582 History of Wake Forest College
leigh.14 His theme is the progress of scientific knowledge and its
application to modern life. His discussion shows that the speaker was
familiar with his subject but contains nothing distinctive. It was
delivered, however, with all the force of Mr. Moore's imposing
presence and drew from the editor of the Biblical Recorder this
encomium: "The address of Mr. Moore was a fine production, and
furnished a good model of oratory for the young gentlemen who had
solicited his services on the occasion. The sentiments uttered by the
speaker were just and appropriate, combining the useful and the
beautiful and evincing classic cuiture seldom equaled by the literati of
our country."15 The reader of today would be much more moderate in
his praise, and perhaps would lay it aside unread after finding some
rather severe strictures on the founders of denominational institutions
which are noticed in the footnote. In his introduction, however, Mr.
Moore had said:
Among the first emotions, gentlemen, which I felt on receiving your invitation,
was one of gratitude to the founders of this flourishing institution, which though of
brief existence, has quietly and firmly established itself in the republic of our
colleges, by its merit and success, and advanced into reputation by the excellence of
its fruits.
A little later he said in speaking of our denominational colleges:
"These institutions are now set in our educational system,
―――――――
14
A sketch of Mr. Moore may be found in the Biographical History of North
Carolina, V, 275-86.
15
Biblical Recorder, June 19, 1856. After the speech had been put in print the
editor had a like complimentary notice. He had failed to comment on the fact that
Mr. Moore had made a very uncomplimentary comparison of the College with the
State University, and had spoken in slighting terms of the purpose of the
denominations of the State to make their colleges serve in the propagation of their
faith, and had designated this as selfishness. A writer in the Biblical Recorder of
August 1, 1856, however, in a well conceived and well written article called
attention to what Mr. Moore had said in this way. The nature of this writer's defence
of the colleges may be judged from these words: "And in the present instance, the
zeal which has been manifested in the cause of general education by the different
Christian denominations of our country affords ample proofs that they have not
been actuated by the spirit of mere partisans. It is true that each group desires the
success of their own schools and enterprises, but we hope not with the feeling of a
mere selfish party; but as conscientious believers in the truth of their own creeds,
they support a zeal
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