hampton, David Buckman and James Briggs of the township of New-
town, and Joseph Hampton and Isaac Chapman of the township of
Wrightstown, all in the County of Bucks, and the survivors of them, the
sum of 50 in gold or silver currency in trust .... place the same
at interest on real security or therewith purchase an annuity or ground-
rent or such other method as they may think proper for securing the
same and apply the interest thereof as the same shall thereafter be
received, towards the establishing and maintaining a free school in
Wrightstown aforesaid near the meeting house for the instruction of
Friends children belonging to the monthly meeting of Friends in
Wrightstown, in useful learning, and the said school to be under the care
and direction of the monthly meeting aforesaid. 87
In 1791 a committee presented a report on the status of
legacies, which is given herewith in shortened form,
i. The will of David Twining.
I give to the monthly meeting of Friends at Wrightstown the sum of
five pounds to be applied towards a Free School in Wrightstown, near
the meeting house, that is under the direction and care of Friends.
M Min. Wrightstown Mo. Mtg., 10 5 1790, 57.
M Ibid., 12 7 1790, 60.
K Ibid., i 4 1791, 62.
^The Harker legacy at this time had increased to 183/4/4 ( see
Wrightstown Minutes, 10 2 1792, 92).
w lbid., 9 6 1791, 71.
'Early 'Quaker Education in Pennsylvania
2. A committee of six suggested to take the said legacy
and apply its interest to the said school.
3. Report of a committee on Adam Marker's will.
All trustees have died without having made any purchase of any
groundrent or annuity for the purpose aforementioned.
4. The trustees appointed by David Buckman, deceased,
in his last will and testament to have the care of a legacy of
50 given by the said David to this meeting for establishing
a Free School in Wrightstown, report that they have received
said legacy and put it out to interest on a mortgage bearing
date the seventeenth day of the third month last. 88
In 1799 a legacy of 30 was left to Wrightstown Meeting
"to be laid out in the education of poor children in the school
house on the meeting house land." 89 From later records
running into the first two decades of the next century, it
appears that the state of the donations was never gotten into
very good shape. When they came into the hands of the
trustees in 1822 they were "indistinguishable one from
another," so far as the purposes for which each was intended.
At the time when some of the bequests were made there was a
large stone schoolhouse standing on the meeting's grounds to
which they alluded in their wills. 90 This building was torn
down about 1815 and two schools set up, one two miles above
the meeting house, and the other about three-quarters of a
mile below it. The total amount of the legacies had in-
creased by 1822 to about $6,8oo. 91
Richland Monthly Meeting (1742), the latest of all in
Bucks County to be established, with which we are now
dealing, belonged to the Abington Quarter (whose limits
were chiefly in Montgomery County). The school, its date
of beginning not known (probably in 1742),* was early
endowed with legacies left voluntarily and primarily for the
education of the poor ; the first one of considerable worth was
that of Morris Morris. An extract from the minutes shows
88 Min. Wrightstown Mo. Mtg., 9 5 1791, 83!.
B9 Ibid., 571799, 233-
Schools of Bucks County
At this meeting were exhibited two bonds for two sums of money
amounting in the whole to 100, it being a free and generous donation
given by our ancient Friend, Morris Morris, for the use and encourage-
ment of a school to be kept at or near this meeting house, which bonds
are legally executed to the Friends heretofore appointed as trustees for
this meeting, who are to take care from time to time to lay out the
interest arising from the said donation for procuring necessary learning
for such poor Friends' children who may be the most proper objects
of such charitable help and the said trustees to render yearly account to
this meeting of their service in the said distribution. 92
This beginning was increased in 1796 by 20 granted from
the estate of Edward Roberts. 93 The following record from a
school account book of legacies, known as the "Jonathan
Walton Fund" is cited, which indicates the manner of the
1792 for schooling
to Jesse Foulke 15/10/00
to Jonathan Carr I /io/oo
to ditto 7/00
to Abraham Walton 16/6/00
to Jesse Foulke i /io/7
to John Nash 5/00
to Jonathan Carr 7/6
to Nathan Walton 5/4
to Sam Norris 2/12/11
to Abraham Walton 18/7
to Samuel Norris 3/6/3^
Paid to Daniel B . Ayres for teaching children 2/1/8
Paid for teaching and books 2/1 /4 M
The establishment of schools of Falls, Middletown,
Wrightstown, Buckingham, and Richland meetings is dis-
cussed in this chapter. Their first activity was to establish
youths' meetings and look after the placing of apprentices.
The date of the first school at Falls is not determined, though
w Min. Richland Mo. Mtg., I 21 1762.
M Ibid., 12 21 1769.
M Expenditures, J. Walton Fund, I, i.
Early Quaker Education in Pennsylvania
Plan for build-
the educational activity appears to have been on a par with
other meetings. In 1759 property was conveyed to trustees
for the use of the school, and at various dates thereafter. A
school committee reported three schools, one in each prepara-
tive, in 1784. The usual means of support were employed.
The school money amounted in 1799 to 777/9/4^.
Middletown's first school was held in the meeting house, in
accord with a permit granted by Friends. The real progress
of schools among them is not determined, though we know
that they are supplied with schools. It is likely, judging
from the nature of the committee's reports, that they did not
meet the standards set by the yearly meeting. The free
school, endowed with 40 in 1755 by Marker, was to be under
care of the monthly meeting.
Buckingham meeting assumed a regular care in the appren-
ticing of children, and, like Middletown, was endowed by
Adam Harker. A school committee was appointed in 1778,
and the visiting of schools required. An unusual plan for
building schoolhouses was devised in 1785 ; and also a scheme
for school support in 1785 which was improved in 1793. A
special committee of two men had charge of employing
masters Two schools are reported as under the care of the
meetings' committee, in 1790.
The cause for the apparently slow progress of Wrightstown
concerning schools lay chiefly in a lack of permanent funds.
Back of this, there seems to have been a failure on the part of
the monthly meeting to unite and direct the activities of its
preparatives, for the individual contributions were consider-
able. Though ' 'schools" are mentioned in the minutes, it seems
most likely that only the one at Wrightstown was in reality a
school of the monthly meeting.
Little is discovered concerning the Richland school save
that it was endowed in 1762 by Morris. The account books
of the Walton fund show that the children were schooled at
the expense of the meeting.
There were probably eight schools regularly established in
the five monthly meetings.
SCHOOLS IN MONTGOMERY COUNTY
Following the procedure in the preceding chapter, the
establishment of schools in Montgomery County will be
treated (i) under the head of the monthly meetings in whose
limits they were located and (2) in the order of the time of
settlement. The monthly meetings in Montgomery County
and their dates of establishment are as follows: (i) Abing-
ton, 1683; (2) Gwynedd, set off from Radnor, located in
present Delaware County, 1714, and (3) Horsham, set off
from Abington in 17 82* In connection with the schools
established in Montgomery County will also be considered
briefly the same activity of Warrington Monthly Meeting
(York County), which belongs at present to Baltimore Yearly
Meeting. Warrington was established as a monthly meeting
in i747, 2 being set off from that of Sadsbury. Brief mention
is made of Westland Meeting.
The first records left by Abington Meeting, which relate
particularly to any phase of education, are those in reference
to the establishment of youths' meetings. It is implied by
these minutes that nothing was done in this regard till about
It was agreed upon . . . that four friends belonging to this monthly
meeting be asked to take care of the Youth belonging to each meeting
as concerning their orderly walking . . . according to the good
advice of Friends, in an epistle from the Yearly Meeting at Burlington
1694, wherefore . . . men appointed. 3
This apparently resulted in an agreement that the youths'
meetings should be established at the home of Richard
1 Bunting, 23, 26, 25, respectively; also, first volumes of the respective
"See abstracts of Warrington Records, H. S. P. Library; Prowell,
Hist. York County, I, 112.
8 Min. Abington Mo. Mtg., 2 29 1695, 25.
Early Quaker Education in Pennsylvania
Worrall. 4 It is to be inferred that considerable attention was
given to this earliest phase of education. In 1699 the Friends
of Abington urged:
Those Friends that are appointed to inspect into the behavior of the
youth and their respective meetings; that they may be stirred to dis-
charge their places, and to give account to the monthly meeting. 5
The youths' meetings were not of permanent foundation,
and their date for meeting was shifted frequently, which gave
them characteristic irregularity. 6 The purposes to be
secured by the youths' meetings were chiefly moral. 7
The gift of property for the foundation of Abington Friends'
School dates back to i697. 8 The donor, John Barnes, had
purchased 250 acres adjoining the tract possessed by Sarah
Fuller, receiving patent for the same on June ist, i684. 9
Shortly after this he added to his possessions also the tract
formerly possessed by Sarah Fuller. 10 From this total (600
acres) he deeded one hundred and thirty acres on Feb. 5th,
1696, to the use of a meeting house and schoolhouse for the
Friends of Abington Meeting.* The tract lies about ten
miles north of the city of Philadelphia. The Abington
School, thus possessing such a large heritage and firm founda-
tion in a material way, at least is a close rival of the Penn
Charter School of Philadelphia, the petition for which was
presented to the Council 1697-8,** and whose first charter was
granted in i/oi. 11
The exact date when a school was first held in property on
this land cannot be determined. The meeting house on the
newly acquired lands was built between the years 1697 and
1700, with assistance from the meeting at Philadelphia. It
is probable that a school may have been taught at the meeting
house for a time as that custom was followed in many other
4 Min. Abington Mo. Mtg., I 29 1697, 30.
*Ibid., I 27 1699, 35.
6 Ibid., 8251703, 48.
7 See page 172.
8 Bean, 679; also, Friends Intelligencer, 8 15 1896, 539.
9 Ibid., 679.
*Friends Intelligencer, 8 15 1896, 539.
**Col. Rec. I, 499.
"See pp. 47-52.
Schools in Montgomery County
meetings, 12 but this is a mere probability. The best evidence
of a school at an early date is that relating to Jacob Taylor
who, about 1701, was "concerned in a school at Abington,"
but was to be asked to take the management of a land office. 13
Mr. Bean, writing in the local history of Montgomery County,
says that Jacob Taylor was land surveyor from 1706 to i733. M
That he was engaged in teaching during the entire period
from 1701 to 1706 we do not know, but it is quite probable
that he was the first schoolmaster who taught in a regularly
In 1722, referring to the bequest of land by John Barnes,
the minute of the monthly meeting states :
Whereas John Barnes deceased, having given a legacy or yearly
income towards maintaining of a school at Abington . . . and in the
said deed of trust to Friends, he left this meeting in power to choose a
trustee when any Friends that were intrusted did remove or decease.
Now seeing Thomas Canby being one intrusted is removed into the
County of Bucks, this meeting does appoint Richard Martin to act in
his room. 1 *
In 1726 Thomas Fletcher was chosen to act as one of the
trustees of the said donation and the school affairs, in the
place of his deceased father, Robert Fletcher. 16 Everard
Bolton's place (deceased) was filled by Nicholas Austen as
trustee in 1727. B In 1742 Abington Friends took a deed of
conveyance of Thomas Canby for the land and premises
belonging to their school and meeting house. 18 Besides the
bequest of Barnes already mentioned, there were several
others which deserve mention. In 1749 a committee
appointed to investigate the donation left to the meeting by
William Carter in his last will and testament, reported they
had attended to it, and produced to the meeting an extract
from the will before mentioned. 19 Quoting from the Abing-
ton records the purpose of the will was given to be as follows:
"See pp. 93 and 136.
"2 Pa. Archives, XIX, 24.
16 Min. Abington Mo. Mtg., i 26 1722, 124.
u lbid., 8 31 1726, 149.
"Ibid., ii 29 1727, 155.
is lbid., 6 30 1742, 249.
I9 lbid., I 27 1749, 50.
Land in care
io8 Early Quaker Education in Pennsylvania
of funds in
. . . two certain yearly groundrents one of six, the other of four
pounds, are invested in trustees, in order that the same may be con-
veyed, and ... as this meeting shall think fit to appoint to the
intent and purpose that the same shall be annually laid on and expended
in the pay for the schooling and teaching of such whose parents or over-
seers ... in the verge of this meeting are not able to pay for them,
or the relief of the poor of this meeting, when and as such poor children
are not to be found. . . 20
The details of the expenditure of money left for such pur-
poses were taken care of usually by the overseers of the poor
and also by the school committee, whose duty it was to
inquire in each of the preparative meetings concerning chil-
dren who might be in need of help and whether they would be
willing to accept assistance. Their investigations were
reported to the monthly meeting to be considered before any
expenditures were made. 21 If they were satisfactory to the
meeting, disbursements were then ordered to the preparatives
according to their needs as stated. 22 The preparative meet-
ing was also free to make a voluntary request for a part of any
fund for aid to poor children, if they desired to do so. In
Horsham Friends requested the sum of four pounds of Carter's legacy
towards the schooling of a poor child; this meeting orders that our
treasurer do pay them that sum. 23 And again, the present treasurer,
Joshua Morris, is ordered to pay to Thomas Lloyd a sum of eight pounds
to defray the charges of dieting Joseph Kirk, a poor Friend's child,
belonging to Horsham Meeting, who is put to school at the charge of
Horsham Meeting. 24
It was not always necessary to bring the cases to the
monthly meeting to be decided whether aid should be given
or withheld. It occurred often that the funds were appor-
tioned to the various preparatives, monthly or quarterly
meetings and their representatives allowed to apply it
according to their judgment. 25 In 1766 those appointed to
view the accounts of the treasurer of Abington Meeting made
20 Min. Abington Mo. Mtg., i 27 1749, 50.
n lbid., 1301755, 148.
Ibid., 8251755, 151.
Ibid., 5 26 1760, 260.
M Ibid., 6 29 1761, 284.
z& Ibid., 7 27 1767, 420.
Schools in Montgomery County
the following report as to the state of the funds which had
We the subscribers having perused the accounts of Joshua Morris,
the meeting's treasurer, do report that the said treasurer credits the
meeting with several sums received on the meeting's accounts from the
year 1761 .... including 28 for the rent of William Carter's
legacy to this meeting, the whole being the sum of 157/12/11, and
that he paid by order of this meeting in that time (including 40 paid
for schools for poor children) the sum of 137/11/8; balance in his
hands the 24th of the nth month, 1766 is 20/1/3.
We likewise report that we find five years' rent of four pounds a year
and a year's rent of six pounds on the said Carter's legacy outstanding
and not yet collected or received by him. 26
A minute of 1735 entered in the meeting's records affords
us an interesting glimpse into the nature of the books used
for the Friends' schools. These books are very frequently
mentioned in many of the meeting's records, and many of
them were always on sale by booksellers such as Franklin in
Philadelphia. 27 There seems to be no doubt that they con-
stituted one of the staples of the mental pabulum. The
extract in which they are mentioned illustrates also the
initiative taken by the meeting in the direction of affairs
relating to schools.
And further to let the quarterly meeting understand that this meeting
conceives that reprinting a quantity of George Fox's Primers and
Stephen Crisp's ditto and of George Fox's The Youngers might be
advantageous to those children of Friends in school or elsewhere. We,
therefore, refer the same to said meeting's consideration. 28
The Abington Meeting began at an early date to work for
a better organization among its schools, cooperating heartily
with the suggestions of the yearly meeting from time to time.
The yearly meeting in 1746 and 1750 made several suggestions
for the improvement of schools, 29 which were in 1751 followed
by Abington with a statement that
This meeting has gone through in the several branches thereof in the
service of visiting of families and to general satisfaction, and as to the
settling of schools we have had it under consideration and some are
^Min. Abington Mo. Mtg., n 24 1766, 406.
27 Pa. Gazette, 1740, No. 582.
28 Min. Abington Mo. Mtg., 8 27 1735, 207.
no Early Quaker Education in Pennsylvania
desirous to promote the same but find many discouragements at the
present, yet are in hopes it may be further considered, and . . . 30
This report means nothing in terms of accomplishment, but
indicates willingness and an active interest in educational
problems. In reading of their "discouragements" one must
keep in mind the standards set by the yearly meeting, and
that their report was their idea of how they measured up
The first mention of any school (or any reference to indicate
there may have been a school in the limits of Gwynedd) is
that of 1721, in a petition for a road, entered by Roland Hugh
and Robert Humphrey. 31 The mention herein made is of a
schoolhouse located near the property of Robert Humphrey
and Roland Hughes and not far distant from the road to
Philadelphia. Neither has trace been found of any school
actually established nor of schoolmaster to have charge over
it, yet the presence of a building erected for that purpose
lends credence to the view that there was a school there,
though perhaps irregularly conducted. Procedure in other
districts was usually that schools were present before the
schoolhouses were built. 32
The first mention of a schoolmaster is relative to Marma-
duke Pardo, who came with the following certificate from
Pembrokeshire in Wales.
We whose names are hereunto subscribed, being the curate and others
of the inhabitants of the Parish of St. Davids, do hereby certify whom it
may concern, that the bearer hereof, Marmaduke Pardo, of the city of
St. Davids and County of Pembroke, has to the utmost of our knowledge
and all appearances lived a very sober and pious life, demeaning himself
according to the strictest rules of his profession, viz., what we call
Quakerism, and that he has for these several years past took upon him-
self the keeping of a private school in this city, in which station he
acquitted himself with the common applause and to the general satis-
faction of all of us who have committed our children to his care and
tuition, etc. 33
This certificate was signed by Richard Roberts and several
others. With such recommendations, the citizens of Gwynedd
s Min. Abington Mo. Mtg., 5 29 1751, 78.
31 Jenkins, Historical Collections of Gwynedd.
82 For example, those in Philadelphia, Middletown and Merion.
^Quoted from Jenkins, Historical Collections of Gwynedd, pp. 395-6.
Schools in Montgomery County
were very fortunate if perchance they did secure him as a
master. Other writers have, it seems, taken for granted that
he actually taught in the school, but there is no exact evi-
dence on the point, only a very great probability.*
The following extract indicates there was an established
school at Morristown in 1766.
Plymouth overseers acquaint this meeting that Mordecai Moore on
his own and family's account and several neighboring friends request the
privilege of holding a meeting at the schoolhouse near his dwelling house
in Morristown every first day until the general spring meeting. The
which is granted. 34
As with the schools and school affairs of other meetings,
their history becomes more tangible about the last quarter of
the century. The recommendations of the yearly meeting
being received in 1777 and their attention thus directed con-
sciously to the question of education, a committee was
appointed consisting of the following men: David Bacon,
John Elliott, Jr., Charles West, David Estaugh, William
Brown, Thomas Hollowell, John Gracey, Abraham Liddon,
Samuel Lloyd, Abraham Cadwalader, John Heman, David
Evans, Samuel Lee, Joseph Penrose, Joseph Lukens and John
Evans. 35 The committee reported in 1779 that the establish-
ment of schools had been under consideration, but that no
fund had yet been raised or land purchased for the establish-
ment thereof, as the yearly meeting had directed.** Accord-
ingly the same committee was continued. In 1780 a minute
of the meeting states that :
The matter relating to the establishment of schools is continued and
it is desired that the several preparative meetings will attend to that
matter as recommended by the committee some time past, and that the
committee . . . the same under their care and make a report when
anything is done toward accomplishing that service. 36
And again in 1785:
A care remains on the Friends' minds for the right education of the
youth, though little progress hath yet been made in establishing schools
under proper regulations, although attention hath been paid thereto.
34 Min. Gwynedd Mo. Mtg., 10 28 1766, 457.
z *Ibid., 12 30 1777, 259.
**Ibid., 4271779, 296.
K Ibid., i 25 1780, 16.
Early Quaker Education in Pennsylvania
to aid in
of poor and
Those matters respecting the Africans are under the care of a committee,
though little progress hath been made in inspecting their particular
The activity of the committee does not appear to have been
very great. After a consideration of their obligations on the
subject again in 1791 it was decided to appoint a new com-
mittee which was to work definitely toward a plan for raising