The Alderson Academy
HISTORY OF EDUCATION IN WEST VIRGINIA 1904
This school is located at Alderson, in Greenbrier county, on the C. & C. railway and the Greenbrier river. It is in the midst of one of the finest agricultural section of the State and in a community that is noted for morality, intelligence and interest in educational affairs. In this vicinity have been located some of the most prosperous and useful schools of the State, and upon the Academy has fallen the mantle of many a noble aim and worthy achievement on the part of earnest and efficient educators.
The institution is the outgrowth of a conviction that the Baptist denomination of Southern West Virginia needed a secondary school of convenient access to their boys and girls. The generous support which the school has received and the high degree of prosperity that has marked its history seem to justify the foresight of its founders and to establish the fact that there is a real need of the institution. The Academy opened its doors in the fall of 1901 and during its first session over a hundred pupils were enrolled. Necessarily starting with a largely local patronage, the school has extended its influence and broadened its field until it already reaches ten or twelve counties of the State, though it is as yet in its infancy.
The plant of the Academy is valued at $7,500 and includes three acres of ground in a most beautiful and healthful location in the midst of North Alderson, and a three story frame building which contains dormitories and school-rooms.
The building is comfortably equipped with modern furniture and appliances and the student is supplied with the most approved helps tor the prosecution of his work. A good beginning has been made towards a school library.
The Academy aims to be merely a preparatory school, fitting boys and girls for colleges and higher institutions and seeking to inspire in them a love of higher education. It emphasizes the fact that the academic course is but the beginning, not the end, of a complete training. It aims above all things to be thorough in its work and to develop in the student a spirit of thoroughness. It believes that the very best teachers are needed for such work as it does, and it seeks to employ the best that its resources will permit. The school is co-educational and boys and girls are admitted to all departments upon the same terms. In addition to its preparatory course the Academy offers a very thorough and efficient training in music, vocal and instrumental. The instructors in this department are the equals of any in the State.
It is in the influences and training that lies outside of mere physical and intellectual education that the Academy finds its special field of work and the justification for its existence. It is emphatically a home school and seeks to surround its students continually with such influences as will implant and develop those intangible, but indispensable, graces that mark the nature and bearing of the true lady and gentleman. But it believes that beneath the mere accomplishments and graces of life there is a deeper, more vital need of human naturethe universal need of redemption from the power of evil.
The perfect education includes the training of body, mind and soul, and it is only the Christian school that can furnish this complete training. The Academy places Bible study in its regular curriculum and seeks to create an atmosphere and an influence favorable to the development of the spiritual life of its students.
The work of the school is greatly aided by two very excellent literary societies conducted by the students. These societies publish a quarterly paper.
The officers and teachers of the Academy are as follows:
B. C. Alderson, A. M., Principal.
Miss Emma C. Alderson, Assistant Principal.
B. C. Alderson, A. M. (W. Va. University, University of Chicago), Languages.
Miss Grace E. Melton (Ottawa University), History, Latin.
W. P. Powell, A. B. (Richmond College), English, Sciences.
Miss Emma C. Alderson (Johnson Female College, Aspinwall School), French, Primary Department.
Miss Rose Hill (American Conservatory, New England Conservatory), Piano, Voice, Drawing.
Miss C. Francis Radford, Matron.