Wake Forest History

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Wake Forest is full of rich history.  Matter of fact it was the original birthplace of the Wake Forest University.

"In 1820, Dr. Calvin Jones, originally from New England, bought 615 acres (2.5 km²) of forested
land in Wake County, North Carolina. The sparsely populated area became known as the Forest of Wake, or Wake Forest. Jones sold his farm to the North Carolina Baptist Convention for $2,000, who opened the Wake Forest Manual Labor Institute, later Wake Forest College, on the site. The Raleigh & Gaston Railroad, completed in 1840, established a depot in nearby Forestville, that stimulated the school and surrounding village. College leaders convinced the railroad to move the depot even closer to the college in 1874, leading to more economic development. This community was incorporated as the "Town of Wake Forest College" in 1880. In 1909, the word "College" was removed from the name of the town. The college moved to the much larger city of Winston-Salem NC in 1956.[4] Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary began offering classes on the original campus of Wake Forest University in 1950, and occupied the entire campus when the university completed its move.

Brief History on Wake Forest University

Wake Forest University was founded after the North Carolina Baptist State Convention purchased a 600-acre (2.4 km2) plantation from Dr. Calvin Jones in an area north of Raleigh (Wake County) called the "Forest of Wake." The new school, designed to teach both Baptist ministers and laymen, opened on February 3, 1834, as the Wake Forest Manual Labor Institute, named because students and staff were required to spend half of each day doing manual labor on the plantation. Dr. Samuel Wait, a Baptist minister, was selected as the "principal," later president, of the institute.

In 1838, it was renamed Wake Forest College, and the manual labor system was abandoned. The town that grew up around the college came to be called the town
of Wake Forest. In 1862, during the American Civil War, the school closed due to the loss of most students and some faculty to service in the Confederate
States Army
. The College re-opened in 1866 and prospered over the next four decades under the leadership of presidents Washington Manley Wingate, Thomas H. Pritchard, and Charles Taylor. In 1894, the School of Law was established, followed by the School of Medicine in 1902. The university held its first summer session in 1921

The leading college figure in the early 20th century was Dr. William L. Poteat, a gifted biologist and the first layman to be elected president in the college’s history. “Dr. Billy” continued to promote growth, hired many outstanding professors, and expanded the science curriculum. He also stirred upheaval among North Carolina Baptists with his strong support of teaching the theory of evolution but eventually won formal support from the Baptist State Convention for academic freedom at the College.

The School of Medicine moved to Winston-Salem (then North Carolina's second-largest city) in 1941 under the supervision of Dean Coy Cornelius Carpenter, who guided the school through the transition from a two-year to a four-year program. The school then became the Bowman Gray School of Medicine. The following year, 1942, Wake Forest admitted its first female undergraduate students, after World War II dramatically depleted the pool of male students.

In 1946, as a result of large gifts from the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, the entire college agreed to move to Winston-Salem, a move that was completed for the beginning of the fall 1956 term, under the leadership of Dr. Harold W. Tribble. Charles and Mary Babcock (daughter of R. J. Reynolds) donated to the college about 350 
acres (1.4 km2) of fields and woods at "Reynolda," their estate. From 1952 to 1956, fourteen new buildings were constructed on the new campus. These buildings were constructed in Georgian style. The old campus in Wake Forest was sold to the Baptist State Convention to establish the Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.

A graduate studies program was inaugurated in 1961, and in 1967 the school became the fully accredited Wake Forest University. The Babcock Graduate School of Management was established in 1969. The James R. Scales Fine Arts Center opened in 1979. In 1986, Wake Forest gained autonomy from the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina and established a fraternal relationship with it.

The thirteenth president of Wake Forest is Nathan O. Hatch, former provost at the University of Notre Dame. Hatch was officially installed as president on October
20, 2005. He assumed office on July 1, 2005, succeeding Thomas K. Hearn, Jr., who had retired after 22 years in office.

Information sourced from Wikipedia.com and picture sourced from wakeforestmuseum.org