In this week’s installment of our ongoing series bringing you the history of Princeton University and its faculty, students, and alumni, a dorm pioneers indoor plumbing, students look for ways to protest peacefully, and more.
April 27, 1877—Witherspoon Hall is completed. It is the first dormitory in the country with indoor plumbing.
April 29, 1905—The bodies of Edward William Axson (Class of 1897), his wife, Florence Choate Leach Axson, and only son, Edward Stockton Axson, are buried in Princeton Cemetery. Axson was the brother of Woodrow Wilson’s wife, Ellen Axson Wilson. He drowned in a futile attempt to save his young family from the same fate after his horses spooked and overturned their carriage in the Etowah River in Georgia. He was 29 years old. A photo of his grave is available here.
April 30, 1992—While residents of Los Angeles riot in protest of the acquittal of four police officers on charges of assault with a deadly weapon and use of excessive force during the arrest of Rodney King, approximately 60 concerned Princeton students spontaneously gather at the Third World Center to discuss what an administrator describes as how to “channel their anger in productive ways.” The following day, approximately 500 people will gather at Firestone Plaza to protest the verdict peacefully. Riots in Los Angeles will ultimately last six days, ending on May 4.
May 2, 1958—The Daily Princetonian runs an in-depth article explaining why women are wearing a new style of dress that men seem to hate (the sack dress, which fits snugly around the hips and balloons above them). The verdict? Mostly, women wear them because they allow them to avoid girdles, and they prefer being comfortable to pleasing their Princeton dates. “It is not so bad to be second to the Russians, but girdles . . .”
For last week’s installment in this series, click here.
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