Memorial Drive Historical Marker

Memorial Drive HMWritten by: Sarai Kidd ('14)

The street now known as Memorial Drive was originally named Giddings Drive, in honor of the College's third president. It was renamed in 1948 to highlight the importance of those who lost their lives to war. The commemoration took form in iron plaques and lampposts. The plaques that commemorate fallen students and alumni can be found on lampposts along Memorial Drive and around Giddings Circle- leading from Main Street through the primary entrance to the College and surrounding the heart of campus-the central academic buildings and the campus proper. The plaques ornament twenty-two lampposts, each of which contains one or more plaques that include the name of the fallen solider, the war that claimed his life, and the church that donated the plaque. Overall, the plaques are comprised mostly of veterans from World War II-a time when the population of male students nationwide had been decimated.
      Among these commemorative plaques you will find the name of Dr. Judson Allen Tolman. Tolman was a professor of ancient languages at the college. He was also the former president of both Howard Payne University and Oklahoma Baptist University. Other plaques are dedicated to members of First Baptist Church, Owensboro; Highland Baptist Church, Louisville, Immanuel Baptist Church, Lexington, and other such churches.
      At the dedication for the Memorial Drive in 1948 President Sam S. Hill remarked that Memorial Drive will always keep Georgetown College conscious of the sacrifice made by some of her sons during WWII. The Drive would also serve, according to Hill, as a memorial to Dean Robert Hinton who died in 1948 as well. While Georgetown has made strides in acknowledging the fallen not all students and alumni have a plaque where they can be remembered.


Memorial Drive HM