So long, Lord Jeff: Amherst College unveils new logo
It’s official at Amherst College: Bygone behemoths have pushed a controversial colonial commander to extinction.
The college unveiled its new logo Friday night, and it’s so long, Lord Jeff, hello, Mammoths, for the elite liberal arts school in Western Massachusetts.
The school’s trustees announced last year the college would be dropping “Lord Jeff” as its unofficial mascot. “Lord Jeff” refers to Lord Jeffrey Amherst, the commander of British forces in North America during the French and Indian War in the 18th century.
He is controversial because he supported giving blankets laced with smallpox to Native Americans in an attempt to wipe out their race, historians say.
“Amherst College finds itself in a position where a mascot — which, when you think about it, has only one real job, which is to unify — is driving people apart because of what it symbolizes to many in our community,” the trustees of the college said in a statement in January 2016.
Earlier this year, all Amherst College alumni, students and staff were invited to vote on five mascot finalists. Mammoths emerged victorious, beating out the Fighting Poets, Purple and White, Valley Hawks, and Wolves. All told, more than 4,300 of the 9,200-plus votes elected for colossal mammals.
The college’s Beneski Museum of Natural History has kept a skeleton of a Columbian mammoth since 1925.