Texas in 1850. By Melinda Rankin. Page: 42 of 196

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TEXAS IN 1850.

45

the means, while the poorer class grow up in ignorance,
unfit for society, or any degree of usefulness in the
world. The brightest geniuses may remain buried beneath
the rubbish of ignorance, which under the blessings
of the free school system might have been brought
out and received a polish, whose brightness would have
been a blessing to the world.
How much of the mental power of the rising generation
of Texas is to be left uncultivated, is for the rulers
of this interesting State to decide.
It is very evident that it is indispensable to the well
being of this growing State, to disseminate knowledge,
and cultivate the full amount of its mental strength. It
is a startling fact that the human mind cannot remain
.inert. The mental energies of free born Americans
must necessarily become aroused and developed, and
are available for good or for evil. It has been very
justly observed that "uneducated mind is educated
Vice," and it may be found that more expensive means
will be required to punish crime, (the necessary result
Of ignorance,) than to educate the youth of Texas in
the paths of virtue and knowledge.
The machinery of popul.,r eduoation properly set to
work would operate as a mighty instrument 1 ty in ad
vancing moral elevation, by approaching the mass of
hidden intellect in the land, and most effectually manu
facture the rizing generation into useful and virtuous
citizens.
The hopes of a country, its liberty, and all that makes

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Rankin, Melinda. Texas in 1850. By Melinda Rankin., book, 1850; Boston. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth6107/m1/42/ocr/: accessed December 7, 2016), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .