148 History of Wake Forest College
in language equally as diplomatic and polite, delivered by a com-
mittee.
Soon an intense rivalry had developed between the two Societies.
This was due chiefly to the fact that the proceedings of each were
secret and attendance compulsory. These things engendered a group
spirit which was the more intense because the groups were small.
Before five months had passed there was already keen competition for
new members, a competition that lasted for many years and brought
out many ingenious practices, some of them of questionable nature. A
writer in the Biblical Recorder of September 7, 1835, says that the
state of things among the students owing to this Society spirit was
most unhappy. The two Societies absorbed all feelings and interests;
"jealousies arose and then antipathies; and hostilities were finally
carried so far as to divide brethren of the same profession. This state
of things became quite alarming." It was finally mitigated by the great
revival of the summer of 1835.
But it was only a truce that was brought by the revival. A year later
hostilities were as violent as ever. In August, 1836, two of the
students, William Tell Brooks, Euzelian, and James W. Hoskins,
Philomathesian, the two deacons of the church, had a hot quarrel
when Brooks upraided Hoskins because of his methods of soliciting
new
members.5
This rivalry existed for many years and is not yet altogether dead.
Many amusing incidents arose from it, but it had one very
―――――――
5
Brooks's account of the affair in his Diary under date of August 5, 1886, is as
follows: "Passed most of the day in almost perfect confusion in consequence of
having a dispute with James Hoskins, the great I am. This dispute arose from some
statements he made relative to our society. The method he adopts in gaining
members on his Society, I deem entirely derogatory to the character of a gentleman.
The dispute wounded my feelings the more because of the fact that we are both
members of the same Church, and what is worse, deacons of the Church. The course
I should pursue on this occasion seems to me somewhat difficult. To make
concession to him for having attact him seems too much when I consider the course
he has taken, a course which in its very nature must be ungentlemanly." The next
day Brooks has this entry: "Still dissatisfied in mind. Church met in the evening.
Members quite cold to each other. But little of the spirit of religion among us. The
cause of this has arisen from the Societies. Such things I know ought not to be."
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