The Rebuilding of Mont Amoena Seminary
A Letter to the Editor by the citizens of Mount Pleasant, NC to rebuild Mont Amoena Seminary in their town.
Citizens of Mount Pleasant, NC
Concord Daily Tribune (Concord, Cabarrus County, NC). 15 Dec 1911
15 Dec 1911
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United States–North Carolina
Eastern Cabarrus Historical Society Museum
All rights reserved by the source institution.
Staff Writer, “Certificates Of Graduation Are Presented To 22,” Mont Amoena: Educating the Young Ladies of Cabarrus Couunty 18, t59-1927, accessed December 30, 2014, https://montamoena.org/2014/12/30/the-rebuilding-of-mont-amoena-seminary/
Concord Daily Tribune, 15 Dec 1911
THE REBUILDING OF MONT AMOENA SEMINARY
Prompt Action of Mt. Pleasant People Endorsed by the Board. – Mt. Pleasant the Place to Rebuild the Seminary
Mr. Editor: – Inasmuch as several articles have appeared recently in your paper relative to the rebuild of the Mont Amoena Seminary, her relation to the North Carolina E. L. Synod, and the interest of other towns and cities in securing her relocation, and inasmuch as there seems to be a misapprehension of the true status of affairs, we deem it proper to set forth some facts for the information of the public.
1. The school was begun in 1859 by Mrs. Bittle, wife of Rev. G. H. Bittle, president of North Carolina College, and was continued under the able administration of Rev. Prof. G. F. Shaeffer, being fostered and maintained by the community until 1869, when, largely through the effort of Rev. G. D. Bernheim, it was taken over by the N. C. Synod. Since that time the school has been run by Synod through a Board of Trustees elected by Synod and the Board has always exercised the prerogative of a governing body. It has elected every president of the Institution; approved the instruction of instructors; and transacted such other business as belongs to such Boards.
As to improvements upon the property there has been some misunderstanding. To the original building have been made a number of additions all of which were made through the efforts of the presidents and the Board. Some years ago the growth of the Institution necessitated still more room and President C. L. T. Fisher purchased an adjoining loot and residence which was afterwards taken over by his brother, Prof. J. H. C. Fisher, and enlarged and connected with the Seminary building by a closed hallway. It was upon this last named property and the furnishings of the Seminary (which have through the different administrations been the personal property of the presidents) that the bulk of the insurance was personally carried, amounting to $3500.00. On the Seminary proper $2,000 insurance was carried, as was authorized and provided for by the board. A fair valuation of Synod’s loss over and above the insurance was $4,000.
The financing of the Institution has all along devolved upon its presidents, by Synod has always approved its work and recommended the Institution as the proper one for her daughters. The benefit accruing to Synod cannot be estimated. Hundreds of graduates and ex-students have gone out from the Institution. Not a congregation in the Synod but had been blessed by the work of Mont Amoena Seminary.
2. The action of Mt. Pleasant and community in and following the recent calamity was that which would naturally be expected of any people. All possible was done to save the building, all houses were thrown wide open to students, and immediate and adequate provision was made by the town for the continuance of the work of the present session. The school will resume work January 3d, and practically all the students heartily desire to return.
Through all the years the town and community have done a large part in the maintenance of the Institution and the one thought that has dominated the minds of all since the fire had been the rebuilding of Mont Amoena Seminary. The mass meeting of our citizens were held with this in view. There was no thought but that the Synod would heartily approve of such prompt and zealous action, and it was in no sense intended not to be in friendly co-operation with Synod and all friends of Christian education. Considering the damaging effect of delays on the student body and patronage of and Institution, wisdom and prudence dictated prompt action. Furthermore, it was deemed advisable to have something definite to lay before the board of trustees soon to be called together.
The board was the proper body to lay the body before Synod, which it did, recommending a called session of Synod at the earliest date possible. Moreover, the board heartily endorsed the action of the faculty of the Seminary and the citizens ot Mt. Pleasant in providing for the continuation of the school.
3. It is not a little surprising that, following the recent calamity, other towns and cities should make it the occasion for discussing and bidding for the re-location of the Seminary. For more than half a century Mont Amoena Seminary has been doing noble work for the daughters of the North Carolina Synod, and her location at Mt. Pleasant has brought these benefits within reach of hundreds who could not have availed themselves of them, if she had been located in a city. To re-locate now in a large town or city is but to duplicate a most excellent Institution which we already have within the bounds of our own Synod at Charlotte and remove the Seminary and its benefits beyond the reach of the grater part of the constituency of our Synod which Mont Amoena admirably serves.
It has been stated that any community would act as the citizens of Mt. Pleasant have, and it is pertinent to inquire whether it is in keeping with Christian ethics for other towns to endeavor to remove an Institution from the town in which it has so long prospered and served the church.
Mt. Pleasant, N. C.