Statement of Editorial Procedures:

The copy text is entitled “The Necessity of Education in a Republican Government,” printed in a book of Horace Mann’s lectures published in 1855. The book has entered the public domain. The copy utilized for this transcript was borrowed from the McKeldin Library at the University of Maryland. The original citation is:

Horace Mann, “The Necessity of Education in a Republican Government,” Lectures on Education (Boston, MA: Ide & Dutton, 1855), 117-162.

This selection was based on the publication of the speech by its author and its status as the only verified version in print. No full transcriptions could be located.

Mann did not publish his speeches contemporaneous with their delivery, and claims to have rejected requests from newspapers for his manuscripts. Per the request of the Massachusetts Board of Education in 1844, Mann published the entire series of his lectures in a single volume. Each text was purportedly delivered multiple times at state Common School Conventions; those for 1839 are listed above. In the preface, Mann makes a note on the authenticity of the texts: “In preparing this volume, the author was led to doubt whether he should retain those portions of the lectures which contained special and direct allusions to the times and circumstances in which they were delivered.” He opted to publish the original drafts, he explains, “because it presents the lectures as they were delivered, and because it gives an aspect of practical reform rather than of theoretic speculation to the work.” Horace Mann, Lectures on Education, ix.

All paragraphing, capitalization, spelling, and punctuation are consistent with the copy-text.

Paragraph numbers have been added in square brackets.

All double quotation marks are rendered with “, all single quotation marks with apostrophe ‘.

Special characters and characters with diachronic marks: The original text featured one instance each of ä and ö.

Departures from the Copy-Text and General Editorial Procedures: I made two omissions from the original text. First, certain pages had numbers at the bottom that did not appear relevant to the text of the address. Secondly, Mann incorporated a footnote to clarify the meaning of the address in retrospect. I omitted this information to retain the integrity of the address.

Mann, “The Necessity of Education in a Republican Government,” Textual Authentication

  1. Speech Title exactly as printed: “The Necessity of Education in a Republican Government.”
  2. Exact Date and Place of Speech Delivery:

The speech was delivered at multiple statewide educational conventions from August to October of 1839. The following dates for this particular address can be ascertained from reading Mann’s published diary entries and contemporaneous news articles.

  • August 31: Mann references the audience for his convention lecture in Northampton.
  • September 1: Refers to another convention scheduled for September 2.
  • September 11: In a letter to his friend George Combe, Mann remarks that he has spoken at “six educational conventions” since their last meeting that summer. His previous diary entries indicate he left Combe’s residence in early August.
  • 14-17: The-New Bedford Mercury references a convention address by Mann.
  • 21: Mann reflects on a completed lecture in Nantucket.
  • 24: Mann remarks on a poor turnout for his lecture in Barnstable.
  • 29: Mann discusses his lecture in Plymouth.
  • 1: Mann discusses his lecture in Dedham.

See Mary Peabody Mann, Life of Horace Mann (Boston: Walker, Fuller, and Company, 1865), 114-121; “Education Convention,” The New-Bedford Mercury, September 20, 1839, 1.

  1. Complete Name of Speaker, with year of birth and year of death: Horace Mann (1796-1859)
  2. Complete name of editor or compiler of electronic text, with indication of role: Michael J. Steudeman.
  3. Date of electronic edition:
  4. Languages: English (100%)
  5. Library of Congress Subject Headings: Mann, Horace, 1796-1859; Education–United States– History; Education–United States–History–19th century
  6. Editing functions performed: data entry and proofreading of electronic text, 1 August 2014