Photos of Abe celebrating LMU Anniversary

125th Anniversary of LMU

Founders Day 2022

Join us in celebrating the 125th Anniversary of LMU!

Our beloved university was founded in 1897 on February 12, the birthday of Abraham Lincoln. We are planning a year of special programming and events in honor of our quasquicentennial.

The Founding of LMU

Throughout 2022, we will celebrate “Four Seasons to New Seasons.” The theme highlights the University’s humble beginnings on the grounds of the then-defunct Four Seasons Hotel which opened with a grand ball in 1892. The luxurious vacation destination in Harrogate, Tennessee, included a 700-room hotel and 200-bed sanitarium. A year later, the enterprise was failing. The property and buildings were sold in 1895 and promptly liquidated.

In 1896, Civil War General, Oliver Otis Howard recalled a conversation he had with President Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War, where Lincoln observed that the mountain people of East Tennessee were loyal, but often overlooked. Howard recalled Lincoln’s wish to repay the Appalachian people for their loyalty and agreed to assist Reverend A.A. Myers by building a school that would serve as a living memorial to President Lincoln while providing educational opportunities for underserved populations. Lincoln Memorial University was founded on the anniversary of Lincoln’s birth in 1897, nestled in the Cumberland Gap at the site of the Four Seasons Hotel.

One hundred and twenty-five years later this living memorial to Lincoln can take a student from kindergarten, at the J. Frank White Academy, all the way to a professional degree. The University’s footprint stretches from Corbin, Kentucky, to Tampa, Florida, with online offerings reaching across the country. With an enrollment of over 5,000 students and an economic impact on the region that exceeds $100 million, LMU is fulfilling the mission established by its founders.

  •   April Events Calendar

    Clue, the Musical - April 7-9 at 7:30 pm

    Sam & Sue Mars Performing Arts Center, Duke Hall of Citizenship

    This musical comedy/"whodunnit" satire is based on the popular Parker Brothers board game having their iconic characters: Mrs. White, Professor Plum, Colonel Mustard, Mrs. Peacock, Ms. Scarlet and Mr. Green come to life on stage, singing, dancing, and plotting murder. With added two other players (Mr. Boddy and The Detective), makes this saucy, bright, and loony production a must see.


    Fine Arts Friday/Gallery Hop - April 29 from 5:00 until 8:00 pm

    Stop in at the Arts in the Gap building to pick up an event map that shows which businesses are participating.

    ONLY ONE Fine Arts Friday in Gap!

    Starting April 29, we will be hosting Fine Arts Friday in Cumberland Gap with an art contest entry for residents of the tri-state region will be displayed:

    April 29: All winners will be invited for a Best in Show display. Winners will be crowned!


    125th Anniversary Choir Concert - April 25 at 7 pm

    Sam & Sue Mars Performing Arts Center, Duke Hall of Citizenship

    LMU Choir concert and singing of the LMU Alma Mater


    LMU Jazz Band and Concert Band - April 26 at 7 pm

    Sam & Sue Mars Performing Arts Center, Duke Hall of Citizenship

    The LMU Jazz Band will be performing “Honest Abe”, an original piece written for LMU’s 125th Anniversary by Dr. Benjamin Bruflat.

    The LMU Concert Band will be performing “Lincoln Portrait” by Aaron Copland, featuring narration by Professor Joe Gill. The Concert Band will also perform LMU’s new fight song in honor of the 125th anniversary.


    Antique Show in Cumberland Gap, Tennessee - April 30


  •   2022 Full Schedule of Events

    Beginning on February 11, the University will host Founders Day of Giving activities, the annual Lincoln Games for students and special Lincoln birthday commemorations at LMU’s Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum (ALLM). The ALLM will offer free admission Friday, February 11 – Sunday, February 13, and will present special programming throughout the weekend and a special behind-the-scenes look at items from the ALLM's vault. The LMU Athletic Department will host a special alumni night for the Lady Railsplitter and Railsplitter basketball games versus Queens on Saturday, February 19. During the games, the LMU Pep Band will debut the new University fight song commissioned to honor the 125th anniversary.

    Programming will continue throughout the calendar year with special events, guest lectures, original theatre productions, student poetry contests and a very special Homecoming program.



Founders Day of Giving


This year, our Founders Day of Giving campaign reached our goal of 500 and we are blessed to have over $26,000 donated to LMU! We are so thankful for the continued support from our donors that help us continue to have a lasting impact on the lives of so many students. Check out the video below as our students express their gratitude to all of our amazing donors!