ROCKS, STORMS, AND PERIL--1868-1874
T HUS far I have dwelt especially upon the steady development of the university in its general system of instruction, its faculty, its equipment, and its daily life; but it must not be supposed that all was plain sailing. On the contrary, there were many difficulties, some discouragements, and at times we passed through very deep waters. There were periods when ruin stared us in the face--when I feared that my next move must be to close our doors and announce the suspension of instruction. The most serious of these difficulties were financial. Mr. Cornell had indeed endowed the institution munificently, and others followed his example: the number of men and women who came forward to do something for it was astonishing. In addition to the great endowments made by Mr. Cornell, Mr. Sage, Mr. McGraw, Mr. Sibley, and others, which aggregated millions, there were smaller gifts no less encouraging: Goldwin Smith's gift of his services, of his library, and of various sums to increase it, rejoiced us all; and many other evidences of confidence, in the shape of large collections of books and material, cheered us in that darkest period; and from that day to this such gifts have continued.
Some of the minor gifts were especially inspiring, as showing the breadth of interest in our work. One of them warmed my heart when it was made, and for many years afterward cheered me amid many cares. As Mr. Sage and myself were one day looking over matters upon the