Imágenes de páginas

to Franklin's grave. And if that statue could speak to-day, it would tell you that while Massachusetts may be a good state to be born in, Pennsylvania is a good state to live and to be buried in. I could refer you to other men, who, born in New England, have come to Pennsylvania to live and to die. Need I name THADDEUS STEVENS, whose work in the cause of education and of freedom will not be forgotten? He was born among the hills of Vermont, but he came to live in Pennsylvania, and to be buried under her sod.

Then, too, from the land of the Quakers, more recently, during the late war, we sent 360,000 armed men to fight the battles of the country, and in its high tide the rebellion swept up into Pennsylvania, where it met its death-blow on the field of Gettysburg. And there are sleeping in the cemetery at Gettysburg, to-day, the sons of Massachusetts, of New England, New York, and of the great West, quietly alongside the sons of Pennsylvania.

But educationally Pennsylvania will measure up along with the other proud states of the Union. We will expend, this year, for purposes of education, the magnificent sum of $10,000,000. We have built school-houses to the extent of $4,000,000. We have more than 18,000 teachers. We have six normal schools, and shall have ten before the end of another year. And last, but not least, Pennsylvania is taking care of her soldiers' orphans. She has collected all those left destitute by the death of their fathers, and is educating them for the duties of life. We believe we have done more than all the states together for this good purpose. [Applause.] Pennsylvania does not intend to stop in this work, but to go on educationally, and patriotically, till the land of Penn shall stand among the foremost in the Union.

Hon. John Swett, of California, then gave a humorous speech, recapitulating some of his experiences during his twenty years' absence from New England, and promising for California a worthy future in every thing that goes to make a state.

Col. Joseph Hodgson, of Alabama, was then introduced. He said: Ladies and Gentlemen, the speaker who preceded me remarked that he had almost lost his identity; I assure you, my friends, that I feel as if I had entirely lost mine. Appearing before a Boston audience, in Faneuil Hall, is an event in the life of any southern man.

Speaking in this presence, speaking with these illustrious faces looking down upon us, I feel how inadequate any words that I can express are to meet the requirements of the occasion. I come before you, my friends, as a southern man, from a young state which has no historical antecedents to boast of. It is my pride that I was born and reared in that state, which was the peer of Massachusetts, and the portrait of whose son looks down upon you from that ceiling. I glory in being a southern man, I glory in the illustrious memories and the magnificent achievements of those statesmen who, for half a century, moulded the destinies of the American Republic. That institution which separated those statesmen from your own, upon one point of domestic policy, is gone for ever. [Applause.] The enlightened mind of southern statesmen admits the death of that institution, and they stand ready to-day, by voice and by act, to abide the issues of the war in all their length and breadth. [Applause.]

I speak as a representative man of the State of Alabama, a man who has been elected by what is known as the Conservative or Democratic party of that state; I speak as one who, when he had barely entered his majority, joined the Confederate army and fought until the close of the war; and I speak as one who, when our army surrendered at Appomatox, and the magnanimity of the Federal Government, represented by the good-hearted LINCOLN, received us as friends and brothers, determined, so help me God, to meet that magnanimity, that generosity, with the soul of a patriot and a Christian. [Great Applause.]

I have come before this National Educational Association, my friends, to offer one word of appeal in behalf of the poor South. There is a grave in every yard; there are shrines in every household; there are devastated fields; there are the faces of over-wrought labor and of poverty. With wonderful resources, we are the poorest people upon the face of the globe. A new population has been thrown upon our hands for education. More than half of the adults of the State of Alabama can not read and write. With the addition of this colored population, more than half of the voters of a state that numbers one million people can not read the ballots they place in the ballot-box. In the Gulf States there are a million and a half of illiterate voters. Out of the six million votes which will be cast at the next Presidential election, nearly one-fourth of them will be cast by men who can not read or write their names. The republican institutions, given by WASHINGTON and sealed by WEBSTER, are in the hands of a vast population utterly ignorant of the great questions of the day, which will affect the vital interests of the republic for all future time.

Nor is this illiteracy entirely confined to the black population. Through the four terrible years of war, when the cradle and the grave were robbed for soldiers, our poor white children had no means to attend even a primary school. In the four years that immediately followed the war, those years of terrible poverty, there was limited opportunity for instruction. Eight years have passed, and a generation of young men has arisen, men in whose veins runs the blood of the Saxon race, men whose ancestors stood by WASHINGTON, and whose fathers stood with WEBSTER, a large number of whom have been deprived of education. In behalf of that population I appeal, here in Faneuil Hall; I appeal by the glorious recollections of the past; I appeal by the sacred history of our fathers; I appeal by all the charity of a Christian people; I appeal to you, good people, men and women of Boston, to this National Teachers' Association, to come forward as patriots and Christians and extend the hands of fellowship to the poor, unfortunate people of my section. [Applause.]

I have asked the National Association to call upon the Congress of the United States to make a land-grant in aid of education in the Southern States. A bill to that effect passed the lower house at the last session. I ask that this Association and these good people lend their aid, not only to secure the passage of that act by the Senate, but I ask them to do more, to give us a more liberal grant; I ask them, in the name of republican institutions, to consecrate every acre of the public lands of the United States to the cause of public instruction. The millions of acres of public lands in the Southern States I know do not yield enough to pay the expenses of the land-offices. There are five millions of acres in Alabama which, if granted to the state to build up a system of public schools, would in a few years give us a system which I believe we should not be ashamed to place side by side with those of the older states.

Public instruction is a growth. My friend Mr. White remarked that there had been no advance in public instruction in Massachusetts. But, if I remember correctly, he remarked, a day or two ago, that for one hundred and fifty years females were not educated in the public schools of Massachusetts. Has there been no advance there? Colored people have not been admitted into the schools of Alabama. Now they are all admitted.

I thank you for your courtesy, and I conclude by expressing the gratification which I feel in having made this visit to Boston; and I assure you that our good people in Alabama already are willing and anxious to march by your side forward in this good cause of education. [Applause.]

Mr. W. T. Harris, Superintendent of Public Schools in Missouri, was next introduced. He compared the East and the West, speaking of the former as the realization of hopes and the latter as the land of dreams and expectations, and spoke of the influence this country must wield in the future in furnishing the directive power of the world, in a great measure.

Rev. Dr. Waterston, at this point, brought the speaking to a close, wishing the members of the Association much of success and happiness in the future. A short time more was spent in social conversation and leave-takings, and one by one the company departed.

S. H. WHITE, Secretary.


Among many other letters received at the meeting in Boston was the following, which, by mistake, was not read at that time.

DES MOINES, IOWA, July 30, 1872. Hon. E. E. WHITE, Prest. National Teachers' Association, Boston.

Dear Sir: The educators of Europe are looking with the deepest interest upon the progress of the schools in this land of republican institutions. As you noticed in the Universal German Teachers' Association' that met at Hamburg, May 20, 21 and 22, 1872, one of the most earnest and most successful educators of their number, Dr. LANGE, suggested an elementary school system for the Empire of Germany similar to that in most of the states of this republic, This Dr. LANGE questioned me most minutely, before this convention, about the American system of schools, and expressed his delight at the progress of education in this country. He complimented the American nation as one of the most practical people in the world. On the Continent and in Great Britain, every where I visited, the highest encomiums were bestowed upon our system of popular education in the United States. While this is encouraging, we can still learn much from our trans-Atlantic co-workers about the true science and most skillful methods of instruction. Just such associations as the one of which you are the honored president will do much to unite educationists in the New and the Old World, as well as to awaken a professional sympathy and coöperation in the noble cause of human culture throughout the whole world. Hence, accept my most sincere regrets in not being able to attend the present National Teachers' Association, and permit me, through you, to express to the Convention my deep-felt interest in its progress and certain success. Very respectfully,






To elevate the character and advance the interests of the profession of teaching, and to promote the cause of popular education in the United States, we, whose names are subjoined, agree to adopt the following


This Association shall be styled the National Educational Association.

ARTICLE II.- DEPARTMENTS. 21. It shall consist of four Departments: the first, of School Superintendence; the second, of Normal Schools; the third, of Elementary Schools; and the fourth, of Higher Instruction.

22. Other Departments may be organized in the manner prescribed in this Constitution.

ARTICLE III.-MEMBERSHIP. 21. Any person in any way connected with the work of education shall be eligible to membership. Such person may become a member of the Association by paying two dollars and signing this Constitution; and he may continue a member by the payment of an annual fee of one dollar. On his neglect to pay such fee his membership shall cease.

22. Each department may prescribe its own conditions of membership, provided that no person be admitted to such membership who is not a member of the general Association.

23. Any person eligible to membership may become a life member by paying, at once, ten dollars.

ARTICLE IV.-OFFICERS. 21. The officers of this Association shall be a President, twelve Vice-Presidents, a Secretary, a Treasurer, one Counselor for each state, district, or territory, represented in the Association, and the officers charged with the administration of their respective departments.

22. The President, Vice-Presidents, Secretary, Treasurer, Counselors, and presiding officers of their respective departments, shall constitute the Board of Directors, and, as such, shall have power to appoint such committees from their own number as they shall deem expedient.

23. The officers of the Association shall be chosen by ballot, unless otherwise ordered, on the second day of each annual session, a majority of the votes cast being necessary for a choice. They shall continue in office until the close of the annual session subsequent to their election, and until their sụccessors are chosen.

24. Each department shall be administered by a President, Vice-President, Secretary, and such other officers as it shall deem necessary to conduct its affairs,

25. The President shall preside at all meetings of the Association and of the Board of Directors, and shall perform the duties usually devolving upon a presiding officer. In his absence, the First Vice-President in order who is present shall preside; and in the absence of all the Vice-Presidents, a pro-tempore Chairman shall be appointed on nomination, the Secretary putting the question.

26. The Secretary shall keep a full and accura record of the proceedings of the general meetings of the Association and all meetings of the Board of Directors; shall conduct such correspondence as the Directors may assign; and shall have his records present at all meetings of the Association and of the Board of Directors. The Secretary of each department shall, in addition to performing the duties usually pertaining to his office, keep a list of the members of his department.

27. The Treasurer shall receive and hold in safe keeping all moneys paid to the Association, shall expend the same only upon the order of the Committee on Finance; shall keep an exact account of his receipts and expenditures, with vouchers for the latter, which account he shall render to the Board of Directors prior to each regular meeting of the Association, and shall also present an abstract thereof to the Association. He shall give bonds for the faithful discharge of his duties as may be required by the Board of Directors.

28. The Board of Directors shall have power to fill all vacancies in their own body; shall have in charge the general interests of the Association; shall make all necessary arrangements for its meetings; and shall do all in their power to make it a useful and honorable institution. Upon the written application of twenty members of the Association for permission to establish a new department, they may grant such permission. Such new department shall in all respects be entitled to the same rights and privileges as the others. The formation of such department shall in effect be a sufficient amendment to this Constitution for the insertion of its name in Article II, and the Secretary shall make the necessary alterations.

« AnteriorContinuar »