1825Methodists voted at their General Conference in Oxford, N.C., to consider founding a liberal arts college.
1826-27Methodist annual conferences took further steps to establish a college. Following the 1827 conference, the Rev. James Jamieson, the Rev. Hezekiah Leigh, and the Rev. Leroy M. Lee stopped for lunch on an old field near Boydton, Va., and agreed the rustic spot would be ideal for the new college.
1830A bill was introduced in the Virginia General Assembly on Jan. 15 to incorporate the college as Henry and Macon College. In further discussions, the name was changed to Randolph-Macon. On Feb. 3, the act to incorporate the "Trustees of Randolph-Macon" became law. In October a contract was approved with William A. Howard and Dabney Cosby for construction of a main college building.
1831The trustees elected the Rev. John Emory as the first president. He declined the offer, and the trustees then elected the Rev. Stephen Olin.
1832The college's first session opened in October on the Boydton, Va., campus, with the Rev. Martin Parks, mathematics professor, as acting president. Dr. Olin arrived in the spring. The president's annual salary was $1,000, while professors earned $800 per year. Each also received a house and garden. The cost for students was $121 for 10 months of study.
1833The Washington Literary Society was organized in February.
1834The Franklin Literary Society was organized. In his March inaugural address, President Olin noted that the overriding principle of collegiate studies was "their tendency to enlarge, invigorate and discipline the mind."
1836Landon C. Garland (left) assumed the presidency of the college.
1842A School of Law was added to the curriculum.
1846The Rev. William A. Smith became the college's president. A medical department, called the Prince Edward Medical Institute, was established by the college near Prince Edward courthouse.
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