For more than a hundred years, Princeton Student Agencies have offered goods and services — some essential, some luxurious, others just plain wacky — to the Princeton community.
In 1946, an all-male group of juniors founded the Tiger Tot Tending Agency, offering babysitting services to faculty and town folks to widespread demand.
“The Tiger Tot Tenders got an unexpected bonus of being picked up by the national press and then we were off,” wrote Charles Biddle ’47, a PAW reader and one of the agency’s co-founders. Continue reading
The Washington Family, by Edward Savage, part of the Mellon Collection at the National Gallery of Art, shows the first president with wife Martha, her granddaughter Eleanor, and grandson George Washington Parke Custis, then 10 years old.
Princeton’s connections to U.S. presidents run deep. There are the obvious ones: James Madison 1771 and Woodrow Wilson 1879 were alumni of the University. A handful of others were awarded honorary degrees — including Abraham Lincoln (1864), William Howard Taft (1912), and Bill Clinton (1996). And of course, the White House’s current occupant, Barack Obama, is “s’85” (spouse, Class of 1985, in Class Notes-speak).
History buffs may know about future President George Washington’s role at the Battle of Princeton (described in detail in this excellent piece from MountVernon.org and depicted in the famous painting in Nassau Hall’s Faculty Room). PAW readers also may recall that Washington visited the College of New Jersey’s 1783 Commencement exercises.
But less prominent in the Washington mythology is his role as a Princeton parent (or step-grandparent, to be precise). In the following story from PAW’s archives, Virginia Kays Cressy recounts how George Washington Parke Custis 1799 gave his stepgrandfather fits during an abbreviated stay at Old Nassau. Continue reading
Last weekend, Princeton women’s basketball improved to 19-0 this season — an unprecedented start in the annals of Tiger hoops history.
Women’s swimming coach Susan Teeter in 2003. (Beverly Schaefer)
The University has seen its share of impressive winning streaks: Men’s basketball won 20 in a row during the 1997-98 season; football won 24 straight between 1949 and 1952; and men’s tennis won 43 consecutive matches in a six-year span that began in 1975. But the owners of Princeton’s longest winning streak resided in DeNunzio Pool. From 1998 to 2004, the women’s swimming and diving team won a mind-boggling 47 dual meets in a row, spanning seven seasons.
The streak ended with a loss to Pittsburgh in January 2004, and afterward, head coach Susan Teeter told PAW, “I truly believe, in my heart of hearts, that when they come back for their 50th reunions, this record will still be standing.”
Teeter also said her team was anxious to start winning again — the loss came just before Princeton’s January exam break. After finals, the Tigers won their four remaining meets and finished the season with a first-place finish in the Ivy League Championships.
James R. Wade ’59 led a winter ascent of Mount Princeton in 1964. (PAW Archives)
Over the years, many Princetonians have made the gallant trek up the 14,197-foot-high Mount Princeton in Colorado.
William Libbey 1877 (Library of Congress/Wikipedia)
The “intrepid” William Libbey, Jr. ’77 (1877, that is) made the first recorded ascent less than a month after graduating, PAW reported in 1997. Libbey apparently had no difficulty with the ascent until he came within 1,500 feet of the summit, “when his only way lay over a bed of débris . . .; the size of the boulders being such that nothing but the hardest sort of crawling would answer,” according to a report of the expedition.
In 1964, at the request of the Rocky Mountain Princeton Club, which was publicizing an upcoming conference, James R. Wade ’59 led a winter expedition that successfully conquered the summit. Wade is pictured above in the cover photo from PAW’s March 17, 1964, issue. Continue reading
Images from PAW’s 1978 story on theft at Princeton libraries, from left: A library guard served as “a reminder to be honest”; new security measures included electronic scanners; librarian Peter Cziffra showed tabs in the card catalog that indicated missing books.
On a winter Friday 33 years ago, local police found more than 2,000 stolen library books — including nearly 1,000 from Princeton University and the Princeton Theological Seminary — at the home of a former graduate student.
It wasn’t the first time the University had dealt with book theft. In January 1978, Firestone Library estimated that some 150,000 its volumes had disappeared, almost certainly as a result of theft. “One year we put the books out, the next year they’re gone,” Peter Cziffra, then the head of the Fine Hall math and physics library, told PAW. (The story’s headline: “Crime in the Stacks.”)
From the 1920s through the 1960s, Princeton’s no-car rule banned undergraduates from having a vehicle on campus. Some lucky souls, of course, managed to get around the restriction by parking in town. But no one sidestepped the rule so deftly and with such style as Eric Grinnell ’61 did as a 19-year-old sophomore in 1958: He brought a horse-drawn carriage onto campus.
“Old Elegance at Old Nassau,” read a Life magazine feature on Grinnell’s ingenious endeavor. The New York Times also picked up on the story, giving him front-page attention alongside articles on the Republicans’ campaign strategy and nuclear testing in the Soviet Union. Continue reading