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Title: Letter from Major Henderson to Walter Alves, September 3, 1805: Electronic Edition.
Author: Henderson, Pleasant, 1756-1840
Funding from the University Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill supported the electronic publication of this title.
Text transcribed by Bari Helms
Images scanned by Bari Helms
Text encoded by Sarah Ficke
First Edition, 2005
Size of electronic edition: ca. 11K
Publisher: The University Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
© This work is the property of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It may be used freely by individuals for research, teaching and personal use as long as this statement of availability is included in the text
The electronic edition is a part of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill digital library, Documenting the American South.
Languages used in the text: English
Revision history:
2005-07-27, Sarah Ficke finished TEI/XML encoding.
Title of collection: University of North Carolina Papers (#40005), University Archives, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Title of document: Letter from Major Henderson to Walter Alves, September 3, 1805
Author: Major Henderson
Description: 3 pages, 3 page images
Note: Call number 40005 (University Archives, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)
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Letter from Major Henderson to Walter Alves, September 3, 1805
Henderson, Pleasant, 1756-1840

Page 1
Chapel Hill

Dear Sir,

I hasten to communicate to you a sketch of the strange procedure of a majority of the Students on the establishment, say forty-five; knowing full well it will affect your mind and call forth all your "energies" unitedly with the rest of the Board to counteract its remote consequences — the immediate are past control.
Ever since the board, here in July, past the ordinance directing that the Monitors should perform their official duties under the obligation of an oath a grumbling and discontent hath obtained among them. Caucuses have been held; various plans I suppose have been proposed and at length one digested, i.e. That they should remonstrate through the medium of the Faculty to the Trustees against the ordinance which so set their teeth on edge. This they accordingly did at great length; and Mr. Caldwell instantly forwarded on the original paper to the president of the Board at Raleigh. The Trustees there taking the matter under consideration

Page 2
ordained that that part of the ordinance should stand suspended which imposed on the Monitors an oath until the annual meeting; and that in lieu thereof the Monitors should pledge their words of honor to perform their duties. This I understood was all the modification they required or at least was modifying the ordinance in a manner suited to their objections and tastes. The Trustees lost no time in sending up the amendatory ordinance because new Monitors were to be appointed the first of the present month.
They act for a month. Directly on the receipt of the ordinance they take it into their heads that no modification of the Law had taken place. That there was not in fact any difference between a man swearing to do a thing and his promising to do it, and therefore they, the signers, would withdraw themselves from College unless the Faculty & Trustees would concede to alter the monitorial duties in a manner as suited them; a plan of which they submitted to Mr. Caldwell . This dictatorial conduct was so novel and so inadvisable that Mr. Caldwell could not listen to it a single minute; indeed his oath to carry into execution the Laws of the institution absolutely forbade

Page 3
him from doing any such a thing, and strange as it is to reason and common sense forty-five have actually seceded and almost all the larger Boys among them. They are going off different ways home as fast as they can procure horses.
Mr. Caldwell Sunday evening sent on their ultimatum to Raleigh by post, and I expect the Trustees here by 12 o'clock this day. I don't know that Mr. Caldwell asked them to come, but I suppose he did as it is a matter of great moment, and I am sure they are sensible how important it is to be here to affix a punishment adequate to the delinquency and to fix on some plan of counteracting the rebellion by making a full statement to the public or otherwise as their wisdom may suggest. The crisis is awful, and I hope you will come up this evening or early in the morning in the hope of meeting a Board and joining your exertions to counteract this strangest of all strange procedures. A thousand circumstances not worth noting in a letter the case involves & which you will hear when you come up.

Respectfully, sir, your most obedient,


Sept. 3rd 1805

Walter Alves Esqr

Communicate this fatal intelligence to Mr. Bennehan. I know how much it will afflict him.

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