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As a professed Christian university, Indiana Asbury may be considered a pioneer in the teaching of the natural sciences within and alongside the traditional classical curriculum. In 1849, for example, the university established a two-year scientific department which permitted students aiming for careers in teaching or business to substitute for Latin and Greek more "practical" subjects such as science and modern languages. Extended to three years in 1854, this new course became a four-year program leading to the degree of bachelor of science in 1858.

The heart of the curriculum, however, remained the classical languages. When Cyrus Nutt resigned in 1843, Benjamin Tefft, a second Wesleyan graduate to join the Asbury faculty, served as professor of Greek and Hebrew for three years. From 1846 to 1849 Nutt was back teaching Greek and after another off campus interlude ended his Asbury career as professor of mathematics from 1857 to 1860, as well as vice president and acting president. His successors as professors of Greek were Henry C. Benson (1850-1852) and Samuel A. Lattimore (1852-60), both recent graduates. Another pioneer teacher at Indiana Asbury, John Wheeler, was professor of Latin language and literature from 1842 to 1854. Hoosier Town







Dr. William R. Genung, a physician and member of the
Indiana General Assembly, graduated in 1845.  He
also delivered the Greek oration.



In his "Reminiscences of Thirty Years in Asbury" published in the Asbury Review in 1873, Professor Joseph Tingley gave a vivid wordpicture of the campus and town about the time of his arrival as a student 30 years before:

Conspicuous amid the low, white houses, which dotted here and there the fields around, towered the college building. Its newly painted white belfry, with bright green blinds, its ground is bare o f trees and exposing patches of the yellow clay which had been loosened by recent grading, testified that the institution was yet in its young life .... The remaining portion of the village presented a rude and uninviting appearance. Its nine hundred inhabitants seemed to have expended their whole stock of enterprises and public spirit upon the one object of founding the University, and to have nothing left for further improvement....

The business centre of Greencastle, then as now, was the public square. It consisted of a group of unsightly houses, mostly built of wood, surrounding a rickety court house in the form of a cube attached to a very tall sharp pointed spire bearing two guilt balls and a weather vane. The maufacturing interests were represented by various establishments devoted to chair-making, shoe-making and carpentering, each employing one hand including the proprietor. There was also a wool-carding mill turned by horse power, which you passed between the college and the square, and across the ravine over which it was built, stretched a solitary log, flattened upon its upper side for the convenience of footmen. This rustic bridge formed a part of the principal path, (there were no pavements) connecting those two great centres of commerce and literature....

Almost adjoining the college out-lot on the east, was a partially cleared space, [East College yard] overgrown with briars, and south of this a grove containing a dense undergrowth of paw paw bushes....

Hitherward the hilarious students, wearied quite too soon with study, resorted for fun and frolic; and having "met and battled with the foe," returned with subdued spirit, scarred and battered clothes, and other evidences of the fact that (if not a veteran) he was, at least, (black) eye witness to the memorable scenes of the Paw Paw war....Yet a little further westward [Blackstock Field] were the hunting grounds of the snipe hunter, where in midnight darkness, the uninitiated applicant, having been instructed to "put out the light," was left alone to "hold the bag" while the initiated, under cover of a promise to surround and drive the snipes therein, first slyly and then precipitately retreated to their boarding houses.

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People, Events & Traditions

Cyrus Nutt

The Edifice

Tommy Goodwin

Matthew Simpson

John W. Ray

William C. Larrabee

Rebellion of 1856- 57

Literary Societies

Thomas Bowman

The Civil War

Joseph Tingley

Alexander Martin

The Edifice Fire

Bettie Locke (Hamilton)

East College

Japanese Students