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Commencement and Baccalaureate Collection

Commencement and Baccalaureate Collection

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Descriptive Summary

Title: Commencement and Baccalaureate Collection
Identification: UA370
Date: 1899-1981 (bulk dates 1902-1973)
Size/Quantity: 2.2 linear feet (4 document cases and 3 half-size document cases)
Language: This collection is written in English.
Creator: Georgia Institute of Technology. Archives and Records Management.
Repository: Archives & Records Management, Library, Georgia Institute of Technology
Abstract:This collection consists of selected programs, addresses, invitations, instructions, and printed material produced for the commencement and/or baccalaureate ceremonies at Georgia Tech.
General noteThis collection was partially processed at an earlier date as MS147.

Biographical/Historical Note

Graduation exercises at the Georgia School of Technology took place every June during Georgia Tech's early years. Although little is known about the earliest ceremonies, it is likely that graduation exercises began with the first graduating class of 1890 when Tech graduated two men, George G. Crawford and Henry L. Smith. Printed programs for Commencement Day ceremonies appeared in the Georgia Tech Bulletin beginning with the program for June 1895. In these early days the graduation exercises consisted of a single ceremony that included music, prayers, a baccalaureate address, and the conferring of degrees. The programs also usually list the home county of the graduates and the title of their thesis. The ceremony apparently took place on the Georgia Tech campus until about 1902. From 1902 to 1916 the ceremonies were held at the Grand Opera House in Atlanta.

The graduation ceremonies returned to the Georgia Tech campus in 1917. Between 1935 and 1938 the location was changed to The Fox Theatre. In 1939 the location once again returned to the Georgia Tech campus. Between 1943 and early 1946 graduations were held three times a year (usually in February, June, and October), presumably so that students could graduate before going to serve in World War II. After the war the commencement ceremonies reverted to the once-a-year schedule, usually in early June, and the venue switched back to the Fox Theatre.

Beginning in about 1970, graduation ceremonies began taking place three times a year, and in 1972 ceremonies began being held at the conclusion of every quarter. Ceremonies once again returned to the Georgia Tech campus in 1970, to the Alexander Memorial Coliseum. When Tech converted to the semester system in the fall of 1999, graduation ceremonies began being held in May, August, and December. As of 2009, the ceremonies continue to be held at a location on the Georgia Tech campus (frequently the Ferst Center for the Arts or the Alexander Memorial Coliseum). Because of the number of graduates, sometimes the spring graduations for masters and undergraduate degrees are held at a larger location such as the Georgia Dome.


Scope and Content Note

This collection consists of programs, addresses, invitations, instructions, and printed material produced for the commencement and/or baccalaureate ceremonies at Georgia Tech.

Series 1 of this collection contains instruction sheets for selected years regarding the date, place, and time of the ceremonies; the time for assembly; and special instructions. Series 2 consists of invitations to the commencement exercises for selected years. Copies of the texts of the addresses delivered at selected commencement exercises and baccalaureate ceremonies are included in Series 3. Series 4 contains program booklets and paper programs for baccalaureate and commencement exercises for selected years from 1914 to the early 1970s. Two programs from the Army Specialized Training Program graduations, dating from 1943 and 1944, also form a part of this series. Series 5 is made up of the commencement issues of selected Georgia Tech publications.


Arrangement

Arranged into five series:

SERIES 1. Commencement and baccalaureate instructions

SERIES 2. Commencement invitations

SERIES 3. Addresses

SERIES 4. Programs

SERIES 5. Publications


Index Terms

Baccalaureate addresses.
Commencement ceremonies--Georgia--Atlanta.
Georgia Institute of Technology. Alumni and alumnae.
Georgia Institute of Technology. Degrees.
Georgia Institute of Technology. History.
Georgia Institute of Technology. Students.
Georgia School of Technology. Students.
Graduation (School)--Georgia--Atlanta.
Programs (documents).
Speeches.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Please cite Commencement and Baccalaureate Collection (UA370), Archives, Library and Information Center, Georgia Institute of Technology.

Provenance

This collection was assembled by Archives and Records Management from numerous accession numbers. The main part of the collection was included in accession 1991.0604. Other accessions include: 2001.001, 2001.010, 2002.085, 2004.018, 2002.111, 2003.014, 2004.093, 2006.180, 2007.033, 2008.043, 2008.097, 2009.016. Accession number 1999.044, which was originally processed as MF050, has been reprocessed and included in this collection.

Processing Information

Germaine Schanzmeyer and Christine de Catanzaro processed these papers in June 2009.

Accruals

It is likely that this collection will have additional materials added in the future.

Revisions to Finding Aid

March 2010:
  • Finding aid imported into Archivists' Toolkit.

  • Restrictions

    Restrictions: Access

    No restrictions on access.

    Restrictions: Use

    Permission to publish materials from this collection must be obtained from the Head of Archives and Special Collections.


    Related Material

    The Georgia Tech Archives holds a full run of printed programs for commencement. These have been cataloged as T171 .G42 G48x. The Commencement and quarter-centennial celebration of the Georgia School of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia, June 2d-11th, 1913 has been cataloged as T171 .G44 G124X 1913.


    Other Finding Aids

    A print copy of this finding aid is available in the Georgia Tech Archives reading room.


    Container List

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    SERIES 1: Commencement and baccalaureate instructions, 1927-1970

    Arrangement

    Arranged chronologically.

    Description

    This series contains instruction sheets for selected years regarding the date, place, and time of the ceremonies; the time for assembly; and special instructions regarding dress, the route of the march, lining up for the procession, tasks and responsibilities of the officiants, and other details.

    Box

    Fldr

    11Instructions, June 1927
    12Instructions, June 1931
    13Instructions, June 1944
    14Instructions, June 1946
    15Instructions, June 1948
    16Instructions, June 1959
    17Instructions, May 1960
    18Instructions, June 1968
    19Instructions, July 1970
    110Instructions, December 1970
     

    SERIES 2: Commencement invitations, 1902-1945

    Arrangement

    Listed chronologically.

    Description

    This series contains invitations to the commencement exercises for selected years.

    Box

    Fldr

    29Invitation - Henry Leon Strickland, June 1902
    21Invitation, June 1903
    22Invitation, June 1904
    23Invitation, June 1907
    24Invitation, June 1908
    25Invitation, June 1921
    26Invitation, May 1942
    27Invitation, June 1944
    28Invitation, February 1945
     

    SERIES 3: Addresses, 1904-1981

    Arrangement

    Arranged chronologically.

    Description

    Copies of the texts of the addresses delivered at selected commencement exercises and baccalaureate ceremonies are included in Series 3. Early speakers included prominent citizens, judges, and politicians, such as J. C. Pritchard, U. S. Court of Appeals Judge (1912); Nathaniel E. Harris, Governor of Georgia from 1915 to 1917 (1916); Thomas W. Hardwick, Governor of Georgia from 1921 to 1923 (ca. 1922); S. Price Gilbert, Judge of the Georgia Supreme Court (1944); and M. L. (Marion Luther) Brittain (1866-1953; in 1926) and Blake R. (Blake Ragsdale) Van Leer (1947), Presidents of Georgia Tech. Glenn Theodore Seaborg (1912-1999), Chairman of the U. S. Atomic Energy Commission (1969); Myron Tribus, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Science and Technology (1970) were among the later speakers.

    Box

    Fldr

    31Address - Samuel Spencer, June 1904
    32Address - Albert H. Staton, ca. 1910
    33Address and Baccalaureate Sermon - J. C. Pritchard, M. Ashby Jones, June 1912
    34Address - Herbert S. Bigelow, 1913
    35Address - David C. Barrow, 1913
    36Address - Nathaniel E. Harris (1846-1929), 1916
    37Address - W. L. Moore, 1917
    38Address - Thomas W. Hardwick (1872-1944), ca. 1922
    39Address - David C. Barrow, June 1922
    310Address - M. L. (Marion Luther) Brittain (1866-1953), June 1926
    311Address - S. Price Gilbert, June 1944
    312Address - William Loren Batt, June 1946
    313Address - Raymond Ross Paty, June 1947
    314Address - Larry C. Hart, June 1948
    315Address - Lucius D. Clay, June 1950
    316Address - Arthur S. Adams, June 1953
    317Address - Ralph E. (Ralph Edward) Flanders (1880-1970), June 1954
    318Address - John Jay Hopkins, June 1955
    319Address - W. Homer Turner, June 1956
    320Address - Edward B. Newill, June 1957
    321Address - Wayne J. Holman, Jr., June 1958
    322Address - Eugene Miller, 1962
    323Address - Glenn Theodore Seaborg (1912-1999), June 1969
    324Address - Myron Tribus, June 1970
    325Address - E. C. Ashby, August 1975
    326Address - S. Peter Kezios, March 1978
    327Address - Raymond E. Miller, September 1981
     

    SERIES 4: Programs, 1914-1973 (bulk dates 1920-1973)

    Arrangement

    The program booklets are listed first, followed by the baccalaureate programs, the paper programs, and the Army Specialized Training Program graduation programs. Each of the types is listed in chronological order.

    Description

    This series contains program booklets and paper programs for baccalaureate and commencement exercises for selected years from 1914 to the early 1970s. The program booklets include lists of the graduates, award winners, Senior Class officers, and some photographs as well as the programs themselves. These may have been given to the graduates and their families as mementos. The paper commencement programs include similar information, but they are not bound and they usually have fewer illustrations and photographs. The baccalaureate programs, which date from the early 1930s to the early 1960s, provide details of the hymns and music as well as the names of the presenters of the invocations and sermons. Two programs from the Army Specialized Training Program graduations, dating from 1943 and 1944, also form a part of this series.

    Box

    Fldr

    41Program booklets, 1920
    42Program booklet, 1923
    43Program booklet, 1925
    44Program booklet, 1927
    45Program booklet, 1928
    46Program booklets, 1929
    47Program booklets, 1930
    48Program booklet, 1931
    49Program booklets, 1935
    410Program booklets, 1936
    411Program booklets, 1937

    Box

    Fldr

    51Program booklets, 1939
    52Program booklets, 1940
    53Program booklet, 1942
    54Program booklets, 1943
    55Program booklet, 1944
    56Program booklet, 1945
    57Program booklets, 1946
    58Program booklet, 1947
    59Program booklets, 1948
    510Program booklet, 1949
    511Program booklets, 1951
    512Program booklet, 1952
    513Program booklet, 1955
    514Program booklet, 1958

    Box

    Fldr

    61Baccalaureate programs, 1933-1941
    62Baccalaureate programs, 1949-1950
    63Baccalaureate programs, 1952-1953
    64Baccalaureate programs, 1955
    65Baccalaureate programs, 1957-1960
    66Baccalaureate program, 1963
    67Commencement programs, 1914-1915
    68Commencement programs, 1914-1915
    69Commencement program, 1923
    610Commencement program, 1929
    611Commencement program, 1935
    612Commencement programs, 1945-1946
    613Commencement program, 1948
    614Commencement program, 1952
    615Commencement programs, 1970
    616Commencement programs, 1971
    617Commencement programs, 1972-1973
    618Programs: Army Specialized Training Program graduation, 1943-1944
     

    SERIES 5: Publications, 1899-1911

    Arrangement

    Listed chronologically.

    Description

    This series is made up of two publications: The commencement issue for June 1899 of The Georgia Tech and the commencement number of the Bulletin for 1911-1912 (Volume VIII, No. V), which covers the commencement of June 1911. The Bulletin contains detailed descriptions of the commencement itself as well as the events taking place during the three-day period of the graduation festivities, including the text of the baccalaureate sermon. Also included are lists, such as a list of students on the Honor Roll and a list of graduates with thesis subjects.

    Box

    Fldr

    71 The Georgia Tech (commencement issue), June 1899
    72 Bulletin Vol. VIII, No. V (commencement number), October 1911