Return to Normalcy
The end of the war was announced prematurely on November 7, 1918. People filled the streets and the S.A.T.C. marched into town to parade and celebrate. According to the Geneva Daily Times, “The carnival spirit continued over into the evening and even when the news was received in the early evening that the peace report had not been confirmed there was no abatement in the merrymaking.”
Peace was officially declared a few days later and 5,000 people filled Geneva to celebrate for real this time. A large parade featuring the mayor, Company B of the National Guard, the S.A.T.C., William Smith students, and every other organization in the area wound its way around town.
The following day, several of the William Smith students fell ill, but the college physician Dr. J. Pope DeLaney assured everyone that it was only a cold and not the flu.
As for the S.A.T.C., there had only been time for ten men to have been called up to the Central Officers' Training Camp in Virginia. The 1919–1920 Echo wrote that, "While the men were disappointed at the signing of the armistice, they were—to speak more exactly—disgruntled the next day when classes and drill again started, with apparently no object in view, with the war over, and no Huns to fight."
The S.A.T.C. demobilized and William Smith finished the semester on schedule. By the next Spring, the Colleges were back to normal. Enrollment was high, and many of the S.A.T.C. men had returned to continue their education.
In 1920, the French government presented Hobart College with a captured piece of German artillery. The gift was made possible by French High Commissioner to the United States M. Maurice Cavenave, who had been the commencement speaker the previous year. The cannon was placed near the flagpole until it was donated to a scrap drive during World War II.