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January 5, 1936

Along with the presidents of the University of Chicago, the College of the City of New York and Stanford University, President MacCracken judged an essay contest announced by radio, stage and movie entertainer Eddie Cantor. Cantor offered a $5,000 scholarship at any American college or university for the best essay on the subject “How Can American Stay Out of War?” When the eventual winner, chosen from some 212,000 entries, was almost immediately exposed as a plagiarist and the prize was withdrawn, MacCracken declared the essay by 17 year-old Lloyd Lewis of Plattsburg, MO, hadn’t been his first choice, as it seemed “as if the boy’s mother had written it.”

The New York Times

The Years