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lish colleges, academies, schools, libraries, museums, athenæums, Botanic gardens, labaratories, and other useful literary and scientific institutions, consonant to the laws of the United States of America, and of Michigan, and to appoint officers, instructors and instructri. in. among and throughout the various counties, cities, towns, townships, and other geographical divisions of Michigan. Their name and style as a corporation, shall be "The Catholepistemiad or University of Michigania." To every subordinate instructor and instruxtrix, appointed by the Catholepistemiad or University, there shall be paid from the treasury of Michigan, in quarterly payments, an annual salary, to be, from time to time, ascertained by law. The existing public taxes are hereby increased fifteen per cent.; and from the proceeds of the present, and of all future public taxes fifteen per cent. are appropriated for the benefit of the Catholepistemiad or University. The Treasurer of Michigan shall keep a separate account of the University fund. The Catholepistemiad or University may prepare and draw four successive lotteries, deducting from the prizes in the same fifteen per cent. for the benefit of the Institution. The proceeds of the preceding sources of revenue, and of all subsequent, shall be applied, in the first instance. to the acquisition of suitable lands and buildings, and books, libraries and apparatus, and afterwards to such purposes as shall be, from time to time, by law directed. The Honorarium for a course of lectures, shall not exceed fifteen dollars: for classical instruction, ten dollars a quarter, and for ordinary instruction, six dollars a quarter. If the Judges of the court of any county, or a majority of them, shall certify that the parent or guardian of any person has not adequate means to defray the expense of suitable instruction, and that the same ought to be a public charge, the honorarium shall be paid from the Treasury of Michigan. An annual report of the state, concerns, and transactions of the Institution, shall be laid before the legislative power for the time being. This law or any part of it, may be repealed by the legislative power, for the time being. Made, adopted and published from the laws of seven of the original States, to wit: the States of Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia, as far as necessary and suitable to the circumstances of Michigan. at Detroit, on Tuesday the twenty-sixth day of August, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and seventeen.
WILLIAM WOODBRIDGE, Secretary of Michigan, and at present acting Governor thereof. A. B. WOODWARD, Presiding Judge of the Supreme Court of the Territory of Michigan. JOHN GRIFFIN,
One of the Judges of the Territory of Michigan.
I hereby certify the above and foregoing to be a true copy of the original, now of record in the office of the Secretary of State, on pages 52 and 53 of the Executive Records of Michigan. R. R. GIBSON, Deputy Secretary of State.
In the same year that this territorial law was enacted and published, three sections of land were granted to the "College of Detroit' by the treaty made at Fort Meigs. For the purposes of a seminary of learning therefore, there were at this time two sources of revenue; that derived from the grant of one township and that derived from
In 1818, the first sales of public lands were made in Michigan. The Secretary of the Treasury had not then located the college townships. In 1819 Gov. Woodbridge was sent from the Territory as the first delegate in Congress, and gave his attention to the subject with a view to cause the location. The result of his examination was a conviction that in consequence of the rapid sales then making there did not remain within the district designated by the law of 1804, any one entire township of good lands upon which the location could be made. The session was too far advanced to secure the passage of a law to remedy the evil, and in 1820 Gov. W. resigned his seat in Congress.
In 1821, an act was promulgated and adopted by the Governor and Judges, establishing a UNIVERSITY "for the purpose of educating youth." It was to be placed under the management, direction and government of twenty-one trustees, of whom the Governor of the Territory was always to be one, by virtue of his office. The first trustees named in the act were the Governor, John Biddle, Nicholas Bolvin, Daniel Le Roy, Christian Clemens, William H. Puthuff, John Anderson, John Hunt, Charles Larned, Gabriel Richard, John R. Williams, Solomon Sibley, John Monteith, Henry J. Hunt, John L. Leib, Peter J. Desnoyers, Austin E. Wing, William Woodbridge, Benjamin Stead, Philip Lecuyer and William Brown.
Section five of this act provided that the trustees might from time to time ESTABLISH SUCH COLLEGES, ACADEMIES AND SCHOOLS depending upon the University, as they might think proper; made it the duty of the trustees to visit and inspect such colleges, academies and schools, to examine into the state and system of education and discipline therein, and to make a yearly report; to ordain rules for the government of the institution not inconsistent with the laws of the United States or of the Territory, and to appoint a president and professors and to remove them at pleasure. A president was to be
appointed without waiting until the state of the funds would allow the establishment of a college. Persons of every religious denomination were capable of being elected trustees, and no person, president, professor, instructor or pupil was to be refused admittance for his conscientious persuasion in matters of religion.
The corporation had control and management of the township of land granted by the act of 1804, and of the three sections granted to the college of Detroit by the treaty of Fort Meigs in 1817, and also were entitled to all property, rights and credits of the corporation established by the act to establish a "Catholepistemiad," which act was repealed.
At the first meeting of the board of trustees, Gov. Woodbridge disclosed to the board the result of his previous inquiries and was appointed one of a committee to memorialize Congress in relation to the lands. A memorial was drawn up by him, adopted by the trustees, and a copy laid before the Legislative Council which held its first session in the Territory. It was transmitted with their approval to Congress in 1824. This document, which may be found at length in the journal of Congress for that year, embodies the motives which led to a location of the township in detached sections, rather than in an entire township.
The evils resulting from the separate interests, adverse to the general interests of the State and of the institution, which could hardly fail to grow up, by embodying together in one county and neighborhood, so large a number of lessees (for at this time no thought was entertained of selling these lands in fee,) had been witnessed by the memorialist in the State of Ohio, and formed a le ding consideration for locating the land in separate tracts.
The petition of the trustees was attended to with zeal and fidelity, by the late AUSTIN E. WING, and through his earnest efforts, a second township was appropriated for University purposes, both to be located in detached tracts. An addition was made to om University lands by the terms of the treaty of Fort Wayne idents of the city of Detroit were desirous of ob' ining lend to aid in the building of a church. This wish was cold with in the execution of the treaty, by General Ca.s, with 44
other tract should be granted for the benchi o' This treaty was confirmed and the grants sanctione !.
a holic res
on that on
Classical and evening schools were established in the city of Detroit, as early as 1822, by private teachers, and a Lancasterian school was kept as part of the University, but no law was passed to provide for a system of common or primary schools, until 1827, four years after the organization of the legislative council. This act provided that every township containing fifty inhabitants or householders, should provide themselves with a schoolmaster, of good morals, to teach children to read and write, and to instruct them in the English and French language, as well as in arithmetic, orthography and decent behavior, for such terms of time as shall be equivalent to six months for one school in each year; every township containing one hundred families or householders, for an increased length of time; and to provide in addition, a schoolmaster or teacher to instruct children in the English language. Every township containing two hundred families or householders, was to be provided with a grammar schoolmaster of good morals, well instructed in the Latin, French and English languages.
For neglect of any township to procure and support such teacher as was required for the various lengths of time, the township incurred a penalty in proportion, from fifty to one hundred and fifty dollars; and the penalty was to be levied by warrant from the court, upon the inhabitants of the deficient township, and was appropriated for the use of such schools as had complied with the law, and whose circumstances most required such assistance.
The inhabitants were to choose five persons within their township, as inspectors of common schools, who possessed similar powers to these officers at the present time.
The inhabitants voted at the annual meetings to raise such sums of money upon the polls and rateable estates, within the respective townships, for the support and maintenance of a schoolmaster, to teach youth to read, write and cipher, as a majority deemed expedient; to be assessed and collected at the same time and in the same manner with the township and county taxes; the moneys were apportioned by the supervisor and township clerk, according to the number of children between the ages of five and seventeen, as appeared by a census of the district, taken under oath by one or more of the trustees of the school, who were appointed in each of the districts.
The moneys were to be applied exclusively in paying the wages of the teacher or schoolmaster. But the law did not apply to any township which at an annual meeting, declared by a "two-thirds vote that they would not comply with the act."
Section six of this act relates to proceedings after the formation of a school district, and also to the power of the inhabitants to vote tax and the manner of its collection, and is deemed to be of sufficient interest, being the first school law, and adapted to a state of things so different from our present condition as a State, to be inserted at length:
Sec. 6. That whenever any township in this territory shall be divided into school districts, according to the directions of this act, it shall be the duty of one of the inspectors of said township, within twenty days after, to make a notice in writing, describing said district, and appointing a time and place for the first district meeting, and deliver said writing to some one of the freeholders or inhabitants, liable to pay taxes, residing in said district, whose duty it shall be to notify each freeholder or inhabitant residing in said district, qualified as aforesaid, by reading such notice in the hearing of each such freeholder or inhabitant, or leaving a copy thereof at the place of his abode, at least six days before the time of such meeting; and if any such freeholder or inhabitant shall neglect or refuse to give such notice, he shall pay a fine of five dollars, to be recovered in the same manuer, and for the same use as is provided in the third section of this act Such district meeting shall have power, when so convened, by the major part of the persons so met, to adjourn from time to time, as occasion may require, and to fix on a time and place to hold their future annual meeting, which annual meeting they are hereby authorized and required to hold, and to alter and change the time and place of holding such annual meeting, as they or a majority of them, at any legal meeting, may think proper. And at such first meeting, or at any future meeting, the said freeholders and inhabitants, or a majority of them so met, are hereby authorized and empowered to appoint a moderator for the time being, to designate a site for their school house, to vote a tax on the resident inhabitants of such district, as a majority present shall deem sufficient, to purchase a suitable site for their school house, and build, keep in repair, and furnish it with necessary fuel and appendages; also to choose three trustees to manage the concerns of said district, whose duty it shall be to build and ke p in repair their school house, and from time to time, as occasion may require, to agree with and employ instructors, and to pay them; also to choose one district clerk, to keep the records and doings of said meeting, whose doings shall be good in law, who shall be qualified by oath or affirmation, as the several township clerks are; likewise one collector, who shall have the same power and authority, and have the same fees for collecting, and be subject