The ceremonial mace was first introduced at the May 1987 Commencement ceremony. The mace is carried by a faculty member known as the Commencement Marshal. The Marshal carries the ceremonial mace symbolizing the philosophical foundation and the history of Alabama's oldest university.
The pedestal of the mace is 52 inches tall and was lathed partially from wood saved from Gorgas Oak, a campus landmark felled by a 1982 windstorm. The headframe of the mace is made entirely of Gorgas oak and is set with four bronze castings. The base, pedestal, and headframe were crafted by Sebron E. Kelly, retired Superintendent of Building Maintenance of The University of Alabama and other maintenance employees.
The first casting is the official seal of The University of Alabama, a circle presenting Minerva, the Roman goddess of wisdom, who rests her right hand on the symbols of learning and holds in her left hand the olive branch of peace. In the background, the sun is rising. The outer circle of the seal holds the name of the institution and the date 1831, the year in which The University of Alabama was established.
The second casting is Denny Chimes, the campanile carillon that stands on the Quadrangle and has rung the hours since 1929. The Chimes appear on the mace as a symbol of the campus and of the student life.
The third casting is a triangle presenting the lamp of knowledge with one phase of the University's mission - teaching, research, and service - written on each side of the figure.
The fourth casting is of Clark Hall, one of the oldest classroom buildings on campus and the home of the College of Arts and Sciences, which was the first established division of the University.