66 History of Wake Forest College
Some time before this, we began to look around for some one to take charge of
our contemplated school. A committee was appointed to correspond with
distinguished men at the North. For no one seemed to think that any one living in
the South would answer our purpose. This committee did what it could, but reported
a failure. No man possessing the requisite qualifications could be obtained. The
farm was purchased in August, and in December following a meeting of the Board
of the Convention took place in Raleigh.
To secure a Principal, a committee was appointed consisting of Brethren William
Hooper, T. Meredith, J. Armstrong, and myself. We found the committee previously
appointed had acomplished nothing. We were deliberating in the house then
occupied by our Brother Meredith. Some of the committee expressed a wish to have
a consultation in the piazza in the back part of the house. And there the other three
of the committee informed me that they had agreed to appoint myself Principal of
our contemplated institution. Nothing could have surprised me more. I told them at
once that I was not the man for that place; but, that I would join with any two of
them to appoint the other. Brother Meredith remarked very kindly that, perhaps, it
would be of some service to me, and help a little in deciding the question of duty to
know that, before they had consulted together at all, each had made up his mind to
recommend myself; or had thought of doing so, if the others concurred. Some of the
Board, Brother Armstrong particularly, were for commencing operations on the first
Monday in February following. I told them that would be impossible. We lacked the
requisite funds. Nor had we time to make the preparations, even if we had the funds.
Brother Armstrong wished to know how much better off we should be for
commencing one year hence than we were now. I told him, no better off, if we spent
the year in doing nothing. But, if we would be active during the year, we could
make preparation for commencing the next year to advantage. The farm was to go
into operation at the same time with the school. And the school was to be prepared
to furnish boarding and lodging. , The conclusion was to appoint a committee to
rent out the farm to the best advantage they could for that year, and request me to
continue my agency for the Convention another year, and do what I could, in the
meantime, in collecting funds, or any kind of furniture, for the comfort and
advantage of the institution. By this means an opportunity was afforded to make
known more fully the plan of the school among the churches and to collect aid. And
here, I would remark, that, just as we expected, many were found, especially among
the sisters, who could, in the course of the year, procure a blanket,
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