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The History of Harvard's Commencement, Explained

Foot Ball Dinner.

Unboundel Enthusiasm for the Victorious Eleven.

NO WRITER ATTRIBUTED

Last night the dinner given in honor of the team that beat Yale and of the second eleven which proved such an important factor in that defeat, took place. At quarter before 8 o'clock the great dining room of the RevereHouse, decorated with Harvard banners, was filled with three hundred men waiting for the team to come in. The band played Fair Harvard as Neal Rantoul '92 escorted Captain Cumnock to his seat of honor on the right of the president of the dinner, Moses Williams, Jr., '91. The team followed and took seats at the head of the table to the right and to the left.

After the dinner was well begun Mr. Williams introduced Arthur B. Nichols '91 as toastmaster. In a happy speech Mr. Nichols acknowledged the honor, and proceeded to present G. T. Goldthwaite '91 as orator. Reviewing the history of foot ball at Harvard he showed that hard work was the great faction in the evolution of our evergrowing strength which had culminated at last in victory. As a Harvard man he thanked our coaches, Dr. Conant and the second eleven for their splendid services and congratulated them on their success. He pointed out the necessity of keeping next year in mind and ended by expressing the ten thousand thanks to 'varsity eleven and to their captain, which was but their due.

The poet was next introduced, Benjamin A. Gould, Jr., '91. The poem was always happy and often brilliantly clever as it hit off the prowess and familiar characteristics of the men we have watched with such deep interest that we have grown to feel the reality of that often hypothetical thing, college brotherhood. From Lake to Cumnock, he went through the list and ended by declaring "There's no sweeter music than Twelve to Six."

When the applause had worn itself out the Mott Haven cup was passed among the team, their coaches and the officers of the dinner.

The cries for Cumnock brought the hero of the occasion to his feet. His talk was characteristically to the point. "Last year we were all here and only wanted one thing, victory. This year nothing is lacking. We have come from third place to first. Cliques. societies, and clubs have been disfegarded and we have put a representative Harvard eleven in the field. It has won, but our black board did as much to spoil Yale's round-the-end play as practice on Jarvis and in the gymnasium.

I want to thank the second eleven in particular. To them are due our greatest thanks as were our Hardest bruises. The lucky 'varsity 13 took their reward out of Yale. Finally I can only say again that nothing but perseverance will keep Harvard in first place where she belongs."

After three times three for Captain Cumnock, the toast-master proposed cheers for Mr. Cumnock, senior, and Mr. Lee who were both present.

An allusion to Garrison '88 elicited applause which drew forth one of the best speeches of the evening although impromptu. Mr. Garrison spoke in praise of the work his class-mate Holden had done for Harvard athletics, drawing a strong picture of the deplorable state Harvard sports were in prior to '87.

Professor J. B. Ames spoke next and paid graceful compliments to the men who have earned Harvard her first great foot ball victory, for showing that gentlemen and gentlemanly play not only could win but had won. He said that on looking into the matter he could not learn of a man who had been permanently injured at either Yale or Harvard by foot ball. He believed in the game because to be a player a man must control his temper and be brave.

Professor J. W. White next spoke at some length and discussed the athletic situation at Harvard, past, present and future, with great clearness. He rejoiced in the butial of "Harvard's indifference," stated the position of the Faculty towards athletics and ended by declaring himself in favor of intercollegiate contests under reasonable restrictions.

The company next heard from Perry Trafford '89, an address, admirable in itself, and additionally strong as coming from him. Thanking the college for its support to the foot-ball team, and the second eleven for its service, he ended by advocating a carefully trained second nine.

J. P. Lee completed the list of speakers by cleverly reading a freshman's account of a Rugby foot ball game, from Punch.

The Glee Club and their soloist, Mr. Wendell 91 sang between the speeches and were uprobriously cheered. The dinner could not have been a greater success. From the moment the three hundred men who were present entered the great dining room, saw the pig skin hanging from the chandelier inscribed with the legend Harvard 12. Yale 6, gave cheer after cheer for the men who have at last brought victory to the crimson till Fair Harvard was sung and the dinner was over, the spirti of Harvard enthusiasm seemed only to grow till by its presence it made last night's dinner the mark of a newera in our athletics.

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