Archive for Sunday, August 23, 2015

KU Today: 10 fun facts about how the university started 150 years ago

August 23, 2015

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Here are a few Kansas University factoids to know as the institution celebrates its 150th anniversary.

Quick language note: Another way of saying “150th anniversary” is to say the university is celebrating its “sesquicentennial anniversary.” Just in case you didn’t know.

1: The first classes at KU were held on Sept. 12, 1866.

2: Robert W. Oliver was Kansas University’s first chancellor. He was elected on March 21, 1865, at the first meeting of the Kansas Board of Regents.

Kansas University's first chancellor, Robert W. Oliver.

Kansas University's first chancellor, Robert W. Oliver.

3: From the start of classes until 1872, North College was KU’s only building.

4: In 1866, tuition for KU cost $30 per year for college classes and $10 per year for college prep classes.

5: KU launched with three faculty members. Their salaries? $1,600 per year.

6: On Dec. 2, 1872, “the New Building,” now remembered as “Old Fraser,” officially opened to the public at the site where Fraser Hall currently stands.

The Kansas University campus pictured in the 1870s, after the construction of University Hall, KU's second building. University Hall, which opened publicly in 1872 even though it wasn't quite finished, according to KUhistory.com, is better known now as Old Fraser.

The Kansas University campus pictured in the 1870s, after the construction of University Hall, KU's second building. University Hall, which opened publicly in 1872 even though it wasn't quite finished, according to KUhistory.com, is better known now as Old Fraser.

7: On Dec. 4, 1867, General John Fraser was elected KU’s second chancellor.

8: The Alpha Nu chapter of Beta Theta Pi was the first fraternity at KU, with its first initiation in 1873.

9: Although classes began in 1866, the university’s first commencement was not held until 1873. There were four graduates.

10: At age 23, Flora Richardson was valedictorian of KU’s first graduating class, and also KU’s first female graduate.

Flora Richardson, valedictorian of Kansas University's first graduating class. The first commencement took place in 1873, and four students — Richardson plus three men — earned degrees.

Flora Richardson, valedictorian of Kansas University's first graduating class. The first commencement took place in 1873, and four students — Richardson plus three men — earned degrees.

— Source: Information from KU’s kuhistory.com/#/timeline.

KU Today 2015

Read about what's going with KU's campus and community, while also looking back at where it started 150 years ago, in an LJWorld.com special section: KU TODAY.

Comments

Tom McCune 2 years, 3 months ago

Does anyone know what happened to Flora Richardson after she graduated? Just curious....

Steve King 2 years, 3 months ago

Ms. Richardson became employed as a secondary school teacher in Kanwaka, a community near Lawrence, thus, further proving her devotion to education. She later married Mr. Osgood Colman and had seven children.

Flora remained in Lawrence until her death in 1924. According to her obituary, she was active in the community, specifically with issues involving women and children. Her daughter, Nellie Colman, stated in her obituary, “There has been no movement for the benefit of her community or for women and children that did not receive her ardent support. Women’s suffrage, the women’s rest room, the various plans to provide high school privileges for rural pupils, and the farm bureau for rural women each in their turn were things she was untiring in her efforts to secure”.

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