Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts History

Sauer, Anne

Branco, Jessica

Bennett, John

Crowley, Zachary


Smokers, 1860-1965


Smokers began as social events for male students in the early years of Tufts College. Soon after the founding of the college, various campus groups began holding smokers in order to better the social life of Tufts undergraduates. The smokers were large social events featuring music, speeches, food, and, of course, smoking.

After the construction of Goddard Gymnasium in 1883, students began to hold large-scale annual smokers on the gymnasium floor. Early annual smokers included the freshman class smoker and the Inter-Fraternity Council smoker. The freshman class smoker served as an opportunity to develop unity among the male freshman, and also helped introduce members of the class to their peers. The Inter-Fraternity Council smoker introduced students to different fraternities in order to help them choose a fraternity to pledge. Each event was quite gala, with banners decorating the gymnasium and students attending in formal dress.

Over time, smokers developed into more informational gatherings. By the 1950's, mixers had taken the place of smokers as the main social event on campus. Smokers had evolved into information sessions rather than purely social gatherings. By the 1960's, for example, the Inter-Fraternity Council smoker was a Sunday afternoon event that allowed freshmen to visit each fraternity house prior to rush week. Instead of a social gathering with speeches and musical performances, freshmen visited each fraternity and had their pledge cards signed by members of each house. By then, even the Leonard Carmichael Society was holding smokers to introduce interested students to the different community service programs available through their organization.

By the late 1960's students no longer called any of their gatherings smokers. Although the event had evolved with the times, smokers dropped out of Tufts history, to be replaced by information sessions, fairs, and open houses.

Source: TW, JB1917, JB1922

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  • The encyclopedia seeks to capture more than 150 years of Tufts' achievements, societal contributions and outstanding alumni and faculty in concise entries. As a source of accurate factual information, the Encyclopedia can be used by anyone interested in the history of Tufts and of the people who have made it the unique institution it is.
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Numeric Entries
Dame, Lorin Low, 1838-1903
Dana, Charles A., 1881-1975
Dana Laboratory, 1963
Daniel Ounjian Prize in Economics,
Davies, Caroline Stodder, 1864-1939
Davies House, 1894
De Florez Prize in Human Engineering, 1964
de Pacheco, Kaye MacKinnon, ca. 1910-ca. 1985
Dean Hall, 1887-1963
Dean, Oliver, 1783-1871
Dearborn, Heman Allen, 1831-1897
Department of Anatomy and Cellular Biology, 1893
Department of Anesthesia, 1970
Department of Art and Art History, 1930
Department of Biochemistry, 1893
Department of Chemistry, 1882
Department of Community Health, 1930
Department of Dermatology, 1897
The Department of Economics, 1946
Department of Medicine, 1893
Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology
Department of Neurology, 1893
Department of Neuroscience, 1983
Department of Neurosurgery, 1951
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 1893
Department of Ophthamology, 1893
Department of Orthopedic Surgery, 1906
Department of Otolaryngology, 1895
Department of Pathology, 1893
Department of Pediatrics, 1930
Department of Pharmacology, 1915
Department of Physics and Astronomy, 1854
Department of Physiology, 1893
Department of Psychiatry, 1928
Department of Radiation Oncology, 1968
Department of Radiology, 1915
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, 1955
Department of Surgery, 1893
Department of Urban and Environmental Policy, 1973
Department of Urology, 1910
Dental Health Sciences Building, 1969
Dewick, Cora Alma (Polk), 1875-1977
Dewick/MacPhie Dining Hall, 1959
Dickson Professorship of English and American History, 1913
Dirlam, Arland A., 1905-1979
Dog Cart, 1900
Dolbear, Amos Emerson, 1837-1910
Donald A. Cowdery Memorial Scholarship, 1946
Dr. Benjamin Andrews Professorship of Surgery, 1987
Dr. Philip E. A. Sheridan Prize, 1977
The Drug Bust, 1970
Dudley, Henry Watson, 1831-1906
Dugger, Edward Jr., 1919-75
Durkee, Frank W., 1861-1939
Durkee, Henrietta Noble Brown, 1871-1946
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