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Gettysburg College

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Full-Text Articles in African American Studies

Jack Hopkins' Civil War, Peter C. Vermilyea Jan 2005

Jack Hopkins' Civil War, Peter C. Vermilyea

Adams County History

In the 1862 Pennsylvania College album there is a photograph of John Hopkins, who that year was entering his fifteenth year of service as the college's janitor. In one student's book, the portrait of Hopkins jokingly refers to him as the school's "vice president." This appellation speaks volumes about the life of the African-American custodian, for while it was clearly made in jest as a token of the students' genuine affection for Hopkins, it symbolizes the gulf between the white students and the black janitor. It goes without saying that the students found the picture humorous because ...