An Open Letter from Professor Agassiz.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE Herald: - Having resigned last summer from the Advisory Committee on Boating, may I be allowed to correct some statements of your correspondent in the article on Rowing at Harvard in the Herald of the 28th, which I can hardly believe represents the feelings of the students in regard to the Advisory Committee on Boating.
Messrs. Fenno, Watson and myself consented to serve as members of the committee on the distinct understanding that we should have full powers over all matters relating to the University races and crews.
I am not aware that there has been any misunderstanding at any time between the members of the University crew, the executive committee of the H. U. B, C. and the Advisory committee.
The Advisory committee have fully appreciated the work of Mr. Bancroft in behalf of the crew and of boating interests at Cambridge. But the members of the committee have on several occasions unanimously criticised the action of Mr. Bancroft, both as adviser of the crew and as couth, and this has evidently been considered an undue interference on the part of the committee by your correspondent who does gross injustice to Mr. Watson.
The committee has no axes to grind, it has not been run in the interest either of Mr. Watson or of Mr. Bancroft. There is no truth whatever in the statement that the committee has on several occasions interfered with the affairs of the boat club, with disastrous results to the success of the crew.
The recommendations of the committee, made early in the spring of 1884, were at first ignored, and when finally adopted, it was too late. The interference of the committee with the style of rowing adopted by the crew early in 1882 resulted in their victories in 1882 and 1883.
The resignation as the Advisory committee is regarded by the older graduates as a most unfortunate settlement of a disagreement said to have arisen between the students and the committee, a disagreement which they attribute in great part to articles that have appeared in the Herald, and that have created a most unjust spirit of dislike and opposition to Mr. Watson.
The members of the H. U. B. C. do not at present appreciate how much they lose in being deprived of the services of such a friend of boating as Mr. Watson has been. In the past, he and the older boating men of Cambridge have done all in their power to help the younger ones. They have no cause to regret their advice, but if it is to be considered an interference, the members of the H. U. B. C. will hereafter be allowed to paddle their own canoe.
ALEXANDAR AGASSIZ.Cambridge, Jan. 1, 1885.