Vandy's Field Day in 1893
May 12, 2010
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May 19, 1893 was a special day on the Vanderbilt campus. It was the annual "Field Day." Vanderbilt athletes and other participants had the opportunity to show their skills in several events. The events were held on the original Dudley Field on the Vanderbilt campus. The Nashville newspaper, The Daily American reported on the special day:
Not only was the day a perfect one and every event passed off most smoothly, but the doughty athletes knocked the props from out some of its records which former field day contestants had set up and which they meant to stand as monuments to their prowess.
Seven of these records were smashed and new ones put up in their place. Two of these were made by Goldthwaite, the only contestant sent down from Sewanee. He showed himself to be a runner of pronounced qualities and if properly trained will no doubt make a name for himself as a sprinter.
Next up was the running high jump also with just two contestants competing. C. Ratcliffe of Vanderbilt, defeated R. L. Smithson of the University of Nashville (Peabody) with a jump of 5 feet, five inches. That leap broke the record of five feet, four inches.
In the 120-yard hurdle race, G. Goldthwaite of Sewanee defeated Vanderbilt's C.R. Baskerville with a time of 18 and one-half seconds. The previous record was 19 and one-half seconds.
The American reported on the 100-yard dash:
Rip Allen of Vanderbilt and P. M. McNeil of the University of Nashville competed in the hammer throw. Allen's toss of 72 feet won the match, but fell short of the record of 74 feet, six inches.
Hanner is in some respects one of the best athletes of Vanderbilt University and, considering his small statue, is somewhat of a prodigy. He deserves much credit for yesterday's showing, having never practiced a single day in the field for the contest. In fact, he had had but five days' training in this work for the past two years. The university will lose him after this year, as he has already completed his course there.
Vanderbilt beating Cumberland 4-0 in a baseball game capped a long day of athletic events on the Vanderbilt campus.
If you have any comments or suggestions you can contact Bill Traughber via e-mail WLTraughber@aol.com. This will be the last Commodore History Corner story for the school year 2009-10.
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