SJA-June 1920

To the Editor:

The Caledonian-Record reported in the Tues. June 22, 1920 edition that “[a]nnouncement was made today that the trustees of St. Johnsbury Academy have elected to fill the vacancy in the office of its principal, [with] Rev. Theodore Halbert Wilson, now of Cambridge, Mass., and that he will assume its duties on or before August 1[,][1920].” (“New Principal Elected at St. J. Academy, The Trustees Have Chosen Former President of Olivet College,” The Caledonian-Record, Tues. June 22, 1920, at p. 1).

A native of Middletown, Ct., Principal Wilson was a graduate of Cambridge Latin School (Cambridge, Mass.), Harvard University (A.B., M.A., and Ed.D. degrees), and of Union Theological Seminary in New York City (divinity degree). Rev. Wilson began his ministry career with Congregational Church pastorates in Montclair, N.J., Skowhegan, Me., and Olivet, Mich., in the latter city also teaching and rising to the presidency of Olivet College.

Wilson would serve successfully as the Academy principal for the next ten years during a period of rapid school growth. Following the total loss by fire of SJA’s South Hall on Jan. 11, 1926, Principal Wilson presided over efforts for the fundraising and construction of the replacement building, Colby Hall, which was dedicated on Friday Jan. 28, 1927. (“Dedicate $75,000 Academy Plant Colby Hall at St. Johnsbury Appropriately Opened – Replaces Structure Burned Year Ago,” The Burlington Free Press, Mon. Jan. 31, 1927, at p. 11). Announcing his resignation on June 30, 1930, (“St. J. Aca. Principal Accepts Presidency of Wash. School,” The Burlington Free Press, Tues. July 1, 1930, at p. 2), one of Principal Wilson’s last official public acts as the St. Johnsbury Academy principal was to attend and speak at the Sat. July 5, 1930 cornerstone laying ceremony for the Fuller Hall construction project.


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