University of Virginia Library


At a called meeting of the Board of Visitors of the
University of Virginia, held in the President's office, Friday,
March 15, 1907,

Present: Visitors White, Harmon, Craddock, Flood, Moore,
and President Alderman,

Absent: The Rector, and Visitors Buchanan, Norton, Hunton,
and Eggleston,

The meeting was called to order at 2:30 p. m., by Hon.
Daniel Harmon, acting Rector, and the following resolutions
were adopted,-

It appearing that notice having been given, as required
by statute, of the purpose of the Board to elect a Professor
of General Surgery and Director of the University Hospital:

Now therefore, Dr. Stephen H. Watts having received the
votes of the members of the Board present, is declared elected
to the chair of General Surgery and Director of the University


Hospital, at a salary of $3,000 per annum, to enter upon his
duties, September 12th, 1907.

It appearing that notice having been given, as required
by statute, of the purpose of the Board to elect a Professor
of Economic Geology: Now therefore, Dr. Thomas Leonard Watson
having received the votes of the members of the Board
present, is declared elected to the chair of Economic Geology,
at a salary of $2,800, per annum, to enter upon his duties,
September 12th, 1907.

It appearing that notice having been given as required
by statute, of the purpose of the Board to elect a Collegiate
Professor of Chemistry: Now therefore, Dr. Robert Montgomery
Bird having received the votes of the members of the Board
present, is declared elected Collegiate Professor of Chemistry,
and made Director of the Laboratory for Undergraduate Instruction
in Chemistry, at a salary of $2,500 per annum, to enter
upon his duties September 12th, 1907.

Resolved: That Dr. Arthur E. Austin be appointed an Adjunct
Professor of Physiological Chemistry, for the remainder
of the present session, at a salary of $1,000.

The resignation of Dr. Francis Henry Smith as Professor
of Natural Philosophy in the University of Virginia, (to take
effect, June 12th, 1907) has been received by the Board of
Visitors with sincere regret.

The Board of Visitors desires to place on record its appreciation
of the character, the devotion, the genius, and the
attainments of Professor Smith, as they have been exemplified
in his continuous service to the University of Virginia for


fifty-seven years. Succeeding William B. Rogers as Professor
of Natural Philosophy, he has so conducted that school for a
half century, that its fame and its reputation throughout the
country, has been placed upon an enduring basis.

The Board desires too, to bear testimony to the strength
given to this University through the character and life of
Professor Smith. Thousands of young men, throughout this
nation, have had their ideals advanced, and their conception
of life elevated and dignified, by contact with his personality.

The Board of Visitors wish for him the pleasure and freedom
that comes of duty nobly done, and they desire the privilege
of retaining him as Emeritus Professor of Natural Philosophy
upon the rolls of the University.

Resolved: That, the correspondence between Professor
Smith and President Alderman in reference to Professor Smith's
resignation is directed to be recorded in the minutes along
with this resolution.

Hon. A. C. Gordon,
Dear Sir:

I respectfully resign my office as Professor of Natural
Philosophy in the University of Virginia; the resignation to
take effect at the close of the present session.

Very truly yours,
(sig.) Francis H. Smith.


Dr. E. A. Alderman, President,
Dear Sir:-

Will you kindlytransmit the accompanying open letter
to the Rector at the next meeting of the Board of Visitors?

This action on my part has been long contemplated. The
hour seems to me plainly to have come when I ought to resign
to younger and abler hands, the duties of my office.

I lay down my work with a heart full of gratitude for the
kindness and forbearance of a long line of distinguished men,
visitors, professors, and students, with whom it has been my
honor and my good fortune to be associated. Among these happy
years, I count those not least which I have spent under your
presidency. I cannot say all that I feel, but I retire from
the University in the hearty faith that her best days are to

Very cordially yours,
Francis H. Smith.
My dear Professor Smith:

I beg to acknowledge the receipt of your communication
of the 3rd inst., conveying to the Rector of the University,
the Honorable Armistead C. Gordon, and to myself, your resignation
of the professorship of Natural Philosophy in the University
of Virginia.

It is difficult for me to tell you how sincerely I regret
that you have reached this conclusion. I am aware, as a mere
matter of fact, that you have reached an age when earnest men


have earned rest and freedom from constant toil. But you will
permit me to say that I cannot see that age has touched you at
all, in spirit, in method, in point of view, and in capacity of
real work, and it would give me profound satisfaction if you
could feel that it was best for you to go on with the work which
you have carried forward so splendidly for fifty-seven years,
and which you are doing to-day with the vigor and enthusiasm
of youth.

I count it one of the privileges of my life, as a college
president, to have been associated with you; to have known something
of your fairmindedness and just spirit, of your scholarly
ideals, and of your gentleness mingled with strength, which
marks everywhere the complete man.

The news of your resignation will touch the hearts of
thousands of men throughout the country, who have felt the
inspiration of your teaching; but they will, I believe, have
a certain pride in the knowledge that you claim your rest in
the full strength of unimpaired power. It is a rare thing
that a chair in an American University, existing over a period
of eighty-two years, should have been guided for seventy-two
years entirely by two men, and by two such men as William
B. Rogers and Francis H. Smith. This fact, with other obvious
considerations, will make the task of filling the place made
vacant by your resignation, one of the severest difficulty.
I shall claim the privilege of leaning heavily upon you for
guidance and counsel in this large responsibility.

I know that your great zeal will cause you to continue
work in the higher reaches of your science, and I want you to


know that the University will feel itself honored if you will
think of its laboratories, especially your own laboratory, as
open to you at all times, for the prosecution of any work you
may have on hand, and you must not fancy that I shall spare
you in seeking often to have you speak to our students and to
our faculty for their good. It is assumed, of course, that
you will not lay down your work here until after the close of
the session 1906-1907.

I thank you for your kind expression of confidence in
me. Such an expression gives me courage and hope for the
task I have to perform.

Wishing for your green old age the pleasure of the scholar,
and the satisfaction of an unselfish life, I have the honor to
remain, with great respect and esteem,

Very sincerely yours,
Edwin A. Alderman.

Resolved: That the fund of twenty thousand dollars,
($20,000.) so generously given by Mrs. Thomas Nelson Page, be
styled the "Barbour-Page Lecture Fund," and that the thanks
of this Board be conveyed to the generous donor.

Resolved: That the Board of Visitors accept with gratitude
the gift of one thousand dollars ($1,000.), from Richard
B. Tunstall, for the establishment of the "Isabel M. Tunstall
Memorial Library," and that the thanks of the Board be conveyed
to the generous donor.

Resolved: That the thanks of the Board of Visitors be
conveyed to Mr. Andrew Carnegie, for his generous gift of the
Organ recently installed in the auditorium of Cabell Hall; and


that the sum of $375.00 be appropriated for expenses incurred
in the installation of the organ.

Resolved: That the Board of Visitors acknowledge with
gratitude, the generous donation of $2,500. by the General
Education Board of New York City to the Summer School of the
University; and that the thanks of the Board be conveyed to
the General Education Board.

Resolved: That the following resolution of the Building
Committee of the Board of Visitors, passed at their meeting
on March 4th, 1907, be and the same is hereby approved:

"Resolved, that the Superintendent of Buildings and
Grounds be authorized to close a contract for the erection
of the Dining Hall;—and to invite bids for the President's
House, reserving the right to reject all bids—such bids when
received, to be reported to a called meeting of this Committee."

Resolved: That the Superintendent of Grounds and Buildings
be authorized to proceed with the erection of the Dining
Hall, and to that end, to make the necessary contracts, and
the Bursar is directed to make the necessary disbursements
on the order of the Superintendent.

The Finance Committee is authorized to dispose of the
Bonds in the hands of the Virginia Trust Company, which constituted
the Sinking Fund for the former bond issue, which
was refunded, and the amount realized from that source is
hereby appropriated to the Building fund.

Resolved, further,—It is the opinion of this Board that
the President's house shall be proceeded with as soon as practicable,


and the Building Committee are requested to proceed
to get bids and make contracts for the same.

Resolved: That the sum of three hundred dollars be appropriated
out of the current funds of the University, to defray
the expenses incident to the establishment of night service
in the University Library, for the residue of the session.

Resolved: That the annual appropriation heretofore made
by this Board to the University of Virginia Summer School of
$1,200.00 be increased to $1,500.00

Resolved: That in addition to the amount heretofore
appropriated by this Board for the purpose of making a proper
exhibit at the Jamestown Exposition, there be appropriated the
further sum of one thousand five hundred ($1,500 00) dollars
(only 100000)

Resolved: That all claims for the return of tuition and
other fees of students, be referred to a special committee of
this Board, composed of Mr. Harmon, the President and the Dean
of the University, with full power to act.

Resolved: That Pavilion No. VII West Lawn, be rented to
the Faculty Club of the University, at an annual rental of
$150.00, and that the University put the buildings in such repair
as to make it available for the purposes of the Club.

Resolved: That the Finance Committee is authorized by
unanimous vote to direct and bring about the investment in
such securities as may be considered safe, a fund of about
$10,000.00 now on deposit in the Charlottesville bank.

Resolved: That Mr. Wm. H. White is requested to represent
the Board as its attorney in the suit now pending, or


any suit that may hereafter be filed involving the construction
of the will of the late Edward W. James, so far as the
litigation may affect the interests of the University, with
power to employ associate counsel in the Richmond suit.

On motion the Board adjourned.

I. K. Moran,
Rector, (pro tem.)