Blasts from the Past: November 16, 2017

A photo from the 2016 edition of Servo Thanksgiving (Photo Jamie Welch / The Gettysburgian)

A photo from the 2016 edition of Servo Thanksgiving (Photo Jamie Welch / The Gettysburgian)

By Shannon Zeltmann, Staff Writer

This week in 1917, an ad appeared in The Gettysburgian for the college bookstore. It was a small ad with the address of the bookstore, and it listed some of the available stock: the usual books, supplies, college jewelry, and athletic goods, but also, very specifically, Waterman’s fountain pens, fresh candies, and “sunshine biscuits.” I wonder what those fancy biscuits were? They must have been famous like Servo cookies to be listed in this ad!

This week in 1962, Owl and Nightingale and Delta Phi Alpha were preparing to present their next production, Goethe’s Faust. The three main characters, Faust, Mephistopheles, and Gretchen, of were to be played by Sidney James, Ed Baierlein, and Jane Smith respectively. The Gettysburgian reported the problems the stage crew were facing: there were 21 scene changes in the two acts. They wanted to have 45-second scene changes for each one. They mainly had special effects with the devil, Mephistopheles, such as having a black poodle that must change into Mephistopheles in a puff of smoke. They also had to make many of the costumes for the production. As with any play, the students put a lot of work making this play happen!

This week in 1987, The Ivy League Delegation came to Gettysburg to see if the college had “the look.” As they walked around the college, the representatives noticed that at noon, the college post office was packed with students, who were only using one door. The tour guide for the delegates joked that the other door had never been opened. Then, the sudden change came- one of the delegates opened the door! As the Gettysburgian wrote, “It was the dawning of a new age for Gettysburg!” The delegates then discussed the conundrum and had to be taken immediately to the president of the college. The post office doors stayed open after that day. It is unclear what the ramifications of this event were, but, apparently, it was a big deal at the time.

This week in 1997, as with this week in 2017, students waited outside for another wonderful Servo thanksgiving. That year, planning began in October when Servo had to purchase a hundred and eighty turkeys for the dinner. It was a wonderful event- students were happy to have a feast with their friends before they leave for the thanksgiving break. Students were greeted at the door by President Gordon Haaland and his wife, and faculty served each table of twelve. The Servo thanksgiving was done for fifteen years; however it ended for some time and then came back in 1992. This tradition is something all students still enjoy until today and many alumni remember their Servo thanksgivings vividly.

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Author: Shannon Zeltmann

Shannon Zeltmann '21 is planning on double majoring in history and art history. She is also planning on being part of the Symphony Orchestra, the Civil War Club, and Nerd Nation. Shannon is an all-around nerd, who loves art and history too much and loves to read, draw, and play her cello on the side. She is excited to be a new member of The Gettysburgian team.

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