1963 in Clemson History
- Leon J. (Bill) Hendrix, Life Trustee of the University, current chairman of the Board of Trustees. The Hendrix Center is named for him.
Events in 1963
- The number of women faculty grows to seventeen. (Reel, Jerome V., Jr., "Women & Clemson University: Excellence - Yesterday and Today", Clemson University Digital Press, 2006, ISBN 0-9771263-6-6, page 13.)
- January 28: Harvey Gantt becomes the first African-American student at Clemson as the college integrates without the friction seen on other Southern campuses. Gantt will later serve two terms as mayor of Charlotte, North Carolina. He also marries the first black Clemson coed - Lucinda Brawley. For this event, the Tiger Tavern in the Clemson House is used as a press center for the 200 journalists on hand.
- February: First issue of about three of a virulently racist student "newspaper", a single-sheet type-written document, the Rebel Underground, circulates hand-to-hand on campus which states in its second paragraph, "The REBEL UNDERGROUND is composed of students on the Clemson Campus who are unwilling to accept integration as 'inevitable.' We believe with the CONCERNED ALUMNI that integration is Communism in action. There is ample documentary evidence to prove this. RU opposes Communism in its entirety - - this naturally includes integration." In concluding statements, it reads "BEWARE OF STUDENT INFORMERS! Be sure you know who you are talking to. There are those who are acting as segregationists only to gather information for the rabid race-mixers in high places." As is so frequently the case in these campaigns antithetical to free speech, the document is unsigned. (Eisiminger, Skip, editor, "Integration with Dignity: A Celebration of Harvey Gantt's Admission to Clemson", Clemson University Digital Press, Clemson, South Carolina, 2003, ISBN 0-9741516-1-0, page 82.) In its third, and apparently last issue, the Rebel Underground attacks Gantt with ugly language, and says of Dean Walter Cox, "[i]n recognition for services rendered, the RU has proclaimed him to be an 'Honorary N-----.'" Quite rightly, Dean Cox, using the power mandated to him as dean of student affairs, suppresses the publication which had been influential in promoting violence at the University of Mississippi. (Wunder, John R., "A Good Sport: Walter Thompson Cox, 1985-1986", McKale, Donald M., editor, "Tradition: A History of the Presidency of Clemson University", Mercer University Press, Macon, Georgia, 1988, ISBN 0-86554-296-1, page 249.)
- March 5: Country star Patsy Cline is killed in the crash of a Piper Comanche private single-engine aircraft, N7000P, c/n 24-2144, in bad weather when the plane comes down in a forest near Camden, Tennessee at 6:20 p.m. All four on board die. She was 30.
- May: A North American YF-86H-1-NA Sabre fighter jet, 52-1976, similar to the mount Major Rudolf Anderson, Jr. had flown during the Korean War, is mounted in his memory in Cleveland Park in Greenville next to the Reedy River.
- June 22: The United States Navy launches SSBN-630, the USS John C. Calhoun, a Polaris missile submarine, at Newport News, Virginia. The vessel is christened by Miss Rosalie Julia Calhoun, the statesman's great-great-granddaughter, with her father, Admiral William Lowndes Calhoun (Ret.), and mother, Mrs. William Lowndes Calhoun, in attendance. (Cook, Harriet Heffner, "John C. Calhoun - the Man", The R.L. Bryan Co., Columbia, S.C., 1965, Library of Congress Card No. 65-19779, page 2.)
- August: Tiger Band drops the cadet uniform for a modified Buckingham Queen's Guardsman-style uniform with big fur Busbee headgear which will be worn through the 1977 season. A purple sash is added to the ensemble, which will prove irresistable to Georgia Tech Rats at Grant Field, Atlanta, leading Tiger Band to always take the long way around the track to their seats, avoiding the Yellowjacket student section. Tiger Band marches 80-member block band with color guard.
- September 21: Clemson plays number four-ranked Oklahoma away, losing, 14-31.
- September 28: Number nine Georgia Tech blanks the Tigers in Atlanta, 0-27.
- October 5: The Wolfpack defeats the Tigers, 3-7, in Memorial Stadium.
- October 12: Clemson hosts Georgia, ties, 7-7.
- October 19: The Tigers travel to Duke, lose, 30-35.
- October 26: First win of the season as Clemson defeats Virginia, 35-0, in Charlottesville.
- October 30: A team from Clemson takes on a team from Fairfield University, Connecticut, in the General Electric College Bowl, broadcast nationally by NBC. Although the Clemson four lead at the half-way point, 125 to 90, Fairfield wins the match, 200-245. The Clemson team takes home a $500 grant for the school, while Fairfield is awarded $1,500.
- November 2: The Tigers host Wake Forest, win, 36-0.
- November 9: Clemson gets 11-7 win at North Carolina.
- November 16: The Tigers host Maryland, win, 21-6.
- November 22: President John F. Kennedy is assassinated in Dallas, Texas.
- November 28: The Clemson-South Carolina game is postponed until Thanksgiving out of deference to the president's funeral events on the scheduled November 24 date. Many other college football games are similarly delayed. Played in Columbia, the Tigers beat the Gamecocks, 24-20, for a 5-4-1 season, 5-2 in conference for third place in the ACC. The Cocks go 1-8. This remains the only Carolina game ever played on Thanksgiving.