"From Cabbages to Campus: Tales from a Dozen Decades" is an exhibit featuring a chronological history of Washington State University. Aged photographs and documents are exhibited and give a glimpse into what life was like for Cougars throughout the years.
Among many artifacts on display are photographs of the open rolling hills where Martin Stadium now stands as well as a 1905 promotional brochure picturing “A College Party,” where about ten students are sitting on a rocky outcrop in full turn-of-the century garb (very different from the college parties of today).
Here are some interesting WSU facts that every true Cougar should know:
A three-man committee chose Pullman as the site of Washington State College in 1891 to the major disappointment of the second choice, Yakima.
The first campus building was known as “The Crib.”
When the school’s beloved first president got the boot, the students showered the head Regent in charge of the decision with eggs and cabbages. Throughout the years, WSU students have been involved in many acts of civil disobedience, including anti-Vietnam War sit-ins and protests during the Civil Rights Movement.
The graduating class of 1900 had 11 students.
Washington State College and School of Science changed its name to Washington State College, and then finally to Washington State University in 1959
The original school colors were pink and blue until 1900, when they were changed to the current crimson and gray.
Campus was lined with wooden sidewalks until 1912, when they were replaced by cement.
Tuition was free until 1920. Students voted to pay tuition to fund the construction of Bohler Gym.
The first live mascot was presented during the 1927 homecoming game and was named after the school's quarterback Herbert “Butch” Meeker. After the death of Butch VI in 1978, the students voted to end the live mascot tradition and Butch T. Cougar came into existence.
Mooberry Track now sits where a 1.6-acre manmade lake once resided. Silver Lake, fondly nicknamed Lake de Puddle, was one of the hottest student hang out spots.
In 1915, the sophomore class issued a set of rules to the incoming freshmen, referring to their lot using insults such as Frosh, detestable, spineless and sucklings.
“Should you at any time, while traversing the walks, parks or drives of the college pass within 20 paces of an upper classman, you will remove any raiment from that potion of your anatomy known as black among the degenerate class of reptiles of which you are a part,” rule III stated.
The decree ends with tug-of-war challenge over Silver Lake.
“Should there happen to be in all your babbling, simpering, brainless multitude, any person capable of speaking, understanding or comprehending the English language, send them to us that they may cower at the feet of our almighty leaders and there learn the conditions under which you shall cleanse your foul hides,” the sophomore class wrote.
Tacked on to the bottom is a notice that the college hospital is only for the use of “collegiates,” and that the sure to be injured freshmen should report to the veterinary hospital for any injuries they will undoubtedly receive. The insults of today pale in comparison to this 1915 diatribe. It is also eye opening how far anti-hazing rules have come.
The modern-day financial issues facing this university are not the first to cause cutbacks. When the Great Depression hit, the school had to sell all of its livestock (a major hit) and reduced the teachers'salaries by 25 percent. There would be riots in the streets if salary cutbacks of that magnitude were put into place today.
This exhibition, located in the atrium floor of Holland and Terrell Libraries, is a veritable treasure trove of information and is open Monday through Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturdays from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.