came more refined, however, lines of specialty were more closely
observed, and there can be no doubt that the students were the richer
for it. By 1967 the Wake Forest English Department was widely
acknowledged as one of the strongest departments in the college and
indeed a gathering of teachers and scholars the equal of any small-
college English faculty in the country.
With the departure of Prof. Robert M. Browning for military
service early in the summer of 1943, the teaching of German was
scrapped for the duration of World War II. It was not revived until the
spring of 1947, after the faculty had noted in November of 1946 that
German courses ought to be removed from the catalog unless
"adequate provision for offering the work be assured." The admin-
istration responded by engaging Dr. C. A. Krummel, in retirement
from the Duke University faculty, to offer two elementary sections,
for which forty-one students enrolled.
Krummel stayed only the one semester, because in the meantime
Prof. James C. O'Flaherty, a graduate of Georgetown College who
was completing doctoral studies at the University of Chicago, had
been recruited to head what was then supposed to become a revived
Department of German. A young instructor from Duke, R. Johnson
Watts, was brought in to assist O'Flaherty, although he also taught
Spanish. Even so, the two were able to accommodate upwards of two
hundred students in half-a-dozen sections in the fall of 1947. With the
returning veterans, some of whom brought along European wives, the
reintroduction of German was immediately popular, and Professor
O'Flaherty made it even more so by organizing a German Club which
went on trips, had songfests and Christmas parties, and in general
explored German culture.
A separate budget was adopted for German in 1948-49, to further
its eventual designation as a department, and even though Dr. Tribble,
apparently unaware of the circumstances of O'Flaherty's appointment,
resisted that move, German operated as a de facto department until
1957-58, when it was merged with Modern Languages. It was not
until 1961 that the Department of German was actually created with
O'Flaherty as chairman.
In the meantime, Watts left the faculty in 1951 and was succeeded
Previous Page Next Page