Inside Spencer: The KSRL Blog

Throwback Thursday: Commencement Take Two Edition

May 20th, 2021

Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!

Rain, rain go away! We’re hoping for clear skies on Sunday for KU’s second weekend of Commencement ceremonies. Congratulations to the Classes of 2020 and 2021!

Photograph of KU graduates walking in Memorial Stadium for Commencement, 1933
KU graduates walking in Memorial Stadium for Commencement, 1933. University Archives Photos. Call Number: RG 0/17 1933 Prints: University General: Commencement (Photos). Click image to enlarge (redirect to Spencer’s digital collections).

Caitlin Klepper
Head of Public Services

Throwback Thursday: Commencement Edition, Part II

May 13th, 2021

Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!

Commencement for the class of 2021 is on Sunday, and we join others in congratulating all graduating Jayhawks and wishing them the very best. Rock Chalk!

Photograph of KU graduates walking into Robinson Gymnasium on Commencement Day, 1913
KU graduates walking into Robinson Gymnasium on Commencement Day, 1913. The structure once known as the Fowler Shops (present-day Stauffer-Flint Hall) is barely visible behind the trees on the left. University Archives Photos. Call Number: RG 0/17 1913 Prints: University General: Commencement (Photos). Click image to enlarge (redirect to Spencer’s digital collections).

Caitlin Klepper
Head of Public Services

Throwback Thursday: Cap and Gown Edition

May 16th, 2019

Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!

Congratulations, Class of 2019! We wish each of you all the best in your future endeavors.

Photograph of KU students and Baby Jay walking down the hill at Commencement, 1974

KU students and Baby Jay walking down the hill at Commencement, 1974.
University Archives Photos. Call Number: RG 0/17 1974 Slides: University General:
Commencement (Photos). Click image to enlarge (redirect to Spencer’s digital collections).

Caitlin Donnelly
Head of Public Services

Throwback Thursday: Del Shankel Edition

July 19th, 2018

Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!

This week we’re remembering former KU chancellor Del Shankel, who passed away on July 12th.

Photograph of Del Shankel with students outside Hoch Auditorium, 1973

Del Shankel, then Acting Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences,
with students outside Hoch Auditorium, 1973. Lawrence Journal-World Photo Collection,
University Archives Photos. Call Number: RG LJW 2/18 1973 Prints:
Chancellors: Del Shankel (Photos). Click image to enlarge.

Photograph of Del Shankel speaking at Commencement, 1981

Chancellor Del Shankel speaking at Commencement, 1981.
University Archives Photos. Call Number: RG 2/18 1981 Prints:
Chancellors: Del Shankel (Photos). Click image to enlarge.

Photograph of Del Shankel, 1991

Del Shankel, then Executive Vice Chancellor, 1991. University Archives Photos.
Call Number: RG 2/18 1991 Prints: Chancellors: Del Shankel (Photos). Click image to enlarge.

Caitlin Donnelly
Head of Public Services

Throwback Thursday: Umbrella Parade Edition

May 10th, 2018

Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!

This Sunday, KU graduates will take part in the tradition of walking down the hill from the Campanile to Memorial Stadium for the Commencement ceremony. This week’s photo shows an early version of this procession, which followed roughly the same route that this year’s graduates will take.

Photograph of an umbrella parade during Commencement, 1908

An umbrella parade to McCook Field – located roughly where Memorial Stadium
now stands – during Commencement week festivities, June 9, 1908. University Archives Photos.
Call Number: RG 0/17 1908 Prints: University General: Commencement (Photos).
Click image to enlarge (redirect to Spencer’s digital collections).

You can see the umbrellas more clearly by clicking on the photo and then zooming in. You’ll also see that some participants – presumably KU seniors – are wearing graduation caps and gowns.

Notice Dyche Hall and Spooner Hall in the background. The large open space to their left is where the Memorial Union now stands.

The Lawrence Daily World newspaper previewed the umbrella parade in an article on May 20, 1908: “Another unique feature [of this year’s Commencement] will be the alumni umbrella parade. Gorgeous red and blue umbrellas decorated with the class numerals have been provided, under the gentle shade of which the visiting alumni will parade from Fraser hall to [t]he gymnasium [Robinson Gymnasium, where Wescoe Hall is now] for the alumni banquet, and then to McCook field for the senior-alumni baseball game.”

Image of the schedule of Class Day events, 1908

Image of the schedule of Class Day events, 1908

The schedule for Class Day, 1908. The umbrella parade took place between 3:45 and 4:00pm.
During KU’s early years, Class Day was one of the features of Commencement,
which included several days of celebrations and events beyond the graduation ceremony itself.
University Archives. Call Number: LD 2693 .U55 1908. Click image to enlarge.

Caitlin Donnelly
Head of Public Services