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Congratulations, Graduates!

Posted bypennefesm on 15 May 2010 | Tagged as: Book Excerpt, Gophers, MHS press

phpior1z4With a happy shout-out to this spring’s high school and college graduates—including Megan, Max, Nell, Ariel, Emily, and all those near and dear to readers everywhere—here’s a celebratory look at how women at the University of Minnesota organized their first physical education program in 1888. The women’s drill team, known as Company Q, used wooden guns and put up with lots of snickering before strutting their stuff to whoops of applause during commencement week, 1889. An example from the pages of the campus newspaper (staffed entirely by males):



Q? Q? Q? Q?

What is Company “Q”?

A troop of girls,
A troop well known as the pride of the U,
A troop deserving of homage, too
Maids who dress in black and blue,
Maids whose cheeks are ruddy in hue,
Maids who are blithe and bonny and true—
Such a troop is Company “Q.”


Tim Brady tells the amazing story of “The Broom Brigade” in his Gopher Gold: Legendary Figures, Brillian Blunders, and Amazing Feats at the University of Minnesota.


Read more here.


Photo: Company Q, 1889

Go, Gophers!

Posted bypennefesm on 20 Nov 2009 | Tagged as: Authors, Gophers, History, MHS press, Sports

Floyd of RosedaleThe Minnesota Gophers football team wraps up the regular season with a trip to Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City, Iowa, on Saturday. The Gophers (6–5) will face off against the Iowa Hawkeyes (9–2)  in the schools’ annual battle for Floyd of Rosedale. Kickoff is slated for 11:02 a.m.

If you’re a college football fan, you know this border battle is one of many traditions for the Golden Gophers. In the MHS Press book Minnesota Sports Almanac: 125 Glorious Years by Joel A. Rippel (with foreword by Patrick Reusse), you’ll find all kinds of stats and stories of the Gophers football program (dating back to their first game in 1882), including other infamous Big Ten trophy showdowns (the fight for Paul Bunyan’s Axe against Wisconsin, for the Little Brown Jug against Michigan, and for the Victory Bell against Penn State). And in Rippel’s profiles of Minnesota’s national title teams in the 1930s, ’40s, and 1960, under the leadership of highly respected coaches Bernie Bierman and Murray Warmath, you’ll learn the real history behind the recent commentary in the Wall Street Journal that Minnesota, Tulane, Southern Methodist, and the University of Chicago are all former college football powers that at one time “had it all — and lost it.”