From Special Collections & Institutional Archives:

Our institutional archives at Reese Library hold records related to the Pamplin College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences. Within that collection (IA.01.001.002) are papers written for the classes of prolific historian Dr. Edward J. Cashin. These student papers were acquired in July of 1997.

The papers are written on a variety of local history topics, from church history to Reconstruction to the architecture of buildings in Augusta. One paper, written by a student named Dorothy W. Clark is entitled “Southern Baptist Convention Augusta 1845.” The student covers the history of the birth of the Southern Baptist Convention in Augusta, a church which still stands on Greene Street in downtown Augusta.

Special Collections and Institutional Archives continues to accept student papers, with the exception of Honors theses or dissertations. Any students interested in donating a copy of a history/anthropology/philosophy paper, consider contacting us at Reese Library for a consultation.

  – Maranda Christy, Special Collections Assistant

From Historical Collections & Archives:

Commencement ceremonies mark the beginning the graduating students’ new professional lives. Unfortunately, this year’s spring commencement for Augusta University has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With the exception of the Civil War when the school was not in session, this may be the first time the university has not held a commencement ceremony for its graduating students.

Invitation to 1893 Commencement


The record group RG04.02: Commencements consists of commencement programs and invitations for the legacy institution of the Health Sciences Campus. The earliest printed program in this collection is from 1845. Copies commencement speeches are also available for some years.

The May 1837 issue Southern Medical & Surgical Journal is the earliest print documentation we have of the Medical College of Georgia’s commencement ceremony which was held on April 19, 1837. On page 766 of this SM&SJ issue is a brief article regarding the commencement which lists the graduates, their hometowns, and the subject of their thesis. The article does not state where the commencement took place, but that Professor L.D. Ford gave a “highly interesting and impressive” address. Dr. L. DeSaussure Ford was one of the founding and long-term faculty members of MCG. The Southern Medical & Surgical Journal was edited and published by the MCG faculty.

Commencement programs document an important event in the life of the university as well as providing insight into the university’s history, such as the explanation of the regalia seen at the commencement ceremony. The list of graduating students also provides a source of information for researchers determining if and when someone graduated from the institution. If you would like to view the commencement programs prior to 1978, please contact the curator of the Historical Collections and Archives at

-Renée Sharrock, Curator

About the Heritage Unit: The University Libraries have a department devoted to the preservation and archival keeping of the campus’ unique histories. The Historical Collections & Archives (HCA) is located on the 2nd floor of the Greenblatt Library on the Health Sciences campus. Special Collections & Institutional Archives is located on the 3rdfloor of the Reese Library on the Summerville campus.

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