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April 18, 1935

“Monday afternoon we took the train for Beacon—we talked to the strikers and employees…then, since the strikers were very, oh so very, obviously in the right, since the managers were violating every…rule in the NRA, we joined in the picketing…. Here, the public opinion is pretty stiff, and we’re not feeling too comfortable, but the faculty are nice to me, and my friends all understand…By the way, it wasn’t a radical group of girls that went down, most of them were very respectable. I’m not trying to offer any excuses, I did what I thought was right, and was very glad I had done it….” MS student letter

President MacCracken took steps to disengage students from the picketing by the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America of the Werber Leather Coat factory at Beacon. The students, singing songs they had composed and carrying placards, had been joining the picket lines in rotating shifts.

Affirming at a special assembly that the college did not interfere with students’ activities when they were away from the campus, MacCracken said each student’s first obligation was “to do the best with the privileges she has and this obligation rests on all students…. The college therefore desires to place itself on record as disapproving organized and protracted activities which must inevitably result in detriment to academic work. This applies not only to participation in labor disputes, but to all other personal and social activities outside the college.” The New York Times

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