The University Archives serves as the collective memory of the University of Maryland, from the granting of the charter for the Maryland Agricultural College on March 6, 1856, to the present day.

Established by the Board of Regents in 1972, the Archives is the official repository for all of the university’s permanent records and actively gathers administrative files, university publications, photographs, audiovisual materials, and memorabilia that document all aspects of campus life.

Visit the University Archives website at www.lib.umd.edu/univarchives

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ABC’s of UMD: Letter M

M is for the “M” Circle!

The “M” is one of the most iconic spots on campus, greeting thousands of students, faculty, staff, and visitors traveling up Campus Drive each day. The Department of Physical Plant, now knows as Facilities Management, created this special feature in 1976 as a gift to the campus in honor of the nation’s bicentennial. The Classes of 1986 and 1987 added the lighting to the circle that allows the “M” to shine, day or night.

The flowers in the “M” change twice a year, usually yellow pansies for the late fall, winter, and early spring, and red vodka begonias for the remaining months.

It should be on everyone’s bucket list to have their photo taken by the “M” before they leave campus, and the circle is a favorite photo op location at commencement time each year.

This is the 13th post in our series on Terrapin Tales called ABC’s of UMD! Posts will come out twice a week, on Mondays and Fridays, throughout the semester. If you want to learn more about campus history, check back weekly to see what we’ve picked to highlight, and you can also visit our encyclopedia University of Maryland A to Z: MAC to Millennium for more UMD facts.

Do you have other ABC’s about campus? Let us know in the comments below!

Check back on Friday, October 16, for Letter N!

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