On Aug. 11, 1870, local Quakers purchased 17 ¼ acres of land and an unfinished building for $11,334 at an auction with the intention of establishing a four-year college dedicated to the ideals espoused by the Society of Friends and the belief that an enlightened society would flourish for the good of humankind.
Thus, Wilmington College was born.
Classes began the following April and four years later, in 1875, the initial four graduates received their diplomas. Much has occurred over the past 150 years: young lives transformed, lifelong friendships established, knowledge gained for the betterment of society, and students prepared to go out and change the world.
The college is observing the 150th anniversary of its founding with programming, commemorations and other special activities running through spring 2021. Some of the highlights include a free concert in downtown Wilmington in conjunction with homecoming in September, the production of a coffee table-size WC history book and special programs during the 2020-21 academic year.
The sesquicentennial website at www.wilmington.edu/150 will note all scheduled programming and activities as available.
Submitted by Randall Sarvis, senior director of public relations, Wilmington College.