America's Valhalla

Hall of Fame Opened on Memorial Day.

Fort Wayne Morning Journal-Gazette

When a thing happens for the first time, it is likely to attract universal attention, and the dedication of the great Hall of Fame on University Heights, New York, on Memorial Day, marks the advent of something that is entirely new in the annals of this republic. Great men and women have been born and have passed away, great deeds have been performed and most of them forgotten, but at last the accusatory apothegm, so often quoted in Europe, that republics are notoriously ungrateful, is likely to fall into desuetude, for now we have an American Valhalla, where the names of our most famous heroes, in whatever field they may have performed their exploits, will be perpetuated by means of durable memorials.

This wonderful structure, the Hall of Fame, is the outcome of an unconditional gift to the University of the City of New York in March, 1900, for the purpose of commemorating the achievements of those eminent in the arts of peace as well as in those of war, the author, the inventor and the scientist, to rank equally with the warrior and the statesman.

The gift was originally one hundred thousand dollars, but no limit was set upon expenditure, and double that sum has probably been expended in providing the structure now crowning beautiful University Heights. The name of the donor was withheld, but it has been universally assumed that it is Miss Helen Gould, already so well known through her generous and judicious benefactions.

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Cannon Fired at the Clouds
June 20, 1901

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