Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts
Wheaton College
College History

Academics

1850-1851

A day in the life of a Wheaton Female Seminary student

Elizabeth Morville's diary provides the daily schedule for the year 1850-1851, probably typical for most of the Seminary’s early years.  The students’ day was marked by bells, which rang to warn of each segment of the schedule.

Schedule of Time

  • 5:45 a.m. - Rise
  • 6:30 a.m. to 7:00 a.m.Half Hour Out*
  • 7:00 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. - Breakfast
  • 7:40 a.m. to 8:10 a.m. - Hour Hour In*
  • 8:15 a.m. to 8:45 a.m. - Study Latin
  • 8:45 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. - Prepare for school
  • 9:00 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. - Devotions
  • 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. - Study Wayland
  • 11:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. - Music or Reading
  • 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. - Dinner
  • 1:00 p.m. to 2 p.m. - Recreation or Study
  • 3:00 p.m. to 3:20 p.m. - Calisthenics
  • 3:20 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. - Recess
  • 3:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. -Recite Paley
  • 4:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. - Recite Virgil
  • 4:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. - Recreation
  • 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. - Supper
  • 6:00 p.m. to 6:45 p.m. - Recreation
  • 6:45 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. - Prepare for study
  • 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. - Study Hour
  • 8:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.Half Hour In*
  • 8:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. - Half Hour Out*
  • 9:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. - Study
  • 9:30 p.m. - Retire

*Every morning and evening each student spent a "half-hour" in her room for private devotion. Roommates took turns being "in" and "out" of their rooms.  Later Seminary principals allowed study during the half-hours.

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