Headed by President Conant, a large number of College officials, including the ubiquitous Colonel Charles R. Apted '03, presented a meerschaum amber pipe to John Skehan yesterday morning in commemoration of 50 years of service in the University.
After three years of knocking about in Kansas following his landing from Ireland in 1882, Skehan came to Cambridge. "That was the greatest mistake of my 72 years of life," he declared.
On March 4, 1885, he was given a job doing general work around the University, and ten years later was assigned to keeping the Yard in good condition.
As the official pumper of the Appleton Chapel organ for 30 years, he used to supply the music-making wind every morning. "That was some job!" he asserted. "The old bellows leaked about as fast as I could pump. Many a drop of sweat I left in that old tower!"