The path from Rollins College’s opening celebration to the 125th Anniversary festivities planned for 2010 has not been smooth.
Rollins’ founders were trailblazers—literally and figuratively—as they struggled to preserve Florida’s first college. At times, the College’s growth was phenomenal; at other times, it stood on the verge of total defeat. But the founders and supporters of Rollins never lost their faith, and the College survived.
Rollins’ first four decades were years of building a foundation and establishing direction. They were followed by periods of expansion and experimentation, reevaluation and rededication.
Beginning in this issue, Rollins Magazine will present a three-part history of Rollins through its first 125 years. We invite you to collect all three issues for a complete College history. In the following pages, we focus on Rollins’ early years, 1885-1925, and the people—administration, faculty, and students—who believed in and were Rollins’ future.
They are our roots ... The Pioneers.
“The Pioneers” was originally published as Part I of “A Centennial Perspective” in the September 1985 issue of the Rollins Alumni Record. In addition to the acknowledgments appearing there (Jane F. Fletcher, former Archivist; Mannee Rawa, Assistant in Archives; Donna Janeczko, freelance cinematographer and film producer; Marilyn Anderson, Reference Librarian; and Jack C. Lane, Weddell Professor of History), we wish to thank Professor Wenxian Zhang and Gertrude Laframboise of Rollins’ Olin Library Archives and Special Collections.