Transcribed from College Symposium of the Kansas State Agricultural College Topeka, Kansas: The Hall & O'Donald Litho Co. 1891.


The desire to distinguish ourselves, to rise above the common herd, to carve out a name and fame that shall exist long after we have returned to the dust, seems to be an almost universal one, and various have been the means resorted to to gratify it. History tells of one whose splendid victories for a time dazzled the world; the Persians, the Egyptians, the Hindoos, alike went down before him. The Scythian fled to the desert at his approach, the Arabs acknowledged his supremacy; among all the nations there was found none who could successfully oppose him. Yet, great as Alexander was, he fell a victim to his own unconquered passions. Verily, he made himself a name, but it was by slaughtering countless thousands, by making himself a merciless butcher.

A ship is sailing from an English port. Leaning against the taffrail and gazing at the receding land, fading for aught he knew forever from his sight, is a young man who is destined to achieve grander conquest than any ever imagined by Alexander. In the prime of life, voluntarily exiling himself from home, friends and country, to carry the gospel to the Hindoos.

To-day on the banks of the Ganges, thousands of dusky Christians speak the name of Carey with reverence, with love almost approaching adoration. Alexander's empire lasted only while he lived; but the empire founded in India by William Carey will last as long as the earth stands.

The deeds of Carey are not written on blood-stained pages, but stamped upon the hearts of those upon whom he conferred the twin blessings of the gospel and civilization. Who remembers, to-day, the generals that distinguished themselves in the Crimean war? Nobody! The names of Ragland, Scarlett, Cardigan and St. Amand are recorded in history, 'tis true, but the deeds of their bearers are forgotten; but the name of that heroine, devoted hospital nurse who cared for their sick and wounded soldiers, Florence Nightingale is fresh in the memory of every man.

Who ever thinks, or even knows, that Cotton Mather was the author of three hundred and eighty-two works? Even the titles of many of them are forgotten. Poor, weary, discouraged and houseless Payne gave to the world one simple little song of only two verses, but it, coming from a homeless heart, touched a sympathetic chord of the heart of humanity, and the whole world has sung that song until the name and story of its author, John Howard Payne, are known wherever there are homes or homeless ones.

If you would make yourself a name, do something the world can appreciate; something that will be of benefit to others as well as yourself. Write your name on humane hearts as well as on the pages of history. Humanity is not ungrateful, but it is just. If you leave anything behind you worthy its remembrance, you will be remembered; if not, you will be forgotten, or worse, remain in history as a mere name and nothing more.



One of the most interesting of Colorado's many peaks is that named the Arapahoe, situated near the central part of the State. Viewed from the foothills it appears in shape like a pyramid, but from the greater distance the angular outline is lost, and one sees only the sharp, white point rising high above surrounding bills.

It was a pleasant July morning during the summer of '83, when, in company with two companions, I made the ascent of this peak. As I stood upon the summit and looked across the country lying below, what wonder that I almost became entranced" I thought it the grandest view of nature ever presented to me.

To the east, beyond the foothills, lay the barren plains of Colorado, dotted with hundreds of lakes, reflecting like mirrors the clear sunlight. From the northeast could be traced like a silvery thread the course of the Platte river. Looking south we could see vast herds of grazing cattle. Again and again we tried to discover a limit to the boundless expanse of country, but all in vain; each time the prairie faded into a blue haze. Close to the foothills nestled the town of Boulder, and far to the southeast could be seen faintly outlined the "Queen City of the West" - Denver. North and south the mountains streak away in one long continuous chain, broken here and there by such peaks as Long's, Gray's and Pike's. They seemed like giants keeping watch over their weaker fellows. The columns of blue smoke rising from cañons and mountain sides indicated the location of many a thriving mining camp. To the west lay that great natural basin, Middle Park, with its gentle rolling surface and groves of slender pines. Starting at the foot of the peak, a chain of minature lakes, with waters as green as emerald, extended far out into the park. In whatever direction we turned our eyes, something new presented itself. When we finally took our leave it was with a feeling akin to regret; regret because we could not see it all.



Everyone has, on a bright summer day, observed the shadows cast upon the earth by scattering clouds, first appearing over the hill tops, then gradually enveloping the observer, and then receding in the distance.

In the same way there are clouds of sorrow and disappointment that hide from us the sunshine of happiness. And we may often see them appearing from the distance, then overwhelming us for a time, then pass away and all becomes brightness and beauty.

And after all, this is perhaps the better for us. As, after the passage of clouds, the sunshine becomes more delightful in contrast with the shadow, so the pleasures and prospects of life are far more enjoyable to us after having experienced its sorrows. Again, amid the eagerness and intentness with which we are engaged in some pursuit or pastime, we may become unconscious of cloud shadows about us, so, when clouds of adversity come over us and disappointment meets us on every band, we may forget our own troubles by trying to comfort and encourage others who are weary of life's burdens.

In this way we may not only make ourselves happier but brighten the pathway of others.

In times of darkness and or gloom,
     When all is care and strife,
Oh, how we cast a summer's bloom
     By a pure and noble life.


Did you ever think of the name of Kate,
     And of some who chance to bear it,
How queer they look, and talk and act;
     Some bad, and some with merit?

Now deli-Kate is a lovely Miss,
     Both modest and refined;
But nobler far, is edu-Kate:
     She elevates the mind.

Base fabri-Kate none will believe,
     Her talk is too absurd,
Twin sister of prevari-Kate,
     Who never keeps her word.

Beware, I say, of tripli-Kate,
     'For if she takes you in
You'll have to call on extri-Kate
     To get you out again;

And then, perhaps, on vindi-Kate
     To make your actions clear;
Or else resort to suppli-Kate
     To reach a listening ear.

Miss intri-Kate's a puzzling girl;
     You'll never find her out;
She is always leagued with compli-Kate.
     To put your wits to rout.

Equivo-Kate ne'er speaks the truth,
     For falsehood's her delight;
And expli-Kate, with all her skill,
     Don't make the matter right.

And dupli-Kate, I grieve to say,
     Oft passes for another;
And tripli-Kate, so near alike,
     You can't tell one from t'other.

But indi-Kate points out the fact
     That corrus-Kate is shunning.
While invo-Kate, in pleading tones,
     For each one asks a blessing.

But lest I hear from impre-Kate,
     I'll call the roll no farther;
But simply say that convo-Kate
     Will bring us all together.


"Man wants but little here below,
     Nor wants that little long."
The third-year says this is not so,
     Instead, is very wrong.
"His wants are many, and if told
     Would muster many a score;
And were each wish a mine of gold
He still would wish for more."

What first he wants is a passing grade,
     And of "cheek" a steady gain;
For thus, you know, his right is laid
     In college to remain.
He wants a "stand in" with the profs.,
     An ever winning way;
At all their jokes he loudly laughs,
     And then he's sure to stay.

He wants, when in mechanic's room
     And up before Prof. Hood,
A mirror to reflect his doom,
     0, if he "only could!
He wants to draw a map so grand,
     And fix it up in style;
That he with artists rare may stand
     And praised be, all the while.

When the Ag. supper 'gain is near
     With all its goodly things,
He wants to be a second-year
     And share the joy it brings.
He wants to have just lots of fun
     A-sliding down the hill;
But what a risk he has to run
     When called to "fill the bill."

He wants to go to every show,
     Likewise, to every dance,
Without regard for future woe
     From zeros made by Lantz.
He wants to be a perfect dude
     And make the natives stare;
And would not falter to be rude,
     If that would get him there.

He wants a declamation fine,
     Not old and stale and dry;
But one outside the usual line,
     The seniors to outvie.
He wants to be a U. G., sure,
     And on the stage appear.
To talk in language most obscure,
     The while the seniors jeer.

He wants to organize his class
     And make it strong and true;
But then he never can amass
     His forces so to do.
He wants the seal of power and place,
     The ensign of command,
Charged by his classmates' unbought grace
     To rule the third-year band.

He wants a keen, observing eye,
     A firm and level head;
Yet oft he rushes in to die
     Where angels fear to tread.
He wants to realize his dream
     Of future and of fame,
And has matured full many a scheme
     To perpetuate his name.

His last great want, absorbing all,
     Is, when a fourth-year grim,
Intelligence not quite so, small,
     A mind not quite so slim,
Enough hard cash his board to pay,
     And grades of which to brag;
A chance to speak commencement day,
     A partner for the "rag."


Late one evening as I sat thinking of molecules, of atoms, and of vibrations, and pondering the question of the persistence of motion, of creation, of existence, and of dissolution, I became strangely conscious that in a mysterious manner something was endeavoring to communicate with me. I listened; I looked; I felt; but all in vain. I said, "Who are you that thus assails my thoughts?" Then in some strange inexplicable supersensual manner I became conscious of the following communication:

"I am an atom of oxygen. In dimensions I am only remarkable for my smallness. The traditional comparison to a mustard seed would, in my case, be but a mockery; for I am as many times smaller than a mustard seed as it is smaller than the pyramids of Egypt. My fellows more than make up for my deficiency in size. Drops of water in the ocean and grains of sand on the sea shore would be a poor comparison, for every grain of sand and every drop of water contain thousands of millions of my fellows. As to my properties, I can only say that I am indivisible and unalterable. When was I born? I was not born. Sometimes I almost persuade myself that I was not created, but that there never was a time when I was not. When all was chaos - long before when God said, 'Let there be light,' I existed. After order had been established I and my fellows were the chief agents in that wonderful upbuilding and destruction that has not yet ceased. We floated in the air; bound to atoms of hydrogen we formed the waters; and united to other atoms we formed half of the solid globe itself. But the world was not destined to continue to be a scene of desolation. With my aid plants came into existence and I found myself bound to an atom of carbon hurrying to their leaves, there to be shaken asunder by the rays of the sun; next to become the breath of life to some animal; later on, being bound to atoms of hydrogen forming water, I was again found to be indispensable to all life. And when proud man came to the stage of existence, his every action, his every thought, his very existence was hopelessly dependent on atoms like myself.

"My personal adventures have been numberless. At one time it would be my fate to form part of a body of a Napoleon; the next change might find me a part of the rust on his sword, aiding to propel his missles of death; in the tear drops trembling on the lashes of a mother made childless by his success; flowing from the pen that signed his abdication, filling the sails of the vessel that took him to St. Helena, or forming part of his winding sheet.

"Continuous, never ending motion has been my lot. 1 have been the agent of ceaseless changes. With the aid of me and with the aid of my fellows, civilization has been developed, nations have risen, great minds have flourished, wonderful discoveries have been made, glorious thoughts have been put forth, and yet changeless and unchangeable forever have I been. Unchangeable have I witnessed the formation of the world, the progress of life, and the rise of intelligence; and unchanged will I remain when the earth will be destroyed, the moon cease to shine, the sun grow dim, and the stars fade away. In all the manifold and wonderful changes that I have wrought, not once have I had any choice. I have always yielded with mathematical certainty to the strongest force that presented itself. And yet no force, however powerful, can ever crush or change me in the slightest particular.

"My future can be but a repetition of the past. I may aid in the development of intelligence and of civilization far transcending that of to-day; or I may be one of the agents of an equally great degradation. It matters nothing to me, for I will forever remain an atom of senseless matter. As oxygen, I am an agent of perpetual change; as an atom I am as changeless as God himself."


College Symposium - Index
Introduction, History, 1863 to 1873, 1873 through 1878, 1878 and 1879, through 1879, Experiments and Experiment Station, Philosophy, Chemistry, Horticultural, Botanical, Mathematics, Industrial Art, Telegraph, English, Home Economics, Sewing, Mechanical, Music, Printing, Law, Farm, Military, Physics, Veterinary, Faculty and Assistants, Faculty Biographies, Alumni, Classes, College Organizations, Ionian #1, Ionian #2, Ionian #3, Hamilton #1, Hamilton #2, Hamilton #3, Alpha Beta #1, Alpha Beta #2 Alpha Beta #3, Webster #1, Webster #2, Webster #3, Webster #4, Editors and Church Directory, Advertisements#1, Advertisements#2, Advertisements#3

Tom & Carolyn Ward
Columbus, KS

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