Many of the citizens and especially those pioneer legislators of Washington Territory were of the opinion that the location of the University at Seattle would prove temporary as had been the results under the laws of 1855 and 1858. They were not prepared for the Vigor of action by Rev. Daniel Bagley and his associates, John Webster and Edmund Carr, on the Board of University Commissioners. That Board held its initial meeting on Washington’s Birthday, 1861, in a little triangular building where the Prefontaine Memorial Fountain now stands at the intersection of Third Avenue and Yesler Way. Mr. Bagley was elected President of the Board. He at once took the lead in work and responsibility so effectively that he was later called “Father of the University." Throughout his long life he maintained an interest in the institution and in 1910 his memory was honored by the naming of Bagley Hall, a fine fire-proof building used for the display of fine arts during the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition, and later devoted to the studies of chemistry and pharmacy.
Those honors were certainly earned by the number and weight of the burdens he bore during that ground-breaking period. The portion of the new law requiring the gift of a ten-acre site near Seattle caused him to appeal at once to Arthur A. Demy. As was probably expected, the response was instant:
“Take Capital Hill.”
Mr. Bagley and his two fellow Commissioners examined the hill and pronounced it "too far out in the woods.” Mr. Denny replied: "Very well, Help yourselves to ten acres anywhere on my claim.” They moved southward to a gently sloped ridge that would
still command a view of the harbor and be nearer to Yesler’s Sawmill, the main industry of the town. On surveying the proposed tract it was found that the southeastern corner overlapped a little on a portion of the original Carson D. Boren claim which had become the property of Charles C. Terry and Judge Edward Lander. Those two pioneers promptly said: “All right. We’ll gladly join Mr. Denny in this gift."
After the World War, in 1919, two buildings used for the war-training camp on the new campus, were later named Terry Hall and Lander Hall while used for athletic training quarters. When those temporary buildings were destroyed a marker was placed there
expressing the hope that permanent buildings would take their places as memorials to
those who had joined with Mr. Demy as original donors.
Prompt action was necessary. Substantial results alone would prevent a renewal
of legislative jugglery as to the University’s location. It was first necessary to
clear the forest from that ten-acre site. That was one of the big jobs of the day.
Clarence B. Bagley, son of Rev. Daniel Bagley, was one of those working on that job.
He has written: “The men who did the actual work of clearing became more or less
prominent in the affairs of the city in later years. They were Henry A. Atkins, Lewis
V. Wyckoff, Lyman B. Andrews, Clarence B. Bagley, Hillory Butler, Ira Woodin, Edwin
Richardson, Lemuel Holgate, John Pike and his son Harvey, John Carr, James Crow, James
Hunt, D. Parmlee and 0. Dudley.” The work cost about $3,000 for the whole tract.
The next task was the erection of the first building. Clarence B. Bagley gives a long list of pioneers who helped in that work. There were no drones in the community. ”A11 who had not regular employment elsewhere went to work with saw, plane, hammer, ax, pick, shovel or with whatever he could best turn his hand." Some of those on leading tasks are worthy of especial memory. The architect of the fine classical structure was John Pike, for whom Pike Street was afterward named. The one who surveyed the tract and supplied building levels was Edwin Richardson, A. P. DeLin and 0. C. Shorey carved the beautiful columns and put them in place. The tin work was done by Hugh McAleer, for whom McAleer Lake (now Lake Ballinger) was originally named. D. C. Beaty made the desks and William W. White did the blacksmithing.
Stone for the building’s foundation was brought from a quarry near Port Orchard, the
fir lumber from the mills at Port Madison and Port Gamble and from Yesler’s Mill at Seattle. The finishing wood was white pine from the mill at Seabeck. The paints, glass and hardware were doubled in cost because of the duties and steamboat charges when shipped from Victoria. The brick and lime were brought from Bellingham Bay by Captain Henry Roeder.
Contracts were carefully drawn for different parts of the work. Payments had to be made in coin and this produced one of the heaviest burdens that Rev. Daniel Bagley had to bear. It was the time of the Civil War and "greenbacking” a contractor was deemed disgraceful. Mr. Bagley’s son, Clarence B. Bagley, in 1916 published his History of Seattle. In Volume I., pages 137-138, he tells of his father’s money burdens as follows:
“All Mr. Bagley’s accounts were kept in coin, according to the custom of the business men of the country. Should he receive $240 for a quarter section of land, he did not charge himself with that sum, but reduced it to coin dollars at the current rate. If paper was 60 cents on the dollar, he entered $144; if 50 cents, then $120; if only 40 cents, then it was only $96. Later a committee was appointed by the Legislature, who were unfriendly to Seattle, and mostly political enemies of Mr. Bagley.
They made an examination of his accounts and rendered a report showing a large balance due from him to the university fund, most of which was the difference between the coin value and par value of the paper money he had been compelled to take, and had used in the current transactions of the institution. A later committee of the Legislature made an exhaustive report and found $8 more due him than his own accounts showed. At the time his connection was terminated with university affairs he claimed a balance due him from its fund of a little more than $800, and $1,500 unpaid salary from the territorial treasury. In time the regents of the institution paid the former claim in full, and thirty years later he sued the state and recovered a considerable part of his claim for salary.”
When it is remembered that the only source for university funds was the Congressional grant of two townships of public lands and also that the next session of the Legislature might change the location unless substantial progress should be in evidence, it is clear that Mr. Bagley had to use vigor and speed. Public land could be purchased
from the Government on cash entry at one dollar and a quarter per acre. The law required that the university land should be sold for not less than one dollar and a half per acre. Some small tracts near the towns were chosen first. Mr. Bagley was then surprised to find that quarter-sections of one hundred and sixty acres were the smallest units considered in land-grants. He then had to buy the small tracts from the Government and, in turn, deed them to the purchasers. Complications grew and led to investigations as shown by the quotation from his son’s later writings.
The vigor and speed were not relaxed. The ground was cleared, levels obtained, and on May 21, 1861, the corner stone of the main building was laid with ample Masonic ceremonies. An incident of that day was cherished. Arthur A. Denny arrived late, saying "I have a good excuse. A baby boy was born in my home this morning.” When that boy, Charles Latimer Denny, grew into a helpful manhood he was frequently called "Twin of the University."
The building was reared and roofed, the columns placed, and one room was made ready for use. On November 4, 1861, actual teaching was begun.
The first principal teacher was Asa Shinn Mercer, ever afterwards listed as the first President of the University of Washington. He had graduated the year before from Franklin College, New Athens, Ohio. Ambitious to come west he selected Seattle where his elder brother, Thomas Mercer, was one of the pioneer citizens. He arrived in the summer of 1861 in time to perform some of the manual labor on the foundation work of the University. His recent graduation from college probably insured his selection to begin the educational work of the new institution. His brother was esteemed by the pioneers and, in addition, Rev. Daniel Bagley and Dexter Horton had known the young man from a» early childhood. Their influence was certainly helpful to him at that crisis.
Before the actual work of education was begun, haste received another manifestation. The Legislature met annually from 1854 to the winter of 1866-1867 after which the sessions were biennial. Thus the session for 1861-1862 would assemble in about one month after the beginning of those first classes. Rev. Daniel Bagley, alert and ambitious, issued through the newspapers an announcement signed by him as President of the Board of Commissioners and dated September 16, 1861. There were to be two quarters of eleven weeks each
and tuition ranged from five dollars a quarter for the primary department to ten dollars 46
for Latin and Greek.
That announcement showing the fact that primary and common school subjects were to be
taught in the Territorial University caused instant revulsion and part of the trouble
continued on to the period of Statehood (1889). Even in Seattle a meeting of protest
was held on November 1, 1861, three days before the beginning of instruction. Henry
L. Yesler, speaking for his fellow citizens, declared it would be undignified for the
University to teach such lower branches and the institution would be looked upon as
only a Seattle school. Mr. Bagley replied that the building was big enough for both a
school and university and if the local school board would cooperate it would help to
keep the institution going until it could be restricted to collegiate work alone. This
argument prevailed as it was deemed essential to have school work going on when the
Legislature should meet,
B. C. Lippincott, first Superintendent of Public Instruction for Washington
Territory, issued a report dated December 10, 1861. In addition to launching the work of supervising the common schools, he voiced a severe criticism of the haste in the beginning of the Territorial University. He wrote: "In fact, if the matter is well considered, we shall find that we are not yet prepared for a Territorial University.
We have reason to believe that there is not a young man in the Territory who could pass
an examination to enter the University course. Hence, where is the propriety of spending 48
all this money?"
The ninth session of the Territorial Legislature assembled at Olympia on December 2, 1861. The report by Superintendent Lippincott was soon placed before the members. In spite of that and other antagonisms, the University fared rather well during the session. One personality contributed largely to this result. John Denny of Seattle was a new Representative from King County. He was the father of Arthur A. Denny and had been associated with Abraham Lincoln in political contests in Illinois. Without doubt he was the most adroit politician in that ninth session of Washington’s Territorial Legislature.
It should also be stated that John Webster, one of the University’s original Board of Commissioners, was a member of the upper house or Council.
A surprising case of lethargy was revealed when this ninth session assembled on the legal date of December 2, 1861. There was no quorum of the House. Adjournments from day to day followed and the Speaker was not elected until Tuesday December 17. In two more days both houses were organized and met in joint session to receive the Governor’s Message.
. Jay S. Turney was Acting Governor. Among the reports accompanying his Message
was a brief one from the Land Office at Olympia signed by A. A. Denny, Register. This
helps to explain why his father, John Denny, had been elected to the place he had formerly
occupied as Representative from King County.
After the lapse of all that time in completing the organization of House and Council, University legislation was brought forward promptly and effectively. Friends of the institution were thoroughly prepared. Rev. Daniel Bagley, President of the Board of University Commissioners, had submitted a long report giving details of the acres
selected from the Congressional land grant. This was dated December 3. On December
20 he wrote a brief note to the Council, complying with a request for a report on the
expenditure of University funds, by submitting a complete report on the work done
and money expended. This report was signed by Daniel Bagley, John Webster and Edmund
Carr. The report is dated at Seattle, December 4, 1861, showing that it was in
readiness two weeks before it was called for. It was accompanied by a personal note
from Mr. Bagley frankly explaining certain items which he thought might be considered 50
doubtful. The Legislators thus had before them all this favorable information as well as the adverse report by the Superintendent of Public Instruction.
The Governors Message had been delivered on December 19, and the very next day Representative John Denny took the lead by introducing House Bill 4 to incorporate the University of Washington and on the following day (December 21) he introduced House Joint Resolution No. 1 providing for a Legislative Committee to visit the University buildings. No hesitancy or fear were evident in that leadership.
The incorporation of the institution could wait for discussion and amendment but everybody was anxious for the proposed visit and investigation. Rules were suspended to rush through House Joint Resolution No. 1 providing for the committee of five. Paul K. Hubbs and J. M. Moore were selected by the Council and J. R. Bates,
- S. Yantis and C. C. Bozarth were selected by the House. They proceeded at once to Seattle, taking with them the Superintendent of Public Instruction.
Victor J. Farrar, who had the advantage of the papers and the memory of Clarence
- Bagley, has written a compact account of that visit as follows: "The City of
Seattle wisely prepared to receive them enthusiastically and appointed the day of their arrival (December 31) as the one for dedicating the University. The committee was met at the wharf by a brass band, entertained profusely and invited to take part in the exercises. Seats on the platform were accorded them and, after the principal address by President Mercer, short speeches were asked for. In this way all prejudice was broken down. Superintendent Lippincott completely forgot himself and spoke of the University and commissioners in the highest terms. Chairman P. K. Hubbs then dedicated the University and received and accepted said University for and on behalf
of the Territory of Washington.”
On Monday, January 6, 1862, the five members of that visiting committee
rendered a brief but very favorable report approving all that they had seen. The
report was promptly adopted. It ought to be here recorded that the joint resolution
appointing the visiting committee carried this provision: ”Thet the President of
the Board of University Commissioners pay the necessary express arising therefrom,
and charge to University account."
The University was dedicated and officially accepted, but five days after the
visiting committee’s report was adopted, or on January 11, there was passed another
joint resolution for a careful investigation of all transactions by the Board of
University Commissioners. The joint committee appointed under that resolution
rendered a favorable report on January 25, saying "the business has been conducted
with commendable economy, prudence and energy."
While those visits and investigations were proceeding, Representative John
Denny’s plan for incorporating the University was frequently considered in the midst
of other items of legislative business. The results achieved took the form of two
laws, one to incorporate the University and one to provide for the safe keeping of
the moneys arising from the sales of University lands. In the incorporation act, finally signed on January 29, 1862, instead of January 24 as officially published, we have the first mention of a Board of Regents. Section 1 names Daniel Bagley,
Paul K. Hubbs, J. P. Keller, John Webster, E. Carr, Frank Clark, G. A. Meigs,
Columbia Lancaster and C. H. Hale to constitute the first Board of Regents. It will be noticed that the three members of the Board of University Commissioners are included. The duties and responsibilities of the Regents, the President, Professors and Tutors are all carefully set forth. There is also provided a Board of Visitors to comprise three persons. Section 9 declares that the University shall consist of at least four departments: "1st. A department of literature, science and arts. 2d.A department of
law. 3d. A department of medicine. 4th. A military department." The influence of the Civil War may he noted in that last provision. While the Regents have ample
powers, "the immediate government of the several departments shall be intrusted to
the President and the respective Faculties.” Annual reports must be made to the Legislature.
The other law reveals the fact that it was intended to continue the Board of University Commissioners. Section 2 provides: "That for the safe keeping, manageirent and control of the University fund, the board of commissioners, the President of the board of regents, and the treasurer of the University fund, shall constitute a board of directors.”
The disturbances of the Civil War must have affected this session of the Washington Territorial Legislature. It took two weeks for quorums to assemble at the beginning and when the last day arrived, January 30, 1862, there was not a quorum in either House or Council when the session was adjourned sine die.
While subsequent sessions of the Territorial Legislature considered University matters, sometimes harshly critical and sometimes with friendly interest, it is fair to conclude that a crisis was passed in that session of 1861-1862. The institution was not only incorporated with a Board of Regents provided, but it had been dedicated and accepted. These facts would not be again disturbed.
There was to be much disturbance in the University’s actual work of education.
The early records are scant and far from satisfactory. Rev. Daniel Bagley kept ample records of the lands and moneys but he did not keep equal records of the educational work. His son, Clarence B. Bagley, one of the first students, devoted much time in his later years to the compilation of history. His records are helpful in this connection. He has written that when Asa Shinn Mercer began teaching on November 4,1861, there were about thirty pupils in attendance and the first school year embraced five months. Then Mrs. Ossian J. Carr, taught a private school of twenty-four pupils in the same room during the months of May, June and July, 1862. Mr. Mercer began the second year of the University on October 20, 1862, with Mrs. Virginia Calhoun as his assistant. President Mercer was called out of town several times during the winter
when Clarence B. Bagley presided in his place. Dillis B. Ward occasionally acted
as Mr. Mercer’s assistant during that same winter. Among the first pupils attending
were five from Olympia - James B. Biles, Susan Isabella Biles, Edgar Bryan, Augustus
Geary and Edwin Austin; four from Victoria - George W. Little, John McCrea, Ed.
Francis and Allen Francis; Sarah Loretta Denny, daughter of John Denny; Eugenie
McConaha, first white girl born in Seattle; and Orion 0. Denny, first white boy born
in Seattle, son of Arthur A. Denny. Mr. Bagley seeks to perfect the record as follows:
'•An official list of students is not accessible, but in addition to those named
it is known that these also attended: Margaret Lenora Denny, Rolland H. Denny, Rebecca
Horton, Alice Mercer, George W. Harris, Sylvanus C. Harris, Robert G. Hayes, Charles
Hays, Zebedee M. Keller, James Hunt, L. L. Andrews, Jane Wetmore, Birdsie Wetmore,
Frank Wetmore, E. Inez Denny, Madge Denny, Charles Tobin, Findley Campbell, Sarah
Bonney, Gertrude Boren, Mary Boren, Joseph Crow, Martha Crow, Emma Russell, John B.
Libby, Levi Livingston, Christine Delin, Andrus Delin, Eva Andrews, William R. Andrews,
Ed. Harmon, Fred Young, Frances Webster, Lewis Post, John W. Humphrey, Arthur Brownell,
Thomas Winship, Edward Sanford Bueklin and William M. Belshaw. It is believed the
fifty-eight named herein attended the second Mercer school, and more than one-half
of them the first. It is also believed that it is a complete list of Mercer’s 56
second term pupils."
Obviously, that list is important for two main reasons: it comprises the first
student body of the University of Washington and it includes members of the pioneer
families of 1861-1862. There is but one - Rolland H. Denny - known to be living as
this record is being compiled in 1934.
In preparing for the second session to begin on October 20, 1862, Principal
A. S. Mercer dated at Seattle on September 17, an advertisement for the newspapers
setting forth the courses of study from primary to collegiate grades, the prices
of tuition from five to ten dollars per quarter and board at three dollars per week.
Proper discipline and safeguards were promised -
Compared to the zeal of clearing land and constructing the first building, was the effort to get students. Mr. Mercer has left this personal account of it:
"Previous to opening the school, I spent three weeks, hiring two Indians and a
canoe, and traveled about four hundred miles visiting every logging camp on the
east side of Puget Sound from Bellingham Bay to Olympia, trying to induce any young
men whom I might find engaged in the logging camps to come to Seattle and enter the
school: succeeded in getting about one dozen, varying in age from twenty to twenty-
five years. In order to secure them, I agreed to pay them $1.50 a cord for chopping
wood from the down timber in front of the University grounds, which had been donated
to me for that purpose by Arthur A. Denny. I contracted with the captain of the
steamboat EljLza Anderson, the only steamboat at that time plying upon Puget Sound,
to supply him with wood, getting $2.50 per cord. H. L. Tesler, who owned the wharf
and usually charged 25 cents per cord wharfage, donated or gave me the free use of
the wharf, thus saving 25 cents per cord. This enabled me to pay the boys $1.50
per cord - an extra high price. There were but two horse teams in the country at
that time, and teamsters’ prices were high. I paid $1 per cord for having the wood
hauled to the wharf. These young men, being expert handlers of the ax, averaged two
cords each Saturday, thus earning $3 per week. In order still further to make it
possible to have a school I sent to San Francisco and bought groceries at wholesale
prices, and the captain of a sailing vessel brought them to Seattle free of charge.
I then hired a man and his wife (Mr. and Mrs. 0. C. Shorey) to open a boarding house
on the grounds and board the students for $3 per week - a very low price and only
possible by reason of getting the goods as above indicated."
Fortunately another record has been saved from those beginning days about an acquisition for which a feeling of sentiment has clung through all subsequent years. Mr. Bagley has written this about the old University bell: "The bell that has ever been noted for the quality and power of its tones (it now hangs in Denny Hall) came from Troy, N. Y., around the Horn, and with its fixtures cost, in place in the tower, $386. I (Clarence Bagley) was the first to sound on it a long peal out over the Sound and town, on or about March 19, 1862. For many years, in times of dense fog, it was rung to let steamers on the bay know the direction to steer. Its tones have
reached Port Madison, across the Sound twelve or fourteen miles and at other times
as far as Renton in the opposite direction.
With such manifestations of vigor and enterprise, the University would normally
he expected to go steadily forward in development, but such was not to be the case.
The students left for one reason or another until, on one occasion, only five pupils
appeared for classes. Mr. Mercer closed the school without formalities on March 13,
1863, and resigned his position as Principal or President. He was destined to add
another chapter to the history of Washington Territory in 1864 and 1866 by bringing
from the Atlantic Coast two groups of settlers, mostly women, to Puget Sound. These
expeditions were not connected with the University. They became locally famous and
have been recorded under such titles as "The Mercer Immigration," "The Mercer Expe-
d it ions" and "Mercer Girls."
The apparent collapse of the student body did not discourage the Board of Regents. As soon as President Mercer indicated a desire to step aside, an offer was made to Thomas Milton Gatch, an educator in Oregon, on November 12, 1862. The old minutes of the Regents show the influence of inflated currency. Professor Gatch agreed to come if the salary would be paid in coin. The Regents agreed to pay in government money. The incident was thereupon closed.
William Edward Barnard became the second President. No catalogue was issued,
but on August 15, 1863, he published an extended advertisement in the Seattle Gazette 61
which has been saved. Here we have statements of the calendar, courses of study, discipline and costs. One paragraph introduces the new President as follows:
"The Board of Regents have recently elected W. E. Barnard, A.M., President of the University. Mr. Barnard is a graduate of Dartmouth College, and was for two years at the head of one of the most flourishing academies of New England. His subsequent experience as Principal of La Creole Academy at Dalles, Oregon, and still later, the reputation he acquired while connected with the Willamette University at Salem, as a thorough teacher and disciplinarian, justify the expectation that the University of Washington Territory under his management, will rank second to none on the Pacific Coast.”
The hope thus asserted was only partially fulfilled before the second collapse.
The academic year beginning on September 7, 1863, had forty-two students still enrolled for the last quarter beginning on May 9, 1864. President Barnard had had experience in the far west. He believed it was possible to have a university even in a wilderness.
He is described as being a Puritan. In that first advertisement, under the head of "Discipline", he declared: "Frequenting of saloons, and attendance upon theaters and balls, are not allowed, but students are required to be at their respective places of abode at stated hours. A respectful observance of the Sabbath is required, and at 3 o'clock P.M. each Sabbath the students will assemble at the University Chapel, to study the Scriptures as a Bible Class. The reading of the Scriptures, regarded as the
only safe text book of morals, will be a daily exercise of the school.”
This, of course, was his official attitude. He soon became convinced that
social influences, and not scantiness of population, were responsible for the
school’s low morale. He wrote a letter to a friend including the following:
’’Society is greatly disorganized; drunkenness, licentiousness, profanity, and
Sabbath desecration are the striking characteristics of our people, and of no
portion more than those at Seattle. Of course there are a few honorable exceptions.
We have two distilleries, eleven drinking establishments, one bawdy house, and at
all the drinking establishments, as at our three hotels, gambling is openly practiced;
and Sunday is no exception. These are the influences we have to encounter to build
up an institution. I need not say it is discouraging and well nigh hopeless.”
Such language, in speeches as well as letters, angered some of the citizens.
He felt that crusading was as important as teaching and did not flinch. The angered
ones seized upon the first opportunity to combat him. He had greatly improved the
campus by removing debris left after the construction of the buildings, grading and
planting the grounds and placing necessary walks. Complaints arose over this
expenditure of funds. In the midst of the clamor President Barnard resigned in
February, 1865. This was a surprise. The complainers were only trying to silence
him. He began a successful real estate business and would have continued in it if
the Regents had been able to secure a new President for the University. Mr. Barnard
was prevailed upon to resume the duties. He continued as President until his final
resignation on April 15, 1866. At that time the student body had declined to fifteen.
In that interim from February, 1865, to April, 1866, he published two small adver-
tisements, giving terms of tuition and board. These must suffice for the informative catalogues familiar in later years.
The Legislature had been kept informed. The Board of Regents, provided for in the Act of January 29, 1862, rendered its first report dated December 1, 1862. It goes into details as to buildings, grounds, granted lands and organization of the institution’s work. The statement is made that J. P. Keller, one of the first
Regents, had died and the Governor had appointed Henry McGill to the vacancy.
Rev. Daniel Bagley had been elected as the first President of the Board of Regents but resigned on account of a trip he needed to make to the Eastern States. Thereupon, Mr. McGill was elected President and Frank Clark was elected Secretary. The latter signed this first Regents’ Report. There follows a report by the Board of University Commissioners signed by Mr. Bagley under the date of November 20, 1862.
A statement of Organization gives courses of study for the Primary Department Grammar School, Preparatory Department and Freshman Class. The last group comprises classics, algebra, geometry, trigonometry and physiology. There were fifty-one
pupils, thirty of whom were in the primary department and only one in the freshman 64
On December 22, 1862, the Council ordered that a committee of three be appointed
to “examine into the matter of the Territorial University" and the President appointed
Councilmen Cochran, More and McFadden. No report seems to have resulted.
In its next session the Legislature debated as to the selection of men to
manage the University as Regents. The result was the enactment of a law on January
19, 1864, naming H. L. Yesler, Cyrus Walker, Frank Clark, C. C. Phillips, James
Tilton and Hezekiah Davis to serve in lieu of "Messrs. Bagley, McGill, Clark,
Webster, Carr and Meigs, whose terms of office have expired."
Near the end of the session, on January 30, 1864, the Legislature received a report from Thomas Mercer, Treasurer of the University. From the sales of lands he had received $47,535.07 and had disbursed $40,616.42. A balance due from land purchases interest was being charged at one percent per month and on money loaned at one and one-half percent per month.
It is interesting to find that the old pioneer, Thomas Mercer, served the University as Treasurer but it is puzzling to see that money was loaned from the slender funds. This is frankly treated in the Regents’ Report to the Legislature dated December 19, 1864, as follows:
"The Board of Regents was unable to ascertain the condition of the fund till last October, i'rom oral information, at the meeting in March ’64, authority was given to pay teachers and incur other expenses; but upon receiving in October a statement from Rev. D. Bagley, President of the Board of Commissioners, of the condition of the fund, it was ascertained that the revenue would not allow the payment of the salary of the University President for the last few months, so it was deferred, with the understanding that the facts should be reported to the Legislature, with the hope that your Hon. Body would devise means by which the Regents could comply with the contract with Mr. President Barnard, relating to his salary, as also other necessary expenses, as the Board of Regents could not pay him from the principal of the fund; and there was such an amount of interest money overdue from the borrowers of the fund, and also some of the sums lent were unavailable, particularly in the case of Mr. Thos. Chambers, who is reported by the former Treasurer of the fund as a debtor to a large amount; but Mr. Chambers claims damages for alleged failure on the part of the President and acting Treasurer of the Board of Regents to comply with the terms of the contract by which Mr. Chambers was to receive the sum of money borrowed by him from the University fund."
It is known that Mr. Chambers afterwards settled the account by deeding to the University one-half of his donation land claim near Steilacoom. That land was held by the University until after Statehood when it was sold by the State Land Commissioner. The alumnus, Howard G. Cosgrove, while serving as a Regent (1909-1913), took the case to the courts but was unable to get back to the University either the land or the money received from its sale.
That Regents’ Report recommended that the management of the University be
placed in the hands of one board instead of two for the sake of economy and to center
responsibility. The older Board of Commissioners had been continued and part-of
its three members were also members of the Board of Regents, .among other items touched upon the Report said: "In June last, a meeting of the Board of Regents was
held at Seattle, and in view of the state of the fund, the Board of Regents discharged
all assistant teachers, and continued the University under the sole direction of the
President, Mr. W. E. Barnard, A. M. At that time the pupils numbered about 42."
 Frank McCaffrey: Campus Menories, 1933, pp. 94 and 97.