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Wytheville Female Institute

This document dates from June 1, 1852

Wytheville the County seat of Wythe County, is a neat and handsome village, situated in a healthy portion of the State. It contains about 1200 inhabitants and affords as good society as in any of our smaller Towns. It has great facilities of access, as it is already the central point of Roads which approach it from the surrounding counties. The Southwestern McAdamised Road from an to Tennessee passes directly through it; and the Virginia and Tennessee Railroad now under construction rapidly hastening on to completion, passes within less that half a mile of it.

The BUILDINGS occupy an elevated and central position in the Town, and consist of a large Storied Brick Edifice, with extensive wings. By their construction both they and the recreation rendered entirely private and their position commands a lovely prospect of the surrounding scenery.

Rooms are spacious and well ventilated, and will be furnished with more than ordinary.

Neatness And Comfort

The floors of the young Ladies chambers will he carpeted and each Room furnished with a Bureau, Wardrobe, Washstand, &c., with Feather-Beds for Winter and Mattresses for Summer, all of which will be entirely new.

A large room, the whole length of the main building, will be appropriated a Gymnasium for the Young Ladies, provided with various appropriate means of exercise, so that inclement weather and the Winter Season may not deprive them of proper exercise which is so important an auxiliary to health and study and indeed in all the arrangements constant regard will be had to health comfort and neatness.

In order to secure by a division of labor the best possible arrangement. the Principal has associated with himself Mr. C. H. Fontaine who will give attention to the financial concerns of the Institute, and with his Lady. preside over its domestic arrangements.

The Principal having had some experience in the work of Female Education and being at present in attendance upon a full course of lectures in the University of Virginia upon the branches which will particularly devolve on him, hopes to bring to the present undertaking such qualifications as will enable him to carry out, in the best manner, the plans proposed.

The members of the School will be under the entire and immediate charge of the principal, who will be assisted in his Supervision by his Lady. A constant watchfulness will be exercised over the health, habits and morals of the pupils; and it will be sought as far as possible, to bring them under the best religious influences.

An efficient Corps of Teachers will be provided, consisting of not less than three or four Assistants, and none will be employed who are not entirely competent to their work.

The Institution is designed to be one of high grade, and will consist of a Primary and Academic Department. The Primary will embrace Spelling, Reading, Writing, Elementary Geography, History and Arithmetic. The Academic will occupy a term of four years, and embrace advanced Geography (Ancient and Modern), History and Arithmetic, English Grammar, Algebra, Geometry, Plane Trigonometeyr, Mensuration; Botany, Chemistry, Natural Philosophy, Geology and Mineralogy, Astronomy, Rhetoric, Elocution, Logic, Political Economy &c., will be taught whenever classes may be formed wishing to study them. Instruction will also be given in French, Music (Vocal and Instrumental), Drawing Painting, Wax-work, and the various kinds of needle work, by Teachers thoroughly qualified in these branches. Written essays will also be required of the Pupils in the Academic Department throughout the course, and the Classes in Rhetoric will be exercised in Readings in the English Classics Pope, Young, Milton and Shakespeare.

The plan of instruction will be by Text-books, Lectures, and Experiments. The Primary Department will occupy during school hours, a large room provided with desks for the different pupils, and be constantly attended by the Teacher in that department. The Teachers in the Academic Department will be furnished with separate Recitation Rooms in which their respective classes will be taught and thus will be avoided the confusion and dissipation of thought necessarily incident to having all the Teachers and Scholars grouped together in one large room. An extensive course of

Lectures and Experiments

will be given by the Principal, in Chemistry, Natural Philosophy, Geology, and Mineralogy, and Lectures will accompany the sue of the Text-books in Rhetoric, Intellectual and Moral Philosophy. Every effort will be made to give the pupils a thorough training and to establish habits of systematic and rational investigation and then prepare them for an efficient discharge of the active duties of life.

A strict account will be kept of the daily recitations and deportment of Each Pupil, and Reports giving the average for the quarter, will be transmitted to the Parents or Guardian at the end of each quarter, accompanies by whatever other information it may be thought desirable to impart.

The Academic year of Ten Months, is divided into two Session of five months each–the first, opening on the 1st of September and closing on the last of January–the second opening on the 1st of February and closing the last of June. There will be a vacation of a few days at Christmas. Pupils will be received at any time during the Session, and will in every case be considered as engaged for the remainder of the Session upon which they enter, and charged accordingly. Examinations of the pupils will take place at the close of each Academic year, and Diplomas will be awarded to those who shall go through the Academic Course and stand successfully the written and oral examinations upon the whole course, to which candidates for that honor will be subjected. Diplomas will also be conferred on such as may have pursued in part, or in whole, the studies prescribed in the court, in other institutions, provided they shall become Scholars in the Institute for one year and shall be able to stand successfully the same examination as above on the entire Academic course.

The Discipline will be uniform, mild and persuasive, yet at the same time decided and authoritative; and shall approximate as nearly as possible to that in a well governed family. The Principal will have

Pre-Eminent Control

in this as well as every thing else pertaining to the School, but will, in its exercise, be aided by the associate instructors.

Boarding scholars will be expected to attend public worship on the Sabbath at such places as may be designated by their parents or guardians. There will also be a Bible-class under the immediate charge of the Principal.

In the use of text-books regard will be had both to excellence and economy. They, together with stationary &C., will be supplied at the Institute on very low terms. A list of Text-books will be given in the advertisements previous to the opening of the School.

The regular course may be entered upon at any stage, provided the pupil is sufficiently qualified for so doing. There will also be a selected course for those who may not wish to pursue the regular course.

The Institute will be furnished with a new and extensive Chemical and Philosophical Appartus. A Library and Cabinet of Minerals will also be provided as soon as practicable. In the meanwhile pupils will have access to the Library of the Principal.

Young ladies in the Institute will not be allowed to receive visits from gentlemen or to be escorted by them, unless they are relatives or special friends to the family, or the Principal shall receive from the parents or guardian authority to act otherwise; and even in that case it shall be subject to his discretion.

Parents and guardians should give instructions to the Principal as to whether their daughters or wards will be allowed to open accounts at stores, and whether, if allowed, they wish any restrictions as to the houses at which they shall deal.

It is highly desirable that parents who board their daughters should board them in the Institute if they wish them to enjoy all the advantages of training which the school can afford; and besides the Principal cannot be responsible for the conduct of such as board out of the Institute, any farther than they may come under his supervision as day scholars.

Boarders should have their clothing marked with their names in full.

Parents are requested to have their daughters present on the first day of the Session, as much loss to them and trouble to the Teachers will thus be avoided.


Board, Fuel, Lights, Washing, and Tuition in Primary Department per Session of five months $60.00
Board as above and Tuition in Academic Department $65.00
Tuition in Primary Department $10.00
Tuition in Academic Department $15.00
Tuition in Instrumental Music with use of instrument $20.00
Tuition in French $10.00
Tuition in Drawing, Painting, Wax-work and Needle work, each $10.00
Except when needle-work is taken in connection with either of the others, then for the two $15.00

One half to be paid in advance, the other half at the close of the Session. No deduction except in cases of protracted sickness.

References &c., will be furnished to those who may desire them.

The 1st Session will open on the 1st of September next.

All Communications should be address to the Principal at Wytheville, Va.; and until the 15th of August directed to the care of C.H. Fontaine, Esq.,

R. W. Nowling, Principal

June 1st, 1852.