What happened 100, 75, 50 and 25 years ago?

Welcome to 2011. Every year brings with it anniversaries to celebrate—or not. Here is a sampling of what happened at Stanford 100, 75, 50 and 25 years ago, according to A Chronology of Stanford University and Its Founders, published by the Stanford Historical Society and written by Karen Bartholomew, Claude Brinegar and Roxanne Nilan.


• In January, letter grades are introduced on report cards.
• Theodore Roosevelt tours campus in the springtime with President David Starr Jordan and Professor John Casper Branner.
• In October, Herbert Hoover is elected to the Board of Trustees, the second alumnus to serve.

Hank Luisetti
Hank Luisetti


• In January, the famous football “Vow Boys” beat Southern Methodist University 7-0 in the Rose Bowl.
• The trustees, faced with a declining endowment of about $30 million, successfully petition the Santa Clara Superior Court in February for permission to shift part of the endowment to corporate stocks and real estate.
• In December in Madison Square Garden, Hank Luisetti revolutionizes the game of basketball with his running one-handed jump shot as Stanford beats Long Island University.


• In March, several campus fraternities defy their national organizations and admit students who are black or Jewish.
• In April, President J. E. Wallace Sterling launches the three-year, $100 million fundraising drive called Plan of Action for a Challenging Era, or PACE campaign.
• By a vote of 2,044 to 951, students veto an April proposal to integrate the sexes into one football rooting section.
• In November, physicist Robert Hofstadter wins a Nobel Prize in physics for research on the structure of atomic nuclei.


• In February, freshman Debi Thomas wins the women’s U.S. Figure Skating Championship, then follows up by winning the world title in March in Geneva, Switzerland.
• In May, Lucile and David Packard pledge $70 million to finance construction of a new children’s hospital.
• In November, Athletic Director Andy Geiger bans the Band from playing at the UCLA game after the group spelled out a four-letter word and dropped pants during a half-time show.
• During a November trip to Japan, President Donald Kennedy announces two cooperative programs with Kyoto University.

Visit the Stanford Historical Society website.