High Points and Low 89
visioned. For the twenty-two buildings projected as ultimately nec-
essary, the cost was estimated at between twenty-five and thirty
million. Inflation was to make even those figures unrealistic.
In the summer of 1952 work on the chapel had to be suspended
because of a nationwide steel strike, but construction resumed in
August. In September the library project was begun with the science
building to be next in line. At that point Dr. Tribble reported that $8.6
million had been contributed to the Enlargement Program, and it was
anticipated that the college could move some time in 1954. By the
summer of 1953, the fund-raisers had brought in $9.3 million, and Dr.
Tribble injected a wry note into a June 20 report in the Biblical
Recorder. Of the three thousand Baptist churches in North Carolina,
he said, nineteen hundred had made no contribution at all. "To date
the major share of the funds secured for building the new campus has
come from outside our constituency," he said.
On October 3, 1953, the cornerstones were laid for the three
buildings nearest completion. The main speakers at the attendant
ceremony were Senator Alton A. Lennon of North Carolina; Dr. C.
Oscar Johnson, a St. Louis pastor; Dr. Martin D. Whitaker, president
of Lehigh University and, like Lennon, a Wake Forest alumnus. In his
address Senator Lennon said:
We are changing the site of Wake Forest, but we aren't changing the
spirit. We are improving its facilities, we are increasing its scope and size,
but we cannot and must not change the principles, the fellowship of human
understanding that have been so much a part of Wake Forest since the day
of its humble beginnings.
Wake Forest is not a monument of mere brick or stone or mortar. It is,
rather, a monument of faith in man and love of God. And every Wake Forest
alumnus knows that in Forsyth County as in Wake, Wake Forest College
will ever remain true to its founders who established an institution that
would extend the light of life to mankind…. Our finest hour lies ahead of us.
In the cornerstones were placed such items as volumes of Dr.
Paschal's history, fragments of brick from the old campus, trustee
resolutions, newspapers, coins, presidential photographs, copies of the
Bible, a magnolia leaf, and a vial of earth from the Calvin Jones farm,
birthplace of the
college.4
Previous Page Next Page