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95 Years Ago

The following not only reminds us of our Northfield heritage, but introduces one of the periodicals produced at the seminary. Note the difference in tone between this piece and, say, last week’s. While today’s students do not experience the daily joys of the place that was and is Northfield, it is you who keep alive the Northfield spirit today. Here’s how one Northfield student defined that feeling nearly a century ago. Leaving aside the gendered language of the Northfield Seminary, may all of us do our part to follow the advice herein, to help keep said spirit alive for the next ninety-odd years.

from The Northfield Star, vol. VII, no. 1, pp. 6-7; October, 1922.

A Spirit Gift

Northfield’s greatest gift cannot be defined, not even by a logical definition. It is freer than the air, yet to those who possess it, it is priceless. Every girl may have it if, of her own free will, she desires it, and by honest, purposeful effort strives to obtain it. This gift is not the Northfield “N,” but is generally known by the name of The Northfield Spirit.

Think back to the days when you were a new girl, shy, homesick, and everything seemed so strange. Everywhere you went girls smiled at you and called out a merry greeting. Old girls showed you where you were to take your examinations, where you were to go to have your schedules made out, and helped you solve the puzzles which stared you in the face during those first days. Did you ever stop to think why they were so thoughtful, helping you with the little things which meant so much to you? There is only one answer to this question and that answer is the Northfield Spirit.

Go down on the athletic field when there is a challenge game being played and get acquainted with this same Spirit. Even if no one else is there, you may be sure of Her presence on the field watching the game. She creates the atmosphere of good sportsmanship and it is because of Her that the players can smile at defeat.


That fine spirit of sincere, thoughtful endeavor shown in the classroom, that spirit of constant helpfulness in the halls, that spirit of self-forgetfulness toward one’s friends, the Spirit herself, is waiting to bestow. Do you not want for your very own all these splendid things which make Northfield worthwhile? Just take them, for they are your heritage. They are all embodied in the words Northfield Spirit, and when Northfield has given you that she has given you her best.

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