Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Horseman on Hartwell Lawn!

This image was run across recently by the archivist while looking for images. It is part of a large collection of campus photographer images from the 1950s and early 1960s. It was included in a homecoming section, and would appear to be a campus school student waiting on horseback to ride in the homecoming parade. The date is labeled as 1957, but identity of the young horseman is unknown.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014


Most aren't aware of this nowadays, but for many years the college owned a camp. In the 1950s and early '60s that was Camp Totem, up in the Adirondacks. In 1962 it was decided to sell Totem and to purchase a property closer to home and so the college bought the Fancher campus. This was a largely undeveloped, 500 acre property just 15 minutes west in Orleans County. There were woods, fields, and a small body of water, McCargo Lake. One of the first things the college did was to build a lodge there that could be used for various purposes; meetings, retreats, conferences, and other purposes. In the photo here we see the handsome stone fireplace, and on the left is Gordon Allen, and on the right is Harold Rakov; the administration and student services buildings on campus today are named for them.

Fancher was used for the long running Brockport Summer Arts Festival, for water studies on the lake, for recreation, and many other purposes. Dr. Hellman of the Biology Department spent  years developing an arboretum at Fancher for example. This photo shows him on site, inspecting a seedling. The camp was very popular for some time, but as the 1970s went on there seemed to be somewhat less use, and the costs of maintaining the property became increasingly difficult to justify as state aid to colleges began to be reduced. In the mid 1980s the college sold it and today it is Hickory Ridge, a public golf course and RV park.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Tony Mascioli '54 & Gay History

Tony Mascioli, shown here on the left in the second row of this Vistas photo from the 1954 year book (the title of the English Club publication then) was a Brockport alum and a pioneering gay businessman. The Gay Alliance of the Genesee Valley has a feature on him in their Shoulders to Stand On gay history site.

A Brockport student did quite a bit of research for the Gay Alliance this spring using materials from the college archives to document Tony's time here at Brockport. Tony was not only supportive of gay rights, but he was a supporter of the College at Brockport and had many positive memories of his time here in the early 1950s.