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The Old College Compendium

Myrna Loy Wars and Electrical Terrors

Sporting its new brick, fire escapes and diamond shaped ventilators, the remodeled Old College settled back into life as a dormitory. But dormitory life was not always calm, as Dean William Tate demonstrates in his recollection of the Myrna Loy riot between Old College and Candler dormitories in the late 1920s.

Fire was perhaps a greater danger in the 1920's than raging freshmen. As Dr. Thomas Dyer points out in his history of the University, the Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds found the relatively recent electrical system of Old College overtaxed by excess illumination in a letter of April 1, 1922. He reported that he had found as many as 6 lamps being used in one room in Old College, "These extra lights are not wired according to the laws of the Insurance Cos but are strung in every sort of dangerous way and the extra load heats the connections at the entance block sometimes redhot. The danger of burning the building and the possible loss of life is too great to allow this condition to remain. The original plan of lighting these rooms was one plain drop light per room equipped with a flat porcelain shade."

The 1937 Pandora caught Old College residents in a more pacific and less danger-prone situation as they decorated "the Home of Southern Gentlemen for Homecoming.

Myrna Loy fans please note: the photograph on the timeline page is not Ms. Loy, as depicted on the walls of Old College or elsewhere.

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