East Tennessee State University

Retirees Association (ETSURA)

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Mrs. Robert Imboden

In 1938, Anna Lacey was a student living in Carter Hall, a dorm under the supervision of housemother Mrs. Robert Imboden.  One day, on the spur of the moment, Kent Herrin asked Anna and some friends to ride with him in his father’s big Packard car to Bristol to see the annual Dogwood parade. “Needless to
say, it was a fun treat.” 

That evening, Mrs. Imboden called Anna to her office. Anna was puzzled. She knew she hadn’t broken any of the many dorm and school rules.  Mrs. Imboden also had gone to Bristol, and while she was pleased the girls had enjoyed the parade, she was disappointed to see some of her girls not wearing their hats
and white gloves.

— Told by Anna Lacey, former faculty member of English Department



Dr. H. B. Huddle

Robert Lacey was a chemistry major in the 1930s and Dr. H. B. Huddle was his principal professor. 

“Dr. Huddle, a prince of a man and chemistry teacher par excellence was quite overweight.   His excessive weight was out of proportion to his miniature Crosley automobile.”

A favorite prank of fun-loving students was to place blocks under the little car’s back axles and watch an unsuspecting Huddle start the car and spin his wheels. 

One afternoon, some pranksters picked up the car and carried the Crosley from the
street up the steps of Gilbreath Hall and placed it on the portico. When Dr. Huddle
came out of the building to go home and discovered his misplaced vehicle, he calmly
went back to the chemistry lab where some conscientious students were hard at work.
“He summoned all male students to carry the car down the steps – mission accomplished.  No questions asked.”

— Told by Robert Lacey, former chief chemist for Bemberg



"Tales of the University" is a regular column provided by the ETSU Retirees Association about the university and the people associated with it through the decades.  Faculty, staff, students and alumni are encouraged to share their memories of ETSU with the Retirees Association for consideration for future columns.  Stories, comments and suggestions may be sent to Dr. Willene Paxton, chair of the Tales of the University committee, 1203 Lester Harris Road, Johnson City, TN 37601, or willenepj@charter.net.

Mailing Address:  Office of Human Resources
ETSU Box 70564
Johnson City, TN  37614-1707
Telephone:  423-439-4457
Fax:  423-439-8354
TDD:  423-439-4710

Office Hours:  8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. E.S.T. Monday - Friday
Office Location:  Rooms 307 and 311, Dossett Hall

Updated on 09/07/10