Bates, Sarah -- to Isabel Treadwell, Dec. 1867

Dublin Core


Bates, Sarah -- to Isabel Treadwell, Dec. 1867



Vassar College


Letter from Sarah Glazier, Vassar Class of 1868, to Isabel Treadwell ("Bells"), about faculty, studies and leisure activities during winter break.


Student activities
Student life


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College Women Sources Item Type Metadata


Hartford Ct. Christmas /67. My Dear Bells. I think when I wrote the hasty scribble thanking you for your kind invitation I told you I thought it quite probable I should stay at college during vacation, and would then write to you. But I thought better, or at least differently of such a plan, and so, though X stayed two days after the others, I am "safe at home", and enjoying my "Holidays". I think Louise wrote to you also, and probably entered into particulars, but X was too busy to ask her what she said, so I may tell you stale news. We were very much pleased with your invitation, and X shall keep it for some future time, so look out for a visit from us. - Mary Whitney does not live far from Auburndale and states that your reports of its pleasant situation are "quite correct", and threatens you with a call. She is a lovely girl. X never saw one change more. You know how shy and reserved she used to be. Well she has not yet become very talkative, but you would be surprised to see with what ease, and how little embarassment she presides as President of Delta Xi the Dec. 3d. performance she was Katharine, in a "Scene from Henry VIII", and she did so well, acted the character so perfectly, that I actually cried, although I was entirely aware that I was being humbugged into believing that it wasthe unfortunate Katherine. - Louise of course, presided on the stage—I received the company in the parlor Mattie Warner and Mary Avery I Christmas 1867 -2 had essays, &.c. fcc - In fact matters went off about as usual on such occasions, and it was pronounced a "success", although, in one thing, the girls did not do as well as usual - the voice. Most of them could scarcely be heard in the middle of the house. Our new English Pro- fessor, Mr. Backus, was quite exercised in his mind the next day over it, and seriously proposed that the members of the Senior Class read essays every week before the rest of the college. I can assure you, there was a great outcry, and the matter is "in statu quo". I am very sure I shall not disgrace myself in any such way. Prof. B. is quite an amusing specimen of the genus professor. He is not more than twenty-five, the tallest man in the house, has a perfect mania for criticising, and is full of fun. I like him very well, but cannot manage to feel any profound reverence, particularly in the Logic class, where the girls are nearly as old and certainly quite as smart as he. His wife is the sister of that Miss Glass that was at the college the first year, and they have a baby which the girls pet to death nearly, and denominate in classical language as the "infant Bacchus". Our new professor of languages, Mr. Robert, is a yet more amusing individual. With but ordinary talent, I think, he is the personification of obstinacy, so that he has his own way in everything. - He is personally repugnant to me - but yet I have a certain admiration for the way he sticks to a thing. You knew Prof. Knapp tried very hard to I Christmas 1867 -3 have Greek kept up even as special, with the greatest opposition. Now Prof. R. decrees that Greek shall be counted as regular, and it is so, even Dr. R. himself being made to think he has been in favor of it all the while. - As for Prof. Ritter, what I see of him I like much. He is a great contrast to Prof. W. in manners, that is sure. Louise comes home twice a week from singing-school enraptured with him and her own attempts at warbling", as she styles it. The concert last week Tuesday night was very fine - 'Very classical" as Prof. Robert would say (for he has two manias - "Greek" and "classical music") - nothing being admitted but sonatas and symphonies, or possibly a few songs composed by the "old masters". I enjoyed it much, but really I think they played over the heads (or is it the heart that understands music?) of most of the audience, and person ally, I enjoy that style of music better with only two or three people about, so that I can get at the meaning of it. I think it as useless to attempt appreciating a dosen of Beethoven's or Mendelsohn's compositions in one evening, as to read a dozen of Shake- speare's plays. - Dr. R. read to us Thanksgiving night - it was as enjoy- able as ever. I suppose you were scarcely so anxious to hear Dickens as to go to Boston. I should like to jiee the man, although I have heard several express themselves as disappointed in his reading. Our committee on lectures are so modest as to think he may be induced to come to the I Christmas 1867 -4 college* Possibly he may, lor the sake ol seeing the college, as Newman Hall did, so that we had the pleasure ol hearing him preach. — Have I told you that we have a new society-room, in the gymnasium building? With my usual luck I'm on a committee, so that I've had a siege getting carpet lor It, a stage made, &c. Julia Bush and I went to N.Y. expecting to see the exact thing we wanted, in the lirst store we entered, but instead spent two days "tramp, tramp", in the midst ol a drizzling rain. — That expedition, and the subsequent tribulations in getting it down have given me an intense disgust lor carpets. I don't think i! anyone oHered me a damask to cover my Hoor, I could be induced to pick it out. — Our room isn't the most elegant affair imaginable, but it is much better than none at all* You may have heard that Miss Dickinson and Miss Miller are married. Nellie Gay is not back this year. I miss my "little girl". Lyra is teaching and doing linely - intends to come back lor the last hall ol the year. - "Our class" are getting quite attached to each other - they are most all very nice girls - We sit together at the two central tables next to MEUs Li's, and are given a great many privileges. — Our Astronomy class and Miss M. intend to go West In 1867 to see the total eclipse ol the sun - don't you think it will be nice? Do excuse such wretched writing - it has been done in great haste but I resolved II it were Christmas, I would not put oil longer writing to you. I return to college next week. I hope soon to hear from you, and if I cannot write before, I most certainly ahall not forget "the eve of Good Friday". Do you know, Louise and I never received a word from you last year, at that time? — Santa Claus very kindly remembered me last night, as X trust he did you. -- One of my former classmates is to be married to-day, and X am going to the wedding, so again I must ask you to excuse haste, with much love, S.




Vassar College, “Bates, Sarah -- to Isabel Treadwell, Dec. 1867,” Beth Seltzer Test Site, accessed December 10, 2023,