Page:A History of the University of Chicago by Thomas Wakefield Goodspeed.djvu/238

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.

voted me a year's leave of absence, without pay, to give me a chance to try the thing out. They were quite confident that at the end of that year I should return to Minneapolis.

Some time in the spring, I think in May, Dr. Harper wrote me that he was becoming completely swamped with the labor of preparing for the opening in the following autumn, asking me if I would not join him as soon as my duties at Minneapolis were over, and aid in carrying out these plans. I accepted, leaving Minneapolis on the second or third of June, the day after the Minnesota commencement. I found the offices of the University at 1212 Chamber of Commerce Building. President Harper was there and Professor Abbott, who was acting as University Examiner, Dr. T. W. Goodspeed, the secretary of the Board of Trustees, and a small and in some ways rather extraordinary clerical staff. Correspondence was pouring in from prospective students. Meanwhile the plans for the announcements for the coming year were in process of making. Mr. Abbott went away for his vacation early in July and Dr. Harper and I were left to handle the educational side through the summer together. We worked night and day.

Although Mr. Judson was originally elected Professor of History, in the final organization of the departments of instruction he became acting head, and almost immediately after was made Head of the Department of Political Science. At the January meeting, at which Mr. Judson was elected, William I. Knapp of Yale was made Head Professor of Romance Languages and Literature. Meantime the negotiation with Albion W. Small, president of Colby University, had reached a favorable issue and on January 29 he was elected Head Professor of Social Science. The President had first approached President Small fourteen months before. The two men had had several interviews and exchanged many letters, and the appointment was finally made without any positive assurance that it would be accepted. The experience of Mr. Small as an administrator led to his being drafted into service at once as Dean of the College of Liberal Arts, later as Director of Affiliation, and finally as Dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Literature. Four head professors having been secured, the work of making up the faculty went forward rapidly. The President had for some months been hard at work seeking other instructors and pushing negotiations with them. On January 29, 1892, the first considerable number of appointments was made. In addition to the Head Professor of Social Science these were: Charles Chandler, Professor of Latin; George S. Goodspeed, Associate Professor of Compara-