| Westcott Fountain
by Andrew Young
As you turn onto College Avenue
from Macomb Street you come into view of the Westcott fountain. Even
bottom of the hill, the image of the fountain is amazing. Especially at
when all of the fountain lights come on, the Westcott fountain stands
a beacon. The Westcott fountain was a gift from the 1915 and 1917
Since 1917, the Westcott fountain has been a symbol of Florid State
University’s proud heritage, and pays homage to those who came before.
Westcott fountain is the centerpiece of the courtyard and is
complimented by a
commemorative Brick plaza, a project of the 1996 and 1997 classes. The
Westcott fountain was replaced in 1988, by an exact replica. The
to be replaced due to failure in its support structure.
since its construction, there have been many stories, traditions and
accompany the Westcott fountain. One such tradition is getting dunked
fountain on your twenty-first birthday. This has been a long-standing
at Florida State University, and its been said that you’re not truly a
State student until you have been thrown into the Westcott fountain.
Florida State University Presidents have been known to take a dive into
Westcott fountain. In 1965 President Blackwell was thrown into the
fountain. The Westcott fountain is also no stranger to ghost stories.
around the area the where Westcott fountain now stands was at one point
the gallows. In the 1830s, that same area was called Gallows hill, a
executions were once held. It is not uncommon to encounter a Florida
student who has heard strange sounds or seen unusual things at the
fountain. Late at night, there have even been reports that the executed
still haunt the hill.
Fountain is also where many students spend their free time. The
surrounded by benches, which are almost always full. The fountain area
is a hub
of activity, used as a social meeting place, somewhere to just sit back
relax between or after class, or a relaxing place to study or read. It
not uncommon to find students splashing around in the fountain on a hot
day. The Westcott fountain is also the site of many pranks and
From time to time a prankster will add a detergent to the fountain
to “foam” up. This usually generates a lot of activity around the
students come to see the foaming of the fountain, and to take pictures
to their friends. Another favorite prank, involves dyeing the water in
fountain. There is nothing like coming up to a fountain that has blood
water spraying from it. Thu these pranks seem harmless, the grounds
many hours cleaning and restoring the fountain back to working
is hard to image if the classes of 1915 and 1917 knew then how
symbol the Westcott fountain has become. Surrounded by busy students,
stories, and the occasional prank, Westcott fountain has truly earned
in Florida State University history.
Photographs by Andrew Young