|Repository:||University of Georgia Archives|
|Creator:||University of Georgia.|
|Title:||Commencement Programs, University of Georgia|
|Quantity:||8.0 Linear feet (13 boxes)|
Commencement at the University of Georgia began with the first commencement on May 31, 1804, when ten young men received bachelor of arts degrees at a ceremony in front of Old College which was under frustratingly slow construction. Both the founding president Abraham Baldwin and Josiah Meigs, who presided over the 1804 commencement, were well-versed in academic decorum Yale-style. The sheriff of the county led the processional, and faculty rank and authority were clearly displayed by rigid protocol. Each degree recipient in 1804 was expected to deliver individual remarks suitable to the occasion, a practice that was to continue for many years. By the 1820s commencement activities lasted for days, and “anybody who was anybody in the state” anticipated spending this season in Athens. The crowd quickly outgrew the wooden chapel, and the present University chapel completed in 1832 owes its existence, at least in part, to an attempt to house properly the important commencement exercises. Two years later in 1834, the Alumni Society was formed during that year’s Commencement Week and has provided valuable support for the University ever since.
For additional information see Commencement History.
This collection documents commencement activities held at the University of Georgia beginning with the first commencement held in 1804 through the latest one in May of 2015. There is a wide range of material including sermons, dance schedules, honor student "blue lists", original poems, and strikingly designed "keepsake" programs. The collection will continue to be updated as documents are received.
Commencement Programs, University of Georgia, UA04-002, University Archives, Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, The University of Georgia Libraries.
Though this collection is open for research, the audiovisual recordings are in their original format and do not have copies available for public use. One can make a request for a public use copy but the ability to convert an item is dependent upon the format and condition of the recording.
Related materials in this repository: Georgiana Vertical Files, University of Georgia, UA12-029, "UGA Commencement" and "UGA Programs".