Thirteen Story mosaic on face of Hesburgh Library-known affectionately as  The Touchdown Jesus


From St. Thomas Military Academy to the University of Notre Dame in the fall of 1958. Freshman year they still turned off the electricity at 10:00 P.M. There was a fifty page manual of rules, containing Grave Penalties, More Grave Penalties, and Most Grave Penalties. In 1959 most of this rigid system was dismantled.

Most of my friends and I had no idea what we would do with our lives and we pretty much muddled through four years without enjoying that awesome clarity of purpose and fixity of values enjoyed by engineer, commerce and pre-med students. When we were seniors, a number of us lived in Sorin Hall:

Fritz Wagner with Pat Powers and Joe Papenfuss on the front steps of Sorin Hall, Notre Dame

From the left: Fritz Wagner, Patrick Powers and Joseph Papenfuss. We are standing on the front steps of Sorin Hall, the oldest residence hall and, in those years, for seniors only.

And those of us who lived in the basement were pretty much ignored by the hall Rector. Against all rules we dared to drink in our rooms when we were seniors:

Pat Powers draws a beer

Here Pat Powers draws from a beer keg slipped into the basement of Sorin Hall one busy weekend.

Joe Papenfuss in Sorin Hall Basement

Joe Papenfuss, my classmate from La Crosse, preserves his dignity in the presence of the camera. I am not preserving mine. Shown below: Jim Kolb, Joe Baroody, Varnum Harris, Frank and Joe Papenfuss, Terry Jones and Deirdre. Not shown: John P. (Jack) McLaughlin.

Jim Kolb and his ever present cigar

Jim Kolb was an Oklahoma red-clay country boy. He ran the University Print shop to earn money and preached the gospel according to Ludwig Von Mises. Ludwig was right but I didn't read him until 25 years later. Jim went to Wisconsin for his Masters in History and took a very good degree there. Then he went to work for the federal government.

Joe Baroody in a rare relaxed mood

Joseph Baroody was the son of William Baroody, Sr., the founder of the American Enterprise Institute. So Joe had politics in his blood. When we were Juniors, he beat me for President of the Young Repulicans. He had the contacts to bring Robert Taft and Barry Goldwater to the campus to speak to the Young Republicans.He married a terrific girl from South Bend and he and Sheila had many children together. As a Washington lobbiest, he managed to provide them all with good educations.

Varnum Harris has musical thoughts

Varnum Harris was a music major. One difference between Varn and the rest of us was that he understood music while the rest of us only liked to listen. He and Joe Papenfuss were particularly close.

Joe and Frank Papenfuss in Sorin Hall

Joe Papenfuss hides his face from the camera as he laughs uncontrollably. Frank has just delivered one of his side-splitting deadpan remarks. Off camera is Bill Panagulis.

Terry Jones his senior year at Notre Dame

Terry Jones was an Irishman from Dublin. He came to Notre Dame on a full track and field scholarship. He wanted to write fiction, and I think, because I'm not sure, he ran well enough to keep his scholarship but had more and greater interests than sports. His mentor was Father Ernan McMullen, an Irish philosopher on the faculty. Terry was stubborn, quick to anger, and had a bitter, ironic streak, all very Irish traits, I have since learned. But a girl from St. Mary's, tamed him, at least for a while:

Terry Jones and Deirdre at Notre Dame

If I remember, her name was Deirdre. They married and moved to Eugene, Oregon, where Terry entered into a graduate writing program. In Irish legend, Deirdre wrecked the Irish nation. I hope things turned out well for Terry and Deirdre.