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Circa 1928. Letter from University of Mississippi student Ida Newsom to her mother in Poplarville, Mississippi.
“Oxford, Miss Friday...After supper last nite we went to the meeting in the chapel. We were planning a welcome for our returning victorious team. The time of arrival of the special was unknown but a committee was appointed to find out and the bell was to be rung 30 minutes before it got here to give us time to get there. We went on from the meeting by the P.O. to the show. I’m glad it was free for I’d have hated to have paid $.25 of my good money to have seen it. From there we came back by the Greeks and got sandwiches and coffee...Then on back out here to dance, read and talk until 12:00 when the bell began to clang. A wind had sprung up and the trees were just tossing and ever once in a while a shower of rain came tumbling down from the clouds but I donned Elizabeth’s ‘great coat’ as she calls the big tweed overcoat concern--cute as can be when belted in and put a hat on and off to the station. Ena Mae and I went. The Freshmen had been ordered to wear pajamas and there they were with their pajamas over their other clothes. They looked like stuffed toads. They and all the other boys were armed with pitch tar & rag ready to be lighted, roman candles and firecrackers that had been gotten from the variety store by their going and getting the owner to ‘open up’ and let them in. They got all he had--which was plenty. A few minutes before two the special pulled in. Everything was as light as fires, torches and roman candles could make it while the boys and girls and team piled off mid our yells and cheers. Very exciting and so thrilling. It seems flat when written down for I haven’t the necessary words with which to express ‘my self’ but maybe you’ll be able to get my idea, Honey. Then came the march up the hill headed by the pajamed freshmen bearing torches. Then Ward Hall and the squeaking broken voices of the girls who went to A&M They could scarcely speak they had yelled so much. And tired! they looked as if they’d drop.”