Barbara Auchincloss Thatcher: 00:14 This is the first recording made for the Bryn Mawr Alumni Association All History Collection. The collection was started with funds from the Margaret Writer Smith bequest to the association. A "Reminiscence in the Deanery," a talk by Helen Taft Manning, former Dean of Bryn Mawr College and Professor Emeritus of History, was given at the Alumni Association dinner for the senior class of 1968 on Wednesday, March 20th, 1968, in the Dorothy Vernon Room of the Deanery. Members of the Alumni Association committees and about 125 seniors were on hand for this last association gathering in the Deanery. It was a memorable affair with a huge yellow cake for dessert, decorated with reasonable facsimile of the Deanery in chocolate. Mrs. Manning captivated her audience, and there was prolonged applause when she stopped, followed by a brief silence. Then from the senior's came a rising Anassa kata cheer for Mrs. Manning. Groundbreaking ceremonies were held next day and within a month the old building was raised and the alumni settling into their new Wyndham quarters. Now, Mrs. Manning. [applause]
H.T. Manning: 01:40 I'm afraid I'm here somewhat under false pretenses because I spoke more than a year ago at Washington and told a lot of funny stories about Ms. Thomas that nobody had heard before. But, uh, I didn't speak so very long. Nevertheless, I didn't say a word about the deanery that I can remember, so that incorporating the funny stories and the Dean maybe a little hard. However, whenever you speak about it, tell any, continuous narrative history about M. Carey Thomas who really was the heroine throughout of the Deanery, you can scarcely fail to bring in some of her striking in fact, uh, never to be forgotten- sayings and memories. I'm the oldest alumna around, I think, around the campus, and it's now true enough that I should be asked to deliver the Requiem on the Deanery at any rate. [laughter]. I also was very close to M. Carey Thomas. There were a great many other people who were closer, but most of them have died very naturally.
H.T. Manning: 02:48 I seem to know quite a lot. It's been forgotten by other people in part because I traveled with her in Europe in 1919 just after the close the Paris peace conference and at that time she undertook my education in many matters hoping as a matter of fact that I would use such valuable information as I garnered for the benefit of Bryn Mawr College, and I'm sure; I'm absolutely sure that I'm the only person living or dead who ever rode through Florence- the streets of Florence, in a Victoria with Ms. Thomas, while she recounted the great Deanery scandal, which is really the beginning of the deanery because we now see it so that... what I tell you on that line, is really authentic. I have to go back a little. M. Carey Thomas was the oldest of a large Quaker family in Baltimore and was born just before the outbreak of the civil war.
H.T. Manning: 03:43 I'm a little check it on my dates tonight. That's the result of being a professor of history. I think sometimes they don't seem so important. Her father was a doctor, but that did not prevent him from being also a preacher in the society of friends, and one of the weightiest friends in Baltimore. I don't know whether you met the word weighty friend, but we hear it a great deal at our table. Her mother whose maiden name was [inaudible] was also a preacher and for good measure, she was gloriously beautiful. Her mother and her aunt Hannah Whitall Smith came from Philadelphia and were the two people in the world as Thomas most admired. And Hannah was an even more famous preacher than either of the Thomas's. So much so that she eventually moved to England to take part in the holiness movement and there by very strange non-sequitur became the mother-in-law, Bertrand Russell and Bernard Burrows [laughter].
H.T. Manning: 04:41 The most likely explanation of these strange alliances is probably that all members of the family for two generations seem to have been gloriously beautiful and quite uninhibited as far Ms. Thomas in taking the lead in social events, especially in conversation and serious debates and philosophy, art, any other intellectual subject. Ms. Thomas was the victim of an accident in her early youth in which her leg was seriously burned and she had many painful operations and always walked with a limp and carried a cane. She was so striking in appearance, however, and had such a decided way of expressing herself. The limp and the cane nearly added to her unique distinction and the long period of suffering and enforced invalidism probably increased those characteristics of great willpower and drive which naturally endowed it. She was in fact, a formidable figure, even in her own family. And I was told the other day that Bertrand Russell in his autobiography, tells of his first meeting with her and says he, uh, when- before he was introduced his brother-in-law Logan Pearsall Smith, said to him, uh, in a voice of doom, "Prepare to meet thy Carey." [laughter].
H.T. Manning: 05:59 Ms. Thomas lived, liked to talk about her family to whom she was sincerely devoted, but she also liked even better, I think to me, you tell about her youth in Baltimore when she built up a circle of friends, all women whom she indoctrinated with her own views on women's rights and feminism, the need for immediate action, and above all for better education for women. She never inspired any of them with her own defiance of paternal authority and was the only one who attended Johns Hopkins where the curtain lowered to shield her from the gaze of the male students or to take a degree at Cornell, which was the only Eastern college open to women. In all these projects, she had the strong support of her mother, but her father, under censure from the circle of male friends, refused to allow her to leave home. As Ms. Thomas used to tell this story, she and her mother had only one resource left and that a humiliating one. "I cried all day," she said, "and my mother cried all night." And after three days of this drastic treatment Dr. Thomas gave in. Her next move was to go to Germany and on this, the greatest adventure of her youth. She was accompanied by Mamie Gwinn, a young woman of a most brilliant mind and remarkable critical ability. Who presumably shared Ms. Thomas's extreme views on the rights of women or at least accepted them. She was the other leader in Ms. Thomas's circle of friends in Baltimore and they were told to be young lady of their own age, but are very different social circle who shared their views of the great woman in question, Ms. Mary Garrett, her portrait is there. She was the real builder of the Deanery. The Garretts were very wealthy, owned or controlled, the Baltimore and the Howard railroad and a great deal of the best real estate in Baltimore.
H.T. Manning: 07:49 Her family were more successful than Ms. Thomas. Ms. Thomas's father and keeping their daughter at home. But eventually they died and left her a very large fortune. She admired Carey Thomas and all that Carey Thomas represented. And as you probably know, she lived here, built--helped--Ms. Thomas build the deanery and left the fortune to Ms. Thomas when she died. So you now have the dramatic persona of the uh, Deanery story. When Bryn Mawr opened in 1885, Ms. Thomas, armed with a PhD from Zurich, (since, that Sheikh Rashid studied, refused to give a degree to a woman, however brilliant) became the first Dean of the college at the age of 25, the president would, Dr. James Rhodes, a friend of our father's. The trustees were all members of the society of friends and although they certainly did not relish all of Ms. Thomas's theories, they did--she did have the support of Dr. Rhodes and is responsible presumably for arranging the curriculum, making many of the appointments in the faculty. One of her greatest contributions, was in insisting on accepting only well-qualified students. And the Bryn Mawr system of entrance examination was the first thing of its kind that I believe in this country. Uh, setting up subject examinations which really tested and not simply taking the word of the high school and the model for the college board exams. Uh, Ms. Thomas used to boast, and I suppose she's right, that this was also imposed on Johns Hopkins medical school and Ms. Garrett gave part of her fortune to them because uh, they, they [inaudible], they [inaudible], two conditions, one that they should admit women and second that they should have entrance examinations. And it used to be said that Dr. Oslur said to Dr. Welch "it's lucky we got in before they passed that rule." Okay. I didn't. As teachers, we'd never have passed the examinations. She gave herself the great course to teach in English literature, which occupied one third of a student's time for two years.
H.T. Manning: 09:53 And Mamie Gwinn, who moved with her to Bryn Mawr, read the papers written by the students and made comments in a spidery hand on the space which they were required to leave empty. There was a whole half the page, Ms. Thomas and Ms. Gwinn moved immediately into the frame house, which was the nucleus of this building. There were, of course, it wasn't nearly as big as this. There were two living rooms next to the front door, which was over there and one was used by Ms. Thomas as her study and the opposite one by Ms. Gwinn. Ms. Thomas represented to me that Mamie Gwinn was always lazy and that she, Carey Thomas had to get her the needed books from the library and see to it that all her physical needs were cared for. In fact, I gained a picture of Mamie Gwinn reposing on a chaise long and behaving like some of the great Victorian ladies, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Harriet Martin, and others.
H.T. Manning: 10:48 The truth of the matter was I imagine, that Ms. Gwinn was not so much lazy, as pathologically shy--didn't care to go out for fear of meeting strangers and had it not been otherwise ordained, might've become almost a recluse in private life, but there was never any question of her intellectual energy and originality. Although at first she confined herself to reading students' papers and writing on the margins, she did shortly begin to give a famous course on Victorian critics. First to advance students in her own study, but later to a larger group in a seminar room. She spoke always in a low voice and feared alarmed too much discussion, but everyone who studied with her regarded her as the most inspiring teacher of literature she had ever encountered. Her range was probably limited, but her taste was impeccable, and her approach was often very original.
H.T. Manning: 11:41 Now we come to the serpent in this Eden, Ms. Thomas became president of the college in 1895 or thereabouts and after a few years she decided that it would be necessary for her to turn over the survey of the English literature to another member of the faculty. Ms. Thomas's method of choosing members of the faculty, if they had to be men, and most of them--for the most part they did; she took women when she could get them--was to find out who were the most promising graduate students at Johns Hopkins or Harvard, send for their theses, which she assured me she always read through the night before appointing them. By this method, she told me that she had almost always been able to select red hot PhDs as she called them [laughter] of unrivaled capacity. Mr. Hodder, who came from Harvard, did give her lectures--that is, takeover her course--was recommended by William James and had had, as a matter of fact, more teaching experience than most of her appointees.
H.T. Manning: 12:42 He arrived in Bryn Mawr with a foreign lady and a child whom he presented as his family and they settled down on faculty row. Apparently Mr. Hodder and Ms. Gwinn fell hopelessly in love as soon as they met. My narrative of Ms. Thomas began at this point, she was in the habit of going away on a good many weekends. This point traveling about the country for the benefit of the college or alternately visiting Ms. Garrett for rest and refreshment. As she described it to me, the weekends, at the Deanery when she was away, were a continual orgy [laughter]. Champagne bottles popping. Beds being jumped into and out of and all very likely a Hollywood movie. I can't imagine how Ms. Thomas could have known very much about what actually went on, but there must've indeed have been a major intrigue and oddly enough, all the younger ladies of the English department sided with Ms. Gwinn.
H.T. Manning: 13:40 I think they thought that she'd been oppressed by a dragon the whole eight years and was at last, having a little fun. The situation could not last long. Mr. Hodder shipped the lady he'd brought with him back to Europe and said he hadn't been married to her, but nevertheless it was bound to end in tragedy. He and Ms. Gwinn were married for a few short years and then everything went to pieces. Uh, at any rate, that was the great Deanery scandal, and the most extraordinary thing is that none of the students in college knew about it. I don't believe that could happen nowadays. It was a natural sequel that Ms. Garrett moved to Bryn Mawr and that the rebuilding of the Deanery began. The really great luxury display of some of the rooms was due I think entirely to the taste of Ms. Garrett. But the beauty of this room, and of the blue study, were undoubtedly due, I believe, to Ms. Thomas's magnificent imagination and feeling for building and planning, which can be seen also in many of the other college buildings. Be that as it may, Ms. Thomas and Ms. Garrett between them, could fill the deanery with themselves and their guests. After Ms. Garrett died, I think that Ms. Thomas became troubled over its future, thought it not really well adapted to be the president's house and was not even very sure that the alumni could afford, uh, to support it. She was always aware that it was a wooden building, not too well constructed, I think foresaw that it would be taken down someday to enlarge the library, which she really wanted to be her memorial. Of course it was finally called the M. Carey Thomas Library. But it has been a thing of beauty for all of us, especially this room and the garden for many years now, and it's very, very sad to lose it.
H.T. Manning: 15:38 I hope I've already conveyed to those of you who never saw Ms. Thomas, a little of how she looked and what effect she'd produced, because I've got to do the rest with rather hasty anecdotes. In her book, uh, written last year, uh, Nicky Mariano who lived, it's called 40 years with Berenson, has some very uncomplimentary passages about Ms. Thomas and other members of the Whitall and Smith families. Ms. Thomas was a real termagant of a woman arrogant, crude and childishly ignorant. She refers to her position in American education and implies so much the worst for American women. I brooded over it and I read the book, which I liked because of its picture of Ms Thomas's cousin, Mary Berenson, whom I knew, and I myself had stayed at the Berenson's house with Ms. Thomas and I realized that while Nicky's opinion was not very important, it did reflect to some extent the opinion of Berenson, Logan Pearsall Smith, Bertrand Russell, and many other intellectuals. I may say it once, that it did not by any means reflect the male opinion. I may have given you a impression that Ms. Thomas lived in a purely female world. That was not true. She, uh, she knew a great many men when she was growing up and she knew members of the Haverford faculty. And she told me once that she'd been really planning to marry a man and then she watched him read a book and he turned the pages so slowly that she decided they'd never get on together. [laughter] But I think she had had a number of love affairs, [laughter], and probably like Mary Berenson and Alys [inaudible] might've married anybody if she hadn't been wholly devoted to the idea of what she was going to do for women's education. Now as to her, her, uh, own, uh, cultivation and education, she was remarkably well grounded and well, most interesting in her conversation about literature, classical and modern. She was particularly, uh, proud of, uh, fond of the classics, though she insisted on having written many other things, put in the curriculum, which had never been there in any other, uh, university at that time to the same extent I think. But, uh, and she also took up hobbies like archaeology, two of the best appointments she ever made to Bryn Mawr were Paul Shorey, who was the greatest Greek scholar of the country, and who moved to Chicago afterwards, and Rhys Carpenter who of course stayed here always and was undoubtedly the leading man in Greek archaeology in his great day and a marvelous lecturer.
H.T. Manning: 18:32 And uh, they admired Ms. Thomas very much indeed. I mean they felt that she really knew what she was about and that it was great fun to teach at Bryn Mawr because of the enthusiasm that she succeeded in creating. So when I tell the story about the Berensons, I'm not asking you to accept that opinion. She was an omnivorous reader. She wanted the kind of universal survey of almost everything and she was often woefully wrong. There's no doubt about that. She believed in wasting no time in idle chat. If you could not have a constructive conversation, better read a book. She read a great many on subjects she knew nothing about and they were rather badly selected that in 1919 when I was in Naples with her we were staying at Bertilini's, with the glorious view of Naples after which, whoever it was, Byron or someone said that you saw Naples and died and I was looking at Naples and I thought I was getting on fine, but Ms. Thomas had brought a book to the table. It was a [inaudible] and she tore it in two and said, now Helen you can begin this book, and I'll read the second part.[laughter]
H.T. Manning: 19:42 I don't know whether she realized that I'd never looked at Naples before, the day of Naples and Capri and all in the same with as much, but damnit, I don't think I got far with the book. That story or something like it got to Heywood Broun and he described a splendid scene where Ms. Thomas was having dinner in Constantinople, Istanbul in a restaurant and she was reading a book called uh, "This Freedom," and when she got, uh, quarter way through, she discovered it was anti-feminist. So she called the waiter and she said, waiter, drop this book in the [inaudible]. [laughter]
H.T. Manning: 20:22 Ms. Thomas was most indignant over that story appearing in a New York paper. She said it wasn't true at all. She'd taken a lovely villa on the Bosporus and by mistake she'd gotten this book and realized that it might [inaudible] Turkish [inaudible] sons of the Turkish lady who owned the land and she left, and she quietly dropped it in the [inaudible] [laughter], but there was none of this publicity given to the event, and there's no doubt that a book that was anything against women would certainly have been--there were--Ms. Thomas was always enormously interested in Constantinople. And later, I suppose it was called Istanbul, I never can remember when these names changed after the war. Uh, the first world war, I mean, she was disposing of Europe in her chapel speeches and she told us that it was rather a question about was going to happen to Constantinople at that time. She told us that she, uh, didn't think it ought to go to Russia, and she didn't think it should go back to Turkey, perhaps it not be given to England. And then she said it should not be given to the United States, or we all waited to know why. And she said it should never go to too sanitary a nation.
H.T. Manning: 21:40 [laughter] She did have this superb way of disposing of questions. And when people laughed--when we laughed, she used to rebuke it slightly. She'd say, "now, I sometimes say things hastily and it would be better if you didn't laugh." However, she was quite used to it really, because she would come out with these extraordinary and sweeping statements very often. I tried to, uh, indicate that she had her strengths and her weaknesses and undoubtedly literature, art about which she didn't know a great deal, but to me, she was tremendously interested. She did found the history of art department and put Georgianna King in charge of it and wanted it to grow. Uh, and archaeology, which she learned a great deal about through traveling and seeing ruins and so forth. And talking to [inaudible] and others. Uh, the thing she never knew anything about was the social sciences in any way that she became more interested in them as she grew older and she used to talk to me--I being a historian, she had the lowest possible opinion of historians, but I think she thought it was all right for me, though she would much prefer that I'd majored in economics and politics, which she thought might do some good. The trouble with history was that it really didn't do any good and also that she had a lot of very strange theories about it. She said, I believed in the idea of progress, but she also had worked out racial theories. There were certain great races, she told me, the Egyptians and the Greeks, the Persians--the Persians, I think only because she didn't like the Arabs and she thought therefore that whatever, they did do that was fine--in Spain, Southern Spain and so forth, they'd learned from the Persians. And I think she made some allowance for the Chinese, but she was thumbs down on American Indians and Negros. Above all, she praised those glorious Nordics, including the English. I think she believed that the good old stock was being polluted by immigration of inferior peoples, but she was, uh, it would stay pure in Scandinavia and in England.
H.T. Manning: 23:52 There were a lot of books written and they were here in the Deanery when the alumni took them over, I don't know whether they burned them or not, [laughter] but at any rate of a very dangerous nature, I think. She told me once that she, uh, was afraid that due to the building of the Panama canal, the Gulf stream was going to be diverted [laughter]--or had been diverted and that the Nordics in, in Scandinavia were going to have a hard time of it, and I had sat with my mouth open and then said, but Ms. Thomas, she had it, she'd looked into it all in the Pacific Ocean was higher than the Atlantic [laughter] and this was what was giving trouble to the Gulf stream. I said, well, Ms. Thomas, it isn't the Pacific that goes into the Suez canal, it's the Chagres River. And for all I know
H.T. Manning: 24:44 if they make it a sea level canal, this may really happen, but at any rate at the moment, whatever was happening to me, Ms. Thomas looked very much surprised at that. She never visited Panama and she never visited Mexico. I said to her when we came back after a glorious month in Mexico that she really ought to go, that was the [inaudible]. It was a unique country and that I knew that she'd get a tremendous thrill. She said, Helen, I decided long ago in looking at the pictures of the sculptures and the temples that those people had come from uh, Mesopotamia and therefore I don't see any reason going to Mexico. Again, it seemed non-sequitur to me, but I think she may be right. I don't. I think there's much more debate now than there then was is to validate where the Aztecs and the mayors came from.
H.T. Manning: 25:35 But for history, generally she had very little use because she believed in progress and she didn't think that historians except for H.G. Wells, perhaps brought it out enough or made it interesting enough and she was all for rewriting it. Gertrude Eli says that she was going up, had gotten on a train with Ms. Thomas at North Philadelphia and Ms. Thomas had her arms full of magazines and papers and looked as though they were going to have a nice chat about current events. [Inaudible] Ms. Thomas got out a tablet and began writing and she wrote all the way to Newark, say, and finally Gertrude stand it no longer. And she said, Ms. Thomas, what are you writing? And Ms. Thomas said a history of Egypt. [laughter]
H.T. Manning: 26:21 I don't vouch for that story, but it's perfectly true that I'm sure she'd tried to read histories of Egypt and decided they weren't at all interesting and that she could pep it up a bit. And she did interfere with the history department in a very unfortunate way now and then at Bryn Mawr, this was before I was in it, of course. I was Dean under her for a few years so that that was, um, I didn't have to suffer from it. But uh, at any rate, she didn't think any good could come from history. Social science on the other hand, she thought might prove something and improve people, and she started, or at least she used the money that was left, uh, by [inaudible] to found the [inaudible] department and made wonderful plans for how the world could be reformed. I think the most interesting episode, there was as she told [inaudible] and me, she woke up in the middle of the night in the Sahara desert and suddenly thought we must have a school for women workers in industry, and it should be run by the [inaudible] department, and by the time she came home, she was all primed with plans for it. But, but, always I can well remember what always seemed to me a little bit tricky about it, well she said now the Webbs have written a book telling us exactly what to do. So we'll know just what to teach the women workers in industry. Well, very fortunately, I think the school got off to an excellent start and it's only too bad in the long run, the labor unions preferred to do the work themselves and the school broke down, but it did an excellent job for the time being. And it was due to Ms. Thomas. She could get things done even though she, she, uh, did have what could only be regarded as very curious notions occasionally as to how they were to be done.
H.T. Manning: 28:15 She also had very, um, decided views about, uh, teaching sex education and so forth. Especially to me. I can remember when we were in Pompei together, she would go down--I was too young--but she would go down and then she'd come back and tell me just what the dirty pictures were on the wall [laughter] in the greatest detail. But this was my education. It was purely educational. But I, my niece, [inaudible] always tells me that I can't stop on this side without telling the story of my visit to Atlantic City. Uh, I was staying here at the Deanery. This was when I was not teaching here. It was after I'd married, and the Reverend Anna Howard Shaw was also here. She had been the head, she was a minister, and she had been the head of the women's suffrage movement, and there's a Memorial to her in the cloister.
H.T. Manning: 29:11 And Ms. Thomas at that moment, I think, really thought she was the greatest woman alive. Susan B. Anthony she had admired more in her day. But, uh, we drove down to Atlantic City in considerable luxury. Ms. Thomas had a chauffeur and a car and, uh, Ms. Thomas had some work to do, I suppose to any rate. We stopped and had sandwiches en route. And then Ms. Thomas said to me, I said to us, since we were going to be late getting there, uh, she had, uh, an apartment there overlooking the ocean at that particular moment. And, um, she said, we won't try to get lunch in the apartment. We'll go to the mall, [inaudible] grill. That's where I always go with my nephew, Harold Worthington. Harold Worthington was the son of her sister, uh, Grace Worthington. And one of, one of the two nephews and nieces whom she really took a good deal of responsibility for educating and bringing up. So we drew up in style in front of [inaudible] Grill and a great flunky came out in the big uniform and Ms. Thomas got out and said with great air, uh, we wish to go to the grill, and the flunky said, well, it's down there mom, but you can't go there without a man. Well, I thought that there would be a scene. [laughter]
H.T. Manning: 30:30 Not at all. Ms. Thomas led us quietly away. And then she turned in for my instruction. She said, you see, they think we might be prostitutes. [laughter]
H.T. Manning: 30:54 I said rather feebly, well, Ms. Thomas, I don't think we look like prostitutes, [laughter] I didn't think we did. But Anna Howard Shaw said in a very reproving way, "it's very difficult for them to discriminate." [laughter]
H.T. Manning: 31:17 I don't know whether there are any other stories which I have to tell, Barbara, are there? Well, I tried to give you an impression of her, of her sex appeal to begin with. And one of the people that, that conveyed this to me when I was in the White House with Speaker Joe Cannon, I think he must've been about, uh, 80 years old by that time. But he'd once visited Bryn Mawr, and he wanted to spend the whole evening talking about that school as he called it and how much he admired Ms. Thomas. And so I told Ms. Thomas this tale, and she said, yes, he fell in love with me. He walked up and down senior row and he wouldn't go away.
H.T. Manning: 31:59 But she did, she made a great hit with a lot of people because her conversation was extraordinarily interesting even though now, and then it did seem a little odd. She was a great figure who got things done. No alumnae who knew her, I think can resist telling uh, Ms. Thomas's stories--some thing she said or did, was really very remarkable and unlike anybody else. But on the other hand, nobody could feel that the college could have been here or that things could have been in any way the same if it hadn't been for Ms. Thomas. I used to try to think of people that she reminded me of who had that quality of greatness and, and get up and go at every moment. And I think the easiest to think of quickly was Theodore Roosevelt. They wrote the, I don't know if you ever heard the poem? Probably not though, I taught it to Mr. Dutton. At 6:00 AM he shoots a bear. At 8:00 he tames a rested horse. From 10:00 to 4:00 he takes the air, he doesn't take it all of course. [Laughter] But he has the same kind of extrovert energy and ability to do everything and meet anybody that Ms. Thomas had. Though, Ms. Thomas was in many ways I think a more interesting person, wider interests and uh, I should think have performed an even greater work. The other person that she reminds me a little of is Queen Victoria because people can't forget Queen Victoria. And yet almost every story that you think of and everything I read about her always makes me feel that there was some, uh, that she was somehow, uh, only to be appreciated if you could laugh at her heartily. And I think the something of the same kind with Ms. Thomas. The whole, and you can see if you go upstairs in the Deanery, how unbelievable some of the arrangements were that she made.
H.T. Manning: 33:55 She had a, a bathroom for herself, which was about, seemed almost a quarter of a mile from her bedroom, but it was filled it up with everything she could possibly want. It wasn't her room is over the, over the, this beautiful room here, the Dorothy Vernon room. That belonged to Ms. Garrett, and she had her own bathroom next door, but Ms. Thomas would stick in something that seemed to her perfect. And as I was telling you some of you before, she would travel with the most enormous amount of numbers of trunks. One of her reasons, she told me why she spent money so freely, and she did spend money very freely, so that she didn't really have enough left to leave a proper endowment for the Deanery. I think in the end, the alumni, she would've liked to, uh, was that she told me that she really was expecting a revolution.
H.T. Manning: 34:41 Uh, and every now and then she'd ask us whether we, uh, would be willing to have property divided up and imply that she thought it ought to be divided up. But I can only say she didn't leave very much to be divided up. So it didn't seem as if she'd done her heart part for the revolution. But you can see from that how her mind worked-- there is a progress and, uh, what was going to happen, and how you could work everything out ahead of time. Well, we have to say goodbye to her now. I'd be delighted to answer any questions about the Deanery if I can. I know a good deal more than I told you, but not everything by any means. I think that plenty of alumni who know more than I do. So if anybody wishes to hear anything else, just speak. [applause]
A Reminisence in the Deanery
Talk given by Helen Taft Manning, "A Reminisence in the Deanery," at Alumnae Association Buffet Supper for the Class of 1968 before the Deanery was torn down at 6:30 p.m. Introduction by Barbara Auchincloss Thatcher.
Manning, Helen Taft, 1891-1987 (speaker)
1 sound tape reel : analog
North and Central America--United States--Pennsylvania--Montgomery--Bryn Mawr