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Title: Letter from David L. Swain to Charles Manly, October 28-29, 1856 : Electronic Edition.
Author: Swain, David L. (David Lowry), 1801-1868
Funding from the University Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill supported the electronic publication of this title.
Text transcribed by Bari Helms
Images scanned by Caitlin R. Donnelly
Text encoded by Caitlin R. Donnelly
First Edition, 2007
Size of electronic edition: ca. 20K
Publisher: The University Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
2007
© This work is the property of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It may be used freely by individuals for research, teaching and personal use as long as this statement of availability is included in the text
The electronic edition is a part of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill digital library, Documenting the American South.
Languages used in the text: English
Revision history:
2007-03-05, Caitlin R. Donnelly finished TEI/XML encoding.
Source(s):
Title of collection: University of North Carolina Papers (#40005), University Archives, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Title of document: Letter from David L. Swain to Charles Manly, October 28-29, 1856
Author: D. L. Swain
Description: 4 pages, 4 page images
Note: Call number 40005 (University Archives, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)
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Letter from David L. Swain to Charles Manly , October 28-29, 1856
Swain, David L. (David Lowry), 1801-1868



Page [1]
Chapel Hill 28. Oct 1856

My dear Sir ,

Your kind letter of the 25th. & 26th were received yesterday. I wish I had it in my power to comply with your request to visit Raleigh. Gov. Graham is to be here tomorrow to confer with Judge Battle and myself in relation to Mr. Davis's proposed plans of improvement, and the removal of Mr. Hedrick has devolved additional labour on me, to such an extent that I do not expect to be absent from my post an hour until the end of the session.
With very high respect for your judgement and perfect confidence in your friendship, you must allow me to intimate that when the facts shall come fully before you, I do not think you will regard me as having given too much attention to the proceedings of Mr. Herrisse . I have something to say, which perhaps had not better be written at present.
I have had no altercation and bandied no epithets with him. Since the receipt of his supplemental memorial, I have neither written nor spoken to or of him, except in the discharge of official duty.

Page [2]
On the 13 Sep. the Ex. Com. resolved among other things, "that disorderly conduct among the students was daily increasing for want of due execution of the ordinances of the University." The Faculty responded on the 19th. and their answer is on file.
On the 4th. Oct. the Committee call for a full copy of the journal or proceedings of the Faculty in relation to the disorderly conduct of one of the students as set forth in the accompanying Memorial of Mons. Herrisse of the 27 Sep.
What was the object of this call? No power has ever been claimed, much less expressed by the Trustees to reissue a decision of the Faculty with respect to scholarship or morals. It would have been indecent to suppose, in violation of all judicial analogies that the Trustees desired to consider whether a new trial should be directed in a case where the Defendant had been acquitted. Regarding you on the other hand, as in the exercise of an undoubted right to determine, at the instance of Mons. Herrisse whether they ought not to be punished, for not punishing Whitaker , they felt themselves called upon to comply with your mandate and submit the best defence in their power. — They have done no more, and they dared do no less.
On the 29. Sep. Mr. Herrisse sent in a supplementary memorial, with a motto, prefixed extracted from the Resolutions of the Committee, in these words, "The usefulness of the Institution depends not so much on the number of students as their exemplary conduct." The opening charge in

Page [3]
this remarkable paper is that the discipline of the University is lax and "impunity an occurrence of every day life."
To all this the Faculty simply responded on the 15. Oct. by declaring that in their opinion, the discipline of the institution, had never since their connection with it been better maintained than at present, and resolving that if the Committee should not be satisfied from the evidence before them, that Mr. Herrisses memorials were without a substantial foundation, that strict and speedy investigation of the facts was due to all concerned.
If a letter of the allegations in these papers are true, I am altogether unworthy of my station. I am satisfied that if they are permitted to rest upon the table, I will not be able to exercise the influence over the Faculty, indispensable to the successful management of the affairs of the Institution. Mr. Herrisse has long since announced his intention to prepare a pamphlet, and indeed has already done so, it is said, upon this subject. Permit him to remain, or to retire from his place, without an investigation of charges which profess to rest upon the authority of records, and witnesses of high character, and it may not be so easy to controvert facts, which were received by the Committee without question.
For these and other reasons which need not be stated at present, I think an early decision of such issues, as you may deem material, is important.

Yours very sincerely

D. L. Swain.




Page [4]
Wednesday morning 29. Oct.
The foregoing was written yesterday and intended to be sent by Mr. Ashe who left before I knew it. I will now send this by mail, and the package containing Memorials by Prof. Hedrick with directions to leave it with Mr. West at the Depot. Mr. Hedrick is off for Ohio, Indiana & Iowa on a trip of exploration with a view to respound. His grandfather Sherwood lives in Iowa.
I am very loathe to give trouble to Mr. Bryan Mr. Moore and yourself. Mr. Herrisse either believes or pretends to believe that the Ex. Com. are with him, and although there is but a single professor who will speak to him, except when compelled by the necessities of his position, I do not believe he will resign without some action on your part. If the Committee will simply resolve, that due subordination in the Faculty is indispensable to the proper maintenance of discipline among the students, and that the Resolutions of the 15. Aug. meet with their approval, and recommend that the further consideration of the Memorial, Supplementary Memorial, Key and P.S. be indefinitely postponed, nothing more will be required. As it is he boasts a triumph and his adherents (Prof. H. & Messrs. Lucas & Wetmore ) suppose he has achieved one. All the Professors addressed a note to Prof. Hubbard yesterday requesting to be informed whether he was referred to as a witness by authority. Unless he disavows the reference, and unrecovered the charges they will cut him to a man. I hope he will take the proper course and that we will have no further trouble. There is no one who has so little reason to desire a rigid investigation as he.