Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 2

Tuesday. 26th.

Thursday. 28th.

Wednesday. 27th. CFA


Wednesday. 27th. CFA
Wednesday. 27th.

This being Commencement day and my year for taking the last benefit of my education, I rode from Medford to Cambridge early in the morning. Found the town about as much crowded as usual upon similar occasions. It was the first time that I had ever proposed to go through with a day of this kind regularly. I formed in the procession as a candidate for the Master of Arts degree.1 Our Class was rather more full than I had expected to see it. There being nearly thirty, and among those present were many whom I was rather pleased to see. I had not anticipated any gratification but when we came together again among the old scenes, it brought up the remembrance of our greater or less intimacy with every individual, and I was agreeably disappointed.

We walked to the Chapel and sat through the exercises which were uncommonly clever, for College parts, after which we took our first dinner in Commons Hall. Every thing tended to remind one of College days and scenes. We then visited the rooms of two or three of the graduating class. Winthrop and Chapman. Many ladies were present and a number of our College acquaintances. The next thing was a return to town, but not before visiting the humble offering of our class to those who have left us. Poor Sheafe, I thought of him, but the past is to us as nothing. And the remembrance of him is all I am to keep for the rest of life. I drove Lothrop into Boston, and we went to take our third dinner with the Class, at the Boston Coffee House. There were but seventeen present, but among them, were Dwight, Howard and Richardson of my particular friends. Lothrop, Fisher, Prescott, Chapman, Fay, Lodge,2 Lord, Sherwin, Cole,3 Hedge, and one other whose name has escaped me, who graduated. Bellows and Davis, who belonged, but did not graduate.4 We had a pleasant time and parted late, after which I slept at the Exchange.


The degree of Master of Arts at Harvard was granted upon application three years after the date of the Bachelor’s degree until 1869, when it was 274awarded only on examination ( Harvard Quinquennial Cat. , p. 131).


Giles Henry Lodge, Harvard 1825.


Jonathan Cole, Harvard 1825.


John N. Bellows, of Boston ( Harvard Annual Cat. 1822), and Charles Henry Davis (1807–1877), the future Civil War admiral ( DAB ).