Henniker 1861 School Committee Report (Part 3)

1861: Parents!  Lay not the flattering unction!  The School Committee offers its perennial remedy for lackluster schools, including a stirring peroration on parental participation …

<< BEFORE: Order in the classroom …

TownReport-1861-School-06B-www.MarekBennett.comTownReport-1861-School-07-www.MarekBennett.com TownReport-1861-School-08-www.MarekBennett.comTownReport-1861-School-09a-www.MarekBennett.com

NEXT: Teacher performance reviews! >>

Did you catch those references?  Check it out:

  1. “The Old Folks At Home” = 1851 minstrel tune by Stephen Foster — An intriguing hint at the mainstream stature of the minstrel show in rural midcentury NH.
    .
  2. “Young America” = A somewhat progressive movement within the Democratic party, led especially by NH politician & former US president Franklin Pierce.
    .
  3. “Lay not the flattering unction…” = Hamlet, Act III, Scene 4
    But it’s not an exact quote!
    Here’s the passage:
    ~
    ” … Mother, for love of grace, 

        Lay not that flattering unction to your soul 
        That not your trespass but my madness speaks. 
        It will but skin and film the ulcerous place, 
        Whiles rank corruption, mining all within, 
        Infects unseen.”
    ~
    In other words, don’t deceive yourself, it’ll only make the problem worse!  But Shakespeare makes the image unforgettable for all the parents in town.

2 Comments

  1. I also notice repeatedly that the town has multiple schools – probably so they are within walking distance of all children. Contrast that to modern day, when Surry closed its school, Gilsum is closing its school, and Troy is considering the idea of closing.

    1. Yes ~ To me, this demonstrates how many of our modern “connective” technologies (transportation, communication, &c.) actually remove us from our local surroundings… ~ M

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