A Clarkson Mosaic - page 195

bronze sculpture of the lever moving the world. The base, about 3 1/2-feet square, is a chest
supported on each corner by a fluted column with a Doric capital. Its front face bears a replica
of the Clarkson seal with the motto and the Clarkson family coat of arms, along with the titles
of the degree-granting departments. On the two sides are symbolic figures representing the
different departments: a desk, ledger, and pen for the business administration department, a
retort for the chemical engineering department, a replica of the Thousand Islands Bridge for the
civil engineering department, an electric generator for the electrical engineering department, a
Newcomen engine for the mechanical engineering department, and a medieval castle for the
ROTC. On the side facing the entrance, the base bears the inscription,
"Erected through the
courtesy of L.R. Burch, President, The New York Air Brake Company, New York, N.Y., October
14, 1941."
This base is surmounted by a bank of clouds on which rests a globe, representing the
earth, with the continents showing in bas relief. Under this globe is inserted one end of a lever,
resting on a fulcrum with the hand of Archimedes grasping the other end, the whole depicting
the words attributed to that father of engineers, who lived in the third century BC, and who
stated that with his lever, he could tip the world over if only he had a fulcrum on which to rest
it. The symbols on the side panels were designed by Major Purcell, commandant of the ROTC;
the cloud bank, globe, and lever were designed in the drafting room of the New York Air Brake
Tradition claims that originally the pedestal was built in 1896 for a statue of Thomas S.
Clarkson, which was cast and then declared unacceptable. Since then, Techers have placed on it
a statue of Moses "borrowed" from Normal's statuary in [now] Snell Hall, have used it as the
place from which freshmen were forced to deliver "profound" orations, and even on a dreary
Halloween evening early in the 1920s, have used it as a display base for a Model T Ford which
had been dismantled and then reassembled on it.
Its most common use was the location for bull sessions. As the October 1
reported, "Get a crowd of ChEs sitting up there with 15 or 20 minutes to kill, and then listen to
the words of wisdom flow!"
Tau Beta Pi.
On December 4, Tau Beta Pi established its Theta chapter on the campus. Begun
at Lehigh University in 1885, Tau Beta Pi spread across the country so that by December 4,
1941, Clarkson became its 76th chapter. Undergraduate students whose scholarship places them
in the top eighth of their class in their next-to-last year or in the top fifth of their class in their
last college year are eligible for membership. Those scholastically eligible students are further
considered on the basis of personal integrity, breadth of interest both inside and outside of
engineering, adaptability, and unselfish activity.
Between 1974 and 1976, Clarkson professor Edward T. Misiaszek was national vice
president, and between 1976 and 1978 was the national president of this prestigious
The official badge of this Association is a watch key in the form of the bent of a trestle.
This key concept, describing the insignia of many organizations, comes from the fact that it was
first designed late in the 18
century to include a pocket watch winding featureƔPhence the
word "key." The bottom stem added to the basic insignia had a tapered square hole fitting the
common sizes of watch-winding shafts. Its top stem and ring were added so it could be worn as
a pendant from a chain, rather than as a pin or badge, and could easily be used to wind watches.
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