Documenting the American South Logo
Legend Informational Note
See the Page Image
     Mouseover Available
Title: Letter from Elisha Mitchell to Thomas Ruffin, February 2, 1843: Electronic Edition.
Author: Mitchell, Elisha, 1793-1857
Funding from the University Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill supported the electronic publication of this title.
Text transcribed by Bari Helms
Images scanned by Caitlin R. Donnelly
Text encoded by Caitlin R. Donnelly
First Edition, 2006
Size of electronic edition: ca. 16K
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:
2006-12-07, Caitlin R. Donnelly finished TEI/XML encoding.
Title of collection: Thomas Ruffin Papers (#641), Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Title of document: Letter from Elisha Mitchell to Thomas Ruffin, February 2, 1843
Author: E. Mitchell
Description: 2 pages, 3 page images
Note: Call number 641 (Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)
Editorial practices
The text has been encoded using the recommendations for Level 5 of the TEI in Libraries Guidelines.
Originals are in the Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Original grammar, punctuation, and spelling have been preserved.
DocSouth staff created a 600 dpi uncompressed TIFF file for each image. The TIFF images were then saved as JPEG images at 100 dpi for web access.
Page images can be viewed and compared in parallel with the text.
Any hyphens occurring in line breaks have been removed, and the trailing part of a word has been joined to the preceding line.
All quotation marks, em dashes and ampersand have been transcribed as entity references.
All double right and left quotation marks are encoded as ".
All single right and left quotation marks are encoded as '.
All em dashes are encoded as —.
Indentation in lines has not been preserved.

For more information about transcription and other editorial decisions, see the section Editorial Practices.
Letter from Elisha Mitchell to Thomas Ruffin , February 2, 1843
Mitchell, Elisha, 1793-1857

Page [1]
Chapel Hill Febry 2d 1843

To His Hon.
Thomas Ruffin

Dear Sir

On Friday night the 27th of Janry a supper with spirituous liquors was furnished at this place by an individual named Thompson. A general invitation having been stealthily circulated a number of the students attended the entertainment and much disturbance naturally followed. More than half of the night was spent in ringing bells, blowing horns, riding horses and shouting. The extent to which these disorders were carried determined the Faculty to indict Thompson and to require of each student a full and fair statement of his participation in them, as the only condition on which he could be permitted to remain in the institution.
Your son states that he went down to Thompson's, was thus from 5 to 10 minutes — that he drank no spirits and was in his room during the disorders in and about the buildings — that he took no part in them
Quiet and order seem now to be restored and efficient measures have been taken to secure their continuance.

By order of the Faculty

E. Mitchell


The above is official. The two in whom you take a peculiar interest seem to be going on in the main — wile. I have no fault to find with them as members of my family. The 22d is hereafter to be a day of study in the institution and there may be some kicking up when it arrives. A previous word of caution if you happen to be writing may be prudent though I know of no particular necessity for it. I acknowledge the receipt of two hundred dollars from you at the opening of the session which I have passed one half to the credit of your son the other to your Nephew.

Page [2]
Chapel Hill , March     , 1843.


When a young man is frequently absent from the religious services, and the scholastic exercises of the Institution, there is reason to apprehend, that he is falling into evil company, vicious habits and a disregard of moral and social obligations. If, in addition to these delinquencies, he is found to be profuse in the expenditure of money, all experience shews that there is very little foundation for doubt upon the subject. On the other hand, punctuality in the performance of these duties, and a proper regard for economy, are generally connected with correct and decorous deportment, and afford promising presages of ultimate success in the acquisition of a good Education.
During the last     weeks, immediately preceding the date of this communication, Mr.        has been absent from Prayers     times, from recitation     times, and from attendance on Divine worship     times.
His relative gradation of scholarship in his class is considered as Respectable
Each student is required to attend prayers thirteen times, recitations fifteen times, and Divine worship once each week. All absences, whether unavoidable or not, are recorded. A very simple calculation, therefore, will enable you to ascertain the precise proportion of duties performed and omitted
With respect to the necessary expenses of a student THE FACULTY concur entirely in the opinion expressed by the EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE, in the Circular addressed to Parents and Guardians on the 15th April, 1837, that exclusive of the supplies of clothing ordinarily obtained from home, more than two hundred and fifty dollars a year is not necessary either to the comfort or reputation of any one. A strict compliance with the Ordinances adopted by the Trustees, establishing the Bursarship prohibiting the creation of debts with Merchants and Shop-keepers, cannot be too strictly enforced upon the consideration of all who desire to promote the interest and usefulness of the University

Back page