The Memorial's Defacement

The loyalty trials and the propaganda pushed forward by the state and nation caused anti-German sentiment to boil over on the campus.  The Schiller-Linden tree became the symbolic victim to the wrath of the anti-German sentiment.  As an observer later noted, "one morning during the war anyone who passed by was surprised to find in place of the small iron tablet a placard containing some ribald statement or two and winding up the statement that the tablet was interred for the period of the war.  At the top of the tree was a small fluttering American flag."  Despite the pledge that the tree and its plaque would be restored before the end of the war, it was not even noticed for the most part until numerous inquiries were made about it in the 1930's.  The original plaque was never recovered. (Knoll)