Bicentennial of the University of Michigan

 


200 Years of The Leaders and Best:

University of Michigan Bicentennial


 

 

CLICK ON ANY PHOTO TO ENLARGE.

The year was 1817. The United States itself had not existed for very long, and Michigan was not yet a state but still a frontier territory.   Detroit was a long way from being the world class city it would become.

Flint, Dearborn, and Ann Arbor would not be established until somewhat later. Yet, even then, people in Michigan Territory had big ideas about public education.

Governor Lewis Cass, Michigan

On August 26 of 1817, territorial governor Lewis Cass and local judges drew up the initial charter for what was originally called The Catholepistemiad, or University of Michigania. “Catholepistemiad” being a word coined by Judge Augustus Woodward, after whom the main north-south road in Metro Detroit is named.

He intended the word to mean “a school of universal science.” The original proposed name was soon simplified to The University of Michigan.

In the early years in Detroit, the U of M was not really what we would now think of as a college or university.   It was something more like an advanced high school or preparatory school.

Fast forward 20 years to 1837.   By then, Michigan had become a state and the population was growing.   Therefore, there was more of a need for public education at all levels.

Among the many towns and cities being established in the state at that time was Ann Arbor, in the county just west of Wayne County where Detroit is.

A forty acre, square shaped plot of land in Ann Arbor was acquired and the first few buildings of what would eventually become a world class university were built.   The Reverend Henry Colclazer was appointed in 1837 as the first University of Michigan Librarian.

In 1841, the first college level students began their studies at the Ann Arbor campus. Four years later, twelve men formed the first graduating class of the University of Michigan.

The School of Literature, Sciences and Arts (LSA) was the first specific U of M college or school to be established.   As the rest of the 1800s progressed, other schools and colleges were added, such as Engineering, Medicine, Law, and of course Library Science.

Samuel Codes Watson

As has unfortunately been the case in American society generally, the University was slow to integrate on the basis of race and gender. Samuel Codes Watson was the first known African-American student at the University in 1853.

First Woman to Graduate From Medical School First woman to graduate from University of Michigan Medical School — Madelon Louisa Stockwell

 

 

 

In 1870, Madelon Stockwell became the first woman student at Michigan.

Image: Available online in Bentley Image Bank and in Ann Arbor, Michigan photograph collection, Bentley Historical Library, Ann Arbor in the 1870s.

 

 

 

 

By the 1860s, many of the extracurricular activities that are now such a big part of University life had been or were being established. Greek letter societies had existed almost from the beginning of the Ann Arbor campus.

The first of today’s intercollegiate sports teams, the Wolverines baseball team, began play in 1866.

The following year, the familiar University colors of maize and blue were first used.

Michigan Wolverines football team, 1883
Michigan Wolverines Football Team, 1894.

In 1879, the Michigan football team played and won its first game.

 

 

At that point, the American version of the game had not yet fully evolved and what was played then was more like today’s game of rugby.

Michigan Wolverines Football Team, 1897.

As history moved forward from the 1800s into the 1900s, the Ann Arbor campus continued to grow and expand far beyond the original 40 acre “Diag” area, taking over larger and larger parts of Ann Arbor.

Michigan Wolverines Football Team, 1902.

Eventually there would be four distinct “campuses” in Ann Arbor, first  being the original campus, another being the Medical Center.

The North Campus first began to be built in the 1950s and has grown over the years.

University of Michigan Stadium, May 2011 Photo by Corey Seeman
Sign at University of Michigan Stadium. Photo by Corey Seeman, 2009.

Finally, there is the South,  or Athletic campus, where the University sports venues including Michigan Stadium (The Big House) are located.

 

 Photo by Corey Seeman, Director, UM Business Library
University of Michigan Football Stadium. — Photo by Corey Seeman, 2011.

University of Michigan Alumni Field, Ann Arbor, Michigan
University of Michigan Women’s Softball Coach Carol Huchins.

Another favorite sports venue on the Ann Arbor campus is Alumni Field, where Coach Carol Hutchins leads the top ranked Wolverine women’s softball team.

 

Wondering  about our campus here in Flint?

 

As Michigan’s population grew along with the demand for higher education, it was proposed that the University open additional campuses outside of Ann Arbor.

Charles Stewart Mott

Flint businessman, Charles Stewart Mott, offered a large sum of his fortune to the University for the purpose of starting a campus here.

Others joined him in the effort, and in the fall of 1956 the first students arrived to attend classes at what was originally called The University of Michigan-Flint College.

Later, the word “College” was dropped from the name; we were officially the University of Michigan-Flint

 

The Dearborn campus opened in 1959.

The University still maintains a presence in the city where it originated 200 years ago, in the form of the Detroit Center, located on the street named after one of the University’s founders, Woodward Avenue.

From a dream in the minds of ambitious frontier residents, the University of Michigan has grown over two centuries into one of the leading institutions of higher education in the United States and the world.

The bicentennial motto is a very fitting description of this great University, and it echoes the refrain of the school’s famous fight song:  The University of Michigan…Always Leading, Forever Valiant.

GO BLUE!!

By:   Vanessa Prygoski

Annie Szuch Retires after 40 Years of Library Service


Annie Closes a Door on a Library Era

While she Opens a Door into her Future!


Annie Szuch
Beth Annie Szuch, retirement celebration, January 6, 2017.

For those of whose lives have formed part of the history of the Thompson Library, an era of monumental changes has ended.

Beth Annie Szuch, the last of our librarians who have been here since the 70s, has retired.

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Beth Annie Szuch. Librarian, Thompson Library, University of Michigan-Flint.

In a brief ceremony held in the Library on Friday (January 6, 2017), Laura Friesen and Becky Waller recited some of Annie’s accomplishments during her years working in the library.

The talking was followed by the eating, with a fantastic buffet enjoyed by librarians, library staff and several invited guests with close ties to Annie and her work within the Library and the Biology Department.  During the entire event, there was a lot of reminiscing, with plenty of old stories told (some familiar, some new to several), memories shared, happy moments relived, a few tears, and lots of laughter.

Annie was accompanied to the gathering by her husband, Ernie Szuch (professor of Biology, retired).

As the Guest of Honor, Annie had the opportunity to visit with old friends and colleagues, even those no longer working at UM-Flint — such as her former supervisor and friend, Dave Hart (retired), Gary Pace from Biology (retired) along with his wife, Colleen, and Karen Arthur from Human Resources, just to name a few of those that attended.

Annie’s association with the University of Michigan-Flint goes way back.   A native of the area, her father graduated from UM-Flint with a teaching degree.  Years later, Annie followed in her father’s footsteps and graduated from UM-Flint, but with a degree in biology.

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Retirement celebration for Annie Szuch, January 6, 2017.

It was during her undergrad years that Annie met fellow student and biology major, Ernie Szuch. The rest is history.

After they married, Ernie went on to get his graduate degree in biology, eventually returning to teach on our campus, becoming a respected fixture of UM-Flint until his own recent retirement.

Annie chose a different path.   She continued her education by obtaining her master’s degree in Library Science from UM-Ann Arbor.

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UM-Flint Libraray in the Mott Memorial Building (1970s).

Annie began working at Thompson Library in 1977, where she was assigned to work with Ingrid in Technical Services.

Working in serials section of Tech Services, Annie processed the incoming journal issues and sent older volumes to the bindery, maintained journals on-shelf and updated the card catalog.

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University of Michigan-Flint Library, 5th floor, CROB, mid 1980s.

Over the years, Annie has progressed through the ranks, moving on to handling new book orders, donated books, and maintaining the index of materials owned by the Library through updating the (at that time) new online database, MIRLYN as our cataloger.

Plus, of course, Annie also worked front-and-center as a Reference Librarian, Biology Department Library Liaison, and teaching librarian.

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Construction of the Thompson Library, which opened October 1994.
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Thompson Library, 3rd floor carrels overlooking the Atrium.
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Thompson Library, north side.

Through all those decades of service,  Annie has seen a lot of changes.

From starting out in the UM-Flint library that shared space with Mott College at the Mott Memorial Building, to the vast, open area where the library remained for a couple decades on the 5th floor of the Classroom Office Building (fondly know to one and all as CROB, now dubbed French Hall in honor of our former Chancellor), to the brand new facility made specifically and exclusively to house the Thompson Library, Annie has seen it all.

No other librarian in current service can make that claim.

And thus ends an era.

Though Annie is leaving us, her life will continue to remain full and active.

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Smudge Szuch in the rafters at home during the holidays.

She will continue to share her magnificent log cabin home with her husband, Ernie, as well as several family members that happen to have 4 legs, a tail and fur — and purr!

 

We’ll miss hearing of the exploits of Annie’s cats, both living and living in memory, such as Two-Spot, Smudge, Petunia and Gracie.

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Annie at her favorite hobby.

Her cats will be by her side when she enjoys some of her favorite hobbies, such as spinning wool into yarn, then using the yarn she created to knit beautiful and warm items of clothing.

 

Annie has developed a great deal of expertise in this particular hobby, and has taught both spinning and knitting to others.

Annies Cane
Annie’s cane, uniquely personalized!

Annie2Knowing Annie’s fondness for her knitting projects and anything related to yarn,  her colleagues at the Thompson Library gave Annie a gift certificate to her favorite yarn shop, Heritage Spinning and Weaving of  Lake Orion, where Annie has been known to teach a class or two as well.

Annie tells us she will be using her gift certificate to purchase a new 8-shaft loom to replace her old 4-shaft loom.  The old loom will likely become available if anyone is interested in learning how to use one.  (And of course,  Annie can even teach you HOW to use a loom.  She also teaches knitting, both beginner and advanced, as well.)

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Retirement Celebration for Annie Szuch, Thomposon Library, 2017.

Not to be outdone,  Gary Pace (retired UM-Flint associate professor of biology) and his wife, Colleen gifted Annie with a framed photograph of herself and Ernie — underwater, snorkeling in the clear, blue ocean.

It’s an incredible keepsake of just one of the many adventures that Annie and Ernie have shared over the years, including incredible memories of summers spent on expeditions from the Caribbean  to the Smokey Mountains to the great forests of the north.  Now they have a photo that captures an amazing moment of their many  adventures together.

We all enjoyed the party, but it had a bitter-sweet overtone for everyone there, knowing that we were celebrating a life well lived, but that the course of that life would no longer include Annie’s bright and smiling face joining us daily — or boxes of donuts from the Davison bakery.

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Annie Szuch retirement celebration, Thompson Library, 1-6-17.

 

Annie, we are going to miss you.

But we join together in wishing you all happiness and all possible joy in your retirement.

 

FramedFlowers

May the new life you now begin be as  wonderful  —  and as memorable     —    as the one you have left as your legacy.