case western reserve university



180 Events from 180 Years: 1830s


Western Reserve College held commencement exercises for its first graduating class of four students. Pictured here is the page from the faculty minutes discussing commencement.


Charles B. Storrs was inaugurated as Western Reserve College's first president.


John Sykes Fayette was the first documented African-American student enrolled at Western Reserve College.


College exercises were suspended for 2 weeks in December in order that all students could attend a religious revival. The students were required to attend 3 sermons each day. Pictured here is a page from the faculty minutes approving the action.


George E. Pierce was inaugurated as Western Reserve College's second president.


The course of study at Western Reserve College was organized into 5 areas: Classical; Mathematical & Physical; English & Rhetorical; Intellectual, Moral, and Political; Biblical and Religious. All students took the same course of study and there were no electives.


The oldest endowed professorship at the University, the Oviatt Professorship of Sacred Rhetoric (now the Oviatt Professorship of English) was endowed by Heman Oviatt, pictured here.


The Western Reserve College Alumni Association was established, "whose object shall be to cultivate acquaintance & friendship, to form & perpetuate a record of the residence & employment of each, & to promote the interests of the College." Pictured here is a page from the minutes.


Duties of the Western Reserve College faculty were enumerated in the Laws, " …It shall be the duty of the Faculty faithfully to instruct the students in the several branches of learning taught in this College, to encourage them in the practice of virtue and piety, to reprove and warn the offending, and promptly and impartially to administer the laws established by the Trustees."


The first Western Reserve College alumni directory (in Latin) was published in the 1839/40 Catalogue.

Information was compiled by staff of the Case Western Reserve Archives, February 2006.