Early Graduations

  • The first graduating class (1887) members were Emma Oldham of the original class, and Mary Parsons, who had entered as a junior. Commencement exercises were held at the Presbyterian Church (a building at the site of the present Presbyterian Church.) Mary's commencement oration was called 'Babylon.' Emma spoke on 'The Inclined Plane.'

    The 1898 commencement exercises were held at the metropolitan Opera House. The class historian noted that the three boys chose not to speak while all eleven girls took part. She said, "We told how our forests might be preserved...We showed what 'hard masters' foolish pride, intemperance and idleness are...The beauty of noble character building was earnestly expounded; the sad plight of the Russian Jew was well described.