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which they obtained did not justify the claims of the schoolmasters. Some, from motives in which desire for a living was probably a larger factor than zeal for education, announced that they were ready “to go out, to receive day pupils, or to take boarders.”
In the mercantile centers the desire for a practical education was always strong. As early as 1713 in New York a demand arose for courses in navigation, surveying, mensuration, astronomy, and "merchants' accounts.” In 1755 a master by the name of James Bragg offered to teach navigation to “gentlemen Sailors and others ... in a short time and reasonable.” In Charleston, George Austin, Henry Laurens's partner, voiced a general feeling and forecast a modern controversy when he deemed training in business more to his son's advantage "than to pore over Latin and Greek authors of little utility to a young man intended for a mercantile career.” Here and there
throughout the colonies there were evening schools, las in New York, Charleston, and Savannah;
French schools, as in New York and New Rochelle; besides schools for dancing, music, and fencing, and at least one school for teaching “the art of manly defense.” Whether shorthand was anywhere
taught is doubtful and highly improbable, yet from Henry Wolcott, Jr., of Windsor and Roger Williams of Rhode Island to Jonathan Boucher of Virginia and Maryland there were those who were familiar with it, and occasional references to writings in “characters” would point in the same direction.
As far as girls were concerned, the opportunities for education were limited. As a rule they were not admitted to the public schools of New England, and coeducation prevailed apparently only in some of the private schools, the Venerable Society's Charity School in New York, and in Pennsylvania, particularly among the Germans. In 1730 the Charity School had sixty-eight pupils, twenty of whom were girls. The Moravian girls' schools at Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and Salem, North Carolina, were unique of their kind. Day schools for ? young ladies were subsequently opened by men and women everywhere for the teaching of reading, writing, "flourishing," ciphering, French, English, and literature, and for instruction in embroidery, the making of coats of arms, painting, “Dresden, Catgut, and all sorts of colored work” and various other feminine accomplishments of the day deemed "necessary,” as one prospectus puts it, “to the amusement of persons of fortune who have taste."
A boarding school for girls was opened at Norfolk, Virginia, and another in Charleston, to the latter of which Laurens sent his eldest daughter; but boarding schools, though not uncommon for boys, particularly after 1750, were rare for colonial maidens, some of whom from the South were sent abroad, while many others were taught at home. Manuals on home training were known and used, one of which, The Mother's Advice to her Daughters, described as “a small treatise on the education of ladies,” was imported into New England in 1766.
Many efforts were made to instruct and Christianize both Indians and negroes. Among the bestknown of these are the labors of Jonathan Edwards among the Indians at Stockbridge, of David and John Brainard among those of New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, and of Eleazer Wheelock and his missionaries among the Oneidas and Tuscaroras and at the Indian school in Lebanon. There was also an Indian school connected with William and Mary College; and Massachusetts in 1751 proposed to start two schools for the instruction of negro boys and girls, to be boarded and taught at the expense of the colony. The Society for the Propagation of the Gospel made this work
a very important part of its program and instructed its missionaries and schoolmasters “to be ready, as they have opportunity, to teach and instruct the Indians and Negroes and their children.” As a consequence schools for this purpose were opened in many colonial towns and parishes. The pioneer, Dr. McSparran, gave much of his time to catechizing and teaching both Indians and Negroes, and there must have been others of the clergy doing the same unselfish work. Even Harrower, the Virginia tutor already mentioned, read and taught the catechism to a “small congregation of negroes” on Captain Daingerfield's plantation. One of the most famous efforts of missionary education was that of Commissary Garden of South Carolina, who started a negro school in Charleston in 1744, to which “all the negro and Indian children of the parish ” were to go for instruction "without any charge to their masters.” Funds were collected, a building was erected, and the school continued for twenty-two years with from thirty to seventy children, who were taught reading, spelling, and the chief principles of the Christian religion.
In the realm of the higher education, three -colleges, Harvard, William and Mary, and Yale, were already prominent colonial institutions, but
Princeton in 1753 was still “our little infant college of New Jersey," and the College of Rhode Island (now Brown University), and Dartmouth, the outgrowth of Wheelock's work at Lebanon, were hardly as yet fairly on their feet. King's College (now Columbia University) and the College and Academy of Philadelphia (now University of Pennsylvania), organized to promote more liberal and practical studies, were just entering on their great careers. The degrees granted by the colleges were Bachelor of Arts and honorary Master of Arts, to which in some instances Bachelors of Arts of other colleges were admitted. Higher degrees, such as Doctor of Divinity, Doctor of Laws, and Doctor of Civil Law, were not conferred by American colleges but were granted to many a colonist, chiefly among the clergy, by Oxford, Cambridge, Aberdeen, Glasgow, and, highest in repute, by Edinburgh. Occasionally a colonist received a degree from a continental university such as Padua or Utrecht. Though the cost of a degree in those days ran as high as twenty-five pounds, there was considerable competition among the New England clergy to obtain this distinction and not a little wirepulling was involved in the process.
For professional training in medicine, surgery,