University Installs First Water Feature on Campus


A dedication ceremony will be held for the Miriam and James Haywood Memorial Fountain in July. Photo by Katie Alexander.

by Buffy Lockette

Construction is almost complete on JSU’s first water feature, the Miriam and James Haywood Memorial Fountain, located in the courtyard in front of Angle Hall. The beautiful new campus focal point was funded by a gift from the estate of the late Mr. and Mrs. Haywood, who retired from the university in 1979. 

James and Miriam Haywood

Mrs. Haywood worked for the university for 35 years in various roles including secretary to Dr. Ernest Stone, assistant business manager, and director of personnel services and payrolls. Mr. Haywood, a former Gamecock football player, was a teacher and assistant football coach at Jacksonville High School until joining the university’s staff in 1960 as director of food services - drawing on his experience running military mess halls during World War II. They both earned bachelor’s degrees in education from JSU. 

The couple purchased the first Cocky the mascot uniform for the university while Mrs. Haywood served as JSU cheerleader sponsor for a decade. The Haywoods retired from JSU in 1979 and moved to Gainesville, Fla., for six years when Mr. Haywood accepted a position as director of the Gator Athletic Dining Hall. They returned back home to Jacksonville for retirement. Mrs. Haywood died at the age of 80 in October 2014 while Mr. Haywood died at age 70 in October 1993.  

“The Haywoods were loyal supporters of JSU who wanted to leave a legacy on campus in addition to all their contributions as alumni and retirees,” said President Don Killingsworth. “We are thankful for their generosity and proud to honor their memory with this new campus showpiece.”

Construction began on the fountain in October, with the entire courtyard getting redesigned to include new flagpoles to display the American, Alabama and JSU flags and forthcoming signage to recognize the Haywoods as well as the university’s first African American student, Barbara Curry Story. The historic markers were removed for construction but will soon be reinstalled. The university is planning a dedication ceremony in July during the summer meeting of the Board of Trustees. More information will be provided at a later date about the event. 

The above photo of Mr. and Mrs. Haywood was printed in The Chanticleer upon their retirement in 1979.