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Alabama.... 1819 1819 Schools to be encouraged; university .. 107 Missouri

1820 1820 Superintendent; board of education ;

separate colored schools; university
and school fund; no township receives
money from school fund unless a school
has been taught three months ; new

voters after 1866 to read and write.... 108 Arkansas 1836 | 1836 Schools to be encouraged.....

110 Michigan 16:37 | 1837 Superintendent; board of education ;

public schools kept at least threo
months annually; normal, agricultu-

ral, university, and benevolent schools. 110 Florida

1845 1845 School fund to be kept inviolate..... 112 Texas

1845 1845 Superintendent; board of education ;

school and university fund; tax levied
on colored persons to be used for col-
ored schools..

113 Iowa ...

1846 1846 Board of education; school funds and
school lands...

115 Wisconsin ..... 1848 1848 Superintendent; school fund; school li.

braries; towns to raise by taxation at
least one half the sum annually re-
ceived from school fund..

117 California ...... 1849 1849 Superintendent; school and university

funds; public schools to be kept three
months each year..

119 Minnesota

1858 1858 School fund and lands; university .. 119 Oregon

1859 1839 Superintendent; school land commis-
sioners; university....

120 Kansas

1839 1859 Superintendent: common, normal, agri

cultural, and university schools ;
school lands to be sold by vote of

121 West Virginia... 1862 1863 Superintendent; school fund

122 Nevada

1864 1804 Superintendent; school fund; univer

sity : tax on property for schools.... 123 Nebraska

1867 1867 School lands not to be sold for less than
$5 per acre..



The past and present constitutional provisions of the several States of the Union relative to education exhibit the growth of the national sentiment in favor of, and the present strong attachment to, the public school system. In the early reconstruction of political organizations, rendered imperative by a separation from Great Britain, only a few States recognized in their organic law the necessity of providing for the diffusion of intelligence among the people, and this recognition expressed in general terms. But within the last half century the constitutions of the States, admitted from time to time in the Union, have become more and more emphatic in the declaration, that it is the wisest economy and the highest duty to provide for an efficient and uniform system of public schools.

The New England States having incorporated a public school system with their earliest organizations, in emerging from their colonial condition, had no occasion to provide specially for it in their first State constitutions.

First settlement, 1620. Area 7,800 sqnare miles.


610,840 1800.

423, 245

737,699 1810 472, 040

994,514 1820. 523, 827

1, 231, 066 In 1636, six years after the first settlement of Boston, the General Court of the colony of Massachusetts Bay, vhich met in Boston on the 8th of September, passed an act appropriating £400 toward the establishment of a college. The sum thus appropriated was more than the whole tax levied on the colony at that time in a single year, and the population scattered through ten or twelve villages did not exceed five thousand persons; but among them were eminent graduates of the University of Cambridge, in England, and all were here for purposes of permanent settlement. In 1638 John Harvard left by will the sum of £779 in money, and a library of over three hundred books. In 1640, the General Court granted to the college the income of the Charlestown ferry; and in 1642, the Governor, with the magistrates and teachers and




elders 'were empowered to establish statutes and constitutions for the infant institution; and in 1650 a charter was granted, which was protected by an article in the constitution of 1780 and still remains the fundamental law of the oldest literary institution in this country.

In 1642 the attention of the General Court was turned to the subject of family instruction in the following enactment:

Forasmuch as the good education of children is of siugular behoof and benefit to any commonwealth; and whereas many parents and masters are too indulgent and negligent of their duty in this kind:

It is therefore ordered by this Court and the authority thereof, That the selectmen of every town, in the several precincts and quarters where they dwell, shall have a vigilant eye over their brethren and neighbors, to see, first, that none of them shall suffer so much barbarism in any of their families, as not to endeavor to teach, by themselves or others, their children and apprentices so much learning as may enable them perfectly to read the English tongue, and knowledge of the cap: ital laws, upon penalty of twenty shillings for each neglect therein; also, that all masters of families do, once a week, at least, catechise their children and servants in the grounds and principles of religion, and if any be unable to do so much, that then, at the least, they procure such children or apprentices to learn some short orthodox catechism, without book, that they may be able to answer to the questions that shall be propounded to them out of such catechisms by their parents or masters, or any of the selectmen, where they sball call them to a trial of what they have learned in this kind; and further, that all parents and masters do breed and bring up their children and apprentices in some honest lawful calling, labor, or employment, either in husbandry or some other trade profitable for themselves and the commonwealth, if they will not nor cannot train them up in learning to fit them for higher employments; and if any of the selectmen, after admonition by thèm given to such masters of families, shall find them still negligent of their duty in the particulars aforementioned, whereby children and servants become rude, stubborn, and unruly, the said selectmen, with the help of two magistrates, shall take such children or apprentices from them, and place ihem with some masters for years, boys till they come to twenty-one, and girls eighteen years of age complete, which will more strictly look unto and force them to submit unto government, according to the rules of this order, if by fair means and former instructions they will not be drawn unto it.

In the same year the following brief School Code was enacted : • It being one chief project of that old deluder, Satan, to keep men from the knowledge of the Scriptures, as in former times, keeping them in an unknown tongue, so in these latter times, by persuading from the use of tongues, so that at least the true sense and meaning of the original might be clouded and corrupted with false glosses of deceivers; and to the end that learning may not be buried in the grave of our forefathers, in church and commonwealth, the Lord assisting our endeavors :

It is therefore ordered by this Court and authority thereof, That every township within this jurisdiction, after the Lord hath increased them to the number of fifth householders, shall then forthwith appoint one within their town to teach all such children as shall resort to him, to write and read, whose wages shall be paid, either by the parents or masters of such children, or by the inhabitants in general, by way of supply, as the major part of those who order the prudentials of the town shall appoint; provided that those who send their children be not oppressed by paying much more than they can bave them taught for in other towns.

And it is further ordered, That where any town shall increase to the number of one hundred families or householders, they shall set up a grammar school, the musters thereof being able to instruct youths so far as they may be fitted for the university, and if any other town neglect the performance hereof above one year, then every such town shall pay five pounds per annum to the next such school, till they shall perform this order.

With various modifications as to details, but with the same objects


steadily in view, viz., the exclusion of" barbarism” from every, family by preventing its having even one untaught and idle child or apprentice, the maintenance of an elementary school in every neighborhood where there were children enough to constitute a school, and of a Latin school in every large town, and of a college for higher culture for the whole colony, the colonial legislature, and the people in the several towns in Massachusetts, maintained an educational system, which, although not as early or as thorough as the school code of Saxony and Wirtemburg, has expanded with the growth of the community in population, wealth, and industrial development, and stimulated and shaped the legislation of other States in behalf of universal education.

The article on education in the constitution of 1780 was one of the first ever incorporated into the organic law of a State. Section 2, making imperative on legislators and magistrates to encourage the interests of literature and the sciences, and all seminaries of them, was framed by John Adams, and has been retained until this day without the slightest alteration,

The University at Cambridge, and Encouragement of Literature, etc.

SECTION I.-THE UNIVERSITY. Art. 1. Whereas our wise and pious ancestors, so early as the year one thousand six hundred and thirty-six, laid the foundation of Harvard College, in which university many persons of great eminence have, by the blessing of God, been initiated into those arts and sciences which qualitied them for public employments, both in church and state; and whereas the encouragement of the arts and sciences, and all good literature, tends to the honor of God, the advantage of the Christian religion, and the great benefit of this and the other United States of America ; it is declared that the president and fellows of Harvard College, in their corporate capacity, and their successors in that capacity, their officers and servants, shall have, hold, use, exercise, and enjoy all the powers, authorities, rights, liberties, privileges, immunities, and franchises which they now have, or are entitled to have, hold, use, exercise, and enjoy ; and the same are hereby ratified and confirmed unto them, the said president and fellows of Harvard College, and to their successors, and to their officers and servants, respectively, forever.

2. And whereas there have been, at sundry times, by divers persons, gifts, grants, devises of houses, lands, tenements, goods, chattels, legacies, and conveyances, heretofore made, either to Harvard College, in Cambridge, in New England, or to the president and fellows of Harvard College, or to the said collego by some other description, under several charters successively-it is declared, that all the said gifts, grants, devises, legacies, and conveyances are hereby forerer confirmed unto the president and fellows of Harvard College, and to their successors in the capacity aforesaid, according to the true intent and meaning of the donor or donors, grantor and grantors, devisor and devisors.

3. And whereas, by an act of the general court of the colony of Massachusetts Bay, passed in the year one thousand six hundred and forty-two, the governor and deputy governor for the time being, and all the magistrates of that jurisdiction, were, with the president and a number of the clergy in the said act described, constituted the overseers of Harvard College; and it being necessary in this new constitution of government to ascertain who shall be deemed successors to tho said governor, deputy governor, and magistrates, it is declared that the governor

, lieutenant governor, council, and senate of this commonwealth are and shall be deemed their successors; who, with the president of Harvard College for the time being, together with the ministers of the Congregational churches in the towns of Cambridge, Watertown, Charlestown, Boston, Roxbury, and Dorchester, mentioned in the said act, shall be, and hereby are, vested with all the powers and authority belonging or in any way appertaining to the overseers of Harvard Col. lege: Provided, That nothing herein shall be construed to prevent the legislature of this commonwealth from making such alterations in the government of the said university as shall be conducive to its advantage, and the interest of the republic of letters, in as full a manner as might have been done by the legislature of the late province of Massachusetts Bay.

SECTION II.-THE ENCOURAGEMENT OF LITERATURE. Wisdom and knowledge, as well as virtue, diffused generally among the body of the people, being necessary for the preservation of their rights and liberties, and as these depend on spreading the opportunities and advantages of education in the various parts of the country, and among the different orders of the people, it shall be the duty of the legislatures and magistrates, in all future periods of this commonwealtli, to cherish the interest of literature and the sciences and all seminaries of them, especially the university at Cambridge, public schools, and grammar schools in the towns; to encourage private societies and public institutions, by rewards and immunities for the promotion of agriculture, arts, sciences, commerce, trades, manufactures, and a natural history of the country: to countenance and inculcate the principles of humanity and general benevolence, public and private charity, industry and frugality, honesty and punctuality in all their dealings; sincerity, good humor, and all social affections and generous sentiments among the people.

The history of the influences that led to the introduction of section second of this article was given by Mr. Adams in 1809. (Works iv, p. 259.)

“In travelling from Boston to Philadelphia in 1774-5-6-7, I had several times amused myself at Norwalk, Connecticut, with the very curious collection of birds and insects of American production made by Mr. Arnold, a collection which he afterwards sold to Governor Tryon, who sold it to Sir Ashton Lever, in whose apartments in London I afterwards viewed it again. This collection was so singular a thing that it made a deep impression on me, and I could not but consider it a reproach to my country that so little was known even to herself of her natural history.

“When I was in Europe in the years 1778 and 1779, in the commission to the King of France with Dr. Franklin and Mr. Arthur Lee, I had opportunity to see the King's collection and many others, which increased my wishes that nature might be examined and studied in my own country as it was in others.

In France, among the academicians and other men of science and letters, I was frequently entertained with inquiries concerning the Philosophical Society at Philadelphia, and with eulogiums on the wis: dom of that institution and encomiums on some publications of their transactions.



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