Letter to Cornell University Regarding Coffman Union and Antisemitism

This letter is from a correspondence between Foster W. Coffin, Director of Cornell University’s Willard Straight Hall student union, and G.R. Higgins, Director of the Minnesota Union (subsequently called Coffman Union).  Coffin wrote to Higgins about the “problem”of “Jewish girls and boys using the student union.” Higgins’ reply thanks Coffin for his “cry from the wilderness.” He responds, using racist and antisemitic language, that Jewish student presence is “diluted” by the presence of non Jewish students. This remarkable choice of words in 1941 echoes the language of the Final Solution in Nazi Germany and segregation in the South.

SourceCourtesy of Mark SolderstromRightsCourtesy of Mark SolderstromTime Period1940s