Title: Excerpts from the Diary of Edmund D. Covington, September 25 and October 3, 1843: Electronic Edition.
Author: Covington, Edmund DeBerry, 1823-1845
Editor: Erika Lindemann
Funding from the State Library of North Carolina supported the electronic publication of this title.
Text transcribed by Erika Lindemann and Timothy Lambrecht
Images scanned by Mara E. Dabrishus
Text encoded by Risa Mulligan
First Edition, 2005
Size of electronic edition: ca. 19K
Publisher: The University Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
© This work is the property of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It may be used freely by individuals for research, teaching and personal use as long as this statement of availability is included in the text
The electronic edition is a part of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill digital library, Documenting the American South.
Languages used in the text: English
Revision history:
2005-05-16, Risa Mulligan finished TEI/XML encoding
Part of a series:
This transcribed document is part of a digital collection, titled True and Candid Compositions: The Lives and Writings of Antebellum Students in North Carolina
written by Lindemann, Erika
Title of collection: Edmund DeBerry Covington Diary (#1506-z), Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Title of document: Excerpts from the Diary of Edmund D. Covington, September 25 and October 3, 1843
Author: Edmund DeBerry Covington
Description: 3 pages, 3 page images
Note: Call number 1506-z (Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)
Topics covered:
Examples of Student Writing/Diary and Notebook Excerpts
Personal Relationships/With Students and Friends
Education/UNC Student Associations
Editorial practices
The text has been encoded using the recommendations for Level 5 of the TEI in Libraries Guidelines.
Transcript of the personal correspondence. Originals are in the Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Original grammar, punctuation, and spelling have been preserved.
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Letters, words and passages marked as deleted or added in originals have been encoded accordingly.
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Indentation in lines has not been preserved.

For more information about transcription and other editorial decisions, see Dr. Erika Lindemann's explanation under the section Editorial Practices.

Document Summary

Covington writes in his diary that he has dissolved a friendship and begun recitations on mental philosophy with Gov. Swain. A second entry includes a draft of a committee report proposing the establishment of The North Carolina University Literary Magazine, sponsored by the senior class.
Excerpts from the Diary of Edmund D. Covington , September 25, 1843, and October 3, 1843 1
Covington, Edmund DeBerry, 1823-1845

Page 167
Journal Recommenced—

Septr 25th 1843.–
Again my birth has dawned upon me and le finds me just a score of years old. Altho' I feel neither philosophical, poetical or pensive I shall commence journalizing. My intellectural habits for the last few months have entirely unfitted me for literary exercises. I shall endeavor to train my mind to former habits by daily exertions in this way.–
I recited my first lesson in Abbots Abercrombie 2 to day to the Governor I hope I shall be able to study it. As one of a literary Committee I had a conference with the Gov. for the furtherance [of] a scheme which3 I had the honor to propose. How it will succeed I know not. I hope it will prove an ornament to the university and an honor to the Students.— Have had some very pensive reflections of on the dissolution of a friendship which I hope to cherish. The act tho' a sad one was a duty which I owed to my honor. I feel erect and independent.—

Page 69

Papers Relative to the Establishment of
"The North Carolina University4 Literary
October 3rd 1843.–
The Committee appointed at a late meeting of the Senior Class, to enquire into the Expediency and5 practicability of establishing a Literary Magazine in this place, to be conducted by the class—and to submit a plan for the same—having held a conference with Gov Swain and Ths Loring Esqr of Raleigh and having maturely and deliberately considered the subject beg leave to submit the following report.–
It is the opinion of this committee that a periodical, to be called the North Carolina University Magazine, should be issued monthly—a number on, or near the first day of each month—that the immediate supervision of the periodical should be confided to an Editorial Corps of six: (three from each Society) which corps shall be elected at the end of each Junior year, by the class of which, they may be members, and shall, at the beginning of the following session, assume the duties and responsibilities, and be vested with all the authority which usually belongs to an Editorial department.
The Committee would further suggest, that this meeting proceed forthwith to the election of an Editorial Corps, who shall be empowered to make all further arrangements, with regard to the publication of the Periodical.
The above Report being submitted to the

Page 70
Class at a subsequent meeting, was unanimously adopted.–
The Class in accordance with a suggestion of the Report proceeded to an election of an Editorial Corps consisting of six members—which resulted as follows

Of the Philanthropic

Mr Covington had the honor of being appointed to submit a Prospectus for publication—proceed to do so as will appear on the next page.–7


1. Edmund De Berry Covington Papers, SHC. The diary is a paginated volume measuring 7 1/2 by 12 1/8 inches. The front flyleaf is inscribed "The Literary 'Multi-Flora'/or/A Literary Miscellany/Devoted to Extracts, prose and poetry,/English and Latin quotations, quaint/And pointed remarks, Original/Compositions, Strange and unusual/Circumstances/'Legere sine calamo est dormice.'/Quintilian/Qui legit, in antiquis temporibus, vivit/Norman.– /Nemo, nisi amicus, legat has literas./ E D. Covington .– /
A garden in which spring up the flowers of fancy/and the stout shubery of fact.– Enter and pluck while yet it is unforbidden.
Norman/Commenced September 25th 1842 1." The pages of the diary are numbered from 1 to 206, but there are several gaps in pagination. Covers and blank pages were discarded at some point. The earliest entry, dated September 25, 1841, Covington's birthday, appears on page 113. The latest entry is dated September 26, 1843. The journal includes compositions, poetry written by Covington or copied from other sources, "Gleanings from my reading," and several "Phillippics" addressed to his mathematics professor James Phillips . The September 25, 1843, entry appears on page 167 of the journal; the October 3, 1843, "Papers," on pages 69 to 70. Covington (1823-45) graduated in 1844 and died the following year of pneumonia.

2. John Abercrombie, Inquiries Concerning the Intellectual Powers, and the Investigation of Truth, with additions and Explanations to Adapt the Work to the Use of Schools and Academies, by Jacob Abbott (Boston: Otis, Boarders, [1833]).

3. Covington wrote which on top of several unrecovered characters.

4. Covington wrote University on top of Literar.

5. Covington wrote and on top of of.

6. Though Thomas Badger Wetmore (1821-94) had graduated in 1841, he may have remained in Chapel Hill to read law.

7. The "next page" of Covington's journal has not survived. The first issue of The North Carolina University Magazine appeared in March 1844 with eight articles, two poems, and a "Publisher's Department" that reprinted short pieces drawn from newspapers.