In her essay titled "The Influence of Uncle Tom's Cabin," Lida Mildred Ebbert explored the great importance of the novel upon nineteenth- and twentieth-century Americans. She argued that "It is probable that no other book, except the Bible, has had such world-wide popularity and impact." Ebbert went on to discuss the author, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and the time in which the book was written.
In her senior oration "The Protestant Sisterhood," Olive Taylor discussed the centrality of women in religious communities throughout history. She argues that women's activity as reformers and missionaries within the church in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries was unprecedented. For the first time, she asserted, protestant women were leaving the private sphere and working independently within the public sphere. However, Olive argued, women were still being the motherly figures they were born to be.
In his senior Oraton "The Influence of Women in History" Charles Stewart Davison discussed women's role in history. Though often not included in history books, he argued that women greatly influenced events in history. He cites such women as Eve, Catherine de Medici, and Joan of Arc. He concluded his oration and wrote that "Such is a hasty glance at the influence of woman in the past.Â If she advances to the position she should rightly hold, the future will see her occupying a station of still higher honor and influence."
In her senior oration "The Achievements of Our Age," Mary Ann Humrich discusses the many technological advances of the nineteenth century. In particular she argues that the electric light bulb, matches, electric automobiles, and the introduction of table manners revolutionized the era. She concludes her oration and wrote that "'The past is sublime but the present is sublimer.'"
In her senior oration "The Development of Science from Superstition," Elizabeth Anna Low discussed the origins of modern scientific thought. Low argued that science originated from superstitious pracitices of early civilizations. She explained that, "To us, they seem absurd and ridiculous, and yet, to astrology, freed from its superstitions and prejudices, modern astronomy owes in part the firm basis on which it rest to-day." In conclusion, Low asserted that Americans must furhter distance themselves from such superstition in order to further scientific scholarship.
In his senior oration "Co-education in American Colleges," Frank Moore (class of 1891) argued in favor of co-education in America. He first contended that women's college's were not up to par with their male counterparts. Instead of improving the women's institutions, he believed that Americans should send women to coeducational institutions.Â This would allow for the further improvement of formerly male institutions.Â Secondly, Moore asserted that coeducation would better prepare women for living in a man's world.