Letter from Henry Smith Leiper, American Board Mission, Tientsin, to Alfred E. Stearns, June 25, 1920


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Letter from Henry Smith Leiper, American Board Mission, Tientsin, to Alfred E. Stearns, June 25, 1920


Letter from Henry Smith Leiper, American Board Mission, Tientsin, to Alfred E. Stearns, June 25, 1920


Dear Dr. Stearns :

My friend Mr. C.Y. Sun, a prominent retired business man of Tientsin, is sending two of his sons and two of the sons of friends of his to America this summer to enter them at Phillips Academy. He has asked me to suggest some one whom I could commend to his as a guardian for the boys, and I at once thought of you, inasmuch as I knew of your great interest in all young students, and especially in the boys who come overseas to study in America.

There are a number of matters which Mr. Sun wishes me to take up with you in this connection, and I shall try to state them as clearly and briefly as possible. First let me give you the names of the boys with the dates of their births:

Sun Huang I 1900
Ling Cheng Fan 1904
Sheh, Quincy Sun 1905
Kwang Hua 1907

As you will at once observe, the oldest and the youngest are the sons of Mr. Sun. The third boy mentioned already has an English name, the others have not as yet adopted any.

The fathers of these fine boys are all anxious for them to have a thorough Christian training, and to that end are very anxious to have the boys placed in Christian homes for the first years of their stay in America, should that prove feasible. In such homes they will as nowhere else learn to understand the life and principles of those who have for generations been heirs of the Christian tradition. It is the desire of these wise fathers that the boys be taken to Church regularly and given every opportunity to see and understand the normal Church life of America.

Similarly, the fathers are anxious to have the boys attend the Summer Conferences of the Y.M.C.A. and the gatherings held by the Chinese Christian Student Association each summer.

Money matters are to be in your hands, and the boys are directed to make monthly statements which you will please kindly sign and send at intervals to Mr. Sun here in Tientsin.

Among the things which Mr. Sun also specifically mentioned to me is the desire that the boys shall have training in sports and in etiquette, so that courage and gentlemanliness will be instilled into their lives thruout their stay in America.

The future study of the boys is not determined except in the case of the oldest, Sun Kuan I. He wishes to go to Massachusetts Institute of Technology, to study civil engineering. But I have urged Mr. Sun to let him take two years of academic work in some small college before entering Tech, and Mr. Sun directs that the matter be left with you for decision in the light of the circumstances later on.

For the other boys, Mr. Sun wishes you to choose for them from the four following institutions: Amherst, Cornell, Harvard, Yale.

I have quite strongly urged their going to Amherst, for reasons that you will of course appreciate, but when the time comes for them to enter college there may be reasons why you deem wise some other choice among those here indicated as possibilities.

Altho I know how busy you are and how many things you are called upon to do, I feel sure that you will gladly undertake this personal responsibility for these Chinese lads who are starting out on the great adventure. With such splendid homes as those from which they come to give them a start, their lives are full of promise for this great land in which the need of qualified leadership is greater than perhaps in any other at this time.
I recall with pleasure and enthusiasm the few times that I have seen you in Amherst, and hope that when I next return to America I can see you in Andover or Amherst and get better acquainted with the great work you are doing for boys of the homeland as well as boys from sister Republics.

Yours cordially in Amherst


Henry Smith Leiper


Phillips Academy


June 25, 1920


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