JUNE 16, 1886 VANDERBILT UNIVERSITY COMMENCEMENT DAY PROGRAM (WOMEN'S STUDIES INTEREST)
Nashville, TN: Brandon Printing Co., 1886. First Edition, First Printing. Original wraps. 6 X 9 1/21 Inches. 4 PP. Very Good. Item #2544
Very scarce original Vanderbilt University Commencement Day "Programme of Exercieses" for Wednesday, June 16, 1886. Single sheet (folded). The family names listed include those such as Hume, Meade and Crockett - a who's who of Tennessee. A few of the most interesting names included in the Awards are those of William Wirt Hastings (Indian Territory) and Miss Willie May Anderson (one of the first female students allowed at the University). William Wirt Hastings went on to preside over the first Democratic Convention in the Indian Territory and served at the Official Delegate of the Cherokee Nation to Washington. Hastings was member of the US House of Representatives and was an integral advocate for Indian rights at the turn of the Century.
While Vanderbilt had previously allowed Miss Kate Lupton to "Listen" in on classes and take exams, she was essentially barred from any public recognition of a degree she received in 1879. Only a few women attended classes at Vanderbilt between 1876 and 1886. This commencement address proves that a "Miss Willie May Anderson" was one of those female "listeners". Until 1892 women who attended classes at Vanderbilt were not recognized as students. They were allowed to access the school and attend classes by some sort of priviledge and/or favor system. Between 1892 and 1901 women worked their way into the system at Vandy and were provided much of the same exposure and recognition as men. This particular University publication documents the fact that as early as 1886 women were making their mark at the University. It also exhibits that in only seven years, the University went from providing a diploma in private to publicly recognizing a female student "listener".
Hint of wear at edges and faint fold-marks.