GEORGE WASHINGTON GAVE $25,000 FROM HIS PERSONAL ESTATE FOR THE PURPOSE OF ESTABLISHING SUCH AN INSTITUTION BUT IN THE EARLY DAYS OF THE REPUBLIC BOTH CONGRESS AND THOMAS JEFFERSON OPPOSED THE IDEA. BUT IN PURSUIT OF GEORGE WASHINGTON’S GOAL, THE SCHOOL’S FOUNDERS IN THE 1860S CITED HIS STATEMENT THAT “A PRIMARY OBJECT OF SUCH A NATIONAL INSTITUTION SHOULD BE THE EDUCATION OF OUR YOUTH IN THE SCIENCE OF GOVERNMENT” AND MADE THE SCHOOL OF LAW THE UNIVERSITY’S FIRST INSTITUTION. IN THE EARLY YEARS OF THE NATIONAL UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF LAW THE U. S. PRESIDENT ACTED AS CHANCELLOR EX OFFICIO BY VIRTUE OF THEIR OFFICE. AFTER PRESIDENT GROVER CLEVELAND, THE BOARD OF REGENTS ABOLISHED THE OFFICE AND ELECTED THEIR OWN CHANCELLOR. TWO FUTURE CHANCELLORS HAVE ALSO SIGNED THIS DIPLOMA.
A MERGER WITH GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVRSITY WAS DELAYED BY THE MAJOR STUMBLING BLOCK OF SEGREGATION. NATIONAL HAD DESEGREGATED YEARS BEFORE WHILE GEORGE WASHINGTON HAD REMAINED STAUNCHLY OPPOSED TO INTEGRATION. AS NATIONAL HAD SIX AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDENTS MATRICULATING AT THE TIME, MERGING THE SCHOOLS WOULD REQUIRE A CHANGE IN POLICY. GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY, UNDER PRESSURE FROM STUDENTS, FACULTY, AND THE AMERICN ASSOCIATION OF LAW SCHOOLS, VOTED TO DESEGREGATE THE UNIVERSITY ON JUNE 30, 1954, AND THE MERGER PROCEEDED TO CREATE NATIONAL LAW CENTER AT THE GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY.
GROVER CLEVELAND (1837-1908) SIGNED DOCUMENT AS PRESIDNET OF UNITED STATES AND CHANCELLOR EX OFFICIO BY VIRTUE OF HIS OFFICE, “Grover Cleveland”, partially printed sheet of vellum, 16.25 x 20, [Washington, D. C.], 1887, a partially printed document in Latin for the National University School of Law conferring a diploma upon Robert H. Farrelly. President Cleveland was the last U. S. President to act as ex officio of the university by virtue of their office.
Also signed by five others, including two future chancellors, Eugene Carusi, and Arthur MacArthur (1815-96), a Scottish-American immigrant lawyer, and judge. He was the fourth Governor of Wisconsin (for four days) and an associate justice of the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia. He was the grandfather of General Douglas MacArthur.
In fine condition with gold foil seal intact and some age toning throughout.