1880s | 1890s |


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Events include: Philippine-American War, building of the Panama Canal, Einstein's theory of relativity, first human flight by the Wright Brothers, advent of Cubist art

1901: Margaret Haley is the first woman to address a public forum of the National Education Association in its 44-year history.

1903: The University of Chicago segregates women from its previously coed undergraduate program, signaling a backlash against female students.

1908: The first black women’s sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha, opens at Howard University.

Cottey Presidents:
Virginia Alice Cottey (1884-1922, 1923-1929)

Commencement, 1880s
Commencement, c. 1900.6

Cottey students of the domestic science program, c. 1908
Students in Cottey's Domestic Science program, c. 1908.

Cottey campus in 1900
Main Hall in 1900.5

Cottey campus in 1906
Main Hall and Rosemary Hall in 1906.5


Main Hall Fire

Nov. 15: A fire starts on the fourth floor of Main Hall, in one of the hospital rooms.1 The fire department is immediately called. The firefighters carry a hose through the north entrance to the fourth floor, where the flames are soon extinguished. The entire room, including ceiling and floor, are destroyed by fire and water.

William Jennings Bryan, c. 1901 William Jennings Bryan at Missouri Hall, 1901.

John Joins the Ministry

John Stockard, V.A. Cottey's stepson, leaves Cottey to join the ministry. He returns to the college a year later.


William Jennings Bryan

May 16: Orator and Congressman William Jennings Bryan speaks at Lake Park Springs. All of Cottey attends, and Alice meets him personally. Two Cottey students present him with flowers at the park. He visits Cottey that night to thank all the girls personally before retiring at A.B. Cockerill's house (the future Missouri Hall).

Main Hall and Rosemary Hall, c. 1908 Rosemary and Main halls, c. 1908.


Rosemary Hall Built

The West Building (Rosemary Hall) is built. It is the first hall to utilize the suite plan.

Madame Blitz's Attempted Suicide

Music professor Madame Blitz consumes deadly nightshade in an attempt to kill herself, but survives.

John Weds

August: John Stockard weds Cottey alumna Edna Busby.

Ems and Mags Formed

Madame Blitz Mme. Blitz.

The Emerson and Magnoperian literary societies are formed by professor John Stockard.


Madame Blitz's Death

May 26: Professor Madame Blitz commits suicide by drinking carbolic acid. Her husband, music professor Dr. Blitz moves to New York, where he has a studio in Carnegie Hall.


Main Hall Suites

Main Hall's boarding rooms are remodeled into suites like those of Rosemary Hall.

Katie Weds

Katie Stockard, Alice Cottey's stepdaughter, weds Robert Milam in Main Hall parlor.


College Given to Nevada

Mar. 22: V.A.C. Stockard transfers ownership of the college to Nevada. College finances are now run by an all-male board of trustees: W.T. McClure (V.A.C. Stockard's brother-in-law), M.T. January, I.W. Ammerman (V.A.C.S.'s doctor), J.S. Clark, Joseph King, J.B. Latimer, R.M. Burton, W.A. Bearsley, F.H. Glenn, Chas. Thom, Theo Lacaff, J.B. Robinson.

Faung Chung Tsao

Faung Chung Tsao enters Cottey in the fall, one of the first Chinese women sent to the U.S. to study education.

Stockard Hall, c. 1950 Stockard Hall, c. 1950.


Stockard Hall Built

Stockard Hall is built across the street from Main Hall. It is used as Virginia Alice Cottey's home and a dormitory for students. Eight young ladies move in this year.

Association of College Presidents

The Association of College Presidents is formed by seven women's colleges in Missouri to standardize credits and requirements. At its first meeting, Alice lectures on college revivals and the place of religion in college.


Founder Protests Saloon

Jan. 14: V.A.C. Stockard leads a group of women against the licensing of a saloon in Nevada.4

Silver Jubilee

Oct. 20: As part of Cottey’s 25th anniversary celebration, a procession of perhaps 500 people marches from Main Hall towards the town square and back to the school.3 The ranks included V.A.C. Stockard, Cottey faculty, Cottey students in uniform and class colors, visiting college presidents, ministers, high school faculty and students, and primary school faculty. An "Alumnae rally" followed in the auditorium, then a grand banquet in the Main Hall dining room. Various toasts were given, honoring Cottey and its founder, and about $1,500 was raised for the endowment fund.

Works Cited:
  1. "Fire at Cottey College." The Daily Mail [Nevada MO] 15 Nov. 1900: 1. Google news. Web.
  2. "Miss Cottey Started Her School in 1884." The P.E.O. Record Mar. 1969: 17-24. Print.
  3. "Silver Jubilee Celebrated." The Nevada Daily Mail [Nevada MO] 21 Oct. 1909: 4. Google news. Web.
  4. "The Saloon License Petition." The Nevada Daily Mail [Nevada, MO] 14 Jan. 1909: 1. Google news. Web.
  5. "Sanborn Maps for Missouri." University of Missouri Digital Library. Web.
  6. "One Vision ~ 125 Years!" Cottey Viewpoint. Spring 2009. Print.
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