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Teachers' Institutes.

THE approach of autumn reminds us that the

Annual Meeting of the American Institute of Instruction.

season for labor has also come. As teachers of [THE following report of the doings of the Ame

BRATTLEBORO', VT., Aug. 22, 1861.

the State of Rhode Island, we must not withdraw rican Institute of Instruction, at Brattleboro', Vt., personal effort from the great and vital interests is from the special correspondence of the Boston of popular education at home. Though the mus-Journal:] tering of troops and the dismal sound of war has well nigh hushed all else; though our sympathies are turned in a great measure towards the fate of The thirty-second annual meeting of this, the our beloved country, its maintenance or its over- oldest of all the national educational associations, throw, yet we may not suffer the wants of the ris- commenced its sessions at 24 o'clock P. M. on Weding race now with us to pass unheeded, or the on-nesday. The meeting was called to order by the ward march of civilization, with its train of benefi- President, D. B. Hagar, Esq., of Jamaica Plains, cent institutions, to be retarded.

Mass. The exercises were opened with prayer by the Rev. Mr. Tyler, of this place. Then followed the address of welcome by Hon. J. D. Bradley.


He alluded to the disturbed condition of our

Meetings of the Institute will soon be called in various portions of the State, whose object, as well as of all such meetings, is to gain as well as to impart that knowledge of the art of teaching which may elevate the profession of teacher and raise the tone of feeling in the community upon the sub-country, characterizing it as the school-teachers' ject of education. Now, we doubtless shall meet disturbance. He referred to the landing of the a number of teachers there, but we fear a small May Flower, saying that the shoes of the Pilgrims proportion of those who might attend. This is to were hardly dry when they set up a school, from be a meeting for teachers, who may show that by which has grown the educational systems of New making this exertion to be present they are true England and the Northern States. to their calling and not mere mercenaries. No teacher has a moral right to withdraw his personal presence or influence from such a meeting. By so doing he virtually ignores his calling, and disgraces himself in the estimation of his fellows. Do you say, that you have already taught many years, and your experience is sufficient without any instruction from others. We reply, your position is alarming, and we fear your school-room will show, here and there, the rust and cobwebs of a wonted curriculum. You can but lose enthusi

Another ship landed a different cargo in a souththe result is too well known. The ern harbor plantation cannot become a school district. The present is a trouble between the school district and the plantation system. There are, it is true, sporadic instances of treason in the North, also oases of loyalty in the South; but no extended rebellion has risen up where the schools have been faithfully fostered.

In response to the address of welcome, the President said: "You have made a grave charge up. on us, sir. We supposed, before coming up here, that the people down South were the cause of the

asm, your ambition will be swallowed up by the dull routine of your plans and designs, when not brought in pleasant contact with other minds. We war, but now you charge it upon the teachers. say, come then to our family meeting, unfold the scroll of your own school-life to the eyes of fellows, perhaps less successful than yourself. Learn from the shoals and quicksands of others' wrecks, to shun the same in your future ventures. Invite the parent to sit an hour with us that "we may reason together."

Well, we shall not shrink from the responsibility; and if we cannot fight it out in the school-room. you will find many of us ready to go and fight it out upon the field." The President then followed with his


Referring to the meeting of this association last year, attended by two thousand teachers, he said Though the political horizon of our beloved land it was the most enthusiastic national meeting ever lowers darkly upon our anxious gaze; though reheld in America. Then, delegates were present bellion and foul treason stalk abroad at noon day; from nearly every State in the Union. To-day though patriots tremble for the life of our republic, several of those representatives would not dare to yet this cloud has a silver lining. By our arms we stand upon this platrorm and advocate popular trust to maintain our national honor, to save the and free education, and then return to their own constitution and the laws from the bold assaults of States with any hope of liberty, if of life even. petty tyrants; to show to the far-off nations that "our rope of sand" is rather a "two-fold cord, "How many hours a day ought pupils to be connot easily broken." Yet the deep-mouthed cannon and the silver steel may cause us to shout the fined in school: and should they be required to pean of victory far sooner, when guided by heroes prepare lessons at home?" This subject was diswhose hearts burn with the fires of Christian civi- cussed by J. W. Bulkley, Esq., of Brooklyn; and lization; whose early training and maturer culture


have taught them the true worth of constitutional Dr. Dio Lewis, of Boston. liberty.

The latter said it was

a matter of smaller concern whether the children

are kept one hour or ten hours in school, than it is prevails. The Italian revolution of 1859 was rewhether they are rightly employed while there. ferred to as an example of the influence of AmeriHe was followed by Mr. Putnam, of Boston; Mr. can ideas of education and government there. Parish, of Springfield; and Grovernor, of Dor- Soon after that period Garibaldi decreed a spot of chester. ground for the erection of a chapel devoted to Protestant worship, not in Florence, but in Naples ! Such was the glorious result of American ideas.


The State Commissioner of Public Schools for Ohio, gave an address in the evening. In his in- Tyrants have always known the truth that edutroductory remarks, alluding to the early history cation is a mighty conservator of freedom. Maof the society, he said that the Rev. Jacob Abbott, dame De Stael was the most accomplished woman in an address before this association thirty-one of her age in France, and Napoleon, when he ceasyears ago, used the following language, by way of ed to be the savior and became the oppressor of illustration of some point: "The government of Europe, feared her most of all, remarking that she the United States employs several hundred work- carried a quiver full of arrows which would hit a men at Springfield and Harper's Ferry in the man-man though he were seated on a rainbow. He acfacture of muskets. Each gun, lock and flint is cordingly banished her.

carefully examined and then put away, probably The lesson of the hour is most potent on the to slumber forever." That "forever" terminated point, that in order to preserve freedom all must Yonder rebellion has been caused when the armories were emptied by that prince of be educated. thieves-Floyd. When this association was young by a few ambitious men, who have prevailed over Andrew Jackson was battering the head of secession.

The principal theme of his address was


A revolution implies that the people know the fact and the cause of their oppressions. Rebellion implies an unlawful ambition, which relies for its success mainly upon ignorance and treason. The present war is a measure of our civilization, and if our

the ignorance of the multitude.

The lecturer plead "not guilty" to the charge sometimes brought against our public schools, country is now saved in this time of peril, it will that they are "godless schools." He said, "take not be on account of the politicians, but because away all the teachers from our schools, and the the schoolmaster has been abroad for the last twenloss of religious influence would be incalculable."| ty five years. As the teachers of the present are The moral diseases of many of our children be- the pioneers of thought for a future generation, come chronic before they are submitted to the in- let all labor to accomplish the great command, fluences of our schools, and we ought not to ex-.. pect the teachers to make them over into true men and women without time. We can teach all that is necessary to Christian character without crossing the pathway of any of the sects. What parents will complain that their children are taught to love their brothers?

BRATTLEBORO', August 23, 1861. The exercises of the Institute commenced at 9 o'clock, and were opened with prayer by Rev. Mr. Williams, of this place.


Let there be light."

Hon. Joseph White, Secretary of the Board of Education of Massachusetts, followed Mr. Adams with a most eloquent address on a similar topic, which had been announced as the subject for discussion, which was, "Universal Education, the Great Safeguard of a Republican Government." Mr. White defined a republican government, as it is understood in America; answered the question, what is meant by universal education, and then proceeded to inquire what are the relations of such an education to the permanency of republican inT. D. Adams, Esq., of Newton, Mass., was then stitutions. The whole subject was treated in a inroduced, who spoke in a most eloquent manner masterly style, and the address was heartily enupon "The Bearings of Popular Education on joyed and frequently applauded. Every one felt, Civilization." He placed teachers in the vanguard at its close, that no more discussion of that topic of civilization. The hand of the teacher is seen in everything good; the faithful teacher lives for the good of all, laboring in obedience to the Divine command, "Let there be light." "More light, more light," were the last words of the dy- President-A. P. Stone, Plymouth, Mass. ing Goethe, and teachers reecho them as they re- For Vice Presidents-Samuel Pettes, Roxbury; joice in the high relative position of the civilized Barnas Sears, Providence; Gideon F. Thayer, world. In all history no brighter page can be Boston; Benjamin Greenleaf, Bradford; Daniel found than the present. Nothing in the history of Kimball, Needham; William Russell, Lancaster; Greece or Rome can compare with it. Nowhere is Henry Barnard, Hartford; William H. Wells, the influence of education seen more clearly than Chicago, Ill.; Alfred Greenleaf, Brooklyn, N. Y.; in government, the most oppressive tyranny always William D. Swan, Boston; Charles Northend, being found where the greatest degree of ignorance New Britain, Ct.; Samuel S. Greene, Providence ;

would be demanded, or, perhaps, endured. The Institute then proceeded, according to previous assignment, to the election of officers for the ensuing year, as follows:

Ariel Parish, Springfield: Leander Wetherell, and a vast extent of beautiful country beyond, exBoston; George B. Emerson, Boston; Amos Per-tending even to the Green Mountains. More than ry, Providence; Nathan Hedges, Newark, N. J.; a hundred persons, principally ladies, made the William J. Adams, Boston; Zalmon Richards, ascent, who will never forget the efforts that it cost Washington, D. C.; John W. Bulkley, Brooklyn, them, nor the rich rewards for all the annoyances N. Y.; Thomas Sherwin, Boston; Jacob Batchel- of the tedious journey.

der, Salem; George S. Boutwell, Groton; John The exercises of the evening were of a miscelKingsbury, Providence; George Allen, Jr., Bos- laneous character, consisting of the passage of the ton; Charles Hammond, Groton; D. N. Camp, customary resolutions of thanks, hearing reports New Britain, Ct.; J. D. Philbrick, Boston; Joshua from the States represented, all of which was inBates, Boston; Anson Smith, Columbus, Ohio; terspersed with capital singing by Prof. Wood and his friends, to whom the Institute are much inAlpheus Crosby, Salem; Ebenezer Hervey, New debted. At the close of the exercises at the hall. Bedford; B. G. Northrop, Framingham; George very many accepted the invitation of Mr. Emil F. Phelps, New Haven; John C. Pelton, San Fran- Apfelbaum, Superintendent of the Lawrence Water Cure, to enjoy a Social Party in the spacious cisco, Cal.; Henry E. Sawyer, Concord, N. H.; halls of his establishment, where the song and William F. Phelps, Trenton, N. J.; J. Escobar, dance and social conversation closed, at a late Mexico; E. P. Weston, Gorham, Me.: E. F. hour, the pleasures connected with this last and Strong, Bridgeport, Ct.; D. B. Hagar, Jamaica one of the best meetings of the American Institute of Instruction. Among the resolutions at the Plain; Hiram Orcutt, West Brattleboro'; B. B. evening session was one with reference to the deWhittemore, Norwich, Ct. cease of Mr. W. A. Pike, of Boston, who was one

Recording Secretary - Wm. E. Sheldon, West


of the early Secretaries of the Institute; and one

also with reference to the decease of Mr. Ichabod Morton, of Plymouth, a man always prompt to do

Corresponding Secretaries-B. W. Putnam, Bos- his duty in the work of education. ton: John Kneeland, Roxbury.

Treasurer-William D. Ticknor, Boston. Curators-Nathan Metcalf, Boston; Samuel Swan, Boston; J. E. Horr, Brookline.

Censors-William T. Adams, Boston; James A. Page, Boston; C. Goodwin Clark, Boston.

Counsellors - Daniel Mansfield, Cambridge; C.

LESSONS IN PHYSICAL GEOGRAPHY.-By Walter Wells, A. M. Published by Mason Brothers, Nos. 5 and 7 Mercer street, New York. 1861.

We have examined this work, and are ready to pronounce it an admirable treatise for young minds. In fact, it is the only work of the kind which is really adapted to the young. The author has brought it within the capacity of all who may read with tolerable proficiency. The catch words instead of blank questions, is really a novelty to

Hutchins, Boston; J. W. Allen, Norwich, Conn.; Geo. N. Bigelow, Framingham; Richard Edwards, St. Louis, Mo.; T. W. Valentine, Brooklyn, N. Y.; J. E. Littlefield, Bangor, Me.; F. A. Sawyer, Boston; Moses T. Brown, Toledo, Ohio; Henry us, and we think them extremely happy both for L. Boltwood, Derry, N. H.; Joseph White, Williamstown; George T. Littlefield, Somerville. The new President, Mr. A. P. Stone, assumed the duties of the chair in the afternoon, having accepted the office in a graceful speech.

teacher and pupil. We hope it may soon find its way into all of our lower schools. Teachers, examine it and it will receive your hearty approval. This enterprising firm have published fresh works, which are advertised in another place, and will be noticed at length hereafter.

Professor Edward North, of Hamilton College, gave the address of the afternoon, on "The Sour- HAVE you used those school pens of Potter & ces of Personal Power," which he arranged under Hammond? Well, they are exceedingly flexible, four heads, viz. Health, Organized Thought, En- and remind us of the "gray goose quill" of our thusiasm and Friendship. The great struggle in early days. Potter & Hammond have had a large this life is one for power. Every one has, away experience in all the branches of chirography and back in his secret thoughts, a guarded shrine, know how to make the tools and how to use them. where each sets up a veiled image and whispers in Buy the school pen. a private litany his aspirations for power. Man's WE call the attention of teachers and school nature fits him for power. He was sent here to earn the right to influence others, to create histo- committees to the advertisement of Ivison, Phinry, to create images of his own personality. The ney & Co., New York, in this number. We shall various ways in which this four-fold power mani- examine Robinson's Series of Mathematics and fests itself were illustrated by reference to the give the result of our examination in the next No, lives of Eli Whitney, Charles Goodyear, Hiram "ON THE STUDY OF WORDS."-A notice of this Powers, and others. The address was a finished, book, prepared for this number, is crowded out. scholarly one, which was greatly enjoyed. See advertisement of the publisher, W. J. Widdleton, successor to J. S. Redfield.

The Institute adjourned at an early hour to enable many of its members to ascend the mountain on the opposite side of the river, from which to WORKS from Carleton & Porter, New York, will gain a magnificent view of the valley of the river receive attention when we have more space.


your eye, were the book before you, duly spelled according to the orthography preferred by Webster-center. So that in a hundred years the

COMMUNICATIONS for this Department should be ad- word has been changed from [-ter] to [-tre], and dressed to HENRY CLARK, Pawtucket, R. 1.

For the Schoolmaster.

Changes in Spelling.

back to [-ter].

It does not seem to the writer that changes made by the voice of a lexicographer really amount to any important result. People go on to spell just

A few days ago, I purchased an old book out of as they have always spelled-with a few excepa case of second-hand volumes, at a bookseller's. tions in some obvious cases - at least they think The title page bears the imprint, 1762-London, so. till by and by, looking back at some old book, and this is the thirteenth edition. Page and type as we have done to-day, they all at once discover throughout the volume are clear and free from ty- that themselves, or others for them, have altered pographical errors. Glancing at its open pages, I the letters in many words-how, they do not found there the old f-s's, sprawling numerals, know; why, they care not. I say this of the great nouns capitalized for emphasis, and various other mass of words in common use. I do not mean to marks of antique printing and of authenticity. deny that a very few words change on the authoriThat the book was well printed-it will appear ty of a dictionary, and I am not making an attack well in comparison with modern typography-that upon any dictionary, for such an attack would be futile and disrespectful. it emanated from a respectable source-an F. R. S.—and that it had enjoyed a dozen issues, made it a worthy index of the spelling a hundred years


It is weary work reading a book to scan its orthography. Yet it is often remunerative; for within the scope of fifty pages and with ordinary care, pencil in hand, I discovered here many words strange in form, that are written out on a little card that lies before me as I write at my desk.

And after all, does it much matter whether we spell "center" with the [e] before or after the [r], or whether the [u] in "honor appears or not? Learned men will say that the analogy of the language is in favor of the modern spelling of "center," and that the Latin is preferable to the French model for "honor." Others, in reply, may say, as to the first, that it evidently follows the form of sabre, fibre, French, and consequently should ap

"Scriblers," I see is spelled with one [b], "pod- pear in the form of these words. Concerning the ed"-past of "pod"—with a single [d]; "fit-second, they will ask, If it comes from the French, ing" did not double the [t], nor "runing" the [n]. Our forefathers were chary of their letters in these words, but "conick" and "elastick" and "musick" and "specifick," and the [-icks] in general, closed up with [k], while the [c] ends them now. Then "scaley" stood for "scaly.". "compleatly" spelled "completely," "sinonym" was equivalent to "synonym," "turnep" to "turnip," "streaked" was "streeked," and "ancient"

"antient." [K] begun "katkins" and "kalen


why should it not retain some distinction of French orthography? And I am half inclined to think the latter have the best side of the question; for, how shall we know, if we continually change the shape of our words, whether they are of French or Latin origin, or to what nation they do belong? Certainly, if we know not of what origin words in general be, we shall not know where to look for

their primary signification. Further than this, the orthography of these words at least is of slight importance. Yet this is perhaps a more important consideration than may at first appear. For withHow great was the din of words in the contest out any attempt at a labored argument, on the for and against the transformation of "honour,' very verge of which I seem to stand, I would ap"favour," "savour," "colour," "endeavour," and peal to the common sense of any reader to decide the like, to simpler form by eliding [u]. I shall whether, as words are the signs of ideas, we shall not give my opinion upon either side here, but I know them as well or understand them as well if may remind any observant student of letters that they be constantly changed in form without referin many of our reprints of English works this of- ence to their etymology. It is a miserable docfensive letter is not pruned, but the word is retain- trine that we understand a word any better beed as it is written uniformly so far as I know by cause it is so changed that we can spell it easily. Englishmen, in the form indicated just above this Is it to know how to spell it or how to use it, that sentence. That was the form a hundred years writers desire most? Is it to see it in a simplified form or to see it in a well-known form, that is most Another change is well remembered by some desirable? If we strip off every quality that goes who skim this page. It is that of "centre to to show its origin, its composition and its former "center." Yet, be not doubtful, reader, here, in shape, of what value is the word? Such an opethis ancient book, a century old, "center" is ration is like girdling an oak. It stops all life and spelled "center," just as our modern litterateurs makes the thing unsightly. It is like the kindly spell it. And you might find it here just under ornamenting the archer in the fable gave with his


knife to a favorite bow. He carved his designs so ent method of writing in the general business of deeply that he weakened the instrument and then life. This it has not done. It probably never will snapped it in twain the first time he bent it with take the place of the present system, unless its an arrow on the string. design is entirely changed.

As to "honor" and "favor," which I take to It is very much, I would say here, with letters represent the [-ours], although we have the au- as with grammar. How many times have men thority of more than one language for the omiss- thought they have seen serious defects in the sciion of the [u], if we drop this letter shall we not ence of language! They have exposed what they lose an exquisite test of their origin? For be- considered to be errors, and they have from time sides this, we have no authority for naming the to time written works that claim to develop true parent language the French, which it probably is, systems of grammatical science. I believe to-day except the fact that the Norman French exerted that all of grammar that is really practised, that great influence on early English, and so doubtless is to say, the essential elements of grammar, resupplied these words, being of a class oftenest us-mains about the same as it was fixed at the first; ed in courtly circles. Dropping [u] we lose sight what we have gained being more philosophical of all these important circumstances and become definition and fuller explanation of the parts of ignorant of their parentage. speech, and that knowledge of grammatical con

said, that as literature is like all science, its principles ought not wantonly to be disturbed. The little pruning and alteration that come of time and rough usage cannot be well prevented. But unless some better argument be given than that made recently much too prominent-that certain words are hard to spell and hence should be squared and clipped to suit a rapid method of education — we had best let words remain as they are.

As near as we come in the spelling to the origi-struction which comes from the study of various nal form of the word, if it be primitive or if com- and numerous examples of sentences - no mean pound to the root form, so near do we come to the acquirement, but far below what enthusiastic represervation of its original significance and fresh-formers have claimed. ness. What more is there in the word? Only a And now, as a matter for conclusion, it may be modification through which it has passed by constant usage-slight indeed in comparison with its radical meaning. I think it may be found upon an examination, too laborious for my present object, that in several of those words that have been changed by direction of the dictionaries those alterations have obtained which have tended to carry the word nearest its normal form, or have suggested most readily its etymological meaning. If it is not so, ought it not to be so? I think immediate- Of such as advocate alterations upon this basis, ly of "skillful," which recently doubled the [1], of we ought perhaps to say no more than that we ax" and "plow," (the latter the verb), and of judge their design to be in very bad taste. We the word "though," which, unlike "plough," had would thank them to cease meddling with lanonly the argument of an elaborate orthography for guage in a manner which is sure to be unsuccesslopping off its three last letters. "Though" re-ful if we judge by the past, and which will, if they mains intact, while "plow," "ax” and “skillful" succeed, be followed by no benefit either to themare steadily gaining ground according to the more selves or to those who study their plans. recent spelling; not because that spelling is simpler or easier, but because it approaches to the forms of those words that have obtained among the writings of our ancestors, or are the simplest offspring in form from their roots.

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Revolutions in language during the memory of the writer have quite generally failed. Phonography, a science that no one should disparage, failed in one of its essential objects—the establishment

of general phonetic spelling. Phonotypy, based on the most plausible theory of simplicity, is almost forgotten. I do not know of any defect in the plan of either. Both are beautiful, complete and practical, so far as they are needed. How far that need exists is proved by their general use.

Time bears witness to the enthusiasm of those who adopted the plan, and to the captivation which exists in a design which promises so much that it really consummates. But the patrons of the science expected too much. It was, they thought, destined to a rapid and successful career, until, at no distant day, it should entirely supersede our pres

A Poem by Roger Williams---1643.

"How sweetly doe all the severall sorts of Heaven's Birds, in all Coasts of the World, preach unto men the prayse of their Maker's Wisdome, Power and Goodnesse, who feedes them and their young ones Summer and Winter with their severall sorts of foode: although they neither sow nor

reape, nor gather into Barnes!

"If Birds that neither sow nor reape
Nor store up any food,
Constantly find to them and theirs
A maker kind and good!
If man provide eke for his Birds,

In Yard, in Coops, in Cage,
And each Bird spends in songs and Tunes,
His little time and Age!

What care will Man, what care will God
For his wife and children take?
Millions of Birds and Worlds will God
Sooner than his, forsake."

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