College Green of Ohio University

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College Green

The College Green of Ohio University is the university's central quadrangle lawn which saw the first academic buildings in the Northwest Territory.[1] The green roughly sits aligned to the cardinal directions, with Manasseh Cutler Hall facing true north. The green, at the heart of the Athens campus, is surrounded by administrative, academic, and library buildings.[2] For most of the nineteenth and twentieth century, it saw small memorials and wartime monuments dedicated in remembrance of the people involved in those centuries' great conflicts.[3]

President Lyndon Johnson's first ever public reference to the Great Society took place during a speech to students on May 7, 1964, on the College Green:

And with your courage and with your compassion and your desire, we will build a Great Society. It is a Society where no child will go unfed, and no youngster will go unschooled.

He later formally presented his specific goals for the Great Society in another speech at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor on May 22, 1964.

Through the contemporary period, the green has hosted numerous visits from prominent Americans such as Sherrod Brown, Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama.[nb 1][6][7][8][9][10] The College Green has been frequently referenced in Athens literature and music. Its gateway is used by the entering freshman class upon their official university convocation, and is also the site of the international promenade during the university's International Week. Buildings on the historic green are named for figures that played pivotal roles in Ohio University history: Manasseh Cutler, Robert Wilson, William McGuffey, and Vernon Alden to name a few. The College Green has been the site of musical performances, protests, progressive movements, and patriotic displays.[11][12][13][14] It is featured as the symbol of Ohio University on the official university logo, designed with the three central halls as the background. Most of the university student body passes through the green at some point in their time as a student because of the presence of the university registrar and bursar there. For almost all of its life, the College Green has welcomed tourists and visitors who want to see its prominent stature in Ohio and American history.

Further reading[edit]

  • John C. Baker: An Oral History. Athens: Ohio University Libraries, 1995.
  • The Decade of the University: Ohio University and the Alden Years. Meno Lovenstein. Athens, Ohio: Lawhead Press, 1971. A philosophic account of the university in the 1960s


  1. ^ Under the direction of Richard Suk, the Marching 110 Band opened for Hillary Clinton's speech at Baker Center in October 1996.[4] Clinton spoke on the steps of the old Baker Center, which was located on College Green during her visit.[5]


  1. ^ "A Pioneer College and Its Background (The Ohio University) by Charles Super". Newcomb & Gauss, Salem, Mass. 1924. 
  2. ^ "Wilson Hall, College Green, Ohio University". Ohio University. 2013. Retrieved February 2, 2013. 
  3. ^ "College Green landmark was a magnet for lovers". The Athens News. December 13, 2010. Retrieved February 2, 2013. 
  4. ^ "OHIO Athletic Traditions; Marching 110". Ohio University Athletics. 2013. Retrieved February 27, 2013. 
  5. ^ "Ohio University 1804–2004: Spirit of a Singular Place. Betty Hollow, 2004". Ohio University Press. 2004. 
  6. ^ "Famous Visitors to OU & Athens". Ohio DigiArchive. 2013. Retrieved February 27, 2013. 
  7. ^ "Obama to visit Ohio University". Fox News 8 Cleveland. October 13, 2012. Retrieved February 27, 2013. 
  8. ^ "Official transcript of President Barack Obama's speech in Athens". The Post. October 18, 2012. Retrieved February 27, 2013. 
  9. ^ "Obama rocks 14k on OU's College Green". The Athens News. October 17, 2012. Retrieved February 27, 2013. 
  10. ^ "President Obama Visits Ohio University; As Many as 14,000 Attend". WSAZ News Channel. October 18, 2012. Retrieved February 27, 2013. 
  11. ^ "History and Traditions of Ohio University". Ohio University. 2013. Retrieved February 2, 2013. 
  12. ^ ""Under the Elms" Summer Concert Series begins June 22". Compass Magazine. June 15, 2011. Retrieved February 27, 2013. 
  13. ^ "VIDEO: Defend Education, Ohio! protest on March 4, 2011". The Post. March 4, 2011. Retrieved February 27, 2013. 
  14. ^ "College Republicans continue 'Never Forget' 9/11 memorial project". The Post. September 11, 2012. Retrieved February 27, 2013. 

External links[edit]