previous next
“ [104] forward and surrounded him for the last time. They were to see his face no more.”

Mr. Alvord took Mr. Ashmun's place as professor, but, in the summer of 1833, he also was taken very ill. During the weeks after the notice of the steeple-raising, I find Mr. Sumner's name mentioned constantly, coming in to report Mr. Alvord's state, as he visited him daily. One extract more from the journal: “Charles Sumner came to give his account of Mr. Alvord, which is more favorable. He paid me a long visit, and we talked at the rate of nine knots an hour. He gave a curious account of a young man who has been studying Latin and Greek in a lighthouse, to prepare for college. The reason of his choosing a lighthouse is to save the expense of oil! We agreed that he deserved all success. Mamma returned from Dedham while Mr. Sumner was still here, and he staid and had a good long talk with her.”

His classmate, Rev. Dr. Emery, writes:—

In Oct., 1833, I returned to Cambridge and became a resident graduate. I found Sumner in the Law School, pursuing his studies with great enthusiasm, and we were often in each other's rooms. He was the same scholarly person then as when in college, and he lived, as it were, in intimate converse with the learned of ancient and modern times. I have no doubt his mind was better stored with accurate and critical knowledge than that of any other student in the school. He occupied as librarian one of the front rooms in the second story of Dane Hall, “ the pleasantest room in Cambridge,” as he told me. If he had at that time any thought of being one of the foremost public men in the country beyond that of an eminent lawyer, he certainly kept it to himself, for he seemed to take but little interest in political matters. He came one day to my room in Massachusetts Hall, and told me how he had unfortunately just congratulated a professor, recently resigned, on his election to the State Senate, not knowing that he had been defeated. His mind was wholly absorbed in other pursuits, which, perhaps unconsciously to himself, were preparing him for the lofty stand he attained in after life.

Professor William C. Russell, of Cornell University, who saw much of Sumner at Cambridge in 1832-33, writes: —

He was a tall, thin, bent, ungainly law-student; his eyes were inflamed by late reading, and his complexion showed that he was careless of exercise. I was from New York, and he had less experience of life; and from that cause, I suppose, liked to talk to me. He certainly was very kind, very simple, and very easily pleased. I rather think, however, that I owed a great deal of the kindness with which he treated me to the fact that I was personally acquainted, though very slightly, with “ Fanny Kemble,” as we boys used to call her. He was, as much as any of us, infatuated by her acting; and I remember his one day stopping me in the street, and drawing me out of the thoroughfare, and saying, “ Come, Russell, tell me something about Fanny Kemble,” with all the interest of a lover.

His personal kindness never ceased while I remained at Cambridge, and

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Massachusetts (Massachusetts, United States) (1)
Dedham (Massachusetts, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Charles Sumner (5)
James C. Alvord (3)
William C. Russell (2)
Fanny Kemble (2)
Hall (1)
Samuel M. Emery (1)
John Hooker Ashmun (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
1833 AD (2)
October, 1833 AD (1)
1832 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: