Presidential politics conjure lots of memories, especially the hard-fought contests that went down to the wire. R.J. Naylor '03 wrote about the morning after the 2000 Bush/Gore election his first. I was unaware that the election was still being contested until I, a Fouster, went downstairs and found our regularly scheduled Residential College core sections had been canceled for a special town hall style session to discuss the historic election.
Margaret (Peggy) Jeffries Jones '50 has several vivid memories from the 1948 election: Dr. Bardolph was, I believe, a precinct captain at a polling place in a near-by fire station. He recruited several history majors to help count votes there. Since there was a hotly contested North Carolina election that year and he did not want any questions about our loyalties, he selected out-of-state students. The counters, students and townspeople, were divided into groups of four: one person reading the ballots and three recording the results. When each group finished a stack of ballots, those ballots were passed to another counting group until every ballot was counted by at least three groups. If there was a discrepancy in the tally, that group was recounted. About 9:30 p.m. the firemen brought us coffee and doughnuts and the news that Truman was leading in the East. The Democrats were jubilant and the Republicans reminded them that it was too early to predict the outcome. Around 11 p.m., another round of coffee brought news that Truman was still leading. The Republicans responded by saying wait until the farm vote comes in. At midnight, the cry was wait for the West Coast vote.
I returned to North Spencer about 2 a.m. Finding my roommate asleep, I took my radio down to the living room and listened to the returns until about 8 a.m. After a shower and breakfast, I hastened to Miss Louise Alexander's political science class to hear her analysis of the election and its results. Miss Alexander, who had marched in the Suffragette demonstrations for women's suffrage and was an unabashed liberal, was in her element that morning. Although I had been following the campaign all fall, I felt that she did a better job of analyzing both candidates and the reasons for Truman's victory and Dewey's loss than any of the so-called experts of the day. The lasting memory of that class was that every vote counts: the lesson I gave to my students when I taught American History and Government. This took place 60 years ago, but it remains as clear as if it were yesterday.
Young Republicans Club
And remember that photo on the right? Jacqueline Pickard Marcotte '58, pictured farthest right, explained how I like Ike got on her leg. No, that is not a tattoo on my leg but rather embossed hose that were sent to me by my staunch Republican grandmother to wear as I awaited my first time to vote in a presidential election.
Now take a look at this 1939 photo of visitors in the Virginia Dare Room (shown below), including Mrs. Clyde R. Hoey, wife of the governor of North Carolina, seated with hat and pearls, and Miss Clara B. Byrd, Alumnae Secretary, standing on the right. The Alumni House has clearly been the scene of a number of memorable moments. Tell us about some of your favorite Alumni House memories. Send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org or Beth English, UNCG-University Relations, 1100 W. Market Street, Suite 201, P.O. Box 26170, Greensboro, N.C. 27402-6170. Responses may be used in the next issue.