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In 1880 Tennessee had twenty-one male colleges and universities, and sixteen female colleges and seminaries, ten of which latter confer college degrees; but there were only two distinct preparatory schools—though at least nineteen colleges had preparatory departments,—sixty-three secondary schools, and four public high schools. It would be safe to assume that not more than one-third of the sixty three secondary schools could fit a boy for a good college. In Massachusetts, in 1880, there were seven male colleges and universities, and two female; but there were twenty-three preparatory schools, a large number of which would anywhere in the South or West be called colleges, and 215 public high schools (now 226), with 494 teachers and 18,758 pupils, besides forty-six other schools for secondary instruction.
The income of sixteen New England colleges in 1881 was $1,024,563*, and they had 720,187 volumes in their libraries; all the one hundred and twenty three Southern colleges and universities had together an income of $1,079,187 and 668,667 volumes. Of the one hundred and twenty-three Southern colleges and universities, sixty-nine had each property in grounds, buildings, etc., valued at not more than $50,000; of the sixty-nine, there were thirty-five with not more than $25,000, and fourteen with not more than $10,000. Of the sixty-nine, only five report productive funds valued at $50,000; five more report $25,000; the remainder report less or none-mostly none. In New England, in 1881, not a college reported property valued at less than $100,000, and only two productive funds below $150,000. The forty three New England preparatory schools reported in 1881 nearly twice as much property and productive funds as the sixty-nine weakest Southern colleges, and, indeed, four of these preparatory schools had as much property and as much productive funds as the sixty-nine Southern colleges.
Of the one hundred and twenty-five regular preparatory schools in the United States in 1880, there were in New England forty-six; in the six Middle Atlantic States, forty-six; in the Southern States, six; in the remaining (Western and Pacific) States, twenty-seven. “Forty-four per cent. of the property, eighty-four per cent. of the productive funds, and sixty-three per cent. of the income from productive funds represented in the list of preparatory schools are from New England.
Money will not of itself make a college or university, but it is equally true that college and university cannot be made without it. For universities, indeed, as Presi. dent Gilman is reported to have said, “ it is no longer a question of tens or even of hundreds of thousands of dollars; it is a question of millions”; and for a good col. lege at the present day it is hardly a question of less than hundreds of thousands of dollars. We cripple our college work all over the country, and especially in the South and West, by spreading our resources too much. The money that would run a reasonable number of colleges well serves merely to protect the feeble existence of a great many. The policy of diffusion, rather than concentration of resources, is in education necessarily fatal to high and thorough standards. When I think of our educational policy, the anecdote about Franklin Pierce always occurs to me. After he had been nominated for the Presidency, an itinerant lecturer asked an innkeeper among Pierce's native hills, “ What sort of a man is General Pierce ?” “Waal,” he replied, “up here, where everybody knows Frank Pierce, and where Frank Pierce
*Manifestly an error. for Harvard's annual expenre account, a year or two ago, was said to be $582,390, and Yale's over $350,000.
knows everybody, he's a pretty considerable fellow, I tell you ; but come to spread him out over this whole country, I'm afraid he'll be dreadful thin in some places.” The“ tertium comparationis," as the commentators on Homer call it, is the dreadful thinness in some places. * *
* It is not meant to be implied, however, that the South errs more than some other parts of the country with regard to diffusion of resources in the higher education. For instance, in Ohio, in 1881, the combined income reported by thirty-six colleges and universities was $302,436, and the whole number of volumes in college libraries was 321,147. Harvard University alone reported that year $357,431 and 214,000 volumes. There were in Ohio seventeen colleges and universities with property valued at not more than $50,000 each; nine of these, indeed, having not more than $25,000, and three not over $10,000. Again, eleven report no productive funds; twenty-six have not more than $10,000 income, of which number eighteen have not over $5,000 income. The report of the Commissioner of Education reveals the same state of affairs in Illinois with twenty-eight colleges and universities, Iowa with eighteen, Indiana with fifteen; and so it is in other States.
[Then follows a discussion of the universities of the South, and especially of the curriculum and elective systems in connection with them. The author takes occasion in the discussion to pay a high tribute to the University of Virginia. Among other bad results, as the author thinks, of the elective system for colleges is that of long examinations. After considering their influence on college work, he continues :)
This mania for long examinations, beginning in the higher institutions, has worked downward until it has invaded even the primary schools. In the public schools of Nashville the examinations are held in writing from the tiine the children learn how to write, and they have two examinations a day, together equal to five or six hours. The children of one of my colleagues in Vanderbilt have written examinations, in one of the private primary schools in Nashville, covering five or six consecutive hours. They are eleven and thirteen years old respectively. Think of a child of eleven years writing five hours in succession! It is physical torture! It is cruelty to animals! * * * * * * *
We have also in the South, of course, the same trouble that exists all over the country-namely, the overtaxing of students by requiring too many studies for gradu. ation. It is an evil that thinkiug men see to exist even in the public school courses. Chancellor Garland says: “The vicious feature in our colleges is overtaxing the pupil with routine work, and affording no opportunity for general culture by reading useful books. Our students have too many subjects to study. They have time only to learn lessons; none to master subjects and principles. It is a cramming process." It is a constant subject of remark among Southern professors how little students read. The students are aware of this, but claim, with much justice, that they have no time for reading. I was astonished, when a professor in Williams College, to see how many daily papers were taken by the students. Still more surprised and delighted was I to hear a Sophomore say that he and a classmate were accustomed to meet once or twice a week and to read aloud and discuss Emerson, and that they had just finished all his works. That man stood near the head of his class. I remember with what a
feeling of pride another student showed me his treasures, the British and American poets, and how I marveled at his knowledge of them. He was only one of many. Students crossing the campus of the South Carolina College late at night used to see George McDuffie's light burning, and hear his sonorous voice as he read aloud some English masterpiece. I am afraid we do not allow our students time for that now. In Harvard and Yale, with the exhaustive preparation they can and do require for admission, the elective studies, in the higher classes particularly, seem to solve the problem in great measure. But with us, where wretched preparation is the rule, election is never safe before the third or fourth year, if then. It seems to me the only plan is for the better colleges in the South to have and rigidly enforce certain fixed requirements for admission; then to have two or more parallel courses, as cir. cumstances allow, with fewer studies in each course, and more time given to each; and finally, in the third and fourth years, if possible, some elective studies.
After this jeremiad there is space only for the mention of a few of the hopeful signs in Southern educational work. I take hope from the fact that the South is more generally aroused on the subject of education than ever before, that primary educa. tion is more generally diffused. The effect will be seen in time. Young men who aspire to professorships are beginning to fit themselves for the higher work in a man. ner not known before. The unwritten law of good Northern colleges, that a young man must have first-class university training, at home or abroad, if he hopes to rise, is being established among us, too. Eleven graduates of recent years of a college in South Carolina, which has really not more than one hundred names on its rolls, are now pursuing, or propose to pursue, a university course either in this country or abroad. With two or three exceptions, these young men are seeking not professional training, but simply higher culture. Best of all, two-thirds of them are making the money necessary for the course they propose. There was an increase in the incomes reported by Southern colleges from 1880 to 1881 of $109,330. The idea that col leges must be endowed is gaining ground. There is a growing conviction that fitting-schvols of a high order are as necessary as colleges. We do not yet, however, appreciate the truth that preparatory schools, in order to good work and permanence, must be endowed. Two facts have given me more encouragement than anything else. Culleoka, recognized as the best sitting-school in Tennessee, is every year crowded with students from all parts of the South, and sometimes rejects in one year applicants enough to fill another school. The other fact is the founding and endowing, a few years ago, of the Holy Communion Institute, a good academy, in Charleston, South Carolina. We have probably touched the lowest point, and those of us who are young will see better things in the “New South” than our fathers ever saw.
In commenting on the article of Professor Smith, The New England Journal of Education (probably Rev. A. D. Mayo) says editorially:
We have no expectation of a revival of the ante-bellum state of educational affairs and little sympathy with that class of college men who denounce the people's common school as the enemy of the higher education. To our mind, the Southern people were never in so hopeful an educational state as to-day. They are honestly, energetically, and, in the main, hopefully trying to educate eighteen millions of people, one-half of whom have been practically overlooked until the past dozen years. In
the beginning of such a magnificent undertaking it is not left for school-men, even the most eminent, to choose what they will do. The schoolmaster, like the clergy. man-like every truly educated and consecrated man or woman in those States-for a generation yet, must be the servant of the people, often of the humblest of the people, do the best he can, and wait on Providence for the increase. With all their trials, no body of teachers in any country have a more responsible, even more envi. able position, than the superior men and women in the higher grades of Southern educational life.
The people are waking with a mighty impulse, and to them is given the reorganization of education, with opportunity to profit by the experience of Christendom, and the sympathy of the noblest educators in all lands for encouragement. We believe the college work of the South is on a broader, more scientific, and altogether more progressive basis than ever before. The preparatory department does a great deal more for an earnest student than could be done by the exclusive, old-time academy. We know Vanderbilt pretty well, and believe a wide-awake, hard-working young sellow from the country will get a more vigorous push toward a higher order of manhood in two years as a student in Nashville than was possible from a full course in any reputable college in New England a generation ago. The key to the situation is the hearty acceptance by the college fraternity of the public-school system; the crowning it, when possible, by the preparatory school; the gradual improvement and endowment of the best academies; the proper handling of the college preparatory department, and the gradual working out of the extreme elective system. With such leaders as are now at the front, reinforced by the brilliant group of young men entering the field, there need be no cause for discouragement.
[The following letter from one of our Richmond teachers, who was an eye-witness of the scene, presents a phase of the National Educational Association not before given to our readers.—ED.]
NATIONAL TEACHERS' UNION, Madison, Wis., July, 1884. Dear Mr. Editor,--Thinking it a pity that our hard-worked Richmond teachers should not have the gratification of knowing that in some parts of their own country their profession is honored as it deserves, I send you a very concise description, copied from the Madison Democrat and Wisconsin State Journal, of the glori. ous manner in which the Madisonians welcomed the teachers who accepted their hos. pitable invitation for July, 1884. The Richmond representatives, though few in number, were great in appreciative ability, and stand second to none in their admiration of the “Great Northwest," and especially of Mr. Stevens, the able Mayor of Madi. son, whose exertions contributed so much to the success of the Association and the enjoyment of the visitors.
The ILLUMINATION IN HONOR OF THE NATIONAL TEACHERS' ASSOCIATION. Well, the capital city of Wisconsin experienced a grand time last evening—the grandest in her history. Her illumination was beyond all description, and it was in honor of the National Teachers' Association, which indulged in a formal opening on that occasion. As the gloom of evening approached, all the gas-lamps were brought into use, the hundreds of gas-jets forming arches over the eight entrances to the park were lighted. The arched lights represented red, white and blue colors. Two thousand Chinese lanterns showed themselves in the park, along the various walks and among the trees. Beside this, all the windows around the park presented bright lights. The flood of light seemed magnificently grand; but when, half an hour afterward, the electric lights over the dome, at the entrances and in the interior of the capitol shone forth, then the pencil became impotent. There was no longer any sense in attempting to describe the scene. Red lights were visible on many a corner and in front of places of business. Fiery balloons were sent up from Grube's, on Pinckney, and they sailed over Monona, viewed by the thousands of people in the park, on the streets, and in houses,
The meetings were held in the Senate and Assembly chambers and in the Congregational church. But the crowd could not be accommodated, of course. Not less than 3,000 people were assembled at the east front of the capitol listening to the happy strains of Lueders's band.
As a Democrat representative was gazing over the scene, General Fairchild, an active member of the principal committee, remarked, “Mr. Reporter, you can state that over 4,000 persons, visitors, will occupy beds here to-night, assigned to them by the committee.” Then there are about 2,000 others who, not being members of the Association, care for themselves. Madison, then, is pretty well flooded with humanity. And all appear contented.
THE RECEPTION GIVEN BY GOVERNOR RUSK TO THE PUBLIC IN HONOR OF THE NATIONAL EDUCATIONAL ASSOCIATION.-"How grand-why, it is just perfectly beautiful!” This expression was indulged in by a lady as she returned from Gov. ernor Rusk's reception last evening.
Now for the explanation : Governor Rusk gave out word a few days ago that he would give a reception to the public in honor of the National Educational Association, assembled in this city. This invitation was announced to the five or six thousand people, the greater number of them being of the Association, at the gathering at the east entrance of the capitol, last Wednesday morning, and it was accepted by a unanimous vote. Last night the happy event took place. Nine o'clock was the hour set for the commencement of the ceremonies—and, in fact, there were to be but few and very brief ceremonies.
Long before the hour appointed, a representative of the Democrat visited the scene of operations, on Gilman street, between Pinckney and Webster. Passing up Pinck. ney street, on the right hand side, it was noticed that a grand illumination began at the extreme lower portion of Mr. M. E. Fuller's place. Reaching Gilman street, the illumination extended down Gilman street, eastward, past the Fuller place, Gurney's, Fox's, Ald. Campbell's, Dr. Wilson's and Judge Cassoday's. On the other side of Gilman street the illumination extended from Gov. Rusk's place, midway between Webster and Pinckney, to Wisconsin avenue, taking in Col. Vilas' place, corner of the avenue and Gilman street. Along these lines hung hundreds of Chinese lanterns, and the residences were brilliantly illuminated. Next to his Excellency's place the Fuller place presented the most attraction. Here ever and anon red fire enriched the scene. The spacious lawn between the Governor's place and Mr. Mears' place, reaching to the lakes, was filled with visitors. In this lawn were tables loaded with ice cream, cake, etc., and waiters, under charge of Mr. Chas. Slightam, did good work in distributing the same to visitors. Six hundred gallons of ice cream were