HARVARD'S MUSE FOR WRITING

The youngest tradition of the oldest college in the United States is seventy today. "Copey," as he is known to Harvard, and Professor Charles Townsend Copeland, as the title pages of books read, is now three score years and ten. He was feted last night at the New York Harvard Club by the Charles Townsend Copeland Association, a group of his students, including some of America's foremost writers, who have banded together for the one purpose of expressing their appreciation of a teacher and a friend. "Copey" has a private alumni association.

For twenty-five years Harvard's most loved professor has journeyed to New York to read aloud to his disciples who gather from all over the country. He is one of the few remaining masters of the lost art of reading to audiences. His rich, melodious voice, his unerring ear for the subtleties of rhythm and his stage presence have already become part of the Harvard tradition.

More than a brilliant reader, "Copey" is the exponent of the old- fashioned idea of personal education. Year after year, in his courses, English 12 and English 5, he selected only a few of the most promising undergraduate writers, labored with them and loved them, criticized them harshly, sometimes, but always inspired them. Understanding their personalities, he helped them to develop themselves.

He has had a great influence on American culture, through such pupils as Walter Lippmann, Heywood Broun, Conrad Aiken, Kenneth MacGowan, John Dos Passos, J. Brooks Atkinson, Robert Littell, Herman Hagedorn, John Reed, Robert E. Sherwood, Edward Sheldon, Earl Derr Biggers, Frederick L. Allen, Richard Connell, David Carb, John Marquand, Robert Burlingame, Waldo Pierce, Willard Huntington Wright, Marshall Best, and Maxwell Perkins.

Shunning publicity for himself, "Copey" has been content to let his pupils represent him before the world. Each of his readings is prefaced

____________________
An earlier version of this essay, entitled "Silent Partner of Authorship," appeared in the New York Herald Tribune on April 27, 1930.

-16-

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