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Drawing on a paper she had given at the Yale Keats Centenary, Imagist poet and critic Amy Lowell traced the poet’s development as “the first of the color writers,” reported the Miscellany News, “and his language. . . is extraordinarily modern. In his set of Spenser, now owned by Miss Lowell, he marked many passages of vivid color or auditory imagery.”

“He is dead,” Miss Lowell concluded, “but once he lived—nay, I will go further—he still lives. We are here tonight because of the love we bear him.”

Professor John Livingston Lowes from Harvard University lectured on “Convention and Revolt in Poetry.”

Professor Lowes also visited the college in 1919 and 1932.

An early morning fire thought to have started by spontaneous combustion of hay leveled a large barn, killing 16 college horses and destroying the college farm equipment and sleighs. The loss was estimated at $30,000.

At their monthly meeting, the faculty approved changes in the requirements for graduation, specifically mandating study of English and history, a science requirement and exemption, depending on those offered at matriculation, from the requirement of a third foreign language. The new requirements went into effect with the 1922-23 academic year.

Professor of Latin Lily Ross Taylor explained the explicit requirement of study of English and history, said The Miscellany News, reflected the fact that “there was no substantial equivalent in any other course for the ability to express oneself given by English, and the foundation for social science and practice in library work given by history.” Five subjects from the remaining disciplines were required, with special emphasis given to classical and foreign languages and science courses.

“One of the chief reasons for changing the present system,” The Misc reported, “is the need for more science in these times when science is so conspicuous. Up to this time only about 50% of the students have offered science for entrance.” Students not entering Vassar with a study of science were expected in the new requirements to study either physics or chemistry and to elect another science coure in zoology, botany, geology, astronomy or physiology.

“In order to prevent an increase in the present requirements,” The Misc. explained, “it is necessary to make some adjustment of the rest of the curriculum. The new system will do this, making even fewer requirements for students wo have had special advantages in preparation.” Since about 20% of current year’s freshman class entered with a third foreign language, the new plan offered such students exemption from the graduation requirement of three foreign langugages.

The faculty voted that candidates for admission be accepted from the entire list of applicants according to fitness for college work, not priority of application. Since 1915 a certain number of places had been held for admission on fitness of “honor” candidates.

In a “fast and furious” game at the Seventh Regiment Armory in New York City, Vassar defeated Smith College 27 to 18 in the first intercollegiate basketball game between teams representing women’s colleges. Nearly 4,000 spectators, most of them sporting touches of either Vassar’s rose and gray or the white and gold of Smith, watched as teams of alumnae from the two colleges played a game that The New York Times called “fast and furious from the start.”

“Smith,” said the Times, “was possibly a bit better organized in the singing and had three cheer leaders to Vassar’s one. But the supporters of the Poughkeepsie college, on the other hand, were able to produce the greater volume of noise when it came to cheering on the players.”

Vassar’s team consisted of Elizabeth Harden ’16, Anne Goss ’21, Ruth Goss ’14, Emma Downer Hardin ’16, Gertrude Farnham ’16 and Margot Hesse ’21. Most of the players on both teams were from the New York metropolitan area.

The Class of ’22 was acclaimed for having the best song and the Class of ’23 were chosen as the best singers at Founder’s Day. The celebration honored the memory of naturalist and long-time friend of the college John Burroughs, who died the previous March. President MacCracken and Cornell university ornithologist, artist and illustrator Louis Agassiz Fuertes spoke.

President MacCracken unveiled a bust of Maria Mitchell at New York University’s Hall of Fame of Great Americans. Mitchell had been selected in 1905, along with Mary Lyon and Emma Willard, as one of the first women to be so honored. Other busts unveiled were those of two of the original designees in 1900, George Washington and Gilbert Stuart, one of the 1910 group, Edgar Allen Poe, and one from 1915, Mark Hopkins.

“Maria Mitchell had,” MacCracken said, “a rare combination of an enthusiasm for research as well in the in the inner mind and heart of immature pupils as in the remote spaces of the firmament. True teacher that she was, her spirit irked at the inevitable restrictions of marks and grades, semesters and requirements….”

The Mitchell bust, a replica of the 1877 work by Emma F. Brigham, was the gift of Maria Mitchell’s nephew, William Mitchell Kendall.

Annual Report of the Maria Mitchell Association (1923), The New York Times

The alumnae having raised $2 million of the matching challenge for the $3 million faculty salary endowment fund, the trustees voted that the Alumnae Fund Committee of the Associate Alumnae be recognized as an official endowment committee to cooperate with the Trustee Endowment Committee.

By Commencement on June 13, the total in the endowment was $3,011,476.48, and 95 percent of the alumnae, 98 percent of the students and 90 percent of the faculty had contributed. The direct result was a 25 percent budget increase for faculty salaries for the following year.

The Rev. Henry Evertson Cobb, pastor of the West End Collegiate Church in New York City and chair of the Vassar board of trustees, gave the baccalaureate address for the Class of 1922. Drawing on the text, “I am come that ye may have life, and have it more abundantly,” he said, according to The Miscellany News, the promised abundance “does not suggest the prim asceticism that Christianity has meant to some people—it suggests, rather, vision and enthusiasm for the young, the glory of going on for the old, the whole tide of energy and passion of power that cannot be denied.”

The service, “characterized by dignity and solemn loveliness,” featured processional music by César Franck, a solo, Franck’s “O Lord Most Holy,” sung by Inez Barbour ’22 in memory of Harriet Kelly ’22, who died from influenza in her freshman year, and an “impressively simple and well-rendered” baccalaureate hymn written by Irene Mott ’22 and Gladys Neff ’22.

The Miscellany News

Despite having Professor of Political Science Emerson D. Fite in center field, Superintendent of Grounds Henry Downer in left and Professor of English Burges Johnson available as a utility substitute, the Class of 1922 baseball team lost the Class Day matchup against their fathers by a score of eleven to three. Attempting to help the home team, the umpire, Poughkeepsie native Elmer Steele, a former Red Sox and Dodgers pitcher, picked up a father’s “sizzling line drive…threw it to first, and graciously called the runner out.“ But the “Dads…gleefully pounded the offerings of Miss Edith Fitch [‘22], Vassar’s pitching ace, scoring six runs in the third inning and five in the fourth.”

The New York Times

Two hundred and fifty-six members of the Class of 1922 received bachelor’s degrees at Vassar’s 56th Commencement. Six candidates received the master’s degree. In his address, “Making it Unanimous,” President MacCracken noted a dangerous realignment in the country, pitting ultra conservatives against ultra radicals. “Turn where we will,” he said, “among the interests of society we seem to be everywhere confronted by an endless wrangle of Fascisti and Communists.” While this might be a natural outcome of “the shell shock of the war period,” he said, “What would be unnatural…would be for us, while recognizing it, to settle down under it as the normal condition of our life henceforth, to accept it passively as the terms of existence in our generation.” He urged his auditors to press always for greater liberty of individual development and expression.

Gifts to the college in excess of the completion of the $3 million faculty salary endowment totaled $207,608. Included in the sum was a $150,000 bequest from the late trustee Henry M. Sanders for the erection of a physics building. The Rev. Dr. Sanders had given the college the Sanders Chemistry Building (1909) in memory of his wife and more recently had given the art gallery a number of important works. Ground was broken for the Sanders Physics Building immediately after Commencement.

The retirement was announced of the first dean of Vassar College, Ella McCaleb ’78, after 38 years of service to the college in a number of posts.

The New York Times

President MacCracken and his family sailed aboard the Cunard liner Scythia, beginning a six-month visit to Europe. MacCracken planned to speak to the Third International Moral Education Congress in Geneva on “The Social Laboratory” and to visit European universities, particularly those in Central Europe, to speak about American collegiate methods. Maria Podzimkova ’22, one of the five Czech students who matriculated in 1920, sailed with the MacCrackens.

College opened with 1,149 students, of whom 323 were freshmen, less than the 360 in the Class of 1925, owing to an unusually large sophomore class. Yale English literature scholar George Henry Nettleton, trustee since 1920, served as acting president for the first semester during President MacCracken’s absence in Europe.

The college announced that President MacCracken, currently visiting Europe, had been presented with the Cross of the Order of the Crown of Italy by the Italian government in recognition of his knowledge and interpretation of the culture of Italy and of his support for the study of Italian at Vassar. The New York Times noted that the “award carries with it the right to wear the red and white ribbon of the order and to have the title “Cavaliere.”

Julia C. Lathrop ’80, former chief of the U.S. Children’s Bureau, preceded a conference on vocations for women with a lecture, sponsored by the Ellen H. Richards Lecture Fund, on women in social services.

Lathrop, President MacCracken and trustee Minnie Cumnock Blodgett ’84 were developing a new Vassar program around the ideas of Richards ’70 in the multidisciplinary field she named Euthenics. Richards first used the term in The Cost of Shelter (1905), giving its definition as both “the science of better living” and “the art of better.”

The Years