Harman Literary Society Created by Female Students


The Harman Literary Society was first conceptualized on October 21, 1896 by the ladies of Dickinson College. The female students first met in Denny Hall for the purpose of organizing a literary society and were allowed to make a temporary one. The society is named after Dr. Henry Harman, a professor of Greek and Hebrew who was also a member of the Class of 1848. Dr. Harman was known as a staunch opponent of coeducation, but the Professor did give his approval for use of his name. On November 11, 1896 the committee was formed and their constitution formally adopted.

    Any member of this society could contribute to the "Harman Echo," the society's paper. The first contributing officers were President A. Mabel Geiger, Vice President Arabel Robinson, Secretary Lex Robinson and Treasurer Grace Vale. The other members were Helen R. Horn, Annie E. Miles, Marie Lloyd, Lucia C. Hargis, Emma L. Vandewater, Blanche Beitzel, Lile G. Deeter, Jessie W. Hargis, Anna M. Himes, Netta Hoffman, Edna W. LaRoss, Margaret D. Saxton and Hattie S. Shelly.

    Only a year after its establishment though, the society fell dormant because the enrollment of women at Dickinson also had dropped. It was later revived in 1900, with enforced strict attendance regulations to allow for the continuation of the society. They published a magazine called "The Salmagundi," which expanded beyond just a discussion of written works. The society was active until 1935, when the group was then dissolved.

Location of Document in Archives
1897 Microcosm

Deborah Bushey Ohge (not verified)

Tue, 08/31/2010 - 03:54

I was searching the internet because Edna Albert was one of my favorite forebears (she was my father's elder cousin). This website references her; was she a Dickenson graduate and perhaps active in the women's literary society there? I am trying to learn more about her and I also found one article about her from her home town in Pennsylvania. Can anyone in the history area there help? thanks.

Edna Albert did attend Dickinson as a member of the class of 1905. I would be happy to provide you with whatever information we have about her in our records. If you would be so kind as to contact me directly at archives@dickinson.edu or 717-245-1399, I will be happy to assist.
Malinda Triller, Special Collections Librarian