of their time to the farm and garden would be diffused throughout the
State and prove of incalculable benefit. The city of Raleigh would
furnish a good market for the products of the farm and garden. While
all other professions except the ministry were overstocked, scientific
agriculture and horticulture offered a constantly increasing "source of
wealth, health and happiness."
The proposition received no favor. At the meeting of the Board of
Trustees the next June the land east of the railroad was sold to W. T.
Brooks for ten dollars an acre.
The College all along showed its desire to prove useful to the State
and its citizens. The responsibility of the institution to train teachers
for the elementary schools was felt even before the Legislature, late in
1838, passed the first law looking to the establishment of Common
Schools. Probably the contrast between educational conditions in
North Carolina and in New York and New England was very striking
to Wait, White and Morse, all of whom were from that section. Nor
could Wait in his many itineraries through the State have failed to
observe the utter lack of training of certain of those who were
teaching little children. Hoping to make Wake Forest an agency in
removing this evil he provided that a course should be offered for
such as were preparing themselves to teach in the common English
schools of the State. It was planned that those taking this course
should be trained not only in the branches they were to teach, but
should also be given instruction on the management of schools and in
the duties and office of teachers.27 The editor gave this letter place in
an editorial commending the purpose and expressing the hope that
many would take advantage of the opportunity offered. Just
27 See Wait's letter in the Biblical Recorder of June 23, 1838, which is as follows:
"Wake Forest Institute, June 20, 1838. Bro. Meredith, will you allow me to state,
through the medium of the Recorder, that the second session of this Institution will
commence on the fifth of July next.
"It is thought proper to add, that arrangements have been made to give suitable
instruction to a class of such young gentlemen as may be preparing to take charge of
common English schools.
"Should such a class be formed, a course of lectures will be given on the
government of schools, and on other subjects connected with the duties and office
of teachers. Your brother, Samuel Wait."