WU History

Happy Birthday Fannie Hurst

By Lillian Blotkamp, Graduate student worker on October 18, 2013

American novelist Fannie Hurst, born in Ohio on October 19, 1889, grew up in St. Louis and attended WU.  She graduated with her B.A. in 1909.  During her time at the University, Hurst was heavily involved with theatrical life on campus.  After the beginning of the dramatic club Thyrsus in 1907, H...

WU and the Beginning of Educational TV in St. Louis

By Lillian Blotkamp, Graduate Student Assistant on September 20, 2013

St. Louis’ educational television station, KETC Channel 9, made its first broadcast on  September 20th, 1954 — fifty-nine years ago today.   It operated from a small, temporary studio in the women’s gymnasium at  McMillan Hall.  The beginning of regular broadcasts marked the completion of a...

Moving In WUSTL Style

By Miranda Rectenwald on August 22, 2013

This week brings to campus a flurry of activity as students (and their families and all their belongings) arrive at the South-40.  Offered here is a brief look back at the campus “tradition” of move-in day at Washinton University.  And while the vehicles and hair styles may have chang...

Public School Reform in Wartime: From the Desk of William Greenleaf Eliot

By Bianca Lopez, PhD candidate in History on June 12, 2013

In 1861, St. Louis’s public school system was threatened by the outbreak of the Civil War. As a member of the school district’s board of directors, William Greenleaf Eliot wrote to its president, Edward Wyman, and asked that he keep the schools open during wartime. As it turns out, the schools ha...

Palette Scrapings, Then and Now

By Miranda Rectenwald on June 5, 2013

The Kemper Art Museum  started a new blog in April 2013 that offers a “behind-the-scenes look at the exhibitions, the artworks on view, and the inner workings of the Kemper Art Museum from the point of view of the people who make it all happen.” This new modern publication has a histo...

Women’s Education: From the Desk of William Greenleaf Eliot

By Lillian Blotkamp, Graduate student worker on May 24, 2013

In December of 1870, William Greenleaf Eliot penned the following thoughts in his journal, which he jotted down after writing a speech on women’s education at the Missouri State Teachers’ Conference. He wrote, “We cannot now turn back, and having now admitted all the destructive powers of ignoran...

Commencement Tidbits

By Sonya Rooney, University Archivist on May 14, 2013

The first commencement for Washington University occurred in 1862, with five graduates.  In the 2012 Commencement 2,760 candidates received 2,878 degrees (1,450 undergraduate and 1,428 graduate and professional). A variety of people have spoken at Commencement over the years including James Bryce...

Getting your bearings on WU Traditions

By Miranda Rectenwald on May 1, 2013

Part of an occasional series exploring unusual, obscure, and sometimes near-invisible student traditions at WU.  Presented below is the full text from the last page of the 1975-76 student handbook, Bearings. The student authors offer parting words of wisdom on some of the more unique WU tradition...

A Tradition of Service at Washington University

By Miranda Rectenwald on April 3, 2013

In honor of the Clinton Global Initiative – University (CGI-U) opening April 5-7, 2013, Bears Repeating offers a brief look back at WU community service through the years.   1993 The Saale family wrote to Chancellor Danforth, “we were blessed with 10 fantastic volunteers from you...