Early history of State Teachers College, Frostburg
Early History of the State Teachers College, Frostburg, Maryland
JOHN L. DUNKLE
The State Teachers College at Frostburg was created by an act of the General Assembly of Maryland in March, 1898. Who sponsored the amendment to the budget bill to establish the school? What compromises were made among the local delegates? What trades, if any, were made to further the legislation? Even after the lapse of less than threescore years, much has been lost to enable us to answer these questions.
The Journal of the House of Delegates for the Session of 1898 at page 1135 shows that at the morning session on Friday, March 25, 1898, meeting at 11 a. m., a bill entitled "An act making appropriations for the support of the state government for the fiscal year ending on the 30th day of September, 1899," was introduced and referred to the Committee on Ways and Means. Further, that on page 1267 of the Journal, the House resumed its meeting at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 31, 1898, and at 4 p.m. special business of the day was taken up, which consisted of House Bill 742, the General Appropriation Bill.
The Journal shows that three amendments to the Appropriation Bill were offered, apparently from the floor of the House, and one by John Leake of Vale Summit, Allegany County, which amendment reads "For the erection of a building at Frostburg, Allegany County, to be known as State Normal School No. 2, the sum of $20,000; and for the support of said school when established $5,000 annually, provided, however, that the people of the town of Frostburg furnish the ground for the site of said building and deed the same to the state." The records show that the amendment passed and was signed by the Governor as worded above.
The record as transcribed seems clear until examined against accepted accounts made by James Campbell of Barton, Allegany County, who was, along with Mr. Leake, a delegate from the county. "Uncle Jimmie" as he was familiarly known to his many friends, often told how he, having access to the Budget Bill, inserted the amendment creating the school after the Appropriation Bill had been completed by the Ways and Means Committee. It is quite likely that Mr. Campbell was responsible for the amendment and for giving to Frostburg the privilege of having the school and the obligation of providing a site for the school. Mr. Leake was asked by Mr. Campbell
John L. Dunkle
Ruth Enlow Library, Oakland
22 x 15 cms