Alex S. Murphy Class Notes
Abstract: Class notes from a Rhetoric class taught by Duke University founder Braxton Craven and taken at Trinity College (Duke's precursor) in the Fall of 1871 by Alex S. Murphy
Online catalog terms: Craven, Braxton Trinity College (Durham, NC)--History Murphy, Alex S., 1852-1877 Education, Higher--North Carolina--History
Size: Approximately one linear foot.
Provenance: Unknown. Arrived at Rowan Public Library prior to 1988.
Access: No restriction.
Copyright: Retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
A 78-page notebook containing the lecture notes taken by Alex S. Murphy between August and October 1871 while a Junior at Trinity College in North Carolina. The notes, taken in fairly full form, cover lectures on Rhetoric delivered by the college president, Braxton Craven, founder of Trinity which was to become Duke University.
Twenty-three lectures are covered with titles such as "Correctness of Taste," and "Beauty" building to subjects along the lines of "Poetry," "Sculpture," "Fiction," and "Architecture." A sample of the notes reveal lines such as " Man was not intended as a mere creature of enjoyment, his pleasure was intended for use as well as gratification . . ." and "Much of the restlessness, roaming (?), and evil of young people is due to the fact that they have no resource of amusement in themselves and no material on which they can employ their hearts."
Alex S. Murphy attended Trinity 1870-1873. School records show that he was from Salisbury, NC. An index to the 1870 Federal census for Rowan County shows a 17 year-old Alex S. Murphy as the eldest son in the household of Helen (daughter of Dr. Alexander Long) and Andrew Murphy, a clerk in the assessor's office. There are five younger siblings listed. On August 2, 1874, The Carolina Watchman noted that A. S. Murphy "gives notice that next session at the Salisbury Male Academy will begin on the 31st of August inst." and that "the terms of tuition are very reasonable and as Mr. Murphy is a young man of fine qualifications and with experience as a teacher, we take pleasure in recommending his school to our citizens." The notice addds that "he was raised here among us, educated here, and he is entitled to the encouragement and patronage of our citizens." The November 8, 1877 Carolina Watchman carries an obituary for A. S. Murphy who passed away October 31, 1877. Murphy, aged 25, died of consumption at the home of his father.
Box 1. Notebook