1968: Columbia in Crisis

The Protests > Strike Coordinating Committee

Mark Rudd Speaking

Mark Rudd, SDS Chairman, leading a discussion in Fayerweather during the occupation.

Courtesy of Gerald S. Adler, photographer, 1968

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In the days after the occupation of Hamilton, Low, Avery, Fayerweather and Mathematics, striking students formed a Strike Coordinating Committee (SCC).  Basing their operations out of Ferris Booth Hall throughout the strike, the members of the SCC served as student representatives of the “communes” and facilitated communication between the buildings, the faculty, the administration, and the press. SDS members held a the majority of positions on the Strike Coordinating Committee, and both conservative and left-leaning groups acknowledged SDS influence on the ideology and events of the student protests.

Campus Map

Map of Columbia University campus in 1968.

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Occupied buildings are shaded in light blue.





Food pantry in an occupied building.





Wall of clippings created by students occupying Mathematics.

"Fayerweather Liberated"

Courtesy of Gerald S. Adler, photographer, 1968

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Interior of Fayerweather during the occupation.

This Office has been 1) Liberated 2) Cleaned, Keep it that way

Notice: "This Office has been: 1. Liberated 2. Cleaned Keep it that way."

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Students in occupied buildings made a point of cleaning and organizing building facilities.  The images of destroyed offices and classrooms that appeared in the media after the police bust were often the work of the police themselves as they cleared the buildings.

Blanket Dump

Notice: "Blanket Dump."

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Another example of organization of supplies and materials set up by protesting students in occupied buildings.

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