40 THE HISTORY OF WAKE FOREST COLLEGE
though it may change its outward appearance, Wake Forest must never
At the height of the public debate the Recorder reported that "it
seems to be taken for granted that the Reynolds offer will be ac-
Regarding a Baptist State Convention, however, nothing can ever
be taken for granted, least of all the number of seats the messengers
will require. On July 30, 1946, so many delegates and guests showed
up at the First Baptist Church in Greensboro that hundreds were left
milling around outside. For that reason the afternoon proceedings, in
which the debate and vote would occur, were moved to the Avcock
Memorial Auditorium on the campus of the Woman's College. It had
twenty-five hundred seats; every one was taken and there were still
several hundred people standing for three hours in the back. The
delegates (by official tally 2,245, the largest number ever to attend a
Baptist State Convention to that point) ranged in age from ten to
seventy-five. Before them was the text of the Reynolds offer signed
by the foundation trustees, a report on the status of Wake Forest's
Enlargement Program, and a gratifying new development-the offer of
a large block of prime property from the estate of R. J. Reynolds in
the Winston-Salem suburbs as the site for the new campus.
That offer came in a letter from Mr. and Mrs. Charles H. Babcock.
Addressed to the convention, it read:
Gentlemen: When Wake Forest College is prepared to break ground for a
new campus in or adjacent to Winston-Salem, we shall be pleased to
contribute a tract of land consisting of at least three hundred (300) acres,
lying within the property now known as Reynolda, to Wake Forest College.
An outstanding college planning authority has determined this tract to be a
most desirably located area for a college campus.
It is hoped that in the initial planning of the college campus, long-term
growth will be projected to include certain additional Reynolda tracts ad-
jacent to the initial tract. When such a plan has been formulated we will then
consider making future additional gifts of land consistent with the plan.
During the planning stage, please be assured access to all Reynolda land
is available to authorized representatives of Wake Forest College.