1978-79

This Timeline is based on a portion of Tim Shary’s A History of Student Activities and Achievements at Hampshire College. Anything not otherwise cited comes from this source.

Contents

1978

September

Sep 12

  • The cafe that students Naomi Guttman, Karin Schmidt, Katie Downes, Brian Fradet, Mike Bird, Nicole Sumner, Martha Zimicki, and Scott Nadel had been planning since last February opens in the bridge joining the library to the RCC. [Climax: September 21, 1978]

Sep 13

  • The editors of “Boxspring”, a literary magazine that has been in existence at Hampshire since the early ’70s, vote to change its name to “Norwottuck”. [Climax: October 19, 1978]

October

Oct 17

  • Students cite constitutional violations as the Senate passes a motion to extend all non- student terms on the Senate by one semester. [Climax: November 3, 1978]

November

Nov 3

  • Climax publishes a special issue devoted to President Adele Simmons. [Climax: November 3, 1978]

Nov 4

  • Over 30 Hampshire students join over 300 Amherst College students at Amherst to protest the college’s $21 million worth of investments in South Africa; Amherst College trustees will not even consider the issue of divestment on their agenda. [Climax: November 16, 1978]

Nov 11

  • Student Saga worker Davis Bates is fired by his supervisor for refusing to stop garnishing salad condiments with political slogans such as “No Nukes”. [Climax: March 9, 1979]

Nov 16

  • Third-year student Colin Twitchell has not yet been able to make his modified bicycle fly, even after he has spent nearly three years and two Division I exams trying to redesign the bike for air travel. [Climax: November 16, 1978]
  • The New England Small Farm Center, the first of its kind, is being designed on 200 acres on the east side of campus, to be a research facility for faculty and students. [Climax: November 16, 1978]

December

Dec 14

  • Long-time director of the Outdoors Program and literature professor David Roberts has resigned after Adele Simmons informed him that she must begin “dismissal for cause” proceedings against him; students express outrage and confusion. [Climax: December 14, 1978]

1979

February

Feb 4

  • Two men steal over $2,000 in cash and small possessions from students sleeping early on a Saturday morning; security guard Brian Rust chases a suspect car into Amherst center hours later, but the thieves get away. [Climax: February 9, 1979]

Feb 9

  • A record 20 pregnancies of Hampshire students are reported by Health Services for the past fall semester alone; the highest number previously had been 22 in one year. [Climax: February 9, 1979]
  • Hampshire Security has been charged with hiring student workers without interviewing them to determine if they are on financial aid; policy calls for two weeks at the start of each semester in which Financial Aid students are given hiring preference. [Climax: February 9, 1979]

Feb 17

  • The Judicial Council rules that the rights of Davis Bates “to freely express his ideas”, as stated in the Norms for Community Living, were violated when he was fired from his job at Saga for garnishing salad items with political slogans. [Climax: March 9, 1979]
  • Director of Personnel Bob Fox claims that he is not bound by the Judicial Council’s decisions in the Davis Bates case because they have “no constitutional authority to hear employment grievances”. [Climax: March 9, 1979]

Feb 18

  • The second fire in a year breaks out in Prescott, this time caused by a baseboard heater ~ in mod 95; it is successfully extinguished by students before causing major damage, but security guards take 20 minutes to respond to the call. [Climax: February 23, 1979]

Feb 19

  • Students pass a Community Council referendum calling for an increase in student activities fees to rebuild the second floor of the RCC as a student center. [Climax: February 23, 1979]

Feb 23

  • House staff have reported that a master key to one of the dorm buildings was stolen by the thieves on February 4, but no approval for the recoring of doors in either building has been approved by the administration. [Climax: February 6, 1978]
  • Leon Brown, a third-year student and the Chairperson of C.O.C.A., has reportedly used a theatre production of “Godspell” to generate hundreds of dollars in illicit revenue for C.O.C.A. [Climax: February 23, 1979]

Feb 24

  • Infinity, a new Hampshire television news show, debuts on Intran; it is coordinated by alum Roger Mellen and organized by students Bill Kearn, Patti Sobel, Mike Chapman, Tom Giovan, Terry Willis, and Suzie O’Gorman. [Climax: February 23, 1979]

March

Mar 1

  • Over 60 students form a human blockade around the Hampshire Mall “Freebus” when it arrives shortly after noon protesting the economic and social impact of the mall and its bus service, students demand that the bus never return; it never does. [Climax: March 9, 1979]

Mar 9

  • A petition is again presented to the Board of Trustees demanding complete divestment of the college’s funds from companies in South Africa after it is learned that the trustees reinvested $61,000 in such companies last fall. [Climax: March 9, 1979]
  • Climax prints a retraction to their accusations that Leon Brown was responsible for swindling money for C.O.C.A. from a theatre production, stating simply, “We were wrong.” [Climax: March 9, 1979]
  • Several hundred members of the Clamshell Alliance, an anti-nuclear group, including many Hampshire students, are arrested by police in a sit-in demonstration at Seabrook Nuclear Plant when they attempt to block the delivery of reactor pressure vessels. [Climax: April 13, 1979]
  • The Board of Trustees approves divestment from three remaining companies with ties to South Africa in which Hampshire funds had been invested. [Climax: September 24, 1979]

Mar 27

  • After a two-month clandestine stakeout, state police with search warrants raid the campus, targeting Dakin H-l, where they arrest student Keith Dubay and an off- campus friend for possession of one ounce of cocaine and seven pounds of marijuana. [Climax: April 13, 1979]
  • Less than two hours after the Dakin raid, police take over Enfield mods 65 and 66, where they seize eight large marijuana plants and arrest students Shannon Steel, David Stern, Hiro Chanrai, Ellen Blaine, David Hoffman, and Elizabeth Kaplan. [Climax: April 13, 1979]
  • During the Enfield raid, security guard Ernie Bias falsely announces that the police have a blanket search warrant, sending numerous students into a panic as they quickly dispose of illegal drugs all over campus; dogs are seen staggering for days after. [Climax: April 13, 1979]

April

Apr 9

  • All charges against the six students arrested in Enfield two weeks before are dropped; while the Prosecutor states that “intent to distribute” accusations were “unrealistic”, the Judge agrees, adding that he had even seen “plants” at Amherst College. [Climax: April 13, 1979]

Apr 13

  • Enfield mod 57 has won the semester-long “Mod Beautiful Contest” for the most beautiful mod; among a list of other awards, Prescott mod 98 wins the prize for worst mod, and Enfield mod 46 wins the coveted Adele Smith Simmons mod award. [Climax: April 13, 1979]
  • After continuing controversy, the Chairperson of C.O.C.A., Leon Brown, has resigned; student Diane Dorries is elected to the Chair, promising reform in the mismanaged committee. [Climax: April 13, 1979]

Apr 16

  • The legal drinking age in Massachusetts rises from 18 (where it had been set in the early ’70s) to 20; a list of changes in alcohol and party policies is handed down from the state legislature. [Climax: April 13, 1979]

May

May 1

  • Community Council elects the following students to these positions: Chairperson, David Early; Secretary, Carolyn Sheehan; Treasurer, Cindy Canary; together they help create the most organized and ambitious era of governance in years. [Community Council Minutes: May 1, 1979]