This Week in Princeton History for February 13-19

In this week’s installment of our ongoing series bringing you the history of Princeton University and its faculty, students, and alumni, a professor starts a controversial contraceptive hotline, the campus agrees on a method for resisting the British crown, and more.

February 13, 1967—Vassar’s debate team argues the merits of coeducation in Whig Hall. Vassar’s team, arguing that Princeton should educate women, wins by a vote of 36-11. Both single-gender schools will ultimately become fully coeducational in the same year (1969).

A member of the Vassar debate team makes her argument in Whig Hall, February 13, 1969. Photo from the Daily Princetonian.

February 14, 1996—A controversial Emergency Contraceptive Hotline created by James Trussell, Director of the Princeton University Office of Population Research, and Jacqueline Koenig, Associate Dean of the Woodrow Wilson School, launches today to provide callers with information about relatively unknown methods for preventing pregnancy after a sexual encounter rather than before, including intrauterine devices and pills sometimes called “morning after” drugs. It will receive more than 6,000 calls in its first three weeks.

One of the emergency contraceptive options the hotline suggested was off-label timing and dosage for hormonal birth control pills like Triphasil. Office of Communications Records (AC168), Box 151.

February 16, 1774—The Pennsylvania Gazette reports on the patriotism of the College of New Jersey: “We hear from Princeton in New-Jersey, that the Officers and Students of the College, have unanimously agreed to drink no more TEA.”

February 19, 1947—Albert Einstein is one of 75 scholars who gather at Princeton University for a three-day conference on “The University and Its World Responsibilities.”

Frank Aydelotte, Marie Jeanette Aydelotte, Albert Einstein, and William Rappard, February 19, 1947. Historical Photograph Collection (AC112), Box MP68, Image No. 1601.

For last week’s installment in this series, click here.

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