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1909 in Clemson History
Events that occurred in 1909:
- The Lincoln penny replaces the Indian head cent in U. S. mintage, the hundredth anniversary of the 16th president's birth.
- Wesleyan Methodist Bible Institute in Central, South Carolina changes its name to Wesleyan Methodist College. It is now Southern Wesleyan University.
- Construction continues on the Central High School, Central, South Carolina. Builder is J. H. Hall, foreman is D. E. Lawrence.
- January 11: Jimmie Dyess, Class of 1931, born.
- March 25: Frank Howard born in Barlow Bend, Alabama.
- June: Clemson College was reported to be considering building an electric railway from Calhoun, the location of the Southern Railway depot, through Clemson to Cherry Station on the Blue Ridge Railroad in a June 1909 newsbrief appearing in the Electric Railway Journal. Walter Merritt Riggs wrote a rebuttal for the next issue which declared that the trustees had considered the idea, but had agreed that it was not practical. Considering the size of the town involved (Cherry Station, at best, had four nearby families), the line would have seen reasonable use only when the college semesters began and ended. (Source: Palmetto Traction - Electric Railways of South Carolina by Thomas Fetters, 1978, Forty Fort, Pennsylvania, no ISBN. - Fetters is Class of 1961, with a BS in Chemical Engineering.)
- Fall: Bob Williams returns to head the Clemson football team.
- Fall: Future Clemson Life Trustee Christie Benet coaches the South Carolina Gamecocks football team to a 2-6 season, for a lifetime .250 win-loss ratio. (Reference: http://www.sports-reference.com/cfb/coaches/christie-benet-1.html.)
- September: Central High School opens for classes for the first time.
- September 25: The Calhoun Literary Society meets. The evening debate concerned the advisabiity of spending money on polar exploration. "Mr. Peagues and Mr. Deason - both volunteers - and Mr. Warner, ably defended the affirmative, while Mr. Salley, Mr. Riley, and Mr. Rowell carried on the contest of the wits for the negative. The irregular debate was no less lively and mirth provoking than the regular. After the smoke cleared, it was seen that the negative had won." (The Tiger, October 15, 1909, Volume V(?), Number 2, page 6.)
- September 27: The Tigers defeat Gordon Institute for third year in a row in game played on Bowman Field, 26-0. Clemson owns series, 3-0.
- October: "Capt. Marshall after giving several military commands to the skeleton in the veterinary science lecture room, and these not being executed replied "Oh! he's a bonehead anyway.' " ("Fillers", The Tiger, October 15, 1909, Volume V(?), Number 2, page 8.)
- October 2: In road game, Clemson falls to Virginia Tech, 0-6. Tech leads series, 1-3-1.
- October 8: The third meeting of the fall of the Palmetto Society held in Palmetto Hall.
- October 9: Clemson defeats Davidson in match played in Charlotte, North Carolina, 17-5. Tigers lead series, 4-2-1.
- October 16: Alabama defeats the Tigers for the first time in game played in Birmingham, 0-3. Clemson leads series, 3-1.
- October 22: The Calhoun Literary Society meets.
- October 23: In sole meeting with Naval Station Port Royal, a Naval Reserves service squad, the Tigers win, 19-0, on Bowman Field, for all-time series record of 1-0. "Hon. T. Frank Watkins, of Anderson, spent Saturday on the campus and officiated in the Clemson-Marine game." (The Tiger, November 1, 1909, Volume V(?), Number 3, page 3.) Port Royal will later become Parris Island Marine Corps Base.
- Late October: " 'Rube' Fike, who graduated with the class of '08, spent a few days on the campus last week. 'Rube' is always a welcome visitor and takes much interest in the Clemson Tigers." (The Tiger, November 1, 1909, Volume V(?), Number 3, page 3.)
- November 4: The Clemson-South Carolina game resumes after a six-year absence. Clemson wins, 6-0, in Columbia at the State Fair. Tigers lead series, 5-2.
- November 10: Clemson defeats Georgia, 5-0, in game played in Augusta. Clemson leads series, 8-5, and Georgia will suffer a 1-4-2 season.
- November 13: The Tigers shut out the South Carolina Military Academy (renamed The Citadel in 1910) in Clemson, 17-0, in first meeting between the two teams.
- November 25: Georgia Tech beats Clemson in Atlanta, 3-29, although Tigers still lead series, 6-3-1. Tigers end season with 6-3 record.
- December 6: Walter Merritt Riggs is named as acting president of Clemson Agricultural College, replacing President Patrick Hues Mell who resigned.