Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!
Summer is great time for grilling and barbecuing!
Buffalo Barbecue at Memorial Stadium (visible in the background), 1961.
University Archives Photos. Call Number: RG 71/66/14 1961/1962 Prints:
Student Activities: Sports: Football Fans (Photos).
Click image to enlarge (redirect to Spencer’s digital collections).
The Buffalo Barbecue was held on Saturday, April 22, 1961, just after the Kansas Relays parade in downtown Lawrence.
Reporting on a dry run of the event earlier in the week, the Lawrence Journal-World stated that “entertainment at the barbecue includes square dancing, western band, barber shop quartet and folk singing. Tickets are $1.50 each. Four serving lines will ensure quick service for everyone.” The newspaper anticipated that 2,000 people would attend.
The barbecue also culminated a week of campus celebrations marking the centennial of Kansas statehood. According to the 1961 Jayhawker yearbook:
Hooped skirts and cowboy boots prevailed in campus dress during the K.U. Centennial Week, April 17-22. The western flavor was encouraged by the Centennial Co-ordinating Committee, composed of the major Hill organizations, the dormitory councils, the Douglas County Centennial Committee, and the K.U. administration. Even Chancellor Wescoe yielded to the spirit of pioneer Kansas with a carriage ride to his office Thursday. Drama was added Friday noon when the Registrar’s office suffered a staged payroll robbery. Four of the kidnapper-gunmen were captured in a running battle with the sheriffs on Strong Hall lawn, to the delight of the spectators. A Zone X square dance Friday night led into the Centennial K.U. Relays the next day (446-447).
Whether or not buffalo was actually on the menu at the barbecue remains undetermined.
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