Download Full Text (11.1 MB)
Goodwin declines presidency; letter from Maxwell about Pres. Allen as a potential president of Kenyon.
letter, McIlvaine, Bedell
McIlvaine, Charles Petit, "Letter to Bedell" (1862). Charles Pettit McIlvaine Letters. 347.
Cinc. Aug. 28
I have just rec’d a letter from Mr. Wharton containing the enclosed which will explain itself. He writes that our friends in Phila. think we have lost nothing in Goodwin’s decline [?], because of his lack of doctrinal positiveness. He also writes that Maxwell strongly recommended to have Pres. Allen of Guard College - about whom the enclosed was written. Wharton says “P. Allen has the advantage of being a layman and a man of great wealth - I do not know him but his reputation is very high. He leaves or may leave Guard College where his salary is $5000, from his unwillingness to co-operate with the present Rom. Cath. and [?] influences which are obtaining the context of that [?]
All sems favorable as regards Mr. Allen but what Maxwell says of his [?] I send the enclosed that you may ex[perience].
C. P. M.
1505 Guard Avenue
August 22nd ‘62
Since my return from Cape May, I have sought and obtained an interview with Pres. Allen. I can, hence, answer some of your inquiries in a way which may prove more satisfactory than would have been the case, had my reply been furnished at an earlier date.
You profound the following inquiries, [?]:
1st, would he do as a teacher and disciplinarian?
I answer, some years ago he was regarded as the ablest teacher or Professor in one of our Eastern Colleges. Latterly, his circumstances as Pres. of Guard College have afforded him no considerable opportunity in that connection; but this I make bold to say, that he is equal to all the demands which Kenyon Col. may [?] upon him, either as teacher or disciplinarian.
2nd, as a thinker?
I reply in the language which I heard another use in relation to him - “Pres. ALlen is the broadest man with whom it has ever been my good fortune to meet. He is not only extraordinary as a profound and accurate thinker, but the range of his thinking is wider, and he is conversant with more subjects than any individual I ever knew.”
I think these two answers will be fully sustained by S. G. Coff[?] Esq. (who was for many years a Director of Giv. Col.) if you will call upon him, or refer to him.
3rd, Would he do as an Episcopalian?
He addresses me, he is very partial to the Episc. Ch. and would have united with it but for the force of circumstances. To my knowledge, he is a pew-holder and frequent attendee at St. Matthew’s Ch., and his eldest daughter, his only adult child, died recently, a [?] of that church. Should he be elected to Kenyon, I am certain he would soon gratify his “partiality” by a visible union with the Epis. Ch.
2nd, would he come?
I rather think so, from my interview with him. At least, I know he would, if elected, give the matter a very earnest consideration. He appeared gratified at my approaching him on the subject. (I must not omit to say, here, that when I mentioned the name of Dr. Allen to you in connection with the Presidency of Ken. Col. - it was without any previous conference with him, in any such or any knowledge on his part of my intention to do so.) Should you elect him and prevail upon him to visit those classic grounds, I feel little fear, that the zest would follow, and then, you would all be justly proud of your great Pres’d.
I may add, his manners are cordial and well suited to Kenyon. He is much like Pres. Andrews - only, in my esteem, a much greater man.
Lastly (as the [?] say,) you ask, “Do you consider Prof. an Evangelical man?” I consider him one of the lowest [?] it has been my [?] to hear in many long years. I think too, his views (being the result of deliberate thought and study) would be pressed.
All the foregoing is sacred with yourself, Bishops McIlvaine and Bedell.
Pres. A’s address is Mr. H. Allen, L.L.D., Pres. Guard College, Phila.