On March 5, as bells pealed across the Academic Quad, students, professors, and staff members streamed into Memorial Chapel. Inside, large panels displaying archival photos and a slideshow projected over the stage depicted Colgate’s proud tradition and bold ambition. The centerpiece display: an oversized reproduction of the handwritten charter granted to the Baptist Education Society of New York that formally established the institution that became Colgate — on March 5, 1819.

In recognition of Charter Day 2019, the official day that Colgate University turned 200 years old, members of the community had been invited to the chapel to make a gift of $1 (or more), symbolic of the $13 put forth by the 13 founders.

By day’s end, with a matching gift from Stephen ’85 and Melissa Rock P’13’19’20, the collection totaled $8,508. Shortly after, an anonymous donation of $4,492 brought the giving total to $13,000. The contributions will benefit the Southern Madison County Ambulance Corps, Hamilton Food Cupboard, and Hamilton Fire Department.

As dusk fell, the campus glowed with special lights illuminating the cupolas of Colgate’s historic and new buildings to mark this Bicentennial moment.