Ex-Yard Cop Misses Good Old Beery Days
"The whole place is a disgrace, with them bars around," claims John Connolly, 81 year old retired yard cop. The more be reminisces in his Cambridge home, the more appalled he becomes at the condition of the University today.
"There was none of this rough stuff in my day," he said. "We had only three men to police the whole University."
John thumbed through his scrap-book to refresh his memory.
"Here's a corker, he said, producing a clipping headed "Cop Clubs and Bombs Rout Harvard Rioters." In response to the mysterious disappearance of the Memorial Hall bell clapper, 2000 students, mostly freshmen, had broken into Radcliffe dormitory and ran through the halls screaming "We want out bell clapper and we want beer."
After setting on the Bertram Hall clapper, they ran out to the square, where thirsty students were clubbed, police were stoned, and the Brattle Square Police Station rocked under the attack of the augury mob trying to rescue an arrested student.
"If you think that was something, you should have seen them senior picnics," he said. "Why they used to drink a gallon of beer apiece and all sobered up by jumping in the bay and trying to catch a greased pig."
Prohibition was comparatively calm according to John, except for a certain fruit juice peddler. When he was arrested for soliciting in freshman dorms without permission, police examined his "fruit juice" and labeled it 16 percent alcohol.
"They used to get their liquor, though," he said.
"The funniest thing, though," he said "was a bunch of fellows in the Yard after graduation. They were so pied they could hardly walk. One of the soberer ones staggered up to me, pulled out his diploma case and said, "John, have a drink."
John closed his scrap book, leaned back in his chair and said, "Them was the good old days, when men was civilized."