Manual Labor Days 91
College still a student may get an education at a cost low enough to
encourage any aspiring youth however poor.56
56 Several amusing stories about manual labor days were long current. The
following is told by Dr. T. E. Skinner in his Reminiscenses, p. 335:
"When I reached the prescribed age, my father, true and loyal to the Baptists,
removed his promising scion-promising to him only-to the College, where he
remained without any special distinction, save that he was summoned before the
Faculty-that star chamber of the neophyte-once for cutting up the promising corn
crop at hilling time, instead of supporting the growing grainery, for which he
received the very moderate punishment of twenty stripes, with Rev. Langdon C.
Hinton, and William Hunter, afterwards a Baptist, and now an Episcopalian
preacher; with Sister Wait, of blessed memory, standing near, dear woman, with
uplifted hands, praying: `Hold, enough;' I thought she was the greatest, best and
most charitable person ever encountered by this scribe. The whole affair was a farce
on discipline; but we offered no protests, save that a few weeks after the same
individuals were sufficiently suspected of grabbling potatoes in Professor White's
patch. We thought that the object we beheld in the corner of the fence was a barrel,
but lo! it was he. Still we all turned out to be preachers."
Mr. G. H. Wall told the following story of his father, Mr. Henry Wall, who was
overseer of the farm of the Institute:
One cold, frosty morning he was given a squad of students to pull the corn on the
bottom on the east bank of Richland Creek just below the bridge on the road from
Glen Royall west. When the boys saw the frost on the ears they protested.
"Oh, it is not cold; your hands will soon get warm," said the overseer.
"Well," said the boys after going apart and laying their heads together, "it is so
nice and warm, you must have a bath," and overpowering the overseer they dropped
him into a pool in the creek.
When he came out of the water, shivering and dripping, he said to the laughing
boys: "Now you'll catch it!" The boys understood, and bought off Mr. Wall with
many intreaties and a purse of three dollars, which was all the money in their
pockets. And such work as they did do in pulling that corn! One of them was
Major J. M. Crenshaw, Wake Forest Student, XXVIII, 304, tell the following
"Mr. George Wall's father was manager of the farm. I myself was watertoter to
the workmen and carried water in an old tin bucket. There were two little frame
houses built after the College started, at the north and south ends of the Campus.
Professor Armstrong and Mr. Wall roomed in one of them. Wall and Armstrong
slept together, and as Wall was a great snorer, his snoring disturbed the learned
Professor Armstrong. One night when the snoring had kept him awake for hours,
Armstrong could endure it no longer. He laid violent hands on his bedfellow,
exclaiming, `Wake up, wake up, you've been calling hogs all night.' Farmer Wall
rolled over and answered, `And I haven't found but one hog, either."'