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75 years ago: Christmas at the Chronicle

By Emily Cummins, Assistant Features Editor

In The Nassau Chronicle's first year, issue number 9 had "Christmas Greetings" written across the top of the paper and several pieces about Christmas events and articles that were Christmas-themed. The focus on a single holiday changed to "Season's Greetings" the following year with fewer and fewer mentions of Christmas as time went on.

To start, the Christmas issue's text was printed entirely in green and featured articles like an alert to the Christmas party taking place that afternoon at Hofstra Hall (the party cost 30 cents to get into, while a copy of The Chronicle was 5 cents). Other events included the Turkey Shoot to be held on campus.

The Christmas-themed articles were a little wacky. There was a Christmas card to the staff of the newspaper that was a poem. "The ‘ads' were wrong… the ‘heads' were wrong, The copy didn't fit, The column was ‘cut' even more… When I ‘blue-penciled' it." There was another poem by Editor-in-Chief Olive Plunkett called "A Christmas Thought."

There was also a letter to Santa that was just a wish list poking fun at students, faculty, and staff. "To the lounge, a radio… To the Hofstronians, a five cent sandwich," which makes it seem as if

students were always complaining about wanting new gadgets and free food. "To Plunkett, a cowbell so people can always find her," which is odd because The Chronicle's current Editor-in Chief Ryan Broderick can always be heard yelling from afar.

The Viewpoints question, comparable to Man on the Unispan, asked students what they wanted Santa to bring them for Christmas. The general consensus was a car. "All I want is a Chevrolet in my stocking," said Ira Jaffe.

The following year, however, "Season's Greetings" was the message from the paper, but it was not scrolled across the top. There were only two articles about Christmas in that issue: "Christmas Concert Held at Hofstra Yesterday" and "Merry Christmas to Hilda." Accompanying the message of Season's

Greetings was a picture of a pine on what was referred to as the Brower Hall Green lit up with blue lights.

In 1939, the same picture of the tree was used and fewer articles featured Christmas themes or mentioned campus sponsored Christmas events. It seemed that the university was becoming more secular and on the road to calling the January gap between the two semesters "Winter Break," disassociating it from any holiday.

In 1945 there was a cartoon of Santa in stuck in a chimney, but that was the last image of Santa that could be found in the University Archives of Chronicles that was not newsworthy. Today there is no mention of what holiday's people are celebrating over break, no "Merry Christmas" or "Happy New Year" up in the corners.


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