Residence Hall Namesakes: Brody Neighborhood

11 02 2015

Brody Neighborhood

Brody Hall Cafeteria, 1954

Brody Hall Cafeteria, 1954

W. G. Armstrong Hall

Construction on Brody Complex, 1955

Construction on Brody Complex, 1955

W. G. Armstrong was an alumnus of Michigan State.  As many Spartans (once “Aggies” for Agriculture College), Armstrong was a farmer in his lifetime. After graduation, Armstrong continued his involvement with the college and became a member of the Board of Trustees. Armstrong Hall opened in 1956, along with two other Brody residence halls, Bailey and Emmons.

 

Liberty Hyde Bailey Hall

College Speculum Staff, Bailey seated second from left

College Speculum Staff, Bailey seated second from left

Liberty Hyde Bailey had his start as a Michigan State student in the Class of 1882. During that time, he founded and edited the Speculum, a student paper. Bailey studied with Dr. William Beal before becoming a professor himself. It is said that Bailey’s courses were so good that students were bringing their own seats to ensure they could attend his lectures. Bailey wrote more than 60 books and numerous articles, which became the backbone of horticulture literature. He was also known as the world’s “plant hunter.” Bailey was a man of science yet did not believe in Darwin’s theory of evolution, but rather took to the Bible’s origin of man. His name was a family name passed down by his abolitionist grandparents who used Liberty as a way to signify all deserved to be free.  Designed by Ralph Calder, Bailey Hall opened in 1955.

 

Claude S. Bryan Hall

Building Supervisor at Bryan Hall buffing the floor, 1957

Building Supervisor at Bryan Hall buffing the floor, 1957

Claude S. Bryan was Dean of Veterinary Medicine beginning in the late 1940’s. After he took the position, Bryan requested a change in facilities, class size, and pre-course work for veterinary students. Bryan’s efforts helped to create the Veterinary Medical Center on campus. Bryan Hall opened originally as an all male residence hall in 1954.

 

Kenyon L. Butterfield Hall

Butterfield Hall (Brody Complex), circa 1955

Butterfield Hall (Brody Complex), circa 1955

Kenyon L. Butterfield was a native Michigander from Lapeer. Butterfield graduated from Michigan State in 1891. After graduation, Butterfield held many positions in the area before returning to school to receive his Masters from the University of Michigan. Butterfield held presidency positions at two other colleges before resigning to return as president of Michigan State (1924-1928). Though a conflict over appointing two friends to executive positions at the college caused him to step down from presidency at Michigan State, Butterfield’s career included much more than his education positions and he held many international positions throughout his lifetime. Butterfield Hall first opened in 1954.

 

Lloyd C. Emmons Hall

An aerial view of Brody Complex, 1958

An aerial view of Brody Complex, 1958

Lloyd C. Emmons made many strides as a faculty at Michigan State. As Dean of the School of Science and Arts, also referred to as Liberal Arts, Emmons made many changes to programs and expectations within the school. While Dean, the a program for nursing was established in his school in 1950. Dean Emmons continued to teach for some time even while holding his position as a dean. Emmons was a professor of calculus. Dean Emmons also pushed for teacher preparation during his time at the college.  Emmons Hall first opened in 1955.

 

Howard C. Rather Hall

A view of Rather Hall, 1959

A view of Rather Hall, 1959

Howard C. Rather was a graduate of Michigan State. Part of the Class of 1917, Rather received a Bachelor of Science. Following his graduation, Rather joined the United States Army, and received an honorable discharge. After the war, Rather returned to Michigan State as a member of the faculty and eventually became a professor of Farm Crops. Rather also became the Dean of the Basic College during his career at Michigan Agricultural College (now MSU).  Rather Hall first opened in 1954, and its irregular plan is the reverse of Bailey Hall’s.

Written by Laura Williams





Scrapbook History: Leon L. Budd

21 01 2015

The Michigan State University Archives hold materials that are decades and even hundreds of years old. Recently, pulled from the shelf was a scrapbook from a student that graduated from this university in 1915, exactly one hundred years ago.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Leon L. Budd’s memory book has specific pages for events to record throughout his college career. He records the scores of various sporting games and writes “Yell – Rah! Rah! Rah! Uzz! Uzz! Uzz! M-A-C!”. There is even a section for interactions with professors, where Budd notes that one of the most valuable lessons he learned was to “study chemistry”.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

The next section lists his dear friends, along with their happiest memories at Michigan Agricultural College. “It’s never late till 12 pm and it’s early after that” wrote John S. Hancock of Hart, Michigan. Budd’s friends proved to have some fun with the advice “If you can’t be good be careful”. A couple students bonded over their hall placement with the saying “To Hell with Wells and Abbot its Williams Hall for us” and the rivalry continued “To H—L with Williams – Wells is The Gentlemen’s Dorm”.
The happy thoughts did not disappoint, below are a few favorites:
“Of what shall man be proud of if he is not proud of his friends”
“MAC did it”
“RAH! RAH! For M.S.C.”
“Eat, drink, and be merry”
And of courses they remind us that Michigan’s cold hit this generation as well; “It’s so cold in here that the thermometer is froze”

The chants and songs during the football games shows just how much tension there was (and continues to be) between State and Michigan. Here are just a few of the “College Yells”:

We’ll rub it into Michigan, Michigan, Michigan;
Rub it into Michigan, M.A.C. can.
On to old Michigan.
Rub it into Michigan, M.A.C. can.

Hi-le, hi-lo, hilo,
Michigan’ chances grow slimmer and slimmer
Hi-le, hi-lo, hilo
Michigan’s chances must go.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

School dances were also recorded, with marks next to the name of the dances done at a party. Budd attended quite a few dance parties during his time at Michigan State.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Mr. Budd also has some memorabilia from days as an engineering student. One poster depicts a skeleton at a desk with an open book to “MAC valves”. The bottom of the poster reads “=Ye=Faithful=Engineer=”.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

The following pages are filled with pictures from Leon Budd’s time at MSC. They include the “Fresh-Soph Rush. 1912. ’16 vs ‘15”, places on campus, his friends, his love interest, and himself. Following those are pages of classic scrapbook findings, the football program, class schedules, and newspaper clippings from the games.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

We really get a glimpse into life at Michigan State during Leon Budd’s time here. The buildings have changed, the style is different, and the course options have diversified, but the smiles and comradely seen between Budd and his classmates seem to be an everlasting effect of time at Michigan State.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 – UA 10.3.124

Written by Laura Williams





A Timeline of the LGBT Community at Michigan State University

1 12 2014

Early twentieth century saw an almost non-existent gay population on campus and even in the area. Students recalled a time when there were no gay bars, no gay community, and not even a real way to identify as gay (History at MSU, Report). The 1950s saw “gay purges” where people would be requested to take a lie detector test at the police station where they were asked intimate details about possible gay relations and would often leave the community (History at MSU, Report). One man was banned from the ROTC after he had been questioned. There was a looming fear for safety and job security if the community found out someone was gay, and therefore creating support groups was not a safe choice. (The Final Report Vol. I of the University Wide Task-Force on Lesbian and Gay Issues, 1992: A History of the Gay and Lesbian Experience at Michigan State University)
In the 1960s, “homosexual activity” was added to the Michigan State University Department of Public Safety Annual report as a category of complaint. Within the first year that this category was added, there were fourteen different reports and six arrests made under that claim. The following few years saw a rise from six to twenty arrests (History at MSU, Report). This decade also saw the basement of the MSU Union Building remodeled after the men’s bathroom became known as a place for homosexual activity. (The Final Report Vol. I of the University Wide Task-Force on Lesbian and Gay Issues, 1992: A History of the Gay and Lesbian Experience at Michigan State University)
Michigan State and the East Lansing community went through great changes in the 1970s. The Gay Liberation Movement became a registered student organization in 1970 and was very active on campus, responsible for the establishment of Pride Week at State. 1970 was also the year that a Human Sexuality course at MSU included materials by gay/lesbian authors and provided a safe space for student to openly discuss sexual orientation. An openly lesbian professor at MSU provided a representation of success to students in the LGBT community of the ’70s. In 1974, the East Lansing Council passed a gay rights ordinance that prohibited discrimination in the workplace and public places. Though harassment still occurred, it gave public places more power to take action, just as Beggar’s Banquet did the following year when people were being harassed in their establishment. 1977 was a big year for change as it included both progress and discouragement. The Gay Liberation Movement became the Gay Council and picked up more power and steam on campus, an anti-gay crusade caused tension and controversy, and an amendment to the anti-discrimination policy was changed to include sexual orientation. A creative event called “Gay Blue Jeans Day” asked anyone who identified as gay to wear blue jeans on a particular day. Any person that was forgetful or unaware of the call for blue jeans and found themselves dressed in jeans on that day may feel the oppression that the lesbian and gay community felt on a daily basis. That same year, the ASMSU Student Board President attempted to disband the Gay Council after he claimed it was not like other minority groups where people are born a certain way and rather “gay people choose to be homosexual” (History at MSU, Report). His proposal was voted down. The following year, in 1978, an openly gay student won the presidency of ASMSU. (The Final Report Vol. I of the University Wide Task-Force on Lesbian and Gay Issues, 1992: A History of the Gay and Lesbian Experience at Michigan State University)

(UA 12.3.14, Box 4454)

Click to enlarge (UA 12.3.24, Box 4454)

In 1982, Delta Sigma Phi suspended one of their brothers on the grounds that he was “incompatible” with the fraternity due to his involvement on the Lesbian-Gay Council. Though the student had already chosen to move out of the house after feeling unconformable when his brother found out about his involvement, Delta Sigma Phi still chose to suspend him from any house activities. The Anti-Discrimination Judicial Board ruled that the fraternity was in violation with the anti-discrimination policy at MSU, but the fraternity repealed it. When they were rejected, the group threatened to sue the school if MSU President Mackey did not veto the ruling. Due to the fact that the Greek community is a separate entity, President Mackey overruled the Board’s decision and reinforced that choice with the claim that Greek Life functioned on a single-sex basis and therefore did not fall under the sex discrimination policy. Multiple deaths in the Lansing area due to AIDS called for a step-up in awareness from both Olin Health Center and the Gay-Lesbian Council. In 1987, The College Republicans tried to fight “Gay Blue Jeans Day” with “Straight Shirt Day” in hopes to offset the mission of the day, ASMSU condemned their attempt. Beginning in 1988, Michigan State saw a string of harassment and discrimination from students to students. A State News writer was attacked in one of the halls and warned that they should stop writing about gay/lesbian issues in the paper. The 1989 Pride Week was all but welcomed with chalked messaged of hateful and demeaning anti-gay messages on the Wells Hall Bridge, some of which directly targeted a Resident Assistant who had helped plan Pride Week. That RA was targeted when his room was set on fire and the State News received an anonymous call that it was only the first strike just before another target found their car soaked in gasoline. The Department of Public Safety claimed that the fire was caused by accident as opposed to intentional harassment, however, MSU President DiBiaggio put out a statement to condemn those who discriminate or harass. (The Final Report Vol. I of the University Wide Task-Force on Lesbian and Gay Issues, 1992: A History of the Gay and Lesbian Experience at Michigan State University)

(UA 12.3.14, Box 4454)

Click to enlarge (UA 12.3.24, Box 4454)

The 1990s was another rocky decade for the LGBT community. The 1990 Coming Out Day was met with a “seltzer bomb” (a two-liter bottle with ingredients that expand and explode), no injuries or damage was done but the Lesbian/Gay Council was outraged at the act (State News, Bomb Explodes at Assembly, 10/17/1990). In 1991, a MSU student brought Sigma Lambda Phi, a socially progressive fraternity, to campus as a place for both gay and heterosexual men to build community. The Final Report of the University-Wide Task Force on Lesbian and Gay Issues was published in 1992, outlining the history and giving suggestions to better the life of lesbian and gay students at Michigan State. Some of the suggestions included improvement in anti-discrimination policies, employment, LGBT curriculum/materials and campus education, admission, Greek Life, and mentioning. Queer Color, a group created for lesbian, bi, and gay minorities was established in 1994. Michigan State University employees were given health benefits for their same-sex domestic partners in 1998. 1999 Pride Week had a special event when the ten year time capsule was opened to show newspapers clippings a letters that helped students put in perspective where MSU and college campuses nation-wide have come in those ten years, and where it still needed to reach. (The State News)

(UA 12.3.14, Box 4454)

Click to enlarge (UA 12.3.24, Box 4454)

The LGBT community grew stronger and move visible as the new millennia came. In 2000, there was a push for a LGBT aide in the residence halls, similar to the minority aides (a position that today has developed into the Intercultural Aides), though the position was never established. Pi Kappa Phi was suspended in 2002 when pledges wore pink shirts with offensive phrases including “Fag Hairstylist” and others into a dining hall. The removed leaders of the fraternity did not try to appeal the national council’s ruling to close the chapter with the chance for recolonization the following fall. That March, MSU hosted a gay conference with an attendance expected to be over 1,000 people and events that included speakers and workshops. The event proved as a mark of success for both LGBT groups on campus and MSU leaders in their progression on-campus. MSU students held a rally in 2005 to show their disapproval with Michigan’s vote of Proposal 2. The Sesquicentennial Parade included a float titled “Cheers for Queers”, created by The Alliance of LBGT and Straight Ally Students, and was met with positive cheers from the crowd. That year also saw Conservative Coming Out Day, equipped with a mock closet, which upset the LGBT community as that group is usually associate with views against the LGBT community and implies certain things about what Coming Out means to their community (10/12/2005, State News). In 2006, Michigan State University was ranked in the top 100 best colleges for LGBT students, according to The Advocate College Guide for LGBT Students, written by Shane Windmeyer (State News). Not long after, a bathroom crawl was conducted to raise awareness and fight for gender neutral bathrooms and “inclusion of gender identity in the MSU anti-discrimination policy” (LBGT Resource Center webpage, 4/11/2007). Also in this decade, with respect and open-mindedness, MSU’s Department of Residence Life and its LGBT Resources Center began to work with students to take into consideration transgender students in their living arrangements on campus. Late in this decade, the program New2U was created to help LGBT freshmen acclimate to campus with connections to resources and weekly meetings. (The State News)
The current decade has seen some very positive events coming out of the hard work of the LGBT and Allies in the Michigan State and East Lansing community. In 2011, Residence Halls Association (RHA) partnered with the Red Cross to do a blood-drive that protested the life-ban on gay men. Someone could donate their blood along with a note that the blood was in honor of someone who could not donate, to display the amount of blood that could have been donated if both people were allowed. The LGBT Resource Center held a Queer and Career Conference that year, to help students in their transition into corporate America. That same year, the LGBT Specialization was in the works, as was a LGBT focused study abroad. Also in 2011, Ingham County had the second highest number of same-sex couples, after Washtenaw County (home to University of Michigan). “I am an Ally” program through the LGBT Resource Center gave allies a way “to give visibility and voice to people who are supportive of the LBGTQ community” (LGBT Resource Center: Programs and Services). In 2012, RHA officially passed a policy that allowed gender-neutral housing. In March of that year, the East Lansing City Council recognized the Gay Liberation Movement as a key player in becoming the nation’s first city to “ban discrimination based on sexual orientation” in 1972 and how MSU continues to follow their lead in bringing equality to the LGBT community (East Lansing City Council: A Resolution Commemorating the 40th Anniversary of East Lansing’s First-in-the-Nation Ban on Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation, 3/7/2012). 2013 was another year of pride and awareness at MSU and included Celebrate Bisexuality Day, the finalization of the LGBTQ and sexual studies Specialization. East Lansing also made big moves that year; the city gave same-sex couples the right to place their names in the city directory to be recognized by East Lansing, even if the state laws prevent their formal recognition. The city also received the high score of eighty-six on the Human Rights Campaign report, though it was scored prior to the domestic partnership registry, which would have brought the city to ninety-eight (The State News).
The past year has once again brought pride to the Michigan State University community. The LGBT Resource Center received an anonymous $1 million donation. In recent news, East Lansing scored a perfect 100 point score from the Human Rights Campaign for American cities based on “discrimination laws, relationship recognition, municipal employment policies, inclusiveness of city services, law enforcement and municipal leadership on LGBT issues” (State News, East Lansing gets perfect score from LGBT group, 11/13/14). The history of the LGBTQA community at Michigan State saw many ups and downs. Recent events prove that the tireless work and discrimination endured did not go unnoticed, and Michigan State, along with its City of East Lansing, has shown its commitment to progression.

Sources:
Lansing State Journal
Detroit Free Press
The State News
LGBT Resource Center
The Final Report Vol. I of the University Wide Task-Force on Lesbian and Gay Issues, 1992: A History of the Gay and Lesbian Experience at Michigan State University
East Lansing City Council: A Resolution Commemorating the 40th Anniversary of East Lansing’s First-in-the-Nation Ban on Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation, 3/7/2012

Resources at the MSU Archives:

Alliance of Lesbian, Bisexual, Gay, Transgendered, and Straight Ally Students Records (UA 12.3.24)

University-Wide Task Force on Lesbian and Gay Issues Records (UA 3.22.1)

Lesbian, Bisexual, Gay, Transgender Resource Center Records (UA 7.16)

Written by Laura Williams





Greek Life at MSU

17 03 2014

Student groups and organizations have always been a part of the MSU’s history. Literary societies, activism groups and even squirrel watching clubs have shaped student life at the University since its beginning. MSU has also been home to one of the most iconic collegiate groups that has spurred on movies, books and television series, Greek Life.

Greek Life started at M.A.C in 1872 with the establishment of Delta Tau Delta. They were followed by Phi Delta Theta in 1873. However in 1896 the faculty banned national Greek organizations from forming at the College. Phi Delta Theta chose to be recognized as a local organization by changing their name to the Phi Delta Society. Due to the ban, many non-Greek societies began to form. The Union Literary Society, the Hesperian Literary Society and the Excelsior Society were among them.  In 1891 the first all-women’s group, the Feronian Society, was established. They were founded just five years before the creation of the Women’s Program in 1896. Academic and literary societies sought not only to have a forum for intelligent conversations, but also to plan and attend extravagant events and balls.

Members of the Phi Delta Society in the 1920 Wolverine Yearbook

Literary Societies also sought off campus housing, at the exclusivity of their members. However President Snyder was great proponent of the collegiate dormitory system and found this idea to be elitist and unnecessary. In 1905 the College did not have enough living spaces to accommodate all of its students. The faculty relented and allowed the Hesperian Society and the Colombian Society to buy its own meeting houses off campus.

 

The Trimoira Literary Society established at M.S.C in 1913

The 1920s gave way to an increase in students attending M.A.C and the lack of housing led faculty to allow off campus housing for more society members. In 1921 the ban on national Greek organizations was lifted and the first organizations to be established were the Alpha Gamma Delta and Alpha Phi Sororities. Alpha Phi was created by members of the Feronian Society.  Following them were the Forensic Society, who became Lambda Chi Alpha and the agriculturally based fraternity, Alpha Gamma Rho.

Members of Alpha Phi in 1925

Throughout the 1920s more and more literary societies became affiliated with national Greek organizations. The Aurorean Literary Society became Delta Sigma Phi Fraternity in 1923. Phi Kappa Tau Fraternity was forged from the Dorian Literary Society in 1924. In 1925 the Orphic Literary Society became Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity. From then on Greek life grew and became an integral part of MSU student life.

Competition has always been an important aspect of Greek Life. Chapters held Tug of War across the Red Cedar River, Chess Tournaments in local houses, as well as academic achievement contests throughout the school year. In 1930 Sigma Kappa Sorority won an exciting victory for overall best GPA on campus. They narrowly defeated the previous year’s winner, Alpha Chi Omega.

During the 1940s, World War II led to an overall decline in male enrollment at M.S.C. Fraternity houses were used to lodge coeds, due to a lack of women’s housing. Houses were also used by the Army and local R.O.T.C chapters. After the War, the G.I Bill allowed more and more students to attend college and Greek Life at M.S.C once again became a popular student activity.

In 1948 the first African American fraternity at the college was established by the brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha. They were committed to philanthropic service to all mankind and to the advancement of interracial groups at the college. The first African American sorority at M.S.C. was Alpha Kappa Alpha. They were established in 1954 and engaged in such as activities as reading to the blind and giving campus tours. Today MSU proudly hosts all nine historically African American Greek organizations on its campus.

Members of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity in the 1950s

In the 1950s Greek life continued to expand. In 1959 the count was up to 20 nationally recognized sororities and 34 fraternities. All of these organizations participated in campus wide events such as Spartacade, Greek Sing, Water Carnival, Greek Week and Homecoming festivities. One fall, the Kappa Sigma fraternity bought a World War II era plane from a local bar owner for $40. They set it up outside of their house so that it appeared to have crashed into the side of their house. They placed a dummy inside and splattered the whole thing in ketchup for dramatic effect. A sign beside it read “He rushed Kappa Sigma but didn’t quite make it!”

1957 photo of Winter Carnival Float created by Alpha Omicron Pi and Theta Chi

1951 outdoor homecoming display of William and Mary’s execution on the lawn of Phi Delta Theta.

Greek Life saw its decline in the 1970s. Campus dorm life became less restrictive and the traditions of fraternity and sorority members seemed to be out of date. Many chapters closed due to lack of membership; including Alpha Omicron Pi in 1972 (the chapter was re-established in 1989).

In more recent years Greek life at MSU has seen a steady increase with recruitment and rush numbers moving well into the thousands. In November of 2013, 141 years after the first fraternity established at MSU, the Panhellenic Council, Interfraternity Council, National Pan-Hellenic Council and Multicultural Greek Council became recognized by the University.

Photo courtesy of MSU GreekLife: Representatives from Panhellenic Council and Interfraterity Council pose with President Simon and others at the recognizing of Greek Life by the University.

Sources

Michigan State University Archives, “African American Presence at MSU; Historic Firsts.” Accessed March 12, 2014. http://archives.msu.edu/collections/african_presence_firsts.php.

Michigan State University Greek Life, “MSU Greek Life: History and Future.” Last modified January 01, 2014. Accessed March 14, 2014. http://www.msugreeklife.org/history-and-future.

The 1959 Wolverine Yearbook, Michigan State University.

Thomas, David A. Michigan State College: John Hannah and the Creation of a World University. 1926-1969. East Lansing: Michigan State University Press, 2008.

Widder, Keith R. Michigan Agricultural College: The Evolution of a Land-Grant Philosophy, 1855-1925. East Lansing: Michigan State University Press, 2005.

Written By Caroline Voisine