72 History of Wake Forest College
Royall, head of the Greek department. Early in his service as teacher,
dating from the reopening of the College in January, 1866, he
established a name for goodness and saintliness which follows him
after his death in January, 1928. Dr. A. T. Robertson, who knew him
in his manhood's prime, 1879-85, and in after life, said of him: "Next
to his rare scholarship, the outstanding feature of Dr. Royall is his
saintliness. He did not pose as pious. It was not affectation with him.
He was simply and genuinely spiritual. He lived with Christ and it
showed in his words, his walk, his expression."
Of like tenor, but even more revealing of Dr. Royall's Christian
influence on the average student is the following from Dr. J. L.
Kesler, a member of the class of 1891, who was and has continued a
layman. He says:
As a man and a Christian, a quietness and loveliness, an entire naturalness and
absence of pretense of any sort, gave one an impression of a reserve and sincerity
rarely felt, and commanded a deep reverence and love from his students. I never
knew a student, nor. any one else who knew him, who did not love Dr. W. B.
Royall. His Christianity was inseparable from his life. The man and the Christian
were one. To one who had never believed in Christianity before, belief came easy as
he saw it in him.... He was a good friend, a quiet scholar, a great teacher, a Christian
so like Jesus that, as one recalls his life, a fuller and richer understanding of
Christianity steals out of memories like a new revelation. Him whose life made all
life better for us we can never forget.
This endowment of spiritual influence of Dr. Royall continued to
bless other generations of students during all the years of President
Poteat's administration. Though in his last years his enfeebled health
limited his activities and he was known personally to few students, his
influence was unabated.
The period of the greatest activity in religion as well as in other
things, of Dr. C. E. Taylor, Professor L. R. Mills, and Dr. John F.
Lanneau, was in the years before Poteat assumed the presidency, but
their religious interest was manifest and their influence continued
strong on the Campus.
Most active in Sunday school work were President Poteat, Dr.