Place in Time

The bell of the M. S. Emory Victory 175 Things You Should Know about Emory

10. It Tolls for Them

More than 3,500 alumni and former students served in the military during World War II, and 121 died. To honor their service, in 1945, a 10,700-ton cargo ship was christened the M. S. Emory Victory. The ship sailed until 1962, when it was renamed and repurposed, and the university was given the ship’s large brass bell. In a similar spirit of efficiency, leaders later called it the Victory Bell and made it the centerpiece of an annual athletics celebration.

The spire of Glenn Memorial Church

15. Methodist Roots

Founded at Emory in 1920, Glenn Memorial United Methodist Church was later named for Wilbur Fisk Glenn 1861C, a minister whose family helped build the sanctuary building. It was completed in 1931, when an Emory publication reported, “At last the campus and the community have a real church edifice in which to worship, and for a few years at least, Emory will have an auditorium large enough to accommodate its graduation exercises, musical concerts, and lectures.” It still serves as both a church and event space for Emory.

16. Modern Spirit

There may be no better symbol of Emory’s diverse, vibrant religious life than Cannon Chapel. Designed in the 1970s by architect Paul Rudolph, the chapel stands apart from ornate, symbol-laden churches with its clean lines and concrete simplicity. The sanctuary at its heart is usually filled with natural light, but little else, allowing the space to be adapted easily for the multiplicity of religious groups that use it. Any given week might find Christians of all denominations, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, and Hindus in the chapel for various services and events. The chapel is the meeting place for Emory’s Interreligious Council, made up of representatives from 30 different faith groups.

18. Kitty’s Cottage

A white, two-room shack at the edge of Emory’s Oxford campus stands as a silent witness to the university’s Southern past. In the mid-1800s, it was the residence of Catherine Andrew “Kitty” Boyd, a slave owned by Methodist bishop James Osgood Andrew, the first chair of Emory’s Board of Trustees. Although Andrew inherited Kitty and could not legally free her, his status as a slave owner created a schism in the Methodist church that lasted nearly a century. Earlier this year, Emory’s trustees released a statement of regret for historic ties to slavery, and the university hosted a four-day conference on the subject—during which visitors to Kitty’s cottage made it and its neighboring Old Church the site of remembrance and reconciliation.

19. Setting the Scene

Emory has become increasingly popular as a location for film, television, and commercial shoots—including graduation scenes for Into the Wild, Sean Penn’s movie about Chris McCandless 90C, and award-winning films shot for Campus MovieFest, the international student film festival started by four Emory alumni in 2001. As filmmaking gains momentum on campus, so has the Department of Film and Media Studies, which now offers production courses and a joint program with Goizueta Business School.

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