Project Launch: Iowa State University Football Programs

In March 2018, the DI unit completed a new online collection containing 201 objects from the Iowa State Football Program Collection.

Football has been played at Iowa State University (formerly known as the Iowa State Agricultural College) since the 1870s, initially on an intramural level. Iowa State University held its first organized football game against State Center in 1892 under coach and team captain Ira Brownlie. In 1894, the team became part of an officially organized athletic association and competed with other colleges in the state of Iowa. The first football program in the digital collection is from an 1896 game played against the University of Minnesota.

Football programs document a significant part of Iowa State University’s athletics history. These materials highlight the players and status of the various teams. In addition, football programs provide a glimpse of campus and local history through articles relating to the universities playing. The artfully designed program covers offer visual interest and a glimpse into the aesthetics of the years they were produced.

The digital collection contains at least one football program from each year (1896-2008). Only portions of the entire collection have been digitized. The football programs selected for the digital collection often focus on special event games such Parent Day, Homecoming, bowl games, etc. The complete collection, RS 24/6/0/5, is available in the Special Collection and University Archives Department, located in Parks Library.

Here are some of my personal favorite covers found within the collection:

Colored image of poster from Ames v.s. Drake homecoming football game in 1926

Iowa State vs. Drake, November 13, 1926

Colored image of poster from Missouri v.s. Iowa State homecoming football game in 1935

Missouri vs. Iowa State, October 26, 1935

Colored image of poster from Iowa State v.s. Iowa State Teachers football game in 1945

Iowa State Vs. Iowa State Teachers, September 29, 1945

Colored image of poster from Iowa State v.s. Kansas State football game in 1967

Iowa State vs Kansas State, October 14, 1967

Colored image of poster from Iowa State v.s. Kansas State football game in 1972

Iowa State vs. Kansas State, October 21, 1972

You can view the entire digital collection here. Enjoy!!

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