Archive for Sunday, September 22, 2013

100 years ago: ‘Grand athletic opening’ planned for first KU game day

September 22, 2013


From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Sept. 22, 1913:

  • "A grand athletic opening is the plan of W. O. Hamilton, manager of Kansas University athletics. The manager will put the plan into operation on Saturday, October 4, the occasion being the first game of the University football season. As a result of the plan the largest crowd of the season may be out at this first game which in the past has been regarded very much as preliminary, and has not been a very great drawing card. The plan promises very much and will be a decided innovation in college athletics. It should mark the day as one of the Red Letter events of the season. Manager Hamilton has issued a special invitation to Governor George H. Hodges of Kansas to attend the game and participate in the festivities.... The afternoon will open with a grand street parade starting from the Court House on South Massachusetts street. The procession headed by the University of Kansas band will proceed north on Massachusetts and then double back toward McCook Field.... In the first auto following the band will ride Governor Hodges and his party. Chancellor Strong, the Board of Administration, 'Uncle Jimmy' Green and the Athletic Association will follow in other cars. Mayor Bond and a party of officials from the city will be asked to participate as will members of the Merchants Association. Next will come the Kansas University team and the visiting team from William Jewell. The 'Thundering Thousand' will follow and will lend a 'Rock Chalk' now and then to enliven the procession.... In speaking of the plan this morning Manager Hamilton said: 'It is the hope of the athletic association that in this way every one interested with the University will be out to attend this first game. We hope to make it a sort of a "big league" opening and I believe it will work as we have planned it. We want to make this first game worth while and mean more than it has in the past.' Then the day will close with the annual nightshirt parade in the evening. This has become a fixed custom at K. U. and should be a fitting close to the big day."
  • "The final tryout for places on the University band will be held tonight in Fraser hall. Leader J. C. McCanless is still looking for a snare drummer. If one turns up tonight he says he will be happy.... The question of band uniforms is now in the hands of the Student Council. Last year the K. U. band looked like a bunch of rubes by the side of the bands of Missouri and Nebraska although the music was of as high a standard. A mild squabble between the band and the Student Council has arisen over the uniform question. Leader McCanless says that his men will appear in civilian's clothes before they will wear the uniforms they had last year."
  • "Enrollment at the University this morning had reached the 2,075 mark. Students are still coming in and Registrar George O. Foster is being kept busy collecting fees. This figures shows a gain of 107 over the registration last year at this time."
  • "Jack Frost paid this section of the country his first visit of the season last night. He confined his tour to the low lands and simply nipped a sweet potato vine here and there, robbed a rose bush of its beauty and stopped the growth of some of the less hardy plants that were struggling to overcome the ravages of the long extended drouth. No general frost is reported in this section but nevertheless the frisky Jack was here and he left his mark in several places. No heavy damage was done, unless it was to the sweet potato crop. The sweet potato is the first to suffer from the frost as the chill robs the tuber of its flavor and causes the formation of water."


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