Doors to the Past


raised from a small orphan boy. When he received his freedom we were glad 
to know he was ready to take his place in the world. He was an expert 
cook, his first salary was eight dollars a month as steward on a steam 
boat, his wife was chamber maid at a good salary, and when he wrote me, "I 
have a son named after you and a daughter named after your sister." It 
pleased me to know he remembered old home folks. 
Morris Harvey College has an incorporated history of thirty-six years. The 
institution was founded in 1888 as the Barboursville Seminary; but finding 
it difficult to maintain the school because of the lack of endowment and 
equipment, the citizens of Barboursville induced the Western Virginia 
Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, to take over the 
plant and make it a denominational college. 
Accordingly, in 1889, it passed into the hands of the Southern Methodists 
of West Virginia, and name changed to Barboursville College. 
In the above status, the school continued to function under the authority 
of state and church, until the close of the spring semester of 1909. 
Degrees in education, literature, arts, and sciences were conferred. The 
records show, that at this time, the requirements of education in the 
state and of endowment by the General Board of Education in the church 
were so raised, that the standard college rank was lost and the 
institution became a junior college, and so remained until 1919. In 1901, 
Mr. Morris Harvey, a resident of Fayetteville, West Virginia, became 
interested in education and his attention was toward Barboursville 
College. In recognition of his liberal gifts, the Board of Trustees 
changed the name of the school to Morris Harvey College. 
On account of the growing demand for more complete education at the hands 
of the church, and at the request of the local Board of Trustees, the 
General Board of Education determined in 1919 that the school should be 
made once more a standard, four year, collegiate institution. Pursuant to 
this decision, in each of the scholastic years of 1919-1921, the addition 
of the senior year made the program complete, and at the following 
commencement (1921) the first class with degrees in Arts and Sciences was 
graduated after a lapse of more than a decade. 
The curriculum now leads to bachelors' degrees in the college, or 
certificates in the special departments. The latter include four years in 
piano and voice; six grades and post graduate in violin; two years in home
economics. There is also the standard academy following the requirements 
prescribed by the state for secondary schools. This is a distinctly 
separate unit. 

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Templates in Time