High Points and Low
To say that the college was making no headway in its Enlargement
Program in 1950 is to understate the seriousness of the problem. In
the year before Dr. Tribble's arrival the college was actually spending
more for fund-raising than it was bringing in. The last substantial
campaign, concluded in 1948, had been that in Winston-Salem and
Forsyth County, in which 5,936 contributors had oversubscribed the
goal of $1.5 million. Dissatisfaction with the pace of development led
the Board of Trustees to terminate the contract with the American
City Bureau on June 30, 1950.
There were still some who would put up a good front. Odus Mull,
in a February speech to the Winston-Salem Rotary Club, said that "the
campaign for Wake Forest College is the most successful general
campaign that has ever been conducted in North Carolina…. More
than 100,000 pledges made the greatest public response that has ever
been made."
Other loyal supporters of the college were less optimistic. On
February 21, 1950, Irving Carlyle wrote a letter to Judge Hubert E.
Olive expressing his dismay over flagging Baptist support of the
removal program. "I am getting fed up with all the fuss that has been
raised about all the questions at issue," he wrote. "There is so much
division among everybody and all groups on all these questions that I
am frankly losing hope about ever achieving any unity and getting the
thing done. We seem to be incapable of getting together on any
program and having any unity among the Baptists for any worthwhile
achievement." 1
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