His Career In Congress And On The Hustings--HisWork In The Courts--His Record WithThe Army--His Life At Home
Georgia, there is a story that his State university, in order to win back his friendship, conferred upon him an honorary degree. Toombs is represented as having spurned it with characteristic scorn. "No," said he, "when I was unknown and friendless, you sent me out disgraced, and refused me a diploma. Now that I would honor the degree I do not want it."
There is no record that the college ever conferred a degree upon Toombs at all. Later in life he was elected a trustee of this university, and each year his familiar figure was seen on the stage during commencement, or his wise counsel heard about the board. His attendance upon these duties was punctilious. He would leave the courthouse, the legislative halls, or Virginia Springs--wherever he happened to be--and repair to Athens the first week in August. Once or twice he delivered the annual address before the alumni; several times he secured appropriations for his alma mater from the State. His visits to Athens were always occasions of honor.