Charles Alling Diary, 1883-1884
(Hanover College, Class of 1885)
Charles Alling, Jr., entered Hanover College in 1879, when he was thirteen years old, as a student in the "preparatory department"; he graduated in 1885, when he was nineteen. During his junior and senior years, he kept a diary, recording his day-to-day experiences. He seems to be a fairly typical student of his time. He had an active social life, getting into mischief with his friends, escorting girls to dances, and participating in fraternity life as a member of Sigma Chi. He also had a serious side, reading poetry, discussing sermons with his friends, and worrying about how to find the right career after graduation.
After graduating from Hanover, he went on to practice law in Chicago and to serve as an Alderman there. He maintained interests that he had developed at Hanover --directing the First Presbyterian Church School in Chicago and becoming a national officer in Sigma Chi, for instance. He married in 1914 and had no children. -smv
Aid to the Charles Alling Diary, Archives of Hanover
College, Duggan Library, Hanover College (Hanover, Indiana);
"Alumni File of Charles Alling, Class of 1885, "Archives of
Hanover College, Duggan Library, Hanover College (Hanover,
Indiana); Doug Denne, Archivist, Hanover College (Hanover,
Indiana), personal communication.
The complete diary is available at the Duggan Library Archives, Hanover College (Hanover, Ind.). Hanover College students in His234 "Studies in American Cultural History: The Middle Class" (taught by Sarah McNair Vosmeier in Winter 2009, Fall 2010, and Fall 2012) transcribed these entries. We thank Pat Schuring for her assistance.
Thursday, Dec.20th 
Kit and Agnes have been busy all day making Bert a wig out of rope. It is quite a good invention. I took my first sleigh ride this morning; drove Kit around to several places on errands. She only stayed half an hour in Roger’s. We had our old sleigh which has become very rusty from exposure to the weather. The “Mistletoe Bough” tonight was quite a success but it was [quite] rather spoiled by our having to stand up so long. Bert walked with Alice Emmett, or Jen Graham rather, Alice was Genevra; Joc Abbott, Lord Lovell. She looked very pretty and acted her part well, as she always does.
I took Lot home. Vic Herbst looked especially well when she tried on that black bonnett. Kit was in the garret scene.
I worked hard all morning and afternoon on my essay, but did not read it tonight. I took Agnes up home in the sleigh after supper and did not get back in time to finish up my essay and dress. So it took me till nine o’clock to get down there and then it was too late. After the entertainment, five couples of us went in to the rink and the boy’s orchestra played for us to dance. We did not put on skates for it was too late to dance much. I took Ida Greiner; she and Jen Graham are a lively team.
Notes for page 57
Saturday, Dec. 22
I got one of Rea’s cutters this morning and took Aunt Sallie out sleighing. She seemed to enjoy it very much as she has been confined in the house so closely tending to Ute. He is much better now, but he has had a sorry siege of it for a long while. He has had a serious type of malarial fever. I took Florence Harper out riding afterwards. I had a magnificent ride with her. She looked very pretty in her new hat and we cut a gay figure. The streets and roads could not be in a better condition; the horse is feeling good and makes the snow fly. I had to pay a dollar for my sleigh, but what is that to me? The boys had our sleigh and Graham’s horse out.
Sunday, Dec. 23
It snowed hard all yesterday afternoon and turned into rain last night. It was so slippery and such bad walking that very few people were out at church. Mr. Brown preached a regular Christmas sermon. Kit went to Aunt Sallie’s to dinner and Rob to Aunt Beck’s. I did not go to S.S. this afternoon; started to church tonight, but fell down in the slush at the gate. I had intended to go to the Second as Mr. Brown stated there would be no church at night on account of the weather. The choir did well this morning; Mrs. Snyder was away and the younger members let themselves out. Jen laughs and enjoys life behind the railing as much as ever.
Notes for page 58
Monday, Dec. 24 
I got a tramp to clean off the front pavement for an old pair of pants. I worked hard on those around the house and we now have oure pavements free of ice. Helped Howard awhile at the store and worked out front part of the time just to show my countrymen that even though a college boy, I am not afraid of honest labor. Somehow, everybody gets an idea that college students are utterly averse to anything like manual labor. It is true that a great many fellows who have been to college go home with a feeling that they are extraordinary beings worthy of great respect and humble reverence on account of their prodigious accomplish ments in the fields of art, science, & literature.
Tuesday, Dec. 25
Bert and I went down to the express Office last night but found no box there. We were roused and besought by such strong arguments this morning, that we came down with the rest in time to enter in the “door-open” at six instead of seven as usual. The children were delighted. Three dolls, jumping jacks and cymbal men stuck out of Fred’s stocking and it nearly unbalanced his equilibrium. Rob and Van also fared no worse than usual; Aunt Beck gave George Robinson a splendid magic lantern; he also got Muncie skates, books, a sword, etc. Van nearly ditto. But alas for the “Older Ones”. We poor wayfarers were set down a peg or two. The place by the first three stockings was
Notes for page 59
quite bare and looked like it was an aching void never to be supplied. The only thing by Bert’s stocking was a silk muffler, Charles and Kitty, ditto. Papa gave Howard and Will each a very pretty music stand; Kit and me each a five piece; of course this was good but it did not seem like a Christmas gift for he sometimes gives me as much as $20. We were all very quiet and made no boisterous demonstrations because alas there was nothing to demonstrate for. Papa had gone to church when the Chicago box came. We opened it and were all “gratified”. Aunt Janie, papa, Kit, Mame and etc fared pretty well. Bert and Howard got little pocket cases with plaster and scissors in them, and also a necktie. Bert picked his up and – “laid it down again”. He said, you may all be glad you’re livin’.” I was exceedingly pleased on the contrary with a bunch of dasies painted on wood by Anna Hendrix and framed beautifully in gilt by Marie. It is truly a handsome gift and made me feel that Christmas was really here again. Aunt Lizzie sent very handsome autograph albums to Will and etc; nice books to the children, and a very pretty apron to Kit. She did the square thing by us and added greatly to our Christmas. But, as all of the old ones of the family said, this is not Christmas and it has not really seemed so. I supposed the next few Christmas occasions I see will be likewise. But when I get to making anything like a competence if such a doubtful thing ever happens – the Christmas of this family will be what it used to be if I can add my mite make my purse open 1/8 of an inch.
Wednesday, Dec. 26. 
I had almost decided to go to Columbus tomorrow with Rob when papa told me that they would need me at the store. I went down and “fell to work”; they put me out in the shed to measure the pump tubing. It was most awfully cold but I managed to keep warm in my overcoat. We worked up in the second and third stories this afternoon and got along very well. I got off tonight to go to prayer meeting with Aunt Janie. On the way up we stopped in the German church to see their Christmas tree. Rob, Van and Fred were all there; the latter was rather indignant because they gave him no candy. It was a very good entertainment; there were songs, recitations, etc, all in German
Thursday, Dec. 27. 
I worked hard this morning, fixing up the packing, ready to be weighed. This was the dirtiest work I have had, but it was quite satisfactory to see how nice it looked after it was dusted and straightened up. We weighed the rope this afternoon and are now nearly up to the side door. I went to operetta tonight but they would not let anybody in for the house was too crowded; Papa and Aunt Janie ditto. I went down to the store then and wrote letters of thanks to Marie and Anna. Bert and I were the only ones there; we had a lunch of coffee, sandwiches, etc. sent in and spent the time very pleasantly. It has turned very cold tonight and the store is like an ice house.
Friday, Dec. 28th 
I removed the whole pile of barbed wire and put it back again without getting a single tear in my pants or shoes and only one scratch on my hand. We had a very nice little company at Graham’s tonight. The boys- Eck, Lois, and Will played for us. It was a small affair, no refreshments, and we did not stay late. Rob Moffett escorted Miss Meldrum who is visiting at Dolittle’s; Gale Crozier, Fan Vail; Will Johnson, Ida Greiner; Howard Moffett, Kit; Ollie DeLoste, Marie Abberger. I never knew before that the last named was such a good dancer. She moves so easily and gracefully and never breaks into a hop. I had to call most of the time; am getting rather used to it now and do not mind it so much.
Saturday, Dec. 29. 
It was quite a relief to think that tomorrow was to be Sunday and we would not have to work so hard; for, to tell the truth, we are beginning to think that stock taking is rather a monotonous business. Father says it worries him more every year as he grows older. Mr. Lodge frequently utters execrations upon the dust and hard work. Charlie Wharton has been a great help; it is real accommodating for him to spend his holidays in this way. He and Frank were here to supper last night and seemed to enjoy it. The operetta – Pepita – was repeated this evening. I took Edith Fisher who came upon a visit today. The play was splendid. Tot Gorgas, Nell Grayson and Kit were the stars.
Notes for page 62
Sunday, Dec. 30th
It was a very bad day yesterday and it has been a worse one today. Mr. Brown preached an impressive sermon concerning what was done in the past year and what ought to be done in 1884. Kit, Fan and Jen and Nathan were all away from the choir. I slept all afternoon and did not have a chance to read anything. I took the Hennesey’s home from church and had a very pleasant call. Sam M. took Cora home but would not go in. Bert brought Miss Meldrum to church and put her in the family pew. I sat by her and took care of her for him. We took her right in to the affection of the family.
Monday, Dec. 31st
I went up to Vic. Herbst’s to get her company for tomorrow night but found it was taken. I then went to Greiner’s and engaged Ida’s company. I took Edith Fisher to the rink tonight. Kit said she would come but never put in an appearance all evening. She and a party had gone to Mrs. Wm. Page’s to make a call. We were fully expecting them and it raised a few riffles in my serene temper when I asked her about it the next day. I am glad I am not in the store for life, as a week will amply satisfy me. I do not mind the work so much but it galls me to think that I am fully capable of something better- or hope I will be someday- and yet have to do the worst of drudgery. Even Tom Todd can “say go and I go, come and I come.”
Thursday, Jan. 3rd 
We- Tom and I- measured the last of the belting this morning and that finished stock taking and liberated me. I would hate to be tied down, [^always] the way I have been for the last week. I did not even have time to write in this book – much less to read any. I could not stand being rushed up in the morning, rushed home to meals and right back again, rushed home and on up to bed. I suppose, however, this is an unusually busy time and I hope for the family’s sake that “it is not always thus.” I have been out to Kimmel’s this afternoon to try the skating. The pond is too rough [.] My skates were very dull also and would not take hold of the ice very well. Edith Fisher went home this afternoon with Walter. Lot Brewer was here all afternoon.
Friday, Jan. 4th 
It has been snowing hard all day and it has kept me and Will busy to sweep the pavements every now and then. Howard and I went up to call on the Lepper girls last night. A Miss [Hayes] of Louisville is visiting there. Sadie L is now attending Moore’s Hill College. We took a box of candy but found John Rose was ahead of us with one. We danced a ‘three cornered quadrille’ and spent quite a pleasant evening. Tonight, I went to call on Florence Harper; looked in at the rink afterwards but there were no “inducements”. It was such a bad night or Florence and I would have gone up [.] Will’s orchestra played at the 2nd Church S.S. [Ent.] tonight.
Notes for page 65
Monday, Jan. 4. 1884
Father is not out yet and had the doctor again today. It is snowing today and still very cold. When the thermometer comes up to zero, we think it a great modification of the weather. I never saw it snow when the air was so cold. It is often said, “Its too cold to snow,” but I will never believe that again. I have been kept on the run all day, doing errands for the house and for myself. I am getting my effects collected and put in order, preparatory to my departure into a foreign land. I had my suit altered, ordered a gold bangle for Anna Hendrix, got my skates sharpened, got my goods mended, ect.
Tuesday, Jan. 8th. 1884
We were invited to Hennesey’s last night. Sam M. took Joic Hutchings and I took Maud. It was snowing hard but we ploughed it down there. It was a small company but all had as good a time as if it had been a large dance. I was particularly attentive to Emma Frevert. I have always admired her; she is so bright and full of fun and to me seems very pretty. We had a splendid horseback ride together last summer and quite a pleasant time at the Clifty Falls Picnic. Frank Swope, Mame Bright, She and I went through the tunnel together……… I came down to Hanover in the sleigh this afternoon, Not many boys here; had a hard time to “thaw the room out”. Howard F. has been over since supper. We had a long chat. I am really glad to get back again and feel anxious to put my new resolves into execution.
Wednesday, Jan. 10. 
I had a hard time to sleep well last night. The bed seemed so very, very hard after coming from Bert’s and my bed.
There was an unusually large number back it being the first day. All of the boys, with two or three exceptions, are now here. John came just before dinner in a sleigh from Lexington. I have not had a chance to do much studying but got my latin for Friday. There was quite a great deal of hand shaking to do and I tried to go around the crowd even to Armor Clemmons, etc. Everbody seemed glad to see the old familiar faces again.
Thursday, Jan. 11th. 
Doctor Fisher gave us a splendid lecture this morning on “Through the Highlands.” He dwelt at length on the life and character of Burns whose native place he visited and described. I never knew before that Burns had such a remarkable history; there is so much sadness mingled with the bright side of his character that it at once enlists the sympathies of the reader. He was courted and received with favor by a circle of young men who were above him in social standing (so called and who posessed more wealth. With them he began a system of dissipation which ended his career at an early age; which also reduced him to poverty long before his death. Doctor said, “Let the Chirstian, bright, gifted Burns live but let the gross immoralities and disgraces of the other Burns lie buried in oblivion”.
Notes for page 68
Friday, Jan. 18. 
Other considerations have come in, however, to wield a greater influence. My circumstances and surroundings are such as to alienate me from the ministry. Although I have always had a good reputation at home among my acquaintances, yet a certain amount of frivolity – so to speak – has been one of my characteristics. Especially in the company of the girls, I have got a way of talking which, though generally proper, impresses them with the idea that I am up with the times. It would be hard for me to counteract this sentiment and become a steady – going, embryo preacher. My extreme youthful appearance would also act as another hindrance. These and other considerations make me have a sort of inward feeling that I should turn my attention elsewhere.
Last summer, I read Matthew’s Getting On In the World, and thought of studying law. It seemed to me that I was capable of succeeding if so many men had gained a footing; men, that is, of very limited education and of exceedingly small energy or prominence of character. Graduates of Hanover College, whom I know, have gained success, and, not to be egotistical, I think I have as much of the elements of success as they had. John Wiggam and Frank Swope both intend to be lawyers and I would hate to say I was not the mental equal of either. But the idea of learning stenography was suggested to me by Mr. Korbly, saying something about it at home last term. I thought then that the acquisition of this
Sat. Jan. 19. 
art would be a good preliminary step to the profession of law or to journalism in which latter direction my thoughts seem somewhat definitely to settle. My youth, the opportunity of at once sustaining myself, the fair prospects of honorable success, the opportunities of travel as a correspondent, the importance of the journalists profession, etc. seem to tell me that this is my most congenial sphere.
I do not desire to be a business man; there are enough in the family now to represent the hardware trade. Besides my education is too valuable to squander by tying myself down to the petty, irksome restraints of a business life. As to wealth, I care not, whether I ever become a five hundred thousand man. Of course, I expect to live very comfortably and to know how to manage my finances.
Sunday, Jan. 20. 
I have come out rather plainly above but deem this subject worthy of its attention………
I wished I had gone to church this morning when there was a crowd of boys in here who kept me from doing anything.
Mr. McCoy preached this afternoon a sermon which by request he repeated, having delivered it last Sunday Morning. His text was, "Holding up the word of life." It was quite a practical, heart-reaching discourse.
Howard Fisher and I had quite a conversation after Y.M.C.A on the questions relating to predestination. We discussed the matter thoroughly but were still somewhat in the dark on closing. We took Judas as a good example of what we meant.
Notes for page 75
Monday, Jan. 21 
John and I went to Gilchrist's for supper Friday night on the invitation of Taggart. It was quite a treat for me; it is a pleasure for me to partake of any body's hospitality, though it be only turnips and water. A change here at Hanover is quite acceptable in any form. The oratorical election is again being stirred up and the boys are all busy; it grows warmer and warmer even though there are two weeks yet.
Mr. McKee died last Thursday and was buried Friday afternoon. Father and Mr. Reid came out to represent the trustees; I did not see them, however, as our society did not adjourn. We had a lively time Friday night; my decision was twice appealed from, but the chair was sustained each time.
Tuesday, Jan. 22
My first decision was that the negative leader, as well as the affirmative, could bring up no new arguments in his last speech. I declared the judges disfranchised on the voting, for they were not acting as members of the hall, and such vote might prejudice them; this was the second point appealed from. The debate was rather poor; on the subject: Resolved, that the President should be elected by a direct vote of the people; decided in the affirmative. I had to fine severely in two or three instances; am getting along in the chair better than I had anticipated. I rather enjoy rendering decisions, bringing down the gavel for order, etc.
I have written two long letters to Will Harper and Aunt Lizzie today.
Wednesday, Jan. 23. 
I intended to learn a declamation tonight, but could not find the book. I would have had to speak earlier, but the roll was cominenced at the foot of the class this term-more of a brurden than a releif. Nathan Powell and I made a call on Mrs. Fisher, Edith, and Miss Hennesey last night. We had a very pleasant time and were especially entertained by a basket of apples. Nathan gave Mrs. F a beautiful Christmas card. He also gave her and Mrs. Morse framed pictures of the fraternity group.
Thursday, Jan. 24.
There was quite a change in the weather today. The thermometer registered 10 degrees below early this morning. There is a heavy fall of snow on the ground; in fact it is a rare thing this winter to see the bare ground. We are truly having a severe winter; at least so as compared with the last two.
We had a good session of society this afternoon and a good debate tonight; the question was, resolved, “That the present system of punishing crime increases rather than prevents it”.
This question is wholly one sided on its face, yet they made a fair debate of it. It is evident that if there was were no punishment for crime, there would be a great deal more of it. Hence if we tak away the system, crime increases. Dunn presented this squelcher. The judges having disagreed, the chair dec. in the negative.
Saturday, Jan. 26. 
We had a cool and bracing ride up here (Madison) this morning. The thermometer was zero. I enjoyed it very much and did not suffer from the cold as “Bob Todd” had filled the sleigh full of nice warm robes. Nature had decked herself in her garb of wintry beauty. The brown beach trees with here and there an evergreen were robed in their garments of white frost. The few withered and dead leaves-some still resplendent with the rich hues of Autumn-made a gorgeous (crossed out: beautiful) background for the network of beautiful white. The sun gradually came forth in all its beauty and lent its splendor to this already magnificent combination of nature. But all this would not have seemed so picturesquely beau-tiful, if my own spirit within had not beat in unison with the happy aspect of inanimate nature. My drooping heart had revided at the thought of once more being welcomed to the bosom of my family. I had remained for over three weeks in the classic village and was quite (crossed out: w) delighted when I beheld once again the lofty towers and imposing masonry of my native city. The great town was bustling with life and activity which seemed doubly impressive on account of the placid quiet of the little burg rendered important by the location of a college in its midst. My first thought was of the loved ones at home and hither I bent my rapid advance. After receiving a warm welcome, I at once went to work on my declamation, which I had committed by dinner time. Had a good sleigh ride tonight with Florence Harper; the sleighing was never better.
Sunday, January 27, 
Mr. Brown preached a good sermon on “Peter’s Denial”. He was unable to preach at night on account of ill health; so we all went to the Second Church to hear their new pastor Mr. Barnard. He is not as good as I expected and does not admit of comparison with Dr. Brown. I went to S.S. this afternoon but did not stay for the lesson as I had no class in which to go.
Monday, January 28, 
I had a boy at Rea’s bring me out in the buggy this morning. I have put in a full day. I studied all afternoon and then practiced my speech till supper time. I got three letters in mail this eve- from Will Harper, Sadie Lepper, and a circular.
Tuesday, January 29, 
It has turned warmer and has rained for the past two days. The walks are in a horrible condition; the mud is fully up to the tops of our rubbers in many places, and it is hard to keep them on. We had a rather short fraternity meeting because some of the boys wished to go to the social.
Wednesday, January 30, 
I did a great deal better with my speech this morning than I had expected. I had not taken much interest in it, and commenced it only last Friday, besides it was a very old one but it has not been spoken for a long time; Henry Clay’s speech was on Ambition. Doctor told me I “seemed to do everything just right”, but my delivery lacked something, which he thought was “fire”. It is not that, but it is the need of a deeper, more developed voice and the need of about ten years and ten inches and fifty pounds.
Monday, April 7 
I have been intending for the last month to write up many of the interesting events that have happened, but it seems I will never have the time unless I just take it from something else. It may be that I have been doing more real labor lately and have not had as many opportunities to communicate with my journal as I used to. However, believing that the more man does, the more he can do, I will re-consecrate myself to the keeping of a diary, if not as much of a journal as in the past.
The Spring Exhibitions have come and gone since Feb. 23. Sister visited at Dr. Fisher's during them and had a very pleasant time. I was not on our exhibition and threfore did not have much to do at the end of the term; especially so, because we were releived of having examinations, that is, only the juniors and Seniors. I occupied some of this spare time in reading "Yesterday, Today and Forever", a long poem, written by Brickerseth. It is a spendid work something on the order of Paradise Lost. I intended to read more but think this quite a large step in the right direction.
I went home last week to attend the Leap Year Party at Pogue's and felt amply repaid. It was a delightful affair and I enjoyed the fine music and dancing immensely. . . . I took Ella Peace riding the next day and also read her Virgil. I have always been very attentive to her and do not like to see other boys get too strong a hold. She is quite popular since "Aunt Drusie & Uncle Newt" allow her to go out in society.
Notes for page 83
Tuesday, Apr. 8th 
Alas, my intentions are good but I have not written for a week and it is now April 15. Since last we met, I have taken a trip to Indianapolis, having been excused as a "backer" of the Hon. Nathan Powell, Hanover's delegate to the state oratorical. The primary contest was held on the 7th inst., the contestants being Powell, Iddings and Montgomery; they came out in their respective order as named above. We went up Wednesday Afternoon, stopped at the New Denison for supper, but stayed at the Grand Hotel afterwards, as that was headquarters. Ed Powell, Fisher, Wiggam, Turner, Irwin, Voris and I represented Chi and did it well too. Irwin and I took the Misses Fisher, of 242 E. South Street, to the contest and afterwards to the Sigma Chi banquet at the New Denison. This was the most elegant affair your honor ever attended, both as to the banquet and the manner in which it pulled my pocket book. Of course we went in a hack and I felt quite "cosmopolitan" when we were told by our "nigger" that the conveyance was in readiness, when we were descending in the elevator, when we were rattling oe'r the stony street and when we walked in the opera house late and took our seats among the upper ten in the parquet. It has been hard for me to come down to the homely fare of the C.P.H. and to think again that I am only a poor Boy with my fortune and fame yet unrealized. I often thought while strutting around the city that the bustle and metropolitan self-satisfaction would just suit me. . . . Nathan came out third, but should have had second place.
Notes for page 84
Wednesday, Apr. 23 
Today and tomorrow are our busy days this term. We have four good, solid recitations on these days and three every other except Monday. Think of getting twenty pagers of International Law, thirty lines of Greek (Antigone), ten pages of physiology, and a chapter of Optics in one afternoon and then going to fraternity at night as we had to do yesterday! I managed to read my Law and Mathematics before supper, my Greek immediately after, and my physiology at 11 p.m. after coming home. Besides this small amount of labor we are expected to write in our leisure (?) moments an essay and an oration for chapel which are both due at the same time- four weeks. Truly a student's lot is a hard one; it is up in the morning in time to get greek before breakfast, then a rush to make it to chapel, then a weary hour of worthless mathematics, then a course of greek ponies called Antigone; after this severe treatment, an hour among the learned expounders of the law; finally, he is subjected to an hour's mental anguish from that prince of quizzers the scientific professor. A few moments then for refreshments at the College Point House, an afternoon of battle with the hosts of Morpheus, which, when conquered, demand that the replenishing of the alimentary canal, at supper, falsely so called; meanwhile. kind friends drop in to find they are not disturbing you in your lessons. The evening shadows fall and soon the midnight hour ends this day of weary care.
Notes for page 85
Sunday, May 4 
John has returned and I am no longer an old bachelor. I find it quite pleasant to have him to talk to and confide in. His landlady--Mrs. Gilchrist--wrote a very exaggerated letter to his mother, saying that he was forming very loose habits, and had become a very bad boy. Mrs. Ferguson sent the letter back and John returned it to Mrs. Gilchrist or rather she snatched it from his hands when he confronted her with what she said. Dr. Fisher took hold of the case and the consequence is that, "Alling and Ferguson" still hold the fort in No. 7. Both members have seen trials and difficuties in mantaining their places in the firm but all is serene again. One fact is established now-we are older. John has become greatly subdued by his different misfortunes and is not the same "wild scamp" as of yore. Charles Jr. too has been improved by a two months and a half solitude; and during this time the importance of economizing and using every spare moment has been deeply impressed upon his mind. So that between us, there is quite a change in our corner of the third floor; we are less noisy, more dignified and more sedate. yes, it is time, I was learning to think more of the future and less of the frivoloties of the present. I have become so inured to the idea of leaving college that it seems as if I was to go in June. One short year! And college life will be over for me; precious hours have gone never to return and eventide is closing its shades around.
Notes for page 86
Sunday, May 25 
I have finished my oration on "Social Inequality" even to its delivery in chapel on last Wednesday. I am better pleased with this production than any I have ever written. This can not be egotistical, for none of my lofty themes have ever satisfied me; on the contrary I have always become disgusted with my orations by the time I have severely scrutinized them in committing. Turner, who is not in the habit of loose flattery, told me that mine was the best oration of the morning. Will Baird did not do near as well as he has the reputation of being capable to do. I also finished my class essay yesterday after a continuous siege of reading in the morning and writing in the afternoon and evening. My subject is the "Oregon Controversy" and I have managed to grasp the principles of the case - in my own mind at least.
The Freshman Ex. was held last Saturday. Ella Peace was my company; Howard Fisher took Mame Taylor, a new blossom on our society tree, and Heller, Carrie Calloway. We had a magnificent time and danced nearly all day. I was quite a figure in this part of the programme, having all the calling to do. We went on Wolf's barge with the Mamie Glass, a steam yacht, to propel us. It brought to my mind the similar scenes of a year ago on the J. M. Abbot when the last class went. This is a very nice custom and every class should perpetuate it. Turner took Alice Emmet whom I recommended to him. She is a fine girl and I now have one of her rings; she is as lively as a cricket.
Notes for page 87
Monday, May 26 .
I have never enjoyed a Sunday in Hanover so much as I did yesterday. It seems that this day of rest becomes more and more acceptable to me as I grow older. I remember of sitting in the village church last year and thinking that in whatever calling I might engage, whatever might be my disappointments, Sundays would come to me, doubly dear, as one sweet refreshing place, where I could enjoy the pleasures of the sanctuary and lay aside the anxious forebodings concerning my future career. Yesterday was enjoyed the more by me because my essay was completed, my oration was done, and the prospect of an easy time on account of Prof. Young's departure lay before us. My physical condition was eminently fitted for appreciating the beautiful day, for I had not felt so well for a long time. Upon coming home from S.S, I took off my coat and stretched out upon the bed to read the "Little Classics." By the way, these little sketches, such as "My Chateux," A Bachelor's Reverie, are very entertaining and I become greatly interested in them. Another cause of my perfect satisfaction was a new suit of clothes with a four button cut-away coat. This is my first appearance in one and of course the novelty was quite pleasant. Howard Fisher also has a frock coat; we have started the style in Madison, for five other boys have followed us; among whom is Howard Alling. Last Sunday, Bert, Eck. Graham, Howard, and I loomed up with a row of cutaways and canes that made everybody wonder at the amounts of style. It is a new departure for the young men but a very acceptable one.
Notes for page 88
But to continue my remarks about Sunday: or more appropriately, the Sabbath: As far back as I can remember, this day has been the milestone of the different events of my life. I can see myself now upon father's knee, with Howard and Will on the other, hearing him read the interesting narratives in the "Child's Bible Story Book"; concerning Moses and the Children of Israel, Samson and the Philistines, David and Goliath. The pictures of Noah's ark, the Brazen Serpent, the dividing of the Red Sea, and others are firmly fixed in my mind as if they lay before my eyes. Truly, the impessions of childhood are the most lasting of all periods of life. An eminent priest has said, "give me the children to educate till six years of age and you (protestants) can make what you please of them." I will always remember the first coat and vest I ever had; father took me in to see Miss Mary Hanley and she made a great many remarks about it; I can just imagine how I looked and what my thoughts were when I see Van. He has pretty suit with his first vest and it makes me live that period of my life over again. And just in this connection I think of the many times grandma Crane has taken us to dinner and supper on Sunday; how greatly I enjoyed the good bread when she would give us a lunch during the afternoon, to eat under the syringa bush near the old pit. That corner of the lot has changed wonderfully since then; a high board fence used to stand in place of the present stone wall and comparatively low fence on the west. There was a deep
Notes for page 89
ditch on the inside of the fence, composed of clay soil and many an hour have I spent in rolling clay marbles and balls to bake in the sun. This has remained distinct in my mind on account of the frequent references of Will Harper who was an interested party at that time. My early years on Main St. are intimately associated with the Harper boys - George and Will. George was Berts great crony; and how they did try to rule me and Will. One day we strolled to the river and who should we see taking the forbidden skiff ride, but Bert and George. Of course our threats of exposure soon brought the boat to land, and we had quite a pleasant ride. The only time I remember of playing at their house was one Sunday when my parents and Will's had gone to Mr. Geo. Brights funeral and had sent me to their house. Every toy we used is plainly before me now. Then when Harpers moved to their present home on Second St. we used often to see the boys. That was the time when our passion for keeping a store was at its height. Those fellows were in the habit of stealing all the stock from the drug store. So that all we made was clear gain. Licorice, cinnamon essence, almanacs and memoranduum books were the principal articles of merchandise. I cannot forget either how Mr. Harper
came up stairs one day and found Bert and Geo. dipping promiscuously into all the stores; "ah! then there was hurrying too and fro" as he went among the crowd with his paddle - the top of a box. Charley, alias Sonny, Belser and I found a convenient avenue of escape and were soon past all danger. About this time, in my numerous escapades about that drug store, the farce of "Harvey" Young met me. How little did the shaver in short pants and bare feet think that he was in a few years to bow submissively beneath the iron rule of "Professor" A. H. Young - a change for both, as the bare feet have been covered and the pants lengthened. Will often tells that Harvey, as he calls him, grew very angry one day where he stopped him in a buggy just to ride from Broadway hotel to his grandfather Greens - Dr Ford's present residence. Let me not fail to mention the velocipede they had given them on one Christmas. It was among the first in Madison and the rest of us boys considered it quite a treat to have a ride. We all went through the Walnut St. sewer just after it was built and of couse the velocipede went too. Bert, Will and George were greatly interested in printing enterprises and edited the Amateur Banner and Star.
Notes for pages 90 and 91
I cannot leave this subject of the Harper boys without saying a word about our mutual interests at Capt. Spillman's; whose place was located just opposite Eagle Hollow in Kentucky. The old gentleman is a warm friend of Mr. Harper and in this way the boys have become as well acquainted with him as if he were a neighbor. Bert and George often visited together and as soon as they came home Will and I took their places. Oh! Those good old Kentucky dinners! I can taste that good old buttermilk even now and that was nothing to the delicious biscuits which always form a part of Kentucky dinners. I have often said at home that only Kentuckians knew how to make real cornbread; and it is a fact that I have never in my life tasted a meal so palatable and satisfying as the simple, yet elegant dinner, which I ate one summer day, long ago, when Will Harper and I left in the afternoon in a carriage which brought Mrs. Harper over for a short visit. The old lane dividing Trimble and Carroll Counties lies before me now with every twist and turn; the beautiful hills and groves at its terminus rise up before my imagination till I seem to stand in the cool shade on some commanding height and look far away to the Indiana Hills and then to the no less grand prospect of the beautiful farms spread out all over the fertile river bottoms.
Notes for page 92
But I started to write something about Sunday and many of my words have sadly missed the aim. It seems appropriate that I should here mention my S.S. reminiscences. A faint and dim impression of my first hours in the basement of the First Pres. Church on Broadway still lingers. Miss Mary E. Reid was the first and only teacher of the infant class during my course. I can remember one or two Sabbaths when the class occupied the larger square apartment just north of the present room. But all my recollections centre just now upon the little rows of chairs, one above the other, till they almost reached the ceiling. My seat was upon the second row and many the time have I risen from it to repeat six verses of scripture and gain a card for it. Greater was my delight to receive a small book (pamphlet) when I had secured twenty of these cards. Father used to enjoy standing in the room when I was repeating them- secretarie's book in hand. It seems strange but pleasant to me now to think that he has remained in that capacity for so many years, while I, a youth, have deserted my post this early in the conflict. But my heart is still warm toward the S.S. and if I am needed, the only thing necessary is to call on me.
Notes for page 93
My most pleasant recollections of the First Church Sabbath School are connected with Mrs. Weyer's class. Here I learned nearly all of what I know of the Bible. Let me record just here that I owe my religious inclinations to her faithful teachings more than any other human agency. Sam Moffett and I (who alas! have become so greatly estranged of late) used to carry on arguments with our teacher as profound as either could produce even now. My intellect seemed to grasp the situation better then and memory did her part more nobly. A book Mrs. Weyer gave me - Romulus and Remus - in 1878 stirred my desire for J. S. C. Abbott's histories and I did not stop till I had read most of those in the Madison Library. Although Miss Kate White was accustomed to review family affairs every week her heart was evidently in the good work. She succeeded Mrs. Weyer when the latter took sick. I do not know what her ailment is, but she is still confined to her bed and grows weaker all the time. The Sabbath School by the way is or rather has just been in the last stages of dissolution. Scholars have become very scarce and teachers more so. There is some advancement of late; but the prospect is not bright for restoration to its former self. Well, it is time I should say Vale' to this subject.
Sept. 14 
Before going farther it would be well for me to pause and state that I have entered upon my last year as a student of Hanover College. The old bell pealed forth its familiar notes upon the cool September morn of last Wednesday and Charles Alling, Jr., in common with the class of ’85, heard its welcome to another year of college life for the last time. The last opening day which we shall ever see as students has come and gone. And we are almost warranted in saying commencement is upon us. That day is one of importance to me. Its scenes are constantly before my mind. Often when I think of my formal departure from college on commencement day, my feelings overcome me. It even seems probable that I will burst into tears after my oratorical effort, so strong will be the effect upon my composure. Or it may be, that my heart will fail me just as I rise; seeing opposite me the body of trustees, with their velnerable forms, their cultured minds and criticizing eye and ear. Father will be sitting among them, and as I see him gazing concernedly among the class at his only son, who ever graduated, and from Hanover College, so dear with recollections of mother’s former home,-I say then there will be a tax upon my energies. The family and some relatives probably will be sitting in the audience and as I feel them gazing upon the representative
Notes for page 95
of the family upon the platform, my hopes will again sink. It may be, just as on the spring exhibition two years ago, that the sight of those most concerned in my welfare may disconcert me and stammering under embarrassment I may sit down in confusion. But why have I to fear this calamity? Because I am just as much embarrassed now on declaiming in chapel as I was four years ago. My lips grow dry and my voice fails. I can not better express my feelings, when disconcerted upon the platforms, than by using Huline’s expression concerning the roller coaster at the Louisville Exposition. He said that when it went tearing around upon the track he always felt a sort of “goneness about his stomach.” It does not behoove me to speak more of my difficulties, in appearing before the public, or I will never get over it because the impression will thus be made more permanent. I know that if I have my speech thoroughly committed, it will give me a self-confidence which will make it almost impossible to fail. My speeches too have always been composed hurriedly and therefore illy connected; which renders a perfect committal very difficult. If I can only get a good subject, a logical and well written body and a flowery conclusion; and withal perfect committal I know I can do myself justice in chapel this term.
Notes for page 96
Sunday, Sept. 28 
It is a pity I cannot write more in my old friend but the fates seem to be against it. Every day seems to be so completely filled, that no time is left to use in compiling my daily thoughts and acts. I often wonder how it is that Frank Swope accomplishes so much. He gets his lessons better than I do and has more surplus time in which to play ball, lawn tennis, and especially does he devote an hour or two daily to music. Now why is it I can not practice short hand some time during the week at least? One reason is that confinement to my room is not healthy for me. Constipation affects me whenever I stay in my room during the whole day. Therefore one hour at least must be spent in aiding my digestive apparatus in its work. Before 4:30 then in the afternoon, I have time only for one lesson. After supper, I generally study from seven till ten but the interruptions are frequent so that a whole evening is often wasted. Besides, fraternity meeting comes on Tuesday night and it is therefore lost. A social or call or concert generally uses another evening of the week, leaving only Monday and Wednesday and Saturday nights on which to study. Our lessons are not hard this term, but they require a great deal of time—psychology particularly. On Tues. and Thurs. we are
Notes for page 97
so very fortunate as to have only two studies to employ our time; some of the other classes, on the other hand, have four to get on these days. In many cases it seems that “the more man does, the more he can do.” Again, it often occurs to me that I do not know how to recite. Some fellows make a blind stagger at questions and hit them every time; with an air so in different and features so suggestive of a knowledge of the whole subject, that the professors pass them by with a ten. It is only during this—my senior year that I have learned to recite to Prof. Young. I study hard and closely and aim to gain a general knowledge at least of every species that arises. I then sit up and look at him like a man—which I never used to do—and even discuss the questions with him. It amuses me to see how John Wiggam manages his recitations. He often fails to look at his book before the vacant hour and then skims the lesson over here in my room or in Marshall’s. When he goes to Prof. Morse’s room he always seems to get through without any serious blunders. But it seems to me that it is only on account of his age that he is often passed by when a hard question reaches him and that his answers—generally vague—are accepted. While with one so young as I the old Prof. does not scruple to be very familiar; that is, he “calls me to time” whenever it suits his royalty; whenever I do not know a lesson, he always finds it out.
Notes for page 98
Sunday, Dec. 21, 1884
Having noticed on the previous page a remark concerning Prof. Morse and his recitations, it seems best to resume the narration on that fertile topic. As we boys have often remarked, our recitations to Prof. Morse become a mere farce in the last two years of the college course. Analytical Geometry was the only mathematics in which I took any interest and I made a success of it, obtaining a mark of 96 unprecedented in my previous mathematical career. Very little time did I ever spend upon that study, but it was enough to give me a fair knowledge of the subject. I have often said, when rather discouraged, that I could never make a mathematician, but the reason was a lack of effort. Because in Analytics, my marks were high and I felt they were justly so. There are some curves and equations in that study which are difficult and I can say, without boasting, that I grasped and understood them as well as any other man in the class. Of course some things were difficult and discouraging to me, especially those operations which depended on former studies as geometry and trigonometry. But upon looking back at my record in mathematics in the first three years I can not seriously blame myself for its shortcomings. At that time I was riding out from Madison and was requiring a great deal of time out of each day in which to do it.
Notes for page 99
We, Howard and I, would arise about 6:30 every morning in the winter, often before it was light enough to dress without the gas. After putting on our clothes in a hurried manner, we would eat or rather bolt our breakfast from 6:45-6:55. This always left us five minutes in which to hitch the horse to the buggy, which, by the way, we had reduced to a science: one of us would hurry to the stable each morning before eating breakfast and feed, brush, and put the harness on the horse; everything would then be ready to hustle him out of the stable, snap the lines and traces, and dash on to conflict. Starting at 7 a.m. left us just an hour and ten minutes to make it in time for chapel. It was a full seven miles and a half up hill, so that we often tested the metal of our charger in attempting to escape absence. We would arrive home at 2 p.m. and begin studying about 2:15. It left us only a short while till it was time to curry the horse, grease the buggy or do something relating to our transportation. During what we had of the afternoon then Charlie Allison, Linck Cravens and I would "dig out" our Latin. After supper, I always looked over my mathematics, or else my Greek, but soon became too sleepy to do anything, having been out in the wind, and being too young, growing all the while, to make myself put in the evening till ten p.m. at least to good advantage. So I say, that my record
Notes for page 100
in mathematics, though it is not what it should be, seemed almost fated. If I had only boarded at Dr. Fisher's in my Freshman year, as Walter so persistently advised me, and have demanded ungently said request, I might stand today at the head of my class. “If the dog had not stopped, he would have caught the rabbit.” However, I am not ashamed of my course in Hanover College and have much to make me feel satisfied. Though I may be a little short in Greek and Mathematics, my record in Latin is a formidable chair of self satisfaction in which to rest my misgivings. Again, if I had stayed in Hanover during my Freshman year, it might have had its drawbacks; so with the optimist let me say, “The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places, I have a goodly heritage.” x x I find I have digressed exceedingly from the intention in starting which was to say a word concerning our “mathematical farce.” Some of our recitations to Prof. Morse are as ridiculous as the closing piece in a negro minstrels. In Astronomy there is none whose action is sound. Many enter the room without even looking at the lesson, and make the queerest answers, but generally sliding by without notice by giving evasive answers and drawing Prof. on into answering his own questions. The “recitations in Astronomy” are too rich to be soon forgotten.
Notes for page 101
Hanover College Department of History