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The History of Harvard's Commencement, Explained

Harvard During the Revolution.

NO WRITER ATTRIBUTED

It is always interesting to have a sidelight thrown on the effect which a great political event has on a small community or on an individual living in it. In this way the following letter written by a Harvard student on "Sept'br ye 23d 1777" well portrays some of the effects of the Revolution on his mind and on the college community at large. He complains bitterly of the rise of prices. After a very short "family" sentence he goes on to say: "Wood is but twenty dollars pr. cord, the corporation meet to-morrow to determine upon a vacation, it is supposed that we shall not have any fall vacation, but to include it in the winter, it is likewise supposed that we shall have a vacation to begin in December and continue through the winter (!), but it is conjecture only, tho' I think with a great degree of probability; for I am sure it will be impossible for us to remain here during the winter. For you can not look a man in the face without a dollar, board four dollars a week, candles one-half pr. lb., wine and rum which we have quite done with, the one 14s, the other 10s. pr. bottle, and everything in propotion, and continually rising; to what height I can't tell, but I hope they will have a Confounded Fall by and by." This to his "Honour'd Mamma!"

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