of Duckport Plantation, Madison Parish, Louisiana


University of Louisiana (now Tulane) Law School

New Orleans, LA

©2000 Richard P. Sevier ( This material is intended for informational use only and may not be reproduced by ANY means whatsoever without written permission from the author.



This part of the diary begins January 1, 1880 on his trip from Duckport back to the University of Louisiana (now Tulane) Law School in New Orleans following the Christmas and New Year’s holidays. This diary itself shows evidence of fire and water damage due to the 1984 Tallulah fire.


University of Louisiana about 1850 -- from a watercolor by Boyd Cruise (See Map)


Thursday, January 1st, 1880

A very gay New Year’s morning this upon which I leave home, after a quiet but pleasant weeks’ sojourn with home folks, on my return to New Orleans. Father went with me to Vicksburg. Hugh Lucas joined me at Delta. Jno. Lucas & Dr. Sampson were visiting VBurg. Having until 5 o’clock to remain in town Tom & myself joined a party consisting of Alex. Paxton, F. Buckingham, D. Porterfield, Chas. Cowan, Ham Wright, and A. R. & B. Reading in making calls. We left our cards at many residences “not receiving”, but enjoyed the day very much. We were invited in at Mrs. Wright’s, Mrs. Clark’s, Mrs. Trescott’s, Mrs. Pittman’s & Mrs. Lawrence’s. We had not finished when Tom & myself had to take leave of the party to reach the train leaving at 5 P.M.

We arrived in Jackson between 8 & 9 o’clock. After taking supper at the Edwards House & looking around town until about 11 we returned to our sleeper & retired. The train to take us to N.O. was due at 12.15. The weather was quite warm for the season. While in Vburg today I met up with several old acquaintances: Baker Sively, Bruce Banks, Tom Marshall, and Mr. Snead, one of my teachers while at Miss. College.

Friday, January 2nd, 1880

We arrived in N.O. about 9 A.M. – too late for breakfast at our boarding places, so after receiving a warm welcome from Mme. Tourtarel[1]  & family I joined Tom in breakfast at Moran’s. The morning was foggy, several showers fell during the day, which added to the heat rendered it very disagreeable. We were glad to meet Dr. P. B. McCutchon, formerly assistant Professor V.M.I. After looking around about 12 we separated for our rooms. Willie Tourtarel came in & chatted a while this eve. Both of us complaining of being unwell. Attended lectures by Prof. Mellen & Schmidt from 5.30 until 8 o’clock. Tom & myself went to see Jno. T. Raymond at Mulberry Sellers. He was very laughable. Retired about 11.30.

Saturday, January 3rd, 1880

Got up at 7, took walk & read paper before breakfast. Walked up town & made several purchases, called by to see Bush & Harris & Co. Found Tom in my room on my return & New Year’s cards from the Misses Rountree. Mme. Tourtarel came in about 3 and resumed her task in giving me French lessons. Carlton Hunt[2] lectured tonight on “Marriage”. I went out to see the Misses F’bush & chatted for an hour. They presented me with a jumping jack & toy drum which Santa Claus had put on the Xmas tree for me. Retired about 11 o’clock.

Sunday, January 4th, 1880

The weather was so very warm that I slept late – until after 8, when I arose & dressed in good time for breakfast. I read the Picayune[3] until Frankenbush called about 11. Herndon called with his friend Mr. Behan sometime later & we chatted until after when they all departed. I got real hungry before dinner was announced shortly after 3 and lunched on a banana & an orange. While walking out after dinner I joined Shaffer[4] & Lucas, -- the latter returned to my room with me & chatted until near 7 when we walked to the St. Charles[5] where we talked for a short while with Messrs. Leche & Lewis, the latter of Madison Parish. Returning I wrote a short letter to father. Am not at all well. Retired at 10.30.


St. Charles Hotel. From Frank Leslies Illustrated Newspaper, December 9, 1876 (See Map)

1873 Map of New Orleans.  Modified From Appleton’s Handbook of Southern Travel


Monday, January 5th, 1880

I never was so sleepy-headed as I have been since coming to N.O. I fell asleep soon after retiring last night & found it very difficult to get up at 8 this morn. The weather was oppressive & I felt perfectly worthless all day. After breakfast I looked over the Democrat[6] & the Nation[7] & then went walking until 10.30. Jno. Shaffer came in & chatted some time. I studied the subject of Corporations for a while; consulted Dr. Brickell and prepared my French exercise for Mme. Tourtarel who came in about 3 P.M. Randall Hunt[8] lectured on Principal & Agent tonight. I returned from lecture to study but had not progressed far before Herndon came in for me to call on Miss Lena Rogers – there I was introduced to Misses Dufour, Bohne & Nalle. Returned to my room at 11, retired at 12.30. Thro’ the kindness of Brand I got an invite to the Maginnis party tomorrow night.

Tuesday, January 6th, 1880

I managed to crawl out this morning & got half an hour’s walk before breakfast. I have spent the day in reading Kent[9] on Int. Law. Tonight Prof. Mellen lectured on the “Number or Holders of Estates”. Prof. Schmidt lectured & questioned on the incidents to “Neutrality”. I hurried from the lecture at 7.45 in order to get ready for the party. I called for Herndon at 9.30, but had to wait his return from his business, which had detained him longer than he had expected; as it was after 10 o’clock before we reached the festive assemblage. The Misses Maginnis are very pleasant & contributed to my pleasure by introducing me extensively. It was a real brilliant affair. I escorted Miss White of Plaquemine to supper. It was too crowded to admit of much dancing. It was after 3 o’clock when I returned to my room. Miss Moss sent me an invitation to the assembly ball for next Monday night.

Wednesday, January 7th, 1880

The bell for breakfast called me out of bed at about quarter to 9. The day has been somewhat cooler, but I was too much fatigued from the dissipation of last night to make good use of it. I napped a short while, studied a little, the Code[10] and prepared my French. I received a note with a picture from Miss Columbia V. L. Bryden. Tonight Prof. C. Hunt questioned me on Law & on Corporations. The lecture closing at 7 I called & spent a very peasant hour with Mrs. & Miss Moss. I Met Lucas at the St. Charles & we went to see Fanny Davenport in “As you like it”. I was very much pleased with the play & with the acting of Miss D. I was glad to meet “Jam” McCutchon on the street today. I retired on returning to my room about 11.30. I called on Dr. Brickell again who changed his prescription after making an intense examination.

Thursday, January 8th, 1880

On waking this morn I was surprised to find it after 8 o’clock. Dressing hurriedly I was ready at the announcement of breakfast. Took a small walk, returned & read Smith on Principal of Agent until after 12 when I prepared my French in time to go out & witness the military parade about 1.30. The entire military of the city turned out in honor of the anniversary of the battle of N.O.[11], flags were displayed & the streets crowded. Will Finney & myself were companions in witnessing the procession. They looked well in their uniforms but displayed no perfection in drill. When they left Canal I returned to my room – too late for my French lesson. No lecture tonight. I called on Miss Groverman, but she going to a party, I did not stay long then I called on the Misses Townsend – had a pleasant chat with Misses Cora & Adele. Miss Daisy went to a German. Returned to my room & read Smith & Townsend until 11.30 when I prepared to retire.

Friday, January 9th, 1880

Arose at a quarter before 8. After breakfast I read the news for a while when I went out for an hour’s walk. Met up with Mr. L. A. Longly with whom I had a short chat. Returning to my room I read Kent until interrupted by a visit from Lucas & Reid, who sat until near 1. Prepared my French & recited at 3. This morn I rec’d a letter from father enclosing one from Joyes. Tonight Prof. Mellen lectured on Qualifications of interest in Real Property”. Prof. Schmidt questioned me regarding the effect of war on commerce. Lucas & myself called on the Misses Shaffer who are visiting the city; but they were out.  We then called on Mrs. James of Madison Parish – met Mrs. Ned Farrar & Mrs. Stamps. Returned at 9.45 & studied until 11. The weather continues to be warm. Retired about 11.30.

Saturday, January 10th, 1880

After making several efforts I managed to get up & dressed by 8 o’clock. Reading the news for a short while after breakfast I read the first book of the Code and prepared my French. Rec’d a pleasant little note from Rena Cox[12] accompanied with a gold pen as a Xmas present.


This page, written October 4, 1880, is from Rena Cox’s “autograph” book. She was 14 years old at this time and he 22. Little did they know (or maybe they did) that in 16 years they would become man and wife. They were cousins only in that they shared first cousins.


The weather continues unseasonably warm. We read of its being uncommonly cold in France & elsewhere. I would rejoice at a cold snap. Carleton Hunt made a general review tonight during which I did not reply well to his questions. In fulfillment of appointment I called at Miss Townsend’s tonight for the young ladies to teach me the “heel & toe”. Found them most agreeable teachers. Returned at 10. Read until 11. Retired at 11.30.

Sunday, January 11th, 1880

I slept until 8.30 when I dressed & read the paper until breakfast at 9.15. Finishing the paper I wrote father a letter & then went up to the St. Charles to see the arrivals. I met Maj. Lucas, Maj. Gibson & J. R. McDowell[13] who constitute the delegation from Madison to the General Assembly[14]. Returning to my room about 1 I wrote a letter to Loring R. Millen & chatted a while to Wm. Tourtarel who came in. At 6 P.M. I met Herndon at his residence & went with him to see the Misses Pritchard. On my return I stopped in to chat Miss Herndon for an hour. She looked very pretty & talked pleasantly. By 8.30 I was at my room again. Wrote a letter to Rena Cox. At 10 o’clock I rushed out to the alarm of fire but finding it too far off I did not go to it. I made an attempt to study but was too sleepy. The day has been clear & pleasant. Retired about 11.30.

Monday, January 12th, 1880

I struggled out of bed about 8 o’clock. It had rained considerable during the night & continued in frequent sprinkles during today. The rainy weather kept me in doors most of the day. I walked as far as the post office before breakfast. My “Nation” coming I spent some time reading. Read Smith on Principal & Agent. Tonight Prof. Randall Hunt placed three of us before him for examination. Returning from lecture I chatted in the parlor until time to dress for the party. Lucas came in & we left for Grunewald Hall[15] about 9.30. It was a beautiful & most enjoyable affair. Met several ladies. Horace Dufour, Lucas & myself took supper together at the last hour. At about 3.30 “Home Sweet Home” was played & the dance ceased. I got to bed about 4.30.


Grunewald Hall. From Jewell's Crescent City Illustrated, 1873


Tuesday, January 13th, 1880

Madame Tourtarel, in order not to disturb my rest, did not ring the bell for breakfast, I slept until 11 o’clock. My breakfast was kept warm for me. The weather turned cool during the night, and had not the supper of last night disagreed with me I would have felt splendidly. About 1.30 I walked out on Canal & chatted a while with Finney & Behan. Returned in time to prepare my French. We were kept in the lecture room until near 8 o’clock tonight. I spent the night by my fire reading the Code. Retired about 12.

Wednesday, January 14th, 1880

Arose about 8 & took short walk before breakfast. After which I read the news, studied my French, called at Mr. Harris’ by 12 o’clock. I was glad to find there a letter from Jenkins, which they have held for some time. At 12 o’clock I went to a matinee to hear the opera “La Belle Helene” rendered by “Grau’s French Opera Troupe”. I enjoyed it very much. Prof. C. Hunt questioned a short while & then lectured on “Absentees”. I again called to see the Misses Shaffer & found them out. Have felt unwell tonight from indigestion. Studied the subject of “Master & Servant” until 10 o’clock I took Shakespeare’s Cymbeline & read until 11. The weather has been cool & pleasant today. Retired about 12.

Thursday, January 15th, 1880

Got up about 8; having passed an almost sleepless night in consequence of having taken some medicine. My stomach has been uneasy today from it. I was reading Cymbeline when F’bush & McCutchon came in & chatted agreeably for a while. Tonight our Prof. Lectured on Mercantile Property – ships. Feeling better I went to the Academy of Music[16] to see Fanny Davenport as Imogene. Meeting Miss Frankenbush & her brother Albert at the ticket office & secured a seat by them. Miss F. invited me to a surprise party next Wednesday night. I enjoyed the play very much & between acts was entertained very nicely by Miss F. Returned about 11. The weather is again growing warm. Retired about 11.30.


Academy of Music. From Jewell's Crescent City Illustrated, 1873 (See Map)


Friday, January 16th, 1880

Had myself wake up at 7 but I discussed the propriety of rising until 7.15 when I arose I walked to the levy (levee). After breakfast read the paper & walked out for a short while. Met “Don” McCutchon & chatted. Read Prof. Minor on Real Property until 1. Then to French. The weather was damp & I felt lazy all day. Calling at Mr. Harris’ about 2 I found a very pleasant letter from Mrs. Jenkins. Prof. Schmidt did not meet us this eve. Prof. Mellen lectured on “Trusts”. Calling on Maj. Lucas at the St. Charles he persuaded me to go with him & Tom to the theatre. I saw Miss Davenport in Leah. The play is splendid & is to her taste. Was glad to meet my old classmate W. D. Haynes at the theatre. Returned about 11. Retired at 11.45.

Saturday, January 17th, 1880

Arose about 8 – not feeling much rested after sleeping soundly all night. Walked to the levy & back before breakfast. Read the Civil Code until 12 o’clock when I walked around to the State House to see the Legislature in session. The Senate being in executive session & the House not having been convened I returned after chatting Walton[17], a member of the law class, a short while. I felt so very badly that I had to give up my French lesson & lie down. The weather was close & damp. Tonight C. Hunt lectured on “Property”, and assigned several of us the task of writing an analysis of the History of the Roman Law for next Wednesday. I went around with Willie Tourtarel  & his mother to spend the evening with the Misses (blank). We had several dances & enjoyed the visit until our departure at 10.30. Rec’d a letter from father. Retired about 11.45.


State House.  From an 1835 drawing (See Map)


Sunday, January 18th, 1880

It was after 8 o’clock when I looked at my watch this morn. By 9 I was dressed & went out for the paper which I read until 9.30 when breakfast was announced. Lucas came in before I was through & was soon followed by F’bush, Haines, Shaffer, Herndon, & McCutchon, A. D. We chatted until after 1, when the party took leave. I went with Bush to the levy where we intended to get a boat & visit the Chateau Renaud, a French man-of-war lying in the harbor. I remained until after 3 o’clock when we were still unable to get seats in the boats I excused myself to come home for dinner. I enjoyed chatting Miss Bertha F’bush who had come for the same purpose. After dinner I wrote to father. About 7 o’clock I called on the Misses Shaffer for an hour. I then went up on Prytania & chatted Miss Vairin[18] until 9.30. Returning about 10 o’clock I read King Lear for a short while. Sleep overcame me & I retired about 11.15.

Monday, January 19th, 1880

Slept until 8 o’clock. Took short walk & read paper before breakfast which was announced about 9. Spent the morning in reading History of the Civil Law. Did not feel well this afternoon but managed to get my exercise ready for Mme. Tourtarel. Feeling cool from the damp atmosphere I had a fire made. Tonight we were lectured on Mercantile Contracts. Tom Lucas came in before calling on his relation, Mrs. Templeton & daughters, & chatted a while tonight. I took some notes for my analysis tonight. Retired about 11.45.

Tuesday, January 20th, 1880

Arose about 8. After breakfast read paper and went for half an hour walk. Read Code of Practice & studied History of Civil Law. Tonight I paid my party call at the Misses Maginnis. I enjoyed my chat with them very much. Returning down Prytania I stopped in to see Miss Walton from Concordia Parish & had a very pleasant chat. Returning to my room about 10 I wrote on my analysis until about 12, when I prepared to retire. My health has been better today than for some time, though the weather has been Spring-like. Retired about 12.45.

Wednesday, January 21st, 1880

Arose about 8 & found it raining. After breakfast read the paper & took my umbrella for a walk. Returned about 11 & commenced work on my Analysis which was completed about 1. The rain ceased & the sun appeared about 1. Prof. Hunt occupied over an hour tonight in questioning & hearing read the Analyses of several of us. From the lecture I hastened back to prepare for the parties to which I had been invited. Shortly after 8 I arrived at the residence of Mr. F’bush, the rendezvous, from whence we went to the “Surprise Party” at Capt. Morphy’s. It was real pleasant. I met Misses Rose & Lathrop, friends of Miss Georgie N., from Natchez. At 11 I left to attend the party to which I had been invited by the Misses Shaffer. There I took supper and danced until nearly 3. Said goodbye to the Misses S. who return home tomorrow morn. Childers returned part of the way with me. Retired about 3.30.

Thursday, January 22nd, 1880

Was aroused by the servant at 9.30. Took my breakfast which had been kept warm for me & read the paper. Was glad to see that the Democratic caucus had nominated Gen. Gibson for U.S. Senator. Walked down to the state house & thro’ Maj. Lucas got admission to the floor of the Senate; but it soon met the House in joint session to elect Senator. Remained until the ballot was taken & Gen. G. declared elected. Lucas, Reid & myself walked back together. Commenced preparing my French on returning to my room about 1.30. The weather has been clear & quite cool today. I have been suffering from a cold contracted last night. Prof. Hunt lectured on “Bills” tonight. Returned to my room & read Townsend on that subject. Rec’d an invitation from Mr. Moss to attend the Assembly ball on the 28th inst. Retired about 10.15.

Friday, January 23rd, 1880

Was surprised to find it 8.30 on looking at my watch this morn. My eyes were quite sore & swollen all the morning. After reading the paper I walked up to the St. Charles where I had a short chat with Maj. Lucas & Mr. Dock Richardson of Madison. Met Herndon on the street & chatted a short while. Returned to my room about 11.30 & read Smith on “Mercantile Property” until about 1. My eyes hurt me so badly that I did not make much progress with my French. Prof. Mellen lectured on “alienation of lands”. I did not stay to Prof. Schmidt on Int. Law. I have not perceived that I have gained anything from his lectures. Tourtarel & myself called on the Misses Hernandez tonight. They live in elegant style out on St. Charles Av. Returned about 9.30, but did not read long on account of my eyes. Retired about 11.

Saturday, January 24th, 1880

Arose shortly after 8, and found the morning beautiful. Received a letter from father expressing anxiety about my health & desiring me to quit the pursuit of law & return home to a more active life. On consulting Dr. Brickell he informs me that nothing serious ails me & my bladder only, not my kidneys, is affected. I was very much pleased to hear this, for I have feared that I would have to abandon my studies. Read the Code until 11.30 when I took a walk before going to matinee to witness the opera “Les Cloches de Corneville”. I saw & spoke to Miss Lizzie Bedford, who is down for Mardi Gras. Tonight Prof. H. lectured on “Things”. Tonight I called on Miss Moss from 8 until after 9. Returning to my room I read the subject of “Servitudes” until my eyes began to hurt. The day has been quite cool. Rec’d an invitation from Miss Bertha F. to attend a party at Miss Kornig’s next Tuesday night. Retired about 11.

Sunday, January 25th, 1880

About 8.30 I crawled out to find it still colder than yesterday. Breakfast was not announced until 9.30. Haynes came in soon after breakfast & was followed during the day by Frankenbush, Herndon, McCutchon & Harry Behan. We chatted until after 2. I went home with Bush & dined with him. Had a very pleasant evening chatting with the ladies, & a pleasant walk with Miss Bertha. Returned home about 7 & stopped in to talk with Mme. Tourtarel for a while. Wrote to father & Miss Georgie. My health has been much better today. Retired about 11.15.

Monday, January 26th, 1880

Rose about 7.30. Took half an hours walk before breakfast. The weather was quite bracing, but at noon the sun made it comfortable without heavy coats. Spent the morn in reading Townsend on Contracts. Prof. Hunt completed that subject tonight & took up “Common Carriers”. The “Moot Court” was organized tonight by the election of officers. Returned to my room & wrote letters to Joyes, Paxton, Dickinson, & Miss Rosa R. Retired about 10.30.

Tuesday, January 27th, 1880

Got up at 8, but breakfast being announced I did not get my walk until after breakfast when I took a long walk up Magazine St. Spent the morning with the Civil Code & studying Mercantile Law. Prof. Mellen being absent from the city did not lecture tonight. Tom & myself went up to the hotel & chatted the Major during the hour. In order to prepare for the party at Miss Kornig’s I did not attend Prof. Schmidt’s lecture. I called for Miss Bertha F’bush about 9. The party was very pretty, & tho’ much crowded, quite enjoyable. Returned & retired about 3.

Wednesday, January 28th, 1880

Got up about 9.30. Did not feel any bad effects from the night’s dissipation. After breakfasting & reading the paper I went walking. Met Frankenbush & Finney whom I joined for a while. Joined L. M. Cooper & went to see Robson & Crane in “Our Bechellon”. It was very laughable. Returned to my room after matinee & napped until dinner. This eve Prof. Hunt lectured on “Servitudes”. I lay down to rest before the “Assembly Ball”. Haynes came in about 8 & asked me to go to the theatre with him. It was a beautiful night for a ball – cool & moonshine. At 10 o’clock when I arrived at Grunewald Hall very few ladies had arrived. The ball was a splendid one – the music & supper surpassing the previous one. It was about 3.30 when I left the ballroom & only one more set was to be danced. Retired about 4 o’clock.

Thursday, January 29th, 1880

Arose about 11 o’clock. Walked a short while. Lucas came around and we walked to the St. Charles where we sent our cards up to Miss Templeton, of Carroll Parish, a distant relation to Lucas. She excused herself in consequence of being fatigued from the dissipation of last night. Learning that Rilma Sanders was in the city I sent my card up to her; but she was “out”. I spent the rest of the day in resting. Bush called around just after dinner to inform me that I was invited to a “fancy dress” party at the Chaffer tonight. I was prevailed to go & had a very pleasant time. There were few gentlemen dressed in fancy costumes, tho’ the ladies were generally in fancy dress. Having to walk back it was 4 o’clock before I got to my room. Received an interesting letter from Miss Rosa R.

Friday, January 30th, 1880

Bush came in to bring my hat, which, through mistake, I left at his house last night, and woke me up at 10 o’clock. Soon afterwards I got up & breakfasted, Rec’d a letter from father. Walking out I met up with Willie Finney with whom I chatted a while. Returned & rested until 3, when Mme. T came in & attempted a French conversation with me. Prof. Mellen did not lecture tonight. Prof. Schmidt commenced the subject of Admiralty Law. On returning I stopped in & chatted with the family until about 9 when I came up & retired. Rec’d an invitation to the Mistick Krewe Ball.

Saturday, January 31st, 1880

Got up about 7.30 & went for a walk. It was very foggy & damp. After breakfast I went to work studying a case which I am to defend before the Moot Ct. next Monday night. Lucas came in about 11 & sat a while. Walked out with him. Visited the rooms of the Y.M.C.A. of which I have been elected an associate member. Returned & went to work on my French about 1. Mme. Tourtarel had not finished with my lesson when Shaffer came in & interrupted us. He sat until near dinner. Prof. H. questioned tonight. I went out to call on Miss Lizzie Bedford but failed to find her stopping place, Then I stopped in to see the “great wizard” Macallister. Soon grew tired of his tricks & left. Retired about 11.30.

Sunday, February 1st, 1880

Arose about 8.30. Soon after breakfast Haines came in & chatted until after 1. He was soon followed by Lucas & Bush who spent an hour with me. Between their departure & the arrival of Carter & Shaw I had time to start a letter to father. My new visitors, fraternity-men, sat until nearly dinner. A rain setting in prevented my paying several visits this eve. This being the only night in which McCullough will appear as Virginius[19] I went with Haynes to see him. Perfectly delighted with him. It was pouring down rain, thundering & lightning as I returned about 11 o’clock. Shuffled off my wet clothes & retired about 11.30.

Monday, February 2nd, 1880

Arose about 8. The rain was falling hard. In consequence of which we did not get breakfast until 9.30. Took short walk & returned to work on my case. Jack Reid came in about 2 o’clock & invited me to attend his wedding tonight. He married Miss Mary Middlemiss. I told him of my engagement with Haynes & excused myself. At the Moot Ct. I excepted to the petition of the pl’t which the judge took under advisal. Was sorry to learn from Shaffer that Lucas has been sick all day. Called by for Haynes & went to see Jno. McCullough as Othello. Perfectly splendid. The weather has been pinching cold & windy since the rain ceased about 9 A.M. At Haynes’ invitation we indulged in “biscuit & chocolate”, after the theatre, at Kountz’s. Retired about 12.45.

Tuesday, February 3rd, 1880

On getting up shortly after 8 I found it still real cold, but not so windy as yesterday. Was told during the day that ice was seen early this morn. After breakfast I called at the office of Horace Dufour & chatted him a while. Was in route to Lucas’ room when I met Shaffer who joined me. Found Tom up but looking pale. He has caught cold since the sudden changes. I sat with them until after 12 when Shaffer & myself returned. At 2 o’clock I got to my French. Prof. Mellen still absent. Prof. Schmidt lectured on “Admiralty Jurisdiction”. After lecture I called at St. Charles to see Miss Sanders, but she had gone to the theatre. Met Maj. Lucas & went to his room & enjoyed his conversation until after 9. Returned & answered O. E. Meyer’s letter, rec’d today, inquiring about Eastman College[20]. Read Civil Code. Retired about 1.15.


Example of money issued by the Eastman College Bank, about 1880

Wednesday, February 4th, 1880

            Was aroused about 7.30. Made a fire & read some before breakfast. Went to the Y.M.C.A. and read the papers. The gymnasium being filled with small dirty boys I gave up the idea of exercising. Returned & went to work on the Civil Code – finished the second book & reviewed the subject of marriage. Haynes came to bring me an invitation to Rex’s Ball. Prof. H. finished the subject of “Servitudes” this eve. On returning from lecture I found a note from Bush inviting me to a party on board the U. P. Schenck. Herndon came in & we went up to call on the Misses Raworth – they had gone to the theatre. We then went to the Schenck & danced until nearly 2 o’clock. Had quite a pleasant time. Waited with Miss Bertha F. until her car left at 2.30 o’clock. Retired about 3. Received a letter from Paxton & Rena C. P. says he will come to Mardi Gras.

Thursday, February 5th, 1880

The bell for breakfast aroused me about 9. Was very sorry to find it raining in consequence of its effect on the anticipated procession of Momus[21] tonight. Walked out after reading the French paper. Returned to my room about 12. Bush came in to chat & chatted until Mme. T. came to give my French. Rec’d a letter from father saying he would be down Monday. On going to the hall tonight was informed there would be no lecture. Read until about 7.30 when Tourtarel & myself went out to wait for the procession. It was cold & sprinkling rain, but the streets were all crowded. We were joined by Bush. The sprinkle ceased just before the procession appeared. It was very interesting to a novice. Bush & myself, after the procession, took some refreshments & parted. At my room I found an invitation to the ball. Dressed hurriedly & went.

Friday, February 6th, 1880

I could hardly believe my watch when on waking today I found it 12.20 o’clock. I got back from the ball at 4 A.M. Had a very nice time. Met Miss Anna Greene from Vicksburg. At the table I found a letter from Dickinson saying he could not come to Mardi Gras. At the St. Charles Hotel I met Lucas who informed me of the arrival of Miss Ida Waddill, whom I met & made engagement for the theatre tonight. Had a talk with Major Lucas, Tom & Shaffer. Returned to my room about 3. Tourtarel came in & chatted about the procession with me until dinner. Tonight I called for Miss Ida about 8 o’clock & went to see Robson & Crane in the Two Romeos. We were very much pleased. On our return to the hotel I had an opportunity to shake hands with Miss Sanders. Retired about 12.30. Rec’d a letter from Miss G.N.

Saturday, February 7th, 1880

The bell for breakfast called me out about 8.45. After reading the paper I went up to the St. Charles Hotel & had quite a chat with Miss Rilma Sanders. Afterwards I met Miss Anna Greene & escorted her to see McCullough in Julius Caesar at matinee. Returned to my room about 3.30 & chatted Tourtarel until dinner. Tonight Prof. H. lectured on “Ownership”. Went to the theatre with Shaffer. I like McCullough as Richard III better than in anything in which I have seen him. Stopped in at the St. Charles parlor after the performance & chatted Miss Ida W. & Miss Henry. Returned to my room about 12. Retired about 1. Tonight at the theatre I was glad to shake hands with “Bones” Payne, an old V.M.I. friend.

Sunday, February 8th, 1880

Arose about 8.45. After breakfast I read the Picayune until shortly after 10 when I called at the hotel to offer my services to Misses Waddill & Henry as escort to church; but they had already gone. Returned to my room. Don McCutchon called & sat some time with me. Wrote a letter to mother. After dinner I prepared for a number of visits tonight. Called on Misses Herndon, Vairin, Laura & Jeanie Raworth & reached the hotel in time for short chats with Misses Waddill, Henry, Sanders & Templeton, to whom I was introduced tonight. The St. Charles is crowded with visitors & among them are a number of pretty young ladies. It is a treat to visit the parlors of the hotel when they are filled with the crowd. This morning the weather was threatening, but it soon cleared & we had a lovely day. Much anxiety is felt about the weather. Great are the expectations regarding the extensiveness & beauty of the coming pageant. I am glad to see Tom Lucas better today. Retired about 12.15.

Monday, February 9th, 1880

This morn I arose about 8 o’clock. After breakfasting & reading the paper I went to the depot to meet father & Paxton. The train being behind I had to wait there from 10 o’clock until 11.30. I brought father & Paxton to my room where they dressed & went with me for lunch. At the St. Charles father met up with Maj. Lucas, whom he joined & Paxton, McCutchon & myself went down to the levy to see the arrival of Rex. We enjoyed it very much. The streets are crowded with people. There are more visitors than at any time since the war[22]. Father & myself dined at 5 o’clock. No lecture this eve. Tonight went to see Emma Abbott in the opera “Bohemian Girl”[23] with Paxton, F’bush & McCutchon. We walked around town until after 12. P. & myself retired about 1.

Tuesday, February 10th, 1880 (Mardi Gras Day)

We got up about 8. After dressing I went around & aroused father. At 10 o’clock ladies began to crowd the galleries on Canal awaiting the procession of Rex. At the St. Charles P. & myself were joined by Osgood & Lucas. We secured a hack for three hours, and drove around to see the crowd. About 10 o’clock the procession reached Canal. We had a splendid opportunity to see it. It was beautiful. The weather seems to have been made for the occasion. While taking lunch I cut my finger with a cheese knife. About 3.30 o’clock I joined father & we came down to rest. Mme. T. dressed my finger, which bled considerably when my hdkf was removed. Father & myself got standing room on a gallery tonight from which we saw the procession. It was splendid. Tonight I attended the opening of the Rex[24] Ball & then went to Comus[25] in time to see the tableaux.

Wednesday, February 11th, 1880

Got back from the ball about 2.30. It was too crowded for dancing & I did not participate much. Father came in & aroused me about 9. Breakfast was soon announced. P. promised to meet me at the St. Charles. Father & myself called on Mr. Harris & then went around to see the shipping & the compressing of cotton.


Loading Cotton 1883. From Harper’s Weekly July 7, 1883


Father went around to the Boston Club[26] to lunch with Mr. H. & I came to my room & rested until 4 when I went up to the hotel to meet father & to go to the Cosmopolitan where we were invited by Mr. Mayer to dine. We had an excellent dinner. It continued too long for me to attend lecture. We then walked up to the hotel where I chatted some young ladies for a short while. Father, Shaffer & myself went to the Ghost Show. S. & myself went to see Shaffer & Sexton play billboards. Returned & retired about 11. Lost P. this morn & have not seen him since.


Cosmopolitan Hotel -- about 1900 (See Map)


Thursday, February 12th, 1880

Arose about 8. P. did not come in at all last night. Meeting him on the street shortly after breakfast he informed me that he spent the night with his brother. Father left me at the hotel to meet some gentlemen on business. Tom & myself called on Miss Ida a short while. Returned to my room & read Aug. & A. on Corporations for an hour. Paxton came in about 1.30 to make preparations for his departure by the 2.30 train. I went out with him & saw him stored in the car for the depot. Met up with “Bones” Payne with whom I promenaded a while on Canal. He left for his home near Yazoo City this eve. Father went with me to lecture, the subject of which was Insurance. The Judge of the M. C’t decided in favor of the exception I made to petition filed. Father did not meet me at the hotel as agreed, so Tom & myself went in & chatted Miss Douglass of Tensas (Parish). Sat with Maj. Lucas & Judge Farrar a short while. Returned to my room & read on Insurance.

Friday, February 13th, 1880

Arose about 8.15. Father soon came in & we chatted until breakfast was announced shortly before 9. After breakfast we went out & purchased some furniture. At the hotel he left me to attend some business. Tom & myself went to the Mint with Misses Waddill, Henry & Williamson.


U. S. Mint. From Ballou's Pictorial Drawing Room Companion, 1858. (See Map)

At 1.30 I joined father at the hotel & assisted him in preparing to get off by the 2.30 train. I rode out on the car some distance with him but left him to keep an engagement to lunch the young ladies at 3 o’clock. At the hotel Tom & myself met Miss Labatt. We could not prevail on her to go with our party to Kountz’s for refreshments. Misses Henry, Waddill, & Williamson accompanied us. Tonight Prof. M. lectured on actions; Prof. S. questioned. Returned to my room & studied until 10. Retired about 11.It was cloudy during the day & cooler tonight. Mme. Tourtarel has a young Creole come to board with her.

Saturday, February 14th, 1880

Mrs. Thompson tapped so I arose about 8 o’clock. After breakfast I attended to the forwarding of some bundles father ordered & read the Bee[27]. At 10.30 I went up to the hotel to meet Lucas & the young ladies according to engagement. We had arranged to meet at 11 o’clock. & visit the steamship Louisiana, the State House & the Lake; but in consequence of the late arrival of Miss Henry we did not get off until 11.30. The party consisting of Misses Waddill, Henry, & Labatt & Shaffer & Lucas & myself.


Painting of Steamship Louisiana.  Added to the Cromwell, New York and New Orleans line in 1880. For many years held the New York - New Orleans speed record

The steamer had sailed before we reached the wharf. We went to the State House & saw the Senate & Leg. In session, visited the Custom House & then returned to the St. Chas. Where we rested before going to Kountz’s for lunch.


New Orleans Custom House.  From Jewell's Crescent City Illustrated, 1873 (See Map)


At 3 we started for the lake where we remained until 5. Returned in time to be late for lectures. Prof. H. took up the subject of “successions”. Called at the hotel & had a pleasant chat with Miss Ida, after which I went up & sat with Maj. Lucas until after 10. Retired about 11.30. Clear & cool.

Sunday, February 15th, 1880

Arose about 8 o’clock & read the Bee before breakfast which was not ready until after 9. About 10.30 I went up to the hotel with the intention of going to church with Miss Ida. After waiting some time for an answer to the card I concluded she had already gone. Have since learned that she was at breakfast. Went to Christ Church where I met Shaffer. The very uninteresting sermon was preceded by a discourse on the financial condition of the church. On leaving church we were joined by F’bush & Behan who went with us to the hotel to say good by to Miss Ida. After taking hasty farewell Behan came down to my room with me & sat until about 3. I amused myself with the Nation until dinner was announced. About 5.30 I went out to see the Misses F’bush. From thence I was joined by Joe. We visited Misses Lizzie Bedford & Vairin. It was nearly 11 when I reached my room. Feeling very sleepy I concluded to go to bed and rise early tomorrow to write father a letter.


Christ Church (Episcopal) in 1873.  The church was demolished in 1883 and moved to St. Charles and Sixth St (See Map)


Monday, February 16th, 1880

Bounced out at 7.15 & took half an hour’s walk & read the Times before breakfast. Wrote a letter to father. Rec’d one from Tom Joyes. Did a good day’s work on “Contracts of Affreightment”[28] & “Marine Insurance” also resumed my French lessons. The weather, though not so lovely as that of yesterday, was cool & pleasant. Prof. H. continued the subject of Insurance tonight with a very long lecture, after which we had a long session of Moot C’t. It was 8 o’clock when I got back to my room. Resumed my study of Mercantile Law. Retired shortly after 11.

Tuesday, February 17th, 1880

Arose at 7.15, walked half an hour & read a portion of the Times before breakfast. After which I read Blackstone & Minor on remedies for wrongs & then Townsend on Bailment. McCutchon called & sat a short time with me. The weather has been warmer, hence an inclination to be lazy. Tonight Prof. M. lectured on Common Law Pleading & Prof. S. read from Dana[29]. The lectures were long & tiresome. It was nearly 8 o’clock when we got out. I hastened to meet McCutchon who had engaged to take me to see Miss Sue Kearney. We called about 8.30 & enjoyed a short visit. Miss K. is very pretty & interesting. On leaving her Don took me to see his two sisters. There I met Miss Jeanie Harvey. Returned home about 10.30. Studied some French. This morning I bought Dornat on Civil Law. Retired about 11.30.

Wednesday, February 18th, 1880

Arose at 7.15 & went for my walk. The morning damp & warm. Breakfast was announced as I returned about 8.30. After breakfast I read L’Abeille[30].


Cartoon from L'Abeille in 1900, poking fun at the authorities about the repaving of Chartres Street


At 10 o’clock I called to see Horace Dufour as requested by him. We discussed the feasibility of forming a chapter of Eli Bananas here. Returned shortly before 11 & commenced work on “Successions”. The day has been very close & oppressive – so much so that I did not do a good day’s work. Prof. H. questioned this eve. Soon after returning from lecture a rain set in accompanied by occasional peals of thunder. I sat with Mme. T. & Edda until nearly 8 when I came up & did a fair amount of work. Retired about 11.30.

Thursday, February 19th, 1880

Got up at the usual hour. It sprinkling rain I did not walk long. Read L’Abeille before breakfast. Spent the morning on reading Marine Insurance. Received a letter from Miss C.V.S.B. About 10 o’clock A.M. it turned clear & cool. Prof. H. finished Marine & Life Insurance. Tonight I called to see the Misses Townsend. Miss Adelle the only one at home. Misses Cora & Daisy having gone to the opera. Returned to my room about 9.30. Reviewed some in the Code. Retired about 11.30.

Friday, February 20th, 1880

Arose as usual and took walk before breakfast. Was surprised to find that it had been raining. We had several showers between breakfast & 11 o’clock, whence it stopped but remained cloudy all day. Rec’d a letter from father. Spent the morning in studying “Action at Common Law”. Did a pretty good day’s work. Prof. Mellen lectured on Pleading & Prof. S. continued on the Admiralty Jurisdiction. Called to see Mr. & Mrs. Harris on my return from lecture but they were not at home. Returned to my room about 9.30 & went to work on “Successions”. At 11 o’clock I found myself nodding. Retired about 11.30.

Saturday, February 21st, 1880

Got up at the usual time & walked to the levy. Read L’Abeille before & after breakfast. About 11 o’clock a rain set in which continued for an hour or more. Read the Code on Succession & Smith & Townsend on the subject of Bailment. This eve Prof. H. questioned & lectured on Succession – giving the history of the Roman law on the subject. As I started to call on Miss Moss tonight I met Herndon on his way to see me. He walked as far as the door of Mrs. M. with me. I enjoyed talking with Miss M. until 9.30. I had no idea that I had spent near one hour and a half with her. Felt very nervous on returning to my room. Could not work, so retired about 10.45.

Sunday, February 22nd, 1880

Arose about 8. Breakfasted about 9. Called at the St. Charles about 10.30 where I met Shaffer who went with me to Trinity church. Dr. Thompson, the pastor, preached. As I returned the streets were alive with the military of this city & of Mobile, making preparation to go to the cemetery & unveil the Washington Artillery[31] Monument. I went around to Miss Moss’ having an invitation to dine there at 2 o’clock. It was 3 before it was announced. Enjoyed my visit very much. It was nearly 7 o’clock when I left. I sat & chatted Mme. Tourtarel a short while on my return. Called on the Misses Dufour & returned about 9.30. Wrote to father & to Miss Jeanie Lyburn. Retired about 12.

Monday, February 23rd, 1880

Arose at 6.30 & took short walk before breakfast. After reading the Democrat I went up to the state library and hunted up points in my case for the Moot Ct. tonight. Took walk to several of the second hand bookstores & returned to my room about 12. The weather having turned warm I felt worthless all the afternoon. Prof. H. commenced the subject of Evidence tonight. I was successful in gaining the suit before the Moot Ct. tonight. Returned about 7.30 & sat with Mme. T. until about 8, when I came up & studied Equity, which Prof. Mellen is to take up soon. Wrote a note to Miss Columbia V. S. B. returning her picture as requested by her. Retired about 11.45.

Tuesday, February 24th, 1880

Arose at 7.15 & took a short walk. After breakfast & reading L’Abeille I went to the state library & read Conkling on Admiralty until 12 o’clock when I returned to my room perused the Nation & prepared my French by 3 o’clock. We had quite a sensation at the breakfast table this morning over the fainting of the younger Mme. Tourtarel. Was glad to see her entirely recovered by dinner. Prof. Mellen commenced the subject of Criminal Law this eve & Prof. S. continued on Admiralty Jurisdiction. Returned about 8 o’clock & joined the large company of Creole ladies in the dining room & enjoyed their lively French conversation until near 9 when I came up & wrote a long letter to Jenkins. The weather has been clear & pleasant all day. Retired about 11.45.

Wednesday, February 25th, 1880

Arose at usual hour and walked to the levy. After breakfasting & reading the paper I walked to the post office. Met McCutchon who walked with me. He anticipates returning to Pass Christian on Friday and told me good by. Calling by Eyrich’s I procured copies of the North Am. Review & the Contemporary Rev., which contained articles I wish to read. I finished today a discussion on the “Third Term” – against it contained in the North American Rev. Read the Code on Successions. Have felt very unwell all day from the effects of the medicine Dr. B. gave me to take last night. The day has been warm & windy. Prof. H. kept us in until 7 o’clock on successions. Felt too bad to visit Mr. J. P. Parker & family as I had contemplated. Sat with the family until after 8. Read the Review & the Code tonight. Retired about 11.30.

Thursday, February 26th, 1880

Arose about 7 & took usual walk. After breakfast & reading L’Abeille I walked up to the hotel & chatted the Major & Tom a while. Tom boards at the St. Charles now. En route to Mr. Harris’ office to draw some money I dropped in to speak to Bush. Shook hands with Miss Bertha, who was in the office. She speaks of taking a trip to the country. Returned & read thirty pages in Greenleaf. Weather warm & oppressive. Found a letter from Jenkins at Mrs. Harris’ today. Mr. Hunt lectured long tonight – reading from Greenleaf 5.30 until 7. Called on Miss Voorhies tonight & had a pleasant chat. She is a pretty & interesting little Creole. Returned about 9.30 & made a review of Prof. C. Hunt’s lectures. Shaffer called in to see me today – this eve. Retired about 11.30.

Friday, February 27th, 1880

Arose at 7 o’clock & took usual walk. The morning was foggy & damp but it soon cleared warm. After breakfast & reading the paper I set to work on reviewing Prof. H.’s lectures on the Civil Law. At 12 o’clock I went out for a short walk & a lunch. Returning I rec’d a V’Burg Herald from Miss G. giving a notice of the death of Miss Donoho of our parish. Tonight we had two fatiguing lectures. At least one lecture & an examination by Prof. Schmidt. It was about 8 o’clock when we got out. Went to the hotel to see Miss Templeton – she had gone to the theatre. Met Tom, we went to the Major’s room where we found Messrs. Farmer & Robertson with the delegation from Madison. Listened to them until about 10 when Tom & myself went to Kountz’s & lunched & chatted until 11. Returned & read E. W. Stoughton in favor of Grant’s candidature. Retired about 12.30.

Saturday, February 28th, 1880

Arose at 7.30. Reads L’Abeille and breakfasted. About 10 o’clock went for a short walk. It was very warm & close. Spent the day with the Civil Code. Prof. C. Hunt questioned this eve. About 8 o’clock I called on Miss Walton – was introduced to Miss Jones who joined in our conversation. Walked back home by 10 o’clock. Finished reading the Nation of this week, and retired about 11.30.

Sunday, February 29th, 1880

Arose about 8, read the Bee & breakfasted. About 10.30 Bush came around to go with me to the Cemeteries. We started out about 11 o’clock and returned about 1. The day was very warm, but we enjoyed the beautiful tombs very much. The flowers are beginning to bloom. After our return Bush sat & chatted until about 2. I then wrote a letter to father. About 5 o’clock I went out to Bush’s as appointed to pay some visits with him. We stood at the gate & chatted Miss Bertha & Miss Brittain until almost 6 when we started out. We visited Misses Chaffe, Herndon & Koenig. Miss H. has just recovered from the effect of having her ankle sprained at a party just before Mardi Gras. We arrived at the St. Charles shortly after 9 when we met Lucas, Shaffer & Behan with whom we loafed until 11 when I returned to my room. Retired about 12.

Monday, March 1st, 1880

Arose about 7.15 and took my usual walk to the levy. In the Times of this morning I see that twenty seven cadets have been “shipped” from the V.M.I. for breach of arrest. Spent the day in reading Admiralty law. Last night after an attempt to rain it turned cool & has been cool & damp today. Tonight Prof. R. Hunt questioned on Mercantile law. I went to see the young actor Frederick Paulding in Hamlet tonight. I liked his rendition of the character very much. He is young & has been on the stage only one year, & if he practices as he should he will make a great actor. He would do better for Hamlet if he had a few more inches in height. It was quite 11.30 before the play closed. Returned to my room & retired about 12, having concluded to write my journal on tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 2nd, 1880

Up & took my walk at the usual hour. I am fond of going to the levy where I see the numerous boats discharging their cargoes. It is a busy sight. I am almost disheartened with my own physical weakness. I feel animated after that sight & have a spirit to enter upon my studies; but ere noon comes I am overcome with feebleness. My body refuses to comply with my desires. I am unable so far to cure this constipation. Dr. Brickell continues to dose me with medicine. Today I went to the library & read several authors on the Feudal System upon which I propose to write one of my theses. Prof. Mellen has completed with Crim, law in only two lectures. Tonight he took up Equity. Prof. Schmidt questioned. On my way back from lecture I met Bush who came down & sat with me. We went out & loafed until about 10.30. The weather has been cool & damp. Retired about 11.45.

Wednesday, March 3rd, 1880

Arose at 7 o’clock & took my usual walk. The morning dawned with a bright sun & the day continued clear, but warm. After finishing L’Abeille I set to work on writing my thesis on the “Feudal System” for Prof. Mellen. Mme. T. & myself had quite an interesting attempt to carry on a French conversation after our lesson this eve. Prof. H. gave us quite a long lecture on Succession tonight. Returning about 7.30 I sat & chatted with the family until about 8, when Harry Behan, according to appointment, came to take me to see his sister. It is twenty minutes ride from here to his home. It being reception night I remained longer than I intended. I found Mrs. & Miss B. very pleasant & the latter quite pretty. Returned about 11 read the Nation for half an hour. Retired about 12.

Thursday, March 4th, 1880

Arose at 7 & walked as usual. Read L’Abeille. About 10.30 I went out to witness the parade of the firemen[32], which had been so highly recommended. The procession was extensive & beautiful – quite coming up to my expectations.


Thirty-fifth annual parade of New Orleans firemen, March 4, 1872, painting by V. Pierson and P. Poincy.  Courtesy of Louisiana State Museum

It was late before the line was formed. Met up with Mellen of the law class, & Lucas soon joined us. While witnessing a game between L. & M. at the billiard hall Randolph[33] of the law class came in & we had a long & pleasant talk concerning the law. Randolph, Lucas & myself witnessed the procession from an elevation on the St. Charles hotel. Maj. Lucas left for Madison to be gone a few days. Returned to my room & finished the Victim by dinner. Prof. H. gave us a long lecture tonight on the discovery of America, Geo. Washington, &c. We elected judges of the Moot Court. Lucas & Shaffer argued a case before me. Wrote on thesis tonight. Retired about 11.45.

Friday, March 5th, 1880

Rose at the usual hour & walked to the levy. After reading the morning paper I went to work on my thesis. At 11 o’clock I lay aside my writing & studied Smith on Equity. The day was intensely warm. It has been really a July day. I was glad to receive a letter from home after finishing with my French lesson this eve. Profs. Mellen & Schmidt questioned this eve. It was nearly 8 when we left the lecture room. I called again to see Mr. & Mrs. Harris but found them not at home. Returned & sat with the family & read L’Abeille with Edda until 9 o’clock, when I came up & finished my thesis, & studied the Civil Code. I am perfectly overcome by the warm weather tonight. Retired about 11.30.

Saturday, March 6th, 1880

Arose as usual & went for my walk. After breakfasting & reading the morning paper I went up to the St. Charles & chatted with Lucas on the topics of the day. About 11 we went down to the State House. I did some writing for Major Gibson & returned to my room about 12 & went to work on the Code. The weather is growing even more oppressive. Mme. Tourtarel, who likes it warm, is complaining. Prof. H. lectured on donations inter vivos & mortis causa. We got out shortly before 7. I chatted with a party a few minutes & then made preparations to call on Mr. J. P. Parker. Found him still up on the plantation. Returned about 9 and commenced preparing a thesis for Prof. R. Hunt on Agency. On looking at my watch was surprised to find I had worked until 11.30. Retired about 12.15.

Sunday, March 7th, 1880

Arose at 8 o’clock & walked to the levy. Read L’Abeille and breakfasted. I commenced & finished a letter to Mrs. A. H. Jenkins. Wrote to father before dinner. After dinner I was reading Paley on Happiness when Lucas came in, and chatted me until about 6 o’clock, when we walked up to the hotel. Tonight I called on the Misses Frankenbush, Maginnis & Miss Walton. Also called to see Miss Sue Kearney, but she was not at home – on a visit to the country. Miss Black of Vicksburg is visiting the Misses Maginnis. Had a long chat with Miss Walton. Returned to my room about 11. As I close this writing I observe the lightning & thunder. A heavy rain tonight will be most welcome. Retired about a quarter to 12.

Monday, March 8th, 1880

Imagine my surprise when I found that I had slept until 7.30 this morning. Took only a short walk, to procure a paper, before breakfast. Read the Times as the Bee is not published on Monday. After breakfast I walked to the P.O., stopped at Goldthwaite’s & purchased 8 volumes of Story’s works. Spent the morning in preparing a decision to deliver in the case argued before me by Lucas & Shaffer last Thursday night. Gave decision for Shaffer. Prof. H. continued on the Constitution tonight. There being an appeal case before the Moot Ct. tonight I did not preside. It did not rain during last night as I had wished; but it came tonight in torrents. The city was completely washed. Walked in water over my shoetops nearly all the way from the lecture room. The streets were then flooded for probably two hours. After changing my wet clothes I sat with the family until 9. Wrote on thesis until 11. Retired about 11.45.

Tuesday, March 9th, 1880

Arose at 7 & took walk to the levy. After reading the Bee I walked around & chatted Horace Dufour for a short while & then called on Joe Reid’s office & sat with him a while. We went to a second hand book store & then I purchased the works of Montesquieu[34] in five volumes & Les Droite Romaine in 8 volumes, all in French. Returned to my room about 12 & set to work on Equity. Tonight Prof. M. lectured on that subject & Prof. S. questioned on Contracts of Affreightment. Lucas & Gurley called for me soon after my return & having already purchased tickets persuaded me to go with them to see Adelaide Neilson as Juliette. We enjoyed it very much, tho’ I saw (her) in that last fall while in N.Y. The play closed about 11.30. The weather has been cooler today. Retired about 12.15.

Wednesday, March 10th, 1880

Arose about 7 & took a walk down town to the basin. After reading the Bee I walked to Reid’s office to get some books, Conkling’s Ad., he promised to lend me. He was not in so I called at the hotel & chatted Lucas a short while. His father returned from a short trip home yesterday & reports everything progressing finely in Madison. Spent the morning with the Civil Code. Tonight Prof. H. made a general review in questioning. Returned about 7 & sat with the family until 8. Edda & myself read “La vie de Montesquieu”. Tonight I have spent in finishing the completion of my thesis on Agency for Prof. R. Hunt. The day has been cool & damp. Retire about 11.30.

Thursday, March 11th, 1880

Arose & took walk at the usual hour. The weather turned warmer during the night & the bright sun of the morning foretold the extremely warm day. It has been smothering nearly all day. I spent the morning & part of the night in revising & copying my thesis on Agency. Tonight Prof. Hunt read from the U.S. Constitution. It is the failing of all our professors but one, Prof. C. Hunt, to read from the books or to copy their lectures directly from them. They do not pretend to lessen our work. Indeed it was better not to lose an hour in fatiguing oneself in trying to attend to the reading of something which he can himself read with more satisfaction in his own room. Patterson & Randolph conducted a case before the Moot Ct. tonight. Returned about 7.30 & read “L’Histoire d’Engleterre” with Edda. Came up about 8.30. Wrote on a thesis for Prof. Schmidt. Growing very tired I retired about 11.15.

Friday, March 12th, 1880

Arose a quarter before 7. While out walking a slight sprinkle which gave me an excuse to quicken my step into a run. It lasted only a few minutes & was followed by a clear & warm day, tho’ there were several showers in sun-shine. Spent the day in writing my thesis on Admiralty Jurisdiction for Prof. Schmidt, & in studying Equity. Our lectures were long & tedious tonight. It was raining when we got out shortly after 8, & I was dampened en route to my room. The rain continued to fall quite briskly until about 11. Tonight I wrote on my thesis & read the Nation. Having called on business at Mr. Harris’ office this morning he invited me to dine with himself & wife on Sunday next. Retired about 11.45.

Saturday, March 13th, 1880

Arose at the usual time & took a long walk down Chartres St. to observe the bird & fowl stores. It rained, I was told, nearly all night, and as I walked this morning it was making efforts to sprinkle; however as the day grew it cleared brighter. Between 10 & 11 I made a visit to the St. Charles theatre to see the “Midgets” – Gen. Mite & Maj. Atom.

St. Charles Theatre from a lithograph by G. Tolti, printed by D. Theuret about 1850. This St.  Charles Theatre opened in 1843 after being burned in 1842.  In 1899 it also burned. (See Map)

 They are two wonderfully small creatures. Returning about 11 I was glad to receive a letter from father saying that all was well. Resumed my work on my thesis, which was finished after an hour’s writing. Read “Twelfth Night” until the hour for preparing for my French arrived. Prof. H. continued on “Donations” tonight. Lucas & myself went to Neilson in Twelfth Night and enjoyed it very much. The play closed about 11. Retired about 11.45.

Sunday, March 14th, 1880

Arose about 7.30 & took a short walk. After breakfast I sat in the parlor & read the Bee & chatted until about 10, when I prepared to fulfill an engagement with Miss Templeton. It had been sprinkling occasionally during the morning & still threatened. We went to church (First Presbyterian) & heard Dr. Palmer[35]. On our return it was raining & continued off & on all day. Sat with Miss T. a short while when I called on Maj. Lucas & found the Madison delegation with him. At 3 o’clock I went to Mr. Harris’ for dinner. Had a very pleasant evening. Mrs. H. is an excellent lady, handsome, amiable & intelligent. Met there Miss Howell a real pretty young lady. Tonight Tom & myself called on Mrs. & Miss Moss. I made a short visit to Miss Alice H. in hopes of having an opportunity to attempt French with her, but Behan was there. Returned about 10 & wrote to father. Retired about 11.30.


First Presbyterian Church about 1900 (See Map)


Monday, March 15th, 1880

Arose about 7 & took my usual walk. Soon after breakfast my Nation arrived, as is usual, & a letter from Miss Jeanie L. About 10 o’clock Reid came & sat awhile with me. I walked out with him & remained until nearly 12, having become interested in discussing some points of law. Returned & wrote out my decision to be rendered on the case tried at the last Moot Court. After which I tried to study Story on the Constitution; but I have (been) lifeless & unable to study all day. The weather has been close & raining. Tonight Prof. H. gave us quite a long lecture, in consequence of which it was agreed that there should be no Moot Ct. Lucas & myself called on Joe Reid & his wife tonight. Found Mrs. R. very pleasant. It was a miserable trip uptown through the rain. It was quite 10 o’clock when I got back. My eyes hurting me I did not do much studying. Retired about 11.30.

Tuesday, March 16th, 1880

Arose at the usual time & took a walk. The weather had turned real cool in the night & I found the air bracing. On going to the library about 10 I met Bush on his way to my room to deliver me an invitation to Miss Koenig’s wedding. He walked with me up to Hensell’s where I ordered some books. Went to the library & read Conkling’s Admiralty until 12.30, then returned to my room & read the Code for half an hour. I prepared our lesson in Equity for tonight before going out this morning. Profs. M. & S. both questioned tonight. I felt much stimulated by the cold weather & did a good day’s work; but tonight my eyes hurt me so that I had to give up the idea of doing a good night’s work on the Code. I am very uneasy about my eyes. Fearing to use them I made haste to retire after brooding not a little over the probability of having a serious time with my eyes. Retired about 10.15.

Wednesday, March 17th, 1880

Arose about 6.30 & took a walk of about half an hour. The weather was even cooler than yesterday. After reading the paper I went to work on the Code which occupied me until 11 when I went to the library to read on the subject of “Marriage”, upon which I propose to write my thesis for Prof. C. Hunt. Returned to my room about 12.30 & read the Code until the time arrived for preparing my French. My eyes, though red, appeared better today, and I felt encouraged to work. Prof. H. lectured on “Testaments” tonight. He informed us that we would meet him on Friday eve at 2 P.M. and that he would for the remainder of the session give us three lectures per week. Sat with the family & read French with Edda until 8. My eyes troubled me so that I lay aside Story on the Constitution about 10 o’clock. Retired about 10.45. I bought Conkling’s U.S. Admiralty in two volumes.

Thursday, March 18th, 1880

Arose about 7, and went for my walk. Spent some time observing the work on the sewers which is going on at the corner of Canal & Camp. Spent the morning with Story on the Constitution, and the afternoon on the Civil Code  & French. This evening Prof. H. resumed the subject of Evidence. The Moot Ct. was dissolve tonight. Returning I chatted the family until about 8 o’clock when I came up & studied Evidence. About 9 Herndon called me to the door. We took a short walk & returned to my room & chatted until 11 o’clock. The weather has turned warm & the rains of last week were resumed again. My eyes are much better tonight. Retired about 11.45.

Friday, March 19th, 1880

The morning was very cool & pleasant after a considerable rainfall during the night. I enjoyed very much my walk, to the levy, at the accustomed hour. After reading L’Abeille I studied Equity until I was interrupted by a short visit from Lucas & Shaffer. On their departure I finished our lesson in Equity & read the Code in Testaments. At 2 o’clock I attended Prof. Hunt’s lecture. He finished with the “Testaments” & informed us that henceforth he would meet us on Mondays at 2 o’cl’k in addition to his regular lecture. Returned to my room about 3.15 & had my French lesson. Profs. M. & S. questioned this eve. Prof. M. examined me for the first time. It was 8 o’clock before Prof. S. dismissed us. Sat with Mme. T. & read French with Edda until nearly 9, when I set to work on Domet (?) & Justinian[36]. Retired about 11.30.

Saturday, March 20th, 1880

Arose about 7 & walked out Claiborne St. as far as the basin. The morning was very pleasant & the bright sun promised a pretty day; but towards evening it grew cloudy & by night a slow rain set in. After breakfast I read the news & read the Code. I was happy to receive a letter from father, which said that the high water did not alarm him as to home; but he fears that the islands[37] will be submerged. At the invitation of Lucas I met him at the theatre at 12 to attend matinee. Was glad to meet Dr. Sampson there – we enjoyed Miss Nielson very much in the Lady of Lyons[38]. The theatre was jammed with an enthusiastic audience. Dr. S. is down on a short stay. The Dr. went around with us to lecture, which was preceded by an examination on the subjects he has lately considered. His lecture was upon Fidei Commissa & Substitutions. Tonight we took Dr. S. around to see the sights of the city. He enjoyed the midgets very much. We roused up by going to the theatre & seeing Miss Neilson in the last act of the Lady of Lyons. Tom had already provided tickets for the occasion. Miss N. had a crowded house for her farewell & being called before the curtain a second time after the last act she made a pretty little speech, expressing herself pleased with her reception here. Immediately I returned to my room. Retired about 12.

Sunday, March 21st, 1880

Got up at 7.30 and took a walk of half an hour through a drizzling rain, which has continued throughout the day & tonight. I was writing on a letter to Miss Georgie N. when Bush came in (and) sat with me until after 1. Finished my letter before dinner. After dinner I communed with my own thoughts until about 7 when I called on the Misses Townsend. Leaving them I went to the hotel & chatted with the Major & Mr. McDowell until about 10 when I returned & wrote a letter to father. Retired about 11.45.

Monday, March 22nd, 1880

Arose about a quarter of 7 & found the rain still falling as last night & which it continued to do all day. I walked to the post office before breakfast. After breakfast I read the nation a short while & then set to work on the Code – reading Conventional Obligations. Reid came in about 11 & sat a short while with me. Carleton Hunt met us at 2 o’clock & lectured until nearly 3.30 on Obligations. We were informed that Mr. R. Hunt would not lecture tonight. After dinner I read the Droit Romain until nearly 7 when I went down & read French with Edda. Tonight I spent in commencing a thesis on “Marriage” for C. Hunt & in studying Equity. Have not been at all well in consequence of indigestion. Retired about 11.45.


New Orleans Post Office. From Norman's New Orleans and Environs, 1845 (See Map)

Tuesday, March 23rd, 1880

On rising at 7 I was happy to find the sun shining. I enjoyed very much my walk without an umbrella. After breakfasting I read the Bee. About 10 I walked up to the hotel to meet Tom & Dr. Sampson. We sat & talked with Major L. until nearly 11. I walked around with Tom & the Dr. until 12 when In I returned & studied “Collision” in Admiralty. Dr. Sampson left for Madison by the Lee this evening. I have been unwell all day – suffering from indigestion. I can’t study with any satisfaction. Profs. Mellen & Schmidt questioned tonight. We were dismissed at 8 o’clock. I attempted to study the Code but my headache compelled me to give up & go to bed early. Retired about 10.30.

Wednesday, March 24th, 1880

Arose at the usual hour & walked out on Claiborne as far as the basin. Having taken some medication last night have felt better today. The papers of this morn announce that Gen. Grant is to make a visit to N. O. About 9.30 I walked up to Lucas’ room & borrowed a Hadley in order to get information from it on the subject of my thesis. I was writing on it when Herndon came in (and) chatted with me a while. The day has been clear & pleasant. The news from the river & weather above is encouraging. Tonight Carleton Hunt failed to meet us; but posted notice that he would lecture tomorrow afternoon at 2. Most of the class walked up Baronne a short distance to see a man walk the rope. Went by Eyrich’s & bought me a book on the Interoceanic Canal. Tonight I spent a short while in reading it & in preparing my thesis. Retired about 11.30.

Thursday, March 25th, 1880

I arose this morning at 6.30. The Catholics in the house had been noising it for an hour getting ready for mass. I took the Baronne St. car about 7 & rode out to 3rd St. From there I walked back by 8 o’clock. I enjoyed very much the beautiful flower yards and as I turned along St. Charles Av. I did not feel well in consequence of some medicine I took just before breakfast. Spent the morning in writing on my thesis & in studying Evidence. At 2 o’clock we attended Prof. H’s lecture. Tonight or this evening Prof. R. H. Read from Greenleaf on “Confessions”. After lecture I took my book on the Interoceanic Canals to Mrs. Harris. Took a short walk before commencing my studies. Rec’d a note from Mrs. Townsend, saying that it being Holy Week, they would not attend the Art to which she had invited to go with them. Worked on my thesis. Retired about 11.30. Temps bien.

Friday, March 26th, 1880

Arose at 6.30 and took the Prytania St. car shortly after 7 and rode until about 7.25 when I got out & walked back by 8 o’clock. The weather is very pleasant in the morning; but as the sun advances it grows warm. About 10 I walked up to Hansell’s to pay for a Hadley & to settle my dues at the Y.M.C.A. Stopping in at a second hand book store I purchased the writings of Jefferson & an abridgement of Blair’s Rhetoric. Spent the day in preparing Equity & Admiralty for the evening recitations. This being Good Friday it has been a holiday with most or a great portion of the population. Tonight I finished my thesis & read the first lecture in Hadley’s Introduction to the Roman Law. Have felt better today. Retired about 11.15.

Saturday, March 27th, 1880

Got up at 6.30 & took a walk of nearly an hour out Canal St. This morn I spent in reading the Nation & in studying the Code. I also read a lecture in Hadley. I was glad to receive a letter from father saying they were all well. A brisk wind blew up about 11 & after a slight shower it continued cool & windy the rest of the day. I have suffered again today from constipation & Dr. Brickell being still absent in Vicksburg I got Dr. Gourier to subscribe for me today. Carleton Hunt questioned this evening. Took a short walk after lecture. Sat with family until about 8 when I came up & read Equity & copied some of my thesis. Retired about 11.15.

Sunday, March 28th, 1880

Got up at 7 & after a short walk I read the Bee until breakfast. This morning was real cool, and a brisk wind blew. I was writing a letter to Henderson about 11 o’clock when Haynes came in & chatted me until after 12. We discussed the two prominent candidates for the Democratic nomination for president. He favors Hancock[39] & I Bayard[40]. After finishing my letter to Henderson I wrote one to father. Then I went down & helped in the freezing of a bucket of ice cream for dinner. Though I had quite a headache I started out with the intention of paying several visits; but did not get further than Mr. Frankenbush’s. I found the company there quite agreeable & feeling that would not permit me to enjoy myself elsewhere I continued there until about 9.30. The night air was pinching cool on my ride back. Retired about 11.

Monday, March 29th, 1880

Arose at 6.30 & took a walk to the levy. The morning was quite cool, and we have had a splendid day. Read the Times before breakfast, after which I walked out Claiborne as far as the basin. Returning I read the Nation until about 10 when I commenced to study Evidence. Lucas came in about 11 & sat until nearly 12 when we walked up to Charlie Hamilton’s & lunched. Returned & read Ev. until time to start for lecture at 2. Mr. H. lectured on “Persons incapable to contract”. Returning Mme. Tourtarel & myself read a few pages of French before dinner. This eve Prof. R. Hunt continued to read from Greenleaf on Ev. After lecture I walked for some time. Sat with the family until 8.30. Tonight I studied Equity until 10 when I commenced copying on my thesis again. I have suffered from a headache again this eve & tonight. Retired about 11.45.

Tuesday, March 30th, 1880

Got up about 6.30, walked to the levy & read Bee before breakfast. The weather of today has been like that of yesterday. After breakfast I took a walk of nearly an hour – returning about 9.30. While out I purchased at a second-hand book store Colton’s Life of Henry Clay & Parton’s Life of Aaron Burr. I tried to study Admiralty all the morning but was not in the humor for it. I felt dejected most of the day. I can not help from fearing that my health will never be sturdy & robust. Dr. Brickell will be back tomorrow. Our two professors questioned this evening. We were very much fatigued from our long sitting. It was after 8 o’clock when we were dismissed. Read some French with Edda tonight. Came up about 8.45 & finished copying my last thesis. Read Bl. On Rise & Progress of the Laws of England. Read the introduction to my new books Clay & Burr. Retired about 11.45.

Wednesday, March 31st, 1880

Arose about a quarter before six & took my usual walk of half an hour. The weather continues beautiful. Before breakfast I read L’Abeille. Afterwards I went out for a walk; examined books in several book-stores, and purchased a Code Napoleon.  Returned shortly before 10 & commenced studying the Code. About 2 o’clock I walked out on the street for a few minutes – they were crowded with people awaiting the arrival of Grant. Prof. H. continued on Obligation. While we were at lecture Grant arrived. We were dismissed shortly before 7 & I had an opportunity to glance at the Ex-President as he approached the St. Charles hotel. He had quite an escort of citizens in carriages, militia and a great number of negroes. Left before the procession was passed to attend the art illustrations of Prof. Cromwell at the French Opera.


French Opera House about 1860 from a watercolor by Boyd Cruise. The structure was built in 1859 and burned in 1919. It was the scene of many carnival balls and other festivities. (See Map)

Took Tourtarel with me, Rome was beautifully represented. Returned shortly after 10; read Constitution. Retired about 11.45.

Thursday, April 1st, 1880

Arose shortly before 7. Walked to the levy & read the Bee before breakfast. After breakfast I walked out Claiborne as far as the basin; returning about 9.30. This morning I read Story on the Constitution & read the last chapter in Blackstone. This afternoon I read the Code. In consequence of having to study for the examinations I have stopped my French lessons; though I will read a little every day. About 3 o’clock I walked up to the St. Charles hotel & chatted a few minutes with Tom. Returned & read “Le Droit Romain” & the Code Napoleon until dinner. Prof. H. questioned on the Constitution this evening. I sat & chatted with the household & read a little French with Edda until 8.30 when I came up & read the 2nd lecture in Hadley, & wrote a letter to Prof. Minor requesting a certificate to the effect that I studied law at the University. Retired about 11.15.

Friday, April 2nd, 1880

In consequence of the heavy rain I did not get up until 7.17. The rain continued with intervals of sunshine throughout the day. Read the Bee before breakfast; after which I took a short walk. Spent the morning in reading Conkling. About 12 I took a short walk. The weather was awfully close. This eve I analyzed my theses to be handed in tomorrow & read an article in the North Am. Review on “the third term”. Tonight Profs. Schmidt & Mellen questioned. Sat in the dining room & chatted until 9. Edda & myself read some French. Tonight I have read the 3rd lecture in Hadley & Domat. Retired shortly after 11.

Saturday, April 3rd, 1880

Arose about 6.30 to find that the weather had cleared. Before breakfast I took half an hour’s walk & read the paper. After breakfast I walked until 9.30. Have spent until about 2.30 in studying the Code. Shaffer & Randolph came in for a few minutes to ask me to go with them to the races; but having an engagement with Bush I waited for him until his arrival at 2.30 when we went to the races. I enjoyed them very much. It is the first time I have attended a race track.


Louisiana Jockey Club. From The New York Daily Graphic, April 24, 1874

I left before they were over in order to be at lecture at 5.30. I was glad to receive a letter from father. Received a card from Vaughn announcing him as practicing in Mobile. It was reported some time since that he was dead. Prof. H. lectured on fraud in contracts. Tonight I called on Miss Herndon & had a pleasant evening. Returned about 10 & wrote a letter to Miss Rosa R. Retired about 12.

Sunday, April 4th, 1880

Rose at 7 o’clock. Before breakfast I went to the barber & after returning read the papers. After breakfast I sat in the parlor a short while. Lucas came around shortly before 11 & chatted until about 12 when I walked with him up to the hotel & sat until about 1.  I was writing a letter to father about 2 when Behan & Finney came in & sat until 3.15 when dinner was announced. After dinner finished father’s letter & read several editorials in the Times. About 6 I called on Miss Moss & chatted very agreeably until 7.30. I then called on the Misses Maginnis & spent a very pleasant hour. I then went up to see Miss Vairin but finding the gate locked I supposed she had not returned from the country. Returned to my room about 9.30 & wrote a letter to Joyes. Before going to Miss Moss’ this eve I called to see Mrs. Harris but she excused herself as being sick. The weather quite warm. Retired about 11.45.

Monday, April 5th, 1880

Arose about 7. Walked to the levy. Read the Times before breakfast. I was persuaded not to go walking after breakfast on account of the warm weather. I was very glad to receive a long letter from Jenkins this morn. He sent me a picture of himself as first orderly. Spent a few minutes in reading the Nation which reaches me as usual on Monday morning. Was studying the Constitution about 11 when Tom came in & informed me of the arrival of some clothes we had ordered from N.Y. I went up to the hotel with him to examine them. Returned & went to work on the Const. Again for a short while when I picked up the Code but was soon interrupted by Herndon who came in to show me an account in a Richmond paper of the late trouble at the V.M.I. At 2 o’clock we met Carleton H. who spent an hour & a half in questioning. Randall H. did not meet us this eve. Took short walk after dinner. Had French reading with Edda. Came up & went to work on Com. Law. Very warm. Retired about 10.30.

Tuesday, April 6th, 1880

Got up at 6.30. Took half an hour walk before breakfast. Found the weather quite warm for the early morning. Read L’Abeille & the Times before breakfast. A long account is given of the banquet at the St. Charles last night in honor of Grant. After breakfast I walked up to J. S. Harris & Co.’s & got some money. On my return found Tom in my room. He remained with me until 10.15. I studied the common law doctrine of Real Property until about 1, when I took up International Law until about 3, when Mme. T. voluntarily came in & read some French with me. This eve our professors questioned in review. Preparing for the examinations which are to commence about the 20th. It was 8 o’clock when we were dismissed. Sat, chatted & read with Edda until 9 when I came up & studied Mercantile Contracts until 10.30 when sleep overcame me. Quite warm all day. Retired about 11.15.

Wednesday, April 7th, 1880

Arose at 6.30 and took a walk of half an hour. Read the Times & L’Abeille. After breakfast I walked for half an hour. About 10 o’clock I commenced studying the Code on Mortgages. About 12 I took up International Law. Did a real good day’s work, tho’ it was quite warm. After a shower late this eve it turned cool. Prof. H. lectured on lesion. Sat & chatted Mme. Tourtarel & Thompson until about 8. Mme. T. & myself had a short reading in French when I came up & went to work on Hadley. Growing sleepy I changed to Commercial Law, & finally read a couple of articles in the Nation. Retired about 10.30.

Thursday, April 8th, 1880

In consequence of the rain I did not get up until 7 o’clock. It continued to rain all day & I failed to take my walk. Before breakfast I read the papers. Spent the day in studying Commercial law. It was quite cool & I had a fire all day. Prof. R. Hunt questioned on the Constitution tonight. Feeling tired from my day’s work I went visiting tonight. Called on the Misses Dufour, where I had a chat with Miss Rogers, & called to see Miss Voorhies but she is absent on a trip to the country. I sat & chatted Miss Williams for a short while. Returned shortly before 10. Read some miscellaneous pieces. Retired shortly before 11.10.

Friday, April 9th, 1880

Arose at 6.30 to find it real cool. Took half an hour’s walk before breakfast; found my overcoat very comfortable. Read the Times & L’Abeille. Shortly after 10 I took a walk. Purchased Gayarré’s[41] History of La. in four volumes & Terré’s works in one volume. Returned about 11. Received a letter from father. Spent the day in studying the Com. Law & International law. Prof. Hunt met us at 2 o’clock & spent over an hour in going over the same matter as was the subject of his last lecture. Bush stepped in during the day to inform me that the pic nic was to come off this eve. I was sorry not to be able to go. It would interfere with my lectures. This eve profs M. & S. questioned us on Com. & Int. law respectively. On my return shortly after 8 I joined some young ladies, in the parlor, in a game of euchre. Shortly after 9 I came up. My eyes hurt me so I cl’d not study. Rec’d a certificate from Prof. Minor. Retired about 10.15.

Saturday, April 10th, 1880

Arose at 6.30 & took half an hour’s walk before breakfast. Read the papers and after breakfast took half an hour’s walk. Commenced reading Hadley about 10 spent (part) of the day on the Civil Law of Obligations. My eyes have been quite red & painful all day. The wind has contributed largely to it. This eve Prof. H. questioned promiscuously. He took occasion to question me; which he does not do so often as early in the session. Returning I sat with Edda & Mme. T. a short while when I came up & prepared to call on Misses F’bush. Was very sorry to find Miss Mary sick from the effects of the pic nic. Miss Bertha related that they had a very nice time. Returned about 10 & prepared fro retiring. The weather continues quite cool. Retired about 10.45.

Sunday, April 11th, 1880

I was very much surprised on looking at my watch this morning to find it nearly 8 o’clock. I left my blinds closed last night which prevented the light from coming in. Took a short walk purchased the Times & L’Abeille, which I read by 10 o’clock, when I prepared to go with Tourtarel & Savoir to the ice manufactory. Though little could be seen or understood I enjoyed very much the process for making ice. On our return we stopped a short while at the water works, where we admired the immense engines used for pumping the water. We got back about 10 o’clock. I was writing a letter to father when Herndon came in with his cousin (Underwood) & invited me to dine with them. Of course I accepted & spent a most pleasant evening. At dinner they had artichokes. I had never seen them on the table before & having heard that a green person did not know how to eat them I acknowledged my ignorance[42]. I enjoyed them very much. Miss Alice looked very sweet in her spring costume & was in extremely good spirits in consequence of having had a good time at a German a few nights since. We had a considerable walk after dinner. I was sorry to leave at 7.30. I then called to see Mr. & Mrs. J. P. Parker. I had a very pleasant chat with Mrs. P. Mr. P. had not returned at a dining at his mother’s. I then called upon the Misses Townsend & chatted Miss Daisy for an hour or more. Returned to my room about 10. The day has been lovely. Retired, after finishing a letter to father, at 11.30.

Monday, April 12th, 1880

Arose at 7 o’clock & went for half an hour walk. Before breakfast I read the Times. I went out for another walk about 9.30 & returned at 10. After reading the news of the week in the Nation I studied Commercial law. I felt more like communing with my own thoughts than studying. Mme. T. came up about 3 & read some French with me, after which we conversed a while in French. Prof. R. Hunt did not lecture today & Prof. C. Hunt lectured instead. Returning I sat in the parlor & chatted until 8.30, when I came up & after studying a while I found it too cold to sit up. It has been turning cooler all the evening. Retired about 10.15.

Tuesday, April 13th, 1880

Arose at 6.30 & took half an hour walk. Found the weather not so cool as yesterday. Today the sun came out quite warm, though tonight it is chilly. After breakfasting & reading the papers I walked up to the St. Charles hotel, where I had a short talk with Maj. Lucas who left for home this eve. Went to Tom’s room & talked to him & Gutheim[43] until about 11. Returned to my room & studied the Common law until shortly before 2 when I went to Carleton Hunt’s lecture. He made a general review by questioning. Returning I read Admiralty until dinner. Profs. M. & S. questioned this eve. Prof. S. seemed to be in a bad humor & more than once displayed considerable temper. Got through about 8. Sat & chatted a short while, when I came up & went to work on Admiralty. Find myself very sleepy-headed of late. Retired about 10.45.

Wednesday, April 14th, 1880

Arose at 6.30 & took my usual walk of half an hour. The morning was warmer than for some time & the bright sun foretold that today would be a renewal of Spring weather. After breakfasting & reading the papers I came up & went to work on the Code. Lucas came in about 11 & chatted about an hour. He complained much of home-sickness since the departure of the Madison delegation. Had a considerable shower about 2 o’clock. Found it quite difficult to study all day. Tonight Prof. C. Hunt lectured. The Prof. Of Com. Law has resigned to him his evening for the remainder of the session. Tonight I called to see Miss Sue Kearney; but she was out. Thursday is her reception night. Returned to the St. Charles & called on Miss Templeton. She introduced me to Miss Crawford of Mobile. Was surprised to see Miss Rilma Sanders in the city. Returned about 10.15 & after reading a little Justinian retired about 11.30.

Thursday, April 15th, 1880

Arose at the usual hour & went for my walk. Was very agreeably surprised to meet Vaughn, from Mobile, member of our law class at the University. After breakfast I went to work on the Civil Law which occupied me until 1 when I met Vaughn at the St. Charles according to appointment. We joined Shaffer & Gutheim & went to Lucas’ room where we spent some time & pleasant chat. The day has been quite warm. At lecture tonight C. Hunt made a review of the Code as far as Testaments. Tonight V. & myself went down to the Academy to see the Arabian Night. We enjoyed it very much. After the theatre we took some refreshments & returned to my room shortly before 12, having persuaded V. to spend the night with me. Retired about 12.20.

Friday, April 16th, 1880

Arose shortly before 7. Accepted an invitation to breakfast with Vaughn at Moran’s. After breakfast we walked down to the wharf & boarded the Natchez.


The Natchez in 1883. Built in 1879, she sank in 1887

After looking through her cabin we returned & visited the marble hall in the custom house. Took leave of V. about 9 o’clock. He returned to Mobile this eve. We found the morning very close & oppressive. I found it difficult to study all day; as I got a sore throat from sitting in the night air at Bonnecaze’s last night. Spent the day in an attempt to study Blackstone & Conklng. I lay down shortly before 3 & slept until dinner. Our professors questioned tonight. Sat & chatted & had a French reading with Edda. Came up about 9 & studied Conkling until 10.15. It is intolerably warm. Retired about 11.

Saturday, April 17th, 1880

This morn I arose at the usual time & took a walk out Rampart St. The weather was awfully close & the smell from the gutters & dirty streets was very offensive.  No wonder this is an unhealthy city. After reading the papers I went to studying the subjects of Sale & Marriage Contracts in the Code. Was in no humor for studying & found it a great effort all day. Herndon came in about 1 & chatted a while. He extended me an invitation to attend a pic nic early in May. This eve I read some in Equity & the subjects of Pilotage & Wharfage in Admiralty. Tonight Mr. H. lectured on Divisible & Indivisible Contracts. Tonight I called on the Misses (left blank), creoles, & had a pleasant evening. We went to a fire which broke out in the St. Louis Hotel. It was extinguished without seeing very much. Returned about 10.30. Disappointed in not hearing from home. Retired about 11.15.


St. Louis Hotel in 1873.  From Jewell's Crescent City Illustrated (See Map)

Sunday, April 18th, 1880

Willie Tourtarel woke me this morning at 6 o’clock. After I had dressed we went out to spend the morning in a long walk. We walked to the levy & there took the car for Esplanade St. There we alighted & walked to enjoy the beauties of the flower gardens & the large shady oaks. We admired the grounds of the Jocky Club through the fence railing & then went out to Bayou St. John. After looking around the boat house we proceeded out to the so called City Park.

Crowning the May Queen in City Park. Harper's Weekly, 1863

This place is more of a pasture than a park. If art could only be made to assist what nature has done for it we would have a lovely resort. The grounds are shaded by grand water oaks. After resting a while in the shade we took a car & went out to the cemetery at the end of Canal St. & changed cars for town which we reached about 9 o’clock. We missed the cool & pure air immediately upon our return. Breakfast was immediately announced & I ate with some relish for the first time in over a month. After reading the Times & writing a letter to father I went up to Christ Church & heard Bishop Gallagher preach a sermon. Having a back seat I could not catch much of it. There were quite a number confirmed which ceremony I did not remain to see finished. Returned to my room & studied Hadley & Conkling until diner. After dinner I sat & chatted with Edda until about 5.30 when I prepared to make my evening calls. I found Miss Sue Kearney at home & had quite a pleasant chat. Called & spent an agreeable hour with Miss Vairin who got back from the country last Monday. The remainder of the evening was spent in chatting with Miss Laura Maginnis, who was so pleasant I could barely get away. Returned about 10 P.M. Retired at 11.45.

Monday, April 19th, 1880

Arose at 6.30 o’clock and walked for half an hour. Read the Times & had an opportunity to read some of the Code before breakfast. After breakfast I took another half hour walk. Found it quite warm. The streets smell from the stagnant water in the gutters. No wonder it is unhealthy here. After reading the news of the week in the Nation I went to work on the Code, which occupied me most of the day. This afternoon we had quite a heavy rain, which purified the air & I trust purified or washed away some of the filth from the streets. Prof. H. questioned tonight. I went around to Tom’s room where he, Gutheim & myself questioned each other on the Constitution & on Int. Law. Osgood came in about 9 & we spent the rest of the evening talking. I left about 9.30. After looking over some parts of the Const. I prepared to retire expecting to be called early tomorrow. Retired about 10.45.

Tuesday, April 20th, 1880

In consequence of a heavy rain I was not aroused this morning at 5 as I had requested. When I awoke shortly after 6 it was pouring down and thunder was frequent. This prevented me from taking my walk until after breakfast when it checked for a while. It continued until the afternoon. Spent the day with Blackstone & Cockling. Received a letter from father. He enclosed a letter from the Clerk of the Dist. Ct. making a proposition to give me a position in his office. Tonight both our professors examined us. Gutheim, Lucas & myself met & questioned each other on the Civil Law until nearly 10 o’clock. Returned to my room & wrote to Judge Dennis[44] declining to accept any political office. Retired about 11.30. Today I purchased Johnston’s History of American Politics & Eaton’s Civil Service in Great Britain.

Wednesday, April 21st, 1880

Arose at 6.30 and took my walk of half an hour. Before breakfast I read the Times. Afterwards I read the Constitution until nearly 10 when I joined Lucas & Gutheim at the St. Charles where we spent until about 12 & questioned on Commercial & Maritime Law. Returning to my room I found a letter from father & one from Paxton. Spent the afternoon in reviewing the history of La. & in reading Gibbons’ 44th chapter. The day managed to keep clear & warm until about 4.30 P.M. when a heavy shower fell for half an hour. This eve Prof. H. questioned some & lectured on the subject of Sales. After lecture Denis & myself stopped at the Jesuit church to witness the marriage of Miss Emma Maginnis to Mr. Gilmore. Quite a brilliant wedding. Joined Lucas & Gutheim & questioned on Hist. Of La. Osgood came in shortly after 9 & chatted. Returned about 10.30. Retired about 11.30.

Thursday, April 22nd, 1880

Arose at a quarter before 6, when I was aroused by Mme. Tourtarel. Took a walk of three quarters of an hour; read the Times & studied Blackstone on the Law of England before breakfast. After breakfast I read Hadley on Servitudes until near 10 when I joined Lucas & Gutheim to question on the Civil Law. We examined each other until 11.30 when I returned to my room; found a letter from & commenced to study the Code. Willie Finney came in to invite me to some theatricals for tomorrow night. My work prevented me from accepting. He sat & talked some time. This eve Prof. H. questioned. I joined L. & G. tonight – we questioned on the Com. Law. About 10 they accepted my invitation to take biscuit at Kountze’s. We sat & chatted some time after which we walked around until after 11. Weather quite warm. Retired about 12.15.

Friday, April 23rd, 1880

Was aroused & rose at 6 o’clock. Took my usual walk & read the Times before breakfast. After breakfast I wrote out my application for B.L. and studied the Constitution until 10 when I joined L. & G. & questioned on Admiralty & Equity until about 11.30 when I returned & studied Conkling & Interest until dinner. F’bush came in & chatted me for a short while. Tonight Prof. Schmidt dismissed us until our examination. Tonight we questioned until nearly 10 o’clock on Commercial Law. Returned to my room & spent a while in reading Smith on that subject. The weather was very pleasant all day; but tonight it is quite warm. Retired about 11.15.

Saturday, April 24th, 1880

Arose this morning & walked up beyond the Lee Circle. The morning was quite pleasant. After reading the paper I read Conkling until breakfast; after which I resumed my reading until 10 o’clock when I joined Lucas & Gutheim. We questioned on International Law until 12 o’clock when I returned & read Conkling for a short while; then took up the Civil Law. Had a short nap this eve. Tonight C. Hunt lectured on Marriage Contracts. He kept us until after 7.30 – over two hours – it was warm & very fatiguing. I had made up my mind not to study any tonight; sat & chatted with the family until 9, when I came up & read a little Equity. Retired shortly after 10.

Sunday, April 25th, 1880

Mme. T. awoke me at 5.30, and though I lay some time before going to sleep last night I arose & took the St. Charles St. car & rode to fifth street when I returned on foot. The morning was quite pleasant & so continued all day. Before breakfast I commenced a letter to father, giving him some reasons for my not accepting a position in the Treasurer’s or Tax Collector’s office of the Parish of Madison. The head officials in these offices have offered me a lucrative position in consideration that father go on their board. Upon this being made known to me I wrote Judge Dennis a letter declining any such situation; not only because I don’t want to attain position through the influence of father but because I believe that it is a bad plan for a young lawyer to be concerned in politics or a political office. I repeated about the same reason to father today. It is real difficult to hesitate even in accepting a paying position; since I feel greatly indebted to my father for the liberality with which he has opened his pocket to me, and in gratitude to him should be inclined to follow his wishes. After breakfast I chatted a while with Edda & Mme. T. & then came up & finished my letter to father. Attended Christ Church. Behan & Lucas came in & chatted until dinner. Called on the Misses F’bush – took walk with Miss Mary. Called to see Miss Behan but the sickness of her father caused her to excuse herself. Returned to my room about 10 o’clock. Retired about 11.

Monday, April 26th, 1880

I was aroused about a quarter before 6; I walked to the levy. Found the morning quite warm & so it has been all day. Before breakfast I studied the Civil Code after I studied the Const. & read the Nation. Shortly after 10 I joined Lucas & Gutheim and we questioned until after 12. Shaffer joined us for a while. Returned to my room but I had such a headache that I lay down about 2.30 and napped until nearly 4. Randall Hunt was too unwell to meet us & make his farewell address as expected this eve. Gutheim came around and sat with me a while. We went to the Crescent Bill. hall for a while, when I joined Lucas for a few minutes Ex. on Equity. Learning that Miss Delia Henry, from Bolton, Miss., was in the hotel I called & had a pleasant chat. While there Mrs. Scannell, lately Miss Maggie Lonsdale came in. I congratulated the happy pair. Returned about 9.30 & studied Equity. Retired about 11.15.

Tuesday, April 27th, 1880

Arose at 5.30 & took a short walk. After reading the paper I went to work on Common Law which I continued all the morning. About 12 o’clock I went up to the hotel, got Lucas & went for some lunch. Returned to my room & spent the evening on Evidence. My eyes pained me before I finished. I enjoyed very much a letter I received from Mrs. A. S. Jenkins. Carleton Hunt after lecturing on the Code of Practice made some farewell remarks. I sat in the parlor until about 8 o’clock when I came up & studied the Const. until my eyes hurt me so I had to give it up. Our first Ex. on Commercial Law, Evidence & the Constitution takes place tomorrow. I feel pretty well prepared for it. The day has been tolerably warm. Retired about 9.45.

Wednesday, April 28th, 1880

Arose at 5.30; walked to the river. Made a general review for the examination today. Shortly after 9 I started for the examination. Prof. Randall Hunt being indisposed the examination was conducted by Prof. Carleton Hunt. It was not particularly difficult, but long & tedious. We had a recess from 4 to 6. Shortly after 7 Prof. Hunt informed us that he would have to ask us to stop. I had not quite finished answering all the questions; though had filled twenty four pages of legal cap. Seguin[45] & myself were in the same predicament. We certified as to our knowledge of the remaining questions. Returned to my room & studied until about 11.30. Retired about 12.15.

Thursday, April 29th, 1880

Arose at 5.30; took walk & studied until 9.30 when I went to the examination on Civil Law. Commenced writing about 10 & wrote without moving from my seat, except for the recess from 4 to 6, until 9 tonight. The examination comprehended nearly everything that has been taught during the session. One who finished before me said the questions numbered 181 after an actual count. The examination tho not so difficult as those at the University is more lengthy. I am completely exhausted tonight. Would like to prepare myself for tomorrow but must rest my physique. Am confident that I answered 95 per cent of today’s examination. Returned to my room shortly after 9. Retired about 10.15.

Friday, April 30th, 1880

Was aroused at usual & arose at 5.30 & after a walk to the river made a review of Equity & some of the points in the common law. Found it real cool out this morning – Prof. Mellen’s examination was more difficult but not so long as the previous. I wrote from 10 until about 3.30, & am confident of having passed; though my answers on Equity were not so complete as they have been in the previous examinations. The entire class seemed to have found this the most difficult. Returned to my room & having requested that my dinner be saved I lay down to rest but could not sleep. Got up & took my dinner about 6 – sat & chatted a while & then took a walk of about half an hour. Commenced work on Int. & Admiralty about 8 & worked until about 11. Concluded it best to rest. Retired about 11.30. Rec’d a letter from father.

Saturday, May 1st, 1880

Arose at 5.30 & took a short walk. Before & after breakfast I spent in reviewing Admiralty. At 10 o’clock we entered upon our fourth & last examination, upon International & Admiralty Law. I closed about 4 o’clock, after writing about 17 pages. The subject being easy, the examination was not much difficult. It was a great relief when I had signed my last papers. The last four days work have completely exhausted me. About 7 o’clock I met a party of students at the Crescent. We discussed the examinations over several glasses of beer. The son of Prof. Mellen reports that his father is well pleased with the examination of the class in his course. Five papers were splendid & eleven were fair. This consoles me as it was in his course that I did meanest. Returned about 9.30. Retired about 10.30.

Sunday, May 2nd, 1880

This morning I took advantage of the opportunity & slept until nearly 8 o’clock. Found it raining & so it continued all day. Spent some time after breakfast in chatting with Edda in the parlor. She presented me with a very nice little “book-mark” with Remembrance worked in it. Shortly after 11 I came up & wrote to father – then occupied the day in addressing invitations. After dinner I chatted the family until after 5, when I came up & prepared to go visiting. I first called & had a very pleasant visit with Mr. & Mrs. Harris. While there I met Mrs. Hamilton Wright, an elderly lady who has traveled much & possessed of fine conversational powers. I then called on the Misses Maginnis for an hour & closed with a long & pleasant chat with Miss Alice Herndon. Returned shortly after 10. Retired about 12.

Monday, May 3rd, 1880

Arose about 7 o’clock, and took a short walk before breakfast. About 9.30 we all congregated at the University to learn the result of the examinations. The greatest excitement prevailed for over two hours while the professors were balloting upon the papers. I was confident & did not feel much anxiety. About 12 o’clock the list was placed up & we made a rush for it. Fourteen were declared proficient & I was glad to find my name among them. Four of the applicants were found deficient. Two of them will be given an opportunity to pass themselves tomorrow morning, where they will have a second examination. I spent some time in sending off invitations & then joined a party at Lucas’ room where we indulged in some champagne. Tonight we met & had a reunion. Returned & retired about 11.15.

Tuesday, May 4th, 1880

Arose about 6.30 & took a walk before breakfast. After breakfasting, reading the paper & mailing some invitations, I called & chatted Lucas. About 1 o’clock I went up to meet the members of the supper committee, but Lucas persuaded me to go on a drive out to Lake End. We went out behind a pretty fast horse & enjoyed a short stay. We took a bath. Returned about 5 & took dinner at Moran’s. After which I came around & dressed to attend the Jockey Club entertainment to which Herndon got me an invitation.

Louisiana Jockey Club.  From Jewell's Crescent City Illustrated, 1873

I got out about 7.30. The grounds were beautifully lighted up, and well crowded with people. I was too tired to enjoy it much. Had chats with Misses Herndon, Mel Miller, Frankenbush & Mrs. Scannell. We left the grounds about 12. Persuaded Gutheim to spend the night with me. We retired about 12.45.

Wednesday, May 5th, 1880

Gutheim & myself arose about 7.30. I spent a very restless night. I rolled & tossed most of the time & hardly believe I slept an hour. After breakfasting & reading the paper until 10 o’clock I went up & aroused Lucas. I sat & read a while after chatting with several members of the class who came in until 12 o’clock, when I returned to my room, read a letter just received from Miss Georgie N.[46] and commenced an article in the May Number of the N. Am Rev. on the “Third Term” by Judge Black. I had not read long when I went to sleep. Got up in time for dinner. After dinner I sat & chatted a while when I met Lucas & went with him to see Mrs. & Miss Moss. On leaving them I called & had a pleasant chat with Miss Daisy Townsend. Returned to my room & retired about 10.30.


Program from Commencement Exercises

Thursday, May 6th, 1880

This morning I got up about 6 o’clock & went with Mme. Tourtarel to the Jesuits to see the children take their first communion. It was a very pretty & interesting service, though I became very tired before it was over & felt the want of something to eat. I took a short walk & bought De Tocqueville’s Democracy in America. After breakfast I read the Times & some in my book. About 11 o’clock I went around to the hotel & met Lucas, Shaffer, Randolph & Lovell; after chatting a while Lucas & myself went in & met Miss Templeton who had invited us to her wedding at 1.30 o’clock. Miss T. gave me charge of the Misses Todd & we attended the ceremony at Dr. Palmer’s church. The bridal party left for St. Louis, the home of the groom, immediately. Tom & myself escorted the Misses T. to Kountze’s for refreshments. This eve I went out with Tourtarel & H. Dufour to the St. Jno. R. C. entertainment. Too windy for the race. Got tired & returned about 7.30 with Randolph. Called on Misses Kearney, Maginnis & Vairin – none at home. Retired about 10.15.

Friday, May 7th, 1880

Arose about 7 o’clock & took a short walk before breakfast. After which I read the paper & addressed a few invitations. Went around & joined Frankenbush on a stroll. Afterwards I met a party of our class at the Crescent and chatted a while. Then returned to my room, received a letter from mother & one from Henderson. Read a while & went to sleep until dinner. Tonight I called on Miss Sue Kearney & had a very pleasant talk. I then made quite a long visit to the Misses F’bush, returning about 11. I think I have persuaded Miss Mary to go up home with me if Joe will come along. Retired shortly after 12.

Saturday, May 8th, 1880

It about 7.30 when I arose this morning. Had only time for a short walk before breakfast. After reading the paper I was kept busy getting ready for the Commencement exercises. I had to run around the street making many preparations. Our exercises were quite a success. The audience was large and the addresses good. Our valedictorian, Parkerson[47], did quite well. It was about 3 o’clock when the exercises were over. I was very much disappointed in not having the diplomas conferred upon us then – they were delivered to the negro servant who is to distribute them among us – it being customary to present the negro with $5. I think this is a shame. I do not object to making the servant a little present, but will not receive my diploma from him. Tonight I called on Misses Howell & Moss. Retired about 11.15.


The following description of the graduation exercises appeared in a New Orleans newspaper:


Graduates of the University of Louisiana

A large and Elegant Assemblage Witnessed the Commencement Exercises


Grunewald Hall was resplendent yesterday with a vast assemblage of beauty and fashion -- the mothers and sisters and relatives and friends of the young gentlemen of the law class of 1880 who had successfully passed their examinations and acquired the right to practice the legal profession, and upon whom was to be conferred the degree of Bachelor of Laws.

Throughout the ceremonies were unusually impressive, and the addresses were exceptionally able.

A little after noon the orchestra, an excellent one, under the direction of Prof. Curant, played an exquisite overture, during the closing strains of which -- a march -- a procession, led by the Hon. Randall Hunt, LL. D., president of the University, supported by two alumni, marched from the lobby to the platform. His Excellency Gov. L. A. Wiltz, Chief Justice Bermudez and his associates, the Rev. Dr. Palmer, the district judges and a number of our prominent lawyers, and the graduates, fifteen in number, formed the interesting cortege.

The ceremonies opened with solemn prayer by Dr. Palmer, at the close of which the Hon. Carlton Hunt, dean of the faculty, introduced to the president the following gentlemen as having completed their studies and become qualified to receive the degree of Bachelor of Laws:


Richard Kinsey Boney

George Julius Denis

Louis H, C. Dufllho

Meyer Gutheim

Frank M. Hebert

Hugh Ross Lucas, Jr.

Rich’d M. McCulloh

Wm. S. Parkerson

Geo. Covington Preot

Edw. H Randolph

Jas. de B. Seguin

Walter B. Sommerville

John Dalton Shaffer,

Omer Henri Villere,

Geo. Sublett Walton,



Upon whom, with a few congratulatory remarks, the honorable the president conferred the degrees.

It may be noted here that two or three of the graduates not having yet attained their majority will have to wait a few months before receiving their diplomas, among them our young friend Meyer Gutheim, the son of the distinguished and reverend Mr. Gutheim of Temple Sinai.

Prof. Wm. F. Mellen, the expounder of common law of the university, here delivered a worthy and able address, the theme of which was the disposition of a certain portion of the ??? and private individuals of this country ??? evidences of a tendency to centralization for a "strong government." This was refuted by Mr. Mullen, by an exhaustive review of the progress of liberalism throughout the civilized world, during which he analyzed the political situation in Spain, Italy, Germany. France and Russia, and dwelling particularly on the recent reactions in England.

The discourse was received with great attention and frequently applauded.

It devolved upon our young and talented friend, Horace L. Dufour (the son of our late distinguished fellow-citizen, Cyprien Dufour), to deliver the welcoming address on the alumni. He gave the address in full, and those who will read it will agree with us that the opening apology of Mr. Dufour was not necessary.


Sunday, May 9th, 1880

Arose about the usual hour this morn. Did not walk before breakfast; but read the paper & talked. After breakfast I chatted with Edda a while & then went to the barber to prepare for church. I called for Miss Howell according to engagement shortly before 11 & escorted her to church. Mr. Cramer preached. I enjoyed Miss H. very much. She is a real pretty brunette; very independent, and has the reputation of being cold natured; but, though such may be her appearance, I think her warm hearted & charitable. I am sorry I have not learned to know her better. On my return to my room I found Ed Herndon waiting to take me to dinner with him. We lounged & chatted until 3 o’clock when we took the cars. Miss Alice was looking her best & I do not remember when I spent a more pleasant afternoon. Soon after dinner we went walking, and I find myself still more pleased with her. She is pretty, sweetly disposed, about 18, finished school this summer, literary in her tastes and ambitious. I took leave of the family shortly before 8 & called on Miss Vairin. Had quite a pleasant chat with Miss Alpha during which she won two pairs of Kid gloves from me. About 9 I left for the Misses Maginnis, where I enjoyed a long chat with Miss Maggie. Miss Laura had several of her fond admirers around her. It was nearly 11 o’clock when I left. I wrote mother a letter & retired shortly before 1 o’clock.

Monday, May 10th, 1880

Arose about 8 o’clock. After breakfast I went up to see Lucas. We called to see Herndon & Frankenbush to arrange for a meeting of our acquaintances among the ex-cadets at Spanish Fort tomorrow night. I stopped in & chatted Frank Brickell some time this eve. Gutheim & Lucas came in shortly after dinner & sat until about 7. G. has invited the members of the law class to an entertainment at his father’s house tonight. On their departure I prepared myself; called for Lucas & found him stricken down with neuralgia; called by for Mellen & went out with him. On arriving at the party I rec’d a note from Miss Laura M. asking me to call for her. I gladly did so. We had a pleasant evening – a long chat with Miss L. who is a sweet girl much spoilt by attention since her début. It was about 12.30 before I got back home. Retired about 10 o’clock.


Skip to May 23rd by which time he had returned to Duckport.


Sunday, May 23rd, 1880

Got up shortly after 6. The morning was warmer & so was the day than any other we have had. I spent much of the forenoon in reading the Introduction to Bunyan’s Complete Works. This afternoon I wrote Miss Jeanie L. a letter of twelve pages, sat & talked with the family and late in the afternoon made a visit to Mr. Utz who has been sick for the last few days, but is improving this eve. Jim went to Delta to see a game of base ball. Retired about 9.30.

Monday, May 24th, 1880

Arose about 6 o’clock. We breakfast generally between 6.30 and 7. I spent the morning & part of the evening in reading Sterne’s[48] Tristram Shandy. I took a horse back ride of about an hour this eve. We had quite a wind & some rain this afternoon. The unsettled state of the weather prevented me from calling on Miss Georgie this evening as I had intended. Mr. Herman Van Oss from Delta called for a short while this eve. Tonight I read my Nation which came today. Aunt Eliza says I am looking much better since being at home. I do not feel it much. My strength is slow coming. Retired about 9.15.

Tuesday, May 25th, 1880

Got up the usual time. After breakfast & reading a little Hamlet I took a ride of an hour around the field. While out I undertook to plough a couple of furrows, which the tenant said I did very well. It was about 9.30 when I returned. Spent the day in reading Tristram Shandy & American Politics. This evening late I drove up to see Miss Georgie, reaching there about dark. I was disappointed in finding Mr. Alston already there – any how we had a very pleasant evening & rode back together. He drove two separate little ponies which made the seven miles in about an hour. Reached home about 11.30; could not persuade Mr. A. to spend the night with me; retired shortly after 12.

Wednesday, May 26th, 1880

I was aroused about 6.15. The saddles all being in use I did not get my ride today. I spent the morning with Shakespeare & Johnston’s American Politics. After tiring of reading I wrote a letter to Jenkins. This eve I took a long nap, read some of the Introductory Essay to Junius. About 6 o’clock I took a walk as far as Mr. Jeffries’ store. Had a very pleasant chat with Mr. Jeffries & had a few words with Dr. Clark whom I met en route to see Miss Georgie. The day had been breezy & cool. Retired about 9.30.


Although the diary had pages through 1880, this was the last entry.



Chapter 8 – Epilogue


Return to Preface

[1] The 1890 New Orleans City Directory lists an Ada (widow of John) and in 1891 a William Tourtarel at 190 Annunciation Street. Annunciation currently runs into Tchoupitoulas Street at about the 1000 block, so there is no 190 Annunciation, which would have been on Tchoupitoulas two blocks south of Canal. It is possible that in 1890 Annunciation’s numbering started at its beginning, i.e. its intersection with Tchoupitoulas or it could have continued to Canal very close to Tchoupitoulas. However, maps don’t show this. In any event a spot nearer Canal would have been the more likely location of R. K. Boney’s boarding house.

[2] Dean of the Law School

[3] One of New Orleans’ oldest newspapers – first published in 1837.

[4] John Dalton Shaffer: graduated from University of LA Law School in 1880.

[5] The St. Charles Hotel was the finest in New Orleans at this time. It was completed in 1842, burned in 1851, recompleted in 1853, burned again in 1894 and recompleted again shortly thereafter.

[6] The Times-Democrat – another New Orleans newspaper

[7] A periodical.

[8] President of the University of Louisiana

[9] James Kent (1763-1847): American Jurist; author of the four volume Commentaries on American Law.

[10] Napoleonic Code – used in several European countries as well as Louisiana as the basis for Civil Law and mentioned many times in this diary.

[11] During the War of 1812, Andrew Jackson with 6,500 men and the help of the pirate Jean Lafitte, defeated the British, who had 8,700 men, on January 8, 1815.

[12] He married Rena Cox 16 years later on April 27, 1896. Rena was 14 years old when she sent the pen.

[13] In the 1850 Census James R. McDowell, Sr. then 39 and born in Ireland, was the second wealthiest person in Madison Parish. His land was evaluated at $118,940. The J. R. McDowell mentioned here was his son. See Buckner, Louis: James R. McDowell and his Descendants, Residents of Madison Parish, Owners of Sparta Plantation and Walnut Grove Plantation 1835-1955. (1998) Madison Historical Society, Tallulah, LA.

[14] After the Civil War the legislature met in New Orleans until 1882 when Baton Rouge was again named State Capital.

[15] Grunewald Hall was owned by Louis Grunewald – a pioneer New Orleans music merchant. It was said to be “the finest, most elegantly outfitted and centrally located Hall in the South…”.

[16] The Academy of Music was built on St. Charles in 1853. It burned in 1903 – then known as the Audubon Theatre.

[17] George Sublett Walton: graduated from University of LA Law School in 1880.

[18] Miss Vairin was one of his “young lady friends” during the summer of 1878 at the Montgomery White Sulphur Springs, VA.

[19] Virginius – a play by James Sheridan Knowles.

[20] Eastman College was a business school in Poughkeepsie, NY. Richard K. Boney may have gone there after Law School because his scrapbook contained several denominations of Eastman College “money” (see illustration).

[21] Momus, who had its first parade in 1872, was one of the older Mardis Gras Krewes.

[22] Civil War

[23] Opera by Irish composer Michael William Balfe

[24] Rex, like Momus, was organized in 1872.

[25] Comus, whose first parade was in 1857, was the first Mardis Gras Krewe.

[26] The most exclusive of the New Orleans men’s clubs

[27] A local newspaper

[28] A mercantile lease of a vessel.

[29] Richard Henry Dana (1815-1882) Writer & Lawyer. Wrote Two Years before the Mast & was a recognized authority on Maritime Law.

[30] L’Abeille (the Bee) was a French newspaper published from 1827 to 1925.

[31] Finally spelled it right after 6 years.

[32] A much-anticipated annual event in New Orleans started in the 1830’s.

[33] Edward Hughes Randolph: graduated from University of LA Law School in 1880.

[34] Charles Louis de Secondat, Baron de Brede et de Montesquieu (1689-1755) French author whose writings helped bring about the French Revolution.

[35] Dr. B. M. Palmer of the First Presbyterian Church was probably the best-known Protestant minister in New Orleans at this time.

[36] Justinian I – (483-565) Byzantine Emperor who conquered the Romans in the early 6th century and was responsible for codifying Roman Laws into the Justinian Code or just the Code. This now forms the basis of law for most European countries as well as for the Napoleonic Code, which is used in Louisiana as a result of early French influence.

[37] “Islands” in the Mississippi River created when the River changes its course, such that at times land is completely surrounded by water. Paw Paw Island in Madison Parish & Big Black Island in Tensas Parish – a portion of both of which owned by his father G. L. Boney -- are examples.

[38] A play by Edward Bulwer-Lytton.

[39] Winfield Scott Hancock (1824-86) American general who was largely responsible for repulsing the main Confederate attacks at Gettysburg in 1863. As the Democratic nominee, Hancock Ran for president in 1880, but was defeated by a small margin by the Republican, James Garfield.

[40] Thomas Francis Bayard – Delaware senator who was considered for president in 1880, but was not nominated. He later became Secretary of State under President Grover Cleveland.

[41] Charles Gayarré (1805-1895) Pioneer Louisiana Historian. Wrote Histoire de la Louisiane in 1846-47 and the 4 volume History of Louisiana during 1854 to 1866.

[42] Apparently he liked them. In the early 1930’s we had artichokes at least twice a month.

[43] Meyer Gutheim: graduated from University of LA Law School in 1880.

[44] “Judge” Elias S. Dennis was an interesting character. Stepfather of the notorious western gunslinger, Jack Slade, Dennis was a Union General during the Civil War and was in charge of the Milliken’s Bend area of Madison Parish at the time of the Siege of Vicksburg and the Battle of Milliken’s Bend. At one point he was accused of selling provisions to the rebels while his men were on half-rations. This was never proved. After the war he returned to Madison Parish rather than his native Illinois, married a local widow (though still married to a lady in Illinois) and became a Police Juror (Parish Judge) and later Sheriff. For more information see Elias S. Dennis, A Yankee General in King Cotton’s Court by Richard P. Sevier at

[45] James de Benneville Seguin: Graduated from the University of LA Law School in 1880.

[46] Miss Georgie Nicols was the daughter of George W. Nicols, a prominent Madison Parish planter. Georgie was born in St. Paul, MN in 1856 and came to Madison Parish later, probably after the Civil War. She seemed to have been R. K. Boney’s number one girlfriend at the end of his diary. Georgie married Edwin James Henderson in the early 1880’s and they spent most of their life in Chicago. Georgie died in 1942 in Los Angeles CA.

[47] William Stirling Parkerson: Graduated from the University of LA Law School in 1880.

[48] Laurence Stern (1718-1768) The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman, written about 1760, is considered by many to be the first modern novel.