Madison West, Class of 1954

West High School, Madison, WI, 1954

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The Committee


Vol. XXIV, No. 4        Madison, Wis., Thursday, November 19, 1953        Price Ten Cents

It's Sickening... What a Funny Way to Light a Fire, Crichton…Mary, You Toad



Four members of the cast for "The Admirable Chrichton" are shown above in an early rehearsal.  Left to right are Rolf Henel, Nancy Blume, Sylvia Hasler, and Peter Mortenson.


A romantic English butler, played by Keith Nason, comes into his own and saves his master's family from a shipwreck as "The Admirable Crichton" is staged at 8 p.m. Friday.

Having saved the three dignified English ladies, he finds them all chasing him, which results in a mix‑up of several marriages everyone thought settled.

All in all a "natural" situation ends up "unnatural" and Lord Loam finds his pet theories are radical.

One of the best known of James M. Barrie's fantastic modern plays, "The Admirable Crichton" is concerned with an aristocratic English family whose head, Loam, played by Rolf Henel, has some revolutionary views about equality.

He holds, "If we were to return to nature, which is the aspiration of my life, all would be equal."

During a yachting voyage in the South Seas with his daughters, guests, and servants, he is wrecked on a desert island. Upon being presented with his desired situation Lord Loam finds that the efficient and admirable Crichton naturally takes over by proving himself more capable .

Along on the voyage are Lord Loam, his daughter, Lady Mary    to (Ann O’Malley), Lady  Catherine (Sylvia Hasler), and Lady Agatha (Nancy Blume), the Rev. John Treherne, (Chuck Rauschenberger), Ernest Wooley (Peter Mortenson), and Tweeny (Sue Dymond), the sisters’ maid.


Senior high Club Arrowhead, the Saturday night recreation program at West, will feature three special dances with bands this year, announced Mr. Thurman Fox, club director.

The first senior high evening will be Saturday night, with a dance from 7 to 10 p.m.  No gum activities will be held until repairs there are completed.  The game room will be open, however.

The first 8 to 11 dance, which will have a theme and decorations, will be December 18.

An added feature will be free orchids for the first 100 couples to attend, in line with the Hawaiian theme which will be used, according to Social Committee Chairman Ann O’Malley.

Other dates set for 8 – 11 dances are January 23 and March 6.

Senior high Club Arrowhead, with the record dances, and game and gym activities, will be on February 13 and March 30, besides Saturday night.



Two dances featuring popular dance bands have been scheduled at the Loft November 21 and 27.

Frank Douglas will be featured at a Dress-up dance Saturday, and Dixieland jazz will set the mood

when Dick Rudebush and his band furnish the music for “Dixie Bash” November 27.  He will present a one and a half hour concert before the dance.

 Admission for regular Loft dances is ten cents to all members, and 25 cents is charged for the “Dress-up” dances, when girls are not admitted on the dance floor in jeans of slacks.  Loft membership is $1.50 a year.

 Besides dances every Friday and Saturday night at the Loft, there are game rooms for playing pool, table tennis and other games.

At a Loft dance last Saturday, the All-City Football awards were presented by members of the Wisconsin Football team.  Three members of West’s team, Gordy Corcoran, Dave Johnson, and John Christianson received the awards


“At ten minutes before ten I closed my program, broke the station and started to read news," commented Bob Dale. "I took the five minute newscast off proper form at 9:55, gave station identification again, and started the next program, which was by tape recording.  After a few adjustments, I walked out of the studio sure that the program would progress on its own, and ambled nonchalantly into another studio, where a rather bewildered announcer gaped at me and then the clock and asked me with eyes bulging out and jaw hanging, precisely what I was doing away from my program. At this time I realized that my clock was five minutes fast, and the taped program couldn't be allowed to end five minutes too short."

In his role as a disc jockey on "Saturday Symposium," on the air from 9:00 to 10:00 on station WMFM Saturday mornings, such calamities are routine. Bob plays all kinds of music, from classical to jazz, including West band, orchestra and choir concerts by tape recording. He calls himself an interlocuter, and discusses local news as well as the records.


Bob acts as announcer and engineer on the program which means he times himself, selects the records, play them, does all the talking, and cuts himself off. This isn't enough to keep him busy. Bob is in the fall play, "The Admirable Crichton" and has to be at practice at 10:00 on Saturday mornings so he tapes the last half hour or so and is there in person for the first half hour. The trick is in making the two meet in the middle. Off the record, Bob has set the pace in getting from WMFM (near Schenks Corners) to West High for Saturday practice, his time --­twelve minutes.


There was some misunderstanding as to what the senior boys should wear – light or dark suits, when having their pictures taken for the yearbook. Following a short confab in 120 on which color should be worn, Joe ­Stassi flatly stated. "Egad, how many suit do they think I own"'

Borrowed from Aesop:

Man's born,

Man lives,

Man dies,

Man's buried,

Man turns to dust,

Dust turns to grass,

Grass turns green,

Cows eat grass.

Moral of this story: Never kick a cow it may be your Uncle Ted.

After the Hi‑Y pep aud, Bill Buellesbac and John Bass came walking into the office. They asked for an admittance slip to class.  They explained, "We were in the aud you know, and we were dressed up like girls, and somebody hid our trousers."

Miss Marion Huxtable came into study hall 202 and talked a minute with Mr. Don Page, conducting the class.

He nodded and chose five boys from the study to help Miss Huxtable. After calling out several boys names, he yelled, "Dan."  Dan Trewartha said "Darn to himself, reached down, put on his saddle shoes, and trouped out.  The comforts of a study hall.


Class officers were chosen two weeks ago in the annual student senator sponsored class elections.  Senior class officers, are Bill Hammill, president; Pete Pleune, vice-president; Judy Bruce, secretary.

Junior officers are Art Wegner, president; Fred Mohs, vice‑president; Mary McKenzie, secretary.

Sophomore officers are Harry Hamilton, president; Nick Fish, vice-president; Ken Lynn Heydon, secretary.

Duties of the senior president are to appoint committees for cap and gown selection, senior banquet, class flowers and motto, and Class Night. According to Principal R. 0. Christoffersen, the office of senior class president ranks as one of the most important at West.

Junior class officers take charge of Grad Dance and help work on May Dance. The junior president responds to the senior president at the spring banquet. He also conducts class meetings.


The West basketball team will open its season Wednesday night under a new coach who believes that "we have an equal chance."

Coach Don Page said that he The thinks the West team has an “equal chance with the Madison schools" and that Janesville and Horlick are the ones to watch in the Big Eight.

Mr. Page will send the team into action Wednesday in the, opening game with Wisconsin Dells in the West gym, trained with a new style of offense and defense;

Six lettermen are returning from last year's squad; They are seniors Joe Stassi and Dick Kraemer and juniors Dave Baskerville, Jack Foerst, Jack Fuss, and Bob Colbert.

Coach Page plans a 12 to 14 man varsity team, a “B” squad if there are enough boys. and, a sophomore team coached by Mr. Clark Byam.

He said that the boys haven't formed into a team yet and that he does not know whom he will be depending on during the season. It has been a "slow start," he reported.

The Regents will play eighteen games this season. The opener will be followed by a game Friday, Nov. 27, at Edgerton, the team Mr. Page coached last year.


The first Big Eight conference game, will be against Horlick Dec. 4 at Racine and the first home Big Eight game will be Dec. 11 against East.

Also included in the schedule is the annual charity game, this year against Waukegan, Ill. in the East gym.

Mr. Page graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1950 and spent three years coaching at Edgerton. This last summer he earned his master's degree in physical education at the University of Wisconsin.

His basketball teams there won two conference championships and last year took a double overtime the victory over West.

While he attended West in 1942 - 45, he was center on the state championship basketball team in 1945, and also starred in tennis and track.

Mr.Page teaches senior general science classes and will also be tennis coach.

He is married and has two sons, Jon, 17 months, and Dave, two weeks.

The twenty-one boys still members of the varsity team are Dave Johnson, Ralph Johnson, Larry E. E. Graham, Gordon Corcoran, Dick Kraemer, Joe Stassi, Mort Rabinovitz, Dave Baskerville, Dick Ragatz, Paul Sergenian, Jack Fuss, Jack Foerst, Bob Colbert, Dennis Murphy, John Cartwright, Tom Fox, Harold Corcoran, Tom Kippert, Don Peterson, Bill Schweers and Tom Schlict.



Shown above is part of the equipment nearly installed, which has been disrupting gym classes and athletic practice since school began.

The new bleachers are equipped with and can be folded against the side of the gym when not in use. According to Mr. Don Page, head basketball coach, two people can set up all the bleachers in about ten minutes.

Besides eliminating the necessity of a bleacher crew, the new stands will also free much space in the storage room, he said. The bleachers will seat approximately 1600, an increase of about 150 over last year. Another advantage, he pointed outs that the new bleachers will be considered safe and will not require a safety check by the State Industrial Commission.

The project was begun last summer, along with other improvements on the gym. Other work included sanding and repainting the gym floor and installing six new baskets. The work was expected to be completed this week, in time for use in West's first basketball game.


Senior homeroom 120 won the Honor Plaque for the first six‑weeks period with a grade point average of 1.93. The plaque is awarded each grade period to homeroorn which has the highest grade point average.  A total of 150 students are on the first honor roll of this year.

Nine students from homeroorn 120 are on the honor roll. They are Agnes Rusy, Carol Schumpert, Sally Schwenker, Janis Stockman, Fred Cassidy, Marie Grady, Jayne Ann Paugh, Stuart Rosenfeld, and Col­leen Udelhoffen.

Homeroorn 116 won second place in the Honor Plaque contest, with a grade point average of 1.92. The seven students on the honor roll from 116 are George Allez, Gordon Corcoran, Mary Steussy, Janice Tande, Tom Thompson, Sara Towell, Dan Trewartha, Jane Walker, Virginia Wallace, Mark Weavers, Donna Wesenberg, Jill Wobig

Homeroorn 216 was third on the honor plaque list with a 1.91 average, 211 was fourth with 1.89, and homeroom 103 came in fifth with 1.88.

Other seniors on the honor roll are Ann Aageson, Jerry Anderson, Susan Boesel, John Bruckner, Bill Bunce, Barbara Chapman, Bennett Christopherson, Joseph Conrad, Bill Curreri, Bob Dale, John Dutton, Susan Edgerton, Gwyneth Fair, Suzanne Filek, Edith Finlay, Dennis Gunderson;

Dick Hartwig, Sylvia Hasler, Philip Henderson, Audrey Hobbins, Margaret Hobbins, Nancy Hutchins, Dorothy Ingwell, Joe Irwin, John Keene, Robert Kirchberger, David Koehler, Sharon Koepcke, Lucille Kubiak, Joanne Leveque, Barbara Loder, Dick Mahoney, Roberta Marling;

Andy McBeath, Shirley Metz, John Post, Barbara Rieman, Claudia Schroeder, Patricia Searles, Sandra Smith, Bette Solheim, Rita Wittich, and Dick Woodring.

Juniors on the Honor roll are Betty Baird, Dave Baskerville, Waltressa Allen, Bruce Boller, Nancy Bozell, Judy Brandly, Signe Briedis, Priscilla Butts, John Cartwright, Nancy Castole, Tm Dean, Larry Dietrich,

Tim Frautschi, Marian Freed, Tom Fox, Dianne Gensichen, Katy Grimmer, Susan Gunderson, Edith Halls, Heather Harrington, Ann Haugen, Hallie Hohf, Gretchen Idhe, Edward Ingraham, Judy Johnson, Alecea Kellar, Margaret Kingsbury, Jeanne Larson, Gail Lawrenz, Judy Lerdahl, Judy Lentz, Barbara L’Hommedieu;

Katharine Lowe, Sharon Maloney, Dan Matson, Riva Mazur, Floyd McBurney, Ralph Nafziger, Phoebe Napper, Lois Ann Paulson, Don Peterson, Virginia Pochman, Gaines Post;

Barbara Reed, Ingetraaud Rennenkampff, Sarita Sarig, Alice Schlinkert, Mary Schwab, Neil Smith, Bonnie Stamm, Peter Starkweather, Roger Stolen, Fred Verhulst, Lowell Watkins, Arthur Wegner, John Williamson and Michael Wyngaard.

The sophomores on the Honor Roll are Edward Allen, Kristin Biart, Judy Blumer, Deanne Chapman, Sarah Crownhart, Grace Dahle, Stuart Delinky, Dorothy Eiden, Jean Anne Gehner, Raymond Gesteland, Jane Gillette, John Hamacher; Harry Hamilton, Gail Hawley, Jennifer Hill, Ann Holmgren, Beverly Hopps, Marily James, Marjorie Kelzenberg, Elizabeth Inope, Elizabeth Krug, Marian Lee, Rhoda Maxfield, Connie Napper, George Nelson, Harriet Novick, Charles Reul, Richard Rewey, Mary Snell, Jean Sorum, Sally Trieloff, Barbara Wallace, Bill Wilson, and John Wyngaard.


A snake crawled out of the ventilator in Mr. Henry Koehler’s biology class the other day, and as expected, the female members of the class screamed and squealed.

Mr. Koehler picked the reptile up and twined it around his neck to sow how “harmless it is.”

He explained that it was brought in several days before and because it seemed such a “friendly, harmless snake” he didn’t put the cover on tight.  It escaped that night and had been loose for several days.

I didn’t want to tell my classes about it.” He said.  “It would be too upsetting.”

Science club has begun work on “Test Tube Times,” the official paper of the Wisconsin Junior Academy of Science which will be published in January.  This issue will celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Junior Academy.

“Test Tube Times” staff includes Dick Mahoney and Gratia Stavrum, co-editors; Roger Clark, John Brueckner, John Keene, Don Brieby, Ed Aebischer, Steve Zwicky and Lucille Kubiak.

 "Test Tube Times” will be distributed to all students at West this year and will also be sent to many high schools throughout the state and nation.

 Dick Mahoney stated that the purpose of the paper was to create a genuine interest in science and to inform other schools in the country what the West High club has been doing.


Joe Stassi, Dick Kraemer, and "Gordie" Corcoran bowed Out of the 1953 West High football season on November 4 when they helped their teammates defeat East at Breese Stevens Field.

Joe played fine football this year s safety on the varsity squad. He has played football for three years as well as some basketball a n d has run the high and low hurdles on the track squad.

Joe is active in other school acti­vities. He is president of W Club member of Hi‑Y and choir, and was class president during his sophomore year.


Dick Kraemer played the half-back position on defense and full-back position on offense through‑ out the season.

This was Dick's first year on the squad and he saw action in every game. He also played forward on the basketball team last year, and ran the 220 and 440 yard dashes on the track team.


Dick is a member of Boys English Club, M Club, and Hi‑Y.

“It surely was a thrill when we won our first game against Racine Park,"  stated Dick. "It was good to know we could do it."

Gordie Corcoran shared the spotlight" this 1953 football season when he was named on both The Capital Times and The Wisconsin State Journal All‑City football teams. "Gordie" has played football for three years and has been the stalwart of the Regents defensive line.

Gordie played basketball last year and held the third base posi­tion on the baseball squad.

He is president of Spanish Club, and a member of M Club.

"Gordie" says the event most out­standing to him this year was the Regents' victory over East.



The West High 1953 football team closed its campaign successfully with victories over Janesville, 26‑7; and East, 20‑13. The Regents showed surprising strength in winning their final two games, experts said.

The victories enabled the Regents to gain a tie with Madison Central for fourth place in the final Big conference standings.


West ran over the Janesville Bluebirds 26‑7, October 30, at Breese Stevens Field.

The Regents' powerful offense, together with a strong defense, en­abled the squad to roll up their highest point total of the season.

Halfbacks Dave Johnson and Ralph Johnson scored two touch­downs apiece on runs of two, one, four, and seven yards.

 Karl Holzworth converted on two of his four extra point attempts.

John Christianson set up one of the Regents' touchdowns ‑when he blocked a punt which Joe Stassi recovered deep in Janesville territory.

West dominated play so completely that they had to punt only once, that being a beautiful 56‑yard punt  by Dave Johnson.

Janesville scored their only touch­down in the second half on a 56­yard run by Rabiola.

The Regents pounded out a 20‑13 win over their cross‑town rivals, Madison East at Breese Stevens Field, November 4. The Regents played their best game of the season statistically in scoring the victory, their third of the campaign.


Things looked dark for West in the opening minutes, as East took the opening kick‑off and marched 60 yards for a touchdown. Dick Barton crossed the goal and Leon Orvold converted for East, giving them a 7‑0 lead.

It was at this point, about half way through the first

Quarter, that the West backs, led by Dave John­son and Dick Kraemer, began to rip through large holes that the Regent line opened in the Purgolder line.

West took possession of the ball on their own 27‑yard line, and started their first touchdown drive as the Regents' right halfback, Dave Johnson, slammed up the middle for a 33‑yard gain.


Moments later Johnson completed the drive by slipping through a big hole at East's right tackle spot and into the end zone for the first West score. Karl Holzworth kicked the extra point to knot the score at seven apiece.

East did not make a first down after the kick‑off, and punted to West's 28‑yard line. On the first play from scrimmage, fullback Dick Kraemer plunged through the center of the line, broke into the open, and outran the entire East secondary for a 72‑yard touchdown run. The try for the extra point was not good.

Shortly before the first half ended, Barton intercepted a West pass and carried the ball to the Regent's 23‑yard line. East tied the score once again on a pass play from quarterback Ron McCloskey to end Dean Hewitt. East missed the extra point, and the score at half time was 13‑13.

During the second half, the West defense, led by Gordon Corcoran,  was immovable and the East team could not get a single first down or get past the 50 yard line.


Late in the third quarter West took over the ball on their own 39­yard line after an East punt. Krae­mer, Johnson, and Mort Rabinovitz, playing left‑half for the injured Ralph Johnson, all reeled off yard­age, as the Regents drove to an­other touchdown, with Rabinovitz going 27 yards for the final score of the game. Holzworth converted and the final gun sounded with the score 20‑13, in favor of West.

Coaches Fred Jacoby and Burton Hable both expressed their pleasure by saying, "It was great to bounce back, after suffering a lot of close defeats, and win those last two ball games." Jacoby also expressed opti­mism for a "winning season next year", pointing out that many ex­perienced juniors and sophomores will return next season.


Basketball practice started a week ago Monday with the roughness of the football players and with panting by the other boys. Out of the 40 boys that made the second cut, 36 of them were on the foot­ball team.

In the Janesville football game Ralph Johnson and Dave Basker­ville were discussing what plays West could use against them, while the defense was in the game. Ralph told quarterback Dave Baskerville. "Ivory, give me the ball next time we get down close. Dave Johnson already has two touchdowns." Ive did, and the Johnson's ended up with two touchdowns apiece.

After the East game the whole team went running over to East’s dressing room carrying the "Beat West" sign which was shown, in the pep aud, Wednesday. One of the re­ferees looked at a police officer ­and said, "You had better get out of there, that's East's dressing room.  Coach Jacoby, hearing the remark told the policeman not to worry that they were just returning some thing that East had lost.


West High's wrestling squad will swing into action with the open­ing practice Nov. 17, under coach Dale Wesenberg, returning after a year's absence.

Returning lettermen are Jim Filer, Skip Wobig, John Christiansen and Roger Clark, who may be out because of a football injury.

At the meeting last Friday 54 boys showed up, but this number is expected to be reduced after a week of practice as there are only 10 weights in competition.

Mr. Wesenberg is trying to arrange the meets on the Fridays of the basketball games.  The number of meets will be shortened because in the past the season was too long. One of the first meets will be with Central about Dec. 11. Some of the other important dates on the wres­tling program are the Big 8 meet Feb. 13 and the State Meet Feb. 27.

Mr. Wesenberg is expected to get some coaching help from university students as he has had in previous years.

If the weather holds good the boys will be running outside but if it turns bad they will run in the gym with the co‑operation of Mr. Page and the basketball team.


The Wisconsin State Journal and Capital Times have honored  on their 1953 All-City team, several West High gridders. Gordon Corcoran, rough and ready West center was chosen All-City center and also, named co-captain of the All-City team.

Gordie has done an excellent job as offensive center, the papers said, for the Regents this fall, but his main power came on defense, where he did a good job of linebacking. John Christianson was picked as an All-City tackle. The big 235 pounder truly deserved the honor, as he did a great job both offensively and defensively at the left tackle spot this fall. Dave Johnson, West right halfback was the other boy to be chosen to first team All-City honors.

A hard-hitting runner on offense, Dave was the leading scorer and ground gainer for the Regents this fall, and proved to be a rugged linebacker on defense. Bob Colbert and Jack Fuss, Regent winners were both picked to second team All‑City honors, as were tackle Dick Woodring and quarterback Dave Baskerville.

West boys on the All‑City squads picked by the Wisconsin State Journal and Capital Times are:

1st Team‑

Gordon Corcoran, West C

John Christianson, West T

Dave Johnson, West B


2nd Team­

Dick Woodring, West T

Bob Colbert, West E

Jack Fuss, West E

Dave Baskerville B


The West High Cross-Country squad finished the '53 season with a third in the Big 8 Meet and a ninth in the State Meet.

The Big Eight Conference Cross-Country meet was won by Janesville Saturday, Oct. 31 at the Riverside Park course in Janesville.

Ken Vogel took top honors for the Bluebirds with a time of 11:18.  Racine Park placed second while Racine Horlick captured fourth place. Top runners for the Regents were John Lee, 4; Pat Topp, 12; Vince De Paul, 13; John Ottow, 14; and Bob Kirchberger, 18.

The Regents "B" squad won first place in the meet with a team total of 33 points. They were followed by Janesville, Racine Park, Racine Horlick, and Madison East respectively.   West winners were:

Grant Tessmann, 4; Don Johns, 5; Francis Green, 7; Wally Neuman, 8; Tom Thompson, 9;

Jim Allen of Milwaukee Washington won the State Meet at Grant Park,  Milwaukee, running the 2.2 mile course in 11 minutes.

Ken Vogel, Big 8 champ, came in fourth.

John. Lee was the top West entry at twenty-sixth.

The Regents came in ninth behind champion Wauwatosa, Milwaukee Washington, Janesville, Milwaukee South, Wausau, Milwaukee Bay View, Waukesha, and Milwaukee Rufus King.

The "B" race was won by Milwaukee Lincoln.


For the first time. anywhere, the secrets of towel fighting as carried on by West athletes are being put into print.

The ingredients of a good towel fight, are (1) two or more athletes in a state of semi‑exhaustion (2) several towels soaked in icy show­er water and (3) a good throwing arm.

Somebody throws a cold, wet towel at someone else’s warm, dry body. The victim cries out with a mixture of surprise, pain and rage.

Soon towels are flying in every direction and a number of boys are attacking the one who threw the first towel.

Quickly tiring of the violent action, groups of warriors leave the showers, find dry towels, and begin to dress.

Everyone has a good time except the poor manager who must pick up and count the frigid missiles and turn off the showers.

Another form of shower room mayhem is the Turkish bath.

All the showers are turned on spraying hot water only, Soon clouds of steam rise to the ceilings creating a dense fog, Within thirty minutes the steam is rolling into the coaches office, the boys are gone, and the coach is left the job of shutting off twenty-five hot water handles.

The coach made no comment for publication.


November 20 and 21 – Wilma Lipp, Coloratura Soprano, 8 p.m. – Wisconsin Union Theater.

November 22 – “Venus Observed” dramatic reading by Phi Beta Fraternity, 8 p.m. – Scanlan Hall, Madison Vocational School.

November 20 – University Symphony Orchestra, 8 p.m. – Wisconsin Union Theater.

November 23 – New York City Opera, “La Traviata”, 8 p.m. – Wisconsin Union Theater.

November 23 -29 – “Kiss Me Kate” – Orpheum Theater.

November 24 – New York City Opera “The Marriage of Figaro”, 8 p.m. – Wisconsin Union Theater.

November 26 through December 2 – “Calamity Jane” with Doris Day – Capitol Theater.

November 26 through December 6 – Ice Follies starring Barbara Ann Scott – Milwaukee Arena.

November 29 – Madison Civic Symphony Young People's Concert, 2:30 p.m. – Central High Auditorium.

November 30 – December 5 – “South Pacific” – Orpheum Theater, Wednesday and Saturday matinees.  Nightly at 8:15 p.m.