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Excerpts from “Normal Magazine”, April 1902

Vol. VI, No. 6

Potsdam Normal School


Published monthly during the school year by the Alumni of the Potsdam Normal School


Alumni Editor-in-Chief – Mahlon M. Wagner, ‘75

Associate Alumni Editors – N. Belle Whitney, ’88; Emily D. Streibert, ’72; Frank L. Cubley, ‘92

Undergraduate Editors – J. D. Thompson, Roger Baconian; J. M. Bonner, Francis Baconian; Muriel Streibert, Alpha; Edith Bolton, Calliopean

Advisory Committee – F. H. Allen, ’85; Emily D. Streibert, ’72; Julia E. Crane, ’74; N. Belle Whitney, ’88; Clara K. Hawkins, ‘85




Dr. MacVicar writes

Virginia Union University

March 7, 1902

“The February number of the magazine has just been received, with which I am most pleased.  It contains a full account of the Ninth Annual Reunion and Banquet of the New York Association held in New York February 7th.  I was sorry to be unable to be present at this gathering.  I have not met the Association for several years, as my other engagements make it impossible for me to respond to their kind invitations.

It has given me great pleasure to read the account given of the reception to my old respected pupil, Miss Julia E. Crane.  In reading her address I was reminded very vividly of some of the scenes through which the Normal school had to pass during its first year of work.  Miss Crane was then a young girl, but an exceedingly promising one, and I am much pleased to know that she has more than fulfilled her promise of former days in the Normal school, and that she is now an honored teacher of the Institute and a master of the department to which she has given her life.  I have had the pleasure of recommending the employment of her graduates in the schools of our Society, and in every instance they have proved successful in the work they have undertaken and give clear evidence of having been trained under a teacher who understood how to train in a practical way those who were preparing to take charge of classes themselves.

Remember me very kindly to Miss Crane and to such of the old teachers as were in the school during my administration.  So far as I know, Prof. Hathorne and Prof. Mann are the only two now left.

Yours sincerely,

M. MacVicar

The Normal Magazine conveys Dr. MacVicar’s message not only to Miss Crane and the old teachers, but gladly sends his letter to hundreds of boys and girls who will rejoice to hear once more from him.  If they are not “gude men” and “gude women” it isn’t because they were not told often enough that they out to be just that, and told with a good Scotch accent too.


Alfonso E. MacDonald, ‘75

It gives us pleasure to present with this number of the Magazine an excellent likeness of our old classmate, Alfonso E. MacDonald, ’75, for many years past a resident of Chicago, and the President pro tem of the Chicago Association of Potsdam Normal Alumni, now being organized.  Mr. MacDonald is “all right” and likewise a hustler, two qualifications essential to success in the western country.  Some six years ago we had the pleasure of visiting his school and enjoying the hospitality of his pleasant home.  The memory of it remains with us.  For the past eighteen years he has been Principal of the McClellan Grammar School, having an enrollment of 14—pupils and 29 teachers.  Among these teachers we found, to our great surprise, as his first assistant, an associate of ours in institute work in the old days in Iowa, a teacher of primary methods whose equal we have rarely met.

Outside of his school Mr. MacDonald finds time for church work which must tax his energies.  He is an elder in the Forty-first Street Presbyterian church and Superintendent of the Sunday School which as a membership of about six hundred and fifty.  He is also President of the Christian Endeavor Union of the State of Illinois, and in behalf of that organization traveled during the year 1901 nearly 1200 miles.


Alumni Babies:

SPRAGUE – Born, Jan 31, 1902 at Harrisville to Berta Humes Sprague, ’98, a daughter, Laura Humes.


Alumni Jottings:

Mrs. C. H. Sisson and children, of Tupper Lake, were in town for a few days.

Messrs. Albert and Allen Newall, ’01, have been admitted to the Phi Delta Theta frat. At Williams college.

Miss Adele Waldo, ’76, spent the Easter vacation in Potsdam, being called home by the death of her mother

In the Assembly, the opposition to the Canal bill was pronounced and forcible and was led by Mr. Merritt of St. Lawrence, who made the strongest speech of the day in that body.  Mr. Merritt did not mince matters but hit straight out from the shoulder in a manner that greatly pleased the opponents of the canal scheme.

Miss Dezell of Lisbon Center, who is teaching school in Pyrities, got into the flood at Little River Saturday, and came very near drowning.  They were all riding and attempting to put the team over the road, when a cake of ice suddenly upset the sleigh and Miss Dezell started to float away.  A man happened to be handy and he threw a rope to the young lady, by means of which she got back to dry land.

Mr. Clinton Curtis son of Mr. and Mrs. H.C. Curtis, and Miss Sadie Austin, daughter of Mrs. Austin who resides at 40 Bay Street, were united in marriage at Norwood on Jan 22.  The marriage has just been announced and Mr. and Mrs. Curtis left on their wedding trip Saturday noon, accompanied by the best wishes of their friends together with a goodly portion of rice.  They intend visiting Mrs. Curtis’ former home in Depeyster and friends in Watertown.

M. H. O’Brien ’98 called at the Normal Easter week.

Mabel Joyce ’97 paid the Normal her first visit since graduating.

Abbie Howe ’97 spent her Easter vacation at her home in Potsdam.

Mrs. Walter Gurnee, nee Helen Stoller ’98, resides at Sacketts Harbor.

Wm C. Geer ’97 has been appointed assistant in chemistry in Cornell University.

Miss Allie Sayles ’02, who is teaching at Rouses Point, visited the Normal recently.

Miss Lucia M. Yale ’01 has had to give up her position in Champlain on account of poor health.

Mrs. Ola Esterly Alexander has returned to New York from the South where she spent the winter.

Potsdam people have enjoyed the letters written from Florida by Wm. Fay.  Mr. Fay returned home a few days ago.

Clinton Houghton ’98 has been appointed assistant in the Etomological Dept. at Cornell, and is Curator of the Museum.

From the Williams Weekly we learn that A. P. Newall 1905 (Normal ’01) has been elected to participate in the preliminaries for the Williams-Wesleyan debate.

W. A. Newell ’01 recently represented Williams college in their relay race with Amherst, at Boston, Mass., and in their relay race with Villa Nova college at Washington, D.C.  Williams won both contests.

Among the Alumni visitors at the Normal Easter week were noted Laura Washburn of Heuvelton, Lena Wright of Lawrenceville, Nellie Squire of Canton, Ada Strait of Potsdam, Roy Spear of Lisbon Center, Nan Maloney ’00 of Colton Heights.

Watson A. Lawrence, 1900 has accepted a position as supervisor of the Junior Department of the Mackenzie school, Dobbs, Ferry, N.Y., at a salary of $1100.  The Mackenzie school is one of the most exclusive boarding schools for boys in the country.  Rev. J.C. Mackenzie Ph. D., the headmaster, was for many years principal of the Lawrence school, Lawrenceville, N.J.

Harry Hall ’00 and Roy Spear recently made the Normal a short visit.

Miss Eliza Kellas is spending the winter at Monticito Cal. Near Santa Barbara.

Truman Moon, Paul Mann and Roy Stowell are home from Cornell for their Easter vacation.

Miss Elva Haywood has had to temporarily give up her work in No. 8 on account of illness.

Miss Mabel Guile ’00 has accepted a position with the Normal school at Jamaica as instructor of English.

Mr. Aaron Corbin who was so ill a few weeks ago has recovered in a most remarkable way much to the surprise and delight of his many friends.

A letter from Miss Winnifred Tompkins, ’99 says that Potsdam is better represented in the Herkimer schools, than any other one Normal school.  At present Sadie Blood, Belle Williams, Eva Roberts, Mabel Guile and she are teaching there.  Like all good Normal girls they are working for the success of their Alma Mater.

An attractive circular of the Bonnie Brae school in Los Angeles, Cal., has come to hand.  It announces a Private Graded school, giving the full course of the best public schools, and in addition French, German and Latin.  The Principals of this school are Miss Emma J. Fuller and Miss Frances Parmeter.   The picture of the school building shows it to be a most artistic structure, pleasantly situated and surrounded by beautiful flowers and shrubs.

The following clipping comes from “The Madisonian” of which Joseph Smith ’88 is editor and proprietor.  It was evident that something was to take place in Elkdom Monday evening, for early in the afternoon members of the antlered herd began to arrive from all parts of Madison county.  The citizens of the Social City were aware of the fact that a band of 20 fawns were to be corralled and branded.  The friends of Joseph Smith II looked after his interests by having him left to the last, with the hope that the team of Elks doing the floor work would be worn out.  It is said that before leaving the preparation room he was arrayed in a costume more elegant than that worn by King Solomon at the height of his glory.  He was blindfolded and then led into the lodge with placard on his breast upon which was printed, “Dear Elks, Please Give Me the Limit.”  Upon seeing this request, the working team lost their weary feeling, with the result that Smith II, received all that was due.


Roll of Honor:

The following subscriptions have been received since our last issue:

Two dollars: Roy B. Davis, Ruth Walling, W. W. Read

One dollar and fifty cents: Eva Waldron, Warren Chase, Halley E. Newton, Anna G. White, F. H. Tichenor, E. J. Bonner, Marion B. Forsyth, E. W. Flagg

One dollar: Lillian Blake, F. B. Spaulding, Grace Lyon, E. Jeannette Compton, May E. Wellings, Effie Plumb, Mary M. Oliver, George Nevin, Anna L. Barnes, Miss Caldwell, Ethel M. Bush, J. H. Hall, May E. Wright, W. H. Armin, F. M. Payne, Grace Brush Pert.

Fifty cents: W. A. Lauber, W. Ethelyn Harper, Mrs. Streibert, Ines Ehles, Edith Merrick, Bessie Finnemore, Martha B. Turney, Harriet N. Ackert, T. L. Heaton, Allie L. Sayles


Crane School of Music Notes:

Miss Elizabeth Cameron ’01 is having excellent success with her work in Fort Covington.  She had been allowed new books for the High school, and has formed a boy’s glee club.  The club has already appeared at some of the social events of the town with success.  Good school music is soon known by its fruits, and the whole town benefits from it.

Miss Mabel Ruggles ’01 is teaching at Monticello Seminary, Illinois.  She spent the Christmas holidays in Chicago, hearing much fine music.  Monticello furnishes many advantages to its students, in concerts and lectures at the school, and still further advantages to the teachers in trips to St. Louis where artists are to be heard.  Miss Ruggles has been very successful in her work.

Miss Jessamine Nuffer have a Recital with her 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th grades lately.  The children of each grade marched in as their turn came, sang three or four songs, and did some work in modulation, sight singing and ear training.  A club of girls from the High school assisted.  The recital was a great success and aroused intense interest not only in the town, but amongst the pupils, and teachers of the school, inspiring them to better work.  Miss Nuffer has also secured her life certificate for teaching drawing.

Miss Fannie Stevens ’02 is well started in her work at Warsaw and is enjoying it very much.  She has a High School chorus of some fifty voices, which is doing good work.  She is being called upon to sing at many social events, and find the people most cordial and appreciative of her work.

Miss Ildah Chaney ’91 has been doing Post Graduate work since September.  She is now in New York where she has been consulting with two different school boards in regard to a position for next year.  To accept one of them means beginning work at once; the other will not require her services until September.  Miss Chaney has had charge of the Music training class in the kindergarten and has been developing the work from the foundation so well laid by Miss Ruggles last year.

One of the pleasant things in a teacher’s life is to hear good reports from the students who have been graduated and are doing strong work in their world.  A few days ago a former superintendent of Silver Creek, brought a fine report of the good work being done in that town by Miss Elizabeth Humphrey.


Society Notes:


Society work is passing along pleasantly and profitably.  Misses Apthorpe, Nichols, McKnights, Paubst and Clarkin have lately become Calliopeans.

Our Union with the Franks occurs April 12.  Misses Elizabeth Maloney and Maud Hupp are elected for debaters.

The semi-annual open meeting occurred March 15.  The hall was draped in purple and gold; palms decorated the piano and president’s stand.  An interesting program was given.  An oration “German Customs” by Miss Hibbard, was very instructive.  The debate on the question ‘Resolved, that immigration should be further restricted” was warmly contested by Misses Maynard  and Hubbard on the affirmative, and Misses Hobbs and Lynch on the negative.  The program closed with a laughable farce.



Among the new members recently initiated are Misses Simonds, Batchelder, Cadzow and Forrester.

The open meeting of the society was held March 1st, the subject for the evening being, “Athletics”.  The question debated was, “Resolved, that no professionalism should be allowed in the athletics of secondary schools.”  Misses Benson  and Balwin upheld the affirmative and Misses Kelsey  and Tiffany the negative.  The discussion was awarded to the affirmative.

The meetings of late have been well attended, special interest being taken in the programs which have been arranged in regard to particular topics.  Among the most interesting have been the evenings on Macbeth and Evangeline.


Francis Baconian

The editor wishes to state that it was through no fault of his or lack of news that the Franks were not represented in the Magazine last month.  The society news were written and handed in on time but for some unaccountable reason failed to appear.

The quarter so far has been very successful.  The work has been good and solid.  The general committee selected the following six men all of whom joined the society: T. B. Storel, Meade Alexander, George Eastman, Carl Coit, Horace Ruggles, and James Cavanough.

The society held a very successful open meeting March 7th.  The program was excellent and consisted of the following: Recitation, A. H. Chase;  oration, Our Country Past and Present, D. E. Darrah; vocal solo, Fred Berryman; Debate, Resolved, that England is justified in carrying on the Boer War; Affirmative, J. O. Coit, W. F. Regan; Negative, J. D. Gillette, W. S. Wallace.  Farce, a burlesque on Pauline’s Hypnotic show.  Wm Burt acting the part of Pauline, performed wonderful feats of mind reading, hypnotism and mesmerism, which appeared as genuine as that of the original.

J. O. Coit, ’03, and M. F. Reagan, ’03, have been elected to uphold the debating honor of the Franks at the spring union with the Rogers.

Mr. Bonner has resigned his position on the staff of society editors.  Mr. Darrrah has been elected to fill the vacancy.


Roger Baconian

The open meeting was held Saturday March 8.  The programme was as follows: Recitation, Mr. O’Mally; oration, Mr. Sullivan; music by the Roger Baconian quartette; debate on the question, “Resolved, that trusts are an evil;” Affirmative, Messrs. Gore and Crowley; Negative, Messrs. O’Sullivan and Clark.  Music by the Roger Baconian string quartette; paper, Mr. McCarthy; and farce in charge of Mr. Manley.

Messrs. McCormick, Carr and O’Sullivan are about to become members of our society.

The union meeting witht eh Alpha society will be held on April 12.  Messrs Gore and McCarthy will represent us in the coming union with the Francis Baconian Society.



Mr. John May, who recently completed a course in Eastman Business College, left Friday to accept a position in the Garfield National Bank, New York.

At the “A” class meeting for organization, the following officers were elected: President: Edith Bolton; Vice President, J. Dane Thompson; Secretary, Jessie Parsons; Treasurer, F. W. Ballou.

J. M. Bonner, one of our undergraduates has secured a position as teacher at Stark, New York.