RECAPITULATION OF CONDITIONS IN OUR EARLIER COLLEGES
THE historical review already made of the genesis and growth of our earlier colleges causes some points to stand out clearly.
These colleges were regarded as means and not as ends in themselves. The ends sought were paramountly great in the eyes of the colonists -- the means were necessarily very imperfect. The ends were the conversion of every student to a "lively faith in Christ"; an education in divinity, the ancient languages, logic, mental and moral philosophy, public speaking, correct and elegant writing, and the lower mathematics; and thus the development of clean, strong, moral character, according to the standards of the day, in every student; and so the spread of God's Kingdom. With these great ends in view we may gravely question whether the early fathers would not have thought it a sacrilege to have made the college an end in itself.
They were means for high ends.
There were constant and persistent efforts to regulate the private and personal lives of the unsophisticated boys, who, for the most part, composed the body of the students. Individual Training was dominant. Social conditions, the poverty of the institutions and the small numbers of faculty and students made this possible. The colleges in themselves were not in any respect imposing. On the contrary they were poverty-stricken in the highest degree: always begging for more, yet owing their teachers, and constantly in need of help from the public treasuries as well as from private donors. The colleges were almost perfect exponents of their times and customs -- narrow, bigoted, ready to split hairs and fight to the finish on doctrinal questions. The very fact that they were ready to force their theories and doctrines on the other man, even at the expense of his life if need be, made it certain that they would bring up their boys in the way that -- according to the elders'
Individual Training dominant.
Colleges narrow, bigoted, but trained their students well.