Low Library 1968

Columbia University 1968 - Student smoking President's cigar

This is perhaps the most famous image from the Columbia uprising of 1968, snapped by a LIFE Magazine photographer on the chaotic first day: a student smoking President Kirk's cigar. The student was not a serious occupier of the President's office, and left shortly thereafter, well before the arrests. The image has been used ever since to discredit student building occupations as the actions of spoiled children who only want to play with grownup toys.

Photo: Life Magazine, May 10, 1968.

Frank da Cruz / fdc@columbia.edu / Columbia University 1968 / Jul 2001