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November 19, 2020: Throwback Thursday to 93 years ago when international students were first welcomed to Wichita State University! President Dr. Harold Waldstein Foght, native of Norway, recruited international students, including first international grads Evelyn Hinton (Canada) and Eugene Prostov (Russia) - both pictured. Foght also helped organize a club for international students and faculty. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

November 12, 2020: Throwback Thursday honoring the legacy of Dr. Melvin H. Snyder: United States Air Force major, veteran, alumnus and longtime professor and chair of WSU’s department of aeronautical engineering, now aerospace engineering. During World War II, he served as an aircraft engineering officer for the P-47 Thunderbolt pursuit aircraft and was involved in several pivotal European campaigns. He was awarded France’s Croix de Guerre in 1956 and ended his military career as a major. In 1947, Snyder came to Wichita State University to teach and pursue graduate studies; he retired 50 years later! Special Collections and University Archives holds the personal recollections of this influential professor about the Wichita State University College of Engineering's history. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

November 5, 2020: FIRST ROW, FAR RIGHT: On this Throwback Thursday we celebrate the 50th year of the Wichita State University Health Professions and a remarkable WSU First-Gen Student Organization student of the college! Not only was Junetta French Everett a First Gen Shocker, she was the first African American dental hygienist to graduate from the CHP program and the first African American dental hygienist in Kansas. In an interview with the Wichita Eagle, she said she wanted “to make sure I’m not the last” so she and her husband created a scholarship with the Wichita State University Foundation. Now a Delta Dental executive, she is the current chair of the Wichita Regional Chamber of Commerce, the first African American in the post. Photograph of WSU chapter of Junior American Dental Hygienist Association from 1978 Parnassus yearbook accessible online via WSU Libraries’ SOAR. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

October 29, 2020: Some hiney humor on this Throwback Thursday! During the 1976 election University Libraries encouraged students to vote with a witty display on the second floor of Ablah. That year included Dan Glickman ousting incumbent Garner Shriver as the state's rep in the Fourth District. Jimmy Carter narrowly won the presidency over Gerald Ford, whose running mate was Kansan Bob Dole. Special Collections has candidate papers on Glickman and Shriver. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

October 22, 2020: As Wichita State University and W. Frank Barton School of Business (Wichita State University) break ground on the new Wayne and Kay Woolsey Hall, we will Throwback Thursday to Sept. 4, 1968 – the groundbreaking for Clinton Hall, longtime home of the school. The unique shovel used by Eldon Sloan, Robert Schrader, and Dr. John Breazeale (center) resides in University Archives inside University Libraries. See original post at: Facebook Twitter  Instagram

October 15, 2020: Throwback Thursday to homecomings past brimming with football, parades, queens, “varsities” and concerts. In the 1982 parade, the Delta Upsilon space shuttle with copilot WuShock released balloons to impress the crowd outside Cessna Stadium. More about our homecomings going back to 1924.  See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

October 8, 2020: #TBT to October 1935 when the first drawing of the “New Student Union Building” appeared in The Sunflower and other Wichita newspapers. A year later, the “Auditorium and Commons Building” was completed, constructed on the site of old Fairmount Hall which was destroyed by fire in 1929. The building later was renamed to honor George Wilner, longtime head of speech and theater at Fairmount College and the University of Wichita. Today, it houses Wichita State University School of Performing Arts. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

October 1, 2020: Throwback Thursday to a somber time in our history. When news of the tragic football team plane crash reached campus, WSU lowered the flags in front of Morrison Hall to mourn those who died. More on the 1970 season and crash See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

September 24, 2020: Throwback Thursday to a group photo taken in the midst of the 1918 flu epidemic! Fairmount College’s Student Army Training Corps (SATC) assembled on December 3, 1918, near the unit’s barracks in Fiske Hall and two temporary wooden structures. Panoramic 43 x 8 inch photo at also shows temporary mess hall and cooks at far left, Fairmount Hall (near present site of Wilner Hall) in background, band and man in Navy uniform at far right, and Fairmount College president Walter Rollins, front row center. In early 1918, the US War Department created SATC as a national program to accelerate training of soldiers who simultaneously would take college courses and prepare for war. Fairmount’s SATC unit formed in Oct. 1918 and disbanded two months later. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

September 17, 2020: Throwback Thursday to 1935-36 when Erna Prather Harris (front row, second from left) was the editor of our student newspaper, The Sunflower. She became the first African American to write for and hold positions with the paper, and later the first African American woman to earn a journalism degree from Wichita State. Her life was one of many firsts, including being the first African American, first woman and first freshman to earn an award for journalism. Other firsts in Harris’ career: She started her own newspaper and she built her own car. See original post at: Facebook Instagram

Erna Prather Harris

September 10, 2020: Talk about old-school cool! Throwback Thursday to September 11, 1895, our university’s inaugural day of classes. Meet the first freshmen - seven women and six men whose average age was 20 (youngest 16, oldest 24). Twelve of the thirteen were first generation students! Plus eight of the thirteen were our first graduates. They are pictured here among Fairmount Academy students on the west-facing steps of the only building on campus at the time, Fairmount Hall. Front row, left to right, are faculty members A. W. Sickner (with bicycle), George Chase, Paul Roulet, President Nathan J. Morrison, Della Smoke, Dean W. H. Isely, and possibly Jennie McClung. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Fairmount Hall 1895

September 3, 2020: A great Throwback Thursday for Hispanic Heritage Month looking at 1973’s “Chicano Cultural Week” organized by Shocker student group Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlán (MECHA). U.S. Sen. Joseph Montoya (D-New Mexico), is shown with students during the week. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Students 1973

August 27, 2020: Throwback Thursday to 1974 when political activist Angela Davis spoke to a crowd of 500 at WSU’s Duerksen Fine Arts Center amphitheater. She represented the National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression as its co-chair. At the time of her appearance, the “Leavenworth Brothers” were on trial in Wichita for allegedly inciting a riot in 1973 at the Leavenworth Federal Penitentiary. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Angela Davis 1974

August 20, 2020: Throwback Thursday to Sept. 1895 when the first college classes on our campus took place in Fairmount Hall, located just northeast of 17th and Hillside. It housed the college in its entirety – library, classrooms, labs, art studio, chapel, administrative offices, and a porte-cochere (covered drive-through pictured) for those coming by horse and carriage. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Fairmount Hall 1895

August 13, 2020: Throwback Thursday to the first decade of Wichita State's student newspaper, The Sunflower. Artistic covers were the norm, including this September 1900 illustration by Edmund L. Davison welcoming students back to campus with the proviso that the Sunflower “will be published every little while.” See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Sunflower Cover 1900

August 6, 2020: The '70s were a different time. Throwback Thursday to when there was little need for social distancing at fall registration. So many Shockers were signing up, concession stands at the Roundhouse were used to keep things moving. Stay safe Shocker Nation! See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Roundhouse 1970s

July 30, 2020: Amazing Throwback Thursday to when Grace Wilkie (denoted) helped organize a Red Cross chapter at Fairmount College. The chapter was established to carry on the work begun during the 1918 flu pandemic. Grace Wilkie Hall stands today in honor of her service to the university from 1912-1953 as home economics professor and dean of women. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Nurses 1918

July 16, 2020: Throwback Thursday to an aerial campus view from 1965 - the first as Wichita State University. Facilities - and parking lots - were filled beyond capacity with 9,300 enrolled students - a 2,500 increase from the year prior. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Campus 1965

July 9, 2020: Throwback Thursday to 1926 when Wichita’s citizens voted to accept the proposed gift of Fairmount College and transform it into a municipal university, the first of its kind west of the Mississippi River. Wichita helped shape and support the University of Wichita for 38 years. WU became WSU in 1964, and the connection between the city and the university remains strong and deep. Campus buildings shown in the Ben Hammond cartoon still with us (in various forms) include Fiske Hall, Holyoke Cottage, Morrison Library (columns at 17th and Fairmount) and Fairmount Hall (stones in the George Washington Bicentennial Bridge near Charles Koch Arena). See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Campus 1964

July 3, 2020: Throwback Thursday to 1900 when Fairmount College President Nathan J. Morrison penned the school's history describing its moral and healthful environment, the quality of instruction and students, and the city’s support to make it a “Wichita Institution. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Morrison notes 1900

June 25, 2020: Throwback Thursday to June 1964 for the dedication of the iconic Corbin Education Center designed by legendary architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Open skylights and light needles cap the center’s two buildings, of which extensive records can be found in Special Collections. See original post at: Facebook Twitter 

Corbin Education Center 1964



June 18, 2020: Throwback Thursday to a historic Shocker! Doris Kerr Larkins, a WU music student in the 1950s, later organized Wichita’s first Juneteenth celebration. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Doris Kerr Larkins



June 11, 2020: Throwback Thursday to 1969. History is a powerful thing! WSU and Wichita African-American publications in Special Collections and University Archives relate to current racial social issues on our campus and beyond. See original post at: Facebook Twitter 




June 4, 2020: Among the 74 University of Wichita graduates on June 5, 1928, were John Wesley Hayes and Lotta Hayes, the first African Americans to graduate from our university. They also were non-traditional students in terms of age, both in their mid-30s, over a decade older than their classmates. In 1932, they each earned master’s degrees in religious education from WU, becoming the first African Americans and the first married couple to do so. They led Wichita’s historic Calvary Baptist Church for 38 years (1921-1959). See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Students 1928



May 28, 2020: Throwback Thursday to "Science Hall" 1929. Three floors of the hall provided space for the sciences and the fourth floor housed the first wind tunnel on campus. In 1964, the building was renamed for Dr. Lloyd McKinley, longtime chemistry professor. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

McKinley Hall



May 7, 2020: Snakes alive! The discovery of Chilabothrus granti entwines with WSU for our #TBT. Chapman Grant, military science professor and grandson of U.S. President Ulysses S. Grant, left our school 90 years ago this month to study reptiles in the Caribbean. His expedition there is credited with discovering 15 previously unclassified species, two of which are named for him. While at the University of Wichita, this man of many talents led the ROTC program, served as Kansas Audubon Society president, established a school museum and acted in plays. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram




April 30, 2020: Today marks the 30th anniversary of the dedication of the National Institute of Aviation Research. It was built for $7 million during WSU President Warren Armstrong's tenure with contributions from Beech and Boeing aircraft companies. US Rep. Dan Glickman was keynote speaker along with FAA chief James Busey who said WSU will "carry on the tradition of the Wright Brothers." See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

NIAR Building



April 16, 2020: With Cessna Stadium's forthcoming razing to make way for new facilities in the news, let's take a Throwback Thursday lookback at a bright spot for the 74-year-old complex. On Oct. 1, 2006, Cessna Stadium hosted The Rolling Stones in front of more than 30,000 fans. It marked the largest concert in Wichita's history, and the first show by The Stones in Kansas. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Cessna Stadium



April 9, 2020: Throwback Thursday to this early 1900s promotional design of Fairmount Hall. This art was by the first chair of the art department Elizabeth Sprague. She came to Fairmount College in 1901. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Fairmount College Sign



April 2, 2020: Throwback Thursday to when President Dr. Nathan J. Morrison was working from home in the pre-technology era. Morrison came out of retirement at 67 to head Fairmount College (now WSU) from its 1895 beginnings to his death in 1907. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram




March 19, 2020: Our Throwback Thursday sounds a more lighthearted note this week. While it may not be official social distancing, this 1911 photo shows Fairmount College students Wilson Brown and Bess Rose a safe distance apart. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram




February 27, 2020: Retro fashion, retro tech, Retro WSU on National Retro Day. We feature secretarial training student Connie Rosenbloom, and a pair of Shockers in the CAC (now the Rhatigan Student Center) circa 1968. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

RSC 1970 



February 20, 2020: This year the Delta Mu chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha celebrates 70 years on campus. Installed March 25, 1950, it was the first national fraternity organized at Wichita State. Pictured in this Throwback Thursday photo includes then chapter president Richard Cary (kneeling lower right) and sponsor Dr. Clair Hannum (center), associate professor of zoology. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram




February 13, 2020: Throwback Thursday to Walton and Van Ray Morgan in 1962. WSU grad Walton taught music in Wichita schools for 34 years. Van Ray was the first African-American office employee at Beech Aircraft Company, and ran a local modeling and charm school. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram




February 6, 2020: Throwback Thursday to Homecoming 1954! Pictured are Homecoming royalty – basketball star Cleo Littleton, chosen as “Jack Armstrong,” and “Wheaties Sweetie” Jeannine Crowdus. Littleton scored 19 points in the Feb. 27 Shocker win. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram




January 30, 2020: Super Bowl Sunday is almost here! For Throwback Thursday we'll revisit two-time Super Bowl winner Bill Parcells. The HOF coach spent his college days on the Wichita State gridiron, and was a coach for the Shockers in 1965. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Bill Parcell



January 23, 2020: Cold weather got you in ski mode? For Throwback Thursday we revisit Shocker Mountain, an artificial ski slope created using the west ramps of Cessna Stadium. DuraSnow, an artificial surface made of slick plastic bristles, was used to simulate snow even in hot weather during the year-round program. WSU's ski program ran from 1977-1986. Photo circa 1980. See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Cessna Stadium



January 16, 2020: Spring semester is almost here, so we're taking a look back when Roundhouse registration was the norm. This Throwback Thursday photo circa 1968-69 shows sign-up in Henry Levitt Arena (now Charles Koch Arena). See original post at: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Koch Arena 1968


January 9, 2020: Ready for the snow? These Fairmount College frolickers were in a #tbt photo circa ~ 1900. This photo shows a view looking north toward Fairmount Hall from the front yard of Holyoke Cottage (a residence still standing at 16th and Holyoke). The coeds pictured are likely residents of Holyoke, which was built by Rev. J.H. Parker – a founder of Fairmount College. Holyoke eventually served as a women’s dormitory for the institution. See original post at: Facebook Twitter


November 13, 2019: I am in my appointment in Wichita State University Libraries, Special Collections. With the College of Health Professions 50th Year Anniversary coming up in 2020 I am beyond excited to learn about the history of College of Health Professions. I am starting with reading a chapter in Craig Miner’s “Uncloistered Halls” See original post at: Twitter


November 8, 2019: We enjoyed having Wichita State University Criminal Justice professor Dr. Michael Birzer and O.W. Wilson’s grandson Matthew Wilson speak today in Special Collections in honor of the new O.W. Wilson collection. Make sure to stop by to see it! See original post at: Twitter


October 4, 2019: Where can you find rare and unique books on Wichita and Kansas history, the U.S. Civil War, abolition, the history of printing, Mesmerism and hypnotism, and aviation in Ablah Library? In Special Collections on the lower level! See original post at: Facebook Twitter


August 22, 2019: Kicking off the new semester with a bang! Thirty-four students in Dr. Katie Lanning’s World Lit class got up close and personal with materials in Special Collections.See original post at: Facebook Twitter


August 20, 2019: To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the release of Gordon Parks’ The Learning Tree, Special Collections put together an exhibit!.See original post at: Facebook Twitter


July 24, 2019: In honor of the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11, check out this excerpt from an Apollo 11 logbook we have in Special Collections! In the picture is an announcement of the space capsule splashdown in the Pacific Ocean. See original post at: Facebook Twitter


July 16, 2019: In honor of the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11, check out this excerpt from a logbook compiled by Apollo 11 recovery coordinators that we have in Special Collections! On this day, liftoff was at 1:32 pm, noted as "L.O.". See original post at: Facebook Twitter


July 10, 2019: Don't forget to stop by Special Collections in Ablah Library today for a discussion with Dr. Jones! See original post at: Facebook Twitter






October 7, 2020: What are the oldest items in your collection? Our oldest items include some papyrus samples from 300BC and some Japanese prayer scrolls from around 900AD! See original post at: Facebook Twitter 



October 7, 2020: Why can't we just browse the archives like the regular stacks? 2 main reasons: 1. Archives aren't usually arranged by subject like the stacks so browsing probably won't be helpful. 2. Everything looks the same!! See original post at: Facebook Twitter


October 7, 2020: How do you get materials into your digital collections? We've got several scanners in our archive that are meant for different materials - from photo negatives, to oversize maps, to 3D artifacts. Sometimes we need to outsource our materials, too. See original post at: Facebook Twitter

October 7, 2020: What's the most unexpected item in your collections? Ours is James Barr Fugate's, an author and activist in the gay rights movement, glass eye! See original post at: Facebook Twitter


October 7, 2020: Who has access to your materials? In person research is restricted to WSU faculty, students, and staff. We're working our hardest to reach those of you not able to come to campus - zoom sessions, phone consultations, and scanning! See original post at: Facebook Twitter

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