Come on up to the fourth floor to see the new exhibit Gridiron’s Golden Era: Early Days of High School Football in Grand Rapids. This exhibit tells the story of Grand Rapids high school football beginning in 1892 and up through the season of 1959 which ended with a play that came to be known as “The Run”. Over the years, autumn weekends were defined by the battles fought at Houseman Field, South Field, and Island Park between teams such as the Union Red Hawks, Catholic Central Cougars, South Trojans, Central Rams, Creston Polar Bears, and the Ottawa Hills Bengals.
So come learn about the fierce rivalry between South and Union, and their annual quest for the Little Red Jug. In addition, learn about Catholic Central’s dominance in the 1940’s and 50’s under coach Ted Sowle. Also see photos of Gerald Ford as the captain of the Trojans and as a Herald All-City Player. The exhibit is drawn from the library’s vast archival collections including yearbooks, programs, newspaper articles, photos from the Robinson collection, and even some extremely rare footage of a 1948 Thanksgiving Day game.