Editor's note: This is a series of columns by John Malcolm on his "50 years at Fredonia." Retired, he is a professor emeritus at Fredonia State.
By JOHN MALCOLM
The basement locker rooms of Old Main left a lot to be desired. I'm sure the Biology Department could find all kinds of life.
My first year we were instructed by Gilbert Yates who was substituting for William "Slats" Ludwig for whom Ludwig Field is named. When Bill returned from his sabbatical he informed us that he would improve the gym showers since he had the adjustment keys. We all assumed that "Gym Showers" was his master's thesis.
The cafeteria had been pretty much the student union before Gregory Hall was built. The food was pretty standard public school fare.
One thing I do remember was that the student teachers ate behind the dishwasher while the regular faculty had their own room.
Where the gym had its limitations the physical education faculty were very resourceful. Thanks to them students were treated to just about every type of sport including archery, golf, ice skating-thanks to math professor Nelson Wood who constructed an outdoor rink on the site of the current Maytum Hall. Dr. Wood was also the assistant baseball coach. Dr. Leo Alilunus of the Social Studies faculty was the tennis coach. Then "Mr." Pat Damore started a soccer team.
There were opportunities to play football but not at a college trying to protect its music students' hands and lips. Some students played for a semi-professional team called the "Fredonia Orioles."
They chose Orioles since they played in the orange and black cast-off uniforms of the high school. After a game they were paid in beer at the Fountain Grill on Water Street. My senior year roommate played for them and while he was student teaching he often had to explain why he had a black eye or a thick lip.
John Malcolm is a Fredonia resident.