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Philander Chase describes the first Commencement Ceremony at Jubilee College.
Philander Chase, Laura Chase, Dudley Chase, Samuel Chase, Jubilee College, commencement, graduation, ceremony
Chase, Phllander, "Letter to Laura Chase" (1847). Philander Chase Letters. 1299.
You see my Dear Laura the Order your proceedings here on Jubilee Hill at our Commencement yesterday.
What a wonder! Seven or 800 people all assembled together to witness the fact that Jubilee College was not is not dead -- or rather that it has indeed a Being
Never were the Solemnities of the Church more decently conducted than those of Yesterday in Jubilee Chapel. The Rev Sam’l Chase read the morning prayer - Your Uncle Dudley read the lessons and his wife performed on the Organ.
Of the proceedings in going to the Green Arbor” in proession[sic] you’ll have some idea by my telling you that it reached ‘round the west wing of the College and extended 2 or 3 hundred yards under the direction of your Uncle Henry who was Marshall of the day having a Band of Music at his control to the Place prepared for conferring collegiate degrees. The Ranks opening to the right & left the Order was reversed - and when I came to “Green Arbor” situate under three spreading Oaks and canopied by fresh boughs over hanging a well carpeted Platform surrounded on every side (but one) with comfortable seats the whole seemed enchantment. Never have I been more deeply affected at the engeniuty[sic] of my beloved family and Scholars.
The Band performed some of their best pieces - while the Seats were filling up with eager listeners: and when all were in their places and breathless silence obtained the Orations commenced.
Of these it becomes others to judge except to say they all exceeded my expectations in delivery as they had done in being previously examined by the Professors & myself
You would think the subject assigned to your Uncle Philander “Mathematics” was rather a dry one for a Speech. But it proved otherwise in the discussion. He astonished up by his deep knowledge of the subject and then by transporting us from the natural to religious science, from natures laws to God the Creator of Nature he engaged our Sympathies and warmed all hearts with pious sentiments. All well educated persons see in this dear Uncle of yours (the husband of your beloved friend Anna) concentrated the future success of Jubilee College in teaching the Natural Sciences. I wright[sic] to apologize for breaking over my rule of propriety in giving preferences to anyone of the excellent Orators, for indeed all performed well. The whole Audience were regaled after the Degrees were conferred and I had said a few words, by a well prepared Lunch - and then departed rejoicing to their homes.
Your loving Grand Father
Philander Chase, the Bishop of Ill