Republished from The Babbler, Vol. 4, No. 1, Oct. 5, 1923.
The paper of David Lipscomb was formerly named “Havalind Acts.” It appeared once every month in bound volume. Its capacity was about 2,000 words.
A paper this size was rather small to represent successfully the activities of this school. Much news that would have been of interest to alumni and friends had to be omitted and only the main events could be featured in the paper. Then, also, the lack of space prohibited the giving to every individual student a chance to paper was largely the editors’ paper, and was not sufficiently large to accommodate the writings of the students, although the writings might be well deserving of appearance in print. Such was the original “Havalind Acts.”
This year, with a change in the college administration, it was thought wise to change the form of the paper. It was observed that the enrollment was going to be at least fifty per cent greater than that of last year, which made it the more important that additional space be arranged for. The result was the changing of the paper to the present form. The old name, “Havalind Acts, although euphonious and well’
adapted, was changed for the following reasons:
First, the name had no original meaning in itself–was not at all self explanatory. “H-ava-lind,” is obtained of the “H’ of Harding, the “Ava” of Avalon, and the “Lind” of Lindsay, thus incorporating the doings or the two dormitories with those of the administration building, Harding Hall. It was inconvenient to explain this in every issue of the paper, but if not explained the name was entirely meaningless to most of the readers.
Second, those in authority desired that the paper be given a name that would, in itself, distinguish this school as being a religious institution. This was not a demand that a name of extreme graveness and sobriety be given the paper, but on the contrary a name was desired that would be humorous and
“catchy” as well as one that was used in the Bible. The result of our careful consideration of the numerous names that were suggested was:
While this name is synonymous with “Tattler” and “Prattler” and the names of a few other papers, so far
as we can determine the word is entirely original as the name of a school paper.
The “Babbler” offers to every student an opportunity to express himself by contributing to its columns.
Appearing, as it does, semi-monthly, with a capacity of 10,000 words, it is hoped that it will fill fully the function of an ideal school paper.
The co-operation of the work of the first issue has been excellent. Much good material has been laid aside of necessity in order to give space to events which took place during the summer months. WRITE IT AND SEND IT TO THE BABBLER.
CONCERNING OUR WORK
It is not a matter of infrequent occurrence that a student will go to college to study books, and nothing else. He thinks there is nothing to learn in college, except the cold facts inside his textbooks. Books are good for mental development and also for information, but should never be thought of as the only things worth studying in college. Many of the things which we study in books will very seldom be thought of when we get into our life’s work. If a student graduates from a college of moral character and standing, even if he has the highest literary honors that his college can bestow upon him–but at the same time lacks basic morality and culture, he will have failed in his work thus far, for he has missed many of the main things that enter into college life. The associations, the stand for honor, justice, and fair dealing that have been grounded (or should have been) into his character, are worth more to him than anything he may have learned from history or science. But if these things have been lightly turned aside, he is not a true representative of his college.
The paper of a school, if properly run, offers a great opportunity for the student of the school to develop himself in ways apart from what the books will do and to put in practice those things which he learns from his books. To make a good school paper three things are especially necessary:
The first is originality. The student’s paper cannot be published by the faculty and remain true to its purpose. It will then be no more than a bulletin advertising the school. Furthermore, it cannot be composes of material from other papers and yet be of real merit. It must represent the everyday life and activity around the college whence it proceeds. A school paper should not be a digest of the news of the land. Such treatment always indicates a lack of originality within the school itself.
Second: variety must be had. This gives an opportunity to any student, who has a particular talent, to develop what may be a spark of genius, which by proper use, he can make the key to the remarkable success which he may attain.
Third: those who have had experience along this line will testify that the great requirement in publishing a school paper is hard work. If a paper is good, the chances are that work is the principal cause: it not good, the lack of work. There must be concentration, diligence, effort, and perseverance.
Now, in view of the foregoing reasons, is it not plain that a real value is to be gained by work with a school paper? Are not the qualities of originality, variety, versatility, and willingness to work essential in any great work? Can they be learned and applied by the study of textbooks alone? Then let us divide our energies and put those things which we learn from nooks into practical use.
Editor-in-Chief: J.C. Greene
Ass’t. Editor-in-Chief: Elmo Phillips
Associate Editors: Mary Tittle, Tommie Leeper, H.F. Pendergrass, T.C. Wilcox
Society Editors: Ruby Crutcher, Joe K. Brown
Humor Editors: Mary O. Jones, W.R. Yowell, Herbert Jordan
Exchange Editor: Dorothy Breeding
Sport Editor: H.J. Priestley
Religious Editor: C.J. Garner