On Feb 14, 1844, the Rev. John J. "Father" Shipherd and 39 followers arrived by ox-cart on this wilderness hilltop, driving their herds before them. They felt that God had directed them to this oak grove for the purpose of founding a coeducational Christian college open to students of all races. First chartered as Olivet Institute, the school received its charter as a college in 1859. For over a century it has given a broad liberal arts education, with strong support from the Congregational Church. Many alumni have gone forth "Pro Christo et Humanitate."