To those of us occuping Hamilton for the second time, it seemed a fairly
peaceful affair. We were not aware that barricades such as this one had
been erected by our supporters at campus entrances on Broadway and Amsterdam
to prevent the police from entering. As you can see the barricades were
made from police-line sawhorses. The police were let in through a normally
locked door on Amsterdam Avenue and came to Hamilton Hall through the
tunnels and took us out the same way. When word got out we had been
arrested, a riot ensued. I don't know the details because I was already
gone by then, but I do know the police, including mounted ones, attacked the
crowds, chased them from the campus and down the streets, and that the
barricades were set on fire (next image). Former New York State governer
From around the back of Low library comes this wave of T.P.F. guys just
clubbing everybody in sight. I guess their orders were to clear the campus,
which was incredibly stupid and counterproductive because many of the people
outside the buildings were the anti-radicals — the pro-cop people.
The radicals were inside the buildings. I remember running up the steps of
Mathematics Hall, and there were T.P.F. guys on horses coming
toward me, and I jumped off the steps and ran out onto Broadway. I was
getting chased by a guy on a horse up Broadway. What are you going to do?
The horse is faster than you are and the guy's got a club, so I dove under a
Virtually all my friends who'd been in the Majority Coalition switched
sides, just because the cops were nuts. Those who had been supportive of
the administration and the police were completely demoralized.
Until I saw this article I never knew that Pataki was at Columbia in 1968.
In any case I heard similar stories from all of my friends who were
on campus that night. One group ran down 115th Street and was pursed by
mounted police into Riverside Park.