Theta Epsilon Alumni Association

                               Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity

                                               Humboldt State University

Chapter History

Alumni History

Theta Epsilon Charter History

Theta Epsilon Chapter Sweethearts

Michael D. Suggs Theta Epsilon Chapter Scroll #1

TKE Car Smash 1966-67

 

TKE Theta Epsilon Chapter By Laws 1969                  TKE Theta Epsilon Chapter Neophyte House Telephone Speech

The newly formed Theta Epsilon Alumni Association of Humboldt State University will be adding various historical stories associated with our fraternity  at the college since it's founding in 1960.........

A little piece of Theta Epsilon Chapter History November 15, 2009

Good Morning Mike:

 When Gary Peterson drafted the application for active status from a Colony (1959 - 60), the National wanted a picture of the house (C Street House) on the front cover. Not really knowing exactly what a fraternity house & members should look like, they went about putting on the sport coats and ties bit and gathered about in the front of the house. Chuck Muser, the house photographer, thought it would be "just great" if someone did something domestic to show that we were really serious about the whole idea of becoming a Chapter.

Mike Suggs grabbed the lawn mower and made like he was mowing the lawn, in a suit and tie. The National passed us for a Chapter before the existing Chapters could vote on admission, otherwise we probably would have been rejected as a bunch of hicks from the sticks.

 Locate that charter application and you will have a picture of the C Street house. As an alternative, you might contact Chuck Muser as he was the only one wielding a camera in those days.

 After we moved to Laurel Drive, the C Street house became a private housing unit serving students. I drove by the place about a month ago and it is now a private residence, complete with roses and an arbor over the front walk. It has been painted white with an attractive trim but in looking through the front window (it being open to see from the street) the front living room is much the same as it was back then as a Chapter Room, as remodeled by Don Bird, et al.

 The "pledge steps," which serve as an outside entrance to the second floor, are still in service. This was the only way pledges could enter or leave the house and they had to recite the Greek alphabet as they climbed or went down the stairs.

 

.................... Bruce Marshall #23

 

You mentioned that you wanted tales from the past.  Here's one, and it's illustrated too.

                                                  n a recent email Don Bird mentioned a "two holer" in the quad.  Well, this is it.  I took this photo the next day for the Eureka Standard.

  It seems that one evening 40 some years ago we were to have dinner at the Teke house (the original on C street) and it was to be served by the pledges.  Our cook, the redoubtable Mrs. Davis, always cooked the meal and then left everything on the stove before she left.  Well, when dinner was served that night it just wasn't up to Mrs. Davis's standards, just  some veggies and some noodles with a few strings of chicken in them.  We grumbled, but ate anyway.  It was after dinner when the clean-up crew found the rest of the dinner in the oven, it was a great pot of chicken which, we found out later, was supposed to be served with the noodles.  On the spot the leadership decreed that later that evening we would have a chicken snack, to be served by the errant pledges.  They were called in and at about 9 pm we gathered for our feast.  If memory serves, there was also a quantity of beer consumed.  One thing led to another and we hatched a plot.  We would "borrow" an outhouse and deposit it in the quad.  I'm not sure who came up with the idea, or if anyone knew where to get one.

Anyway, we set out, after persuading Don Cherry (I think he was one of the pledges) to bring along his new Ford Ranchero and allow us to carry our borrowed cargo in it.  This took some persuading because Mr. Cherry truly loved his car.  We acquired our two holer somewhere out towards the mouth of the Mad River.  As I remember the wind was blowing something fierce and we were a bit giddy, and noisy, but we got it all loaded up and off we went.  We had quite a crew available and it was a good think because we had to carry the thing on its side from the parking lot behind the dorms.  Amazingly we didn't get caught, probably because it was then around midnight and the dorms were pretty quiet then.  Unfortunately the picture I shot with all the culprits standing around right after we planted it has been lost.  It wasn't until the middle of the day after that the college maintenance crews removed it from the quad.

We gave some thought, upon more sober reflection, about the people who owned the outhouse.  We only hoped that it was not longer used, but we never found out.  Ah, the things we did in our youth.

                                                          

 

The 1960 football season for Humboldt State was one to remember.  The team won the Far Western Conference championship and went to the NAIA championship game in St. Petersburg, Florida.  The fourth game of the season, and the first conference contest, was against San Francisco State.  The last time Humboldt had lost a game was in the 1959 season, and they were beaten by SF State, so this was a big game.

That year HSC was playing its games on the Eureka High School field because Redwood Stadium was being renovated.  The SF student body was opposite us and they had their banner, the one in the picture above, attached to the railing just adjacent to the track.  Well, members of the fraternity snatched it right off that railing.  The only participant of the heist group I can remember was Jerry Stram.  He was wearing a trench coat so he wound the banner. folded long ways once,  around his body and put his coat on over it.  He was one pudgy dude wearing the banner.  They got it out of the stadium undetected.  The next day, a Sunday, we paraded around campus displaying the prize and yelling, "Stomp, Stomp, back to the swamp."  (SF was the "Golden Gaters" so we renamed them the "Gators.")  The photo was taken on the steps of Founder's Hall.

Not surprizing, the SF State administration was a bit miffed and demanded that heads should roll.  After a few days word from the HSC administration filtered down that we had better return the banner to it's rightful owners which, after some grumbling, we did.  As I recall it was mailed back in a brown paper package.

An addendum to the story.  The football team had quite a few African American members and, when word came that the team had been invited to play in the Holiday Bowl in Florida, a deeply segregated Florida in 1960, word also came that the black players would have to stay in separate quarters from the white players.  The student body was pretty upset and there was talk that the team wouldn't be allowed to go.  The black players got together and decided they wanted to play.  When that was made known the student body relented.  The opposing team was from Lenoir Rhyne College, a small, all male (and need I say) all white, private college in North Carolina.  HSC lost that game 15 to 14 on a last second field goal, thus ending a 22 game winning streak, the longest in the nation at that time.  Many of the players thought the field goal missed, and they were also upset because Lenoir Rhyne had only a couple of penalties called against them, while HSC had 11 or 12.  The Officials were all Southern white men.

In the Spring of 1965 I had occasion to be in St. Petersburg, Florida, spending a week of relaxation from a hard winter traveling for TEKE national in places like Wisconsin and Michigan.  One day I went to the hotel pool wearing my Humboldt State sweatshirt and the bartender at the pool bar sought me out.  He asked me if that was the Humboldt state that had played the game in St. Pete in 1960.  Yep, I answered.  Well, he said, his high school band, of which he had been a member, had acted as Humboldt's band during the game.  He then said, "You know, your guys got screwed.  That winning field goal was wide.  You won that game."

Such is life, sigh.

Chuck Muser
 

 

317 Laurel Street, Arcata....Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity House.....Bill Henry # 15, doing a little preparatory work for the chapter move into the new fraternity house on Humboldt State College Campus..........

TKE Theta Epsilon Chapter Roaring Twenties Party, Arcata/Eureka, Ca Fall 1964. This picture is from Frater Phil Hartley Scroll #123 which shows Joe Forbes, Larry Henderson, Fred Nave , Don Rubin in the front row with dates among many other Theta Epsilon fraters. Phil indicates 11 of his 13 pledge brothers from thed "Womb Bats" Pleddge Class of 1965 were in thi photo....Below is the history on the Roaring Twenties Theme Party  from Frater Bruce Marshall Scoll #23, which was started by charter members of Theta Epsilon and enjoyed by all every year thereafter.......

Mike  ......... That's not just a "House Theme Party," that's the "Roaring Twenties Bash" which was the traditional fall social highlight for OE. It started at 1030 C Street circa September 1960 following and edict by Kate Buchanan, et al declaring that all fraternity parties must have a chaperone and be in the decorum as dictated by her office. OK ........ so we tried it after the first home football game. There were lots of cokes and other soft drinks in a wash tub of ice and the faculty guests (chaperones) were Dr. E.

Ned Girard (Major - USMC Reserves, "please stand and salute when I enter the

room") and Kate Buchanan. As I remember, there were two (count em') two house members and dates present. Everybody else was at a "non -fraternity"

party at DJs apartment which lasted until most felt it was safe to return to the house. Gary Peterson walked in the door and proclaimed: "That's it .. no more TKE obeying the rules while the Delta Sigs roar about doing essentially what they want to. Next week we're going to have a PARTY." Barry Jensen and Don Bird came up with the idea of a Roaring Twenties costume bash and concocted a recipe for a rum punch, served from a not quite empty whiskey barrel. The rest of us went about the second hand stores in Eureka searching for a costume. The bash managed to roar a little louder as each year passed.

Rene` finally came up with the idea of JCs cabin on Jacoby Creek Road in an attempt to preserve the charter.

 

I do not know if the Roaring Twenties Party was held after OE was booted out of the Laurel Drive house but it was sure fun while I was in the house.

 

........................................................ Bruce Marshall - OE #23

 

 

 

Here is another oldy photo.  I think Spring semester 1965.  Story is that the Business Division had a display case for business majors to put up show cases.  Les Schneitter #79 did this one for TKE.                             Phil Hartley #123

For those who are just too far away, click right here for a trip live to Arcata Square. This should take you back and remind you of a little of the big little town of Arcata, home to Humboldt State! I think I can almost see Marino's ! Can you? No more as of late July 2001 as it burned to the ground. Sad day.  For the sad particulars....thanks Doug Peterson for the URL here.