Vassar College Digital Library

Barnes, Lucy | to George Taylor Barnes, Jan. 29, 1875:

VC 1875
Content Warning
The Vassar College Archives within the Digital Library include some images, texts, and material items that are racist, xenophobic, or otherwise harmful. The Vassar Libraries have provided descriptive text and additional notes whenever possible to alert Digital Library users to these items. The Engaged Pluralism Initiative Race and Racism in Historical Collections Project Group is working with the library on contextualizing and facilitating community conversations about these materials. For more information see:

Transcription view:

While on the first image, click on the three stacked horizontal lines (burger) on the top left side of the image viewer to view the text transcription for the entire item. The transcription will not be viewable once you click through the other page images.

Transcript file(s)
vassar:24156,,Box 64,VCL_Letters_Barnes_Lucy_1875_015
January 29, 1875
1 item
For more information about rights and reproduction, visit


: VCLLettersBarnesLucy1875015001
Vassar College
Jan. 29. 1875.

My dear Mr. Barns,

Your letters are very nice and I do like to get them!- You always tell things In such an Interesting way, but you are very obstinate and disagreeable about writing; when you blandly confess you enjoy it more than otherwise, I do think it isn't a bit fair to make me answer every solitary one- - but - I said (to myself) I was never going to say any thing to you about it again - - I dont much care though if you do know how bad I think you. Well here it is Friday again - it hardly seems possible- I have had so much to do the time just seems to have flown. We are now In the midst of our semi-annual reviews
previous to examination and I tell you it is a " grind" indeed It cant really be all work you know, and you surely have heard enough about it any way to prevent your doubting its reality so I shant say another word [crossed out: word] upon the subject. It is a^wonder if you were not thorough disgusted with the despondent tone of my last, so now lets begin over again and pretend I was some body else when I wrote the above. Is it possible it will be two weeks Sunday since I wrote you - My! lots of things have happened since then - I hope you wont sight, or draw a long breath or perform any other significant antic - if I begin at the very beginning. Well, I'll attempt it any how, and it may be my patience will give out first - "Who knows."


: VCLLettersBarnesLucy1875015002
The very afternoon of the day I mailed your letter I was in Miss Cushings room reading the Tribune to her. When we heard the most dreadful noise coming nearer and nearer to us- presently Mathew Vassar's [crossed out: name] ^voicer could be recognized in the tumult ushering the crowd along - "Gentlemen this way-" Gentlemen this way" "Our
Library" &c &c- until I got quite curious and stepped to the door to see what was going on. Actually I was frightened; I never saw so many men. (I was going to say in my life but I will add) here. I should certainly think there were a hundred. Boston delegate - whom M.V. evidently enjoyed showing round. After said party had vacated the Library Miss Cushing and I took possession.— How the place did smell of cigars! And would you believe I was guilty of saying "how nice"? I am afraid it is only in theory I disapprove. I may add too "in excess".

And that is — well you know how many-

Dear me how silly you are about Prof. Backus. If you know them both you would think just as I do and "poor Mrs B" would not have any more of your sympathy than she has of mine. She came home yesterday and I was in to see her last night, so I suppose I ought not to talk so but I dont like her and I cant help it. The truth is I am dreadfully sorry there is any Mrs B. for I do think Miss Cushing would make such a splendid one. Is it a very bad to say? if it is you must not tell any one. Last


: VCLLettersBarnesLucy1875015003
Friday evening Chapter Alpha had her first meeting in the Hall and your friend presided for the first time over a large assembly There were probably some three hundred persons present, but it was not half so hard as I had anticipated - I find that the little experience I have had every Friday evening at our ordinary meeting and that of the Dickens' Club, has helped me wonderfully in putting me at my ease. Miss Cushing was over at the entertainment with me, and we came home together- It was then quite late and we went to our respective room - I was seated in mine but a few moments when she came back in a great excitement with a note for me to read- She had found it in her door. "My dear Miss C. Will you & Miss S- have pity on two grass widowers Mr. Struble and myself and come play a game of Whist In Mrs. B's sitting room. Our time Is at your disposal we will wait for you till midnight." Well after a few moments contemplation we concluded to go, and such a time as we did have getting there. It was just about ten o'clock and teachers were popping out every where to see If the lights were out. After several dodges we got safely along to the parlor door, on the second corridor- and— well it was only one of the students who had had company and It would be hard to tell who was the most scared- so we walked along as bravely as anything until we heard some heavy footsteps behind us- we look around— mercy a man!- it was surely the President,


: VCLLettersBarnesLucy1875015004
so we just skipped around a corner and let him pass- This was our last adventure and we got there safely- but what was our surprise- we had expected to meet two gentlemen- but here were three. Mr. Three had his overcoat on and was apparently soon to leave but Prof. B. invited him to remain over night mit him where upon the ent, went out to dismiss the coach man at the door- In his absence- Prof, told us as best he could for laughing -'said gent, had stayed so long mit a certain Miss Taylor in the parlor- that he got locked in- and had come to him to help him out.' Now this was a good enough joke la itself - but for Miss C. & me it had a double meaning - it was this poor scared individual whom we took for our worthy President. Well we had a good game and a good time and came home quite unmolested about twelve o'clock.

The next afternoon I got perfectly desperate for a sleigh ride- and got Miss C. quite in the humor too - so I telegraphed In town for a sleigh and we mit our sisters started off. The country around Po'keepsie is always very beautiful but the hills and mountains looked especially grand that afternoon - the day was splendid and showed them off ^to their best advantage. I had been especially stupid all day previous to the ride - (now dont say it was the effects of the night before) but now I felt quite in the humor of attending a lecture to be given in the Chapel at 5 P.M. by Madame Roch - on "The Men and Women of the Revolution". The subject


: VCLLettersBarnesLucy1875015005
was one of special interest to me as I was reading Carlyle's Revolutions, and the facts I heard did much to heighten my interest. —

Saturday morning. Other people you see are also prevent some times from accomplishing what they set out to do. A committee meeting call me yesterday I suppose I had better not remark again that I am Librarian or you will think Miss Cushing has vacated entirely - but here I am taking her place temporarily while she attends a meeting of the Floral Society. I want to thank you for your very kind invitation for the 22nd & 23 of next month. I am going to be very airy and say it would give me great pleasure to accept but a previous engagement prevents my doing so- Did I not tell you I expected to go to Brooklyn on the afternoon of the 19th and stay until the evening of the 22nd at wh. time I want to be back at the College to attend a sort of house warming over in our new buildings- I have understood it is going to be very nice- Prof. B. is going to make a speech I believe. I have also heard rumor that we are to have a band but I real know very little about it. But it seems to me if we might reverse matters and you come to Brooklyn you might come up here for Monday night and still be able to be in Phila- for the 23rd? "What do you say" Have you ever met Miss Livermore- Mr Glendennings friend? Well I expect to stay with her one night before going to Miss Jackson. Miss Cushing and Miss Alice Brown are going with me- and you


: VCLLettersBarnesLucy1875015006
^dont know what a good time we old girl are anticipating when we get together again. Are you aware how lavish you were mit your compliments in your last- indeed I feel quite flattered- innocent, ignorant, owlish. Anything.....(incomplete,

[Lucy (Sellers) Barnes, '75]