From Banner of Truth:
This was certainly true at Hampden-Sydney and the President, John Blair Smith, also a Presbyterian pastor of two nearby, small congregations, Briery and Cub Creek, was deeply grieved. He and the members of his churches began to pray for revival in their communities and at the college. In 1788 eighty young men were at the college and none were outwardly professing Christians. It had become vogue to reject the Calvinistic upbringing these young men had received. But two students, William Hill and William Calhoun, found each other and admitted they were concerned for their souls. When Calhoun read Alarm to the Unconverted1, a Puritan classic by Joseph Alleine, he became even more concerned for his soul. The two agreed to pray secretly on Saturdays in the woods, lest other students see them and mock them. But one Saturday they were expecting rain so they decided to pray in the residence hall. Others heard them praying and threatened to break down the door if they persisted. Later that day John Blair Smith heard about the incident and invited these young men (others had since joined their ranks) to come to his study the next week and pray. Within weeks half the student body was gathering for prayer. There was much weeping, repenting, and rejoicing. Revival had come to the student body at Hampden-Sydney and the communities within one hundred miles of there. Blair’s father, Robert, who had been converted forty years before under the preaching of George Whitefield, after hearing of the revival, came for a look.
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