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Alumni Relations. Programs and Publications,, 2017

Identifier: RG5-4-3

Scope and Contents

The records for Alumni Relations date from the 1860s to the present but the majority of files date from 1958 to the present. Subjects or activities of the office documented in the collection include Reunions (1938-present), travel programs (1974-1994), class gifts, the Living Endowment (1958-1971), leadership programs and continuing education/Alumni College programs. The Living Endowment files (1957-1972) reflect the involvement of the Alumni Office with this program which is now part of the Development Office. These files contain manuals for class agents, correspondence with class agents arranged by city, and reports. The Alumni Leadership Conference files document training given to alumni for fund raising activities including the Living Endowment, Annual Fund and Wildcat Club. The activities of local chapters, especially Charlotte and Mecklenburg County groups, are documented in the - Mecklenburg Chapter, 1942-1991 and Davidson Goes Uptown files as well as in some of the sports related files such as the 1-2-3 club and Basketball Appreciation Dinner, 1963-1965. The Alumni Office offered several variations on continuing education programs. These are documented in the Executive Weekend, Alumni College, Saturday Seminars,and Continuing education files. In addition, the office organized a number of tour and travel programs. The files for continuing educationa and tours contain flyers, reading lists and planning documents. The Continuing Education Program 1968 file contains papers by facuty including Louise Nelson, George Abernethy, Frank Bliss, Earl MacCormac, Philip Secor, James Purcell and Jazmes Martin. There are several files documenting alumni activities organized around sporting events including the 1-2-6 to 1-4-2 club files, Southern Basketball Tournament, Spring Sports Day, Basketball Appreciation Dinner files, and Championship New York, 1970 files . The Spring Sports Day 1964 file has information about the Turtle International fund raiser as well as sports activities planned around a spring homecoming. The first Spring Sports Day was on May 2, 1964. There is a group of files documenting overall office activities relating to chapters. They include invitations, flyers, reports on attendance, evaluations, alumni award citations, and handbooks. A separate group of files cover activities related to the Black Alumni Nework (DBAN). Additional materials about specific reunion gatherings for the DBAN can also be found in the yearly Alumni Weekend/Reunion files. The yearly reunion files begin with a file on alumni activities during the 1938 college commencement. The file contains correspondence with faculty and alumni planning a discussion panels and minutes of the alumni meeting. The annual files generally contain examples of publicity materials, correspondence with class organizers, memorial programs, and evaluations. The Reunion file for 1941 includes correspondence from Harlee Branch reflecting on staffing and responsiblities for the Alumni Office.The 1942 -1945 files show the effects of the war on reducing alumni activities and attendance. The 1953 file contains correspondence about the establishment of the class of 1928 scholarship fund.The Alumni Weekend file for 1963 contains correspondence about the creation of an alumni weekend separate from commencement. This marks the shift from alumni gatherings tied to commencement to separate weekends.The Alumni Weekend 1968 file contains correspondence about the creation of an alumni golf tournment. The Alumni Weekend 1972 file has a letter from Ralph Peeples concerning Davidson students recruited as bus drivers for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School system for desegration. The Alumni Weekend 1974 file has a basketball history done for the tribute to Tom Scott and basketball reunion. Ag rowing practice of having special reunions is evident in 1984 with files on gatherings for Black alumni, soccer players and physicians. The Alumni Weekend 1988 contains information the 3rd Black Alumni Reunion, surveys of the group, a resolution concerning South Africa and divestments and minutes of a Black Alumni Network meeting.The 1989 file has information on a soccer reunion. In 1990, the office replaced the name Alumni Weekend with Reunion.the 1997 files have information on a Union reunion and a special Phi Delta Theta reunion honoring John Kuykendall on his retirement as college president. In addition to the spring Alumni Weekend/Reunion, the Alumni Office also organized events for alumni at the college's fall Homecoming celebrations. The Homecoming files have flyers, schedules, correspondence and roster. They document the change from general events to separate class celebrations during Homecoming. In 2002 the Alumni Office published a collection of memoirs entitled, Soldiers and Sentinels: Davidson's World War II Veterans Speak. There are several files related to this project including essays received too late to be included and photographs of alumni in service. The Homecoming 2012-50+ Years of Integration file contains copies of the remarks made by Benoit Nzengu, Leslie Brown and Georges Nzongola-Ntalaja. The publication files contain respresentative samples of invitiations, announcements, and flyers produced for Alumni Relations activities. The oversize ledger, 1968-1985 has signatures from visitors and attenders of alumni events."


  • Creation: 2017


Conditions Governing Access

Minutes are restricted for a 25 year period.

Biographical / Historical

The Office of Alumni Relations is responsible for overseeing activities related to alumni programs including Homecoming, reunions, publications, and alumni chapter events. The first Alumni Association programs were informal gatherings during commencement. By 1876 increasing interest in alumni relations with the college led to a request that four of the College Trustees be elected as alumni representatives. Alumni also began to publish catalogs or directories of former students. In 1903, the Davidson College Alumni Association of Charlotte was formed and in 1914 alumni contributions helped build a new gymnasium for the campus. By 1920, there were 8 regional chapters and in 1926, the first Alumni Secretary was hired with funding through the Alumni Association. W. Ernest Melton, class of 1926 served as Director of Publicity and Alumni Secretary for 6 years. He was succeeded by D. Grier Martin. The first issue of the Alumni Journal appeared in 1934. Martin left the position in 1936 but was to return in 1958 as college president. In 1938, the College assumed full responsibility for the salary and oversight of the position. By the 1960s the office had expanded to include an Assistant Director. The position for the year 1960-1961 was held by another future college president, John Kuykendall.


16.00 boxes_oversize (16 boxes + oversize)




The files are arranged subject. In addition, the files are arranged in the following manner: RG 5/4.1 are Administrative files, RG 5/4.2 are Alumni Association Board records, RG 5/4.3 are Programs and Publications, and RG 5/4.4 are Class files and RG 5/

Physical Location










Mapstand B-6

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Transferred from Alumni Relations and College Relations; 2000-91 (Guest books and minutes 1868-1929); 2012-20

Repository Details

Part of the College Archives Repository