the writing remained somber and didactic; questions from the syllabus of readings asked readers to describe and give reasons for the English climate or to describe the composition of the German government.
By the turn of the century, decreasing circulation led Flood to relinquish both ownership and editorship of the Chautauquan. The Chautauqua Association became the owner, and the Chautauqua Press became the publisher. The new editor was Frank Chapin Bray, a career journalist with long-time connections with Chautauqua-style education. Bray was not committed to producing a general magazine, and the Chautauquan under his editorship more completely reflected its function as an organ of the Chautauqua assemblies. He added more illustrations (in 1903, he changed the subtitle to indicate this), more travel articles, especially about the East, and more material about social and civic reform. In 1906, Bray changed the size of the magazine to duodecimo 7 and limited the contents to local announcements and news. As the national enrollment in the Literary and Scientific Circles declined, the magazine was changed to "a weekly newsmagazine" (in 1913), and absorbed by the Independent in 1914.
Certainly the foremost of the organs of the organized adult education programs so important at the time, the Chautauquan fulfilled its unique function well-- at times with surprising style and variety. Old Chautauquans are now likely to be found in attics, 8 reminders of an effort to carry the Chautauqua inspiration and culture to every fireside.
Case, Victoria, and Robert Ormond Case. We Called It Culture. New York: Doubleday, 1948.
Hurlbert, Jesse L. The Story of Chautauqua. New York: Putnam's, 1921.
Morrison, Theodore. Chautauqua. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1974.
Mott, Frank Luther. A History of American Magazines. Vol. 3: 1865-1885. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1938.