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Mr. Johns Hopkins to be Honored at Graveside on Christmas Eve

December 20, 2011
To: Reporters, editors, producers, daybooks
From: Dennis O’Shea | 443-287-9960 | dro@jhu.edu
The man who left his fortune and his name to launch The Johns Hopkins University and The Johns Hopkins Hospital will be honored at his grave by staff, faculty, alumni and other supporters. All are welcome.

When: 10 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 24, Christmas Eve, the 138th anniversary of Mr. Hopkins’ death at his Baltimore home.

Johns Hopkins, by Thomas C. Corner, 1896 (Johns Hopkins Medical Archives)

"Johns Hopkins," by Thomas C. Corner, 1896 (Johns Hopkins Medical Archives)

Where: The historic Green Mount Cemetery, 1501 Greenmount Ave, Baltimore, Md. 21202. (To reach the gravesite, enter the cemetery at the main gate along Greenmount Avenue, about five blocks south of North Avenue. Drive straight up the hill; park near the crest. The grave is to the right along the ridge.

Background: Mr. Hopkins died the morning of Dec. 24, 1873, leaving $7 million in his will to establish the university and hospital that bear his name. It was, to that time, the nation’s largest philanthropic bequest.

 “We gather at his grave to remember a great man and a great act of generosity,” said Ross Jones, vice president and secretary emeritus of the university. Jones arranged the first graveside commemoration in 1973, the centennial of Mr. Hopkins’ demise, and has organized similar events annually since 1998, the 125th anniversary.

“What this one man did has meant so much for the world,” Jones said. “More personally, his legacy also means so much to all of us who have had the privilege to work, study or be healed at the institutions he founded. It seems only right to set aside a few minutes every Dec. 24 to remember him and thank him.”

The informal ceremony includes remembrances, presentation of a wreath and brief remarks. This year, Stephen C. Achuff, professor of cardiology at the School of Medicine, will highlight aspects of the history of the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions.

Read Mr. Hopkins’ obituary from the Dec. 25, 1873, edition of the Baltimore Sun


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