Vassar College Digital Library

Sylvester, Helen (Seymour) | to father, Oct. 24, 1865:

VC Spec 1865-1866
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vassar:25041,,Box 73,VCL_Letters_Sylvester_Helen_1865-1866_005
October 24, 1865
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: VCLLettersSylvesterHelen18651866005001
Vassar College
Oct 24th 1865
My dear father
I suppose you are very busy just now finishing up
the house and preparing to commence at the furnace.
I do wish you would hurry off Henry to Norfolk. I am afraid he
will not go till Christmas if you do not. It is just as pleasant as can
be here except on Sundays when we have to stay at the college and
listen to a Sermon from president Raymond. I do wish there could be
some way provided for us to go to Poughkeepsie to Church, but we have
to pay 40 cents if we go in the "bus" and cannot often get permission


: VCLLettersSylvesterHelen18651866005002
to go on any condition. Indeed it is very impossible to get permission.
I have not been since I have been here. We have heard Mr Beecher
(T.K.). My roommate Clare Spaulding is one of his congregation in Elmira
and so went to take tea with him- He stayed at Prof Farrars, one of the
professors. The salaries of the teachers &cd perhaps you would be
interested in knowing I found them out by one of the professors.
President Raymond has six thousand dollars. Miss Lyman the lady
principal has three thousand, each of the professors 2 thousand and the
assistants $450. It is the best place here to learn languages I ever was
in. I am studying French German Geology and Zoology and Music. I wish


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could just step in upon you and see the house and the gas.
It Is so nice here to have gas. We have it In our bedroom as well
as in our sitting room. I am sure I do not know what we have to use
Shakespeare and Milton for, but I suppose they will come in time into
use. The examination was what I dreaded most and that I have passed
through and fortunately do not have to take geography arithmetic Gram-
mar Algebra or Rhetoric, which some do, rather to their disgust.
There are so many girls here it is a long time before we get acquainted
with them. They are here from everywhere - almost. Some from Kansas
and one from California - San Francisco. A good many come from New York
and Brooklyn.


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Next room to us is Mary Cornell daughter of Ezra Cornell
who is Union candidate for State Senator and who has given five hundred
thousand dollars to build an agricultural College. Miss Robinson daughter
of Prof Robinson the Mathematician is here, and there is a young widow
here. She is only 22 though those are all the very distinguished characters
here. Mr Vassar has three neices at school here. Two from Poughkeepsie
one from Auburn. I am quite lost without my usual correspondents I hardly
get a letter in two weeks now. I am so very busy I do not miss them as
much as I did now. Two of my roommates have gone since I wrote the first
part of my letter. Clara Spauldings father has been here to-day and she
has gone with him to New York to see her sister who Is at school there.
Libby Anderson has gone to Poughkeepsie to visit. This is the second time she has been. Mary Woodruff and Sarah Lawson are here though, but it made
me feel very


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homesick to think I could not go too. I wish I could see you
all. Tell me how you are getting along.
Your affectionate
daughter Helen.