We are excited to announce that a new accession of photographs to the Department of Athletics Collection is available for research. This accession is particularly special since it contains images of less-documented sports — including women’s sports and intramural sports — from the 1960s and 1970s.
Included in this addition are images of the Titleholder’s Championship (also called the Women’s Pro Tournament), held at Southern Pines and sponsored by UNC in 1972. The Titleholder’s Championship was only a handful of championship-level events for professional women’s golf in the 1970s, and the winner of the event — Sandra Palmer — was one of the most accomplished female golfers of the time. The addition also includes photographs of the 1963 renovations to Kenan Stadium.
The selection of photos below include images of men’s intramural handball; women’s intramural basketball, volleyball, tennis, and bowling.
University Archives is pleased to share a newly processed collection – the records of the UNC Cardboard Club. The Cardboard Club, started in 1948 by UNC cheerleader Norman Sper, coordinated and produced displays at UNC football games, using colored cardboard squares to form words and images in the stands.
Members of the club planned out their designs on gridded paper, and placed cardboard squares and cue cards listing the upcoming “stunts” on the seats of the “card section” of Kenan Stadium the night before football games.
The club was funded by the Carolina Athletic Association. It was discontinued in 1987, in part due to safety concerns–students often sent their cardboard panels flying towards the field at the end of games, hitting fellow spectators.
Today in Chapel Hill, Margaret Spellings will be formally installed as the eighth president of the University of North Carolina System. As a proud UNC student and for my first blog post as a graduate assistant in the University Archives, I decided to look back at the inauguration ceremony of the first UNC System president, Frank Porter Graham.
Graham’s appointment as President of the UNC System followed just a year after he was inaugurated as President of UNC-Chapel Hill. There does not appear to have been a separate ceremony when he became system president, but his inauguration as UNC-Chapel Hill President was an elaborate event.
President Graham was officially sworn into office November 11, 1931. It was no casual affair, either; according to the Daily Tar Heel, five thousand people came out to witness the ceremony. The ceremony itself was planned to coincide with Armistice Day and the annual meeting of the Association of American Universities.
Footage of Frank Porter Graham’s inauguration procession. From the North Carolina Collection.
The ceremony began with a procession from Bingham Hall to Kenan Stadium. As bells chimed from South Building, ten different divisions of marchers assembled at Bingham Hall, including student body representatives, the class of 1909 (Graham’s own graduating class), North Carolina state officials, and representatives from other universities across the United States. A trumpet signaled the beginning of the procession. As everyone took their place in Kenan Stadium, two minutes of silence were observed to honor the World War I armistice and the thirteen years of peace since then. North Carolina Governor O. Max Gardner opened the ceremony, and due to the absence of North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice W. P. Stacy, the Honorable W. J. Adams administered the oath of office. The whole ceremony was specially amplified so everyone in the large stadium would be able to hear the proceedings.
After the official swearing-in ceremony, the day continued with more events – a luncheon, official meet-and-greets with various university representatives, and musical performances by the music department and the glee club. Since the 33rd annual meeting of the American University Association began the day following Graham’s inauguration, a large number of university officials were present for the ceremony and following events. These officials included deans and presidents from Harvard, Columbia, Northwestern, and more.
The Daily Tar Heel‘s dedicated inauguration issue didn’t skimp on descriptions of the event and praise for Graham and the future of the University, and so I end this post with a couple of my favorites quotes — ones that seemed to sum up the student body’s and the larger academic world’s opinion of the event and President Graham himself.
“Frank Porter Graham, who more than any other by his peculiar qualities of absolute impartialness, sincere support of the Ideal, unusual humanity, and indefatigable energy on behalf of the University and the state personifies that which education in its usefulness and inspirational service to the community and the commonwealth strives to accomplish.”
“Long now has education been satisfied to rest in conservatism restrained by tradition, when it should be the intellectual beacon guiding men onward into unknown but knowable. Too long have universities been sepulchers for the imprisoned culture of past ages. The time is at hand to loose Wisdom and Culture from their dungeons that they may serve mankind. The presidency of Frank Porter Graham by its enlightenment can be the single greatest factor in lifting North Carolina from the intellectual rear guard of the forty-eight states to that position of preeminence which its long and illustrious history deserves.”
The final football game of UNC’s 1925 season was against the University of Virginia, as was tradition. It was played at UNC, on a field that could hold around 2,5o0 spectators. However, 16,000 spectators came to the game. The lack of space was a persistent problem, and UNC was unable to play many of the more prominent Universities in the South because of it. After the 1925 UNC-UVA game, alumni began actively corresponding with each other about the need for a new, larger stadium and ways provide the new stadium at no cost to the University. Dr. Foy Roberson, who later became secretary of the Stadium Committee, stated in one of his letters to a fellow alumnus that “We purposely placed the meeting in Durham, because we did not want the people over the State to feel that the movement was being sponsored by the University itself.”
Initially, the plan was to build a stadium for 33,500 people on a budget between $475,000 and $500,000. The initial architectural plans for the stadium also allowed for later additions if necessary without compromising the uniformity of the design. The money was to be raised by having alumni and friends of the university subscribe to stadium seating. The subscription would give alumni guaranteed seats for the “Big Games” for a set number of years. The greater the donation, the better the seats and the longer the term the seats would be reserved for. However, this subscription plan was never needed.
William Rand Kenan, Jr. had always intended to make a donation to the University of North Carolina as a memorial to his parents. Kenan recognized the need for a much larger stadium and worked with the Stadium Committee and the University Athletic Council to make it happen in time for the Thanksgiving Day game in 1927. Most of the correspondence concerning the stadium during the planning and construction was between Mr. Kenan and the Graduate Manager of Athletics, Mr. Charles T. Woollen.
Kenan decided to use the existing architectural plan, with the option to later expand the seating, decided upon by the Stadium Committee, but with a capacity of 24,000 and on a budget of $275,000. This budget included a memorial to Mr. Kenan’s parents. However, during construction they decided to add a Field House which “…not only provides excellent quarters for the teams, but makes it possible for us to extend hospitality to visiting teams in a way that we have not been able to do in the past.” (Letter to Kenan from the Secretary of the University Athletic Council October 8, 1927, in the Department of Athletics Records #40093, University Archives).
The addition of the Field House put the final cost of the Stadium at $303,190.76, which Mr. Kenan paid for in its entirety. The stadium was dedicated on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 24, 1927 where the Tar Heels beat the University of Virginia Cavaliers, 14-13.
Students are back, the sky is a crisp Carolina blue, and the leaves are just starting to change. … Must be time for Carolina football! This weekend, before you head down to Kenan Stadium and the new Blue Zone, be sure to stop by Wilson Library to see scenes from UNC’s football past in Gridiron Glory.
Charlie “Choo Choo” Justice, Bob Lacey, “Famous Amos” Lawrence, and a host of other Tar Heel greats are highlighted in footage dating from 1934 through 1985. Woody Durham narrates the 20-minute collection of archival film. Also on display: football memorabilia and materials from the collection of Jack Hilliard (’63), including pennants, tickets, bubble-gum cards, and sheet music for the song “All The Way Choo Choo.”
Want a preview? Check out this clip:
Gridiron Glory Film Showings
Saturday, Sept. 17, 2011
Noon to 3 pm (continuous 20-minute loop)
Wilson Library, Pleasants Family Assembly Room
Free and open to the public
Information: (919) 962-3765 or firstname.lastname@example.org