The Trouble With Women

What do you do with them after the sun goes down?

Here are two stages in the evolution of the curfew for women at Rice. The first is from the Thresher in December, 1929:

5 oclock rule january 1930

The second is also from the Thresher, this time 1961. Thirty-two years later, still grappling with the same problem:

That 5 oclcok rule Nov 17 1961


(Inside the Archives: the reason I can give you the whole front page for the ’61 story is because the Thresher that year was roughly a third of the size it was in 1929. It changed sizes frequently and there doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason to these changes.)

Bonus: Unbelievably, this is my 1,000th post. I thought about finishing up here but I’m still enjoying it and I’m still gaining readers, so on we go. I do want to thank all of you who read and especially my faithful commenters and emailers for your generous collaboration. I couldn’t have imagined at the beginning how much pleasure this would bring me.

Extra Bonus:


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14 Responses to The Trouble With Women

  1. almadenmike says:

    The bonus photo appears to be taken from Herring Hall, looking SW toward Baker Hall/Institute.

    • Angela Wren Wall says:

      Yup, taken from an upper floor of Herring.

      Although this one did not require one, ‘twould be sad to have no more reconnaissance missions from bonus photos, Melissa….

  2. marmer01 says:

    Finishing? No, no, no, no! We are not ready for this to end.

    • Richard A. Schafer says:

      Absolutely right. I continue to enjoy your digs into the history of the campus immensely fascinating. Please keep going.

  3. Matt Schreck says:

    Melissa, I enjoy these immensely! Please keep on keeping on!

  4. Gloria Tarpley '81 says:

    Absolutely — we love these daily epistles! Please keep going, and know you have a devoted following. Thank you for all the effort it takes, on top of all you do for Rice!

  5. Let not a mere number define the extent of the measure of the intriguing history of this place! Please continue the blog; To go where no Archivist has gone before!

  6. I look forward reading your articles every day and miss them when you are gone on vacation or attending other business. Keep up the good work. I am an avid Rice sports fan and love the articles on some of the stories you come up with in the sports arena.

  7. Barney L. McCoy says:

    I read you daily when I can. When I have missed a few days, I go back at the first opportunity and catch up. I save all the articles in my ISP cloud storage and occasionally reread them. Life would be less interesting without the Rice History Corner. Please keep on.
    Barney L. McCoy, Hanszen 67

  8. marmer01 says:

    You’re having a great time, I can tell. Why stop?

  9. Melissa Kean says:

    Well, it’s surprisingly time consuming. However, I am indeed having a great time so although there may be a day when I post no more, today is not that day.

  10. Kathy says:

    Please don’t stop! These posts bring back so many memories, plus such fun pix, etc., from before my time at Rice.

    And speaking of curfews, I often tell people that the evolution of Rice’s open house policies while I was there is pretty emblematic of the times: when I started as a freshman (Brown) in 1967, we could have boys up to our rooms every other Sunday, I think from 1-4. When I graduated four years later, Brown had 24-hour open house. Yes, things moved fast in the ’60’s!

  11. Theo says:

    That curfew rule not being in place while I was at Rice irks me – it would have saved me several painful evenings in the physical chemistry laboratory class (if I had been a woman at the time). I recall with some clarity the bomb calorimetry experiment, in which a small sample is combusted inside a very well insulated container and one can accurately measure the energy produced during a TWENTY FOUR HOUR session. I think I call Domino’s three times during that lab. Interesting how social mores progress – when I started at Sid in 1991 I was in a room of four men but we were mixed sex per floor. Brown had unisex bathrooms at the time which we thought were very progressive, but a bit weird during parties when non-Rice people were present. I had a lot of explaining to do when UT or A&M friends visited.

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