Dartmouth's Daily Blog
News, commentary, criticism and praise for the College on the Hill, enlivened with history, culture and travel when we feel so moved.
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Days of Yore: The Class of 1979 Bonfire
Though I did not participate in its construction, the worthies who built the Class of 1979 bonfire in the fall of our freshman year in 1975 deserve to be honored. Their stupendous bonfire was 100 tiers high — so high that the College recognized the size race for what it was and limited the height of bonfires thereafter. (Last weekend’s bonfire was 72 tiers high.)
In those days, bonfires were not constructed of the green timber that one sees today. They were made of old railroad ties deeply impregnated with a flammable protective: coal tar creosote. Man, did that stuff burn. There was never any doubt that the entire structure would tumble to the ground in a shower of sparks and flames. The whole bonfire caught fire from the start, not just its flammable core.
Curiously, we never ran around the fire, nor felt any urge to touch the pyre itself. I guess that old traditions could not fail, if they had not yet been invented — and with the use of creosoted ties, our bonfire was a heck of a lot hotter, too.
August 14, 2013
Breaking: Of Crips and Bloods and Memories of Ghetto Parties
History repeats itself, first as tragedy and then as farce, or sometimes it just repeats itself. From the New York Times on November 30, 1998: At Dartmouth College, white students at a ”ghetto party” dressed…
June 25, 2013
Dean of the College Charlotte Johnson’s War on Students Part (2/2)
Part 1, Part 2 Today’s post again recounts the events that befell the Freshman. However, the content of the Hanover Police department report reproduced in this space yesterday is supplemented by information from my own…
October 18, 2009
When Love Beckoned in 52nd Street
We were at San Francisco’s BIX last evening, enjoying prosecco, cheese, and a bit of music. A full year of inhabitation in Northern California has unraveled to me no decent venue for proper lounging, but…
October 9, 2009
D Afraid of a Little Competish
So our colleague and Dartblog writer Joe Asch informed me that the D has rejected our cunning advertising campaign. Uh-oh. The Dartmouth is widely known as a breeding ground for instant New York Times successes,…
September 4, 2009
How Regents Should Reign
As Dartmouth alumni proceed through the legal hoops necessary to defuse a Board-packing plan—which put in unhappy desuetude an historic 1891 Agreement between alumni and the College guaranteeing a half-democratically-elected Board of Trustees—it strikes one…
August 29, 2009
Election Reform Study Committee
If you are an alum of the College on the Hill, you may have received a number of e-mails of late beseeching your input for a new arm of the College’s Alumni Control Apparatus called…
- The Dartmouth College Case
- 2007 Trustee Election
- Dartmouth Constitution
- Sunday Morning Sinatra
- The Indian Wars
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