Monday, July 2, 2012

On July 2

On this day in ...
... 1862 (150 years ago today), President Abraham Lincoln signed into law An Act Donating Public Lands to the Several States and Territories which may provide Colleges for the Benefit of Agriculture and the Mechanic Arts. Better known as the Morrill Land-Grant Act, this legislation granted each state tens of thousands of acres of federal land, which was sold to pay for public colleges that concentrated on agriculture and mechanical arts. Today the 106 institutions so founded include some of the United States' best. Among them are my undergraduate alma mater, the University of Illinois (which is planning an October conference on the Act), as well as institutions where I've had the privilege of teaching law, the University of California and the University of Georgia. (credit for photo Alma Mater statute by Lorenzo Taft, a landmark at Illinois' Champaign-Urbana)

(Prior July 2 posts are here, here, here, here, and here.)

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