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Husker Football in the Age of Reform and Progress, 1890-1920

2019 Carroll R. Pauley Lecture

5:00 pm–6:00 pm
Nebraska Union Room: Platte River Room
Additional Info: NU
James Le Sueur,
This year’s Pauley Lecture is presented by Dr. Bruce Pauley.

“Husker Football in the Age of Reform and Progress, 1890-1920” is part of a larger study of everyday life in an age of phenomenal social, political, and economic changes. An agrarian, frontier society was replaced by one which was increasingly urban. The three decades were the golden age of streetcars, trains, and newspapers. They marked the end of horse-drawn buggies and the arrival of automobiles, movies, electric lights, and modern hospitals. Women not only gained the vote, but also played a dominant role in the prohibitionist movement. Meanwhile, small denominational colleges were replaced by rapidly growing public universities, including the University of Nebraska, whose enrollment grew from fewer than six hundred in 1890 to nearly seven thousand in 1920. During the same period, the supremacy of Ivy League football was being challenged by Midwestern schools. Husker football went from non-existence to becoming one of the country’s powerhouses. Meanwhile, the rules of football changed drastically into becoming much as they are today, while attempts to make the game safer had only limited success.

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This event originated in History.