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Centennial of Canadian Methodism
Methodist Education in Canada


AT the Conference next following the independent organization of Canadian Methodism two most important enterprises were undertaken by the young Church. They were both rendered essentially necessary by the circumstances of the times, and were the direct outcome of the struggle in which our fathers were engaged, to secure for themselves and for their children complete civil and religious liberty. The first was the publication of a weekly religious news- t paper, which was projected, not merely for devotional and religious purposes, but especially as a means of awakening the interest and directing the thought and action of the Methodist public on the moral and religious aspects of all living questions.

The other enterprise was initiated by a resolution of Conference in 1829, to provide for the higher education of the young people of the Church, and especially for the rising ministry. In the following year a constitution for the projected seminary, to be called Upper Canada Academy, was adopted, and efforts were at once put forth to raise the necessary funds.

The Methodists of that time numbered few men of wealth, being principally farmers, still engaged in the struggle to create productive homesteads out of primitive forests. To raise the $50,000 needed to build and equip their seminary was a more gigantic undertaking than would be the raising of two millions by the united Canadian Methodism of to-day, or of twenty millions by the wealthy Methodism of the United States. But to these fifty men of faith the task was God’s command, and it must be done. If the work placed in their hands by God was to be carried forward, a ministry so educated as not to be disparaged by the side of the university men supplied to the Anglican and Presbyterian churches from the old seats of learning in Great Britain must be secured for Methodism. If, in the councils of the nat!on and in the great politico-religious questions of the day, they were to make their influence felt, their sons must be educated. Under this supreme sense of duty, as it must then have appeared to them, the work was undertaken, and, in seven years from the time of its first mention in Conference, was completed, free from debt. Of the effort put forth to bring about such a consummation some idea may be formed from a few sentences of a letter, written by the Chairman of the Board engaged in erecting the building to the Rev. Egerton Ryerson, who was then in England soliciting funds and a royal charter for the institution: “You must stay in England until the money is got. Use every effort. Harden your face to flint, and give eloquence to your tongue. This is your calling; excel in it. Be not discouraged with a dozen refusals in succession. The money must be had, and it must be begged. My dear brother, work for your life, and I pray God to give you success. Do not borrow, if possible. Beg, beg, beg it all. It must be done.” Such was the spirit of conviction, and such the effort of these founders of our Church.

Nor were the financial difficulties the only ones to be overcome in this enterprise. It was considered necessary that the institution should possess corporate powers and conduct its operations under the provisions of a charter. Such a charter could only, at this time, be obtained directly from the King himself, acting, of course, through the Colonial Secretary, who again was to be approached through the Governor of Upper Canada. It might be supposed that such an enterprise as the founding of a seminary of learning in a young colony, which at that time possessed but one institution of the class proposed, would meet with the most ready acquiescence and approbation of the authorities, both in our own country and in the parent land. In England these anticipations were not disappointed, but in Canada the representatives of our Church had to force their way through almost every possible form of official obstruction and delay, and even insult, before the desired object was obtained.

The institution thus founded was opened for academic work June 18, 1836, with the Rev. Matthew Richey as Principal. Mr. Richey was a native of Ireland. Classically educated in the land < f his birth and converted under the ministry of Methodism about twenty years before this time, he emigrated to America, and in the Maritime Provinces consecrated his rare gifts of eloquence to the work of the ministry. He was a master in pulpit eloquence; splendid in diction, rich and b autiful in thought, luminous in exposition of truth, association with him was in itself an inspiring education to the young men of that day. At the close of the first year the new Academy numbered 120 students on its roll, and was fully organized under the royal charter granted October 7th, 1836, by His Majesty King William IV.; and was, by the aid of a royal grant, free from debt. ^During the three years of Mr. Richey’s presidency the Church already began to reap the fruits of her enterprise in the addition to the ranks of the ministry of such names as G. R. Sanderson, James Spencer and I. B. Howard, all trained in the Academy, and in after years doing honour to their alma mater.

In 1839 Mr. Richey was succeeded by the Rev. Jesse Hurlburt, M. A., a graduate of Wesleyan University, Middletown, a finished scholar and a very able educator. Associated with him was also another gentleman, then just beginning a distinguished career as an educator, the Rev. D. C. Van Norman, M.A. Under their control the Academy continued to increase in popularity and usefulness both to the Church and to the country. It was during this period that the Rev. H. B. Steinhauer, himself an Indian of pure blood, laid the foundation of that scholarship which served him so well in the translation of the entire Scriptures into the Cree language of our North-Western plains, as well as in his long and successful work as a missionary teacher and preached. The mention of such names as Lieutenant-Governor Aikins, Lieutenant-Governor Richey, M. B. Roblin, Esq., Horace Yeomans, Esq., Colonel Stoughton Dennis, A. E. Van Norman and 0. W. Powell; with such ladies as Mrs. Nathan Jones, the Misses Adams, Mrs. Yeomans, Mrs. Judge Macdonald and Mrs. I. B. Howard, will show to those acquainted with the inner history of Canadian Methodism, as well as with our political and social life, how important was the work of this period and how widespread its influence.

After five years of successful academic work, during which hundreds of youth of both sexes and various religious denominations received a substantial education, Upper Canada Academy, by Act of the Provincial Parliament, was endowed with university powers and became, under its extended royal charter, Victoria College, on August 27th, 1841. In October of that year, the Rev. E. Ryerson, D.D., was appointed the first principal of the college and professor of moral philosophy, and on the 21st of that month opened the session and commenced his duties by a public address to the students. This was the first opening in Ontario of an institution authorized to confer degrees. Queen’s College and University (Presbytuian) was opened on the 7th of March, 1842 ; and King’s College, the then provincial college under the control of the Church of England, on the 8th of June, 1843. To the Methodist Church belongs the honour of leading the way in university work in Western Canada.

During the first year the management of the incipient university devolved on the Rev. Mr. Hurlburt. In June, 1842, Dr. Ryerson, released from external labours which had devolved upon him, devoted himself more fully to his college work. The occasion was marked by an inaugural address more formal and comprehensive than that of the preceding October, and setting forth the conception entertained by the new president of the university training required by the Canadian student. On two points he anticipates the great movement of university reform of modern times. The fiist is the prominent position which he assigns to the English language and literature as elements of a university education. At the close of several pages devoted to this subject, he says, “What I have said is designed to show that I do not undervalue the English classics and the philosophical and literary resources of our own language, and that youth who cannot acquire the mastery of other tongues ought not to be excluded from the invaluable mines ».of wisdom and knowledge which are contained in their own tongue.”

The second is the appreciation of the physical sciences. On this point he says : “ The physical sciences have, as yet, received little attention in our higher schools in this Province. Instruction has been chiefly confined to the classics, and students have acquired little or no knowledge of natural philosophy, chemistry, mineralogy, geology, astronomy, etc., except what they have attained in another Province, or in a foreign country. If one branch of education must be omitted, surely the knowledge of the laws of the universe is of more practical advantage, socially and morally, than a knowledge of Greek and Latin.”

The magnificent modern courses of science in our uni versities have not passed the limit here sketched. In commencing his work, Dr. Ryerson was supported by a staff of men distinguished for learning but still more for individual ability as educators. Mr. Hurlburt became professor of the natural sciences. Mr. Van Norman, distinguished as a grammarian, became the professor of classics. To these were added Mr. William Kingston, M.A., whose reputation as a professor of mathematics was well known to some thirty successive classes of students in the halls of Victoria. In addition to these, an English master was employed ; the second of these, the Rev. Janies Spencer, M.A., was well known afterward as a man of mark in Canadian Methodism, wielding a gifted pen, and editor of the Christian Guardian. Dr. Ryerson evidently understood that the strength of an institution of learning lies not so much in magnificent buildings or expensive equipments, as in men of rare ability as teachers; and in the selection of these he was singularly fortunate. Around such a college president, and such a faculty, there gathered at once the strongest young mind of the country. The name of Rev. S. S. Nelles, D.D., LL.D.; Rev. William Ormiston, D.D., LL.D.; Rev. W. S. Griffin, D.D.; Hon. Senator Brouse, M.D. ; Hon. William McDougall, C.B. ; Judge Springer, M.A.; J. E. Hodgins, M.A., LL.D., Deputy Minister of Education; J. L. Biggar, M.P., will be recognized as men eminent in Church and State, and in college life and work, all of whom were students of this period. Of Dr. Ryerson’s work as College President, Dr. Ormiston writes :—

“In the autumn of 1843 I went to Victoria College, doubting much whether I was prepared to matriculate as a freshman. Though my attainments in some of the subjects prescribed for examination wera far in advance of the requirements, in other subjects I knew I was sadly deficient. On the evening of my arrival, while my mind was burdened with the importance of the step I had taken, and by no means free from anxiety about the issue, Dr. Ryerson, at that time Principal of the College, visited me in ray room. I shall never forget that interview. He took me by the hand, and few men could express as much by a mere hand-shake as he. It was a welcome, an encouragement, an inspiration, and an earnest of future fellowship and friendship. It lessened the timid awe I naturally felt toward one in so elevated a position. I had never before seen a principal of a college; it dissipated all boyish awkwardness and awakened filial confidence. He spoke of Scotland, my native land, and of her noble sons, distinguished in every branch of philosophy and literature ; specially of the number, the diligence, the frugality, selfdenial, and success of her college students. In this way he soon led me to tell him of my parentage, past life and efforts, present hopes and aspirations. His manner was so gracious and paternal, his sympathy so quick and genuine, his counsel so ready and cheering, his assurances so grateful and inspiring, that not only was my heart his from that hour, but my future career seemed brighter and more certain than it had ever appeared before. Dr. Ryerson was, at that time, in the prime of a magnificent manhood ; his mental powers vigorous and well-disciplined, his attainments in literature extended and diversified, his fame as a preacher of great pathos and power, widely spread. . . . As a teacher, he was earnest and efficient, eloquent and inspiring. His methods of examination furnished the very best of mental discipline, fitted alike to cultivate the memory and strengthen the judgment. All the students revered him, but the best of the class appreciated him most. His counsels were faithful and judicious, his admonitions paternal and discriminating, his rebukes, seldom administered, but scathingly severe. No student ever left his presence without resolving to do better, to aim higher, and to win his approval.”

The presence of such a man, surrounded and supported by able instructors in various departments of learning, was sufficient to give great popularity to this first Canadian college, and quickened the spirit of the whole people in the direction of higher learning, until, by 1843, there were three colleges in active operation in Ontario, besides McGill, in Quebec. An effort was made at that early date to combine the three colleges of the western province in a Provincial University. The Hon. Mr. Baldwin introduced a bill for University Federation, but the defeat of the ministry prevented its becoming law. The attempt was renewed in 1846, with no better success, and when a University Bill wras finally passed in 1849, it included but one of the three colleges.

Meantime the first principal, Dr. Ryerson, was called to the chief superintendency of education for the Province. His place was filled by the Rev. Alexander McNab, D.D., under whose administration the college held a good position for four years, numbering in 1848, 140 students. During this period Judge Springer, Rev. Dr. Ormiston, Rev. Prof. Wright, Dr. Cameron and Mr. Campbell were graduated in arts.

The resignation of Dr. McNab, in 1849, closed the first period of the history of Victoria College, in which the institution was limited to purely college work, that is, the training of students in the elements of a general and liberal education, leading to the B.A. degree.

Disturbing influences connected with the resignation of the principal and an interregnum of a year and a half, dispersed the students and seriously interfered with the future prospects of the college. The Methodists were anxious to fall in with the popular movement for a national university. Negotiations were commenced with that in view, and a bill obtained authorizing the removal of the college to Toronto. The Government o£ the day did not, however, prove to be sufficiently earnest in purpose to carry the matter to completion, and the only result was the abortive affiliation provision of the University Act of 1853. Meantime, the leaders of Methodism felt that the position won by such noble and self-sacrificing efforts in the past must not be abandoned, and a young minister just ordained, a graduate of Wesleyan University, Middletown, and one of the first under-graduates of Victoria under Dr. Ryerson, was called to preside over the destinies of the Methodist college in September, 1850. This was the Rev. S. S. Nelles, M.A., with whose name the history of Victoria, in its growth toward university status, is most intimately henceforward associated.

The young Principal was then but twenty-seven years of age; an excellent scholar, an eloquent preacher, and a most successful and thorough teacher, but with a task before him of great difficulty. The college treasury was empty. There was absolutely no endowment.

The buildings and furniture, after fifteen years of constant wear by hundreds of students, were sadly in need of repair and renewal. The able professors of other days had betaken themselves to other work, and there were scarcely thirty students (but two matriculated) to respond to his call of college opening. To raise funds for an endowment sufficient to bring the annual income of the college up to $5,000, to organize an efficient staff of professors, to attract and organize students once more into the relations of college life, in fact, to resuscitate the college, was the work before him. Meantime the Revs. John Ryerson, Dr. E. Ryerson, Richard Jones and Dr. Green, J. P. Roblin, M.P., John Counter, Esq., and Rev. William Case of the original founders, were still members of the corporation, and afforded counsel and support; while Dr. Wood, Dr. Rice and Mr. Musgrove, who represented English Methodism, and three old students, Messrs. Sanderson, Biggar and. Powell, were added to the corporation, and lent their help in the effort. The first struggle was for financial relief. This was attempted in September, 1851, by the inauguration of what was known as the scholarship scheme—an effort to raise $50,000 by the sale of 500 scholarships, good for free tuition in this college for twenty-five years from that date. At the following Conference, consisting of, all told, 150 ministers and preachers, ninety of these scholarships were sold to ministers, and between three and four hundred were disposed in all, realizing about $30,000 in principal, but depriving the institution of all income from fees, for twenty-five years to come.

But, if not a grand success in raising funds, the scholarships were a means of increasing the number of students. Meantime the Board were also successful in bringing to the support of the Principal, three very able members of the former staff: Prof. Kingston, in mathematics; Prof. John Wilson, in classics; and Prof. John Beatty, M.D., in natural science. These men were as varied in gifts and scholarship as the departments over which they presided. Prof. Kingston was an embodiment of the exactness of mathematical science, and no student could pass through his hands without learning to define and demonstrate. Prof. Wilson, of Trinity College, Dublin, was famed for the unfailing accuracy and extent of his scholarship, for his fine literary taste, and for the beautiful Christian perfection of his character, which was a constant living example to all the boys. Dr. Beatty was a scientist, a man of the world, and a leader in the Church; one of those clear, active, versatile and strong minds, that young men delight to follow. When at the head of all these was placed the learning, the philosophical acumen, the brilliant eloquence, and the administrative ability of the President, Victoria found a staff, which for the purposes of college discipline, could not easily be excelled. Meantime, under their hands, the gathered masses of raw material soon began to organize into a well-defined college life. The number of students rose to nearly 300, and the regular undergraduate classes, which had all disappeared save one, during the interregnum, were again filled out.

At this formative period, when the traditions which so powerfully regulate student-life were being established, it was the blessed fortune of the college to be visited with a great revival. An old student, Rev. G. R. Sanderson, was the pastor. About a dozen faithful, godly young men, the most of whom are prominent leaders in the Church to-day (four have been Conference Presidents), formed a band for prayer and work among their fellow-students. When the work began, not twenty-five per cent, of the students were professing Christians. At the end, not five per cent, were left unmoved by the power of saving grace. Out of the fruits of that revival came a score of ministers, a number of Conference Presidents, one of our General Superintendents, and a large number of the leading Christian laymen of our Church to-day. But better even than that, the ablest, oldest and most advanced students all converted, a Jiigh moral and religious tone became an established tradition of the college, continuously maintained through the thirty classes that have graduated out of college to this day. There has been very little serious difficulty about the discipline of the college from that day to this. It was about this time that Rev. Dr. Rice became associated with the institution as moral Governor and Chaplain, and by the great force of his Christian character did much to establish and perfect the religious life commenced in the great revival.

The period had now arrived for the expansion of the college life and work into that of the university. The development of Victoria University was at first along the old-fashioned line, and fortunately in such a way as not to interfere with college work. A faculty of medicine was established in 1854, but in the city of Toronto, and with an entirely independent teaching- staff and financial management. A similar faculty of law was added in 1860, and a faculty of theology, in closer relations to the college, in 1871. During all this time the faculty of arts adhered faithfully to the old college discipline of classics, mathematics, and philosophy, with a moderate addition of modern literature and science. The number of undergraduates in arts exceeded at no time 150, and no Canadian college did more thorough work along this line than Victoria. Her university work in distinct lines gave her the advantage of moral influence and support in the country, as her graduates in medicine alone now number over one thousand.

Victoria has, however, shared with all other American institutions the influence of modern ideas, and has felt the pressure of the claims of modern science. As early as 1856, the introduction of Dr. Whitlock, formerly of Genesee Wesleyan Seminary and College, into the staff, in the department of natural philosophy, gave an impulse in that direction. He was a man of rare genius—a philosopher rather than a professor, who thought aloud before his class, and suffered them to imbibe the tire of his own spirit. He was followed, in 1864, by Dr. Harris, now of Amherst College, a man who had then just graduated from a German university, and who moulded students with a strong hand, leaving on all his men a very decided impress of the culture of physical and chemical science. Meantime other changes favoured this incipient tendency. Professor Bain succeeded Professor Kingston in the chair of mathematics, bringing from Europe the modern taste for the employment of mathematics as the instrument of scientific investigation. A chair of English literature was established in the hands of Professor Reynar, and a new impulse given to that department, as well as to modern literature generally. Finally, in 1873, Dr. Haanel took charge of the department of science. Bringing with him fine scholarship, and employing it with an ability and enthusiasm rarely equalled, what was a chair, under his hand soon expanded into a 21 department, presenting a complete curriculum in science, embracing varied work in mathematics and modern literature, and rendering necessary the chair in natural history and geology, now filled by Dr. Coleman, and the erection of Faraday Hall for the science department.

These steps in advance were not taken without involving considerable financial embarrassment. In 1860, an effort was made to claim the relations to the Provincial university system, to which the early history of Victoria University fully entitled her. But the effort, while resulting in good to the university work of the country at large, brought Victoria merely a slightly increased subsidy from the public funds. A considerable debt had accumulated during the ten years of struggle in which Dr. Nelles and his staff had been engaged to secure a position as a university, and which was wiped out by the energetic efforts of Rev. Dr. Ayles-worth, between the years of 1862 and 1865, and the college placed in a position to make income equal to expenditure. Scarcely, however, was this effected, when, in 1868, a combination of adverse forces in Parliament deprived both Victoria University and Queen’s College of the annual grants which for twenty-seven years they had received from the Government; and financial ruin once more stared our college in the face. At this juncture the late Dr. Punshon became associated with Canadian Methodism. He at once threw his influence into the effort made by President Nelles for the college endowment. The Conference seconded and supported the work, its members for several years taxing their salaries to meet the annual deficit. In a few years an endowment of $100,000 was raised, more than replacing the grant so unceremoniously withdrawn. At the same time the growing necessities of the university began to attract the attention of broad-minded, generous and wealthy men. The late Edward Jackson led the way in this work. The theological department was projected under his patronage ; he, and his equally generous and devoted wife, contributing by gift and bequest, $30,000 for this purpose, resulting in the appointment of the writer as Dean of the faculty of theology and Professor of Biblical and systematic theology. A few years later, another gentleman, a partner and life-long friend of Mr. Jackson, Dennis Moore, Esq., contributed $25,000, to assist in the extension of the department of science. The death of Dr. Ryerson was the occasion of a worthy memorial effort, now nearly completed, to endow the chair of moral philosophy which he had filled during his presidency, with the sum of $35,000. The date Sheriff Patrick has also left a bequest of some $20,000, so that at the time of the Union, the assets of the College were about $250,000, and the annual income about $20,000.

In the meantime, the collateral branches of the educational work of Canadian Methodism in Ontario had grown up side by side with this parent stem. Victoria University, as we have traced its history, while at first the college of an almost united Methodism, became specially the institution of the Wesleyan Methodists. But the Episcopal branch of Methodism laid its foundations so broadly in the Province of Ontario as to be able, in 1857, to found a second Methodist seminary of learning. At its head was placed one of Victoria’s oldest graduates, the Rev. Albert Carman, D.D., now General Superintendent of the Methodist Church. For nine years after its foundation the work of the institution was entirely of an academic character. Its success in this respect led to the belief that the interests of the Church it represented, and also the interests of higher education, would be better served if it were in possession of university powers. An Act of Parliament to that effect was obtained in 1866, and the institution exercised its university functions until its consolidation with Victoria, in 1884. During these eighteen years it graduated seventy-six young men as Bachelors of Arts Among these may be mentioned the senior graduates, Rev. Dr. Aylesworth, pastor of one of the Methodist Churches, Strathroy ; Judge Carman, Cornwall ; Rev. Dr. Lane, for several years, until failing health forced him to retire from the pulpit, one of the leading preachers in New York city Methodism ; Rev. Dr. Badgley, Professor of Mental and Moral Philosophy in Victoria University ; Dr. McIntyre, for many years Principal of Brantford Ladies’ College, and now Principal of the Ladies’ College, Bloor Street, Toronto ; Principal Austin and Pro fessor Warner, of Alma Ladies’ College ; Principal Dyer, of Albert College; Rev. F. McAmmond, Principal of Stanstead College ; A. W. Bannister, Principal of St. Francis College ; Rev. Dr. George, of Belleville ; Rev. J. Burton, Toronto; H. F. Gardiner, editor of the Hamilton Times, and for many years one of the foremost reporters and leading writers in Canadian journalism ; and F. W. Merchant, one of the most representative teachers in the Province, and now Principal of the Collegiate Institute, London.

From 185S to 1876 the institution was under the able and vigorous administration of Rev. Dr. Carman, General Superintendent of the Methodist Church. For the next ten years the Rev. Dr. Jacques was President. He was succeeded four years ago by the present Principal, Rev. W. P. Dyer, M.A.

Since the Union the institution has been in affiliation with Victoria University, to which it is a most important auxiliary, and to which the Rev. E. I. Badgley, LL.D., has been transferred, as Professor of Mental and Moral Philosophy.

From its foundation until the present the school has been open to both sexes. The number of graduates in arts represents but a fraction of the work done. The records show an annual attendance, from 1857 to the present, of from 100 to 200 students. Since the Union the attendance has largely increased, the result of a larger constituency being opened to it, and its influence upon the Church and upon the public is constantly growing.

About the year 1860, the attention of Canadian Methodism was first seriously turned to the important department of higher education represented by the Ladies’ College. The Upper Canada Academy in its first inception had provided for the education of both sexes. The Belleville Seminary had been founded upon the same principle of co-education. In these days no Canadian young woman had as yet ventured upon a university course, and the elevation of Victoria to university status had virtually excluded the ladies from its halls. The Rev. Dr. Rice, Rev. Dr. Rose, and Rev. Richard Jones all threw themselves with great enthusiasm into the project of founding a college especially adapted for the educational requirements of young ladies. In this task they were nobly seconded by such men as Edward Jackson, Edward Gurney, Dennis Moore, the late Dr. McQuesten, and the Hon. W. E. Sanford. The result of their work was, in 1861, the opening of the Wesleyan Ladies’ College, of Hamilton, which has now for thirty years maintained its position as the pioneer in this special line of educational work. Commencing its work with a faculty of great ability, including such names as the Rev. Dr. Rice, in Moral Philo .sophy; the Rev. Wesley P. Wright, M.A., in Science; the Misses Adams, the one as Lady Principal, the other as Professor of Mathematics ; it soon won for itself a high reputation for the thoroughness of its intellectual work, for the genuine refinement of its Christian culture, and for its deep moral power in moulding the noblest types of womanly character.

The success of this first institution led to the founding of the Ontario Ladies’ College, at Whitby, in 1874, principally through the self-sacrificing efforts of the Rev. Jos. E. Sanderson, M.A. Another decade brought the founding of Alma College, at St. Thomas, by the Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Canada. At the head ot these three institutions we have now placed respectively the Rev. Alexander Burns, D.D., LL D., Principal of the Wesleyan Ladies’ College; the Rev. J. J. Hare, M.A , Ph.D., Principal of the Ontario Ladies’ College ; and the Rev. B. F. Austin, M.A., B.D., Principal of the Alma College. In each of these men the Church has found high university attainments, combined with great ability as educators and administrators, and no institutions in our country stand higher than these in the confidence of the public in their moral and' intellectual character.

Of late years the education of the women of our land has taken a new departure. In 1884, Queen’s and Victoria conferred the first degrees in Arts on Ontario ladies, following Mount Allison, from which young ladies had graduated in Arts in 1875 and in 1882. This movement has now permanently established itself in all our universities, and the lady students alone in the universities of Ontario can now be numbered by the hundred, and the lady graduates by the score. One of its results has been the affiliation of our Ladies’ Colleges with Victoria University, affording our young ladies all the advantages of the aesthetic culture of the special provisions of their own institutions, and combining with this the advanced special learning of the university curriculum. In a curriculum of six years, four in the Ladies’ College, including such branches of aesthetic culture as her natural gifts may indicate, and two in the university, completing her higher intellectual training, the daughter of Canadian Methodism has offered to her educational facilities not to be excelled in any land. , The last step in the Methodist educational system in Ontario is of too recent date to be considered as a matter of history. It will rather constitute the foundation of the educational work of our second century than appear as a constituent part of that of the first. The work which we have described, built up in all its essential elements by men who have already entered into rest, has ripened into a completeness independent in itself. It takes up our young men and women at that point in their educational course when they are first separated from home. It avails itself in the public system of all which can be furnished by the State to the child still under the care of the parent. In such institutions as Albert, Alma, the Wesleyan and Ontario, it combines the Christian home with the college discipline, and carries our youth up into a comparatively mature young man—or womanhood. Finally it projects itself into the university sphere where again it links itself with the provisions of the State, and infuses into the highest forms of intellectual culture both the spirit and the truths of our holy religion. We hope that it may yet be regarded as the crowning glory of this system, that in taking its leave of those whom it has guided through six of the most critical years of human life, it transfers them at once into the great brotherhood of the Christian State, as well as into the brotherhood of the Methodist Church. If this broader Christian spirit is fully secured, the two or three years spent in the halls of the federated National and Methodist Universities will be among the most fruitful of the whole course. As a total result of our fifty-five years’ work in general education in the Province of Ontario, these institutions have graduated 550 students to the degree of B.A., more than 500 more to degrees which represent a university standing of the second or third year, while the total number of students educated within their various halls, would be numbered by the tens of thousands. The entire present staff in Arts of the University, with its four affiliated colleges, numbers over fifty professors and teachers, and the number of students enrolled last year in Arts work was 879.

The special training of the candidates for the Christian ministry is by some regarded as the sole form of educational work to which the Christian Church is called. Canadian Methodism has never yet accepted this position. It is not the traditional policy of our Church. But while a broader view of our responsibilities has governed the plans and labours of the past sixty years, at no time has our Church lost sight of the importance of an educated and trained ministry. As far back as 1825, measures were adopted for the direction of the studies of candidates for the Christian ministry, and the Presiding Elders were ordered to devote special attention to this duty. In the first college curriculum of 1841 and 1842 divinity had its place, and the Principal was also professor of theology. In the year 1871, a school of Theology was practically organized in Victoria

University. From this school in twenty years 350 students have entered the ministry of our Church. The school is now provided with a strong working faculty covering all the important parts of the most advanced theological curriculum in the work of the lecture-room.

Before passing away from the educational history of Ontario Methodism, there are a few names of the sainted dead who must receive special mention. The eloquent Dr. Richey was our first principal. The mighty Dr. Ryerson was our first college president. The brilliant Dr. Nelles built our college into a university. The noble Dr. Rice laid the foundations of higher education for our daughters, and the saintly Dr. McClure was the forerunner of our theological schools The means for the foundation of a theological school were not given him, but for one branch of our Methodism he did the work of a divinity school by his own untiring efforts. The fruits of that effort stand among our best men of the pulpit and the pen to-day.

The special development of Methodist education in the Province of Quebec dates from 1872. The special circumstances of the Province had, from the beginning, separated its institutions of learning into two distinct classes, Protestant and Roman Catholic. As a matter of course, the Methodists at once ranged themselves with the supporters of the Protestant schools. With the limited Protestant population of the country, it would have been useless to. attempt to maintain a system of Methodist schools and colleges. The Methodist interest in education thus centred around the Protestant academies of the Eastern Townships and the McGill Normal and High Schools. The university centre of the Province for all the Protestant bodies was fixed in the city of Montreal at a very early date, and the McGill University has most nobly supplied the great public demand which it was created to meet. The only exception to the unity of this system was the founding of the Stan-stead Wesleyan Academy in 1873. After varying fortunes, this academy, though still Methodist in its administration, is now unified with the provincial system,' and is one of the chain of secondary academies or colleges which are affiliated with McGill University.

Some twenty-five or thirty years since, the honoured and Christian Principal of McGill University, with statesmanlike sagacity, conceived the idea of surrounding the University with a group of Theological Colleges representing the great Protestant denominations of Quebec. The Presbyterian Theological College was the first of these to be completed. The Congregational soon followed, and in 1872, with the support of Rev. Dr. Punshon, then President of the Wesleyan Conference, the Hon. James Ferrier and others, procured from the Conference the resolution authorizing the establishment of the Wesleyan Theological College of Montreal, and subscribed some $50,000 to initiate the enterprise. At the same Conference the Rev. George Douglas, LL.D., was appointed the Theological tutor, and in 1873 classes were opened in the school-rooms of the Dominion Square Methodist Church. In 1874 the Rev. W. I. Shaw, LL.D., was added to the staff, as professor of Greek Testament and Church History, and to his business capacity and energy as Secretary, no less than to the commanding talents of the Principal, is due the success and growth of the institution. In 1879, it was incorporated by Act of the Provincial Legislature, and affiliated in Arts with McGill University. In 1883, it was provided with commodious and elegant buildings within the University square at a cost of some $50,000, contributed by the late lamented Senator Ferrier and other wealthy Methodists of Montreal. In 1889, its charter was extended to embrace the power of conferring degrees in divinity, and it is now the second in number of students and extent of work of the four Theological colleges which surround McGill University. Since the foundation of this institution, over 150 candidates for the ministry of the Methodist Church have been educated in its halls. The staff consists of three professors, and the curriculum extends to the degree of B.D. The number of students enrolled last year was forty-two.

The educational institutions of Mount Alison University, Ladies’ College and Academy owe their existence to the Christian philanthropy of the late Charles F. Allison, for many years a resident of Sackville, N.B. In the beginning of the year 1839, he proposed to the Methodist Church to furnish, at his own expense, an eligible site and suitable building for an academy. He further offered to contribute <£100 a year for ten years for the maintenance of the institution. His offer was, of course, cheerfully accepted. The foundation stone of the building was laid on the 9th of July, 1840, and on the morning of the 19th of January,

1843, the building was opened for the reception of students. The late Rev. Dr. Pickard had, in the meantime, been elected principal, and on this occasion, in company with the founder and a few friends, and six or seven students who presented themselves for admission, a suitable religious and dedicatory service was held. The Academy thus founded for young men grew so rapidly, that at the end of the first decade, the annual attendance averaged 110 students. In 1850, Mr. Allison added to his noble gifts .£1000 for the foundation of a second academy for young ladies.

At the head of this was placed the Rev. E. Evans, D.D., with Miss M. E. Adams as lady principal.

In the year 1858, on the motion of the generous founder, steps were taken for the establishment of a college, and a charter obtained for that purpose from the Legislature of New Brunswick. In the following year, the theological department, as the first element of the proposed college work was established, and in 1861 the Rev. C. De Wolfe was appointed Charles Allison Professor of Theology. In 1862, the full organization of the College was completed, and the college was opened in August of that year, under the Presidency of Dr. Pickard, with twelve undergraduates.

At the close of the college year, 1868-9, Dr. Pickard resigned, and was succeeded by David Allison, LL.D., as President of the College, and Principal of the Academy for young men, while J. R. Inch, LL.D., was appointed the Principal of the Ladies5 Academy. Dr. De Wolfe was, in 1870, succeeded in the chair of Systematic Theology by the Rev. Charles Stewart, D.D., the present Dean of the Faculty of Theology, whose zealous, able and extended labours have done much for the general advancement of the college, as well as for his own chosen department. On the appointment of Dr. Allison to the Superintendency of Education in the Province of Nova Scotia, Dr. Ir^ch became President of the University in 1878. In the year 1883, the foundation of the magnificent Centennial Hall was laid, and in the following year it was dedicated to the service of God and the work of Methodist University education. It is the finest college building as yet erected by Canadian Methodism. At the same time, the Methodists of the Maritime Province have made noble contributions to the endowment of their university which now, in staff and equipments, ranks with the best in Maritime Canada. During the past year the Ladies’ Academy has been enlarged by the addition of a beautiful building to be used as a Conservatory of Music. It also contemplates, in connection with the celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of the institution, in 1892, to add a commodious college residence to the present group of buildings, as well as to increase the present endowment.

As a result of eighteen years of college work, Mount Allison University has graduated 154 students in Arts and Science, and four to the degree of B.D. in Divinity. Among these are such men of note as the Hon. Mr. Justice Bur-bidge, Dr. Weldon, M.P.; Dr Stockton, Mr. Wood, M.P.; Dr. Sprague, Dr. Inch, Dr. A. D. Smith, Professors Brecken and Borden. These well-known names are representative of thousands who have been trained under the care of the present staff and their predecessors in office. The staff now includes eight professors. There were enrolled last year ninety-eight students in Arts, sixteen in Theology, 156 in the Ladies’ College, and ninety-one in the Academy for Young Men.

The great work of higher education in what we, as yet, call the North-western Provinces of our Dominion, is still in its infancy. A system of public schools has been established, and secondary schools have been founded in Winnipeg, Brandon, Portage la Prairie, Regina and elsewhere. In all these the Methodist people take a leading interest, and will doubtless shape their entire future policy in harmony with them. The University of Manitoba, already organized, is based upon the federal principle, and already embraces four colleges. One of these, Wesley College, Winnipeg, was founded by our Church in 1873, but after a struggling existence as a High School, was discontinued on £he establishment of the Winnipeg Collegiate Institute. Immediately after the General Conference of 1886 preparations were made for the re-establishment of the college as a part of the newly-founded University of Manitoba. In 1888, the Rev. J. W. Sparling, M.A., D.D., was appointed principal, and a staff of professors selected, and work commenced. The first students, two in number, were sent up to the Provincial university for graduation in 1890, and at the examination of that year four scholarships were won by students of Wesley College. The attendance last year was thirty-five, including twenty candidates for the Methodist ministry. A professor of Theology has been appointed, and the foundation laid for a divinity school, as well as of a college in Arts. Four professors in Arts are employed, constituting in combination with an equal number attached tj the Manitoba College (Presbyterian), a very efficient teaching staff. It is only needed that the Government of Manitoba should erect a common science hall, open to the students of all four colleges, to give the federated University of Manitoba the full strength needed for the most vigorous growth. This, and the development of the secondary schools throughout the Province, will enable this land of boundless resources to take a foremost position in the very near future.

The educational agencies of our Missionary Societies constitute a most important part of the contributions of our Church to this work. We borrow from the last report of the Educational Society the following summary statement:— “ The following is a list of the institutions : The Anglo-Japanese College at Tokyo; the Chinese Schools at Victoria, Vancouver and New Westminster, B.C.; 27 Indian Schools, viz.—In Ontario, 11 ; west of Ontario, 13 ; Quebec, 3 ; and four French Schools. The Woman’s Missionary Society is vigorously prosecuting its educational work in connection with the Ladies’ Schools at Tokyo, Shizuoka, and Kofu, Japan ; the McDougall Orphanage at Morley ; the Crosby Home, at Port Simpson : the Indian Boarding School, at Chilliwhack; and the Chinese Rescue Home, Victoria. Some of the institutions are extensively enlarging their operations—notably the French Methodist Institute in Montreal, for which large and suitable buildings have been completed in the western suburbs of the city. Rev. W. Hall, A.M., has been appointed Principal of the institution, which is designed to accommodate 100 students.”


“This institution has had marked success during the past year. Provided with a very tine suite of buildings containing most eligible school rooms, etc., and with a good supply of apparatus for the laboratory and of other appointments for educational work, it has an efficient stafi of instructors, two of whom are university graduates, and four others highly-certificated teachers. Besides, in the Primary and Model School it has two teachers of the first grade. The average attendance of pupils per quarter was 220 in the college proper, and 112 in the Primary School. Thirty-one persons were under training as pupil-teacliers, and eleven received certificates. The Home provides board, etc., for non-resident students from the outports, and has had a most successful year under the management of the Rev. George P. Story, Guardian and Chaplain, supplying a need long and urgently felt by the denomination. The Methodist schools of the colony, numbering 135, are under the superintendence of the Rev. George S. Milligan, LL.D., according to whose latest report, education is making much progress ; the total ‘attendance in these was 7,913, an increase of 496 during the year.”

To obtain a complete view of the relation of the Methodist Church to the work of education, our Sabbath-schools must be taken into account. Embracing as they do, nearly 3,000 schools and a quarter of a million of pupils, they begin at the very foundations of the moral'and religious work of which our colleges and universities are the cope-stone. This system which thus completed places our Church in the closest contact with the whole range of Educational work and influence in every part of our country, is perhaps the most complete to be found in any part of the Anglo-Saxon world. It affords the Church an unlimited facility for the combination of spiritual and religious truth, and influence with the intellectual growth and life of all our people. The masses and the most highly educated are alike reached by its influence. It is free from all the objections which lie against a church-state system, and yet it largely avoids the narrowness of isolation, and the weakness which in a young country must inevitably result from sectarian division in the work of education. It gives us all the breadth and wealth of resources of a national system with all the moral safe-guards and spiritual power of a religious system. The great duty of the present hour is the strengthening and perfecting of the system already established. Our fathers have laid the foundations, a second generation have raised the walls, which it is ours now to complete as a glorious temple of religion and truth.

In the year 1874 was begun the important work of unifying and strengthening our educational forces through a general Educational Society. The General Conference which completed the first union established the Educational Society, embracing the entire educational work of the Church then united, and the present writer was appointed the first Secretary, with the Hon. W. E. Sanford as Treasurer. The advance of the whole Methodist people in liberal appreciation of the importance of their educational work has been since that date one of the greatest triumphs of our Church.

When in 1886 the General Conference resolved upon the new departure involved in the federation movement, the Rev. Dr. Potts was appointed Secretary, and was entirely set apart to that work. At that date the income of the Educational Society had never reached $12,000. Last year it was already more than $20,000. In the meantime the processes of organization and consolidation already described, were quietly progressing. The federation movement, with the sharp opposition it has provoked, has completed the awakening of our Church upon this subject, and we enter upon our second century with a noble wealth of resources already laid upon the altar for this work, and with the inspiration of the example of the Jacksons, Moore, Gooderham, Patrick, Macdonald, Walker (not to speak of living names, whom we trust to see long spared to the Church), to stimulate us for the future. With nineteen professors and 327 students in our university faculties of Arts, eleven professors and 144 students in our faculties of Divinity, and 1,262 students in our various academies, a noble work is now being done, and with the nearly one and a half millions of resources which are to-day being placed in our hands for this work, our responsibilities and opportunities for the future far surpass those of the past.

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