Search this Site    --   FSM-A Home Page

FSM-A \ Free Speech Movement Archives FSM-A


Chronology of Events

Three Months of Crisis - Part One

From the U.C. Berkeley alumnii magazine California Monthly

The following chronology traces events of the "free speech" controversy Berkeley from Sept. 10,1964, through June 4, 1965. Full texts of all important documents, reports, statements and resolutions are included. Where full texts were too long for inclusion, they appear elsewhere online, along with. relevant portions of the State Constitution, Education Code, "University Policies Relating to Students and Student Organizations," and "The Position of the FSM on Speech and Political Activity."

Reproduced with permission from the California Monthly [Feb. 1965] Further segments (through June 4, 1965) appear in the March, June, and July-Aug. issues. At present, the text below extends through October 28. We plan to reproduce the rest through June 4, 1965.

September:  10   15   16   17   18   20   21   22   23   25   27   28    29  30

October:     2   3   4   5 

Part Two is here.
We are looking for volunteers to help scan in Parts 3 & 4.

September 10

     A letter authored by "a former student" and distributed with the Slate Supplement Report called for an "open, fierce and thoroughgoing rebellion" on the Berkeley campus. Although the letter did not relate specifically to the "free speech issue," it sounded the rallying cry for subsequent events:

   The University does not deserve a response of loyalty and allegiance from you. There is only one proper response to Berkeley from undergraduates: that you ORGANIZE AND SPLIT THIS CAMPUS WIDE OPEN! . . .

   "Go to the top. Make your demands to the Regents. If they refuse to give you an audience: start a program of agitation, petitioning, rallies, etc., in which the final resort will be CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE. In the long run, there is the possibility that you will find it necessary to perform civil disobedience at a couple of major University public ceremonies . . ."

September 15

     The Ad Hoc Committee to End Discrimination -- led by former Berkeley student and Slate founder Michael Myerson and by Tracy Sims, leader of the Palace Hotel demonstrations -- announced plans to picket the Oakland Tribune for the third Friday in a row, and held a noon rally at the Bancroft and Telegraph entrance to the Berkeley campus.

September 16

1. Presidents or chairmen and advisers of all student organizations received a letter from Dean of Students Katherine A. Towle, dated Sept. 14, announcing that, effective Sept. 21, tables would no longer be permitted in the 26-foot strip of University property at the Bancroft and Telegraph entrance, and that advocative literature and activities on off-campus political issues also would be prohibited:

   "Provisions of the policy of The Regents concerning 'Use of University Facilities' will be strictly enforced in all areas designated as property of The Regents . . .including the 26-foot strip of brick walkway at the campus entrance on Bancroft Way and Telegraph Avenue . . ."

   (Small copper plaques, imprinted: "Property of The Regents, University of California. Permission to enter or pass over is revocable at any time," outline Vniversity campuses' boundaries. A series of these plaques is located parallel to Bancroft Way, about 26 feet outside the large concrete posts at the Bancroft-Telegraph entrance to the campus. The new policy did not apply to an approximately eight-foot-wide strip of City of Berkeley sidewalk located between the plaques and the Bancroft Way curb.)

   "Specifically," Dean Towle's letter said, "Section III of the (Regents') policy ... prohibits the use of University facilities 'for the purpose of soliciting party membership or supporting or opposing particular candidates or propositions in local, state or national elections,' except that Chief Campus Officers 'shall establish rules under whichcandidates for public office (or their designated representatives) may be afforded like opportunity speak upon the campuses at meetings where the audience is limited to the campus community.' Similarly, Chief Campus Officers 'shall establish rules under which persons supporting or opposing propositions in state or local elections may be afforded like opportunity to speak upon the campuses at meetings where the audience is limited to the campus community.'

   "Section III also prohibits the use of University facilities 'for the purpose of religious worship, exercise or conversion.' Section IV of the policy states further that University facilities 'may not be used for the purpose of raising money to aid projects not directly connected with some authorized activity of the University . . .'

   "Now that the so-called 'speaker ban' is gone," Dean Towle's letter continued, "and the open forum is a reality, student organizations have ample opportunity to present to campus audiences on a 'special event' basis an unlimited number of speakers on a variety of subjects, provided the few basic rules concerning notification and sponsorship are observed ... The 'Hyde Park' area in the Student Union Plaza is also available for impromptu, unscheduled speeches by students and staff.

   "It should be noted also that this area on Bancroft Way ... has now been added to the list of designated areas for the distribution of handbills, circulars or pamphlets by University students and staff in accordance with Berkeley campus policy. Posters, easels and card tables will not be permitted in this area because of interference with the flow of (pedestrian) traffic. University facilities may not, of course, be used to support or advocate off-campus political or social action.

   "We ask for the cooperation of every student and student organization in observing the full implementation of these policies. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to come to the Office of the Dean of Students, 201 Sproul Hall."

     Explaining the new ruling, Dean Towle said, "The growing use and misuse of the area has made it imperative that the University enforce throughout the campus the policy long ago set down by The Regents." Only leniency on the part of the administration slowed enforcement of these rules in the past, she said, but more strict enforcement had been under discussion for some time, she added.

     Berkeley Chancellor Edward W. Strong, in a report to the Berkeley Division of the Academic Senate dated October 26, said:

   "The situation was brought to a head by the multiplied activity incidental to the primary election, the Republican convention, and the forthcoming fall elections. Representatives of the Chancellor's Office, the Dean of Students Office, the Campus Police, the Public Affairs Office, and the ASUC had the problem on the agenda of meetings on July 22, July 29, and September 4. They agreed that the situation would worsen during the political campaign, and steps should be taken at the beginning of the semester to assure use of the area in accordance with University rules . . ."

2. Arthur Goldberg, former chairman of Slate, announced lawyers representing Slate and other interested groups would meet tomorrow (Sept. 17) to decide posible legal action. Goldberg called the new policy "another in a long series of acts to curtail either right- or left-wing political action on campus . . .

   "As the students become more and more aware of America's social problems, and come to take an active part in their solution, the University moves proportionally the other way to prevent all exposure of political action being taken.

   "The most important thing is to make this campus a market place for ideas. But, the University is trying to prevent the exposure of any new creative political solutions to the problems that every American realizes are facing this society in the mid-Sixties."

September 17

     Representatives of 18 student organizations met with Dean Towle to point out what they considered to be the unfairness and purposelessness of the new enforcement policy. The student groups asked for:

1) Advocacy of any political viewpoint or action or to be able to distribute literature to that effect in the Bancroft-Telegraph area.

2) Permission to distribute literature from tables, from which they can attract, by means of posters, interested people. They said they do not want to force literature on pedestrians, but rather hand out literature to those who approach them.

     Student spokesmen offered to conduct a traffic flow survey and to police for violations of University rules regarding placement of posters on University property. Most of the groups also indicated they would be willing to forego collection of money in the area.

     Dean Towle answered that Regents' policy is clearly set down for all on-campus areas, including Bancroft-Telegraph, and that the University administration is under obligation to enforce that policy.

     Dean Towle also charged, during the meeting, that, although the University had repeatedly asked for cooperation from groups using the Bancroft-Telegraph area, it received little in the matter of poster and table placement. "Some of the students have been both impudent and impertinent," she added.

     Dean Towle implied it might be possible for the University to substitute the Hyde Park area in the Student Union Plaza for the Bancroft- Telegraph area. This offer was rejected. The students agreed to submit a list of written suggestions to the Dean of Students for the possible use of the Bancroft-Telegraph area and the Hyde Park area, although Dean Towle said further use of the Bancroft-Telegraph area was "almost out of the question."

     The students insisted on their right, and "duty to society" to remain at their south entrance posts.

September 18

     The 18 student organizations affected by the Bancroft-Telegraph controversy petitioned the Dean of Students for the use of the Bancroft- Telegraph area, under the following conditions:

   "1. Tables for student organizations at Bancroft and Telegraph will be manned at all times.

   "2. The organizations shall provide their own tables and chairs; no University property shall be borrowed.

   "3. There shall be no more than one table in front of each pillar and one at each side of the entrance way. No tables shall be placed in front of the entrance posts.

   "4. No posters shall be attached to posts or pillars. Posters shall be attached to tables only.

   "5. We (students) shall make every effort to see that provisions 14 are carried out and shall publish such rules and distribute them to the various student organizations.

   "6. The tables at Bancroft and Telegraph may be used to distribute literature advocating action on current issues with the understanding that the student organizations do not represent the University of California these organizations will not use the name of the University and will dissociate themselves from the University as an institution.

   "7. Donations may be accepted at the tables."

September 20

     At an evening meeting, most of the groups affected by the new University policy agreed to picket, conduct vigils, rallies and touch off civil disobedience, if the University stands firm on the. Barcroft-Telegraph politics ban after a meeting with Dean Towle, scheduled for 10:30 a.m. the next morning.

September 21

1. Dean Towle met with representatives of student groups affected by the new University rules for the Bancroft-Telegraph area. She accepted most of the proposals submitted by the students on Sept. 18: she would allow groups to set up a regulated number of tables with posters attached in the area, and she would allow distribution of informative -- as opposed to advocative -- literature from them. Dean Towle also announced the establishment "on an experimental basis" of a second "Hyde Park' free-speech area at the entrance to Sproul Hall:

   "Individuals are free to speak at will in these areas," she said, "provided they are registered students or staff of the University of California and observe the policies pertaining to use of University facilities. Since the University reserves such areas of the campus for student and staff use, those who speak should be prepared to identify themselves as students or staff of the University. It is suggested that speakers use as their podium the raised part of the wall on either side of the main stairway or the lower steps flanking the main stairway. Because of possible disturbance to persons working in Sproul Hall offices, voice amplifiers will not be permitted. There must be no interference with traffic or the conduct of University business."

     Dean Towle refused permission to advocate specific action and to recruit individuals for specific causes. Also prohibited was solicitation of funds and donations "to aid projects not directly connected with some authorized activity of the University . . .

   "It is not permissible, in materials distributed on University property, to urge a specific vote, call for direct social or political action, or to seek to recruit individuals for such action," Dean Towle said.

     The students refused to accept Dean Towle's concessions. Picketing, demonstrations and vigils would be conducted, they said, until satisfaction was obtained from the University: Jackie Goldberg, spokesman for the protesting groups, insisted

   "the University has not gone far enough in allowing us to promote the kind of society we're interested in.

   "We're allowed to say why we think something is good or bad, but we're not allowed to distribute information as to what to do about it. Inaction is the rule, rather than the exception, in our society and on this campus. And, education is and should be more than academics.

   "We don't want to be armchair intellectuals. For a hundred years, people have talked and talked and done nothing. We want to help the students decide where they fit into the political spectrum and what they can do about their beliefs. We want to help build a better society."

     Dean Towle replied: "We have tried to be as fair as possible but University policy is clearly stated in this area." The non-advocative restriction is not directed specifically at students, Dean Towle explained. Even non-students invited to speak on campus are informed that on-campus advocacy of direct political or social action is prohibited.

     Dr. Saxton Pope, special assistant to Vice Chancellor Alex Sherriffs, who was present at the meeting, said the University was trying to discourage "advocacy of action without thought."

2. Approximately 75 students held an all-night vigil on Sproul Hall steps.

September 22

     The ASUC Senate (by a vote of 11-5) requested the Regents "to allow free political and social action to be effected by students at the Bancroft entrance to the University of California, up to the posts accepted as the traditional entrance." The Senate motion also requested the privilege of soliciting funds for off-campus activity. These privileges were also requested for eight other campus locations where only non-advocative literature is now permitted. The ASUC Senate also began circulation of a petition to gather student grass-roots support, and discussed the possibility of the ASUC purchasing the disputed land and establishing it as a free speech area. The Senate also proposed establishment of a board of control to prevent congestion in the area and to protect students from "overt confrontation" by leaflet distributors. Commenting on the Senate's motion, Men's Residence Hall Representative Mike Adams said, "Advocacy of action makes our society a viable one, and is central to the entire educational process." Alumni Representative Wayne Hooper urged the Senate not to "use the petition as a crutch. Don't wait for the students to pat you on the backside before you take a stand of your own."

September 23

     Chancellor Strong issued the following statement:

   "I call attention to the following facts concerning student use of University-owned property at the Telegraph-Bancroft entry to the campus. The Open Forum policy of the University is being fully maintained. Any student or staff member is free to address a campus audience in the 'Hyde Park' areas in the heart of the campus. Printed materials on issues and candidates can be distributed by bona fide student groups in nine places on campus, including the Telegraph- Bancroft location. A full spectrum of political and social views can be heard on campus, and candidates themselves can be invited to speak on campus.

   "The University, rightly, as an educational institution, maintains an open forum for the free discussion of ideas and issues. Its facilities are not to be used for the mounting of social and political action directed at the surrounding community. The University has held firmly to the principles set forth by President Kerr in his Charter Day Address on the Davis Campus May 5,1964:

   "'The activities of students acting as private citizens off-campus on non University matters are outside the sphere of the University ... Just as the University cannot and should not follow the student into his family life or his church life or his activities as a citizen off the campus, so also the students, individually or collectively, should not and cannot take the name of the University with them as they move into religious or political or other non University facilities in connection with such affairs ... The University will not allow students or others connected with it to use it to further their non University political or social or religious causes, nor wfll it allow those outside the University to use it for non-University purposes'."

September 25

     University President Clark Kerr condemned the student demonstrations, and disagreed with the protestors that you must have action in order to learn:

   "The Dean of Students has met many requests of the students. The line the University draws will be an acceptable one. ..

   "I don't think you have to have action to have intellectual opportunity. Their actions -- collecting money and picketing -- aren't high intellectual activity ... These actions are not necessary for the intellectual development of the students. If that were so, why teach history? We can't live in ancient Greece . . .

   "The University is an educational institution that has been given to the Regents as a trust to administer for educational reasons, and not to be used for direct political action. It wouldn't be proper. It is not right to use the University as a basis from which people organize and undertake direct action in the surrounding community."

September 27

     Spokesmen for the combined liberal and conservative student political groups announced plans to picket tomorrow's (Sept. 28) University Meeting: the groups would simultaneously set up tables at Sather Gate and hold a rally in front of Wheeler Hall, without giving the required prior notice to the University administration. While the University Meeting is in progress the students would march to the University Meeting. Politically conservative protestors would participate only in the march, since the other activities violated University regulations.

September 28

     Chancellor Edward W. Strong announced a substantial concession -- that campaign literature advocating "yes" and "no" votes on propositions and candidates, campaign buttons and bumper strips could now be distributed at Bancroft-Telegraph and at eight other campus locations -- as pickets formed in front of Wheeler Hall and marched to the University Meeting. Chancellor Strong's liberalization of regulations -- a result, he said, of a "reinterpretation of Regents' policy" -- was a direct contradiction to Dean Towle's statements earlier in the dispute. Dean Towle had stated Regents' policy prohibited distribution of literature advocating either a "yes" or a "no" vote.

     Arthur Goldberg, one of the protest leaders, said: "And you're asking me if picketing is effective?"

     Another protest spokesman said:

   "The Bancroft Telegraph issue has alerted us to the free speech issue all over campus. We won't stop now until we've made the entire campus a bastion of free speech."

     Commenting on the student pickets disruption of the University Meeting, ASUC President Charles Powell said:

   "Placards like 'Sproul Hall Will Fall' and constant heckling and disruption among an audience ... are ... unnecessary at this stage of the issue, and a reflection of student sentiment of which I can no longer be proud."

September 29

1. Several tables were set up on campus at both Bancroft-Telegraph and in front of Sather Gate. Only one or two of the tables had the required permits from the University. (According to the Dean of Students Office, permits were issued only to "qualified organizations" that promised not to solicit money or members, or initiate or advocate any off-campus activityother than voting.) Most of the organizations represented by tables would not make this promise and, in fact, were conducting such activities.

     Dean of Men Arleigh Williams and University police officers informed each of the tables that some of the activities being conducted were illegal; a few times they asked for identification from students manning the tables. Dean Williams said: "Every effort will be made to remove those tables." But, he did not indicate if such an effort would involve action on the part of University police.

     Arthur Goldberg, a protest leader, was asked to make an appointment with Dean Williams.

2. Representatives of protest groups met at 10:30 p.m. to plan future action.

September 30

1. At noon, University Friends of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and Campus Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) set up tables at Sather Gate. Neither had permits from the Dean of Students Office. According to Mario Savio, SNCC spokesman, the student groups were denied permits because it was suspected that they would attempt to collect funds for off-campus political or social action. According to Brian Turner, who set up the SNCC table, funds were being collected, in direct violation of University regulations.

     University administration representatives approached each table, and took the names of those manning the tables. Five students -- Mark Bravo, Brian Turner, Donald Hatch, Elizabeth Gardiner Stapleton, and David Goines -- were requested to appear before Dean of Men Arleigh Williams at 3:00 p.m. for disciplinary action. That action triggered what was to become the first of the Sproul Hall sit-ins.

2. At 3:00 p.m. -- under the direction of Mario Savio, Arthur Goldberg and Sandor Fuchs -- more than 500 students and protestors appeared outside Dean Williams' office. Savio, Goldberg and others stood on a narrow balcony outside the second floor lobby of Sproul Hall, shouting to passing students and those gathered on Sproul Hall steps, urging them to join the growing mass seated and standing outside the Dean of Students Office.

     Savio, the apparent spokesman for the protestors, presented a petition signed by more than 500 students:

   "We the undersigned have jointly manned tables at Sather Gate, realizing that we were in violation of University edicts to the contrary. We realize we may be subject to expulsion."

     Savio then issued two demands:

   1) That everyone in the group who signed be treated exactly the same as the students who were summoned into Dean Williams' office, and

   2) That all charges should be dropped until the University clarifies its policy, and it is clear whether or not there has been any violation.

     Savio stated the group was absolutely firm on the first point, but might give a little on the second.

     Dean Williams answered Savio's demands:

   "I can not make any guarantee to concede to any request. We are dealing only with observed violations, not unobserved violations. And, we will continue to do this."

     Dean Williams thereupon cancelled a scheduled 4:00 p.m. meeting with the leaders of all the groups protesting the University's policy.

     At 4:00 p.m., Dean Williams asked the original five students, plus the three demonstration leaders, to enter his office to discuss disciplinary action. None of the eight people summoned entered the Dean's office.

     Savio then announced that, since it appeared none of their demands had been met, that they would remain in Sproul Hall throughout the night:

   "We want equal action," Savio declared. "And, that's no action, because they can't take action against all these people who are here. They're scared. We're staying."

     Money was collected -- Slate announced a sizeable contribution -- for food. By 5:00 p.m., women students were preparing sandwiches in a second floor alcove.

3. At about midnight Chancellor Edward W. Strong issued the following statement:

   "Students and student organizations today enjoy the fullest privileges in the history of the University, including discussing and advocacy on a broad spectrum of political and social issues. Some students demand on-campus solicitation of funds and planning and recruitment of of- campus social and political action. The University cannot allow its facilities to be so used without endangering its future as an independent educational institution. The issue now has been carried far beyond the bounds of discussion by a small minority of students. These students should recognize the fullness of the privileges extended to them by the University, and ask themselves whether they wish to take further actions damaging to the University.

   "The University cannot and will not allow students to engage in deliberate violation of law and order on campus. The Slate Supplement Report this fall urged 'open, fierce and thoroughgoing rebellion on the campus ... in which the final resort will be Civil Disobedience.' Individual students must ask themselves whether they wish to be a part of such action.

   "When violations occur, the University must then take disciplinary steps. Such action is being taken. Eight students were informed individually by a representative of the Office of the Dean of Students that they were in violation of University regulations and were asked to desist. Each of the eight students refused to do so. I regret that these eight students by their willful misconduct in deliberately violating rules of the University have made it necessary for me to suspend them indefinitely from the University. I stand ready as always to meet with the officers of any student organization to discuss the policies of the University."

4. "I really don't know what to say," Mario Savio told the group of students sitting-in in Sproul Hall, when he heard Chancellor Strong's statement. "If you won't take this as the official statement of the group, I think they're (the administration) all a bunch of bastards."

     Savio, one of the eight students suspended, acted as spokesman for the protestors. He said the issue will be met with continued protest. The three points of future protest action will be:

1) A fight for the dropping of disciplinary action against the suspended students;

2) A continuation of the fight for the demands on the free speech areas, including a proposed meeting with Chancellor Strong, and

3) The stipulation that no disciplinary action be taken against any students participating in further demonstrations.

     Savio went on to say that the problem was that parts of Clark Kerr's Multiversity Machine, the students, "had broken down and were gumming up the works." So, naturally, the University had decided to expel the parts which weren't running smoothly. His analogy was cheered by the demonstrators.

     As the evening progressed, the demonstrators continued their sit-in, lie-in, and representatives of the various political organizations supporting the "Free Speech Movement" ( FSM ) -- the name born that evening -- met to plan future moves.

October 1

1. The first Sproul Hall sit-in broke up at approximately 2:40 a.m., when demonstrators voted to leave the premises. Before leaving, they announced a rally to be held at noon on Sproul Hall steps.

2. Several mimeographed fliers appeared on campus, calling for student and faculty support for the suspended students and announcing a "Free Speech Rally" at noon on Sproul Hall steps.

3. At approximately 10:00 a.m. two tables were set up outside Sather Gate, and one at the foot of Sproul Hall steps.

4. At approximately 11:45 a.m. Deans George S. Murphy and Peter Van Houten, with University Police Lieutenant Merrill F. Chandler approached and spoke to a man who was soliciting funds at the Campus CORE table at the foot of Sproul Hall steps. The man, later identified as Jack Weinberg, a former student, refused to identify himself or to leave the table. Lieutenant Chandler arrested the man for trespassing. Weinberg went limp. Instead of carrying Weinberg into police headquarters in Sproul Hall, University police moved a police car into the area where students were gathering for the noon rally, intending to remove Weinberg by auto.

     The crowd chanted "Release him! Release him!" About 100 students promptly lay down in front of the police car, an other 80 or so sat behind it. Mario Savio removed his shoes and climbed on top of it, urging the gathering crowd to join in.

     By noon, about 300 demonstrators surrounded the immobile police car; by 12:30 p.m., several thousand students were crowded around the car -- which became the focal point and rostrum for the next 32 hours of student demonstrations.

     Weinberg remained inside the captured police car throughout the two-day demonstration. He was fed sandwiches and milk through an open window.

     Savio demanded Weinberg's release and the lifting of University prohibitions against soliciting funds and memberships on campus:

   "We were going to hold a rally. We didn't know how to get the people. But, we've got them now, thanks to the University . . .

   "Strong must say no to the suspensions. He must agree to meet with the political organizations. And, there must be no disciplinary action against anyone before the meeting!

   "And, I'm publicly serving notice that we're going to continue direct action until they (the Administration) accede. I suggest that we go into that building (Sproul Hall) and sit on the desks and chairs and make it impossible for them to continue their work."

     Charles Powell, ASUC President, took Savio's place atop the stranded car:

   "I can see now that your cause is just," Powell said. He asked that, instead of a mob scene in Sproul Hall, only he and Savio enter the building to meet with Dean Williams.

     The crowd demanded that Savio and Powell negotiate Weinberg's release, and termination of the eight student suspensions, and suspension of Administration action against any protestors until the matter had been arbitrated.

     Dean Arleigh Williams told Savio and Powell that the matter was out of his jurisdiction. He referred them to Chancellor Strong, with whom they discussed the problem.

     Chancellor Strong refused Savio's demands. He said the University would not give in to pressure, the suspensions would stand, and that a meeting was possible only if the demonstrations ceased.

     Savio and Powell returned from their meeting with Chancellor Strong at about 1:45 p.m.

     Powell offered to have the ASUC Senate attempt to deal with the entire situation concerning the University's edict. The crowd refused Powell's offer, and he left.

     At approximately 2:30 p.m., Savio suggested the demonstrators force their way into Sproul Hall, in order to hinder operations of the Administration there:

   "I recommend that 500 of you stay here around this auto and others join me in taking our request back to the deans."

     Savio then led about 150 students into Sproul Hall, where they sat outside the Dean of Students Office.

     About 4:00 p.m., the demonstrators inside now numbered about 400, voted to pack solidly in front of the door to the Deans' office, and not allow anyone out. Deans Peter Van Houten and Arleigh Williams were trapped within the office by this maneuver.

     The situation remained static until about 5:30 p.m. when Savio, again atop the automobile, announced "a committee of independent faculty members" would try to make contact with high administration officials. If contact was made, the group decided, the students in Sproul Hall would be notified and would leave the building. The students also voted to have the faculty committee notify them as soon as contact was made with the Administration. Within a short time, contact was made with Vice Chancellor Alex Sheriffs, but a breakdown in communications prevented the students being notified.

     At 6:15 p.m., 45 minutes before the scheduled closing. campus and Berkeley police officers began closing the front doors of Sproul Hall. Angered, about 100 of the approximately 2000 students outside Sproul Hall charged the doors, packing them to prevent their closing. Two police officers were pulled to the floor; one lost his hat and shoes (which were returned to him as he escaped into the building) and was bitten on the leg. About 20 police officers took up stations at the foot of the main stairway leading from the Sproul Hall lobby to the second floor, where the Deans' offices are. The students took up positions on the lobby floor.

     After a long discussion, the demonstrators outside decided to form a united front, and ordered those inside the building to come outside to join them on the mall. All but five of those inside Sproul Hall at the time obeyed the summons. The remaining five were left unmolested. The demonstrations then continued around the police car on the mall between Sproul Hall and the Student Union.

5. Demonstration leaders met in a closed meeting at 10:00 p.m. They decided:

1) The demonstrators would attempt to remain on the steps and in the mall through Family Day on Saturday, Oct. 3.

2) Tables would be set up at Sather Gate, separate from the Sproul Hall demonstrations, in the hope that more people would be suspended.

3) A rally would be held at noon tomorrow (Oct. 2), centering around the car carrying Weinberg.

4) After the rally, groups of demonstrators again would move into the second floor of Sproul HaII and block off the Dean of Students Office.

6. At 11:15 p.m. small groups of anti-demonstration demonstrators began converging on the mall from all directions, swelling the crowd to about 2,500. At this point, the demonstration degenerated into a shouting, singing, swearing and egg throwing contest. The demonstrators sang "We Shall Overcome!" The anti-demonstration forces shouted "Mickey Mouse ! "

7. California Governor Edmund G. Brown issued the following statement:

   "I support fully the stand of U.C. President Clark Kerr and Berkeley Chancellor Edward W. Strong.

   "This is not a matter of freedom of speech on the campuses. I and President Kerr and The Regents have long fought to maintain freedom of speech and an Open Forum policy on all the campuses of the University.

   "This is purely and simply an attempt on the part of the students to use the campuses of the University unlawfully by soliciting funds and recruiting students for off-campus activities.

   "This will not be tolerated. We must have -- and will continue to have -- law and order on our campuses."

8. Berkeley Chancellor Edward W. Strong issued the following statement:

   "Because two facts respecting University policies on students and student organizations are still being mis-understood or misrepresented by some persons, I want again to emphasize these two facts:

   "1. The University's policy prohibiting planning and recruiting on campus for off-campus political and social action, and prohibiting also the solicitation or receipt of funds for such purposes is now and has always been the unchanged policy of the University.

   "2. The University has not restricted or curtailed freedom of speech of students on campus by any change of its own Open Forum policy.

   "No instance of a newly imposed restriction or curtailment of freedom of speech on campus can be truthfully alleged for the simple reason that none exists.

   "Freedom of speech by students on campus is not the issue. The issue is one presented by deliberate violations of University rules and regulations by some students in an attempt to bring about a change of the University policy prohibiting use of University facilities by political, social and action groups."

9. Charles Powell, ASUC president, issued the following statement:

   "The facts are these:

   "The prohibition on the solicitation of funds and membership on campus for partisan issues is not a ruling of the Chancellor or of President Clark Kerr.

   "It is, in fact, a State law.

   "Therefore, the only rational and proper action at this point is to seek changes in the law. Those opportunities are not here on the campus -- but in the houses of the State Legislature.

   "In a conference with President Kerr, I have been told that mob violence and mass demonstrations directed at the Administration will, in no way, do anything to alleviate the problem.

   "In fact, we are indeed losing support among the Regents for concessions which have already been made.

   "I am certain, and President Kerr has confirmed this fear, that if demonstrations such as today's continue, we will lose the Open Forum policy.

   "This is a tradition for which all students and President Kerr have fought long and hard, and one which we need nor lose.

   "I appeal to my fellow students.

   "I ask that you not oppose the Administration -- the Administration can do nothing to meet the demands being made.

   "But this I do ask, write your State legislators, then give your full-hearted support to the ASUC Senate which will ask the property at Bancroft and Telegraph be deeded to the City of Berkeley for municipal administration.

   "Above all, I ask you to discontinue demonstrations which are endangering lives, property, and the Open Forum policy which the entire University community enjoys."

10. Mona Hutchins, vice president of the University Society of Individualists, a conservative group, issued the following statement:

   "The conservative campus groups fully agree with the purpose of the sit-ins in Sproul Hall. Individual members of our organizations have expressed their sympathy by joining in the picketing on the steps of the Hall, and will continue to do so.

   "However, our belief in lawful redress of grievances prevents us from joining the sit-ins. But, let no one mistake our intent. The United Front still stands."

October 2

1. The Daily Californian, the campus student newspaper, printed the following editorial, bordered in black and signed by the Senior Editorial Board:

   "Last night the students became a near mob, with a police car for their symbol.

   "The demonstrators surrounded a police car in front of Sproul Hall as a banner for their disobedience against University authority. It became a symbol of their power. And yet when an opposition force appeared late last night from the fraternities and residence halls, the demonstrators appealed to the police to maintain 'law and order.'

   "No one can rationally justify the simultaneous defiance of authority on one hand, the expectation of protection on the other.

   "We feel that, under these circumstances, the demonstrations have dissolved into a morass of distorted goals, inconsistent means, and blindness to their fallibility.

   "The demonstrators say that the campus administration is no longer open for discussion. How can the demonstrators themselves be open for rational discussion when the basic issues of solicitation of funds, recruitment of members and 'mounting social and political action' have been wholly overshadowed by defiance?

   "The antagonists of late last night exhibited something just as dangerous. They overflowed with an explosive sing-song belligerence. They went to Sproul Hall with anger and without reason -- and almost touched off a riot.

   "The entire Open Forum policy has been threatened by the action of both of these student groups. The concept of the Open Forum will continue to be in jeopardy at the hands of persons completely outside the Universiq if the same irrational and rash challenges to the Administration's final decision continue.

   "The Administration has drawn the line at what it believes is the last concession on the University level. We completely believe they are telling the truth.

   "Those who espouse over-simplified concepts of the issues and solutions, will tell you otherwise.

   "The University has drawn the last line it can.

   "We therefore suggest that the emotional commitment of the past two weeks needs a drastic reappraisal. We urge the students to think by themselves -- not by the group."

2. At 1:30 a.m., as conflicts between demonstrators and anti-demonstration demonstrators threatened to erupt into a full- blown riot, Father James Fisher of Newman Hall mounted the police car. The crowd fell silent as he pleaded for peace -- and got it.

     Demonstrations around the stranded police car, still containing Jack Weinberg, continued throughout the day. Sproul Hall was locked, except for one police-guarded door at the South end through which those with legitimate business inside could pass. A pup tent was pitched on one of the lawns. The entire mall area was littered with sleeping bags, blankets, books, and the debris of the all-night vigil.

     Speakers continued to harangue the crowd from the top of the sagging police car, gathering momentum as noon approached. At noon, lunch-time onlookers enlarged the crowd to close to 4,000 persons.

3. At 10:30 a.m., after President Kerr and Chancellor Strong agreed that the situation had to be brought under control, a high-level meeting of administrators, deans and representatives of at least four law enforcement agencies was held to formulate plans for handling the demonstrations. At 11:55 a.m., representatives of the Governor's Office and the President's Office joined the session. (It was agreed that Chancellor Strong would read a statement at 6:00 p.m., declaring the assembled group an unlawful assemblage and asking the crowd to disperse. To enforce Chancellor Strong's declaration, plans also were drawn up for a mass movement of police officers onto the campus for the purpose of arresting those demonstrators who refused to comply with Chancellor Strong's request to disperse. )

4. At about 4:15 p.m., demonstration spokesmen asked to meet with President Kerr, President Kerr and Chancellor Strong agreed to meet with the protest leaders at 5:00 p.m.

5. At 4:45 p.m. police officers from Oakland, Alameda County, Berkeley and the California Highway Patrol began marching onto the campus, taking up positions at the north and south ends of Sproul Hall and on Barrows Lane, behind the Administration building. Some 500 officers, including over 100 motorcycle police, were on hand by 5:30 p.m., some armed with long riot sticks.

     As the police arrived, onlookers and protest sympathizers swelled the crowd between Sproul Hall and the Student Union to more than 7,000. Spectators lined the Student Union balcony and the roof of the Dining Commons.

     As the possibility of police action ageist the demonstrators increased, protestors were instructed on "how to be arrested" (remove sharp objects from pockets, remove valuable rings and watches, loosen clothing, pack closely together, do not link arms, go limp) and were counseled on their legal rights (give only your name and address, ask to see your lawyer, do not make any statements). All persons with small children, those under 18 years of age, non-citizens, and those on parole or probation were advised to leave.

     And, as six campus police officers penetrated the periphery of the crowd -- in an effort to reinforce the stranded police car -- the demonstrators packed themselves solidly around the car.

6. At about 5:30 p.m., the demonstrators were informed that the meeting between protest leaders and University officials was in progress at University House, and that President Kerr had promised no police action until after that meeting. Participating in the negotiations were President Kerr, Chancellor Strong, members of an informal faculty group, student leaders, representatives of the Inter-Faith Council, and nine demonstration spokesmen. A six point agreement was reached and was signed by President Kerr and the demonstration spokesmen. The meeting was disbanded at 7:15 p.m.

7. At approximately 7:20 p.m., the crowd was informed that an agreement had been reached, and that the protest spokesmen were en route from University House to present it to the demonstrators.

8. At 7:30 p.m., with President Kerr and Chancellor Strong watching from the steps of Sproul Hall (the crowd was unaware of their presence), Mario Savio mounted the flattened roof of the police car to read the agreement:

   "1. The student demonstrators shall desist from all forms of their illegal protest against University regulations.

   "2. A committee representing students (including leaders of the demonstration), faculty, and administration will immediately be set up to conduct discussions and hearing into all aspects of political behavior on campus and its control, and to make recommendations to the administration.

   "3. The arrested man will be booked, released on his own recognizance, and the University (complainant) will not press charges.

   "4. The duration of the suspension of the suspended students will be submitted within one week to the Student Conduct Committee of the Academic Senate.

   "5. Activity may be continued by student organizations in accordance with existing University regulations.

   "6. The President of the University has already declared his willingness to support deeding certain University property at the end of Telegraph Avenue to the City of Berkeley or to the ASUC."

   (The agreement was signed by Clark Kerr, Jo Freeman, Paul C. Cahill, Sandor Fuchs, Robert Wolfson, David Jessup, Jackie Goldberg, Eric Levine, Mario Savio and Thomas Miller.)

At 7:40 p.m., Mario Savio said:

   "Let us agree by acclamation to accept this document. I ask you to rise quietly and with dignity and go home."

9. At 7:50 p.m., President Clark Kerr held a news conference in Sproul Hall. Chancellor Strong was present, but did not take part. Outside the window, the students were dispersing. The police officers had been dismissed. President Kerr said: "Law and order have been restored without the use of force." University rules remain unchanged, he said. The arrested non student trespasser (Jack Weinberg) has been booked by police. Although the University agreed not to press charges, President Kerr said he could not speak for the district attorney. The eight suspended students remain suspended. Their cases will be reviewed, under the regular procedures, by a faculty committee. The faculty committee's suggestions may, or may not, be accepted by Chancellor Strong. Final disposition is still in the hands of the Administration, President Kerr stressed.

     Chancellor Strong, the President continued, will issue appointments to the special ad hoc committee to be established under point two of the agreement. Four students, four faculty members and four Administration representatives will be named to the committee. Two of the students will be named from among those who negotiated the agreement with President Kerr.

October 3

Edward W. Carter, chairman of the University Board of Regents, issued the following statement:

   "Law and order have been re-established on the Berkeley campus of the University of California. That this was accomplished without violence is a tribute to President Clark Kerr and his administrative staff. All applicable University rules remain unchanged; the non student arrested has been booked by the police; the eight suspended students are still on suspension, and the regular procedures for review of student conduct and grievances are functioning.

   "A faculty committee will review individual cases in an orderly manner, and in due course will make recommendations for their disposition by the properly constituted administrative authorities.

   "It is regrettable that a relatively small number of students, together with certain off campus agitators should have precipitated so unfortunate an incident."

October 4

1. California Governor Edmund G. Brown pledged to maintain law and order on University campuses and asked President Kerr to prepare, "as soon as possible," a full and complete report on the student demonstration:

   "I would like a detailed account of its causes, what actions were taken and why, what issues were involved, and what recommendations you have for preventing similar situations in the future."

2. President Clark Kerr, answering Governor Brown's request, said the Administration "has already begun an investigation and analysis" of the demonstrations. Kerr's statement said, in part:

   "Law and order were restored to the Berkeley campus without the use of force -- a result the Governor desired as much as I.

   ". . . All applicable University rules remain unchanged; the non-student arrested as a trespasser has been booked by the police. The eight suspended students are still under suspension and the regular procedures for review of student conduct and grievances are functioning."

     President Kerr described the situation as "highly complicated. . .

   "Students with left wing arid right-wing political orientation are more active than ever before. Off-campus elements excite this orientation. As a consequence, the historical position of the University against being made a base for political direct action is placed under unusual attack.

   "At the same time, the world and national situations have most unfortunately placed more emphasis in the minds of a few students on direct action, even outside the limits of the law, than on compliance with law and order and democratic process.

   "Nevertheless, the University is fully responsible for the maintenance of law and order and the guarantee that it remain an educational institution."

3. Various reactions were inspired by the student protest demonstrations:

1) Ernest Besig, executive director of the Northern California chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), disputed the University's interpretation of the State Constitutional clause relating to political and sectarian activity on the campus (Article IX, Section 9, see Appendix). His statement was issued October 1:

   "The ACLU does not share the opinion of the University Administration that the constitutional ban on political and sectarian activity is aimed at students."

Bessig said the ACLU Board of Directors would consider intervening on behalf of the eight suspended students.

2) The Executive Committee of the Association of California State College Professors expressed support for the student protestors:

   "Participation in social action, whether it is political or non-political ought not only to be permitted, but actively encouraged, so long as it does not interfere with the regular instructional program . . ."

3 ) The Inter-Faith Staff Workers and Student Leaders, a local religious group, supported the aims of the protestors:

   "We affirm the right of members of the campus community to solicit funds, distribute literature and recruit members for involvement in common action."

4) Cal Students for Goldwater supported the Regent's right to regulate as they deem necessary and complained of the non-enforcement of rules applying to campus political activities, according to Morris E. Hurley, vice president.

4. Chancellor Strong's office issued a statement outlining plans to implement the agreement reached between protestors and President Kerr last Friday night:

1) Tomorrow (Oct. 5), Chancellor Strong will send the names of the eight suspended students to the Faculty Committee on Student Conduct.

2) Tomorrow (Oct. 5), Chancellor Strong will send out letters of appointment to members of the student-faculty-administration committee which will discuss the dispute.

3) The University has not pressed charges against Jack Weinberg (for trespassing), but reemphasized the administration had no authority to speak for the district attorney's office.

October 5

1. Protestors held a noon rally on Sproul Hall steps, claimed victory and voiced their approval of Friday evening's agreement. Art Goldberg said:

   "We ask only the right to say what we feel when we feel like it. We'll continue to fight for this freedom, and we won't until we've won."

     Approximately 1000 students gathered in the mall between Sproul Hall and the Student Union to listen to the protest speakers.

     Mario Savio, one of the demonstration leaders who negotiated the agreement with President Kerr and who urged the students to accept the agreement, stated that "although the whole war is far from over, we have won the biggest battle." That battle, he explained, was to gain "jurisdictional recognition" from President Kerr of a faculty-student-administration committee to negotiate the "free speech" issue.

     To answer what he considered President Kerr's implication of a Communist tinge to the anti-ban movement, Savio decried the "great bogeyman raised ... whenever a group is working for social change. No one wants to admit that large numbers of people are sick and fed up with the way things are."

     A number of speakers addressed the assembled students, including several of the eight suspended students, Professor John Leggett of sociology, Professor Charles Sellers of history, and Warren Coats of the Young Republicans. Statements of support were read, including a document signed by 43 political science and economics teaching assistants, commending demonstrators' goals.

     The rally was technically illegal under University regulations regarding non student speakers. It was permitted, however, under a "special waiver" signed by Dean of Students Katherine A. Towle. Dean Towle explained:

   "We are honoring the spirit of the President's agree" ment and therefore have granted a special waiver for this meeting today, so that leaders of the demonstration may discuss the written agreement of last Friday."

   (University regulations require non student speakers to wait 72 hours after officially requesting permission from the Dean's office to speak on campus. Most of the leaders of the current demonstrations are either suspended or non-students. No one requested permission for them to speak at this rally.)

   (The DAILY CALIFORNIAN speculated, on Oct. 6, that both sides had maneuvered behind the scenes to persuade the other to back down on the rally issue. The Administration wanted the students to postpone the rally -- or, hold it on city property -- apparently to avoid embarrassment over allowing anti-oar students to again break University regulations. The student protestors wanted to hold it on Sproul steps, in order to honor their Friday night announcement of the rally's location and time. Apparently, the students won.)

2. In an effort to atone for damage to the police car during the Thursday and Friday demonstrations, the students began a collection of funds to help pay the $334.30 in damages to the police car.

3. Chancellor Edward W. Strong turned the cases of the suspended students over to the Faculty Committee on Student Conduct, in accord with the agreement between the demonstrators and President Kerr to submit the suspensions to adjudication within one week. Unfortunately, as the Chancellor found out -- and everyone soon knew -- there was no "Student Conduct Committee of the Academic Senate," as specified in the agreement. The Faculty Committee on Student Conduct is a duly constituted committee, and, even if it had been asked to do so, the Academic Senate would have been unable to set up an ad hoc committee to hear these cases before October 13 well beyond the one week deadline stipulated in the agreement.

4. Chancellor Strong also announced appointments to the faculty-student-administration Study Committee on Campus Political Activity. They were:

   Faculty: Robley Williams, professor of virology; Theodore Vermeulen, professor of chemical engineering; Joseph Garbarino, professor of business administration; and Henry Rosovsky, professor of economics.

  Students: ASUC President Charles Powell and Marsha Bratten, both winners of the 1964 Robert Gordon and Ida W. Sproul Awards. Two additional student members will represent the demonstrators.

  Administration: Katherine A. Towle, dean of students; Milton Chernin, dean of the School of Social Welfare; William Fretter, dean of the College of Letters and Sciences; and Alan Searcy, recently appointed vice chancellor for academic affairs.

Go to Part Two

Back to Chronologies of the Conflict  List


Search this Site    --   FSM-A Home Page