Special May 4 Exhibits
During the 50th Commemoration Weekend, we invite you to view the special May 4 exhibits that will be on display around campus.
FOUR FALLEN STUDENTS
This is the collective title of the four separate exhibits (one for each of the students killed) previously displayed at the May 4 Visitors Center
- ALLISON THE PROTESTOR
From the time she volunteered at a mental hospital in high school to the time she helped organize a campus-wide march against the Vietnam War as a freshman, it was clear that Allison Krause was an activist. Through her own words and the memories of the people who loved her most, this exhibit illustrates Allison’s heart, humor, and her efforts to change the world.
- BILL: AN ALL-AMERICAN BOY
Bill was an All-American boy – athletic, loyal, and extremely patriotic. He was the captain of his high school basketball team, a member of the marching band, Lorain’s youngest Eagle Scout, and he attended both the Colorado School of Mines and Kent State University on a Reserved Officer Training Corp (ROTC) scholarship. Through Bill’s exhibition, current students can learn about a person who represented some of the best of attributes his generation.
- OUR BROTHER JEFF
Jeffrey Miller’s exhibition tells the relatable story of a young person finding themselves and forging new relationships with friends and family. As kids, Jeff and his older brother Russ were very close. It was no surprise that when Russ left for Michigan State, Jeff soon followed. Jeff even pledged Russ’ fraternity, becoming a brother pf Phi Kappa Tau. However, the divides of the times started to push them apart as Jeff grew increasingly disillusioned with the Vietnam War and became a “brother’ in the cause. In this way, Jeff is like a brother to us all.
- • SANDY’S SCRAPBOOK
In an era before social media, Sandy Scheuer chronicled her life in the pages of her scrapbooks. Her candid photographs, personal letters, and lovingly selected mementos paint a story full of friendship, family, and adventure. They are the inspiration for this exhibit. The colors, flowers, artifacts, and inscriptions all mirror her own selections.
50 YEARS: LONG LIVE THE MEMORY OF ORANGEBURG, JACKSON STATE, AND KENT STATE
This is the title of a joint exhibit series (individual exhibits are listed below separately) involving Kent State and Jackson State.
- THE BEST OF US: LESSONS FROM KENT STATE AND JACKSON STATE
On Saturday, May 3, 1970, Governor Rhodes called the students who participated in the protests here at Kent State, the “worst type of people in America.” This exhibit will counter that narrative to show that the students targeted at both Kent State and Jackson State, in fact, reflected the best of us. This exhibit will highlight the lives of those who survived the shootings and those whose lives were touched by this tragedy.
- BLACK STUDENT MOVEMENTS: ORANGEBURG, KENT AND JACKSON STATE 1968-1970
This exhibit seeks to highlight the civil rights struggles and anti-war protests which students engaged in at Orangeburg, Kent State University and Jackson State University as well as presenting images from the shootings which occur at each of the three Universities between the years 1968-1970.
- CIVIL RIGHTS, BLACK POWER, AND ANTI-WAR ACTIONS: ORANGEBURG, KENT, AND JACKSON STATE, 1960-1967
This exhibit provides a historical context of social activism at each geographical location during the years leading up to the shootings at South Carolina State (Orangeburg), Kent State (Ohio), and Jackson State (Mississippi). The exhibit will showcase key events in each of the three institutions' immediate environments indicating a growing level of Civil Rights actions, anti-war protests, and the development of a Black Power movement occurring from 1960 to 1967.
CAMPUS STRIKE PAPERS: THE AFTERMATH OF MAY 4 1970
In the aftermath of the expansion of the war into Cambodia and the Kent State and Jackson State shootings, countless student demonstrations and strikes were staged throughout the country. Kent State University’s Special Collections and Archives collected materials from colleges and universities across the United States. This exhibit will highlight selected flyers, newsletters, newspapers, and correspondence that reflect the sentiments of a portion of the American student body, faculty, and administrative officials during this time.
CULTURE/COUNTERCULTURE: FASHIONS OF THE 1960S AND 70S
The exhibition Culture/Counterculture looks at fashions of the 1960s and early 1970s with a particular focus on the generation gap during that period. The exhibition is scheduled to coincide with the 50th anniversary of Kent State’s shootings on May 4, 1970. Almost 50 years ago, the shootings of Kent State University students by the Ohio National Guard brought to a head the cultural divides that had split the nation. There was a sharp contrast between supporters of the establishment and those opposed – the culture and the counterculture. These cleavages in society saw their clear expression in the fashions of the time. The exhibition draws from private, the Rock Hall of Fame and the university’s historic costume collection
KICK OUT THE JAMS: AUTHENTIC IMAGES FROM THE ROCK & ROLL ERA AT KENT
A collection of images of notable rock & roll musicians who performed at Kent State during the ‘60s and ‘70s.
MAPPING MAY 4: ORAL HISTORY WALL MAP EXHIBIT
Wall-sized maps of the city of Kent and the Kent State University campus in 1970 will be on exhibit during the Commemoration weekend at the May 4 Visitors Center and the Kent Historical Society & Museum. Both maps, which use an aerial photo from 1970, have physical buttons that when pushed, share audio stories about what happened at particular sites from May 1-5, 1970. Content is drawn from oral histories in the May 4 Collection, Kent State Special Collections and Archives.
MAY 4 MEMORIAL DESIGNS
In 1990, Kent State University dedicated a memorial to the students killed and wounded during the May 4, 1970 tragedy. The designs submitted represented a wide variety of opinions, viewpoints and design styles. Many of the designs submitted have never before been made available for public viewing. This exhibit provides a rare glimpse into some of the concepts submitted as part of the design content including one by John Cleary who was wounded on May 4, 1970.
THE TRUTH DEMANDS JUSTICE: A SNAPSHOT HISTORY OF THE MAY 4 TASK FORCE
This exhibition will feature posters, flyers, t-shirts and other items created by the May 4th Task Force, a student-run organization founded in 1975, to raise awareness among students, faculty, administrators and the general public about the Kent State shootings of May 4, 1970.
VOICES OF CHANGE: KENT STATE STUDENTS AND PRESIDENT NIXON
When the campus closed after the shootings on May 4, a group of Kent State students hopped in a car and headed to Washington, D.C. Two days later they found themselves in the Oval Office with President Nixon. This brief exhibit highlights that meeting and shares Nixon’s actions just before and, in the days, and weeks after the May 4 shootings.
Wearing Justice” uses student- and faculty-made designs and fashion to create a dialogue about social justice, political discourse, conflict resolution, war and peace. The exhibition features designs that directly address the reverberations of May 4, while others focus on today’s global concerns from gun violence to climate change to corporate greed. The museum hopes “Wearing Justice” sparks conversations about the significant role fashion plays in social activism.
WITNESS – THE PIVOTAL ROLE OF STUDENTS IN DOCUMENTING THE MAY 4 SHOOTINGS
WITNESS tells the story of the events of May 4, 1970, through the eyes of the Kent State students and student journalists who experienced them. The photographs of more than a dozen Kent State students, including alumni such as John Filo, Howard Ruffner and Lafayette Tolliver, offer compelling and courageous eyewitness perspectives that served as an early and essential visual history of May 4. The exhibit is sponsored by the College of Communication and Information (CCI) and is open to the public.
WAGING PEACE IN VIETNAM
Kent State University is pleased to host the traveling exhibit Waging Peace in Vietnam, which documents the influential and often-overlooked peace movement conducted by anti-war soldiers and veterans during the Vietnam War. Both the exhibit and its companion book present the case that American soldiers and veterans served as powerful agents of peace and were a significant factor in the U.S. withdrawal of troops in Vietnam. The exhibit currently is touring around the United States.