294 History of Wake Forest College
each payable only if the whole amount should be subscribed before
December 1, 1859.
On the next morning when the plan was presented, Wingate offered
on the floor of the Convention the following resolution as a basis for
discussion:
Resolved, That we have heard with pleasure of the plan proposed by the Board of
Trustees of Wake Forest College to raise an unencumbered fund of fifty thousand
dollars for the endowment of Wake Forest College.
This resolution was first discussed by Wingate and J. L. Prichard,
and was being spoken to by A. M. Poindexter, who was present as a
delegate from the General Association of Virginia, with all his wonted
eloquence and power, when the unexpected occured. Just outside the
Commons Hall where the two hundred delegates were sitting a group
of three men were in consultation. These were Rev. Thomas E.
Skinner, then pastor of the Baptist Church at Raleigh, and his father,
Charles W. Skinner, and his father's neighbor and dear friend, Richard
Felton. Both the latter were members of the Hertford Church of which
T. H. Pritchard was pastor. After Poindexter had concluded and the
resolution had been passed Dr. T. E. Skinner obtained the floor and
announced that his father, C. W. Skinner, and Richard Felton would
each become responsible for $5,000, and the young Skinner, for
$3,000 additional,5 though his personal subscription seems to have
been for $1,000. To quote the words of an eyewitness, "from that
moment no one remembers exactly what occurred." The account as
recorded by the Secretary of the Convention and printed in the
minutes, though not quite in agreement with some other accounts is as
follows, certain omissions of which are supplied in the footnotes:
After the passage of the resolutions, an opportunity was granted to
individuals who might wish to subscribe to a pledge binding them-
selves for sums to be appropriated to this object to do so. A feeling of
deep and solemn interest and anxiety pervaded the entire body, as
―――――――
5 Thomas E. Skinner, Sermons, Addresses and Reminiscences, p. 245, article on
Charles Worth Skinner by Dr. John W.
Moore.
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