CAMBRIDGE, April 27, 1893.
Will you allow me space in which to explain a few details of the proposed new dining hall, and to correct a few misapprehensions regarding it ?
The plan, briefly stated. is to build a University club-restaurant at which both men with short pursed and men with ample means, can order what they wish. They can order one dish, or twenty at a
sitting; one meal a day or two or three a day; they can order every day in the week, or at irregular intervals. To satisfy men who do not wish to order minutely at each meal, a "regular" meal system is to be combined with the a la carte system, - precisely as such systems are generally combined in gentlemen's private clubs. A member ordering a "regular" meal may also order additional dishes if he pleases to widen his selection, and these extra dishes may be plain or high priced, as the the individual prefers.
Club tables are to be secured in the new hall. Ii is not proposed to assign more men to a table than there are seats to a table, unless in some future years the new hall comes to be as crowded as Memorial is now. The inference that a general table system is to be in force at the new hall is erroneous.
The students who are collecting the signatures of men who wish to join the new Association, tell me that they are asked whether men who sign, pledge themselves to remain members of the new Association during the whole of next year. They do not. They promise, if in Cambridge, to join the new Association at the opening of the next year; but they will of course have the same privilege of withdrawal, if arrangement are not to their liking, which they would have if they signed for Memorial, or for the Foxcroft Club. They will, however, by withdrawing early sacrifice their first fee of two dollars.
The necessity of making sure and ample provision, in the new Association, for men of slender means, is readily explained. The Foxcroft Club has wholly out-grown its present quarters, and will probably be obliged to vacate them be fore long I firmly believe that at the Opening of the next academic year there will be four hundred of our students demanding privileges such as the Foxcroft Club alone offers. There is no intention of taking away the Foxcroft Club's rooms, and giving it no standing in the hall. To do so would be grossly unjust to a large body of men.
By offering to build an attractive club restaurant, the Corporation meets the real basis of the demand for "a new Memorial." It also stands by the men who cannot afford to pay four dollars a week for their boards, and it does what no one has even asked it to do, offer the best and most varied accommodations to men who are in Cambridge only a part of each day, or fractions of each week.
If there are any doubtful points in the proposed scheme still unexplained, I shall be happy to endeavor to make them clear to any student, either by letter or in a personal conversation.
Very truly yours.