WKU Libraries Blog

News and events from WKU Libraries

WKU Libraries Blog - News and events from WKU Libraries

September Cool Stuff

Athletic Village – article by Kelly Thompson

Beulah Collins Ellis Autograph Book

Autograph Album

Autograph Album

BUWKY 9/1938 – Bowling Green Business University student publication

Glasgow Normal School – collection inventory

Personnel File – September 1988 issue WKU newsletter

Rodes-Helm Lecture Series – posters & programs

Sophomores – links to images and information regarding Sophomore classes

Southern Normal Scrapbook Index

Van Meter Hall – building history

Wetherby Hall – building history

Zacharias Hall – building history

August Cool Stuff

Class of 1913 – class list and links to images

Class of 1913

Unidentified member of the WKU Class of 1913

Class of 1963 – class officers and Talisman

Fashion Show Programs – 1981-1990

Freshmen – documents and photos regarding freshmen

Gilbert Hall – building history and documentation

Keen Hall – building history and documentation

Nursing Class of 1988 – photo board showing members of the 1988 nursing class

Pearce-Ford Tower – building history and documentation

Poland Hall – building history and documentation

Teachers College Heights 7/1/1938 – photo spreads of campus

July Cool Stuff

Baseball Media GuideBaseball – Objects, photographs and documents related to WKU and College High baseball teams.

Board of Regents Special Meeting 11/7/1938 – 75 years ago – construction of the Kentucky Building

Cardinal Yearbook – Ogden College yearbook is 100 years old

College Heights Herald 7/22/1968 – summer theater, ETV Network & Shaker pageant

Eleavator 7/1913 – WKU’s bimonthly publication

Fanlight, 1988 – Kentucky Museum happenings from 25 years ago

Forensic Story – transcript of audiotape regarding the establishment of the William Biven Forensic Society

John Minton – 5th president of WKU

Marion Humphrey – alumni papers

Recitation Hall – building history and documentation

Resolution 88-10-S – Unicorn Pizza & Theater open on weekends

Southern Normal School – collection inventory

Al and Jeanne Baker honored

A reception was held in honor of Al and Jeanne Baker, former owners of Shutterbug Photography, for their in-kind gift “WKU Libraries-A Century of Excellence” now displayed on the first floor of Cravens Library. The 14 foot long display was created to commemorate a century of service on the hill.

Century of Exc 5

Recognition for Al and Jeanne Baker’s Millennial display at WKU Cravens Library.


Photo Album | Audio | Podcast RSS Feed

The Kentucky Derby: How the Run for the Roses Became America’s Premier Sporting Event

Dr. James Nicholson

Dr. Nicholson speaking at Barnes & Noble Bookstore.

Thursday evening at Barnes & Noble Bookstore, Dr. James Nicholson shared with his audience the history of the Kentucky Derby and what makes “America’s Premier Sporting Event”.   He spoke and also shared a collage of photos revealing the highs and lows of what is none other than the tradition and culture surrounding Kentucky’s famous Derby!

Photo Album | Audio | Podcast RSS Feed

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Earth Awareness Festival

Student Awareness Earth Week

Student Awareness Earth Week

 In 1976 WKU students observed Earth Week April 11th – 17th.  A group sprang up calling themselves Energy for Student Awareness.  They were concerned and printed a 12 page newsletter.  The group screened films, had a food drive for Guatemalans and staged the Earth Awareness Festival outside Downing University Center.  The newsletter includes articles regarding The Farm a commune in Summerton, Tennessee, nuclear energy, alternative energy sources, healthy eating, Native American rights and ecological legislation.

Do you remember Earth Awareness Festival?  How did you participate?  What will you be doing for Earth Day, April 22nd?

This and many other records are available for researchers through our online catalog, KenCat and in the Harrison-Baird Reading Room of the Kentucky Library & Museum Monday – Saturday, 9 – 4.

Kentucky Building Song

CHH Feb. 1929 Headline

CHH Feb. 1929 Headline

Set to the tune of Auld Lang Syne, The Kentucky Building song composed by Mrs. H.R. Matthews during the fund raising campaign appeared in the March 1929 College Heights Herald.

Though we may wander from the Hill
In wider fields to roam
We’ll treasure o’er our college days
And call her portals “Home”

Then may our hands and may our hearts
Be joined to build a great
Kentucky monument to save
The history of our state

The Indian lore and pioneer
Shall never pass away;
Our relics we shall now preserve
And in our state they’ll stay

Check out other College Heights Heralds in TopScholar.  1925-1929, Jan. 1930, 1961-1963, 1968-1969 are up.  More coming soon.

“Here’s to Coach Arthur and the Victorious Basketball Girls!”

1915 WKU Hilltoppers

1915 Varsity Team*

The 2012-13 women’s basketball team is a roll. Led by Coach Michelle Clark-Heard—herself a former Lady Topper—they join a long line of great basketball teams here on the hill. But where did that tradition begin?

98 years ago, on this day in 1915, the women of Western Kentucky State Normal School played their very first game against another school. This team was an unusual group. In the fall of 1914, each literary society in the school organized a girls’ basketball team. That’s right—the athletes came from the literary set. They learned the rules, practiced diligently, and then played each other.

The Senior team handily won every game they played, but all of the teams came in for compliments in the school magazine, The Elevator. Even the Kit-Kats and the Loyals, who only won three games between them, were praised, “because they have improved so much since they began. They have nerve, courage and ‘that other thing’ that has strengthened them against the attacks of a stronger force.”

When their intermural season was over, a varsity team was chosen from the best players of all the society teams. They challenged Logan College in Russellville to a game for the first day of March, 1915. The Elevator reporters reveled in the game: “On that great and memorable day the chosen ten from the Western set forth to seek renown for our dear old Normal by completely vanquishing and utterly subduing the basketball Amazons of Logan College.” Vanquish, they did. The newly formed varsity team “played with all the vim and determination and ‘that other thing’ that Normalites are famous for,” and won the game, 12 to 8.

When that game ended, that was it. One game and the “season” was over. Regular games didn’t start again until 1921. However, the legacy of this plucky team was on-going. In fact, one of those winning varsity players, guard Josephine Cherry, became the coach of the 1921-22 team and supported the teams that followed.

The Elevator said at the time, “The whole school joins in congratulations to these valiant girls in whose hearts are ever burning the bright fire of zeal and interest in every phase of our athletic work.” 98 years later, we join them in congratulations and appreciation to the 1915 Women’s Basketball varsity team for laying down a lasting foundation.

To learn more about this team, check out the February and April Elevators.
Search our online catalog, KenCat or visit the Harrison-Baird Reading Room of the Kentucky Library & Museum (Monday – Saturday, 9 – 4) for more information on women’s intramural basketball or any of the teams that have played since.

[*Photo Identification, first row, l-r: Zona Lee Searce, Mary Brown, Anna McClusky. Second row: Pearl Jordan, Josephine Cherry, Lucy Booth, Laura Phelps.  Third row: Coach J. L. Arthur, Mary Holton, Martha Holton, Louise Jordan.]

Blog post written by WKU Archives Assistant Katherine Chappell.

Military Broadsides

In 1943, World War II was in full swing. U-boats were sinking, London was being bombed, the Trident Conference was taking place, Italy was being liberated by the Allies—and military squadrons were heading to Bowling Green, Kentucky.

Why did so many squadrons come to town? They were using Bowling Green as a part of their troop training. We know that our airport was used for training beginning in 1943. The 11th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron was deployed to the Bowling Green Airport for about four months in 1943 and 1944 and some of the other divisions were probably doing air training as well, though the reasons for a tank division to be deployed here is less clear.

Jim the Pilot

Jim the Pilot

Five military broadsides found in the WKU Archives were apparently made by different squadrons as thank you cards to the citizens of Bowling Green for their hospitality. These broadsides offer some interesting information about soldiers who were about to head off to war. They reveal a sense of humor that underscores the stereotype of the happy-go-lucky, charming, confident American soldier boy. Nicknames like “SNAFU,” “Tough Boy,” and “Toothless” pepper the signatures. Corporal Martin “Snooks” Schnall Jr. is called “Headquarters (Brains of the Outfit)” on one poster. Some posters include references to the battalion’s purpose, like a tank or the outfit’s insignia or a plane, piloted by “Jim,” whose picture has been cut out and pasted into the airplane’s window.  [Click on images to enlarge].



One broadside is a complete mystery, though. Why does it have two ships from different eras passing or a sketch of a dog? Instead of including the signatures of the men in the outfit, there is an illegible inscription at the top and a lot of shorthand at the bottom.



There are a few other unanswered questions. What brought the tank battalion to town? It was the only part of its division to see engagement; did their training here help them get there and get through? Were hand-drawn posters a typical thank you to towns they visited? And what on earth does this shorthand say?



If you have the answer to these questions or know someone who was attached to any of these squadrons, we would love to hear from you! Please contact archives@wku.edu or leave a comment. Use the links below to take a closer look at the broadsides in TopScholar.

These and other university records are available for researchers to use in the Harrison-Baird Reading Room of the Kentucky Building, Monday-Saturday, 9 to 4.

Blog post written by WKU Archives Assistant Katherine Chappell.