December 13 is Dartmouth’s Charter Day. In honor of the day, the Rauner Special Collections Library has written a blog about the first school started by Dartmouth founder Eleazar Wheelock—Moor’s Charity School in Lebanon, Conn.
A passport and other items from Moor’s Charity School, founded by Eleazar Wheelock, is on exhibit in the Class of 1965 Galleries in Rauner Special Collections Library. (Rauner Special Collections Library)
From the blog:
For those of you who dread getting up in the morning, or have ever had to endure lengthy speeches about days of trudging to school in the snow “uphill both ways,” we have an item that just may make you feel a bit better about your daily commute. Imagine leaving home by yourself and traveling hundreds of miles on foot, just for the promise of an education. For the Indian students of the Moor’s Charity School, founded by Eleazar Wheelock in 1754, this was a reality.
A passport, discovered among the effects of William Allen, president of Dartmouth and of Bowdoin colleges, whose wife, Maria Malleville Wheelock, was the granddaughter of President Eleazar Wheelock, documents the travels of Wheelock’s Indian students on their journey from Bethel, N.J., to Lebanon, Conn. The passport is a sheet 15 inches long and 12 inches wide, folded into fourths and stitched together at each crease. (The passport, along with other items from the Moor’s Charity School, is currently on exhibit in the Class of 1965 Galleries in the Rauner Special Collections Library until February 28.)