Al and Claire Geddes Interview

Dublin Core


60 mins


Al and Claire Geddes met at Danbury State Teachers College and later married. Al was Dean of Men and Claire was Dean of Women. They discuss programs for students and faculty and administration of the college.







Oral History Item Type Metadata


Janick, Herb


Geddes, Al and Claire Geddes




Time Summary

10 min: Al discusses his prior experience and becoming WCSU Faculty; Claire discusses her prior experience and becoming WCSU Faculty; Together they discuss the intention and character of the Faculty and the school

20 min: Claire develops a friendship with faculty members, living temporarily with Ruth Haas; Community projects within the school; WCSU Faculty and community were generous, often not being reimburst;

30 min: Claire's experiences with other schools during renovations; Shaping well-rounded students into professionals in difficult circumstances; Ruth Haas requested Claire to become Dean of Women when she would ascend to President of the school after the death of the former president.

40 min: Begin Side 2; Ruth Haas was well-liked by student and Faculty; Student body was generally age 18 when liquour laws changed, making alcohol legal at age 18; Reaction of campus to alcohol, to increased male population; Discusses Ruth Haas family situation and work experience prior to WCSU; Unionizing Faculty drew direction and organization within the system;

50 min: Why Ruth Haas retired, her health before and after her position as president; Students graduate with more social confidence due to increasing diversity; Political/Social influence to receive position as Faculty;

60 min: Foodservice became an outside agency after WCSU became co-ed and introduction of off-campus housing, therefore no more dorm-wide dinners; Sports became prominent in the school after WWII; 1950s WCSU went through much change and expansion;

70 min: Claire tells her "Favorite Haas Story";


Janick, Herb -- Interviewer. “Al and Claire Geddes Interview.” Herb Janick Papers, MS012. WCSU Archives, 9 July 2019. Accessed on the Web: 28 Jan. 2020.



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