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Also known as Kent State, Kent State University is one of the nation's top 90 public research universities.Its main campus is in Kent, Ohio and regional campuses are located in Ashtabula, East Liverpool, Geauga, Salem, Stark, Trumbull, and Tuscarawas.Regarded as the second largest of all Ohio universities, the university is dedicated to preparing students for responsible citizenship and productive careers, broaden intellectual perspectives and foster ethical and humanitarian values.With its founding in 1910 as a teacher-training school, the university has been serving as an engine for economic, cultural, and workforce development in the region and beyond.It is accredited regionally by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (NCACHE).The curriculum is designed to prepare the students for challenging and exciting careers around the globe. International programs, sponsored programs, interdisciplinary programs, and advanced degree programs are offered, as well.Kent State University encompasses schools and colleges such as the College of Arts and Sciences; College of Architecture and Environmental Design; College of Business Administration; College of Communication and Information; College and Graduate School of Education, Health, and Human Services; College of Fine and Professional Arts; College of Nursing; Honors College; School of Technology; and the College of Continuing Studies. There is a separate division of research, graduate studies, and technology transfer.Designated as a Doctoral/Research-Extensive university, the campus proudly hosts 77 centers and institutes, all of them supporting the institution’s teaching, research, and public service mission in its own unique way.The eight-campus library system comprises 14 libraries, which provide access to primary sources and rare materials.The university offers a rich variety of cultural and artistic opportunities for its students through the School of Music, Art, Theater and Dance, and Art Downtown Gallery.The intercollegiate athletic program competes at the highest National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I level.Internships and financial assistance to eligible students are offered.Dedicated to costumes and decorative arts, the Kent State Museum has a costume collection that features American and European high fashion from the 18th century to the present day.
Kent State Shootings: A Timeline of the Tragedy
On May 4, 1970, members of the Ohio National Guard trying to disperse a crowd of student demonstrators at Kent State University opened fire, killing four students and wounding nine others.
More than any other single event, the Kent State shootings would become a focal point of the ongoing, bitter divisions among Americans over the Vietnam War. The deadly outburst marked the culmination of several days of confrontations between law enforcement and protesters, which had begun after President Richard M. Nixon announced in a TV broadcast that he had authorized U.S. troops to invade Cambodia.
Nixon’s decision, which expanded the Vietnam War at a time when the United States had been in the process of withdrawing its troops, immediately sparked anti-war protests at colleges across the country—including Kent State.
Kent State University History
Special Collections and Archives acquires and houses Kent State University records of historical and research value. Serving as Kent State’s organizational memory, these materials include university and student publications, correspondence, computer data, financial statements, archives of student organizations, minutes of meetings, photographs, faculty papers, and many, many other types of materials related to the activities, functions, and history of the university. Materials are added on an ongoing basis and Special Collections and Archives is working to develop more collections that document historically-underrepresented groups within the Kent State family.
Recognizing the historic significance of the 1970 shootings on campus, Special Collections and Archives began to build, starting in the weeks following the shootings, collections of both primary and secondary source materials. This has grown (and continues to grow) to become the extensive archive known today as the “May 4 Collection.” It enables students and other researchers to explore in depth that pivotal moment in American history and its enduring legacy here at Kent State.
Kent State Shootings
In May 1970, students protesting the bombing of Cambodia by United States military forces, clashed with Ohio National Guardsmen on the Kent State University campus. When the Guardsmen shot and killed four students on May 4, the Kent State Shootings became the focal point of a nation deeply divided by the Vietnam War.
By 1970, thousands of people in the United States were actively protesting the Vietnam War. There were numerous reasons why these protests took place. Some of the prominent ones included revelations that former President Lyndon Baines Johnson had misled the U.S. public about the Gulf of Tonkin Incident, which led to the escalation of U.S. involvement in Vietnam in late 1964. The ending of college deferments, which previously had exempted most college students from the draft and service in Vietnam, further contributed to the protests. Finally, revelations that the United States military was bombing and sending troops into Cambodia, a country neighboring North and South Vietnam, and the increasing number of U.S. casualties further angered many people.
Numerous people protested the Vietnam War for these and other reasons as well. These protests usually were peaceful and included such things as burning draft cards, fleeing to Canada or some other country to escape the draft, protest rallies and marches, or simply remaining enrolled in college to avoid the draft. However, even peaceful protests sometimes turned violent, as United States involvement in the Vietnam War divided the United States public.
The most well known protest involving the Vietnam War occurred at Kent State University in Ohio in May 1970. On May 1, Kent State students held an anti-war protest. That evening several incidents occurred, including rocks and bottles being thrown at police officers and the lighting of bonfires. These incidents led to the closure of bars by authorities before normal closing time to reduce alcohol consumption. Eventually students, other anti-war activists, and common criminals began to break windows and loot stores.
The mayor of Kent, Leroy Satrom, declared a state of emergency on May 2. He requested that Governor James A. Rhodes send the Ohio National Guard to Kent to help maintain order. Rhodes agreed, and the National Guard members began to arrive the evening of May 2. As the soldiers arrived, they found the Reserve Officer Training Corps building at Kent State University in flames. It is unclear who set the building on fire. It may have been anti-war protesters, but it also could have been someone seeking to have the protesters blamed. Interestingly, Kent State officials had already boarded up the ROTC building and were planning to raze it. Protesters were celebrating the building's destruction as fire fighters arrived. The protesters, who included both students and non-students, jeered the fire fighters and even sliced the hoses that the fire fighters were using to extinguish the flames. National Guard members arrived to reestablish order and resorted to tear gas to disperse the protesters.
On May 3, approximately one thousand National Guard soldiers were on the Kent State campus. Tensions remained high, and Governor Rhodes further escalated them by accusing the protesters of being unpatriotic. He proclaimed, "They're the worst type of people that we harbor in America. I think that we're up against the strongest, well-trained, militant, revolutionary group that has ever assembled in America." Some Kent State students assisted local businesses and the city in cleaning up damage from the previous night's activities, but other students and non-students continued to hold protests, further exacerbating the situation. The National Guard continued to break up these demonstrations, including threatening students with bayonets.
On May 4, a Monday, classes resumed at Kent State. Anti-war protesters scheduled a rally for noon at the campus. University officials attempted to ban the gathering but proved unsuccessful in their efforts. As the protest began, National Guard members fired tear gas at the demonstrators. Due to wind, the tear gas proved ineffective. Some of the protesters threw the canisters, along with rocks, back at the soldiers. Some of the demonstrators yelled slogans, such as "Pigs off campus!", at the soldiers.
Eventually seventy-seven guardsmen advanced on the protesters with armed rifles and bayonets. Protesters continued to throw things at the soldiers. Twenty-nine of the soldiers, purportedly fearing for their lives, eventually opened fire. The gunfire lasted just thirteen seconds, although some witnesses contended that it lasted more than one minute. The troops fired a total of sixty-seven shots. When the firing ended, nine students lay wounded, and four other students had been killed. Two of the students who died actually had not participated in the protests.
The Vietnam War had escalated under Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson before Richard Nixon took office. Under Johnson, the number of American troops in Vietnam soared from 16,000 when he replaced Kennedy in 1963 to more than 500,000 in 1968 but with no tangible results. When Nixon was elected in 1968, he promised to end the conflict. However, in November, 1969, the My Lai Massacre by American troops of between 347 and 504 civilians in a Vietnamese village was exposed, which heightened opposition especially among younger people around the country. The nature of military participation also changed on Dec. 1, 1969, when the first draft lottery since World War II took place. The new procedure eliminated deferments allowed in the prior draft process, leaving many college students and teachers unsure of their immediate futures.
The escalation of the invasion of Cambodia in 1970 angered those who believed it only exacerbated the conflict by enlarging it and invading a neutral, sovereign nation. Across the U.S., campuses erupted in protests in what Time called "a nation-wide student strike", setting the stage for the events of early May, 1970.
Kent State protest activity, 1966–1970 Edit
During the 1966 Homecoming Parade, protesters walked dressed in military paraphernalia with gas masks. 
In the fall of 1968, the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) and a campus Black Student Organization staged a sit-in to protest police recruiters on campus. Two hundred fifty black students walked off campus in a successful amnesty bid for the protesters. 
On April 1, 1969, SDS members attempted to enter the administration building with a list of demands where they clashed with police. In response, the university revoked the Kent State SDS chapter charter. On April 16 a disciplinary hearing involving two of the protesters resulted in a confrontation between supporters and opponents of SDS. The Ohio State Highway Patrol was called and fifty-eight people were arrested. Four SDS leaders spent six months in prison as a result of the incident. 
On April 10, 1970, Jerry Rubin, a leader of the Youth International Party (also known as the Yippies), spoke on campus. In remarks reported locally, he said: "The first part of the Yippie program is to kill your parents. They are the first oppressors." Two weeks after that, Bill Anthrell, an SDS member and former student, distributed flyers to an event in which he said he was going to napalm a dog. The event turned out to be an anti-napalm teach-in. 
Thursday, April 30 Edit
President Nixon announced that the "Cambodian Incursion" had been launched by United States combat forces.
Friday, May 1 Edit
At Kent State University, a demonstration with about 500 students  was held on May 1 on the Commons (a grassy knoll in the center of campus traditionally used as a gathering place for rallies or protests). As the crowd dispersed to attend classes by 1 p.m., another rally was planned for May 4 to continue the protest of the expansion of the Vietnam War into Cambodia. There was widespread anger, and many protesters issued a call to "bring the war home". A group of history students buried a copy of the United States Constitution to symbolize that Nixon had killed it.  A sign was put on a tree asking: "Why is the ROTC building still standing?" 
Trouble exploded in town around midnight, when people left a bar and began throwing beer bottles at police cars and breaking windows in downtown storefronts. In the process they broke a bank window, setting off an alarm. The news spread quickly and it resulted in several bars closing early to avoid trouble. Before long, more people had joined the vandalism.
By the time police arrived, a crowd of 120 had already gathered. Some people from the crowd lit a small bonfire in the street. The crowd appeared to be a mix of bikers, students, and transient people. A few members of the crowd began to throw beer bottles at the police, and then started yelling obscenities at them. The entire Kent police force was called to duty as well as officers from the county and surrounding communities. Kent Mayor LeRoy Satrom declared a state of emergency, called the office of Ohio Governor Jim Rhodes to seek assistance, and ordered all of the bars to be closed. The decision to close the bars early only served to increase tensions in the area. Police eventually succeeded in using tear gas to disperse the crowd from downtown, forcing them to move several blocks back to the campus. 
Saturday, May 2 Edit
City officials and downtown businesses received threats, and rumors proliferated that radical revolutionaries were in Kent to destroy the city and university. Several merchants reported they were told that if they did not display anti-war slogans, their businesses would be burned down. Kent's police chief told the mayor that according to a reliable informant, the ROTC building, the local army recruiting station, and post office had been targeted for destruction that night.  There were unconfirmed rumors of students with caches of arms, plots to spike the local water supply with LSD, and of students building tunnels for the purpose of blowing up the town's main store.  Satrom met with Kent city officials and a representative of the Ohio Army National Guard. Because of the rumors and threats, Satrom feared that local officials would not be able to handle future disturbances.  Following the meeting, Satrom made the decision to call Rhodes and request that the National Guard be sent to Kent, a request that was granted immediately.
The decision to call in the National Guard was made at 5:00 p.m., but the guard did not arrive in town that evening until around 10 p.m. By this time, a large demonstration was underway on the campus, and the campus Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) building was burning.  The arsonists were never apprehended, and no one was injured in the fire. According to the report of the President's Commission on Campus Unrest:
Information developed by an FBI investigation of the ROTC building fire indicates that, of those who participated actively, a significant portion weren't Kent State students. There is also evidence to suggest that the burning was planned beforehand: railroad flares, a machete, and ice picks are not customarily carried to peaceful rallies. 
There were reports that some Kent firemen and police officers were struck by rocks and other objects while attempting to extinguish the blaze. Several fire engine companies had to be called because protesters carried the fire hose into the Commons and slashed it.    The National Guard made numerous arrests, mostly for curfew violations, and used tear gas at least one student was slightly wounded with a bayonet. 
Sunday, May 3 Edit
During a press conference at the Kent firehouse, an emotional Governor Rhodes pounded on the desk,  which can be heard in the recording of his speech.  He called the student protesters un-American, referring to them as revolutionaries set on destroying higher education in Ohio.
We've seen here at the city of Kent especially, probably the most vicious form of campus-oriented violence yet perpetrated by dissident groups. they make definite plans of burning, destroying, and throwing rocks at police and at the National Guard and the Highway Patrol. . this is when we're going to use every part of the law enforcement agency of Ohio to drive them out of Kent. We are going to eradicate the problem. We're not going to treat the symptoms. . and these people just move from one campus to the other and terrorize the community. They're worse than the brown shirts and the communist element and also the night riders and the vigilantes. They're the worst type of people that we harbor in America. Now I want to say this. They are not going to take over [the] campus. I think that we're up against the strongest, well-trained, militant, revolutionary group that has ever assembled in America. 
Rhodes also claimed he would obtain a court order declaring a state of emergency that would ban further demonstrations and gave the impression that a situation akin to martial law had been declared however, he never attempted to obtain such an order. 
During the day, some students came to downtown Kent to help with clean-up efforts after the rioting, actions which were met with mixed reactions from local businessmen. Mayor Satrom, under pressure from frightened citizens, ordered a curfew until further notice.
Around 8 p.m., another rally was held on the campus Commons. By 8:45 p.m., the Guardsmen used tear gas to disperse the crowd, and the students reassembled at the intersection of Lincoln and Main, holding a sit-in with the hopes of gaining a meeting with Mayor Satrom and University President Robert White. At 11:00 p.m., the Guard announced that a curfew had gone into effect and began forcing the students back to their dorms. A few students were bayoneted by Guardsmen. 
Monday, May 4 Edit
On Monday, May 4, a protest was scheduled to be held at noon, as had been planned three days earlier. University officials attempted to ban the gathering, handing out 12,000 leaflets stating that the event was canceled. Despite these efforts, an estimated 2,000 people gathered  on the university's Commons, near Taylor Hall. The protest began with the ringing of the campus's iron Victory Bell (which had historically been used to signal victories in football games) to mark the beginning of the rally, and the first protester began to speak.
Companies A and C, 1-145th Infantry and Troop G of the 2-107th Armored Cavalry, Ohio National Guard (ARNG), the units on the campus grounds, attempted to disperse the students. The legality of the dispersal was later debated at a subsequent wrongful death and injury trial. On appeal, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled that authorities did indeed have the right to disperse the crowd. 
The dispersal process began late in the morning with campus patrolman Harold Rice  riding in a National Guard Jeep, approaching the students to read an order to disperse or face arrest. The protesters responded by throwing rocks, striking one campus patrolman and forcing the Jeep to retreat. 
Just before noon, the Guard returned and again ordered the crowd to disperse. When most of the crowd refused, the Guard used tear gas. Because of wind, the tear gas had little effect in dispersing the crowd, and some launched a second volley of rocks toward the Guard's line and chanted "Pigs off campus!" The students lobbed the tear gas canisters back at the National Guardsmen, who wore gas masks.
When it became clear that the crowd was not going to disperse, a group of 77 National Guard troops from A Company and Troop G, with bayonets fixed on their M1 Garand rifles, began to advance upon the hundreds of protesters. As the guardsmen advanced, the protesters retreated up and over Blanket Hill, heading out of the Commons area. Once over the hill, the students, in a loose group, moved northeast along the front of Taylor Hall, with some continuing toward a parking lot in front of Prentice Hall (slightly northeast of and perpendicular to Taylor Hall). The guardsmen pursued the protesters over the hill, but rather than veering left as the protesters had, they continued straight, heading toward an athletic practice field enclosed by a chain link fence. Here they remained for about 10 minutes, unsure of how to get out of the area short of retracing their path: they had boxed themselves into a fenced-in corner. During this time, the bulk of the students congregated to the left and front of the guardsmen, approximately 150 to 225 ft (46 to 69 m) away, on the veranda of Taylor Hall. Others were scattered between Taylor Hall and the Prentice Hall parking lot, while still others were standing in the parking lot, or dispersing through the lot as they had been previously ordered.
While on the practice field, the guardsmen generally faced the parking lot, which was about 100 yards (91 m) away. At one point, some of them knelt and aimed their weapons toward the parking lot, then stood up again. At one point the guardsmen formed a loose huddle and appeared to be talking to one another. They had cleared the protesters from the Commons area, and many students had left, but some stayed and were still angrily confronting the soldiers, some throwing rocks and tear gas canisters. About 10 minutes later, the guardsmen began to retrace their steps back up the hill toward the Commons area. Some of the students on the Taylor Hall veranda began to move slowly toward the soldiers as they passed over the top of the hill and headed back into the Commons.
During their climb back to Blanket Hill, several guardsmen stopped and half-turned to keep their eyes on the students in the Prentice Hall parking lot. At 12:24 p.m.,  according to eyewitnesses, a sergeant named Myron Pryor turned and began firing at the crowd of students with his .45 pistol.  A number of guardsmen nearest the students also turned and fired their rifles at the students. In all, at least 29 of the 77 guardsmen claimed to have fired their weapons, using an estimated 67 rounds of ammunition. The shooting was determined to have lasted 13 seconds, although John Kifner reported in The New York Times that "it appeared to go on, as a solid volley, for perhaps a full minute or a little longer."  The question of why the shots were fired remains widely debated.
The adjutant general of the Ohio National Guard told reporters that a sniper had fired on the guardsmen, which remains a debated allegation. Many guardsmen later testified that they were in fear for their lives, which was questioned partly because of the distance between them and the students killed or wounded. Time magazine later concluded that "triggers were not pulled accidentally at Kent State". The President's Commission on Campus Unrest avoided probing the question of why the shootings happened. Instead, it harshly criticized both the protesters and the Guardsmen, but it concluded that "the indiscriminate firing of rifles into a crowd of students and the deaths that followed were unnecessary, unwarranted, and inexcusable." 
Eyewitness accounts Edit
Several present related what they saw.
Suddenly, they turned around, got on their knees, as if they were ordered to, they did it all together, aimed. And personally, I was standing there saying, they're not going to shoot, they can't do that. If they are going to shoot, it's going to be blank. 
The shots were definitely coming my way, because when a bullet passes your head, it makes a crack. I hit the ground behind the curve, looking over. I saw a student hit. He stumbled and fell, to where he was running towards the car. Another student tried to pull him behind the car, bullets were coming through the windows of the car.
As this student fell behind the car, I saw another student go down, next to the curb, on the far side of the automobile, maybe 25 or 30 yards from where I was lying. It was maybe 25, 30, 35 seconds of sporadic firing.
The firing stopped. I lay there maybe 10 or 15 seconds. I got up, I saw four or five students lying around the lot. By this time, it was like mass hysteria. Students were crying, they were screaming for ambulances. I heard some girl screaming, "They didn't have blank, they didn't have blank," no, they didn't. 
Another witness was Chrissie Hynde, the future lead singer of The Pretenders and a student at Kent State University at the time. In her 2015 autobiography she described what she saw:
Then I heard the tatatatatatatatatat sound. I thought it was fireworks. An eerie sound fell over the common. The quiet felt like gravity pulling us to the ground. Then a young man's voice: "They fucking killed somebody!" Everything slowed down and the silence got heavier.
The ROTC building, now nothing more than a few inches of charcoal, was surrounded by National Guardsmen. They were all on one knee and pointing their rifles at . us! Then they fired.
By the time I made my way to where I could see them it was still unclear what was going on. The guardsmen themselves looked stunned. We looked at them and they looked at us. They were just kids, 19 years old, like us. But in uniform. Like our boys in Vietnam. 
Gerald Casale, the future bassist/singer of Devo, also witnessed the shootings.  While speaking to the Vermont Review in 2005, he recalled what he saw:
All I can tell you is that it completely and utterly changed my life. I was a white hippie boy and then I saw exit wounds from M1 rifles out of the backs of two people I knew.
Two of the four people who were killed, Jeffrey Miller and Allison Krause, were my friends. We were all running our asses off from these motherfuckers. It was total, utter bullshit. Live ammunition and gasmasks—none of us knew, none of us could have imagined . They shot into a crowd that was running away from them!
I stopped being a hippie and I started to develop the idea of devolution. I got real, real pissed off. 
May 4, after the shootings Edit
Immediately after the shootings, many angry students were ready to launch an all-out attack on the National Guard. Many faculty members, led by geology professor and faculty marshal Glenn Frank, pleaded with the students to leave the Commons and to not give in to violent escalation:
I don't care whether you've never listened to anyone before in your lives. I am begging you right now. If you don't disperse right now, they're going to move in, and it can only be a slaughter. Would you please listen to me? Jesus Christ, I don't want to be a part of this . ! 
After 20 minutes of speaking, the students left the Commons, as ambulance personnel tended to the wounded, and the Guard left the area. Professor Frank's son, also present that day, said, "He absolutely saved my life and hundreds of others". 
Of those wounded, none was closer than 71 feet (22 m) to the guardsmen. Of those killed, the nearest (Miller) was 265 feet (81 m) away, and their average distance from the guardsmen was 345 feet (105 m).
Killed (and approximate distance from the National Guard):
- 265 ft (81 m) shot through the mouth killed instantly. 343 ft (105 m) fatal left chest wound dead on arrival. 382 ft (116 m) fatal chest wound died almost an hour later in a local hospital while undergoing surgery. He was a member of the campus ROTC battalion. 390 ft (120 m) fatal neck wound died a few minutes later from loss of blood.
Wounded (and approximate distance from the National Guard):
- Joseph Lewis, Jr. 71 ft (22 m) hit twice once in his right abdomen and once in his lower left leg.
- John R. Cleary 110 ft (34 m) upper left chest wound.
- Thomas Mark Grace 225 ft (69 m) hit in his left ankle.
- Alan Michael Canfora 225 ft (69 m) hit in his right wrist. 
- Dean R. Kahler 300 ft (91 m) back wound fracturing the vertebrae permanently paralyzed from the chest down.
- Douglas Alan Wrentmore 329 ft (100 m) hit in his right knee.
- James Dennis Russell 375 ft (114 m) hit in his right thigh from a bullet and grazed on his right forehead by either a bullet or birdshot both wounds minor (wounded near the Memorial Gymnasium, away from most of the other students).
- Robert Follis Stamps 495 ft (151 m) hit in his right buttock.
- Donald Scott MacKenzie 750 ft (230 m) neck wound.
In the President's Commission on Campus Unrest (pp. 273–274)  they mistakenly list Thomas V. Grace, who is Thomas Mark Grace's father, as the Thomas Grace injured.
All those shot were students in good standing at the university. 
Although initial newspaper reports had inaccurately stated that a number of National Guard members had been killed or seriously injured, only one Guardsman, Sgt. Lawrence Shafer, was injured enough to require medical treatment, approximately 10 to 15 minutes prior to the shootings.  Shafer is also mentioned in an FBI memo from November 15, 1973, which was prepared by the Cleveland Office and is referred to by Field Office file # 44-703. It reads as follows:
Upon contacting appropriate officers of the Ohio National Guard at Ravenna and Akron, Ohio, regarding ONG radio logs and the availability of service record books, the respective ONG officer advised that any inquiries concerning the Kent State University incident should be directed to the Adjutant General, ONG, Columbus, Ohio. Three persons were interviewed regarding a reported conversation by Sgt Lawrence Shafer, ONG, that Shafer had bragged about "taking a bead" on Jeffrey Miller at the time of the ONG shooting and each interviewee was unable to substantiate such a conversation. 
But in an interview broadcast in 1986 on the ABC News documentary series Our World, Shafer identified the person that he fired at as student Joseph Lewis, who was shot and wounded in the attack.
Photographs of the dead and wounded at Kent State that were distributed in newspapers and periodicals worldwide amplified sentiment against the United States' invasion of Cambodia and the Vietnam War in general. In particular, the camera of Kent State photojournalism student John Filo captured a 14-year-old runaway, Mary Ann Vecchio,  screaming over the dead body of Jeffrey Miller, who had been shot in the mouth. The photograph, which won a Pulitzer Prize, became the most enduring image of the events, and one of the more enduring images of the anti-Vietnam War movement.  
The shootings led to protests on college campuses throughout the United States, and a student strike, causing more than 450 campuses across the country to close with both violent and non-violent demonstrations.  A common sentiment was expressed by students at New York University with a banner hung out of a window that read, "They Can't Kill Us All."  On May 8, eleven people were bayonetted at the University of New Mexico by the New Mexico National Guard in a confrontation with student protesters. Also on May 8, an antiwar protest at New York's Federal Hall National Memorial held at least partly in reaction to the Kent State killings was met with a counter-rally of pro-Nixon construction workers (organized by Peter J. Brennan, later appointed U.S. Labor Secretary by President Nixon), resulting in the Hard Hat Riot. Shortly after the shootings took place, the Urban Institute conducted a national study that concluded the Kent State shooting was the first nationwide student strike in U.S. history over 4 million students protested and hundreds of American colleges and universities closed during the student strikes. The Kent State campus remained closed for six weeks.
Just five days after the shootings, 100,000 people demonstrated in Washington, D.C., against the war and the killing of unarmed student protesters. Ray Price, Nixon's chief speechwriter from 1969 to 1974, recalled the Washington demonstrations saying, "The city was an armed camp. The mobs were smashing windows, slashing tires, dragging parked cars into intersections, even throwing bedsprings off overpasses into the traffic down below. This was the quote, student protest. That's not student protest, that's civil war."  Not only was the President taken to Camp David for two days for his own protection, but Charles Colson (Counsel to President Nixon from 1969 to 1973) stated that the military was called up to protect the Nixon Administration from the angry students he recalled that: "The 82nd Airborne was in the basement of the executive office building, so I went down just to talk to some of the guys and walk among them, and they're lying on the floor leaning on their packs and their helmets and their cartridge belts and their rifles cocked and you're thinking, 'This can't be the United States of America. This is not the greatest free democracy in the world. This is a nation at war with itself.'" 
President Nixon and his administration's public reaction to the shootings was perceived by many in the anti-war movement as callous. Then National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger said the President was "pretending indifference". Stanley Karnow noted in his Vietnam: A History that: "The [Nixon] administration initially reacted to this event with wanton insensitivity. Nixon's press secretary, Ron Ziegler, whose statements were carefully programmed, referred to the deaths as a reminder that 'when dissent turns to violence, it invites tragedy.'" Three days before the shootings, Nixon had talked of "bums" who were antiwar protestors on United States campuses,  to which the father of Allison Krause stated on national TV: "My child was not a bum." 
Karnow further documented that at 4:15 a.m. on May 9, 1970, the president met about 30 student dissidents conducting a vigil at the Lincoln Memorial, whereupon Nixon, "treated them to a clumsy and condescending monologue, which he made public in an awkward attempt to display his benevolence." Nixon had been trailed by White House Deputy for Domestic Affairs Egil Krogh, who saw it differently, saying, "I thought it was a very significant and major effort to reach out."  In any regard, neither side could convince the other and after meeting with the students, Nixon expressed that those in the anti-war movement were the pawns of foreign communists.  After the student protests, Nixon asked H. R. Haldeman to consider the Huston Plan, which would have used illegal procedures to gather information on the leaders of the anti-war movement. Only the resistance of J. Edgar Hoover stopped the plan. 
A Gallup Poll taken the day after the shootings reportedly showed that 58 percent of respondents blamed the students, 11 percent blamed the National Guard and 31 percent expressed no opinion.  However, there was wide discussion as to whether these were legally justified shootings of American citizens, and whether the protests or the decisions to ban them were constitutional. These debates served to further galvanize uncommitted opinion by the terms of the discourse. The term "massacre" was applied to the shootings by some individuals and media sources, as it had been used for the Boston Massacre of 1770, in which five were killed and several more wounded.   
In a speech at Kent State University to mark the 49th anniversary of the shootings, guest speaker Bob Woodward revealed a 1971 recording of Richard Nixon discussing the Attica Prison riot, in which he compared the uprising to the shootings at Kent State and considered that they might have a "salutary effect" on his administration. Woodward labelled the previously-unheard remarks "chilling" and among the "most outrageous" of the President's statements.   
Students from Kent State and other universities often got a hostile reaction upon returning home. Some were told that more students should have been killed to teach student protesters a lesson some students were disowned by their families. 
On May 14, ten days after the Kent State shootings, two students were killed (and 12 wounded) by police at Jackson State University, a historically black university ("HBCU"), in Jackson, Mississippi, under similar circumstances – the Jackson State killings – but that event did not arouse the same nationwide attention as the Kent State shootings. 
On June 13, 1970, as a consequence of the killings of protesting students at Kent State and Jackson State, President Nixon established the President's Commission on Campus Unrest, known as the Scranton Commission, which he charged to study the dissent, disorder, and violence breaking out on college and university campuses across the nation. 
The Commission issued its findings in a September 1970 report that concluded that the Ohio National Guard shootings on May 4, 1970, were unjustified. The report said:
Even if the guardsmen faced danger, it was not a danger that called for lethal force. The 61 shots by 28 guardsmen certainly cannot be justified. Apparently, no order to fire was given, and there was inadequate fire control discipline on Blanket Hill. The Kent State tragedy must mark the last time that, as a matter of course, loaded rifles are issued to guardsmen confronting student demonstrators.
Legal action Edit
In September 1970, twenty-four students and one faculty member, identified from photographs, were indicted on charges connected either with the May 4 demonstration or with the one at the ROTC building fire three days before they became known as the "Kent 25". The Kent Legal Defense Fund was organized to provide legal resources to oppose the indictments.  Five cases, all related to the burning of the ROTC building, went to trial: one non-student defendant was convicted on one charge and two other non-students pleaded guilty. One other defendant was acquitted, and charges were dismissed against the last. In December 1971, all charges against the remaining twenty were dismissed for lack of evidence.  
A grand jury indicted five guardsmen on felony charges – Lawrence Shafer, 28, and James McGee, 28, both of Ravenna, Ohio James Pierce, 30, of Amelia Island, Florida. William Perkins, 38 of Canton, Ohio and Ralph Zoller, 27, of Mantua, Ohio. Barry Morris, 30, of Kent, Ohio Leon Smith, 27, of Beach City, Ohio and Matthew McManus, 28, of West Salem, Ohio, were indicted on misdemeanor charges. The guardsmen claimed to have fired in self-defense, testimony that was generally accepted by the criminal justice system.
On November 8, 1974, U.S. District Judge Frank J. Battisti dismissed civil rights charges against all of the accused on the basis that the prosecution's case did not warrant a trial.  “It is vital that state and National Guard officials not regard this decision as authorizing or approving the use of force against demonstrators, whatever the occasion of the issue involved," Battisti said in his opinion. "Such use of force is, and was, deplorable.”
Civil actions were also attempted against the guardsmen, the state of Ohio, and the president of Kent State. The federal court civil action for wrongful death and injury, brought by the victims and their families against Governor Rhodes, the President of Kent State, and the National Guardsmen, resulted in unanimous verdicts for all defendants on all claims after an eleven-week trial.  The judgment on those verdicts was reversed by the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit on the ground that the federal trial judge had mishandled an out-of-court threat against a juror. On remand, the civil case was settled in return for payment of a total of $675,000 to all plaintiffs by the state of Ohio  (explained by the State as the estimated cost of defense) and the defendants' agreement to state publicly that they regretted what had happened:
In retrospect, the tragedy of May 4, 1970, should not have occurred. The students may have believed that they were right in continuing their mass protest in response to the Cambodian invasion, even though this protest followed the posting and reading by the university of an order to ban rallies and an order to disperse. These orders have since been determined by the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals to have been lawful.
Some of the Guardsmen on Blanket Hill, fearful and anxious from prior events, may have believed in their own minds that their lives were in danger. Hindsight suggests that another method would have resolved the confrontation. Better ways must be found to deal with such a confrontation.
We devoutly wish that a means had been found to avoid the May 4th events culminating in the Guard shootings and the irreversible deaths and injuries. We deeply regret those events and are profoundly saddened by the deaths of four students and the wounding of nine others which resulted. We hope that the agreement to end the litigation will help to assuage the tragic memories regarding that sad day.
In the succeeding years, many in the anti-war movement have referred to the shootings as "murders," although no criminal convictions were obtained against any National Guardsman. In December 1970, journalist I. F. Stone wrote the following:
To those who think murder is too strong a word, one may recall that even [Vice President Spiro] Agnew three days after the Kent State shootings used the word in an interview on the David Frost show in Los Angeles. Agnew admitted in response to a question that what happened at Kent State was murder, "but not first degree" since there was – as Agnew explained from his own training as a lawyer – "no premeditation but simply an over-response in the heat of anger that results in a killing it's a murder. It's not premeditated and it certainly can't be condoned." 
The Kent State incident forced the National Guard to re-examine its methods of crowd control. The only equipment the guardsmen had to disperse demonstrators that day were M1 Garand rifles loaded with .30-06 FMJ ammunition, 12 Ga. pump shotguns, bayonets, and CS gas grenades. In the years that followed, the U.S. Army began using less lethal means of dispersing demonstrators (such as rubber bullets), and changed its crowd control and riot tactics to attempt to avoid casualties amongst the demonstrators. Many of the crowd-control changes brought on by the Kent State events are used today by police and military forces in the United States when facing similar situations, such as the 1992 Los Angeles riots and civil disorder during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
One outgrowth of the events was the Center for Peaceful Change established at Kent State University in 1971 "as a living memorial to the events of May 4, 1970".  Now known as The Center for Applied Conflict Management (CACM), it developed one of the earliest conflict resolution undergraduate degree programs in the United States. The Institute for the Study and Prevention of Violence, an interdisciplinary program dedicated to violence prevention, was established in 1998.
According to FBI reports, one part-time student, Terry Norman, was already noted by student protesters as an informant for both campus police and the Akron FBI branch. Norman was present during the May 4 protests, taking photographs to identify student leaders,  while carrying a sidearm and wearing a gas mask.
In 1970, FBI director J. Edgar Hoover responded to questions from then-Congressman John M. Ashbrook by denying that Norman had ever worked for the FBI, a statement Norman disputed.  On August 13, 1973, Indiana Senator Birch Bayh sent a memo to then-governor of Ohio John J. Gilligan suggesting that Norman may have fired the first shot, based on testimony Bayh received from guardsmen who claimed that a gunshot fired from the vicinity of the protesters instigated the Guard to open fire on the students. 
Throughout the years since the shootings, debate has continued on about the events of May 4, 1970.  
Three of the survivors have since died – James Russell on June 23, 2007,  Robert Stamps in June 2008,  and Alan Canfora on December 20, 2020. 
Strubbe Tape and further government reviews Edit
In 2007 Alan Canfora, one of the wounded students, located a static-filled copy of an audio tape of the shootings in a Yale library archive. The original 30-minute reel-to-reel audio tape recording was made by Terry Strubbe, a Kent State communications student who turned on his recorder and put its microphone in his dormitory window overlooking the campus.  At that time, Canfora asserted that an amplified version of the tape reveals the order to shoot, "Right here! Get Set! Point! Fire!". Lawrence Shafer, a guardsman who admitted he fired during the shootings and was one of those indicted in the 1974 federal criminal action with charges subsequently dismissed, told the Kent-Ravenna Record-Courier newspaper in May 2007: "I never heard any command to fire. That's all I can say on that." Referring to the assertion that the tape reveals the order, Shafer went on to say, "That's not to say there may not have been, but with all the racket and noise, I don't know how anyone could have heard anything that day." Shafer also said that "point" would not have been part of a proper command to open fire. 
A 2010 audio analysis of the Strubbe tape by Stuart Allen and Tom Owen, who were described by the Cleveland Plain Dealer as "nationally respected forensic audio experts", concluded that the guardsmen were given an order to fire. It is the only known recording to capture the events leading up to the shootings. According to the Plain Dealer description of the enhanced recording, a male voice yells, "Guard!" Several seconds pass. Then, "All right, prepare to fire!" "Get down!," someone shouts urgently, presumably in the crowd. Finally, "Guard! . " followed two seconds later by a long, booming volley of gunshots. The entire spoken sequence lasts 17 seconds. Further analysis of the audiotape revealed that what sounded like four pistol shots and a confrontation occurred approximately 70 seconds before the National Guard opened fire. According to The Plain Dealer, this new analysis raised questions about the role of Terry Norman, a Kent State student who was an FBI informant and known to be carrying a pistol during the disturbance. Alan Canfora said it was premature to reach any conclusions.  
In April 2012, the United States Department of Justice determined that there were "insurmountable legal and evidentiary barriers" to reopening the case. Also in 2012, the FBI concluded the Strubbe tape was inconclusive because what has been described as pistol shots may have been slamming doors and that voices heard were unintelligible. Despite this, organizations of survivors and current Kent State students continue to believe the Strubbe tape proves the Guardsmen were given a military order to fire and are petitioning State of Ohio and United States government officials to reopen the case using independent analysis. The organizations do not desire to prosecute or sue individual guardsmen, believing they are also victims.  
One of these groups, the Kent State Truth Tribunal,  was founded in 2010 by the family of Allison Krause, along with Emily Kunstler, to demand accountability by the United States government for the massacre. In 2014, KSTT announced their request for an independent review by the United Nations Human Rights Committee under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the human rights treaty ratified by the United States.  
In January 1970, only months before the shootings, a work of land art, Partially Buried Woodshed,  was produced on the Kent State campus by Robert Smithson.  Shortly after the events, an inscription was added that recontextualized the work in such a way that some people associate it with the event.
Each May 4 from 1971 to 1975, the Kent State University administration sponsored an official commemoration of the shootings. Upon the university's announcement in 1976 that it would no longer sponsor such commemorations, the May 4 Task Force, a group made up of students and community members, was formed for this purpose. The group has organized a commemoration on the university's campus each year since 1976 events generally include a silent march around the campus, a candlelight vigil, a ringing of the Victory Bell in memory of those killed and injured, speakers (always including eyewitnesses and family members), and music.
On May 12, 1977, a tent city was erected and maintained for a period of more than 60 days by a group of several dozen protesters on the Kent State campus. The protesters, led by the May 4 Task Force but also including community members and local clergy, were attempting to prevent the university from erecting a gymnasium annex on part of the site where the shootings had occurred seven years earlier, which they believed would obscure the historical event. Law enforcement finally brought the tent city to an end on July 12, 1977, after the forced removal and arrest of 193 people. The event gained national press coverage and the issue was taken to the U.S. Supreme Court. 
In 1978, American artist George Segal was commissioned by the Mildred Andrews Fund of Cleveland, in agreement with the University, to create a bronze sculpture in commemoration of the shootings, but before its completion, the sculpture was refused by the university administration, who deemed its subject matter (the biblical Abraham poised to sacrifice his son Isaac) too controversial.  Segal's completed cast-from-life bronze sculpture, Abraham and Isaac: In Memory of May 4, 1970, Kent State, was instead accepted in 1979 by Princeton University and currently resides there between the university chapel and library.  
In 1990, twenty years after the shootings, a memorial commemorating the events of May 4 was dedicated on the campus on a 2.5-acre (1.0 ha) site overlooking the University's Commons where the student protest took place.  Even the construction of the monument became controversial and, in the end, only 7% of the design was constructed. The memorial does not contain the names of those killed or wounded in the shooting under pressure, the university agreed to install a plaque near it with the names.  
|May 4, 1970 Site Makes National Register of Historic Places, (1:46), Kent State TV|
In 1999, at the urging of relatives of the four students killed in 1970, the university constructed an individual memorial for each of the students in the parking lot between Taylor and Prentice halls. Each of the four memorials is located on the exact spot where the student fell, mortally wounded. They are surrounded by a raised rectangle of granite  featuring six lightposts approximately four feet high, with each student's name engraved on a triangular marble plaque in one corner. 
In 2004, a simple stone memorial was erected at Plainview-Old Bethpage John F. Kennedy High School in Plainview, New York, which Jeffrey Miller had attended.
On May 3, 2007, just prior to the yearly commemoration, an Ohio Historical Society marker was dedicated by KSU president Lester Lefton. It is located between Taylor Hall and Prentice Hall between the parking lot and the 1990 memorial.  Also in 2007, a memorial service was held at Kent State in honor of James Russell, one of the wounded, who died in 2007 of a heart attack. 
Front side of Ohio Historical Marker #67-8: 
Kent State University: May 4, 1970 In 1968, Richard Nixon won the presidency partly based on a campaign promise to end the Vietnam War. Though the war seemed to be winding down, on April 30, 1970, Nixon announced the invasion of Cambodia, triggering protests across college campuses. On Friday, May 1, an anti-war rally was held on the Commons at Kent State University. Protestors called for another rally to be held on Monday, May 4. Disturbances in downtown Kent that night caused city officials to ask Governor James Rhodes to send the Ohio National Guard to maintain order. Troops put on alert Saturday afternoon were called to campus Saturday evening after an ROTC building was set on fire. Sunday morning in a press conference that was also broadcast to the troops on campus, Rhodes vowed to "eradicate the problem" of protests at Kent State.
Back side of Ohio Historical Marker #67-8: 
Kent State University: May 4, 1970 On May 4, 1970, Kent State students protested on the Commons against the U.S. invasion of Cambodia and the presence of the Ohio National Guard called to campus to quell demonstrations. Guardsman advanced, driving students past Taylor Hall. A small group of protesters taunted the Guard from the Prentice Hall parking lot. The Guard marched back to the Pagoda, where members of Company A, 145th Infantry, and Troop G, 107th Armored Cavalry, turned and fired 61–67 shots during thirteen seconds. Four students were killed: Allison Krause, Jeffrey Miller, Sandra Scheuer, and William Schroeder. Nine students were wounded: Alan Canfora, John Cleary, Thomas Grace, Dean Kahler, Joseph Lewis, D. Scott MacKenzie, James Russell, Robert Stamps, and Douglas Wrentmore. Those shot were 20 to 245 yards away from the Guard. The Report of the President's Commission on Campus Unrest concluded that the shootings were "unnecessary, unwarranted, and inexcusable."
In 2008, Kent State University announced plans to construct a May 4 Visitors' Center in a room in Taylor Hall.  The center was officially opened in May 2013, on the anniversary of the shootings. 
A 17.24-acre (6.98 ha) area was listed as "Kent State Shootings Site" on the National Register of Historic Places on February 23, 2010.  Places normally cannot be added to the Register until they have been significant for at least fifty years, and only cases of "exceptional importance" can be added sooner.  The entry was announced as the featured listing in the National Park Service's weekly list of March 5, 2010.  Contributing resources in the site are: Taylor Hall, the Victory Bell, Lilac Lane and Boulder Marker, The Pagoda, Solar Totem, and the Prentice Hall Parking Lot.  The National Park Service stated the site "is considered nationally significant given its broad effects in causing the largest student strike in United States history, affecting public opinion about the Vietnam War, creating a legal precedent established by the trials subsequent to the shootings, and for the symbolic status the event has attained as a result of a government confronting protesting citizens with unreasonable deadly force." 
Every year on the anniversary of the shootings, notably on the 40th anniversary in 2010, students and others who were present share remembrances of the day and the impact it has had on their lives. Among them are Nick Saban, head coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide football team who was a freshman in 1970  surviving student Tom Grace, who was shot in the foot  Kent State faculty member Jerry Lewis  photographer John Filo  and others.
In 2016, the site of the shootings was named as a National Historic Landmark. 
In September 2016, Kent State University Libraries' department of Special Collections and Archives began a project, sponsored by a grant from the National Archives' National Historical Publications and Records Commission, to digitize materials related to the actions and reactions surrounding the shootings. 
- 1970: Confrontation at Kent State (director Richard Myers) – documentary filmed by a Kent State University filmmaker in Kent, Ohio, directly following the shootings.
- 1971: Allison (director Richard Myers) – a tribute to Allison Krause.
- 1979: George Segal (director Michael Blackwood) – documentary about American sculptor George Segal Segal discusses and is shown creating his bronze sculpture Abraham and Isaac, which was originally intended as a memorial for the Kent State University campus.
- 2000: Kent State: The Day the War Came Home (director Chris Triffo, executive producer Mark Mori), the Emmy-Award-winning documentary featuring interviews with injured students, eyewitnesses, guardsmen, and relatives of students killed at Kent State.
- 2007: 4 Tote in Ohio: Ein Amerikanisches Trauma ("4 dead in Ohio: an American trauma") (directors Klaus Bredenbrock and Pagonis Pagonakis) – documentary featuring interviews with injured students, eyewitnesses and a German journalist who was a U.S. correspondent.
- 2008: How It Was: Kent State Shootings – National Geographic Channel documentary series episode. 
- 2010: Fire In the Heartland: Kent State, May 4, and Student Protest in America – documentary featuring the build-up to, the events of, and the aftermath of the shootings, told by many of those who were present and in some cases wounded.
- 2015: The Day the '60s Died (director Jonathan Halperin) – PBS documentary featuring build-up of events at KSU, archival photos and film as well as eyewitness reminiscences of the event.
- 2017: The Vietnam War: The History of the World (April 1969 – May 1970) Episode 8 (directors, Ken Burns and Lynn Novick) – PBS documentary series featuring build-up of events at KSU, archival photos and film as well as eyewitness reminiscences of the event.
- 2021: Fire in the Heartland: The Kent State Shootings is the story of the struggle of a generation of students at Kent State University who stood up in the 1960s and 70s for Civil Rights and against racism, violence, and the war in Vietnam, and paid for it with their lives. Directed by Daniel Miller.
Film and television Edit
- 1970: The Bold Ones: The Senator – a television program starring Hal Holbrook, aired a two-part episode titled "A Continual Roar of Musketry" which was based on a Kent-State-like shooting. Holbrook's Senator character is conducting an investigation into the incident.
- 1974: The Trial of Billy Jack – The climactic scene of this film depicts National Guardsmen lethally firing on unarmed students, and the credits specifically mention Kent State and other student shootings. 
- 1981: Kent State (director James Goldstone) – television docudrama. 
- 1995: Nixon – directed by Oliver Stone, the film features actual footage of the shootings the event also plays an important role in the course of the film's narrative.
- 2000: The '70s, starring Vinessa Shaw and Amy Smart, a mini-series depicting four Kent State students affected by the shootings, as they move through the decade. 
- 2002: The Year That Trembled (written and directed by Jay Craven based on a novel by Scott Lax), a coming-of-age movie set in 1970 Ohio, in the aftermath of the Kent State killings. 
- 2005: Thank You For Smoking Directed by Jason Reitman In the satirical film, based on the novel of the same name, the narrator, Nick Naylor, describes fellow lobbyist Bobby Jay as having joined the National Guard after the Kent State shooting "so that he too could shoot college students." 
- 2009: Watchmen Directed by Zack Snyder Depicts a reenacted scene of the shooting in the few opening moments of the film. 
- 2013: "Freedom Deal: The Story of Lucky"  Directed by Jason Rosette (as 'Jack RO'). Cambodia-made film dramatizing the US & ARVN incursion in Cambodia on May 4, 1970, as told from the perspective of two refugees fleeing the conflict. Includes US Army radio references to the Kent State protests, with accompanying archival footage.
- 2017: The Vietnam War (TV series), episode 8/10, "The History of the World" (April 1969 – May 1970), directed by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick. Includes a short segment on the background, events and effect of the Kent State shootings, using film footage and photographs taken at the time.
- 2021: Fire in the Heartland: The Kent State Shootings is the story of the struggle of a generation of students at Kent State University who stood up in the 1960s and 70s for Civil Rights and against racism, violence, and the war in Vietnam, and paid for it with their lives. Directed by Daniel Miller.
Graphic novels Edit
- Issue #57 of Warren Ellis' graphic novel, Transmetropolitan, contains an homage to the Kent State shootings and John Filo's photograph of Mary Ann Vecchio.  's 2020 graphic novel, Kent State: Four Dead in Ohio depicts the events and the circumstances leading to them in detail.
- 1976: Kent State: A Requiem by J. Gregory Payne. First performed in 1976. Told from the perspective of Bill Schroeder's mother, Florence, this play has been performed at over 150 college campuses in the U.S. and Europe in tours in the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s it was last performed at Emerson College in 2007. It is also the basis of NBC's award-winning 1981 docudrama Kent State. 
- 1993 – Blanket Hill explores conversations of the National Guardsmen hours before arriving at Kent State University . activities of students already on campus . the moment they meet face to face on May 4, 1970 . framed in the trial four years later. The play originated as a classroom assignment, initially performed at the Pan-African Theater and was developed at the Organic Theater, Chicago. Produced as part of the Student Theatre Festival 2010, Department of Theatre and Dance, Kent State University, it was again designed and performed by current theatre students as part of the 40 May 4 Commemoration. The play was written and directed by Kay Cosgriff. A DVD of the production is available for viewing from the May 4 Collection at Kent State University. 
- 1995 – Nightwalking. Voices From Kent State by Sandra Perlman, Kent, Franklin Mills Press, first presented in Chicago April 20, 1995, (Director: Jenifer (Gwenne) Weber). Kent state is referenced in Nikki Giovanni's "The Beep Beep Poem". 
- 2010: David Hassler, director of the Wick Poetry Center at Kent State and theatre professor Katherine Burke teamed up to write the play May 4 Voices, in honor of the incident's 40th anniversary. 
- 2012: 4 Dead in Ohio: Antigone at Kent State (created by students of Connecticut College's theatre department and David Jaffe '77, associate professor of theater and the director of the play) – An adaptation of Sophocles' Antigone using the play Burial at Thebes by Nobel Laureate Seamus Heaney. It was performed November 15–18, 2012 in Tansill Theater. 
- The incident is mentioned in Allen Ginsberg's 1975 poem Hadda be Playin' on a Jukebox. 
- The poem "Bullets and Flowers" by Yevgeny Yevtushenko is dedicated to Allison Krause.  Krause had participated in the previous days' protest during which she reportedly put a flower in the barrel of a Guardsman's rifle,  as had been done at a war protest at The Pentagon in October 1967, and reportedly saying, "Flowers are better than bullets." 's poem "The Commons" is about the shootings. Makuck, a 1971 graduate of Kent State, was present on the Commons during the incident.  ' poem "Sandra Lee Scheuer" remembers one of the victims of the Kent State shootings. 
- 's story collection, Alone Against Tomorrow (1971), is dedicated to the four students who were killed.  's novel, The Republic of Nothing (1994), mentions how one character hates President Richard Nixon due in part to the students of Kent State.  's Dragonsword trilogy (1988–1992) follows the story of a teaching assistant who narrowly missed being shot in the massacre. Frequent references are made to how the experience and its aftermath still traumatize the protagonist decades later, when she is a soldier. 's post-apocalyptic novel The Stand includes a scene in Book I in which Kent State campus police officers witness U.S. soldiers shooting students protesting the government cover-up of the military origins of the Superflu that is devastating the country. 
The best-known popular culture response to the deaths at Kent State was the protest song "Ohio", written by Neil Young for Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. They promptly recorded the song, and preview discs (acetates) were rushed to major radio stations, although the group already had a hit song, "Teach Your Children", on the charts at the time. Within two and a half weeks of the Kent State shootings, "Ohio" was receiving national airplay.  Crosby, Stills, and Nash visited the Kent State campus for the first time on May 4, 1997, where they performed the song for the May 4 Task Force's 27th annual commemoration. The B-side of the single release was Stephen Stills' anti-Vietnam War anthem "Find the Cost of Freedom". 
There are a number of lesser-known musical tributes, including the following:
Kent State University - History
Elusive Victory: The Union Navy’s War along the Western Waters
by Robert Gudmestad
Cannibals, Gorillas, and the Struggle over Radical Reconstruction
by Daniel P. Kilbride
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A Brief History of Kent State University (KSU)
Ohio is known for many things — home to Cedar Point (the roller coaster capital of the world), being one of the eight Great Lakes states, home to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, home to one of the largest zoos in the U.S., and much more. Throughout this great state, another noteworthy claim to fame includes universities with a rich background of academic excellence, especially when it comes to the history of Kent State University in Kent.
In 1910, the foundation of the university began as a teacher-training school when State Rep. John Lowry wrote a bill that established funding for two schools dedicated to the professional development of teachers. One of the schools was called Kent State Normal School, which was located on farmland donated by William S. Kent, who was the son of Marvin Kent and the namesake of the city of Kent.
After enrollment expanded rapidly and other programs of study were introduced outside of the primary teacher education focus, including graduate courses, the school went through a series of name changes over the course of 25 years — from Kent State Normal College to Kent State College (1929) to Kent State University (1935). The first full academic year was in 1913 with 144 students, and enrollment grew to 1,600 the following year.
Fast forward to the present day, and impressive numbers reflect how Kent State has grown to become an outstanding educational beacon for students around the world:
- More than 41,000 students are enrolled throughout the university’s eight campuses, including 3,000 international students from 100 countries.
- Alumni encompass more than 251,000 people worldwide.
- Kent State has more than 10,700 employees consisting of over 2,700 full- and part-time faculty more than 3,000 staff members, and over 5,000 student employees.
- More than 400 student clubs/organizations are available to join.
Part of Kent State’s history also includes an unfortunate incident that took place on May 4, 1970, when the Ohio National Guard opened fire on a crowd that gathered to protest the Vietnam War, resulting in four students being killed and nine wounded. To honor the loss of students’ lives, The Center for Peaceful Change opened a year later to serve as a living memorial, which is now known as The Center for Applied Conflict Management.
To learn more about what happened that day, a self-guided walking tour is available called “May 4, 1970: Someone to Tell the Story.” Go to the May 4 Visitors Center located in Taylor Hall or the circulation desk inside the university library and check out an iPod that has the documentary loaded on it, and you can follow the seven walking tour trail markers on campus. It’s important to note that The Ohio History Connection’s State Historic Preservation Office Awards recognized Kent State in 2018 with the Public Education and Awareness Award for the “important efforts to respect, interpret, foster greater public awareness and understanding, and preserve the history and site associated with the May 4, 1970, Kent State Shootings.”
An interesting fact about Kent State was it became the first university in the country to have a dedicated gluten-free dining hall on campus. Prentice Café was officially certified through the Gluten-Free Food Services Certification Program offered by The Gluten Intolerance Group — “a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering the gluten-free community through consumer support, advocacy and education.” Menu options include vegan or vegetarian options for students to enjoy.
Kent State also has a stand-out list of notable names who called the university home, including celebrities, musicians, athletes, etc. — Steve Harvey, Drew Carey, Michael Keaton, Arsenio Hall, Chrissie Hynde, James Harrison, and Dav Pilkey, just to name a few.
Early history (1920–1970) Edit
The first attempt to establish a football team was in 1914, one year after the first classes were held on campus and four years after the school was founded in 1910. The team played two practice games against local high schools, but was discontinued by the athletic board and faculty to focus on basketball season. While there was hope the team would return for the 1915 season, no team was established until 1920.  The team played their first game October 30, 1920, against Ashland College, a 6–0 loss under coach Paul Chandler. The first Kent State home football game was held November 6, a 7–0 loss to sister school Bowling Green. The final game of the season was a home game scheduled against St. Ignatius College of Cleveland, but the game was not played and counted as a forfeit win for Kent.   The team would not record their first true victory until November 14, 1925, a 7–6 win over West Liberty State College. Outside the forfeited win in 1920, Kent State would fail to score in their first 14 games, posting a record of 0–13–1 before finally putting points on the board in a 7–6 win against West Liberty in 1923. During that streak, Kent State would suffer the worst loss in school history, a 118–0 loss to Baldwin–Wallace College, also in 1923. Following the 7–6 loss to West Liberty, a new shutout streak began which lasted 8 games, in which the Flashes, then known as the "Silver Foxes" went 0–6–2. The streak began with the second most lopsided loss in school history, an 82–0 loss to Slippery Rock. The streak finally ended with a 6–6 tie with the Indiana (PA) Normal School in 1925, the game which preceded Kent State's first true victory. Kent State posted their first winning season in 1928, going 4–2–2. 
Kent State joined the Ohio Athletic Conference beginning in the 1931 season, playing in the OAC through the 1950 season except for the 1943–1945 seasons, which were canceled due to American involvement in World War II. Under coach G. Donald Starn, who coached Kent State from 1935–1942, the Flashes would begin to taste success, posting winning seasons in 1938 (6–2), 1940 (8–1), and 1942 (5–3). During their time in the OAC, the Flashes never won a conference title, but did finish second in 1940 with a 4–0 conference record. The team finished third in both 1948 and 1949, going 3–0 and 2–0 respectively in conference play. 
In 1946, the program was revived after the conclusion of World War II under head coach Trevor Rees,  who would coach the Flashes to their first era of consistent success. During his tenure, which lasted 18 seasons, the Flashes would post winning seasons in all but 5 of them. In 1950, the team opened their first true stadium, Memorial Stadium, by defeating Marietta College 57–0. The next season saw the Golden Flashes join the Mid-American Conference. Rees would guide the team to its first bowl appearance in the 1954 Refrigerator Bowl. Rees coached Kent State from 1946–1963, posting a record of 92–63–5 (.591).  Rees retired as Kent State head coach following the 1963 season. 
Leo Strang took over for Rees in 1964, and under his tutelage, the Golden Flashes struggled, compiling a 16–21–2 record.  Kent State failed to win more than five games under Strang's leadership, and Strang resigned following the 1967 season.  Washington University head coach Dave Puddington was hired to replace Strang,  and Kent State's struggles continued. The program posted a 9–21 record during Puddington's three seasons,  the best of which was a 5–5 campaign in 1969.  During the 1969 season, the Flashes also moved into Dix Stadium, which was not fully completed until January 1970. The Puddington tenure was also marked by the Kent State shootings in May 1970, when the Ohio National Guard opened fire on a group of university students, killing four and injuring nine.  Puddington was fired after the 1970 season.
Don James era (1971–1974) Edit
In 1971, Don James took over as head coach.  Under James, and with notable players such as Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee and former Pittsburgh Steelers middle linebacker Jack Lambert, Alabama Crimson Tide football coach Nick Saban, and former Missouri Tigers football coach Gary Pinkel, Kent State was finally able to celebrate its first—and so far only—Mid-American Conference title in 1972 followed by a trip to the 1972 Tangerine Bowl. 
James coached at Kent State four seasons (1971–1974), posting an overall record of 25–19–1 (.567)  which included a 9–2 record in 1973.  James left after the 1974 season to accept the head coaching job at Washington. 
Coaching succession Edit
Following the departure of Don James, Kent State went through a period marked by mostly losing seasons and regular coaching changes, with no coaching tenure lasting more than three seasons until 1997. Dennis Fitzgerald, who was promoted from defensive coordinator to head coach after James' departure,  was able to lead the team to an 8–4 record and second-place MAC finish in 1976  and a winning 1977 season,  Fitzgerald was able to continue James' success within the Kent State football program, but left the program after the 1977 season. 
Ron Blackledge was promoted from offensive coordinator to head coach following Fitzgerald's departure.  Kent State's struggles continued, with the Golden Flashes posting records of 4–7,  1–10  and 3–8  for a total mark of 8–25.  Blackledge was fired following the 1980 season. 
Succeeding Blackledge was Boston College head coach Ed Chlebek.  Chelebek has previously turned around the BC football program and was expected to do the same at Kent State. Unfortunately, he couldn't. The Golden Flashes followed a 4–7 campaign in 1981  with a winless 0–11 season in 1982.  Chlebek was fired following the 1982 season. 
Utah offensive line coach Dick Scesniak was hired as Chlebek's replacement  and, once again, Kent State's football struggles persisted. Scesniak's teams posted records of 1–10,  4–7  and 3–8  for a total of 8–25.  Scesniak died of a heart attack on April 1, 1986. 
Ohio State offensive coordinator Glen Mason was hired as Kent State's head coach in 1986.  In his two seasons in Kent posted two consecutive 2nd place MAC finishes including a 7–4 overall mark in 1987,  the Flashes' first winning season since 1977. Following the 1987 season, Mason was hired by the Kansas Jayhawks.  Kent State alumnus Nick Saban, the defensive coordinator at Michigan State from 1983–87, was a finalist to succeed Mason, but he didn't get the position. 
Former North Carolina head coach Dick Crum was hired to replace Mason.  Despite high hopes for his tenure, Crum's Golden Flashes never put together a winning season in three years, compiling a record of 7–26.  Crum was fired following the 1990 season. 
Improvements and stability Edit
Former Flashes standout Jim Corrigall began in 1994 and became the first coach since Don James to coach more than three seasons, lasting four. Although some progress was made, the Golden Flashes best season under Corrigall, a 3–8 campaign,  proved to be his last in 1997. Three wins in 1997 were the most wins for Kent State since 1988. Corrigall had an overall record of 8–35–1 in four seasons. 
Dean Pees was hired in 1998 and suffered through the Flashes' most recent winless season (0–11 in 1998) before leading the team to a slow recovery. In 2001 Kent State posted their first winning season since 1987 when they were led by quarterback Joshua Cribbs to a 6–5 overall record, 5–3 in the MAC. Pees left Kent State after the 2003 season to take the defensive coordinator job with the New England Patriots of the National Football League (NFL) under head coach Bill Belichick. 
Coach Doug Martin was promoted from offensive coordinator and began his tenure as head coach in 2004. His best season was the 2006 season, which saw Kent State go 6–6 overall and 5–3 in the MAC, finishing second in the East division.  Kent State began the 2010 season with hopes of contending for a MAC title, but early losses at Miami and Toledo ended any hope for a title. The team did record its first-ever sell-out at Dix Stadium on October 9 when a crowd of 24,211 watched the Flashes defeat the arch-rival Akron Zips 28–17 to reclaim the Wagon Wheel. 
In the days following a 38–3 loss at Western Michigan, which dropped the team's record to 4–7 and 3–4 in the MAC, Doug Martin announced his resignation, effective at the conclusion of the season.  The team responded with a 28–6 upset win over the first-place Ohio Bobcats at Dix Stadium to finish with a record of 5–7 overall and 4–4 in the MAC.  Martin finished his tenure with a record of 29–53 (.354) overall and 21–35 (.375) in the MAC. 
Darrell Hazell era (2010–2012) Edit
Ohio State wide receivers coach Darrell Hazell was hired to replace Martin.  Hazell was the first African American head football coach in the history of Kent State football. 
In Hazell's first season, 2011, the team had two three-game losing streaks, but also had a five-game winning streak in the latter half of the season. Kent State dropped their first three contests, which included losses at eventual BCS national champion Alabama and Kansas State and a home loss to Louisiana-Lafayette. Hazell's first win at Kent State came on September 24, in a 33–25 win over South Alabama at Dix Stadium. The team then dropped their first three MAC games before defeating Bowling Green, which was the start of a five-game winning streak that included a 35–3 win over arch-rival Akron at InfoCision Stadium – Summa Field, Kent State's first win in Akron since 2003.  The season ended with a 34–16 loss at Temple. The Flashes finished third in the MAC East with a 5–7 record overall and 4–4 in the MAC. 
The 2012 season began with a 41–21 win over Towson at Dix Stadium, followed by a 47–14 loss at Kentucky. Following the loss, the Flashes defeated Buffalo at University at Buffalo Stadium and followed that with a come-from-behind 45–43 win over Ball State in Kent. A 31–17 win over Army at Michie Stadium was the first victory for Kent State over a non-conference team on the road since 2007.  The winning streak reached six, the longest for Kent State since 1940, after a 35–23 win over undefeated and 18th-ranked Rutgers at High Point Solutions Stadium. The win was the Flashes' first over a ranked opponent after entering the game 0–22 against ranked teams.  The win earned Kent State votes in the October 28, 2012 AP Poll, Coaches' Poll, and the Harris Interactive College Football Poll.  The team continued winning, beating Akron in the Battle for the Wagon Wheel game at Dix Stadium, followed by a 48–32 win over the Miami RedHawks at Yager Stadium. The win over Miami set a new team record for consecutive victories in a season at eight and tied the 1973 team for most wins in a season at nine. On November 11, the Flashes were ranked 25th in the weekly AP poll, their first time being ranked since November 5, 1973, when they were ranked 19th for one week. 
Kent State clinched their first-ever MAC East Division title and spot in the 2012 MAC Championship Game with a 31–24 win over Bowling Green at Doyt Perry Stadium on November 17.  Following the win over Bowling Green, the Flashes rose to No. 23 in the AP poll and entered the Coaches' and Harris polls at No. 25. Kent State was also ranked for the first time in the Bowl Championship Series standings at No. 23.  The team climbed as high as 17th in the BCS standings following their regular season-ending win over Ohio at Dix Stadium on November 23, which clinched their first-ever undefeated season in MAC play and set a record for most wins in a season with 11.  They were also mentioned as a potential BCS Buster.   Kent State, however, fell in overtime to Northern Illinois in the MAC Championship Game. Following the loss to NIU, Kent State accepted the invitation to play in the 2013 GoDaddy.com Bowl. Kent State fell to Arkansas State in the game by a score of 17–13 to finish 11–3 overall. 
Darrell Hazell accepted the head coaching position at Purdue on December 5,  but Purdue granted Hazell permission to coach Kent State in the bowl game, the first bowl appearance by the Flashes since the 1972 Tangerine Bowl.
Paul Haynes, a Kent State alum who had previously served as defensive coordinator at Arkansas, was hired as Kent State's head football coach on December 18, 2012.    Haynes was the second African American head coach in the history of Kent State football.
In Haynes' first season, the Golden Flashes finished with a 4–8 record.  Kent State followed that season with a 2–9 mark in 2014  and consecutive 3–9 seasons in 2015 and 2016.   Haynes was fired after the 2017 season, finishing his tenure with a record of 14–45 overall, 9–30 in conference play. 
Sean Lewis became head coach for the 2018 season. The Golden Flashes finished the 2019 season with a record of 7-6, and at the end of the season, the Golden Flashes won their first ever Bowl game, a 51–41 victory over Utah State in the Tropical Smoothie Cafe Frisco Bowl.
Conference championships Edit
Kent State has won one conference championship in school history. 
Year Conference Coach Record Conference Record 1972 Mid-American Conference Don James 6–5–1 4–1
Division championships Edit
Kent State has won one division title, doing so in 2012 season. 
Season Division Coach Opponent CG result 2012 MAC East Darrell Hazell Northern Illinois L 37–44 2OT
List of Kent State head coaches. 
- (1920–1922) (1923–1924) (1925–1932) (1933–1934) (1935–1942)
- No team (1943–1945) (1946–1963) (1964–1967) (1968–1970) (1971–1974) (1975–1977) (1978–1980) (1981–1982) (1983–1985) (1986–1987) (1988–1990) (1991–1993) (1994–1997) (1998–2003) (2004–2010) (2011–2012) (2013–2017) (2018–present)
- Jim Goss, former Ottawa Rough Riders player , former BC Lions player , former Calgary Stampeders player
- Contributors . 6
- The Tensions between Continuity and Change: Early Prescriptive Literature in Ohio and the Western Reserve
- Martha I. Pallante . 7
- Robert Klotz . 32
- Stuart D. Hobbs . 47
- Ken J. Ward . 92
On the cover: “Construction of a Modern Steel Building.” Image courtesy the Supreme Court of Ohio. David Barker, photographer.
Ohio History Spring 2020
Contents for Volume 127, Number 1, Spring 2020
- Contributors . 6
- Editor’s Note . 8
- Cincinnati’s Base Hospital No. 25: A Community’s Contribution to World War I
- Richard M. Prior and Kimberly Mullins . 9
- Jonathan L. Entin . 30
- Douglas A. Dixon . 58
- Paul Burnam . 87
- Michael H. Washington . 104
On the cover: Surgical ward at Christmas dinner, Base Hospital No. 25 (National Library of Medicine, Image A08578)
Ohio History Fall 2019
Contents for Volume 126, Number 2, Fall 2019
- Contributors . 4
- A Lesson for All Rebels at Home: The Holmes County, Ohio, Rebellion of 1863 Revisited
- Stephen E. Towne . 5
- Perry Bush . 38
- Jerrad Lancaster . 64
On the cover: David Tod (Courtesy of the Library of Congress)
Ohio History Spring 2019
Contents for Volume 126, Number 1, Spring 2019
- Contributors . 4
- Blue Jacket, Anthony Wayne, and the Psychological and Symbolic War for Ohio, 1790–95
- Joshua Casmir Catalano . 5
- Elaine Verdill . 35
- Jack Hammersmith . 58
- Naomi Rendina . 72
On the cover: Anthony Wayne’s defeat of the Indians, at the Battle of Fallen Timbers, near Toledo, Ohio, August 20, 1794. Courtesy of the Library of Congress.
Ohio History Fall 2018
Contents for Volume 125, Number 2, Fall 2018
- Contributors . 4
- Editor’s Note . 5
- Pioneers and Land on the Ohio Frontier
- Mansel G. Blackford . 7
- Arthur Andrew Savery . 28
- Transcribed and edited by Samuel R. Phillips . 55
On the cover: Pioneers Crossing the Ohio River. (Courtesy of the Ohio History Connection, Image ALO4712)
Ohio History Spring 2018
Contents for Volume 125, Number 1, Spring 2018
- Contributors . 4
- By Compass, Chain, and Level: Early Efforts at Surveying and Mapping the Mounds
- Terry A. Barnhart . 5
- Renea Frey and Jacqueline Johnson . 32
- Arjun Sabharwal . 47
- Robert Llewellyn Tyler . 70
- Christopher Cumo . 95
On the cover: Squier and Davis’s “The Serpent,” Adams County, Ohio.
Ohio History Fall 2017
Contents for Volume 124, Number 2, Fall 2017
- Contributors . 4
- Ladies of Lockbourne: Women Airforce Service Pilots and the Mighty B-17 Flying Fortress
- Jenny Sage . 5
- Lawrence S. Freund . 28
- Paul Lubienecki . 49
Cover image courtesy of the National Archives.
Ohio History Spring 2017
Contents for Volume 124, Number 1, Spring 2017
- Contributors . 4
- Editor’s Note . 5
- “Only a Moral Power”: African Americans, Reformers, and the Repeal of Ohio’s Black Laws
- L. Diane Barnes . 7
- Daniel R. Griesmer . 22
- Lae’l Hughes-Watkins . 41
- Marcelle R. Wilson . 65
On the cover: “Mabel the Elephant Looked at the GF Label and Climbed Aboard.” (Suender and Morgan, GF News: 50 Years of Progress, September 1931.)
Ohio History Fall 2016
Contents for Volume 123, Number 2, Fall 2016
- Contributors . 4
- Editor’s Note . 5
- Publisher’s Note . 6
- The State of Ohio History: A Roundtable Discussion
- L. Diane Barnes, Donna M. DeBlasio, Kevin F. Kern, David J. Merkowitz, and Gregory S. Wilson . 7
- Carol Lasser . 26
- Edward J. Roach . 48
On the cover: Chevy Bel Air with Airstream trailer, courtesy of Stephen H. Paschen. From the exhibit 1950s: Building the American Dream, Columbus, Ohio Historical Center, Ohio History Connection
Ohio History Spring 2016
Contents for Volume 123, Number 1, Spring 2016
- Contributors . 4
- Editor’s Note . 5
- Love and Danger on the Underground Railroad: George and Edy Duncan’s Journey to Freedom, 1820
- Roy E. Finkenbine . 7
- Megan Chew . 26
- Joshua Casmir Catalano . 51
- Casey Huegel . 73
On the cover: Daniel Henderson, a young neighbor of the Wright brothers, poses with arms crossed outside the Wright family home at 7 Hawthorn Street, Dayton, 1899‒1901. (Source: Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division, LC-W85-28)
Ohio History 2015
Contents for Volume 122, 2015
- Contested Patriarchy: John Cleves Symmes and the Struggle for Family Control in the Post-revolutionary West
- Cathy Rodabaugh . 5
- Larry Lee Nelson . 29
- Michael Daniel Goodnough . 49
- Mansel G. Blackford . 65
On the cover: The Columbus water-treatment plant was one of the most modern in the world, and worked well in all weather. (Columbus Metropolitan Library)
A "Teacher Training School" was part of the original plans at the establishment of the Kent State Normal School in 1910 as the modern practice of placing student teachers in the schools was not yet developed. Providing 250 students for a training school was one of the many stipulations the state of Ohio gave the village of Kent in order to secure the school.  The first classes were held in 1913 at the newly completed Merrill Hall and covered grades 1–8 with a kindergarten class at the nearby DePeyster School a few blocks west of campus. Kent State also operated what was known as a "model school" at the schoolhouse near Brady Lake, just east of Kent. The model school was intended to give teachers training in a rural setting.
The high school was established in 1914, adding one grade level per school year. The first class graduated from the Kent Normal High School in 1918. In 1916 the school was moved into the new Science Hall (renamed Kent Hall in 1938) before finally getting their own building in 1927 with the completion of the William A. Cluff Teacher Training building, which was renamed Franklin Hall in 1956. In 1956, the school moved to a new building on the southwestern corner of campus. This building, originally known as the University School building, was renamed the Michael Schwartz Center in the 1980s. 
By the 1960s the school was no longer using education students as teachers and the school was used more as a research opportunity for students and faculty than a training school. Some of the educational innovations developed at the school included the team-teaching concept, integrative curriculum, block and modular scheduling, and middle school organization. The innovations and the school's reputation for focusing on the individual student attracted students from the region, though most of the student body was made up of local students in and around Kent.   
Budget constraints in the 1970s, exacerbated by the university's enrollment decline following the Kent State shootings, led to the gradual closing of the school beginning in 1972 with the senior high school (grades 10–12). The junior high school grades (7–9) followed in 1978 and the remainder of the school was closed in 1982 over fierce protests from parents and alumni. 
The agreement with the state of Ohio required the city of Kent to provide 240 students for a teacher training school. Initially, the student body came from a specific area in Kent, which was determined in coordination with the Kent City School District. A 1915 Kent Courier article defined the area as being between Main Street and Williams Street, east of the railroad, but also included students from northeast Kent.  By 1931, the school had an enrollment of 265 students in grades K–6 and 303 students in grades 7–12. The high school enrollment included 105 students from Brimfield and Franklin Townships as neither district had a fourth year of high school available, a common occurrence for many rural schools in the early to mid-twentieth century.  
By the early 1960s, the University School became a laboratory school with a selective enrollment and no formal attendance district. Franklin Township schools merged with the Kent City School District in 1959 and while high school students initially continued to attend KSHS, they eventually were transferred to Theodore Roosevelt High School. In Brimfield, the Field Local School District was created January 1, 1959 and Brimfield high school students were transferred to the new Field High School when it opened in late 1961. Through a selective admissions process, the student body was made up of a variety of students from the areas in and around Kent, attracting students as far away as Cleveland. The school had a policy that classes could not exceed 50% of children of KSU faculty, staff, or students unless there were no names on the waiting list. Priority in admission, however, was given to local students and those who had siblings already attending. 
All grade levels of the University School were held in the same building. The first two buildings that housed the school—Merrill and Kent Halls—were also home to other university programs and departments. Merrill Hall, for instance, was the first building built on the KSU campus, while Kent Hall—known until 1938 as Science Hall—initially served as the home of the science classes. The school's first exclusive home, known as the William A. Cluff Teacher Training Building, would serve as the school's home for nearly 30 years. Athletic fields for the high school first appear in the 1942 map of campus and were on the opposite side of the campus from the Cluff building.  The school had its own athletic facilities once it moved to what is now the Schwartz Center, as the building included its own auditorium and gymnasium. Athletic fields were located just to the east of the building along Summit Street and included a running track. 
Watch the video: After watching this, your brain will not be the same. Lara Boyd. TEDxVancouver
Kent State has appeared in four bowl games, going 1–3. They won their first bowl game in school history by defeating Utah State in the 2019 Frisco Bowl.
|1954||Trevor J. Rees||Refrigerator Bowl||Delaware||L 7–19|
|1972||Don James||Tangerine Bowl||Tampa||L 18–21|
|2012||Darrell Hazell||GoDaddy.com Bowl||Arkansas State||L 13–17|
|2019||Sean Lewis||Frisco Bowl||Utah State||W 51–41|
Kent State's biggest rival is Akron, located 10 miles (16 km) from the Kent campus.  The two schools first met in 1923 and have played 56 times through the 2013 meeting. Akron went 11–0–1 in the first 12 meetings in the series between 1923 and 1941, with no games played from 1924–27 and 1937–39. Kent State started a 10-game winning streak in 1942 through 1954, though no games were played during the World War II years of 1943–45 when neither school fielded teams. After the 1954 meeting, the rivalry was scrapped due to a lack of competition. It was reinstated in 1972 and has been an annual contest since 1983. In 1992, Akron joined the MAC and the rivalry became a conference game.  
Since 1946, the two teams have played for the Wagon Wheel. The story goes that John R. Buchtel was searching for a site to start a new college in 1870 near what is now Kent State University when his wagon became stuck in the mud. The horses pulled the wagon apart and one of the wheels ended up being buried. Buchtel would eventually settle on a site in Akron for Buchtel College. In 1902, while digging for a pipeline in Kent, the wheel was discovered and eventually came into the possession of Kent State dean of men Dr. Raymond Manchester. It was he who suggested in 1945 that the wheel be used as a trophy for the winner of the Kent State-Akron football game. 
Akron leads the series 35–24–2 through the 2018 season 
Bowling Green Edit
Bowling Green leads the series 60–22–6 through the 2020 season. 
The Flashes' home field is Dix Stadium, located along Summit Street on the eastern edge of the KSU campus just east of Ohio State Route 261. The stadium opened in 1969 and has a seating capacity of 25,318. Dix Stadium features a FieldTurf playing surface, which was installed in 2005. It was originally a natural grass field until 1997, when an Astroturf surface was installed. From 1997 to 2004, the stadium also hosted the Kent State field hockey team until a new facility for field hockey was built immediately north of the stadium in 2005. 
Dix Stadium was most recently renovated in two phases in 2007 and 2008. Phase one included construction of a large canopy over the press box, new entrance gates, and a ticket office, all completed prior to the 2007 season opener. Phase two included the demolition of the south end zone seats and construction of a new high definition scoreboard, concession area, and plaza in the sound end zone area. 
Adjacent to the stadium to the north are two natural grass practice fields. Immediately east of the stadium is the Kent State Field House, which opened in 1990. The Field House includes a full-size football field, a six-lane indoor track, and a weight training room named for Kent State football alumnus James Harrison. The building, one of the first indoor football facilities built in Ohio, is also used by several other Kent State athletic teams during the year and is the home indoor venue for the men's and women's track teams. It includes locker rooms for women's soccer, field hockey, softball, and men's and women's track.  
Dix Stadium is the third facility the Flashes have called home. From the team's inception in 1920 through the 1940 season, they played at Rockwell Field, which was located adjacent to the original campus buildings on what is now known as The Commons. Rockwell Field was shared with the track and baseball teams and was plagued with drainage and quality issues its entire existence as an athletic field. For seating, it initially had no seating before primitive wooden bleachers were added in the 1930s. At its peak, the bleachers held approximately 3,000 people, with crowds reported for some games as large as 5,000.   In 1941, the team moved to the new Athletic Field along Summit Street, a Works Progress Administration project that included separate football and baseball fields, with the football field surrounded by a cinder track. Seating was again provided on primitive wooden bleachers. After the football team was restored in 1946 following the return of men from World War II, a drive started in the late 1940s to build a permanent grandstand around the existing field. Memorial Stadium opened in 1950 with seating for 7,000 fans, a new electronic scoreboard, permanent press box, and field lighting. It was expanded multiple times and by 1966 seated approximately 20,000 people. Most of Memorial Stadium was used in the construction of Dix Stadium as the Memorial Stadium seating areas were dismantled in 1969 and transported to the current site in a new configuration.   
Despite the overall lack of success in the program, Kent State has produced a number of standouts including several prominent figures in college football, the Canadian Football League and in the National Football League.
College football Edit
- , former head coach of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, North Carolina State Wolfpack, and South Carolina Gamecocks , former head coach of the Missouri Tigers and Toledo Rockets , head coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide former head coach of the LSU Tigers, Michigan State Spartans and Toledo Rockets (college), and Miami Dolphins (NFL)
Canadian Football League Edit
- , former CFL player , former Toronto Argonauts player and member of Canadian Football Hall of Fame
National Football League Edit
40 Kent State alumni have either played in or are playing in the National Football League—although as noted below, not all of them played football at the school. 
Ohio History Journal
On the cover: Depiction of the Drummond Gristmill, ca. 1840. (Original artwork by Ann Geise.) See page 59.
Ohio History Fall 2020
Contents for Volume 127, Number 2, Fall 2020