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Perusal of 15 Ephemeral College Publications Reveals Secrets of Early 20th Century


No less than fifteen ephemeral publications have glimpsed the light of a University day since the gay nineties squandered money on superfluous petticoats. Ranging from a weighty political work like the "Harvard Democrat" to such froth as the "Harvard Brewers' Gazette", most of them were lucky if issue number two ever came off the press.

It would seem that the University suffered considerable degeneration as the 20th century toddled from its cradle. Where the question of Imperialism filled the pages of the "Harvard Democrat" in 1900, the following item appeared in the "Harvard Anarchist" in 1908:

"Professor Kittredge was sought at ten o'clock and was asked what he thought of the Democratic party, but he hurried way, merely remarking that he could stand for almost anything but turpenine."

Help in French 6

But 1908 was not completely without its constructive publications. In November appeared "The Harvard Grind" with its avowed purpose to help fellow grinds. Quoting a reader of the "Grind" just before a French 6 exam:

"Rabelais is famous for his "Pantagruel" (three books) and his "Gargantua" He was a humanist and called a spade a spade; his motto was: 'Fais ce que voudras' or 'Do what damn please'--a fine dope to follow if you have a barrel of money, but for a poor guy it means prison inside of a week. Rabelais was an all 'round bad guy, didn't believe in God, and led a pretty fast life. His works show it, and they'd never do for a Girls' School, but would make a big hit with some college men I know. Next!"

No summary of College publications would be complete without quoting the "Harvard Brewers' Gazette" in its inimitable argument against a periodic Prohibition movement in 1909:

"Come, all ye who drink and are heavy laden.--Cambridge is to be turned into a dasert.--The Freshman is to be deprived of his beer.--Remember your fathers.--Did they not throw the tea overboard?

"Ours is the ideal candidate with the ideal name (Beerwith for mayor). He will give satisfaction. He has satisfied himself for years. Can the Proselyte of Prohibition say as much?"

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