Ezra Cornell to "The coming man and woman."
Ithaca, May 15, 1873.
Ithaca New York
To the Coming man & woman
On the occasion of laying the corner stone of the Sage College for women of Cornell University, I desire to say that the principle [sic] danger, and I say almost the only danger I see in the future to be encountered by the friends of education, and by all lovers of true liberty is that which may arise from sectarian strife.
From these halls, sectarianism must be forever excluded, all students must be left free to worship God, as their concience [sic] shall dictate, and all persons of any creed or all creeds must find free and easy access, and a hearty and equal welcome, to the educational facilities possessed by the Cornell University.
Coeducation of the sexes and entire freedom from sectarian or political preferences is the only proper and safe way for providing an education that shall meet the wants of the future and carry out the founders idea of an Institution where "any person can find instruction in any study." I herewith commit this great trust to your care.