In the early part of I834 several energetic citizens of Canaan, and prominent among them was the lawyer, George Kimball, procured subscriptions sufficient to build a house, and to buy half an acre of land, for grounds. It was located in the field next south of the Congregational Meeting House, with an ornamental fence in front. There were sixty contributors to the enterprise, and chief among them stood the venerable farmer, Samuel Noyes, for whom the contemplated school was named. The amount subscribed was $1,000, of which sum only $80 was subscribed by the opponents of the school, and only $20 of that was ever paid, the friends of the school offering at that time to assume the whole $80. Application was made to the legislature for a charter which was granted July 4, 1834, to Samuel Noyes, George Kimball, Nathaniel Currier, George Walworth and John H. Harris, as incorporators of Noyes Academy. The charter provided for the "education of youth." That the corporation could hold estate not to exceed $15,000, to be divided into one thousand shares of $15 each. Property by way of gift could be held to any amount. The stock was not assessable. On the 4th of July it occurred to some of the enthusiastic and philanthropic donors of the institution, to propose having it established, as they said, "upon the principles of the Declaration of Independence," whereby its privileges and blessings should be open to all pupils without distinction of color, coming with suitable moral and intellectual recommendations. A general meeting of the patrons of the school was warned to be held on August 15, 1834. Previous to this meeting the plan was proposed to many of them individually and met their prompt acceptance.
The nation at this time was at the height of the anti-slavery agitation. During this month anti-slavery riots had taken place in New York City, and had been continued into New Jersey. The people of Canaan sympathized with both sides and the line was as sharply drawn between the abolitionists of Canaan and their