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A letter from an alumnus about The Princeton Student (aka The Christian Student)

February 12, 2002

I am delighted that you have seen fit to mention the W.Earl Dodge bronze statue, circa 1908, wearing football garb, holding books to his breast and appearing to overlook his domain with thoughtful and serious expression.

There was nothing "waggish" about the name or the appearance of the statue which stood near Murray-Dodge Hall and the Princeton University Chapel, not the Firestone Library which did not exist then.

Repeated vandalism of the statue by reputed left-wing groups on campus in the 1920's and 1930's resulted in The Christian Student's strategic removal from the Princeton campus.

Sometime prior to 1987, I, as president of the Friends of Princeton Football, approached Hugh de N. Wynne, '39 with the idea of building a fitting memorial to Harlan "Pink" Baker,'22 and his 60 Years of devotion to the Princeton freshman football team. Hugh, with great delight, explained that he was negotiating the return of The Christian Student statue to the campus, and that this statue would make an ideal memorial for Pink. Hugh finally got the approval from the University with three requirements;

1. The statue would reside in the lobby of Jadwin Gym.

2. The name must be changed from The Christian Student to The Princeton Student.

3. The Friends of Princeton Football must pay all expenses connect with the relocation of the statue from the cemetary for unwanted statues to Jadwin.

The Friends of Princeton Football paid costs of about $10,000 as I remember.

Please visit this historic relic now residing in honor of "Pink" Baker,'22 in Jadwin's lobby, near two imposing bronze tigers put there by whom? You guessed it – Hugh de N. Wynne ’39!!

Somers King Steelman ’54
Longport, N.J.

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