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from the academical and 97 from the law department. The first president was a native of Scotland. Presidents Wilson and Turner were both of Virginia descent,
In 1893 State Superintendent Morgan was succeeded by Mr. Virgil A. Lewis, who served the State four years. In his first biennial report, covering the two years ending June 30, 1893, and June 30, 1894, the new superintendent takes up the strain of exposing the defects of the State school system. “That educational system which expends thousands of dollars to maintain a State university and State normal schools and yet leaves whole counties in the State unable to have more than two or three months of primary schools in a year is a system which is radically wrong. There appears but one way to accomplish the desired result, to increase the State school tax by decreasing the State tax for general purposes." In 1891 the State superintendent was instructed to prepare a manual and graded course of primary instruction for the country and village schools of the State. Under this provision such a manual was prepared.
The West Virginia institution for training colored teachers was opened May 3, 1893, at Farm, Randolph County, with an academical and normal connected with an agricultural and mechanical department. Its attendance was 1 for every 637 of the colored population of the State. Of 13 private and denominational institutions of learning in the State Bethany College, at Bethany, was still the most important. The West Virginia State University in 1894, twenty-seven years after its establishment, reported 7,047 volumes in the library, 16 instructors, 21 women and 224 men in attendance as students, with 36 graduates at its last commencement, and a total property value of $300,000. In 1893 the State made an educational exhibit at the World's Fair in Chicago. A respectable show of the result of popular education in the State was placed on exhibition in the 500 square feet granted for its reception. The recent superintendent, Dr. B. S. Morgan, with a committee of 14 of the leading educators of the State, was intrusted with the display.
One of the most valuable contributions to educational reform during the administration of Superintendent Lewis was his publication of a manual, West Virginia School Laws and Decisions. This volume, of more than 200 pages, contains the school law passed in 1881, with amendments for almost every year until 1894.
After four years of service, during which every section of the State had been traversed, Superintendent Lewis presented his final report for 1895–96. In this it appears that the number of youth from 6 to 16 in the State in 1896 was 296,517. Of these, 215,665 had been enrolled in schools, 80,825 being reported as out of school; 114,181 in average daily attendance. There were 47 independent, 381 magisterial, and 5,413 regular school districts and 4,750 schoolhouses. The total value of school property was $2,462,196. Of the 6,219 teachers, 2,529 were women and 235 colored, only 237 of whom were graduates from the 6 normal schools. The average length of the school term was 5,55 months—111 days. The average salary paid the teachers was $27.39 per month. The total amount expended for schools in 1896 was $2,069,725.53; $12.62 per capita on average daily attendance and $6.12 for persons of school age. The average rate of taxation on $100 was 37 cents and 3 mills in State and 22 cents and 4 mills in the local levy. The total valuation of property in the State had risen to $215,669,937. “The State of West Virginia in 1896 expended the larger portion of its revenue for the education of the children."
During the administration of Superintendent Lewis the State made its first provision for the selecting and distributing of a series of schoolbooks.
The successor of Superintendent Lewis during the four closing years of the century was Mr. J. R. Trotter. During his administration more attention was given to the collection of school libraries. His reports, though crowded with suggestions for the strengthening of the weak places of the system, present on the whole a hopeful view of the general condition of education in West Virginia. He says: “Within a decade an increase of $750,000 has been made in the total expenditure, which in 1898 was $1,960,413.54—all save $349,982.22 from district levies. This, with added appropriations for special schools, including $36,550 for the university and $47,304.50 for the normal schools, raised the total expenditure in 1898 to $2,106,768.04—$6.48 per capita of enumerated pupils; the increase being 6 per cent in teachers' wages and 64 per cent in value of school property in ten years. The total enumeration of pupils in 1898 was 302,354, with 158,527 in daily attendance, an increase in ten years of 44.3 and 47.6 per cent, respectively. In 1897 the legislature had responded to the demand for a compulsory school attendance law, requiring all children between 8 and 14 to attend school at least sixteen weeks every year, with the result that in one county there was an increased attendance of 40 per cent. The general school fund in 1898 amounted to $924,000, with an income of $40,967.70, although West Virginia had never received the Congressional appropriation for common schools which began with Ohio and had been continued to all States afterwards admitted to the Union, with the exception of Texas. The State university in 1898 showed an increase of attendance of over 200 per cent and contained 9 courses leading to regular degrees, besides several in addition. Dr. Jerome Hall Raymond was president, with 23 professors, 3 assistant professors, and 15 instructors. During the administration of President Trotter the school system of the State moved with additional momentum, a gradual and healthy increase in all directions being noted. A compulsory school law enacted in 1897 had somewhat increased the attend nce. Teachers' wages were crawling upward and school buildings improved. In 1897 there were 7,197 public school teachers in the State, of whom 58.9 per cent were men. The average length of the school term had reached 5.3 months.
From 1863 until 1900 the office of State superintendent of free schools had been filled by 11 gentlemen. An interesting portion of the official report of Superintendent Trotter is a biography of these gentlemen. The West Virginia School Journal since 1881 had been a valuable contributor to educational progress.
The decade closing with the century-1890–1900—was in all respects the most remarkable in the brief educational history of less than forty years of the statehood of West Virginia. So marked had these ten years been in material importance and the discovery of the physical resources of the State that the mother Commonwealth in several respects had been outstripped by her more vigorous and prosperous daughter. During this period the educational life of the Commonwealth had partially outgrown many of the defects which for thirty years had been the burden of the criticism of its more competent educators. The State University, including the agricultural and manufacturing departments, in 1900 was organized into 11 departments, one-half of them having been established during the past ten years and all the others improved. The attendance had risen from 208 in 1890 to 882 in 1901. The faculty was increased to 70 members, and it is claimed that the type of instruction and illustration had cori
orrespondingly grown. Forty-two college courses were offered to each student. The revenues from all sonrces in 1902 were $220,000. The enlarged campus contained 25 acres, with a superb overlook of the valley of the Monongahela River. A farm of 100 acres had recently been added. The 10 university buildings are grouped around the original university hall. Presidents Turner, Reynolds, Knight, and Raymond had during the last years contributed largely to the development, and in 1901 Prof. D. B. Purinton, an alumnus of the institution and for several years a member of its faculty, was elected president, and Dr. John A. Myers, Ph. D., was made director of the agricultural experiment station. In 1895 preparatory schools of the university were established at Montgomery, Fayette County, and at Keyser, Mineral County. The 6 normal schools had been largely developed, and the appropriations made in their behalf in 1902 amounted to $382,579. They were all coeducational, with uniform courses of study. Their academic course prepared students for entrance to the university and the normal for practical teaching. In 1902 there were nearly 1,000 students, with 102 graduates. Since its establishment all the university departments had included 23,790 students and 1,704 graduates.
Of the West Virginia cities, Wheeling, the original public school city of the State, was still the most important. In 1900 it reported a school system in which each election district of the city was a subschool district. Under this arrangement there were 8 schools, each with 4 divisions. The high school contained 308 pupils, with a faculty of 9 instructors. The entire system was conducted at an expense of $94,446.21. The cost per pupil on enrollment was $13.78 and on average daily attendance $25.35. Annual institutes were held for the benefit of the city teachers.
Next to Wheeling in educational importance is the city of Parkersburg, which in 1900 rated the value of school property at $108,980; number of pupils enrolled, 2,117; number of teachers, 44. As early as 1859 a movement was made which six years later resulted in the establishment of a system of free public schools for the city. By a special law of 1882 a board of education of 5 members, selected for four years, was empowered to levy 50 cents on $100 of valuation for teachers' salaries and 40 cents for all other purposes. This board was intrusted with complete authority to administer the educational affairs of the city, including a nine months' school term. The course of study required nine years before entering the high school, with three years in that institution. The city had been fortunate in securing able and successful meinbers of the school board and superior teachers during the thirty-eight years of its educational history. Parkersburg was the first community in West Virginia to move in the schooling of the colored race. During the civil war a private seminary for this class of pupils in the city was maintained, which in 1867 was merged in the free school system.
In 1900 colored pupils had the same course of instruction as the white pupils, and the same standard of excellence for promotion was required. In 1884 a high school for colored youth was established, with a competent instructor at its head, from which 11 pupils had been graduated. This, in 1900, was the only public high school for colored persons in the State.
In addition to these, 12 cities are represented as supporting graded systems of instruction, of which Martinsburg, Huntington, and Charleston were the most important. The value of school property in Charleston, the capital, in 1900, was $80,000, and the number of pupils 1,173, teachers 25. In 1900 the number of high schools in West Virginia had risen to 39, graded schools 813, common schools 5,186; total, 6,038. The unification of the school system had also made good progress.
Besides the school system the State of West Virginia in 1900 contained a number of colleges, of which Bethany is the oldest and probably remains the best. Twenty of these institutes, under different names, appear in the valuable History of Education in West Virginia, by Professor Whitehill, to which the reader is referred for details.
The State of West Virginia at the beginning of the new century appears with a total area of 24.780 square miles, 135 square miles in water surface. Its extreme length is 240 and its greatest breadth 160 miles. It is one of the most irregular in outline east of the Mississippi Valley, almost entirely mountainous or hilly, although the hills can often be cultivated to their summits. The number of farms was estimated at 75,000, and more than one-half the population of the State
was engaged in farming. It is the favorite home of the blue grass. Its mining · and manufacturing possibilities are enormous, fully two-thirds of the State being underlaid with beds of coal. In 1890 the State was fourth in the Union in the manufacture of rolled iron and steel and tenth in the output of pig iron. In the production of coal it is only excelled by Pennsylvania, Illinois, and Ohio, and in natural gas its production is rapidly increasing. Its great variety of hardwood forests makes it one of the leading States in the production of this valuable lumber. The situation of the State, a mountain rampart between the East and Central West, in connection with its marvelous resources and rapid development in various forms of industry, combined with the educational history of the past forty years, justifies the most enthusiastic expectations for its eminent rank in the Union at a not far distant future.
During the four years of the continuance of the civil war, owing to the proxe imity to the city of Washington the political affairs of Maryland were largely dominated by the National Government. During the year 1864 the first serious attempt was made in Maryland toward the establishment of the American system of common schools for “all sorts and conditions of people.” A convention representing the loyal element of the population placed in a new constitution, October 12–13, 1864, the following provision for education:
ART. 43. That the legislature ought to encourage the diffusion of knowledge and virtue, the extension of a judicious system of general education, the promotion of literature, the arts, sciences, agriculture, commerce, and manufactures, and the general melioration of the condition of the people.
ARTICLE VIII.- Education.
SEC. 1. The governor shall, within thirty days after the ratification by the people of this constitution, appoint, subject to the confirmation of the senate, at its first session thereafter, a State superintendent of public instruction, who shall hold his office for four years and until his successor shall have been appointed and shall have been qualified. He shall receive an annual salary of $2,500 and such additional sum for traveling and incidental expenses as the general assembly may by law allow; shall report to the general assembly, within thirty days after the commencement of its first session under this constitution, a uniform system of free public schools, and shall perform such other duties pertaining to his office as may from time to time be prescribed by law.
SEC. 2. There shall be a State board of education, consisting of the governor, the lieutenant-governor, and speaker of the house of delegates, and the State superintendent of public instruction, which board shall perform such duties as the general assembly may direct.
SEC. 3. There shall be in each county such number of school commissioners as the State superintendent of public instruction shall deem necessary, who shall be appointed by the State board of education, shall hold office for four years, and shall perform such duties and receive such compensation as the general assembly or State superintendent may direct. The school commissioners of Baltimore City shall remain as at present constituted, and shall be appointed, as at present, by the mayor and city council, subject to such alterations and amendments as may be made from time to time by the general assembly or the said mayor and city council.
SEC. 4. The general assembly, at its first session after the adoption of this constitution, shall provide a uniform system of free public schools, by which a school shall be kept open and supported, free of expense for tuition, in each school district for at least six months in each year; and in case of failure on the part of the general assembly so to provide, the system reported to it by the State superintendent of public instruction shall become the system of free public schools of the State: Provided, That the report of the State superintendent shall be in conformity with the provisions of this constitution, and such system shall be subject to such alterations, conformable to this article, as the general assembly may from time to time enact.
SEC. 5. The general assembly shall levy, at each regular session after the adoption of this constitution, an annual tax of not less than 10 cents on each hundred dollars of taxable property throughout the State, for the support of the free public schools, which tax shall be collected at the same time and by the same agents as the general State levy, and shall be paid into the treasury of the State, and shall be distributed, under such regulations as may be prescribed by law, among the counties and the city of Baltimore, in proportion to their respective population between the ages of 5 and 20 years: Provided, That the general assembly shall not levy any additional school tax upon particular counties unless such county express by popular vote its desire for such tax. The city of Baltimore shall provide for its additional school tax as at present, or as may hereafter be provided by the general assembly, or by the mayor and city council of Baltimore.
SEC. 6. The general assembly shall further provide by law at its first session after the adoption of this constitution a fund for the support of free public schools of the State by the imposition of an annual tax of not less than 5 cents on each $100 of taxable property throughout the State, the proceeds of which tax shall be known as the public school fund, and shall be invested by the treasurer, together with its annual interest, until such time as said fund shall by its own increase and any addition which may be made to it from time to time, together with the present school fund, amount to $6,000,000, when the tax of 10 cents on the $100 authorized by the preceding section may be discontinued in whole or in part, as the general assembly may direct. The principal fund of $6,000,000 hereby provided shall remain forever inviolate as the free public school fund of the State, and the annual interest of said school fund shall be disbursed for educational purpose only, as may be prescribed by law.
On November 12, 1865, Governor Bradford appointed Rev. L. Van Bokkelen superintendent of public schoɔls, with orders to report within thirty days a complete system of education for the State. The new superintendent proceeded at once to acquire such information as was possible concerning the actual condition of educational affairs in the 24 counties of Maryland. These counties contained an area ranging from 250 to 630 square miles and a population varying from 91,860 to 434,439 in Baltimore City. The total physical area was 9,660 square miles and its population 1,042,000, with great diversity of surface, from the mountains of the Allegheny on the north to the broad plain on the eastern shore. Seventeen of the 20 counties were virtually a seacoast district and 7 had the Patapsco River for their western boundary.
The new superintendent soon learned that whatever may huve been the condition of educational affairs in 1860, the Stats had greatly suffered in this respect by the continuance of the four years of civil war. In addition to the burdens which this great conflict imposed on all the loyal States, there was the additional pressure from a considerable portion of the population of Maryland who favored the cause of the Syuthern Confederacy. The State had lived in constant apprehension of being made the battle ground of the contending parties, more than one important engagement having taken place on or adjacent to its northern boundary. While awaiting returns from his letters of inquiry addressed to the county authorities, the superintendent visited several of the Northern States to study their systems of public education and obtain copies of their State school laws. The reports from the counties were far from satisfactory. With few exceptions the school authorities were unable to reply to the larger number of the queries, because they had no system of reports from teachers or commissioners. The conclusion reached from what was received was that, in his words, “the information collected presents clear and unimpeachable evidence that we have to begin about at the foundation and recast anew the educational edifice.”
In his preliminary address to the general assembly of the State the superintendent boldly faces the situation and proposes nothing less than a complete system of public instruction for the entire white school population, with an earnest plea that the colored children and youth, one-fourth the entire number in the State, should be included in its benefits. The fundamental principles of the system, according to him, should be: “(1) Education ought to be universal; (2) the education ought