Amid the general turmoil of the day, I spent a few enjoyable moments talking with a friend who had some business in the Woodson and I tossed off almost thoughtlessly the notion that archiving is more an art than a science. That idea came back to me again just a few minutes later. I’ll let you in one of our special archive secrets: sometimes when we look at a photograph or document we don’t have any real idea what it is. So from time to time things wind up in the wrong place, or at least in a place that isn’t precisely right. (Here’s an earlier example.)
At some point, someone looked at this picture and decided it belonged in the file folder labeled “Students, Unknown, 1970s.”
It’s not a bad guess, really. Some of the people in the photo are certainly students, and I definitely don’t know who they are. The outfits absolutely scream “1970s.” But those guys in the back look a bit long in the tooth to be students, if you know what I mean. And at a glance I recognize two of them: Ira Gruber from the History Department and Bob Curl of Chemistry. So my guess is different–I think this is a picture of the college masters and presidents, and I agree that it was sometime in the 1970s.
I seem to have quite a few readers from that era, so any help in identifying the other people would be greatly appreciated. We can discuss later what the appropriate title for the file folder would be.