The new issue of National Review carries my article on Ronald Reagan and his alma mater, Eureka College.
Reagan loved Eureka, but Eureka hasn’t always loved him back. At times, the college has been downright conflicted about its best-known alumnus. Professors and administrators at liberal-arts colleges weren’t exactly a part of his core constituency, so even at Eureka, Reagan met with skepticism.
But now Reagan is everywhere at Eureka College. Crammed onto its 112-acre campus are a Ronald Reagan Museum, a Ronald Reagan Peace Garden, a Ronald Reagan Leadership Program, a Ronald Reagan Society (join for $35), and banners proclaiming the Reagan centenary. The Reagan Physical Education Center doesn’t carry a first name because technically it refers to both the politician and his older brother Neil, who also attended the college. On September 24, Eureka added to its honor roll by dedicating the Reagan Research Center, which now occupies the basement of the college library. Pretty soon, it seems, there won’t be anything left to do but rename the college itself.