This blog includes text and images drawn from historical sources that may contain material that is offensive or harmful. We strive to accurately represent the past while being sensitive to the needs and concerns of our audience. If you have any feedback to share on this topic, please either comment on a relevant post, or use our Ask Us form to contact us.

This Week in Princeton History for October 31-November 6

In this week’s installment of our recurring series, a professor urges locals to vote for Abraham Lincoln, a woman attending a football game feels unsettled, and more.

October 31, 1864—Mathematics professor John Thomas Duffield, Class of 1841, speaks at a Union meeting in the town’s Mercer Hall. He says he voted against Abraham Lincoln in 1860 but will vote for him this year with hopes others will do the same, and that any negotiations to end the war with the Confederacy via compromise would be sinful.

John Thomas Duffield, ca. 1860s. Historical Photograph Collection, Individuals Series (AC067), Box 134, Folder 35.

November 2, 1998—A Princeton employee researching internal combustion engines is arrested for keeping a pellet gun in his office. Though the gun is generally seen as a toy, it is illegal to have it on campus under New Jersey law. The employee says he was unaware of the law.

November 4, 1893—Dorothy Maddox feels uneasy at the Pennsylvania-Princeton football game. She will later explain her feelings in the Philadelphia Inquirer. “Didn’t those Princeton students yell? Indifferent to self, they shrieked and howled in manly unison, working off in this way to a degree of interest that would have reduced a woman to a pitiful state of exhaustion.” She is displeased that women aren’t given the same freedom: “Why cannot we be more natural? Why cannot we cultivate lusty lungs and a reckless disregard for damaged complexions and wilted bangs? No, we must always lose half the flavor, half the spice of life, simply because we are not natural.”

Pennsylvania vs. Princeton program, November 4, 1893. Athletic Programs Collection (AC042), Box 1, Folder 1.

November 5, 1963—The real estate department is attempting to implement a new policy forbidding the listing of local rental rooms or apartments “where there is any evidence that the owner discriminated against tenants for reasons of race, color or faith,” but is finding it challenging. Although two owners have been delisted because they explicitly indicate that they will not rent to Black residents, the department will also need to take a more active role in investigating charges of discrimination when owners are less openly prejudicial.

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.

One response to “This Week in Princeton History for October 31-November 6”

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.