Religion in the Institute 165
Recorder of September 23, 1835. By pre-arrangement those who were
constituted into a church were immediately in front of the rostrum;
those who expected to get their letters and unite later were at the left
of the rostrum, while those who had been recently converted were
invited to take the seats to the right. These were about thirty, "their
hearts filled with gratitude and joy." After they had taken their seats
the invitation was given for all who were anxious about the salvation
of their souls to come forward and join the rejoicing throng,
whereupon every other person in the house came. At this spectacle
Professor Armstrong, no longer able to restrain his emotions, broke
out in words of exulting thankfulness, "God is for us; God is with us;
who can be against us?" Of the recent converts thirteen joined the
church at this time. They were Lewis DuPre, John Trantham, Jesse
Jackson, Oscar F. Baxter, Nicholas Prince, George May, Joseph
Moore, Philip Gathings, Richard Hatch, Alfred Jordan, John C.
Rogers, Nazareth Leggett, Thomas Bush, Dallas R. Wood, Edwin
Hinton, Sampson Gathings. In addition to these, "Jim a Servant" was
also baptized. William Jones and his wife, Margaret Jones, and Henry
L. Graves were soon received by letter. Thus the little church after a
few weeks had thirty-seven members, one a servant, one lone woman,
a student's wife,10 two instructors and thirty-three students of the
Institute. The writer from whom I have quoted above saw in it "A new
era in the history of our institution, yes, in our denomination in North
The baptism of the new candidates was on September 11. The
place, described as "three hundred yards from the house,"
10 The first woman baptized into the church was a Mrs. DuPre, on October 16,
1837, "and, after Baptism, we came to Bro. Wait's dwelling, where Mrs. DuPre was
received into the fellowship of the Church." Wake Forest Church Book.
11 This writer was probably a member of the faculty. He is probably the same
writer who signs his name "0. N." and who had an article in the Biblical Recorder of
October 21, from which I get the information about the baptism also. In the same
paper, September 23, 1835, is a letter of W. W. C(hilders), reprinted from the
Southern Baptist, in which it is said only one sermon was preached during the
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