CHICAGO — OK all you Northwestern fans basking in the glory of Thursday's basketball win over Vanderbilt in the NCAA tournament:
A one, and a two and a...
Go! U Northwestern!
Fight for victory.
Spread far the fame of our fair name.
Go Northwestern, win that game!
Almost makes one want to march around and form a big N or something.
Speaking of which, we ran across this 1923 video of Northwestern (football) fans. Feel free to share it with your fellow Wildcat fans:
The video is from the Moving Image Research Collections at the University of South Carolina.
While the flick is silent, it's possible that Northwestern's fight song may have been part of the entertainment mix. Written by Pharmacy School student and South Side resident Theodore Van Etten, "Go U Northwestern" premiered in 1912. It was said that he "was thrilled" every time he heard it broadcast on the radio.
The year the video was filmed, 1923, Northwestern went 0-6 in the Big Ten, finishing in last place (and going two games without scoring at all). The Wildcats did manage to beat non-conference teams from Beloit College (21-6) and Lake Forest College (32-0).
Luckily, the video shows one of those wins.
The game against Beloit was watched by 10,000 people, according to an Oct. 7, 1923, Tribune account. But even the victory faced scrutiny: The Wildcats were "erratic," according to the report, and "spurted and stumbled" to the win. The team also was "frequently penalized for stalling" and criticized for its "eccentric circular system."
Moving Image Research Collections seeks to preserve films made outside the feature film industry. It holds 11 million feet of fragile silent and sound films that document news and global events from the 1920s to 1940s that were produced by Fox Movietone.
The Fox library was given to the university by the Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation in 1980, and the university works to restore them and make them available to the public.