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George Washington Flint PDF Print E-mail

George Washington Flint's family moved from Massachusetts to Nova Scotia, where he was born Mar. 2,1844. When he was six, they moved back to the States, to Westport Island, Maine and then to Bath, Maine. As a boy he lived and worked on a farm and attended a nearby private school off and on. He showed such promise academically that his teachers encouraged him to attend the Nichols Latin School in Lewiston, Maine. He followed their advice but soon ran out of funds and had to quit. At age 17 he went to work in a tide mill and saved enough to return to school. His father, a Captain in the Illinois Cavalry was killed at the Battle of the Crater at Petersburg, VA Jully 30,1864. George had two brothers, one of whom died as a lieutenant in the Civil War. In the fall of 1866 Flint entered Bates College, earning money in the hayfields in the summer and tutoring in the winter to support himself. He also had the job of ringing the college bell and it was said he never was late for this in his four years of college. He was extremely conscientious even as a youth. At college George earned the respect of the faculty both in academics and in sports. It was said, Flint is good, wherever you put him.

He graduated as Salutatorian in June 1870. For the next three years he taught at the Francestown, NH Academy, where he met and married the French teacher, Mary Elizabeth Monteith. Bates College honored him with a Master of Arts degree in 1873 out of respect for his excellent teaching at the Academy. He then taught for one year at Bates High School in Bath, Maine. In 1874 George Washington Flint began his 24 years of service as principal of the Canton High School. A new school building had been built in Collinsville in 1854, but as yet no class had been graduated well-prepared for college. Flint reorganized the curriculum in 1875 and in 1879, 6 pupils graduated, of whom 5 later graduated from college. Professor Flint was a classicist of the old school. he and one other teacher, Miss Phelps, taught 75 or more students a day Latin, Greek, Grammar, Algebra, and English. Lessons always came first, before sports, entertainment, etc.. Flint regularly assigned 60 lines of Virgil in Latin daily, for example. His students must have struggled under this regimen, but they surely received a superior education because of it. Professor Flint took an active part in community affairs and often wrote a special poem to suit patriotic and other occasions. In 1898 George Washington Flint was the unanimous choice of the trustees to become President of Storrs Agricultural College, later the University of Connecticut. After a distinguished career in building up the resources and reputation of that school he moved back to the Boston area. His son, then, was principal of a high school in Jaffrey, NH, he had to resign because of illness and went to Southern California to recover. Professor Flint took over as Principal and stayed in Jaffrey 5 years, finally leaving to be with his family in California. Two years later he was back in New England where he had a succession of jobs; there was no Social Security then. He worked as a foreman in a piano factory, an agent for books and magazines, a janitor in a Cambridge bank and a clerk in the North Station of the Boston and Maine Railroad. His last 8 months of life were spent in Marlboro, MA at the home of a cousin. It was reported that during this time he read over 70 books and wrote his own valedictory. Professor Flint died Oct. 23,1921, age 76; His family was still in Pasadena, California. He was buried in Arlington, MA. George Washington Flint said he tried to live each day as if it were his last; he was a good citizen and a great teacher.

 

Hours of Operation

Summer Months:
(April through November)
Wednesday - Sunday 1 - 4 PM

Winter Months:
(December through March)
Saturday and Sunday 1 - 4 PM
or by special appointment.

Admissions:
Adults $4.00
Seniors $3.00
Children (ages 6-16)  $1.00
Tours: Available by appointment
starting at $20 based on size of group

Images of the Museum

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