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Schill calls on UO to comment on renaming Deady and Dunn halls



University of Oregon President Michael Schill asked the campus community today for their opinions on renaming Deady and Dunn halls, which are named after racists in UO’s past.

Schill sent out an email to the campus community on August 9 detailing the process the administration has gone through considering the renaming of Deady and Dunn Halls. In the email, Schill provided a link to a comment form for all UO students, staff and faculty to weigh in on this controversial topic.

This consideration by UO administration came after the Black Student Task Force sent out a list of 13 demands last fall. The demands varied from creating a black cultural center on campus and removing the names of Matthew Deady and Frederick Dunn from two of the oldest buildings on campus. The BTSF cited these men’s racist histories as the reason that the UO should rename the halls.

Matthew Deady is the namesake of University of Oregon's first building. Photo credit: Jarred Graham

Matthew Deady is the namesake of University of Oregon’s first building. Photo credit: Jarred Graham

The administration charged a task force earlier this year with generating a set of guidelines for the decision to rename the historic buildings on campus, as well as assigned three historians with uncovering all relevant research related to these buildings and their namesakes. These historians provided their findings to the UO administration on August 5.

The findings confirmed many of the criteria the BTSF cited as reasons to rename the buildings. Deady, who was a politician and judge on the Oregon Supreme Court, ran a pro-slavery campaign and supported many laws that excluded minority groups from entering the Oregon Territory. Dunn, a former Latin professor and chairman of the Latin Studies program at the UO, was a member and Grand Cyclops of the Eugene chapter of the Ku Klux Klan, the report confirms.

Schill called on the UO community to provide insight on the consideration to rename these halls by 5 p.m. on August 24. Following this comment period, Schill said he will, “Carefully consider the report and all the comments before announcing next steps, including the possibility of taking a denaming proposal for one or both buildings to the UO Board of Trustees.”

 

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Troy Shinn

Troy Shinn

Politics News Reporter for the Oregon Daily Emerald. UO Senior studying Journalism and Film.