Tribute to Frank A. Hutchins, May 20, 1914 (fragment)

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Mr. President, and ladies and gentlemen: I feel somewhat embarrassed to come in the midst of Mr. Hutchins' old friends and neighbors to speak of him whom I did not have the pleasure of knowing, but an <any> request which comes even indirectly from the University of Wisconsin I find it very hard to decline, because I do recognize it as an alma mater; and also because it seems to me that Mr. Hutchins in many ways stood for some of the most remarkable things which the University of Wisconsin has accomplished.

The president has said that this is an age of humanitarianism. And as one looks back over one manifestation of that wonderful [illegible delete word] <spirit>, that of the university extension movement [illegible deleted word] in my opinion expresses     and recognize how new it was    

In the middle ages I attended some university extension lectures in New England.

The first settlement in London was the largest in that city, the largest in England.

I heard some of the lectures there, and was thrilled as I have never been thrilled before when I saw working men listening to difficult and abstruse teachings.

When it first came to America movement began in Chicago more as missionary movement, tried out rather bunglingly [page 2] and not altogether successfully.

But it remained for the University of Wisconsin to bring it to the highest state of perfection, not only in this country, but would bear comparison with any whitehead movement in Germany, Hungary, and other countries of Europe. The settlement movement is another manifestation of this social movement. And it seems to me again that the University of Wisconsin embodied it far more successfully than any of the other centers.

     that we used to use in the early days of the settlement movement that says the university was established [illegible deleted word] primarily for research, colleges and classes primarily to pass down the sum total of knowledge, such knowledge as the race had acquired;     so the settlement had been established to extend the area of knowledge, to find new minds, wake up new gray matter,     faculties which had remained dead to all the things for which knowledge

But we know how feeble we were      added      to this great undertaking again remains, it seems, to commission      not only in Wisconsin, but wherever bright     young people going into settlement activities      remains for the University here to          our more extensively, thoroughly, and successfully than any other institution, not excluding institutions; anywhere in this county, or, so far as I know, [page 3] in Europe.

Last summer in [Budapest]     managed by municipality    lectures given there paid for out by the city, ran dance hall paid for out  of city funds, did various things in the line of housing and caring for children and looking up neglected children, which we think of in America primarily as volunteer movements, all under the name of the municipal settlement.

Did not after all reach out into the body of working people of city of [Budapest], who had heretofore no interest in relation     who knew nothing about the kingdom of the mind    the men came and the women    young people and boys and girls     were the ambitious young people who had left school and were now eager to do the next thing which the wonderful things called the municipal     offered them     no parades     no     no     of people to go out into the     to start into hunger and desire for relation     people which for long     sluggish and indifferent

This is what the settlement in its beginnings hoped to do     in very remarkable way has been done from this place as center       [page 4]

Some one responsible     Did not develop without some moral strife,     some one lay awake nights, some one trying to find out how things can be pushed forward     how human intelligences can be reached     So nearly as I can discover     a very potent factor in this work of going out into the state     has been Mr. Hutchins.    here take him in his capacity     connected with university extension movement as organized here, whether in connection with the library movement, whether longing for beauty    for youths of the state     now become state property 

Now how did he do this thing?

It is said that

We make most of our mistakes not so much     as lack of thought     thoughtlessness in people     to meet crises     many by following habit, following routine, and because we had had failed to connect our       revise and correct our actions by fresh experiences by more vital knowledge,     the knowledge that should come to us today when it is so much easier to act upon knowledge of yesterday, or day before yesterday, or, worse still, when we were young and read books on morals in school or church. [page 5]

Want an easy way of doing things.

Do as we have done before, act on knowledge so long in our minds     slide into    not as life actually presents itself to us     that is what Mr. Hutchins did     loved his state and saw it freshly every time he looked up it     every time he talked to men and women and children got new and vivid and fresh impression     suggested some form of service which     cooperation of dozens and hundreds of people also interested in the state, but did not have this fresh knowledge, point of vital contact     he was able to bring back to them

Among all stories of last few weeks      number of letters from all kinds and sorts of people in state of Wisconsin since it was announced that I was would speak     one     of some boys found in small town listening to a tramp      some stories, rather obscene stories      Boys     about him in empty freight car      seemed to Mr. Hutchins very shocking     thirst for adventure, desire to know the world, longing to [page 6] go out and conquer afresh which every young person has     the world all about them      to come to them through this man whose experiences had been     shady, perhaps criminal,      this adventure embodied in     wonderful <glamour> of life      could have so easily been but into other hands reduced to having stories come from this man he thought of that thing as the foundation for public library that would      falling back into ready thought     what kind of books would those boys read, how could you get such boys, who did not want to read, never did, did want adventure     thirsts     what could he do to connect up with resources of the world      as     in the final importance of the world     goes at it as     problem epitomized for the moment by groups of shy boys     city man <not> because he was a tramp going about the world he much be put outside of this     live in some way with better things offered by state vivid impression in going to     day and night until     do something about it that way great discoveries come [page 7] men willing to spend hours and hours upon streets and discuss religious problems     had only used     to make new discoveries owners content with  <hygiene>, content with form of government, with knowledge      if people discuss fairly and squarely important things which come to us now     unless something is done by those who believe in, beauty, righteousness     all the discussion is going to be done upon very, much less desirable themes     distinguished Englishmen came to Hull-House     three months lecturing in New England in city of Providence     looking for street speaking as in England

Only men found speaking on the street     I.W.W     people who care for their causes     that seems to him most unfortunate     where are the people who believe in other things? Why are they not on the streets?     discuss great social questions,      where are the people with burning religious views, social views,      seem to them important     turning it all over to one set of people, and one only so as New England was concerned [missing page(s)]