Springfield College Seventy-Eighth Commencement Program (June 14, 1964)
View Full Text
The Springfield College Seventy-eighth Commencement program for commencement held on June 14, 1964, has the College's triangle emblem on the front as well as their seal pressed into the bottom right. The document lists the commencement exercises, the students' names, what degrees they are receiving, and what hometown they hail form. The last page lists the honorary degree candidates. In 1964, Springfield College shared a moment in history often overlooked by historians with honorary degree recipient and commencement speaker Martin Luther King Jr. Despite significant pressure from prominent shareholders and benefactors of the College to not invite Martin Luther King to speak at Commencement, college President Glenn A. Olds, a minister and conscientious objector during World War II, refused to waver. When King was arrested the day before, Olds contacted law enforcement officials, telling them that if they continued to hold King, school officials would fly down to tape the commencement address, leaving St. Augustine to deal with the attendant publicity. Whether or not his intervention played a role, King was released on a nine hundred dollar bond Saturday afternoon. Met at the airport by Springfield College Economics Professor Robert Randolph, later the first black president of the Massachusetts State College System at Westfield State, King toured the campus, gave a press conference, and shared a brief luncheon with faculty and administration. On the day of commencement, Black Muslim protestors who felt King was too conciliatory and bomb-sniffing dogs greeted the graduating class. Minor ink smudge on left side of first page.
|Springfield College Archives and Special Collections|
Springfield College--Alumni and alumnae
King, Martin Luther, Jr., 1929-1968
Text and images are owned, held, or licensed by Springfield College and are available for personal, non-commercial, and educational use, provided that ownership is properly cited. A credit line is required and should read: Courtesy of Springfield College, Babson Library, Archives and Special Collections. Any commercial use without written permission from Springfield College is strictly prohibited. Other individuals or entities other than, and in addition to, Springfield College may also own copyrights and other propriety rights. The publishing, exhibiting, or broadcasting party assumes all responsibility for clearing reproduction rights and for any infringement of United States copyright law. Contact host institution for more information.