The American Cyclopædia (1879)/Dartmouth College

For works with similar titles, see Dartmouth College.
The American Cyclopædia
Dartmouth College

Edition of 1879. See also Dartmouth College on Wikipedia, and the disclaimer.

DARTMOUTH COLLEGE, an institution of learning in Hanover, N. H. The college buildings front on a fine campus on an upland plain near the Connecticut river. Dartmouth hall is a long central building, containing the chapel, while in line with it are Wentworth and Thornton halls. In front of this line is Reed hall, containing the college library. These buildings are old and plain. East of the line is Culver hall, a handsome new structure, 100 by 60 ft. and four stories high, containing laboratories, recitation and lecture rooms, and rooms for the various cabinets and museums. North of the college is the Chandler scientific school, while the medical college and the observatory are in the vicinity. The government of the college is vested in a corporation of 12 members, of whom the governor of New Hampshire for the time being is one. Eight of the members must be residents of the state, and seven must be laymen. The college comprises an academic, a scientific, and an agricultural department, in each of which a partial course may be taken, embracing two at least of the prescribed studies. The academic year, beginning about the first of September and ending with commencement on the last Thursday in June, is divided into two terms of 20 weeks each. A public examination is held at the end of each term. Instruction is administered by recitations and lectures, chiefly the former. The regular course in the academic department extends through four years, upon the completion of which the degree of bachelor of arts is conferred. All the studies are required, except that in the first term of the sophomore year French may be taken instead of mathematics, and in the second term of the junior year Greek and Latin are optional with mathematics. The tuition fee for each student is $70 per annum, while the expenses for room rent, board, fuel, and lights average from $120 to $200 a year. Aid is given to indigent students, mainly in the form of scholarships, usually of $70 per annum, but in some cases $100. In 1874 upward of 100 scholarships were available. Prizes amounting to about $500 are annually awarded. The Chandler scientific department was founded in 1852, pursuant to a bequest of $50,000 made by Abiel Chandler, late of Walpole, N. H., and formerly of Boston, Mass. The regular course comprises four years, at the end of which the degree of bachelor of science is conferred. The degree of master of science is conferred in course upon a bachelor of science of three years' standing or more, on payment of $5. French and German are included among the studies, while Latin and Greek are omitted. The cost of tuition in this department is $60 a year. The agricultural department was established in 1866 by the legislature, under the title of the “New Hampshire College of Agriculture and the Mechanic Arts,” in fulfilment of the act of congress for this purpose. It was organized under a board of nine trustees, appointed partly by the governor and council and partly by the corporation of the college. There are two terms in each year, extending from about the first of September to the last of April, with a winter vacation of four weeks. The course of instruction extends through three years, and embraces mathematics, physics, drawing, bookkeeping, botany, chemistry, physiology, zoölogy, mechanics, political economy, and geology. Applicants for admission must be at least 16 years of age, and pass a satisfactory examination in arithmetic, English grammar, geography, and history. During the first year all students pursue the same studies; at the beginning of the second year they are required to select either the special course of agriculture, or the course of mechanic arts. In the immediate vicinity of the college is an experimental farm of 165 acres, which also furnishes to students opportunities for remunerative labor. A new building is soon to be erected, containing rooms for the farm superintendent and for students. It will embrace a boarding establishment, which will be supplied with the products of the farm, and where board will be furnished to students at cost. The degree of bachelor of science will be conferred upon those who have completed the entire course of agriculture or mechanic arts and have passed the final examination. The cost of tuition is $15 per term. A special course of instruction in civil engineering for advanced students has been established by means of $70,000 given for that purpose by the late Gen. Sylvanus Thayer of Braintree, Mass. It is designed to extend through at least two years, a portion of each being given to outdoor practice. The medical department was founded in 1797, and was formerly known as the New Hampshire medical college. There is an annual course of lectures, beginning early in August and continuing 14 weeks. Medical instruction is also given by means of recitations, for which purpose there are two terms of 14 weeks each, beginning in December and in March. Students 21 years old and upward, who have devoted three years to the study of medicine, and during that time have attended two courses of medical lectures, including one at Dartmouth, may upon examination receive the degree of doctor of medicine. By a recent gift of $10,000 from E. W. Stoughton of New York, a museum of pathological anatomy has been formed.—The faculty of the college comprises, besides the president and librarian, 26 professors, 2 lecturers, and 7 instructors. In 1873-'4 the total number of students was 420, including 262 in the academical, 79 in the scientific, 52 in the medical, 22 in the agricultural, and 5 in the civil engineering department. These students represented 23 different states and territories, Nova Scotia, Canada, Liberia, and Japan. According to the triennial catalogue of 1873, the whole number of alumni was 3,907, of whom 2,077 were living. The several libraries connected with the college contain 47,200 volumes. The astronomical and meteorological observatory contains, besides other valuable instruments, a new telescope of 9410 inches aperture and 12 ft. focal length, made by Clarke of Cambridgeport, Mass. The college is provided with extensive philosophical apparatus, a museum of geology and natural history, chemical laboratory, and other valuable collections. A gymnasium has recently been erected at a cost of $24,000, the gift of George H. Bissell of New York.—Dartmouth college received its charter in 1769, and went into operation in the following year under the presidency of Eleazar Wheelock, D. D. It grew out of an earlier school established by the Rev. Mr. Wheelock in Lebanon, Conn., and designed for the education of Indian children. The idea of this school had been suggested to him by his success in educating a young Mohegan Indian, Samson Occom, who became a remarkable preacher. Other pupils from the Delaware tribe were afterward received, and the school became an object of public attention and interest. In 1754 a farmer named Joshua Moor gave a house and two acres of land for the purposes of the institution, which was from this time known as Moor's Indian charity school. Occom, accompanied by the Rev. Nathaniel Whitaker, visited England to collect funds; a sum of about £10,000 was subscribed, and a board of trustees was there organized, of which Lord Dartmouth, one of the subscribers, was made president. The school was so much resorted to by the native tribes, that Dr. Wheelock determined to transfer it to some place nearer to them. Many proffers of situations were made; the town of Hanover, on the Connecticut river, in the western part of New Hampshire, was selected, and grants of about 44,000 acres of land were made. The institution was chartered by Gov. Wentworth, under the name of a college, with all the privileges and immunities of any university within the British realm; and the name of Lord Dartmouth was adopted for it. Moor's school soon afterward obtained an independent charter, and remained as an academical or preparatory department till 1849. A small fund still exists for the education of Indians. In 1770 Dr. Wheelock removed his family and school, consisting of 18 whites and 6 Indians, from Lebanon to the wilderness of Hanover, where they lived in log huts. In 1771 the first class of four students was graduated. President Wheelock retained his office till his death in 1779, and was succeeded by his son John Wheelock, who in 1782 was sent by the trustees to Europe to promote the interests of the college; and through introductions by Gen. Washington, Dr. Franklin, and John Adams, he obtained considerable sums of money, philosophical instruments, and other valuable donations. The prince of Orange was one of the donors. He returned in 1784, and, after a presidency of 36 years, was removed from the office by the trustees in 1815. This act, which was occasioned chiefly by a local religious controversy, led to a conflict with the legislature of the state; that body claimed the right to amend a charter of which it was the guardian, and in 1816 passed acts creating a new corporation in which the property was vested, and changing the title of the college to Dartmouth university. The old trustees began a suit for the recovery of the college property, which was decided against them in the supreme court of the state. It was carried by appeal before Chief Justice Marshall in the supreme court of the United States, where the judgment was reversed, and the principle of the inviolability of chartered property fully established. It was by his elaborate argument in behalf of the plaintiffs in this case that Daniel Webster, at the age of 35, took rank among the most distinguished lawyers in the country. The question excited also a violent controversy in the local newspapers. Wheelock was raised to the presidency of the university by the new board, in February, 1817, but died within two months, and was succeeded by William Allen, D. D., who retained the office till the decision of the question in favor of the college by the supreme court in 1819. Francis Brown, D. D., was the successor of Wheelock as president of the college, having been elected by the old board in 1815, and retained the office till his death in 1820. He was succeeded in the presidency by the Rev. Daniel Dana, who after one year was succeeded by Bennet Tyler, D. D. Upon the resignation of Dr. Tyler in 1828, Nathan Lord, D. D., was chosen president, and performed the duties of that office till 1863, when he was succeeded by the Rev. Asa Dodge Smith, LL. D., of New York, who still retains the office.

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Dartmouth College.