Founding of Ashland College
The dream of establishing a college was born in the hearts of members of the German Brethren Church. In March 1877, a meeting was held at the Maple Grove Brethren Church to discuss the establishment of a college in Ashland. A town meeting followed in June. At this meeting residents agreed to help raise $10,000 to establish the College. On February 20, 1878, the charter and by-laws were approved and the most desirable location for the campus was chosen. Ashland College opened in 1879 with two buildings, eight faculty, and 60 students. In 1881, four male students comprised the first graduating class.
Ashland Eagles Tradition
Once known as the Titans, Ashland College athletes became the Eagles in 1933. Wreathed in purple and gold (the school colors since 1900), Eagle statues remain the institution's most visible tradition. These statues, once the official mascot of the J.I. Case Co., began appearing on campus in 1941 with the arrival of Louise, which perched in front of Old Founders Hall until it burned down. Kidnapped by students in the still of the night, additional statues appeared over the next two decades from as far away as Illinois and Pennsylvania. In 1965, the Case Company donated the 20-foot eagle statue that once adorned its Columbus headquarters. Now Old Abe, as it is
known, greets visitors to the Physical Education Center, and his "flock" includes 20 smaller, personalized eagles.