Goucher History: The Christmas Ornament

Sean Varner
Features Editor

T’was three weeks before Christmas, when all through the Ath, a thousand sat toiling over English and Math—browser tabs open to things they daren’t mention, in hopes their professors would grant them extensions.

Their spent heads were hung, dangling down from their necks, in thought of their lives, which they assumed utter wrecks. When on the Great Lawn, there arose such a clatter, they sprung from their desks to see who the hell interrupted quiet hours.

Away to the windows, they shot in a flash, tripped over each other in quite a mad dash. When, what to their wondering eyes should appear, but a secondhand Chevy and no reindeer. They all pushed and they shoved to see this great cause, and there on the lawn stood old Varner Claus.

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What’s in a Name?

Sean Varner
Features Editor

I have written in the past about the buildings on this campus, about whom they are named after and when they were built and how much it cost to build them. So put the torches and pitchforks down: I’m not dipping in the same river twice. I’m approaching the river from the other side and thinking about taking a bath.
Never have I looked at the genealogy behind the building names—at the meanings and origins of the surnames christening buildings on this campus, and how those meanings and origins have become unfitting in the context of the buildings that now bear them.

Where and when did the names of Goucher’s buildings originate? And how did they come to exist? (Photo: Google Images).

Stimson (after Dorothy Stimson) – It’s a patronym, a surname based on the name of one’s father, in this case of the male Stephen (i.e. son of Stephen). Stephen itself originates from the Greek stephanos, meaning crown or wreath; the wreath or crown of leaves awarded to athletic champions in ancient Grecian society was thought to be the greatest obtainable award.
Conversely, in modern Goucherian society, being sentenced to live in Stimson is considered to be the greatest achievable punishment.
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