The very first day for class sessions at the Maryland State Normal School (MSNS) was January 15, 1866.
Beginning in the 1920s, January 15th became a day of celebration for the school, marking a time for reflection about the institution's progress. The school community would gather to listen to speakers during the day, and celebrate with a dance and refreshments in the evening.
After World War II, Founder's Day programs became part of the mid-winter convocation, and the speeches began to focus on the broader topic of education as a whole.
While the formal Founder's Day celebrations have mostly disappeared since 1966, Towson University still marks January 15th as Founder's Day.
written by Felicity Knox, archives associate, Spring 2022.