Letters

Kudos on a fantastic issue celebrating the 175th anniversary of Emory. As an active alumnus and an alumni chapter president, I was incredibly impressed with the depth of new information I learned about Emory. I also greatly enjoyed the variety of content. Mike Luckovich’s great cartoons set the tone for what was clearly a special issue. It provides a number of examples of what makes Emory unique as an institution; I certainly felt a lot of pride reading it.
Gregory Miller 04BBA
Washington, D.C.

Your Autumn 2011 issue was not only the very best I have ever read, it was also the most educational. I spent a couple of hours last evening reading it twice, I enjoyed it so much. The best part to me was the 1958 “The Big Picture” of all the girls at the brand new Hopkins Hall. With the help of a magnifying glass I found my girlfriend, Michele Lauderbach (Sharpton), who I married after she graduated in 1961. (She can be seen behind the spiral staircase on the sidewalk.) What you may not know is that most of those shown spent their first year in Alabama Hall, which was across the street from what used to be the Alumni Memorial Building. Alabama Hall was an all-male dorm prior to the freshman Class of 1957. Men’s urinals were still in place and the girls put goldfish in some of them or used them as flower pots! I am sure there are more stories. That photo brought back some great memories.
William C. Sharpton Jr. 60C
Lakemont, Georgia

Just want to thank you for the most delightful publication I have ever received. The cartoons are more than hilarious! The history is inspiring. My education was exceptional and I thank Emory for it. I started out premed and wisely switched to psychology before that dreadful encounter with organic chemistry. I was applying for graduate school in psychology when my pastor at Decatur First Baptist asked me a probing question: “What will happen to the church if none of you intelligent and capable young men take responsibility for it?” I went to Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. At Emory, I was taught not what to think, but how to think and analyze my world. For this I am grateful. I am probably the only Emory grad to ultimately become a tree surgeon. Through the Internet, I now share Emory thinking with a circle of friends around the world. The international flavor of Emory bespeaks even wider influence of Emory on the future world we face.
Gene Scarborough 67C
Bath, North Carolina

I love the article “175 Years of Earning Trust” [by Ben Johnson III 65C]. I believe Emory will continue to maintain the trust I had in it when I sent my daughter, Lianne, to spend some of her most formative years in Emory.
Sally Coyukiat, parent of Lianne Coyukiat 13B
Quezon City, Philippines

I was very pleased to see the 1972 photo of some of the members of the Emory Black Student Alliance in the autumn 2011 issue of Emory Magazine. I am a 1975 graduate of the college and former member of the BSA. I have many great, fond memories of my time at Emory and the photos bring back wonderful memories.
Al Brooks 75C
Albany, New York

What a wonderful Emory Magazine this time! I read every inch of it. Even having been on campus off and on since I attended summer school in 1949 at the advanced age of seventeen, I really learned a lot. It is a great review and one that I am keeping. My favorite personal story of Emory dates to that time. Needless to say I was young, naive, and credulous (the only female in my class of comparative anatomy). I was told that we had such strong ties to Bobby Jones and his golfing career that they had built, in his honor, a huge golf ball sitting on an enormous tee down by the railroad tracks. (Remember the old water tower—a huge round tank on top of supports.) I believed it for a while till I was told the truth. Much mortification and chagrin! Still, I had a great summer and the class sort of adopted me in spite of my being a girl in this all-male college.
Barbara S. Bruner 56M
Sandy Springs, Georgia

I thoroughly enjoyed all the vignettes from Emory’s past. I would like to add a little something to two of them. You suggest that the $105 million gift in 1979 “coined Emory’s famous nickname.” My daddy, who graduated in 1927, used to sing:

Emory, Emory, your future we foretell,
We were raised on Coca-Cola,
So no wonder we do so well.
When we meet Tech’s engineers
We’ll drink them off the stool.
So raise your cup, here’s to the luck
Of the “Coca-Cola School.”

After all, it was Candler money that built the campus in 1915. You also noted that the Emory Wheel is a punning reference to a grindstone, the emery wheel. But taken one step further, it’s where students went when they had “an ax to grind.”
Walton Peabody 60C 63T
Dahlonega, Georgia

I just read the excerpt regarding Emory’s Library School in the recent issue of Emory Magazine. I regret to say that I am very hurt by the entry on page 41. I graduated from Emory’s Library School in 1981 and have a wonderful career helping thousands of students every year at Florida State College at Jacksonville find the information they need to complete their assignments and research papers. I use the Emory Library School’s best practices every single day.
Barbara L. Markham 81G
Jacksonville, Florida

I would like to share a photo of my now deceased father, Dr. Tom L. Edmondson (above right). As a 1940 sophomore he played football for Emory at Oxford. They played against colleges in the area. He would never tell me if they ever lost.
Patrick Edmondson 70Ox 72C
Atlanta

Your Magazine cover celebrates 175 years of undefeated football seasons; I understand, of course, that you mean we were undefeated because we had no team for all those years. Nice joke. But is this correct? My father was class Dux (or president; pronounced “Ducks” at Emory, a classmate of his told me) his freshman year at Emory College at Oxford [in the early 1900s], and he played four college sports. My recollection is that one of those sports was football. So are you sure there was no intercollegiate football at Emory College in the early years?
John T. Wilcox 55C 56G
Former Associate Professor of Philosophy
Fitzgerald, Georgia

Editor’s note: According to official Emory history, Emory had an extensive intramural program in tackle football until the early 1960s, when flag football was substituted. Such teams may have played off campus informally. Each of Emory’s schools fielded teams along with the college classes of freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors.

Seconds after reading the Coda (“The Unlikely Power of Pens”), as I glance up, the air in the room is hazy and I can’t remember if it is day or night. I never asked myself the ultimate question, “Why are we here?,” until now. I had no knowledge of who wrote this story until I finished it and glanced at the author’s name. I am touched by Dr. [Sanjay] Gupta’s primal emotions of sincerity and passion toward children. If the tears of these children could only send a message to the world, we would all come to realize that we all have the same answer. As a mom of a freshman daughter at Emory, I am confident that the road ahead of her will be one of promise, hope, and change. As for the children Dr. Gupta sees on his travels, I can only pray.
Ellen Baseman, parent of Gigi Baseman 15C
Naples, Florida

As a friend of Emory, I am impelled to extend congratulations for your outstanding 175th anniversary edition of Emory Magazine. Its broad and intensely interesting coverage and creative format provide an engrossing—albeit brief—history of the university. A special salute to Zoe Hicks for her poignant narrative combining a trying family experience with her involvement in what she aptly termed “a time of social turbulence.”
Robert Gerwig
Atlanta

Zoe Hicks’s essay, “Defining Moments” inspired me to tell about my adopted father’s connections to Hamilton Holmes, one of the first African Americans to integrate the University of Georgia system. Reverend James Lee Welden, a graduate of Candler School of Theology, signed for the first three African Americans to integrate the University of Georgia in the 1950s. (There was a requirement that an alumnus sign the application for any student seeking admission, a ploy to preserve segregation.) Reverend Welden’s courage and compassion marked him and his family as the target of many Ku Klux Klan threats, late-night cross burnings, and derogatory letters sent to church members. The Grand Dragon of the KKK lived down the street from the Jonesboro Methodist Church parsonage, and they had a field day in our yard. He never received support from the Methodist Church for his actions, only fear and suspicion. I am proud that my heritage includes this courageous minister who made a difference in not only three young lives, but also mine. His legacy lives on. There is a footnote to the story—Welden had a car wreck later in his life and was taken to Emory University Hospital where Dr. Holmes was head of the orthopedic department. Dr. Holmes came to his bedside and thanked him profusely for his courageous act. It was the last time the two would meet.
Patsy Tinsley Simmons 62Ox 63C
Spartanburg, South Carolina

Corrections to the autumn 2011 issue

• Jimmy Carter was elected in 1976, not 1977.

• Virgil Eady was dean of Oxford College during the 1940s and 1950s, not the 1930s.

• Lullwater is now 132 acres, not 185.

• The first dean of campus life was Carroll Moulton, who came to Emory in 1989.

Has something in Emory Magazine raised your consciousness—or your hackles? Write to the editors at Emory Magazine, 1762 Clifton Road, Suite 1000, Atlanta, Georgia, 30322, or via email at paige.parvin@emory.edu. We reserve the right to edit letters for length and clarity. The views expressed by the writers do not necessarily reflect the views of the editors or the administrators of Emory University.

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