Images of America: Marshall University

Author: James E. Casto

In 1837, the people of Guyandotte, then a village on the Virginia frontier, resolved to open a school for their sons and daughters. Tradition says local lawyer John Laidley convinced his neighbors to name the school for his friend, Chief Justice John Marshall. The one-room log cabin that housed those first students soon gave way to a two-story brick building that, with various additions over the years, became the school’s Old Main. For decades, the cherished landmark has stood a proud sentinel, watching Marshall grow and evolve into a major university with an enrollment over 16,000.

This remarkable volume, with more than 200 historic photographs from the Marshall archives, chronicles the dramatic Marshall saga. It offers glimpses of Marshall students at work and play, records the proud accomplishments of those who guided   the school to its destiny, and provides an informative look at the steady growth of the campus over the years. It also captures the triumph of that 1961 day when Marshall at last became a university, the despair of the 1970 plane crash that plunged the campus and community into mourning, and the inspiring story of Marshall’s comeback from that tragedy.