[p. 13] do something about State normal schools. This was its birth in me, and I baptized it my Seaborn School. After this I looked upon each child as a being who could complain of me before God if I refused to provide for him a better education, after what I had learned.Six months later, that is, in the spring of 1835, Dr. Julius made a visit to Mr. Brooks at Hingham, and Brooks announced that he was going to make the attempt to introduce the Prussian system into Massachusetts. It is evident that he recognized the importance of having a thorough preparation for the campaign, for in addition to his other studies, he corresponded with Victor Cousin, whom he had met upon his European journey. Cousin's work on the Prussian system of normal schools had already been translated into English, and was meeting with favor in the circles where the matter of improved educational facilities was the subject of deep concern. When Brooks felt that he had learned his story, he wrote and published, but in his own words, ‘Few read and still fewer felt any interest. I was considered a dreamer, who wished to fill our Republican Commonwealth with monarchical institutions.’ But Brooks' whole active life showed that he was not one to be turned aside from his purpose, if he had made up his mind that the idea for which he was working was right. If one plan did not bring the desired result, then others were devised. And, as by the printing press he did not obtain his results,1 he determined to try the effect of his personal presence and his word of mouth. On Thanksgiving Day, 1835, he delivered a carefully prepared address to his people of Hingham, setting forth at length and in detail, the needs of the schools in general, and particularly, what the Prussian system of State normal schools, if adopted, would accomplish in Massachusetts.
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