New Digital Material: Historic Campus Maps Added to AlbUM

In recent weeks, nearly 100 maps of campus from throughout our 160-year history have been added to the University Archives’ online image repository, University AlbUM.

Have you ever wanted to see how our lovely old campus has changed since 1856? Now you can! Even if you just want to see what might’ve changed during your own years as a student, or since your parents’ day, or whatever – it’s all here!

Let’s take a look at the two oldest maps. Trust us, it’ll blow your mind.


For some perspective, the “Maryland Agricultural Experiment Station” is the Rossborough Inn. It stands on the map exactly where it exists today. Campus was centered south of that location, right about where Morrill Hall and LeFrak stand today. Did you notice there were only 10 buildings on campus?


This map, dated circa 1916, features the same center area of campus. It explains which buildings burned in the Great Fire of 1912, and outlines the new building locations. That circle with all the lines coming from it? That’s the point of failure – yes, THAT point of failure between Shoemaker and LeFrak – and marks where the fire started. The mechanical engineering building and annex are now called Taliaferro Hall.


In the late 1930s-early 1940s, campus started to take its more familiar shape. This map, dated 1941, is the first time we see the full extent and beauty of what would come to be known as McKeldin Mall. Originally the mall extended from Main Administration all the way up to Anne Arundel Hall. The Armory still isn’t in the right place yet, but we’re getting closer!

Check out the slideshow of other fun campus maps below. If you’re interested in seeing them all, head over to University AlbUM! Feel free to look around, and see what else we have while you’re there. (We’ve got some awesome old football film online too!)

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UMD123: 35

Thirty-five represents the number of years that Steny Hoyer, ’63, has served Maryland in the House of Representatives

In today’s UMD123 post, we are highlighting the service of the Maryland alumnus who has risen the highest in the U.S. Congress, Representative Steny Hoyer of Maryland’s 5th District. Hoyer was first elected to Congress in a special election in 1981 to fill Gladys Noon Spellman’s seat after she was incapacitated following a stroke and has served continuously ever since. Representative Hoyer has been the second highest member of the House Democratic Caucus since 2007, when he became House Majority Leader under Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. After the Republicans retook the House in 2011, his title changed to House Minority Whip.

Hoyer as Whip of the Free State Party. From the 1963 Terrapin

Steny Hoyer’s years at the University of Maryland were very much a harbinger of his bright future. A Political Science major, he was a member of the Sigma Chi, Pi Sigma Alpha, and Omicron Delta Kappa fraternities. He worked on the Diamondback newspaper and was an important member of the Student Government Association, serving as vice president and as a member of the legislative council and finance and judiciary committees, as well as whip of the ruling Free State Party. Hoyer was also a member of the Young Democrats and served on the Central Student Court. His deep involvement in university life also undoubtedly helped earn him a spot on the exclusive “Who’s Who” list of students his senior year. All Hoyer’s activities chronicled in the 1963 Terrapin yearbook proved prescient, as only three years after graduating, Hoyer was elected to the Maryland State Senate, where he would eventually rise to president, before beginning his long stay in Congress.

Steny Hoyer may be the longest-serving Maryland alumnus in the House of Representatives, but he is hardly the only Terrapin to join that body. Here is a list of Maryland’s Congressional alumni: Continue reading “UMD123: 35”

Delays on the Green Line: Grand Opening of the College Park Metro Station



“The band [the UMD marching band] was here before playing the theme to ‘Jurassic Park,’ and I thought it was appropriate because it often felt like it took 165 million years to build.” – Michael Smith, city councilman who served on the Metro Watch committee, in the Diamondback on the occasion of the grand opening of the College Park Metro Station on December 13, 1993

Do you ride the Metro? Are you all too familiar with the terms track worksingle-tracking, or delays on the Green Line?   Are you dreading Metro’s  year-long, system-wide maintenance, which began this month?

As residents of the District, Maryland, and Virginia (DMV) lament delays while SafeTrack is underway, here’s a bit of the history of the College Park Metro station, our university’s connection to the Green Line of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA). The Metro was founded in 1967, and Metro broke ground on the Green Line in 1969 along 12th and G Street, NW. The College Park Station opened to the public decades later on Saturday, December 11, 1993 — 14 years after the projected opening date of 1979!

Shuttle-UM stop 1971
Students waiting at a Shuttle-UM stop, April 19, 1971 (from The Diamondback)

On April 19, 1971, The Diamondback reported that navigating from the WMATA office in downtown Washington, DC, to Prince George’s Plaza required four buses, took at least 90 minutes, and cost 95 cents. To get to the University Student Union (now the Stamp Student Union), members of the campus community spent another 32 cents on an additional 15-minute bus ride. The Diamondback welcomed the fact that by 1979, students could expect a 19-minute Metro ride into downtown.

Continue reading “Delays on the Green Line: Grand Opening of the College Park Metro Station”


UMD123: 33

Thirty-three represents the number of previous presidents of the University of Maryland

Since its founding in 1856, the present-day University of Maryland, College Park, has operated under three different monikers and numerous forms of administration, but one thing has remained constant: a single person has been tasked with running the show. Dr. Wallace Loh heads just the 34th administration to guide the university, and our UMD123 number today recognizes the 33 men to hold the job (however temporarily) before him.

Presidents of the Maryland Agricultural College

Charles Benedict Calvert

The university was first chartered in 1856 as the Maryland Agricultural College on land that was part of the Riversdale estate of Charles Benedict Calvert. Classes began in 1859 with 34 students, including four of Calvert’s sons.

  1. Benjamin Hallowell, 1859 – President for one month. A Quaker who only took the job on the condition that slave labor not be used on the college farm.
  2. Charles Benedict Calvert, acting, 1859-60 – Our founder took the reins himself temporarily until a suitable replacement could be found.
  3. John Work Scott, 1860 – Elected president, but may never have even stepped foot on campus!
  4. John M. Colby, 1860-61 – Saw enrollment rise but then fall sharply with the approach of the Civil War.
  5. Henry Onderdonk, 1861-1864 – Forced to resign amidst accusations that he willingly harbored and feted Confederate soldiers under the command of General Bradley Johnson on their way to the assault of Fort Stevens in the capital.
  6. Nicholas B. Worthington, acting, 1864-1867 – A journalist and professor, he sold almost half of the original campus to meet outstanding debts. As a result of the college’s bankruptcy and the Maryland General Assembly’s decision to designate it a Morrill Land Grant institution, the State of Maryland takes a partial ownership stake in the college for the first time.
George Washington Custis Lee
  1. George Washington Custis Lee, 1866 – The son of Confederate general Robert E. Lee and descendant of Martha Washington, he was offered the position of president but eventually declined due to his loyalty to the Virginia Military Institute and opposition from the Maryland legislature
  2. Charles L. C. Minor, 1867-1868 – Another former Confederate officer, Minor had only 16 pupils when classes opened in 1867.
  3. Franklin Buchanan, 1868-1869 – Yet another former rebel, Buchanan was the first Superintendent of the Naval Academy in Annapolis before serving as the highest-ranking admiral in the Confederate Navy.
  4. Samuel Regester, 1869-1873 – A Methodist minister, Regester eliminated the Bachelor of Science degree and implemented rigid religious discipline.
  5. Samuel Jones, 1873-1875 – After a brief respite, the college once again elected a Confederate officer as president. Former Major General Samuel Jones greatly expanded the curriculum and shifted the focus away from agriculture and towards military training.
Cadets_Class of 1890
Cadets, Class of 1890
  1. William H. Parker, 1875-1882 – Parker saw service in the Civil War as a captain in the: _________ (you guessed it), Confederate Navy! He continued Jones’ unpopular focus on militarism until the state legislature pressured him to resign by threatening to withhold funding.
  2. Augustine J. Smith, 1883-1887 – A commercial agent for a manufacturing firm, Smith sought to build connections between the college and farmers throughout the state.
  3. James L. Bryan, 1887 – Head of schools in Dorchester county, Bryan declined the job after visiting campus.
  4. Allen Dodge, acting, 1887-1888 – A school trustee, Dodge filled in after Bryan turned down the presidency.
  5. Henry E. Alvord, 1888-1892 – In a shocking break with MAC presidential tradition, Alvord was a former major in the Union army. He shifted in the opposite direction of some previous administrations, choosing to focus the school’s efforts almost exclusively on agriculture
Richard W. Silvester
  1. Richard W. Silvester, 1892-1912 – The school’s first long-term president, Silvester served for two decades until a devastating fire the night of November 29, 1912, burned down two major buildings campus. Already in poor health and now faced with the enormous challenges of re-opening the college, Silvester resigned shortly after the conflagration.

Barracks burning, November 29, 1912

  1. Thomas H. Spence, acting, 1912-1913 – A professor of languages, Spence oversaw the construction of temporary buildings and dormitories as the college struggled to resume operations.
  2. Harry J. Patterson, 1913-1917 – The once-and-future director of the Agricultural Experiment Station (housed at the Rossborough Inn), which was unaffected by the fire), Patterson presided over the transfer of the college to full state control in 1916. H.J. Patterson Hall was later named in his honor.

Continue reading “UMD123: 33”

The Greatest visits with the Terps

As the nation mourns the passing of Muhammad Ali, the UMD Archives remembers his encounter with the Terps 40 years ago.

Ali with Harrington Magid Schrader
Muhammad Ali with Terps’ (l to r) Pat Hand, Brian Magid, Asst. Coach Joe Harrington, and Eric Schrader

The historical records we have from Terps’ men’s basketball include a series of shots of The Greatest from the 1975-1976 season-ending banquet on April 26, 1976. Ali was in town preparing for his April 30 fight vs. Jimmy Young at the Capital Centre in Landover, and his training camp set-up in the banquet room at the Sheraton Lanham re-routed the Terps’ celebration to a side room at the hotel. To make amends, Ali agreed to appear at the event, and from the photos we have in our collections, really enjoyed himself.

Head coach Lefty Driesell presented the champ with a Terrapin clock with his name on it during the evening. According to the account of the banquet in the April 27 Washington Post, Ali teased the crowd by responding “You mean this is all you’re giving me?” and offered up one of his famous poems:

“I like your team, I admire your style, But your gift is so cheap, I won’t see you for awhile.”

Certainly a memorable night for all those in attendance.

Farewell to a great champion in sport and in life.





UMD123: 92

You scream, I scream, we all scream for ice cream. For the last 92 years, University of Maryland has been screaming.

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photo 4

Maryland Dairy began production in Turner Hall on Route 1 aroundDairy 1930s 1924. Almost 20 years later production would soar under the help from esteemed ice cream connoisseur, Wendell Arbuckle, a professor at Maryland for 23 years, better known as “Mr. Ice Cream”. He developed many exotic flavors such as bubble gum, cantaloupe, sweet potato and cinnamon zig-zag throughout his time at the university.

Twelve years ago, manufacturing of the ice cream transferred departments from the photo 1Animal Science Department to Dining Services but the great taste remains the same. When visiting the ice cream shop, be prepared to make a hard decision. Flavors are always changing with current concoctions including Brenda’s Peanut Butter Frese, Fear the Turtle, Midnight Madness, and 1856, in addition to long-standing favorites like vanilla, cookies and cream, and mint chocolate chip. Special limited edition flavors also appear on the menu, including ‘Speare the Turtle, created to commemorate William Shakespeare.

logoStudents and visitors should stop by the ice cream shop in The Stamp Student Union for a cone, cup, sundae or milkshake of the delicious, creamy treat! If you can’t get enough, there are half-gallons available to take home!

For more information take a look at the letter “I” in the “ABC’s of UMD” blog post series from last semester!



This is a post in our new series on Terrapin Tales called UMD123! Similar to our “ABC’s of UMD” series last semester, posts in this series will take a look at the university’s history “by the numbers.” New posts will come out twice a month throughout the semester; on the Terrapin Tales blog search “UMD123” or use the UMD123 tag. You can also check out Twitter #UMD123. If you want to learn more about campus history, you can also visit our encyclopedia University of Maryland A to Z: MAC to Millennium for more UMD facts.

Terps’ World Record Attempts

Who doesn’t relish a good pillow fight? Back in 2009, University of Maryland students sought to break the Guinness World Record for Largest Pillow Fight! On April 17, 2009, the Senior Council organized 1,834 students on McKeldin Mall to beat the British Broadcasting Corporation’s 2008 record.

Gazette_Pillow Fight
Pillow Fight on McKeldin Mall, April 17, 2009. Brenda Ahearn/The Gazette


Although the Senior Council’s effort failed to break the record of 3,706 people, the event successfully raised $6,000 for Dream Village Inc., a nonprofit children’s book publisher.[1] Two days later, columnist Rob Gindes lamented in The Diamondback that fewer people participated in the pillow fight than in the SGA elections.[2] You can read more about the pillow fight on the University Archives MAC to Millennium site under “P.”

We should try to set a goofy world record every Friday. Who cares if we don’t succeed? – Rob Gindes, The Diamondback

It turns out that the University of Maryland has a track record for failed Guinness World Record attempts. In 1981, students assembled on McKeldin Mall for a very different purpose than the protests only ten years earlier (see the UMD123: 3 post).  On April 29, 1981, students gathered on the Mall to break the Guinness World Record for Unsupported Lap Sitting. According to The Diamondback, the student body had already failed to eclipse the record the previous year, and the Guinness Book of World Records did not even list lap sitting as a category! Nevertheless, the University Commuters Association amassed 2,768 students and garnered local media attention from WRC-TV and WTTG in Washington and WBAL in Baltimore for their “sit-in.” While the lap-sitting event broke no records, students reportedly enjoyed an afternoon of camaraderie on that beautiful Friday in April.

Sittin' Pretty

Have you ever participated in a Guinness World Record attempt on campus?  Did we miss one? Let us know in the comments!

The Diamondback’s reporting, including humorous perspectives on failed efforts to break world records, provides an invaluable perspective on the history of the university. As the University of Maryland’s primary student newspaper, The Diamondback records the voice of the student body. Thanks to generous donations and a successful Launch UMD campaign, the University Archives is digitizing the entire run of the newspaper. The Diamondback will be online and searchable in 2016 and in the meantime, it is currently available on microfilm.

This post is the ninth in a series by graduate student assistant Jen Wachtel, who is collecting data for the Diamondback Digitization Project. Check out the Twitter hashtag #digiDBK or the DigiDBK tag on the Terrapin Tales blog for previous posts, and look for her posts every other Monday and monthly during the summer session.   

[1] http://www.gazette.net/stories/04232009/largnew172537_32529.shtml

[2] http://www.dbknews.com/archives/article_07954fbc-1d70-5392-931c-9f4dafde66e9.html

Ruth Finzel’s May Day Folly

Ruth Finzel-cropThe University of Maryland Archives recently received the 1930 handwritten diary of Ruth M. Finzel (Class of 1931), of Mt. Savage, MD. In it, she shares her experiences as a co-ed in the College of Education, living in the newly constructed Alpha Omega Pi house on College Avenue and as an active participant in the Y.W.C.A. and women’s non-varsity sports, such as tennis, basketball, bowling at College Park lanes, and soccer. The University Archives staff has transcribed the diary and will be sharing excerpts from Ruth’s chronicles in future blog posts.

We begin with May Day, a popular spring tradition that played an important role on campus during Ruth’s era.  May Day festivities (1923-1961) were first established by Dean of Women Adele Stamp.  They included an elaborate pageant with costumes, a theme such as “Nursery Rhymes, “Neptune, Ruler of the Sea,” “Rip Van Winkle,” and “Famous Lovers,” dancing around the Maypole, and the crowning of a queen and her court. The junior women worked many months creating the handmade invitations and costumes to honor the seniors.

Ruth and her AOPi sorority sisters attended numerous rehearsals on the lawn starting in April to prepare for the occasion.  Their heightened interest was inspired by the fact that her sorority sister, Evalyn Ridout (Arts & Sciences, Annapolis, MD), was to be crowned May Day Queen. All the junior women spent many hours creating the handmade invitations and festive costumes that captured the Zingaree, the Gypsy theme for the year.

1930 May Day invitation and program


The morning of May Day began with rain but fortunately cleared in time for the ceremony. Pictured here, Queen Evalyn Ridout  is accompanied by her four attendants:

univarch-055040-0001Left to Right:=
Alice (Curry) Nourse, Educ., Davidsonville, MD, Kappa Kappa Gamma
Isabel Dynes, Home Economics, Chevy Chase, MD, Alpha Ypsilon Chi
Isabel (Izzy) Bewick, Education, Cumberland, MD, Kappa Delta
Roberta Harrison, Education, Washington, DC, Chi Omega

 Ruth writes:

“Rained off & on but finally cleared up so we had May Day.  It was a gypsy theme and fairly good.  Evalyn Ridout was May Queen with Izzy Bewick, Isabel Dynes, Curry Nourse, & Roberta Harrison as maids.

Went to the Chorus recital with Marguerite & Helen & nearly had hysterics over a woman who sang.”

We post this today, on the 86th anniversary of this special day in Ruth’s life, and encourage you to check back for future snapshots of this era in UMD history! Enjoy these additional photos of Zingaree and the gypsies.

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Need some help for finals?

Thought you might appreciate this little prayer left among many offerings for Testudo at finals time in the late 1990s. We found this again recently while looking for the answer to another reference questions related to our beloved mascot.Enjoy, and good luck on exams!

A Prayer to Testudo

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of exams

I shall fear no question, for thou art with me

Thy shell and thy nose, they comfort me

Thou preparest a pen for me in the face of mine professors

Thou anointest my head with knowledge, my cup runneth over

Surely good grades and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life

And I will dwell in the house of the Terrapin forever

Help us in our hour of need, Testudo!

Offerings at Testudo statue

Panty Raids!

Panty Pirates Headline

How do you plan to spend your summer session?

On vacation?


Hitting the books?


On May 21, 1952, twenty-one male students decided to start their summers with a panty raid on sorority houses and women’s dormitories. A week later,  Dean of Men Geary Eppley stated in The Diamondback that he found several men admiring their nylon and silk “trophies” in Calvert Hall. Eppley claimed that one woman in the Margaret Brent dormitory “had her evening gown torn to pieces… At the Kappa Kappa Gamma house one coed lost $56 worth of underclothing, and other lost $122 in underwear.”

As punishment for stealing the ladies’ lingerie, three men were suspended for one year, and one could not return until June 1953. The rest of the raiders were suspended for one semester and permitted to return the following February.

These raids were not unique. In response to the wave of panty raids overtaking college campuses that summer, The Baltimore Sun  reported on May 28, 1952, that the U.S. Senate received demands that “panty raiders,” including those at the University of Maryland, lose their draft deferment and be sent “to do some raiding in Korea!”

The students did not learn their lesson. On May 8, 1956, male students carried out yet another panty raid.

Tumultuous mobs of underwear seekers thronged to the women’s dorms, crawled through windows and emerged later wearing step-ins, slips and other items of personal apparel. – The Diamondback, May 17, 1956

One student who had already broken into the women’s dorm egged on his fellow students, shouting “You’re chicken if you don’t come in!” The women responded by pouring water and throwing housecoats and blankets on their assailants. One woman reported, “You couldn’t stop them! I pulled his ears off — you just couldn’t stop them!” The raiders progressed through Caroline, Queen Anne’s, Anne Arundel, and St. Mary’s Halls before speeding along to the sorority houses. Dean Eppley speculated that the raid was spontaneous and started after students on the upper floors of men’s dorms started bombarding a Spring Week sound truck with water bags.

They’ve taken everything from one of the girls except her socks. – coed quoted in The Diamondback, May 17, 1956

We hope you enjoy this  brief editorial in which the Diamondback staff lamented the unfavorable publicity caused by the 1956 panty raid!

Page 3
One student’s response to the 1956 Panty Raid.

You can find more information about the 1950s panty raids in the correspondence of UMD President Harry “Curley” Clifton Byrd.

The Diamondback provides a crucial student perspective on student activities on campus, including these two infamous panty raids. As the university’s primary student newspaper, Diamondback reporting is essential to the history of the University of Maryland. The University Archives is digitizing the entire run of the newspaper, which is now currently available on microfilm.Thanks to generous donors and our successful Launch UMD campaign, The Diamondback will be online and searchable in 2016.

This post is the eighth in a series by graduate student assistant Jen Wachtel, who is collecting data for the Diamondback Digitization Project. Check out the Twitter hashtag #digiDBK or the DigiDBK tag on the blog for previous posts, and look for her posts every other Monday.



Many colleges and universities across the United States experienced an extended and often violent period of student unrest during the Vietnam War in the 1960s and 1970s, memorialized in an iconic photograph from the Kent State shootings by John Filo. Student outrage here at Maryland against U.S. military involvement in Vietnam and elsewhere in Southeast Asia  peaked between 1970 and 1972. These protests prompted Governor Marvin Mandel to declare a state of emergency and send the National Guard to maintain order. That brings us to the next post in our UMD123 series: 3 is the number of times Governor Mandel dispatched the National Guard to campus.

May 4, 1970

In response to the U.S. invasion of Cambodia, thousands of students across the country protested. Here in College Park, on May 1, 1970, after a noon rally on McKeldin Mall, student protesters vandalized the ROTC and AFROTC offices and proceeded to block traffic on Route 1. Prince George’s County police could not contain the students, who returned to campus to throw bricks, rocks, and bottles and slash tires. Over the next two days, students continued to block traffic on Route 1. The Washington Post reported on May 4, 1970, that the protest had grown to the “largest and most violent in the university’s history,” involving 1,000 -2,000 students and 250 police officers. Later that day, after students set fire to the Main Administration building, Maryland Governor Marvin Mandel declared a state of emergency. He sent 600 National Guardsmen to campus and placed Adjutant Major General Edwin Warfield III in command of operations on campus.

Student protesters gathered in the rain outside McKeldin library with a banner reading “Pigs Out of Cambodia, Pigs Off Campus,” spring 1970. (From University AlbUM).
1970_Route 1
Crowd of protesters block Route 1 at the South Gate of the University of Maryland, 1970. (From University AlbUM)

Protests continued even after the governor declared a state of emergency. When students attempted to overtake the ROTC armory, they were met with National Guardsmen armed with M16 rifles. The Guardsmen never loaded their weapons and students left peacefully, but the administration cancelled classes indefinitely. Students continued  occupying and damaging buildings on campus, and the National Guardsmen remained on campus for nearly five weeks.

Continue reading “UMD123:3”