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Archive for Saturday, July 3, 2010

100 years ago: Naismith teaching women’s swimming class

July 3, 2010

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From the Lawrence Daily World for July 3, 1910: “Dr. James Naismith, physical director of the university, is teaching a class of young women to swim. An average girl can be taught to swim across the pool in five lessons. Every day from three to five, the pool is filled to capacity with the girls who are just beginning to appreciate the lure of the old swimmin’ hole for little brother. ‘Can a girl be persuaded to dive, doctor,’ the instructor was asked. ‘Why sure. They plunge off the spring boards with a whole lot more grace than a boy can muster. Of course they are a little timid about shooting straight down. Most of them want to wear rubber caps to protect their hair too.’... The first suggestion in the park naming contest to reach the World Office comes from J. R. Kenyon, who offers the name ‘Pleasure Park.’ The name is a good one and frequent use has not left it trite. Mr. Kenyon phoned in his name within an hour after the World was out announcing the contest. The park management wants a catchy name for the new Lawrence play ground, and offers a cash prize for the most suitable submitted by July 6th.”

Comments

AnnaUndercover 4 years, 5 months ago

I shouldn't comment in the midst of early AM delirium, but I have so little restraint sometimes:

"‘Can a girl be persuaded to dive, doctor,’ the instructor was asked. ‘Why sure. They plunge off the spring boards with a whole lot more grace than a boy can muster."

We've come such a long way. I sometimes worry that even feminists (like myself) don't realize we have a distance to go to claim and keep a spectrum of choices for women.

There's a Tolstoy of a comment in what I just said, but I'll stop there.

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