Building Community through Shared History - A KU Memorial Union Program

Jayhawk Collection Grand Opening

The KU Memorial Unions held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new Jayhawk Collection exhibit's grand opat 3:20 pm on January 29, 2015, on level two of the Kansas Union, 1301 Jayhawk Boulevard in Lawrence. The event was held in conjunction with the Student Union Activities’ Tea @ 3 event in the lounge of Jayhawk Ink. Remarks will be made at approximately 3:20 p.m. and the ribbon-cutting will take place at the entrance to the Jayhawk Collection, located near the Traditions Stair Tower in the level two hallway.

The collection was a gift of Mr. and Mrs. James A. Ascher Sr. of Shawnee Mission. The Aschers also contributed to the installation of the new display cases designed by Sabatini Architects and constructed by B.A. Green Construction.

Most of the 1,000+ piece Jayhawk Collection was purchased from Kenneth “Bud” Jennings in 2013. Mr. Jennings had been collecting Jayhawk memorabilia for much of his life. Additional pieces in the collection were donated by various members of the KU community or were from existing holdings of the KU Memorial Unions.

The collection was on display for four years in the Kansas Union by agreement with Mr. Jennings. When the agreement expired, Jennings planned to sell the collection by auction. While the collection was in the process of being removed from the Union, posts were made on the KU History Facebook page ( with images of the collection and a plea for a donor to come forward to keep the collection on campus. When the news of the loss of the collection reached the Lawrence Journal-World, an article was published and read by Mr. Ascher, who then offered to purchase the collection for permanent display in the Kansas Union.

KU Today
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
5th nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets: Colleges," Military Times