The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 69, July 1965 - April, 1966 Page: 232
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
no building to receive the students so the faculty called on Governor
Ireland and asked to use the Temporary Capitol. Permission was
granted and the school was opened across the street to the east of
the Governor's Mansion. The Senate Chamber was to be used
as an Assembly Hall and by putting up plank partitions the fac-
ulty could use the Hall of Representatives as lecture rooms. This
was not a satisfactory way to handle the situation but it had to do.
The new members of the faculty were recruited from the east
and north and were really of the highest type, both intellectually
and morally. But the local people did not regard them at all with
favor. The Austin newspaper made violent attacks on them, refer-
ring to them as "imported foreigners" and criticized their schemes
for studies and classes. The paper said that the salaries of the
new professors at the start were as much as those paid at the
"great University of Oxford, England" and it did not approve
of them at all.
Then the faculty had trouble with the owners of local book
stores. They apparently thought the attendance of the new school
would be large when it opened and ordered books accordingly,
but when the large enrollment did not materialize they became
quite angry. One of them said he would not do any business with
the new university at all.
When the time came to open, even though the new building
was not completed, the faculty, regents, students, and interested
citizens decided to meet there anyhow. The audience sat on chairs
placed on a temporary floor as the permanent floor had not yet
been laid. Dr. J. W. Mallett of the faculty in excusing the situ-
ation, said that a university could not be created in a day. The
eight members of the faculty were entitled to great credit for their
good sportsmanship as they came from the older universities of
the east and south where they were accustomed to great Gothic
buildings and the expensive equipment that went with them. They
endured the hardships for the first year but some of them left
for happier surroundings in the older schools of the east.
An old alumnus, Will Vining, 1884, said of the first days at the
new University of Texas:
It was there in the Temporary Capitol where the first lessons were heard, the first
lectures given and where the foundation was laid for a great university. It
was here that the Athenaeum society was organized and the Rusk and made a
part of the Varsity's life. It was here that I was first charmed by the silver tongued
Yancey Lewis. It was here where Milton Monroe turned a summersalt in a Prince
Albert suit and a silk hat, only to be confronted by Governor Roberts (the old
Alcalde) upon reaching his proper standing position. It was here that the entire
class ran to the windows to listen to the strains of the brass band and watched the
circus parade come up the Avenue.
Governor O. M. Roberts and Judge R. S. Gould in the early
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 69, July 1965 - April, 1966, periodical, 1966; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117144/m1/272/: accessed June 25, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.