45th Anniversary of Pelican Island Campus (Forerunner to Texas A&M University at Galveston) on Wednesday, August 31, 1971
Beginning in 1962, when the Texas Maritime Academy, forerunner of Texas A&M University at Galveston, was founded, cadets had spent their first academic year on the College Station campus of Texas A&M University. On August 31, 1971, the Pelican Island campus, donated to the university by George P. Mitchell, opened its first two buildings for classes.
For the first time, the first year students joined their fellow sophomore, junior and senior students in Galveston. They lived on the Texas Clipper, the academy's first training ship, where they also attended classes. The newly opened classroom and administration building brought the entire student body together on Pelican Island. Until then, the administration and classes were housed in a building at Fort Crockett.
The Texas Maritime Academy office at College Station closed as all four years shifted to the Galveston campus. It was a move that changed the nature of the university and its relationship with the Galveston community forever.