Agency of Thompson, McNabb, and Jordan 257
he sought to stimulate the friends of the College to liberal and prompt
action. It was better, he said, to finish with the debts once for all and
avoid the expense of countinuing agency; the work could now be
done "with safety and credit. Public sentiment is with us. Prices are
good. The Institution is prosperous. Wind and tide are now in our
favor. Now is the time to pull with a quick and a strong oar." Jordan
was hoping for subscriptions as large as $300 to take care of any
deficit in the number of subscriptions or default in paying them.
In all these campaigns subscriptions were solicited with payment
conditioned on securing subscriptions to a certain amount in the first
campaign for paying the Berry note this was $9,000. This plan had
not worked well, though it is evident that many had paid their
subscriptions in disregard of the condition. In his last letter Jordan lets
it be understood that all subscriptions are unconditional and that
immediate payment would be well. Before this Rev. Elias Dodson, in
one of the numerous letters in which he showed his unflagging
interest in the College, had said: "I hope no proposition will ever be
made to liberate the subscribers if a stipulated sum is not raised. Such
a course is like building and then pulling
down."21
Jordan's agency begun with so much promise was attended by the
fatality that hampered the agency of Wait and others: he fell ill. After
making a canvass of twelve days, and getting a short distance below
Fayetteville he was forced to desist on account of sickness. Returning
to Fayetteville he was for a week in the house of Elder Robert
McNabb, where he was most kindly
treated.22
He had, when forced to
leave off, done well and had secured subscriptions for about $1000.
It was July 28, 1847, before Jordan was sufficiently recovered in
health to take the field again. As the season, with its risk of disease,
did not admit of his going back to his work in the eastern
―――――――
21
Ibid., November 14, 1846. The College, however, did not desist from the risky
plan. In 1873, Dr. Wingate secured large subscriptions for the College but failed to
get the $100,000, the stipulated sum, to make the conditions valid.
Professor L. R. Mills, Wake Forest Student, III, 314.
22
Ibid., May 15, 1847.
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