Looking for something else in an old scrapbook I discovered this newspaper article attached to a small piece of paper that had come loose and lodged inside the back cover. This is quite a good story, a vibrant contemporaneous account of a really stupid incident. You can almost hear the chaos:
I’m not surprised at all by the harsh discipline but I was a bit taken aback by the idea that they would let the homeless students camp out in the woods on the west side of campus.
Bonus: Yesterday I found myself umbrella-less, waiting out a thunderstorm in Keck Hall. For the first time I noticed that the little medallion on the defunct drinking fountain in the main hallway on the first floor matches the medallions on the front doors. That’s nice.
The “medallion” is a Tudor Rose. Used prolifically at Palmer Church. You can double check with Stephen Fox for a more detailed history of their use at Rice and Palmer. Thanks,Cornelia Williams
The food fight article appeared on page 15 of the Sunday, May 27, 1917, edition of the Houston Post. (https://www.newspapers.com/image/94927641/)
I did not see any mention of it in the next issue of the Thresher (June 11, 1917; https://scholarship.rice.edu/bitstream/handle/1911/64919/thr19170523.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y), which was largely devoted to Rice’s second commencement and looking forward to the next year.
Following the release of the movie “Animal House” food fights at collegesbecame all the rage for a while.
One always heard that the reason the Baker Commons has the beautiful dark-stained wooden walls is that a food fight resulted in the plaster being permanently stained; hence, the change. Any record of that?
That’s not an urban legend.
It’s mentioned in the 1923 Campanile account of campus discord during WWI, as part of the yearbook’s “Rice at War” retrospective:
“… there was a ‘food riot’ in which dishes and food sailed quite merrily for a time. In fact, the walls of the Mess Hall were so dented that it was easier to put in the oak panelling we now have than it was to repair them. ”
(It’s on p. 132 of this pdf of the 1923 Campanile: https://scholarship.rice.edu/bitstream/handle/1911/62528/campanile1923rice.pdf). Note: The “Mess Hall” is today’s Baker Commons.
That account is also quoted on page 7 of the summer 2010 issue of the Rice Historical Society’s “The Cornerstone”: (https://scholarship.rice.edu/bitstream/handle/1911/88463/wrc04751.pdf?sequence=11).
My mistake. It is a quatrefoil. Decorative architectural motif.