Sarcasm, No Cap, Hell Raising, 1941

I recently received a package from reader Colleen Jennings Batchelor ’72, for which I am very grateful. It was packed full of interesting things that her father, Edwin J. Jennings ’48, ’49 had saved. Mostly these were issues of the Rice Owl magazine, which were much appreciated as we don’t quite have a full run yet. This one here turned out to be particularly relevant to my purpose today:

Because the real treasure in the package turned out to be a flimsy little notebook filled with the recorded offenses against the Slime Rules committed by the freshmen in Mr. Jennings’ dorm. A quick look through the directories reveal that these young gentlemen were all resident in West Hall in the fall of 1941. And what miscreants they were! Violations of the Rules for Slimes abound.

I was particularly impressed with young Bill Clough and his persistent refusal to wear his slime cap. I almost certainly would have been similarly recalcitrant.

And James Cleave–sarcastic, disobedient, and cussing at a sophomore:

Harrison Fortune: what can I possibly add to “Kiss my ass, sir”?

Gilbert Allen had the temerity to doubt the word of a sophomore!

One mystery remains. Every page includes the initials C.B.S. and I can’t sort out what that might stand for. Any thoughts?

Bonus: As you can probably guess from the dates, within months these young men would all be in military service. Edwin Jennings himself should have been in the class of 1944, but in his daughter’s words “he had a detour to New Guinea and the Philippines during WWII, so ended up in the class of 1948, with a masters in 1949.”  Some of the others entered the Naval ROTC program. Harry Fortune is eighth from the right in the front row below; James Cleave fifth from the right in the third row.

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9 Responses to Sarcasm, No Cap, Hell Raising, 1941

  1. Matt Schredk says:

    While I can’t be sure, that looks like it might be my father fifth in from the left in the front row. He was Naval ROTC at that time, and he ended up on a destroyer in the Pacific.

  2. grungy1973 says:

    Who’s still with us, so we can ask them when the Army ROTC building was built?

  3. Whit Matteson says:

    Cap, Bow tie, Suspenders?

  4. Melissa Kean says:


  5. loki_the_bubba says:

    Good to see some variant of the word sarcasm on almost every page. Some Rice things never change.

  6. Steve Lukingbeal, Hanszen 76 says:

    I hope Dr. Stephen Baker sees these. He was hyper sensitive to any alleged incident of hazing when he was Master of Hanszen College, formerly West Hall, beginning in 1973.

  7. Pingback: Rice Boys at a Rest Stop Somewhere in Texas, 1943 | Rice History Corner

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