Dartmouth College Library Bulletin

Notes from the Special Collections



THIS YEAR marks the one hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the birth of Edward Tuck 1862, whose gif in 1899 providing for the establishment of the Amos Tuck School of Business Administration was formally accepted in 1900. The school was named in honor of his father, who graduated from Dartmouth in 1835. Edward Tuck was born on 24 August 1842 at Exeter, New Hampshire. He began his career as a vice consul in Paris in 1865 and the following year accepted a position with John Monroe & Company, bankers, of New York and Paris, becoming a partner in 1871. In 1872 he married Julia Stell of Philadelphia, for whom Stell Hall, the dining hall at Tuck School, is named. Doing well in the banking business and in his personal investments, Mr. Tuck retired from banking in 1881, and he and Mrs. Tuck went to live in France permanently in 1889, devoting their lives to philanthropy and to a lasting friendship with France.

Soon after Mr. Tuck's graduation from Dartmouth he made a donation of one dollar to the College to be applied for 'unrestricted use.' Later, through the renewal of his friendship with President William Jewett Tucker, with whom Mr. Tuck had roomed in College, Tuck became one of Dartmouth's most generous benefactors over a period of forty years, donating many funds anonymously. Mr. Tuck gave Tuck Drive, the President's House, the group of Tuck School buildings, art works, and large cash contributions. Recipients of his benefactions included two hospitals, a school, the American University Center in Paris, and art collections in France and restoration of a Roman monument (Trophee des Alpes) near Monte Carlo. Those who are familiar with the New Hampshire Historical Society in Concord may know that Mr. Tuck donated the funds for the construction of its library and museum. Funds also went to Phillips Exeter Academy, Mr. Tuck's alma mater.

Among the bodies of papers in the College Archives are those of the Tuck family, a number of which related to Amos Tuck, born in Parsonsfield, Maine, in 1810 A lawyer, Amos Tuck was keenly interested in politics and served in Congress from 1847 to 1853. He helped to found the Republican Party and to elect Abraham Lincoln as the first Republican president. The Amos Tuck portion of the papers consists primarily of business records, account books, correspondence, and notes, and letters to his son Edward and other family members. The Edward Tuck papers contain diaries and some business records but mostly correspondence including that of his wife, Julia. The letters reflect his political opinions, the world economy, the Tucks' philanthropic pursuits, and the war scene 1914 to 1918. The total collection encompasses 61/2 linear shelf feet, and guides to the papers are available.

With the founding and endowing of the Amos Tuck School of Business Administration Edward Tuck established the first graduate business school in the country. With the records of the Board of Trustees of Dartmouth College are copies of letters Mr. Tuck wrote to the board describing his wish to donate funds to the College. A letter written to President Tucker on 8 September 1899 described an endowed fund of $300,000 to memoralize his father and to it President Tucker responded:

With the balance of the income we can make the extension which we discussed in our interviews, in the direction of Modern History, Economics, Political Science and Finance. As I then said to you, the present tendency in the College is as strongly toward business as toward law. Of course it is not possible to give the same training for the larger kinds of business as for some of the traditional callings, but it does seem possible and necessary that men should be well grounded in the principles which underlie the great business operations of the day, if they are going to take part in them. Every man must serve his apprenticeship. I am constantly told, however, by heads of business houses who are making more urgent request for college men, that they desire the sort of training to which I have referred, as intermediate between the ordinary College course and one's actual apprenticeship. There seems to be a very strong and genuine demand for the training which will fit men for work in the field of distribution as well as in the field of production.

This matter has been under the careful consideration of a Special Committee of the Trustees, who are to report at the meeting to be held on the 30th of December. I shall be very glad to hear from you if practicable before that time as to any suggestions which you may wish to give in regard to the disposition of the income beyond the specified statement in your deed of gift. I enclose a memorandum for such an extension of work on the part of the College as I have proposed.

I think it would give distinctness to our object if you would allow this extension to take definite form under the name which I have suggested in the memorandum, the Amos Tuck School of Administration and Finance. Of course, the school will be under the direct charge of the Trustees, and the instructors in it will be, with one of two possible exceptions, the instructors in the College. The extension, as you understand, would cover two years, one year of which, however, would be a graduate year. We have already elected a man to the Chair of Modern History, Professor Justin H. Smith, of the class of '77, a man of full qualification for the place, personally and in his familiarity with his subject, whose salary will be drawn from the income of the fund.

On 27 December 1899 Mr. Tuck responded in part, 'The establishment of "The Amos Tuck School of Administration and Finance" has my full approval. The statement which you make of its purpose and scope is clear and convincing. I believe it to be just in the line of modern educational requirements, and I shall be glad to see your plan put into effect.'

In January 1900 the Board of Trustees formally established the school.