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It would contribute immensely to the proper development of the College, if a suitable building were erected to accommodate the departments of physics and civil engineering, agriculture and natural history. Such an edifice, for which an admirable plan has been prepared, should contain a large room for the agricultural museum, and a lecture-room adjoining ; a large room for the State collections in natural history, which are now in danger of destruction by fire in the south dormitory; and a lecture-room and laboratory for the professor of physics, with ample accommodations for apparatus. In the upper portion of the same building should be apartments for the College library and reading-room, and a spacious hall for public exercises.
Money is also greatly needed for the constant increase of the collections, and especially for the enlargement of the library. While, within suitable restrictions, the College can, doubtless, always enjoy the benefits of the valuable library and collections of Amherst College, it must be obvious to all, that for the books, specimens, and apparatus which are required for daily use, it should be independently furnished.
The foregoing statement of the deficiencies of the College is made, not with the expectation that they will at once be supplied either by individual, legislative, or congressional munificence, but in the hope that a knowledge of them may awaken sympathy in some quarters, and induce the friends of the Institution to rally with unwonted enthusiasm for its
Professor Totten's Report states clearly what has been attempted and accomplished in the military department during the past year. Considering the difficulties which have been experienced in other colleges in the maintenance of a thorough system of discipline and instruction in this department, his complete success and decided popularity are quite remarkable
. As he has shown very decided ability as an officer and teacher during his detail at the College, it would be very agreeable to have him again assigned to duty at Amherst,
A course of lectures upon veterinary science and practice has been provided for the present senior class, and it is hoped the funds of the College may important subject to be given every year. The lecturer for the class of 1878 is Dr. Charles P. Lyman of Springfield,
The first public exercise of anniversary week occurred on Monday evening, June 18, and consisted of the Farnsworth Prize Declamations, which were honored by the presence of the founder. The judges were Hon. C. L. Flint of Boston, and Messrs. G. L. Smith and E. E. Webster of Ainherst. The gold medals were awarded to Lockwood Myrick of the sophomore class, and Edgar R. Wing of the freshman class ; and the silver medals to Roscoe W. Swan, sophomore, and Alvan L. Fowler, freshman.
The examination of the graduating class for the Grinnell Prizes, for excellence in agriculture, occurred in the forenoon of Tuesday, June 19; and the comunittee were President P. A. Chadbourne of Williams College, and Messrs. E. A. Ellsworth of Barre, and H. C. Comins of Hadley. The successful competitors were David H. Benson and John E. Southmayd, between whom the first prize, of fifty dollars, was divided, and Atherton Clark, who received the second prize, of thirty dollars.
The committee of award for the Hills Prizes, for the best collection of dried plants, were Professors H. G. Jesup of Dartmouth College, Edward Hitchcock of Amherst College, and S. T. Maynard of the Agricultural College. The first prize, of fifteen dollars, was given to Atherton Clark, whose herbarium was the largest ever collected by a student in the College, and contained eleven hundred and twenty-five species admirably mounted, named, and catalogued. The second prize, of ten dollars, was awarded to John E. Southmayd.
The Totten Military Prize, of twenty-five dollars, was bestowed upon David H. Benson for the best essay upon the subject assigned ; viz., “ The Military Resources of America.”
The military parade in the forenoon of Graduation Day, June 20, was largely attended, and very interesting and satisfactory. In the absence of his Excellency the Governor, the battalion was reviewed by Ex-Gov. William B. Washburn. The diplomas for special excellence in this department were bestowed upon Atherton Clark, John E. Southmayd, David H. Benson, James K. Mills, Joseph Wyman, and George E. Nye.
The theses of the graduating class were delivered in the
afternoon, in Amherst-College Hall; and the valedictory addresses were given by David H. Benson, who also had the bunor of representing the College at the commencement exercises of Boston University,
The diplomas of the University, in the absence of President Warren, were presented to matriculants by Secretary Flint.
His Honor Lieut.-Gov. Knight closed the exercises with appropriate remarks, and bestowed upon each member of the graduating class the diploma of the College, in the name of the Commonwealth.
PRESIDENT W. S. CLARK.
Sir, I have the honor to submit the following Report:
The work upon the centennial battery has been pushed, until it is now very near completion. It has been turfed and graded upon the inside, and one wing is already finished. It received its armament in time for the commencement exercises last June; and “the actual throwing of shell upon that occasion, from real mortars in a regular earthwork,” added great interest to the military exercises of the day. This battery now constitutes one of the most noticeable features upon the College-grounds, has afforded eminently practical instruction in earth work to the students who built it, will greatly facilitate the instruction of future classes, and, as a lasting monument of genuine enthusiasm, will certainly elicit the admiration of all who visit it.
The grading of the drill-ground early in the autumn has greatly improved its general appearance, and fitness for tactical manœuvre, and has thrown into greater relief the battery situated just beyond.
Through the kindness of the Adjutant-General of the State, large additions have been lately made to the collection in the military museum, and one hundred and sixty knapsacks furnished for purposes of camping and instruction. The usual supply of service ammunition for the twelvepounders and small-arms was received at the beginning of the year from the ordnance department at Washington; and an additional supply of friction primers, and ammunition for the eight-inch mortars, has since been promised from the same source. This large amount of ammunition is now stored in the new and substantial service magazine built during the year from the appropriation of the Trustees for that purpose. This magazine is situated just in rear of the mortar battery, and is connected with it by a suitable trench, which serves both as a covered
and a drain.
Since the last report, several important changes have been effected in the uniform of the College. The West-Point cadet suit is still the regulation for full dress, but is now obtained from the contractors, Devlin & Co., at the very noticeable reduction of some seven dollars from the original cost. At the instance of a petition, originated, and signed almost unanimously, by the students, a neat blouse has been adopted for undress purposes. It is made of cadet gray, to match the pants and cap; and is modelled upon the blouse lately worn by regular army officers, with braid and slashes. This blouse has been contracted for by Devlin & Co., and already furnished to about forty cadets, at the low price of eleren dollars and fifty cents. Made out of a material so famous for its iron wear, it will certainly effect a great saving to the students, while, from its neat military appearance, it cannot fail to strengthen their esprit de corps. While adopting the blouse, the regular cadet overcoat and fatigue-cap ornament were also recognized “as uniform ” by the department, and will be furnished by Devlin & Co, at twenty-one dollars and one dollar respectively. Of course it is not made obligatory upon cadets to procure any but the regular fulldress uniform, though the prospects are, that, in a few years, the blouse and cap ornament will be almost universally adopted.
The special military diploma, for some time contemplated by the department, was struck off from appropriate plates in time for issue to the last graduating class. The undertaking was entirely a private one; but no expense was spared to make a handsome document. It is surmounted by the design found upon the state-militia commission, has for its footpiece one very similar to that found upon that of the regular army, reads somewhat like the West-Point diploma, and recommends its holder to a commissioned rank in the regular army of the United States, or in the militia of any of the several States. Though offered to and within the reach of all, it is to be given, under the official control of the professor of military science and tactics, only to such as attain to genuine military merit. It is intended for a prize, and as an incentive to military proficiency, and is already recognized by the students as having a decided intrinsic value. Six members of the class of '77 received the distinction; and,