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Horace Mann: Father of Public Education - Preface

 

Education is the only political safety.
Outside of this ark all is deluge.

Horace Mann
America’s “Father of the Common School”

 

Draped in his scholarly robes, Horace Mann—founder and president of Antioch College—reviewed his 1859 speech to the graduates. He underlined the quote he wanted them—and hopefully, society—to remember in the future:

 

I beseech you to treasure up in your hearts these my parting words: Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity.

Mann reflected on those words, taking some heart in knowing that he had worked diligently to help ensure that every child in the nation would have a good education, that slavery was an evil and that those with mental-health problems should be given proper care. 

 

Mann leaned back in his chair, his speech in hand, and his mind drifted back to his early days working on his family farm in Franklin, Massachusetts. It wasn't easy and it took its toil on his health with the average temperature for the five months of winter averaging below freezing.

 

During these months he would spend his spare time walking to the community library. It was the first one in the country and was started when Benjamin Franklin donated 116 books (in honor of the citizens naming the town after him).

Original Release: Apr 02, 2016

Updated Last Revision: Sep 01, 2017


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