Processed by Adam Todd in October 2006 under the supervision of Deirdre A. Scaggs, University Archivist.; machine-readable finding aid created by Eric Weig
Austin Lilly papers and photographs
University of Kentucky Libraries, Special Collections
This collection is arranged chronologically in three series:
Collection is open to researchers by appointment.
1988UA022: [identification of item], Austin Lilly papers and photographs, University of Kentucky Archives.
0.25 cubic feet (2 boxes)
Photographs and YWCA materials related to Ms. Lilly's time as a student at the University of Kentucky, circa 1919. Articles, correspondence, and photographs related to the Donovan Scholars Program and Ms. Austin Lilly's retirement from the program in 1983.
Ms. Austin Lilly graduated from the University of Kentucky in 1919 with a B.S. in Home Economics. During her time at UK, she was involved in a number of clubs and extracurricular activities including the YWCA, Alpha Xi Delta, and the Home Economics Club. After graduation, Lilly went on to teach domestic science at Lexington Junior High School until 1966. While she was a teacher, she took college courses in art. In the late 1950s she studied at the University of Arizona, the University of California, Transylvania, and the University of Guadalajara in Mexico. She took courses for a number of years as a Donovan Scholar until she became an instructor in the program in 1969. Ms. Austin Lilly served as a painting and art appreciation instructor in the Donovan Program for 14 years. In 1983, she retired from the program.
In 1962 the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees established the Council on Aging. The brainchild of former UK President Herman Donovan, the Council was intended to create educational programs for senior citizens and perform research related to aging. In 1964, upon the Board of Trustees approval, the Herman L. Donovan Fellowship for Senior Citizens was established. Donovan Scholars had their tuition waived and were allowed to enroll in any courses on Lexington's campus as well as at community colleges. The only requirement was to be at least 65 years old. The program gained national exposure in 1966 when it was covered in TIME magazine.
In time the program expanded to offer special opportunities in the arts, open to a slightly wider age range. This included writing workshops, music lessons, and visual arts courses. These offerings were not for credit, but were instead aimed at self-enrichment. The Donovan Program is still in operation today.
The Austin Lilly papers and photographs contain materials related to Ms. Lilly's time as a student at the University of Kentucky, circa 1919. This includes photographs of student life and items pertaining to the YWCA. It also contains articles, correspondence, and photographs related to the Donovan Scholars Program and Ms. Austin Lilly's retirement from the program in 1983.
The physical rights to the materials in this collection are held by the University of Kentucky Special Collections.
The Student Materials series contains notes, correspondence, various other written materials, and photographs. A portion of this series is composed of records and meeting minutes from the Student Young Women's Christian Association of UK during the years of 19161919. The series also includes a number of photographs featuring different events and individuals from Ms. Lilly's time as a student at UK including Homecoming activities, professors, and members of the Home Economics department. These photographs were removed from a scrapbook for preservation purposes. Descriptions of these photographs that appear in quotation marks are taken from inscriptions on the photos. Also of note in this series is Austin Lilly's Life Certificate from UK's College of Education which recognizes her work in the college and certifies her to teach in Kentucky public schools (Folder 2).
The Donovan Scholars Program series contains articles, exhibit programs, and course outlines related to the Program. Of particular interest is an article from a 1979 issue of The NYSATA Bulletin (The Official Journal of the New York State Art Teachers Association) which praises the Donovan Program for its excellence in art education for senior citizens.
The Retirement Materials series contains items related to Austin Lilly's retirement celebration on June 7, 1983. This includes clippings, a guestbook, and congratulatory letters. Of particular interest are photocopies of letters from Lexington Mayor Scotty Baesler, UK President Otis A. Singletary, and Kentucky Governor John Y. Brown, Jr. It also includes seventeen photographs documenting Austin Lilly's retirement celebration. Most of the photographs are labeled.