Comic Almanack for 1836

The Comic Almanack fro 1836, cover

The Comic Almanack for 1836, cover

We don’t have any pranks for you today, but we do have some Cruikshank. Because of the devoted Dr. Robert Patten, we have an extensive George Cruikshank book collection and large research collection.

George Cruikshank  (1792-1878) began his career as a political satirist but moved on to become a book illustrator. In his lifetime he created nearly 10,000 prints, illustrations, and plates. His early drawings often featured attacks on Britain’s royal family. In the 1820s his preoccupation with political caricature waned, however, as he became more interested in theatrical caricatures and book illustrations. Cruikshank produced some of his best-known work for Charles Dickens, beginning with Sketches by Boz, (1836) and reaching an apex with Oliver Twist (1838).

Here is Cruikshank’s entry for April from The Comic Almanack for 1836 with Twelve Illustrations of the Months. The “Season’s Signs” section is amusing.

April in Greenwich Park

April in Greenwich Park

page 11

page 11

Memorabilia Monday: Compacts

In our vault, we have a small collection of compacts. The first two pictured below are souvenirs from dances.

Senior Banquet souvenir, given by Christine Hall Ladner, 1936

Senior Banquet souvenir, given by Christine Hall Ladner, 1936

Given to dates attending the annual Rice Band Banquet held at the San Jacinto Inn in 1935, given by Helen Kelly Gibson

Given to dates attending the annual Rice Band Banquet held at the San Jacinto Inn in 1935, donated by Helen Kelly Gibson

The one shown above is the only one that sports a brand name. According to an eBay seller, “Volpute Inc. was founded in 1920 in Elizabeth, NJ producing compacts and cigarette cases and jewelry using chromium-plated metal mesh [ . . . ] It was purchased by Shields, Inc. of Attleboro, MA in 1957 and ceased operations in the 1960s.” If anyone has more information about the company, please let us know in the comments.

Elizabeth Baldwin Literary Society compact, ca. 1940

Elizabeth Baldwin Literary Society compact, ca. 1940

This last one might have been given to ladies in the Elizabeth Baldwin Literary Society. If not, someone might have had her personal compact engraved to show her allegiance. For those interested in the literary societies, we have records for most of the societies and an exhibit.

How to Beer Bike: A Good Bike

Each team tries to get the best bikes they can and make adjustments for the riders.

Lovett College, photograph by Mike Gladu, 1980

Lovett College, photograph by Mike Gladu, 1980

Unknown rider, 1980-1990s

Unknown rider, 1980-1990s

Some teams make their own.

GSA Keg Bike, 2003

GSA Keg Bike, photograph by Tommy LaVergne, 2003

How to Beer Bike: Have a Good Judge

That judge looks like he's also having a great time.

2nd women’s Beer Bike race in 1972. — Brown College Scrapbook 1972/1973

Every team wants a judge that knows the rules and is fair. It doesn’t hurt if s/he is having a good time, too.

The clip above is from the 1981 Beer Bike video that we have in our collection, but it has also been digitized by Will Rice College. It features former Hanszen Master Dr. Dennis Huston attempting to justify a call he made that resulted in a penalty against Will Rice. Hanszen ended up winning that year’s women’s race, so it seems like Dr. Huston’s call might have been upheld.

That great Beer Bike video was produced by Gary Alford, James Burton, Scott Caddes, Vasu Duvvury, Anna Goslicka, Kevin Henderson, James Mischka, John O’Brian, Chris Peddie, Pat Rohrer, Laura Rohwer, Carl Thomas, Brad Walker, and Charles Wampold.

Memorabilia Monday: How to Beer Bike: T-Shirt

Whether your Beer Bike T-shirt has seen better days . . .

Baker Beer Bike Sweatshirt, ca. 1969

Baker Beer Bike Sweatshirt, ca. 1969

or is brand new,

Lord of the Drinks: Return of the Keg, Sid Richardson College, 2015

Lord of the Drinks: Return of the Keg, Sid Richardson College, 2015

you have to support your team.

1994-2013

1994-2013

If you don’t see your college represented or you’re from GSA, please stop by the Woodson and donate your extra Beer Bike gear.

Rondelet = Spring

Rondolet Freshmen Court, 1955

Rondolet Freshmen Court, 1955

Nothing says spring like Rondelet queens in pastel.

How To Beer Bike (Tech Thursday Edition): Chug Can

Chug. Chug. Chug.

Chug. Chug. Chug.

This chug can was made by Rice alum Skip Wise. The plastic around the opening is soft to keep the chugger’s lips from getting scratched, and there are two holes at the bottom that can be covered with fingertips to control the flow.

Jen Cooper, a former Student Media Advisor at Rice, donated the can to the Woodson in 2001. She explains in a 2001 email:

designed and constructed by Geoffrey “Skip” Wise, MSEE, Jones ’91

he created an entire set for Jones College shortly after he graduated (’91 – ’93 ?) 

I know some of them are still at Jones

green is one of Jones’ Colors

Both Skip and his sister (Benee Wise Curtis, Jones ’86) chugged for Jones as undergrads and alumni…Benee probably still does. 

The cans have seen plenty of action since they were made:

Rice University Campus Photographer Files, UA 188, Box 19, Folder 12, Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library, Rice University

Rice University Campus Photographer Files, UA 188, Box 19, Folder 12, Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library, Rice University

1997 Campanile, pg.  277

1997 Campanile, pg. 277

How to Beer Bike: Keg Backpack

Beer Bike will be here in 10 days. To celebrate this unique Rice holiday, we’ll be writing Beer Bike-themed posts that provide some helpful tips to enjoy the day.

Beer Bike audience member wearing a keg backpack

ca. 1980s

The best way to keep yourself hydrated is with a keg backpack.

The image above comes from the Rice Campus Photographer files, which has many photographs, negatives, and slides of Beer Bikes of yore. We also have many digitized images depicting the biking, the chugging, the crowds, the parades, and even the GSA team.

Memorabilia Monday: The Heaviest Suit – Update

March Madness begins this week, so it’s only fitting that we showcase a piece from our basketball memorabilia.

Notice the vibrant blue curtain

Notice the vibrant blue curtain

Former Athletic Director Chris Del Conte had the blue curtain, shown above, that hung in Autry Court made into a suit.

Here’s a 2007 Houston Chronicle story about Autry Court closing for extensive remodeling. In the article, a trainer had threatened to make former Coach Willis Wilson his own suit. It seems Del Conte took that threat and decided to make his own bright blue garment.

It's a heavy suit.

It’s a heavy suit.

If you have any photographs of Del Conte in the suit, please let us know.

Update: Our wonderful volunteer, Susan Kirby, sent us a picture of the suit in action. Thank you, Susan.

Chris Del Conte wearing the curtain suit.

Rice’s First Star Female Athlete: Kay Pearson

1933 Campanile

1933 Campanile

Kay Pearson ’36, or as she was later known Kathryn Pearson Keating, excelled at both tennis and golf. While at Rice, she was the star of the tennis club and independently won national intercollegiate doubles and singles titles in 1935. This was almost 50 years before women’s sports were funded by the university. She also competed in the US  Open against Helen Wills, Helen Jacobs, and Elizabeth Ryan.

1935 Campanile

1935 Campanile

It’s amazing that she achieved so much at the collegiate level in tennis, but there’s actually more. She started taking golf lessons in January of 1936. Two years later, she was the Houston City Women’s Champion and won the title five more times, as well as the state title in 1941 and 1947. She beat future great Betty Jameson in the semi-finals at the Women’s Southern Golf Tournament in 1940.

Campanile 1934

Campanile 1934

In 1982, Pearson received an Honorary “R” award from the “R” Association, and her name graces Rice’s outstanding women’s tennis player award.

"R" Award

“R” Award

Sadly, we only have Campanile and newspaper articles that describe Pearson’s life. If you have any items about her that you would like to donate or know someone that does, please contact us.


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