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    [Yale University] Skull and Bones Gold Stick Pin and 1872 Album with Twenty-Three Cartes de Visite. The gold pin and album belonged to Edward Thomas Owen, member of the Class of 1872. The ultimate American secret society, the Skull and Bones, have counted presidents, diplomats, and the nation's most prominent financiers as alumni. The gold pin is the society's emblem, a skull with crossed bones, over the number "322". The pin measures .75" wide with a hinged straight pinback. The reverse is engraved "E. T. Owen". Included is Owen's Skull and Bones album, measuring 5" x 6" that contains eighteen cartes de visite, one of each member of the Class of 1872, a group image with the Skull and Bones, an image of the society's home "The Tomb", and one of the Skull and Bones on a table. There are also five cartes de visite of other Bonesmen who were not members of the Class of 1872. The CDVs are generally very fine. The leather album, with "Edward T. Owen / 1872" on the front cover and "322" on the back cover, is worn and the backstrip is loose. The pin is missing a catch on the back, but otherwise fine.

    Edward Thomas Owen entered Yale University with the class of 1871 and joined the class of 1872 at the beginning of his senior year. After graduation Owen studied two years at the Georg-August-Universität Göttingen in Germany and a year in Paris. He returned to the United States as a professor of French and Linguistics at the University of Wisconsin. Owen, with the Mutton Chops facial hair, is pictured wearing this pin.

    The roster of the Skull and Bones Class of 1872 records only fourteen members; however, there are fifteen cartes de visite in the members section of the album and an equal members in the group image. In addition to Owen the other Bonesmen in 1872 were: Robert Elmer Coe, who died shortly after graduation in 1872 of typhoid fever; William Lee Cushing who taught at Yale and founded the Westminster School in Dobbs Ferry, New York; Charles Clerc Deming, who, after graduating from Columbia Law School, became vice president of the Jacksonville, Tampa, and Key West Railway Company; Henry Champion Deming, secretary and treasurer for the Mercantile Trust Company of New York; Frederic Shepard Dennis, a professor of surgery at Bellevue Medical College; John Howard Hincks, an ordained minister who served as dean of Atlanta University and professor of History and Social Science; Benjamin Hoppin, a German translator; Alexander Ross Merriam, a pastor; George Foot Moore, also a pastor; Henry Silas Payson, who practiced law in St. Louis, before he retired to Payson Farms at Mossville, Illinois; Charles Benjamin Ramsdell, who graduated from Union Theological Seminary and became a pastor; George Atherton Spalding a physician at the House of Refuge, Randall's Island, New York; and, Theodore Salisbury Woolsey a professor of law at Yale Law School.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    March, 2009
    6th-7th Friday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 5,151

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