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The favor with which the first edition of this book has been received by the school authorities of Tennessee, and by the public, and the unexpectedly large demand, have rendered it the imperative duty of the publishers to issue a second edition,
The opportunity has, thus, been afforded the authors to make a careful revision of the book, and to embody suggestions which have been made by some of the ablest educators and historians of the State, and to bring the history of the State to the present time, 1903.
Grateful to the public for the favorable reception accorded to the first edition, the publishers respectfully solicit the continuance of the
BRANDON PRINTING COMPANY.
The competent teacher of history demands of the text-book two essential qualities :
First. The text-book must contain a clear statement of all material facts, and an adequate discussion of all important topics, arranged in such consecutive order as to cover the subject completely, and to connect all the parts in logical sequence. There must be no missing link in the chain of events. The author of the text-book does not share in the license accorded to the general writer. He has no right to dilate on favorite or sensational topics to the omission or exclusion of essential links in the chain of history. In order to cover the subject in all its parts, it is necessary that the style be concise and the scope be comprehensive. If the text-book be defective in this first essential quality, no rhetorical excellence or charm of style can cure the defect.
Second. In connection with the statement of each important fact, and the discussion of each important topic, the text-book must supply carefully selected page references to the sources of information, and to the best authorities in which the subject is treated inore in detail than the restrictions of a school-book will permit. The skillful teacher makes this demand of the text-book, because he needs it as an aid to himself and a guide to the pupil, in order to accomplish the best results. He knows that the limitations of the school-term will not permit him to do more than lay the foundation upon which the pupil, himself, in future years must build the superstructure.
If the teacher is ambitious that his teaching shall live in the future lives of his pupils, he looks beyond the school-room, and is not content to prepare his pupils only for the next recitation, or the next examination. If he aims to train lovers of history, or readers of history, or writers of history, he must give his pupils, at least, a glimpse of the rich and varied field of historical literature, with some training towards forming the habit of historical research, and some practice in the methods of historical investigation. The text-book should aid in this work by supplying references.
As a quality next in importance, the teacher requires that the text-book shall be made as interesting as the limitations of space and the restrictions of a concise style will permit; yet he can not pardon the text-book which sacrifices historical instruction to sensational composition.
As a means to aid in rendering the conception of the pupil clear and permanent, the teacher also requires that the text-book shall be appropriately and copiously illustrated with maps, charts, pictures, and portraits, suited to convey the vivid impressions derived from the sense of sight, and he demands that these illustrations shall be correct and artistic.
The above-mentioned qualities should be required of every school text-book on history. The text-book purporting to teach the history of Tennessee should also possess certain special features, adapted to the special phases of Tennessee history. If the pupils are to form at school an adequate conception of the history of their State, the several periods of its development and the rise and growth of its civil and political institutions must be clearly portrayed, and interwoven with the narrative of events.
Beginning with the distinctive and romantic period of Tennessee history, which extends from the advent of the pioneer to the date of the admission of the State, in 1796, the spirit of this period should be taught as well as its facts. It is not enough that the children of the State should learn the events of this period when their fathers acted in the obscurity of the wilderness parts fit to adorn the theater of the world. They should be electrified with the spirit of their ancestors. They should be taught to comprehend the character and aspirations of these pioneer heroes — these heroes, all unconscious of their own grandeur, invested with none of the extravagant attributes which make ancient heroes ludicrous, but simply a noble type of manhood equal to any luman emergency, and developed into greatness by their romantic environments. Such instruction can not be imparted by the mere recital of events or anecdotes, however vividly narrated, nor by eulogies of a few leaders, however glowing. The picture must be a consecutive panorama, and must include the unnamed body of pioneers. Fully to appreciate the genius, the struggles, and the triumphs of the founders of Tennessee, the pupil inust be so instructed as to form an adequate conception of their environments. He must have some knowledge of the aboriginal inhabitants, their characteristics, their traditions, their claims to the soil, their relations to each other and to the white people. He must know something of the contest among the European powers for posses
sion of that portion of America which includes Tennessee. He must understand how this contest affected the early pioneers in their struggles with the Indians.
With this knowledge clearly held in mind, he can appreciate not only the heroic acts of individuals, but also the grand achievements of the pioneers as a body. He can understand the dangers with which they were beset, the nature of their struggle, and the grandeur of their triumph over savage foes, British hostility, and Spanish intrigue. He can recognize their intuitive sagacity in establishing independent governments suited to their needs, ordaining the first written constitution framed by native Americans, founding in the wilderness the institutions of civilization, and planting the industries of domestic life. He can study intelligently the growth of the pioneer settlements into strong communities, and trace the result of Indian wars and Indian treaties to the time when the pioneers acquired title to every foot of soil of Tennessee by purchase or treaty. He can understand the reasons why the pioneers sought and obtained recognition from the parent State, surrendered their independent governments, and were merged into the State of North Carolina. He can appreciate the fact that in establishing their independent goverments, as also in surrendering them, their motive was always the same- to acquire the boon of being free citizens of a sovereign State, and of the United States.
For about eight years the pioneers had enjoyed State citizenship, when they felt that it was endangered by the act of North Carolina, in 1784, ceding their country to the United States. Alarmed and indignant, unwilling that the right of citizenship, for which they had struggled so long, should be so lightly regarded by the parent State, they determined to defend it by returning to their original condition of independent government, and attempted to establish the State of Franklin. The second cession by North Carolina, made in 1789, and which went into effect in 1790, furnishes the only instance in the history of our country, previous to the "Reconstruction Period," in which the people of any populous community were degraded from the condition of State citizenship to that of "inhabitants of a Territory." The pupil can trace the causes which induced the people of the ceded territory to accept cheerfully, in 1790, the conditions which they had resisted in 1784.
Through the period of apprenticeship under the Southwest Territory, the people looked anxiously forward to statehood, when their
right of citizenship would be placed upon a secure and permanent footing. Impelled by the same ardent longing to enjoy this great boon, they anticipated the action of the United States, organized a State government, and entered upon the exercise of State sovereignty March 28, 1796, more than two months before the admission of the State by act of Congress. When finally admitted, June 1, Tennessee was already a State in full operation, and had the honor to be the first State formed out of Federal territory. With its admission, in 1796, the distinctive and romantic period ends.
In treating of Tennessee as a State, its history is interwoven with the general history of the United States, and the pupil enters upon a new phase of the subject. He finds less of romance, and deals more with political and economic questions. He must study the formation of constitutions, the development of institutions, questions of internal improvement, State debt, extension of the elective franchise, corporations, etc., all complicated with questions of Federal politics. The narrative is varied with the events of Indian wars, and foreign wars, in all which Tennessee took a leading part and acquired the title of the “ Volunteer State.”
The pupil must follow Tennessee in its rapid growth in population and wealth, and in political influence, until it becomes, during the period from 1924 to 1849, the most influential State in the Union. From the end of this period to the present time the history of Tennessee reaches forward into the memory of men now living, and approaches the boundary line which divides history and politics. History deals with past politics, and the historian shrinks from touching political questions of the present. Yet, it is the imperative duty of the teacher and of the text-book to supply to the pupil a true and impartial narrative of all the important events in which Tennessee has taken part.
The narrative of the Civil War and the “Reconstruction Period” presents to the historian, as well as to the teacher, his most delicate task. The children of the State have a right to know all the facts of its history. Events of great importance must not be passed over in silence, or concealed by evasive treatment. The teacher and the text-book owe a duty to the State, to the pupil, to themselves, and to the truth of history. They must relate the events of the Civil War and of the “Reconstruction Period,” and must paint a true picture of the bitter irritation of the times.
The teacher or the writer who converts this duty of the historian