Interview With Alcide Marin

Version 3.0 (November 1999/September 2000)
Interviewee:
Alcid Marin
Student Director 1943
Asst. Cal Band/Dir. ROTC Band 1944
Acting Cal Band Director 1945/Associate in the Music Dept.
Interviewer:
Dan Cheatham, Drum Major 1957
Date of Interview:
Mid March 1996
Place:
Coffee Shop Alta Bates Hospital
[Cheatham edited his own remarks for clarity and grammar in December 1997.
Marin edited his own remarks for clarity and grammar in February 1999.
Cheatham typed in Marin’s corrections in April 1999 and applied finishing touches in September 1999. Cheatham made a few changes in September 2000 to update some of the points in the interview.]

Keywords: Room 5, Student Director 1943, Acting Director 1944, Charles Cushing, V-12 Program, marching rehearsals

Cheatham: My name is Dan Cheatham. I was Drum Major of the Band in 1957.

Marin: My name is Alcide Marin. I was a graduate student of Charles Cushing’s between 1943 and 1945. I came to Cal from University High School located close to the Oakland/Berkeley border, On Grove Street. [Now called Martin Luther King Way. NHC]

I played Mellophone, Baritone, Euphonium, and even Trombone at one time. During the concert band season I played the String-Bass. When I was Acting Director of the Cal Band, I had a faculty appointment with the University as an associate in the Music Department.

Originally, my major instrument was the piano. My mother started me when I was about 5-years old. And when I went to the public schools, I joined the school’s orchestra and the band and of course there was a junior ROTC Band in high school too. That’s when I started learning other instruments.

In the orchestra I learned to play the String Bass because there were a number of pianists and we couldn’t all play at the same time. I played String Bass when I wasn’t playing the piano. I remember Mr. Carter, the Director of Music at University High while I was there. He taught me how to play the Mellophone and that was when I started learning the brass instruments, which led me, eventually, into the Cal Band.

One interesting thing is after graduating from Cal I did some student teaching back at University High School. I taught band and the ROTC band.

Cheatham: How did you became aware that there was such a thing as the Cal Band.

Marin: When I was in grammar school I was on the student traffic squad that stopped traffic while students crossed the street. We used to get passes to go to Cal football games. That’s when I remember seeing the Cal Band and getting my first impressions.

During my first two years at Cal, I played in the ROTC Band in order to satisfy my requirement for compulsory ROTC for Freshmen and Sophomore men. That’s where I started to pal around with members of the Cal Band because they also had to take ROTC and did so by playing in the ROTC band. Going from the ROTC band to the Cal Band was natural because Mr. Berdahl conducted both bands. [Berdahl was the Student Director of the Cal Band in 1938 and must have been conducting the ROTC band under Charles Cushing’s supervision. NHC]

I remember the Cal Band going to Treasure Island during the last year of the World Fair. That was very interesting to me but I have forgotten what we played.[Note: A certificate of appreciation hangs in the Cal Band reception office.(September 2000: The cirtificate is now in the Bancroft Library.) Also, note that Cal Band Senior Manager (1939), Abe Hankin, was coordinating the Band’s appearance as an employee at the fair grounds. He worked as part of the special events staff at the fair and talks about it in his oral history. See the appendix at the end of this document. NHC]

Marin: On New Year’s Day the Cal Band used to perform at the Shriners East-West football game in the old Kesar stadium at Golden Gate Park.

I remember one New Year’s Day in particular. It was raining and we were preparing for the parade. We were wearing white shoes and of course it was very difficult keeping them white...walking in the mud and all of that. I remember during the half-time they unfolded the big American Flag on the field while the Cal Band was participating in the field show. Of course, our shoes got all muddy again.

[As far as I know they still feature spreading out a huge American flag at half-time of the Shriner’s East-West football game, held currently at the Stanford stadium. NHC] [September 2000: There are plans that it will be held in the new Pacific Bell baseball park in San Francisco starting in 2001.]

Cheatham: From my own undergraduate days, I remember the important role that the bandroom at Room 5 Eshleman Hall played in my life. What was it like in your time? [It is now called Moses Hall.]

Marin: Room 5 was a meeting place for most of the Bandsmen between classes and on the way home. I always stopped by there to visit with other Bandsmen. There was a shower room in the back where I took many a shower before and after games. There was also a ping-pong table.

[By the 1950’s it ceased to function as a shower room and one of the stalls was converted, in a makeshift manner, into the music library. It and the adjacent bathroom were lined with marble and had a tile floor. It was quite elegant and consistent with public bathrooms built during the late 1920s. The drummers liked to go in there and practice, much to the detriment of their hearing I am sure. NHC]

Each Bandsman had a locker and of course, we kept a lot of our books there.

There was a telephone right by the window near the front door. It was not supposed to be used except by band managers and other band officers. [As I recall, it was connected to the ASUC central switch board. NHC] There was a table and lounge area there by the phone.

Cheatham: How did it happen that you became the Student Director for the football season 1943?

Marin: Being a music major I was naturally interested in conducting and I was impressed, of course, with the Student Directors when I first got into the Band. It was in the back of my mind... that’s what I wanted to do too...to be Student Director.

They usually held elections for the student officers but I can’t remember now whether there was an election when I became Student Director. There must have been an election but things were kind of in a turmoil at the time due to the wartime intervention on campus. I guess Cushing had me in mind to be the Student Director and it may have been more of an appointment rather than an election. [I suspect it was. At that time the Band was only about 35 members strong, if that many, and many of the members were in the various military units on campus and not available to hang around the band room in the usual manner. I suspect that many Band matters, by default, were decided by Prof. Cushing. See interviews by Dave Wenrick and Dick Auslen for insights into the reestablishment of the “student system” after the war. NHC]

In 1943 I was Student Director and the next year I was Assistant Director to Cushing. [Morin and Herb Towler are are the only student officers listed in the Cal Band history book for 1943 and 1944. That was at the height of the war years and I suspect Prof. Cushing was holding the Band together as best he could. I suspect he had very few students to draw from who weren’t in the military. My guess is there was not a sufficient critical mass of students to have a banquet and an election. Furthermore, an elected officer could not be counted to be on campus during the next student year. They would have been shipped out on military assignment. Cushing probably just appointed whoever he could among the students not in the military. NHC]

As the Assistant Director I had a lot of the administrative work that Cushing passed on to me. I became more involved with the duties of the Director. That probably led to my being the Acting Director when Cushing went on sabbatical the following year.

Cheatham: How did you become the Acting Director for the academic year, 1945?

Marin: I got to know Charles Cushing quite well because music was my major and I enrolled in some of his courses and of course we also worked together when I was the Student Director. Sometimes I would go with him to certain meetings at the public schools in the area. And, as the Student Director, I would sometimes take over Cal Band rehearsals for him...even the concert band. I am sure that led to my being the Acting Director when he went on sabbatical.

I believe he went to Tahoe somewhere but I don’t know what he was doing. He just...he was doing a lot of reading and resting, he said. I guess he shaved off his goatee at the time and of course that was rather interesting to me because I only remembered seeing him with a goatee. [He was wearing it during the post-war years and he had the nickname, “Cush the Bush.” NHC]

Cheatham: You said that you took some classes with Cushing. What kind of a teacher was he?

Marin: I took classes in Harmony and Composition and he was a pretty good teacher I’d say. As a matter of fact, one of the courses I took was in French Music which was his specialty.

In my freshman year, I believe, I started out with Cushing in Music 1 ...I think it was Music 1...and Harmony and then I believe, the next year was with Bill Denny and then for Music 3 and 4, which was Harmony and in Advanced Harmony I was with Edward Strickland.

Cushing was interested in Modern Music. He was composing at the time but I never did hear any of his compositions.

I once complained to him that I didn’t know why I was studying music because I wondered how important music was in this period? It was near the end of the war and I said maybe I should have gone into something more mechanical...physics or chemistry...because it seemed more practical at the time. He said, “Well, that may be interesting to you but after all, why do people study mechanical engineering and all of those things? It’s so that they can have time to appreciate the arts.”

I enjoyed taking the courses from him because I felt that he taught us the essentials and didn’t spend too much time joking about anything, that I can recall.

Cheatham: During the time that you were functioning as Cushing’s direct assistant and as Acting Director, what were some of the kinds of daily problems that you had to deal with with regards to the Cal Band?

Marin: I dealt with maintenance of the instruments...getting them repaired. After each semester, most of the instruments that were loaned out had to be overhauled. So we took some of them to Best Music and also Forrests Music companies for the repair work. One of the problems was getting the money to pay for the repairs. Some of the instruments belonged to the ASUC, some to the Military, and some to the University. So all of these funds had to be amalgamated in one way or another. As a matter of fact I have a letter from, I think it was from the Head of the ROTC Department, concerning some instruments that I was going to repair and pay for with some of his funds. [His title was Professor of Military Science and Tactics. I think that was a courtesy title to give him faculty standing and provide academic credit the classes. NHC]

The Cal Band uniforms belonged to the ASUC and of course they had to be cleaned after each semester and we had to get money for that.

Coordinating all of the various owners of the equipment and instruments was a bit of a problem.

When I was Acting Director, there was a small office, about the size of a janitor’s closet on one of the landings in a stair well near the band rehearsal room at 175 Men’s Gym. I wonder if it was not intended to be a janitor’s closet, but nevertheless I enjoyed having my own office. Is it still there? [Yes. It was until they renovated Men’s Gym/Harmon Gym in 1998-99. NHC]

Of course, the acoustics in room 175 Men’s Gym weren’t perfect. It was a room without acoustic tiles and sound bounced off the walls. But it was adequate, I believe. I was able to get the things from the students that I needed. [Room 175 Men’s Gym is talked about in some of the other interviews covering this era. Men’s Gym became known as Harmon Gym in recent years. NHC]

I usually didn’t point out errors to any of the performers. I just ask them to do it over again when I heard something wasn’t going right. Then if I needed to explain what was wrong I would be more explicit. But often times by just asking them to do it again they would get it without my having to be too picky.

Actually the general level of musicians was quite good because we were rather strict during try-outs. We just didn’t let anyone into any of the bands; concert band, ROTC band or the Cal Band. They had to be able to read music. One thing I learned from Cushing was to be rather strict in the try-outs. During my time I remember there were some players from the Navy’s V-12 program.

The size of the bands that I rehearsed in room 175 were around maybe 55 or 60 members.At the end of each semester and before the beginning of the next, I would go up to International House, which was the headquarters for the V-12 Unit, and try to recruit new members for the bands. I could offer them academic credit for the concert band. Quite a number of people from the V-12 Unit responded. I also had to field a band when the ROTC and other military units had a parade [Pass in Review] on Edward’s Field.

There were not enough non-military students on campus...students who had deferments for various reasons and weren’t drafted...to keep the various bands going without the V-12 students. That was especially apparent for the Cal Band during football season. [See Herb Towler’s interview. NHC]

Cheatham: Tell us about the Cal Band marching rehearsals in preparation for performances at football games.

Marin: Many of the marching rehearsals during the football season were held in the field immediately west of the Hearst Gymnasium for Women. It wasn’t a very large field but it was large enough to do our stuff. Of course, some of the times we would go up to the stadium and rehearse there. The stunts for the football games were designed, mostly, by the Drum Major. Herb Towler was one of them. Some of the stunts were designed so that we could make a configuration of geometrical forms which we thought were rather unique at the time. Sometimes at the beginning of the game we would do the Star Spangled Banner with the visiting band. I would direct both of them together.

As I recall, most of the pregame entrances...we had a fanfare at the beginning. We usually had enough trumpets and trombones to do the Hail to Cal fanfare...which Cushing wrote by the way. Even though it was a small group, we still did them well enough to go over well. Actually the rooting section at the football games were of quite good size, considering the war years and all. The card stunts were quite well done too.

I remember one incident at one of the rehearsals, in the stadium ...they pantsed one of the guys and hung his pants up on a flagpole because he was being disruptive...that was kind of a discipline action imposed by the group.

Cheatham: Yes. I can remember in my days as a water boy, in that immediate post-war era, pantsing was a manner of disciplining someone who was disruptive when the rest of the Band wanted to get along with rehearsal. The disruptive individual would be ganged up on and they would remove his trousers. In fact, sometimes in later years they refer to it as a “trouser-rectomy.” We have to remember that in those days it was an all male band. The idea was to place their trousers in an awkward enough location that the person would have to retrieve them in his state of undress...wearing just his skivvy shorts. Sometimes his pants were run up an empty flagpole, if one was handy, or they were thrown on a high branch in a tree. The guy was exposed in such a manner, in public, and understood the displeasure that the rest of the Bandsman had towards his disruptive behavior.

One of the things that you bought to show me is a cardboard placard - a cardboard sign - advertising a University meeting on campus at the Men’s Gymnasium on September 12. There is no year on the placard but it does mention the music by the University of California Band directed by Alcide Marin, so we’re presuming it’s 1945, and it says the speaker will be Dr. Robert Gordon Sproul. Tell us about that University meeting?

Marin: The University meeting was in the Men’s Gymnasium and of course we, at that time, were still holding rehearsal in room 175 Men’s Gym. I remember President Sproul mentioning that the U.S. was working on something the Germans were also working on. He said whoever got it first would win the war. Of course that something turned out to be the Atomic Bomb. I always remember him saying that. That meeting was really interesting to me because it was a thrill to be directing the University Band at a University meeting with Dr. Sproul as the speaker. [See Tom Simonson’s interview for comments about the atomic bomb.]

Cheatham: Here is a copy of the 1945 Blue and Gold. On page 195 are some photographs that show the Band on the field. A photo, labeled number 5, shows Alcide conducting. And there’s a commentary regarding card stunts.

Picture number 2 shows a portrait of Coach Stub Allison and the commentary points out that the women’s rooting section...that was then next door to the men’s routing section...had joined with the men in order to fill up the spaces and to make a large enough rooting section to perform the card stunts. These photos show card stunts with many students wearing Military uniforms. A lot of them are Naval uniforms because there was a preponderance of Naval personnel on campus at that time. The largest component was the V-12 program which was housed at International House which, during those years, was renamed Callaghan Hall, after a famous naval officer. [Rear Admiral Daniel Judson Callaghan was once the Executive Officer of the Naval ROTC unit on campus. He was killed on the bridge of the cruiser USS San Francisco while commanding a cruiser task force engaged in battle off Savo Island in the Solomon Islands during the Guadalcanal campaign in the early days of World War II.]

The Navy wasn’t the only service represented. There were also some Marines. Callaghan Hall was staffed by Navy personnel referred to as the Naval Training Unit. Commanding Officer’s name was Captain Bruce L. Canaga. The goal of the program, as mentioned in the Blue and Gold, was “To train men to be excellent officers and to place these officers where they are most urgently needed. Their training is strict...“reveille, quiet hours, and inspection are well enforced but the boys who otherwise would have had their college courses interrupted, are getting the opportunity to finish their education.” There was also a Naval ROTC Battalion on campus.

Back again, for a minute, to the V-12 program, we have another oral history interview with Cal Band drummer, Phil Elwood. He was in the V-12 and his interview should be referred to.

[Alcide adds: “The V-12’s added not only a military flavor to our campus, but they added a great deal of pep and vitality to University enterprises. They also contributed many student officers and participants in the student government. Their participation in sports, especially football, revived the lagging war-time spirit.”]

The V-12 program was established as an officer procurement program, and all the V-12’s studying at Callaghan Hall were candidates for Naval or Marine commissions. They could follow one of two courses. The regular students took a fully prescribed Navy program. The irregular students were those who were already in college prior to entering the Navy and followed a college curriculum as well as a Navy course. The Navy wanted the V-12 program to be a “college” program where prospective officers got the benefits of college education and associations. In other words, the Navy felt they would make a more rounded officer if they had the experience of being a college student.

For more on the V-12 program see the interview with Ludy E. Langer. He talks a lot about his personal experiences.

Going on with a list of Military Units on campus at the time...there was also a Marine Corps Unit, and an Army ROTC Unit.

Also, inserted in the Blue and Gold, was a piece of paper with some of Alcide’s writing on it and I’ll give him a chance to talk about that.

Marin: I don’t know how accurate this is but this piece of paper mentions the Class songs and it says the Freshman song was “Rambled”, the Sophomore class song was “Rambling Wreck” [I think it was “The Jolly Sophomore” to the tune of the Rambling Wreck from Georgia Tech. NHC], and the Junior’s song was “One More River” which, by the way, we used to play coming out of the stadium at the end of the game. Do they still do that? [In the background Cheatham says, “Yes.”] The Senior’s song was “Big C”. My recollections about these are not strong but I have it written down here so it must be.

Cheatham: That explains a mystery that’s on my mind. When I first got involved on campus, we had enough football players and enough funds to support a second football team. It was a Junior Varsity team that was called “The Ramblers”. I wonder if maybe, at one point, it might have been formulated as a football team built around a preponderance of freshman football players-in-training for the varsity team. The team might have gotten its name from the freshman class song.

The words are about a “billy-goat” who was known for “rambling in and out of town”, although there might be a set of words special to the Freshman class.

It’s also the tune of the opening lines of the song we know as the “California Drinking Song”. In fact, when I was first involved with the Band, the Student Director, when giving a signal to play the drinking song, would wave his first finger in the air in a circular motion (The same hand signal the infantry used to indicate “assemble”.) that indicated the song “Rambled” followed by the signal for the “Drinking Song” and he would shout out loud, “Rambled into the Drinking Song!” In other words, he wanted to combine the two songs. Today, few people realize that there are two different tunes. As it is now sung and it’s just known as the “Drinking Song”.

[Speculation: One of the verses, referring to Billy-the-goat, goes “He rambled onto the ferry boat and rambled on the deck. The ferry-man got after him and rambled him on the neck.” This followed by the chorus which corresponds to the tune of the “California Drinking Song” that goes “Oh California, California...or know the reason why.” It then shifts into a new tune starting with the words, “And when the game is over...”

The introduction to the whole thing is the part that starts, “Oh, they had to carry Harry to the ferry..” I wonder if this isn’t reference to the same ferry that Billy-the-goat rambled onto?

In his oral history, Honorary Life Member of the Cal Band Ralph Edwards, describes how each class marched into the Greek Theatre separately by class. He didn’t mention it but surely the Band would have been playing each “class song.”]

Today the signal for “the Drinking Song” is a closed fist with thumb and little finger extended. This is waved back and forth in the air in a motion that is used to indicate drinking from a bottle of beer. This same gesture is used in Hawaii to indicate, “Hang Loose”.

Also stuck in among the pages is a Cal Band roster dated July, 1945. On this roster are 51 names. Among them are the names Robert Desky and Donald Griffith. We have oral histories with both of these people.

Alcide, I’m holding, in my hand, two programs for University concert band spring performances. One of them is April 12, 1942, and the other one is April 18, 1943. There is something unusual about the openings of these two concerts and I’d like you to tell us about it.

Marin: They were held in the Men’s Gym - during the spring semester, the football “off season”, when the Cal Band was transformed into a concert band. We rehearsed every Tuesday and Thursday in the Greek Theatre, as long as the weather was clear. The interesting thing about these two programs is that the Star Spangled Banner as played for two years, ’42 and ’43, was arranged by Strawinsky, Igor Strawinsky, and transcribed for band by Charles Cushing, of course. I can remember that after the second performance Cushing told us that he was instructed that he couldn’t play that arrangement again.

The arrangement was, to me, not offensive. I mean, it was of modern-type harmony...but apparently it offended some people and he was told that he couldn’t use it any more but that’s about all I know. [Because it did not have a patriotic enough sound for the war years? NHC]

The melody, of course was the same but the harmonization was... If you have ever heard any of Igor Strawinsky’s music, you know that it was with modern harmony and it’s probably...

These harmonies are probably what offended some people, I would imagine. It didn’t offend me at all because I’ve written the stuff myself. It was in the modern idiom but apparently it was decided that Cushing was only to use the traditional harmonization of the Star Spangled Banner.

I think Strawinsky’s harmonization was more dissonant than the traditional harmony. Some of the notes that would sound out of place to a traditionalist were actually...they didn’t sound out of place to me. That’s about all I can say on that.

Cheatham: Incidentally, I would point out that it was written on the program as Strawinsky. It was later that you see it spelled with a “V” instead of a “W”. I’m just wondering, out loud, if this spelling is based on his native language and the fact that he just recently immigrated from Europe. This may also have inspired him to prepare this arrangement in gratitude, after fleeing wartime Europe.

I wonder who told Cushing not to use that arrangement. Was it the Music Department or was it the University President Robert Gordon Sproul? I would presume that, as with your experience, the Chairman of the Music Department would have understood the musical principles involved so it must have been someone else. Maybe it was it was Provost Monroe E.Deutsch.

Give us a brief synopsis of your adventures subsequent to your graduation from Cal?

Marin: In my graduate work I did a lot of courses in Composition. I studied with Roger Sessions when he was here at Berkeley and so I have been doing some composing myself...although the last couple of years I haven’t done too much. But I’ve written a number of things myself. I still have ambitions to write more music. Most of the things that I’ve written are for piano and some were for wind instruments...chamber music. There could be more to come. That will remain to be seen.

I’ve also been an organist at the Naval Air Station in Alameda for a good many years. The base is closing down now so that’s going to come to an end. I’ve played a lot of weddings there. I’m not there every Sunday anymore, as I used to be, but I still get calls. I’m on-call for weddings and memorial services. Of course I did some teaching in the public schools, too...such as Acalanes High as a long term substitute. I have a private music studio where I teach piano and organ and other instruments. I also teach orchestration. It remains to be seen what I will do in the future.

Cheatham: I think it’s rather interesting how you and I came to meet one another. Would you tell us about that.

Marin: I had a call to play for a wedding at Treasure Island. The regular organist was away and wasn’t going to be back on time. So I went to the rehearsal and I noticed that there were a number of people pulling instruments out of a car and I said, “Well, are you musicians”? And they said, “We belong to the Cal Band.” So the rehearsal went well and then, of course, I met the bride and the groom and they invited me to the reception once they found out I was also a member of the Cal Band. Cal Band Director Robert O. Briggs was there and we sat together...right across from Cheatham. And that’s how I found out that he was doing tape interviews. Ever since then, I’ve been trying to get with him on this.

Cheatham: This was the wedding between Genro Sato and Grace Tiscareño which was held at the Chapel at Treasure Island. Genro was Senior Manager of the Band the same year that Grace was the Public Relations Director (1988). The interesting thing about this ceremony is that the two of them designed it themselves molding the Spanish-Catholic heritage that Grace came from and the Japanese heritage that Genro came from, into a very nice and unusual marriage ceremony. Currently Grace is a Captain in the Air Force as a navigator flying in aerial tankers and has been dispatched on several occasions to the mid-east as part of those duties.

For the final question in this interview, are any additional thoughts you would like to share with us?

Marin: One of the important things to me, even now, is my experience with the Cal Band and that I was its Acting Director. Occasionally when I meet someone at a party or somewhere, and they ask me, I feel proud to tell them that I am connected with the Cal Band...that I had been a Director of the Cal Band. Then occasionally I run into people who say that they remembered me from those days. That makes me feel very proud too. It’s something that I’m sure I will never forget.

I think Charles Cushing had an influence on me. He actually got me started and gave me the proper instructions even though I had had a course in musical conducting. His advice was more practical and I’m very much indebted to him. I never got close enough that I knew him personally very well, but I felt close to him academically and as a musician.

Cheatham: Thank you very much for spending time with me talking about a part of the Cal Band history of which we really know very little...the middle war years.

APPENDIX

Comments from an oral history with Abe Hankin, Cal Band Senior Manager 1939.

I ran Cal Day at the Fair. That was a series of events in which the University was incorporated into a day’s events at the Fair.

John McPherson and I flew over to Treasure Island on a sea plane. John was the President of the Associated Students and, unfortunately, is no longer living.

A feature of the Fair was a pageant called the “Calvacade of America”. It was the history of the United States done in pageant form and in addition to hundreds of people, and horses and stage coaches and things like that, there was a sound system which provided the necessary voices in the background for this performance. And what they would do, at particular places in the script...insert the names of people from the class that would be recognized...people sitting there...

I’ll give you an example. There was an argument staged where two people would go to the wild west and are about to be assessed for the glass in their houses...for the windows...and there was this argument back and forth and they used names of people who were in the class. I think Bob Odell was one and somebody else was another...and they were arguing back and forth as if it were real and the upshot was, “Why are you worried about these taxes? You don’t have windows in your house anyway.”

That was the nature of how we were incorporated into the events of the Fair and I might add, while we’re at it...I can’t remember the man’s name who wrote a book about The Golden Gate International Exposition...one of the features of the exposition was the Fair’s theme statue called Pacifica...beautiful ladies, standing many stories high...and there was a picture of it and it was in all the papers.

What happened was that some members of my Cal Day committee...I don’t really know they were...but they built a huge rooter’s cap, a blue and gold rooter’s cap and put it at a very rakish angle on the statute of Pacifica. Now the man that wrote that book is somewhere on this campus and I’ve been meaning to get in touch with him. When he reported that...he reported it as a Navy seaman’s cap because the photo was in black and white and looking at it, you’d never know but it was a Blue and Gold rooter’s cap and it was part of homecoming that year.

Cheatham: That story gets clarified when you consider that the felt rooting caps that they used in those days were, in fact, shaped very much like a Navy seaman’s cap...one side being blue and one side being gold. You could turn the hats inside out displaying each of the colors as needed. For instance, while sitting the rooting section you could display a gold C on a blue field.