The Archives: A Look Back at Tam’s History


By Wesley Emblidge, Chris Long & Billie Mandelbaum

“Internet access to reach all classrooms,” “Come ‘Injun’ dance at the prom tonite” and “Goldfish lose tails” are just a few of the breaking news headlines that have appeared in the Tam News since its founding nearly a century ago. This issue, we decided to feature a wide range of past stories from a variety of years, from the 1930s all the way to the 2000s. Even this magazine’s cover is a reprint; a front page from March 1978, when Miller Avenue flooded and students had to canoe to school.

We have photos of current staff members taken when they first arrived at Tam (check out Lapp’s stache). We have a wide range of news and lifestyles pieces that reflect past (and even present) Tam culture. There are even quite a number of ridiculous stories you would expect to see in an April Fools issue (for all we know, some of them were just that).

The feature’s most prominent page is devoted to one of the key days in Tam’s history: Breakthrough Day. On February 27, 1967, all classes were cancelled for the day in order to hold an assembly and group discussion that addressed growing racial tensions among students. The event was covered by both local and national news outlets.

You can see evidence of the need for Breakthrough Day in some of the other headlines and stories; the blatant racism of some of the earlier decades illustrates the exact attitudes that prompted Breakthrough Day and caused us to change our mascot from the Indian to the Hawk.

This isn’t the only look you’ll get of the Tam News archives. Along with this article, we plan to feature other archived content in future issues, and eventually to have the entire archive history online. As you read, you’ll notice what things have changed at Tam, but also bear in mind that some things just never change.