It’s not every day that people associate libraries with football. But with UNI’s long-standing football tradition and the Rod Library University Archives’ commitment to preserving UNI’s past, the relationship is fitting. Among the endless treasures in the University Archives are over 250 films of UNI’s football games from a memorable era spanning 1958-1975. These films include memories of three Panther nine-win seasons, featuring All-American and UNI Hall of Famers including George Alsleson, Wendell Williams, Randy Shultz, Ray Pederson, and Mike Timmermans. Memories of Latham Stadium come alive in this collection of films. Unfortunately, the films are only available in their original format and are rapidly deteriorating.
Staff in Rod Library’s Special Collections & University Archives and Digital Scholarship Unit work not only to preserve UNI’s past but also to make it as accessible to the campus and community as possible. Digitization of fragile items, like film, photographs, and paper documents, preserves unique content that otherwise might become unusable and lost to us forever. Digitization also opens access to otherwise out-of-the-way or rare material and memories, and online access through ScholarWorks makes these materials even easier to find and view. Researchers, including faculty, students, journalists, genealogists, and hobbyists regularly use the Special Collections & University Archives to inform their work.
Digitizing these football films will preserve an important and exciting piece of UNI’s past, allowing us to share it with current and future generations of Panthers.
We invite you to support the football films digitization project through the UNI Football films PAWprint campaign (https://pawprint.uni.edu/project/7419).