Pre-St. Johns County School Board In 1822 every sixteenth land section was reserved to aid in the support of primary schools through the creation of a permanent school fund.1
East Florida (Republican Star, October 23, 1821) ... It is pleasant to trace thus the steps of improvement, which this country is making under the auspices of Liberty. How many years would have passed away under the Spanish Regime, ere the Jury system would have poured its benefits upon the poeple. --But the improvement is not confined to the judicature. At a meeting which was held in the Council Chamber, at St. Augustine, (Mr. Forbes in the chair) the citizens entered into resolutions to collect funds for the establishment of a Protestant church, and of a library. A Committee of three was also appointed "to report to this meeting on the 22d inst. the best practical plan of a Public School or Schools for the inhabitants of East Florida." ....
Early support of Private Schools by City Government Dec 20, 1822 On a motion, resolved that the lower part of the City Hall be given to Mrs. Girty for the purpose of a school until such time as it shall be wanted for a more important one, or for other purposes. City of St. Augustine Minute Book
January 24, 1823 A letter was recd from Mr. Cotter and Waldo soliciting the Room in the lower part of the City Hall for the purpose of establishing a Classical and English School. Resolved that the said Mr Cotter and Waldo have the use of said Room for the space of two months free of rent. City of St. Augustine Minute Book
June 9, 1823 Resolved that notice be given to Mr. Cotter that three dollars per month will be expected from him for the hire of the room which he occupies as a school room from the first of July ext. City of St. Augustine Minute Book
November 15, 1823 Free education in a non-denominational school November 15, 1823 James P. Cotter be given the room he was then occupying in the City Hall rent free provided that he consented to receive the children of indigent parents into his school free of tuition charges. City of St. Augustine Minute Book
In 1827 Congress passed an act giving the Governor and Territorial Legislature control over the school lands, and in 1828 another act authorized the appointment of three trustees of the school lands in each county.2 During the four years that this law was in effect, only $101.50 was realized in income from the rental of the school lands.
1832 people in each township were empowered to elect three commissioners to take charge of the public school lands.3
The Florida Educational Society4 About a decade after Florida had become American territory arose the first noteworthy movement toward the establishment of a system of general education. It originated in the territorial capital and before 1840 had spread to other sections where there were considerable centers of population. In January, 1831, the Florida Educational Society was organized at Tallahassee for the avowed purpose of encouraging such a system. Governor Duval was one of the chief movers in its establishment and in his official capacity also appointed a commission to investigate and recommend a plan. The following year, attempts were made to establish a agricultural and manual labor school near Tallahassee, founded after a similar institution at Fellenberg, Switzerland, and a free school at St. Augustine, the latter under the auspices of the Florida Educational Society.
In January of 1831, the Florida Educational Society was formed in Tallahassee with the object of collecting and diffusing information on subjects pertaining to education and to procure the establishing of such general system of instruction as would meet the needs and conditions of the Territory.
Several branches of this society were formed, the most important being located in St. Augustine ad called the St. Johns and Mosquito County Society. The primary purpose of this group was the promotion of educational welfare in the counties for which it was named.The St. Augustine auxiliary chapter of the Florida Education Society was started in 1831.5
The branch of the Florida Educational Society at St. Augustine did make a rather thorough report in 1831 of educational conditions in St. Johns and Mosquito counties. This showed that there were 569 children under fifteen years of age in the former county, and 579 in the latter. Of these, 463 lived in St. Augustine, but only 137 of them were receiving daily instruction in schools.6
Report of educational society St. Johns and Mosquito County 1831: "The board, in attending to the state of education in both counties, have to say that, according to the census taken last year, there are 579 white children of both sexes under 15 years of age - 238 of which are under 5 - 10 in Mosquito County and 569 in St. Johns. The number of children in our city (St. Augustine) - the only one where a school is found is 463; that is to say: in Castle Ward, 105; in Custom-house Ward 168, in Hospital Ward 87; and Barrack Ward, 103. Of these there are 137 children of both sexes which attend school daily. Of the nine schools, there are three containing 57 children, conducted by teachers qualified to impart elementary instruction in the respective branches of education. The rest may be considered as primary schools of all sorts, which, from the very reduced salary their parents can afford to pay, cannot much be depended upon for their stability.
Thus we see that out of the number of 341 children, between the ages of 5 and 15, there are but 57 who are likely to obtain elementary education; 80 receive but precarious instruction; and 204 are left to row up in ignorance and its attendant consequences. From this number, however, there are about 30 boys who have been receiving for the last three months two hours' daily instruction in spelling, reading, and even writing."7
There were more than twenty-three private schools, nine academies, and three seminaries taught by more than thirty-nine teachers in St. Augustine during the territorial Period, 1821-1845. 8
St. Augustine Public School Ordinance for the free public school was passed on March 31, 1832. "which shall be free to all free white children of both sexes residing within the limits" of St. Augustine.9
Act of incorporation of 1831 expressly permitted establishment of such a school.10
Letters of Trustees of New School March 3rd 1832 I have received a notification of my appointment as one of the trustees of the Free school, and accept the same with a sense of the honor given me by the Council
Sir I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your note of yesterday announcing my appointment by the Mayor and Aldermen of the City of St. Augustine as one of the "Trustees for the government and Superintendence of the Free School established by an ordinance passed on the first of March 1832" it has long been an object of solicitude with me to see a Free School established at which all the children of our city might be instructed in the elementary branches of education and I shall cheerfully ? my efforts to the establishment of so desirable an object. Respectfully Tho Douglas
Gentlemen, St. Augustine March 3d 1832 I have received a notification of my appointment as one of the Trustees of the Free School, and accept the same, with a sense of the honor done me by the council. I remain Gentlemen your obedt Servt W O Simmons
March 5 Trustees asked for the Marine Hospital for use as school and the city undertake and supervise repairs of same15
To the Mayor and Aldermen of the City of St Augustine St Augustine March 5th 1832 Gentlemen The undersigned Trustees of the Free School of the City of St. Augustine beg leave to represent that feeling a ? sense of the importance of the institution with the management and direction of that which they have the honor to be instructed they have entered upon the discharge of their duties the first subject which naturally engaged their attention was the procuring of a suitable building as the funds are limited economy is essential to success with this object in view the undersigned would respectfully solicit the City Council to place at their disposal so much of the Marine Hospital as is not necessary to its own accommodations. The location of that building is quite suitable and with some repairs and the enclosure of the lot upon which it stands would answer the purpose better than any other that can be immediately procured and considerable would be saved in the matter of rent, the undersigned think it probable that the necessary repairs could be made to better advantage under the direction of City Council than under the direction of the undersigned, the undersigned will happy to learn at an early a period as possible whether it ? accord with the views of the City Council to place a portion of that building at the disposal of the undersigned for the purpose specified and if so whether the necessary repairs will be made under the direction of the Council. with great respect Tho Douglas W. O. Simmons Gab W. Perpall16
To Jas Haskins to taking down stone wall and under pinning privy for free school $5 May 8th 1832 17
The Corp of St Augustine to E B Gould Dec 15 1831 to adv Mayor's Proclamation .75 Feb 16 1832 Ordinance to raise a revenue 7.50 April 12 Ordinance establishing free school 4.50 May 3 Presenting report Committee of the Whole 12.00 Aug 1 Adv notice .75 Aug 9 Ordinance amending ordinances for the removal of decayed building .75 Oct 18 Adv Preamble of Resolutions and Proclamation of the Mayor 6.00 Total 29.25 Joseph L Smith Mayor 18
Trustees of the Free School 6 Slates 25 cents $1.50 15 spelling books at .18 3/4 2.81. 1/6 Rec from F Douglas Esq 4.31 1/4 J Gray the Mayor 19
Beginning of Hospital (Aviles) Street School Sec 3 of the Act of Congress of the 28 June 1832 gave title of the lot of ground known as old or burnt Hospital lot with all its appointenances to the Mayor.
The purpose of erecting thereon...building necessary for the education of free white children of both sexes.
To James Keogh City constable of St. Augustine County of St Johns
In virtue and by the authority of an ordinance of the City Council passed 31st March 1832, providing for the establishment of a free school, and imposing taxes for its support, John Alden having been returned a delinquent for the said taxes by the City Treasurer as by law directed. You are hereby remanded to ? and levy upon the goods and chattels of said John Alden to the full amount of five dollars his the said John Alden's tax due as a foreward and the contents thereof, and sell the said goods and chattels so detained and levied after having ?advertised he same for the space of five days at least, and from the proceeds of sale pay over to Joseph Simeon Sanchez the City Treasurer the amount of said tax and costs and make return of this warrant the 15th next month (October) J Gray Jr 26th Sept 1832 23
The Corporation of St. Augustine to Wm Fraser 1832 29 Oct 1832 for my quarters salary give this day as one of the teachers of the free school $100.00 Test Jos S Sanchez clerk J Gray Mayor 24
Corp of St Augustine 1832 to John Cassernas to cash pd for filling plaza of public schools $1.00 Drayage of lumber .25 for taking bench 12 1/2 for cleansing alley .50 postage on letters to corp 6 2/4 1.93 34 25
Front The Corporation of St Augustine to Wm Fraser on 1832 2 q Oct 1832 for my quarter Salary ending this day as one of the Teachers of the free School $100.00 ? 29 Oct 1832 for payment J Gray Jr Mayor Test Jos S Sanchez clk 26
Back Received of Joseph S Sanchez City Treasurer fifty dollars on account of the within Sum of one hundred St. Augustine 29th Oct 1832 Wm A Fraser 27
I hereby assign the balance of this acct to John Gray agt for Syman Southwick 29th Oct 1832 Wm A Fraser 28
Rec in full the twenty dollars J Gray Jr 10 Nov 1832 29
Recd 1 Nov 1832 from J Gray Jr Mayor of St Augustine his dft at 90 days after date on >>> Dongherty and by him accepted for sixty six dollars which when paid, ? he in full of my second quarter salary due for principal instructor of the free school of St Augustine amounting in all to the sum of one hundred fifty dollars $150 James Whittle 30
Received of Jos S Sanchez City treasurer, the sum of seventy six dollars forty cents in part paymt of one hundred dollars due me for two quarters of my salary as Instructress of the Public School St Augustine 2 Nov 1832 $ 76.40 Mary P Harker 31
In presence of a resolution of the City Council, I hereby make known to the citizens of St. Augustine, that the free school recently established in this city under and in virtue of the act of incorporation of the 4th of February 1831 has been suspended. It is proper and perhaps expected by those who have both advocated and supported so useful and beneficial an institution to explain the motives and reasons which have induced the City Council to discontinue it. A charitable and benevolent feeling for those whose station in life rendered them unable to bestow upon their children the advantages of education, and an honest and thorough conviction of the important benefits that must necessarily result to the community from a measure effectually calculated to improve the minds and morals of the young who are now springing up among us, and render them useful citizens, and virtuous members of society, induced the City Council to establish this school by taxation, as the only mode which could render it permanent. The plan was the only effectual one that could be suggested, and which is in general and practical operation in many parts of the United States, where hundreds and thousands of the youth of our country are enjoying and reaping the benefits of a good education on economical terms. Various objections were stated by certain persons to this institutional its first establishment, but obviously intended to cloak the real motives of their opposition, as we think that no reason offered by them can strike the mind of any reasonable being with any force whatever. Three competent persons were appointed to conduct the school, one female and two male instructors, to receive the three a sum not exceeding $1100 per annum, and this raised by a tax in proportion to the amount of property owned by those subjected to it. but the small circle of opposition soon began to expand, until the most decided and inveterate hostility, threw every embarrassment that could be devised in the way, and resorted to every measure that could impede and finally annihilate the school, by refusing themselves to pay, and encouraging others also to resist the payment of the taxes necessary for its support. They have succeeded, and let the consequences rest with them. The school is ended - one hundred and twenty children are again turned adrift; those, whose parents can afford it, to continue their education in some other institution, but those whose parents are unable to assist them, to grow up in ignorance, and at some future day to curse in bitterness of heart those who have thus contributed to their degradation and wretchedness.....
Let those alone rejoice, who grudge to the children of the poor, the benefits of learning. John Gray, Jr. Mayor 34
Council resolution: Whereas certain persons in this Community have not only arrayed themselves against the Free School recently established by the City Council, but have operated upon others to resist and oppose this useful institution, and whereas this opposition have interrupted the collection of the school Tax by causing to be issued certain writs of replevin, to replevy the property distrained upon, claiming that the City council have no power under the act of incorporation to establish a school in this city; and whereas the City Council suspended further proceedings to collect and tax until the Judge of the State Court should arrive in order to have the question of power tried and determined by said Judge; and on his arrival did offer to the said opposition to try said question and use every effort to have the same tried, but they denied and refused to do so. By which said acts and doings of said persons, it has become impossible to collect said school tax, and for the present to carry on said school.
Resolved, therefore, that said free school be for the present, suspended until the said question can be tried and determined at the next Superior Court in November ensuing.
Resolved, That the thanks of this board be given to the teachers of said school for the faithful and diligent performance of their duties.
Resolved, That the Mayor... his proclamation ...
Resolved, That the forgoing ... and resolutions be printed in the next Florida Herald John Gray Jr. Mayor.
* * * June 12, 1834 Will be sold at public auction on the 2d day of July next, at the market to the highest bidder the house (excepting the stone and brick) formerly occupied as a free school. This building to be removed by the purchaser within two weeks from the day of sale. Conditions cash. By order of the city council James M. Gould, Clerk.
* * * 1834 county judges were authorized to appoint two commissioners of school lands.35
1834 Mayor and aldermen of St. Augustine were empowered to raise two thousand dollars by a lottery device for the establishment and maintenance of a free school (see Laws of Florida, 1834, p. 64.) 34
In 1834 a school was provided when an act of the legislature empowered the mayor and aldermen to raise up to $10,000 by means of lotteries for the establishment and maintenance of a free school. * * * Lawton Fund The real beginning of funding for public school education in St. Augustine and St. Johns county can be traced from 1835 when the will of Charles Lawton, a former resident of St. Augustine, left the sum of one thousand dollars to the City Council of St. Augustine for the education of the poor children of the town, the sum to be invested in some stocks or bounds with interest to be paid annually.
(During the succeeding years the Parish priests and pastors of the Protestant churches continued to teach or supervise the teaching of the poor children of their denominations. All drew on the Lawton fund to assist them in their work.)
Very few residents of this city are aware of the fact that the schools here receive an income from a legacy left over seventy years ago. An old document is on file among the city papers showing the date of the will and the amount bequeathed. While the origin of the income has been forgotten, the schools have regularly receive d the interest every year. The old document referred to is an extract from the will of the benefactor and reads as follows:
Extract from Will of Charles Lawton of Charleston Dated 26th of June 1835. Proved Feb 7 183. Recorded at Charleston office of judge of probate in Will Book H., page 420
I give and bequeath to the City Council off the city of St. Augustine, East Florida, one thousand dollars for the education of the poor in that city, this sum to be invested by my executors in some safe stock and the he interest be paid annually to the City Council aforesaid."
The above extract is the whole of that portion of the will which relates to the said legacy.
Feb 15, 1872 Pressley & Lord, Attorneys at law, The money is safely invested and yields about seven per cent, interest. * * * The Lawton Fund was held in trust by Lawton's heirs in South Carolina, and the interest on the principal was given to the town council quarterly for allotment to teachers who would agree to take students from poor families that could not pay tuition.
1835 Register of the Land Office was authorized to supervise the school lands35
1836 and 1837 control transferred to the Territorial Treasurer36
1839 election of three trustees in each township to lease school lands. County judge was to supervise the expenditure of the school funds.37
In 1839, the first general school law was passed. It provided for three trustees in each township to care for the school land sections (the sixteenth) of the Territory. They had been placed in the hands of various public officials, but there was so little to collect that by 1842, the public school fund faced a deficit of $350.38
1843 County sheriff was directed to assume control of the school lands 39
Petition for aid to build a school house acted upon in full council 24th April 1843
On October 18, 1843, a special meeting of the City Council was called to discuss the Act of Congress granting the old hospital lot on Hospital Street (Aviles) for a public school, and on July 19, 1856, a resolution was offered to extend the building and to install additional windows.
1844 State goes back to three trustees40
1845 Act of March 10, 1845 judges of the county courts should act as superintendents of the common schools.41
Constitution of 1845 The first constitution of Florida adopted on the third day of March, 1845 had the following provisions concerning education:
Section 1. The proceeds of all lands that have been, or may hereafter be, granted by the United States for the use of schools and a seminary or seminaries of learning, shall be and remain a perpetual fund, the interest of which, together with all moneys derived from any other source applicable to the same object, shall be inviolably appropriated to the use of schools and seminaries of learning, respectively, and to no other purpose.
Section 2. The general assembly shall take such measures as may be necessary to preserve from waste or damage all lands so granted and appropriated to the purpose of education.
This article was repeated almost verbatim in the constitutions of 1861 and 1865.
Petition from Residents of St. Augustine to U. S. Congress [Referred February 28, 1845] To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives of the United States in Congress, Assembled.
Your petitioners, inhabitants of the City of St. Augustine Florida, respectfully represent, that most of the youths of this ancient town are growing up without education and that their parents in many instances are too indigent to pay for their instruction. The government of Spain made no provision for any School or College in East Florida, and consequently many of our inhabitants are without that education so indispensable to a free people. Without education, neither our Constitution or laws will be understood or maintained. The rights and liberties of our Citizens, though Secured by the great Charter of our union, will serve but little purpose unless the principles on which it is founded shall be firmly and clearly impressed on the minds of our rising generation. The protection and blessings we have enjoyed under your patronage for more than twenty three years, has taught us the value of liberty, and inspired us with devoted attachment to the United States. The salubrity of St. Augustine is known throughout the United States, and a Site more advantageous for the establishment of a college, will not be found in all the South. The catholic congregation, represent that their Church covers most of the lot on which it Stands, and they have not ground Sufficient to erect a college thereon. That the grants to private persons made by the Spanish authorities, long Since, covers all the land in the vicinity of St. Augustine, so that for many miles around, no School Sections could be reserved, thus leaving the inhabitants of this City destitute of the donation which Congress has so liberally provided for the inhabitants of other Townships.
Your petitioners State that many of our citizens are descended from Spanish ancestors who Settled in this City, while this province was in possession of Great Britain and had been kept under the Military Government of Spain until the transfer of Florida to the United States. They have during that time enjoyed but few privileges of improvement or education.
Your petitioners therefore pray that fifteen Sections of land may be granted to the Catholic Congregation in this City to enable them to erect a Suitable Institution of learning, and that a lot in the said city known in the Plan and Survey of the Same, as the Custom House lot, adjoining the lot on which the Catholic Church Stands, may also be granted to said congregation, on which to found a college. Your petitioners state, that the Custom House was many years since destroyed by fire and has ever since remained unoccupied and is now a heap of ruins. That the United States will never need at this place a Custom house, and the said lot is in the middle of the City and cannot be built upon while owned by the United States: -- its condition renders it a nuisance.
The Catholic Clergy at their own and the congregation's expense, have now a common school and from their zeal and untiring energy they have under tuition about seventy five boys, many of whom are taught gratis and the other pay but a nominal Sum for the learning they receive. With the aid Solicited of Congress your petitioners entertain no doubt that the Catholic Congregation here will establish an institution that will do credit to our country. Youths from every quarter of the South will find it most advantageous to enter the College, not only for education, but for the security of health.
With these views and for a purpose so important and beneficial, we your Petitioners, as in duty bound, will every pray &c
[Endorsed] Florida memorial of Trustees of Roman Catholic Church & citizens of St. Augustine for grant of land, & lot for school purposes -- 1845 Feby. 28. Refd to Com on Pub. Lands Levy 42
Education of the Poor After the Indian wars more interest was taken in the matter and to the sheriffs was assigned the duty of giving special attention to "the education of the poor.' In 1845, county judges were required to perform some of the duties of the present county superintendents of schools. In 1849 an act was passed to increase the school fund by adding to the sale of school lands donated by the general government the net proceeds of five per cent of other public lands, and of all escheated property, and of all wreckage and flotsam found on the coast.43
* * * St. Augustine May 2nd 1846 To the Mayor and composing the City Council of St Augustine
Gentleman As I am devoting a part of my time to the important and responsible office of imparting instruction to a portion of the youth of this place, I hereby solicit your patronage by your appropriating to me a portion of the fund which I learn is to be distributed for the purpose of educating the indigent children in St. Augustine. I can at present apply for the tuition of but four who are entirely unable to pay yet I have one other the parent of which says that he can pay but a little towards the educating of his child whether or not (if you are disposed to consider my application with favor) you will consider this case is not for me to determine. I am willing (since my school is but small as yet) to take 15 or 20 indigent children into my school and as I may shortly have a few more I may if you are disposed to aid me make a further application. One end I had in view in endeavoring o establish a school here was to educate as far as I might be able the indigent youth and if permitted and enabled to carry my plans into execution to keep up for successive years a school of that character to be taught either by myself or the minister who may succeed me or someone under his control and direction.
Very Respectfully yours, David Lindsay White Jr.
Oct 22 1846 Learning verbally that there could be no appropriation made of the poor school fund in my favor for teaching Catholic children I herewith send in again the names of the few poor of the protestant children taught by me during the last 2 quarters.
Emma Kelly commenced on Monday 23rd March 1846 and been regularly at school up to the 2nd Oct inclusive making 27 weeks exclusive of 1 week vacation Francis Isabella Southwick Augustus Virgin (orphan) Mary Hunt Franca Hunt Theodore Hunt (City Papers)
* * * Monthly Return of the St. Augustine, Free School for the Month Ending on the 7th of September 1846 No. to Names of Parents each Names of Boys Remarks
The Religious Recorder significantly asks: "which is the cheapest, to hire a room and buy a library, and organize a school for poor children--- or pay the damage which such a troop of vagabonds will in a few years inflict on society? July 12 1845 The News St Augustine
1848 state authorized to sell school lands and establish a permanent State common-school fund.44
1849 state system of public education open to all white children between the ages of 5 and 18. Register of Land office was the State Superintendent of schools. County Probate judges as county superintendents and local boards of trustees were to be elected by the taxpayers of the various districts.45
1851 counties authorized to level a tax on real and personal property not to exceed four dollars for each child of school age. 46
1853 county commissioners of each county as a county board of education. Judge of probate remained as county superintendent and was to serve as president of the county board of education.47
Private Schools There were more than twenty-three private schools, nine academies, and three seminaries taught by more than thirty-nine teachers in St. Augustine during the territorial Period, 1821-1845. 48
February 28, 1839 Select Seminary for Young Gentlemen, Under 8 years of age. Miss Phillips respectfully informs the parents of young Gentlemen under 8 years of age, that she will open her school on the first day of March next, at her residence solely for Boys. -- and that they will be instructed in Orthography, Reading, Writing Arithmetic, Grammar and Geography. Terms $5 per quarter. The "News" will be pleased to give the above four insertions and send the bill for payment to Mr. G. I. Phillips St. Augustine, Feb 20, 1839
English School Mr. B Creegan having separated from the Rev. Mr. Hackett most respectfully announces to the citizens of St. Augustine, that he has already commenced teaching school in the house belonging to Capt Mickler, situated in Charlotte Street, in which he will receive and carefully instruct, as he has heretofore done, children who may be confided to his care. He also begs leave to inform the public that he will spare no pains or trouble for the improvement of his pupils, and though his school is open to all, without distinction of creed, yet he depends more particularly upon the patronage of the Catholic community for support.
* * * Penmanship The citizens of St. Augustine are informed that C. W. Bartlett, teacher of the beautiful art of Penmanship, has taken rooms at Mr. Hulbert's stone building, near the market place, where he will commence a course of twenty four lessons on Monday next. April 15th; two lessons each day.
Terms of Tuition, two dollars for the course payable at the expiration. Any scholar who understands holding a pen, and who pays diligent attention, shall be made a good writer or no pay will be demanded. April 11, 1839 C. W. Bartlett
* * * The Citizens of St. Augustine are respectfully informed, that Mr. B. Creegan will give lessons in his school room every night. Saturdays and Sundays excepted, from 7 o'clock to 9, to a number of young gentlemen, limited to eight. Terms, $2 per month, payable in advance, if required. No persons will be received but those of respectability, wholly desirous of improvements. St. Augustine July 25, 1838 B Creegan
* * * February 13 1840 St. Augustine Select Academy, For young ladies & Gentlemen. James D Boylan takes leave respectfully to inform the inhabitants of St Augustine and its vicinity, that on Tuesday, the 7th inst. He intends to open an Academy for the instruction of Young Ladies and Gentlemen at the house (for the present) lately occupied as a school by Mr. Creegan.
The course of instruction comprises Orthography, Reading, Penmanship, English Grammar, Elocution and Composition, Arithmetic, Book Keeping, Geography, History, and the use of the Globes, Geometry, Algebra, and the Latin and Greek Languages.
Mr. Boylan pledges himself that every method which many years experience in directing the juvenile mind has suggested, shall be employed to inculcate strength and purity of moral sentiments, and habitual elegance of manners; and the public are assured that whatever assiduity and competency can do, shall be done for the benefit of those committed to his charge.
Much or frequent punishment Mr. B has bound useless, often injurious in the education of youth by directing attention to such subjects as were best suited to their capacities and most congenial to their talents...by a careful observance and judicial management of the passions, he has succeeded better in promoting the literacy advancement of his pupils than by any mode of corporal punishment.
By means of judgment books used in this Academy, parents are daily informed of the attendance, conduct and improvement of their children, and Mr. B. trusts that these books will be examined every day. And that indulgence or the contrary will be need to each child according as his or her judgment book may seem to require. Such procedure will have an excellent effort. It awakens in the youthful breast, the passions of fear shame, or emulation, and thus renders much assistance to the teachers in the performance of their duties.
The young ladies will be under Mrs. Boyland's direction, in a separate apartment. And instructed by Mr. B. in those branches of education, which are most effectually taught by masters.
Mr. Boylan can produce the most unexceptionable testimonials of moral character and literary abilities from several exalted characters in the city of Philadelphia, and among them from the Rev. Samuel B Wylie Professor of Languages in the University of Pennsylvania, and Robert Adrain, Esq. Professor of Mathematics and Natural Philosophy in the said University; in Charleston he respectfully begs leave to Rev. Wm Benrke, D. K Whitaker, Esq., Martin Roddy Esq; and in St Augustine to Rev C Rampon Rev Thomas Molony, General P S Smith, Dr. Wm H Simmons, Dr. Chas Byrne and Antonio Alvarez, Esq.
Terms moderate, made known on application at the Academy.
* * * The following is from the pen of Mr. Welsh of the National Gazette.
We have had the pleasure of visiting Mr. Boylans Academy. ?? and must in justice to its amiable and competent Principal say, that it is worthy of all the encomiums which it has so generally received.--His plan of instruction is one of such a perfection, as unwearied application could alone have attained to and a strict disciplinarian alone could practice.-- Strictness without severity, and system which of itself invites the pupils compliance are particularly observable there and be happy and successful ability with which he unites the suaviter in modo with the fortiter in re thus giving he pupil a pleasure in acknowledged the importance of industrious application is truly admirable. Mr. Boylan's abilities are of high order. & in conjunction with his moral reputation, render him peculiarly capable of fitting the human mind to be at once a value and an ornament to society. We wish him that success which so excellent a preceptor deserves --- National Gazette.
N. B. -- Mr Boylan begs leave to assure the public that it is his fixed determination to become a permanent resident of St. Augustine, in the event of his meeting with sufficient patronage as he highly appreciates the valubility of the climate.
* * * Feb 20 1840 The public are respectfully informed that Mr. B Creegan has this day recommenced teaching school in the house of Mr. Andrew Lopez; in which he will receive, in addition to those who he already has under his care, ten or twelve Young Ladies, who will be taught in an apartment separate from that of his Boys and to whom the strictest attention will be paid.
His Night School will be conducted as heretofore. St. Augustine Jan 2, 1840. * * *
March 9, 1850 Circular. Mr. Phillips thankful for the patronage extend to him during the last 18 years, would respectfully inform the Parents of the Pupils now under his tuition, that hi age prevents him extending to his fifty Pupils the instruction he conceives encumbered upon him. He therefore considers it necessary to reduce his school to twenty five, from the first of April next. Being willing and desirous to retain and continue instructions to those of his Pupils who have commenced with him, or been under his instruction for two or three years, he respectfully notifies their parents that his charges in future will be $6 a quarter, and $8 a quarter for branches unconnected with an English education.
Parents wishing to continue their children on those terms will be so kind as to secure seats, as soon as convenient before the 1st Primo. George L. Philips49 __________
(Undated found in the Anderson papers should be late 1850's) Miss Mather's School for Young Ladies,
At St. Augustine, Florida. The Fourth Year of this School will commence on Monday, the 15th October.
Miss Mather has secured the valuable assistance of Miss M. L. Wright, a lady of superior attainments, and formerly a teacher in the Female College, Greensboro', Ga., and the Judson Institute, Marion, Ala.
In addition to the English branches, and Latin, French and Music, instruction will be given in Drawing and Painting, in various styles, oils, water colors, etc.
It is needless to call attention to the great salubrity of this climate, which renders St. Augustine a healthful and delightful residence, in Summer as well as Winter.
Invalids coming to St. Augustine with their families, will find this a desirable home for their children, where special attention will be paid to their moral and mental training; and for those not intending to remain throughout the year, satisfactory arrangements can be made.
This place is easy of access from Steamers from Charleston and Savannah to Tocoi, and from thence by railroad to St. Augustine.
Terms. Pupils under 12 (including board and tuition in English), per annum $200. Over 12 years of age, $300 Languages, each $25.00 Music $50.00 Drawing and Painting $50 Day scholars from $30 to $40 Washing, extra, half the Annual Payment to be made in advance. Each pupil is expected to bring a spoon, fork and napkins. The scholastic year commences 15th October, and closes 15th July.
References Rev. Dr. Myers, St. Augustine Fla O M Dorman Esp St Augustine Fla Dr. Jno E Peck St Augustine P Bent, Esq. St Aug B. E. Carr, Esq, St Aug G Burt, Esq, St Augustine Mr. Andreau Po. Master, St Aug Dr. Benedict, Magnolia Fla Col Dancy Orange Mills Fla Rev E P Crane Palatka Fla Judge Forward Palatka Col Hemming Jacksonville C Cooper Gibbs, Esq Lake City Rev Mr. McNeil, Fayettesville NC Rt. Rev. Bishop Meade, Va Rev D. V. Moore, D. D., Richmond VA Rev Theo Pryor DD Petersburg, Va Rev R. C Galbraith, Govanstown, Md Rev Mr. Patton, Philadelphia Rev J. P. Ripley Philadelphia Rev Walter Powell, Lancaster Pa Rev Nathan Hoyt DD Athens Ga Rev Homer Hendee, Pres. Female College, Greensboro Ga Col Wm Mitchell, Athens, Ga. Hon Stephen Fairbanks Boston Joseph S Ropes, Boston Moses H. Baldwin, Park Row New York John Baldwin Park Row, New York Dr. Oliver Bronson New York
The Rev'd C Rampon pastor of the Catholic congregation of St Augustine wishing to afford a remedy to the evils resulting from the want of education and abandonment in which the Children of poor parents are brought up, from the absence of a public free school in the place; appeals to a grievous, enlightened and liberal community to aid him in building a more capricious room than the one he now occupies for the same purpose thus enabling him to offer instruction to a greater number and enlarging the usefulness of the poor school already in existence under his care
The trustees of the catholic Church $50.00 The Revd C Rampon $0.00
In 1856 it was first attempted to obtain funds for a Parish school house, the children themselves raised the first money $37.50 by their own work. Subscriptions and the efforts of the Ladies increased the amount to $829 and the corner stone was laid by Bishop Rittledge, assisted by Rev. A. A. Miller and other clergymen. April 1857, during this year Rev. O. P. Thackeray, assumed the rectorship. Mr. Miller acting as assistant.50
Judge of Probates who acted as County Superintendent of Schools Prior to 1869 7 - 26- 1845 E B Gould 5/23/49 Gad Humphreys 11/9/59 John Lott Phillips 11/8/61 G. A. Pacetty 11/16/63 James Middleton 12/7/64 Irvine Drysdale 1/1/66 John L Phillips
According to The Florida School Law of 1849 the Register of Public Lands was to be, "by virtue of his office, superintendent of schools for the State." Acts of Florida, 1849.51
The Florida School Law of 1849 provided for a State System of Common Schools financed by the state, county, and local groups and of course with corresponding control. The teachers were to be certified by the Judges of Probate who were to be ex-officio superintendents of schools for the counties.52
Common Schools 96,688 children are taught in the Common Schools alone of the City of New York, and 463,000 in the Common schools of the State. Governor Floyd of Virginia, in his Message says, The schools and colleges throughout the Commonwealth are in an unprecedentedly flourishing condition. Would that the Governor of Florida could say as much.
Mr. Brooks, a member of Congress from New York, has transferred the appointment of a Cadet to West Point, which rented with him, to the Faculty of the Free Academy, with instructions to bestow it on the fittest and most deserving student. We hope our representative from Florida will follow this example, and that the next Cadet from Florida will be appointed from the best organized common school in Florida.
The daughter of Mr. Fillmore, (Vice President of the United States,) received her education at the State Normal school and is now honorably engaged as a teacher in one of the public schools in Buffalo, an example commendable and worthy of imitation by some of our ladies in the south where female teacher are so much wonted, what a beautiful illustration of the simplicity of our Republican institutions, -- the daughter of the Vice President of the United States a common School teacher!
Pupils are instructed in the science of common school teaching in 38 academies in the State of New York, and from these academies hundreds yearly go out into all part of the State as teachers.
There are 250 public schools in Philadelphia city and county, 696 teachers and ? scholars.53
January 12, 1850 Schools. We are gratified to observe that some movement is being made in some of our more thickly settled portions of the county towards the establishment of schools. It is true that our school fund is as yet too small to aid in this matter now, but upon a subject of so much importance as education, our citizens should act in advance and establish schools by their own endeavors. No better investment can be made by a parent for the benefit of his children, than in procuring them instruction; the crop of learning once planted in the youthful mind and nurtured for a season will produce a most abundant harvest of usefulness.
The only way which now suggests itself to us is that whenever 12 or 15 children can be got together within a reasonable distance, the parents should join together and procure the services of a teacher, females are preferable for the earlier branches of education, and require less compensation. Particular attention should be at once paid to the qualification of persons for teaching. Our planters, both large and small should at once send their daughters to seminaries in the towns where they can learn to become themselves teachers, and should fit themselves for it.
In connection with this subject, we have examined the Report of the Commissioner of the general Land Office, and observe with pleasure the following remarks having a peculiar applicability to our own State.
That the benefit of education might be extended to them and their posterity the sixteenth section in each township, or the thirty-six part of the public lands, has been set apart for the support of schools, besides munificent donations being from time to time made by Congress for colleges, seminaries, seats of government, county seats, and internal improvements.
The philanthropic intention of the grant for school purposes is, however, frequently frustrated by the 16th acting falling upon swamps or valueless tracts; and therefor recommend that the proper authorities, in such cases, be authorized to substitute other lands. It may also be worthy of the consideration of Congress whether it wold not be proper to enlarge the school grant by an additional allotment in each township."
In connection with these remarks of the Commissioner, it would be well to our citizens generally to send on Petitions to Congress numerously signed, praying that these recommendations may be carried into effect. It is a subject of incalculable importance to us as a people. We hope to see public attention more awake to its importance than it now is.54
Feb 9 1850 Common School Fund
We learn that there is now in the hands of the superintendent the sum of $8,042 18 and that additional sales will probably be made of lands during the year. There can be no doubt, as is suggested by the Register, that Congress will upon proper application and energetic exertion of our Representatives therein, make this munificent donation equal to that given to the other States. Congress never intended that one County should be recipient to a greater extent than another, nor do they intend that one state should receive a larger share than another.
In designating every sixteenth section, it has in consequence happened that this section in one township became more valuable than in another, and this inequity afforded the strong argument with our legislators for the consolidation of the School fund. The County Commissioners throughout the State and the respective County Superintendents should immediately draw up a memorial setting forth the true situation of these lands in their respective counties, giving their value and drawing comparisons with adjoining counties. The State Superintendent should likewise memorialize and among other things draw comparisons with other States thereby shewing conclusively to Congress that by their enactment a great inequity exists. This is a matter worthy of the attention of these officers and of the people. If attended to in the language of the State Superintendent who is better qualified to judge than any other man, "the State may have a fund sufficient for the object of common schools without resorting to taxation."
Since this faithful officer has had the matter in charge the Sixteenth sections have been looked after, and the utter worthlessness of a large portion discovered.
That the Sixteenth sections in every Township, it good land, would furnish a fund a sufficient for the support of Common Schools, and particularly now the lands are to be sold and the proceeds consolidated and distributed among the inhabited portions of our state, no man that will take the trouble to honestly calculate the amount will deny.
Petition Congress, fellow citizens' urge this matter upon your Delegates, upon your County Commissioners, and let it no be said you did not point out to Congress the defect. Petition, thereby discharge your duty, and if good and is not procured in place of worthless the culpability will rest upon your members in Congress, and not with you.55
St. Augustine 9th March School Fund Dr. the City of St. Augustine, Florida, in account current with Chas Haager, Treasurer, in the Quarter commencing second Monday of November, 1849, and ending second Monday of February 1850. Treasurers Commission on 14.50, received at 2 1/2 per cent .36 Balance on hand 14.14
By amount received from Francis Bridier for lease of the Hospital Lot, from 21st day of January, 1850, to 31st day of Dec. 1850 $14.50 56
June 8 1850 School Fund Dr. The City of St. Augustine, Florida, in account current with Charles Haager, Treasurer in the Quarter commencing 2nd Monday of February 1850 and ending second Monday of May, 1860
Treasurers commission on 40.14 received at 2 1/2 percent .65 May 13 To balance on hand. 39.49
balance on hand last quarter 14.14 March 25 by month received of Mr. James M. Gould, interest due by him 26.00
Amount due the School Fund for money loaned Nov 10th, 1849 114.42 (owed by city)57
Footnotes: 1 History of Public-School Education in Florida Bulletin, 1921, No 1, State Depart Of Education, Tallahassee, Fl).
2 History of Public-School Education in Florida
3 History of Public-School Education in Florida
4 Florida Educational Society, History of Florida Past and Present Historical and Biographical Issued in Three Volumes, The Lewis Publishing Company,Chicago and New York:1923, p 220.
5 Education in St. Augustine, 1821-1845 by Frank Lewis, Florida Historical Quarterly, Vol 30, 1951-52, p252.
6 A History of Florida from the treaty of 1763 to our own times by Caroine Mays Brevard edited by James Aleander Robertson, Deland Florida: The Florida State Historical Society 1925 p 183 vol 1.
7 History of Public-School Education in Florida by Thomas Everette Cochran, Ph. D. State Department of Education, Tallahassee, Florida Bulletin, 1921 No. 1, p2.
8 Brevard, p242
9 Brevard, p253.
10 Brevard, p254.
11 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
12 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
13 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
14 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
15 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
16 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
17 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
18 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
19 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
20 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
21 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
22 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
23 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
24 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
25 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
26 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
27 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
28 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
29 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
30 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
31 St Augustine School Records Manuscript Collection St Augustine City Papers MC 17 Box 5
32 Fla Herald Oct 11, 1832
33 History of Public-School Education in Florida
34 History of Public-School Education in Florida
35 History of Public-School Education in Florida
36 History of Public-School Education in Florida
37 History of Public-School Education in Florida
38 History of Florida Past and Present Historical and Biographical, Issued in Three Volumes The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago and New York: 1923.
39 History of Public-School Education in Florida
40 History of Public-School Education in Florida
41 Brevard, p189.
42 House Journal, 28 Cong., 2 sess. p. 532. No further action noted.
43 History of Florida Past and Present, p221.
44 History of Public-School Education in Florida
45 History of Public-School Education in Florida
46 History of Public-School Education in Florida
47 History of Public-School Education in Florida
48 Lewis, p242.
49 The Ancient City, March 19, 1850.
50 St. Augustine Examiner, February 27, 1869.
51 Education in Florida Past and Present, Florida State University,Tallahassee,1954, p18.
52 Education in Florida Past and Present, p19.
53 The Ancient City, January 5, 1850
54 The Ancient City, January 12, 1850
55 The Ancient City, February 9, 1850
56 The Ancient City, March 9, 1850
57 The Ancient City, June 8, 1850
Early History of Education in St. Johns County Part One 1822 - 1860