Page:A History of the University of Chicago by Thomas Wakefield Goodspeed.djvu/48

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A HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO

1867. In 1869 he was made president and continued to administer the institution with great wisdom and ability until the end of its separate existence in 1892, when he insisted on giving up the headship. In November, 1866, Dr. John B. Jackson was called from a pastorate in Albion, New York, to the chair of church history, and did most useful service, during the succeeding year, in soliciting funds for the infant institution. In the two or three years preceding the formal opening of the institution several agents had been engaged for brief periods in this work. A considerable number of small notes and a few larger subscriptions had been secured, when, in October, 1867, Dr. G. S. Bailey began a financial service which continued through seven and a half years. Additional agents were associated with him for brief periods and earnest efforts were made to accumulate an endowment. A contribution of thirty dollars constituted the giver a life member of the Theological Union, and a very large number of thirty-dollar notes, payable in five annual instalments, was secured. Larger amounts were sought and subscriptions of a hundred dollars were obtained in considerable numbers. But the subscribers generally caught at the thirty-dollar life-membership plan. When several hundred thousand dollars are needed for an endowment it cannot be secured by thirty-dollar subscriptions. To care for the current expenses and secure the endowment would have required so many thousands of these small pledges that the effort was foredoomed to failure. Many, having given a thirty-dollar note, soon grew indifferent and ceased to pay the annual instalments; many moved and were lost sight of; others died, and still others were unable to pay. While, therefore, these small notes multiplied, and assets seemed to grow, the actual resources of the institution did not increase.

The formal opening of the new Seminary took place on October 2,1867. The course of study was to cover three years, Junior, Middle, and Senior. The first year there were two classes, Junior and Middle, with twenty students. The main building of the Old University had just been erected and there were in it ample accommodations for many more students than both institutions had, or were likely to have for years to come. The University sorely needed the rent the Seminary would naturally pay for the rooms