Critical Period Under President
|In January of 1927, the Coe College
board of Trustees comissioned Erik M. Eriksson (professor of history,
1926-29) to write a history of the college. The Critical Period Under President James
Marshall covers the years 1887-1896. "This period of
Coe's history can be termed 'exciting' at best and 'nearly ruinous' at
worst. But then, life at Coe was rocky for most of the nineteenth
"During Marshall's tenure,
Coe underwent financial upheaval and
numerous curriculum changes. But perhaps more critical was the
student walkout that nearly doomed the college. Eriksson relates
a story of faculty censorship of a student in 1887 but omits a stand of
Marshall's that was just as uncompromising: when he first became
president, Marshall issued an edict against the 'mingling of the sexes'
except for the classroom--no social affairs, no dating. These
developments and a general campus atmosphere of unrest led in 1888 to
the walkout of all upper-class students--only freshmen remained at the
Not suprisingly, James Marshall holds the
distinction of being the only
Coe president hanged in effigy by his students--at least to date."
The Critical Period
Under President James Marshall was published by the Development
office of Coe College in 1982.
For full text, click here.