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[144] in his ‘Alumni of the Earlier American Colleges Who Have Held Official Positions,’ awards the first distinction in point of number and exalted position to our own venerable and potential William and Mary College. She leads with three of the fourteen Presidents who have been graduates of American colleges—Jefferson, Monroe and Tyler. (Virginia furnished also Madison and Harrison, as you are aware.)

There have been fifteen United States Cabinet officers, a chief and three associate justices of the United States Supreme Court, one lieutenant-general United States army, fourteen United States envoys and ministers, eighty-four United States senators and representatives in Congress, sixty judges of the United States District, Circuit and State Courts, three presidents of colleges, and twenty-three governors of States.1 Dr. Thomas Nelson Page, in his able address on ‘The History of the South,’ delivered before the Alumni Society of the University of Virginia in Louisville, Ky., April 13th last, thus eloquently invokes the coming expositor of the South:

If any one aspire to do his country this service, let him arise. He need not fear for his reward. To such an one I would say that he must have at once the instinct of the historian and the wisdom of the philosopher. He must possess the talisman that shall discover truth amid all the heaps of falsehood, though they be piled upon it like Pelion on Ossa. He must have the sagacity to detect the evil in every manifestation of the civilization he shall chronicle, though it be gleaming with the gilding of romance. He must have the fortitude to resist all temptations to deviate by so much as a hair's breadth from the absolute, the inexorable fact, not if the angel should attempt to beguile him. He must know and tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help him God!

For such an one Fame waits to take him in her arms.

Young gentlemen, brother students, this just apotheosis is a practicality.

I would fain hope that among you it may find realization in patriotic illustration of your own grand old State, if not of the sisterhood of the Sunny South.

1 New York, 1890, reprinted from the New England Historical and Genealogical Register.

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