The History of May 4

The tragic events of May 4, 1970, had a profound impact on ├█Đ┐appUniversity, the nation and the world. In the ensuing years, Kent State's learning community has honored the memories of Allison Krause, Jeffrey Miller, Sandra Scheuer and William Schroeder with an enduring dedication to scholarship that seeks to prevent violence and promote democratic values from public service to civil discourse.

The university's national leadership role in promoting nonviolence and other democratic values extends to 1971, when the Center for Peaceful Change was established to generate research, teaching and community outreach focused on nonviolent conflict resolution. The center has since been renamed the School of Peace and Conflict Studies. The May 4 Resource Center, established in 1973 in the library, houses materials documenting May 4 and serves as a public reading room and memorial.

Chic and Alan Canfora discuss the impact of the universityÔÇÖs decision to assume responsibility for the annual May 4 Commemoration. Both were students who were present at the shootings; Alan is one of nine students who were wounded.
  • ├█Đ┐apphas numerous experts, including witnesses, historians and other members of the university community, who are available for media interviews about the history and impact of May 4. Their contact information can be found in the Guide to Experts by entering "May 4" in the block marked "expertise."

  • Special Collections & Archives houses the May 4 Collection, one of the largest archives related to the ├█Đ┐appshootings and their aftermath. More than 50,000 items from this archive are now available in digital format online, along with oral histories and audio-visual materials. Our archivists and librarians have in-depth expertise in assisting researchers, film makers, students and others to access archival resources associated with May 4.

  • Trace the steps of history through this documentary in the style of Ken Burns ÔÇö based on 500 archival photographs never before brought together and narrated by notable civil rights leader Julian Bond. The chapters of the documentary are keyed to the seven Walking Tour trail markers.