At a meeting of the Trustees on November 6-8, 1838, on a report of
a committee consisting of Alfred Dockery, Thomas Meredith, and W.
H. Jordan, it was voted to ask for a revision of the charter, and Alfred
Dockery, Thomas Meredith, and Amos J. Battle were appointed to
bring the request to the attention of the Legislature, which was then
Mr. Dockery, who was a Senator from the district of Rockingham
and Robeson, presented a bill embodying the desired reforms, on
December 17. It provided for the extension of the life of the
institution for fifty years after the lapse of the twenty years allowed in
the former charter; that the Trustees were to be called henceforth "The
Trustees of Wake Forest College," and that with the consent of the
Trustees the faculty should have the power of conferring degrees; that
the value of the property which the Trustees might hold should be
increased to $200,000, and that all property except lands in excess of
six hundred acres should be free from taxation, an exemption, as we
saw above, denied to the real estate of the school under the former
charter. To correct the abuse of having trustees who never attended
the meetings of the Board, it was provided that a trustee who was
absent from the meeting for three years thereby forfeited his
membership, while the Board might remove any member for
disorderly conduct on a charge properly recorded in the minutes, after
three months notice, and by a two-thirds vote of those present. It was
further provided that billiard tables,2 theatrical, sleight-of-hand and
other shows should be unlawful within one mile of the College except
on the written
1 Proceedings, p. 31.
2 In 1794 the Legislature passed an Act forbidding billiard tables within five
miles of the University, the reason, as stated in the preamble, being that it was
believed "they would greatly tend to create idleness and dissipation among the
students." Potter's Revisal of 1821, Chap. 429.
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