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This Week in Princeton History for January 1-7

By April C. Armstrong *14

In this week’s installment in our recurring series, an alum seeks donations for a charitable venture, a senior expresses his hopes for his future, and more.

January 1, 1929—Mayor B. Franklin Bunn, Class of 1907, reiterates his desire for traffic signal lights to be installed on Nassau Street.

January 5, 1880—Joseph S. Schanck, Class of 1869, reports for the Executive Committee of the Princeton Free Reading Room Association that the town’s free library for young men has been a success in its first year of operation. About 40-50 readers visit daily and circulation of books is about 35 per week. “We hope to see the Library in time, a permanent fixture of the Community, and to that end request gifts of books…”

January 6, 1906—In response to a recent increase in thefts from students’ rooms, deliveries are now only permitted between the hours of 8:00AM and 5:00PM to dormitories, and all those who deliver goods will be escorted by University employees.

Benjamin Stuart Walcott
Benjamin Stuart Walcott, Class of 1917. Photo from 1917 Nassau Herald.

January 7, 1917—Benjamin Stuart Walcott, Class of 1917, writes to his father about his plans after graduation:

If I go to Europe, as I want to, to drive an ambulance or in the aeroplane[,] I will be doing a man’s work and shall be doing enough to support myself. If the work is unpaid, it is merely because it is charitable work and as such is given freely. If you want to pay my way, I will consider it not as dependence on you, father, but as a partnership that may help the Allies and their cause… If not, I will be willing to invest the small amount of capital which has accumulated in my name. I have been thinking of this work in Europe for over a year now, and am still very strong for it. I don’t know what the effect will be on myself, but if it will be of service to others, I think that it is something I ought to do.

For the previous installment in this series, click here.

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2 responses to “This Week in Princeton History for January 1-7”

  1. I looked up Benjamin Stuart Walcott ’17 online. Your post would have been more informative if you had mentioned that he died during WWI, while acting on the service he promised to pursue.

    • We’re glad to see that we inspired you to do more research! That’s one of our aims. If you ever have further questions about something we’ve shared, please feel free to ask here, or contact us through our Ask Us form.

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