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John T. L. Preston and Francis H. Smith correspondence

 File
Identifier: RG-01-Correspondence-Preston - Smith
Correspondence between Francis H. Smith, who became VMI's first Superintendent, and John T. L. Preston relating to the organization and opening of VMI. Includes four letters from Preston to Smith and one letter from Smith to Preston, in which he accepts the job offered by the Board of Visitors to serve as Superintendent (originally called Principal Professor). One related letter is from Francis H. Smith to William Atkinson or Atkison, in which Smith asks for advice about VMI's job offer.

Dates

  • 1839

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions

Conditions Governing Use

Manuscript collections in the VMI Archives are made available for educational and research use. The VMI Archives should be cited as the source. The user assumes all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any copyright holders. Materials from our collections may not be redistributed, published or reproduced without permission from the VMI Archives. Contact the VMI Archives for additional information.

Extent

6 items (6 items in one box)

Biographical / Historical

John T. L. Preston (1811-1890), was one of the founders of the Virginia Military Institute. He served at VMI as a member of the first Board of Visitors (1839) and as a Professor of Modern Languages from 1839-1875. During the Civil War he was on the staff of Gen. Stonewall Jackson.
Biographical / Historical Major General Francis Henney Smith (b. 1812 d. 1890) was appointed VMI's first Superintendent in 1839. An 1833 graduate of West Point, he had previously served briefly in the U. S. Army and was a Professor of Mathematics at Hampden-Sydney College (VA) when he accepted the position as head of the newly established Virginia Military Institute. He served for fifty years, from the Institute's infancy, through the Civil War, and through the difficult post-war period. He is known as the "builder and rebuilder of VMI." Smith retired on January 1, 1890 and died only a few months later, on March 21, 1890.

Physical Location

Archives stacks, Record Group 01, Board of Visitors

Repository Details

Part of the Virginia Military Institute Archives Repository

Contact:
VMI Archives
Preston Library
Lexington VA 24450
540-464-7516