Video feature: Reunions bring back Princeton alumni through the ages

May 25, 2011 noon
reunions index

Photo by Denise Applewhite

reunions video thumbnail 1895
reunions video thumbnail 1921
reunions video thumbnail 1961
reunions video thumbnail 1986

Screenshots courtesy of the Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library

Princeton alumni have returned to campus to celebrate Commencement festivities and reunite with friends since the earliest days of the institution in the 1700s, when it was still known as The College of New Jersey. Beginning as informal gatherings of alumni, faculty and guest speakers, a milestone was reached at Princeton's 100th Commencement in 1847 that drew 700 graduates. Today, more than 20,000 alumni, family and friends participate in this annual gathering, known as Reunions. This year, the campus will be awash with Princetonians past and present Thursday through Sunday, May 26-29.

The marching of the classes across campus, by which alumni processed to class dinners and the traditional Yale baseball game, quickly grew into the modern P-rade, complete with costumes, banners and hired bands, which is a distinctive and colorful highlight of Reunions. Read more at the Mudd Manuscript Library's Reunions FAQ.

reunions coeducation

Some of the first women to graduate from Princeton after the implementation of coeducation march down Prospect Avenue in the P-rade in 1973. (Photo courtesy of Princeton Alumni Weekly Photo Collection)

 

reunions donkey

Animals historically also have participated in Reunions; here, a member of the class of 1896 is pulled across University Field by a donkey. (Photo courtesy of Historic Photograph Colllection)