Wednesday, December 4, 2013

No Churches nor Schools

Our Excellent correspondent “Diff.” has on several occasions referred to the absence of school houses in the slave States which he has visited, and the consequent illiterate condition of the people.  A correspondent thus alludes to the same subject:

On coming to Rolla I was struck with the fact that there was neither church nor school-house in that town.  From there to Springfield, a distance of one hundred and twenty miles, in which there are farming neighborhoods settled over twenty years, I saw but one church – a half finished building commenced by the Southern Methodists, and afterwards abandoned – and not a single school-house. – At Springfield there were indications of moral, religious and intellectual culture, (churches and academies, temporarily abandoned during the possession of the town by the rebels, some of them destroyed,) but from Springfield to Cassville there was not a church or school-house to be seen.  In Cassville, I think, there must have been some obscure place used for religious purposes, but it was not visible, nor distinguishable from the other houses.  From Cassville to this town, no church or school-house has met my eye.  In Galena, the county seat of Stone county, there is no such structure.  In Forsyth there is the same destitution of any outward signs of religion or education.  Is it any wonder that in such a region the rebellion should find adherents among an ignorant and prejudiced population?

– Published in The Davenport Daily Gazette, Davenport, Iowa, Saturday Morning, May 17, 1862, p. 2

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