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tion of levees and for the necessary expenses of drainage. Many of the States devoted these lands to the cause of education.

The total amount of swamp lands patented to the States from the date of the first grant to 1876 is 47,802,271.16 acres. It is quite impossible to state how much of the proceeds of the sales of these lands was devoted to higher education. California appropriated a large amount to the State university. It is provided in the Constitutions of Iouisiana, Indiana, and Mississippi that the proceeds of the sales of swamp lands shall be set apart for the support of public education. Also the States of Missouri, Ohio, and Wisconsin have by statute laws placed these proceeds in the general school fund. Other acts have granted special amounts of so-called saline lands to the several States. Ohio realized $41,024 from this source, and Indiana, $85,000, which sums were added to the school fund. We find that Iowa devoted part of the proceeds of the sales of saline lands to the agricultural colleges.

It is a very difficult problem to find the returns of the sales of these lands separate from others, and much more difficult to separate the respective amounts set apart for higher and common school education. Yet it was thought best to give brief mention of these grants to bring before us the opportunities furnished the States for the support of public education.


It was enacted by Congresso in 1811 that each of the eight following States should receive five hundred thousand acres of land for the purpose of internal improvement; for the purpose of constructing “roads, railways, bridges, canals, water courses," and for the draining of swamps. This act subsequently was made to embrace all of the new States admitted, with the exceptions of West Virginia and Texas. These lands were not to be sold for less than one dollar and twentyfive cents per acre. By special stipulations in accepting this grant, seven of the States more recently admitted' have reserved the proceeds of the sales of these lands for the benefit of free schools. The number of acres thus granted is nine million five hundred thousand; three million five hundred thousand of which have been set apart for public education. This of course passes into the school fund, and has not been drawn upon for the support of universities.

The General Government has also expended large sums for the benefit of colored schools, for libraries and publications, and for scientific in. vestigations and explorations. So far as they pertain to the subject of higher education, they will be discussed under separate headings.


Report of the Commissioner, 1876, National Education, 16.
? United States Statutes at Large, V, 455.
3 California, Nevada, Iowa, Kansas, Oregon, Wisconsin, and Colorado.


The Federal Government has appropriated lands and money for the benefit of educational institutions within the District of Columbia. The first instance to be mentioned is that of the appropriation of lands in the city of Washington, valued at twenty-five thousand dollars, to the Georgetown College in 1833. The lands were not received by the college until 1837. They have greatly increased in value since the time of the donation. In 1836 Congress gave the same amount of land in the city of Washington to the Columbian University. The lands were to be sold and the proceeds (twenty-five thousand dollars) invested in permanent securities and the interest to be used to pay the professors in college. This is the extent of the aid rendered these two institutions by Congress.

Howard University has also received assistance from the Federal Government. The appropriations to this institution for support during the last four years were as follows: 1885, eighteen thousand five hun dred dollars; 1886, nineteen thousand dollars ; 1887, twenty-five thou. sand five hundred dollars ; 1888, eighteen thousand five hundred dol. lars.



It may be questioned whether a military academy should be properly classified with those schools commonly known as institutions of supe. rior' instruction, or whether it should stand alone as a special school, having no bearing upon the subject of higher learning. Viewed from a political standpoint it is only a means of national defence, and this is the great aim of the military school. Yet the national military school, as well as those of the several States, in their practical operation send out yearly scores of educated men who find their way into the various civil pursuits in times of peace, and as engineers of roads or mines, as officers, scholars, and statesmen, form a valuable portion of the community. Leaving out the idea of making armies, the discipline of the military school is the best possible education for a large percentage of our youth, and as for the questions of national defence and national safety the statesmen of the Republic must ever consider these the essential ideas of all state education.

The Military Academy contributes indirectly to science and learning by furnishing officers and engineers to surveying and exploring parties; it contributes directly to the general welfare and improvement of the people by furnishing competent superintendents of public works. Says Adams: “It is the idea of strengthening the country by internal improvement, and binding its different sections indissolubly together by ties of economic interest, such as river improvements, canals, roads, bridges, and other great public works described under the comprehen. sive name of engineering.It is not infrequent that men, graduates of

1 U. S. Statutes at Large, IV, 603.

2 Ibid., V, 214.

1 this school, have done their country great service by devoting them. selves to the study of science. It is through this institution that our meager but necessary standing army is kept respectably well officered.

As a means of defence in time of war it gives little enough military education for a great people, and the experience of war shows that the great majority of our able military leaders have arisen from this school. It is fortunate when in war they are all upon the same side; otherwise the conduct of the officers of West Point fighting againsť one another after having sworn to defend the nation may sbake the faith of the people in the supposed advantages of a military academy.

Although the first expression on record of sentiments in favor of a military academy did not come from Washington, it is due to him more than to any other that such an institution was established. He main. tained that in times of peace training for war is necessary to prepare for emergencies that may rise.



It was near the beginning of the War for Independence that the necessity for a national military academy forced itself upon the leaders of the young nation. It was the growing sentiment of nationality, together with the consciousness of entering upon the struggle with few efficient commanders and a poorly disciplined army, that taught the need ot' such an institution.

As early as September, 1776, a committee was appointed to inquire into the state of the army at New York. After a thorough investigation, the cominittee reported the army in a state of disorganization, the soldiers insubordinate, and the commanders incapable. There was embodied in this report, among other things, a resolutions that the board prepare a continental laboratory and a military academy, and provide the same with officers."

Two days prior to the reception of the report of this committee a second committee was appointed by the Continental Congress and instructed to submit to that body a plan for a military academy. In the work of these committees is foreshadowed the events which led to the establishment of the peace arrangements of the army, and finally to the Academy at West Point. It seems that the latter committee never reported. The precipitation of imminent war engrossed the attention of the leaders, while the raw recruits and the half-trained officers found

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ample instruction in military tactics in the severe school of experience. Nothing further was attempted toward a school until the close of the war in 1783, at which time the question was again agitated under the discussion of the peace arrangements for the army.

Alexander Hamilton was appointed by Congress chairman of the committee for preparing a plan for the peace arrangement of the army. Hamilton at once addressed a letter to General Washington, soliciting his views on the subject. Washington replied in his clear and decisive manner, and recommended, among other things, that a military school should be established at West Point. At this time General Timothy Pickering was in command of the forces near West Point, and General Washington addressed a letter to him for his views and report concerning the situation and the condition of the army.

Pickering replied to this letter on April 22, 1783, giving his views at some length on the peace arrangements of the army. It is to be noted that the suggestions of Pickering became the policy of the Government to a considerable extent. At the close he says: “If anything like a military academy in America be practicable at this time it must be grounded on the permanent military establishment for our frontier posts and arsenals, and the wants of the States separately of officers to command the defenses on the sea-coasts. On this principle it might be expedient to establish a military school or academy at West Point.” 2

The inilitary organization was in a state of confusion for several years, the chief attention of legislation being directed toward civil affairs. But the first President of the United States had no intention to allow the subject to be forgotten which he deemed to seriously affect the people. Therefore in his annual message of 1793 he recommended that a military academy be established. In the discussion of this clause in the cabinet, Thomas Jéfferson thought the power to create a military school unconstitutional, but his opinion was not of sufficient weight to overrule the strong convictions of Washington. It seems that when Thomas Jefferson became President he had changed his views, and strongly recommended the support of the military academy.


Preparations were made for a peace organization of the army for the education of cadets, and in fact for executing all the plans of Washington, except the immediate formation of a local school after the design which he had in mind. In the year 1802 an act was passed which made more ample provisions for the military peace establishment. The army was reorganized, the artillery corps was separated from the engineer corps, and both were stationed at West Point, the former having forty cadets attached to it and the latter only ten.3

Sparks' Washington, XIII, 417.
2 Life of Timothy Pickering, IV, 442, Appendix.
3 History of West Point, by E. C. Boynton.

From this time on the number of cadets was increased at intervals, and the educational facilities were constantly improved until the school attained its present high rank. The Federal Government has by appropriate legislatiou attended punctually to the maintenance and direction of the school. The small amount expended for the support of the school has been repaid by manifold service to our common country.

In 1867 the school was made a department of the army, and so continued until 1882, when the Commander of the Army had visitorial and advisory powers given him, while the school was placed in charge of the Chief of Engineers, as formerly.


The amount expended by the Government from 1802 to 1843, inclusive, for the support of the school, given in yearly appropriations, was $4,002,901. The grand total from 1802 to 1886 was $13,789,194. This makes an average annual appropriation of $164,157.13. The maximum appropriation was in 1866, when it amounted to $354,740, while the annual appropriation of 1885–86 was $309,921. These figures include all expenses and the pay of cadets, which was fixed in 1878 at five hundred and forty dollars per annum.


The doubt might be entertained by some whether or not the United States Naval Academy comes properly within the class of those institutions established for the inculcation of higher education among the people. No doubt the first and prime object of the founding of this institution was to afford a more efficient national defense; but since this was to be brought about-in fact, has been brought about-through the means of instruction of the higher order, it seems only proper that at least a short treatment of the Naval Academy and its work should be given here, if only for the purpose of comparison.


The Navy Department was established by an act of Congress in 1798.2 Previous to this time the Navy could hardly be said to have had an independent existence, and, for a number of years after, its organization was of the most imperfect kind. Under the act of organization, the President was empowered to appoint eight midshipmen for each ship. They, as a rule, were appointed from civil life, without proper regard to age, education, or fitness. At first no provision was made for the instruction of these midship

They were dependent upon their own efforts for what they


1 Logan: Volunteer Soldiers of America, 240.

2 For a number of facts contained in this sketch I am greatly indebted to Soley's History of the Naval Academy.

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