Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Prexy's Pool

prexy - the head administrative officer of a college or university

There once lived a pool, primarily known as "Prexy's Bath Tub" in the middle of what now is the Bartlett Garden next to Carnegie Hall, then an original Carnegie Library, and the "Overlooked Bridge." It was at the site of an "ancient store" that burned down in 1913, and the basement of the building was turned into a a pool filled with water lilies and goldfish with a fountain in the middle. Reason's for it's name are unknown, but one story tells of a child who fell into the pool, too small to get out himself, called for help, and President-Emeritus Boothe C. Davis ran from his office in the Carnegie Library and pulled the child out.

Prexy's Pool was often the site of student activities and parades, however, where there are college students, there is mischief. It was officially filled in during a campus-wide landscaping projects, arguably between 1952 and 1958, due to students throwing each other into the pool, especially freshmen and sophomores. Alan Littell, a local author, historian, and just a good old facts guy who likes to hang out in the Herrick Archives told me a story about several "frat boys" who emptied the pool completely and carried a Volkswagen Beetle over to the site and dropped it in.

And, as we all know, if Prexy's Pool were still here, we would still throw freshmen into it.


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