Today, January 27, represents a momentous date in the history of the University of Georgia, for three reasons.
On this date in 1785, the Georgia General Assembly became the first American legislature to charter a state university. The 224th anniversary of the birth of the University of Georgia will be commemorated with the Founders’ Day Lecture by Dr. Thomas G. Dyer, which will be delivered at 3:00 this afternoon in the Chapel. (Alice Vernon may be contacted for additional information.)
Exactly 29 years later, on this date in 1814, Captain Samuel Butts was killed leading a Georgia Militia charge against the Creek Indians at the Battle of Chalibbe in the War of 1812. Captain Butts later became the namesake of Butts County, and one of his direct descendants, James Wallace Butts, served as the head coach of the Bulldogs from 1939 to 1960, compiling a 140-86-9 record that included four Southeastern Conference championships and victories in the Orange, Rose, and Sugar Bowls.
Exactly 181 years later, on this date in 1995, my wife and I went out on our first date. O.K., maybe that isn’t quite as big a deal to you, but it happened in Athens while we were both students at the University, so I’m counting it.