The year was 1972. President Nixon went to China in February and in June, five men were arrested for breaking into the Democratic National Committee headquarters in the Watergate complex. As the eyes of the world turned to the Summer Olympic Games in West Germany—and the subsequent terrorist attack—Hampden-Sydney College itself was going through a series of changes: S. Douglas Fleet had assumed the role of chairman of the board of trustees; expansion of the new Eggleston Library was already underway; and preparations had begun for an elaborate national and institutional bicentennial celebration.
The board and the administration were wrestling with the issues of female visitation and coeducation. Though then-President W. Taylor Reveley II ’39 supported remaining all-male, he successfully encouraged the board to bring women onto the faculty and include them on the board of trustees.
Today’s students would recognize most of The Hill of 1972. They would get lost in the woods looking for much of current student housing, however, would likely drool over the chance to park in front of Cushing Hall, and would search hungrily for the Commons, then located in Winston Hall.
Meanwhile, the faculty was growing rapidly, having added 20 professors since 1965. The fresh faces on campus during the early 1970s included now well-known names, such as Brinkley, Franke, Martin, Silvera, Sipe, and the History Department’s Class of ’68: Amos Laine, Ron Heinemann, and James Simms.
New to the Hampden-Sydney faculty in 1972 was George Bagby, a fresh-faced Ph.D. candidate at Yale University who had spent two years teaching at LeMoyne- Owen College, a historically black college in Memphis, Tennessee. Now, for the past 40 years, the Fredericksburg native has taught American literature, with particular interest in poetry, nature writing, and African-American literature, among other genres.
The College was changing during the early 1970s—so was the entire country—and since then the College has changed much. Bagby points out that the student ethos at Hampden- Sydney, however, has remained remarkably the same during this time. Full story...
Alumni graduating in years ending with 4s and 9s met on campus for the second annual Hampden-Sydney Reunion Weekend on June 6-8, 2014. Receptions, dinners, live music, and other events throughout the weekend kept alumni entertained while they spent time with old classmates, friends, and family. Building on last year's inaugural event, the 2014 Reunion was a resounding success. Full story...
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