Why are Princeton's colors orange and black?

• In April 1866, freshman George Ward noted that Princeton had no patriotic colors, and recommended orange since William III of the House of Nassau, for whom Nassau Hall is named, was also the Prince of Orange.

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• The first recorded use of orange and black together was in June 1867, when Ward provided his baseball teammates with badges of orange ribbon printed with black ink.

• In 1874, William Libbey Jr., a member of the class of 1877, arranged through his merchant father for 1,000 yards of black and orange silk ribbon to be manufactured and sold as "Princeton's colors." The move rebuffed a Rutgers attempt to claim those colors, which thereafter were used by Princeton's athletic teams.

• The trustees adopted orange and black as the official colors for academic gowns in 1896. That year, Professor Allan Marquard pointed out that the colors of the House of Nassau were orange and blue. His objection, however, won little support.





This tiger cub showed his colors for Reunions in June.

photo: Evelyn Tu





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