By now, most of Mercyhurst has seen the foot-high pillar-shaped stone between Egan and Old Main. The stripes carved down each side and across the top of the foot-high stone were as much of a mystery as the presence of the stone itself.
The stone was a gift from the Mercyhurst sister campus in Dungarvan, Ireland and is meant to signify our relationship to the Ireland campus as well as the University’s Irish roots.
How the stone actually ended up at Mercyhurst campus was allegedly the result of a joke made by Director of Asian Studies Program and World Languages and Cultures Keiko Miller.
She discussed the matter of a monument to signify the connection between the two campus of Mercyhurst on the phone with Dungarvan Visit Coordinator Tom Keith.
Miller suggested an Ogham Stone realizing the absurdity of procuring an ancient stone that civilizations used to preserve their alphabets.
Whether the stone is an actual Ogham stone or just a stone that coincidentally has the same shape as one is unknown as the alphabet would’ve been weathered away. The carvings currently on the stone were made recently in ancient Gaelic which spells out “Dungarbhan Sna Deise” (Dungarvan in the traditional district of Na Deise).
After these alterations were made to the stone, pebbles which now surround the base of the stone and a plaque which depicts where both came from were all put into suitcases of American students and brought back to Mercyhurst campus.