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Centennial Celebration of the University of Buffalo collection

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: 5-3-29

Scope and Contents

Collection contains invitations, bulletins, correspondence, lectures, program committee, reports, publicity, photographs, and resolutions regarding the 100th centennial celebrations of the University of Buffalo in 1946.

Box 1

Contains invitation lists, bulletins, Centennial Committee correspondence, speeches, alumni delegates, paper reprints by the Chemistry Department, UB Studies Centenary Lectures, and Program Committee correspondence.

Box 2

Contains program; banquet seating lists, diagram, and correspondence; invitations and greetings; mailing lists; and Centennial Report.

Box 3

Contains committee correspondence: Fundraising, Membership, Faculty, and Executive committees; invitations; publicity.

Box 4

Contains forms, announcements, programs, and “The Greater University of Buffalo” booklet.

Box 5

Contains greetings to UB (see Archivist for list of senders), publicity clippings, and scrapbook.

Box 6

Contains 3 photo albums regarding Centennial events.


  • 1946


Terms of Access and Use

The Centennial Celebration of the University of Buffalo collection is open to researchers.


Copyright is held by The State University of New York at Buffalo. Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns. Researchers must obtain the written permission of the holder(s) of copyright and the University Archives before publishing quotations from materials in the collection. Most papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures unless otherwise specified.

Historical Note

On the University’s First 100 Years:

Founded in 1846 as the private University of Buffalo, UB began as a medical school. At first, classes were held in rented spaces in the city of Buffalo, until the first building was erected at Main and Virginia in 1849. The Schools of Pharmacy (1886) and Law (1887) were added, but it was not until the first liberal arts classes in 1913, and the official establishment two years later of the College of Arts and Science, that marks the establishment of UB as a true university.

At the same time, plans were taking shape to create a unified campus. Land was purchased (the current Main Street/South Campus) in 1909 and a major endowment campaign was held in 1920 to raise funds for building the campus. The campaign raised $5 million in 10 days in 1920. To give a measure of what was accomplished, it’s the equivalent to about $60 million today. The addition of Samuel P. Capen as the first full-time Chancellor (1922-1950) further served to unify the once loose collection of professional schools under a centralized administration.

During his twenty-eight years at the University of Buffalo, Capen established many University programs and educational experiments that helped to further the expansion of higher education. He helped to broaden the education of the professional schools, developed standardized curriculums, and personally handpicked a first-class faculty of full-time, academically trained professors. He also established the Millard Fillmore College for adult education and created the Bureau of Personnel Research, a counseling office, to administer programs that tested the achievements and personalities of students in order to provide better guidance for career choices and help them obtain employment. The numbers attest to his role as administrator: student enrollment rose from 1,687 in 1922 to over 10,000 by the time of his retirement in 1950.

On the University’s Centennial:

From the foreword of Centennial Celebration of the University of Buffalo, 1846-1946, Capen stated:

“In the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the University of Buffalo, the Council of the University voted to conduct a series of public gatherings designed both to record important stages in the development of the institution during its first century, and to present to its members and invited guests discussions of topics of current moment in various fields of learning. The first of these gatherings took place on Charter Day, May 11, 1946, at the School of Medicine, the first unit of the University to be founded. It was followed in succeeding months by a number of symposia in which distinguished scholars in the arts, the sciences, and the professions from the United States and other countries participated.

The general public celebration of the Centennial occurred on October 3 and 4, 1946. To it the University invited the citizens of Buffalo and representatives of American and foreign universities, colleges, and learned societies.”

The Centennial booklet provides descriptions and photographs of celebratory events and can be viewed online at


4.75 Linear Feet (4 manuscript boxes, 2 oversize boxes)

Language of Materials



Records pertaining to the Centennial of the University of Buffalo, 1946, including clippings; scrapbook; photographs; correspondence; invitations; programs; committee reports, etc.


Generally arranged by topic and/or format.

Acquisition Information

The Centennial Celebration of the University of Buffalo collection was transferred to University Archives in multiple accessions: from Lockwood Library in October 1967; and the Office of the President in October 1968 and April 1978, accession number unrecorded.

Accruals and Additions

No further accruals are expected.

Processing Information

Processed by Archives staff, date unrecorded; finding aid encoded by Amy Vilz, August 2019.


Finding Aid for the Centennial Celebration of the University of Buffalo collection
Finding aid prepared by Amy Vilz
15 August 2019
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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Repository Details

Part of the University Archives Repository

420 Capen Hall
Buffalo New York 14260-1674 US
716-645-3714 (Fax)