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Trenton State College, 1971 to 1976

Photographs by Michael Butkus Jr., photographer/photo editor of SIGNAL (student newspaper) and SEAL (yearbook) at various times, and sometimes both, during my 5 year stay. Many of my photos appear in those yearbooks, student newspapers and Official TSC Publications.  TSC was also know as a "suitcase college" from the late '60 to the early '80.  With very little housing on campus most students lived in off campus apartments or homes.  During Freshman year I lived in a residential home a few miles from campus with 3 other students.  There was a "off campus housing department" that found you local houses with rooms for rent.  I only stayed at that house the first semester as the Wolf / Travis housing fully opened in Jan. '72.  Some students, like my wife, sister-in-law and two other girls even lived in apartments in PA, just a few miles away.  Even the two other girls always went home Fridays.   Those PA students were accosted by that town's "voting tax", they were constantly sent letters stating they had to pay a "head tax".   This "suitcase college / school" attitude can be attested by a video I made for a "media contest" sponsored by the Student Government in 1974 (?).  Using Super 8 film and the music from Alvin Lee's song "Going Home" I showed the "evacuation" of the campus after Friday's 1pm classes.  The movie ended showing the deserted, empty campus on Saturday and Sundays.   The Signal, if you could find any in the archives for those years, had articles on the lack of any students and student  activities during weekends of my early years there.  I still have that movie I made, as well as the hundreds of photo taken during my years at TSC.   As a newspaper / yearbook person I (and my fellow newspaper staff members) stayed on campus to photograph those few weekend events.  The name "suitcase college" can also be attested by my wife of 30 years (2007) Lynn Chalmers Butkus during her '68 - '73 TSC years, her sister Terri that also attended TSC, her husband / my Brother-in-Law, Stu Field (TSC '71 - '77).  He was also a co-photo editor of the Seal for a couple of years with me.


Photographs Copyright by Mr. Butkus, 
via the TSC yearbooks of 1971 to 1976

Comments - suggestions or "hey, that's me" use the address below.


All photographs are B/W (hey it was the 70's) and more than full screen so you may have to pan a bits!

Click on the picture to see it enlarged. These did appear full screen back in 1996 when 640 X 460 was the typical screen size and I scanned these photos.

click here to see the "BOSS" Bruce Springsteen who was an opening act back in '73!

click  here to see a typical full house at Kendell Hall concerts.

click  here to see that someone that had a bits-to-much to drink before the Kendell hall concert (photo TX at 1200 ASA @1.4 w/50mm Pentax)

click  here for the foggy walk in the evening past the old dorms.

click  here "Football been berry-berry go to me" (needed a stock Football photo, I felt creative)

click  here for the not so typical shot "they" wanted for the clock tower (Tri-X - w/500mm mirror lens)

click  here for Duke Ellington, the other "BOSS" that appeared at TSC.

click  here to remember the constant construction in front of Wolf/Travers towers.

click  here to see my perception of the row of construction trailers in front of Green Hall and the lake. At this point this area was a swamp.

click  here to see how I felt about weekend life on campus for "us" that stayed the weekends. (TX w/28mm@ 2.8 and 1/15 sec handheld)

click  here for Green Hall, all light up at night. No money for parking but they added these lights.

click  here to see the TSC, the school that never closed. Ah, does that mean we have to show up for class too?

click  here to see our construction workers view of work while at TSC.

click  here for the "Famous" TSC Panty Raids. This is the side of Decker, the "girl's" dorm. Caution children, you may find your wonderful parents participating! (Tx at 6400ASA, 50mm @1.4 at 1/4 sec, no tripod here kiddies. You had to keep moving)

click  here for evidence of what you get from ladies at the windows. Ah yes, the Higher Education your parents paid an astounding $300 a semester.

click  here to see the beautiful view of the library (after the construction crew got to it)

click  here to see how TSC solved the problem of items missing/people misusing the Chapel (I needed a Signal pix to show the "solution".  Lock the doors of worship). Actually this was a photo of the outside doors to one of the classroom buildings. Nice fire hazard!

click  here to see the favorite TSC summer spot. Actually it was taken at Sea Side Heights at night. (Tx w/50mm @1.4 and 1/15 sec. I had steady hands in those days)

click  here for my idea of the administrators at the time. It's from the 2nd floor of the building facing Green Hall. All their ducks, lined up in a row.

click  here to see my picture that was the cover of the TSC technology department booklet. I needed a neat shot of the campus, it was about 2 degrees out that night, I froze to death shooting multiple time exposures. Note the WATER TOWER! Does that bring back fond memories to you former Greeks?

click  here to see my night stuff. As you my be able to tell, I liked dark despairing pictures. This is of a student walking the glass lined halls. (TX 2400ASA with 50mm @1.4 1/15 sec)

click  here for more nights at TSC. This is the walkway behind the old bookstore (temp buildings) to Wolf/Travers. Can you say boo! (Tx w/50mm @1.4 at 1/2 sec)

click here to see what else it did during the '72 to '74 years - RAIN!. Constantly almost every day I thought.

click  here to see some wonderful student that was so impressed with the John Lee Hooker concert she came up on stage to dance. She enticed the security guards behind the curtains to "come and get me". What is she doing 30+ years later?

click  here and see if the car fits the person!

click  here to remember "being in class"

click  here to remember what the usual weekend traffic was. Students moving out!

click  here to check if you have the correct forms. Let's see, you saw your advisor, got it all signed and changed the "class day" 3 times due to the class being "CLOSED". You remember REGISTRATION!   This was pre computers...

click  here if you got your shots! I was too busy shooting shots of all those lined up for their Meningitis shots during the scare.   Lots of shots in that sentence.

click  here to remember Wolf Towers. On the right were the mailboxes and a student behind the frosted glass. Lots of memories of letter (hopefully with money enclosed) from mom asking me to call home for once.

click  here: For all the communications majors. Yes, you once thought our B&W studio and 3" tape machines were a big deal?

click  here for a double shot, evenings and rain! I told you it rained a lot.

click  here: For all those that attended TSC for their Masters, you remember all those night classes? I did my evening classes at SHU. Glad I worked on campus, short drive!

click  here for the evening sun shining through the trees by the small bridge between the lakes.

click  here: Studying happens!

click  here: Education Students: you can't forget the trip to Wapalanne. My most remembered moment, at one of the training exercises. Our group, myself and a bunch of female teachers, were suppose to swing across an imaginary pool of quicksand via a rope hanging in the middle. We were told to start. After 10 seconds, no one said a thing. I grabbed a thick branch I found on the ground, threw it and hit the rope.  It swung back and I grabbed it. I had each person in my group swing over after I gave them a big push. I went last. In 5 min. we were across. The trainer said "we have to wait here for another 30 minutes.  Most of the other groups couldn't figure out how to grab the rope and the time to accomplish the task was 35 min. . Those in other groups that did finally grab the rope couldn't all swing across".  I thought to myself "and these are our leaders, they must have never played in the woods as kids!"

click  here: To those that finally made it. Look Ma! I'm here somewhere.

click  here for a final look at the old TSC (AKA - College of New Jersey) or sometime referred to as (Trenton - College of New Jersey)