Category Archives: Uncategorized

University of Detroit Marching Band

The University of Detroit had a marching band to go along with some of their football games. The first student band were engineers dressed as clowns, played at a football game in which U of M defeated U of D, 39-6 on November 1, 1913. The first organized band was formed in September of 1919 when a call went out for volunteers and twenty-five musician showed up. The first appearance was for a performance of As You Like It by...

Robert Frost: Poetry reading and informal talk at University of Detroit, Nov. 14, 1962

Robert Frost gave one his last public readings of his poetry at the University of Detroit on November 14, 1962. (He died January 29, 1963, at the age of 88.) He was also awarded an honorary degree form the university in “recognition of the achievements of Robert Frost as a poet and humanist, who has advanced permanently the art of poetry and the importance of the liberal arts in our national life.” (part of the citation read conferring the honorary...

U of D Class of ’79 Tower Yearbook: Finances, Food Fights and Football?

The 1979 Tower Yearbook almost didn’t make it out for publication. Severe budget cuts left no money at all for its production. Some students got together with the Dean of Students to gather the necessary resources to produce the yearbook. I am so glad they had the foresight to make this yearbook. One of the most common questions that comes to the archives is from someone looking for  information about a relative that attended the university. Outside of maybe a...

Safety Street: UDM Halloween Tradition

In 1990 the University of Detroit Mercy chapter of the American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS) started Safety Street out of the concern for the safety of neighborhood children. The first Safety Street was set up at Kassab Mall where the architecture students created cardboard facades for neighborhood kids to get their treats. Local schools and daycare centers were invited to participate. Now the Halloween tradition has expanded to take over the whole fountain area in front of the student...

U.S. Presidents in the UDM Autograph Collection

While we listen to all the political speeches and media speculation as to the outcome of the 2012 Presidential election, here are some of the autographs of U.S. Presidents, before, during and after their term in office. I am no expert, but I suspect some of the autographs may be just stamps or autopen as noted in Wikipedia. Here is a sampling of some of the presidential signatures we have in the collection in alphabetical order:...

In Memory of Peter D. Sieruta

This is a personal tribute to a friend and former collegue, Peter D. Sieruta, who passed away recently as a result of injuries from a fall at his home. Peter and I started work about the same time at Mercy College of Detroit Library back in 1979.  He was the library technician that worked every department there was in the library. We had a lot in common: born in the same month (October), went to the same high school (Cody),...

Celebrating the UDM Law School Centennial

The University of Detroit Law School opened in September, 1912. According to the first Law School catalog: “The completed course includes three years, each of which occupies eight and one-half months…. The first semester of the year 1912-1913 will begin October 1st.” Here is a listing of the tuition and fees for the Law School in 1912. Board and lodging could be had for $17 and up per month depending on the student’s tastes. Just to put things into perspective,...

Come fly the friendly skies of the University of Detroit Flying Club!

The University of Detroit Flying Club was first formed about 1921 and lasted off and on until about 1962. During that period the club won a number of air races including the 1925 Aero Digest Trophy at the International Air Races in New York, Dayton Daily News Trophy and the Scientific American Trophy, plus some $2,000 in cash prizes. In June 1931, the Flying Club announced that it had placed in order for a new training airplane. Up until then...

Mercy College of Detroit-First Male Students

“Two Males at Mercy College Surrounded by 948 Females“,”Two Boys Doing Well at Mercy-With 948 Coeds To Welcome Them” Those were some of the headlines when the press reported the first two men enrolled full-time at Mercy College of Detroit. Mercy College of Detroit re-chartered in the Spring of 1963 and included a provision to admit men to the formerly all-women campus as full-time students. Jerry Sup and Robert A. Woods were the first men to register. Both were attracted...

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