This Week in Princeton History for January 24-30

In this week’s installment of our recurring series, an alum urges Americans to put the Civil War behind them in order to defeat a new mutual enemy, the local newspaper advocates scrapbooking, and more.

January 24, 1817—The New York Commercial Advertiser reports that students at Princeton “are in a state of revolt.”

January 25, 1764—Around this date, the Pennsylvania Gazette reports that a fire has damaged Nassau Hall.

January 26, 1889—Students and others gather at a Temperance meeting at the town’s Second Presbyterian Church, where Alfred H. Colquitt, Class of 1844, now a senator from Georgia, warns that Americans must band together against liquor sales. “The Rebellion is over but a new war is upon us. No foreign enemy, but an enemy at home. Let the North and South unite and with combined strength overthrow this threatening evil.”

January 27, 1860—The Princeton Press encourages local residents to take up scrapbooking, and suggests they paste its own articles in their books.

Student scrapbooks do have plenty of newspaper clippings, local and otherwise, but often also a wealth of other contextual information. In this scrapbook made by Benjamin S. Morehouse, Class of 1862, we find an artifact not mentioned in the newspaper article he pasted in its pages, along with this note: “This ‘Golden Circle’ was one of a large no. tacked upon the trees in Princeton by some persons unknown during the night following the troubles mentioned in a preceding article in this scrapbook, ‘Treason Punished in Princeton College’ dated Sept. 16, [18]61. I took it down from a tree. The design thereof did not appear. Whether it is a sign of the ‘Golden Circle’ or not, I do not know. There was much excitement in the place during the few days mentioned in the article.” (The Knights of the Golden Circle was a secret society that formed in 1854 with an aim to establish a new country where slavery would be legal. During the Civil War, some northerners sympathetic to the Confederacy were part of the group.) Scrapbook Collection (AC026), Box 11.

For the previous installment in this series, click here.

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This Week in Princeton History for March 22-28

In this week’s installment of our recurring series bringing you the history of Princeton University and its faculty, students, and alumni, the temperance movement finds support, A Beautiful Mind begins filming on campus, and more.

March 23, 1843—Princetonians are collecting data about the Great Comet passing by.

March 24, 1830—The Boston Recorder reports that a Temperance Society “on the plan of entire abstinence has been recently formed by the students of Nassau Hall, the majority of whom have attached themselves to it. One or two young gentlemen who had been in the habit of a pretty free use of ardent spirits, were among the first to attach their names to the constitution.”

March 25, 1986—The Korean Students Association meets with faculty in the East Asian Studies department to discuss a proposal to reinstate Korean language studies at Princeton. Korean classes have not been available to students since the 1960s.

March 27, 2001—A Beautiful Mind begins filming at Princeton University.

Russell Crowe and Ron Howard talk on the set of A Beautiful Mind, 2001. Office of Communications Records (AC168), Box 198.

For the previous installment in this series, click here.

Fact check: We always strive for accuracy, but if you believe you see an error, please contact us.

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.

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This Week in Princeton History for January 4-10

In this week’s installment of our ongoing series bringing you the history of Princeton University and its faculty, students, and alumni, the school’s president petitions Bill Clinton for an end to a “discriminatory policy,” Nassau Hall gets new tigers, and more.

January 4, 1836—Two students “having been detected in having ardent spirits in their rooms” are asked to withdraw from the College of New Jersey (Princeton).

January 5, 1993—Princeton University president Harold Shapiro signs a letter along with 66 other American university presidents urging U.S. President Bill Clinton to remove the ban on homosexuals in the military as a “discriminatory policy” that “is antithetical to our institutions’ commitment to respect for individuals, as well as for equal access and opportunity.” The action invites intense criticism for Shapiro.

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Harold Shapiro, ca. 1993. Photo from the 1993 Bric-a-Brac.

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