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So far as we are aware there have from that day to this, existed the most amicable relations and purposes between us.
last winter, came to reside at our State Capital, Mr. Barney showed us' most friendly attentions. For several weeks he kindly gave us a table in his office, while a room was preparing for us.
In January, the Democrats bad nominated Mr. Barney for reëlection; and in May we were made a candidate for the same office by the Republicans. For months our friends in various parts of the State, had heen inquiring of us whether we would accept such a nomination. All such inquiries we answered with an honest negative. We did not desire the office. It imposes great responsibility and severe labor, and the salary, ($1,500,) is no greater than is paid to many Teachers in positions much more easily filled. And more than all, we did not believe that our qualifications were equal to the demands of the office.
While we were in nomination we made little or no effort to secure our election. We made no speeches, except on one occasion, when unexpectedly called upon. We then did little more than to apologize for not speaking at length. But the papers say that we have been elected, though we have received no official information on the subject. If such is the result, we shall do what we can towards discharging the duties of our office in a judicious and efficient manner. That we shall commit no mistakes and errors, we dare not hope. That our administration will please all, we are not vain enough to expect. As Commissioner, we shall “know no North, no South,” in either State or Church. That is, with political and denominational differences of opinion, we shall have nothing to do. We shall seek counsel from the active and judicious friends of education, whether they be Democrats, like Dr. Trevitt, Judge Thurman, Harvey Rice and George Willey, -Republicans, like Judge Bates, Senator Canfield, Rufus King and Charles W. Hill, or Americans, like Dr. Stevens, and others of his party.
But we have said quite as much as is proper for us to say on this subject at present.
I love a hearty laugh, (says Sidney Smith,) above all other sounds. It is the music of the heart; the thrills of those chords which vibrate from no bad touch; the language Heaven has given us to carry on the exchange of sincero and disinterested sympathies. Herein we differ from the brutes. Animals don't laugh.
What pretty letters you do write me. I wish that I could have them all printed in the Journal, but there is not room for them. I was greatly pleased with the “Resolutions” passed in Miss F-'s school. Stick to them, you little jewels. The children in Miss T- 's school, in C—D—, are often thought of. One little girl writes a glowing description of her loved Teacher, -describing her bright, blue eyes her fresh cheeks and pleasant voice,--all of which I sincerely believe is true of her. One boy writes me that he has the best Teacher in all the world, “only his ugly moustache makes his mouth look real mean.” We rather sympathize with his wish that "he would cut off the dirty thing.” But our little friend must remember that when Sampson lost his hair, there was not much left of him.
You will remember, children, that in one of my letters, I told you about the children who can not speak; who have to make motions with their fingers when they wish to communicate their thoughts. It is a great affliction to be dumb. But we better not be able to talk, than to use our tongues for bad purposes. We better have no tongues at all, than use them for speaking profanity, falsehood and vulgarity. Boys, when I hear a man swear, I say to myself, “poor man, pity it is that you are not dumb.” It does nobody any good to swear. God has solemnly forbidden it. It is a crime against God, and against good manners.
There once was a boy who used sometimes to swear, when he was displeased. One day he read these words, and he never swore after that.
"It chills my blood to hear the blest Supreme,
Reflect, your Maker now may stop your breath.”
I do hope that none of you ever tell lies. A lying tongue is a great
deal worse than the tongue of the dumb, which can not speak at all. Liars are very troublesome, as well as wicked people. I never can endure to have anything to do with people whose word I can not depend on. A great deal of trouble is made in the world by telling what is not true. And very often people get themselves into difficulty by telling lies. I must tell you a story on this subject.
There once was a boy who was watching some sheep. One day he thought that he could play a trick on some men who were at work in a field not far off. So he ran to them, and pretending to be scared half to death, said that some wolves were killing the sheep. He begged the men to go and drive the wolves away. They ran with him to the sheep, but there were no wolves there. The naughty little boy had told a lie, just to fool the men. But the next day the wolves did really come, and the boy was terribly frightened. He ran to the men, and told them that the wolves were killing the sheep, and plead with them to go and drive them away. But as he had lied to them before, they did not believe his story, and would not go with him. So the wolves killed the poor sheep.
My dear children, always be truthful and honest. A liar is just about the meanest animal that ever lived.
Some children who never use profane words, and never tell lies, are sometimes guilty of using very indecent and filthy language. This is about as bad a use as they could possibly make of their tongues. When you talk with each other, and at all times, avoid all vile and impure words. Some children seem to think it not wicked to use very obscene language. But they are very greatly mistaken. I hope that all the children who read the Journal will be very careful to make a good use of their tongues.
I have written against using your tongues to utter profane, untrue, and obscene words. There is one thing more which I wish to mention. Be careful not to use coarse and outlandish language. So far as you can, speak in a dignified and grammatical manner. There are a great many loaferish phrases, and low by-words, which some people use. It is pretty certain that people who say “you can't come it,” and “he bust his biler,” and other slang phrases, are not gentlemen and ladies, but ill-bred people, who are poor examples for you to follow. I do not say that such language is wicked, but it is foolish and coarse.
But I must close this letter. May God bless the dear children of Ohio. Good-by.
One year ago we wrote our prolegomena, or editorial inaugural. With the revolving year, the wheel of destiny has made an unexpected revolution, and we are thereby required to dismount the tripod, and surrender into the hands of the Association the trust which they committed to our charge.
The position which we have held was unsought and unexpected ; and we entered on its duties with much distrust of our ability for their appropriate performance. And now that the year has passed away, and we review our labors, we find nothing of our own of which to boast, but numerous deficiencies to deplore.
But of that department of the Journal which has been supplied by other pens than our own, we are free to speak in terms of highest praise. We are confident that no other State educational
has contained more contributions of ability and value than have appeared in this Journal. Though some of these articles are of unusual length, most of them have been copied into numerous periodicals throughout the country; and we doubt not that their influence bas been as beneficial as it has been extensive. And we sincerely thank all the contributors to the Journal for the very efficient aid which they have rendered.
Of the 384 pages contained in the last twelve numbers, 42 have been furnished by the corps of Associate Editors, 146 by other contributors, 23 by the State School Commissioner, and 19 have been selections from other publications. The balance of the volume, 154 pages, we have furnished.
Editing a Journal is as much a profession, a trade, as preaching or teaching, practicing law or medicine. With the peculiar duties of an Editor we had but slight acquaintance when we took charge of the Journal. We had every thing to learn. We beg our readers to make due allowances for this fact.
In our articles we have had little to say in regard to teaching. How to teach grammar, and other branches of study, we have chosen to leave to Institutes and other associations. We have judged it more important to direct attention to the character and manners demanded of Teachers. We hope that our efforts in this direction have not been wholly in vain. Our Letters to the Children of Ohio," we can but know, have been read with interest by those to whom they have been addressed.
To the numerous Teachers who have, by letter and otherwise, express
ed satisfaction with our management of the Journal, and to Editors throughout our State, who have spoken with approbation of our efforts, we make grateful acknowledgments.
Post SCRIPT.-Every day we are questioned in regard to the future of the Journal of Education. It is a subject in regard to which we know nothing. The Executive Committee will, we presume, arrange the matter in due time.
We do not believe that any new man, unacquainted with the business, can take charge of the Journal under such restrictions as the Association impose, and make it pay all expenses the first year. The printers' bill is about $2,500 per annum. Office rent, fuel, postage etc., about $100. Editor's salary $1,500. Total, $4,100. That a more economical plan for conducting the Journal should be adopted, none can dispute.
We will not recommend a course for the Association to pursue, but it seems to us that the plan adopted by the N. Y. State Association might well be pursued by their Ohio brethren. The New York Teacher is the educational organ of three States,- New York, New Jersey, and California. It has a paying circulation twice as large as that of the Ohio Journal. But at the close of the last volume it found itself in debt to the amount of $2,400. Mr. Cruicshanks offered to take the entire responsibility of the concern for a term of three years,—to pay all expenses, and to make it pay him what he could. They accepted his proposition. The Teacher is still the organ of the Association, as heretofore. Associate Editors are appointed as formerly. But the Association is relieved from all pecuniary obligations. Mr. C. acts as Resident Editor, and its fiscal management is his own personal concern.
There is a gentleman residing in Columbus who, probably, could be induced to take charge of the Journal on the same conditions. The Association might appoint Associate Editors as heretofore, and continue to control its character, and at the same time be relieved from all care and expense as to its publication.
The gentleman of whom we speak, is Col. S. D. Harris, for many years a Teacher, and still deeply interested in the cause of Education. He has had much experience as an Editor and Publisher, is possessed of eminent qualifications for taking charge of the Journal. We know of no man more competent to occupy this position, and we feel the utmost confidence that he would make the Journal quite equal to the best educational paper in the country.
It is due to Mr. Harris that we should say that he does not seek to take charge of the Journal, and will on no account do so, unless upon the assurance that such is the general wish of the Association. Nor is he aware that we are thus bringing his name before the Association.