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Life & Labors: A Fortuitous Stop

Life & Labors: On the founding of Grinnell College

Mrs. Gaylord reports that though the original band of young ministers who came west to Iowa intended to form a college, their missionary labors had not yet allowed time to establish one.  When a new cohort of ministers arrived, then the group was able to move forward.  On March 12, 1844 they held an organizing meeting, and on April 15 formed the "Iowa College Association."  It was two years later before a first board of  twelve trustees was elected, and Rev. Gaylord was included; he was also on the Committee on Charter.  He served on the college board until 1855, when he moved to Omaha.  She writes, "He was always careful to attend the meetings of the Board, often taking the trip on horseback, a distance of eighty miles."

The first building was erected in Davenport in 1847-8.  The college was later moved to Grinnell, Iowa.  She writes,

It made slow progress at first, but in a few years entered upon a career of sure and steady growth, which continued until its buildings were hurled to destruction by the terrible cyclone of June, 1882.  But the munificent gifts of a generous public soon restored it to more than its former completeness and beauty, and it is now a noble institution doing a great and noble work.


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