Difference between revisions of "Charter Day"

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The annual celebration of '''Charter Day''' at the [[College of William and Mary]] was initiated by President [[John Stewart Bryan]] on February 8, 1937.  The first Charter Day was known as Founder's Day and included an academic procession with the faculty in their regalia, walking from Jefferson dormitory to Phi Beta Kappa Memorial Hall, where Charter Day celebrations still occur. Drawing on the reference of granting the Royal Charter to a President and Six Masters, President Bryan was joined on stage at Phi Beta Kappa Memorial Hall by six professors. The choir sang "God Save the King," one professor read excerpts from the charter, and Wesley Frank Craven, visiting professor of history from New York University, gave the principal address. President Bryan’s love of pomp and pageantry also led to the annual [[Yule Log Ceremony]].
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The annual celebration of '''Charter Day''' at [[William & Mary]] was initiated by [[President]] [[John Stewart Bryan]] on February 8, 1937.  The first Charter Day was known as Founder's Day and included an academic procession with the faculty and [[students]] in academic regalia, walking from [[Jefferson Hall]] dormitory to Phi Beta Kappa Memorial Hall (present day [[Ewell Hall]]. Drawing on the reference of granting the Royal Charter to a President and Six Masters, President Bryan was joined on stage at Phi Beta Kappa Memorial Hall by six professors. The choir sang "God Save the King," one professor read excerpts from the [[charter]], and Wesley Frank Craven, visiting professor of history from New York University, gave the principal address about the historical background of the founding of William and Mary. President Bryan’s love of pomp and pageantry also led to the annual [[Yule Log Ceremony]].
 
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During the eighteenth century Transfer Day was the usual time of celebrating the birth of William and Mary by observing the anniversary of the Transfer of the [[Charter]] from the founders of the College to the President and Masters of the College on [[August 15, 1729]].
 
  
In 1859, the 166th anniversary of the College of William and Mary was celebrated on February 19 with an address by [[John Tyler]], former president of the United States, and a reading of St. George Tucker’s celebratory poem by the poet himself. St. George Tucker was the grandson of the man for whom Tucker Hall is named. The book is the published version of these presentations and also contains a brief history of the College and lists of its officers, faculty and alumni.
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==Historical Sketch==
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During the eighteenth century [[Transfer Day]] was the usual time of celebrating the birth of William and Mary by observing the anniversary of the Transfer of the [[Royal Charter]] from the founders of the College to the President and Masters of the College on [[August 15, 1729]].
  
The tradition of having [[Charter Day Speakers]] of note to address the audience carried over from the nineteenth century to the present.
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In 1859, the 166th anniversary of the College of William and Mary was celebrated on February 19 with an address by [[John Tyler]], former president of the United States, and a reading of [[St. George Tucker]]’s celebratory poem by the poet himself. St. George Tucker was the grandson of the man for whom [[Tucker Hall]] is named.
  
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The tradition of having [[Charter Day Speakers]] of note to address the audience carried over from the nineteenth century to the present. Once the new [[Phi Beta Kappa Hall]] was built in 1957, the Charter Day exercises were moved there from [[Ewell Hall]] (the first Phi Beta Kappa Hall). Since 1957, the majority of the Charter Day exercises were held in Phi Beta Kappa Memorial Hall. Exceptions include the 1968 Charter Day ceremony held in [[Blow Gymnasium]] for Sir Patrick Henry Dean – Her Britannic Majesty’s Ambassador to the U.S. The Right Reverand and Right Honorable Robert Wright Stopford, Bishop of London. The Charter Day ceremony in 1993 was held in [[William and Mary Hall]] with [[His Royal Highness Prince Charles]] as the speaker on the occasion of the College's 300th Anniversary.
  
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Effective with the 2011 Charter Day, the ceremony was moved from Saturday morning to Friday afternoon and moved from Phi Beta Kappa Hall to William and Mary Hall.
  
==Charter Day Celebration Format==
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==Charter Day Celebration Exercises==
The main characteristics of the Charter Day exercises has changed little over the years. The following is a listing of the main aspects of the excersises in order from beginning to end.
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The main characteristics of the Charter Day exercises has changed little over the years. The following is a listing of the main aspects of the present-day exersises in order from beginning to end.
*The [[William and Mary Choir]] sings the William and Mary hymn and the National Anthem.
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*The [[William and Mary Choir]] sings the [[William and Mary Hymn]] and the National Anthem.
  
*Introductory remarks by the [[College President]]  
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*Introductory remarks by the [[President]] of the College of William and Mary.
  
*The reading from the Royal Charter
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*Reading from the [[Royal Charter]] by the [[Provost]].
  
*Reading from the Royal Proclamation
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*Reading from the Royal Proclamation by the [[Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences]].
  
*Presentation of the Charter Day Awards, which include the [[James Monroe Prize in Civic Leadership]], [[Thomas Jefferson Award]], [[Thomas Jefferson Prize in Natural Philosophy]], [[Thomas Jefferson Teaching Award]], [[Alumni Medallion]], as well as [[honorary degrees]].
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*Presentation of the Charter Day awards, which include the [[James Monroe Prize in Civic Leadership]], [[Thomas Jefferson Award]], [[Thomas Jefferson Prize in Natural Philosophy]], [[Thomas Jefferson Teaching Award]], as well as [[honorary degrees]]. Winners of the [[Alumni Medallion]] (through 2010 awarded the Friday before the Saturday ceremony) are also recognized.
  
*Recognition of [[Alumni Medallion]] Recipients
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*Conferral of [[Honorary degrees]].
  
*Conferral of the [[Honorary Degrees]]
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*Charter Day Address by a guest speaker. The newly-elected governor of Virginia customarily speaks the first Charter Day after the election.
  
*Charter Day Address from a guest speaker
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*Closing remarks by the President.
  
*Closing remarks by the President
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*The choir sings the [[Alma mater]] and the William and Mary Hymn to close the program.
  
*The choir sings the [[Alma Mater]] and the William and Mary Hymn to close the program
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==Material in the Special Collections Research Center==
 
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*[http://swem.wm.edu/departments/special-collections/exhibits/exhibits/charter/charter/ Charter Day exhibit], Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary.
==Material in the SCRC==
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*"Charter" and "Charter Day" files, University Archives Subject File Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary.
*[http://swem.wm.edu/departments/special-collections/exhibits/exhibits/charter/charter/ Charter Day exhibit], Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, College of William and Mary.
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*Charter Day Collection,  Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary. Includes programs, published guides, invitations, and related material.
*"Charter" and "Charter Day" files, University Archives Subject File Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, College of William and Mary.
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*Various administrative office records.
 
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*University Archives Photograph Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary.
==Share Your Memories==
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*University Archives Audiovisual Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary.
Do you want to share your memories of recent or past Charter Days? You are welcome to [http://scrc.swem.wm.edu/wiki/index.php?title=Special:Userlogin&type=signup&returnto=Main_Page create an account] and add your memories to this section of the SCRC Wiki page or if you prefer, contact University Archivist Amy Schindler (acschi@wm.edu or 757-221-3094). In either case, please include your name and class year. We look forward to hearing from you.
 
 
 
==External Links==
 
*[http://www.wm.edu/blogs/studentblogs/brian/the-rechartering-of-charter-day.php Brian Focarino's blog post] on plans for Charter Day 2010. Accessed 22 October 2009.
 
  
 
==References==
 
==References==
 
 
*Godson, Susan H. et. al., ''The College of William and Mary: A History'', King and Queen Press, Society of the Alumni, College of William and Mary, 1993, pg. 72, 643.
 
*Godson, Susan H. et. al., ''The College of William and Mary: A History'', King and Queen Press, Society of the Alumni, College of William and Mary, 1993, pg. 72, 643.
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*''Charter Day'', University Archives Subject File Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary.
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*Charter Day Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary.
  
*''Charter Day'', University Archives Subject File Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, College of William and Mary.
 
  
==Need help?==
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==External Links==  
To search for further material, see [http://swem.wm.edu/scrc/Tools.cfm Finding Materials in the SCRC] for an introduction to the [http://scrc.swem.wm.edu/ SCRC Collections Database], card catalogs, Flat Hat-William & Mary News-Alumni Gazette index, etc.
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*[http://www.wm.edu/sites/charterday/ Charter Day Website] from the College of William and Mary. Accessed 17 January 2010.
 
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*[http://www.wm.edu/blogs/studentblogs/brian/the-rechartering-of-charter-day.php Brian Focarino's blog post] on plans for Charter Day 2010. Accessed 22 October 2009.
Questions? Contact the SCRC at spcoll@wm.edu or 221-3090, or visit the [http://swem.wm.edu/scrc/ Special Collections Research Center] in the Earl Gregg Swem Library at the College of William and Mary ([http://www.swem.wm.edu/scrc hours]).  
 
  
  
{| border="1" class="wikitable" style="margin: 1em auto 1em auto"
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{{Shareyourmemories}}
|-
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{{helpmsg}}
! style="background:#228844" |A Note About The Contents Of This Wiki
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{{infodisclaimer}}
|-
 
| |Unfortunately, many of the early original records of the College of William and Mary were destroyed by fire, military occupation, and the normal effects of time. The information available here is the best available from known documents and sources at the time it was written. Information in this wiki is not complete as new information continues to be uncovered in the SCRC's collections and elsewhere. Researchers are strongly encouraged to use the SCRC's [http://swem.wm.edu/scrc/Tools.cfm access tools] for their research as the information contained in this wiki is by no means comprehensive.
 
|}
 
  
[[Category:College Traditions]][[Category:College Events]][[Category:College Stub]][[Category:August 15, 1729]]
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[[Category:College Traditions]][[Category:College Events]]

Latest revision as of 17:15, 9 September 2019

The annual celebration of Charter Day at William & Mary was initiated by President John Stewart Bryan on February 8, 1937. The first Charter Day was known as Founder's Day and included an academic procession with the faculty and students in academic regalia, walking from Jefferson Hall dormitory to Phi Beta Kappa Memorial Hall (present day Ewell Hall. Drawing on the reference of granting the Royal Charter to a President and Six Masters, President Bryan was joined on stage at Phi Beta Kappa Memorial Hall by six professors. The choir sang "God Save the King," one professor read excerpts from the charter, and Wesley Frank Craven, visiting professor of history from New York University, gave the principal address about the historical background of the founding of William and Mary. President Bryan’s love of pomp and pageantry also led to the annual Yule Log Ceremony.

Historical Sketch

During the eighteenth century Transfer Day was the usual time of celebrating the birth of William and Mary by observing the anniversary of the Transfer of the Royal Charter from the founders of the College to the President and Masters of the College on August 15, 1729.

In 1859, the 166th anniversary of the College of William and Mary was celebrated on February 19 with an address by John Tyler, former president of the United States, and a reading of St. George Tucker’s celebratory poem by the poet himself. St. George Tucker was the grandson of the man for whom Tucker Hall is named.

The tradition of having Charter Day Speakers of note to address the audience carried over from the nineteenth century to the present. Once the new Phi Beta Kappa Hall was built in 1957, the Charter Day exercises were moved there from Ewell Hall (the first Phi Beta Kappa Hall). Since 1957, the majority of the Charter Day exercises were held in Phi Beta Kappa Memorial Hall. Exceptions include the 1968 Charter Day ceremony held in Blow Gymnasium for Sir Patrick Henry Dean – Her Britannic Majesty’s Ambassador to the U.S. The Right Reverand and Right Honorable Robert Wright Stopford, Bishop of London. The Charter Day ceremony in 1993 was held in William and Mary Hall with His Royal Highness Prince Charles as the speaker on the occasion of the College's 300th Anniversary.

Effective with the 2011 Charter Day, the ceremony was moved from Saturday morning to Friday afternoon and moved from Phi Beta Kappa Hall to William and Mary Hall.

Charter Day Celebration Exercises

The main characteristics of the Charter Day exercises has changed little over the years. The following is a listing of the main aspects of the present-day exersises in order from beginning to end.

  • Introductory remarks by the President of the College of William and Mary.
  • Charter Day Address by a guest speaker. The newly-elected governor of Virginia customarily speaks the first Charter Day after the election.
  • Closing remarks by the President.
  • The choir sings the Alma mater and the William and Mary Hymn to close the program.

Material in the Special Collections Research Center

  • Charter Day exhibit, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary.
  • "Charter" and "Charter Day" files, University Archives Subject File Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary.
  • Charter Day Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary. Includes programs, published guides, invitations, and related material.
  • Various administrative office records.
  • University Archives Photograph Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary.
  • University Archives Audiovisual Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary.

References

  • Godson, Susan H. et. al., The College of William and Mary: A History, King and Queen Press, Society of the Alumni, College of William and Mary, 1993, pg. 72, 643.
  • Charter Day, University Archives Subject File Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary.
  • Charter Day Collection, Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library, William & Mary.


External Links


Share What You Know

The SCRC welcomes various forms of support from friends and supporters. Here at the SCRC Wiki we welcome visitors to share what you may know about our collections as well as the traditions, history, and people of William & Mary based on your research or personal experience.

If you would like to share your memories or what you have discovered while using the SCRC's collections, please contact us at spcoll@wm.edu or 757-221-3090. We look forward to hearing from you.

Need help?

To search for further material, visit the Special Collections Research Center's Search Tool List for an overview of the Special Collections Database, W&M Digital Archive, Flat Hat-William & Mary News-Alumni Gazette index, card catalogs, and other tools available to help you find material of interest in William & Mary Libraries Special Collections Research Center.

Questions? Contact the Special Collections Research Center at spcoll@wm.edu or 757-221-3090, or visit the Special Collections Research Center in the Earl Gregg Swem Library at William & Mary.

A Note About The Contents Of This Wiki
The information available in this wiki is the best available from known documents and sources at the time it was written. Unfortunately, many of the early original records of William & Mary were destroyed by fires, military occupation, and the normal effects of time. Information in this wiki is not complete as new information continues to be uncovered in Swem Library's Special Collections Research Center and elsewhere. Researchers are strongly encouraged to use the Special Collections search tools for their research as the information contained in this wiki is by no means comprehensive.