If we were … to adapt a system of instruction … for the people of the United States which was adopted and has for ages been employed to teach the religious ideas of Brahminism, and the despotic power of the princess of India, it would be impossible to preserve the republic. … If we could teach the body of the children of India the doctrines of Christianity and the operation and effect of republican laws, it would be utterly impossible for India to remaining its present condition. … We wish to perpetuate the institutions of the republic, because we believe them wise, beneficial, and well calculated to produce prosperity: hence we must adapt instruction to that object. … The education of a free people must correspond to the necessities of freedom, in regard to intelligence, public virtue, activity of mind, general growth, and Christian progress. In order to attain these results, those studies should be principally regarded which tend to instruct the mind of the structure and operation of republican government.
Edward Mansfield, American Education, Its Principles and Elements. 1856. Cited by Mal Couch,This Great Nation: The Things That Made it Great — and How we Lost Them, pg.99