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Page 66 text:
46 INDEX. — The Library — IN a preliminary report made by President Chadbourne, before the open- ing of the college, we find these words : " The very liberal offers made by Amherst College in regard to the use of its library, give the students of the Agricultural College advantages which they could not have for many years from the institution itself. " It was confiidentlv expected that these advantages would prove adec uate for the needs of the students. But it was soon found that practical difficulties lay in the way. Distance from town and the interruption of afternoon duties, prevented attendance during hbrary liours, and it was felt that a library nearer home must be secured. With characteristic energy, Colonel Clark set himself to the task of securing donations of books. By his personal efforts during the first three years, gifts of over 600 volumes were made, besides $150 in money. Promi- ' nent among the donors were Albert Fearing of Boston, Allen W. Dodge of Hamilton, H. K. Oliver of Salem, and Samuel Batchelder of Cambridge, whose gifts in the respective departments of horticulture, agriculture, api- culture, and the arts, formed the nucleus of the valuable collections of to-day. These books were placed in the reading-room of old South College, under the care of a student, but no attempt was made at classification, and no catalogue was prepared. The income from the fund generously provided by the Messrs. Hills of Amherst, for the maintenance of the botanical department, now became available, and from time to time, books pertaining to the studies of that dej)artment were added by purchase. Still the library increased but slowly. The woi ' ks were mostly of a technical character and did not interest the general reader. The two societies, the Washington Irving, and the Edward Everett, were meanwhile endeavoring to supply tliis deficiency and liad started libraries of their own. In 1875, a " Catalogue of the libraries of the Massachusetts Agricultural College, and its literary societies " was prepared, the former numbering 1,099 volumes, including its duplicates, and the latter about 600. No attempt was made, however, to increase its efficiency till the
Page 65 text:
NDEX. 45 Prof. M . — " What is the tent caterpillar? " Student. — " The male is a moth, and the female a beetle. " Prof. — " That ' s a peculiar arrangement. " Prof. W . — " Mr. Bl r, there is something very interesting about this, isn ' t there ? " B . — " Yes, sir. " Prof. — " What is it ? " B . — " I don ' t quite see. " Prof. Ai.-d. — ' • Mr. D-v-s, how much does a pound of clover-seed weigh ? ' ' Sh-m-r. — " Stakes his digestion on toast. " S-ND-RS-N. — " Never mind — : wait till to-morrow. " Prof. M (to B-sh, looking through the microscope) •What do B-SH. — " Two little bugs chasing each other. " Sh-m-r (just back fi-om Trinity game). — " I never felt better in my life. "
Page 67 text:
INDEX. 47 Alumni took hold of the matter in 1883, appointinj;- a committee to solicit funds and purchase books. On tlie accession of President Greenough. an appeal to the legislature was made for suitable accommodations, resulting in the erection of the present building. Pending its completion, the library was moved to the reading-room in North College, thoroughly examined, classified, and catalogued. |t was found then to contain 2.471 volumes. Leander Wetherell of Boston, presented 1,410 bound volumes, the societies gave what they had accumulated, and the generous subscriptions of Alumni permitted large purchases of new books. Tlie stimulus given to reading by providing fresh, interesting material in each department, was as marked as it was gratifying. The part taken by the Alumni is particularly worthy of mention. They subscribed $3,137.60. Of this amount in round numbers, $700.00 has been added to the permanent fund of the library. $1,900.00 has been expended in the purchase of 1,547 books, and the remainder has not yet been collected. For the future maintenance of the library, a perma- nent fund has been started, now amounting " to $4,721.36. The hbrary to-dav numbers 6.334 volumes, distributed as follows : Philosophy, . • 63 The Useful Arts, . 2,780 Theology, . 158 The Fine Arts, 37 Sociology, 760 Literature, 276 Philology, 100 History, .... 607 The Natural Sciences, . ■ 1:553 Total, .... 6,334 As might be expected, the department of horticulture (including botany) and agriculture are best supplied, the former numbering 1,000 volumes, the latter 1,411. This, however, does not represent as large an amount of material as would be supposed, man}- of the works being in sets of twenty or thirty volumes, thus agriculture with its 1,411 volumes, numbers but 454 distinct titles. The libraries of literature and history are especially deficient, and the empty shelves in the departments of zoology, chemistry, and geology, are a standing appeal to some warm hearted alumnus to loosen the strings of his purse and " transmute the sordid gold into the heaven-born thoughts of men. ' " G. .
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