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Jan. 21, 1905: U 'girls' crush plucky South High 72-2

Posted by: Ben Welter under Minnesota History, Sports Updated: February 23, 2015 - 11:22 AM
In addition to the final score, three things leap out from the dusty microfilm on this Minneapolis Tribune story:
  • The University of Minnesota fielded a women’s basketball team in 1905, less than 15 years after Dr. James Naismith invented the sport. And yet the 1971-72 squad, coached by Joan Stevenson, is generally recognized as the school’s first women’s basketball team.

  • It was apparently unremarkable that the mighty Gophers put a local high school on their schedule.

  • The Tribune, which typically devoted less than a page a day to the entire world of sports, covered this women’s game.


High School Misses Are Outclassed, But They Put Up Plucky Fight to the Last – Victors’ Team Work Is Superb
The girls of the Minnesota basketball team ran up the highest score in the history of the team when they smothered the girls from South Side high last evening by a score of 72 to 2.
  Women’s basketball circa 1900: Sensible shoes, billowing bloomers and set shots. (Photo courtesy
It was the fastest, snappiest and most brilliant play ever put up by the university girls and although the high school girls fought gamely to the last, they were badly outclassed and were never dangerous. Minnesota scored within a minute after the game started and continued to put the ball in the basket on an average of one a minute for the thirty-five minutes of play.
The superb team work of the Gopher girls was what won them the game by such a large score. South Side could do nothing to break up the perfect combinations and team play. The varsity played together all the time and with such speed and dash that the younger players were swept off their feet.
South Side’s one score came near the end of the second half, when Miss Loeberg shot a basket for her team. The South Siders had worked the ball down the field on a spurt and it went out of bounds under the basket. A quick pass put it in position for a goal and the only score was recorded for the visiting team.
The game was remarkably free from rough play and the officials did not penalize a single player during the game.
Minnesota alumnae players who watched the game united in saying that the Gophers this year have the fastest team in the history of the university. For so early in the year, the team play is remarkable and the speed is greater than ever before. Hattie Van Bergen and Helen Cummings played the forwards in fine style, the former leading the team in basket shooting and getting into the team play phenomenally. Florence Schuyler was a remarkably steady center and Captain Dunn at guard was strong, coming up with the play and helping in running up the big score. Both Iris Newkirk and Clare Brown, who alternated at the other guard, played steady games.
For South high, Miss Loeberg and Miss Larsen played steady games and the others deserve mention for their plucky work.
There was a good attendance of university and high school students at the game, which was the first of the varsity schedule. Informal dancing followed the game, an orchestra furnishing music for a program of fifteen numbers. The teams lined up as follows:
Cummings, left forward
Van Bergen, right forward
Schuyler, center
Dunn, left guard
Newkirk, Brown, right guard
South Side.
Mars, left forward
Loeberg, right forward
Larson, center
Law, left guard
Stenning, right guard
Goals, Van Bergen 10, Dunn 9, Cummings 7, Schuyler 6, Brown 3, Loeberg 1. Time of halves, twenty minutes and fifteen minutes. Referee, McRae; umpire, Weisel.
Above: Couldn’t find a photo of the plucky girls from South High, but this shot of Fulda High’s 1904-05 girls team shows the typical garb of the era. (Photo courtesy Below: The 1905 University of Minnesota women's basketball team.
The 1905 University of Minnesota women's basketball team.



Feb. 14, 1965: Teen spotting

Posted by: Ben Welter under Minnesota History Updated: February 5, 2015 - 12:30 PM
Reporter David Mazie’s series on “today’s teen-agers” appeared in the Minneapolis Tribune’s Women and Society section on three consecutive Sundays. A big promotional ad touting the project whetted my appetite:

“What’s ‘in’? What will they do tonight? Where will they go? What are their hopes and their ambitions for the future?”

The project, unfortunately, turned out to be less than riveting. Packed with statistics and quotes from experts, the stories show little passion or insight. Worst of all, the same newspaper that continued to the publish the home addresses of crime victims and children well into the 1960s failed to provide the full names of the handful of teens quoted in each installment. Granting anonymity was intended to encourage them to speak freely, which they most certainly did not. Without full names, I can’t track down the kids, now in their 60s, to see whether they achieved their hopes and ambitions for the future.

But this sidebar is a fab snapshot of the era. I encourage readers to post their tips on how to spot teens in 2015.

How to Spot
A Teen-Ager

How do you spot a teen-ager?
It’s not always easy . They don’t all look and act alike. But here are a few identifying traits of the Minneapolis variety.
The female of the species probably will have long, loose hair, quite possibly with bangs that hang down to her eyebrows. Her hair may hide one of the latest trends – pierced ears.
She’ll be dressed casually – perhaps a jumper or blazer or skirt and V-neck sweater at school, ski pants or flirts (a first cousin to culottes) at more informal times. Textured nylons, knee-high socks and loafers are standards for the feet and legs.
Her boy friend also is likely to have a modified Beatle-look haircut. His clothes probably will be conservative, college-style, Ivy League or “Continental” style, which features short, tight trousers and pointed shoes.
The best places to look for teens on weekdays are class rooms, drugstores, club meetings, near a telephone or fighting the battle of homework (two to four hours a night).
On weekends they generally can be found at a school basketball or hockey game, dancing at Mr. Lucky’s, the Marian or the Marigold or at a party in someone’s home. Later on, at Porky’s Drive-In or one of several pizza places. And then, in some cases, parked in such popular spots as Eloise Butler Park or “Sherwood Forest.”
If they are at a dance, the teens probably will be writhing through the Jerk, the Watusi, the Swim, the Frug or the like to some currently popular ballad such as “Love Potion No. 9,” “Little Latin Lupe Lu,” or “The Crusher.”
J.D. Salinger’s “Catcher in the Rye” is still a favorite book, along with “Exodus” and “Mila 18” by Leon Uris and “Black Like Me” by John H. Griffin.
And if you get into a conversation with a teen-ager, you’re okay if he refers to you in such terms as “tough,” “fab,” “gear,” or “sharp.” But watch out if you’re called “animal,” “gross” or “barfy.”
Minneapolis teens of the mid-1960s got their ya-yas out at popular Lake Street clubs such as Mr. Lucky’s. Check out the high-water pants on the young man near the stage. This is fab? (Minneapolis Tribune photo by Dwight Miller)

Feb. 3, 1959: The day the music died

Posted by: Ben Welter under Minnesota History, Disasters Updated: February 4, 2015 - 8:42 AM
Stories that belong on page one don’t always land there. On a cold February evening more than 50 years ago, Minneapolis Tribune editors settled on a front-page lineup that included an outboard-motor theft ring, a nursing home strike, a failed missile test, a congressional hearing attended by two monkeys training for space flight, the resignation of the secretary of the Navy and a short about a bleacher collapse in Portsmouth, Va., in which 29 people were injured. The lead story: An American Airlines flight from Chicago to New York’s LaGuardia Airport crashed in the East River, killing 65 of 72 aboard.

The newsy mix was typical for the Tribune of that era, heavy on wire news, politics, crime and mayhem, leavened with a bright or two. What’s missing? Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper were killed in a plane crash in northern Iowa early that morning of Feb. 3, 1959. Tribune editors decided that the deaths of three “rock ‘n’ roll idols” merited only this extended photo caption on page 11 the next day:

Singers Killed

These three rock ’n’ roll singing idols were killed Tuesday when their plane crashed near Mason City, Iowa, en route to play an engagement at Moorhead, Minn. Buddy Holly, 22, left, Ritchie Valens, 17, center, and J.P. (The Big Bopper) Richardson, 24, were killed along with the pilot of the chartered plane. The three took the plane after playing an engagement near Mason City so they could arrive early and get their clothes laundered. The rest of the troupe went by bus. The Moorhead performance went on last night although members of the troupe said they didn’t have the heart to perform. Some 1,000 advance tickets had been sold.

Jan. 4, 1953: How prejudiced are you?

Posted by: Ben Welter under Minnesota History Updated: February 3, 2015 - 6:29 PM
In a page one story, the Tribune’s Carl T. Rowan reported on a University of Minnesota study of “racial attitudes of middle-class whites in a northern metropolis.” Researchers found plenty of prejudice in the City of Lakes in the early 1950s. A Minneapolis public school teacher was one of 271 white parents interviewed for the study. “No, I don’t let my 10-year-old daughter play with Negroes,” she said, adding that she believed they would be happier living in a neighborhood by themselves.

The story was accompanied by this quiz:

How Prejudiced Are You?

Carl T. Rowan
Carl T. Rowan was Minneapolis Tribune reporter from 1950 until 1961.
What remarks do you make when someone brings up the race question? These “uncalled for” remarks indicate how you would fare on a prejudice test devised by a University of Minnesota research team.
Read the following list of statements (made voluntarily by other Minneapolis residents) and select the one which most nearly agrees with your feelings about Negroes.
1. “My children can join an organization as long as it is predominantly white.”
2. “I have worked with Negroes and have no objection to them.”
3. “I want my children to associate with all groups. I have no discrimination against any group of people.”
4. “Negro children should have playmates in school, but I do not want my children to play with them near home or to bring them home.”
5. “I want my children to play with other children from all races so they can make up their own minds about them.”
6. “I am definitely against Negroes and Jews. They both smell bad and are too aggressive. We should segregate the Negroes.”
7. “I would not let my children play with Negro groups, not with marriage possibilities.”
8. “I wouldn’t have Negroes in my house. I wouldn’t move into another neighborhood with Negroes though. If I saw my children play with Negroes, I wouldn’t permit it. They can play with native-born whites.”
9. “Negroes, if they have the money and education, are always neat and clean.”
10. “I think Negroes, Japanese and Jews are all about as bad. Mixed group marriages, or people of white and Negro race seen together, turn my stomach.”
(3, 5) – If statement 3 or 5 best expresses your feelings you are practically free of racial prejudice.
(9) – If you picked statement nine, you probably hold more favorable than unfavorable opinions of Negroes, but you probably are “masking a few antipathies,” the experts say.
(2) – Selectors of this remark are “ambivalent” in their opinions of Negroes but are the kind who think the “Negro is all right in his place,” the researchers found.
(1, 7) – Choosing either of these responses indicates you fit the average for middle-class Americans in a northern metropolis and you have “considerable” prejudice.
(4, 10) – If your views coincide with either of these statements, you are “very prejudiced.”
(6, 8) – These remarks represent the “extremely prejudiced.”

Jan. 5, 1974: Look out for No. 1!

Posted by: Ben Welter under Minnesota History Updated: January 26, 2015 - 3:31 PM
I've been trying to find out who leaked this story to the Minneapolis Star more than 40 years ago, but all the leads have dried up.

IDS glass washers urinate to street

Minneapolis Star Staff Writer
Men who wash the windows for the IDS tower say that it’s not unusual for them to urinate over the street below.
The window washers say that they think that because the urine must fall 30 or 40 stories, it dissipates before it hits the ground.
  The IDS in 1972: Tut-tut, it looks like rain.
“We usually did it when we got to an empty floor,” said one window washer who cleaned windows for several weeks. “That way people (in the building) couldn’t see us.”
Window washers for IDS work from a cage-like car that is lowered from the top of the building.
Each crew is made up of three persons. Once or twice a day each one urinates out of the car, several men said in interviews.
The window washers are not employed by IDS but by a firm that is contracted for by IDS.
A spokesman for IDS Properties said that Sanitas Services of Minnesota does the window washing. Beginning next summer, IDS will assume the window washing job itself.
Jerry Finkelstein, president of Sanitas Services of Minnesota, said he did not know if his employees were doing it, but that it was contrary to “what the company instructed them, what the company believes in and what the company provides them.”
He said that he could not say at this time what the company provides.
“Our reputation is on the line,” said Finkelstein. He said that any men who he found had been urinating from the platform would be reprimanded and if they were not providing the Minneapolis Star with truthful information, and The Star’s story was in error, he would sue the newspaper.
“I would say it’s not impossible,” says Paul Lucas, operations manager for the IDS tower, when told about the reports.
Lucas said the men are not under his control but if he “got wind of it” he would order the situation corrected.
One window washer remembers the first time he had to urinate and was told by another man to do it over the side.
“At first I was taken aback,” the window washer said. He said that sometimes, he’d urinate on the building, and then throw some water on it to wash it away.
The window washer said it would take too much time to raise their platform back to the top of the building every time someone had to go. “The bosses would lose money,” the window washer explained.
Another window washer said that at first the crew used a bucket to urinate in, but “they took it off for some reason.”
Lucas emphasized the IDS was concerned about all aspects of safety, and had established a remarkable safety record since the time the building was constructed. 


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