Puslapio vaizdai

son, and under their sway the institution flourished in every department. An interesting incident about the time of the Revolution was the organization of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, "the parent society in this country." The date of its origin was December 5th, 1776, and the first meeting was held in the "Apollo Room" of the old Raleigh Tavern. When the college was suspended in 1781, the records of this society were carefully sealed up and placed in the hands of the college steward, and on their examination in the year 1850, it was discovered that only one of the old members, Mr. William Short of Philadelphia, was still living. Mr. Short, who had been President of the Phi Beta Kappa when the college was closed, was at once communicated with, the society resumed its existence with this connecting link, and is now in full operation-its list of members before and since the Revolution numbering some of the most eminent names in the history of Virginia and in that of other States.

The fortunes, good or bad, of the College of William and Mary were always so closely wrapped up with those of the old metropolitan borough of Williamsburg, that some account, however brief, ought to be given of a few famous spots in the ancient capital, whose very dust may be said to be historic. In Williamsburg, every feature of the social, political, and religious organization of the epoch, reacted on every other feature. This state of things was singular, and in vivid contrast with the habitudes of the present time. The Crown extended its fostering or depressing hand over everything-over the church and the institutes of learning, as over political affairs, the whole constituting one fabric under "control of government." It thus happened that William and Mary found itself mixed up with all the ancient localities -the scenes of very interesting events. Old Bruton Church was for a long time the resort of the students on days of public worship. At the Old Capitol they witnessed the determined stand made by the Burgesses against the encroachments of the Crown. At the Old Palace they appeared annually on the 5th of November to present their copies of Latin verses to the Governor, as the representative of the King of England, the head of the institution. At the old Raleigh Tavern they met to found the Phi Beta Kappa Society, or to join in the festivities of the fine assemblies held in the historic "Apollo Room" in the building. When the revolutionary outburst came, the great

drama was played before them, and they mingled in their "academical dresses" with the crowds which cheered the worthy Lord Botetourt as he rode in his fine chariot, drawn by its six white horses, to the Capitol, or hooted the unpopular Lord Dunmore as he fled to his man-of-war in the river after rifling the Old Magazine of its powder.

"Bruton Church," which is still standing, is one of the oldest of these historic buildings, and took its name from the parishthe college having been built, it will be remembered, on land "lying and being in the parish of Bruton." It was erected in 1678, and became a prominent feature of the colonial capital-a sort of miniature St. Paul's. The royal Governor had his fine pew there under its canopy, and around him on Sunday were grouped the most distinguished citizens of the place, the Councilors, Judges, and Burgesses. The old Bruton Church Communion Service is still in existence, and is shown in our engraving. The cup and patten are of gold, and were presented to the church by Sir John Page. The flagon, chalice and plate are of silver, and were presented by King George III., whose coatof-arms is carved upon them. As the Rev. Mr. Blair of the college was always closely associated with the old church, of which he became, in 1710, the rector, the students of William and Mary must have attended the services, no chapel at the college having yet been erected. The engraving will convey a correct idea of this ancient cruciform building, whose ante-revolutionary history is particularly interesting in connection with its rector, James Blair. This gentleman managed generally to be at dagger's draw with the governors on ecclesiastical questions, and invariably overcame them, for there never was a harder fighter or a more dangerous adversary. When Governor Andros assumed high royal prerogatives in the appointment of ministers, Mr. Blair went to London, appeared before the Archbishop of Canterbury, confronted the Governor's representatives, and the historian of the affair sums up the result in the statement-" Never were four men more completely foiled by one." An equally obstinate combat occurred between Blair and his Excellency Governor Nicholson, who had conceived a furious. passion for Miss Burwell, a young lady of Williamsburg. Mr. Blair interfered in the interest of "good morals and manners," when the violent Governor swore that he would "cut the throats of three men, the bridegroom, the minister, and the Justice

who issued the license," in case Miss Burwell married any one besides himself. This threat Blair laughed at, and then proceeded to show that he was more than a



match for his adversary. He preferred charges against Nicholson, who was tried in Lambeth Palace, and the result was his removal from the place of Governor. We are sorry to say that the clergy did not escape from this combat without some dust on their robes. Governor Nicholson charged them with meeting in a grand supper at the Raleigh Tavern to conspire against himwith indulging on that occasion in undue hilarity;" a satirical ballad on the subject was circulated in Williamsburg and London, and the Bishop of London wrote the clergy a severe letter, begging them not to "play the fool any more"-all of which is related on the authority of Bishop Meade. The Rev. Commissary Blair was charged with such improprieties. It seems incontestable that he was irritable and combative, but these quasi-vices seem to have served both William and Mary and Bruton Church.


Duke-of-Gloucester street, the main thoroughfare of Williamsburg, was a straight, broad avenue, three-quarters of a mile in length, with the college at one end, and the "Old Capitol" at the other. The city had been originally laid out in the eccentric form of the two letters W and M, the initials of William and Mary, but the "city fathers" had the good sense to change the plan. There were two "Old Capitols," one built in the first years of the eighteenth century, and destroyed by fire in 1746, and a second

on the same site destroyed in the same manner in 1832. The latter is the historical old building called "the heart of rebellion," and a chance drawing by a lady of Williamsburg (see the engraving on page 8) is all that has rescued its outline from oblivion. The earlier edifice was connected, however, with many interesting scenes in the history of the colony; and it would prove attractive, if for nothing else, from the presence there of the martial figure of Spotswood, the founder of the "Horseshoe Knights," who slew the pirate Blackbeard, and was so mighty a worker in iron that he was called the "Tubal Cain of Virginia." The reverend clergyman and traveler, Mr. Jones, speaks with enthusiasm of the antique edifice, which, like the college, struck him as "beautiful and commodious;" indeed, "the best and most commodious pile of its kind that I have seen or heard of." He dwells with a sort of rapture on its excellent architecture. It was in the form of an H, with a handsome portico in the middle. The General Court sat on one side, and the House of Burgesses on the other; their hall being not unlike the House of Commons. In each wing was a staircase, one leading to the Council Chamber," where the Governor and Council sit in very great state, in imitation of the King and Council, or the Lord Chancellor and House of Lords." Every officer had his room, and a cupola with a clock surmounted the edifice. A wall enclosed the grounds, and "a strong, sweet prison for criminals" rose near-also a debtors' prison, though it rarely had occupants," the creditors being there generally very merciful." In the grounds might be seen at public times a great number of handsom, well-dressed, compleat gentlemen," and, no doubt, roving students from William and Mary, fond of sight-seeing. Such was the first " Old Capitol built at the cost of the late Queen" Anne, and destroyed by fire in spite of the prohibition of " the use of fire, candles, and tobacco." The second building soon took its place, and witnessed the tumultuous scenes of 1774 and the succeeding years. It had already echoed with the thunders of the great debate on the Stamp Act in 1765, when Patrick Henry, a raw countryman, startled the Burgesses with his grand outburst, "Cæsar had his Brutus," etc., with which all are familiar. In the lobby, listening, was a young student of William and Mary College, named Thomas Jefferson, who afterward characterized the debate as most "bloody," and described the sudden



appearance of Edmund Randolph, as he came out of the Chamber, declaring, with a violent oath, that he would have given five hundred guineas for a single vote, which it seems would have defeated the famous resolutions of Henry. The Old Capitol was the scene of all the grand official pageants of that time. The royal governors, always fond of imitating regal proceedings, had the habit of riding from the "Palace" to the Capitol in their coaches drawn by four or even six horses, aiming thus to dazzle the eyes of the "provincials;" and, once enthroned in their Council Chamber, they seem to have felt that for the moment they were the real Kings of Virginia. The old chronicles leave no doubt of the lordly deportment of the royal governors on these occa.sions. "Yesterday, between three and four o'clock P. M.," says the "Virginia Gazette" for May 27, 1774, "the Right Honorable the Earl of Dunmore sent a message to the Honorable the House of Burgesses, by the Clerk of the Council, requiring their immediate attendance in the Council Chamber, when his Excellency spoke to them as follows." His address was that of Charles I. to his Parliament, demanding the five members. The Burgesses had "reflected" on the King and Parliament, and were sternly declared to be" dissolved." And the men who were thus imperiously addressed, who were dismissed by his Lordship with marks of his cold displeasure, as a schoolmaster dismisses his school-boys, were Jefferson, Henry, Mason, and Pendleton-the greatest names, in a word, of the time. A singular ceremony followed this scene. On the next evening the House of Burgesses gave a ball at the Old Raleigh Tavern, " to welcome Lady Dunmore and the rest of the Governor's family to Virginia!"-a proceeding which has been compared to the bow of a swordsman before crossing his adversary's weapon. Other interesting scenes connected with the Old Capitol must be sought for in the annals of the time. It was destroyed by fire in 1832, and only a few articles were rescued. Among these was the tall "Speaker's Chair," behind which was a red curtain, held aloft by an ornamental rod, and a remarkable antique stove covered with carvings. This chair and stove were removed to the Capitol of Richmond-the chair continuing to be that of the Speaker of the House of Delegates, and the stove taking its place near the statue of Washington by Houdon, in the rotunda of the Virginia Capitol.

The "Palace" of the royal governors, of which only a few ruins remain, stood on Palace street, a broad thoroughfare running northward from Gloucester street. The building connected with so many scenes of the revolutionary outburst was not the original structure, occupied by Spotswood. Of the first building, Mr. Jones gives an account full of his habitual enthusiasm. It was a "magnificent structure, finished and beautified with gates, fine gardens, offices, walks, a fine canal, orchards," etc.; and in the building were stands of the best arms, "nicely posited by the ingenious contrivance of the most accomplished Colonel Spotswood," and above the building rose "a good cupola or lantern illuminating most of the town." The cause of the destruction of this building is not recorded-the Palace occupied by Fauquier, Botetourt, Dunmore, etc., was an edifice on the same site with a front of seventyfour feet and a depth of sixty-eight. The grounds consisted of three hundred and sixty acres, beautifully laid out in gardens, walks, carriage roads, a bowling-green, etc.; and in the park in front stood some fine Scottish lindens, planted by Lord Dunmore, which on "gala nights" were hung with colored lanterns. In the great reception-room of the Palace were portraits of the King and Queen, and it seems that here, as well as in the Council Room of the Old Capitol, was transacted much of the public business.

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and the others, and they gave superb entertainments to the Burgesses when they assembled, on the King's birthday,-or whenever it pleased them. The political grandeur of his Viceregal Excellency's sessions in the Old Capitol was to be equaled by the social grandeur of his assemblies at the Palace. Like royalty, he held his "drawing-room"-received his subjects superbly, standing under the portraits of the King and Queen; and it is certain that with Botetourt and others this was a sincere pleasure. It is not so certain that Lord Dunmore had any such feeling, or indeed gave any balls. The Burgesses, as we have seen, offered his wife and daughters the compliment of one, but it does not appear to have been repaid by courtesies on his own part. The "Palace" only appears, during his sway, on one occasion, and then in the disagreeable light of a fortress guarded against the irruption of the gay Virginians. It was reported that his Excellency had arms ranged in rows on the floor ready to do execution on any inconsiderate rebels who assailed him. He soon afterward abandoned the capital, having first removed the powder from the Colonial Magazine.

This building, popularly known as the "Old Magazine," is still standing. It goes back to a period which in America may be called a tolerably remote antiquity, having been erected by Governor Spotswood in the year 1716. The building is octagonal, surmounted by a pointed roof, and is very substantial. Each of the octagonal sides is twelve feet in width, giving an interior diameter of about thirty feet. It has been variously employed since the Revolution as a Baptist meeting-house, etc.; but it is the aim of some gentlemen of Williamsburg now to restore it and preserve it as an historical relic. The Old Magazine appears but once in history, but this single appearance is a dramatic one, and renders the spot highly interesting. The incident is too well known to require more than brief mention. Lord Dunmore, acting apparently like Gage in Massachusetts, under general orders from his Government to disarm the people, secretly removed the powder from the magazine under cover of darkness and sent it off. The act excited enormous indignation, and Patrick Henry marched at the head of an armed force upon Williamsburg, only consenting to disband his men when the powder was paid for. Soon afterward, Dunmore fled from the capital never again to


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was as famous as "The Raleigh." date of its origin is not accurately known, but it was probably erected before or soon after the year 1700. The building was of wood, one full story in height, with an attic above lit by eight dormer windows in each wing-the house being in the form. of an L, with a basement and entrance doors nearly in the center of each front, over one of which was a leaden bust of Sir Walter Raleigh. The main apartment was called the "Apollo Room," for what reason it seems difficult to discover; and this room, which was large, well lit, with a deep fireplace, on each side of which a door opened, and a carved wainscoting beneath the windows and above the mantel-piece, witnessed probably more scenes of brilliant festivity and political excitement than any other single apartment in North America. wood and the early dignitaries of the colony must have been familiar with this old apartment; Botetourt, on his arrival in Virginia, supped here in state, and with the advent of the Revolution, it grew suddenly popular as the place of meeting of the patriots. It had long been used for the grand balls of the time, called "assemblies," and in 1763 or 1764 we find Jefferson, then a gay young student at Williamsburg, or "Devilsburg,' as he always wrote in his letters, declaring that he was as happy on the night before


as "dancing with Belinda in the Apollo" could make him. The ancient room saw, indeed, at one time or another, all that was brilliant and graceful in the Virginia society of the eighteenth century, and its high reputation as a ball-room is shown by the grand assembly held there in honor of Lord Dunmore-a "state affair" under the auspices of the Honorable House of Burgesses. This social importance of the "Apollo Room" was supplemented by a high political renown. On the dissolution of the Burgesses, they retired from the Capitol en masse to the "Apollo," where they entered into the non-importation agreement, passed resolves against England, and subsequently originated the "Committee of Correspondence," the main political engine, uniting in one column, for resistance or attack, all the colonies of North America against England. The detailed history of this famous

cluding the rare volumes of the library. Such was the energy of the authorities, however, that one year afterward, day for daythat is to say, on the 8th of February, 1860, the college had been completely rebuilt and



tavern is worth the attention of some persevering antiquary. We can only add here that the rear wing first disappeared, and about the middle of the present century the remainder was destroyed by fire.

The history of William and Mary College, to which we now return in a few concluding paragraphs, presents since the Revolution some interesting incidents which we shall briefly mention. In 1781 the building was partially destroyed by fire, while occupied by the French troops, in the absence of the students, but rebuilt by the King of France, who made an important accession to the library. In 1788, General Washington, who had held his appointment as Surveyor from the institution, was made Chancellor. Bishop Madison also had charge of the college, as President, until 1812, and about 1848, the present Bishop Johns of Virginia became President, remaining in office until 1854. At present the institution is under the control of the able and estimable President Benjamin S. Ewell, who has been connected with it for the best part of half a century.

In February, 1859, the college was again destroyed by fire, some of the students being exposed to imminent peril. The old portraits in the "Blue Room" and the College Seal were rescued by President Ewell,-also the records of the institution. With these exceptions, almost everything was lost-in

furnished, and was again in full operation, with ample means to sustain its Faculty. In May, 1861, the existence of actual war in the immediate vicinity rendered it necessary to suspend the exercises, and on the 9th of September, 1862, a disorganized force of Federal cavalry, then in possession of Williamsburg, fired and destroyed the principal building, with the furniture and apparatus, subsequently injuring the property to the extent, in all, of about $80,000. The college now seemed to have fallen never to rise again, but its friends did not despair, and in August, 1865, determined to repair some of the buildings, and re-open the institution. This was promptly done, largely by means of contributions, not only from Virginians, but from friends of education in other States and countries, among whom were the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Earl of Derby, and others in England; Messrs. Stewart, Belmont, Harper, Appleton, English, Scribner, and others in New York; Messrs. Childs, Lippincott, and many more in Philadelphia, and the first citizens in Boston, Baltimore, Washington, Georgetown, etc., the list being far too long to present in this place. About the same time the "Matty fund," an ancient charity, dating from 1741, and amounting to more than $8,000, was secured; and with this fund was established "The Grammar and Matty School." To end

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