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[184] less thoroughly convinced that she could not get this in the classes of the college, even if it were desirable for a single girl to enter classes comprising many young men. We saw that in whatever way she were taught, she could only get the advantage she needed by some joining of forces with other young women in the same stage of educational progress.

After considerable thought I conceived the plan of providing a course of instruction for women by the professors of Harvard College, but outside of the college and without responsibility to it. Such a course would not lead to a degree, but it would give the women who were fitted for it all the training that the degree certified to, and of which it is the seal. While I was sure that such a scheme was practicable, and that it might lead to great results, because I was confident that a large body of women longed for the grade of instruction that Harvard College gives, I was not certain that a proposition to begin the work would be favorably received by the professors. Some considerations made me feel that their favor might be obtained, but my fears, which were greater than my hopes, restrained me from making a public expression of my desires for a long time. While I was thus delaying, I discussed the subject with my wife as we walked through the streets of Cambridge and looked at this house and that which we thought might some day serve as the home for the institution that we had in mind. Many months passed, and I still found myself in the position of seeking the proper moment to approach some member of the faculty.

During the summer vacation of 1878, Mrs. Gilman urged with unusual persistency that I should make the move on our return to the city. When we reached home I concluded that the time had

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