Something new has been added to the Duke Divinity scene! Heard echoing through these Gothic arches are the hoof beats of a new comer — modern descendant and name-sake of the most famous figure of pioneer American Protestantism — The Duke Circuit Rider! With no pretensions of grandeur, he has set out for one single purpose — the presentation and preservation of a RECORD … of the school-year 1951–52. It is because those of us who labor here day after day may in the future want an accurate record of our seminary days as well as a glimpse of old, familiar faces, that the Rider is sent forth on this, his first journey. This year of our Lord 1952 is truly a great time to be alive — a great time to be in seminary! It stands at the beginning of a new era in the history of Duke Divinity School — the beginning of our Alma Mater’s second quarter-century and the beginning of the administration of Dean James Cannon III. In the Methodist Church, it is the year of the General Conference in San Francisco. In the U.S.A. it is the year of a General Election. In the world of nations, it is a year of war in Korea and continuing tensions between the Communist world and the relatively free world of the West. But perhaps most significant of all, certainly to the Rider and his constituents, is the gradually mounting tide of Spiritual Awakening which is beginning to be seen and experienced all across this continent and beyond!
J. Malloy Owen III