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On this Day in SLU History

February 21, 1973

Today at SLU in 1973: A SLU fraternity raffles off 100 gallons of free gas. Eight months later, the 1973 oil crisis begins.

February 20, 2005

Renowned civil rights activist Dr. Angela Davis shares her experiences with the Saint Louis University community as part of Black History Month. The event attracts 1,600 students from across the nation.

February 19, 1967

W. H. Auden, perhaps the greatest living poet of the day, speaks at Saint Louis University in the West Pine Gymnasium as part of the Great Issues series. In 1970, Auden will receive the Messing Award at SLU for his literary achievement.

February 18, 2017

Playwright Tennessee Williams captivates an audience of nearly 600 at Pius XII Memorial Library as he receives the Wilma and Roswell Messing Jr. Award. The award will later be known as the St. Louis Literary Award and given to John Updike, Joan Didion and Margaret Atwood, among many other acclaimed authors.

February 17, 1994

Morris Dees of the Southern Poverty Law Center speaks before a packed Busch Memorial Center audience. His presentation, “Why Can’t We All Get Along?” is part of the Student Government Association’s Great Issues series.

February 15, 1946

SLU faculty Dr. Donald Greiff and Dr. Henry Pinkerton have discovered a cure for typhus fever, according to The University News. The research team includes Dr. Vicente Moragues.

February 14, 1964

Today at SLU in 1964: U.S. President Lyndon Johnson visits SLU in one of his 1st public appearances after the assassination of President Kennedy. He speaks at the future site of the Busch Memorial Center and plants a tree to symbolize the growth of St. Louis.

February 13, 1924

Today at SLU in 1924: William F. Robinson SJ, president of Saint Louis University, and Reverend Mother Concordia of the Sisters of Mary sign a document giving the University charge of St. Mary's Infirmary.

February 12, 2014

Today at SLU in 2014: SLU announces the digitization of 19th-century diaries that include some of the earliest first-hand accounts of the daily lives of students and Jesuits.

February 10, 1908

Today at SLU in 1908: John P. Frieden, SJ, is appointed the 19th president of Saint Louis University.

February 9, 1964

The Saint Louis University men's soccer team joins members of the United States Olympic soccer team for an exhibition game against the St. Ambrose Fighting Bees. Half of the Olympic team that year is made up of players from St. Louis.

February 8, 1946

Today at SLU in 1946: Enrollment at Saint Louis University sets a record: 6,118 total. Many are veterans home from World War II. #SLU200

February 7, 1923

Today at SLU in 1923: Magician Harry Houdini makes a stop at SLU to lecture against "mediums." @sciam's Committee on Psychic Research reveals that so far, these so-called mediums have been found to be 100 percent fraudulent. #SLU200

February 6, 2013

Today at SLU in 2013: The new Magis Faculty Society meets for the first time at Il Monastero. The society was created to foster connections among SLU's retired and emeritus faculty members. #SLU200

February 5, 1953

Today at SLU in 1953: Billikenews reports that the Knights of Columbus Foundation at SLU received the first shipments of microfilm of the Vatican Library's priceless manuscript collection. #SLU200

February 4, 1912

Today at SLU in 1912: The St. Louis Times describes the newly appointed president of SLU, Alexander Burrowes, SJ: "On his full face and even features is an expression inviting confidence and bespeaking kindness." #SLU200

February 3, 1933

Today at SLU in 1933: Saint Louis University and the Sisters of St. Mary open Firmin Desloge Hospital, which would later become @SLUHospital. #SLU200

February 2, 1958

Today at SLU in 1958: The cornerstone of @piuslibrary is put in place. Before that, the University's library collection was housed in the Pere Marquette Gallery, located on the 2nd floor of DuBourg Hall. #SLU200

February 1, 2013

Today at SLU in 2013: SLU announces the 2005 @SLUWsoccer will be inducted to the Billiken Hall of Fame. The team was the 1st SLU women's team to earn an NCAA Tournament berth. #SLU200

January 31, 2002

Today at SLU in 2002: @TheUNews reports that @KSLUradio goes global with its first internet broadcast. The stream is limited to 4 hours because it drains resources from University's servers. #SLU200

January 30, 1836

Today at SLU in 1836: Mississippi Sen. Robert Walker, chairman of the Committee on Public Lands, reports a bill which calls for a grant of land to the "French University of Saint Louis." #SLU200

January 29, 2009

Today at SLU in 2009: Sources, a poetry collection by SLU professor Devin Johnston, is selected as a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle 2008 award for poetry, according to @TheUNews. #SLU200

January 28, 1944

Today at SLU in 1944: Claude Heithaus, SJ, eulogizes Otto J. Kuhnmuench, SJ, as, "a living edition of the Ratio Studiorum." Kuhnmuench taught Latin at SLU for 30 years, earning the nickname "The Old Roman." #SLU200

January 27, 2017

Today at SLU in 2017: The College for Public Health and Social Justice announces its REACH initiative, which aims to address problems that undermine the health of children and mothers. #SLU200

January 26, 1999

Today at SLU in 1999: Classes are cancelled so that SLU students and faculty can attend papal events during Pope John Paul II's visit to St. Louis. #SLU200

January 25, 2012

Saint Louis University announces that @SLULAW will move downtown to a new building donated by Joe and Loretta Scott. #SLU200

January 24, 2013

Today at SLU in 2013: SLU researchers and their collaborators at @Mizzou and @PittTweet report a breakthrough in the pursuit of new hepatitis B drugs that could help cure the virus. #SLU200

January 23, 1976

Today at SLU in 1976: @SLU_SGA's Popular Film Series offers students the chance to view a screening of American Graffiti for only 50 cents with a SLU ID. #SLU200

January 22, 1911

Today at SLU in 1911: SLU is named a Collegium Maximum, an official Jesuit term for the "premier college" of a province, by the Father General in Rome. #SLU200

January 21, 1855

George Hood, a Saint Louis University senior, records in his diary that due to heavy snow, the school authorities declare a winter sports day.

January 20, 2005

Today at SLU in 2005: Saint Louis University starts its official Facebook page. @theunews offers full coverage of "SLU's new fad." #SLU200

January 19, 2016

Hoverboards and electronic skateboards — which have grown in popularity by the middle of the decade — are temporarily banned at SLU's campuses due to safety concerns.

January 18, 1982

Today at SLU in 1982: Longtime SLU professor John Kavanaugh, SJ, lectures at the College Church on "Following Christ in a Consumer Society." His best-selling book by the same title was published the year before. #SLU200

January 17, 1898

St. Louis Republic lauds the previous day's dedication of the College Church, calling it a "day of unhoped-for splendor." Archbishop John Joseph Kain, along with four bishops, 60 Jesuit scholastics, 65 priests and 40 acolytes, blessed the new church.

January 16, 1898

St. Francis Xavier College Church is formally dedicated at Saint Louis University.

January 15, 1865

Francis Stuntebeck, S.J., the director of SLU's weather station, reports: "This morning at six o'clock, four rings were seen around the moon: the nearest white, the second blue, the third yellow, and the fourth light green. These lasted for some six to eight minutes and then gradually disappeared."

January 14, 1929

In their best game of the 1929 season, the Billiken men's basketball team beat the Washington Bears 29-18. After three minutes of scoreless play, "Moose" Meyers drops in a long shot, and the Billikens control the game from that point on.

January 13, 1833

Pope Gregory XVI grants a dispensation allowing the Society of Jesus to charge tuition to meet the costs of education and board. The Jesuits at SLU actively sought this dispensation. It is one of the most significant changes in the Jesuit way of operating schools since the founding of the order.

January 12, 1898

U.S. President Grover Cleveland orders the creation of the Corps of Cadets, a student military organization, at Saint Louis University.

January 11, 1984

The winter 1984 issue of Universitas publishes a story about Patrick Gaffney, SMM, and his innovative computer course titled "Who is Jesus?"

January 10, 1898

DuBourg Hall is dedicated.

January 9, 2006

Tom Kavanaugh (AS '01) wins his final round of the popular game show Jeopardy, making him an eight-time champion with winnings of more than $144,000.

January 8, 1818

In the same year as SLU's founding, Henry Clay, speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, presents the first petition to Congress from Missouri requesting statehood.

January 7, 1824

Bishop Louis William DuBourg offers the Jesuits his college, which will become Saint Louis University.

January 6, 1949

Father Reinert begins his 25-year tenure as president of Saint Louis University.

January 5, 1818

Bishop Louis William DuBourg arrives in St. Louis. Later this year, he will establish Saint Louis Academy, which will become Saint Louis University.

January 4, 2013

The men's basketball team defeats Savannah State 67-59, earning their eighth consecutive win at home. The Billikens would go on to compete in the NCAA men's basketball championship.

January 3, 1952

SLU President Paul Reinert, S.J., participates in the Western Province Educational Meeting of the Vincentian Fathers to discuss ways to improve seminary education.

January 2, 1953

Pope Pius XII gives Saint Louis University permission to name its new library in his honor, writing to SLU President Paul Reinert, S.J.: "Willingly then do we accede to your filial request that this new library be designated the Pius XII Memorial Library."

January 1, 1860

The first weather bureau in St. Louis is set up at Saint Louis University.