The Sesqui-Centenial was a celebration of the college's 150th anniversary. It took place on three days, from October 20-October 22. The college was very proud of this achievement because only 11 other colleges have had the honor of this type of celebration. To commemorate this occasion the college invited delegates, including presidents of the college and distinguished members, from 135 universities across the country and from over seas. Some of the colleges that were represented were Princeton, Rutgers, Franklin and Marshal, Gettysburg, Wilson University of Chicago, Mt. Union, Birmingham-Southern, Union Theological Seminary, and the University of Edinburgh. The Smithsonian Institute was even represented by the American Philosophical Society and Dr. Charles G. Abbot1.
The opening day was featured by the chapel address of Dr. Franklin T. Baker, class of 1885, who is a faculty member at Columbia2. Two special incidents gave these exercises unusual touches. There was an appearance of Dean Montgomery P. Sellers, who stood before the student body for the first time since his leave of absence for illness. The other incident was President Morgan being given an honorary membership into Omicron Delta Kappa, the student honorary fraternity, for "distinguished services to the college"3. At noon on the opening day a luncheon was tendered to the college faculty by the Alumni Association. In the afternoon, a conference of liberal arts colleges, under the auspices of the Liberal Arts College Movement, and the Association of College Presidents of Pennsylvania, was held4. The pageant of Dickinson, written by Josephine Meredith, dean of woman, and directed by Prof. Wilbur H. Norcross of the faculty, was presented in the evening. This performance was improved from the first time it was presented at the June commencement. The pageant was followed by a reception tendered by President Morgan and the Board of Trustees. The guests were received in the President's Office by Dr. Morgan, his daughter R.C. McElfish, and Mr. and Mrs. Boyd Lee Spahr. The guests were presented by the four senior members of the faculty, Dr. B.O. McIntire, Dr. W.W. Landis, Dr. C.W. Prettyman, and Dean M.P. Sellers. After seeing the President's Office, the guests entered Memorial Hall where refreshments were served by the wives of members of the faculty. Arrangements for the reception were made by the faculty committee on social affairs, consisting of Josephine Meredith, chairman; Prof. Forrest Craver; Mary Tainter; and Horace Rogers.5
The second day of the celebration began with an academic procession lead by Prof. M.W. Eddy. The procession formed on West High Street and passed through the college campus and turned in front of Old West and marched south to enter the Alumni Gymnasium. President Harold W. Dodds, head of Princeton, was the principle speaker. The program opened following the playing of the "Processional March" by the College Orchestra, under the direction of Ralph S. Schecter, and the singing of the hymn "Accepted May our Offering Be", with an invocation by Bishop Ernest G. Richardson. This was followed by the presentation of a historical sketch of the college by President Morgan. Dr. John Baillie, former member of the faculty at Edinburgh University, now teaching in the Union Theological Seminary, New York, brought the greetings of Edinburgh University, the alma mater of Dr. Charles Nisbet, first president of the College. The college then presented 21 honorary degrees, with members of the faculties of the College, Law School and members of the Board of Trustees acting as presenters in each case, while Morgan presented the degrees. The Rev. Wyatt Brown, Bishop of the Harrisburg Diocese of the Protestant Episcopal Church, pronounced the benediction. The remainder of Saturday included a football game, which Dickinson defeated Allegheny College 13-0, and a dinner in the evening. The celebration concluded on Sunday morning when Bishop Edwin Holt Hughes preached a sermon in Allison Church6.
Two committees, the General Committee with Lewis M. Bacon Jr. of Baltimore as chairman, and the Local Committee headed by Prof. Herbert Wing Jr. of the college faculty, bore the brunt of the Sesqui-Centenial. Various sub-committees of these two bodies carried out every detail from the publication of the History or the feeding of the 500 people at the dinner where the delegates would spend the night. The General Committee was composed of Mr. Bacon, Boyd Lee Spahr, Dean Hoffman, General James G. Steese, Gilbert Malcon, Bishop William F. McDowell, Lemual T. Appold, Dr. E.R. Heckman, Josephine Meredith, Dr. J. Horace Mc Farland, and Prof. Wing. The Local Committee was composed of Prof. Wing, President Morgan, Dean E.A. Vuilleumier, Judge E.M. Biddle Jr., Merkel Landis, Dr. B.O. McIntire, Josephine Meredith, and Gilbert Malcolm7.
1. Dickinsonian, October 20, 1933, Archives and Special Collections, Dickinson College.
2. 1934 Microcosm, Archives and Special Collections, Dickinson College.
3. Dickinson Alumnus, 1933-1937, Archives and Special Collections, Dickinson College.
4. Dickinsonian, October 20, 1933, Archives and Special Collections, Dickinson College.
5. Dickinson Alumnus, 1933-1937, Archives and Special Collections, Dickinson College.
6. Dickinson Alumnus, 1933-1937, Archives and Special Collections, Dickinson College.
7. Dickinson Alumnus, 1933-1937, Archives and Special Collections, Dickinson College.
||Dickinson 1934 is a project of Prof. Osborne's History 204 Class, Fall Semester 2000.|