Appleton Chapel was well filled last night, owing to the general interest felt in Edward Everett Hale's tribute to the memory of the late Rev. Andrew P. Peabody.
Of late years Dr. Peabody had withdrawn from all active connection with the college, except as a member of the Board of Overseers. For this reason he was probably not personally known to many undergraduates at the time of his death; but in the days of his active life here he would have been grieved to think that he was not in very close touch with a majority of the students.
Dr. Peabody always thought and spoke of Harvard as a body of men, young and old, mature and immature working for a common end. As he looked at it, we had made our astronomical discoveries, we had taken our photographs at the station in Peru, we had made our touchdown in the football game. The success of one was the success and the joy of all. This feeling he retained even when his work took him to another state and there was probably no day in which his mind did not turn at least a dozen times to the college as the centre of his hopes and interests.
For twenty years Dr. Peabody delivered the baccalaurate address to the graduating class; and if these addresses could be collected they would form a worthy memorial of him. He did not confine himself in them to generalties, but diligently considered in each some one important question for the benefit of the many young men whom interest and confidence in him brought together when he spoke.
To name the preachers who have officiated in Appleton Chapel is to name a succession of leaders of men who were in touch with their times; and Dr. Peabody was one of the most noted of these. Men early came to feel that he had a definite plan of life, - a plan for an indefinite immortal life; and they trusted him accordingly. Those who came from a distance probably heard him most often and valued him most highly; and though this made his influence as a preacher very wide, it is not solely, or even chiefly, as such that he is to be remembered.
It was a motto of Dr. Peabody's that "every man should have a vocation and an avocation." He himself lived up to this, for while his vocation was the charge of a large church, he made his avocation the conduct of the editorial chair in the North American Review. This work he carried on for five years before giving it up to devote himself to his many other interests. He was always active and in his old age was an example of pluck and energy. Every where people looked up to him and as a leader in religious communion none was more widely known or more honored than he.
Always loving, reliable, and true, Dr. Peabody lent a helping hand to hundreds of whom the world will never know. He lived for others and for God Himself; and surely there is no success like that with which his life was crowned.
The choir sang the anthems: "Thy sun shall no more go down, and" Omnes Amici Mei," by Palestrina. Mr. Merrill sang "But they are in peace," by Faster.