The college opened with 77 male exchange students under the new exchange arrangements with Trinity, Williams and Colgate.  In addition, two students from Wesleyan and one from Haverford were enrolled at Vassar.  Fifty-seven Vassar students enrolled at Trinity, Williams and Colgate, and two were attending Wesleyan.  One Vassar student enrolled at Haverford.
Richard Nixon became the country’s 37th president, succeeding Lyndon Johnson and defeating Vice President Hubert Humphrey.  Nixon vowed to achieve “peace with honor” in Vietnam through a negotiated settlement.
Representatives from the United States, South Vietnam, North Vietnam and the Viet Cong met in Paris for peace talks.
Attorney and author Charles Rembar gave the Sharpe Memorial Lecture, "Literary Censorship under the Anti-Obscenity Laws."  In 1959, Rembar successfully litigated the lifting of the American ban on D. H. Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover (1928), and in 1968 he published The End of Obscenity: The trials of Lady Chatterley, Tropic of Cancer and Fanny Hill.
Sir Ronald Syme, Camden Professor of Ancient History at Brasenose College, Oxford University, lectured on the "Augustan Poets Without Augustus."  He spoke again at Vassar on “Tolerance and Bigotry in the 4th Century, AD" in 1970.

The student senate passed a resolution for the abolishment of parietals on a college-wide basis.   Realizing that neither enforcement of parietal regulations on male exchange students nor selectively enforcing them for women was suitable, President Simpson approved the senate’s proposal, leaving the decision about men’s visiting hours in the residence halls to a corridor by corridor vote.

Voting on March 5, 1,375 students voted for “no restrictions” on visiting hours, 68 voted for a “limitation” on hours without leaving their present corridors and 10 students voted for “limited visiting hours” even if they had to move.

Elizabeth McCarthy '17, handwriting and document expert, lectured on "Pen Points to Crime."   A lawyer and one of the country’s leading handwriting experts, McCarthy gave testimony in the Kennedy assassination inquiry and the Alger Hiss investigations.  While examining Boston mayoral nomination documents in 1967, she discovered that her own name had been forged

McCarthy lectured on “Crimes in Ink” at Vassar in 1967.

Italian-born art historian Brunilde Sismondo Ridgway from Bryn Mawr College gave the Class of 1928 Lecture on "Sculpture of the Siphnian Treasury in Delphi."  Ridgway’s Severe Style in Greek Sculpture appeared from Princeton University Press in 1970.

In an article entitled “Topics: Ask the Oracle About Coeducation,” Fred M. Hechinger, education editor for The New York Times, analyzed the growing interest in coeducation at previously single-sex colleges and universities.  Calling the Vassar-Yale study “what turned out to be a 100 mile misunderstanding” and imagining a future when all single-sex schools had been coeducational for a time, Hechinger predicted that coeducational housing and other attempts to achieve “productive social interaction” would lead to rancor and, eventually, rebellion.

“After a violent confrontation in the parlor of Bryn Mawr’s coeducational dormitory, in which a Biedermeier vase and a shaving mug were shattered, a moderate Society for Newly Independent Girls (SNIG) will agree to a pilot exchange plan under which all Yale women will spend an all-girl week at Vassar, while all Vassar men will participate in a stag week at Yale.

“The experiment will be pronounced a success.  Two years later, the first women’s college will be founded.”

The Viet Cong attacked 110 targets in South Vietnam, including the capital, Saigon.
Cognitive philosopher James W.  Cornman from the University of Pennsylvania lectured on "Do We Ever Perceive Physical Objects?"  Yale University Press published Cornman’s Materialism and Sensations in 1971.
The faculty approved an inter-departmental minor in Afro-American Studies.
Songwriter and folk singer Tom Paxton performed in the Chapel.  An activist singer, Paxton sang about civil rights and the war in Vietnam in such songs as “Lyndon Johnson Told the Nation,” “Goodman, Schwerner and Chaney” and “Buy A Gun For Your Son”  (1965), “Talking Vietnam Pot Luck Blues” (1968) and “The Iron Man,” (1969) a song-cycle about Vietnam.
Feminist and anti-war poet Muriel Rukeyser ex-'34, read her poetry. Her collection The Speed of Darkness was published in 1968.

Architect and acoustician Cyril M. Harris, Columbia University, gave the Dickinson-Kayden Lecture, "Acoustics, Architecture, and Music."  Harris collaborated with the Danish engineer Vilhelm Jordan on the Metropolitan Opera (1966), and was at work on the design for the Kennedy Center of the Performing Arts in Washington, DC.

Mildred Bernstein Kayden ’42 established the fund in 1966 in honor of the late Professor Emeritus of Music George Sherman Dickinson.

New York’s Supreme Court issued a temporary injunction against the college’s abolition of parietals. Responding to a breach of contract suit brought by a Vassar parent, the injunction required the college to maintain parietals as they were on September 15, 1968.   A first hearing was scheduled for March 17.

President Simpson notified the student body that the former rules—male visitors in the halls from 12:30 pm to 7pm Sunday through Thursday and from 12:30 pm to 11 pm on Friday and Saturday—were in effect until further notice.

The following day, Simpson announced that the stay had been lifted pending the scheduled hearing.  Students were given permission to vote, corridor by corridor, “on altering the [men’s visiting] hours in any way they wanted to, even doing away with them entirely.”      The New York Times

The theme of the annual Soph-Frosh weekend, "Soulful Strut," was exemplified by its highlight, a concert in the Chapel by singer and civil rights activist Nina Simone. The weekend, according to its planner Claudia Thomas '71 one of "Black and blues," also featured a "Stoned Soul Picnic" and a black nightclub group. Ms. Simone, said The Miscellany News, used "her voice as a versatile instrument to se the mood of a concert and alternately to sooth and lash the audience until they loosen up to feel the beauty and the protest of the music. She sings racial protest songs—not of hate, but of justice, freedom and pain."

The Vassar concert was Nina Simone's last in this country before leaving on her sixth European tour during which she performed in Dublin, Belfast, Edinburgh, Cardiff and London before appearing in Munich and Paris.

Atomic scientist Paul Zweifel, professor of physics at Virginia Polytechnic Institute lectured on "The Early History of Atomic Energy."  Professor Zweifel took part in a symposium on nuclear energy at Vassar in 1972, lecturing on "Are There Viable Alternatives to Nuclear Power?".
Dr. Philip W. Silver from Oberlin College lectured on "The Aesthetics of Ortega y Gasset and the Generation of 1927."
German bass Hans-Olaf Hudemann, accompanied by Huguette van Ackere, gave a lecture-performance on "The Development of German Lieder from the Time of Schubert."   A concert and oratorio singer, Hudemann was also a lecturer at the Musikhochschule in Heidelberg.
German bass Hans-Olaf Hudemann, accompanied by Huguette van Ackere, gave a lecture-performance on "The Development of German Lieder from the Time of Schubert."   A concert and oratorio singer, Hudemann was also a lecturer at the Musikhochschule in Heidelberg.
President Nixon authorized Operation Menu, the secret bombing of North Vietnamese supply lines and sanctuaries in Cambodia.
The New York State Board of Regents amended Vassar College's charter so that the college could matriculate men.
Dr. J. Frank McCormick, professor of botany at the University of North Carolina, gave the Helen Putnam Gates Conservation Lecture, entitled "Ecological Effects of Nuclear War."   McCormick worked on this question in several studies at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee.
Scottish landscape architect and pioneer in regional and ecological planning Ian L. McHarg, from the School of Fine Arts at the University of Pennsylvania, lectured on "Design with Nature."  McHarg called his book, Design with Nature (1969) “a personal testament to the power of sun, moon, and stars, the changing seasons, seedtime and harvest, clouds, rain and rivers, the oceans and the forests, the creatures and the herbs. They are with us now, co-tenants of the phenomenal universe.”
Mathematician Patricia McAuley '55 from Douglass College of Rutgers University delivered "Remarks on the Fixed Point Property."
British critic Frank Kermode, the Lord Northcliffe Professor of Modern English Literature at University College London, gave the Class of 1928 Fund Scholars' Lecture, entitled "The Survival of the Classics—The Example of 'King Lear.'"
Eminent art historian of the High Renaissance Sydney J. Freedberg, Harvard University, lectured on "The Art of Il Correggio."   Freedberg’s two-volume Paintings of the High Renaissance in Rome and Florence was published in 1961, and Andrea del Sarto appeared in two volumes in 1963.
The New York Supreme Court dismissed the petition for an injunction against Vassar’s change in parietal regulations brought by the parent of a sophomore.    In his ruling, Justice W. Vincent Grady said, “Private colleges and universities are governed on the principle of academic self-regulation, free from judicial restraints….  Vassar College…has succumbed to the trend of coeducation and with the advent of males, new difficulties will be encountered by the college administration.  It is the privilege of a college, through its Student Government Association, to promulgate and enforce rules and regulations for the social conduct of students without judicial interference.”     John S. Brubacher, The Law and Higher Education: A Casebook, vol. 2
Philosopher David Keyt from Cornell University lectured on "Plato's Logical Realism and the Fallacy of Division."
Former US ambassador to Japan Edwin O. Reischauer, Harvard University, gave the Helen Kenyon Lecture, entitled "Japan in the Modern World."  Ambassador Reischauer spoke again at Vassar in 1974, lecturing on “"Japan and East Asia: Reflections on the Nixon-Kissinger Foreign Policy."
Sterling Brown, Howard University, lectured on "Images of Negro Life and Character in American Literature."   Professor Brown was a visiting professor at Vassar in 1945 and 1946.
Phycologist Robert T. Wilce, professor of biology at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, gave the Helen Gates Putnam Lecture, entitled "High Arctic Algae; Their Systematic Role in the Ocean Ecosystem: A Cool Subject."   Professor Wilce was a founding member of the Northeast Algal Society.
Dr. Sidney Morgenbesser, John Dewey professor of philosophy at Columbia University, gave an open seminar on "The Nature of Scientific Theories." Dr. Morgenbesser lectured again at Vassar on May 8 on "The Unity of Natural and Social Sciences."
Philosopher of language Raimundo Lida, Harvard University, lectured on "Miguel de Cervantes."
American poet James Merrill read his work.  Merrill’s Nights and Days (1966) won the National Book Award for poetry in 1967, and his The Fire Screen appeared in 1969.
United State troops in Vietnam reached their highest number, 543,000.  33,641 Americans have been killed, exceeding the number dead in the Korean War.
The Student Afro-American Society gave a list of demands, entitled "A Search for Relevant Education," to the office of Dean of the Faculty Nell Eurich. The list called for the establishment of an Urban Center of Black Studies, a black-students' co-operative residence and cultural center, a black counselor empathetic with black students' circumstances and a budget for black-cultural event programming.
The class of 1971 elected David Galbraith '71 as the first male class president.
Henri Ghent, director of the Brooklyn Museum Community Gallery and member of the Black Artists Emergency Coalition, lead an informal discussion on "The Invisible Art, the Museums, and the Community."
The Vassar faculty approved the Student Afro-American Association's "A Search for Relevant Education" "in principal" and called for the college to begin its implementation immediately.   The notion of an Urban Center associated with the college was, the faculty said, “creative and intellectually sound.”
Author and activist Grace Paley read from her work.  Jailed several times for her protest activities, on July 18, 1969, the self-described “combative pacifist and cooperative anarchist” flew to Hanoi with six other anti-war activists and succeeded in gaining the release of three American prisoners of war.

Former New York City Commissioner of Health Dr. Leona Baumgartner, M.D., gave the Savel and Gertrude Folks Zimand Lecture, entitled "Society and the Revolution in Health Care."   Known for her energetic advocacy of both national and international health education, she was New York City’s first female health commissioner, serving from 1954 until 1962, when President Kennedy appointed her head of the Office of Technical Cooperation and Research for the Agency for International Development. The highest-ranking woman in the United States government, Dr. Baumgartner was responsible for persuading President Lyndon Johnson to include birth control in the planning for health programs in underdeveloped countries.

Gertrude Folks Zimand ’16 was a lifelong crusader against the abuses of child labor.  General secretary and trustee of the National Child Labor Committee and founder of its National Committee on the Employment of Youth, she was married to Savel Zimand, a Rumanian-born international journalist and author.

Dr. Sidney Morgenbesser lectured on "The Unity of Natural and Social Sciences." The John Dewey professor of philosophy at Columbia University, Dr. Morgenbesser gave an open seminar on "The Nature of Scientific Theories" at Vassar on April 24.
Czech Evangelical theologian Jan Milic Lochman, a visiting professor at Union Theological Seminary, lectured on "The Legacy of the Reformation."   Lochman was a member of the World Council of Churches executive committee. In 1970 he was appointed to a chair in systematic theology at Basel University in Switzerland, becoming eventually the university’s rector.
Forty-six American troops were killed and some 400 wounded in a protracted battle for “Hamburger Hill” near Hue, South Vietnam, after which, the American forces were ordered to withdraw, leaving it to the defeated North Vietnamese.  Reports of the debacle fueled anger and discouragement on the home front and in Congress.
Speaking to the nation on television, President Nixon presented a plan to end the war, by which the United States and North Vietnam would simultaneously leave South Vietnam.  The plan was summarily rejected by Hanoi.
Competing in a three-day Intercollegiate Music Festival at Kiel Auditorium in St. Louis, Vassar’s six-member singing group, the G-Stringers, shared first place in the vocal category with Don Smith, a musician from the University of Illinois.
The first 800 American troops were withdrawn from Vietnam.  The phased withdrawal occurred in 14 stages, ending in November 1972.
 In a joint press conference with South Vietnamese President Nguyen Van Thieu at Midway Island in the Pacific, President Nixon announced a “Vietnamization” of the war and the planned withdrawal of 25,000 American troops.
Former Associate Justice of the Supreme Court and United States Chief Representative to the United Nations Arthur J. Goldberg spoke at Commencement, urging the Nixon administration to “de-escalate the war and escalate negotiations.”      The New York Times
President Nixon made his first and only trip to Vietnam, visiting troops and meeting with South Vietnamese President Nguyen Van Thieu.
Arson was blamed for the destruction of a large carriage house and a barn on Matthew Vassar’s estate, Springside.

Milfred C. Fierce, who held that "White Studies have taken several hundred years of trial and error, revision, adjustment and improvement, and…still could use a thorough 'housecleaning,'" was named the first director of the Black Studies program. Under his leadership and through such innovations as the Urban Center in Poughkeepsie and the African Summer Study Trip he led in the summer of 1971, the program—ultimately the multidisciplinary African Studies Program—became a vital element in the Vassar curriculum.     The Miscellany News

Exchange of students among the men’s and women’s colleges remained strong for the 1969-70 academic year.  Students from Amherst, Bowdoin, Dartmouth, Haverford, Mount Holyoke, New York University, Trinity, the University of California and Williams attended Vassar, and Vassar students went to Dartmouth, Colgate, Haverford, Trinity, Wesleyan and Williams.

Two Williams students and one student from Amherst from among this group elected to stay at Vassar.

Vassar admitted male transfer students into the second and third years.
Under New York State’s new Bundy Law—the first of its kind in the country— Vassar was one of 52 private, nonsectarian colleges eligible for grants to assist with college costs.  The grants were based on the number of degrees granted in the previous year, and Vassar’s funding for the 1969-70 academic year was $154,000.
The new curriculum, developed over the summer of 1968 as The Comprehensive Plan and modified and approved by the faculty during the 1968-69 academic year went into effect.  President Simpson described it in his report to the college constituencies in December 1970:
“In the pendulum swing between prescription and freedom which characterizes curricular history, this plan is as close to free choice as Vassar is ever likely to go.  It offers three paths to a degree instead of one, abolishes distribution requirements, encourages a pace to suit the individual, reduces the course load by a change in the counting system, offers wide opportunities for off-campus experience carrying credit towards the degree and seeks to enlarge options of faculty as well as students.”     Alan Simpson, The New Vassar, 1964-1970: Report of the President

The college launched a $50 million comprehensive capital campaign, the largest in Vassar's history. President Simpson said that the aim of the project was to “enable Vassar to sustain its place of leadership among American liberal arts colleges.” The national chairman of the drive was trustee Mary St. John Villard ’34.

The specific goals of the campaign were the faculty—additional chairs, salary increases, an improved leave system, and new faculty positions to accommodate the transition to coeducation—scholarships and financial aid, the Library and scientific equipment. The campaign aimed to raise the money by 1972.

President Simpson received an anti-Vietnam War petition signed by over 150 faculty and over 1,000 students.
President Simpson called the first College Council, a body of representatives from the administration, faculty, and student body, to serve as an advisory council to the president and to meet five times a year, as well as during times of crisis.
Adele Davis, nutritionist and author, lectured on "Your Health Is in Your Hands." One of the first advocates of whole food and an early and stern critic of the prepared food industry, Davis praised the one and excoriated the other in such books as Let’s Cook Right (1947), Let’s Have Healthy Children (1951), Let’s Eat Right to Keep Fit (1954) and Let’s Get Well (1965).
Dr. Charles E. Shaffner, professor of civil engineering and vice president for administration at the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn, was appointed planning director for a proposed cooperative graduate center in engineering and technology at Vassar. The center was one of several new enterprises under discussion intended to enrich the academic resources in Vassar’s region and to extend them into developing fields.
Vassar’s president, Alan Simpson, was among 79 college and university presidents who—emphasizing that they spoke for themselves and not for their institutions—sent a statement to President Nixon appealing for a “stepped-up timetable for withdrawal from Viet Nam” and saying the war “stands as a denial of so much that is best in our society.”     The New York Times

Several hundred thousand students and faculty members on hundreds of campuses across the country observed a day of moratorium in honor of the nearly 40,000 American dead in Vietnam.  By request of many of the faculty and students, President Simpson authorized all interested faculty to close classes on this day to protest United States involvement in Vietnam.

“Nearly 200 miniskirted Vassar College coeds stepped through the gates of the United States Military Academy at West Point in midafternoon and handed daffodils and apples to dozens of startled cadets.  The girls walked to a sun-dappled lawn, sang “America the Beautiful” and then left, smiling as easily as when they arrived.”     The New York Times

Ada Louise Huxtable, the first architectural critic for The New York Times, gave the Helen Kenyon Lecture, "Is Architecture Obsolete?"

Professor R. B. Tate from Cornell University lectured on "The Writing and History of 15th and 16th Century Spain."

Protesting the erection of a new house for John Duggan, vice president for student affairs, on the hill east of Sunset Lake, over 90 students and five faculty members, working at night, filled in the recently dug foundation.  

A few days later, the Master Planning Committee suggested eleven other possible sites for the construction of the house, which was built in a less prominent place west of the golf course.

Oriental art historian Hugo Münsterberg from the State University of New York at New Paltz lectured on "Chinese Buddhist Sculpture."
C. L. Barber from the State University College at Buffalo gave the Class of 1928 Fund Lecture, on the "Use of Tragedy for Shakespeare." 
Alison R. Bernstein ’69 was elected as the youngest member of the board of trustees in the history of the college.  President Simpson said of the PhD candidate in history at Columbia, “If anyone can mediate between hairy youth and hoary age, it is Alison Bernstein,” and a college spokesman, asked if any other trustees were in their 20s, replied “Oh, heavens no.  The next youngest trustee is Samuel C. Butler, a 1951 Harvard graduate.”     The New York Times
An exchange student from Dartmouth was arrested in his dormitory room and found to have over $2,000 worth of LSD and other drugs in his possession.  The student withdrew from the college.
The Student Afro-American Society (S.A.S.) presented President Alan Simpson with the "nine points," designed as “logical follow-ups which reiterated and expanded" the original proposals S.A.S made on April 30 in "A Search for Relevant Education”:
1. That Black Studies be expanded into a degree-granting department.
2. That an increased number of black professors be hired to accommodate this expanded program.
3. The immediate renovation of the entire Urban Center.
4. That we receive those funds which had been promised in addition to any extra funds needed for the expansion and continuance of the Black Studies program.
5. That the college buy a bus for transportation to and from the Urban Center,
6. That Vassar College hire a separate black counselor whose additional job was to place black students after they leave Vassar.
7. That a black housing facility be provided by 1971 which will eventually accommodate at least 200 students.
8. That an architect be contracted to design this facility by Monday, November 17th, 1969.
9. That black students be provided with agreeable black housing until the construction of this facility was completed.

The annual meeting of the Seven College Conference was interrupted when 38 black students demonstrated in front of Alumnae House, protesting the administration's failure to act on their recent demands. At the meeting of representatives from Barnard, Bryn Mawr, Mount Holyoke, Radcliffe, Smith, Vassar and Wellesley, President Simpson affirmed that, despite Vassar's coeducation decision, the college would remain a member of the group, which had met in one configuration or another since 1916.  "The conference [sometimes known as the Seven Sisters]," Simpson said, "represents a fund of experience and concern.  The times have changed, but we have not changed our basic commitment to education for women.  In varying degrees all the colleges are interested in co-education."

Earlier in October his suggestions that Vassar might drop out and that there might not be “a viable future for women’s education” provoked varied responses.  Wellesley’s President Ruth M. Adams observed, “Over the years, it has seemed to me that our group has begun to diverge in function and constitution, and that it might be advisable to enlarge the conference or listen sympathetically to the notion of dissolving it.”  David T. Truman, president of Mount Holyoke, took a slightly different position, saying “we would like to persuade the errant institution [Vassar] to stay with our association, or else we would add to the association, or if necessary do with a smaller number.”     The New York Times, The Miscellany News

Playing at home, Vassar men won against a football team of Sarah Lawrence men by a score of 18-6.

Dr. Chester M. Pierce, professor of education and psychiatry at the Medical School, Graduate School of Education and School of Public Health at Harvard University, gave the Savel and Gertrude Folks Zimand Lecture, entitled, "The Success of the School System: The Most Common Problem for Black Youth."   Founding president of the Black Psychiatrists of America, Pierce was also, as an undergraduate at Harvard, the first African-American to play in a college football game south of the Mason-Dixon Line at an all-white university, in a game against the University of Virginia on October 11, 1947.


Gertrude Folks Zimand ’16 was a lifelong crusader against the abuses of child labor.  General secretary and trustee of the National Child Labor Committee and founder of its National Committee on the Employment of Youth, she was married to Savel Zimand, a Rumanian-born international journalist and author.

Professor of History Stanley M. Elkins from Smith College gave the first C. Mildred Thompson Lecture of the academic year, "Slavery in the Americas: A Reappraisal."  Elkins’s provocative book, Slavery: A Problem in American Institutional and Intellectual Life (1959), argued that a comparative lack of pragmatism of American abolitionists led to a more violent, prolonged and debilitating struggle over slavery than had been the case in Britain and also that the practices of American slave-holders created and maintained a psychologically infantilizing and intellectually degrading slave culture.  As evidence of the latter claim, he contrasted the slave and minority cultures of America with those in Brazil. 

"Mr. Elkins discussed," said a writer in The Miscellany News, "the extraordinary rigidity and the interchangeability of the Noth and South American slave systems.  He noted the differences and similarities...and compared his findings with those of...another historian who has investigated slave systems extensively.  'The comparative approach in discussing problems of slavery will become more popular in the future,' said Mr. Elkins, 'because it is broader and uses ideology as a base.'"  In successive editions of his work—1963, 1969, 1976—Elkins reappraised its original assertions, trying to accommodate much of the original criticism.

The Thompson lectureship, given by an anonymous donor, honored American historian C. Mildred Thompson '03, who taught in the history department from 1910 until 1923, when she became Vassar's dean, a position she held until her retirement in 1948.  Dean Thompson died in 1975.

At 3:20 AM, 34 African-American students—all women and a majority of Vassar’s 59 black students—peacefully took over the central first floor of Main Building, protesting the administration's failure to respond to the Student Afro-American Society’s nine points.   A night watchman left quietly, a small group of African-American men from area colleges and the community guarded the front door and President Simpson spoke briefly with the students through an open window.  A switchboard operator stayed behind, showed one of the students how to operate the system and left.

Speaking to several hundred students later in the morning from the portico outside the Rose Parlor, Simpson said that a meeting including trustees, student leaders, member of the faculty and representatives of the group occupying Main would be convened.  While disapproving of the action, he said he understood “the spirit of deep frustration and high endeavor” motivating the students, adding “I cannot imagine any circumstance in which such conversations would be improved by the use of force or the threat of force.”

Conversations between the several parties began the following day.    The New York Times

President Simpson and trustee representative Orville Schell signed an agreement with Claudia Thomas '71, president of Students’ Afro-American Society (S.A.S.), in which the college agreed to fully implement points one through six of the students’ demands, as well as a modified version of the last three points dealing with an all-black dorm.  With brooms and mops from a utility closet, the students inside Main tidied up, removing the boards that had held the front doors shut.  At 9:30 pm, the demonstrating students re-opened Main Building.   Claudia Thomas recalled: “We left behind an arrangement of daisies on the switchboard operator’s desk, standing tall in a Coca-Cola bottle. For me, I left more than a clean, well-swept area, and a bottle with flowers in it. I left behind nineteen months of anger.”     Dr. Claudia Thomas, God Spare Life (2007)
Oberlin College art historian and curator Ellen Johnson gave the Class of 1928 Fund Lecture, "Oldenburg's Analogies, Metamorphoses, and Sources."   Originally the art librarian at her alma mater, her scholarship and keen appreciation of contemporary art and artists led to Johnson’s appointment to the art history faculty.  Starting in 1951, “Three Young Americans,” her biennial exhibitions at Oberlin’s Allen Art Museum, gave many contemporary artists, including Richard Diebenkorn, Frank Stella, Larry Poons, Bruce Nauman, Chuck Close, Jim Dine and Claes Oldenburg, some of their first academic recognition.  Johnson commissioned Oldenburg’s first site-specific sculpture, Three Way Plug, for the Oberlin Campus in 1970, and her book, Claes Oldenburg, appeared in 1971.
Carolyn Bird ‘35 lectured on "The New Feminine: What's Ahead for Little Girls." The feminist and women’s rights activist published The Invisible Scar, a socioeconomic memoir of the Great Depression, in 1966, and Born Female: The High Cost of Keeping Women Down, written with Sara Welles Briller, appeared in 1968.
An Indonesian dance company, The Budaya Troupe, performed the Hindu epic, The Ramayana, using various elements of Balinese, Javanese and Sundanese performing arts.
The first draft lottery since World War II was held in New York City.
German-born art historian Richard Krautheimer from New York University, visiting scholar at Vassar, lectured on "The Piazza of St. Peter's."   Professor Krautheimer, an émigré during the Nazi rise to power, taught at Vassar from 1937 before becoming the Jayne Wrightsman Professor of Fine Arts at NYU in 1952.  His Studies in Early Christian, Medieval and Renaissance Art appeared in 1969.
Economist Gary Gappert, Washington director of the American Committee on Africa, lectured on "The Absence of Black America in U.S. Foreign Policy."
President Nixon ordered an additional 50,000 soldiers out of Vietnam.