hoots and huzzahs!
found the double-secret page devoted to the Famous and Mysterious
Doyle Owl! What, you ask, is the Doyle Owl? Don’t touch that
Oft discussed but rarely seen, the Owl is an icon, a legend and
a fond tradition of Reed College, having been, by various students
and alums, stolen, moved, re-stolen, re-moved, etc., since the very
beginning of the college. Or not. The legend is, shall we say, fluid.
The facts are these (and please remember that any fact concerning
the Doyle Owl was almost certainly made up in the wee hours by creative-if-sleep-deprived
The original Doyle Owl statue (like all great works of art, there
have been several forgeries) was stolen from somewhere (a local
mansion? a downtown building?) sometime between 1913 and 1930 by
the boys of House F, a residence hall eventually renamed Doyle,
and now known, somewhat less charmingly, as Old Dorm Block. The
House F boys (it’s safe to assume that the women of campus
were rolling their eyes, as often happens) placed the stone or maybe
concrete or possibly metal Owl on the roof of the dorm. Thus began
a decades-long tradition of impressive ingenuity and resourcefulness
in displaying, keeping and stealing the Doyle Owl. Had even a small
percentage of all this effort been devoted to...oh well, there we
shall not go.
Over the years the Owl and/or its copies (who’s to know?)
may or may not have: been hidden at the bottom of the campus’
lake, thrown off a nearby bridge, resided in a locker in the Physics
department, journeyed to San Francisco, visited Disneyland, swum
in the shark tank at Marineland, been chained to the bottom of the
Reed swimming pool, been stolen and hidden by a gang of 21 women
(putting an end to eye-rolling), attended the investitures of Reed
presidents, been shattered to bits, painted orange, painted blue,
painted green, appeared in student films, appeared on MTV in a Tears
For Fears video, and been buried under the library along with a
rather dented MG sports car (but that’s another story).
There—now you know as much Owl lore as we do. Lucky you. Having
materialized very recently at Reed reunions, chariot races and Renn
Fayre—chariot races? don’t ask—we are reasonably
certain that the mysterious Doyle Owl will make an appearance or
two during your tenure on campus, should you wisely choose to attend
Reed. (Of course, our lawyers tell us we can’t actually promise
anything, owl-wise.) In any case, long live the Doyle Owl!
((Reed griffin page))
Since the earliest years of Reed, the griffin, or “griffon”
(if you happen to be reading this in, you know, the 1700s), has
been the central image in the Reed College seal.
A wingless bird with hairy feathers, the griffin—no, wait,
that’s an apteryx. Sorry...a griffin is a mythological creature
with the body of a lion and the wings, head and talons of an eagle,
thus combining the swiftness and strengths of the noblest beasts
of the air and the land.
a protector, the griffin was linked in mythology with Artemis, and
with the sun god Apollo, whose golden chariot was pulled by a griffin.
By thus hauling the light around, as it were, the creature also
eventually came to be regarded as an enemy of ignorance.
Sadly, like all hot celebrities, the griffin suffered the inevitable
bout of bad press, when, in medieval days, the church in Rome adopted
the symbolic beast for its own purposes, using it to represent the
devil carrying souls to hell. Other legends of the time, however,
cast the griffin as a symbol of the divine. It is unclear whether
this dichotomy caused any additional stress for the already-conflicted
griffin (the whole bird-cat thing), but by the time of the Renaissance
Grif was back on the A-list as protector of life’s treasures
and enemy of ignorance.
It was in this guise that the griffin appeared on the coat-of-arms
of Englishman Simeon Reed, who, with his wife Amanda, was the first
benefactor of the college. And when, in 1914, the school’s
seal was being designed, the griffin was the perfect choice to symbolize
an institution that has always been an enemy of ignorance and a
protector of the knowledge and intellectual freedom that are the
treasures of lifelong learning.
Welcome to Reed’s virtual campus tour, which you can take
with your shoes off. Come to think of it, you can take the real
tour that way too, but your socks will get dirty. Click on the pooch
to begin. To hear a message from Reed President Colin Diver that
has nothing to do with socks, click here>
((“map” page which follows))
Click on a building above or a name below for info, or click on
a ((blue circle)) for a 360-degree view.
((Hum 110 page))
All first-year Reedies take Humanities 110, an intense interdisciplinary
study of classical Western philosophy, literature, history, religion
and the arts. It’s amazing—and amazingly challenging.
The weird thing is, you’re going to love it. Here’s
((Life on campus page))
Is it just us, or does every “campus life” photo in
history show students sitting outside on the grass? Do colleges
have no chairs? But we digress. Life at Reed can be as lively as
you wish. Want to live in the library? Want to be involved in anything
and everything? Whatever works. Here’s a cyber sample...
((Getting away page))
If you ever run out of things to do on campus, there’s a nice
little off-campus entertainment center we like to call Portland
and the State of Oregon. Maybe you’ve heard of them? Coffee,
mountains, clean air, big on green? Go forth and play...
This is why you come here: academic power, educational fire, intellectual
life. Exceptional teachers and a passionate love of learning. Small
interactive classes paired with very big expectations. Alumni who
have changed the world. Click and learn...
((Events on campus page))
Play something, hear something, see something, do something. Repeat
as necessary. Events and opportunities for diversion on campus include
music, art, Reed theater, lectures, movies, sports and much more.
And that’s only Tuesday. Check it out...
((Senior thesis page))
You think Hum 110 sounds hard? Reedies will testify: The senior
thesis may well be the most challenging thing you will have ever
done—certainly it will be among the most rewarding. It closes
your Reed education; it opens an entirely new realm of what you
can accomplish. Take a look...
((About the tour page))
A lot of very talented and dedicated people created this virtual
tour, along with one or two who were just average. Allow us to detail
our, um, gnomenclature...