« AnteriorContinua »
for the purpose of educating their sons in their own language and habits. Though endowed with considerable funds, and placed under the direction of persons of different denominations, Lutherans, Presbyterians, and Calvinists, it has not flourished. In 1815 the number of students did not exceed fifty.
Washington College, which bears the name of the illustrious hero of the revolution, was established at Cannonsburg, fourteen miles S. W. of Pittsburg, in the western part of the state, in 1802, with a grant of land of several thousand acres. The new college edi. fice, when completed, will consist of three stories, 180 feet in front, the centre 40 by 60, and the wings 70 by 40.
Public Schools.— The expence of public schools, in 1810, amounted to nearly 8000 dollars, for which the legislature has appropriated large tracts of land. The Moravian schools, at Bethlehem and Nazareth, for the education of both sexes, are considered as the best in the United States. There is another very useful establishment, but for females only, at Leditz in Lancaster county. Sunday-schools are now numerous ; and several have been lately established on the Lancasterian plan.
Philosophical, Literary, and Economical Institutions. The American Philosophical Society, formed by the un. ion of certain literary societies, in 1769, was incorporated in 1780, by an act of the legislature. Five volumes of Transactions have appeared. The Philadelphia Medical Society was established in 1790. The College of Physicians, formed in 1787, was incorporated in
1789. The Medical Lycæum was established in 1804. The Linnean Society in 1806. In the city of Philadelphia there are three extensive libraries: The Philadelphia, the Loganian, * and the Friend's library. The first is open to the public, and books may be taken out and read by the shareholders. It contains about 25,000 volumes, and is rich in rare editions of the classics. An Atheneum has been lately added to it, with a library and public room. The Pennsylvania academy of the fine arts, founded in 1805, has been since incorporated by the legislature. Peales' museum, which commenced in 1784, now contains a very extensive collection of objects of natural history. In the year 1805, a society was established for the encouragement of domestic manufactures. The “ Philadelphia Society for Promoting Agriculture,” formed in 1785, and incorporated in 1809, has published three volumes of Memoirs. About the same time, another society was established at Philadelphia, for improving the breed of cattle. The academy of natural sciences of Philadelphia, publish, from time to time, a Journal, the first number of which appeared in May 1817, consisting of 16 pages in 8vo.
In the Alms-House, and House of Employment for the city and districts, the average number of persons, maintained, in 1810, was 735; riz. men, 287; women, 384; children, 114. The average weekly expence for each was 1 dollar 202 cents per week. At the commencement of the year, the number of persons was 619; persons admitted during the year, 189; number who died, 327; discharged, 1465; remaining at the end of the year, 718. The profits, including labour of the different manufactures of wool, cotton, flax, shoes, iron, amounted to 3500 dollars. In the house of employment, the poor of the city, and some adjoining townships, are employed in the fabrication of coarse manufactures, under the care of the overseers and guardians of the poor, who, as a corporate body, have power to lay taxes for its support. Managers were incorporated in 1766. The building is spacious and convenient.
* So called from William Logan, who gave his library to this institution, amounting to about 1000 volunies.
Friends' Alms-House is a society established by the Quakers, for the use of the infirm and indigent of their own community; there are separate rooms for families, or single unfortunate persons, where they are supplied with those necessaries which they cannot sufficiently procure by their own industry, and thus have a very comfortable support.
The College of Physicians, incorporated in 1789, consists of fellows, or resident members and associates; and its object is to extend medical knowledge. The members, who meet monthly, have established a medical library, and publish Transactions.
The Abolition Society, for promoting the abolition of slavery, and the relief of free negroes unlawfully held in bondage, was instituted in 1774, and has been very instrumental in effecting improvements in the laws relating to this subject; members pay ten shillings a-year. Dr Franklin was president of this society, several years before his death, and took great pleasure in discharging the duties of the office. In 1770, a school was opened, by private subscription, for the instruction of negroes, and donations were afterwards made by the benevolent society of Quakers in England, by Anthony Beniset and other individuals.
The Washington Benevolent Society of Pennsylvania, established in 1812, consists of nearly 3000 members, each of which pays, at his admission, two dollars, besides an annual sum not exceeding this amount. The funds are applied to charitable purposes. Besides the stated quarterly meetings, there is an anniversary meeting on the birth-day of Washington, exclusively devoted to the recollection and commemoration of his virtues and services. The building erected by this association, called Washington Hall, is 73 feet in front, and 138 feet deep, with a saloon capable of containing 4000 persons, a dining room 117 by 30 feet.
The Humane Society was instituted in the year 1780, for saving the lives of persons apparently drowned; and, in 1787, their care was extended to persons injured by sudden heat or cold, drinking cold water, damps, lightning, &c.
The Asylum for the Relief of Persons deprived of the Use of their Reason was planned, in 1813, by an association of Quakers, who meet annually at Philadelphia, and choose, among themselves, twenty managers, a treasurer, and clerk. Members of the Society of Friends, who contribute 200 dollars, or pay 10 dollars per year, are authorized to recommend one poor patient, at one time, on the lowest terms of admission.
A building was erected for the institution about five miles from Philadelphia.
The Society for Alleviating the Miseries of Public Prisons was instituted in 1787, affording relief in money or provisions; applying to the magistrates for the enlargement of persons illegally confined; enforcing complaints made to the proper officers, concerning offences against law, in the management of the jail. To the exertions of this society, the public are indebted for the abolition of the use of spirituous liquors; the separation of the sexes; the cleanliness of the apartments; and the employing of the prisoners in useful labour, allowing them the whole amount exceeding their maintenance, and many other improvements.
The Pennsylvania Hospital, for relieving the poor, whether afflicted in body or in mind, was established in 1756. The building was afterwards erected chiefly by means of donations from the legislature, and legacies and contributions from private persons.
The charter prohibits the managers from spending any part of the capital stock. Patients are admitted on the
receipt of the overseers of the poor; but none are received who are afflicted with infectious or incurable disorders. Persons maimed or injured by accident may be introduced immediately without an order, whether a citizen or stranger. This institution is under the management of twelve persons, chosen annually out of the contributors, who pay ten pounds each.
Christ Church Hospital is an institution for the support of aged women of the Protestant Episcopalian church, founded by an eminent physician of the city,