When Gerald Ford died last winter, I wrote a blog entry about U.S. presidents wearing various sports uniforms. But it turns out, unsurprisingly, that there are lots of additional photos that I didn’t find. That news recently came my way from Satin Piping-level member Karen Hibbitt, who works at the National Archives, where they’re currently featuring an exhibit called “School House to the White House: The Education of the Presidents.”
As Karen explained to me, the exhibit focuses on “presidents (Hoover to present) during their school days, with LOTS of great athletic/uniform photos — and not just Ford (although we do have his Michigan varsity sweater on display).” Indeed, the exhibit’s web page includes great shots of Eisenhower playing football, baseball shots of LBJ (he’s the catcher) and George H. W. Bush, FDR posing with his high school baseball team (that’s him, back row, third from right [he was the student manager], although of course I’m more interested in the hoop-striped undersleeves), and JFK on the Harvard swim team (back row, third from left).
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Karen generously offered to send me additional photos from the exhibit, the best of which break down as follows:
• Here’s Dwight Eisenhower’s Abilene High School baseball team, with Ike shown in the top row, second from the right. (Note the awesome cuff stripes on the kid sitting in the center.)
• Man, I love the 1937 Harvard “second” football team‘s uniform. That’s a young JFK, then a sophomore, in the middle standing row, third from the right.
• Most Poppy Bush sports photos that I’ve seen focus on his Yale baseball days (like this team portrait, showing GHWB is in the front row, far left). But Karen sent along lots of material from his days at Phillips Academy in Andover, including a soccer photo, his varsity letter award, and an all-purpose sports pass.
• FDR served as an usher at Harvard football games, where he wore this sash.
• We’ve all seen lots of football photos of Gerald Ford. But here‘s one from his high school days that I haven’t seen before. And check this out: a recruitment letter from Curly Lambeau, who was trying to sign him for the Packers.
Big thanks to Karen for today’s content — much obliged!
Uni Watch News Ticker: Remember how the Mets were wearing their blue game caps during BP, instead of the new BP caps? Not anymore. A source with the team tells me, “We had to go back to the horrible BP hats, orders from MLB/New Era. We wore them this weekend, and will continue to for the near future.” … Member Jeffrey Soderberg contributed two good screen grabs yesterday: “The first one is Felipe Lopez (Nationals) vs. Indians on Friday the 22nd with a REEEDICULOUS-sized number pendant on his necklace. He’s only hitting .236, slugging .401 for the season — not exactly bling-worthy numbers. And from the same game, what the heck is a Yankees logo doing on a seat in the visiting bullpen during an Indians/Nationals game?” … Here’s how to perpetuate a bunch of really bad stereotypes: You run an article on same-sex couples adopting kids, as CNN.com did yeserday, and then pair it with this photo. Note that the kid is wearing his glove on the wrong hand. … The long-awaited Israel Baseball League has finally gotten underway. You can see a bit of the uniforms here and here, and the various caps are available here. “The cleverest is the one worn by the Netanya Tigers, in which the palm of the paw is the Hebrew letter tet,” writes Eric Trager, who also notes that player names on the jerseys are printed in Hebrew. … Andrew Connor points out that the p in the Capitals’ new logo is very evocative of this logo. … According to a Texas A&M message board, the Aggies’ new football unis will look like this and this. … The Bucks have unveiled a 40th-anniversary logo, and does that “40” look super-clunky or what? … “Three years ago,” writes Tom K, “I would have never read this article on striped knit socks. But now, being a uni-watcher, I was all over it.” … Great contribution from Matt Nelson, who writes: “I was at the Cedar Rapids Kernels game tonight at Veterans Memorial Stadium, where the gift shop includes the Cedar Rapids Pro Baseball Hall of Fame. Their displays include a couple of pretty old jerseys, highlighted by a 1907 Cedar Rapids Bunnies jersey.” … Only one member of the Cardinals was showing his stripes last night: the batboy (with thanks to Chris Flinn, who was at the game). … Last week I reported that the U. of Minnesota would be enlarging the “M” on their football helmet. It will apparently look like the one shown here.