1. Clear the track!
    –Kenneth Clark


Photo courtesy of the Office of Communications

Photo by Dino Palomares

“We’ll clear the track as we go back, going back to Nassau Hall.” The song “Going Back to Nassau Hall” is the most beloved of Princeton school songs aside from “Old Nassau,” the official alma mater. In addition to “Going Back,” Kenneth Clark ’1905 wrote “The Battle Song of Princeton” and “The Princeton Jungle March,” composed lyrics and music to four Triangle shows, and served as the editor of Tiger Magazine. The lyrics of “Going Back” echoed the tendency to refer to the entire College as Nassau Hall, its historic and most central building, until the College officially changed its name to Princeton University in 1896. The train terminology reflects the long-standing association between Princeton and the railroad, which was the primary means of transportation to and from the University and town until the twentieth century.

  • For more song lyric quotations, please see quotation #2 and 36.

  • To learn more about Princeton spirit songs, see Café Vivian picture #38 and 103.

  • To learn more about Nassau Hall, see icon #1, quotation #35, and Café Vivian picture #4, 20, 33, 75, 92, and 95.

  • To learn more about the Triangle Club, see icon #4 and 10, quotation #22, 36, and 37, and Café Vivian picture #5, 13, 42, 82, 103, 115, and 130.

  • To learn more about Tiger Magazine, see quotation #22, and Café Vivian picture #17, 45, 52, 77, and 106.

  • To learn more about the significance of trains in Princeton history, see Café Vivian picture #71.