…Opposition to the traditional coats and ties actually began after World War II. As one student wrote to the editor of College Topics in 1946: ‘I agree that the wearing of coats and ties gives a much better appearance than the mode of dressing to be found on most campuses. But please do not try to indoctrinate us with the theory that the mere wearing of a coat and tie will effect a magical change on those of us who are not gentlemen by virtue of our actions, or that the lack of those articles of apparel will in any way change a gentleman from what his is.’ ” (1)
(N.B. The tradition does continue after a fashion. Mrs. E, Wahoo herself, tells me that Fraternity members are frequently seen in ties at home football games. In fact, you can catch a glimpse of a few on the right side of the cover of the alumni magazine from which this quotation was taken.)
1. Coy Barefoot, “According to Custom: Student Traditions at Virginia”, The University of Virginia Magazine, Fall 2007, 42.