The letter of Mr. Robert Treat Paine, which appeared in Thursday's issue of the CRIMSON, injects new spice into a discussion which has become stale from too much tasting. Few have been the Alumni Bulletins of the past two years which have not carried some fiery communication from a graduate in regard to the proposed War Memorial Chapel. In contrast to these letters, virtually all of which confined themselves to a debate on the merits of having a new chapel at all, Mr. Paine's recognizes the inevitability of the structure, and raises a question of practical value. It suggests the building of a chapel on Memorial Drive, facing the Charles.
Like it or not, Harvard is to have a new chapel. But the acceptance of a plan involving the razing of Appleton Chapel and the occupation of its site by the new building has not yet received a similar stamp of irrevocability.
The permanence of a Memorial Church demands that it harmonize with the Harvard of the future. Mr. Paine had this in view when he guessed that the erection of new units along the river front will bring a shift in the center of Harvard population, and suggested the location of the new chapel in accordance with this trend. Further, the correlative elimination of the difficulties of reconciling any style of architecture with the surroundings in which a substitute for Appleton Chapel would find itself clearly supports his argument.
Southward the course of Harvard takes its way. The appearance of the Business School on the south bank of the river has been followed by the purchase by the University of all land between the Learz Anderson and the Western Avenue bridges not already occupied by College buildings. This tract of undeveloped property is a map of what Harvard will be. Those responsible for the new chapel should consider carefully before succumbing to a tradition which thinks of Harvard only in terms of the Harvard Yard without regard to larger appropriateness.