This Week in Princeton History for May 20-26

In this week’s installment of our recurring series bringing you the history of Princeton University and its faculty, students, and alumni, married undergraduates face a housing shortage, two Charter Club officers are sentenced to prison, and more.

May 20, 1782—Princeton president Samuel Stanhope Smith signs a receipt for Peter Elmendorf, Class of 1782, for payment of the rent of his room for the year (40 shillings).

May 21, 1971—The Daily Princetonian reports on a housing shortage facing 96 married undergraduates.

May 24, 1864—Twenty-three-year-old Abram Zabriskie, Class of 1859, a colonel in the Union Army, dies from wounds originally sustained in the Battle of Drury’s Bluff on May 16.

Abram Zabriskie, Class of 1859, ca. 1860. Historical Photograph Collection, Alumni Photographs Series (AC058), Box MP10.

May 25, 1988—Charter Club’s former president and social chair are both sentenced to 30 days in prison and a $500 fine for their involvement in an outbreak of alcohol poisoning on campus that led to 46 students requiring emergency medical treatment. Judge Russell Annich explains the need for sentence, which some saw as unusually severe, by comparing Charter Club’s sign in party to the Jonestown massacre. “There are issues of broad social concern…I am also determined that when whatever inquiry goes into these events that it will not be said that the Princeton Borough municipal court treated this as an undergraduate frolic that got out of hand.”

This February 11, 1988 issue of the Nassau Weekly details the crisis of alcohol abuse on the Princeton University campus.

For the previous installment in this series, click here.

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1 thought on “This Week in Princeton History for May 20-26

  1. Pingback: This Week in Princeton History for May 27-June 2 | Mudd Manuscript Library Blog

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