Morehouse-Bowdoin College Exchange
For its first one-hundred and seventy-five years, Bowdoin remained a college for almost solely white, male New Englanders, save for a small, dispersed handful of pioneers. Then in 1963, inspired by the wave of Civil Rights activism sweeping the nation, two Bowdoin students, David Bayer ’64 and Phil Hansen ’64, proposed to President James S. Coles that the College engage in an exchange program with Morehouse College, a historically black college in Atlanta, Georgia. With the help of Morehouse English Department Chair, Richard Barksdale ’37—one of the few black alumni from that period—the program launched in the spring of 1963. Six Morehouse students traveled to Brunswick while six Bowdoin students traveled to Atlanta. For Bowdoin, it marked its entrance into integration—a process which would gain momentum throughout the decade.