Comrades of the Quest

President William Trufant Foster looking out over the pasture on the north side of the canyon towards the West Hills of Portland, 1910.

The raw, dramatic, underground history of Reed, profiling seven icons who shaped our first century.

Excerpts from An Oral History of Reed College

“In every roundup, the finest steers are always outside the bunch.”

—David Starr Jordan, president of Stanford University,
  at the laying of the Reed College cornerstone, June 8, 1912

This month, Oregon State University will publish Comrades of the Quest: An Oral History of Reed College, edited by John Sheehy ’82. This magisterial volume, constructed from hundreds of interviews with professors, presidents, alumni, and administrators over the past century, traces the history of the college, from Amanda Reed to Nitrogen Day, as told by the people who worked, studied, lived, and loved here. Rather than excerpt a single passage, we chose to highlight seven figures who shaped the college in one way or another. If this sampling whets your appetite, we encourage you to check out the book.

Amanda and Simeon
The Founders

Amanda and Simeon Reed

The iconoclast

William T. Foster [president 1910–19]

The Tug-of-Warrior

Dexter Keezer [president 1934–42]

The Steady Hand

Paul Bragdon [president 1971–88]

Doyle Owl
The Trophy

The Doyle Owl

Gail Kelly
The Iron Maiden

Gail Kelly ’55 [anthro 1960–2000]