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'53 Riots in Yard, at Annex

Rinchart Cries Initiate Freshman Melee


Hundreds of freshmen shouting "Rinchart" stormed out of the Yard and over to the Radcliffe Quad last night before police arrived and began collecting bursar's cards. Shortly after 11 p.m. exam-weary Yardlings began to pour from their dorms as the traditional call to riot echoed through the Yard for the first time since the war.

A small group gathered in front of Matthews North entry soon grew into a large disorganized mob that took up the shout "We Want Conant" and began marching toward the President's house. But any direction the movement had was lost when Yard Proctor Borden F. Beck, Jr. '45, 3L single-handedly barred the way before Widener Library.

Head for 'Cliffe

The mob then turned back and streamed through Massachusetts Hall gate and headed for Radcliffe. Cambridge police did not attempt to stop the throngs as they ran through Cambridge Common and down Garden Street.

Some were still clad in pajamas, others beat on pans and sang "Harvardiana" as they invaded the Quad and began to gather before Cabot Hall. Greeted only by water poured from Cabot windows, the berserk Yardlings then marched around the Quad ignoring girls eagerly hanging from Moors Hall windows. Some gathered on the terrace of Barnard but closed doors and windows repulsed their attempts to gain access to the Hall.

Fifteen of the rioters made the only successful invasion of the Radcliffe dorms when they found the door of Bertram Hall open. A night watchman threw the intruders out of the dormitory.

At least seven Cambridge police cars finally swarmed around and through the Quad at midnight. Riot-breaking tactics seemed to consist of driving the squad cars through the crowd with sirens wailing. This brought cheers of approval from the rioters. The Yardlings began to disperse only when the police dismounted and began taking bursar's cards. Police only seemed to have a handful of cards, but when queried a police official claimed 300 had been collected.

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