274 History of Wake Forest College
annual installments was adopted. Dodson was also urging rich men to
remember the College in their wills, citing a South Carolina
Methodist who had recently left a bequest of $100,000 to found a
Methodist
college.6
It was to Wingate, however, more than to any other that the College
owed the endowment and the support and affection of our Baptist
people and the high standard of its work in the period before the Civil
War. As agent indeed he labored only about eighteen months, but as
Acting President of the College for the years 1854-56, and as
President thereafter, he continued to give character and direction to
the work for the endowment; the confidence in him personally and in
the College he had brought so powerfully to the attention of the
Baptists of North Carolina became all the stronger when he became
head of the institution.
Accordingly, the two able agents that in order succeeded Wingate,
T. H. Pritchard and John Mitchell, may be regarded rather as
lieutenants in the campaign begun and directed by Wingate.
It seems probable that Wingate did not enter on the active work of
his agency until about the first of February, 1853. In the Biblical
Recorder of February 10, 1853, he began the publication of a series of
articles on matters pertaining to his agency, and continued them at
frequent intervals until the summer of 1854, when he resigned to
become Acting President of the College.
The articles just mentioned are most valuable in revealing the
condition of the College in those years: its need for endowment that it
might meet the rising standards of collegiate education and keep pace
with the best educational institutions of the land North and South; its
value present and prospective if properly supported to the
denomination; the meagerness and sporadic nature of the support
previously given it. Wingate also mentions the difficulties that
attended the work of an agent for the College. There was much lack
of interest, which he thought could be partly removed if many from
all sections of North Carolina would publish in the Biblical Recorder
letters in reference to the endowment. The object was comparatively
new, and there was a general assumption that men
―――――――
6
Ibid, July 80, 1852, April 1,
1853.
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