In its third campus on Hayes and Van Ness, SI became the premier college on the West Coast, with the greatest enrollment of any Jesuit college and some of the finest scientific equipment and collections found in any university in America. Many consider this the Golden Age of SI, when, it seemed, nothing could diminish the school’s luster.
Adding to that sheen were several distinguished alumni, among them John Montgomery ’78, the first person ever to make a successful glider flight. SI students also added to the school’s history when they played rugby against Sacred Heart College in 1893, inaugurating the oldest athletic high school rivalry west of the Rocky Mountains.
In 1905, when SI celebrated its 50-year anniversary with grand parties and high Masses, everyone in the community felt on top of the world. They did not know tragedy would befall them one year later.
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