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Animal House 1804

I don’t watch a lot of movies, but I have seen Animal House, an account of a memorable year at the fictional Faber College. At the end of the movie, it is revealed that one of the most animalistic of the Animal House students, Bluto (portrayed by John Belushi), would eventually become a United States Senator.

Ignoring the fact that one of Belushi’s co-workers eventually WOULD become a United States Senator, there is a historical parallel to the “bad college student becomes respectable” story.

In 1804, there was a school in Lexington, Virginia named Liberty Hall. Today it is known as Washington and Lee University. Back in 1804, however, an incident occurred in the city involving a college student:

Several students are suspended when a Lexingtonian complains that they “stripped naked in the public street in a clear moonlight night between the hours of 8 & 9” to bathe at a public pump. In August, senior George William Crump is suspended for the remainder of the session for running naked through the streets of Lexington.

The account, on Washington and Lee’s own website, goes on to say:

(Crump later becomes a congressman and the U.S. ambassador to Chile.)

Congressman Crump’s official biography (which omits the streaking incident) is here.

And as for Senator Blutarsky, Congressman Keith Ellison once inadvertently quoted the Senator’s historical knowledge.

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