Beginning today, the Yale Daily News will look back at its coverage of the bicentennial — Yale’s 200th birthday — as the University counts down to its 300th anniversary.

There was a beginning made earlier than 1701. The details of this first chapter of Yale’s history are somewhat obscure. There are many delightful traditions. There are some verified facts. But all the story, incomplete as it is, serves as a vehicle for the continued expression of a spirit which infused into Yale’s life into its outset and enduring through all her history, has helped not a little in making the place what it is.

As early as 1647, when the New Haven Colony was still struggling for existence, land was offered to the authorities for a school reservation and steps were taken by a few public citizens led by the Rev. John Davenport toward raising an endowment fund. One can guess at the sacrifices men of those days made, one can applaud the quality so near heroism in their hearts. … To know how keenly the colony desired the school and to read that it required eight years to raise 540 pounds is full of meaning.

— Oct. 10, 1901