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January 17, 2014 / Joanne Yeck

Buckingham Schools: Homer Male Seminary

Slate River Ramblings_Physic Springs_1850_Homer Seminary

For many decades, Physic Springs in Buckingham County, near Gravel Hill, was a busy place.  It was home to a health resort, a farm and mill, an Academy for boys, and a Seminary providing the equivalent of a junior college education.

According to Garnett Williams’ survey for the Virginia Historical Inventory, “Physic Springs was a well known health resort, people came for miles around that were afflicted with any form of skin diseases, they drank the water, and used it for bathing purposes. Dr. (Edward) Snead conducted an Academy for boys there for about ten years.”

In 1850, Homer Male Seminary operated at Physic Springs and advertised in the Richmond papers.  One ad began, “The next session of this Institution will commence the 1st of Jan., and close the 30th of Nov’r following, giving a vacation of one month.  The object of the School is to educate youth thoroughly, prepare them for the Junior and Senior Classes in College, or the active duties in life. “

Instruction in Languages and Science was thorough.  Boys did not advance who did not fully comprehend their course of study.  Board for ten months was $80.00. Importantly, the institution was located just two miles from the Buckingham Female Collegiate Institute, facilitating fraternization between the young scholars and the girls of The Institute.

Coming next: Physic Springs Farm & Mill

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