was now seventy-eight years old) 
made a trip to Richmond to exchange the bonds for some 
$33,220 new bonds, and for a certificate of West Virginia of 
a face value of $16,610. The latter had a market value of a 
little over six per cent and was sold by the College for $1,017. 
In 1884 the new Virginia bonds were exchanged again for 
$18,000 of a newer issue carrying a 3% coupon and maturing 
in 1932. Finally, in 1909, the College was able to realize sub- 
stantially par for these bonds. The Finance Committee corre- 
spondence contains many letters at different periods in which 
the committee struggled with the problem. It is a long and 
involved story which reflects great credit on the perseverance 
and care which the Finance Committees of decade after 
decade for a third of a century exercised in order to realize 
as much as possible for the College. 

Hitchcock's gift to the College in 1872, on the occasion of 
its semicentennial, enabled him to dispose of another doubt- 
ful investment in his own portfolio via the philanthropic 
route. The $100,000 gift was in bonds of the Lamoille Valley 
Railroad, which ran from Joe's Pond in Vermont to Maquam 
Bay on the shore of Lake Champlain, a distance of well un- 
der fifty miles. The road was a subsidiary of the Portland & 
Ogdensburg Railroad running from Portland, Maine, through 
Crawford Notch in the White Mountains to Lake Cham- 
plain, and the ambitious people of Portland hoped to con- 
tinue the road to Ogdensburg on the Great Lakes. In 1877 
the road went into receivership, with two other small con- 

necting roads. They were reorganized in 1880 as the St. 
Johnsbury and Lake Champlain Railroad, and the College 
was forced to exchange its bonds for stock in the new road. 
It received preferred stock of a par value of $41,000 and 
common stock of a par value of $59,000. The College never 
received any return either on the bonds or on the stock. The 
line was always second grade, but was so situated as to cause 
uneasiness to its neighboring lines. In the 1880's the Con- 
necticut River Railroad bought a heavy interest in the line, 
and the College was able to unload some of its stock for $500 
in cash. Later the Connecticut River Railroad sold its inter- 
est to the Boston & Lowell, which was endeavoring to extend 
its sphere of influence to the Canadian border. The railroad, 
some forty-six miles long, is still in operation, and the Bos- 
ton & Maine runs one mixed train a day over the line. Pro- 
fessor Lamprecht of the Amherst faculty has a summer home 
not far from the railway. But the Amherst Board as early as 
1887 voted that at the discretion of the Finance Committee 
the investment be written off, and on March 31, 1890 it was 
marked " worthless." This of course ended the Hitchcock 
Endowment for Scholarships and Kindred Purposes. 

The committee then recommends to the Board that it ac- 
cept and approve the budget submitted by the treasurer in 
which the estimated income for the year is $200 more than 
the estimated expenses, and it adds that " this is a critical 
margin on which to run so large an institution of learning, 
over a field covered by annual items amounting to $60,000." 

Paragraph Seven in the report is particularly interesting in 
its implications as to the affairs of the heirs of David Sears. 
The committee recommends " that a committee be ap- 
pointed, consisting of Messrs. Morris and Gillett and the 
Treasurer, to consider the application of Mr. C. U. Cotting, 
for one-haff of the income of the Sears cash capital and Brat- 
tle Street Fund. This is an application made, as is supposed, 
under the terms of the gift of the late David Sears, which re- 
quire that, after his death, upon the demand made by his 
representatives, a certain portion of the income shall be an- 
nually paid to them by the College. There are voluminous 


papers connected with the subject, and possible questions of 
interpretation spring out of them, which may be most fitly 
considered by gentlemen in the law." 

The committee then considers the matter of student fees. 
It reports that the annual charge by the New England Col- 
leges is: Dartmouth $70, Tufts $70, Brown $82, Bowdoin 
$85, Amherst $90, Williams $91 to $95, Yale $140, and Har- 
vard $150. It points out that in the past forty years the num- 
ber of students at Amherst has increased 30%; the cost of in- 
struction has increased 600%; and the charge for tuition has 
increased 300%. "This greatly disproportionate increase in 
the cost of instruction is a natural development," adds the 
committee, " a fruit of the broader, more exact, more varied, 
more profound and more stimulating methods and degrees of 
education in this later day. But it must be paid for." And the 
committee ends its report with a recommendation that tui- 
tion charges be raised from $90 to $100 a year. 

Nearly three-quarters of a century has passed since Gov- 
ernor Bullock wrote this report of his committee. The Col- 
lege has survived the crises of 1873, 1893, 1907, and the great 
depression beginning in 1929; it has survived two world 
wars. It is stronger today in material resources than ever be- 
fore in its history. But as one reads this able report, as one 
considers its analysis of the problems which then faced the 
College, one is impressed by the ability of the Finance Com- 
mittee of 1875, by the clarity of its presentation of the essen- 
tial facts, and by the courage and foresight with which it ap- 
plied the necessary measures to protect the future of the 
College. The committee called on the Board " to stand inexo- 
rable in their determination to preserve the principal of the 
College, its capital unimpaired " and to be " deaf to gossip 
and solicitation." The Board stood firm in support of its 

The report indicates that the debt of the College was equal 
to about 5% of its endowment. The endowment was invested 
60% in bonds, 20% in common stocks, 6% in real estate, and 
12% in Notes Receivable. About 14% of the endowment had 
ceased to yield a return. The bonds of the United States, 

however, were payable in gold, which was now at a substan- 
tial premium; as the coupons matured, the College could 
realize this premium by selling them in the open market. 

The list of investments of 1875 contains nearly $70,000 in 
Notes Receivable, The largest item is the note of Samuel 
Williston of $40,000. Mr. WilHston had recently given the 
College $50,000 and had already paid oflf $10,000. The next 
largest item is the note of the Trustees of the College for 
$14,600, representing the money borrowed from various 
funds of which I have already spoken. The College holds the 
note of Julius and Clark Seelye for $1,500 and the note of 
Julius Seelye for $1,000. Julius Seelye was to become presi- 
dent of the College the following year, and Clark Seelye had 
recently been made president of Smith College, after serving 
for eight years on the Amherst faculty. 

Treasurer Dickinson made long and careful reports to the 
Board each year, and while most of the original reports have 
been lost, we have copies of his first ten reports in Journal A. 
In 1875, for example, he reports that the average rate of re- 
turn earned by the College on its bank stocks was 10.595% on 
par; on its railroad stocks ( excluding the Vermont & Canada 
which paid nothing), the average return was 7.855%. In 1876 
he reports that the Financier of the Charity Fund is charg- 
ing the College 7% interest on the loan of $5,000 and that he 
has tried to reduce it without success. In 1877 he calls the 
Board's attention to the fact that $30,500 U.S. Governments 
held by the College have been called, and that he has rein- 
vested in mortgage notes paying 8%, 8/2%, and 10%. The rail- 
road, bank, and manufacturing stocks held by the College 
have reduced their dividends: Boston & Albany from 10% to 
8%, Fitchburg from 8% to 6%, New London Northern from 8% 
to 7%; Boston & Lowell is now paying nothing. And in the 
bank stocks held by the College, Easthampton has reduced 
dividend payments from 9% to 8%, Northampton from 10% to 
8^2%, Mechanics Bank of Worcester from 10% to 6%, Eagle of 
Boston from 7% to 4%, while the Randolph Bank is still pay- 
ing its usual 12%. In 1878 the treasurer tells the Board that 
$50,000 of college securities are paying nothing, while the 


other $360,000 are paying an average of 6% on par. The re- 
port of 1880 tells us that the only outside debt of the College 
is $13,085, borrowed from the First National Bank of Am- 
herst at 4%%. 

In 1881 the treasurer recommends to the Board that most 
of the scholarship funds of the College be consolidated for 
investment purposes, and points out the advantages of such 
a procedure both to the security of the individual funds and 
to the accounting practices of the treasurer's office. The 
Board took no action. The College's railroad stocks are now 
yielding 6%% on par, the bank stocks 6%%, and the manufac- 
turing stocks 8%%. In 1883 the treasurer borrows $50,000 
from the Amherst Savings Bank at 4^2%. And the following 
year this loan is paid off from receipts from a bequest to the 
College. The Treasurer renews his recommendation to con- 
solidate some of the scholarship funds for investment pur- 
poses, and the Board approves the consolidation of twenty- 
seven such individual funds. This is the first treasurer's 
report I find that is audited by an independent auditor, 
Henry Piper of Boston. In the past, the reports have been au- 
dited by a committee of the Board. 

Let us examine in more detail the treasurer's report of 
1882. The report includes also the estimated budget for the 
current year. These documents give us an admirable picture 
of the finances of the College. 

The treasurer lists the investments of the College at the 
book value of $878,631, distributed as follows: 

Railroad Bonds 



State Bonds 



City Bonds 



Railroad Stocks 



Manufacturing Bonds 



Sundry Stocks 



Bank Stock 



Manufacturing Stocks 



Notes Receivable 



Savings Bank Deposit 


$878,631 100 

A comparison of the 1882 summary with that for 1875 in- 
dicates the following significant changes. The investments 
(excluding real estate, which is included in the 1875 total but 
not the 1882 total, although the College still held the same 
real estate) show an increase in investments at book value 
of $328,000, or 60%. The U.S. Governments have been sold. 
Railroad Bonds have increased by some $53,000 but the pro- 
portion invested in railroad bonds has dropped from 30% to 
26%. City Bonds have increased from $26,000 to $77,000 and 
the proportion invested from 4% to 9%. Railroad Stocks have 
risen from $48,000 to $186,600 and the proportion has risen 
from 8% to 21%. And Notes Receivable have risen from 
$69,720 to $237,301, with an increase in the proportion so 
invested from 12% to 27%. A new item appears, — Manufac- 
turing Bonds at $25,000. 

The treasurer's report deals with the Walker Hall fire 
which occurred in the spring of the year, and the steps taken 
by the College to rebuild; the increase made in the college 
insurance by order of the Board; and the increase in the per- 
manent funds of the College. The increase in endowment 
during the year was reported as just short of $200,000. 

First, there was the bequest under the will of Samuel 
Williston taken on the books at $103,000, which we shall see 
later did not add more than $23,000 to pennanent funds. 
In addition, the College received over $40,000 of the total 
of $50,000 coming to it under the will of Joel Giles of the 
class of 1827, the income to be used for the purchase of 
books for the library. Giles had attended Amherst for only 
one year, 1823-24, and had graduated from Harvard and 
from the Harvard Law School, and been a practicing lawyer 
in Boston and New York. The third large gift to pennanent 
endowment during the year was $50,000 from Thomas H. 
McGraw of the class of 1869 of Poughkeepsie. McGraw at- 
tended the College only two years, and then entered the 
lumber business. In 1881 the College conferred on him the 
honorary degree of Master of Arts, making him an alumnus. 
In 1882 he gave $50,000 to endow a Professorship of Mental 
and Moral Philosophy. In 1884 he was elected a trustee. He 


made his gift in the form of a promissory note carrying 6% 
interest, and the note is Hsted by the treasurer under Notes 
Receivable. For three years he paid interest on the note at 
6%. Subsequently, he became disaffected with the College for 
some reason which does not appear in the record. He refused 
payment of the note, and resigned from the Board. The Col- 
lege did not attempt legal action to collect the note. He was 
succeeded on the Board by D. Willis James. 

Another generous donor to the College in this period was 
Mrs. Valeria G. Stone of Maiden, Massachusetts. In 1880 she 
estabhshed the Stone Fund of $50,000. Such portion of the 
fund as the Trustees deem necessary is to support the Stone 
Professorship of Biology. The incumbent of this chair " shall 
always be not only a man of good scientific attainments but 
also one of positive and earnest Christian character, so that 
his teaching and influence may serve to confirm his students' 
confidence in God's word as well as to increase their knowl- 
edge of His works." Any portion of the fund that may not be 
necessary for the perpetual salary of the Stone Professor and 
the thorough equipment of his department for its most ef- 
fective work may be used by the Trustees in whatever way 
they think will best promote the prosperity of this institution. 

And two years later, in 1882, Mrs. Stone established the 
Stone Scholarship Fund, by the assignment of twenty-two 
railroad bonds to the College, with the provision that the in- 
come should be paid to Mrs. Stone during her life. This fund 
now stands on the books of the College at $24,954.82. 

Until this year this is all that we knew about the Stone 
Professorship or the Stone Scholarship Fund. Who was Mrs. 
Stone, how was her interest in Amherst College aroused, 
what was the basis of her fortune? We had no information. 

A few weeks ago there was discovered in a file of corre- 
spondence that had recently come into possession of the 
Hitchcock Room a letter from the Reverend William Henry 
Willcox to President Seelye. The letter, written in 1882, con- 
tained the following sentence: " And it occurs to me just here 
to mention a fact that will certainly interest you but which I 
think I have never mentioned to you before. The $50,000 en- 

dowment Mrs. S has already given to Amherst was the direct 
result of the great interest awakened in her mind by your lit- 
tle volume of lectures to the Brahmins." And in a postscript 
he suggests that Mrs. Stone may consider founding one or 
more scholarships at Amherst. 

The " little volume " which, according to Willcox, pro- 
duced a gift of $50,000 for the College was of course Seelye's 
The Way, the Truth, and the Life; Lectures to Educated 
Hindoos, which he had delivered in India in the course of 
his trip around the world in 1872-1873, three years before he 
became president of the College, and which had been pub- 
lished in this country after his return. What a romantic story! 
A college professor gives a series of lectures in India to edu- 
cated Hindoos and seven years later, when he has become 
president of the college, the volume of lectures stirs the heart 
of a lady in Boston, who founds a professorship at his college 
with a gift of $50,000 and then suggests an additional gift 
for scholarship purposes. 

In the library of Cornell University we found a little vol- 
ume entitled William Henry Willcox, A Sketch by his Chil- 
dren, which enables us to fill out the story. Mr. Willcox 
(1821-1904) spent much of his life in a pastorate in Read- 
ing, Massachusetts, after graduating from what is now New 
York University, and Union Theological Seminary. His wife 
was the niece of Mrs. Daniel P. Stone, who was born Valeria 
Goodenow. Stone accumulated a fortune of some two million 
dollars as a dry goods merchant and private banker in Bos- 
ton. The Stones, who lived in Maiden, saw much of the Will- 
coxes, and asked Willcox to draw their wills. Stone died in 
1878 at the age of eighty, and after legacies to relatives, left 
the residue to his widow, with the suggestion that part of it 
be given to charitable institutions. As executors it named two 
of his business associates and Willcox. Mrs. Stone then asked 
Willcox to resign his pastorate, which he had held for over 
twenty years, and at the same salary become her private sec- 
retary and confidential adviser. During the next few years 
Mrs. Stone, on Willcox's advice, gave more than a million 
dollars to educational and charitable institutions. Willcox 


traveled widely, making careful investigations of institutions 
before recommending them. The leading beneficiaries were: 

American Missionary 



Phillips Academy, Andover 


Wellesley College 


Amherst College 


Bowdoin College 


Drury College 


OberHn College 


Chicago Theological 



Dartmouth College 


Hamilton College 


American College 


Howard University 


Boston Y.M.C.A. 


Iowa College 


Ripon College 


Olivet College 


Robert College 


Illinois College 


Beloit College 


Hampton Normal Institute 


This was of course before the day of the great foundations, 
and Willcox was in effect a one-man foundation acting for a 
most generous benefactor. Meanwhile, Mrs. Stone, contrary 
to the advice of Willcox, had made a new will, leaving her 
entire estate to him to distribute to educational and charita- 
ble institutions. On her death, six years after her husband's, 
there was a contest by the heirs. The contest was settled out 
of court by the allowance of $50,000 to the heirs; the remain- 
der was distributed by Willcox. He became trustee of Welles- 
ley College, Drury College, Jaffna College, Abbott Academy, 
Phillips Academy at Andover, and the Maiden Hospital; a 
member of the American Board of Commissioners for For- 
eign Missions, president of the Congregational Education So- 
ciety, and a trustee of Straight University. 

Willcox sent his two sons to Amherst College, where they 
graduated in the classes of 1884 and 1889. The elder son, 
[80 1 

Walter F. Willcox, was for forty years a member of the fac- 
ulty of Cornell University, and is now professor emeritus, liv- 
ing in Ithaca, New York. 

The report of the treasurer indicates that not all of the in- 
vestments of the College turned out well. For example, the 
300 shares of stock of Collins Manufacturing Co., given the 
College in 1879 by Chester W. Chapin of Springfield because 
of his " high regard for the character of President Julius H. 
Seelye," and having a par value of $30,000, were sold during 
the year for $2,940.94 under advice of Mr. Chapin's son-in- 
law, Mr. Rumrill. Mr. Chapin was one of the leading citizens 
of the Commonwealth, president of the Boston & Albany 
Railroad; and his gift was to provide an endowment for the 
president's salary. This sale reduced the Chapin Fund from 
$50,000 to $27,940.94. Two years later Mr. Chapin's widow 
gave the College something over $22,000 to restore the fund 
to an even $50,000. 

Let us turn now to examine the individual investments of 
the college funds in 1882. Railroad Bonds amount in total to 
$233,800, or 26% of the total portfolio. There are twenty- 
seven different items. The largest are Chicago, Burlington & 
Quincy $44,000, Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul $26,000, Bos- 
ton & Albany $20,000, Chicago and Northwestern $16,000, 
Old Colony $15,000, and Boston & Maine $10,000. Most of 
these companies were financed by Boston capital and main- 
tained their financial offices in Boston. 

Railroad Stocks amounted to $186,600, or 21% of the total 
portfolio. But this figure is deceptive. It included the $100,- 
000 par value of St. Johnsbury & Lake Champlain Railroad 
received by the College in exchange for the bonds of the Le- 
moille Valley Railroad on the reorganization of the latter, 
and the Vermont & Canada. When we pass on from these 
two items given to the College, the list looks better. Next in 
order of size come Chicago, Burlington & Quincy $11,000, 
Union Pacific $10,000, Central Pacific $10,000, and Atchison 
$10,000. There are also small blocks of Boston & Albany, 
Boston & Lowell, Fitchburg, Connecticut River, Old Colony, 
Concord, New London Northern. Most of these, both the 


New England roads and the western roads, were financed in 

Bank Stocks represent $43,100, or 5%, of the portfoho. 
There are nine items, headed by Easthampton $14,000, 
Worcester $8,000, Northampton $5,000 and $4,000. All are 
Massachusetts banks, two in Boston and the others country 

Manufacturing Stocks represent $41,880, or 5%. Here there 
are fourteen items, all New England textiles, the largest be- 
ing Washington Mills at $8,000, and Hamilton Mills at 

Notes Receivable is the largest category, $237,301, or 27% 
of the portfolio. Here there are forty-five items, only two of 
which are of substantial amount. The McGraw note of $50,- 
000 I have already noted. The other substantial item is the 
notes of A. E. Abbott of $100,000 secured by mortgage and 
given in payment of the Williston Mill at Easthampton. Most 
of the items are small loans such as a country savings bank 
would make today, some secured by mortgage, some by two 
names on the paper, most of the names doubtless local peo- 
ple known to the treasurer. 

In Sundry Stocks the interesting item is 12 shares of 
United States Hotel Co. of Boston, Tilly Haynes' famous 
hostelry located near the Boston & Albany station and for 
many years commanding the reputation in Boston now held 
by the Waldorf in New York. 

Fortunately, we are able at this period in the history of the 
College to go behind the formal list of investments in the 
portfolio, and watch the men who were responsible for finan- 
cial policy. Austin Dickinson's files give us an interesting pic- 
ture. The active members of the Finance Committee in the 
decade from 1875 to 1885 were Henry Edwards of Boston, 
Alpheus Hardy of Boston ( until 1877 ) , Alexander Bullock of 
Worcester, and John Sanford of Taunton. And among these 
the most active by far was Henry Edwards. He was writing 
almost every week to Dickinson on some matter of finance, 
he was dropping in on Hardy to get his approval, he was 
corresponding with Bullock and Sanford. And on his way to 

and from his summer home in Lenox he would stop off at 
Amherst and then at Worcester to see Bullock. 

The College's securities were kept in a box of the Union 
Safety Deposit Company at 40 State Street, Boston, close to 
tlie ofiBces of Lee, Higginson & Company. Edwards writes 
Dickinson, for example, that he has "visited the College's 
safe deposit box to cut the July coupons and called at the 
treasurer's offices of various corporations to collect the July 
dividends "; he has deposited these to his personal account; 
and he encloses his check to the College for the total. He has 
sold the coupons on the $93,000 U.S. Governments at a pre- 
mium of 5^8%, netting the College nearly $500 extra. The 
Amoskeag dividend was $40 per share, the Merrimac divi- 
dend was $40 per share, the United States Hotel was $5 per 
share. This was in 1877. 

On another occasion he writes Dickinson that he has called 
on the treasurer of Harvard College and seen their Record of 
Gifts and Bequests, with all the conditions and letters per- 
taining to each gift copied in the record; and he recom- 
mends that Amherst prepare a similar book. It was a wise 
suggestion, but the Amherst treasurers did not follow it un- 
til 1932 when Treasurer Andrews prepared the Amherst Gfft 

Edwards bought bonds for the College in his own name 
and took delivery. He then placed the bonds in the college 
box, and sent the invoice to Dickinson so that the College 
could reimburse him. In 1875 he saw a new type of fire ex- 
tinguisher named the Johnson Pumper. He was so impressed 
that he bought a number for the College, and then arranged 
to have the salesman for the company give a lecture at the 
College before trustees, faculty, and representative students 
on fire prevention. He writes Dickinson that he is retaining 
a certain amount from his dividend collections for the col- 
lege account to reimburse himself for the pumpers. 

When Edwards bought bonds or stock for. the College, he 
shopped around among the different Boston brokers to get 
the best offer he could. And when he had obtained the low- 
est offer, he asked for a further discount in price because the 


transaction was for account of the College, and got it. Then 
he would report to Dickinson in detail. All of his letters were 
in longhand. Dickinson's letters to him are not preserved, for 
Dickinson seldom kept copies of his own letters for his files. 

We have seldom had a more indefatigable trustee than 
Henry Edwards. One of his letters to Treasurer Dickinson, 
written in 1878 when Edwards was eighty years old and suf- 
fering severely from rheumatism, recites that he has recently 
been run down on Tremont Street, Boston, by a team driven 
by a " Jehu," that he hit his head on the pavement, and was 
picked up unconscious, but in a week was back in his office 
looking out for the afiFairs of the College. He made frequent 
business trips to New York. He advised the treasurer on mat- 
ters of accounting practice. He solicited his friends for gifts 
to the College. But he could not go on forever. In 1884, at the 
age of eighty-six and after forty years of service as an Am- 
herst trustee, he tendered his resignation because of the in- 
firmities of age, and the Board reluctantly accepted his 

In 1875 Rufus Bela Kellogg of the class of 1858 was elected 
the first alumni trustee of the College. Kellogg was born in 
North Amherst and after graduation he went west to make his 
fortune. And did. Among his ventures was the Kellogg Na- 
tional Bank of Green Bay, Wisconsin, which he founded and 
of which he was president for many years. In 1877, two years 
after his election to the Board, he wrote Edwards recom- 
mending the investment of a limited amount of college funds 
in western mortgages, paying 10%, and giving his ideas on in- 
vestment policy in general. Kellogg offered to guarantee an 
investment of $5,000 in this field and to select the mortgages 
himself and collect the interest. It was a radical suggestion 
for these New Englanders to consider, and Edwards con- 
sulted Bullock and Sanford. Finally, they all approved an in- 
vestment of $5,000 of college funds, and Edwards wrote 
Dickinson authorizing him to proceed. Kellogg's letter is an 
interesting document. He was devoted to the College and 
he brought a fresh point of view to the Board. He served 
only one term of five years as a trustee, but his interest in 

Amherst continued for the rest of his life. He later gave a 
permanent fund for the Kellogg Prizes in Public Speaking 
and another fund of $30,000 to found the Rufus B. Kellogg 
University Fellowship, which was among the first in the 

By the time Treasurer Dickinson had completed his first 
decade in oflBce, the composition of the Finance Committee 
had changed. Williston retired from the Board in 1874, 
Hardy in 1877, Bullock in 1882, and Edwards in 1884. They 
were succeeded by Sanford, Hyde, Brayton, and Whitcomb; 
two lawyers and two businessmen, all from Massachusetts, 
and all but Brayton graduates of the College. Sanford, Hyde, 
and Whitcomb all rendered distinguished service to the Col- 
lege. Brayton was not particularly active. 

John Summerfield Brayton was a bank president in Fall 
River, and his son was a graduate of the College in the class 
of 1888. The father served on the Board till 1900. He was a 
good friend of Whitcomb's. He made occasional small gifts, 
five hundred dollars for the purchase of books of Spanish lit- 
erature, one hundred dollars for the work of the Greek De- 
partment, two hundred and fifty for general purposes, and 
several of three hundred dollars each to bring distinguished 
preachers to the College. But he does not seem to have 
played a significant part in either the deliberations of the 
Board or the work of the Finance Committee. 

Henry Dwight Hyde (1838-1897) was born in South- 
bridge, prepared for college at Williston Seminary, gradu- 
ated from Amherst in the class of 1861, and studied law at 
Harvard Law School. From 1864 to 1897 he practiced law in 
Boston as senior member of the firm of Hyde, Dickinson and 
Howe, one of the leading firms of corporation lawyers of 
New England. Professor Samuel Williston of the Harvard 
Law School faculty was for many years associated with this 
oflBce. Hyde was a trustee of Amherst from 1877 to 1897 and 
of Mount Holyoke College from 1880 to 1893. He was a donor 
of the fund for the Hyde Prize in Public Speaking and he 
made other generous contributions to the funds of the 


John E. Sanford ( 1830-1907 ) was born in Dennis, Massa- 
chusetts, prepared for college at Amherst Academy and Wil- 
liston, graduated from the College in the class of 1851, 
taught school, was for a year tutor at the College, studied 
law in the office of Treasurer Edward Dickinson and else- 
where, and practiced his profession in Taunton from 1856 
till 1899. Sanford held many offices of trust in the Common- 
wealth. He was Speaker of the House, chairman of the Har- 
bor and Land Commissioners, and later chairman of the 
Board of Railroad Commissioners. He was a trustee of the 
College from 1874 to 1907, and president of the Board from 
1899 to 1907. He gave the $5,000 scholarship fund in mem- 
ory of his class. My college classmate, Marcus A. Rhodes, 
who entered Amherst from Taunton, remembers Mr. San- 
ford, whom he met in 1898 or 1899. " I still recall," says 
Rhodes, "how kindly and sympathetic he was, as we dis- 
cussed my entrance to Amherst College. But dignity was his 
chief characteristic. In his earlier years he had taken some 
interest in local politics, but his duties on various commis- 
sions kept him in Boston more and more as time went on." 
Rhodes is now president of the Taunton Savings Bank, a po- 
sition once held by Sanford, and one of the older trustees of 
the bank recalls that when Sanford was presiding and the 
clock showed that six o'clock was approaching, Sanford 
would put on the pressure so that the business of the meeting 
could be completed before six. "Apparently dinner was a 
fixed date and he didn't intend to be late." 

We have a large number of Sanford's letters in our files, all 
in longhand and all addressed to Treasurer Dickinson. They 
show his constant, careful attention to the investment policy 
of the College and his frequent trips to Amherst for meetings 
of the Finance Committee or for conference with the presi- 
dent and treasurer. 

George Henry Whitcomb ( 1842-1916 ) was born in Tem- 
pleton, Massachusetts, prepared for college at Phillips Acad- 
emy, Andover, and graduated from the College in the class 
of 1864. He built up a large business as a manufacturer of 
envelopes in Worcester, formed the United States Envelope 

Company in 1898, invested his fortune widely, with substan- 
tial interests in Seattle, Washington, and Pueblo, Colorado, 
was a director of many corporations and a large owner of 
real estate. He was proposed as a candidate for alumni trus- 
tee of Amherst in 1879 by a group of influential alumni, in- 
cluding General Francis A. Walker, later president of Mas- 
sachusetts Institute of Technology, but was defeated by 
General Walker who was himself a candidate. In 1884 he 
was elected a life trustee and served until his death in 1916. 
For three years he was treasurer of the College. He was also 
trustee of Mount Holyoke College and chairman of the Pru- 
dential Committee of the American Board of Commissioners 
for Foreign Missions. His three sons graduated from the Col- 
lege in the classes of 1894, 1900, 1904; and his son Ernest has 
continued his close connection with the College right up to 
the present time. 

All of these men — Hyde, Sanford, and Whitcomb — 
started from simple backgrounds in small Massachusetts 
towns. All attained eminence, two acquired substantial for- 
tunes, and all rendered long public service, including distin- 
guished service to their alma mater. They were prudent, 
hard-headed, shrewd judges of investments, and they were 
tireless workers in the interest of the College. The Board was 
still largely a Massachusetts Board, its New York members 
being distinguished ministers. And the finances of the Col- 
lege were handled in Boston and Worcester. 

In the final decade of the century three New York men of 
aflFairs were elected to the Board: George Arthur Plimpton 
in 1890, Daniel Willis James in 1891, and Charles Millard 
Pratt in 1897. Two were graduates of the College, one was 
the father of a then recent graduate. They differed widely in 
age, in experience, and in interest. One was a man of sub- 
stantial means, two were men of great wealth; all three were 
generous in the time and thought they devoted to the prob- 
lems of the College, as well as in the large pecuniary gifts 
they made from time to time. Mr. Plimpton secured more 
money in gifts for the College than any other trustee before 
or since. The gifts of the Pratt family and of the James fam- 


ily have been of a magnitude beyond those of any other 
family in the history of Amherst. And it was through Mr. 
Pratt that his boyhood friend, Henry Clay Folger, came to 
Amherst as a student; it was through Mr. Pratt that Folger 
remained in college to finish his course when the family for- 
tunes suffered a severe reverse. Pratt and Folger were associ- 
ated together in business and were lifelong friends. It was at 
Amherst that Folger developed his intense interest in Shake- 
speare. The college that was founded by the indomitable 
faith of a few men in western Massachusetts in the decade of 
the 1820's, and was saved from bankruptcy and extinction 
by two other men in western Massachusetts in the decade of 
the 1840's, was provided with material resources to make 
the college of today largely by the influence, the prudence, 
and the gffts of three New York men who were elected to 
the Amherst Board in the 1890's. 

George A. Plimpton (1855-1936) was born in Walpole, 
Massachusetts, prepared for college at Phillips Academy at 
Exeter, and graduated from Amherst in the class of 1876. He 
attended Harvard Law School the following year, and then 
entered the employ of Ginn & Co., publishers in New York 
City. At an early age he was made a partner, and later be- 
came head of the firm. He was elected an alumni trustee of 
the College in 1890 and served for five years. In 1900 he was 
elected to the life Board; in 1907 he succeeded John E. San- 
ford as president of the Board and continued to serve in this 
ofiBce till his death in 1936. He was trustee and for some 
years treasurer of Barnard College, trustee of Phillips Acad- 
emy at Exeter, trustee of Union Theological Seminary, trus- 
tee of the American College for Girls in Constantinople. He 
was an inveterate collector; his unique collection of early 
textbooks he gave to Columbia, his Dante collection to 
Wellesley, his collection of French and Indian War material 
to Amherst, his collection of theatrical material to Amherst. 
He published a number of scholarly books, delivered lec- 
tures before learned societies here and abroad. His close as- 
sociation with Amherst covers a span of forty-six years and 
the administrations of six presidents. We think of Mr. Plimp- 

ton as an elder statesman, as, in fact, the elder statesman of 
the College. We are likely to forget that when he was elected 
to the Board in 1890, he was the youngest member of the 
Board and only thirty-five years old. 

D. Willis James (1832-1904) was already sixty when he 
was elected to the Board the year after Mr. Plimpton. He 
was born in Liverpool, England, of American parents and 
his father was the resident English partner of the New York 
firm of Phelps Dodge & Co. His mother was the daughter of 
the head of the firm. He attended school in England and for 
a year was a student at the University of Edinburgh. At the 
age of seventeen he came to New York to enter the employ 
of Phelps Dodge & Co. and in five years was himself a part- 
ner. He was a pioneer in the development of the railroads of 
Mexico and of our Southwest, and amassed one of the large 
fortunes of the day. He was closely associated with the senior 
J. P. Morgan and the Morgan banking firm in many under- 
takings. Unlike most of his colleagues on the Amherst Board, 
who had made their way up from simple backgrounds, Mr. 
James was born to wealth and power. He was a deeply reli- 
gious man, who regarded his wealth as a trust, and through- 
out his long life he was a philanthropist of warm heart who 
gave liberally, and often anonymously, to a wide variety of 
causes and institutions. It would be interesting to know why 
he chose Amherst for the education of his only son, Arthur 
Curtiss James of the class of 1889, who graduated two years 
before his father was elected to the Board, but, unfortu- 
nately, we have no clue to suggest an answer as we have in 
the case of the Pratt brothers. 

Mr. James was named to the Finance Committee in 1892 
and continued on the committee throughout his term as trus- 
tee. Sanf ord seems to have been a bit overawed by James at 
first, but Whitcomb promptly came to know him and they 
became warm friends. And later Whitcomb and James were 
associated in some of their personal business investments. 

The third New York man of alfaus to join the Amherst 
Board in the decade of the nineties was Charles Millard 
Pratt. Pratt's father, Charles Pratt (1830-1891), had come 


from a simple background in New England, had developed 
a large oil business under the name of Charles Pratt & Co. of 
New York, had joined the elder Rockefeller as a partner in 
the Standard Oil Company in the seventies, and for a num- 
ber of years presided at meetings of the partners. He is de- 
scribed by his contemporaries as a man of great concentra- 
tion and self-restraint, frugal and modest, an intense worker, 
deeply religious, and, curiously, for a man who was one of 
the recognized leaders in the greatest business enterprise the 
world has ever seen, a man who found it uncommonly diffi- 
cult to come to decisions. He married twice, and had six sons 
and two daughters. All of his sons he sent to Amherst; one 
daughter married an Amherst graduate. Many of his grand- 
sons attended the College, and some of his great-grandsons. 
A charming picture of the home life of the Pratt family in the 
middle seventies of the last century is contained in the per- 
sonal boyhood diary of his son Fred, which has been pri- 
vately printed. Charles Pratt, with little formal education, 
became intensely interested in the problems of education. 
He watched new developments in the field in this country, 
and in 1889 he traveled widely in Europe, visiting twenty 
cities in England, France, Austria, Germany, Switzerland, to 
observe at first hand what was being done abroad. In 1887 
he founded Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, where he had made 
his home, and he devoted a large amount of his time to the 
direction of its affairs until his death four years later. Pratt 
Institute is his monument, and Founder's Day is celebrated 
there each October. 

His eldest son, Charles Millard Pratt (1855-1935), was 
born in Brooklyn, and prepared for college at Adelphi Acad- 
emy. There he impressed one of his teachers, William C. 
Peckham, who was a graduate of Amherst in the class of 
1867. Peckham had served in the army in the Civil War, 
taught at Williston Academy, attended lectures at Union 
Theological Seminary, and had been licensed to preach. In 
1871 he had joined the faculty at Adelphi, where he was to 
make his career. Peckham talked to Pratt's father and per- 
suaded him, as he had already persuaded young Charles, 

that Amherst was the college for him to select. He took 
young Pratt and his classmate, Henry Clay Folger, to Am- 
herst and entered them both. And doubtless he introduced 
them to the young men in his own fraternity, Alpha Delta 
Phi. Amherst has owed a great deal to its graduates in the 
preparatory and high schools who have brought the College 
to the attention of their young '^tudents. But in no other case 
has the College ultimately received such princely material 

Just before the two boys were to begin their college course, 
something seems to have occurred which turned the thoughts 
of young Pratt's father toward Harvard, and he wrote his 
son suggesting that he consider the college in Cambridge. 
We have the letter written by young Pratt to his father in re- 
ply to this suggestion a few weeks before the opening of the 
college year. " The idea of entering Harvard has been farther 
from my mind," he says, " than of any other college, and I 
had thought that you entertained the same opinion toward 
it as I did. Why you have changed your views I cannot im- 
agine unless you have been influenced by others. 

" You told me some time ago that I could do as I wished 
respecting my choice of a college, and I have done so, but 
you shall be Prime Minister in this matter and my choice 
need not be considered valid. 

" In considering and comparing the two colleges, H and A, 
I can see but very few things in which H excels A and many 
in which A excels H. To be able to say at the end of my col- 
lege course that I was a graduate of Harvard College would 
be pleasant and might be used as something of a recom- 
mendation, but, as for my real standing I believe that Am- 
herst will do as much for me as Harvard, in fact more. 

"At H a man is ranked almost entirely by his examina- 
tions. His daily presence and recitation in classroom is not 
strictly required, provided he passes a creditable examina- 
tion at the end of 6 mos. and of the yr. At A it is not so, a 
man must be in his place every day, unless he has a suitable 
excuse to offer for not being. There is, I think, but slight dif- 
ference in the Curriculum of Study between the two col- 


leges. As far as regards the social relations, I prefer the stu- 
dents of A to those of H. 

" It is almost a common practice if I judge aright from con- 
versing with E. W. Roby for students at H to gamble at 
poker, smoke and drink. Of course I need not, but it is quite 
likely I would. 

" Harvard is no doubt a place where a man can mingle 
with and see life in all its phases, and in that respect sur- 
passes A. If one can mingle with students of all degrees of 
opulence, morals, and success in study, and, after four years, 
come out untarnished, it might be better for him. But I am 
perfectly content not to try the experiment. 

" As regards the situation of the two colleges, I much pre- 
fer A and think it will much prefer me, that is, as regards 
my health." 

So Charles M. Pratt and his boyhood friend, Henry C. Fol- 
ger, entered Amherst together in the autumn of 1875, joined 
Alpha Delta Phi, and graduated in 1879. Folger was the bet- 
ter student and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. Folger sang 
in the Glee Club and in the Alpha Delta Phi quartet. In his 
junior year the Folger family suffered financial reverses and 
young Folger made plans to leave college and go to work. 
But Pratt's father provided the funds which enabled him to 
remain in college and complete his course. Later in his jun- 
ior year Folger won a first prize for an essay on Dickens as a 
Preacher, the prize for an essay on Shakespeare going to a 
classmate. In his senior year he won first prize in the Hyde 
contest with an address on Tennyson, and was elected Ivy 
Orator. His Ivy address was entitled The Sovereignty of Sen- 
timent. Pratt played on his class football and baseball teams, 
was gym captain, an editor of The Student, president of 
the Musical Association, and had a commencement appoint- 
ment. His address was entitled, prophetically. State Preven- 
tive Medicine. On his graduation, Pratt was elected class 
secretary and held the office for the rest of his active life. He 
kept in close contact with classmates, helped many of them 
quietly, and published every five years the class book. 

On graduating from college, Pratt went directly into the 

family business of Charles Pratt & Co., of which he was 
made president. From 1882 to 1911 he was secretary, treas- 
urer, and a director of the Standard Oil Company. From 1911 
until his illness in 1921 and his complete retirement in 1923, 
he was in charge of the fortune of the family, director of 
banks, railways, industrial companies, trustee of Amherst 
and Vassar Colleges and of Pratt Institute, director of the 
Brooklyn Bureau of Charities, trustee of the Brooklyn 
Y.M.C.A. With the other directors of the New Haven Rail- 
road, he was indicted for attempting to create a monopoly 
of transportation in New England, and convicted. Doubtless 
largely from worry over this suit, his health broke and his 
mind failed, and he was forced to live in complete retire- 
ment for the last dozen years of his life. 

The Pratt family fortune, which had been left by his fa- 
ther, was in stock of the old Standard Oil Company. At that 
time. Standard Oil was not publicly held, but was all owned 
by the families of the men who had founded the company. 
His father's will left the estate in trust over a long period of 
time, with the provision that only modest sums should be 
paid to the living heirs. These provisions were later modified 
by court decree on the ground that the original will violated 
the rule against perpetuities. Pratt as manager of the estate 
made the momentous decision to keep the trust fund in- 
vested in Standard Oil. As a result, under his direction, it 
became one of the great fortunes of the country. The estate 
is still only partially distributed. 

Pratt's first gift to Amherst was made in 1883, when he 
gave some $35,000 to the College toward the cost of Pratt 
Gymnasium, the first Amherst building, as President Seelye 
pointed out with pride, given to the College by an alumnus. 
It seems altogether likely that his father helped him to make 
this gift. In any event, the gift was made within four years 
after Pratt had graduated, and the voluminous correspond- 
ence in connection with the gift indicates a lively interest on 
the part of the father, who wrote many of the letters in long- 
hand to Dr. Hitchcock and President Seelye. Their letters 
have not been preserved. 


While the Finance Committee after 1884 was made up of 
Sanford, Hyde, and Whitcomb, and after 1892 of Sanford, 
James, and Whitcomb, Whitcomb was the active, working 
member of the committee. He was forty-two years old when 
he was elected to the Board. He was a man of boundless en- 
ergy, he was devoted to the College and came often from 
Worcester to Amherst, and he was never afraid to take and 
to exercise responsibility. His correspondence with the treas- 
urer was voluminous, and was mostly in longhand. From 
1884 until 1907 he was the dominant man in determining the 
investment policy of the College. 

The year 1884, when Whitcomb joined the Board, had 
seen a sharp financial panic. The immediate cause had been 
several important failures involving large defalcations. The 
panic was short and the business reaction had lasted only a 
year. By 1887 the country was enjoying great prosperity. In 
1890 occurred the Baring failure in London. The reaction in 
this country was slight. The boom in western lands was at its 
height, and railroad mileage continued to grow, until in 1893 
it was twice what it was in 1878. 

Meanwhile, the endowment of the College had been grow- 
ing steadily. By 1892 the endowment, including the Charity 
Fund, had passed $1,300,000. It had grown about a third in 
the decade and had a little more than doubled since Austin 
Dickinson took office. There had been six important addi- 
tions to the permanent funds of the College in the decade. 
The two largest, of $100,000 each, were the gift of D. Willis 
James. In 1887 and 1889, before he was a member of the 
Board and while his son was still an undergraduate, he es- 
tablished the D. Willis James Fund of $100,000, the income 
" to be used to pay professors a salary commensurate with 
always securing and retaining the very best men for the sev- 
eral chairs rather than to now increase the number of pro- 
fessors." And in 1891 James gave another $100,000 to estab- 
lish the Seelye Fund, with the same conditions as those 
attached to the James Fund. This gift was in recognition of 
the distinguished service to the College rendered by Presi- 
dent Seelye, who had recently retired for reasons of health. 

In 1885 Henry Winkley of Philadelphia gave the College 
$50,000 in cash to establish the Winkley Professorship of His- 
tory and Political Economy, later changed to the Winkley 
Professorship of History. And four years later, on Winkley's 
death, the College received his generous bequest of $30,000 
to add to its endowment. The use of the income was unre- 
stricted. Henry Winkley (1804-1888) was born on a farm in 
Barrington, New Hampshire, but his health was too frail in 
boyhood to permit him to acquire much schooling. When he 
was twenty-two he decided to seek his fortune in the city. 
He walked the ten miles to Dover and took the stage to Bos- 
ton. A week later he had a position with a dealer in china 
and crockery. Within six months he realized that his em- 
ployer was not a good businessman, and he promptly re- 
signed and went on to New York. The second day after his 
arrival in New York he secured a position in one of the larg- 
est importing houses. Three years later he opened a store of 
his own in Philadelphia, and later one in New York. His busi- 
ness was the importation and wholesaling of crockery. When 
he was forty-eight he retired from business, to gratify his 
life's ambition to travel and study at firsthand the religious, 
social, and political institutions of Europe. On his return to 
the United States, he decided to devote his fortune to edu- 
cation and selected four schools and colleges "known for 
their Orthodox principles and substantial learning." Amherst 
was not one of them. In 1878 President Seelye wrote him to 
suggest a gift to Amherst, and Winkley replied that he ad- 
mired Amherst, but he " was under the impression that Yale 
and Amherst Colleges were strong, better known and popu- 
lar with the public, having greater facilities in obtaining 
contributions." Unfortunately for us, even in 1878, Yale and 
Amherst had the reputation of being well-oflF. 

Early in 1882 President Seelye enlisted the assistance of a 
young Amherst alumnus less than six years out of college, 
named George Arthur Plimpton. Plimpton bought a copy of 
Tyler's History for $3.00 and, armed with this and a state- 
ment of the needs of the College prepared for him by Presi- 
dent Seelye, made a series of calls on Mr. Winkley in Phila- 


delpliia. As far as I can find, this is the first of Mr. PHmpton's 
attempts to secure a large gift for the College. After three 
years, Plimpton's persuasive efforts, seconded by letters from 
President Seelye, bore fruit. Henry Winkley made a gift of 
$50,000 to Amherst to found the Winkley Professorship. Pres- 
ident Seelye then sent him a catalogue and asked him to 
choose a subject for the professorship, and Winkley selected 
history and political economy. Four years later, on Winkley's 
death, his will contained generous bequests to four colleges 
and three schools: $30,000 to Amherst, $50,000 to Wilhams, 
$20,000 to Bowdoin, $20,000 to Dartmouth, $20,000 to Phil- 
lips Academy at Exeter, $20,000 to Phillips Academy at An- 
dover, and $25,000 to the Theological Seminary at Bangor, 
Maine. Harvard College did not receive a bequest in his will 
but had already received gifts totaling $100,000 during his 

In 1890 the College received a generous gift of $50,000 
from Frederic Billings of Woodstock, Vermont, to establish 
the Parmly Billings Professorship of Hygiene and Physical 
Education, in memory of his son Parmly who had graduated 
from Amherst in the class of 1884. Frederic Billmgs ( 1823- 
1890) was born in Vermont and graduated from the Univer- 
sity of Vermont in 1844. He studied law and began practice 
in Woodstock. In 1849 he went to California in the gold rush 
and opened a law ofiice in San Francisco. Here he not only 
made a fortune, but he was active in civic affairs, and was 
the first president of the Board of Trustees of the University 
of California. He might have had a political career had his 
health not failed. He returned to Woodstock, but later be- 
came active in the Northern Pacific Railroad and in the Nica- 
ragua Canal Company. The city of Bilhngs, Montana, is 
named for him. His two sons came to Amherst. Parmly 
(1863-1888) transferred to Amherst after a year at Williams, 
graduated in the class of 1884, and entered the banking busi- 
ness in Billings. He died in 1888 at the age of twenty-five. 
His father had already made two gifts to the College, $5,000 
in 1884 and $5,000 in 1887 toward equipping Pratt Gym- 
nasium. He had intended to endow a professorship in Latin 

in memory of Parmly, but, finding that the College already 
had a Latin chair, he changed to Physical Education because 
of Pamily's fondness for Dr. Hitchcock. And he made the 
gift in his lifetime, anticipating a provision he had inserted 
in his will. 

His younger son, Richard Billings, graduated in the class 
of 1897 and later gave his alma mater the statue of Noah 
Webster which now stands north of Walker Hall. Richard, or 
" Josh " as he was called in college, I remember well from my 
undergraduate days when he used to return as a young alum- 
nus. After the death of Frederic Billings, his widow and his 
son Richard made frequent gifts to the College toward the 
support of Dr. Hitchcock's work in Physical Education. 

In 1891 the College received the bequest of John C. New- 
ton of Worcester of $54,000 to found the John C. Newton 
Professorship of Greek and Lectureship in Sculpture, later 
called the John C. Newton Professorship of Greek. John C. 
Newton (1810-1890) was bom in Hardwick, Massachusetts, 
and moved to Worcester as a young man. He was a mason 
by trade and later became a large building contractor. His 
bequest to the College was due to his affection and respect 
for Professor Richard Mather of our faculty, and his choice 
of Greek and Sculpture was because this covered the work 
that Professor Mather devoted himself to with great success. 
The endowment was reduced in 1896 to $47,384, because of 
losses on Northern Pacific stock in which the fund was in- 

One of the most significant gifts to come to the College 
during this decade was from Rufus Bela Kellogg (1837- 
1891 ) of the class of 1858. Kellogg we have already discussed 
earlier in the chapter as the first alumni trustee of the Col- 
lege; a banker in Green Bay, Wisconsin, who suggested the 
investment of a limited amount of college funds in western 
mortgages which he undertook to guarantee both as to prin- 
cipal and interest. In 1893 he gave the College ten shares of 
stock of the First National Bank of Chicago, taken by us at 
a value of $33,000, to support the Kellogg Prizes in Public 
Speaking and to establish the Kellogg University Fellow- 


ship. Kellogg wrote a letter to his friend John W. Burgess 
of the class of 1867, who had been a professor at Amherst 
earlier and was now a trustee of the College and dean of the 
Faculties of Political Science, Philosophy, Pure Science, and 
Fine Arts at Columbia University, deploring gifts to colleges 
in which the donor imposed restrictions which later involved 
the college in problems of administration. He then pro- 
ceeded to impose the most detailed restrictions on his gift. 
He provided, for example, that the Kellogg Prize Speaking 
Contest "shall be held on Monday evening (at the usual 
hours ) of Commencement Week, otherwise this gift is to be 
forfeited." When the College changed its calendar to pro- 
vide for week-end commencements years later, counsel for 
the College had to negotiate with the Kellogg heirs and se- 
cure their permission to hold the contests on another night 
than Monday. And if the heirs had not generously waived this 
restriction, the College would doubtless have preferred to for- 
feit the fund rather than maintain the old college calen- 
dar for commencement indefinitely. The restrictions on the 
fellowship were more complicated and caused more diffi- 

Kellogg's gift of a fund for fellowships was a far-sighted 
suggestion on his part which may have been the result of 
conversations with Burgess. The Kellogg Fellowship was 
among the earliest established in this country. Its main pur- 
pose was of course to provide a stipend to enable an excel- 
lent student of limited pecuniary means to continue his stud- 
ies in graduate school in preparation for a life devoted to 
scholarship. Today Amherst is uncommonly well provided 
with funds for this purpose, which have been given to the 
College from time to time during the present century and 
which enable a substantial number of our young graduates 
to continue their studies in universities here and abroad. 
But Kellogg was a pioneer in this field which has proved so 
fruitful. The restrictions which he imposed on the award of 
the fellowship, however, were so detailed that they soon be- 
came obsolete under the changing conditions of life in Amer- 
ica. It became almost impossible to find a candidate, how- 

ever impecunious and however devoted to the scholarly life 
as a career, who would undertake to accept the fellowship 
and comply with the conditions, conditions which may very 
well have been reasonable in 1893. Early in President Harris' 
administration he brought the matter to the attention of the 
Board, and a committee of trustees was appointed to en- 
deavor to obtain from the heirs some modifications of the 
terms. The minutes do not indicate any formal report from 
the committee in the matter. 

The problem of administering the fellowship became more 
difficult as the years passed, and was brought to the atten- 
tion of the Board by succeeding presidents. Counsel for the 
College attempted to secure from the heirs a consent to a 
modification of its terms, but without success. When I be- 
came president in 1932, I read the complete file in the mat- 
ter. Fortunately, we found a suitable candidate at the time, 
and as one of the terms of the fellowship was that it should 
be held for seven years, the matter was laid on the table dur- 
ing the term of Philip T. Ives, '32. Later I took the matter up 
myself with the heirs in my capacity as president and with- 
out the participation of counsel, and in 1946 secured their 
agreement in writing to the modifications which I had sub- 
mitted to them. Two of the heirs were under twenty-one, 
and the matter will of course be reopened with them when 
they reach their majority. The heirs are now resident in Penn- 
sylvania, Virginia, and Florida. 

The largest bequest the College received in this period, 
and one of the largest in its history, was the bequest under 
the will of Daniel Fayerweather of New York. Between 1892 
and 1917 the College received from the Fayerweather estate 
a total amount of $228,145 without restrictions of any kind. 
The money was used for various purposes, including the 
building and equipping of the Fayerweather Laboratory of 
Physics and Chemistry, now the Fayerweather Laboratory of 
Physics. The balance of the fund which was finally set up as 
an endowment fund is small. 

Daniel B. Fayerweather was the senior partner in the firm 
of Fayerweather and Ladew, the largest leather dealers in 


the country at the time and perhaps in the world. Born a 
poor boy in New England, he became a shoemaker and later 
a peddler in Virginia. He often took hides in payment for the 
goods he sold as he traveled about the state, and decided he 
would become a dealer in leather. When he had saved 
enough money he enrolled in a boys' boarding school in 
Connecticut, where the other students were seven or eight 
years younger. At the age of thirty-two he obtained a clerk- 
ship with a New York firm of leather dealers and within a 
year was admitted to the firm as a partner. He was little 
known in New York except in the leather district, at the 
Manhattan end of Brooklyn Bridge, where he gradually be- 
came known affectionately as " Old Dan." And no one real- 
ized that he had become a very wealthy man. In 1886 he be- 
gan to consider what disposition he should ultimately make 
of his fortune by will, and he consulted confidentially with 
Dr. Roswell D. Hitchcock, president of Union Theological 
Seminary. Dr. Hitchcock had graduated from Amherst in the 
class of 1836 and had been a trustee of the College since 
1869. Guided by Dr. Hitchcock, Fayerweather made his will, 
by which, after what he considered suitable provision for his 
family, he left the remainder of his estate to a score of col- 
leges in amounts ranging from $50,000 to $300,000. There 
were no restrictions on the bequests and no provision for the 
perpetuation of his name. 

Legal problems developed immediately in the settlement 
of the estate and extended over many years. The matter 
came before the Board in 1891, in 1893, and in 1897. In 1917 
Treasurer Kidder executed a receipt in behalf of the College 
for the final payment of the College's legacy. The correspond- 
ence in the files of the College is voluminous, but of little in- 
terest to us today. A number of technical points of law were 
involved, including a New York statute limiting the propor- 
tion of a decedent's estate which could be willed to charity. 
A number of young Amherst alumni who were members of 
the New York bar wrote requesting appointment as counsel 
for the College. Each of the twenty colleges was represented 
by distinguished counsel. Amherst's interests were handled 

for most of the period by James Lord Bishop of the class of 
1865. At the trial of the issues, the colleges whose interests 
were the same as Amherst's decided on a young graduate of 
Hamilton College named Elihu Root to present their case. 
James L. Bishop wrote a letter to the treasurer asking his ap- 
proval and saying that in the judgment of counsel involved 
Root was the ablest young man at the New York bar and 
quite able to meet Joseph H. Choate, who would represent 
the other side. The Amherst treasurer appears to have ac- 
cepted Mr. Bishop's recommendation. 

When President Charles W. Cole was a professor on the 
Amherst faculty, he occupied an office in Fayerweather; when 
he accepted an appointment as professor at Columbia Uni- 
versity, he was assigned an office in Columbia's Fayerweather 
Hall. Columbia had named the Hall for Fayerweather when 
it was built; Amherst had not been so appreciative in recog- 
nition of this unknown but generous donor. The Amherst 
building was known simply as the Chemistry and Physics 
Laboratories until 1930. I then asked the Amherst Board to 
attach Fayerweather's name to the building and to place a 
bronze plaque at the entrance to give this belated recogni- 
tion to one of the College's most generous benefactors. 

One of the difficult problems handled by Whitcomb for 
the Finance Committee in his early days as a trustee resulted 
from the will of Samuel Williston. Mr. Williston died in 1874. 
His will, executed the previous year, left specffic bequests of 
over $700,000, with the residue to Amherst College. While 
Mr. Williston had been extraordinarily successful as a busi- 
nessman and had accumulated perhaps the largest fortune of 
his day in western Massachusetts, his final business venture, 
the erection of a large thread mill in Easthampton to com- 
pete with one of the old thread manufacturers of England, 
had been unsuccessful. And as a result, his fortune was much 
reduced in the final years of his life. The College received ti- 
tle to this mill in the settlement of the estate, and received 
nothing more. After prolonged negotiation the College was 
able to sell the mill for some $103,000 to one Albert Abbott, 
taking $3,000 in cash and five serial notes of $20,000 each. 


The first note was paid at maturity; then Abbott failed. Whit- 
comb took over the problem for the College, and his long- 
hand letters to the treasurer of Amherst tell something of his 
difiBculties in realizing on the remaining notes which were 
secured by mortgage on the mill. Finally, in 1888 Whitcomb 
was able to sell the remaining $80,000 notes and mortgage 
for $5,000. His letters show his profound disappointment, as 
he had expected to obtain at least $10,000. Doubtless, with 
his experience as a manufacturer and his natural instincts 
as a trader, he secured for the College all that could have 
been salvaged. The $28,000 realized from the Williston es- 
tate was added to the Williston Contingent Fund which Mr. 
Williston had established in 1872 by the gift of $50,000, 
bringing the fund up to about $78,000. 

The endowment of the College, as we have seen, had been 
growing steadily. By 1892 the endowment, including the 
Charity Fund, had passed $1,300,000. The distribution of the 
investments had shifted, and this was due both to changes in 
the investment market and to the influence of the new men, 
particularly Whitcomb, on the Finance Committee. The larg- 
est classification was Notes Receivable at 37%. Bonds and 
Notes Receivable contained four large items which together 
made up two-thirds of the total of $452,000. The largest were 
the notes of John C. and L. D. Hammond of about $170,000; 
followed in order by a temporary investment made by Whit- 
comb in the $40,000 note of the Western Construction Co., 
the McGraw note of $50,000 which was still carried as an as- 
set, and the serial notes of R. H. Stearns & Co. of Boston of 
$37,000 covering the cost of construction of their new store 
and secured by mortgages on the leaseholds. These notes 
were signed by R. H. Stearns and were arranged and passed 
on by Henry Hyde. The earlier notes were paid at maturity; 
the later ones were anticipated. Frank W. Stearns was at this 
time a young man in the store, not long out of Amherst Col- 
lege. Later, two presidents of R. H. Stearns & Co. were 
members of the Amherst Board, for a total of nearly thirty 

New types of securities begin to appear in the 1892 port- 

folio. Five street railway items, totaling $26,000 par value of 
bonds, were now on the college list; New York & New Jersey 
Telephone Co. bonds, New England Telephone Co. stock, 
Erie Tel. & Tel. stock, and Western Union Tel. Co. stock. 
The list of bank stocks had increased from nine banks to 
nineteen, all in Massachusetts. The common stocks of New 
England textile manufacturing companies had decreased by 
25%. The bonds of Virginia had decreased from nearly $30,- 
000 to $18,000, the Tennessee bonds were lower, and Mas- 
sachusetts bonds appeared for the first time. The College had 
also bought a number of debenture bonds, nearly $45,000 of 
the Equitable Mortgage Co. and $15,000 of the Davidson In- 
vestment Co. 

The trial balance of 1892 shows cash on hand of $35,798, 
and a " New Gymnasium Debt " of $30,268.95. There is also 
a Profit & Loss item on the wrong side of the ledger of 
$5,561.79. The debt on the New Gymnasium was due to the 
fact that the building and equipment built in 1883 cost some 
$30,000 more than the gift of Mr. Pratt of some $35,000. The 
College also had outstanding $50,000 on Notes Payable. This 
was doubtless two loans made at the Amherst Savings Bank 
in 1889 and 1891. The bank charged the College 4^%. 

In 1887 the New York alumni sent a communication to the 
Board asking that an annual statement of the finances of the 
College be given to the alumni. The matter was referred to 
the next meeting of the Board, and was then referred to the 
Finance Committee with power. I do not find that the Fi- 
nance Committee took any aflBrmative action at the time. 
This of course was long before the alumni of the College 
were being asked for funds to support the College. Gifts 
were being sought constantly, but only from the wealthy or 
well-to-do members of the alumni body. 

Treasurer Dickinson had begun his service to the College 
in the early days of the panic of 1873. Now, nearing the age 
of sixty-five, he was faced with the panic of 1893. The first 
warning of impending disaster had been the Baring failure 
in London in 1890. But the land boom had continued until 
in 1893 the crash came with the failure of the Philadelphia 


and Reading and the Erie Railroads. Specie payments were 
practically suspended by the banks, six hundred banks failed, 
and the commercial failures were three times what they had 
been in 1873. A long depression followed, as it had in 1837 
and again in 1873. It was not until 1897 that marked business 
improvement set in, to be followed by a long period of 

The treasurer did not survive the depression. In August 
1895 William Austin Dickinson died, after serving the Col- 
lege for twenty-two years as its treasurer. " His career," says 
George Whicher, " though closely patterned after the pater- 
nal model, never brought him into the thick of life or called 
out all his capacities." His father's activities had brought him 
into contact with the men who were leaders in state and na- 
tion. Austin remained at home, was town moderator, trustee 
of the Savings Bank for nearly thirty years, treasurer of the 
College, a useful and respected citizen. He planted the trees 
on the town common, planted the college grove, was sensi- 
tive to the aesthetic side of life. And he permitted himself 
more personal eccentricities than is usual with a college 
treasurer, from the yellow hunting coat he wore as a young 
man, to the green wig he affected in his later years. His term 
of service with the College covered the last years of Presi- 
dent Stearns' administration, all of President Seelye's, and 
the first half of President Gates'. Because of Gates' inepti- 
tudes as an administrator, Austin Dickinson's duties as treas- 
urer were much enlarged during the final years of his term. 
But as he grew older, he hated to leave Amherst even for 
a brief trip. The correspondence indicates that Whitcomb, 
the busy manufacturer and member of the Finance Commit- 
tee, would frequently make the trip from Worcester to Am- 
herst, but there is no reference to Dickinson's traveling to 
Worcester for consultation. Dickinson's annual reports to the 
Board are a model of clear statement and show a careful and 
balanced judgment in financial matters, but his handwriting 
was poorer than average. His relations with most of the 
members of the Finance Committee were formal and oflBcial; 
only John Sanford of Taunton was on such a basis of per- 

sonal intimacy that first names were used in correspondence 
and greetings were extended to Mrs. Dickinson. He was a 
good treasurer, and, happily for him, he did not hve to learn 
that his confidence had been grossly betrayed by one of his 
most trusted subordinates. 


Chapter Six 

G. HENRY WHITCOMB, Treasurer 1895-1898 
JOSEPH W. FAIRBANKS, Treasurer 1898-1903 
WALTER M. HOWLAND, Treasurer 1903-1909 

The year 1895 is remembered today by our alumni be- 
cause in that year the College graduated two of its most dis- 
tinguished sons, Calvin Coolidge and Dwight W. Morrow. 
Both later became trustees, as did two of their classmates, 
Herbert L. Pratt and Lucius R. Eastman. But the year 1895 
had a quite different significance for the men who were then 
trustees. There was grave difficulty with the president, who 
had lost the confidence of the undergraduates and of many 
of the faculty. And there was serious trouble in the treasur- 
er's office. 

The Finance Committee consisted of Messrs. Sanford, 
Whitcomb, and James, with the president an ex officio mem- 
ber. Sanford had been a member of the committee for nearly 
twenty years, Whitcomb for ten years, and James for three 
years. It was an unusually strong committee, and it contin- 
ued unchanged in make-up until James' death in 1904, when 
he was succeeded by Charles M. Pratt. Each member of the 
committee was a man of sound and independent judgment, 
of long experience in financial matters; and each was fearless 
in the discharge of his duty as a trustee. 

The College was facing a serious deficit from operations, 
and the death of the treasurer made it imperative that a fi- 
nancial officer be appointed at once in his place. At a special 
meeting of the Board in September, Whitcomb was unani- 
mously elected to the vacancy to hold office until December 
1st. Although Whitcomb was already fully occupied with his 
personal business responsibilities and his trusteeships of 

charitable institutions, he accepted the temporary appoint- 
ment, and began coming to Amherst from Worcester by 
train once or twice a week. He was unable to divest himself 
of the office he had assumed until three years later, in 1898. 

An immediate and thorough audit of the college books of 
account led to the discovery of a serious defalcation by a 
trusted employee in the office of the late treasurer. The de- 
faulter was Edward Baxter Marsh, a graduate of the College 
in the class of 1876; and he had used college funds to specu- 
late in stocks. Though no one questioned the personal integ- 
rity of Treasurer Dickinson, the Board felt that his laxity in 
the administration of his office made him subject to serious 
criticism. It now became Whitcomb's responsibility to secure 
restitution and to determine whether the College should 
bring criminal charges. Whitcomb spent many evenings in 
Amherst trying to work out plans for restitution while still 
protecting Austin Dickinson's reputation for personal integ- 
rity. Mrs. Dickinson was of course deeply distressed. Henry 
P. Field, '80, of Northampton represented Mrs. Dickinson. 
The matter was kept entirely secret and I find no reference 
to it in the files of the College or in the official records of the 
Board. I have, however, seen a holograph letter dated No- 
vember 16, 1908 from D. W. Palmer of Amherst, onetime 
owner of the Palmer Block, to Mrs. Dickinson, reciting that 
he has settled the matter involving Mr. Dickinson and his es- 
tate, the defaulter, the College, and the bank, and asking 
Mrs. Dickinson to pay him his expenses, amounting to fifty 
dollars. Mrs. Dickinson paid in three installments. The 
amount of the defalcation, according to Palmer's letter, was 
$5,500. The defaulter, who, by the way, had studied theol- 
ogy after graduating from Amherst and had also served as an 
instructor on the Amherst faculty for two years, left town 
and accepted a clerkship in Boston. 

Whitcomb quickly tightened up the administration of the 
treasurer's office. Dickinson had been lax in collecting term 
bills from students, and although the College was operating 
with a deficit, there was a large amount of money due from 
students both past and present. Whitcomb took the position 


that no student was in good standing until his term bill was 
paid or arrangements made with the treasurer's office for de- 
ferred payments. This of course made him temporarily un- 
popular with the students, who had become as casual in 
meeting their obligations to the College as the treasurer's of- 
fice had allowed. But the policy instituted by Whitcomb has 
been continued ever since. 

The details of the office Whitcomb put in charge of 
Charles R. Fay, who was assistant registrar of the College 
from 1896 to 1900. Fay, familiarly known as " Fatty," had 
graduated from the College in the class of 1890. Later he be- 
came a leading teacher on the staff of Erasmus Hall High 
School in Brooklyn. The college securities were kept in Bos- 
ton in the vaults of a trust company, and periodically Whit- 
comb went to Boston to cut the coupons. He was often 
accompanied by a son or daughter, who was rewarded for as- 
sistance in cutting coupons by a lunch at Parker's or Young's, 
Securities were bought and sold by the treasurer on his own 
responsibility, and the Finance Committee was merely a rati- 
fying body. Whitcomb, however, kept closely in touch with 
Sanford and James, his associates on the committee, with 
both of whom his relations were close. Whitcomb and James 
were, in fact, associated in certain business ventures of their 
own, particularly in the acquisition of large tracts of real es- 
tate in Seattle. 

While the purchase and sale of individual securities was 
handled on the treasurer's responsibility, there were vigor- 
ous discussions of investment policy both in the committee 
and with other members of the Board. Whitcomb, supported 
by James and Sanford, took the position that the College 
must obtain a larger income from its endowment or else re- 
duce its teaching staff. They advocated the purchase of rail- 
way and public utility bonds, and specffically the bonds of 
street railways which were then being built throughout the 
country. Such investments then paid from 5% to 6/2%. Pratt 
was insistent that the College's endowment consisted of trust 
funds and that therefore the only proper investment was 
U.S. Governments, yielding at the time about 2%. Whitcomb, 

James, and Sanford stood firm and the Board supported 
them. Some losses occurred later as street railways declined. 
But the increased income brought the budget into balance, 
and the losses were small. Plimpton, who was outside of the 
controversy, as he was oflF the Board from 1895 to 1900, used 
to say in later life that Whitcomb's policy kept the College 
from going into a decline. 

Whitcomb was at the time one of the largest bond buyers 
in New England; he bought for himself, for the College, for 
two large missionary societies, and he was regarded as a 
shrewd judge of investments and a close buyer. When the 
two months for which Whitcomb had accepted the treas- 
urership had extended to three years, Whitcomb, who was 
now engaged in putting together the United States Envelope 
Company, advised the Board that he could no longer con- 
tinue as treasurer of the College, and the Board said in ef- 
fect that they would elect his nominee to succeed him. Whit- 
comb's resignation became effective on February 1, 1898 and 
the Board elected Joseph W. Fairbanks to be the fifth treas- 
urer of the College. 

Meanwhile, the diflSculties of President Gates had reached 
a point where his continuance in office had become impossi- 
ble. These difficulties were of the president's own making 
and had nothing to do with the treasurer's office. A month 
after Fairbanks took office as treasurer, a special meeting of 
the Board was held and the president asked for and was 
granted an immediate leave of absence for reasons of health. 
He and his family promptly left for England without waiting 
for commencement and the end of the college year. At the 
commencement meeting of the Board in 1898, the president's 
resignation, written in Cambridge, England, was presented 
and accepted, to take effect a year later at the conclusion of 
his leave of absence. The College now had a new treasurer, 
and the duties of the president were distributed between 
Professors Hitchcock, Olds, and Tyler, who were known as 
the Triumvirate. A year later George Harris took office as 
president and the College entered on an era of good feeling 
after the stormy days of the Gates administration. 


Joseph Whitcomb Fairbanks (1841-1903) was bom in 
Ashburnham, Massachusetts, graduated from Amherst in the 
class of 1866, taught school in Worcester, at Williston Semi- 
nary, and, after a few years in business in St. Paul, became 
principal of Smith Academy in St. Louis. He was fifty-seven 
years old when he became treasurer, and served five years, 
till his death in 1903. He was easy-going, though sometimes 
irascible, and was fully entitled to the sobriquet of " Fatty " 
as he was dubbed by the students. The only contact I re- 
member having with him during my undergraduate days was 
a formal note which I received a couple of days before my 
graduation informing me that I would not be allowed to 
graduate unless I paid my debt to the College, viz., five 
cents for a library fine. I paid. 

In 1900, during Fairbanks' administration of the ofiice, a 
young man was added to the staff with the title of assistant 
treasurer, who was destined to remain as a financial officer of 
the College for a third of a century, until his death in 1933. 
His name was Harry Welton Kidder of the class of 1897. 
Kidder was born in Northampton, prepared for college at 
the Northampton High School, and after graduation from 
college was for one year a student of theology at Yale Di- 
vinity School and for the two following years a bookkeeper 
in the Northampton National Bank. Thereafter his life was 
spent on the finances and accounts of the College. 

In 1903, on the death of Treasurer Fairbanks, the Board 
elected as his successor Walter Morton Howland. Howland 
(1840-1911) was born in Conway, Massachusetts, prepared 
at Williston Seminary, graduated from Amherst in the class 
of 1863, and was a practicing lawyer in Chicago from 1869 to 
1902. He was an alumni trustee of the College from 1895 to 
1905. When he accepted the office of treasurer he had retired 
from practice, and bought the Parnell Munson house in 
South Amherst, where he lived until his death. As a lawyer 
he had had long experience in the management of trust es- 
tates, he was of course on intimate terms with his colleagues 
on the Board, he was gentle, humorous and poetic, and un- 
commonly careful in the expenditure of money. Unhappily, 

his mind began to fail and he resigned his ofiBce in 1909 after 
only six years of service. The details of his ofiBce he left 
largely to Kidder. And on his resignation the Board elected 
Kidder to succeed him. The College thus had had three treas- 
urers in fourteen years. 

While treasurers changed, the investment policy of the 
College continued as before. Whitcomb and Sanford re- 
mained on the Finance Committee, and in 1904, on the death 
of D. Willis James, Charles M. Pratt, who had been a mem- 
ber of the Board since 1897, succeeded him. Whitcomb was 
now in his sixties, he had been a member of the Board for 
twenty years and of the Finance Committee for the same 
length of time. He knew more about the finances of the Col- 
lege than any other person. His three sons had graduated 
from the College. He was wealthy; the United States Enve- 
lope Company which he had formed was developing suc- 
cessfully; and he lived only fifty miles from the College. 
Pratt was some fifteen years younger. He took seriously his 
responsibilities as a trustee. He criticised the form of the 
Treasurer's Report as submitted to the Board. Whitcomb 
countered by asking Pratt to submit a form for the Treasur- 
er's Report which would meet Pratt's criticism and would 
more intelligently and accurately indicate to the Board the 
financial results of the College's operations. 

Pratt sent his own auditor, Mr. Isaac E. Hasbrouk of New 
York, to Amherst to make a comprehensive study of the col- 
lege accounts. Hasbrouk made a ten-page typewritten report 
which Pratt sent on to Whitcomb with a covering letter of 
four typewritten pages dated March 6, 1903. Hasbrouk 
pointed out that in the previous year the College had shown 
a surplus of $12,975, although the Treasurer's Report (Treas- 
urer Fairbanks) reported a loss of $2,479. The New York 
auditor called attention also to the fact that " while the dor- 
mitories were operated at a profit, the result was that no such 
profit was allowed to appear as an asset of any kind." " Fur- 
thermore," continued Hasbrouk with the directness which 
characterizes auditors, " if profits were made on the buying 
or selling of securities, they do not appear as a direct in- 


crease in assets but were used to reduce the values of securi- 
ties on hand." 

Among other criticisms, Hasbrouk observes that Notes Re- 
ceivable and Notes Payable include an item of $30,860.36, 
which is the remainder of a note given to the Corporation by 
the then treasurer for $38,693.81, and that this is carried as 
an asset under the heading of " Dormitories, Renovations." 
" If the present practice is continued," he adds, " in the 
course of ten or twenty years a meaningless item will have 
disappeared from the assets and liabilities by a meaningless 

The Hasbrouk report has a familiar ring to us who were 
later on the Board. Twenty years later Dwight Morrow sent 
the auditor of J. P. Morgan & Company to Amherst to ex- 
amine the books. Kidder kept the college books from 1900 
on. His accounting methods were criticised by auditors for 
thirty years, though no one questioned his integrity. But no 
auditor, no Finance Committee was able to change Kidder's 
informal methods of keeping the college accounts. Kidder 
read the reports, listened to the comments of Finance Com- 
mittees, and went on in his accustomed ways. Finance Com- 
mittees finally had to recognize the implicit situation which 
confronted them; their only adequate recourse was to re- 
move Kidder, and he was too useful to be removed. He did 
an amazing amount of work, he was underpaid, he was hon- 
est, and he was stubborn. To have proper accounts would 
have cost the College a substantial increase in the budget of 
the treasurer's office, and this would necessarily have re- 
duced the budget for the educational side of the College. It 
was not until 1932 that the accounting practice of the Col- 
lege was overhauled throughout, and a proper set of ac- 
counting books opened with proper control of account- 
ing practice. By that time the large increase in the college 
endowment, the Folger Fund, and other factors made im- 
perative a change in the treasurer's office and a new treas- 

We must now examine the college portfolio in this decade. 
Here is the comparative statement in summary: 

1875 Total, excluding Charity Fund $ 584,845 

1882 Total, excluding Charity Fund 913,331 

1892 Total, excluding Charity Fund 1,225,184 

1903 Total, excluding Charity Fund 1,671,066 

The endowment has shown an increase in the decade of 
nearly half a million dollars, or 36%. The increase in the pre- 
ceding decade was 33%. The two largest additions to the per- 
manent funds of the College in the decade were: 

190 J Endowment Fund of $100,000 given by more than a 
score of alumni and one non-alumnus. D. Willis James gave 
one-half, $50,000. Charles M. Pratt gave $25,000. John W. 
Simpson gave $5,000. There were eight gifts of $1,000 and the 
rest were smaller. The income was to be used for professors' 

Special Endowment Fund No. 2. $65,000. Established in 
1901 and increased in 1902 by William H. Moore, 71, of New 
York. The income from $40,000 to be devoted to the salaries of 
associate professors and instructors, and the income from $25,- 
000 to be used for scholarships. Mr. Moore (1848-1923) was a 
practicing lawyer in Chicago, promoted the Diamond Match 
Company and the American Tin Plate Company, made a large 
fortune, and was a director of numerous corporations. Six 
years after his death his widow and two sons gave the College 
the Moore Laboratory of Chemistry in his memory, together 
with an endowment of $250,000 for the building. 

In addition, the College received in 1898 a generous be- 
quest amounting to $46,000 under the will of Amos R. Eno 
of New York, without restrictions as to the use of principal 
or income. Mr. Eno (1810-1898) was born in Simsbury, 
Connecticut, and had only a common school education. After 
a short apprenticeship in dry goods houses he went to New 
York at the age of twenty-three and with his cousin founded 
the firm of Eno and Phillips, which became a leading dry 
goods firm. In 1850 the firm was dissolved, and Eno went 
into the real estate business, developing sections of the city 
in the vicmity of City Hall. He built the Fifth Avenue Hotel, 
which became one of the leading hotels of the city. To his 
native town he gave the Tov^oi Library and the main build- 


ings on the Town Farm. What stimulated his interest in Am- 
herst we do not know. 

The Sidney Dillon Fund of $25,000 was established in 
1894 by two daughters and two grandsons of Sidney Dillon, 
with the provision that the income should be used toward 
the salary of the professor of astronomy. One of the daugh- 
ters, Cora, was the wife of Peter B. Wyckoff of the class of 
1868, who became a practicing physician and later a stock- 
broker in New York. Sidney Dillon (1812-1892), in whose 
memory the fund was established, was one of the leading fig- 
ures in the middle of the last century in the construction of 
American railways. The son of a poor farmer in New York 
state, he began work at seven as a water boy on the Mohawk 
& Hudson Railroad from Albany to Schenectady. Later, he 
became a foreman on railroad construction projects in New 
England. Finally, he went into business for himself, built a 
section of the Boston & Albany in 1840, and during the next 
thirty years built thousands of miles of railway. One of his 
contracts was for the construction of the tunnel under Park 
Avenue to Grand Central Station, undertaken for Commo- 
dore Vanderbilt. His greatest enterprise was the construc- 
tion of the Union Pacific, with which he became associated 
through the purchase of large blocks of stock of Credit Mo- 
bilier. He was twice president of Union Pacific and at the 
time of his death he was chairman of the Board. He was 
closely associated with Jay Gould in many of his enterprises. 
His wife was Hannah Smith of Amherst. He was engaged in 
the revision of his will when he died; and his children and 
grandchildren made a number of charitable gifts from their 
inheritance in order to carry out the program he had in mind 
in the draft of a new will. 

In 1897 the College received the Pratt Health College 
Fund of $32,000 from three Pratt brothers: George of the 
class of 1893, Herbert of the class of 1895, and John of the 
class of 1896. The income was to be used for the mainte- 
nance and operation of Pratt Health Cottage which they 
had just given to the College. It is now used for the mainte- 
nance and operation of the College Infirmary. It is to be 

noted that this gift was made at a time when these young 
men were just out of college, and before they had received 
their shares of their inheritance. They all later became 
wealthy men, and their generous gifts to the College contin- 
ued throughout their lives. How they secured funds to make 
this generous gift to their alma mater I have not been able 
to find out. 

Another gift to the College in this decade was the Wil- 
ham S. Tyler Memorial Fund of $25,000 given in 1902 by 
Mason W. Tyler of the class of 1862 in memory of his father 
who had graduated in the class of 1830 and served on the fac- 
ulty until 1893, and who, in addition, had rendered a serv- 
ive of great usefulness by writing the history of the College 
at its semicentennial and revising it for publication when 
the College celebrated its seventy-fifth anniversary. The in- 
come is to be used for the purchase of books, maps, etc., for 
the college library. Mason W. Tyler, the donor, had served 
in the Union Army as a young man, practiced law in New 
York for a third of a century, served as alumni trustee of the 
College from 1901 to 1907, and held the office of governor 
of the state of New Jersey. 

While the endowment had increased during the decade 
some 36%, the distribution of investments had made marked 
changes. Notes Receivable, which was the largest item in 
1892, representing 37% of the total, had dropped to 8%; Rail- 
road Bonds had risen from 24% to 31%, Bank Stocks from 3% 
to 9%; Manufacturing Stocks of $32,000 were almost un- 
changed in amount, though lower in percentage. Bonds and 
Notes Receivable now amounted to 71%, compared to 81% in 

In 1892 the College had Notes Payable of $50,000. In 1903 
Notes Payable stood at $29,000 and the following year this 
disappeared completely from the Balance Sheet. By 1903 the 
General Gain and Loss Account was in the red by the 
amount of nearly $40,000. 

A significant change had occurred since 1892. The Treas- 
urer's Report was now printed for distribution in a twelve- 
page leaflet. Previously the printed report had given only a 


summary of income and expense, but no balance sheet, no 
report of purchases and sales, and no list of gifts received. 
The new type of report did not include a list of the invest- 
ments of the College, but, except for this, it did give a rea- 
sonably comprehensive picture of the finances of the insti- 
tution. It was unsigned and did not include a copy of the 
auditor's certificate. 


Chapter Seven 


Assistant Treasurer 1900-1909 
Treasurer 1909-1931 

Comptroller 1931-1933 

Harry W. Kidder became the seventh treasurer of the Col- 
lege in 1909, but the actual transfer of the responsibility had 
been taking place gradually as the health of Mr. Howland 
failed. When Kidder received his formal election by the 
Board, he was already carrying most of the important work 
of the office, and the Board's action ratified what had already 
become a fact. The significant change in the management of 
the college finances had taken place two years earlier, in 
1907. John E. Sanford died in October, at the age of seventy- 
seven. A graduate of the College in the class of 1851, he had 
been an influential member of the Board for thuty-three 
years, a member of the Finance Committee for nearly thirty 
years, and president of the Board for eight years. And for a 
quarter of a century he and Whitcomb had worked closely 
together on the problems of the finances of the College. 
D. Willis James, who had been associated with them on the 
committee, had died three years earlier. These men had 
worked easily and informally. There is no record of any for- 
mal meetings of the committee to consider investment pol- 
icy. Whitcomb was the dominant member of the committee, 
as we have seen, and exercised the primary responsibility. 
Policy was made in Massachusetts, as it had been since the 
founding of the College. 

In 1907 two New York men were added to the committee, 


John W. Simpson and Arthur Curtiss James. Charles M. Pratt 
continued as a member and Whitcomb continued as chair- 
man. But the weight of the committee was now centered in 
New York for the first time. Simpson and James had both 
been elected to the Board in 1904, the latter to the life Board, 
the former as an alumni trustee. In addition, George A. 
Plimpton of New York, who had been an alumni trustee from 
1890 to 1895, had been made a life trustee in 1900, and in 
1907 was chosen president of the Board to succeed Sanford. 
In 1908 the Finance Committee at its own motion elected 
Plimpton to the committee, thus giving New York four mem- 
bers to one in Massachusetts. 

Arthur Curtiss James was elected to the Board in 1904 to 
succeed his father. Born in New York City in 1867, he grad- 
uated from the College in the class of 1889. He inherited one 
of the large fortunes of the country, became the largest in- 
dividual stockholder in American railways, a director and 
large stockholder in Phelps Dodge & Co., a director of the 
First National Bank of New York, and of many other cor- 
porations, a trustee of numerous charities, and a member of 
a large number of organizations. James was a member of the 
Board from 1904 till 1938. When failing health made it im- 
possible for him to attend meetings, the Board elected him 
trustee emeritus. He died in 1941. 

It is interesting to observe the change in emphasis, and 
sometimes in direction, which may result from the addition 
of one new member to a small Board like the Amherst Board. 
Often a new man is added to the Board and no change occurs 
in the center of gravity, nothing new is added. But, occa- 
sionally, the addition of one new trustee results, in time, in 
profound changes within the Board and in its action. John 
W. Simpson is an example. John Woodruff Simpson ( 1850- 
1920 ) was one of the ablest men on the Board. Born in Ver- 
mont, he graduated from the College in the class of 1871, 
and was a practicing lawyer in New York City from 1873 un- 
til his death. He founded and was the senior member of the 
firm of Simpson, Thacher and Barnum, which later became 
Simpson, Thacher and Bartlett. Dwight W. Morrow, '95, and 


Niel A. Weathers, '98, later became partners in the firm. 
After Mr. Shnpson's death, his widow and daughter joined in 
founding the John W. Simpson Foundation at the College, 
with a gift of $150,000. 

I never knew Mr. Simpson personally. He was evidently a 
man of very great personal charm, wide contacts, shrewd 
judgment, and incisive action. He was devoted to Dwight 
Morrow, and Morrow always spoke of him with deep aflFec- 
tion and almost with veneration. One of our alumni who was 
once a law clerk in Mr. Simpson's oflBce writes me, " I should 
doubt very much if anybody other than Mr. Simpson was the 
leader on any committee of which Mr. Simpson was a mem- 
ber." Simpson married Miss Kate Seney, " as blue a blood as 
any in the land, and with family connections, both wealth 
and social, which became an important source of the clien- 
tele of her husband's firm." Mrs. Simpson inspired awe even 
in the wife of a Morgan partner. I called on her once toward 
the end of her life in her beautiful New York home; to me 
she seemed a great lady of an earlier day. 

Mr. Simpson was a lawyer of the new type, the head of a 
large firm which numbered many of the great corporations 
of the country among its clients. His firm and the other lead- 
ing New York finns of the day were the product of the 
change in the business methods of the country which had 
been developing with the rapid growth of large corporate 
enterprises. And Simpson was the first lawyer of this type to 
be elected to the Amherst Board. As a member of the Board 
from 1904 to 1907, he was not responsible for the procedures 
used by the Finance Committee in the exercise of their re- 
sponsibility for the purchase and sale of securities for the col- 
lege account. When he became a member of the committee, 
it was natural for him to take seriously his new responsibility 
and to suggest that the procedure which had before been in- 
formal be regularized by frequent formal meetings of the 
committee. With four members in New York and only one in 
Massachusetts, it was natural that tire meetings be held in 
New York and he offered his office as a convenient meeting 
place. Beginning in 1908, the Finance Committee held regu- 


lar meetings at the Simpson offices at 62 Cedar Street, and 
formal minutes of the meetings were kept and placed on file. 
Four meetings were held in 1908, eight in 1909, ten in 1910, 
and ten in 1911. Kidder came down from Amherst to each 
meeting and kept the minutes. If only Simpson and Kidder 
were present, the meeting was canceled, but Simpson went 
over with Kidder the matters to be considered. 

One of the first matters to be regularized involved access 
to the vaults in the Boston Trust Company where the Col- 
lege's unregistered securities were kept. For half a century 
the treasurer had had access and so had one member of the 
Finance Committee, in the early days Henry Edwards and 
later Whitcomb. In 1897 the Board had voted that the for- 
mal custody of the securities rested with the Finance Com- 
mittee; this meant, in effect, with Whitcomb. In 1905 Plimp- 
ton raised the question of the custody of the securities at the 
autumn meeting of the Board, and suggested that current 
procedure was not in accord with the best modern practice. 
The matter was referred to the Finance Committee. In 1908 
the Finance Committee voted that access to the vault should 
be limited to the treasurer in company with Kidder or in 
company with a member of the Board. And at the same 
meeting Plimpton was asked by the committee to make in- 
quiries as to the cost of having the securities handled by a 
trust company in Springfield. In 1909 the committee settled 
the matter for the present by voting to deposit the unregis- 
tered securities with the City Trust Company of Boston; the 
trust company would collect and transmit the income and 
charge 2^2% of the income for their services. The following 
year the City Trust Company was absorbed by the Old Col- 
ony Trust Company, which continued the service to the Col- 
lege. Registered securities were apparently kept by the 
treasurer in his office in Walker Hall, for in 1913 we find the 
Board passing a resolution that pending further action of 
the Finance Committee, the treasurer be instructed to trans- 
fer the securities from Walker Hall to a box " in one of the 
banks in Amherst " with access by the treasurer and presi- 
dent or dean or a nominee of the Finance Committee. 
[ 120 ] 

At the monthly meetings in New York the purchase and 
sale of securities was discussed and each transaction re- 
corded in the minutes. At the meeting in March 1910, only 
Simpson and Kidder of the committee were present, and the 
meeting was postponed. Note, however, is made in the min- 
utes that Simpson had brought Morrow to the meeting to re- 
port on a matter he had investigated for the committee. And 
from then on. Morrow appears from time to time in the min- 
utes of the committee as in attendance for a similar purpose. 

At a meeting in 1911 the claim of the Sears heirs for $69,- 
457.84 was discussed, and the committee voted to retain Ar- 
thur Wellman, Esquire, of Boston to represent the College. 

Perhaps the most spectacular tragedy in American finance 
in this period was the gradual collapse of the credit of the 
New Haven Railroad and the decline in the market value of 
its securities. As Charles M. Pratt was a member of the Am- 
herst Board and a director of the New Haven, it is interesting 
to see how the college finances fared. For New Haven stock 
had held a pre-eminent position for a generation as an invest- 
ment for trust funds and for " widows and orphans." It was 
held in much the same regard as the stock of American Tele- 
phone is held today. Its dividend record was impressive. It 
had paid 10% every year but one from 1873 to 1895, and 
since 1896 it had paid 8%. In 1903, Charles S. Mellen was 
elected president of the road. His election was widely ac- 
claimed; he was New England born and had spent most of 
his life in the employ of New England railroads before go- 
ing west to head the Northern Pacific. The elder Morgan 
brought him back to the presidency of the New Haven, 
which was regarded as the best road in New England. Mel- 
len then began, with the support of Morgan, to acquire the 
trolley lines, the boat lines, and the competing railroads in 
New Haven territory, and to extend New Haven territory to 
take in most of New England. Control of the Boston & Maine 
was acquired, and arrangements made with New York Cen- 
tral for joint control of the Boston & Albany, which had 
been leased to New York Central about 1900. It was obvious 
that New Haven under Mellen and Morgan intended to 


acquire a monopoly of public transportation in New England 

In 1907, Louis D. Brandeis of Boston, later Mr. Justice 
Brandeis, published a pamphlet in which he vigorously op- 
posed the New Haven program and in which he attempted 
to prove that the New Haven Railroad had grievously under- 
mined its own credit position by its enormous expenditures 
made in carrying out its purchases. One of the most bitter 
fights of the century developed. It was carried on in the 
press, in public debates, before committees of the Massachu- 
setts legislature, and finally before the Interstate Commerce 
Commission. In 1910 John E. Oldham, '88, a Boston invest- 
ment banker who had made penetrating analyses of the 
credit of various railroads, made a thorough study of New 
Haven for his clients. He advised them that New Haven 
stock, which had sold as high as 250, was not worth over 80. 
No publicity was given to his findings. In 1913 Joseph B. 
Eastman, '04, later a trustee of the College and the most dis- 
tinguished member of the Interstate Commerce Commis- 
sion, joined Brandeis in the attack. Eastman at the time was 
secretary of the Public Franchise League of Boston. New 
Haven stock, which had sold for 250 and over, dropped from 
year to year. In 1910 it reached a low of 149; in 1913, a low 
of 65; and in 1917 it dropped to a low of 21. In 1913 it was 
forced to reduce its dividend to 7/2%; in 1914 it paid 1/2%; and 
from 1915 it paid no dividends until 1928. In 1935 it was in 

In March 1913 the elder Morgan died. In July of the same 
year Mellen resigned as president of both the New Haven 
and Boston & Maine. It took years to unscramble the cor- 
porate tangles involved. Criminal action was brought against 
the directors by the Federal Government, and the directors 
were convicted and fined. Charles M. Pratt resigned from 
the New Haven Board and was succeeded by his younger 
brother John. The so-called " New Haven crowd " considered 
Brandeis a wrecker, and the financial papers, which received 
large advertising contracts from the New Haven, joined in 
the cry. A professor at the Harvard Law School, who had 

been one of my teachers there, was discovered to be on the 
payroll of the New Haven, together with his father and 
brother, and was promptly dismissed by Harvard from his 
faculty post. Personally, I took no part in the fight, though I 
immediately sold the small block of New Haven belonging 
to my wife. I had, however, a ringside seat, as I was closely 
associated with Brandeis at the time in other matters, while 
many of my social acquaintances, as well as most of my fam- 
ily, belonged to the New Haven group in sympathy. I have 
no doubt that the fight cost Charles M. Pratt his health, and 
ultimately his reason. And I suppose there is no question that 
he had large blocks of New Haven stock in the family trusts 
from which great losses were suffered. Yale University was 
also a large stockholder, and its president, Arthur T. Hadley, 
who was a scholar in the field of political science, was for 
many years a New Haven director. 

Did Charles M. Pratt, director of New Haven and member 
of the Finance Committee of Amherst, persuade his col- 
leagues on the committee to invest college funds in New 
Haven securities? It seems abundantly clear that he did not. 

In 1908 the College owned eight shares of New Haven at 
a book value of $1,000, which it had acquired in the Gaylord 
Fund some years earlier. It owned $3,000 New Haven Con- 
vertible 6s of 1948 at a book value of $3,799 and two years 
later it bought $7,000 more at 133^ at a meeting of the Fi- 
nance Committee at which Whitcomb, Plimpton, and James 
were present, but Pratt was absent. In addition, the College 
owned small blocks of Old Colony Railroad and Providence 
& Worcester, both leased lines of the New Haven with their 
dividends guaranteed by New Haven. The College acquired 
its first stock in Old Colony (then Old Colony & Newport) 
before 1875; and its first investment in Providence & Worces- 
ter is at least as far back as 1894. Both Old Colony and Provi- 
dence & Worcester were considered sound investments with 
the guarantee of New Haven. 

The College sold its 20 shares of Providence & Worcester 
in 1925 for $3,631, at a loss of $3,368. It sold its 250 shares of 
Old Colony in 1935-36 for $16,183, at a loss of $9,648. It sold 


its 20 shares of New Haven in 1920 for $643, at a loss of 
$1,606. Pratt's record as a member of the Amherst Finance 
Committee seems to be clear beyond question, and the Col- 
lege's losses were relatively small when one considers the 
size of its portfolio at the time and the high standing which 
New Haven securities held in the minds of investors. Most 
of Brandeis' criticisms of New Haven were supported by the 
record when all the facts were known, but Brandeis was a 
lonely figure in the fight and almost the entire financial com- 
munity supported the New Haven position. 

We must now examine the Treasurer's Report of 1912, 
which has been expanded to a pamphlet of sixty-two pages, 
with an index, and is mailed to the alumni each year as an 
issue of the Amherst College Bulletin. 

For the first time it includes a formal balance sheet. The 
total assets of the College are stated at $3,699,113.07. Plant 
Assets are $1,050,731, which excludes dormitories at $60,000, 
and other real estate in Amherst $27,000, which are carried 
as investments of trust funds. The endowment representing 
the portfolio, dormitories, and other real estate in Amherst, 
and real estate in Boston, in addition to cash of $654 await- 
ing investment, comes to a total of $2,629,509. The deficit, 
representing the excess of liabilities over assets on the bal- 
ance sheet, is $24,359. 

Here is a comparison with previous decades : 

1875 Total, excluding Charitable Fund $ 584,845 

1882 Total, excluding Charitable Fund 913,331 

1892 Total, excluding Charitable Fund 1,225,184 

1903 Total, excluding Charitable Fund 1,671,066 

1912 Total, excluding Charitable Fund 2,629,509 

The endowment has shown an increase in the decade of 
nearly a milhon dollars, or 57%. The increase in the preced- 
ing decade was 36% and in the decade before that, 33%. The 
Charity Fund, not included in the above totals, has now risen 
to $95,000. 

Seven large additions to the permanent funds of the Col- 
lege had been received in the decade: 

The Biological and Geological Laboratory Maintenance 
Fund. Established in 1907. The sum of $150,000 was raised for 
the construction and maintenance of the laboratory; of this 
amount, the Board set aside $50,000 as a permanent mainte- 
nance fund. The largest donors were Andrew Carnegie, $75,- 
000, D. Willis James, $20,000, Charles M. Pratt, $15,000, John 
M. Simpson, $10,000, and Mortimer L. Schiff, $10,000. This was 
a project initiated and developed by Mr. Plimpton, who secured 
the gift from Mr. Carnegie conditioned on the College's raising 
an equal amount. 

The Edward West Currier Fund of $232,842.94 received in 
1908 by bequest of Edward West Currier of the class of 1865, 
both principal and income unrestricted. And the Edward West 
Currier Library Fund of $10,000 by similar bequest, the in- 
come to be used for the purchase of books for the college li- 
brary. Edward West Currier (1841-1907) was born in New 
York City, attended Harvard for one year, transferred to Am- 
herst and graduated in the class of 1865. On graduation, he 
joined the firm of Currier and Ives of New York, became a 
partner a year later and continued with this firm until his 
death. His classmate, James L. Bishop of the New York Bar, 
represented the College in the settlement of the estate. His 
alma mater was his residuary legatee. 

The D. Willis James Legacy of $95,250 received in 1908 by 
bequest of Mr. James, with no restrictions. 

The Edward A. Crane Library Fund of $35,042.88 received 
in 1909 by bequest of Edward Augustus Crane of the class of 
1854, the income to be used for the purchase of books " record- 
ing or treating facts of observation and experience, the induc- 
tions from them, and their application in the service of man." 
Dr. Crane (1832-1906) prepared for college at Phillips Acad- 
emy, Andover, graduated from Amherst in 1854, and from Har- 
vard Medical School in 1857. He practiced his profession for 
four years in Providence, served for three years on the U.S. 
Sanitary Commission, and then went abroad. With Dr. Thomas 
Evans he organized the American Ambulance in the Franco- 
Prussian War. With Dr. Evans he planned and carried out the 
escape of the Empress Eugenie. The rest of his life was spent 
in Paris, where for many years he published the American 

The Clyde Fitch Memorial Fund of $20,000 established in 


1911 by gift from Mr. and Mrs. W. G. Fitch of New York, the 
parents of Clyde Fitch of the class of 1886, as a memorial to 
him. The income is to be used for the furtherance of the study 
of English Literature and Dramatic Art and Literature. Clyde 
Fitch (1865-1909) was born in Elmira, New York, graduated 
from Amherst in the class of 1886, and became the best 
known playwright of his time. His study has been incorporated 
in Converse Memorial Library. 

The John S. Kennedy Fund of $90,000 received in 1911 by 
bequest of John Stewart Kennedy of New York, without re- 
strictions. John Stewart Kennedy (1830-1909) was born in 
Scotland and entered the iron and coal business in Glasgow. At 
twenty-six he came to the United States at the invitation of the 
New York banking firm of M. K. Jessup and soon was a part- 
ner. Later he established his own firm of J. S. Kennedy & Co. 
and became one of the foremost financiers of the country. He 
was closely associated with James J. Hill in the building of the 
Hill railroads, was a director of Union Pacific, and was a mem- 
ber of the syndicate which entered into a contract with the 
Canadian government for the building of the Canadian Pacific. 
In 1883 he retii-ed from business and devoted his time and en- 
ergies to philanthropic enterprises, including Columbia Uni- 
versity and Robert College. Half of his estate of sixty-seven 
million he left for public purposes. Amherst was one of forty- 
six institutions to receive a bequest of $100,000, doubtless due 
to the persuasive suggestions of George A. Plimpton, who was 
associated with him on various charitable boards. And Mr. 
Plimpton represented the College at the memorial service held 
in New York in November 1909. 

The Salary Fund (1911 Endowment) of $401,000 established 
in 1911 by gifts, the income to be used for the salaries of pro- 
fessors and instructors. The donors were Mrs. D. Willis James, 
$100,000, Arthur Curtiss James, $100,000, General Education 
Board, $75,000, George A. Plimpton, $50,000, four Pratt broth- 
ers, $50,000, Mortimer L. Schiff, $15,000, William H. Moore, 
$10,000, and Frederick W. Whitridge, 74, $1,000. This too was 
a project of Mr. Plimpton's. 

While the endowment has increased during the decade by 
57%, the distribution of the portfolio has also changed. Notes 
Receivable, which a score of years before represented 37% of 

the total, and ten years before 8% of the total, have now 
dropped to 1%. Railroad Bonds have risen from 31% to 35%. 
Miscellaneous Bonds have risen in the decade from 26% to 
38%. Bank Stocks have dropped from 9% to 5%. Manufac- 
turing Stocks have dropped from $32,000 to $9,000. The 
New England textiles are being liquidated rapidly. During 
the year, for example, the College sold its Bigelow Carpet 
at a profit of $7,500, or nearly 100%; its Merrimac at a loss 
of $2,000, or 50%; its Pepperell at a profit of $6,700, or over 

During the year the gains on the sales of securities 
amounted to some $39,000, the losses to $4,000, showing a 
net gain of $35,000. 

There is also a wider distribution within the categories. 
Most of the individual investments are in blocks of ten to fif- 
teen thousand dollars. The only very large blocks are North- 
ern Pacific stock at $98,000, Great Northern Preferred at 
$80,000, and First National Bank of Chicago at $48,000. The 
Great Northern and Northern Pacific were gifts from the 
Jameses; the First National Bank of Chicago was received 
from Rufus B. Kellogg. 

Deposits in the Amherst Savings Bank now amount to 
$17,000, on which the College receives 4% interest. 

Bonds, notes, and cash now amount to 76%, as compared 
vidth 71% in 1903; equities at 17%. 

The excess of liabilities over assets, that is to say, the defi- 
cit, stands at $24,359, as compared with $39,487 in 1903; an 
improvement of $15,000. 

This is not, however, a true picture. For in November 1906 
the Finance Committee cleared certain debit and credit ac- 
counts. The facts appear in the 1907 Report of the Treasurer. 
An accumulated deficit of $49,110 was charged off, partly 
($34,783) to the Gain and Loss Account on the purchase and 
sale of securities, and the balance to the Fayerweather Leg- 
acy, which was unrestricted. And a year later a loss of $21,- 
719 on the investment account was charged off, some $18,- 
773 to the Fayerweather Legacy and $2,946 to the General 
Treasury Fund. 


The year 1912 had a significance in the finances of the Col- 
lege which was not recognized at the time. President Harris 
retired after a service of thirteen years, and the Board 
elected Alexander Meiklejohn to succeed him. The faculty 
were not officially consulted by the Board, and perhaps for 
this reason they sent a round-robin letter to the Board, writ- 
ten in the beautiful hand of Professor Genung, recom- 
mending Frederick J. E. Woodbridge, '89, as their choice. 
Woodbridge was then professor of philosophy at Columbia 
University. A covering letter indicated that the majority of 
the faculty would support George D. Olds, then dean of the 
College, but it was understood that he was not a candidate. 
Harlan Fiske Stone, '94, wrote a discriminating letter sug- 
gesting two names for the presidency: Woodbridge and 
Dwight W. Morrow. And Arthur Curtiss James, a classmate 
and close friend of Woodbridge, told him privately that if he 
were elected he (James) would provide him with all the 
money he needed to develop the College. It is interesting, 
and of course fruitless, to speculate on what the results for 
the College would have been if the Board had elected Wood- 
bridge, and Arthur James had made available to him what- 
ever financial help he asked for. 

The Board elected Rush Rhees, '83, then president of the 
University of Rochester, who declined the appointment and 
chose to remain at Rochester, where his friend George East- 
man later placed his great fortune at the disposal of the uni- 
versity. The Amherst Board then passed over Woodbridge 
and Morrow, as well as Alfred E. Stearns, '94, then headmas- 
ter of Phillips Academy at Andover, and elected Alexander 
Meiklejohn, then dean of Brown University. Meiklejohn's 
name was first proposed to the Amherst Board by John 
Franklin Jameson, '79, the distinguished historical scholar, 
who had formerly been a member of the Brown faculty and 
was now director of the Department of Historical Research 
at the Carnegie Institute in Washington. Jameson was a 
classmate and close friend of Charles M. Pratt of the Am- 
herst Board and a friend of Plimpton's. When Meiklejohn's 
name was proposed, however, none of the Amherst Board 

had any personal acquaintance with him, and he in turn 
knew httle about Amherst. 

President Meiklejohn was inaugurated in the autumn of 
1912, and administered the College for eleven years. The 
College had operated at a deficit of some eighteen thousand 
dollars in the last year of President Harris. President Meikle- 
john was unable or unwilling to take the steps necessary to 
balance the budget and continued for nine years to operate 
at a deficit. The Auditor's Reports show the following 
deficits : 

1912 $18,488 1917 $29,924 

1913 35,620 1918 17,977 

1914 29,311 1919 8,992 

1915 32,910 1920 44,105 

1916 31,993 1921 81,734 

To meet these deficits the College borrowed money. It 
borrowed from the First National Bank of Amherst, and then 
from the United States Trust Company of New York. In 1913 
it owed the latter bank $50,000. By 1915 its loan from the 
United States Trust Company had risen to $120,000, by 1917 
to $140,000, and two years later to $160,000. The interest 
rate was at first 4% and later 3^2%. The loans were arranged by 
Arthur Curtiss James at the request of the Finance Commit- 
tee. In 1920 the College began paying oflF the loans from its 
receipts on the Sage bequest. A century before, the College 
was embarrassed by debts of $30,000. Now its credit was of 
the best; it had a large and sound portfolio; it could borrow 
in the New York market at a low rate of interest. Its Board of 
Trustees included several New York men of large fortune. 
But by operating at a deficit for more than a decade, it was 
consuming its capital, and drastic action would have to be 
taken. The net accumulated deficit of these years reached a 
total of $321,195. 

I have often wondered why the president himself did not 
take the steps necessary to bring the budget into balance, 
even though such steps would necessarily have been dis- 
agreeable. And I have wondered why the Board did not 


force him to balance his budget. One reason was that World 
War I was in progress during part of the period. Another 
doubtless was that the Board had other problems with the 
president which were gradually mounting toward a crisis. 

Meanwhile, the College was receiving from generous 
alumni and friends substantial additions to its permanent en- 
dowment. The first large gift received after the inauguration 
of President Meiklejohn was a fund of $100,000 to establish 
a professorship of economics to be named the George Daniel 
Olds Professorship. The donor requested that he remain 
anonymous, and his wishes were of course respected. I now 
have his permission to disclose his identity. This generous 
gift was the first of many made by Frank Lusk Babbott, Jr., 
who had graduated from the College only the year before, 
in the class of 1913. The professorship was named for Dean 
Olds, who had won the deep affection, as well as the pro- 
found respect, of the donor. Two years later, in 1916, Bab- 
bott gave another fund, which is called on the college books 
the Dana Street Property Fund, and which stands on the 
books at the nominal value of $32,000. The president of the 
College was having difficulty in finding satisfactory living ac- 
commodations for the new men he called to the faculty. 
Babbott bought several house lots on Dana Street and built 
three excellent houses suitable for faculty residences. In ad- 
dition, he built a more elaborate house on the east side of 
South Pleasant Street as a faculty residence. All four were 
deeded to the College. The house on South Pleasant Street 
was later moved to Hitchcock Boad to make way for the 
Alumni Gymnasium. 

When the Converse Memorial Library was built, Babbott 
furnished the seminar rooms for the departments of econom- 
ics and political science. And in 1920 he gave a fund of $80,- 
250 to establish the Amherst Memorial Fellowships, to per- 
petuate the memory of the Amherst men who had given their 
lives for an ideal. The income of this fund is used for the 
support of fellowships to promote the study of social, eco- 
nomic, and political institutions. The fellowships are awarded 
annually by the Trustees on the recommendation of the Fac- 

ulty Committee on Fellowships. Of late years, with the 
approval of the donor, one fellowship is awarded each 
year to a member of the graduating class of Williams, Wes- 
leyan, or Bowdoin; the others are awarded to graduates of 

Frank Lusk Babbott, Jr., 13 (1891- ) is the son of 
Frank L. Babbott, 78, and Lydia Richardson Pratt, a sister 
of the Pratt brothers. After graduating from Amherst, he took 
his medical course at Columbia and his internship in hospi- 
tals in New York. Thereafter, he was on the faculties of the 
medical schools of Johns Hopkins and Yale and Long Island 
College of Medicine. In 1931 he became president of Long 
Island College of Medicine. On his retirement some years 
later for reasons of health, he became chairman of its Board 
of Trustees. In 1933, on the twentieth anniversary of his 
graduation, he received from his alma mater her highest hon- 
orary degree. On his father's death in 1933, the Long Island 
College of Medicine and associated hospitals received one- 
half of the estate. 

In 1916 the College received a gift of $100,000 to establish 
the Rufus Tyler Lincoln Professorship of Biology. This gen- 
erous gift was made by Mrs. Caroline Tyler Lincoln, a daugh- 
ter of Wellington H. Tyler of the class of 1831, and a niece 
of Professor William S. Tyler of the class of 1830, as a me- 
morial to her son, Rufus Tyler Lincoln. Mrs, Lincoln was the 
widow of Dr. Rufus P. Lincoln of the class of 1862. Dr. Lin- 
coln (1840-1900) was born in Belchertown, prepared for 
college at Williston and Exeter, and served in the Union 
Army. He had been promoted through grades from second 
lieutenant to colonel. After his medical course at Harvard, 
he practiced in New York as a throat specialist. 

In 1918 the College received the Richard B. Sewall Fund 
of $30,000 under the will of Mr. Sewall, who had made a for- 
tune in Boston in the Sewall Day Cordage Company and 
later in cotton manufacturing. He left his fortune to a num- 
ber of colleges, with the residue going to Hai-vard and Yale 

And in 1918 the College received what is called the 1918 

[ 131 ] 

Endowment Fund of $653,411-85, given by seventeen alumni 
and one friend of the College, with the provision that the 
income be used for the salaries of the faculty. The largest 
donor was Arthur Curtiss James, with a gift of $336,411.85. 
Messrs. Simpson, Plimpton, Morrow, and each of the six 
Pratt brothers gave $25,000. The class of 1884 gave $25,000, 
and William H. Porter gave the same amount. William H. 
Porter ( 1861-1926 ) was a partner of Morrow's in J. P. Mor- 
gan & Co. and made the gift because of his affection for Mor- 
row. He himself had had only a common school education 
and a short stay at Saratoga Academy. Before joining the 
Morgan firm he had risen to the presidency of the Chemical 
National Bank in New York, and was a director in other 

In 1920 the College established the Margaret Olivia Sage 
Fund from payments made during this and the following 
years from the estate of Mrs. Sage. Altogether, the College re- 
ceived a total of over six hundred thousand dollars from this 
source. Mrs. Sage was the widow of Russell Sage, an almost 
legendary figure of the last century. Sage (1816-1906) was 
born in a covered wagon in upstate New York while his par- 
ents were en route from Connecticut to Michigan. He was 
brought up on a farm, attended school winters, and began 
his business career as a clerk in his brother's grocery store in 
Troy, New York. For twenty years he was a wholesale grocer 
in Troy; he served as alderman, and went to Congress for 
one term. Then in 1863 he moved to New York and engaged 
in buying and selling " privileges " in Wall Street. He became 
an ally of Jay Gould and a figure in the railway world. He 
promoted the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul and was for 
many years a vice-president. As he grew older he became 
more conservative and loaned his money on call in Wall 
Street. At one time he had $27,000,000 out on call. His fru- 
gality became proverbial. When he was an old man a bomb 
was exploded in his oflBce by a blackmailer. The blackmailer 
and a confidential clerk of Sage's were killed, but Sage recov- 
ered and lived to be ninety. He left a fortune of $70,000,000 
to his wife. She was as generous as he was penurious. On her 

death the estate went to a large number of colleges and to the 
Russell Sage Foundation. 

As I grew up in Troy, I heard stories about Russell Sage as 
a boy. Doubtless most of them were apochryphal. The one I 
enjoyed most was the story of an acquaintance meeting Sage 
walking down Sixth Avenue in New York under the elevated 
railway, in which he was a large stockholder. The acquaint- 
ance asked him why he was walking, and Sage replied that 
he had forgotten his pass and so was saving five cents. The 
acquaintance suggested that if he walked down Fifth Ave- 
nue he would save ten cents. 

Meanwhile, the Finance Committee was meeting regularly 
to review the portfolio. We have seen that the College began 
the acquisition of New England textile stocks in the middle 
of the last century. Most of them had come to the College 
from time to time by gift or bequest. By 1900 we had a sub- 
stantial investment in this category. During the early years 
of this century textile mills in the South were developing and 
each year were oflFering increasing competition to the older 
mills in New England. The southern mills were equipped 
with the most modern machinery, labor costs were lower, the 
cost of living was lower. The Finance Committee was of 
course aware of these facts and in 1912 began the liquida- 
tion of its textile stocks. Its sales were concentrated in the 
years 1912, 1916, and 1920. The College's books of account 
indicate that the College made gross profits of $24,000 and 
gross losses of $3,000, with a net gain of $21,000 in the price 
it realized above the value at which the stocks were carried 
on the books. An excellent record. 

Important changes were taking place in the Finance Com- 
mittee. Whitcomb withdrew from the Finance Committee 
because of illness in 1914, after a service of thirty years, and 
Simpson was elected chairman. He had for some years been 
the dominating member of the committee, as we have seen, 
and most of the meetings had been held in his New York of- 
fice. Plimpton, Pratt, and James continued on the committee. 
In 1916 Whitcomb died and Dwight Morrow was elected to 
the Board and added to the Finance Committee. A few 


months later the country was at war, and a few months after- 
wards Morrow went abroad as a member of the American 
Shipping Mission and a civihan member of the staflF of Gen- 
eral Pershing. Simpson had secured his advice on invest- 
ments from the Chase National Bank and we have in our files 
a number of then* letters which he presented to the Finance 
Committee and had embodied in the minutes. From time to 
time, as we have seen, he brought Morrow, his partner, in to 
advise the committee on special matters. 

The first account the College had with Morgan was in 
1916 when Morrow authorized J. P. Morgan & Co. to debit 
an account in the name of Amherst College in the sum of 
$1,965.16 to pay certain charges on Pere Marquette securi- 
ties then in process of liquidation. Morrow was handling the 
college investment in this road for the Finance Committee. 
The next year an account entitled " Amherst College Fund, 
Dwight W. Morrow Treasurer " was opened on April 20, 
1917, and closed the following year. I have secured a photo- 
static copy of the ledger sheets of this account from J. P. 
Morgan & Co. The account covers the 1918 Endowment 
Fund which we have discussed. The account is credited with 
the subscriptions to the fund and debited for the cost of the 
securities bought by Morrow with the approval of the Fi- 
nance Committee for investment. The final entries are for the 
insurance and shipping charges on the securities shipped to 
the College and the payment of the small balance to H. W. 
Kidder, Treasurer. After the war the College transferred its 
principal deposit account to J. P. Morgan & Co. and its se- 
curities were bought and sold through the Morgan bank. 

We have seen how important a factor in the finances of the 
College the election of President Meiklejohn had proved to 
be. The election of Morrow to the Board in 1916 to succeed 
Dean Wilford L. Bobbins, '81, was, I believe, the most impor- 
tant fact in the financial history of the College since Presi- 
dent Hitchcock had saved the College from extinction some 
seventy years earlier. Morrow's services to his alma mater 
had already been important. His service as trustee from 1916 
until his death in 1931 was unique. Others have been larger 

benefactors in pecuniary gifts to the College; others have 
been as devoted and tireless in their work for Amherst. But 
no one since Hitchcock has made a contribution as signifi- 
cant and as essential as Morrow was able to make. And no 
alumnus within my memory has had the affection and the 
confidence and the respect which were accorded to Morrow 
by his fellow trustees and alumni of all ages. If I may use a 
phrase of Professor Genung, Morrow's election to the Am- 
herst Board was "providential." We are dealing now only 
with the history of the endowment of the College. And 
though Morrow's contribution in this aspect of the College 
was large, it was not perhaps his most important contribu- 
tion to Amherst. 

Morrow's ability was great. He was the ablest man I have 
ever been privileged to know. But his human understanding 
was as great as his ability. And he was completely unspoiled. 
He remained to the end of his life as simple, as warm- 
hearted, as human, in the widest sense of the word, as he was 
when he endeared himself to his classmates as an under- 
graduate. He was born in Huntington, West Virginia, in 1873 
and died at his home in Englewood, New Jersey, in 1931, at 
the age of fifty-eight. His boyhood was spent in Pittsburgh, 
where his father was superintendent of schools. Morrow 
wanted to go to West Point, but the congressman from the 
district refused to consider him for appointment inasmuch 
as his older brother, Jay, was already a West Point cadet ap- 
pointed from the district. Through the interest of William D. 
Evans, '85, a practicing lawyer in Pittsburgh, Morrow's at- 
tention was drawn toward Amherst. He entered college in 
1891 loaded down with conditions because he had not pre- 
pared in foreign languages, as he hoped to go to the Military 
Academy. He graduated in 1895 one of the best students in 
his class, and the best student in mathematics that George 
Olds ever taught. In 1899 he graduated from Columbia Law 
School, and immediately entered the office of Simpson, 
Thacher and Bartlett in New York. He was admitted to the 
firm six years later, and handled some of its most important 
and difficult negotiations. In 1914 he became a partner in 


J. p. Morgan & Co. In 1927 he resigned his Morgan partner- 
ship to accept the appointment of United States Ambassador 
to Mexico, where his success was immediate. In 1930 he was 
appointed to the United States Senate from New Jersey, and 
at the next election he was returned to the Senate. When 
Harold Nicholson was preparing to write Morrow's biogra- 
phy, he found that one-third of his files dealt with Amherst 

Simpson, Morrow's former chief, was chairman of the Fi- 
nance Committee when Morrow joined the Board, and con- 
tinued as chairman till his death in 1920. Morrow attended 
one meeting of the committee after his election in 1916, and 
five out of six meetings in 1917. Then he went abroad on a 
war mission for the government, as member of the American 
Shipping Mission and civilian aide to General Pershing. At 
this time I was serving as a special assistant to Secretary of 
War Newton D. Baker. One afternoon in Washington, Mor- 
row telephoned me and asked if I could drop in to see him 
at his hotel before he sailed. I supposed he wished to estab- 
lish an informal channel of communication with the Secre- 
tary of War, and walked across Lafayette Park to Morrow's 
hotel. Morrow talked with me for more than an hour, but 
not a word was said about the war except my final good 
wishes to him for his voyage. Morrow talked Amherst: the 
present condition of the College, the deficits, the need for 
more endowment, a program for an appeal to the alumni 
after the war; and finally asked me if I was prepared to do a 
substantial amount of work for the College when the war 
was over. I told him that I would like to work for the Col- 
lege when the war was over, but that until then I was 
completely committed in Washington. As I rose to leave, he 
kept me for a moment and we both were silent. Then he 
said out of a clear sky, " Someday I hope to see you on the 
Amherst Board." 

Morrow returned to New York directly after the armistice, 
and in 1919 we find him attending all the meetings of the 
Finance Committee. A joint Trustee-Alumni Committee, 
after a study, recommended an appeal to the alumni of the 
[ 136 ] 

College for a gift of $3,000,000 to mark the centennial of the 
College, which was to be celebrated in 1921. The committee 
asked Morrow to head the Executive Committee which 
would organize and direct the campaign. Morrow agreed to 
accept on condition that " Tug " Wilson, '02, and I would act 
as vice-chairmen. He told us that we were to direct the cam- 
paign, but that he would undertake to do anything we asked 
him to do. We accepted, and for two years Morrow and Wil- 
son and I spent a large amount of time on the project. The 
meetings of the Alumni Council in Amherst in November of 
1919 and 1920 were devoted exclusively to the Centennial 
Gift. Frederick Pitkin Smith, '08, was retained to devote full 
time to the work of the campaign. Local committees were 
formed in every part of the country, and did yeoman work. 
Special task forces of volunteers undertook to visit alumni 
in localities where no committees were available. At com- 
mencement in 1921, the College was able to announce that 
$3,013,115.56 had been pledged by 4,044 alumni, 479 un- 
dergraduates, 138 friends of the College who were not grad- 
uates, and two foundations. The General Education Board 
made a gift of $300,000 and the Carnegie Corporation one of 
$75,000. There were 18 individual subscriptions of $25,000 
or more, 362 of $1,000 or more, and 3,682 of less than $1,000 
each. One striking feature of the campaign was that nearly 
95% of the total fund was raised in a ten-day period in No- 
vember 1920. The balance was raised by Fred Allis, secre- 
tary of the Alumni Council, between then and commence- 
ment. Among the gifts to the fund was a memorial gift for 
G. Henry Whitcomb, who had served the College so long as 
trustee, working member of the Finance Committee, and 
treasurer. The gift was made by his three sons and amounted 
to $17,000. 

I cannot close this brief account of the Centennial Gift 
without adding that President Meiklejohn asked the Board of 
Trustees for leave for the entire year in which the campaign 
was conducted. He spent the year in Europe with his family 
and did no work in the campaign to raise an endowment for 
the college of which he was president. Wilson and I sent him 


a cable asking him for a message we could send the alumni 
as the campaign opened. The message he cabled back to us 
seemed to us insulting to the alumni. We threw it into the 
wastebasket, and ourselves wrote a short message from the 
president of the college to its alumni, and put it in print for 
circulation. When he returned to a college that had three mil- 
lion more endowment than it had had when he sailed, nei- 
ther he nor we referred to his message. In the absence of the 
president, our committee sent three senior professors out on 
trips to the alumni; they accepted the assignment in addition 
to their regular teaching load. 

In 1921 there were three changes in the Board of Trus- 
tees. George D. Pratt, '93, succeeded his older brother, 
Charles M. Pratt, who retired for reasons of health. Calvin 
Coolidge, '95, was elected to succeed Professor Williston 
Walker on the life Board. And to my surprise, I was elected 
to a five-year term by the alumni. George Pratt was added 
to the Finance Committee, and later Calvin Coohdge was 
added to the committee. Later in the decade I occasionally 
sat with the committee on the invitation of Morrow. Mor- 
row had become chairman, as we have seen, in 1920. Three 
years later he insisted that James accept the chairmanship. 
James did so, but Morrow continued to assume the prime re- 
sponsibility. The meetings of the committee, which had been 
held up to 1920 in Simpson's ofiice, were now held at 23 
Wall Street. Careful minutes were kept and circulated to the 
members. And the bond experts of the Morgan Bank, includ- 
ing Francis Ward, prepared recommendations for Morrow 
to present to the meetings for purchase and sale. Occasion- 
ally John E. Oldham, '88, sat with the committee, for Mor- 
row sought his advice continuously. 

In 1920 Morrow initiated a thorough and comprehensive 
study of the finances of the College. His purpose was the 
preparation of a report to the Board and to the alumni. No 
formal treasurer's report was issued between 1920 and 1924. 
At a meeting of the Finance Committee on June 24, 1920, it 
was voted to have all of the property of the College ap- 
praised as of June 30, 1920. The plant was appraised by Ira 

G. Hersey of Boston, an expert insurance appraiser selected 
by Frank W. Stearns of the Board, and the securities were 
appraised under the direction of WilUam Ewing of the bond 
department of J. P. Morgan & Co. The plant, which was car- 
ried on the college books at $1,357,950, was appraised at 
$3,431,900.90. The securities, which were carried on the 
books at $3,706,636.22, were valued at market at $3,218,- 

Morrow, with the approval of the Finance Committee, 
then appointed an informal committee to consider the prob- 
lems involved in a comprehensive report to the alumni. The 
members of this committee, John E. Oldham, '88, a private 
banker in Boston, and Howard A. Halligan, '96, executive 
vice-president of Western Electric Company, visited Amherst 
and conferred with the treasurer. And Morrow sent L. A. 
Keyes, one of the senior members of the staJBf of the Morgan 
firm, to Amherst several times to confer with the treasurer 
and to examine the books of the College. 

As a result of these studies and conferences. Treasurer 
Kidder presented a report to the Finance Committee, which 
was concurred in by Messrs. Oldham and Halligan. Its prin- 
cipal recommendations were as follows: 

1. That the Plant be carried at its former book value, but 
that $135,233 be added to this book value to cover expenditures 
during the past ten years in the nature of improvements and 
permanent betterments to Plant which had been charged to 

2. That $45,000 be charged to Capital account to cover the 
cost of specimens and equipment for the laboratories which 
had been added during the past ten years and charged to 

3. That North and South Dormitories, heretofore carried on 
the books as Real Estate Investments at an aggregate amount 
of $60,000, be transferred to Plant Account where other dormi- 
tories were carried. 

4. That 600 shares of Great Northern Iron Ore Certificates, 
which the College received as a dividend on its Great Northern 
stock, be placed on the books at present market price of $30 
per share. 


5. That the $83,000 par value of securities received in Janu- 
ary to endow the Amherst Memorial Fellowships be placed on 
the books at the market value of the day received. 

6. That interest and dividends accrued but not yet paid be 
carried on the books as an asset at the close of the fiscal year. 

The treasurer then called attention to the fact that the ac- 
cumulated deficit on the books at June 30, 1920 amounted to 
$259,194.31. In addition, there was a deficit of $15,111.46 
made up of expenditures for scholarships in excess of income 
for this purpose. The account covering Gain and Loss on In- 
vestments w^as in debit $81,614.19. He estimated the operat- 
ing deficit for the current year at $85,000 and the net gain on 
security transactions of the year at $28,000. He then pointed 
out that if the changes recommended by him were approved 
by the Finance Committee and made at the closing of the 
books on June 30, 1921, the deficit at that date would be ap- 
proximately $165,000. 

It is not easy to determine from the books, at the present 
time, what action was taken by the Finance Committee on 
these recommendations. A careful examination by the pres- 
ent comptroller of the College seems to indicate that the 
Dormitories were transferred to Plant as suggested. This 
was of course sound procedure. Accrued interest on invest- 
ments was picked up to the amount of $81,117.05. Part of the 
deficit, $120,807.53, was charged oflF to the Sage Fund, which 
was unrestricted; the balance was apparently picked up by 
an adjustment of Plant Account. 

While these studies were being made at the instance of 
Morrow, the relations between the president of the College 
and the faculty and between the president and the board 
were rapidly deteriorating. At the commencement meeting 
of the Board in 1923, the president presented his resigna- 
tion and it was accepted. George Daniel Olds, who had just 
retired for age from the post of dean of the College, was im- 
mediately elected to the presidency, and held the ofiice until 
1927. At the commencement meeting of the Board in that 
year, Arthur Stanley Pease was elected the tenth president 
of the College to succeed Olds, and served five years. In 1932 

he resigned to accept a professorship of Latin at Harvard, 
his alma mater. Neither President Olds nor President Pease 
took an active part on the financial side of the College. And 
Presidents Meiklejohn, Olds, and Pease had each made it a 
condition of his acceptance of the office that it should not be 
considered one of the duties of the president to solicit gifts 
for the College. In general, the stimulation of gifts was left 
to Mr. Plimpton and Mr. Allis, and after I came on the Board 
I collaborated with Mr. Plimpton in certain enterprises in 
this field. 

We must return now to the studies under way of the Col- 
lege's financial picture. Morrow was not yet satisfied with the 
results thus far attained. At his own expense he retained 
Charles A. Andrews, his classmate, who was later to become 
treasurer of the College. Andrews was at the time associated 
with the firm of Merrill Oldham & Co. of Boston, private 
bankers, of which John E. Oldham, '88, was senior partner. 
Andrews spent an immense amount of time and had the as- 
sistance of the treasurer's office and of two of the senior 
members of the staflF of J. P. Morgan & Co. And Morrow him- 
self kept closely in touch with the enterprise, and spent 
many week-ends in conference with Andrews. Morrow was 
desirous that the report when completed should be in sim- 
ple English without technical financial terms, so that it 
would be easily understood by laymen and would give to the 
alumni a clear and comprehensive picture of the finances of 
the College. The report which gradually took shape covered 
the present financial situation of the College, including the 
amount of the endowment, the manner in which it was in- 
vested, an account of each of the pei*manent funds of the 
College, an historical study of the development of the cam- 
pus and the college plant, a statement of the income of the 
College and its sources, a statement of the costs of operat- 
ing the College, an account of the Charitable Fund, of the 
Alumni Fund, of the Centennial Gift, a statement of the ap- 
propriations from the Centennial Gift made by the Board 
after consultation with the appropriate alumni and faculty 
representatives, and a statement of the amount of tuition 


charged to students from the beginning of the College to the 

The report was put in proof form and restudied. Finally, 
when Morrow was satisfied that it was as good a piece of 
work as could be done, he submitted it to the Finance Com- 
mittee for its criticism. The Committee adopted the report 
as its own and submitted it to the Board under the date of 
June 30, 1924. The Alumni Council asked the Board to mail 
a copy to every alumnus, and in February 1925 the Report of 
the Finance Committee to the Trustees of Amherst College 
— of June SO, 1924 was mailed to the alumni. It comprised 
sixty-eight pages. For the first time in the history of the Col- 
lege, its alumni were given a complete and easily read story 
of the finances of their college. 

We must now examine the report in some detail. The to- 
tal assets of the College are stated at $8,744,677.15, in com- 
parison with a figure of $3,699,113.07 in 1912, an increase of 
139%. Plant Assets have risen from $1,050,731 to $1,904,758, 
an increase of 81%. Investments have risen from $2,629,509 to 
$6,717,787, an increase of 155%. A comparison with previous 
decades shows the following results: 

1875 Total Endowment, excluding Charitable Fund $ 584,845 

1882 Total Endowment, excluding Charitable Fund 913,331 

1892 Total Endowment, excluding Charitable Fund 1,225,184 

1903 Total Endowment, excluding Charitable Fund 1,671,066 

1912 Total Endowment, excluding Charitable Fund 2,629,509 

1924 Total Endowment, excluding Charitable Fund 6,717,787 

The Charity Fund has risen from $95,000 in 1912 to $103,- 
697. The Alumni Fund, not included in the above total, now 
stands at $101,068. And the treasurer of the Centennial Gift 
Fund reports that he has in hand, not yet turned over to the 
College, cash and securities of $46,426 plus unpaid subscrip- 
tions of over half a million dollars. 

This is an impressive statement. The endowment has 
shown an increase of 155%, not counting the Alumni Fund 
and the funds still held by the treasurer of the Centennial 
Gift. If we include the Alumni Fund and the cash and se- 

curities still in the hands of the Centennial Gift, the increase 
is 161%. We must now turn back and examine the recent ad- 
ditions to the permanent funds of the College. 

In addition to the Centennial Gift from the alumni, the 
College had received three additions to its permanent funds. 
Mrs. Simpson and Miss Jean Simpson gave Amherst a fund 
of $150,000 in 1921 in memory of Mr. Simpson. The fund is 
called the John WoodruflF Simpson Fellowship Fund and the 
income is used for graduate fellowships and for bringing dis- 
tinguished scholars to Amherst as lecturers. 

The following year, on the death of Edmund C. Converse, 
the generous donor of the Converse Memorial Library in 
memory of his brother, James B. Converse of the class of 
'67, the College received a fund of $200,000 for the " upkeep 
and development of the library," and a separate bequest of 
$50,000 for a scholarship fund. These gifts were the result 
of suggestions made to Mr. Converse by Morrow and by 
WiUiam R. Mead, '67. 

In 1923 the College received a gift of $100,000 from a 
donor who desired to remain anonymous, with the obligation 
on the College to pay certain life insurance premiums during 
the life of the donor in an amount not exceeding $4,000 in 
any year. This fund appears on the college books as the Con- 
ditional Endowment Fund. 

In addition to its endowment and to the Charitable Fund, 
the College now had the Alumni Fund, with assets of $101,- 
068.59. A brief account of this fund is given in the Report of 
the Finance Committee, and must be summarized here. The 
Alumni Fund was started in 1906 by gifts totaling $115 from 
six persons, chiefly members of the classes of 1856 and 1862. 
These gifts were made in consequence of a movement to es- 
tablish such a fund by the classes of '56, '66, '71, '76, '81, '86, 
'91, '96, '00, '03, which were holding reunions at the time, 
and by the classes of '94 and '95. A committee was formed to 
administer the Fund, under the chairmanship of Talcott Wil- 
liams, '73. As a result of the efforts of this committee, $20,- 
521.40 was raised, and on the organization of the Alumni 
Council in 1914, this sum was turned over to the treasurer of 


the General Alumni Fund of the Alumni Council as a basis 
for its work. 

The Alumni Fund Committee of the Alumni Council, of 
which Dwight Morrow was the first chairman, decided to 
limit its appeal to classes and at reunion periods only, and 
by this method, at the commencements of 1914 to 1919 
inclusive, $123,678.85 was contributed. The Alumni Fund 
Committee suspended its work during the years 1920, 1921, 
and 1922 because of the Centennial Gift Campaign. 

In 1922 the Alumni Fund was reorganized as recom- 
mended by a special committee of which Howard A. Halli- 
gan, '96, was chairman. From its beginning to June 30, 1924, 
the Alumni Fund received as gifts $170,292.25 and as income 
$42,976.18, a total of $213,268.43. During the same period 
the Fund paid out to the College for instruction $29,730 and 
for general college purposes $29,279.76, a total of $59,009.76; 
and to the Alumni Council for administrative expenses $46,- 
476.43 and for special purposes $6,713.65, a total of $53,- 
190.08. On June 30, 1924 the Alumni Endowment Fund held 
cash and securities of $101,068.59. The legal title to the Fund 
is in the Trustees of the College; the principal of the Fund is 
invested by the Finance Committee of the Board; and the 
treasurer of the College is treasurer, ex officio, of the Alumni 
Fund. The disposition of the income of the Fund is subject to 
the joint action of the Trustees of the College and the Alumni 

In discussing the securities of the College, the Report of 
the Finance Committee points out that they " constitute the 
great bulk of the income-producing property which makes 
possible the continued activity of the College. The figures at 
which these securities are carried are actual cost for such as 
have been purchased, and appraised value at date of receipt 
for such as have been donated, except that all Liberty bonds 
donated in fulfillment of Centennial Gift pledges are carried 
at par. All investments are made under the supervision and 
with tlie approval of the Finance Committee. During the past 
three years much attention has been given to the invest- 
ments, and numerous changes have been made in the list. 

" It should be remembered that many of the securities 
owned by the College have been given to it. It is not always 
easy and sometimes it is not permitted to dispose of these 
securities even though it may seem to the Finance Commit- 
tee wise to do so. It should also be remembered that many 
of the investments of the College were made years ago when 
its endowment was small. This fact explains the presence of 
many investments in small amounts. It has been the policy 
of the Trustees gradually to dispose of these small invest- 
ments or to add to their amount if they have proved of de- 
sirable character in order that the work and expense of ad- 
ministration may be kept at a minimum. The increase in the 
size of the endowment has made it possible more recently 
to make somewhat larger units of investment than was the 
practice in earlier years. In making investments in larger 
amounts, your committee has constantly kept in mind the 
wisdom of diversity in risk." 

The distribution of the investments of the College is given 
as follows: 
Real Estate, consisting of 19 dwelling 

houses in Amherst occupied for the 

most part by members of the 

; faculty 

$ 160,830 

Sears property in Boston 


$ 185,627 


Government and Municipal 




Public Utility 










Public Utility 





Notes Receivable 


Savings Bank Deposits 


Securities deposited as pledge 

of cash 

subscription to 1918 endowment 


Miscellaneous securities of un 

certain va 





The Charity Fund is invested in mortgage notes and 
bonds, the Alumni Fund in bonds except for one small item 
of preferred stock received as a gift. 

During the seven years which followed, Morrow continued 
to diiect the investment policy of the College. After liis res- 
ignation from the Morgan firm in 1927, he spent much of his 
time away from this country, first in Mexico and later at 
the London Naval Conference. I find no minutes of formal 
meetings of the Finance Committee during this period. 
Doubtless none were held. But on his frequent returns to 
New York he would make the decisions wliich he considered 
necessary for changes in the portfolio. Whether in Mexico 
City or London or Washington, his interest in the College 
continued. Much of the work he had done as chairman of 
the Executive Committee of the Board was taken over by 
Dean Woodbridge, who succeeded him as chairman, and by 
me. In 1927, when I retired from active business, I was able 
to visit the College oftener, and I gradually assumed more 
responsibility outside my immediate responsibilities for the 
development of the Buildings and Grounds. My wife and I 
were spending some time in travel, and I would see Mor- 
row in Washington or London or Paris and discuss college 
problems with him, for we still relied heavily on him for 

Small matters in connection with the administration of the 
treasurer's ofiice would come to my attention during my vis- 
its to the College, and I would have them corrected. Harry 
Kidder, hard-working and honest and entirely devoted to the 
institution to which he was devoting his life, was a man of 
obstinate prejudices. For some reason he had taken a dislike 
to the Amherst Water Company and to the First National 
Bank of Amherst. Ernest M. Whitcomb was president of the 
bank and treasurer of the Water Company. Kidder would al- 
low the water bills of the College to go unpaid for months 
and sometimes for more than a year. He would overdraw the 
college account at the bank and disregard their letters. Nei- 
ther the bank nor the Water Company was willing to take 
the action against the College that they might well have 

taken against a private customer. The matter would be dis- 
cussed in directors' meetings and irritation would result, at a 
period when I was attempting to improve relations between 
" town and gown." I corrected the situation as soon as I 
learned of it, but I could not be sure it would not occur 
again. The treasurer on his periodic trips to Springfield to 
cut coupons would put the coupons and any bonds he was 
withdrawing from the vaults in a small bag, and then leave 
tliis around carelessly while he bought his lunch and did 
other errands in Springfield. He never lost any coupons, but 
the practice was so loose as to cause comment. This too was 

In the late summer of 1929, Morrow asked me to visit him 
at his summer home in Northaven, Maine. Mrs. King did not 
accompany me as Mrs. Morrow was not to be at home. When 
I arrived, I found that Morrow, his brother, General Jay 
Morrow, and myself were to make up the week-end party. 
We spent most of each day in long walks, and Morrow talked 
to me about the College. The country at the time was at the 
culmination of the boom. Paper fortunes had been made in 
the stock market. The popular sentiment expected an era of 
pei-manent good times, and this sentiment was supported by 
the occasional statements made public by leaders in down- 
town New York. Morrow was one of the very few men who 
took the opposite view. He felt there was no justification for 
the prices at which stocks were selling in the market, and he 
had acted in accordance with this judgment in the manage- 
ment of the college portfolio. As a result, the College's in- 
vestments stood up well in the October crash and in the de- 
pression which followed. 

On this same week-end in Maine, Morrow discussed with 
me the need of adding to the Finance Committee a new 
member who could gradually relieve him of the detailed re- 
sponsibility for investment policy. He suggested that I join 
the committee and take on this work. When I told him that 
I did not have the training and experience in the bond mar- 
ket, he said that he could arrange for my education in this 
field in a relatively short time. I did not wish to take on this 


responsibility, however, and declined. I suggested to him the 
name of Robert W. Maynard, '02, president of R. H. Stearns 
Co. of Boston. Maynard had just been elected to the Board 
as an alumni trustee, and at the autumn meeting of the 
Board, which followed soon after our Maine week-end, he 
was added to the Finance Committee. Maynard and I had 
been contemporaries in college and in the Harvard Law 
School; in both he had made a brilliant record. He was now 
a director of the Merchants Bank in Boston, and, above all, 
he had the poise and judgment necessary for this vital re- 

During the same seven-year period ( 1924-1931 ) a move- 
ment developed in the Board to raise the salaries of the sen- 
ior professors on the faculty. The highest salary in 1924 was 
$5,500. We set out to establish a few endowed professor- 
ships paying $8,000 a year. Morrow led off with a gift of 
$160,000 to found a professorship of history, and, with char- 
acteristic modesty, he insisted that it be named for Anson D. 
Morse, who had held a chair of history at the College from 
1878 until 1907. Morrow expressed the preference that the 
chair be held by a professor of American history, and Fred- 
eric L. Thompson, '92, of the faculty was the natural candi- 
date for the appointment. He was a close friend of Mor- 
row's and in fact of most of the Board. But Thompson, with 
equal modesty, recommended that the appointment go to a 
colleague who had recently been called to Amherst from 

Then Mr. Plimpton called on Mrs. William H. Moore of 
New York and asked her whether she would give an equal 
amount to found a professorship in memory of her late hus- 
band, Wilham Henry Moore. Moore (1848-1923) was born 
in Utica, New York, the son of a merchant and banker. He 
entered Amherst in 1867, but was forced to leave college 
after three years for reasons of health. He visited Eau Claire, 
Wisconsin, and, finding the climate beneficial, read law and 
was admitted to the bar in 1872. Later, he practiced in Chi- 
cago. He made his fortune as a business organizer, and his 
most notable success was the formation of four great cor- 

porations known as the Moore Group, with a combined capi- 
tal of $187,000,000, later merged with the United States 
Steel Company. He married Ada Small, the daughter of 
Judge Small, his early law partner. In 1905 Amherst awarded 
him the degree of Bachelor of Arts, extra ordinem. Mrs. 
Moore told Plimpton that she had no interest whatever in 
founding a professorship in her husband's memory, and then 
paused to let the remark sink in. Plimpton's spirits fell, for he 
had expected a favorable answer. Then Mrs. Moore asked 
whether the College would not like a building. Plimpton 
agreed at once, and suggested that a building would cost 
much more. " How much? " asked Mrs. Moore, and Plimpton 
said he would have to consult Stanley King. 

I told Mr. Plimpton that in my judgment our most serious 
need in this field was a new chemistry building. For years 
the departments of physics and chemistry had shared the 
Fayerweather Laboratory. But with the growth in the size of 
the College, and the increasing elections of courses in phys- 
ics and chemistry, our work in these two departments was 
seriously crowded. Plimpton and I asked Mr. Mead to have 
his firm prepare preliminary sketches for a chemistry build- 
ing and make tentative estimates of cost. Sketches were 
made by McKim, Mead & White, and their preliminary esti- 
mates indicated a cost of at least $350,000. Plimpton reported 
the figure to Mrs. Moore and she said at once that she and 
her two sons, Edward Small and Paul Moore, would be happy 
to give a new chemistry laboratory to the College in mem- 
ory of Mr. Moore. A contract was let in 1928 and construc- 
tion begun. Mrs. Moore wished to have the building first- 
class in every respect, and the costs mounted as the work 
progressed. When Plimpton brought the matter to Mrs. 
Moore's attention, she was undismayed. She said that she 
had not promised to give $350,000, that in fact she had 
never promised any fixed figure, but, rather, had promised to 
give a building, and she wanted the building well built. 

The Moore Laboratory of Chemistry was formally dedi- 
cated on October 29, 1929. Mrs. Moore and her family came 
to Amherst for the dedication. She was a guest at the presi- 


dent's house, and Mr. and Mrs. George Pratt were hosts to 
one of her sons, while Mrs. King and I were hosts to the 
other. A few hours before the dedication was to take place, 
we learned from New York of the historic break in prices on 
the stock exchange. At noon Mrs. Moore called her two sons 
into conference with her. At the conclusion of the conference 
she told Mr. Plimpton that she had just realized that they 
were doing a great disservice to the College in presenting a 
building which would be expensive to maintain, and that 
this would have shocked her late husband profoundly. She 
added that her sons would join with her in making an addi- 
tional gift to the College of $250,000 to endow the building. 
Morrow presented a portrait of Mr. Moore by Cartotto to be 
hung in the lobby of the new laboratory. The total gift of 
Mrs. Moore and her sons was therefore in the neighborhood 
of three-quarters of a million dollars. 

It was several years before we received our next endowed 
professorship. Then, in 1930, on the fiftieth reunion of the 
class of 1880, the class presented the College with cash and 
securities of $160,000 to establish the Class of 1880 Profes- 
sorship of Greek. All living members of the class contributed, 
but the fund was underwritten by two members of the 
class who were wealthy, James Turner and Arthur Norris 

James Turner (1858-1940) was born in Brooklyn, gradu- 
ated from Amherst in 1880, attended Columbia Law School, 
and for a quarter of a century was engaged in manufactur- 
ing, commerce, and finance. He had retired in 1906 and de- 
voted his attention to family trusts and to a foundation of 
which he was president. Turner had never married. When I 
knew him he lived with an unmarried sister and an unmar- 
ried brother in a large house in Montclair. His generosity to 
the College was continuous and imaginative. He came often 
to Amherst and quietly sought out ways in which he could 
provide for some need of the College. His gifts during his 
lifetime included an endowment for the religious work of 
the College, the house library in South College, the Little 
Red Schoolhouse, and a large gift to his fraternity, Delta 

Upsilon, to complete the financing of their chapter house. In 
his will, he left $200,000 as permanent endowment for the 
Alumni Fund. His closest friends at Amherst were the Allises 
and the Kings; but closer still was the perennial secretary of 
the class of 1880, Judge Henry Field of Northampton, who 
would come to the Lord Jeffery Inn whenever Turner was a 
guest at the Inn. 

Arthur N. Milliken (1858-1936) was born in Boston, and, 
after college, graduated from Boston University Law School 
and practiced law in Boston. He married a large fortune, and 
his wife and he had no children. I came to know him only in 
the last years of his life. His gift of the Hitchcock Memorial 
Room and his bequest to the College of $300,000 brought his 
total gifts to his alma mater to nearly half a million dollars. 

Meanwhile, Mr. Plimpton had written a letter to Edward S. 
Harkness (1874-1940), the New York philanthropist who 
was making princely gifts to Harvard, Yale, Exeter, and other 
institutions. In his letter, Plimpton pointed out that in the 
Pelham cemetery there were several Harkness graves which 
were not being cared for. He suggested that the Trustees of 
Amherst would be glad to provide perpetual care for these 
graves if Mr. Harkness wished to give $160,000 to found a 
professorship. It was an arresting letter in Plimpton's best 
style. Harkness replied asking a large number of questions 
about the College for which President Pease prepared the 
answers. Then Harkness said he would make such a gift if 
Amherst raised the funds for five other professorships. We 
already had two, given by Morrow and by the class of 1880. 
We needed three more to meet the condition set by Hark- 
ness. And I shall tell the story of these a little later. 

In June 1930 occurred the death of Henry Clay Folger of 
the class of 1879. And a few days later we were surprised to 
read in the New York papers that he had made the Trustees 
of Amherst College his principal legatee. The Trustees of the 
College were to receive the beautiful library in Washington 
then under construction, the collection of Shakesperiana 
which Mrs, Folger and he had spent their lives in assembling, 
and the bulk of his large estate as an endowment for the Fol- 


ger Shakespeare Memorial Library. No member of the Board 
knew that this princely gift was to come to the Board. When 
Folger let the contract for the building in Washington lo- 
cated next to the Congressional Library, it was assumed that 
he would make the Library of Congress his legatee. The will, 
however, provided that all should come to the trustees of 
his alma mater, and it added that if the Amherst Board de- 
clined the bequest or later relinquished it, it should then go 
to the Trustees of the University of Chicago. In case they 
declined or relinquished the trust, it should go to the Library 
of Congress Trust Fund Board. Mr. Folger made the further 
provision that the Trustees of Amherst should receive for 
their services in administering his trust one hundred thou- 
sand dollars a year for the use of the College. This was equiv- 
alent to a gift to the College of two million dollars invested 
at five per cent. 

Folger had for years spent more money for his collection 
than he had received as income. On his death he had bank 
debts as well as notes to Mrs. Folger which were a charge 
against the estate. Mrs. Folger had not expected to present 
these notes for payment by her husband's estate for she was 
as interested in the Library as he. But Mr. Plimpton talked 
with her and suggested that here was an opportunity for her 
to establish a permanent memorial at the College in the form 
of three professorships. As a result of these conversations, 
Mrs. Folger gave the College notes of her late husband in the 
amount of $480,000, to found three professorships, to be 
named for Henry C. Folger, for Emily C. Jordan Folger, and 
for Eliza J. Clark Folger, the latter her husband's mother. 
The notes were paid by the estate. In return, the College 
agreed to reduce the amount to be paid the College as com- 
pensation for the services of the Trustees from $100,000 to 
$76,000 per annum. The College now had five endowed pro- 
fessorships of $160,000 each. Plimpton and I then presented 
a complete statement of the facts to Mr. Harkness and he 
agreed that the conditions of his gift had been met. Shortly 
thereafter we received a check for $160,000 to establish a 
professorship in his name. And the Board thereupon set up 


a fund of $2,000 in the Amherst Savings Bank to provide an 
income sufficient to provide perpetual care for the Harkness 
graves in the Pelham cemetery. 

President Pease did not wish to take on the added respon- 
sibihty for the Folger Shakespeare Library, and I assumed 
this for the Board, except for the problems of investment, 
which were taken by the Finance Committee, and except for 
the problems of Mrs. Folger's personal investments on which 
she wished advice. Morrow became for the time being her 
financial adviser; her entire fortune, she told us, was to come 
to the Board to be added to the Folger endowment. A new 
standing committee was established by the Board for the 
Folger, and Morrow was made chairman. Plimpton and I 
were the other active members. In fact, when I had read the 
first announcement of the gift in the New York Times, I had 
telephoned Morrow and we had agreed that I should go at 
once to Washington and take over the building contract in 
behalf of the Board. 

It was obvious to me that Treasurer Kidder could not as- 
sume the added responsibility which now fell to the treasur- 
er's office in the management of and accounting for the large 
endowment which was presently to come to the Board from 
the Folger estate. He was already overworked and had been 
for years. During the summer of 1930, as I turned the matter 
over in my mind, I became convinced that we must add an- 
other man to the college administration, and that he ought 
to take the office of treasurer. In such event Kidder might 
well be given a new office as comptroller, with his responsi- 
bilities limited to the receipt and disbursement of our funds 
and the supervision of the accounts. The problem was to find 
the right man for treasurer. 

I kept the matter to myself as I did not wish a large num- 
ber of applications. As I thought over the names of various 
Amherst alumni who might fill the position, the name of 
Charles A. Andrews, '95, occurred to me. The more I thought 
of the problem, the clearer it became that he was the ideal 
man for the position at this time. I went to Boston to lunch 
with Andrews. He was enthusiastic. He had a deep love for 


the College and he gave me to understand that he would 
rather work for the College than do anything else. I then pro- 
ceeded to poll the Finance Committee informally. Maynard 
of Boston knew Andrews well and considered him an excel- 
lent selection. Arthur Curtiss James of New York approved, 
though he at first proposed that I accept the position myself. 
George D. Pratt and Frank Stearns were favorable. Then I 
went to see Mr. Coolidge. 

The Coolidges had left the White House and were living 
at The Beeches at Northampton. They had a private tele- 
phone number, so I could not telephone for an appointment. 
My wife and I drove to Amherst for the week-end, and on 
Sunday morning, well before church time, we drove over to 
The Beeches. Just as we stopped in front of the door, Mr. 
Coolidge came out in hat and topcoat. I said, " Good morn- 
ing, Mr. Coolidge, I am afraid you were going out." He re- 
plied, " Thought I was." I told him I would like to consult 
him for a few minutes on an Amherst problem, and he in- 
vited us in. He directed Mrs. King into the drawing room, re- 
marking, " Mrs. Coolidge is out," and took me into his study. 
He sat in a swivel chair, pulled out the slide from his desk 
and draped a leg over it, removed a fine cigar from his pocket 
and lighted it, with the remark, " Frank Stearns gave it to 
me." I lighted a cigarette. 

I stated the problem and my recommendation of Andrews 
for the post of treasurer, and asked his opinion. Coolidge 
then talked almost without pause for fifteen minutes; he re- 
viewed Andrews' life from his freshman year in college, he 
told me many things I did not know about Andrews, he 
spoke with warm affection and confidence of Andrews' char- 
acter and personality. Finally he asked suddenly, " Have we 
enough money in the budget to pay his salary? " I reassured 
him on this point. His next remark delighted me. " I don't be- 
lieve," he said, " in deciding to do something we haven't got 
the money for, and then going out and harpooning some 
alumnus for the necessary money. If our institutions and our 
cities and states and nation only spent the money they had 
in hand, we wouldn't be in the mess we are today." This was 

his philosophy. Then he wound up the discussion with these 
words, " You can count me with you." 

I had aheady discussed the matter with President Pease, 
who was agreeable to any solution approved by the Board. 
His position was, in effect, that this was a matter on the fi- 
nancial side of the College, and therefore a matter primarily 
for the judgment of the Board. Morrow was enthusiastic. At 
the next meeting of the Board I presented the matter for- 
mally; the vote of the Finance Committee was unanimous 
and the proposal went through without debate. Then came 
the administrative question as to how the matter should be 
presented to Treasurer Kidder. This would normally be the 
function of the president, but he was reluctant to undertake 
it. Kidder was prickly, and he had a long record of devoted 
service behind him. At the president's request I accepted the 
assignment. My theory has always been to grasp the nettle 
that no one else wishes to take hold of. I went at once to 
Kidder and told him of the program the Board had adopted 
on my recommendation, and I assured him before he had 
time to ask me that his salary as comptroller would be the 
same as he was now enjoying as treasurer. Kidder was frankly 
delighted with the news. He knew that he had had too much 
work and too little assistance for years; he knew the added 
responsibilities that the Folger Trust would entail; he was 
no longer a young man; he knew Andrews well and knew he 
could work happily with him. Andrews would now assume 
the responsibilities, and he would carry on the detail work 
with which he was so familiar. There was no nettle to grasp; 
Kidder was as happy about the program as I. 

Two years later, in 1933, Harry W. Kidder died. He had 
served the College faithfully for nine years as assistant treas- 
urer, for twenty-two years as treasurer, and for two years as 
comptroller, a third of a century in total service. When he 
joined the staff, I was a member of the freshman class; when 
he died I was president of the College. He had seen the en- 
dowment of the College grow from a million and three- 
quarters to well over eight million dollars on the books of 
the College which he kept. And he had made the entries in 

[ 155 ] 

a new set of accounts for the Folger Shakespeare Memorial; 
the assets of the Folger Fund at the time of his death were 
some eight and a half million dollars. He was faithful, dili- 
gent, and unimaginative. His vision did not reach much be- 
yond the books he kept. His accounting practice was old- 
fashioned, and inadequate for the needs of the College as it 
had grown. Perhaps it is fair to say that he had not grown 
with the growth of the College. He remained throughout his 
life very much as he was when he joined the college staff as 
a young man in 1900, a competent bookkeeper in accord with 
the standards of that day. He worked with five presidents of 
Amherst on terms of cordial association, and each president 
knew his sterling qualities of character and his tireless dili- 
gence. He initiated no new ideas in his administration of his 
office, and he was reluctant to adopt new ideas that were sug- 
gested to him. But his faithfulness was always beyond ques- 


Chapter Eight 


Charles Amos Andrews became the eighth treasurer of 
Amherst College on July 1, 1931, and served until his death 
in 1940. The experience was, I am sure, the happiest of his 
mature life. Andrews was born in Holyoke in 1872 and grad- 
uated from Amherst in the class of 1895. During his college 
course, financial reverses in the family occurred, and he felt 
he must leave college and begm to earn a living. His class- 
mate, Herbert L. Pratt, heard of the situation and insisted on 
sharing his own generous allowance from home with An- 
drews, and Andrews was able to finish his course with his 
class. Now that Andrews was treasurer, he found three of his 
classmates on the Board of Trustees — Morrow, CooHdge, and 
Lucius R. Eastman. And a few years later another classmate, 
Herbert Pratt, was added to the Board. Andrews taught 
Latin for tliree years after leaving college and was then dep- 
uty tax commissioner for the Commonwealth of Massachu- 
setts for eight years. Later he was treasurer of Gorton Pew 
Fisheries Company, and for ten years he was associated with 
Merrill Oldham & Co. of Boston, a conservative investment 
banking firm of which John E. Oldham, '88, was the senior 
partner. Andrews had been a member of the Massachusetts 
legislature, president of the Associated Industries of Massa- 
chusetts, and president of the Amherst Alumni Association 
of Boston. He was a good speaker, a favorite toastmaster at 
Amherst dinners, and, in addition, he had worked for more 
than a year with Dwight Morrow and Treasurer Kidder on 
the Report of the Finance Committee of 1924. His two sons 
were graduates of the College. 

Three months after Andrews took office, the College and 


the country suffered an irreparable loss in the sudden death 
of Dwight Morrow. No member of the Board was as beloved 
as Morrow; no alumnus had the affection and the confidence 
of so many of his fellow alumni; no member of the Board had 
exercised equal influence in the determination of college pol- 
icy; and in the management of the portfolio Morrow had for 
fifteen years been the directing force. For ten years Morrow 
and Woodbridge and I had worked in the closest co-opera- 
tion on Amherst problems; our recommendations had al- 
ways been followed by the Board without question; we had 
supported President Olds and President Pease, and we had 
come to know the College more intimately than most trus- 
tees are ever able to know their college. To me, Morrow had 
come to seem almost like an elder brother. Now Morrow was 
gone; Woodbridge was in Berlin for the year as the Roose- 
velt professor at the University of Berlin; and I was now 
chairman of the Executive Committee of the Board and had 
recently been elected a life member at the expiration of my 
two terms as alumni trustee. 

At the autumn meeting of the Board, a few weeks after 
Morrow's death, we all knew we must immediately 
strengthen the Finance Committee. His death created a va- 
cancy on the life Board, and the rules of the Board provided 
that nominations for such a vacancy must lie on the table un- 
til the next regular meeting of the Board. The name of Niel A. 
Weathers of the class of 1898 was placed in nomination, and 
no other nominations were made. It was clear that Weathers 
would be elected at the next meeting, and I asked permis- 
sion of the Board to invite Weathers to sit with the Finance 
Committee in the interim, a request which was at once 
granted. At the close of the meeting I went to New York to 
present the matter to Weathers and to urge his acceptance. 

Niel A. Weathers was born in Ocala, Florida, the eldest of 
four brothers, three of whom had graduated from Amherst. 
For four years after college he had earned money as a stenog- 
rapher in Florida and Cuba. In 1905 he graduated from Co- 
lumbia Law School, with the distinction of being editor-in- 
chief of the Law Review in his final year. For twenty-three 

years he practiced law in New York City, rising to the posi- 
tion of a senior partner in the firm of Simpson, Thacher and 
Bartlett, the firm in which John W. Simpson, 71, and Mor- 
row, '95, had been partners. In 1928 he resigned from the 
firm to accept the chairmanship of United Electric Securi- 
ties Company, an affiliate of General Electric Company. 
Known from college days as " Pop " Weathers, with a bril- 
liant mind, an unblemished reputation, and a capacity for 
hard and unremitting work, a close friend of Morrow's from 
student days, and with a wide experience in finance, he 
seemed the ideal man to lead the Finance Committee of the 

In New York I had a very pleasant interview with him and 
he agreed to accept the election to the Board when made 
and in the meantime to meet with the Finance Committee. I 
sent on to him the material with which he would need to fa- 
miliarize himself. But before the next meeting of the Finance 
Committee he died suddenly on January 12, 1932, at the age 
of fifty-five. In the meantime. President Pease had tendered 
his resignation, and the Board was looking for a president as 
well as a chairman of the Finance Committee. 

In 1931 Weathers had seemed the obvious choice to suc- 
ceed Morrow. Most of the members of the Board knew him 
well, and those who did not were familiar with his record 
and his reputation in financial circles. In 1932 there seemed 
to be no alumnus who was the clear and obvious choice to 
assume the responsibility. The Board chose Coolidge, East- 
man (L. R. ), Esty, James, Maynard, and Pratt (G. D. ) as 
members of the Finance Committee, and Maynard accepted 
the chairmanship until a permanent choice could be made. 
Plimpton and I were members, ex-officiis, of the committee. 
As president of the College I knew the vital importance of 
strong and wise leadership in the management of the Col- 
lege's portfolio, and I made a private list of alumni who 
might be considered. At the first meeting of the Finance 
Committee which I attended in my capacity as president of 
the College, the treasurer presented a question as to whether 
the College should sell or hold certain oil securities. On a 


motion to sell, the vote was a tie, and I had not voted. The 
other members of the committee then asked for my vote, 
which would decide the question, I refused to cast a vote, 
saying that it was to my mind fantastic that my vote should 
decide such a question, particularly as I had no knowledge 
of these particular securities or of the prospects of the com- 
pany. The College had large investments in oils as a result of 
the Folger bequest, but no member of the Finance Commit- 
tee had any special competence in this field of investment. It 
was, I think, clear to all of us that something must be done 
and promptly. 

Meanwhile, I had been thinkmg seriously of a Boston 
alumnus who was executive vice-president of the National 
Shawmut Bank. I had known him for years, but not well. I 
talked with one of the directors of the bank and then with 
the president, whom I knew. They both spoke of him in the 
highest ternis, and the president gave me a detailed account 
of his perfonnance for the bank before, during, and after the 
stock market break of 1929. At the spring meeting of the 
Board, I recommended for the vacancy on the Board George 
Edwin Pierce of the class of 1909. 

Pierce was born in Brattleboro, Vermont, in 1887, gradu- 
ated from Amherst in 1909, studied law at Boston Univer- 
sity for two years, was employed by Bradstreet's for five 
years, and then entered the employ of the National Shaw- 
mut Bank, rising through grades to the post of vice-president. 
He had not, however, been active in Amherst alumni work 
and was not widely known among the alumni; he had, on 
the contrary, concentrated his attention on his work in the 
bank. The Board did not know him; most of them had never 
even heard his name; only Maynard knew his reputation and 
knew him. I asked Chief Justice Rugg and Mr. Coolidge to 
check him through their channels and they reported favora- 
bly at the next meeting; but the Board still did not know him 
and were reluctant to name to so important a post on the life 
Board a man who was known to so few of the Board. I then 
asked permission for the Finance Committee to invite Pierce 
to sit with them at their meetings, and this was granted. 

Pierce's broad experience, his judicial approach, the care- 
ful study and investigation which he made of the problems 
before the committee quickly convinced the members of the 
committee that they wanted him as a full member of the 
Board. At the October meeting of the Board in 1933 he was 
elected without a dissenting vote. At Pierce's urgent request, 
Maynard continued as chairman for a number of years; but 
Pierce was the recognized leader of the committee from the 
date of his election to the Board. 

The personnel of the Finance Committee was changing 
rapidly for other reasons. Mr. Coolidge died on January 5, 
1933. He had been a member of the Finance Committee 
since 1929, but had taken no active part in its activities. 
George D. Pratt withdrew from the committee a year later 
for reasons of health. And while Arthur Curtiss James contin- 
ued to be a member, his health prevented him from attend- 
ing the meetings of the committee or sharing in its activities. 
Meanwhile, Edward T. Esty, who had acted for years as 
counsel to the Board, was added to the committee, and con- 
tinued as an active member until his death in 1942. In 1934 
Henry S. Kingman, '15, president of the Fanners and Me- 
chanics Savings Bank of Minneapolis, was elected an alumni 
trustee and immediately added to the committee. And a 
year later Lewis W. Douglas, '16, was elected an alumni trus- 
tee and added to the committee. Douglas had been a member 
of Congress from Arizona, Director of the Budget during the 
early days of the Roosevelt administration, and was now vice- 
president of American Cyanamid Company of New York. In 
1938 Frederick S. Bale, '06, was elected an alumni trustee. 
He was at the time vice-president of Bankers Trust Com- 
pany of New York and was promptly added to the com- 

As soon as George Pierce joined the committee, its regu- 
lar monthly meetings were instituted and they were held at 
the Union Club in Boston. The gentlemen of the Finance 
Committee in the 1930's and 1940's did not realize that their 
predecessors, Henry Edwards and Alpheus Hardy, had been 
charter members of the Union Club in 1863 and that Hardy 


had been a member of the small committee which organized 
the Club. Nor did they know that the building at 8 Park 
Street which had housed the Club during its entire history 
had been the home of Abbott Lawrence, the distinguished 
Bostonian who gave Amherst its first observatory, the oc- 
tagonal tower in the center of the Octagon, 

Treasurer Andrews prepared the agenda, and formal min- 
utes were kept. The committee met at the Club for cocktails 
at 6:30, dined in a private dining room at 7:00, and immedi- 
ately after dinner went into formal session, lasting often till 
nearly midnight. Kingman of course could not attend all the 
meetings because of the distance from Minneapolis, but 
when he could not come, he sent his comments on the items 
in the agenda to Pierce or called him on the telephone, so 
that the committee always had the benefit of his point of 
view. Douglas did the same. I always attended the meetings 
of the committee; I enjoyed them as much as any meetings 
I attended; and while I could ordinarily add nothing of value 
to the discussion of specific investments, I learned a great 
deal from this association with my colleagues. 

From the beginning of Pierce's leadership, he brought 
with him to every meeting his associate, Horace Schermer- 
horn of the Trust Department of the National Shawmut 
Bank. " Schermy," though not an Amherst graduate and not 
a graduate of any college, became one of the most liked 
members of the group. He brought with him the pertinent 
facts on all questions to come before the committee and gave 
us the benefit of his wide experience and his vast knowledge 
of corporate financial conditions. His assistance was invalu- 
able. And for this service he never received any compensa- 
tion, direct or indirect, nor did the bank of which Pierce and 
he were officers. In fact. Pierce took the position from the 
outset that as long as he served on the committee, the bank 
would not accept an account of the College or perform any 
regular service for the College for which it received compen- 
sation. And Pierce insisted that the College sell the shares of 
stock in the bank which it had in its portfolio. One of the 
pleasantest privileges I exercised during my years in the 
[ 162 ] 

president's ofiBce was to recommend to the Board the award 
of the honorary degree of Masters of Arts to Schermy at 
the 1944 commencement. It was approved unanimously by 
the Board, and was accepted with deep appreciation by 
Schermy. He still renders the same service to the Finance 
Committee, but now as an honorary graduate of the 
College. Amherst has become his college in a very real 

During the fourteen years from 1932 to 1946, the Finance 
Committee was without doubt the hardest working commit- 
tee of the Board. It met regularly every month except in the 
summer, when only one meeting was ordinarily held. Be- 
tween meetings of the committee, the treasurer regularly 
consulted Pierce and other members by long distance tele- 
phone. And the most effective members of the committee 
were Pierce, Maynard, and Kingman. Pierce and Kingman 
had firsthand knowledge of the matters discussed. Bale, an 
officer of Bankers Trust Company of New York, brought to 
the committee the information and advice supplied him by 
the research department of the Trust Company. Douglas 
had a firsthand knowledge of the mining industry, particu- 
larly copper, and had excellent sources of current informa- 
tion. Esty, in addition to his sound advice on all legal mat- 
ters, was trustee of a number of estates and had a broad and 
sound judgment on investment problems. And Maynard, dur- 
ing the years that he acted as chairman, made an admirable 
presiding officer and saw to it that the work of the commit- 
tee was crystallized in decisions after full debate and the con- 
sideration of all points of view. In addition, he brought to 
the meetings a sound judgment and a great fund of hard 
common sense. He was never ruffled, he was never hurried, 
and he had the admirable quality of bringing together di- 
vergent points of view in the committee. 

On July 1, 1933 the College put into operation a new sys- 
tem of accounts devised by our new auditors, Lybrand, Ross 
Bros. & Montgomery. The system was modeled upon the 
form recommended by the National Committee on Standard 
Reports for Institutions of Higher Education which is in use 


in many of the leading colleges and universities of the coun- 
try. And on June 30, 1934 Treasurer Andrews issued his first 
treasurer's report based on the new accounting procedure. 

On the death of Harry Kidder in 1933, the treasurer filled 
the vacancy in the oflBce of comptroller by the temporary 
appointment of J. Gerald Cole, '15. Cole remained only a few 
months, and the treasurer then appointed Herbert G. John- 
son, '16. Herbert Johnson had had an excellent preparation, 
first with Western Electric Company and then as assist- 
ant comptroller of Bird & Son of Walpole, Massachusetts. 
His appointment was duly confirmed by the Board in 1934. 
And since then he has handled the problems of his office 
with great competence. 

During the year 1933-34 the Finance Committee faced a 
difficult problem in the management of the Folger Fund. 
Mr. Folger had left his entire estate to the Trustees of Am- 
herst. It consisted entiiely of stocks in the Standard Oil 
group of companies, except for a block of some 1,840 shares 
of Chase National Bank. At the time of his death, he not 
only owed money to Mrs. Folger, but he had debts to banks 
of nearly half a million dollars for money borrowed to fi- 
nance his purchases of Shakesperiana. When the executors 
had paid the debts and the expenses of administration, and 
had completed the building of the Library, they turned over 
to the Trustees securities of a value of $1,495,801. This was 
only a fraction of what Mr. Folger had expected to provide 
as endowment for his library. The stock market crash of 1929 
and the prolonged depression which followed had reduced 
the value of his securities, and of course a substantial amount 
of his stocks had been sold by the executors to pay debts and 
administrative expenses and to build the Library. In addi- 
tion, the first charges on the income of the funds turned over 
to the Trustees were a payment of $76,000 a year to the Col- 
lege and annuities to various relatives of $85,000 a year. 
Mrs. Folger had met the emergency by transferring to the 
Trustees the bulk of her estate, with a market value of 
$2,970,000, to be held by the Trustees under the same con- 
ditions as those set down in her husband's will. Her estate 

too was invested in oils. Under the terms of her husband's 
will, the Trustees were allowed to use only the income of the 

By 1933-34 the income of the two Funds (Mr. Folger's 
and Mrs. Folger's) was inadequate to meet the charges of 
$76,000 to the College and $85,000 to annuitants and to keep 
the Library open. Prompt action was necessary to avoid a se- 
rious catastrophe. Three steps were taken. The College sur- 
rendered $50,000 of the income to which it was entitled. The 
Trustees filed a petition in the Probate Court of Hampshire 
County asking the permission of the court to use the princi- 
pal of Mrs. Folger's Fund when necessary. The petition was 
consented to by Mrs. Folger. And in addition, the counsel 
for the College had to secure the consent of the Attorney 
General of Massachusetts, of the Trustees of the University 
of Chicago, and of the Library of Congress Trust Fund 
Board in Washington. In March 1934, the Probate Court is- 
sued its decree approving the change in the terms of Mrs. 
Folger's gift. Meanwhile the Trustees had borrowed some 
$30,000 from the Springfield Safe Deposit & Trust Company 
to enable them to pay the operating expenses of the Library 
until the action of the Probate Court. 

The third step, which was carried through with brilliant 
success by the Finance Committee under the leadership of 
George Pierce, was the sale of about one-third of the oil se- 
curities in the Folger Fund and the investment of the pro- 
ceeds in prime bonds. This was accomplished with a profit to 
the Folger Fund of about $250,000 over book value, and the 
income of the Fund was materially increased. These steps 
saved the Folger Library from curtailment in its operations, 
increased both the principal and the income of the Fund, 
made the future management of the Fund by the Trustees 
simpler and more eflFective, and made possible a balanced 
budget for the Fund the following year. The note to the 
Springfield Safe Deposit & Trust Company was paid when 
due. The College, however, continued to receive only $26,000 
per annum instead of $76,000 from the Folger Fund until 
Mrs. Folger's death, when the College's receipts from the 


Fund were restored to $76,000 and have continued at this 
rate ever since. 

Mrs. Folger died in February 1936, and her will provided 
that the residue of her estate should pass to the Trustees of 
the College to be added to the Fund of $3,000,000 she had 
already given in her lifetime. The total book value of the 
gifts and bequests from Mr. and Mrs. Folger, including the 
library building and land, the collections, and the endow- 
ments, amounted to over eleven million dollars. 

The most striking change which was taking place in the 
portfolio was the distribution of investments between bonds 
and stocks. This change was so radical as to be revolution- 
ary. In 1924 the bond account of the College represented 
91% of its portfolio; stocks amounted to 6%, and real estate to 
3%. Ten years later, in 1934, bonds had dropped to 72%; stocks 
had increased to 17/2%, real estate and real estate mortgages 
to 8/2%; and cash was 132%. And in another ten years, in 1944, 
bonds had dropped to 30/2%, stocks had risen to 63%, real es- 
tate and real estate mortgages stood at 5%, and cash at 1%. 
The following table taken from the annual printed reports of 
the treasurer shows the changes from year to year. 



























































































In considering the investment policy of the College at any 
period in its history it must be remembered that many of the 
securities owned by the College have been given to it. It is 
not always easy, and sometimes it is not permitted, to dispose 
of these securities. The gifts of Mr. and Mrs. Folger, totaling 
nearly four and a half million dollars, were, with minor ex- 
ceptions, all in common stocks and all in one industry, the 
industry in which Mr. Folger had spent his entire business 
life. The oil industry had had an extraordinary growth dur- 
ing the span of one lifetime; it had become one of the fun- 
damental industries of the country and in fact of the world; 
and it had been extraordinarily profitable to the investors 
who had owned the equity securities of the best managed 
companies. The Folger gifts together amounted to about 
two-thirds of the entire endowment of the College in 1924. 
While Mr. Folger's will imposed no restrictions on the Board 
in the matter of the investment of his endowment, the ques- 
tion presented to the Board, and specifically to the Finance 
Committee of the Board, was, not whether to invest the Fol- 
ger funds in the common stocks of one industry, but how 
much of the Fund to sell at the low prices prevailing through 
the years of the depression in order to secure diversification. 
The Finance Committee considered this question with great 
care, and reconsidered it from time to time throughout the 
period we are discussing. From time to time they presented 
the facts to the Board, with their recommendations, as they 
wished the entire Board to share the responsibility for the 
decisions they were taking in the matter. In each case the 
Board approved the proposals of its committee. 

Quite outside of the Folger Fund, however, the investment 
policy of the College was undergoing a radical change. Be- 
ginning in a relatively small way in 1931, the College was en- 
tering the market for prime common stocks for the invest- 
ment of its endowment. I recall very well a meeting of the 
Finance Committee called by Dwight Morrow and held in 
his rooms in the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Boston in the summer 
of 1931, in which he proposed, and the committee approved, 
the purchase of a block of the common stock of the American 


Telephone & Telegraph Company. This was the first pur- 
chase of common stock by the College at any meeting of the 
Finance Committee which I attended. At the same meeting 
Morrow asked me to investigate the stock of United Shoe 
Machinery Company of Boston and send him my report. I 
asked him whether he was interested particularly in the pre- 
ferred or the common stock of United Shoe, and he said that 
if the College bought either, he would suggest the common. 
When I later sent him my report, he authorized the treasurer 
to purchase a block of United Shoe common. Since that time, 
the College's holdings in both Telephone and Shoe have been 
substantially increased. In 1946 the College's investment in 
Telephone common had a book value of over half a million 
dollars, and its investment in United Shoe common a book 
value of over a third of a million dollars. 

There were of course several reasons for the change in pol- 
icy. One was the lesson learned by students of investment 
policy from the relative performance of the best equities 
during the depression as compared with the performance 
of prime bonds. Another was the low interest rate main- 
tained by the government as a matter of policy, which made 
it difficult for colleges to live on the return from prime bonds. 
The same reasons which impelled the Finance Committee of 
Amherst to change its investment policy were operating in 
the country as a whole, and other colleges and universities 
were doing just what Amherst was doing and for similar rea- 
sons. From time to time our Finance Committee would com- 
pare our distribution between fixed-income securities and 
equities with similar figures for other colleges and universi- 
ties. These comparisons usually indicated that we were a lit- 
tle more heavily invested in equities than our friends in 
other colleges, due of course to the influence of the Folger in- 
vestments on our totals. 

Another significant change was in our investment in U.S. 
Government bonds. In 1924 the College held under $700,000 
of Liberty bonds and U.S. Treasury notes, carrying interest 
at 4/4% to 4^2%. Most of these had come to the College as gifts 
in the Centennial Gift. On June 30, 1935, we owned no obli- 

gations of the U.S. Government. In 1946, our U.S. Govern- 
ments represented a total of over $4,000,000, with interest 
rates of from 2% to 2%%, and comprising over two-thirds of all 
our bonds. The management of our Government portfolio 
was a highly specialized problem, and was entrusted by the 
Finance Committee to George Pierce, whose actions were 
reported to the committee and ratified by them. 

In the same ten-year period ( 1935-1946 ) the College re- 
duced its railway bonds from 29% to 3.5% of the portfolio, its 
public utility bonds from 23% to 3.2%, and its railway stocks 
from 2.4% to 1.2%. Its investments in utility stocks, mean- 
while, rose from 2.2% to 11%, and in industrial stocks from 
29% to 49.6%. A substantial part of the liquidation of its bond 
account was of course made, not at the option of the College, 
but of the debtor corporations, which called their high cou- 
pon bonds and refinanced at a lower coupon rate. As the 
decade passed, the difficulty of wisely investing the trust 
funds of the College increased. In the fiscal year ending June 
30, 1936, for example, the purchases and sales of securities 
by the College for its own account and the Folger Fund 
amounted to some $9,000,000 in total. 

The effect of the low interest rates on the College's return 
from its endowment is illustrated by the following table 
showing the rate of return on book value of the Consolidated 
Funds of the College (this of course does not include the 
Folger Fund, which is separately invested ) . 

'Year ending Year ending 

June 30, 1933 4.50% June 30, 1941 4.11% 

1934 4.37 1942 4.336 

1935 4.42 1943 3.99 

1936 4.33 1944 3.99 

1937 4.457 1945 4.11 

1938 4.05 1946 4.137 

1939 3.72 1947 4.59 

1940 4.05 1948 4.64 

In 1939-40 the Finance Committee and the treasurer un- 
dertook one of the most difficult problems confronting the 


College, the development of a contributory pension plan for 
members of the Faculty. Two faculty members were chosen 
by me with the advice of the Committee of Six of the Faculty 
to sit with the Finance Committee in the consideration of 
this problem: Professors Clarence W. Eastman and Bailey 
LeF. Brown. The work continued for more than a year and 
when the report was completed, it was approved by the 
Board. Before it could be presented to the Faculty, the treas- 
urer was taken seriously ill. 

In the years 1940 and 1941 the College suffered grievous 
loss in the death of two senior members of the administra- 
tion. Charles Amos Andrews, treasurer of the College since 
1931, died on November 11, 1940, and Frederick Scouler 
AUis, secretary of the Alumni Council for twenty-five years, 
vice-chairman of the Council for two years, and secretary of 
the Board for twelve years, died on July 23, 1941, a few days 
after his formal retirement from office. Andrews had unusual 
qualities of personality and training for the office of treas- 
urer; he had performed the duties of the office with great 
ability and had won both the respect and the deep affection 
of the members of the Board. He was almost universally 
liked by his fellow alumni, and he had a warm spot in his 
heart for the undergraduate, particularly the undergraduate 
who was having a hard time meeting the expenses of his col- 
lege education. Andrews always remembered his own strug- 
gles to pay his college bills; he always remembered how 
much his scholarship aid had meant to him in enabling him 
to continue his college course. He had been an undergradu- 
ate when " Old Doc " Hitchcock kept a fatherly eye on boys 
who were indigent but promising, and Andrews had many of 
the qualities of a current model of " Old Doc." Under his di- 
rection the entire accounting system of the College had been 
remodeled, the procedures of the treasurer's office modern- 
ized and brought into accord with the best current practice. 
He never attempted to secure large gifts for the College, so 
far as I know, but wherever he went he would tell the story 
of some luckless student who did not have enough money to 
stay in college, and would come back to Amherst with a 

check or checks to be disbursed by him for students who 
were sound and having difficulty making both ends meet. 

Fred Alhs was the ideal alumni secretary, and was recog- 
nized as such both in the Amherst community and outside. 
He was gentle, quiet, persuasive, and obstinate. He was 
never in a hurry, he was never flustered, and he had infinite 
patience. The Alumni Council of the College was the projec- 
tion of his personality and of his tireless work. The Alumni 
Fund was due more to him than to any other single individ- 
ual. He never sought the center of the stage, he never made 
the important speeches, he never participated in debate on 
policy; but he was behind the scenes all the time, and the 
policies of the Alumni Council were his policies, although 
they were proposed, seconded, argued, and carried through 
by others whom he had quietly selected and briefed. He 
made friends wherever he went. He stimulated gifts and be- 
quests to the College, large and small, but almost no one 
knew of his specific efforts in this field. He was trained in 
the law and in banking, he had a fund of common sense, he 
had manners that were almost courtly, he was a good drafts- 
man and a charming letter writer, and he was utterly de- 
voted to the College. Physically, he was rather frail, and for 
the nearly thirty years that he devoted his life to the College 
he had to exercise unusual care for his health. In spite of 
this, he accomplished more than most men of strong phy- 
sique. Most alumni secretaries have considered the post as a 
steppingstone to some other position; he made it a career. 
And he made the career a distinguished one by his own dis- 
tinction. No account of the endowment of the College would 
be complete which did not recognize the important part he 
played in the enlargement of the endowment, a part that for 
many years was second only to that played by George A. 
Plimpton, the president of the Board. 


Chapter Nine 

PAUL D. WEATHERS, Treasurer 

The death of Treasurer Andrews posed an immediate 
problem to the Board and particularly to the Finance Com- 
mittee. The post had become in the last dozen years the sec- 
ond most important office in the administration of the Col- 
lege. A number of alumni desired to be considered for the 
post, but two seemed outstanding and their names were con- 
sidered by the Finance Committee with great care. Neither 
of them sought the office; we sought them out. A few years 
earlier, I had met at commencement Paul D. Weathers of 
the class of 1915, a younger brother of the late Neil A. 
Weathers, '98, who had been selected by the Board to suc- 
ceed Dwight Morrow as leader of the Finance Committee. 
Paul Weathers at the time I met him was treasurer of La- 
fayette College. And when I first met him, I took him away 
from his classmates, who were celebrating their reunion, to 
learn all I could about the administration of the finances at 
Lafayette. He made a deep impression on me at that time, 
and I proposed his name to the Finance Committee. After 
the committee had canvassed the situation, it left the final 
decision to George Pierce and me. 1 telephoned Weathers to 
invite him to come to New England to discuss the matter 
with Pierce in Boston and with me in Amherst. Weathers 
came first to Amherst and then went on to Boston. Pierce 
and I agreed that he was the man for Amherst, and our rec- 
ommendation was followed by the approval of the Board 
and his election in January 1941 as treasurer of the College. 

Weathers was born in Ocala, Florida, and graduated from 

Amherst in the class of 1915. He was forty-seven years old. 
After leaving Amherst, he spent two years at the Harvard 
Graduate School of Business Administration, receiving the 
degree of Master of Business Administration. For several 
years he was employed in Bankers Trust Company, New 
York. Then for some dozen years he was a financial officer of 
various public utility companies. In 1932, he was elected 
treasurer of Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania, and 
held this position till his return to his alma mater as its treas- 
urer. As I look back over the ten years that have inter- 
vened, I am satisfied that no better choice could have been 
made. Paul D. Weathers is, I think without doubt, the ablest 
treasurer Amherst has had in its hundred and twenty-five 
years. The Board has recognized his abilities by a petition to 
the Legislature of the Commonwealth asking for an amend- 
ment to the charter of the College providing that henceforth 
the treasurer of the College shall be a member, ex-officio, of 
the Board. And the legislature passed the necessary act 
amending the College's charter in this respect. 

A few months after Weathers took office, our country en- 
tered World War II and the College went on a war footing. 
This meant new and complicated problems for the treasurer's 
office, which were admirably handled by Weathers and his 
stafiF. The story of the College's participation in the nation's 
war effort will be told elsewhere. Here we are concerned 
with the development of the endowment of the College. And 
the problems of investment and reinvestment continued of 
course throughout the war. 

Meanwhile, the personnel of the Finance Committee was 
gradually changing. Pierce of course continued as chairman. 
Maynard resigned from the Board in 1941 and became trus- 
tee emeritus. Kingman left the committee in 1940, when his 
term as alumni trustee ended, and rejoined the committee in 
October 1943, when he was elected a life trustee. Fales and 
Thorp joined the committee in 1942 and 1943, Francis in 
1944, and Gregory in 1946. 

Frederick S. Fales was born in Rockland, Maine, gradu- 
ated from Amherst in the class of 1896, and after a brief 

[ 173 ] 

business experience in Chicago, joined the stajBF of Standard 
Oil Company of New York in 1903. In 1932 he became presi- 
dent as well as vice-president and a director of Socony- 
Vacuum Oil Company. 

Willard L. Thorp graduated from Amherst in the class of 
1920 and received his doctorate from Columbia in 1924. 
From 1926 to 1934, he was professor of economics at Am- 
herst, the latter year on leave to serve as Director of the Bu- 
reau of Foreign and Domestic Commerce in Washington. 
Later he was a trustee of Associated Gas and Electric Com- 
panies, and reorganized the companies in bankruptcy. He is 
now Assistant Secretary of State of the United States. 

Clarence Francis graduated from Amherst in the class of 
1910, and, after a long business experience with Corn Prod- 
ucts Refining Company and Postum Company, became suc- 
cessively vice-president, president, and chaiiman of the 
Board of General Foods Company of New York. 

Richard H. Gregory graduated from the College in the 
class of 1898 and entered the employ of Western Electric 
Company. In 1908 he became comptroller of the company 
and served in this capacity until his retirement. 

These men brought new and different points of view and 
widely different backgrounds of experience to the work of 
the committee. 

We must now examine the growth of the endowment of 
the College. A comparison with previous decades shows the 

1875 Total Endowment, excluding Charity Fund $ 584,845 

1882 Total Endowment, excluding Charity Fund 913,331 

1892 Total Endowment, excluding Charity Fund 1,225,184 

1903 Total Endowment, excluding Charity Fund 1,671,066 

1912 Total Endowment, excluding Charity Fund 2,629,509 

1924 Total Endowment, excluding Charity Fund 6,717,787 

1932 Total Endowment, excluding Charity Fund 8,580,561 
1946 Total Endowment, including Charity and 

Alumni Funds, but excluding Folger Fund 12,837,192 
1946 Total Endowment, including Charity, 

Alumni, and Folger Funds 19,758,186 

The total assets of the College in 1924 were stated at 8,949,442 
The total including Folger in 1932 were stated at 21,122,611 
The total including Folger in 1946 were stated at 31,461,003 

We observe that in the tables above the Charity Fund and 
the Alumni Fund are not included in the total endowment in 
1924 and 1932, but are so included in 1946. This is due to a 
change in accounting practice ordered by the trustees and 
concurred in by the appropriate officers of the two funds. To 
make the totals really comparable we must therefore add the 
Charity and the Alumni Funds for the years 1924 and 1932. 
This gives us the following comparative figures: 

1924 Total Endowment, including Charity and 

Alumni Funds $6,922,553 

1932 Ditto, but excluding Folger Fund 9,009,197 

1946 Ditto, but excluding Folger Fund 12,837,192 

But in 1946 the real endowment of the College was even 
larger than these figures indicate. For the Folger Fund was 
bound to pay the College $76,000 per annum in perpetuity. 
This was equivalent to an additional endowment of $1,900,- 
000, if we assume an interest rate of 4%. In other words, the 
college endowment which supported the operations of the 
College itself was in 1946 equivalent to some $14,750,000. 
This was more than double what it was in 1924. And as I 
look back to the days when I first began work for the College 
in 1919, I realize that during those twenty-seven years I 
have seen the College's endowment grow from under four 
million to over fourteen million, or nearly fourfold; and I 
have seen the total resources entrusted to the trustees grow 
from about five million dollars to over thirty-one million dol- 
lars, or sixfold. It is an extraordinary record and it is due to 
the extraordinary generosity of Amherst's sons and of their 
widows and children, a generosity which has found expres- 
sion in countless wills and in countless gifts from the living. 
The confidence and the devotion of her sons are the founda- 
tion of the College today, and the promise for the future of 

We must now go back and note some of the additions to 


the endowment as they came to the College from year to 
year during the fourteen-year period from 1932 to 1946 of 
my term as president. 

In the year 1934-35 the College received the second 
largest bequest it has received for college purposes, under 
the will of Frank L. Babbott of the class of 1878. Mr. Bab- 
bott made two specific bequests of $10,000 each, one for 
scholarship purposes and one for the Amherst Chapter of 
Alpha Delta Phi. In addition, he gave the College one-third 
of the residue of his estate, amounting to $1,172,515, with 
the provision that for twenty-five years the income only 
should be used. At the expiration of that period, the fund is 
without restriction. Mr. Babbott had always been a most 
generous benefactor of the College; many of his gifts dur- 
ing his lifetime had been made anonymously. He visited the 
College frequently and sought out ways in which he could 
make a gift which would enable the College to do some- 
thing it was not then able to do. Often his gifts did not pass 
through the treasurer's office, but were made directly to 
some department or some professor. President Pease took 
some exception to this procedure, believing that gifts should 
pass through regular channels, but Mr, Babbott continued in 
his quiet way to make gifts for this or that purpose. Some- 
times he would tell me about them, but usually I would hear 
of them from other sources. One of the objects of his contin- 
ued interest was the Department of English and particularly 
the work of Professor George F. Whicher of that department. 

It therefore seemed to me appropriate, when the College 
received the large bequest under his will, to propose to the 
Board that it name Professor Whicher Professor of English 
on the Frank L. Babbott Foundation, and the Board unani- 
mously approved my suggestion. In addition, I suggested to 
the Board that the College use college funds to make the 
room on the second floor of the Woods Cabinet (the Octa- 
gon ) into a faculty room, to be named the Frank L. Babbott 
Room. Over the fireplace hangs a fine portrait in oil of Mr. 
Babbott which the Board authorized me to commission. 

Mr. Babbott (1854-1933) was born in Waterville, New 

York, and graduated from Amherst in the class of 1878. Two 
years later he graduated from Columbia Law School. He re- 
ceived the honorary degree of Master of Arts from Amherst 
at commencement in 1903, when I received my own Bache- 
lor's degree. After eighteen years in business he retired, in 
1901, and thereafter devoted himself to civic and public 
causes. He was president of the Board of Packer College In- 
stitute in Brookl)'!!, trustee of Vassar College, trustee of 
Brooklyn Academy of Music, vice-president of the New York 
Board of Education, trustee of the Brooklyn Public Library 
and the Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences. In 1886, he 
married Lydia Richardson Pratt, daughter of Charles Pratt 
and sister of Charles M. Pratt. His daughter married Wil- 
liam S. Ladd, '10, later a trustee of Amherst, and his son 
graduated from Amherst in the class of 1913. Later, while I 
was president of the College, we had several of his grand- 
sons in our student body. When the alumni of the College fi- 
nanced the building of the Lord Jeffery Inn, Mr. Babbott 
asked that the dining room be assigned to him for decora- 
tion. The oil portraits on the walls of the dining room and 
the silver service are his gifts to the Inn, which he enjoyed as 
much as any of his New York Clubs. I have said that Am- 
herst received one-third of the residue of his estate. One- 
sixth went to Vassar College, where his wife had graduated, 
and one-half to the Long Island College of Medicine and its 
associated hospitals, of which his son was then president. 

A third large addition to endowment came to the College 
from William Rutherford Mead, '67, and Mrs. Mead. Mr. 
Mead (1846-1928) was born in Brattleboro, Vermont, and 
graduated from Amherst in the class of 1867. For five years 
after his graduation he studied architecture in America and 
Europe. On his return to New York, he went into partner- 
ship with Charles R. McKim, and in 1879, with Stanford 
\Vhite, they formed the partnership of McKim, Mead & 
White, which became the leading fimi of architects in the 
country. Mr. Mead was a member of the American Institute 
of Arts and Letters, president of the American Academy in 
Rome, National Academician, and received the Gold Medal 


of Honor of the National Institute of Arts and Letters. He 
was awarded honorary degrees by Norwich University and 
the University of Pennsylvania; and from his alma mater he 
received its highest degree. He organized and for many years 
headed the Art Commission of the College, and was presi- 
dent for a dozen years of the Amherst Alumni Association of 
New York. He stimulated the gift of Converse Memorial Li- 
brary and the endowment of the Library by his kinsman, 
Edmund C. Converse. And next to his love of the arts was 
his love for Amherst. He died in Paris in 1928. His wife, Olga 
Kilenyi of Budapest, survived him for eight years. On her 
death, the College received from trust estates set up by Mr. 
Mead and from his and his wife's estates some $919,635. To 
Columbia went $100,000 and to the American Academy in 
Rome the same amount; to Amherst came everything else 
including furniture, jewelry, tapestries, and other works 
of art. 

Mr. Mead had discussed his proposed gifts with three 
members of the Board — Morrow, Plimpton, and myself. We 
tried to persuade him to endow a professorship, but his re- 
ply was that others would and could do that; he wished to 
have his gift used for the development of a Department of 
Fine Arts at Amherst. First, he said, you must find the right 
man to head the department; then build a building to house 
the department; and then establish one or more fellowships. 
Morrow was his closest friend on the Board. Morrow ar- 
ranged for the drafting of the necessary papers: deeds of 
trust, letters to the Board, and the joint wills of Mr. and Mrs. 
Mead; and Morrow was one of his executors. With me. Mead 
discussed the location of the proposed building. We walked 
about the campus discussing various sites, but found none 
that satisfied him. 

I never met Mrs. Mead. I tried to call on her in Paris in the 
early 1930's, but she sent word to me that she preferred to 
discuss Amherst matters only with Morrow or Plimpton. 
Both Morrow and Plimpton called on her there. Unhap- 
pily, during much of the time after her husband's death she 
was in a state of mental disequilibrium, and during part of 

the time she was in a nursing home. Mrs. Mead had only one 
relative living, a sister in Budapest, who was impoverished. 
But Mrs. Mead refused to send her money. Under these con- 
ditions, Morrow personally sent her a monthly check as long 
as he lived, and after his death the College continued the sti- 
pend until all such payments became impossible after our 
entry into the war. The sister survived the war in some way, 
and the College again undertook to send her a monthly 

On Mrs. Mead's death, the College received the securities 
and cash, the furniture and personal belongings of Mr. and 
Mrs. Mead. The treasurer of course handled the cash and se- 
curities in the usual way. All of the furnishings and personal 
property were shipped to Pratt Gymnasium, and examined 
with care. Much was useful for the Department of Fine 
Arts, some for the theater, some for the president's house. 

The first step for the Board was obviously the establish- 
ment of a professorship, and I recommended the appoint- 
ment of Charles Hill Morgan, II, of our faculty to the Mead 
Professorship of Fine Arts. Then studies were begun to de- 
termine an appropriate site. These were interrupted by the 
war, as both Professor Morgan and the college architect, 
James Kellum Smith of the class of 1915, entered the Army 
Air Force. In November 1948 the contract for the Mead Art 
Building was let, and the building was completed a year 
later. The fellowships doubtless will follow in due time. 

In 1937 the College received a bequest of $300,000 from 
Arthur Milliken of the class of 1880. I have already told the 
story of Mr. Milliken in connection with the gift of the 1880 
Professorship of Greek to the College in 1930. 

In 1938 the College received an even larger bequest from 
Milliken's classmate, Henry P. Field, familiarly known as 
Judge Harry Field. Judge Field left the College practically 
his entire estate, amounting to nearly $400,000. Henry P. 
Field (1858-1937) was born in New London, Connecticut. 
His father. Reverend Thomas P. Field, had graduated from 
the College in the class of 1834, been a tutor at the College 
from 1837 to 1839, a professor from 1853 to 1856, and from 

[ 179 ] 

1877 to 1886. Harry Field entered the law school of the Uni- 
versity of Michigan after graduating from Amherst and re- 
ceived his law degree in 1882, From then until his death, he 
made his home in Northampton and practiced his profession 
there. He was at one time mayor of the city, twice delegate 
to the Republican National Convention, and for many years 
Judge of Probate for Hampshire County. For most of his life 
he was active in alumni matters, and for twenty years chair- 
man of one of the important alumni committees. He never 
married. He was wise, witty, conservative, shrewd in his 
judgments of men, and utterly devoted to his college and his 

For perhaps a generation he served either as toastmaster 
or principal speaker at the initiation banquet of the Gamma 
Chapter of Psi Upsilon, and his reputation as an after-dinner 
speaker spread far and wide. I remember very well one ini- 
tiation banquet at the chapter house to which I was invited 
as president of the College. I took with me President Nicho- 
las Murray Butler of Columbia, who was our guest at the 
president's house at the time and who was also a member of 
Psi Upsilon. President Butler was himself a master of the art 
of after-dinner speaking, and delivered a finished address 
that evening. But the event of the dinner was the witty re- 
partee indulged in between Judge Field and Reverend Sher- 
rod Soule of the chapter in their addresses. When President 
Butler and I left, he asked me for the addresses of both 
Judge Field and Dr. Soule, saying he had never heard two 
wittier addresses at any dinner in his long experience and he 
wished to write notes to them both on his return to New 

Judge Field had been personal counsel for the Dickinson 
family of Amherst throughout his professional career. He 
had acted for William Austin Dickinson, the college treas- 
urer, for Sue Dickinson, Austin's wife, and later for their 
daughter Mattie, known as Madame Bianchi. 

And I still remember well the one occasion during my 
term as president when the Gamma Chapter of Psi Upsilon 
won the Treadway Interfraternity Trophy for Scholarship. I 

made the announcement in morning chapel. One of Judge 
Field's old friends among the alumni happened to be pres- 
ent, and when the service was over he telephoned the news 
to a bailiff in Judge Field's court, who wrote down the mes- 
sage and passed it up to the Judge on the bench. Two lawyers 
were arguing a case before the Judge at the time. They were 
dumbfounded to note the Judge looking down to read the 
message and then saying, "Now let thy servant depart in 
peace for he hath seen the glory of the Lord. Court will recess 
for ten minutes." The Judge withdrew to his chambers, and 
called the Psi U House on the telephone to inquire if the 
news was correct. Then he extended his congratulations, and 
asked the head of the house to have the local photographer 
take a large picture of the chapter with the cup, send him a 
copy, and send the bill to him. In ten minutes he returned to 
the bench, and the attorneys went on with their arguments 
in the case on trial. 

Judge Field's generous bequest was for scholarships, and 
for education and instruction. The Board established the 
Field fellowships in history and English. 

Two years later occurred the death of a third member of 
the class of 1880, James Turner. He had underwritten with 
Arthur Milliken the gift of his class of the 1880 Professor- 
ship. He had made many other gifts to the College, mostly 
anonymous. In 1935 he gave a fund of $10,000, to which he 
added $6,000 the following year, for the religious work of the 
College, a gift made in recognition of the work of Charles H. 
Cadigan, '27, then Director of Religious Activities. He had 
given the Little Red Schoolhouse. In his will he left $200,000 
as an endowment fund for the Alumni Council. This fund, 
when added to what the Council already had, made the 
Council self-supporting. Thereafter, all of the annual gift of 
the alumni was available for college purposes, as the annual 
expense of the Council could now be taken care of from in- 
come on its endowment. And in 1940, at my suggestion, Mr. 
Turner's brother and sister, William J. and Isabel, gave $10,- 
000 each in memory of Jim as an endowment for the work 
carried on in the Little Red Schoolhouse. In 1948, on the 


death of his brother, WiUiam J., the College received a be- 
quest of $50,000 for the Alumni Endowment Fund. 

In 1938, the College received a bequest of $300,000 from 
William A. Sargent of the class of 1879, unrestricted. Mr. 
Sargent (1858-1936) was born in Boston and spent his en- 
tire life there. He had graduated from Boston University 
Law School in 1881 and been a practicing lawyer in Boston 
till his retirement in 1916. While Mr. Sargent was never ac- 
tive in alumni matters, he had a strong feeling for his class. 
He returned to Amherst regularly at commencement, but in- 
stead of circulating among the reunion classes he spent most 
of his time on the piazza of his classmate, Audubon Hardy, 
on Lincoln Avenue, where members of '79 always made their 
informal headquarters. There I used to see him. But on the 
advice of Mr. Hardy, who told me of the generous provision 
for the College in Sargent's will, I never mentioned the needs 
of the College. And I never came to know him well. 

In 1938, Arthur Curtiss James made his last gift to the Col- 
lege in his lifetime. After the death of his classmate, Freder- 
ick J. E. Woodbridge, his closest contacts with the College 
were his classmate, Professor William P. Bigelow, Miss Mar- 
garet Hitchcock, curator of the Hitchcock Memorabilia 
Room, who was the daughter of a classmate, Fred Allis, and 
myself. Bigelow decided to retire from the faculty a year be- 
fore the retirement age of 70. He had lived for many years in 
his own house at the corner of Orchard Street and Northamp- 
ton Road, and on his retirement Mrs. Bigelow and he wished 
to move to a smaller house. Fred Allis brought the matter to 
the attention of James, after consulting with me. James then 
gave the College $20,000, without formal restrictions but 
with the understanding with Allis and me that the College 
would buy the Bigelow house for $20,000. This would give 
the Bigelows the additional income on $20,000, it would give 
the College a fine faculty house, and it would enable James 
to do for his classmate indirectly what he knew well his class- 
mate would not accept directly. Bigelow had the additional 
satisfaction of seeing his successor in the Department of Mu- 
sic, Professor Vincent Morgan, succeed him in the Orchard 

Street House, and remarked to me when I told him that I 
was assigning the house to Morgan that he beheved in the 
apostohc succession in music. 

Mr. James was in poor health for many years before the 
end. And Mrs. James was also an invalid. Four nurses were 
always in the house, three for Mrs. James and one for Arthur 
James. When the doctors told him he could no longer sail the 
Aloha, for which he had an extraordinary aflfection, he or- 
dered her broken up. No one else should sail that majestic 
ship. He then acquired a large motor cruising yacht which 
he named the Aloha Lei (the small Aloha). Mrs. King and I 
saw him every year, sometimes at Vineyard Haven on Mar- 
tha's Vineyard, sometimes at his lovely home, " Four Winds," 
at Coconut Grove, Florida. Whenever the Aloha Lei put in 
at Vineyard Haven on a summer cruise, he would send word 
to us to dine with him aboard, and whenever we went to 
Florida on a short winter holiday we would call on him at 
Coconut Grove. He told Fred Allis once that I was one of 
the few people who came to see him regularly who never 
asked him for anything. And this of course was true. There 
was no alumnus of his time who was more deeply devoted to 
the College or had given to it more generously. 

In June 1941 he died, a few weeks after the death of his 
wife. After her passing he had nothing more to live for; they 
had never had children. I arranged with the executors to 
have the house flag of the Aloha, the star and crescent, pre- 
sented to the Amherst Chapter of Alpha Delta Phi. At the 
public auction of the furnishings of his great Park Avenue 
home. Professor Charles H. Morgan of our faculty bought 
and presented to me an oil portrait of the Aloha in Vineyard 
Haven Harbor which James had commissioned years before 
and which hung in his study. His homes were sold, and after 
the payment of a number of personal bequests, the residue 
of his estate passed to the James Foundation, Inc. On his 
death the College became the beneficiary of four-eighteenths 
of a trust fund set up by him in 1930. The College's share 
amounted to some $340,000. In addition, the College re- 
ceived from the James Foundation, Inc., some $97,000 dur- 


ing the years 1942 to 1946 inclusive, all of it for current 

In 1945-46 the College received an entirely unexpected 
bequest under the will of Elmer W. Wiggins of the class of 
1901. Elmer Wiggins (1878-1944), was born in Warsaw, 
New York. We were contemporaries in college. After gradu- 
ation he took one year at Massachusetts Institute of Tech- 
nology, and then entered the employ of the du Pont Com- 
pany. In 1927 he founded his own company to operate 
airplanes in New England. We saw each other often, but nei- 
ther I nor any of my contemporaries knew that he had be- 
come a wealthy man. His bequest to the College was $100,- 
000 for scholarship purposes. His widow threatened to con- 
test the will, and a settlement was made under which the 
College relinquished $10,000 of its bequest. The remainder 
we received in 1946 and 1947. 

Under the will of Charles M. Pratt, '79, a former trustee, 
we received $25,000. Under the will of his brother, George D. 
Pratt, '93, a former trustee, we received some $57,000. Under 
the will of Everett Alonzo White, '89, we received a bequest 
of $30,000, the income to be used for golf and nothing but 
golf. And under the will of James A. McKibben, '89, for many 
years secretary of the Boston Chamber of Commerce, we re- 
ceived a bequest of $18,312. From the estate of Harold W. 
Stevens we received nearly $40,000. And under the will of 
Fred L. Norton, '86, a Boston lawyer, we received nearly 

In 1943 we received $10,000 from the estate of Lucius 
Root Eastman, '95. And in 1947 his widow added $40,000 to 
the Fund. Lucius Eastman was one of seven brothers who 
graduated from Amherst. His father was a member of the 
class of 1857, his grandfather a member of the class of 1833; 
his great-grandfather was a contributor to the Charity Fund 
of the College in 1818-1819. His two sons graduated from the 
College, and his daughter married a graduate. After gradu- 
ation Eastman studied law at Boston University and was 
admitted to the bar. In 1905 he became president of Hills 
Brothers Company, distributors of Dromedary Dates and 

later of other food products, a concern in which his wife's 
family were the principal owners. He was active in alumni 
matters, chairman of the Alumni Council, trustee of the Col- 
lege, chairman of the Executive Committee of the Board, 
and active in many civic and philanthropic causes. For five 
years he was American representative on the economic com- 
mittee of the League of Nations. 

During the period under review the College received large 
gifts for endowment from its living alumni and friends. The 
most unusual were the gifts for the Joseph B. Eastman Foun- 
dation. Joseph B. Eastman (1882-1944) and I entered col- 
lege together and were lifelong friends. Born in Katonah, 
New York, the son of Reverend John H. Eastman of the class 
of 1869, Joe Eastman graduated from Amherst in the class of 
1904. For the following year he was Amherst Fellow at the 
South End House in Boston and for seven years secretary of 
the Public Franchise League in Boston. He was counsel for 
the unions in various wage arbitrations in 1913-1914. In 1915 
he was appointed to the Public Service Commission of Mas- 
sachusetts. In 1919 he was appointed to the Interstate Com- 
merce Commission by President Wilson and continued as a 
member of the Commission until his death. He was Federal 
Coordinator of Transportation under the Emergency Rail- 
way Transportation Act from 1933 to 1936, and during 
World War II he was Diiector of the Office of Defense 
Transportation for the country. He died in office in March 
1944. On June 4, 1945 the Medal of Merit was awarded post- 
humously to him, his sister Elizabeth receiving the award. 
This was only the tenth Medal of Merit awarded to a civilian 
since the foundation of the country. He had served four 
years as an alumni trustee of the College. 

Soon after his death, the College received from some of 
his friends a letter proposing that a fund be established to be 
called the Joseph B. Eastman Foundation. They suggested 
that the Trustees of the College hold and administer the 
fund because Eastman had received his education at Am- 
herst and was serving as a trustee at the time of his death. 
The prime mover in the proposal of the Foundation was Fay- 


ette B. Dow of the class of 1904, and the letter was signed, in 
addition, by Gilbert Montague, of the New York Bar, a grad- 
uate of Harvard, and by Frank Wright, a former railroad 
man who had been closely associated with Eastman in his 
government work. Dow has worked tirelessly for the Foun- 
dation. With the exception of gifts from Eastman's personal 
friends in the alumni body, the fund thus far has been 
contributed by non-Amherst sources. On July 1, 1948 the 
Joseph B. Eastman Foundation had capital assets of $192,- 
352.70, exclusive of the Research Fund of $24,130.19. 

In 1945 the College received a gift of $25,000 from Mr. and 
Mrs. Frank M. Lay of Kewanee, Illinois, to establish a fel- 
lowship in memory of their son, Edward P. Lay, of the class 
of 1922. The fellowship is for graduate work in the field of 
music or of dramatic arts. Frank Lay graduated from the 
College in the class of 1893 and has spent his life in business 
in Kewanee, Illinois, where he has also been active in civic 
and educational matters. He has always been generous to 
his alma mater. His son Edward, after finishing his college 
course, devoted his life to singing and made a marked 
success in the professional field. His health gave way 
while he was still a young man, and he died in Santa Fe in 

No college has had a more generous alumnus, year in and 
year out, than Charles E. Merrill of the class of 1908. Born 
in Green Cove Springs, Florida, and raised in West Palm 
Beach, the son of a country physician, Merrill entered Am- 
herst in 1904 and remained for two years. His ambition was 
to become a lawyer. But he was severely handicapped by the 
lack of adequate money, and at the end of two years trans- 
ferred to the University of Michigan, where his law course 
could begin at the conclusion of his junior year in the col- 
lege. He found it impossible to earn enough money to sup- 
port himself at Michigan and resigned at the end of a year 
and went to work. For four years he worked for George H, 
Burr & Co. of New York, dealers in commercial paper. In 
1914 he resigned and began business for himself under the 
name of Charles E. Merrill Company. The following year he 

formed a partnership with Edmund C. Lynch under the name 
of Merrill Lynch & Company, bankers. Today Merrill heads 
the firm of Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Beane, the larg- 
est banking and brokerage firm in the world, doing about ten 
per cent of all business done on the New York Stock Ex- 
change. He has received the honorary degree of Master of 
Arts and later of Doctor of Laws from his alma mater, as well 
as honorary degrees from other institutions. Each year he 
makes a generous gift to the College. In the years 1936 to 
1946, inclusive, Merrill made thirty-two gifts to the College 
for various pui-poses outside of his gifts to the Alumni Fund, 
and the total of these gifts was over $150,000. In 1946 he and 
his partners ( he has some eighty ) gave over a million dollars 
to found the Merrill Foundation for the Advancement of Fi- 
nancial Knowledge, with the provision that the trustees 
should expend the principal and income of the fund within 
twelve years. Four of the eight trustees are graduates of Am- 
herst: Merrill, '08, Winthrop H. Smith, 16, John J. McCloy, 
'16, and myself. The Foundation has recently made a sub- 
vention of $5,000 to Amherst for a study of inflation by Pro- 
fessor Lester Chandler of the faculty. Merrill's son James 
graduated from the College, summa cum laude, in 1947. 

In the winter of 1943, when I was in Boston with President 
Baxter of Williams College, he told me that just before 
Christmas in 1942 he had received a letter from an Amherst 
alumnus saying in effect that he had bet on the recent Am- 
herst-Williams game with a Williams alumnus and asked 
him odds, which were given. Amherst, it will be recalled, 
won the game by two touchdowns, although Williams was 
the favorite before the game. The Amherst alumnus enclosed 
with his letter a check to Williams College in the amount of 
$500 to be used by the president for some deserving student 
in need. I told President Baxter that there was only one 
alumnus who could have sent that letter, and that it was 
Charles E. Merrill of 1908. It was. The same Christmas, I told 
Baxter, I had received from Merrill a check for $5,000. I 
knew that Merrill gave regularly to other colleges as well as 
to Amherst. 


Perhaps the most interestmg story of a gift to the College 
during my term as president occurred in the spring of 1935. 
One afternoon James N. Worcester of the class of 1906 
called at my office. Worcester was a nephew of James 
Turner. He had studied medicine at Columbia University 
and become a surgeon of distinction. In 1932 he had been 
forced to retire because of a serious brain injury suflFered 
when he was beaten up by a thug on his way home across 
Central Park in New York City. He told me this story. He 
had just returned from a holiday in England and still had in 
his wallet a number of $100 bills which he had not used 
abroad. On his return, he decided to drive to Amherst. On 
reaching Northampton, he stopped at a barber shop for a 
shave. When the barber had completed his work, Worcester 
found that he had spent on the trip all his small bills and 
change, and he was forced to offer the barber a $100 bill. 
The barber excused himself to go out and have the bill 
changed. He returned shortly with two policemen, who 
promptly placed Dr. Worcester under arrest and locked him 
up. They refused to tell him on what charge he was arrested. 
And they refused his request that he or they communicate 
either with Judge Henry Field of Northampton or with me 
at Amherst. After several hours, during which he was held 
incommunicado, the chief of police came to his cell and apol- 
ogized and said a serious mistake had been made. His change 
was returned to him and he was allowed to leave. He came at 
once to my office and said he was so happy to be out of jail 
and in Amherst that he would like to make a gift to the 
College in celebration. He asked me what the College 
wanted at the moment. I countered by asking him how large 
a gift he contemplated making. He replied that his checking 
account could stand a check for $5,000. I told him of the 
Hitchcock Memorabilia Room and that we had no money for 
operating purposes. And he then drew his check to the Col- 
lege for $5,000 for this purpose, with the condition that the 
gift should be anonymous. The next winter Mrs. King and I 
saw him on his boat in Palm Beach, a few weeks before his 
death. No harm can now be done by breaching his anonymity 

and telling this extraordinary story of his experience in 

We have considered the gifts and bequests the College re- 
ceives for endovi^ment. We have seen that some are given to 
the College with the restriction that the principal shall be 
kept intact and that the College shall use only the income. 
Some are unrestricted but are added by the Board to the en- 
dowment; some we classify as unrestricted but treat as en- 
dowment. In addition, the College receives a very large num- 
ber of gifts which are to be used for the current expenditures 
of the College from year to year. Most, but not all of these, 
are gifts from individual alumni through the Alumni Fund. 
We have already followed the history of the Alumni Fund 
from its beginnmg in 1906 to 1923 when it was begun again 
after the interruption made for the Centennial Gift. From 
1923, the alumni made an annual gift to the College each 
year up to and including 1946. The disposition of the gift is 
made each year by joint action of the Executive Committee 
of the Alumni Council and the Trustees of the College. In 
most years from 1923 to 1946 the Fund was devoted to schol- 
arship purposes; in one year it was devoted to the War Me- 
morial; and in one or two years to the general purposes of 
the College. This alumni gift is, in a sense, a living endow- 
ment for the College. For example, an annual gift from the 
alumni of $40,000 is equivalent to the income on an endow- 
ment of $1,000,000 at 4%. If the College could count on re- 
ceiving each year from its alumni a gift of $80,000, it would 
be as well off as if it had an additional $2,000,000 in its port- 
folio. For, as I have pointed out before, the Alumni Council 
has its own endowment and all the expenses of the Council 
are carried by the income from its endowment, so that every 
gift from alumni to the annual Alumni Fund goes intact to 
the College. 

The gifts of our alumni to the College through the Alumni 
Fund have been uncommonly generous. From 1906 until the 
Centennial Gift in 1921, the alumni gave $139,441 to the 
Alumni Fund. In the Centennial Gift, 4,044 alumni and 
friends of the College gave $3,012,069.26. From 1923 to 1946, 


both inclusive, gifts to the Akimni Fund amounted to a total 
of $1,087,896. This total was made up of 64,341 separate 
gifts. In 1923, for example, there were 1,043 gifts, making a 
total of $14,983. In 1946 there were 3,504 separate gifts, mak- 
ing a total of $101,621. In 1947 and 1948 the College raised 
the Second Century Fund. There were 4,741 gifts, and the 
total amount raised was $1,018,907. In 1949 the Alumni 
Fund was resumed, and there were 3,653 gifts, making a to- 
tal of $93,373. Here is the story in summary: 

Donors Amounts 

Alumni Fund 

1906 to 1920 

$ 139,441 

Centennial Gift 



Alumni Fund 

1923 to 1946 



Second Century Fund 

1947 and 1948 



Alumni Fund 







If we exclude the figures for the Alumni Fund from 1906 to 
1920, when it was in its experimental stage, we have nearly 
77,000 gifts in a quarter of a century, amounting to over 
$5,000,000 over and above the gifts that have come from 
other sources, from bequests, for the Alumni Gymnasium, 
for other specific projects of plant or endowment. For its first 
hundred years, the College made no call on its alumni as a 
whole for financial support. Its gifts came from a few wealthy 
alumni and friends of the College. In the last quarter cen- 
tury there were nearly 77,000 gifts from the alumni body 
through the Alumni Fund, the Centennial Gift, and the Sec- 
ond Century Fund. 

We have followed the growth of the endowment of the 
College from 1821, when the College had only the Charity 
Fund with a nominal value of fifty thousand dollars re- 
stricted for use for scholarships, to 1946, when the Treasur- 
er's Report showed a college endowment of over twelve mil- 
lion dollars, a Folger endowment of nearly seven million 

dollars, making a total portfolio of nearly twenty million dol- 
lars. We have seen that the loss of the earlier records of the 
College by fire makes impossible the application of objective 
tests to determine how well the trustees have managed the 
endowment entrusted to their care. We have noted that in 
1932 the college accounts were completely reorganized by 
our auditors. We can now apply certain objective tests to de- 
termine how well the trustees, and particularly the Finance 
Committee, handled the investment policy of the College in 
the years from 1932 to 1946, during my term as president. 

No portfolio of any size can safely remain static. Some in- 
vestments are deteriorating in value, others are increasing in 
value. The College is not engaged in speculation, but the Fi- 
nance Committee is exercising a constant vigilance to enable 
it to withdraw from investments that seem to it to be less 
sound than when made and to reinvest in securities that 
seem stronger. This means that the College is constantly sell- 
ing certain securities and buying others. In the fifteen-year 
period from 1933 to 1948, for example, the College sold a to- 
tal of nearly eleven million dollars of securities from the Fol- 
ger Fund and a total of over twenty million dollars of securi- 
ties from all other funds. This means a total of sales in fifteen 
years of thirty-one million dollars, or an average sale of two 
million dollars each year. 

If a sale is made at more than the security cost the Col- 
lege, that is, at more than book value, a gain is made; if a sale 
is made at less than book value, a loss is made. These gains 
and losses are not treated as income or expense, but are trans- 
ferred to a separate account. The Folger Fund, for example, 
in the fifteen-year period has shown gains of $1,190,220 and 
losses of $139,524, or a net gain of over a million dollars. The 
gain on the college funds has been $1,530,874, the loss $820,- 
623, with a net gain of over seven hundred thousand dollars. 
These net gains belong in theory to each separate endow- 
ment fund, large or small. They show on the Treasurer's Re- 
port under the book value of the endowment. 

The Treasurer's Report each year shows the book value of 
the endowments. But each yeai the auditor makes a calcula- 


tion of the market value. On June 30, 1946, the market value 
of all of the portfolio exceeded the book value by $4,741,592. 
On June 30, 1948, the market value exceeded the book value 
by $3,253,399. 

These figures are significant. They mean, for example, that 
a gift of $1,000 to the college endowment in 1932 would in 
1948 be represented by securities having a market value of 
$1,160 plus a share in the accumulated gain and loss account 
of $80, or a total of $1,240. They mean, therefore, that every 
$1,000 in the endowment in 1933 has prospered in the same 
way. And they mean that, in addition, the College has had 
each year, to spend for current purposes, an income from 
each $1,000 of about $41.50, or 4.15%. These figures are based 
on calculations made by the treasurer's office for the entire 
portfolio. The figures for the Folger Fund and for the Con- 
solidated Fund would vary slightly, plus or minus. 


Chapter Ten 

The history of the College for the century and a quarter 
since its foundation parallels the most interesting period in 
the history of the country. When the College was founded, 
the United States was a small agricultural economy stretch- 
ing along the eastern seaboard. There were no railways. 
Transportation was by water or by inadequate post roads. 
The cities and towns on the New England seaboard had ac- 
quired some wealth from shipping and commerce. But there 
was no large-scale manufacturing either in New England or 
elsewhere in the country. Water power had not been eflFec- 
tively harnessed. Barbour's description of the town of Am- 
herst and its neighbors lists the only significant manufac- 
tures as " hats made of straw." 

It is interesting to inquire where the wealth came from 
which contributed from decade to decade to the growth of 
the endowment of the College. We have seen that the earli- 
est large gifts to the College's endowment came from Samuel 
Williston, whose fortune was made in the manufacture of 
cloth covered buttons in Easthampton. The Sears fortune in 
Boston came from shipping and commerce, and only a small 
amount reached Amherst College in the Sears Fund. Samuel 
Hitchcock made his start in merchandising, and built up his 
fortune by investments in the growing country. Dr. Walker 
made his start in his profession and then built up his savings 
by shrewd investments. 

An examination of all the substantial gifts received by the 
College shows that by far the largest part of the endowment 

[ 193 ] 

of the College came from the oil industry, and came from 
one group of companies in the industry, the Standard Oil 
group. The Folger Fund, including the building and the col- 
lections, amounts to some ten million and a half, the three 
Folger professorships to another half million. All of the Pratt 
gifts, the Babbott gifts, the Harkness professorship, the $350,- 
000 gift of the General Education Board in 1921, and the 
subventions from the Rockefeller Foundation for ten years 
for work in Biology came from fortunes made in Standard 
Oil. Altogether, these add up to nearly fifteen million dol- 
lars, or about half of the present total resources of the Col- 
lege. The large gifts of D. Willis James and Mrs. James, and 
of his son, Arthur Curtiss James, and of the James Founda- 
tion, were made from fortunes accumulated primarily in 
copper and railways. The Billings gift and the Kennedy gift 
came from railways. The Morrow, Schiff, Converse, Henry 
Morgan, and Merrill gifts came primarily from banking. The 
gifts of William H. Moore and his family and of Andrew 
Carnegie came from steel. The gifts of Mr. and Mrs. Mead, 
of Field, Sargent, Valentine, Simpson, Tyler, Kirby came 
from professional activities, in architecture, in law, in medi- 
cine. The Fayerweather gift came from leather, the Plimp- 
ton gifts from publishing books, the Sage gift from railways, 
street railways, and shrewd stock market operations. 

Another interesting comparison involves the gifts that 
have come to the College by will and the gifts that have 
come from living donors. The first wills under which the Col- 
lege was a beneficiary were the will of President Zephaniah 
Swift Moore, who died on June 29, 1823, and the will of 
Adam Johnson of Pelham, who died two months later. The 
Johnson will was contested by the brother of the testator, 
who won in the Probate Court. The College appealed to the 
Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, and in 1828 the 
court upheld the bequest to the College. The amount of 
the bequest was $4,000, which was used to help pay for the 
chapel, and the chapel has given Adam Johnson a permanent 
memorial on the Amherst campus. President Moore in his 
will left his widow some $4,000, with the right to use both 

income and principal as she needed. On lier death some 
thirty-five years later, the College received the Fund, which 
then amounted to some $9,000. One-third of the income, un- 
der the terms of President Moore's will, has been added to 
principal each year since the Fund came to the College, and 
the principal of the Moore Beneficiary Fund now amounts to 
over $33,000. 

As we look back over the long record of gifts which have 
come to the College for endowment and for buildings and 
equipment, we see how large a part of the total has come 
from bequests under wills. And this is not surprising when 
we reflect that men are likely to wish to retain their capital 
in the enterprises in which they are engaged during their ac- 
tive lives. I have made an analysis of all gifts received by the 
College from July 1, 1933, to June 30, 1946; gifts for endow- 
ment, gifts for plant, and gifts for current purposes. Total 
gifts for this period were about $6,150,000. Of this total, 
some $4,380,000, or more than 70%, came under wills, or 
trusts that took effect at the death of the donor. I have in- 
cluded in this total the gifts received by the College from 
the James Foundation, Inc., in view of the terms of the 
James will. In the gifts received during the same period from 
living donors, amounting to some million and three-quarters, 
or 28% of the total, I have included gifts from foundations, 
such as the Rockefeller Foundation and the Carnegie Cor- 
poration, subventions for research projects from Research 
Corporation and others, annual gifts to the Alumni Fund, 
etc. The compensation received by the College from the Fol- 
ger Memorial Fund is not included in either category, though 
it might well be added to the total of gifts coming to the Col- 
lege under testamentary provisions of a donor. 

Some of the benefactors of the College have made large 
gifts during their lives as well as generous bequests in their 
wills. In this group would be included Samuel Williston, 
William J. Walker, Henry Winkley, D. Willis James, Arthur 
Curtiss James, Dwight W. Morrow, Arthur Milliken, James 
Turner, Edmund C. Converse. 

Some have made most generous bequests who gave little, 


or perhaps nothing, to the College during their lifetime. In 
this group would be included Daniel Fayerweather, Mrs. 
Sage, Henry T. Morgan, John S. Kennedy, E. M. Currier, 
Amos R. Eno, John Davenport, Samuel Valentine, William A. 
Sargent, William R. Mead, Henry P. Field, Henry C. Folger, 
Frank G. Nelson, and William Nelson Cromwell. 

And some who were generous donors while they lived 
made no bequests to the College in their wills. Mrs. Folger, 
for example, who had given over three million to the Folger 
Memorial Fund during the latter part of her life, had little 
left to bequeath in her will. 

That the College is continuing in the postwar years to re- 
ceive generous support from its friends is indicated by the 
Treasurer's Report for the year ending June 30, 1949. The to- 
tal of gifts and grants for the twelve months preceding 
amounted to almost $1,300,000. The largest item was the Val- 
entine bequest of $465,618. Samuel H. Valentine graduated 
from the College in the class of 1867. For the next two years 
he studied law at Columbia Law School. For nearly forty 
years he practiced his profession in New York City, special- 
izing in admiralty law. From 1906 until his death in 1916, he 
managed his investments. The College received under his 
will a bequest of $5,000 for the beautification of the campus. 
His wife survived him for some twenty years. Under her will, 
after a life estate to her sister which fell in in 1948, the Col- 
lege received one-sixth of the residuary estate. In 1941 the 
College anticipated the bequest by erecting Valentine Hall 
and naming it after Mr. and Mrs. Valentine. The cost of the 
building and equipment was slightly under $300,000, which 
the College took from unrestricted funds and replaced in 
1948, when the Valentine bequest was finally received. 

The second largest gift in the year 1948-49 was the be- 
quest under the will of William Nelson Cromwell of New 
York. Mr. Cromwell, a leader for two generations of the New 
York Bar, was not a graduate of Amherst, but three of his 
partners — Harlan F. Stone, '94, Eustace Seligman, '10, and 
Oliver B. Merrill, '25 — were graduates, and two of these were 
trustees of the College. During the year, the College received 

$205,400 on account of the bequest, and the Board estab- 
Hshed the WilUam Nelson Cromwell Chair of Jurisprudence. 

The third important bequest received during the year was 
$183,735 under the will of Frank G. Nelson of the class of 
1873. Nelson was a classmate and a roommate of my father 
in college. I had known him since I was a boy, as he was a 
frequent guest at our home. After graduating from college, 
he taught school for six years, was an accountant for several 
corporations, and in 1887 entered the employ of the Ameri- 
can Telephone & Telegraph Company, where he became 
statistician and assistant treasurer. He remained with the 
telephone company until his retirement in 1920, at the age of 
sixty-eight. His avocation was fishing, and in early life he 
took his vacation each year on a different stream or lake and 
paid the expenses of the trip by articles for the magazines 
devoted to this sport. In 1935, at the age of eighty-three, he 
married for a second time. Nelson was very close-mouthed 
about his personal affairs, but he discussed his finances 
with me and his proposals for including the College in his 

His original wish was to provide a building suitable for a 
faculty club and for alumni who visited Amherst. At about 
this time the College was making over the Sidney White 
homestead on South Pleasant Street for a faculty clubhouse, 
and I took Nelson down to show him what we were doing. 
He asked me if any of the faculty played billiards. I repHed 
that the Faculty Club owned a pool table and that pool was 
very popular with the professors in the late afternoon. Nel- 
son said he regarded pool as a debased game and he would 
do nothing to encourage it, but he would like to see the fac- 
ulty playing billiards. At my suggestion, he presented the 
Faculty Club with a new billiard table, and the game 
promptly became more popular than pool. And Nelson then 
gave the Club a second billiard table. Once a year he visited 
the Club with a teacher of Monson Academy who was a 
neighbor of his, and played a game of billiards against a fac- 
ulty team, the senior member of which was some fifteen 
years Nelson's junior in age. And several times each year, 

[ 197 ] 

Mrs. King and I would visit Nelson either in his Monson 
home or at his hotel in Florida. He survived his second wife 
and all his classmates, and died alone at home at the age of 
ninety-five. About half of his estate came to the College un- 
der the provisions of his will, a part for the endowment of the 
Faculty Club, and the remainder for the Alumni Endow- 
ment Fund. 

In addition to these three large bequests, the College re- 
ceived in the year 1948-49 some $115,498 toward the Sec- 
ond Century Fund, and other gifts to endowment of $68,582. 
For current expenses the College received during the same 
year gifts and grants of $246,823, including $66,948 in the 
Alumni Fund. 

The total of gifts, grants, and bequests received during the 
year was $1,298,074. 

We have examined with some care the performance of the 
nine treasurers of the College. We have seen the continuing 
work of the Finance Committee, and particularly the vital 
part played by the successive chairmen of the Finance Com- 
mittee in the conservation of the College's endowment. What 
of the eleven presidents of the College? What influence have 
the presidents of Amherst had on the development of the 
College's endowment? 

Zephaniah Swift Moore lived too short a time to affect ma- 
terially the college finances. Heman Humphrey served as 
president for twenty-two years. These years were a continu- 
ing struggle to pay the college debts. They ended in failure 
and Humphrey resigned his ofiBce as a result. Humphrey was 
a good man, but he does not appear to have had the quali- 
ties necessary to handle the financial problems of the young 
and struggling institution. Hitchcock served as president 
only nine years, but he saved the College from extinction, as 
we have seen. He established the financial credit of the in- 
stitution, he gave people confidence that the College was a 
sound, going concern, and gifts to endowment resulted. For 
the first time the college budget was balanced and kept in 
balance, for the first time the College was in a position to use 
the gifts it received to establish permanent funds instead of 


using them to pay debts. Hitchcock was our first great presi- 

Steams served as president for twenty-two years. He per- 
sonally secured some large gifts for the College, including 
the gifts from Dr. Walker. The total gifts to the College dur- 
ing his term are given by Tyler as about three-quarters of a 
million dollars. This was a very large amount for that time in 
the College's history. The College's finances during most of 
Stearns' term of oflBce were in the hands of Edward Dickin- 
son, an able treasurer. But Stearns grew old in oflBce, and 
when the crisis of 1873 struck, Stearns did not have the nec- 
essary qualities to keep his budget in balance. As a result, the 
Finance Committee in its report of 1875 transferred some of 
Stearns' duties to the new treasurer. Steams was too gentle 
and kindly to meet the problems arising from the financial 
crisis. He did not have the firmness and the drive of Hitch- 
cock. Stearns made many friends for the College; he appar- 
ently had an imusual capacity for friendship. Hitchcock was 
more angular, more blunt and outspoken, but he was a better 
skipper in a time of crisis. 

Seelye was a man of a different type from either Steams 
or Hitchcock. He was the first president of Amherst who was 
a man of the great world. He had served with distinction in 
the Congress, and might have had a distinguished political 
career if he had not returned to academic life. He had trav- 
eled around the world, and met the leaders in other coun- 
tries. In the fourteen years he held the office of president, 
the gifts to the College, according to Tyler, amounted to 
more than eight hundred thousand dollars. There was no 
Plimpton on the Amherst Board in those days; the president 
had to be the spearhead in raising money. And Seelye was 
obviously successful in this, as he was in administering the 
College. We have seen that a small volume of his lectures 
stimulated Mrs. Stone to give some seventy-five thousand 
dollars to the endowment. D. Willis James gave two funds of 
one hundred thousand dollars each, out of respect for Seelye. 
Chester Chapin gave a fund of fifty thousand dollars out of 
similar respect. This record is unique in the history of the 


College before or since. The gifts during Stearns' administra- 
tion of twenty-two years averaged some thirty-five thousand 
dollars a year; the gifts during Seelye's administration aver- 
aged some sixty thousand a year. 

Seelye was succeeded by Gates, who served actively for 
eight years, when he was forced by the Board to tender his 
resignation. The gifts to the College during his term 
amounted to about four hundred and fifty thousand dollars. 
Some of them were made from affection and respect for Old 
Doc; this was the case in the gifts of the Pratt brothers. One, 
of one hundred thousand dollars, was made specifically out 
of respect for Seelye. The Fayerweather legacy, part of 
which was paid during Gates' term, was due, as we have 
seen, to the advice of Dr. Roswell Dwight Hitchcock, an 
alumnus. I find no substantial gifts to the College during this 
period which can be credited to the president. 

Harris was the seventh president and served for twelve 
years. He failed to keep his budget balanced for nine of 
these years. The total net deficit from operations during his 
term was nearly fifty thousand dollars. The gifts to the Col- 
lege during the Harris administration amounted to nearly a 
million dollars, or an average of some eighty thousand dol- 
lars a year. Harris was a man of the world; he was urbane, 
charming, and humorous. He made friends easily, and he 
made few enemies. Meanwhile, Plimpton had become presi- 
dent of the Board and had taken the leading part in building 
up the College's endowment. A large part of the gifts to Am- 
herst during this period are to be credited to Old Doc Hitch- 
cock or to Plimpton. 

In 1912 Alexander Meiklejohn became president and 
served for eleven years. He was uninterested in the budget, 
as we have seen, and, as a result, the College operated at a 
deficit for ten of his twelve years. The total accumulated net 
deficit during the Meiklejohn term was over three hundred 
thousand dollars. The Centennial Gift of three million dol- 
lars was raised during Mr. Meiklejohn's absence in Europe 
and without the slightest assistance from him. Total gifts to 
the College during Mr. Meiklejohn's term outside of the Cen- 


tennial Gift amounted to some three million dollars. For most 
of these gifts the president had no responsibility. Some of 
them were made in spite of the critical attitude of the donor 
toward the president. The bequest of Mrs. Sage, which came 
during this administration, had no relation to the president. 
On the other hand, several generous gifts to the College dur- 
ing this period were made by donors who were devoted to 
the president and were his strong supporters. Mr. Meikle- 
john had made it a condition of his acceptance of the office 
that he should not be expected to raise money for the Col- 
lege, and this condition had been accepted by the Board. Mr. 
Plimpton was at this time in the full stride of his money- 
raising activities. A careful analysis of the large gifts of this 
period leads me to the conclusion that the gifts made be- 
cause of friendship or admiration for the president, the gifts, 
in other words, which should be credited to the president, 
amounted in total to less than the deficit which his manage- 
ment of the budget resulted in. And there is ample evidence 
that certain prospective donors stimulated by Mr. Plimpton 
decided not to make gifts to the College after talking with 
the president and learning his views. 

George D. Olds succeeded Meiklejohn as president. He 
was perhaps the most beloved president that Amherst had 
had. He had the respect and affection of all of the alumni. 
Nine years before he became president, a generous alumnus 
had given the College a fund of a hundred thousand dollars 
to found a professorship of economics, and had named it the 
George D. Olds professorship, although Olds was a profes- 
sor of mathematics. Olds managed the budget well. He was 
seventy years old when he assumed the presidency, and he 
made it a condition that he should not be expected to raise 
money. But the gifts to the College during his administra- 
tion amounted to over six hundred thousand dollars, and 
were at the average rate of one hundred and fifty thousand 
dollars a year. Most of these gifts were stimulated by Plimp- 
ton, but friends of the College were happy to give to an in- 
stitution headed by Olds. 

Stanley Pease succeeded Olds, and he too made it a con- 


dition that he should not be expected to stimulate gifts to 
the College, Mr. Pease managed his budget with care and 
foresight. During his five years in office, the operations 
showed a surplus four years, and the net accumulated sur- 
plus of his term was over sixty thousand dollars. During his 
term the College received some very large gifts. The total 
was about two million and a half dollars. And during his 
term Mr. Folger died, and the Folger Fund came to the Trus- 
tees. Most of these gifts were not due in any way to Mr. 
Pease; most of them were stimulated by Plimpton or Allis. 
Mr. Pease devoted his attention to the academic administra- 
tion of Amherst and to the management of the budget. He 
was a conscientious administrator, and the college finances 

During the fourteen years that I occupied the president's 
office, I watched the budget with the greatest care. Our op- 
erations showed a surplus of income over expenditure dur- 
ing thirteen of these years. I came into office in the midst of 
the depression, and the latter years of my term were war 
years. We seemed to be living in times of continuing crisis. 
My first year was the most difficult from the point of view of 
the budget. The budget had been made up by my predeces- 
sor, Mr. Pease, and had been carefully checked by me in my 
capacity as chairman of the Executive Committee of the 
Board. It showed a small budgetary surplus. In the middle of 
my first year, our income was suddenly cut fifty thousand 
dollars by the reduction in compensation from the Folger 
Fund. My faculty colleagues gave me the most wholehearted 
support in saving every cent it was possible for them to save. 
We closed the year with a surplus of one thousand dollars. 
During my term we were able to build up a working capital 
fund and an income reserve fund, both out of surplus in- 
come. These two funds together amounted on June 30, 1946, 
when I retired, to a total of over six hundred thousand 

When I accepted the office of president, I did not ask the 
Board to relieve me of responsibility for stimulating gifts to 
the College. Mr. Plimpton told me, at the time, that he had 

been raising money for Amherst for some forty years, and 
that he wished to be reHeved of this burden. I asked him 
who was to take his place in this enterprise, and he said it 
was obvious that it was my opportunity. 

During my term I kept the begging bowl polished, and 
whenever I left Amherst, I took it with me. The alumni were 
most generous in support of their alma mater, both in gifts 
from the living and in provisions in their wills in behalf of 
the College. The treasurer's office advises me that during my 
term gifts to endowment amounted to $4,709,603, gifts to 
plant to $565,764, and gifts for current purposes to $747,030. 
The total is therefore $6,022,397. 

A college is a society of scholars and a group of students. 
The scholars devote their lives to teaching and to study; the 
students spend four years in the classrooms, and then pass 
into the body of the alumni. The work of the College goes on 
with generation after generation of young undergraduates 
who in turn become alumni. Amherst has been extraordi- 
narily fortunate to have in every generation a few great 
teachers and a large number of good teachers; these we re- 
member with gratitude and affection throughout our lives. 
But behind the teachers and the students, and supporting 
their work, are the trustees; most of them are laymen; for 
three-quarters of a century most of them have been alumni. 
And besides the trustees, there are the generous men and 
women who have given to the College with great liberality 
according to their means, and who have made possible the 
present plant and the present endowment which support the 
College of today and of tomorrow. A handful of them have 
had their names attached to buildings on the campus, begin- 
ning with Adam Johnson, the Pelham farmer with a wooden 
leg. The names of a few others appear each year in the cata- 
logue attached to a named professorship or fellowship or 
prize. But most of them are, and must always be, anonymous 
except as they are recorded in the Gift Book in the treasurer's 
office. The undergraduates spend four years in college and 
know nothing of the work of the trustees; I do not recall that 
during my undergraduate course I ever saw a trustee, or was 


curious enough to inquire what the functions of the trustees 
were. And most undergraduates know nothing about the 
men and women who have been benefactors of the College. 

Amherst has been particularly fortunate in that in each 
generation it has had able and devoted men on its Finance 
Committee and the earlier Prudential Committee, who have 
safeguarded the investments of the College so that its en- 
dowment might go on generation after generation in support 
of the enterprise of education. We have seen who have been 
the leaders of the Finance Committee: Henry Edwards, 
G. Henry Whitcomb, John W. Simpson, Dwight W. Mor- 
row, Robert W. Maynard, and George E. Pierce. These men 
have carried a heavier responsibility and in every case, as 
far as I can find, have done more hard work for the College 
than theii- contemporaries on the Board. They had to, be- 
cause they knew how much depended on their action. 

We who are the college of today — the faculty, the under- 
graduates, the trustees, and the alumni — we are all deeply in 
their debt. Their work made possible our own education at 
Amherst, if we are Amherst men. Their work made possible 
the present plant and the present educational facilities — the 
courses, the laboratories, the libraries, the playing fields, the 
dormitories and the campus, and the present group of teach- 
ers who comprise the faculty of today. They did their work 
well, as we have seen, and they did it without hope of re- 
ward except the satisfaction of work well done, for there 
was, and is, no other reward for the service they rendered. 

And we have seen the work of the treasurers of the Col- 
lege: John Leland, Edward Dickinson, William Austin Dick- 
inson, George Henry Whitcomb, Joseph W. Fairbanks, Wal- 
ter M. Howland, Harry W. Kidder, Charles A. Andrews, and 
Paul D. Weathers. John Leland handled debts; Paul D. 
Weathers manages, under the Finance Committee, a port- 
folio of over twenty million dollars, and a budget of a mil- 
lion and a half dollars each year. 

Amherst College, like every other college in the land, faces 
today an uncertain future. But anyone familiar with her his- 
tory can face it with confidence. The College was founded in 

the difficult days following the Napoleonic wars in Europe 
and the War of 1812 in this country. It faced the only des- 
perate crisis in its affairs some twenty-five years after it 
opened its doors. It was saved from bankruptcy and extinc- 
tion by a president of indomitable faith, of great courage, 
and of resourcefulness, by two wealthy men who had con- 
fidence in its mission, and with the assistance of three rela- 
tively small grants from the government of the Common- 
wealth. It survived the Civil War, the crisis of 1873, of 1893, 
of 1907, two World Wars, the world-wide depression of 1929 
to 1937. It weathered two internal crises, one in the 1890's 
and one in 1923. It is today stronger in plant, in financial re- 
sources, in reputation, and in the devotion and support of its 
alumni than ever before in its history. With a strong and 
united faculty, led by an able president, with a strong Board 
of Trustees, and with more than eight thousand alumni who 
are giving generously to its support every year, it cannot fail. 

It is true, of course, that a large part of the endowment of 
the College and a large part of the college plant we owe to 
the gifts and bequests of wealthy men and women. And it is 
also true that in our present social structure and with exist- 
ing tax laws it is going to be difficult for men to acquire sub- 
stantial fortunes in the future from which large gifts and be- 
quests can be made to educational institutions like Amherst. 
But there is another side to this picture which is often over- 
looked. Let me give an example. In 1918 the College raised 
an endowment fund for teachers' salaries of $653,411. There 
were seventeen donors. The largest gift was $336,411; the av- 
erage gift was $38,000. When one of these generous donors 
died, if one of these donors became for any reason disaf- 
fected, it was a matter of the most serious moment for the 
College. In the thirty years which have elapsed since this 
gfft, all of the donors have died. 

In 1946-1948 the College raised something over a million 
dollars for endowment for teachers' salaries. This was the 
Second Century Fund. There was no gift of over $50,000, 
but there were 4,741 donors. The average gift was about 
$210. There is strength in numbers. And as the donors to the 


Second Century Fund pass on from year to year, their places 
are taken by younger alumni in increasing numbers, who 
are devoted to their alma mater and who give to her in ac- 
cord with their means. They give, in general, from income 
and not from accumulated capital. But the aggregate of their 
gifts from year to year is very large, as we have seen. They 
are the bulwark of the College for the future. 

The confidence which the founders expressed in Amherst's 
mission and in its future has been justified manyfold by its 
contributions to the community and to the entei-prise of edu- 
cation. The social structure in which it is embedded has 
changed almost beyond recognition in the century and a 
quarter of its life, and the College has changed to meet the 
new demands on its resources made by society. While its 
trustees and its faculty grow old and retire, the College re- 
mains young, with the vigor and adaptability of youth. The 
more carefully one studies its history, the more one realizes 
its fundamental strength, and the more confidence one has 
in its future. 



I gratefully acknowledge the assistance given me in the prep- 
aration of this volume by my friends, Walter F. Willcox, '84, 
John E. Oldham, '88, Marcus A. Rhodes, '03, Ernest M. Whit- 
comb, '04, Richard B. Scandrett, '11, and Richardson Pratt, '15; by 
L. A. Keyes, vice-president of J. P. Morgan & Company; by Fred 
Hawley, president, and Robert S. Morgan, vice-president, of the 
Amherst Savings Bank. President Charles W. Cole, Professors 
Otto Manthey-Zorn and George R. Taylor of the faculty, and 
George E. Pierce, '09, Henry S. Kingman, '15, and Robert W. 
Maynard, '02, of the Finance Committee of the Board of Trustees 
have been generous in reading the manuscript and giving me the 
benefit of their criticism. 

Paul D. Weathers, Treasurer, has been of assistance in many 
ways, has read the manuscript, and has discussed with me many 
of the questions which have arisen. Rena M. Durkan, secretary to 
the president throughout my term of office and now curator of 
the Hitchcock Memorial Room, has been tireless in exploring the 
archives in her keeping for relevant material, has typed the man- 
uscript, read the proof, and followed the book throughout its 
preparation. The staff of the Boston Athenaeum, with their un- 
failing courtesy, have placed the facilities of the Athenaeum at 
my disposal. 

And my wife has shared with me all the problems which have 
arisen during the study, has read the manuscript, and has pro- 
vided me at all times with ideal conditions for carrying on my 

To the Trustees of the College I am indebted for their willing- 
ness to sponsor the publication of this study. They of course are 
in no way responsible for the opinions I express or for the accu- 
racy of the study. 



The Hitchcock Memorial Room in Morgan Hall is the reposi- 
tory of the archives of the College. The collection includes all of 
the extant records of the Charity Fund, files of the catalogues of 
the College, The Amherst Student, The Amherst Graduates 
Quarterly, the Olio, the early literary magazines, reports of pres- 
idents, treasurers, auditors, and an immense mass of correspond- 
ence. The vaults of the treasurer contain all the extant books of 
account of the College. The original minutes of the Board of 
Trustees are in the vaults of the ti-easurer's office, and the Hitch- 
cock Room contains complete typescript copies of the minutes. 
The minutes from 1825 to 1923 have been typed, bound, and in- 
dexed, and footnotes have been added. The Hitchcock Room also 
contains bound typescript copies of the minutes of the Execu- 
tive Committee, the Prudential Committee, and the Finance Com- 
mittee, except for the recent minutes of the Finance Committee, 
which are on file in the treasurer's office. 

The best sources of background material are the following: 

Amherst College Biographical Record, 1821-1939 

Amherst College Catalogues 

Barber, John W., Historical Collections, 1848 

Carpenter & Morehouse, History of Amherst, 1896 

Fuess, Claude M., The Story of a New England College, 1935 

Hitchcock, Edward, Reminiscences of Amherst College, 1863 

Tyler, W. S., History of Amherst College, 1873 

Tyler, W. S., History of Amherst College, 1895 

Whicher, George F., This Was a Poet, 1938 

The important source material on which I have relied is the 

Original Records of Charity Fund 
Original Books of Account 
Minutes of Trustees 
Minutes of Prudential Committee 

Minutes of Finance Committee 
Minutes of Executive Committee 

Reports of Presidents 

Reports of Treasurers 

Reports of Auditors 

Reports of Finance Committee, 1875 and 1924 

Report to Finance Committee, 1920, by Oldham, Halligan, and 


Gift Book 

Statement of Assets of College, 1887, in the handwriting of 
President Seelye 

Registry of Deeds, Hampshire County, in Hall of Records, 

Photostatic copies of Ledger Sheets of J. P. Morgan & Co. 

Copies of records from Amherst Savings Bank 

Correspondence of Alexander Bullock, William Austin Dickin- 
son, Henry Edwards, George Grennell, Alpheus Hardy, Edward 
Hitchcock, Henry D. Hyde, Arthur Curtiss James, Rufus Bela 
Kellogg, Harry W. Kidder, Dwight W. Morrow, George A. 
Plimpton, Charles Pratt, Charles M. Pratt, John E. Sanford, 
Julius H. Seelye, John W. Simpson, Hezekiah Wright Strong, 
G. Henry Whitcomb 

I have also examined the following: 

Memorial of the Trustees of Williams College to the Senate and 
House of Representatives, December 24, 1823 

A Statement of the Affairs of the Amherst Institution on the 4th 
of October, 1824. Compiled from evidence exhibited to the 
Committee of Investigation, with affidavits, b-. Pittsfield, De- 
cember 1824 

Report of the Committee Appointed to Inquire into Facts Re- 
lated to Amherst Collegiate Institution, January 8, 1825 

Speech in Support of the Memorial of Harvard, Williams, and 
Amherst Colleges before the Joint Committee on Education of 
the House of Representatives on the 7th of February, 1849, by 
Edward Everett 

Sketches of the Early History of Amherst College, by Heman 
Humphrey. Printed by the College, 1905 


History of the Founding of Amherst College, by Noah Webster, 
reprinted in Amherst Graduates' Quarterly, 1946 
Memoir of David Sears, by Robert C. Winthrop, Massachu- 
setts Historical Society 44 ( Boston Athenaeum ) 
William Henry Willcox, A Sketch by his Children (Cornell 
University Library) 

Memorabilia of Life of Jedidiah Morse, D.D., by Sidney E. 
Morse, 1867 

Records from the Life of S.C.S. Wilder, 1865 
" Our First Men ": A Calendar of Wealth, Fashion and Gentil- 
ity, containing a list of those persons taxed in the City of Bos- 
ton, credibly reported to be worth One Hundred Thousand 
Dollars; with Biographical Notices. Boston, 1846 
Address of Henry Clay Folger at Founders Day of Pratt In- 

From Utopia to Florence, by Alice Eaton McBee, printed in 
Smith College Studies in History, 1947 (Converse Memorial 
Library ) 

The above will be found in the Hitchcock Memorial Room ex- 
cept where otherwise noted. 

I have relied on a number of standard reference works, such as 
The Dictionary of American Biography, National Dictionary of 
Biography, Appleton's Dictionary of Biography, Poor's Manuals, 
Who's Who, Boston Directories, and the complete files of the 
Commercial & Financial Chronicle, which are available in the 
Boston Athenaeum. 

Mistakes in addition will be found in some of the tables in the 
Appendix. The early bookkeepers did not have the advantage of 
mechanical computing machines. 




Auditor's Report - 1822 


SAID BOARD rendered August 28, 1822 

The auditor having attended to the duties of his ofHce respectfully 

That the books and files and vouchers, in the hands of the Fi- 
nancier, relative to the Charity Fund, were found to be kept v^ith 
care, order, & accuraey; & in a manner well calculated to guard 
against accident or mistake. 

It appears upon examination, that the instrument to which the 
several sums were subscribed, which constitute the aforesaid 
Fund bears date May 23rd 1818, and it is provided in & by the 
same instrument, that all sums thereunto subscribed shall be 
voidable, unless the same shall amount to the full sum of Fifty 
thousand dollars, within one year from the aforesaid date. It 
however appears that the sums subscribed between May 23rd, 
1818 & May 12, 1819 (within the year limited) amounted to Fifty 
one thousand seven hundred h- thirty four dollars; and the sums 
subscribed since May 12, 1819 amount to four hundred & sixty 
dollars; making the whole amount of the subscription to the 
Charity Fund Fifty two thousand one hundred ir ninety four 
dollars $52,194.00 

Of this sum seven thousand four hundred & one dol- 
lars & twenty-five cents, have been paid, of which 
sum seven thousand two hundied & thirty three dol- 
lars & thirty three cents have been loaned by the Fi- 
nancier upon security of real estate 7,233.33 


Sixteen thousand & thirty eight dollars are secured 
by notes of the original subscribers $16,038.00 

Fifteen thousand dollars secured by Bond, 15,000.00 

Making the whole amount secured by Mortgage, 
Notes, & Bond 38,271.33 

Four thousand five hundred & fifty four dollars & 

eighty eight cents, subscribed in real estate, has been 

deeded 4,554.88 

Land has since been purchased by the Trustees to 

the amount of twelve hundred & eighty four dollars 

& eighty eight cents 1,284.88 

The Financier has received & is chargeable with in- 
terest paid on the Fund notes & bond three thousand 
two hundred & twenty eight dollars & three cents 3,228.03 

Principal received & not loaned 167.92 

And the Financier has paid for Real estate pur- 1 
chased by the Trustees, which Real estate is consid- |- 396.13 

ered a part of the permanent Fund 

Voted by the Trustees at sundry times, to the Fi- 1 ^ _„_ „„ 
nancier, tor his services j 

Financier's account for expenses, etc. while in the 1 i or* r7 

service of the Board j 

Paid for fencing college lot 70.29 

Paid John Leland, Esq., Treasurer 1,373.75 

Loaned & secured by a joint Note 650.00 

Deduct — due to Seth Nelson & Dudley Phelps & se- 
cured by their mortgage, above the sums paid them 285.00 

Amount rec'd by Financier 3,395.95 

Which leaves a balance due the Financier of two 
hundred & seventy six dollars & eighty nine cents. $ 276.89 

And the Auditor further — Reports 

That he has examined the 
books & vouchers of John Leland, Esq., Treasurer of the Insti- 
tution, from which it appears that of $1373.75 the amount of 


interest on the Fund notes received by him, $150 have been ap- 
propriated by the Trustees for the payment of the tuition of Ben- 
eficiaries in the Academy. The residue $1223.75 has been paid to 
the Officers of the Collegiate Institution & appropriated for the 
support of Beneficiaries in said Institution. 

All which is respectfully submitted 

Lucius Boltwood Auditor 



Auditors Report - 1828 

To the Board of Overseers of the Charity Fund of Amherst College: 

The Auditor of said Board, having examined the Books and securities in hands of the 
Financier relative to the Charity Fund, submits the following detailed report: which shows 
the amount of said Fund; from whom due; the security upon which it rests; the amount 
of Interest paid the past year, and the amount of Interest now due and unpaid — also the 
Appropriation of Principal and Interest paid — 

From whom due 




Whole Int. 

Int. pd. 
last year 

Int. due 
& unpaid 

Calvin Ammerdown 

Sept 6. 1824 




Cephas Blodget 

July 13. 1819 





Elisha Billings 

May 10. 1825 





Enos & Alfred Baker 

Aug. 1. " 




Lucius Boltwood 

May 23. " 




Rodolphus Bardwell 

Ap. 19. 1827 


Joseph W. Bowman 

May 23. 1825 





Caleb Burbank 

Ap. 23. 1826 



Elijah Burbank 

Oct. 1. 1824 




Joab Bartlett 

May 18. 1821 

Note & Mort. 




Gains Bliss 

Sept. 27. 1824 





Elijah Boltwood 

Aug. 12. " 





Moses Bond 

Aug. 7. 1819 





Gains Bliss 

May 3. 1822 





Eben'. Child* 

Feb. 25. 1821 

Note & Mort. 





Samuel Clark 

Aug. 13. 1819 



Eben^ Clark 

May 23. 1825 






Joseph Cowls 

July 14. 1819 



Seth Clark 

May 10. 1825 




Abner Cooley 

July 24. 1819 




Oliver Cooley 

Jany. 23. 1826 




Joseph Cushman 

Aug. 1. " 




Charles Cooley 

Jan. 23. " 




Joshua Crosby 

May 23. 1825 




Church & Russell 

Ap. 9. 1828 


Trustees of Amherst College 

" 1.1826 

Note & Mort. 





Feb. 5. 1827 






Ap.l. " 




" " 1828 


Joseph Carew 

Oct. 1.1824 





Enos & Lucius Dickinson 

Feb. 7. 1827 





Samuel Druce 

Jan. 29. 1821 






Moses Dickinson & others 

Aug. 17. 1824 





Lucinda Dickinson 

July 13. 1819 









Carried Ovi 






Whole Int. 

Int. pd. 
last year 

Int. due 
& unpaid 

Amt. Bro't over. 





Joseph Estabrook 

Sept. 16. 1819 





Jonathan Eastman 

May 23. 1825 




Jacob Edson 

Ap. 1. 1824 

Note & Mort. 



Thomas & George Fox 

Aug. 31. 1825 

" & " 





EUsha Fiske 

Jan. 29. 1821 





Joseph Field 

July 20. 1819 



Job Goodale 

May 23. 1825 




P. & D. Goddard 

Sept. 28. 1824 



Joseph Goffe 

Oct. 1. " 






Feb. 14. 1823 



Rufus Graves 

Mar. 10. 1827 




George Guild 

Aug. 12. 1824 






Erastus Graves 

Mar. 23. 1826 





July 23. 1827 



Richard Hunt 

Jan. 23. 1826 




Joseph C. Heath 

Sept. 6. 1824 




Warren S. Howland 

Aug. 12. " 






Heman Humphrey 

Oct. 4. " 






Rufus Hastings 

May 23. 1825 




John Hooker 

Sept. 30. 1824 





Jacob Ide 

July 15. 1822 





Edmond Longly 

" 19. 1819 




John Leland 

" 13. " 





Joseph Lyman 

Jan. 23. 1826 




Hezekiah Mattoon 




Henry Merrill 

Oct. 6. 1824 



Leander Merick 

Aug. 13. " 





Moses & David Montague 

" 1. 1826 





George Macomber 

Nov. 6. " 

Note & Mort. 




Calvin MerriU & Son 

July 13. 1819 





Azor Moody 

" 30. 1822 




Seth Nilson 

Aug. 14. " 

Note & Mort. 



Zebina Newcomb 

May 23. 1825 





Samuel Osgood 

Sept. 30. 1824 




Alpheus Osborn 

Mar. 23. 1826 




Asa Orcutt 

" 12. 1827 

Note & Mort. 



Experience Porter 

Nov. 1. 1822 





Thomas Parsons 

Sept. 8. 1819 
Oct. 6. 1824 





Benja. Page 

Aug. 6. 1819 






Sybil Parmenter 

May 23. 1826 




John Rankins 

Sept. 30. 1824 





David Richards 

" 29. " 




Stephen Rhodes 










Whole Int. 

Int. paid 

Int. due 






last year 

& unpaid 

Amt. Bro't up. 





Luke Sweetser 

Sept. 6. 1824 






John D. Smith 

Oct. 1. " 




Moses Smith 

May 24. 1821 

Note & Mort. 




Isaiah Stetson 

Jan. 11. 1822 

" & " 





Asa Smith 

Aug. 12. 1826 

" & " 




Solomon Strong 

May 23. 1825 




Selah Severance 

Jan. 23. 1826 




Prince Snow 

July 31. 1819 




Orsa Sheldon 

" " " 



Thomas Snow 

May 23. 1825 





Consider Scott 

July 21. 1819 





Martin Thayer 

Aug. 21. 1824 





I. E. Trask 

May 23. 1826 




Samuel Taylor 

" " 1825 




Salem Town Jr. 

Nov. 21. 1822 





Enoch "Whiting 

Aug. 13. 1824 




David Wait Jr. 

Ap. 9. 1828 



Ephraim Williams 

May 23. 1825 




Eli Wheelock 

Oct. 11. 1819 





Samuel Worcester 

Mar. 15. 1828 

Note & Mort. 


Thomas WilUams 

Jan. 2. 1821 




Leander Merick 

Ap. 1. 1828 

Note & Mort. 


George GuUd 

" " " 

" & " 


Of the sum of $321 

54.61, is secured 





Mortgage of real as 
Residue are Notes 




Int. pd. on 

& Bonds of origi 

nal Donors 


notes which 
have since 

Making a 


been taken 

up & 

Morts. of 

real estate 


Whole amt. of Int. pd. last year . 

Elijah Dickinson 

Moses & J. S. Dickinson 
Elijah Boltwood 

Dr. Rufus Cowls 

Property of the Fund in Real Estate. 
Description of the land. 
Nine acres on which the College Buildings are erected 
in Amherst 

Three and a half acres adjoining the above 
President's house lot 84i Rods. 

Land in Maine given by Dr. Cowls and estimated by him 
at $3000. has been exchanged for land in Pelham and is 
probably worth about 

Ten acres of woodland in Amherst 




Real Estate 

Estimated Value 



Amt. Bro't. over 


David Mack Jr. 

50 acres in W , county of Berkshire 


Erastus Graves 

Lot in Craftsburgh, Vermont 


H. W. Taft 

15 acres woodland in Sunderland 


Zebina Dickinson\ 

Ninety-six acres of land in Amherst, farml 
formerly owned by Seth Smith / 


D. Sheriff / 

Z. Dickinson, Sheriff 

Dwelling house in Amherst formerly owned byl 
J. E. Strong, i acre land i 



Elijah Nash 

1 acre and 54 rods in Hadley with a small housel 
and barn f 



Oliver Smith 

The Merrill farm (so called) in Amherst op-1 
posite the College, 64 acres f 



John Leiand 

The house formerly owned by Dr. Parsons in\ 


Amherst with llj acres of land. / 

Wm. L. Sellon 

160 acres in Craftsburg, Vt. 


Samuel F. Dickinson 

A part of the Coleman place in Amherst fori 
his note of $1000. J 




From the foregoing statement it appears that of the original Fund, 

there is at this time, vested in real estate 


In Notes for money loaned secured by Mortgage of real estate 


Notes & Bonds of the original Donors 



Interest collected the year ending Aug. 1. 1828 on notes and 

Mortgages 2055.451 


Rent Real estate Do. 190.0o/ 

The Interest and Rents of the past year have been appropriated as fol- 

lows. Viz: Financiers bill for the two last years 


Added to the Principal of Fimrl 


Paid from bills of Char 

ty Students 



The amount rec'd on Principal of Fund the past year is 


And appropriated as follows. Viz: loaned & secured by Mortgage 


Paid for 3J acres of land adjoining the college Lot 


Paid toward the purchase of the Parsons house & lot 



All which is Respectfully submitted 
September 20^\ 1828. 

Lucius Boltwood, Auditor 



August 1, 1875 

United States Bonds: 





Rail Road Bonds: 

Burlington & Missouri 


Burlington & Missouri in Neb, 


Burlington & Missouri Land grant 


Chicago & Iowa 


Cedar Rapids & Mo. 


Reading & Columbia 


Omaha & South Western 


Detroit Hillsdale & S. Western Scrip 


Dixon, Peoria & Hannibal 


Detroit & Milwaukee 


Lamoille Valley Montpelier 


Michigan Central 


Mead River & Lake Erie 


New London Northern 


Rensselaer & Saratoga 


Union Pacific Land grant 


City Bonds: 

Brooklyn Water Loan 


Chicago Water Loan 


Holyoke Town Bond 


Lawrence City 


State Bonds: 





Rail Road Stock: 

Boston & Albany 


Boston & Lowell 









Investments — August 1, 

1875 (continued; 


Rail Road Stock (continued): 


$ 2,900 

Connecticut River 


Michigan Central 
New London Northern 


Old Colony & Newport 
Vermont & Canada 


Detroit Hillsdale & S. Western 


$ 48,400 

Bank Stock: 

Boston Eagle Nat. 


Boston State Nat. 


Easthampton First Nat. 
Milford Nat. 


Northampton First Nat, 
Randolph Nat. 
Waltham Nat. 


Worcester Mechanics Nat. 



Manufacturing Stocks: 

New England Glass Co. 
Pepperell Manufacturing Co. 
Amoskeag Manufacturing Co. 
Bates Manufacturing Co. 


Everett Mills 


Hamilton Woolen Mills 


Lawrence Manufacturing Co. 
Washington Mills 
Cocheco Manufacturing Co. 
Lowell Manufacturing Co. 
Laconia Manufacturing Co. 


Great Falls Manufacturing Co. 


Merrimac Manufacturing Co. 



Sundry Stocks: 

Essex Land Co. 


United States Hotel Co. 



Notes Receivable ( 24 items ) 


Real Estate 


Grand Total 


Amount of Charity Fund 


Investments — August 1, 1875 (continued) 


Real Estate, Productive 

( exclusive 

of that used for colh 


purposes ) 

$ 34,700 

United States Bonds 


Rail Road Bonds 


City Bonds 


State Bonds 


Rail Road Stock 


Bank Stock 


Manufacturing Stock 


Sundry Stocks 


Notes Receivable 


Wm. Reed's Legacy 




able $5,000 


Amount of Charity Fund 


(Amounts presumably represent par value) 



August 1, 1896 

Railroad Bonds: 

Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe, 

new 4s $11,000.00 

Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe, 

adj. 4s 5,500.00 
Burhngton & Mo. River in Nebr. 

6s 16,932.00 

Cedar Rapids & Mo. River 7s 1,500.00 

Central Washington 6s 997.50 

Chicago & Northwestern 5s 4,000.00 

Chicago & Northwestern 6s 17,000.00 

Chicago & Southwestern 7s 7,796.25 
Chicago, Burhngton & Northern 

5s 1,500.00 

Chicago, Burhngton & Quincy 7s 21,781.25 

Chicago, Burhngton & Quincy 4s 25,000.00 
Chicago, Burhngton & Quincy 

conv. 5s 1,000.00 
Chicago, Ft. Madison & Des 

Moines 5s 5,000.00 
Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul 

6s 10,000.00 
Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul 

7s 16,000.00 

Cleveland, Loraine & Wheeling 5s 4,937.50 

Connecticut River 4s 3,500.00 

Consolidated of Vermont 5s 4,000.00 

East Tenn., Va. & Ga. 5s 9,872.50 
Houston & Texas Central ( West. 

Div.)5s 1,000.00 

Montana Centi-al 5s 9,912.50 


Investments — August 1, 1896 (continued) 
Railroad Bonds ( continued ) : 

Nebraska 7s $ 5,000.00 
Northern Pacific Divd. Script 3,060.00 
Ohio & West Virginia 7s 8,000.00 
Ohio River 5s 5,000.00 
Old Colony 6s 4,000.00 
Oregon Short Line 6s 9,410.00 
Oregon Short Line & Utah North- 
ern 5s 9,400.00 
Rensselaer & Saratoga 7s 10,000.00 
St. Louis Iron Mt. & Southern 5s 4,800.00 
St. Louis Kansas & S.W. 6s 7,420.00 
St. Paul & North. Pacific 6s 2,035.00 
Scioto Valley & New Eng. 4s 7,707.50 
Southern Pacific 6s 6,000.00 
Southern Railway 5s 19,725.00 
Union Pacific 5s 1,885.00 
Virginia Midland 5s , 9,762.50 $291,434.50 


State Bonds: 

Arizona 5s 


Tennessee 3s 


Virginia 3s 


City Bonds: 

Boston 4s 


Brookline 7s 


Colorado Springs 5s 


Grand Rapids 


Water Bonds: 

Amherst Water Co. 5s 


Brockport Water Co. 5s 


Clyde Water Co. 6s 


Janesville Water Co. 5s 


Lamed Water Co. 6s 


Palmyra Water Co. 6s 


Plattsmouth Water Co. 4s 


Xenia Water Co. 6s 





Investments — August 1, 1896 ( continued ) 
Debenture Bonds: 

Davidson Investment Co. 6s $15,000.00 

Equitable Securities Co. 4s 44,400.00 

Globe Investment Co. 6s 5,000.00 $ 64,400.00 

Miscellaneous Bonds: 

Boston United Gas Co. 


Columbia River Paper Co. 


Columbus ( Ohio ) Gas Co. 


Consolidated Elevator Co. 


Kansas City Cable Co. 


N.Y. & Pa. Tel. and Tel. Co. 


Ogdensburg Car Trust 


Ogdensburg Transit Co. 


Omaha St. R.R. Co. 


Saginaw Union St. R.R. Co. 


Union St. R.R. (Dover, N.H.) 


Watervliet Turnpike & R.R. Co. 


Real Estate: 

Boyden House 


College Hall 


Sears Brattle St. Estate 


Sears Leverett & Barton Sts. Estate 


Sterrett House 


Thompson House 


Blake Field 


Miscellaneous Stocks: 

Erie Teleg. & Teleph. Co. 


Essex Land Co. 


First National Fire Ins. Co. 


Hudson River Teleph. Co. 


New Eng. Teleg. & Teleph. Co. 


Plattsmouth Water Co. 32 shs 

U.S. Hotel Co. 


Western Union Teleg. Co. 





Investments — August 1, 1896 (continued) 

Rail Road Stocks: 

Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe 

$ 5,000.00 

Boston & Albany 


Boston & Lowell 


Central Pacific 


Chicago & N.W. common 


Chicago, Burl. & Quincy 


Concord & Montreal ( Concord 



Connecticut River 


Detroit, Hillsdale & S.W. 


Fitchburg Preferred 


New London Northern 


Northern Pacific Preferred 


Old Colony 


Oregon Short Line & Utah North. 


Providence & Worcester 


St. Paul, Minneapolis & Manitoba 


Union Pacific 

15,456.38 $144,569.38 

Bank Stocks: 

Amherst First National 


Boston Atlas National 


Boston Columbian National 


Boston Eagle National 


Boston Massachusetts National 


Boston National of Republic 


Boston National City 


Boston North National 


Boston Shawmut National 


Boston State National 


Boston Webster National 


Chicago, First National 


Easthampton First National 


Milford National 


Northampton National 


Waltham National 


Worcester, Mechanics National 


Worcester, First National 

5,950.00 112,460.99 


Investments — August 1, 1896 (continued) 
Manufacturing Stocks: 

AmoryMfg.Co. $ 300.00 

Amoskeag Mfg. Co. 1,000.00 

Bates Mfg. Co. 400.00 

Cocheco Mfg. Co. 6,500.00 

Everett MUls 1,700.00 

Great Falls Mfg. Co. 3,700.00 

Hamilton Mills 3,700.00 

Laconia Mfg. Co. 1,600.00 

Lawrence Mills 1,000.00 

Lowell MHls 1,380.00 

Merrimac Mfg. Co. 3,000.00 

Pepperell Mills 1,500.00 $ 25,780.00 

Notes Receivable (38 items) 


Savings Bank: 

Amherst Savings Bank 


Grand Total 



Rail Road Bonds 


State Bonds 


City Bonds 


Water Bonds 


Debenture Bonds 


Miscellaneous Bonds 


* Real Estate 


Miscellaneous Stocks 


Rail Road Stocks 


Bank Stocks 


Manufactm-ing Stocks 


Notes Receivable 


Savings Bank 



* Rentable Real Estate, not including the college buildings and 



June 30, 1948 
( Including Folger Shakespeare Memorial Fund ) 

Government Bonds 

Par Value 

Book Value 

$ 700,000 

Dominion of Canada 



$ 689,750 


U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury 





U.S. Treasury Series G 




Railroad Bonds 

$ 80,000 

Atch. Top. & S.F. Reg. 



$ 75,113 


Ateh. Top. & S.F. Cpn. 





Ches. & Ohio Gen. 





Chi. & W. Ind. Cons. 





Hocking Valley 1st Reg. 





Norfolk & Western 

Public Utility 




$ 33,800 

Am. Tel. & Tel. 



$ 34,542 


Bell Tel. of Can. C 





Par Value 

$ 58,000 

























Book Value 



$ 61,305 










Investments — June 30, 1948 ( continued ) 

Bell Tel. of Pa. C 
Detroit Edison G 
New England Tel. & Tel 
Rochester G. & E. " D " 

Total $347,207 
Railroad Preferred Stocks 

Union Pacific 4% $ 1,750 
Public Utility Preferred Stocks 

Commonwealth & Southern 6% $ 98,608 

Electric Power & Light 1% 15,325 

Narragansett Electric 4)2% 54,124 

Northern States Power ( Minn. ) 3.60% 49,383 

Ohio Power 4M% 81,005 

Pacific Gas & Electric 6% 106,712 

Pacific Tel. & Tel. 6% 138,316 

Union Electric of Missouri 4^2% 105,500 

Total $648,973 
Industrial Preferred Stocks 

American Smelting & Refining 7% $ 123,850 

American Snuff 6% 69,069 

Deere & Co. 7% 90,000 

E. I. duPont de Nemours 4M> 119,256 

Firestone Tiie & Rubber 4M% 16,800 

Fisher Bros. 5% 21,500 

General Mills, Inc. 5% 119,428 

General Motors 5% 72,750 

W. T. Grant S%% 35,000 

International Harvester 7% 113,578 

P.Lorillard7% 14,702 

G. C. Murphy 41% 105,000 

Safeway Stores 5% 100,966 

U.S. Rubber 8% 220,600 

U.S. Steel 7% 215,192 

Total $1,437,691 


Investments — June 30, 1948 ( continued ) 
Railroad Common Stocks 


Book Value 


Atch. Top. & Santa Fe 

$ 51,375 


Norfolk & Western 



Union Pacific 



United N.J.R.R. & Canal 




Public Utility Common Stocks 



Am. Tel. & Tel. 

$ 286,509 


Boston Edison 



Cleveland Elec. Illuminating 



Commonwealth Edison 



Cons. G.E. Lt. &Pr. of Baltimore 



Cons. Natural Gas 



Dayton Power & Light 



Duke Power 



Houston Lighting & Power 



Idaho Power 






Pacific Gas & Elec. 



Pacific Tel. & Tel. 




Bank Stocks 



Bankers Trust 



Central Hanover Bank & Trust 



Chase National Bank of N.Y. 



Chemical Bank & Trust 



First National Bank of Boston 



First National Bank of Chicago 



Guaranty Trust 




Insurance Stocks 




$ 29,443 





Investments — June 30, 1948 ( continued ) 


Book Value 


Hartford Fiie 

$ 40,281 


Insurance Co. of No. America 




Industrial Common Stocks 



Aluminum Co. of America 

$ 26,719 


American Chicle 



American Viscose 






Caterpillar Tractor 






Continental Can 






Eastman Kodak 



General Electric 



General Mills, Inc. 



General Motors 



Gulf Oil 



Hazel-Atlas Glass 



Humble Oil & Refining 



International Nickel of Canada 



Kennecott Copper 



S. S. Kresge 



S. H. Kress 



Liggett & Myers Tobacco 



Ludlow Mfg. & Sales 



Minnesota Valley Canning " B " 



N. J. Zinc 



J. C. Penney 



R. J. Reynolds Tobacco B 



Scovill Mfg. 



Sears Roebuck 



Sherwin Williams 






Standard Oil of Calif. 



Standard Oil (New Jersey) 



Texas Company 



Texas Gulf Sulphur 


Investments - ]une 30, 1948 (contini 



Book Value 


Union Carbide & Carbon 
United Fruit 
United Shoe Machinery 
Westinghouse Electi-ic 
F. W. Woolworth 

$ 242,865 







Real Estate 


Parcels Real Estate in Amherst 
Real Estate Mortgages 




Mortgages in Amherst 
Mortgage in New York 









July 1, 1933-June 30, 1948 
Total Book Value Total Gain 





















Total Loss 
$ 23,401 


















July 1, 1933-June 30, 1948 

Total Book Value 

Total Gain 

Total Loss 


$ 712,846 

$ 12,559 

$ 21,907 



































































































rH >0 


CD rH 

Ol CO 
00 IC 

o ■* 
c-f co" 


■* (N IN 

<0_ (» CO 

CD" rH '«° 
O 00 



w "- 

o .2 

s a 

"'lis" ^ 

I sg -III I 


i It 

1 1-1 o 

(2 O 


S o 

3 > O P^ 

^ o pq O P^ 
^ O o 

en 13 o 

g SE ^' 

05 05 


O) 05 o 
t^ t- lO 

© r-T 

t-H (N 

t- CO 

03 CO 

TO U5 00 

CO >o 00 

•-, > 

t § 

<f^ ^ H T) CL, 

^ 3 

;2 6 


fl g a, -J a «J 

^ ^ -5 ^ 2 ^U 









$ 512.49 

























Net Loss 





























Net Loss 


[ 234 ] 








$ 9,508.78 



Net Loss 

$ 3,714.36 



Surplus Deficit 

1927-28 $ 2,828.57 

1928-29 9,067.33 

1929-30 $5,192.02 

1930-31 43,869.27 

1931-32 11,746.30 

Net Surplus $62,319.45 






$ 1,101.60 



























Net Surplus 



(The figures for the administrations of Presidents Moore, Humphrey, Hitchcock, 
Stearns, and Seelye are taken from William S. Tyler's History of Amherst College, 
1895. The figures for the administrations of Presidents Gates, Harris, Meiklejohn. 
Olds, Pease, and King have been prepared by Treasurer Paul D. Weathers.) 

Endoioment Plant Current Centennial Total 



(a $30,000 fund, 

of which only a 

a part was paid 


1823-45 $ 147,000 


1845-54 133,000 


1854-76 769,168 


1876-90 826,000 


1890-99 $ 371,052.19 $ 60,077.60 $ 21,361.20 462,490.99 


1899-1912 668,129.65 245,481.38 61,441.37 976,052.40 


1912-22 2,665,610.66 441,300.00 102,336.91 $2,967,378.39 6,166,625.96 


1923-27 238,625.98 300,142.70 84,097.93 622,866.61 


1927-32 1.963,940.34 490,192.46 94,843.10 2,648,976.90 


1932-46 4,709,603.30 565,764.03 747,030.27 6,022,397.60 

Total $10,606,962.12 $2,102,958.17 $1,111,110.78 $2,967,378.39 $18,663,677.46 

•Excluding gifts to the Folger Fund. 

[ 236 ] 



Summary of Gifts by Years 


Number of Contributors 




$ 139,441 




[ Centennial Gift 4,044 













































































> Second Century Fund 4,741 









Date of 
Trustee Meeting 

Appointments by Board 
to Prudential Committee 

April 1825 





August 1825 


August 23, 1826 




August 20, 1827 




August 25, 1828 


August 24, 1829 





August 24, 1830 




August 23, 1831 



Members of Prudential Committee (continued) 

Date of 

Trustee Meeting 

Appointments by Board 
to Prudential Committee 

August 21, 1832 




August 26, 1833 





August 25, 1834 





August 24, 1835 


August 22, 1836 





August 22, 1837 


August 26, 1839 





August 25, 1840 


July 20, 1841 


July 26, 1842 


August 8, 1843 


August 6, 1844 



Members of Prudential Committee (continued) 

Date of 
Trustee Meeting 

Appointments by Board 
to Prudential Committee 

April 14, 1845 





August 11, 1846 


August 10, 1847 





August 8, 1848 


August 7, 1849 





Edw. Dickinson 

August 6, 1850 


August 11, 1851 


August 10, 1852 





August 8, 1853 





August 7, 1854 

Acting President 





Members of Prudential Committee (continued) 

Date of 
Trustee Meeting 

Appointments by Board 
to Prudential Committee 

August 6, 1855 






August 12, 1856 


August 11, 1857 


August 9, 1858 


August 8, 1859 






August 6, 1860 


July 8, 1861 


July 7, 1862 


July 6, 1863 


July 11, 1864 


July 10, 1865 






July 9, 1866 






July 8, 1867 


Members of Prudential Committee ( continued ) 

Date of 
Trustee Meeting 

Appointments by Board 
to Prudential Committee 

July 11, 1870 





July 1871 





July 1873 







(At this 1873 meeting the President and Treasurer were voted 
members, ex officiis, and the other four were " reelected," which 
establishes the 1872 committee as the same as 1873) 

July 1874 same 

July 1875 Dwight 


(also voted that three members constittite a quorum) 

July 1879 Pres. and Treas., ex officiis 


Members of Prudential Committee (continued) 

Date of 

Trustee Meeting 

Appointments by Board 
to Prudential Committee 

June 1882 

Pres. and Treas., ex officiis 



June 1883 


July 1884 


June 1885 

Pres. and Treas,, ex officiis 





Pres. and Treas., ex officiis 



June 1887 


June 1888 




June 1890 


June 1891 

Pres. and Treas., ex officiis 




November 1893 



James, D. W. 



From Autumnal Business Meeting, 1873: "Voted — That a Com- 
mittee on Finance consisting of three members of this Board, with 
the President in addition, be appointed every year, whose duty 
shall be to advise and direct the Treasurer in the administration 
of his oflBce; making themselves acquainted with the financial 
condition and interests of the Treasury so thoroughly, that the 
chances of loss, if not rendered impossible, shall be reduced to a 


Date of 
Trustee Meeting 

Appointinents bij Board 
to Finance Committee 

December 1, 1873 



July 1875 


July 1879 

Bullock ^ 

Edwards I reappointed 


July 1885 




June 1888 



Treas., ex officio as well as 


November 1888 

Hyde resigned and Strong 

June 1889 



Treas., ex officio 


Members of Finance 

Date of 
Trustee Meeting 
June 1890 

June 1891 
June 1892 
November 1892 

Committee (continued) 

Appointments by Board 

to Finance Committee 
Pres. and Treas. 

Peet's term as trustee ex- 
pired and D. Wilhs James 
was appointed to Finance 

May 1900 

James, D. W. 

May 1901 


May 1902 


May 1903 


May 1904 

Pratt, C. M. 

May 1905 


May 1906 


May 1907 


November 1907 

Pratt, C. M. 

James, A. C. 

December 1908 


November 1909 


November 1910 



Members of Finance Committee (continued) 

Date of 
Trustee Meeting 
November 1911 

Appointments by Board 

to Finance Committee 

June 1912 


November 1913 


November 1914 

Pratt, C. M. 
James, A. C. 

November 1915 


November 1916 

Pratt, C. M. 
James, A. C. 
Stearns, F. W. 

June 1917 


November 1918 


November 1919 


September 1920 

Breed appointed to fill v£ 
cancy caused by Simpson 

November 1920 

Pratt, C. M. 
James, A. C. 
Morrow, chairman 
Stearns, F. W. 

November 1921 

Morrow, chairman 
James, A. C. 
Pratt, G. D. 

October 1922 

James, A. C. 
Morrow, chairman 
Stearns, F. W. 
Pratt, G. D. 


Members of Finance Committee (continued) 

Date of 
Trustee Meeting 
October 1923 

Appointments by Board 

to Finance Committee 
same ( with James chair- 

October 1924 


October 1925 


October 1926 


October 1927 


October 1928 


James, chairman 


Pratt, G. D. 

Steams, F.W. 

October 1929 

James, chairman 
Pratt, G. D. 

October 1930 


October 1931 

James, A. C. 
Pratt, G. D. 

October 1932 




James, A. C. 

Maynard, chairman 

Pratt, G. D. 

October 1933 



James, A. C. 

Maynard, chairman 



Members of Finance Committee (continued) 

Date of 
Trustee Meeting 
October 1934 

Appointments by Board 
to Finance Committee 

James, A. C. 

Maynard, chairman 

October 1935 

James, A. C. 

Maynard, chairman 

October 1936 


October 1937 

Pierce, chairman 
Pratt, H. L. 

October 1938 






Pierce, chairman 

October 1939 






Pierce, chairman 


Members of Finance Committee (continued) 

Date of 
Trustee Meeting 

Appointments by Board 
to Finance Committee 

October 1940 




Pierce, chairman 

October 1941 




Pierce, chairman 

October 1942 



Pierce, chairman 

October 1943 



Pierce, chairman 

October 1944 



Pierce, chairman 

October 1945 



Pierce, chairman 


Members of Finance Committee (continued) 

Date of 

Appointments by Board 

Trustee Meeting 

to Finance Committee 

October 1946 




Pierce, chairman 



October 1947 




Pierce, chairman 




October 1948 




Pierce, chairman 





Accounting System, 111-112, 163- 

Alden, Ebenezer, 55, 57 

AlHs, Frederick S., 137, 141, 170, 
171, 182 

Alpha Delta Phi, 176, 183 

Alumni Council, 137, 151 

Alumni Fund, 13&-138, 141-142, 
143-144, 151, 189-190; summary 
of gifts. 237 

Alumni of New York, 103 

American Tel. & Tel. Co., 167-168 

Amherst Bank, 8, 9, 17, 18, 19, 29 

Amherst & Belchertown RaUroad, 8, 

Amherst Branch Railroad, 54 

Amherst Memorial Fellowships, 130, 

Amherst Savings Bank, 9, 76, 103, 
127, 153, 207 

Amherst, Town of. Population and 
industries in 1821, 6, 7; connec- 
tion with outside world, 7-8, 53- 

Amherst Water Company, 146-147 

Amory vs. Trustees Amherst Col- 
lege, 46 

Amoskeag Manufacturing Company, 
58, 83 

Andrews, Charles A., 83, 141, 153- 
155, 157-171, 204 

Appleton Cabinet, 58 

Appleton Mills, 58 

Appleton, Samuel, 58 

Appraisal of Assets in 1920, 138- 

Armstrong, Samuel T., 54 

Assets. In 1948, 1-2; 1847, 42-43, 
48; 1872, 64; 1873, 35; 1875, 70- 

71, 74-75; 1882, 76-77, 81-82; 

1892, 94, 102-103; 1903, 112- 
113, 115; 1912, 124, 126-127; ap- 
praisal of in 1920, 138-139; 1924, 
142, 145-146; 1934; distribution, 
166; 169; 1946, 174-175; 1933- 
48 summary, 232-233. See Re- 

Atcliison, Topeka & Santa Fe Rail- 
road, 81 
Attorney-General, 11, 165 
Auditor's Reports, 76 

Babbott, Frank L., 131, 176-177, 

Babbott, Frank L., Jr., 130-131 
Bacon, 69 

Baker, Newton D., 136 
Bale, Frederick S., 161, 163 
Bankers Trust Company, 163 
Banks: Amherst, 8-9, 17, 18, 19, 29; 
Amherst Savings, 9, 76, 103, 127, 
153, 207; First National of Am- 
herst, 9, 76, 120, 129, 146-147; 
Northampton, 18, 20, 75, 82; 
Springfield Safe Deposit, 165; 
Sunderland, 8, 26, 29; U.S. Trust 
Company, 129; suspension of: in 
1857, 59; 1861, 59-60; 1873, 67; 

1893, 103-104 
Baring Bros., 94, 103 
Baxter, James Phinney, 187 
Benson, George W., 49 
Bianchi, Madame, 180 
Bigelow Carpet Company, 127 
Bigelow, William P., 182 
Billings, Frederic, 96-97, 194 
Billings, Parmly, 96-97 
Billings, Richard, 97, 194 


Biological and Geological Mainte- 
nance Fund, 125 

Bishop, James L., 101 

Bixler, James W., 23 

Boltwood, Lucius, 16-22 

Bond, Thomas, 16 

Bonds: Government, 1, 20, 60, 74- 
75, 83, 108-109, 168-169; public 
utihty, 1, 169; telephone, 103; 
Tennessee, 103; Virginia, 64, 71- 
72, 103. See Reports and Assets 

Book Value. See Market Value 

Boston & Albany Railroad, 55, 75, 
81, 121 

Boston Athenaeum, 207 

Boston & Lowell Raiboad, 73, 75, 

Boston & Maine Railroad, 73, 81, 

Boston & Worcester Railroad, 8, 55 

Boyden, Frank L., 23 

Boyden, Roland W., 45 

Brandeis, Louis D., 122-124 

Brayton, John S., 85 

Brook Farm, 49 

Brown, Bailey LeF., 170 

Budget, 25, 41-42, 48, 68-69, 73; 
surplus or deficit by administra- 
tions, 234-235 

Bullock, Alexander H., 50-52, 58, 
67, 82, 84, 85 

Burgess, John W., 98 

Butler, Nicholas Murray, 180 

By-laws, 28 

Cadigan Fund, 181 

Calhoun, William B., 19, 27, 54, 

Canadian National Railroad, 56-57 
Carnegie, Andrew, 125, 194 
Carnegie Corporation, 137, 195 
Cartotto, Ercole, 150 
Centennial Gift, 136-138, 141-143, 

189-190, 200 
Central Pacific Railroad, 81 
Central Vermont Raihoad, 56-57, 

Chandler, Lester, 187 
Chapin, Chester W., 81, 199 


Charity Fund, 5-6, 10-23, 35, 37, 
39, 70, 75, 141-142, 211-213, 

Charter, 10, 26, 31-32 

Chase National Bank of New York, 

Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Rail- 
road, 81 

Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Rail- 
road, 81 

Chicago & Northwestern Railroad, 

Child, Linus, 57-58 

Choate, Joseph H., 101 

Church Fund, 70 

City Trust Company, 120 

Class of 1880 Professorship of Greek, 

Class of 1884 Gift, 132 

Cole, Charles W., 101, 207 

Cole, J. Gerald, 164 

Colleges, 59 

Collins Manufacturing Company, 81 

Commissioner. See Financier 

Concord Railroad, 81 

Conditional Endowment Fund, 143 

Connecticut River Railroad, 54, 73, 

Consolidated Funds, 76 

Consolidated Railroad of Vermont, 

Converse, Edmund C, 143, 194, 

Converse, James B., 143 

Converse Memorial Library, 130, 
143, 178 

Cooke, Jay & Co., 67 

Coolidge, Calvin, 106, 138, 154-155, 

Getting, C. U., 73 

Cowls, Rufus, 11-12 

Crane, Edward A., Library Fund, 

Crises. See Panics 

Cromwell, William Nelson, 196-197 

Crosby, Judge, 46 

Crowell, Edward P., 55 

Currier, Edward West, Library 
Fund, 125, 196 

Custody of securities, 60, 83, 108, 

Dana Street Property Fund, 130 
Davenport, John, 196 
Davidson Investment Company, 103 
Debts of College, 2, 26, 34, 35, 37- 

38, 39, 40-41, 70, 74, 76, 103, 

Defalcation, 106, 107 
Deficit, 64, 106, 115, 124, 127, 129, 

140, 234-235 
Dickinson, Edward, 35-65, 199, 

Dickinson, Emily, 35 
Dickinson, Samuel Fowler, 16, 35- 

Dickinson, William Austin, 65, 66- 

105, 107, 180, 204 
Dickinson, Mrs. William Austin, 107 
Dillon, Sidney, 114 
Doshisha University, 52 
Douglas, Lewis W., 161, 162, 163 
Dow, Fayette B., 186 
Durkan, Rena M., 207 

Easthampton Bank, 75, 82 

Eastman, Clarence, 170 

Eastman, Elizabeth, 185 

Eastman, George, 128 

Eastman, Joseph B., 122, 185; Foun- 
dation, 185-186 

Eastman, Lucius R., 106, 184-185 

Edwards, Henry, 51, 57, 60, 62, 67, 
72, 82-84, 85, 161, 204 

Endovraient Fimds: Of $100,000 
(1901), 113; Special #2, 113; of 
1911, 126; of 1918, 131-132, 134; 
Conditional, 143; 1933-48 sum- 
mary, 232-233 

Eno, Amos R., 113-114, 196 

Equitable Mortgage Company, 103 

Erie Raikoad, 103-104 

Esty, Edward T., 161, 163 

Esty, Thomas C, 23 

Esty, William Cole, 62 

Evans, William D., 135 

Everett, Edward, 27 

Ewing, William, 139 

Faculty Club, 197-198 

Fau-banks, Joseph W., 109, 110, 204 

Fales, Frederick S., 173-174 

Fay, Charles R., 108 

Fayerweather, Daniel, 99-101, 194, 
196, 200 

Fellowships : Amherst Memorial, 
130-131, 140; Field, 181; Kel- 
logg, 85, 97-99; Lay, 186; Simp- 
son, 143 

Field, Henry P., 63, 107, 151, 179- 
181, 188, 194, 196 

Field, Thomas P., 63, 179 

Finance Committee: Established 
1873, 28; Sears suit, 45; duties of, 
57; first members of, 57; invest- 
ment policy in Civil War, 60; 
duties of in 1873, 67; report of 
in 1875, 67-70; communication 
from New York alumni, 103; rati- 
fying body for Whitcomb, 108; 
Pratt succeeds James, 111; rela- 
tion with Kidder, 112; meets in 
New York, 119-120; minutes 
kept, 120; reformed under Simp- 
son, 120; 127; borrowing 1913- 
19, 129; 133; Pratt and Coolidge 
added, 138; Report of 1924, 
141-142; 1932, 159; changes in 
membership, 161; meetings in 
1930's, 161-162; Folger Fund, 
167; changes in membership in 
1940's, 173; 204; list of members, 

Financier (Commissioner), 10-11, 

Fires, 12, 77 

First National Bank of Amherst, 9, 
76, 120, 129, 14&-147 

First National Bank of Chicago, 97, 

Fitch, Clyde, 125-126 

Fitch, William C, 125-126 

Fitchburg Raikoad, 75, 81 

Folger Committee, 153 

Folger Fund, 112, 164-166, 167. 

Folger, Henry Clay, 88, 91-92, 151, 
166, 194, i96, 202 


Folger, Mrs. Henry Clay, 151, 152- 

153, 164-166, 194, 196 
Folger Professorships, 152 
Folger Shakespeare Library, 2, 151- 

153, 164-166 
Foster, Alfred D., 19 
Francis, Clarence, 173, 174 

Gains and Losses, 140, 191, 231, 

232-233, 234-235 
Garrison, William Lloyd, 49 
Gates, Merrill E., 104, 106, 109, 200 
Gaylord Fund, 123 
General Education Board, 126, 137, 

Genung, John F., 128 
Gift Summaries, 60, 137, 190, 236, 

Giles, Joel, 77 
Golf, 184 
Gould, Jay, 132 
Grants. See Legislature 
Graves, Rufus, 16, 21, 28, 30, 32, 

Gray, John Chipman, 45 
Gray, William, 30, 32 
Great Northern Iron Ore Certificates, 

Great Northern Raikoad, 127, 139 
Green, Samuel, Professorsliip, 60, 

Greenfield & Northampton Railroad, 

8, 54 
Gregory, Richard H., 173, 174 
Grennell, George, 16-18 

Hadley, Arthur T., 123 
Halligan, Howard A., 139, 144 
Hamilton, Alexander, 33 
Hamilton Manufacturing Company, 

40, 48, 58, 82 
Hammond, John C. and L. C, 102 
Hammond, Thomas J., 23 
Hampshire and Franklin Railroad, 

Hardy, Alpheus, 45, 52, 56, 58, 60, 

62, 67, 82, 85, 161 
Harkness, Edward S., 151, 152-153, 



Harkness graves, 151, 153 

Harris, George, 99, 109, 128, 129, 

Harvard College, 27, 83 
Hasbrouk, Isaac E., 111-112 
Hawley, Fred, 207 
Hayden, Joel, 47, 49 
Hersey, Ira G., 138-139 
Hitchcock, Dr. Edward, 97, 109, 200 
Hitchcock, President Edward, 14, 

26, 27-28, 34, 40-43, 55, 57, 63, 

134, 198-199 
Hitchcock Endowment for Scholar- 
ships and Kindred Purposes, 47, 

Hitchcock, Margaret, 182 
Hitchcock Memorial Room, 151, 

188, 207 
Hitchcock, Roswell Dwight, 100, 

Hitchcock, Samuel A., 40, 47-48, 

71-72, 193 
Hobbs, 65 
Hopkins, John, 26 
Hopkins, Mark, 27 
Howland, Walter Morton, 110-111, 

Humphrey, Heman, 17, 26, 28, 32, 

33, 39, 41, 198 
Hyde, Henry, 63, 85, 87, 102 

I-Keep-ihe-Income. First gift under, 
38; Stone Scholarship Fund, 78 

Income Reserve Fund, 202 

Investment PoUcy, 12-21, 19-20, 
54-56, 57, 60, 108-109, 145, 166- 
168, 191 

Ives, Phihp T., 99 

James, Arthur Curtiss, 89, 117-118, 

126, 127, 128, 129, 132, 138, 161, 
182, 183-184, 194, 195 

James, D. Willis, 78, 87-88, 89, 94, 
106, 108, 111, 113, 117, 125, 126, 

127, 194, 195, 199 
James, Mrs. D. Willis, 126 

James Foundation, Inc., 183-184, 

Jameson, John Franklin, 128 

Johnson, Adam, 194 
Johnson, Herbert G., 164 

Kellogg Fellowship, 85, 97-99 

Kellogg Prize, 85, 97 

Kellogg, Rufus Bela, 84-85, 97-99, 

Kennedy, John S., 126, 194, 196 
Keyes, L. A., 139, 207 
Kidder, Harry Welton, 100, 110, 

111, 112, 117-156, 204 
Kilenyi, Olga, 178-179 
King, Margaret Pinckney, 207 
King, Stanley, 136, 137-138, 141, 

146-148, 149, 153, 158, 178, 187, 

Kingman, Henry S., 161, 162, 163, 

173, 207 
Kirby, EUwood R., 194 

Labor Conditions in 1820's, 4 

Lamoille Valley Raikoad, 72-73, 81 

Land: Maine, Vermont, Pelham, 
Sunderland, Amherst, 11-12; 
Michigan, 17-18; Sears gift, 44- 
46; Bensonville, 48-50 

Lawrence, Abbott, 162 

Lay, Edward P., 186 

Lay, Mr. and Mrs. Frank M., 186 

Legislatiire. Election of trustees, 26; 
appeal for aid in 1827, 26-27; 
1831, 1837, 1846, 1849, 27; ap- 
peal of Wilhams in 1837, 1839, 
1842, 1849, 27; appeal of Harvard 
in 1849, 27; grant in 1847, 27, 
40; in 1859, 27; in 1863, 27-28; 
opposition to charter, 31-32 

Leland, John, 2, 11, 21, 24-34, 54, 

Liberia, 3 

Lincoln, Rufus Tyler, Professorship, 

Little Red Schoolhouse, 150, 181 

Lord Jeffery Inn, 177 

Lybrand, Ross Bros. & Montgomery, 
2, 163-164 

McBee, Alice E., 48-50 
McCloy, John J., 187 

McFarland Loan, 17-19 

McGraw, Thomas H., 77-78, 82, 102 

McKibben, James A., 184 

Mack, David, 17 

Manchester Print Works, 58 

Manthey-Zorn, Otto, 207 

Market Value vs. Book Value, 1, 

139, 191-192, 232-233 
Marsh, Edward Baxter, 107 
Mason, Jeremiah, 12 
Massachusetts Central Railroad, 8 
Massachusetts Manufacturing Com- 
pany, 58 
Mather, Richard, 97 
Maynard, Robert W., 148, 159, 163, 

173, 204, 207 
Mead, Wilham R., 143, 149, 177- 

179, 194, 196 
Meiklejohn, Alexander, 12S-130, 

137-138, 140, 141, 200-201 
Mellen, Charles S., 121, 122 
Merrill, Charles E., 186-187, 194 
Merrill, James, 187 
Merrill Lynch & Co., 187 
Merrill Oldham & Co., 157 
Merrill, Oliver B., Jr., 196 
Merrimac Manufacturing Company, 

58, 83, 127 
Milliken, Arthur N., 150, 151, 179, 

Monroe, James, 2, 3 
Montague, Gilbert, 186 
Moody, Ambert G., 23 
Moore Beneficiary Fund, 60, 61, 195 
Moore, WiUiam H., 113, 126, 148- 

149, 194 

Moore, Mrs. William H., 113, 148- 

150, 194 

Moore, Zephaniah Swdft, 26, 61, 

194-195, 198 
Morgan, Charles Hill, 179 
Morgan, Henry, 194, 196 
Morgan, J. P., 121, 122 
Morgan, J. P. & Co., 112, 132, 134, 

136, 138, 139, 141, 207 
Morgan, Robert S., 207 
Morrow, Dwight W., 106, 112, 121, 

128, 132, 133-137, 138-139, 141- 

142, 143, 144, 146, 147, 148, 153, 


158, 167-168, 178, 194, 195, 

Morrow, Jay, 135, 147 
Morse, Anson D., Professorship, 

Mortgage Loans, 48, 49, 50, 84. See 

also Charity Fund 
Mount Holyoke Railroad, 53 

Napoleon, 31 

National Shawmut Bank, 162 
Neesima, Joseph Hardy, 52 
Nelson, Frank G., 196, 197-198 
New England Glass Company, 71 
New Haven Railroad, 93, 121-124 
New London Northern Railroad, 8, 

56, 75, 81 
Newton, John C, 97 
Norcross, Alfred, 70 
Norcross family, 66 
Northampton Association of Educa- 
tion and Industry, 48-49 
Northampton Bank, 18, 20, 75, 82 
Northampton & Springfield Railroad, 

8, 53-54 
Northern Pacific Railroad, 67, 97, 

Norton, Fred L., 184 
Notes Receivable, 75; McGraw, 82, 
102; A. E. Abbott, 82, 101-102; 
John C. and L. D. Hammond, 
102; R. H. Stearns & Co., 102. 
See Reports 

Ohio Life & Trust Company, 59 
Old Colony Raikoad, 81, 123 
Old Colony Trust Company, 120 
Oldham, John E., 122, 138, 139, 207 
Olds, George D., 109, 128, 130, 135, 

140, 141, 201 
One Hundred Thousand Dollar 

Fund, 38 
Overseers, 10, 11, 12, 22-23 

Palmer, D. W., 107 

Panics: 1819, 3-4; 1837, 33, 37; 

1857, 59; 1861, 59; 1873, 67; 

1884, 94; 1893, 103-104 


Pease, Arthur Stanley, 140, 141, 151, 
153, 201-202 

Peckham, William C, 90-91 

Pension Plan, 169-170 

Pepperell Manufacturing Company, 

Pere Marquette Railroad, 134 

Perkins, Jonathan C, 27, 56 

Personal Loans, 20, 21 

Philadelphia & Reading Railroad, 

Pierce, George E., 160-161, 162, 
163, 165, 172, 204, 207 

Piper, Henry A., 65, 76 

Plato, 69 

Plimpton, George A., 87-89, 109, 
118, 120, 125, 126, 128, 132, 133, 
141, 148, 149, 151, 152, 153, 178, 
194, 200, 201 

Population, 3, 6 

Porter, WiUiam H., 132 

Portland & Ogdensburg Railroad, 72 

Pratt Brothers, 114-115, 126, 132, 
194, 200 

Pratt, Charles, 90-91 

Pratt, Charles M., 87-88, 89-93, 
106, 108, 111, 113, 118, 121, 123, 
124, 125, 128, 133, 138, 184. See 
Pratt Brothers 

Pratt, Frederic B., 90. See Pratt 

Pratt, George D., 114-115, 138, 150, 
161, 184. See Pratt Brothers 

Pratt Gymnasium, 93, 103 

Pratt, Harold I. See Pratt Brothers 

Pratt Health Cottage, 114-115 

Pratt, Herbert L., 106, 114-115, 157. 
See Pratt Brothers 

Pratt, John T., 114-115, 122. See 
Pratt Brothers 

Pratt, Lydia Richardson, 131, 177 

Pratt, Richardson, 207 

Professorsliips: Astronomy (Dillon), 
114; (Walker), 27, 60, 61; BibU- 
cal Literature (Green), 60, 62- 
64; Biology (Lincoln), 131; 
(Stone), 78; Chemistry (Massa- 
chusetts), 40; Cromwell, 196- 
197; Eastman, Joseph B., 185- 

186; Economics (Olds), 130; Eng- 
lish (Babbott), 176; ( Williston ) , 
40, 56; Fine Arts (Mead), 178; 
Folger, 152; Geology (Hitch- 
cock), 40; Greek (Glass of 1880), 
150; (Graves), 40; (Newton), 
97; Harkness, 151-152; History 
(Winkley), 96; History (Morse), 
148; Hygiene (BilHngs), 96-97; 
Mathematics (Walker), 60, 61- 
62; Philosophy (McGraw), 77-78 

Providence & Worcester Railroad, 

Prudential Committee, 17; election 
of, 1825, 28; duties of, 28; dis- 
continued, 1896, 28; membership 
of, 1825, 28; authority to borrow, 
1834, 37, 38, 42; investment in 
Amherst & Belchertown Railroad, 
55; purchase of New London 
Northern bonds, 56; 204; hst of 
members, 238-243 

Psi Upsilon, 180, 181 

Raih-oads, 8, 53-57, 94; bonds, 169; 
Amherst & Belchertown, 8, 55-56; 
Amherst Branch, 54; Atchison, 
81; Boston & Albany, 55, 75, 81, 
121; Boston & LoweU, 73, 75, 81; 
Boston & Maine, 73, 81, 121; Bos- 
ton & Worcester, 8, 55; Burling- 
ton, 81; Canadian National, 56- 
57; Central Pacific, 81; Central 
Vermont, 56-57, 71; Concord, 81; 
Connecticut River, 54, 73, 81; 
ConsoHdated of Vermont, 71; 
Erie, 103-104; Fitchburg, 75, 81; 
Great Northern, 127, 139; Green- 
field & Northampton, 8, 54; 
Hampshire & Franklin, 53; La- 
moille Valley, 72-73, 81; Massa- 
chusetts Central, 8; Milwaukee, 
81; Mount Holyoke, 53; New 
Haven, 93, 121-124; New Lon- 
don Northern, 8, 56, 75, 81; North- 
ampton & Springfield, 8, 53, 54; 
Northern Pacific, 67, 97, 127; 
Northwestern, 81; Old Colony, 81, 
123; Pere Marquette, 134; Phila- 

delphia & Reading, 103-104; 
Portland & Ogdensburg, 72; Prov- 
idence & Worcester, 123; St. 
Johnsbury & Lake Champlain, 73, 
81; Union Pacific, 81; Vermont & 
Canada, 71, 81; Western Rail- 
road, 8 

Randolph Bank, 38, 75 

Reports: 1822, 211-213; 1828, 13- 
14, 214-217; 1839, 15-16; 1840, 
18-19; 1875, 70, 218-220; 1896, 
221-225; 1912, 124-127; Oldham 
Committee, 139; 1924, 141-142; 
1948, 226-230. Also 75-77, 81, 
111, 115. See Assets 

Research Corporation, 195 

Rhees, Rush, 128 

Rhodes, Marcus A., 86, 207 

Robbins, Wilford L., 134 

Robinson, Edwin B., 23 

Rockefeller Foundation, 194, 195 

Rogerson, C. M., 45 

Root, Elihu, 101 

Ropes, Gray, Boyden & Perkins, 45 

Rugg, Arthur P., 46 

Rugg, Charles B., 45 

Russia in 1821, 3 

Sage, Margaret Olivia, 132, 140, 
194, 196, 201 

Sage, Russell, 132-133 

St. Johnsbury & Lake Champlain 
Railroad, 73, 81 

Salaries, 21, 22, 24, 25, 37, 38, 39. 
41, 57, 61, 70, 94, 148 

Salary Fund (1911 Endowment), 

Sanford, John E., 82, 84, 85, 86, 87, 
89, 106, 108, 111, 117 

Sargent, William A., 182, 194, 196 

Scandrett, Richard B., 207 

Schermerhorn, Horace, 162-163 

SchifF, Mortimer L., 125, 126, 194 

Scholarship Funds, 76 

Sears, David, 39, 40, 43^4, 193 

Sears, David, Jr., 44-45 

Sears Fund of Literature and Benev- 
olence, 39, 40, 44; land on Lever- 
ett and Barton Streets, Boston, 


44-46; land on Brattle Street, 44- 
46; use of income, 44-46, 48; de- 
mand of income by David, Jr., 
44—45; demand of income in 1909, 
and suit, 45-46; debt to, 1875, 
70; demand of income, 73-74; 
Finance Committee retains coun- 
sel, 121 

Second Century Fund, 190 

Seelye Fund, 94 

Seelye, L. Clark, 75 

Seelye, JuHus H., 75, 78-79, 81; 95- 
96, 199-200 

Seligman, Eustace, 196 

Sewall, Richard B., 131 

Silk Culture, 48-49 

Simpson, Jean, 143 

Simpson, John W., 113, 117-121, 
125, 132, 134, 136, 194, 204 

Simpson, Mrs. John W., 119, 143 

Smith, Frederick Pitkin, 137 

Smith, Hannah, 114 

Smith, James Kellum, 179 

Smith, Nathaniel, 28, 29-30 

Smith, Wintlirop H., 187 

Snell, Ebenezer, 53 

Snell, Thomas, 16 

Socony-Vacuum Company, 1 

Soule, Sherrod, 180 

Sources of gifts, bequests, 194-195 

Sparks, President, 27 

Springfield Safe Deposit & Trust 
Company, 1, 165 

Standard Oil Company, 1, 93, 164- 
165, 194 

Stark Mills. 58 

Steamship Central America, 59 

Stearns, Alfred E., 128 

Stearns, Frank W., 102, 139 

Stearns, R. H. & Company, 102 

Stearns, WiUiam A., 45, 57, 62, 68, 

Stevens, Harold W., 184 

Stimson, Caleb, 64 

Stimson Fund, 60, 70 

Stock Exchanges, 59, 67 

Stone, Daniel P., 79 

Stone, Harlan Fiske, 128, 196 

Stone, Mrs. Valeria C, 78-80 


Strong, H. W., 16 

Strong, Lewis, 28-29 

Suffolk Manufacturing Company, 58 

Sunderland Bank, 8, 26, 29 

Supreme Judicial Court, 45, 63-64, 

Sweetser, Luke, 17, 18, 21, 22, 53, 

54, 55 

Tappan, John, 54, 62-63 

Taylor, George R., 207 

Telephone bonds and stock, 167- 

Tennessee bonds, 103 
Textiles, 58-59, 82, 103, 127, 133; 
Amoskeag, 58, S3; Appleton, 58; 
Bigelow Carpet, 127; Hamilton 
Manufacturing Co., 40, 48, 58, 
82; Manchester Print Works, 58; 
Massachusetts Manufacturing Co., 
58; Merrimac, 58, 83, 127; Pep- 
perell, 127; Stark Mills, 58; Suf- 
folk, 58; Washington Mills, 82 
Thirty Thousand Dollar Fund, 25 
Thompson, Frederic L., 148 
Thorp, Willard L., 173, 174 
Todd, Mrs. Mabel Loomis, 66 
Trask, Israel E., 33 
Travel in the 1820's, 5, 7, 8 
Treasurer. As Financier of Charity 
Fund, 10-11; salary increase, 57; 
duties defined, 60; comment of 
Finance Committee in 1875, 68; 
duties defined in 1875, 68-69 
Treasurer's Report. See Reports 
Trustees. Responsible for Charity 
Fund, 10; Hitchcock's opinion on 
their early use of Charity Fund, 
14; election by legislature, 26; 
207. See Investment Policy 
Tuition. In 1821, 25; comparison in 

1875, 74 
Turner, Isabel, 181 
Turner, James, 150-151, 181, 195 
Turner Library in South College, 

Turner, Wilham J., 181, 182 
Tyler, Caroline, 131 
Tyler, John Mason, 109 

Tyler, Mason W., 115, 194 
Tyler, Wellington H., 131 
Tyler, William S., 115, 131 
Tyler, William S., Memorial Fund, 

Union Club of Boston, 161-162 
Union Pacific Railroad, 81 
Union Safe Deposit Company, 83 
United Shoe Machinery Company, 

United States Bank, 3, 37 
United States Hotel, 82, 83 
United States Trust Company, 129 

VaiU, Joseph, 19, 26, 38-39, 50 
Valentine Hall, 196 
Valentine, Samuel H., 194, 196 
Vermont & Canada Railroad, 71, 81 
Virginia Bonds, 64, 71-72, 103 

Walker, Francis A., 87 

Walker Hall Fire, 77 

Walker Instructorship in Mathe- 
matics, 60, 61 

Walker Professorship of Mathematics 
and Astronomy, 27, 60, 61 

Walker, William J., 58, 61-62, 71, 
193, 195 

Walker, WUliston, 138 

Ward, Francis, 138 

Washington Mills, 82 

Weathers, Niel A., 158-159, 172 

Weathers, Paul D., 1-2, 23, 172- 
192, 204, 207 

Webster, Daniel, 12 

Webster, Noah, 7 

Welhnan, Arthur H., 45, 121 
Western Construction Company, 

Western Railroad, 8 
Whicher, George F., 176 
Whitcomb, Ernest M., 23, 87, 137, 

146-147, 207 
Whitcomb, George Henry, 85, 86- 

87, 89, 94, 101-102, 104, 106- 

109, 111, 117, 118, 120, 133, 137, 

White, Everett Alonzo, 184 
Whitridge, Frederick W., 126 
Wiggins, Elmer W., 184 
Wilder, S. V. S., 30-33 
WUlcox, Walter F., 80-81, 207 
WiUcox, Wilham H., 78-80 
Williams College, 27 
Williams, Talcott, 143 
Williston Contingent Fund, 64, 

Williston Mill, 101-102 
WiUiston, Samuel, 40, 46-47, 48, 49, 

50, 51, 56, 57, 60, 64, 75, 77, 82, 

85, 101, 102, 193, 195 
Wilson, Eugene S. 137-138 
Winkley, Henry, 95-96, 195 
Woodbridge, Frederick J. E., 128, 

146, 158, 182 
Woods Cabinet, 41, 176 
Worcester Bank, 75, 82 
Worcester, James N., 188-189 
Working Capital Fund, 202 
Wright, Frank, 186 
WyckofF, Peter B. and Cora, 114 

Yield, 74-75, 76, 169, 232-233