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Book Reviews55 Committee, as well as the Friends World Committee for Consultation which held its Fourth World Conference at Guilford College in 1967. New Garden Friends were active in supporting the sit-ins which in 1960 launched the national drive for integrated lunch counters. The history ofWhite Plains Meeting goes back not quite so far. The first Friends arrived from Virginia in 1850, but there were not enough of them to form a Preparative Meeting until 1 870 and the Monthly Meeting was finally established only in 1890. The meeting was pastoral almost from its inception for this much smaller meeting needed the support and leadership of a paid minister. The pastoral system was adopted in many North Carolina meetings at this time. Much ofthe book concerns meeting activities from about 1920 up to the present, including the development of local missionary work and the organiztion and training of a choir. Again, the book is primarily descriptive, including the list ofa good many individual Friends. Kendal-at-LongwoodNorma Jacob Mr. Sidwell's School: A Centennial History 1883-1983. By William R. MacKaye and Mary Anne MacKaye. Washington, D.C, The Sidwell Friends School. 1983. 254 pages. $15.00. The significance of the title of the Centennial history—Mr. Sidwell 's School—Mes in the realization that what many of us consider to be "Sidwell Friends" was more Sidwell than Friendly for well over halfofits life. This excellent book by William R. and Mary Anne MacKaye, graduates of the class of 1951, will be of value to those interested in Friends' educational institutions and in the changing patterns ofeducational administration and governance in general. The MacKayes have not flinched from reporting what was, and what often is, kept from public view: ineptness, conflict, unpleasant exercise ofpersonal power—those human qualities that obviously can and do surface as often in Quaker schools as elsewhere. And they report with equal attention the humorous and touching tales of human courage and compassion that also fill the history pages of Sidwell Friends School. For the first fifty years of its existence Thomas Sidwell's School, or known at various times as "Friends Select School" or variations on those words, was the creature and shadow of its founder. It is hard to recognize from this distance just how much an individual could dominate an educational institution. Rarely out of debt, worrying about low enrollments, almost constantly trying to raise money for 56Quaker History purchase of new land, new buildings, Sidwell spentg most of his years literally fighting for the life ofthe school. In some ways it can be maintained that Sidwell Friends owes its survival and its reputation for educational excellence today as much to the growth of Washington, D.C. as to the institution as an institution. This is not to discredit Thomas Sidwell, the early teachers, or the students. Other schools were started in Washington in the years that Sidwell Friends was struggling but they did not survive. It is clear that there was vision, a steadfastness ofpurpose, and a sense ofwhat was important in secondary education that set Sidwell's school apart and helped it survive on its own merits. But the growth of Washington as a major national and international city increasingly provided children of socially and politically powerful parents for its classes. The era of one-handedness in control of the school did not disappear with Mr. Sidwell's death in 1936. A powerful member and Chairman of the Board continued for an additional twenty years to exercise almost personal control over the destiny of all those employed by or associated with the school. Ironically it was not until 1956 that Board members finally overrode the Chairman's persistent and personal opposition to the admission of black students and that the school was able to develop a more open system of governance with which most of us are familiar and comfortable. The reference to letters and documents written in the 1930's referring to the schismatic movements in the Society ofFriends make one sigh at the slowness with which we moved toward reconciliation within the Society. The fact that there were two Friends' meetings in Washington for many of the early...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1934-1504
Print ISSN
0033-5053
Pages
pp. 55-56
Launched on MUSE
2012-04-04
Open Access
No
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