As the Sowing: The First Fifty Years of The Principia
Leonard, Edwin S. As the Sowing: The First Fifty Years of The Principia. St. Louis: The Principia, (1948) 2015.
Written engagingly from an insider’s viewpoint, As the Sowing relates the history of The Principia, a school for young Christian Scientists, from its beginnings as an idea of Mary Kimball Morgan in the late 1890s through the Golden Anniversary years of 1947-48. Building thematically on Principia’s symbolic sheaf of wheat, the 29 chapters are organized from Seedtime through Years of Reaping with the basic idea, the ‘good seed,’ underlying the foundation and unfoldment of the school to serve the cause of Christian Science. Poignant biographies of self-effacing Mrs. Morgan and her husband William, a successful businessman of great integrity, illustrate the qualities of character that enabled the school’s progressive unfoldment, especially Mrs. Morgan’s intuitive insight and her “reliance on God for guidance, for strength, supply, inspiration, as a means of meeting every need of her own and the school’s” (31). Early years included experimentation with philosophies of education and discipline. Growth and progress brought the need for greater resources and new buildings, including moving the College across the river to the scenic bluffs above Elsah, Illinois, in 1935. The uncertainties of the 1930s and ‘40s, and the effects of war with men students drafted, required women to serve in many capacities on campus.