Hawthorne Was Here; Reed is Home

Story posted September 28, 2007

Two of Bowdoin's most illustrious graduates — novelist and short story writer Nathaniel Hawthorne and Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Thomas Brackett Reed — are honored with lasting tributes to their significant accomplishments.

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A plaque honoring Hawthorne has been mounted in the common room of Maine Hall to commemorate his residence there. It reads "Nathaniel Hawthorne of the Class of 1825 lived in the original Room 19 of Maine Hall during his sophomore year 1822-1823." Formerly only Winthrop Hall, once the residence of Hawthorne's friend and classmate Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, featured such a commemorative plaque.

At a dedication ceremony held September 29, 2007, Edward Little Professor of the English Language and Literature William Watterson read from Hawthorne's works. A number of Hawthorne's descendents were in attendance, including Katherine Deming Brodie '90, a great-great-great-grandaughter of Hawthorne, who also delivered remarks.

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Thomas Brackett Reed House

A new residence option in the College House system bears the name of Thomas Brackett Reed, a member of the Class of 1860. Reed is widely regarded as the most powerful Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives. He served in Congress from 1877 to 1898, and as Speaker from 1889 to1891 and again from 1895 to 1899. A presidential candidate in 1896, Reed lost the Republican nomination to William McKinley.

This spring, the former Chi Psi fraternity house at 7 Boody Street was renamed the Thomas Brackett Reed House and was dedicated September 28, 2007.

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