The Chair of Philanthromathematics (Henry)

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The Chair of Philanthromathematics
Summary of the Short Story
Microsummary: Two swindlers started a university as an act of philanthropy, but ended up profiting from it by secretly running a gambling operation for the wealthy students.

Jeff Peters and Andy Tucker were two friends who struck it rich in Arizona by selling their silver mine for $25,000. They deposited their money in a bank and decided to use it for philanthropic purposes.

Jeff Peters — narrator; swindler turned philanthropist; cunning, resourceful.
Andy Tucker — Jeff's partner; swindler turned philanthropist; clever, financially savvy.

They came across an abandoned building in a small town called Floresville and decided to turn it into a free educational institution called the World's University.

They hired six professors and advertised the university in state papers, attracting 219 students from five states and territories. The town of Floresville boomed with the influx of students, and Jeff and Andy enjoyed their newfound status as philanthropists.

However, they soon discovered that their funds were running low, with only $821.62 left in the bank. Andy decided to investigate the matter and discovered that they had overlooked the chair of mathematics, which had a salary of $100 per week. Despite their financial troubles, they continued to run the university and enjoyed the respect and admiration of the townspeople.

To Helvetia with philanthropy!

During the Christmas break, all the students went home, leaving the town quiet. Jeff discovered Andy and a faro dealer dividing a large stack of money, which turned out to be their share of the profits from the first half of the university's scholastic term. Andy revealed that the faro dealer was actually Professor James Darnley McCorkle, the chair of mathematics. They decided to leave town the next morning, satisfied with their successful foray into philanthropy.

Philanthropy, when run on a good business basis, is one of the best grafts going.