Hail Kentucky, Alma Mater! Loyal sons and daughters sing

When I was about to graduate from UK, I was approached by the UK Student Development Council (I forget how, either someone talked to me or they sent me a letter) in the hopes that I would contribute to the class of 2002’s gift to the university. They wanted to get each and every last graduate’s money, to make it a unanimous gift.

At the time, I thought it was a great idea, and a nice gesture. I still do, but I think the timing was horribly horribly bad. Why hit people up who are about to graduate or who have already graduated? These people have no money :>

I certainly didn’t, anyway; so they wrote my name down and offered to bill me later. When I received the bill, I tucked it in a drawer and then carried it with me to Georgia when I moved. They sent another notice at some point last year.

I believe I finally did send them the $20, but I’m not positive.

At any rate, today I started wondering what exactly the gift was. It was going to be one of those markers you see all around campus (and throughout Kentucky, for that matter) denoting historical events. For example, the historical marker on Administration Drive that tells about Lyman T. Johnson suing for admission to the university was funded by the class of 1999. However, I didn’t know what historical fact our marker now presents to campus visitors, nor where it was placed.

Once I determined that they’re called “historical markers”, though, I hit the jackpot. The KY Historical Society actually has a Historical Marker Database. (Imagine that!) And so I discovered that our marker is at Memorial Hall on South Limestone (or “South Lime”, as we always called it). Here’s what it says on the marker:

Memorial Hall

Completed in 1929 as a memorial to Kentuckians who died in World War I. The building project was financed by statewide contributions. Rosters of the deceased are mounted on the interior walls. The building has become a symbol of the University of Kentucky. Class of 2002.

(Reverse) The interior contains a fresco, created by Ann Rice O’Hanlon in 1934 for the Public Works of Art Project, depicting historical events in central Kentucky. The Hall and its outdoor amphitheater continue to host many student gatherings, speeches, concerts, lectures, and memorial services. Class of 2002.

So, that’s pretty cool. Hopefully I actually sent them the $20.