How The Temple News covered historical moments from the past century

After 100 years of The Temple News, we revisit monumental moments for our country and our paper.

World War II: May 28, 1945

An edition of the Temple News from May 25, 1945, published a two-page spread memorial for Temple community members that died during World War II.

The Temple News published a tribute honoring Temple University faculty, former students and husbands of Temple students who lost their lives fighting in World War II. The Temple News produced profiles on those who died during the war that included how and where they lost their lives and their relation to Temple University.

The Civil Rights Movement: Oct. 24, 1961

An edition of The Temple News from Oct. 4, 1961, covered moments from a speech delivered by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King in Philadelphia. | ALLIE IPPOLITO / THE TEMPLE NEWS

Martin Luther King Jr. held a public event during his four-day visit to Philadelphia in late October 1961 at Amos Playground at 16th and Berks streets where he spoke to the North Philadelphia community regarding institutionalized racism and prejudice in the minds of the public. He later spoke in an exclusive interview with The Temple News about desegregating fraternities and how racism was destroying communities nationwide. During their interview, King discussed how segregation was not just a problem in the South, but an issue nationwide, including northern states. King told The Temple News that “the problem of racial discrimination should be everybody’s concern. This problem cannot be conquered until young and older people are made to live as brothers.” 

President John. F. Kennedy’s Assasination:  Nov. 25, 1963

An edition of The Temple News from Nov. 23, 1963, covers the death of President John F. Kennedy.

Students and faculty were shocked at the news of President John F. Kennedy’s assasination, which spread quickly throughout campus the day it happened. The Temple News reported on the disbelief students felt when they heard the news, writing that there were “no tears being shed, just emotionless students and faculty shocked in their classrooms.” After the news of the Presidents’s assassination, university administration canceled all Friday and Saturday classes and all on-campus events, like fraternity events and club meetings. Temple President Millard Gladfelter issued a statement published in The Temple News the same day as the assasination and wrote, “No incident could have touched the hearts of more people in more shocking ways than the death of the President of the United States.” 

The Vietnam War: Oct. 16, 1969

An edition of The Temple News from Oct. 16, 1969, covers a student-led protest against the Vietnam War held on Temple’s campus.

Philadelphians, Temple students and professors attended an anti-war rally in John F. Kennedy Plaza on Oct. 14, 1969, to protest the ongoing war in Vietnam and to call on President Richard Nixon to stop the conflict overseas. The Temple News reported that protesters were peaceful and deliberate with their message. Professors and students gave speeches and held signs that flashed messages, like “10 years 44,798 men.” The Temple News talked to protesters and attendees regarding their thoughts about the Vietnam War, writing that the consensus at the event was that people felt the war was senseless and needed to end. 

The 9/11 Terrorist Attacks: Sept. 11, 2001

A print edition of the Temple News from Sept. 13 – 19 reported on the terrorists attack on Sept. 11.

Temple students watched in horror as terrorist attacks led to the fall of The World Trade Center Twin Towers in New York City, the severe damage to the Pentagon in Washington D.C. and the death of thousands of Americans. The Temple News talked to students who were on campus that day to get a sense of their emotions. One student replied saying “the first thing I thought was ‘Where were my friends and family.’” Television lounges on campus were filled with terrified students and faculty and airwaves were jammed with the influx of outgoing calls to family members and friends. 

Same-sex Marriage: Nov. 18, 2008

A print edition of The Temple News from Nov. 8, 2008, covers the nationwide protest of Prop 8 protests that were held at City Hall.

The Temple News reporters talked with students who were among the hundreds of Philadelphians gathered at City Hall to protest California’s Proposition 8, which called for a ban of same-sex marriages. Reporters from The Temple News talked to members from Temple’s Queer Student Union, who said that the “proposition goes against everything queer activists have worked hard to accomplish.” Gay rights activists and concerned citizens flooded the streets of Center City with posters calling for marriage equality for all. 

President Trump’s Election: Nov. 9, 2016

Christine Choi, a freshman undeclared major in the College of Liberal Arts, holds a sign at a gathering of students organized against President-Elect Donald Trump at the Bell Tower in November 2016. EVAN EASTERLING / THE TEMPLE NEWS

Temple students gathered peacefully at the Bell Tower after the election of President Donald Trump. Students voiced their concerns to Temple News reporters who attended the protest, saying they were concerned for women’s rights and immigrants’ rights and some were scared for their own safety in the U.S. 

George Floyd Protests: June 3, 2020

Protestors lie on the ground during a march against police brutality at Broad and Parrish streets on June 3, 2020. | JEREMY ELVAS / FILE

The Temple News reporters attended a protest held by Temple students after the murder of George Floyd by former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin who knelt on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes, resulting in his death. Temple students took to Broad Street to lead a protest showing their support for the Black Lives Matter movement and to pressure Temple to end their partnership with and donations to the Philadelphia Police Department. The Temple News reported on the protest, writing that protesters laid face down in the middle of Broad Street for nine minutes in a moment of silence and remembrance for Floyd. Photographers captured powerful images of protesters marching throughout campus and the city with posters that read messages, like “I can’t breathe” and “my skin color is not a weapon.”