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Today in Princeton History ….. the signature Princeton Orange color was officially recognized!!!!

On April 8, 1960, The Board of Trustees of Princeton University selected the color that would hereby be the official “Princeton orange.” 


(Insiders know in 1866, George Ward, a member of the Class of 1869, proposed the color orange in reference to the Prince of Orange, William III of the House of Nassau. The first recorded use of orange was in 1867, when the Class of 1869 Baseball Club wore Ward’s orange ribbon badges with “’69 B.B.C.” Faculty approval followed in 1868, when students were permitted “to adopt and wear as the College Badge an orange colored Ribbon bearing upon it the word ‘Princeton.'”

In 1873, William Libbey Jr., a member of the Class of 1877, arranged for the manufacture of 1,000 yards of orange and black ribbon for the freshman crew’s hatbands at an intercollegiate regatta in Saratoga, New York, and offered it for sale in Saratoga’s Grand Union Hotel as “Princeton’s colors.” When the Princeton freshmen won the first race, every inch of ribbon sold!

In 1896, when the College of New Jersey celebrated its 150th anniversary, the trustees changed its name to Princeton University and adopted orange and black as the official colors — Professor Allan Marquand of the Class of 1874 was disappointed since the true colors of the House of Nassau, were Orange and Blue.

Anyhoo ….. Stephen Voorhees, of the Class of 1900, an architect and trustee emeritus, discovered that there was no reference standard for Princeton orange. Drawing from a sample of bunting used to welcome Queen Juliana of the Netherlands in 1941, Voorhees dyed a piece of silk to be the official Princeton Orange, now standardized as Pantone(r) 158.