Timeline

18th-century

March 7th, 1715

Ephraim Williams Jr., Founder of Williams College, is born in Newton, Mass.

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November 13th, 1735

Rev. Stephen West, first Vice President of Williams College, was born on this date at Tolland, Conn.

West graduated from Yale in 1755, taught school, studied theology under Timothy Woodbridge in Hatfield, Mass., and commenced his ministerial labors as chaplain at Fort Hoosac. He preached in Stockbridge following Jonathan Edwards, and some of the earliest pastors in Berkshire County were his pupils. He held the office of Williams Vice President for nineteen years beginning in 1793. He died in 1819 after serving his church for over 60 years. “His friends acknowledged the power of his mind and the goodness of his heart.”
(Durfee, Biographical Annals of Williams)

December 5th, 1753

Williamstown’s first proprietors’ meeting is held in Seth Hudson’s house near Hemlock Brook.

July 22nd, 1755

Ephraim Williams, Jr. writes the will that leaves funds to establish the Free School that will later become Williams College.

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September 8th, 1755

The college’s founder, Ephraim Williams, Jr., dies at Lake George in the Battle of the Bloody Morning Scout.

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June 21st, 1765

West Hoosac is renamed Williamstown, fulfilling the first condition attached to Ephraim Williams, Jr.’s funding of a school near Fort Massachusetts.

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March 8th, 1785

The Massachusetts General Court grants the charter to establish the Free School in Williamstown.

By the act, or charter, the ‘Trustees of the Donation of Ephraim Williams, Esq., for Maintaining a Free-School in Williamstown’ are appointed to erect a school “for the instruction of youth, in such manner as most effectually to answer the pious, generous and charitable intention of the testator”, i.e. Ephraim Williams, Jr.

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April 28th, 1790

Advertisements announce the sale of lottery tickets to support construction of the schoolhouse that will eventually be named West College.

When the funds from Ephraim Williams’s estate were transferred to the trustees of the Free School, it was found that the sum, $11,277, was not sufficient to erect a school house. Consequently, the School trustees petitioned the Massachusetts General Court to hold a lottery to aid in funding construction of the building. In 1789, the petition was granted and in 1790, lottery tickets were advertised in such newspapers as the Massachusetts Centinel. Over $3449 was realized in this way.

October 26th, 1791

The Williamstown Free School, precursor to Williams College, opens its doors to its first students.

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May 22nd, 1792

The trustees of the Williamstown Free School write to the Massachusetts General Court asking to convert the School to a college named Williams Hall.

In their petition, the trustees stress the need to keep college-bound students in Massachusetts, the moral ambiance (or lack of urban “allurements“) of the rural location, and the School’s affordability, which would bring education “more within the power of the midling and lower class of citizens“.

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June 22nd, 1793

The Williamstown Free School becomes Williams College.

The Trustees of the Williamstown Free School receive the charter from the General Court converting the School into Williams College.

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October 9th, 1793

Williams College first opens on this day in 1793.

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September 2nd, 1795

Williams celebrates its first Commencement in the old town meeting house.

In early years, commencement was a time for students to exhibit the knowledge and skills they had acquired during their years at Williams. Orations and disputations were organized, in Latin, English and French, on such far-ranging topics as the slave trade, American government, the French Revolution, and the education of women. It was common at these first commencements for each student to speak several times; in 1795, for example, every senior appeared on the program four times. As the number of graduates grew each year, however, fewer students were selected to speak.

November 5th, 1795

The Adelphic Union–the first extra-curricular society at Williams–is officially established.

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September 3rd, 1799

Williams College trustees abolish the position of professor of French.

“The first Williams professor, appointed in 1795, sold books on the side to survive on his $400 annual salary… Although Samuel Mackay survived, his professorship didn’t–being abolished by the trustees in 1799. The French option was stressed in the first Laws of Williams College to attract students from Canada, some historians have said. Mackay himself came from Canada and taught French well, according to contemporary reports. But New England was turning against all things French by the turn of the century. Williams students even petitioned the U.S. President in favor of war against France in 1798, seeing that country as a dangerous source of ‘anarchy and atheism’ stemming from their revolution. Although President John Adams responded politely, it was the Williams trustees who took action, terminating Samuel Mackay’s teaching post on Sept. 3, 1799. Fifty-four years would pass before the French professorship reappeared in the Williams Catalogue.” (Williams 1793-1993, a Pictorial History)

19th-century

February 4th, 1802

Mark Hopkins, Williams’s fourth president, is born in Stockbridge, Mass.

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September 1st, 1802

“Voted: That the Treasurer be directed to procure a New College Seal, and also a screw for the same.” (Board of Trustees minutes)

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February 8th, 1812

Gordon Hall (Class of 1808) and Luther Rice (Class of 1810) are ordained.

They are two of the first five missionaries sponsored by the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions.

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November 2nd, 1819

President Moore and the Trustees petition the Massachusetts General Court to move Williams College to Northampton.

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February 1st, 1820

The Massachusetts Legislature refuses the petition of the President and Trustees to remove Williams College to Northampton.

“… The Committee pray leave to state, that they do most highly appreciate, and most profoundly respect the motives of the petitioners; these are unquestionably founded in a truly honorable, and elevated desire, to extend the usefulness of this respectable College, in promoting learning, virtue, piety, and religion; and, under these impressions, the Committee feel the most sincere regret, that their perception of duty, compels them to submit to the two Houses, that it is neither lawful, nor expedient, to grant the prayer of the petition…”

July 17th, 1821

Zephaniah Swift Moore, second president of Williams College, resigns his presidency.

Williams College’s second president, Zephaniah Swift Moore, was enticed to Williamstown upon assurance by several trustees that the college would soon be moving south to more civilized surroundings. In a letter dated July, 1821, after the legislature found it neither “lawful nor expedient” to grant a petition by Moore and a majority of the trustees to relocate the college, Moore announced his resignation, effective after the fall commencement of the same year. In response to Moore’s impending departure, about half the student body proposed to withdraw (many intending to follow Moore to Amherst) leaving enrollment at a dangerously low level.

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September 5th, 1821

Williams alumni approve the newly composed preamble and bylaws of the Society of Alumni, thereby forming the first alumni society anywhere.

Williams College’s second president, Zephaniah Swift Moore, was enticed to Williamstown upon assurance by several trustees that the college would soon be moving south to more civilized surroundings. In a letter dated July, 1821, after the legislature found it neither “lawful nor expedient” to grant a petition by Moore and a majority of the trustees to relocate the college, Moore announced his resignation, effective after the fall commencement of the same year. In response to Moore’s impending departure, about half the student body proposed to withdraw (many intending to follow Moore to Amherst) leaving enrollment at a dangerously low level. Concerned for the College’s welfare and faced with the threat declining enrollment posed to the continued existence of the college, Emory Washburn (1817) and Daniel Noble (1796) were motivated to act. Washburn published notices in regional newspapers, calling upon all graduates of the college to meet for the purpose of forming a society dedicated to the support, protection and improvement of Williams College. Two weeks later, 23 percent of the living alumni attended the meeting, approved the preamble and bylaws of the society, and formed the first society of alumni to be established worldwide.

April 17th, 1822

“It was directed by the Faculty that there shall be no instrumental music at Commencement . . .

or at any Exhibition except in the house, & that not more than four musicians shall be employed at Commencement, nor more than two at the Exhibitions.” (from the Records of the Faculty of Williams College)

December 22nd, 1824

Four members of the Class of 1827 are fined $5 for playing cards. (Faculty Meeting Minutes)

May 7th, 1828

Edward Clark (Class of 1831) is fined $5 and suspended for a term for firing off firecrackers. (Faculty Meeting Minutes)

May 25th, 1829

John R. Hickok (non-graduate of the Class of 1831) is fined 50 cents for attending a dancing school. (Faculty Meeting Minutes)

December 10th, 1829

Erasmus D. Towner (Class of 1833, non-graduate) is expelled for repeatedly setting a college out-building on fire.

A year later, another student will confess to kindling the fire, and the college will vote to let Towner return to Williams. (Faculty Meeting Minutes)

November 19th,1831

James A. Garfield, Williams Class of 1856 and the 20th President of the United States, is born in Orange Township, Ohio.

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July 4th, 1832

July 4th riots result in the expulsion of several students.

“Voted that Alexander H. Strong, for being engaged in the disorderly conduct at Adams last Saturday, & for being found, on the evening of the 4th of July, disguised in his dress, for the purpose, as he confesses, of throwing fire balls around college, be cut off from college.” (from the Records of the Faculty of Williams College, July 7, 1832)

October 29th, 1833

Kappa Alpha is the first fraternity established at Williams.

Legend has it that fourteen Williams students traveled to Union College to pick up a Phi Beta Kappa charter, but instead came back with one for the social fraternity.

August 25th, 1835

The first expedition of Williams’s Lyceum of Natural History sails . . .

out of Boston bound for the Bay of Fundy and Nova Scotia. The first student expedition ever, the group is lead by Profs. Albert Hopkins and Ebenezer Emmons.

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November 10th, 1836

The faculty vote on the time the prayer bell will be rung.

“Hereafter from…November ’till the close of the first term, the prayer bell shall be rung at 1/2 past four on Saturday, Sabbath, and Wednesday evenings.” Source: Williams College Records of the Faculty, 1821-1871.

June 12th, 1838

Hopkins Observatory is dedicated.

August 15th, 1838

Nathaniel Hawthorne attends Williams College’s Commencement.

During the summer of 1838, Nathaniel Hawthorne spent several weeks in the Williamstown area. In addition to describing Williams’s August commencement ceremonies, he wrote numerous entries regarding Greylock and its startling cloud formations which he termed ‘cloud-scenery’: “It was like a dream to look at it: and the students ought to be day-dreamers, all of them,–when cloud-land is one and the same thing with the substantial earth.” The American note-books is said to contain the first use in print of the name ‘Graylock,’ a name some claim was bestowed by Albert Hopkins, Williams’ professor of natural philosophy and astronomy.

January 30th, 1839

Samuel Chapman Armstrong, Class of 1862 and founder of Hampton Institute, is born on the island of Maui.

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October 17th, 1841

The original East College–featuring four floors–burns to the ground.

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July 18th, 1845

Prof. Ebenezer Kellogg sells the West College garden plot to the college.

Formerly used to grow vegetables for student meals, the college will construct a new dormitory, named Kellogg Hall, on the plot. The land is now part of the Science Quad.

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August 5th, 1850

David Dudley Field, Jr. (Class of 1825) gives a ‘literary picnic’ for Nathaniel Hawthorne and Herman Melville on Monument Mountain in Great Barrington, MA.

August 11th, 1851

Herman Melville, with a party of friends and relatives, stays overnight in the observatory on Mount Greylock.

Evert Duyckinck, one of the party, wrote to his wife: “The ascent of Saddleback the highest mountain in Massachusetts came off grandly with a party of eleven?–a night encampment in an old box called an observatory on the summit & of course sleepless. But people don?t go there to sleep: so a huge bonfire was lighted. Wrapped in buffaloes [robes] we stalked around in the cloud Ossianic ghosts. The sun rise was a failure; not so the sweeping clouds below us rolling in vapory masses, through their looped raggedness disclosing the lower world.”

August 15th, 1854

Ralph Waldo Emerson speaks before the Adelphic Union, the student literary-debating society.

Apparently James A. Garfield (Class of 1856 and future U.S. President) is so moved by the talk that he cannot sleep that night.

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August 14th, 1855

Members of the Lyceum of Natural History dedicate Jackson Hall, their new headquarters located in the Berkshire Quad.

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July 1st. 1859

The first intercollegiate baseball game is held between Williams and Amherst. Amherst wins 66-32.

May 7th, 1861

“Third term begins at Williams and undergraduates form a battalion and drilled an hour daily.”

Source: George L. Raymond journal,1862.

“Intense excitement” created by the surrender of Fort Sumter caused many to enlist and four years of smaller incoming classes. Three hundred seventeen Williams men, representatives of 38 classes from 1825 to 1870, answered Lincoln’s call and eight non-graduates entered the Confederate army. In 1863, the faculty made military training a required exercise with a schedule of three 40 minute drills a week. Students who had been in actual service could be excused from drills “upon application”.

October 9th, 1861

Williams faculty vote to allow students to go out of town without excuse . . .

on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons provided they are not absent from any college exercise.

May 2nd, 1863

The Alpine Club, the oldest mountain climbing organization in the country, takes its first walk to Birch and Prospect Glens.

Inspiration for the Alpine Club reputedly came from Williams College’s Prof. Albert Hopkins. The Club’s mission was to “explore the interesting places in the vicinity, to become acquainted… with the natural history of the localities, and also to improve the pedestrian powers of the members.” The first members were nine Williamstown women: Miss Dewey, Miss Tatlock, Miss Ruth Sabin, Miss Bessie Sabin, Miss Whitman, Miss Foote, Miss Kilby, Miss Louisa Hopkins, and Miss Carrie Hopkins. Prof. Hopkins was elected Chronicler of the Club.

September 23rd, 1863

The Williams faculty vote to require student attendance at military drill.

Faculty Meeting Minutes:

1863 Sept 23
Voted that the students be required to attend the military drill except they are excused by the Faculty. That the time of drill be on Mondays, Tuesdays, + Fridays – Forty minutes for each drill. //

1863 Sept 30
Voted that students who have been in actual service in the defense of the Country be excused from military drill upon application.

July 15th, 1864

A group of seniors and juniors meet to establish a provisional chapter of Phi Beta Kappa at Williams.

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July 28th, 1867

Williams President Mark Hopkins dedicates the Mission Park Monument.

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July 28th, 1868

The Soldier’s Monument is dedicated on Alumni Day.

Williams is the first college to commemorate its Civil War dead in this way.

November 10th, 1868

Williams students rebel against a faculty ruling that awards a zero for any absence from recitation.

In the student newspaper Vidette, Marshall Hapgood, non-graduate of the Class of 1872, described the students’ disagreement with a new faculty regulation awarding a zero mark for any absence from recitation, whether the absence was officially excused or not. “Tuesday, November 10 [1868] Today will be a great day in the history of Williams College . . . our main object was to consider the matter of withdrawing from College; so we adjourned to another room and there decide to withdraw until the obnoxious rule is taken back. After Chapel exercises at night we have a general College meeting and everyone except three of the one hundred and seventy or upwards members sign a resolution to withdraw. So I consider myself no longer a member of College. In eve play Back Gammon and Checkers.” Over the next several weeks, President Mark Hopkins and the faculty softened the rule, and students returned to class.

June 29th, 1871

The Society of Alumni appoints a committee to “examine into the expediency of admitting women as students to college.”

Prof. John Bascom, David Dudley Field, Francis H. Dewey, Clement Hugh Hill, and Rev. Henry Hopkins were appointed to study the introduction of coeducation and submit their report at the 1872 Society of Alumni meeting. The majority opinion advised postponing “the further consideration of the subject to another generation…” The minority report, written by Bascom and also signed by David Dudley Field, supported the admittance of women.

October 28th, 1871

The student newspaper, the Vidette, announces that East College has been wired for telegraphic communication.

December 28th, 1871

One of Williams’s favorite sayings is born: “The ideal college is Mark Hopkins on one end of a log and a student on the other.”

At the annual dinner of the Williams Alumni Association James A. Garfield waxes rhapsodic about former President Mark Hopkins’s impact on education at the college. As no one is taking notes, we are uncertain of the exact words Garfield uses. The saying, however, is soon coined: “The ideal college is Mark Hopkins on one end of a log and a student on the other.”

July 2nd, 1881

James A. Garfield, Class of 1856 and 20th President of the U.S., is shot by a disgruntled office seeker in a Washington, D.C. railroad station.

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July 3rd, 1883

A violent storm destroys the setting for the annual alumni dinner, smashing dishes, tables, and the building itself.

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March 17th, 1896

Students vote 247 to 42 in favor of inaugurating a campus-wide honor code.

March 20th, 1896

A portion of the east side of (old) Clark Hall is loosened by the rain and tumbles to the ground.

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May 28th, 1898

Cap & Bells offers its first production, a comedy “For one night only.”

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20th-century

November 24th, 1904

With Morgan Hall ablaze, President Harry Hopkins calls in the North Adams fire department.

Four men and two hose carts respond to help extinguish the fire by 9 pm. Damages are estimated at $30-35,000. Two thirds of the occupants of the dorm, built in 1882, are away for Thanksgiving recess. When repairs are finished Morgan will have electric lights throughout.

June 21st, 1905

President Theodore Roosevelt attends the dedication of Thompson Memorial Chapel during Commencement weekend.

November 3rd, 1908

The Williams Record posts Tuesday evening election returns in the office at Jesup Hall.

“Especial effort is made to announce results in a definite concise form”.

The previous Thursday evening a Torch Light parade was held with the North Adams band leading the Republicans and their red and green torches around the town and then to the Opera House for a rally. William Howard Taft, friend of President Theodore Roosevelt and his Secretary of War, became our next president. The ticket of Taft and Sherman carried 29 states.

October 12th, 1912

The Williams Record reports that the Trustees have voted to demolish College Hall, best known for serving the worst food on campus.

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November 7th, 1912

The “Apple Growing Committee” of the Good Government Club sets the date for Orchard Day.

State Pomologist F.C. Sears and Professor R. Reese, both of Massachusetts Agriculture College, will give a series of talks on Nov. 19 dealing with apple raising and marketing. A large turnout is expected with faculty, undergraduates plus townspeople. All students wishing to join the committee are invited to the 7:30 meeting this evening at 17 Jesup Hall.

January 24th, 1913

Eben Burt Parsons, secretary of the Faculty and Registrar of the College for 21 years, passes away.

Dr. Parsons, Phi Beta Kappa Class of 1859, served under four Williams presidents and was known as a veritable storehouse of information with his amazing memory. “Eby”, as he was called by the students, did graduate work at Harvard, Cooper Institute and Andover Seminary. He was ordained Chaplain of the 116th U.S. Colored Infantry and pastored a church 20 years before returning to Williams. He and his family lived in a house that had been moved from across Rte. 2 to the Dodd House neighborhood on then College Place. Dr. Parsons was buried in the College cemetery and his home became student housing and “Parsons” in 1974. (Source: Williams Alumni Review, 12/1923; Wms. Record, Jan.25, 1913.)

March 17th, 1914

The cane contest is deemed so disorderly and raucous that the President and Dean abolish this Freshman-Sophomore rush.

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November 11th, 1918

James Alexander, Jr. (Class of 1917) is one of the first Americans to hear of the signing of the Armistice.

“Hostilities will cease on the entire front on November 11th at 11:00 am. French time” (Marshal Foch)
The Armistice details were worked on and signed by the German delegates at 5:00 a.m. James S. Alexander, Jr. (Class of 1917), a staff member of Marshal Foch’s headquarters and the American Mission, was wakened at 5:45 a.m. and spent the entire day and evening “translating for General Pershing the annexes to the armistice agreement.” Alexander wrote to his mother following the cessation of hostilities of WWI telling of the celebrations along with descriptions of his encounters with the great damage done by the war: “To see whole villages pounded to powder is appalling.” James first arrived in France with 13 other men from Williams and many others from American schools who had volunteered for ambulance service. He subsequently joined the A.E.F. and was a Headquarters secretary and a liaison officer. It was in this position that he became one of the first Americans to hear of the signing of the Armistice. His first hand account and observations (drawings, maps, conversations) of his enlistment, training and service in the War are among the collections of the Williams College Archives.

December 6th, 1918

Charles W. Whittlesey (Class of 1905) is awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.

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October 1st, 1919

The World War I Victory Celebration is held at the college.

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January 6th, 1920

Dean Howes investigates the whereabouts of a distillery on campus.

Dean Howes wrote to the U.S. Internal Revenue Collector: “I should be very glad if you are willing to furnish me with any definite information with reference to your discovery of an illicit distillery in one of our college buildings. I am informed that you have recently made a discovery of this character, and I should be very much obliged if you could inform me as to the building in which the discovery was made, and also, if possible, the location of the room.” Williams College Dean (Howes) Records (#2005-996)

June 20th, 1920

Ephraim Williams Jr.’s remains are reinterred at Williams College.

Having been removed from his grave site at Lake George, the remains of Ephraim Williams, Jr. were reinterred in the new crypt in the basement of Thompson Chapel during Commencement ceremonies. Governor Calvin Coolidge, who had received an honorary degree from Williams the previous fall, spoke to the gathering. He is purported to have remarked, turning to Col. Williams’s urn which was draped with an American flag: “And there he lies, underneath the flag for which he fought and died.” Members of the audience later noted that Ephraim had died fighting for King George II.

October 20th, 1920

The cornerstone of Stetson Library is laid.

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March 11th, 1927

Carl Sandburg delivers a speech titled “An American Miscellany” before the Williams Forum in Jesup Hall.

April 19th, 1927

The Lawrence Hall Art Museum opens with an exhibit of paintings and drawings by the late Mrs. Asa Morton.

Mrs. Morton was the daughter of Joseph Ames, a noted portrait painter of the 19th century and wife of Romance Language professor Asa Henry Morton. She studied in France at the Julian Studio.

May 7th, 1927

The Williams Record reports on the new road over Petersburgh Mountain pass.

Work begun the previous September on the highway will “cut off some 13 miles” from the trek to Troy. The route will have temporary surfacing when it opens in 1928 but it will not have permanent macadam surfacing until 1929 when the winter storms and thaws have settled the roadbed. New York and Massachusetts purchased 100 feet on both sides of the roadway to eliminate hot dog shanties and filling stations, and possible eyesores.

January 24th, 1935

The Steamship Mohawk disaster claims the lives of Prof. Herdman Cleland and three seniors bound to the Yucatan for a geological expedition.

The sinking of the Mohawk off the coast of New Jersey claimed the lives of Prof. Cleland, and students William Dwight Symmes, Lloyd Houghton Crowfoot, and Julius Palmer. Three Williams students survived this traumatic event. One year and one day later, the Symmes Gate was presented to the college by the parents of William Symmes in honor of those who lost their lives.

March 2nd, 1935

The Williams Record reports that Latin will no longer be considered a requirement for admission to the college.

September 21st, 1935

The Williams Record reports that compulsory daily chapel attendance has been abolished.

March 13th, 1937

The Williams Forum announces that Andre Malraux has canceled his speaking engagement.

The “noted French lecturer and communist” cancels so that he may interview President F.D. Roosevelt in Warm Springs, Ga.

February 21st, 1938

The college seismograph records a 14 second “earthquake” as the 75 foot brick chimney of the Greylock Hotel falls.

The Willams Record article on the following Saturday describes the end of the hotel’s long and colorful career. Professor Freeman Foote attended with a stop watch and Professor E. Perry recorded the time that the first waves hit the seismograph–“exactly nothing flat to travel down main street to the Geology building”.

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February 4th, 1940

The Shakespeare first folio is stolen from the Chapin Library . . .

by a man posing as a professor of English who presents a forged letter of introduction. The rare volume is retrieved by the FBI later in the year.

April 15th, 1941

Williams ambulance on its way to Africa

The first ambulance sent out from Williams College, following the earlier donation of three vehicles, is now on its way to Egypt for service with the British forces.
Costing $1350 the machine was paid for by $450 in student contributions, $650 from a sinking fund, and $250 from faculty contributions. (North Adams Transcript, Tuesday, Apr.15, 1941.)

October 25th, 1945

The term ends and three seniors graduate. There are no Commencement exercises.

October 31st, 1945

The V-12 program at Williams, in which 1076 men were trained, ends.

March 27th, 1949

The Williams Glee Club broadcasts from Adams Memorial Theatre.

“From five to five thirty (E.S.T.) over NBC” –James P. Baxter’s March 9th note to fellow alumni encourages them to tune into this program that was sponsored by the Monsanto Chemical Company.

June 18th, 1950

Williams awards 328 B.A.s at the college’s first outdoor commencement exercises.

The exercises are held on the lawn behind Chapin Hall. Two graduates are awarded Honors in Math without the traditional thesis due to the fact that they studied for the actuarial exams. Twenty-two reserve commissions are awarded. One hundred seventy-six graduates are WWII veterans. Nine B.A.s are awarded in February of the same year. Honorary degrees are awarded to: Charles F. Boyton (1928), Samuel E. Morison, James R. Miller, Charles D. Makepeace, Edwin C. Kendall.

January 2nd, 1951

A fire reduces West College to a sagging shell.

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September 29th, 1951

Gelett Burgess, author of “Purple Cow” verses, dies at age 85 in Carmel, Calif.

The editors of the Williams College humor magazine chose “Purple Cow” for the title of their publication which began in October 1907. Burgess’s sequel to the rhyme that brought him more fame than all his other works combined: “Ah, yes I wrote the ‘Purple Cow’– I’m sorry, now I wrote it! But I can tell you, anyhow, I’ll kill you if you quote it.”

April 16th, 1961

Martin Luther King, Jr. speaks at Williams College.

September 27th, 1961

Hopkins Observatory begins its move to make room for Prospect.

The Observatory is raised onto greased rails in anticipation of its move northwards to make room for the construction of the dorm. This is the second move the Observatory has made.

June 30th, 1962

The Angevine Committee releases the report that will lead to the eventual demise of the Williams fraternity system.

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December 3rd, 1966

Williams students attend the first annual Inter-Collegiate Conference of African-American students held at Columbia.

October 8th, 1919

Lady Bird Johnson speaks at Convocation and helps launch the Williams Center for Environmental Studies.

January 5th, 1968

The first Winter Study Program begins at Williams.

April 5th, 1969

Members of the Afro-American Student Association take over Hopkins Hall to raise awareness of their demands to improve opportunities for African-American students.

June 8th, 1969

Board of Trustees approve “to admit women on a regular coeducation basis beginning in the fall of 1971.”

October 8th, 1969

Pres. Sawyer announces that Williams will admit women as transfer students in fall 1970.

May 4th, 1970

In opposition to the Vietnam War, Williams students vote to strike.

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July 1st, 1970

The first female Assistant Dean at Williams, Nancy McIntire, begins work.

June 6th, 1971

First time women (seven total) walked across the stage at commencement to receive a Williams diploma from the College President.

October 1st, 1982

The Women’s Center moves from Mears to Hardy House.

September 9th, 1984

Pres. Chandler announces the creation of the Williams-Exeter Programme with the purchase of four buildings in Oxford.

October 14th. 1990

The Jewish Religious Center is dedicated.

Rabbi Alan Berg leads the Torah procession to the JRC. The new building replaces the small Kuskin Room located in Thompson Memorial Chapel.

21st-century

October 22nd, 2000

Morton Owen Schapiro is inducted as the 16th President of Williams College.

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November 10th, 2007

Williams hosts the 150th Saturday morning edition of “ESPN College GameDay”

The 122nd Williams-Amherst Homecoming game was featured on ESPN College Gameday, marking the show’s first broadcast from a Division III school. While the announcers found the concept of an “Eph” odd, they were truly perplexed by the “Lord Jeffs.” Williams defeated Amherst 20-0.

July 7th, 2008

College Archives and Chapin Library begin to move their collections out of Stetson Hall in anticipation of the renovation of Stetson Hall and the construction of a new library.

The staff spends months packing over 13,900 boxes and crates. The collections move takes a little over three weeks.

October 24th, 2008

Class of 2012 celebrates Family Days this weekend. Williams College’s first Parents’ Weekend was designated by the Undergraduate Council for May 5-6, 1951.

Parents were invited to a tea with President and Mrs. Baxter in the Faculty club after the Williams baseball game vs. Wesleyan