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whenever any such request shall be made to the said Regents, they shall in every such case, if they conceive such Academy calculated for the promotion of literature, by an instrument under their common seal, signifying their approbation to the incorporation of the Trustees of such Academy, nained by the founders thereof, by the name mentioned in and by their said request in writing; which said request in writing, and instrunent of approbation by the said Regents, shall be recorded in the Secretary's office of the State.
XIII. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That the Trustees so constituted shall be the tirst Trustees for the Academy for which they shall be appointed, and immediately after recording the request in writing and instrument of approbation, shall be legally invested with all the real and personal estate appertaining to such Academy, or in any wise given or granted, for the use thereof; and the said Trustees, from the time of their appointment as aforesaid, and their successors forever thereafter, shall be a body corporate and politic, in deed, fact and name, known and distinguished by the name and style to be expressed in the said instrument; and by that name shall have perpetual succession, and be capable in the law to sue and be sued, and defend and be defended in all courts, and in all causes, plaints, controversies, matters and things whatsoever; and by the same name and style, they and their successors shall lawfully hold, use and enjoy the lands, tenements and hereditaments, in any wise appertaining to the Academy for which they shall be constituted Trustees, and shall and may lawfully have, take, acquire, purchase and enjoy lands, tenements and hereditaments, and use and improve such goods and chattels in such manner as they shall judge to be most beneficial for such Academy; provided that the annual revenue or incoine arising from the real and personal estate of any such A caderny shall not exceed the value of four thousand bushels of wheat, any law, usage, or custom to the contrary notwithstanding.
XIV. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That it shall and may be lawful to and for such Trustees, and their successors forever, to have and use a common seal, and the same to alter, break and make a new at their pleasure, and as often as any three or more of the said Trustees shall think fit, and signify their request, the senior Trustee actually exercising his office, and residing within three miles of such Academy, shall call a meeting of the said Trustees, at such convenient time and place as he shall appoint, not less than eight nor more than twelve days from the time of such request, of which previous notice in writing shall be affixed on the door of the Academy, and of the church nearest thereto, within two days after euch appointment, and at every such meeting the senior Trustee shall preside; such seniority in all cases to be determined according to the order of their nomination in the said instrument, or according to the priority of election after all the first Trustees shall become extinct, and the inajor part of such Trustees shall always be a sufficient quorum to proceed on business, and shall have full power and authority to adjourn from time to time, not exceeding seven days at one time, as the duties of their trust may require. And it shall and may be lawful to and for such quorum of the said Trustees, when assembled and met in manner aforesaid, or the major part of them, from time to time to appoint a Treasurer and Clerk, Principal, Masters, Tutors, Teachers and other necessary officers; to ascertain their respective salaries, and to remove and displace any of them at their pleasure; and to make by-laws for the admission, education, government, and discipline of the scholars or students, and the establishment of the prices or terms of tuition; for securing, revising and paying out and disposing of the revenues, and in general for conducting and managing the estate, business, and affairs of the said Academy, and every matter and thing relating thereto, in such manner as they shall judge to be most conducive to its interest and prosperity, and the end of their trust.
And in order to preserve the succession of Trustees for the said Academies respectively :
XV. Be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That whenever a vacancy shall happen in any corporation of Trustees, by the death, resignation or refusal to act of any Trustee, it shall and may be lawful for the Trustees of such Acadenry, and they are hereby authorized and required, at any legal meeting of the Trustees, to elect and choose a fit person to fill up and supply such vacancy, and for the greater encouragement of such Academies, and to render them more useful and respectable.
XVI. Be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That the Regents of the University shall be Visitors of such Academies, and the Chancellor, Vice-Chancellor, or a Committee of the Regents, shall, as often as they see proper, visit such Academies to inquire into the state and progress of literature therein.
XVII. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That when any scholar who shall be educated at any of the said Academies, on due examination by the President and Professors of Columbia College, or any other College subject to the visitation of the said Regents, shall
be found competent, in the judgment of the said President and Professors, to enter into the Sophomore, Junior and Senior classes of such Colleges, respectively, such scholar shall be entitled to an admission into such of the said classes for which he shall be so adjudged competent, and shall be admitted accordingly, at any one of the quarterly examinations of such respective classes.
XVIII. And be it enacted by the authority aforesaid, That to entitle the scholars of any such Academy to the privileges aforesaid, the Trustees thereof shall lay before the Regents of said University, from time to time, the plan or system proposed to be adopted, for the education of the students in each of the said Academies, respectively, in order that the same may be revised and examined by the said Regents, and by them altered or amended, or approved anů confirmed, as they shall judge proper.
XIX. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That
whenever it shall appear to the said Regents, that the state of literature in any Academy is so far advanced, and the funds will admit thereof, that it may be expedient that a President be appointed for such Academy, the said Regents shall in such case signify their approbation thereof, under their cominon seal, which, being entered of record as aforesaid, shall authorize the Trustees of such Academy to elect a President, who shall have, hold and enjoy all the powers that the President of any College recognized by this act shall or may lawfully have, hold and enjoy; and such Academy thereafter, instead of being called an Academy, shall be called and known by the same name it was called while it was an Academy, except that the word ༦ “ College” shall be used in all cases instead of the word “Academy;" and be subject to the like rules, regulations, control and visitation of the Regents, as other Colleges mentioned in this act.
XX. And be it further enarted by the authority aforesaid, That no President or Professor shall be ineligible for or by reason of any religious tenet or tenets that he may or shall profess; or be compelled by any law or otherwise to take any test oath whatsoever; and no Professor or Tutor of any College or Academy recognized by this act shall be a Trustee of any such College or Academy, nor shall any President of any College, or Principal of any Academy, who shall be a trustee have a vote in any case relating to his own salary or emoluments; nor shall any Trustee, President, Principal, Tutor, Fellow, or other officer of any College or Academy, be a Regent of the University
XXI. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That whenever any perso' now or hereafter appointed a Trustee of any College or Acaderny shall be appointed or elected a Regent of the University, and whenever any person being a Regent of the University shall be appointed or elected a Trustee of any College or Academy, such person so appointed or elected shall, on due notice thereof, decide and elect in which of the said places he will serve, and by writing under his hand shall, make 'known such election, whether of refusal or acceptance, to those by whom he was elect, to the end that such appointment may take effect, in case he accept it, or that they proceed to a new appointment in case he refuse it.
ŠXII. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That the act entitled “An act for granting certain privileges to the College heretofure called King's College, for altering the name and charter thereof, and erecting a University within this State," passed the 1st day of May, 1784; and the act entitled “An act to amend an act entitled ' An act for granting certain privileges to the College heretofore called King's College, for altering the name and charter thereof, and erecting an University within this State,' passed the 26th day of November, 1784, be and they are hereby severally repealed.”
By this act the Board of Regents was divested of the direct charge of Columbia College, and has since had no control of the internal affairs of this institution or of any other, excepting as required by
special acts, with respect to the College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York and at Fairfield, and as found necessary in the discharge of their duties, under general rules."
· Although the act of 1787 left the Regents without duties in the immediate care of education, other than by way of supervision, the hands of corporations created by themselves or by the Legislature, the idea of establishing some means for direct instruction under their immediate charge has not been overlooked. On the 6th of March, 1856, the following resolution was passed :
" Resolved, That it be referred to a select committee of five to inquire and report whether it be practicable and expedient for the Regents to organize and maintain the University of the State of New York as an active University of Instruction."
On the 21st of April, 1857, Mr. Erastus C. Benedict, chairman of this committee, made an elaborate report, in which he presented the motives and the methods of a plan which may be briefly summarized as follows :
1. The institution be under the management of the Regents. 2. All instruction to be by lectures free to all matriculated students who were or who had been not less than one year in a College or Academy, or who had received degrees from any college in the State, or who were residents of the State.
3. Ten faculties to be established, each with a dean at the head, one of whom was to be president. These faculties were to be :
1. THE NATURAL SCIENCES — Including applications of chemistry, geology and mineralogy to mines and mining.
II. AGRICULTURE AND THE USEFUL ARTS — A wide range, including practical applications being allowed.
III. HISTORY AND GEOGRAPHY — Including ethnology, antiquities and physical geography.
IV. DIALECTICS — Embracing the history of all schools, modes of instruction and systems of education, ancient and modern.
V. PHILOSOPHICAL SCIENCE — Embracing metaphysics, logic, psychology, moral philosophy and natural theology. VI. PHILOLOGY – Embracing languages, literatures, poetry, rhetoric and oratory. VII. MATHEMATICAL SCIENCE AND SCIENCES With applications of every kind. VIII. FINE AND ORNAMENTAL ARTS — Applied, including principles of beauty and taste. IX. PuYSIOLOGY Including scientific and professional medicine and surgery.
X. POLITICAL SCIENCE — Embracing political and administrative sciences and the profession of law.
Each of these faculties was to have a permanent seat at New York, Albany and Rochester, with full courses of lectures at each place. The deans were to be salaried and to devote their whole time to their duties ; other lecturers were to be paid for the time employed. If deemed proper, the lectures were to be repeated in different localities other than those above named. No degrees to be conferred above that of Master of Arts, and only upon examination of the whole course, except honorary degrees.
An annual Convocation to be held at Albany, when the degrees were to be conferred and discourses pronounced by the most meritorious graduates.
With the exception of a Convocation organized many years afterward, and in greatly modified form from that proposed in this report, this scheme of education made no further progress. The paper in which its details were set forth, together with the draft of a bill for carrying it into effect, will be found in the Appendix of the first printed volume of the minutes of the Regents (1853–59). It was also printed separately.
GENERAL OUTLINE OF THE HISTORY OF THE REGENTS. The first meeting of the Regents after the passage of the act for their reorganization was held July 17, 1787. Governor George Clinton was elected Chancellor, Mr. John Jay, Vice-Chancellor, and Richard Harrison, Secretary. Dr. Rodgers, Baron Steuben and Mr. Moore were appointed to prepare a device for a seal,' and a rule was adopted that all applications for incorporation be first referred to a sub-committee of at least three members, and afterward considered by the whole Board, before being issued. They also established as a rule, that at every annual meeting their will should be declared by vote, as to whether there should be an election of the officers of the Board. At this ineeting an application was received for the incorporation of Erasmus IIall, in Kings county.
In the early years of their operation the Regents adopted the custom of designating committees from their number to visit institutions, and report their conditions and wants. The records of the Board show that this duty was faithfully performed, and the custom has been continued down through the century, more or less modified by inviting the coöperation of trustworthy citizens in distant localities.' But for a long period and down'to comparatively recent tiines, the reports made by the Trustees of Academies were received without further verification, and the apportionment of moneys was made upon these returns.
Although several acts were passed assigning particular duties, there was no general act modifying their powers until the revision of the laws in 1813. On the 5th of April of that year, an act was
· This committee, at the next meeting of the Board, held November 17, 1787, reported the following device, which was accepted :
“Minerva and Liberty leading a youth. The motto – QUO DUCUNT IRES. Exergue -- SEAL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF THE STATE OF New York."
The first seal was circular, three and one-quarter inches broad, with the figure of a youth covered by the shield of Minerva, while Liberty leads the way. The second seal was two and one half inches broad, and the youth is pointed the way to a temple on a distant hill. The present seal, under a general law, contains only the State arms and the name of the Board.
? Perhaps the most important commission that had then been appointed was that of Addison Gardiner and Henry J. Whitehouse of Rochester, Albert H. Tracy of Buffalo, John B. Skinner of Genesee, Elial F. Foote of Jamestown, Jesse Ilawley of Lockport, and Gideon Hard of Albion, who were appointed on the 11th of May, 1840, as visitors in the Eighth Senatorial District.