58 History of Wake Forest College
of God and to the nations of the earth." The preachers educated in
such schools, "these school priests," are ready to rob the poor, drain
the coffers of the rich, and are the most dangerous robbers and
murderers and ever ready to cut throats.8
In consequence of the pronounced opposition, the bills as we saw
above, were reported "with sundry amendments." Leaving
8 As an example of Meredith's "most excoriating style," I give the following
excerpts from the review:
"It is a learned and eloquent effort to set forth the diabolical nature, tendency and
effects of Theological schools.... and is designed to open the eyes of the Legislature,
and to put that body on their guard against the intrigues of those who are plotting
the destruction of the country. We have no doubt that the General Assembly have
been vastly enlightened by this effusion, and that the whole population of North
Carolina are immensely indebted to the author for this generous and masterly
"We must acknowledge too, that by the perusal of this paper we have been not a
little edified ourselves. Until now we had always been in the dark with regard to an
act of incorporation. We had always thought (very foolishly no doubt) that when a
church, a school, or any other body became incorporated, it simply received a legal
existence, and a right to hold and acquire property. But we have now learned that
the incorporation of a Theological School would necessarily imply a -'meddling
with religious matters' . . . `the making of laws in matters of religion' . . . `a
trespassing on the dominions of God' .. . `the supporting and maintaining of the
Christian Religion' . . . `a legislating on the ministry' . . . in a word, the subjecting of
all the important provisions of the gospel to legislative enactments. Now, as this
information comes to us sustained by the most invincible proof . . . even the positive
`confidential' assertion of the author, we are of course bound to receive it without
further inquiry.
"These Theological Schools too-what monstrous things they are!—The Spanish
Inquisition—the Pope-or even the sea-serpent is nothing to them! `They are the first
step to a rich church and a proud and pompous ministry! ‘They multiply clergy until
they swarm like Egyptian locusts! They have already subverted the governments of
France, Spain and South America, and have, no doubt, overturned the empire of the
Man in the Moon! They have distressed the kingdom of Great Britain-have set the
members of Parliament by the ears-and have absolutely turned the head of `Lord
King' himself. In this country they have endeavored to stop the mail-have erected
opposition lines of stages and steamboats-have absolutely stretched great chains
across the streets of our cities-and have been, no doubt, the secret cause of all the
earthquakes, tempests, pestilences, witchcraft, and falling stars that have ever
visited our hemisphere! To sum up the whole in one pithy sentence-'they always
have been, are now, and ever will be a curse to the Church of God, and to the
nations of the earth.'
"And these `school priests'-what demons they are! Lucifer and his heroes are no
touch to them! They are the originators and supporters of these Theological schools,
and of course the contrivers and infamous perpetrators of all the mischief which
these schools have produced! Besides this they have robbed and oppressed the poor-
drained the coffers of the rich-propped up the
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