Washington Post
Washington Post
Contributed by Susan

Description: Spencerian Business College Graduates Ready for Life"™s Work

Date: May 15 1889

Newspaper published in: Washington, DC

Page/Column: Page 7

Ready for Life's Work

Many Graduates of the Spencerian Business College - Albaugh's Opera House Crowded

Creditable Addresses Delivered by the Pupils, and the Postmaster General Speaks Eloquent Words of Advice and Encouragement - Flowers on the Stage.

A stream of gayly dressed people began to pour in through the doors of Albaugh's Grand Opera House soon after 2 o'clock yesterday afternoon, and by 3 o'clock the doorkeepers announced that in the orchestra there was standing room only, and both the galleries were filled to their utmost capacity. The attraction was the 23rd annual commencement exercises of the Spencerian Business College, an institution whose popularity was so well illustrated yesterday. The interior of the theatre presented an attractive appearance.

The orchestra circle seemed one vast sea of many-colored bonnets and headgear of all descriptions, from beneath which beamed forth the bright eyes and smiling faces of the wearers. But the prettiest scene of all was that on the stage. The flowers that had been sent the graduating pupils by their admiring friends had been placed on the state just in front of the footlights, and numerous were they that a perfect bank of roses, lilies, and in fact rare flowers of all kinds had been formed, completely hiding the footlight against which they reposed.

Placed in the form of semicircles around the stage were rows upon rows of chairs to be occupied by the teachers, students, and guests of the college. The music for the occasion was furnished by the Marine Band, led by Professor SOUSA and was excellent. Shortly after 3 o'clock the orchestra began a march, and the students, led by Mr. Henry C. SPENCER, filed upon the stage, their appearance being greeted with tumultuous applause. The front row of seats were occupied by the Rev. Teunis S. HAMLIN, D. D., of the Church of the Covenant; ex-Mayer M. G. EMERY, president of the Second National Bank; Superintendent of School W. B. POWELL, Gen R. D. MUSSEY, ex-School Superintendent J. O. WILSON, Thomas J. PICKETT, principal of the College of Commerce, of Philadelphia; William BALLANTYNE, Rev. Mr. PHILLIPS, Miss Clara BARTON, Henry C. SPENCER, principal, and Mrs. Sarah A. SPENCER, vice principal of the Spencerian Business College. Besides these there were the corps of teachers employed in the college. In the second row were to be seen the bright, winsome faces of the young lady graduates, whilst the other seats were occupied by the gentlemen members of the class of '89.

After all had been seated and quiet had once more settled upon the audience, Principal SPENCER introduced the Rev. Dr. HAMLIN, who made a brief prayer for the future success and well being of the pupils and preceptors of the college. After this invocation and the rendition of "The Coquette," by the orchestra, a tall slender youth, with a pleasant face, bright eyes, clear cut features, and high intellectual forehead, was introduced by Mr. SPENCER as Mr. R. Lee MADDOX, of Kentucky, and the salutatorian of the gentlemen's class. Mr. MADDOX was warmly applauded for his excellent efforts, and was presented with many floral [unreadable].

One of the prettiest of the many pretty young ladies on the state, Miss Pearl B. BEVERSTOCK, of Ohio, was next introduced. She is a perfect brunette of medium height and a good figure and was becomingly attired in a Grecian costume. Miss BEVERSTOCK had been selected to deliver the salutatory of the ladies class, and gracefully did she perform her duty. This as followed by a contralto solo by Miss Maude E. WOLSTON. This young lady is gifted with a sweet clear voice, and her rendition of the well known air "I Wonder," was encored.

The valedictorian of the gentlemen's class was then introduced in the person of Mr. Theodore F. MAUSS, of the District. Mr. MAUSS is a pleasant-faced youth of medium build and wore a cool looking black cutaway suit with a red rose of a boutonniere. He was very kindly received by the audience and made a good speech. The concert solo, "Rock-a-bye Baby," by Mr. Walter F. SMITH, preceded the valedictory of the ladies' class delivered by Miss Jeannette (Jeanette?) R. TALBERT, a handsome blonde of this city. Miss TALBERT is as graceful as she is handsome, and is possessed of a clear, pleasant voice, and her remarks were warmly applauded. She received one of the handsomest floral offerings seen on the stage. It was a magnificent basket of exquisite Mareschal Neil and La France roses, with a handle of beautiful double carnation pinks.

Miss Sara A. SPENCER, the vice principal of the college, made a brief address on the business qualities in women. Her remarks were bright and interesting, and were frequently interrupted by applause. She was followed by the principal of the college, Mr. Henry C. SPENCER, who gave the graduates some timely advice as to the best way to keep a situation. Then the audience was given a treat - the Grecian drill of the college Delsarte class of 1889.

This drill was arranged by Miss Ida ROFF, a teacher of the college, and was extremely well executed. Miss ROFF is a well-known teacher of the Delsarte system and the ease and grace of her pupils in their drill was a sufficient testimony of the effectiveness of her efforts. At the conclusion of the drill the pupils formed the sides of a hollow square and a table bearing diplomas for the pupils was brought forward, and a few moments later Principal Spencer, in a few well chosen words, introduced Postmaster General WANAMAKER, who had consented to deliver the diplomas. He said:

"Mr. President, ladies and gentlemen: I am very grateful for this kind reception. It would be an ungracious thing at this hour after these most beautiful ceremonies to attempt to make an address to you. I accepted the compliment of this invitation because I wanted to encourage the men and women that are training those who are so soon to take the places of older men and women, and are giving them a better start in life than the fathers of many of them can have had.

"It is a great, grand work that is being done by the business colleges of the land, and I am here as a business man to say that and more; that they deserve at the hands of all men strong encouragement for their patience, their wisdom, their practical work.

"One day when old Peter COOPER, the philanthropist of New York, entered the building known as the Cooper Union, he passed into a room where a painter on a ladder was frescoing the ceiling. Not knowing the white-hatted, white-hearted old man, the generous soul, the painter said to him: "Old man, please hold the ladder for me, it's a little shaky." There stood the splendid old man holding the ladder for the workman, whilst he plied his brushes to the ceiling. The business colleges are holding the ladder. The young people go to the top and do the work. Whatever experience, whatever strength these teachers have, they want to give it to those fine fellows and to these their beautiful sisters who have life's struggle before them, and for whom to-day in every heart there is a great wish that means more than good will.

"I am glad to be here today and to put on record my confidence in the good work of such a college as this. There are those who believe that the only line of service for business is to become in some measure an apprentice. Not that it is possible in these days to go back to the old system that had in it so much of good, but that in some measure those who have gone before, and know the difficulties shall say to the younger brother ‘Come and sit by me and let me teach you. It shall not be so hard for you when you come to take your place, and do battles, if I can give you a leaf of my book. You shall learn where the rocks are; you shall catch from my head the skill to guide the little boat in which you are to sail on to the other shore.'

"It is no small matter nowadays to keep up in the great race. Business has come to be such a different thing in these days, when ships skip like a deer across the ocean; in these days when everything seems to have swift feet, and must be done on the minute. It is trained people that must come to take hold, and unless they have wit, have it about them, and have it sharpened, they shall fall to the rear. So it comes to pass that your beautiful college opens its doors, that with your test books, your practical teachers, you are leading boys and girls, men and women, to go on and out and upward to higher and better work than their fathers were able to.

"I say in my heart, bless the men and women who, turning their backs themselves upon business that might give them larger incomes, for the love of education, for the love of their fellow man, say, ‘We will be helpful, we will be stepping stones, upon our shoulders you shall rise to greater success than perhaps, in your brightest dreams your sunniest moments every dawned upon your lives.'

"I rejoice in what I see here today of the interest of Washington evinces in such a college. I am glad also to see such a splendid set of young people, ready to take their places. I am glad to have the honor to hand them, not a diploma of good will only, but something that by their heroism, their courage, their patience, they have earned what belongs to them by good right [Applause.]

"And you, dear friends, are applauding them and not the speaker while I make this statement. [Applause.]

"Life at best is a great struggle. Let us help each other, every many of us, every woman, by kindly words, by encouragement. If you should possess a good art to achieve success do not put a patent on it. Let us hand it around, give it to the next one; say to him ‘pass it on to your brother,' and so let the world be filled with job and brotherliness and uplifting until this great world shall be filled with hood will to man. [Applause.]

"I had the greatest respect for a little boy on a winter day that sat at a street corner rubbing his knee. He had slipped down in passing from the curb, and to the man who cam right behind him he said, ‘Mister, don't step there; that is where I fell down.' We will say that marking the places where we slipped, but we will say more: ‘Here is the way to get up; take hold of his hand and this one and let us help each other.'

"A friend said to me yesterday that in one of those automatic machines where you drop in a nickel to get a piano, or something else, that when they came to open the box they found that some people had put buttons in, and little strips of leather, and stones, and a bit of lead, and a lot of things that were not nickels by any means. I do not know what happened when these articles were dropped in the slot, but his I know, that there did come a day when the machine was opened, when it was found out that somebody had some day proved untrue. They tried to get and maybe did get a prize, without the proper pay, but the day came when it was all told out against them.

"To these young people let me say that there is but one true way to get things, and that is by paying the right price. By your toil, your faithfulness, your diligence, you have won what I shall have the honor to put into your hands. So let it always be. If you try to get things without toil, without honest endeavor, it will not be worth anything to you. You will say, ‘I obtained this for nothing and I can get another and another for nothing." And it will take out of you, besides your own self respect, the spirit of effort, and it will dwarf you and you shall be that much less a man. We can only really get what we deserve to have in this world and the next, and that is my speech to you today as your friend. Keep on the line of earnest endeavor, upon which I congratulate you today, and you shall find the flowers at your feet and the music further on, and still higher up the friends to greet you and smile upon you and bless you, and far beyond it all the best of friends to give you welcome, when all this weary world and its work are behind you, a friend who shall say, ‘Well done, good and faithful soldiers, enter the grater joys and blessed rest.'

"I salute you as your brother and friend. In the name of your president and faculty, as you come to stand before me, I shall have the pleasure of laying into your hands what shall be to you not only a sweet memory of those days that you have spent together, but an inspiration because of its encouragement. When this is done you shall say, "I shall do a great deal better; see if I don't; and you help me, and God bless you.'"

His remarks were filled with good advice to the youths about to enter life, and the hearty appreciation and approval with which they were met was evinced by the constant applause which punctuated them. At their conclusion, Mrs. SPENCER said: "We have promised that every graduate may look in the face of Hon. John WANAMAKER, the prince of business men," and then the graduates were called, and received their reward of their faithful study. General WANAMAKER had a kind and appropriate word for each, but it was only to the two colored graduates, W. Randolph SMITH of Virginia and Samuel Z. WALKER of South Carolina, that he vouchsafed the honor of a handshake. As the last diploma was delivered Principal SPENCER stepped forward, and, thanking the audience for their kind attention, announced that the exercises were completed, and this concluded one of the most successful commencements ever held by this popular institution.

The following is a list of the graduates:

Ladies, Day Class:
-- Mary V. Beauchert, D. C.
-- Pearl B. Beverstock, [Milan], Ohio
-- Eva L. Cummiski, D. C.
-- Lena H. (L.?) Dahler, D. C.
-- Alice G. Edmonston, D.C.
-- Elizabeth R. Goods, Virginia
-- M. Ada Larcombe, D.C.
-- Mame M. Lazelle, North Carolina
-- Anna W. Loyd, Minnesota
-- Nataline E. Pavarina, D. C.
-- Jeanette R. Talbert, D. C.
-- Carrie Louise Walker, D. C.

Gentlemen, Day Class:
-- G. Raymond Acton, Virginia
-- John S. Bradford, Illinois
-- Jesse Columbus Brooke, D. C.
-- Samuel S. Coggins, D. C.
-- Adelbert Willis Cox, [Holderness], New Hampshire
-- John D. Cross, Kansas
-- Thomas F. Gillespie, South Carolina
-- Stephen A. Green, Jr., Virginia
-- James C. Hatton, [Trenton], New Jersey
-- Ernest P. Hoff, D. C.
-- Frank H. Hough, [Mount Pleasant], Maryland
-- Edward E. Hunter, Virginia
-- W. Bladen Jackson, D. C.
-- Theodore F. Mauss, Valedictorian, D. C.
-- W. Sewall McDevitt, Virginia
-- Emory G. Moore, Maryland
-- Eugene T. Mower, Iowa
-- R. Lee Orwen, West Virginia
-- Don R. Patterson, Virginia
-- Edward L. Renick, West Virginia
-- Frank G. Strong, Indiana
-- John R. Taggart, Ohio
-- William H. Trouland (Tronland?), D. C.
-- Oscar G. Vogt, D. C.

Ladies Night Class:
-- Serene A. Bayne, D. C.
-- Katie C. Cullen, [Davidson], Tennessee
-- Mary A. Cullen, [Davidson], Tennessee
-- Theresa C. Gately, D. C.
-- Annie M. Griesbaner, D. C.

Gentlemen, Night Class:
-- Edwin M. Bennett, [Cass], Missouri
-- William J. Elder, D. C.
-- Robert H. Lacey, Virginia
-- Daniel P. McCallum, D. C.
-- Will H. McCormick, D. C.
-- Frederick W. McReynolds, Indiana
-- R. Lee Maddox, Salutatorian, Kentucky
-- W. Randolph Smith, Virginia
-- Samuel Z. Walker, South Carolina
-- Victor V. Watkins, New Jersey
-- John E. Weidman, D. C.

Stenography and Typewriting:
-- Mary V. Beuchert, D. C.
-- Annie M. Coughlan, D. C.
-- Jaffa Elcho Haslup, [Baltimore], Maryland
-- Florence E. McKenzie, D. C.
-- Charles J. French, Kentucky

Penmanship Certificate, teachers' Course:
-- Eugene T. Mower, Iowa

-- Lily Beal Porter, D. C.
-- William D. Porter, Jr., D. C.
-- Henry A. Whallon, [Alexandria], Virginia.

Submitted: 10/09/07 (Edited 10/09/07)

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