Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Selections from the Letters and Speeches of the Hon. James H. Hammond, of South Carolina >> Message to the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of South Carolina, Nov. 28, 1843 >> Page 72

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Page 72

Documents | The Reprint Company; John F. Trow & Co. | 1866, 1978
Transcription vantage to themselves, and to the country. I recom-
mend to your serious consideration, the propriety of
establishing, at some healthy and central spot in each
District, an Academy endowed in the same manner as
the College. The sparseness of our population, and
the want of concentrated wealth in the country, will
postpone, for an indefinite period, such establishments
by the people themselves. And in such a matter, the
loss of time is absolutely fatal. If the means of the
State will not permit such an expenditure, in addition
to that already incurred for purposes of education, I
submit to you the expediency of diverting the present
Free School Fund to that object. The Free School
System has failed. This fact has been announced by
several of my predecessors, and there is scarcely an
intelligent person in the State, who doubts that its
benefits are perfectly insignificant in comparison with
the expenditure. Its failure is owing to the fact, that
it does not suit our people or our government, and it
can never be remedied. The paupers, for whose chil-
dren it is intended, but slightly appreciate the advan-
tages of education ; their pride revolts at the idea of
sending their children to school as "poor scholars,"
and besides, they need them at home, to work. These
sentiments and wants can in the main only be counter-
vailed by force. In other countries where similar sys-
tems exist, force is liberally applied. It is contrary to
the principles of our institutions to apply it here, and
the Free School System is a failure. The sum which
is annually appropriated for the support of Free
Schools, if equally divided for one year among the
twenty-eight Districts of the State, giving two portions
to Charleston District, will be sufficient to build in