previous next
[p. 10] August, 1837, he quoted from a petition to the Legislature the previous winter, and said, ‘The committee of the institute in their petition gave their evidence before the world in these words, ‘A very large number of both sexes who teach the summer and winter schools are to a mournful degree wanting in all these qualifications, in short, they know not what to teach, nor how to teach, nor in what spirit to teach, nor what is the nature of those they undertake to lead, nor what they are themselves to stand forward to lead them.’’

I will not ask you to burden your minds with these quotations, for it is certain that some of the words will stay by you, such as, ‘young and ignorant persons,’ ‘starved by parsimony,’ ‘hovel,’ ‘farmer's apprentice,’ ‘excitement about new chimney.’ These conditions, mind you, were in Massachusetts, not in some border territory or frontier settlement, and the time was the third and fourth decades of the last century.

But it must not be supposed that all were indifferent to the existence of such deplorable conditions. The work of these men is fully discussed by Dr. Hinsdale in his ‘Life of Horace Mann,’1 in the chapter on ‘Horace Mann's Forerunners.’ In this he aims ‘to name the principal of Mr. Mann's precursors, and briefly to characterize their work.’ The bibliography of the educational work is large and complete, and an investigator will find much that will interest him if he compares and contrasts the plans proposed. But in such a paper as this, which treats of the definite work of Charles Brooks, it would be wandering from the subject and would tend to confusion if an attempt were made to treat of the general work and of what others were doing, except as such work was related to that which Brooks marked out to be done by himself. Brooks did a definite and specific work. Its inception, its progress, and its consummation, all are clearly defined.

That Brooks did have a clear and definite purpose

1 Horace Mann and the Common School Revival in the United States, by B. A. Hinsdale, Ph.D. Ll.D. Professor of the Science and the Art of Teaching in the University of Michigan. New York, Chas. Scribner's Sons, 1808.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
United States (United States) (1)
Michigan (Michigan, United States) (1)
Massachusetts (Massachusetts, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Horace Mann (4)
Charles Brooks (4)
B. A. Hinsdale (2)
Charles Scribner (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
August, 1837 AD (1)
1808 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: