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In Their Own Words

April 05, 1851

Day at Female College Described

Gertude Clanton attended Wesleyan College in Macon, Georgia from 1849-1852. The following entry about talking to one of her friends suggests that some aspects of college life have changed little:

“Saturday, April 5, 1851 - I was conversing with her on the step when Bettie Williams (Bless her soul) called me and we were promenading the passage together until two oclock. Our conversation was in reference to a secret society got up among the girls principally the seniors which I had not been invited to join. Bett came to give me an explanation which was perfectly satisfactory. When I returned from Mr. Stone’s recitation Eugenia Tucker came in with a note for me. I found it was from the Adelphian Society as they style themselves unanimously soliciting I should join them. I returned a note respectfully declining. To have joined them I should have been thrown into too close communion with the girl I most dislike in college Leab Goodall… . After prayers I was on the step with the girls. When I returned Jule Thomas gave a white rose to me as a birthday present.”

Source: Virginia Ingraham Burr (ed.), The Secret Eye: The Journal of Ella Gertrude Clanton Thomas, 1848-1889 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press,1990), pp. 84-85.