Appendix to Chapter XVI 223
Len "helped clean up the buildings and recitation rooms to resist Lewis." Tom Land
came in soon after Crenshaw first came and remained sixteen years. After
Crenshaw's death, about 1892, the duty of ringing the bell fell on "Doctor" Tom,
who performed this service regularly for fifteen years, and rang the bell also for
church services and occasional services as long as lie lived. Tom had "been boss
since the death of Len Crenshaw."
Tom was only of medium size, but was strong and wiry. Until his last years no
amount of work seemed to tire him. For one of his race he was of unusual
intelligence. He could keep in mind instructions for a day, a week, a month, or a
season, and would be found doing everything at the appointed hour, or minute if it
was a question of ringing the bell. He knew how to do many kinds of work well and
expeditiously. He could lay stones in a wall so that they would stand; trim a walk to
give it the proper curve and make it look well; he was no mean gardener, being
skillful in setting, fertilizing, trimming and training roses and all kinds of shrubbery;
he knew how to set heating stoves and arrange pipes and flues so that they would re-
main in place and not smoke; he knew how to arrange tables and chairs in recitation
rooms, and how to have seats and lights and heat all ready in the College chapel at
the appointed time for public meetings; he could be trusted with small matters of
business around town; he was faithful and obliging and found time in some way to
do any little service that was asked of him by this or that member of the faculty.
And lie would do everything well and promptly, but he was not obsequious or
servile. Tom after all was a man. No one ever thought of him as a clown. He had a
modest self-respect and was respected of others. In his private affairs he was frugal.
He educated his children. For the last twenty-five years of his life he had a neat little
home of his own, and owed not any man.
With such a character Tom was a great favorite, especially with members of the
faculty and the students. He had a very keen wit and a sense of humor which was
made the more pungent in expression by the mutilated English he constantly used.
This mutilation usually took the form of putting the wrong suffix or prefix to words
and using a word of like sound to the one indicated, so that his meaning was seldom
obscure. For instance, he would say "resist" in place of "assist"; the "evangeliation"
of a room instead of "ventilation"; "I want to insult with Mr. Holliday"; "Me and Dr.
Taylor set out most of the scrubbery in the Campus"; "Everybody gives you a big
honorment on those flowers"; when asked to make a speech, "I will be glad to go
and make some outlines in appriety to Wake Forest"; thinking