The Seventy-Fifth Anniversary

  From: “History of the Ohio State University”, VI, Addresses and proceeding of the Seventy-Fifth Anniversary, 1948-1949
By William G. Wilcox

Diamon Jubillee Dinner, 1948

The Seventy-fifth Anniversary celebration of The Ohio State University began with a two-day University-wide celebration on October 14 and 15, 1948, and continued throughout the school year with some sixty-nine special observances by the various colleges, schools, departments and other divisions of the University. Although the University was established in 1870, it opened its doors to students on September 17, 1873; hence the selection of this year for the celebration.

There were a number of other committees responsible for different portions of the celebration. Persons from many areas in the University, including some in retirement, served on these committees. For example, Edith D. Cockins, Registrar Emeritus, made a memorable contribution in handling arrangements for the Seventy-fifth Anniversary Dinner, which was held at the Neil House on October 15- The Board of Trustees, the faculty, the student body, and many friends of the University cooperated loyally and effectively. [take out?]

The theme of the year-long celebration was expressed in the motto, “Growth through Service.” The various observances brought many distinguished scholars, scientists, administrators, and educators to the campus. The University found an opportunity to appraise its past and present, and to examine critically its plans for continued service.

The work of the University was brought to the attention of thousands of people through newspaper and magazine articles and local and national radio programs. The University’s radio station WOSU broadcasted many of the addresses given during the program on October 14-15 and at other events. The Columbia Broadcasting System carried a portion of the address by Karl T. Compton at the Anniversary Banquet. The history of the University was the subject for a state-wide broadcast entitled, “The Broad-Gauge University,” carried by ten Ohio stations on October 15, 1949. And there were others as the year went forward.

Among the special observances were those of the College of Engineering on January 24, and the College of Agriculture on March 22-25. These are the two original colleges of the University, now grown to ten colleges and a Graduate School. The celebration of the College of Agriculture was made a part of the annual Farm and Home Week, an event which attracted more than ten thousand persons to the campus. A Women’s Institute, March 21-23, brought outstanding leaders in women’s activities throughout Ohio to the campus to consider ways of serving Ohio communities. The College of Commerce and Administration held nine conferences and institutes for business groups during the year..

The year was notable also for significant progress in the University’s new building program.

In addition to marking an anniversary for the University, the year saw the completion of college training for a record number of veterans of World War II, who four years previously had swelled the enrollment to a new high. At the June 1949 commencement exercises in Ohio Stadium, 2,457 graduates received diplomas, a new high. For the year, the total was 5,567. The seventy-five thousandth graduate of the University was a member of the June class.