The Board of Education, 1862-1915 479
portunities for preparation for college were of the poorest some
applied for aid who were unable to do even the preparatory work at
the College. Among these were not a few who were poorly endowed
mentally and found such studies as Greek grammar and algebra
altogether beyond them. There were others who were indolent. Of all
these classes the Board took account, sometimes in the midst of a
term but usually at the semi-annual meetings, and advised them not to
return.37 With the Board and with the beneficiaries this watchfulness
of the Board on their scholarship was a serious matter. The members
of the faculty were often asked to furnish information, and the keeper
of rolls was expected to furnish reports of grades and scholastic
standing not only for the negligent but for all. The result was that
through all the years the beneficiaries generally were industrious and
attentive to their studies, and some of them, making up in this way for
lack of preparation and mental endowment below the average, went
on to graduation.
For some years the Board had felt that the ministerial student
should, while in college, have at least an introductory course in the
study of subjects that particularly concerned the work of the ministry.
On June 10, 1878, this feeling took form in a resolution, "That the
Board contribute $400 per annum annually to the Board of Trustees of
Wake Forest College, provided that the Trustees will make provision
for giving suitable specific instruction to its beneficiaries."
This resolution being laid before the Board of Trustees, which was
meeting the following day in annual session, and adopted had far-
reaching results, not the least of which was that it was at least the first
step in securing for the College the services of two men who were to
have each an important part in the work of the College in the next
sixty years. These were W. L. Poteat and N. Y. Gullev.
In accepting the proposition the Trustees voted to employ a tutor for
the work contemplated; this tutor was W. L. Poteat,
37 See minutes of the Board for June 19, 1871; June 18, 1888; September 4, 1901;
Dec. 20, 1901; June 17, 1895.