SPEAKER 1: This is a production of Cornell University.
SPEAKER 2: The Baldwin Memorial Stairway, which runs from Llenroc to University Avenue, was a gift to Delta Phi, to Cornell University, and to the citizens of Ithaca from Arthur J. Baldwin, class of 1892, in memory of his son, Morgan Smiley Baldwin, class of 1915.
The following ceremony marks the reinstallation of the stairway cornerstone box on November 11, 2006.
[MUSIC - CHOIR, "THE STAR-SPANGLED BANNER"]
Oh, say can you see by the dawn's early light what so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming? Whose brought stripes and bright stars through the perilous fight, o'er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming?
And the rocket's red glare, the bombs bursting in air gave proof through the night that our flag was still there. Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave o'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?
ELAINE ANGST: On September 26, the Mason Shop was repairing this stairway, and they came across a copper box and called us and said, what do we do? And I said, we found it, we open it. So we did. The box was installed as a memorial to Morgan Smiley Baldwin. Morgan Smiley Baldwin was a member of the class of 1915 and a member of Delta Phi. He came from a long-time Cornell family. His father, Arthur Baldwin, his uncle, Leonard Baldwin were members of the class of 1892 and among the founders of Delta Phi.
Morgan Baldwin attended Cornell. He then went on to Columbia Law School. When the United States declared war on Germany in 1917, he volunteered. He was sent to France, and he was wounded in the final assault on the Hindenburg Line. He died of his wounds on October 9, 1918 and was buried in France.
Now, when his father, Arthur Baldwin lived here, Llenroc was not owned by Delta Phi, so he lived out on Linn Street, and he spent a lot of time walking up and down the hill. When he decided to build a memorial to his son, he decided that a stairway would be an appropriate memorial.
The stairway was given to Delta Phi, to Cornell, and to the citizens of Ithaca as a shortcut between the campus and the city. We are reinstalling the box on that memorial today. We are doing this, again, in memory of Morgan Smiley Baldwin and all of the young men and young women who died in the service of our country. Thank you.
SPEAKER 3: It is my distinct honor and privilege to memorialize the reburial of the history and mementos of our brother, Morgan Smiley Baldwin, Pi 1911, Cornell class of 1915. It is a long-lasting fraternity tradition that members be buried with their brotherhood pen. And although brother Baldwin rests where he fell in Beaune, France, it is only fitting that these effects be interred instead with this memorial staircase that has meant so much to those he loved as well as to the fraternity, Cornell University, and the citizens of Ithaca, New York.
Since its creation, the staircase has been linked inextricably to the Delta Phi. It has been witness to countless footsteps of brothers trekking downtown to the Ithaca commons, hosted numerous cocktail parties and football tailgates, stood at the true and firm as young men steeled themselves for initiation into the fraternity, and most poignantly, once housed a flagpole that our sophomores dutifully attended to each morning and evening.
The staircase and the brothers whose service and ultimate sacrifice it memorializes will always be considered a part of this fraternity. In 2011, our fraternity will commemorate its 100th year that we have made our home at Llenroc, Villa of Ezra Cornell, and our 120th year on campus. During that time, the Delta Phi fraternity has helped to shape the lives of over 1,350, Cornell men, and as the story of Morgan and his father illuminates, it has touched the families of those men as well.
We each seek personal fulfillment through higher education, hard work, and through service to our country in times of peace and times of war. Morgan Smiley Baldwin paid the ultimate price for something he believed in wholeheartedly, and in doing so, inspired many others. This reflects the true nature of the Delta Phi brother, a scholar, and a gentleman, beloved and respected. Semper ubique.
[MUSIC - UNION BRIGADIER GENERAL DANIEL BUTTERFIELD, "TAPS"]
SPEAKER 2: On the day prior to the reinstallation ceremony, the new cornerstone box was prepared in Cornell's Kroch Library.
JIM GIBBS: Cut a little bit thicker.
ELAINE ANGST: A little thicker, yea. Some other Ithaca items.
JIM GIBBS: Oh, right. Which one of these do I like?
My name is Jim Gibbs. I'm director of maintenance management.
Yep, same thing here. I think this one's a little more complete.
The original time capsule included the early stages of construction of the stairway, drawings of the original stairway.
It was in this section of the extra of the masonry that we found the time capsule.
There was a calendar.
ELAINE ANGST: Calendars, legend.
JIM GIBBS: There were Morgan's Delta Phi pin.
ELAINE ANGST: OK, when we actually put things in, I'm going to make a list.
JIM GIBBS: Yes, we need an inventory. That's correct.
ELAINE ANGST: So that's actually a prettier picture, I think, because you get a little more of this-- the fact that it's early fall.
JIM GIBBS: Right. And contact.
ELAINE ANGST: I'm Elaine Angst. I'm the director of the division of rare and manuscript collections in the Cornell Library, and I'm Cornell's University's archivist. We've tried to find modern equivalents, contemporary equivalents of the Cornell items that were in the original box. We have a nice pendant from delta phi. We've got plans for the masonry repairs to go with the original blueprints. So we've, again, tried to convey what it's like in Ithaca and at Cornell in 2006.
JIM GIBBS: The ceremony is to reinstall the time capsule in a similar way that it was done in 1925 when the original time capsule was installed.
ELAINE ANGST: Hopefully, this will bring some more attention to this really very lovely spot on campus because when you actually stand at the memorial, you have a beautiful view of the lake and really, a beautiful view of the city of Ithaca.
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The reinstallation ceremony and historical perspective on the cornerstone of the Baldwin Memorial Stairway. Originally dedicated on November 11, 1925, the Stairway, which runs from Llenroc (Delta Phi) to University Avenue, was a gift to Delta Phi, to Cornell University, and to the citizens of Ithaca from Arthur J. Baldwin in memory of his son, Morgan Smiley Baldwin '15, who died during World War I.