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the definitions and incidents of Estates, as laid down by Blackstone. The list of books read by him at the school, as noted in his commonplace-books, is remarkable for its wide range, and begins with this memorandum and extract from Coke's First Institute: Law reading commenced Sept., 1831, at Cambridge. Holding this for an undoubted verity, that there is no knowledge, case, or point in law, seeme it of never so little account, but will stand our student in stead at one time or other. 1 Inst. 9. Besides his common-law studies, he read widely in French law. Sumner's memory was not less extraordinary than his industry. Students applied to him for guidance in their investigations, and even lawyers in practice sought, in a few instances at least, his aid in the preparation of briefs. While his friends admired his zeal and enthusiasm, they were not altogether pleased with his excessive application, and advised greater moderation in his studies. There was reason in their caut
or the night, he started the question whether the guard had been assembled and was acting under due corporate authority,—a legal inquiry, which, under the circumstances, somewhat amused his companions. At the beginning of September, 1834, Sumner, anxious to enter at once on practice,—there being no court in session at Boston having authority to grant admissions to the bar,—applied to the Court of Common Pleas, sitting in Worcester (Chief-Justice John M. Williams, presiding), where on the third of that month he was admitted as an attorney, after a recommendation by the bar of Worcester County, of which Pliny Merrick and Charles Allen were then the leaders. D. Waldo Lincoln, Lincoln was the son of Governor Lincoln, for whom Sumner's father cherished a lively gratitude. Ante, pp. 21, 22. a fellow student in College and at the Law School, who was admitted at the same time, interested himself in the preliminary arrangements for Sumner's admission. Letters. To his family a<
nt Sears Building. Sumner occupied the room next to the hall, and Hillard the rear one. He kept one or the other for about twenty years, so long as he remained at the bar. Number 4 Court Street gathered at this period several lawyers, since well known, and some who were destined to a permanent fame. On the same floor with Sumner and Hillard were Theophilus Parsons, Rufus Choate, Theophilus and Peleg W. Chandler; and later John A. Andrew, afterwards Governor of the Commonwealth. On the third floor were Horace Mann, Edward G. Loring, and Luther S. Gushing. When Hillard left the building, in 1856, having previously removed to another room, he wrote in verse a graceful Farewell to Number Four, which called forth some happy rejoinders. Law Reporter, March, 1856, Vol. XVIII. p. 653. Sumner and Cushing Cushing was the well-known author of works on Parliamentary Law. rented together a single lodging-room on the third floor of the Brooks Building. Sumner took his meals at a
c house, by proper ceremonies, Sept. 9. 1874. of that town; and one day, when eighteen years of age, he made known, with some emphasis, his purpose to abandon that occupation and to obtain a liberal education. When twenty years old, he joined the Freshman Class of Harvard College. He entered in November, 1774, not being sufficiently qualified in the preparatory studies to enter in July, at the time of the regular examination for admission. It appears by the records of the college on the fourth of that month, that Job Sumner of Milton, having applied for admission to Harvard College, after examination had, voted that upon condition that he pay into the college the sum of £ 6, to comply with the second law of the first chapter of the college laws, he be admitted into the present Freshman Class. His most distinguished classmate was Nathan Dane, who reported in Congress the ordinance of 1787 for the government of the North-west Territory, by which a vast domain was saved to freedom
f the waters and the land. Retiring then to his berth, he thought of friends, and all that he had left behind, with confidence in their continued regard. You cannot imagine, he wrote to Hillard, the intensity with which my mind, during these moments, reverted to the old scenes and faces with which it was familiar. The wind kept fair and strong, and the voyage, for one made in a sailing vessel and during the winter, was exceptionally rapid and agreeable. Journal Dec. 25. On the fourth day I was rejoiced to find myself able to read, though lying in my berth. Previously my time had passed without the relief which this at once afforded. Chancellor Kent had been kind enough to advise me to take a stock of pleasant books, and I had provided myself with some on the morning of sailing. I read the fourth and fifth parts of Lockhart's Life of Scott, James's novel of Attila, Cooper's England, and the Life of Burr, while stretched in my berth; and never were books a greater luxur
. 31, 1832. my dear friend,—I never receive a letter from one of my old college friends without experiencing a most pleasing melancholy. Memory is always at hand, with her throng of recollections and associations, the shadows of past joys,—joys gone as irrevocably as time. Youth and college feelings have given way to manhood and its sterner avocations. The course is fairly commenced in the race of life, and every intellectual and corporal agency is bent to exertion. There are now no Saturdays bringing weekly respites from drudgery, allowing a momentary stop in the path of duty. All is labor. It mattereth not the day or hardly the hour, for duty is urgent all days and all hours. What, then, could bring up more pleasing recollections, and yet tinged with melancholy (because they are never more to be seen, except in memory's mirror) than a letter from one who was present and active in those scenes to which the mind recurs? I sometimes let a whole hour slip by unconsciously, my
ry he mentioned a little fact. A three-cornered note was brought to you, said he, and you said to the gentlemen round you, it is from Miss M.; she cannot be here this evening. Why were you not introduced to me? said I. Oh, I did not dare to be; I only looked at you from afar with awe. I was, in fact, a year younger than himself; but in those simple days the chasm was wide between a raw collegian, as he then was, and a young lady in society. I recall him very distinctly in his seat on Sundays. It was in the old chapel in University Hall, before any alteration had been made. The President's pew was in the gallery, on the right of the pulpit. Perched there, I looked down, first on good Dr. Ware, Sr., in his professor's gown; and, while he discoursed furthermore, I looked beyond and below on the very young Sophomores, and saw Sumner's long proportions in the front seat of the Seniors. It was during his residence as a law-student that he was most frequently at our house. I
egant leisure with a foreign tour. No steamer, carrying passengers, had as yet crossed the Atlantic. A young man who went abroad at such a period, with narrow means, with a profession which he had served too briefly to retain a hold on clients during his absence, and against the counsels of friends, was indeed stirred by no common aspiration. Early in November he made a farewell visit of a day to his valued friend, Mr. Daveis, at Portland; taking the boat on the evening of Tuesday, the seventh, and leaving that city on his return the next evening. He dined, while in Portland, with Mr. Daveis, meeting at the dinner John Neal, Mr. Neal was through life a busy writer of poetry and prose. He was born Oct. 25, 1793, and died June 20. 1876. In early life, while in Europe, he lived for a time with Jeremy Bentham, an association which brought him into relations with the Benthamites, particularly the Austins. Mr. Neal, not long before his death, thus wrote with reference to Sumner
infirm and aged women, it being a great almshouse. As I left this establishment, I met on the sidewalk a person of rather humble appearance, of whom I asked some question, which enabled him to detect me as a foreigner. It seems that he understood a little English, and had read Sterne's Sentimental Journey,—a book, by the way, which appears to be read a great deal in France,—and he wished to understand more. He frankly told me that he was a mechanic, who could only find time to study on Sundays, and that he could not afford to hire an instructor in English. He accordingly proposed to render me assistance in acquiring French, if I would return the same assistance to him with regard to English. The whole rencontre was so odd that I at first feared some deception, and buttoned my surtout so as to protect my pockets; but I was soon convinced that I did my friend injustice, and I gave him my card that he might know where to call upon me, if he saw fit. I talked with him perhaps three
nnel. While writing the letter to Judge Story, a French whaleman came in sight, the tricolor flapping in the wind, the first sail seen during the voyage,—a refreshing sight, but momentary, as both vessels were speeding in opposite directions. On the evening of the 25th, the captain descried dimly Start Point, in Devonshire; and the next morning Sumner saw Cape Barfleur, about fifteen miles to the right, –his first glimpse of Europe, and the first land he had seen since the afternoon of the eighth, when he went below while the headlands of New Jersey were indistinctly visible on the distant horizon. On account of unfavorable winds encountered in the Channel, the Albany did not come to anchor at the Havre docks till early on the morning of the 28th,—less than twenty days from the time of sailing. Journal. Dec. 26, 1837. At half-past 2 o'clock this afternoon a pilot from Havre came aboard. We were still off Cape Barfleur, and, as he informed me, fifty-four miles from Havre<
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