4 Matching Annotations
  1. Nov 2017
    1. To develope the reasoning faculties of our youth, enlarge their minds cultivate their morals, & instil into them the precepts of virtue & order.

      I do not think this goal was possible with the existence of slaves at UVA. No one can accept the most immoral institution and remain moral. I find excerpts like this extremely interesting, as these men apparently valued virtue but still supported the university’s ownership of slaves. The existence of slaves also cultivated a racist mindset among the students, not a "virtuous" one, which was counterproductive to the founders’ goal.

    2. To harmonize & promote the interests of agriculture, manufactures & commerce and by well informed views of political economy to give a free scope to the public industry.

      Throughout this report, we see a lot of Thomas Jefferson’s influence. This excerpt is interesting because in the early republic, Jefferson supported an economy dependent on agriculture over a mixed economy. Jefferson believed that an agriculture-dependent economy would mean more land owners, and therefore more voters. According to him, this would create a stronger democracy. He feared that a mixed economy (agriculture and manufacturing) would lead to a more unequal distribution of wealth and create low qualities of life for factory workers. However, by the year this report was written, the US was already starting to industrialize. At this time, Jefferson was looking to “harmonize” the interests of agriculture and manufacturing, which shows that he accepted the way the US economy was heading although it differed from the way he hoped it would.

  2. Oct 2017
    1. In conformity with the principles of our constitution, which places all sects of religion on an equal footing, with the jealousies of the different sects in guarding that equality from encroachment & surprise, and with the sentiments of the legislature in favor of freedom of religion manifested on former occasions, we have proposed no professor of Divinity; and tho rather, as the proofs of the being of a god, the creator, preserver, & supreme ruler of the universe, the author of all the relations of morality, & of the laws & obligations these infer, will be within the province of the professor of ethics;

      I thought this passage was very interesting, as it shows an impact of the Constitution on the university, in this case the principle of the freedom of religion. However, religious influence is not completely removed from the education. It is stated that the ethics professor’s job is to teach religion and prove that there is a “supreme ruler of the universe.” Although the document claims to place “all sects of religion on an equal footing,” it seems like it only refers to monotheistic religions. This is another contradictory use of the term “equality" in the text.

    2. leave us free to do whatever does not violate the equal rights of another.

      I find this quote very ironic. The quote puts emphasis on protecting the equal rights of another; however, restrictions prevented people of color and women from enrolling at UVA during this time, a blatant violation of equal rights. It was not until 1950 that the first African American, Gregory H. Swanson, was admitted to the university, but not without a fight. After the Board of Visitors rejected his application on account of his race, Swanson filed a case against the university. In addition, the Board of Visitors did not lift restrictions preventing women from enrolling until 1969. The prevention of African Americans and women from enrolling at the university directly contradicted the principles stated in this report. To the drafters of the report, “equal rights of another” merely meant the “equal rights of white men.”