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Page 14 text:
Looking To the Future I don ' t think that Pierce Cline ever had any great hope that this first period of negotiation concerning Cen- tenary and Dodd College would be successful. As I look back now, it seems very clear that he himself had viewed the negotiations then going on as foundation for future action rather than as holding any possibility of immediate culmination. There wasn ' t a bit of disap- pointment in his voice or in his manner when he told me one day: " The man we ' ve both been thinking about tells me that the $50,000 isn ' t burning holes in his pants and that he is setting a time limit on his offer — January 1. I can ' t blame him for that. " January 1 was only a few weeks away. It came and passed — and the negotiations automatically ended. I Dr. Cline and guest speaker, Galloway Calhoun, lead the commencement procession ot 1940. Dr. Cline, Dean Hardin, and Dean Campbell award degrees to Members ot 1942 graduating class. It was a happy occasion for all when Mrs. John Shuttleworth re- asked Doctor Cline some time later if he thought the possibility of merger had been ended entirely. " Certainly not, " he said. " It is too logical, too necessary to the colleges and to the community, to fail. Some way, some day — ' ■ I don ' t know when or how — the two colleges will be brought together as one. " He was right. I never saw such a light in a man ' s eyes as the gleam that came from the eyes of Pierce Cline when he told me, some two years after the ending of the first period of negotiations, that everything was " all right. " There was another little incident-— which I hope won ' t be misunderstood. But it gives further insight into the man himself. A night or two before a football game between Cen- tenary and one of its arch rivals in athletics, someone — presumably Centenary students — visited the town of the opposing college and did quite a bit of painting on sidewalks and other places — painting of the college letter " C " as youthful and exuberant, though perhaps misguided, defiance to a college " enemy. "
Page 13 text:
level, too. I have met no man who could rise higher in vision without taking his feet off the ground of practicalism than Pierce Cline. I called him up one day just after the Army courses started at Centenary. " What about all this Army demand for science and math and so on, " I asked. " Is education being shot to pieces culturally by this war? " " It is amazing, " he came back without hesitation — and I could vision a twinkle of amusement in his eyes — " what this Army of ours wants our young men to have as education. Why " — his voice rose, but distinctly in mock indignation — " they actually want our 1 boys to have a big, broad, sound foundation in English! And think of this — they want them to have more geography than most colleges offer! And his- tory! And foreign language! Just imagine! Of course they want sound math, science, too. " He hesitated a minute. Then he said: " The Army is good for colleges. It shakes them up — culturally! " He knew that was what I had in mind from the start — that the cry for science and needs of war would not break up simple foundations of cultural education; that needs for science can only be car- ried to their greatest extent when culture is included in the foundation. A lot of editorials have come out of that three or four minute telephone conversation. The tenacity with which Pierce Cline kept after things worthwhile was never better illustrated to me than during the long period of negotiations and stale- mate involving the now existing consolidation of Centenary and Dodd Colleges. Many who simply see the actual consolidation may not realize that the events leading to it covered several years and that these events are divided into two periods — one period of negotations which failed and a second which succeeded. Back in the 1930 ' s I went to Doctor Cline ' s office one day to talk with him about the private negotia- tions which I knew were going on to bring Cen- tenary and Dodd together as one great Shreveport educational institution. I was not seeking news, but merely a background of information and understand- ing which would enable me to be ready when the time did come for publication. I knew that Doctor Cline was pledged to silence concerning the names of certain persons involved — and so was I. Neither in that discussion nor in many that followed did either of us mention the name of the anonymous benefactor who first offered $50,000 in cash and then obligated himself to about double that sum to further higher education in the Shreveport area-- yet each of us knew that the other was fully in- formed. What we talked about chiefly was the great benefit that would come to education itself in this area through such a merger — of the great need for it. Here again that " earthly trinity " of Pierce Cline ' s was predominant — school, church and community — although it was not at this time given a name. Dr. George S. Sexton, then president emeritus, Jimmie Serra, president oi the class of ' 36, and Dr. Cline at the 1936 commencement. Dr. Cline joined the students in celebrating Founders Day. Lett to light, Mrs. Betty Drafts, Dr. Cline, and Mrs. Barron Johns, Jr., in 1941.
Page 15 text:
ceived the Doctor oi Humanities degree irom Dr. Cline. " I see you ' ve started a new art course at Centenary, " I said to Doctor Cline the next day. " Give out a little now — what do you really think of this little episode? " Dr. Cline, center, enjoyed informal discussions with members oi his faculty. Jackson Hall houses the Science departments yfv ■A M. A. I li I I I PIW l kw ■ ■ 11
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