Ohio State Athletics, 1879–1959

James E. Pollard



336 pp. 6x9

$29.95 paper 978-0-8142-5264-2
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Ohio State Athletics, 1879—1959 represents the first archival project devoted to describing the history of The Ohio State University’s athletic program, including the growth of athletics at OSU and the achievements of some of the many athletes who played for Ohio State in those early years. The work was undertaken by James E. Pollard, who, in 1959, continued the work of The Ohio State University Development Fund, the Alumni Varsity “O” Association, and early Athletic Director L. W. St. John to author OSU’s first athletic history. Unsurprisingly, football is emphasized in the book because, even then as now, it drew the greatest public interest and provided a majority of the athletic department’s budget.

Besides turning to the archives of the Lantern and the Makio to research the book, Pollard also relied on conversations with past Board of Trustees Secretary Carl E. Steeb, Professor Charles W. Foulk who actually competed for Ohio State as a student on the university’s first basketball team, and then current Athletic Director, Richard C. Larkins. Because many of the university’s earliest records were lost or destroyed, a significant amount of information also came from Columbus newspapers, Alumni Monthly, and official records of the faculty, trustees, and presidents.

James E. Pollard was the University Historian and Director of the School of Journalism from the 1930s to the 1960s. He was also author of History of The Ohio State University: The Story of Its First Seventy-Five Years, 1873—1948, and was awarded The Ohio State University’s Distinguished Service Award in 1965. The Ohio State University’s School of Communication annually awards the James E. Pollard Memorial Scholarship to an undergraduate student.