Updated Alternatives to the Freshman Beanie

By Lily Johnson | 10/20/17 1:12pm

Homecoming weekend was a time for running around the fire, praying the football team would win and raising bail money through GoFundMe for those unlucky first-years that touched the fire and didn’t get away. But digging into Dartmouth’s past reveals a Homecoming tradition of the past: the freshman beanie.

Courtesy of Rauner Library

Beanies were totally unfashionable green caps whose sole purpose was to make identifying first-years easier. In the 1950s, freshmen couldn’t take off their beanies for the entire fall term unless they could beat the sophomores at tug-o-war on Dartmouth Night, according to Rauner Library. First-years had to wear it  or suffer the consequences of eternal ~shame~ from upperclassmen.

Courtesy of Rauner Library

These beanies have (luckily) fallen out of Dartmouth tradition. But if they hadn’t, what would they look like today? Here are a few possibilities:

1. The freshmen jersey that everyone purchased but only wore to run around the bonfire (because no one wants their class year THAT big on a shirt in the fall).

Courtesy of Dartmouth Co-Op 

2. First-year sweatbands! And they’ll help when you run around the bonfire.

Courtesy of fancydress.com

3. A Dartmouth game day tattoo on your cheek for all of term to show the upperclassmen how committed you are to the Big Green.

Courtesy of Dartmouth College

4. Green sunglasses everywhere — what’s a better way to identify a first-year than by having them wear sunglasses in their classes?

Courtesy of Men's Health  

5. Green shoes — even better than normal frat shoes.

Courtesy of Nike

6. Funky fresh fedoras — why not bring back the beanie with a hat that no one wants to wear outside of 2006?

Courtesy of Good Housekeeping

7. Leg warmers for the ~totally tubular~ 80s vibe

Courtesy of Harper's Bazaar


Lily Johnson