A Clarkson Mosaic - page 131

should the board feel free to extend us this privilege, we pledge our entire efforts to this project in accordance with
any rules the board may deem necessary for the best interests of the college.
With help from the alumni, the Athletic Association saved $850 to start this athletic field. It
paid for a sub-drainage system and part of the fence after leveling had been completed. But that
left no money for leveling. Thus it was decided that two days in the latter part of October would
be set aside for this leveling work. The Electric Light and Power Co., the Village, and the
Highway Department offered the use of their equipment for this work, so there were tools for
everyone. Earl Clark '10 of Ogdensburg, who held a responsible position with the Highway
Department, offered his services as General Superintendent for the construction of this Project.
In the fall of 1923, this huge task was begun. Frederick Talcott '27 remembers:
Civil engineers, directed by Dr. Fred Wilson and supervised by Prof. William Farrisee, surveyed the land
and laid out the preliminary details of the field. All classes were suspended so that all students of the classes of
1924, 1925, 1926, and 1927 were to report to the field for work, with the senior civil engineers performing the
necessary field engineering work. Tools, picks, shovels, etc., were distributed and several dump wagons and
tractors were borrowed from nearby farmers. There were no earth-moving machines available so all earth and
stones were moved by hand. With the aid of four tractors and three teams, nine dump carts, and 150 shovels and
picks, all donated by friendly farmers and others interested, 3,300 cu. yards of dirt were moved and a rough field
began to take on a decidedly level appearance.
In the fall of 1924, the students again were allowed to resume work and the plot began to look like an
athletic field. In this second year, 4,000 cu. yards of dirt were moved with the help of five teams, 10 tractors, 14
dump carts, and 300 picks and shovels donated for a week by friendly neighbors. At the end of that second week,
no spot on the proposed field was more than half a foot off level grade.
The entire third week, in the fall of 1925, was spent laying drain tile, most of which was donated by the
Eastern Clay Products Co. Ditches in the center of the field and at 25-foot intervals were dug the length of the field
to take care of rainfall. Other water was handled by other ditches which were tiled and covered with ashes from
piles dumped along the edges of the field and then wheelbarrowed to the ditch locations.
Students were divided into such squads as graders, the cinders gang, the ditch gang, the repair department,
the stone gang, the surveying squad, the timekeepers, and the water boys. The 50 men on the grader squad levelled
off the high spots and filled in the low spots on the field. The 40 men on the cinders gang emptied the trucks, filled
and wheelbarrowed the cinders to the ditches and filled in over the tiles. One hundred men, divided into sub-gangs
each with its own foreman, dug all the ditches and laid the tile. The supply gang had to borrow all the equipment
including tractors, trucks, teams, dump carts, picks and shovels, and keep careful check of each item.
The repair department maintained the tractors and trucks in running condition, repaired the dump trucks,
and replaced handles on shovels and picks—a large job for only eight men. Two timekeepers and four water boys
were chosen from those of the student body who were not physically fit as they should be for the heavier work.
The stone gang whose 10 members also composed the dynamite crew removed heavy stones from the ditches so
that grade might be reached. Finally, the surveying squad of 10 men kept constant check of the level of the ditches
and the field as a whole.
These workers were encouraged by various rewards: a carton of cigarettes or a box of cigars to the squad
which did the most, and the ever-present bushels of apples furnished by local businessmen. The progress made that
first fall was such that the Trustees agreed to set aside a similar period of time the following fall to continue the
"Stub" Baker '27 also remembered:
All students except football players were supposed to put in a full day's work and when they didn't, there was
immediate discipline in the form of a paddling party supervised by the Board of Governors. One day in Mechanical
Drawing class, Huddy (Prof. Ross Hudson) passed around a sheet inquiring what students could drive teams or
tractors. The others would be assigned to groups of about eight men to load wagons and others to spread the loads
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