The graduation exercises for the class of 1923 were held outdoors in Ferry Field. My parents drove up from Peoria to see me graduate, a long hard trip as there were no paved roads yet. Michigan roads in the southwest part of the state were mostly sand. Gas stations were scarce and there were no route markers to tell them which road they were on. They arrived in Ann Arbor late in the afternoon very hot and tired but they had had no tire or motor trouble.
On the Sunday before graduation all of the graduation seniors and faculty dressed in their academic robes, some from foreign universities [were] very colorful, marched in procession along the campus diagonal to Hill Auditorium where we listened to a noted speaker; who it was I don't remember now. My parents did not arrive in time for that. One could tell which school a senior was graduating from by the color of the tassel on his mortarboard cap; red for medicine, yellow for engineers, etc.
Commencement Day was warm and sunny. Parents and guests sat in the upper rows of the south bleachers on Ferry Field, the seniors below them and the faculty, except for a few, on the platform facing us where a big pile of rolled up diplomas stood, sat on folding chairs on the turf before the stands. After a speech by another notable, and again I don't remember who it was, we marched up on the platform by schools to get our diplomas.
Last modified on 20 June 2009 @ 10:36