The Ninth State: New Hampshire's Formative Years

By Lynn Warren Turner | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 18

PEACE ABROAD:
WAR AT HOME

The college was formed for the public good, not for the benefit or emolument of its trustees; and the right to amend and improve acts of incorporation of this nature, has been exercised by all governments, both monarchical and republican. —William Plumer

While belated dispatches from Vienna, where the assembled diplomats were remaking the map of Europe, and from Paris, where Napoleon had reestablished his empire and was preparing to march toward Waterloo, continued to titillate the readers of New Hampshire's journals after the Peace of Ghent, their real interests began to focus once more upon events nearer at hand. 1 Preeminent among these was a cloud arising in the west, from the campus of Dartmouth College. Trouble had been brewing in that sylvan retreat for many years, but not until the spring of 1815 did it become public property.

Just before the meeting of the legislature, prominent men all over New England received copies of a pamphlet entitled Sketches of the History of Dartmouth College, which proved to be an anonymous and bitter attack upon the college trustees. 2 Readers readily deduced that the pamphlet had been written by no less a person than John Wheelock, the president of Dartmouth College, with the sole purpose of arousing public feeling against his own trustees. 3 Those who were disposed to believe what they read were assured that the trustees had perverted the college into an agency for the accomplishment of long-maturing plans to establish a politico-religious hierarchy in New England based upon the close alliance of Federalism and Congregationalism. 4

Hardly had the shocked people of New Hampshire begun to recover from their amazement at this revelation of alleged rottenness in Hanover before Wheelock struck another well-timed blow by appealing to the New Hampshire legislature for an investigation of conditions at Dartmouth College. Calling on the lawmakers to perform their sacred duty of overseeing literary establishments and rectifying abuses, Wheelock begged them to "make such organic improvements, and model reforms in its system and movements as, under Divine Providence, will guard against the disorders and their apprehended consequences ... that instead of a theatre for the purpose of a few terminating in public calamity,

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The Ninth State: New Hampshire's Formative Years
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • The Ninth State - New Hampshire's Formative Years *
  • Contents *
  • Foreword *
  • Preface *
  • Chapter 1 - Revolutionary New Hampshire *
  • Chapter 2 - Constitution Making *
  • Chapter 3 - Peace and Depression *
  • Chapter 4 - Personal Politics *
  • Chapter 5 - A Fragment of Social History *
  • Chapter 6 - In the Federal Union *
  • Chapter 7 - Constitutional Revision *
  • Chapter 8 - The Rise of Parties *
  • Chapter 9 - Federalists and Republicans *
  • Chapter 10 - Federalist Decline *
  • Chapter 11 - The Old Order Yieldeth *
  • Chapter 12 - Democracy Triumphant *
  • Chapter 13 - Federalist Collapse *
  • Chapter 14 - Blockade and Embargo *
  • Chapter 15 - Drifting Toward War *
  • Chapter 16 - In the War with England *
  • Chapter 17 - The Indian Summer of Federalism *
  • Chapter 18 - Peace Abroad: War at Home *
  • Chapter 19 - Tribulations *
  • Chapter 20 - The Demise of Federalism *
  • Chapter 21 - Reform and Freedom *
  • Appendix - Maps and Explanations *
  • Notes *
  • Index *
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