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Tuesday, January 21, 2020
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  • Tuesday, January 14, 2020 3:43 PM
    If you went to school in Montgomery County from the 40s to consolidation in 1971, you would probably give about anything to sit in your old gym and listen to the school band play the school fight song.  For many of the county schools, the only time only time the fight song is heard  now is when the former school cheerleaders stand up in front on their respective alumni banquets and lead the former students in the school song.  Unfortunately, most of the school gymnasiums are gone; only Crawfordsville, Ladoga, and Waveland are still standing.  The Crawfordsville gym is a part of an ongoing renovation and may soon become apartments, the Ladoga gym  is still used by the Ladoga Elementary, and the Waveland gym is now a community center.
    As for the yearbooks and school newspapers, there is an incomplete collection at the Crawfordsville Library and North Montgomery and Southmont also has an incomplete collection at their respective libraries.  It was with this in mind that I decided that if we were not to lose these important memories, both tangible and intangible, completely, it was time to reach out to former students of the now defunct schools and try to get the school songs, names of newspapers and names of yearbooks so that we would have a record of the Golden Age of Education and Athletics in Montgomery County.  Sadly, this too is incomplete, but I hope to add to it as this material is disseminated.
    Here then are the school songs, nicknames, names of school yearbooks and school newspapers, if they existed.  I have also included the current schools of Crawfordsville, North Montgomery and Southmont.  I have also tried to record the origin of the school nicknames where that was possible.

    North Montgomery Chargers—Orange and Blue

    School Song—Across the Field, Ohio State
    “Oh We will always fight for North Montgomery beating every foe.
    And we will always stand behind our Chargers we are on the go.
    To our school we’ll always be true; we stand out in all that we do.
    Hail, Hail, the team’s all here and we’ll push on to victory!
    Oh, you will see the ever mighty Chargers fight for victory.
    And you will hear the crowd give out this cheer for North Montgomery.
    Hit them hard and see how they fall, never let that team get the ball.
    Hail, Hail, the team’s all fighting for North Montgomery!
    School newspaper-none
    School yearbook—Many times called Charger Flashback. Other times just labeled North Montgomery High School
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  • History of high school songs/names Pt. 1
    Tuesday, January 7, 2020 11:19 PM
    If you went to school in Montgomery County from the 40s to consolidation in 1971, you would probably give about anything to sit in your old gym and listen to the school band play the school fight song.  For many of the county schools, the only time only time the fight song is heard  now is when the former school cheerleaders stand up in front on their respective alumni banquets and lead the former students in the school song.  Unfortunately, most of the school gymnasiums are gone; only Crawfordsville, Ladoga, and Waveland are still standing.  The Crawfordsville gym is a part of an ongoing renovation and may soon become apartments, the Ladoga gym  is still used by the Ladoga Elementary, and the Waveland gym is now a community center.
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  • Monday, December 30, 2019 3:29 PM

    Although the 1962 annual notes that cross-country "...was established again for the first time since 1949," no record can be found of cross-country prior to 1962, when Dorwin Dick started the program.  This appears to be another of the little mysteries of athletics at CHS.  Dick continued to coach the harriers until 1969 when he turned the program over to Chuck Fiedler, who coached from 1969 to 1986.  During those years, against local and state-wide competition, the Fiedler-led teams raced to prominence.  From 1970 to 1974, CHS posted records of 11-3, 11-0, 10-0, 11-2, and 8-4.  In 1971, during an undefeated season, Dirk Berard set a new course and school record of 9:35.  Berard went on to a third place finish in the state meet, as the team finished 11th.  The next year, Berard again led the team as it finished 13th in the state; he was second overall, the highest finish ever for an Athenian runner.  Another milestone occurred when John Fowler completed over 2,500 miles during his three year career.  Under the leadership of Fiedler and Fowler, the Athenians won the Sagamore Conference championship.  In 1981, Louise Ashbaugh became the first girl to compete in cross-country; she ran with the boys for two years and then became the leader of the first girls' cross-country team.
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  • Monday, December 23, 2019 6:05 PM
    Boys' tennis began at CHS in 1938 when seven young men answered the call to participate in a new sport.  Dwaine Moore was the first coach and continued to coach through 1946 with time out for WWII.  Bob Hoke added tennis to his golf and football duties in 1947 and coached the first undefeated team in 1950.  In those early days the boys played tennis on the southeast corner of the high school lot and traveled with the golf team to away matches, so Hoke coached both teams.  In 1969, new courts were constructed at Tuttle Jr. High and the Athenians began to play there in the fall.  The courts at Tuttle were renamed Seward Courts after Athenian and Wabash College tennis star, Kerry Seward who was killed in a tragic car wreck.  Tennis coaches came and went during the next 25 years until Steve Macy arrived on the scene in 1976 and remained for 12 years.  Macy's teams won over 200 matches including 9 sectionals, 8 conference championships, and 10 Montgomery County Crowns.  Macy's best team was the 1979 team which finished with an outstanding record of 18-3.  After Steve Macy's death in 1990, Anita Rupar took over the program and led the boys to a 17-2 record which included Conference and County crowns.  At the end of last season, CHS had won 12 County Championships, 12 County titles and 10 Sectionals.  
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  • Tuesday, December 17, 2019 10:53 PM
     Girls' swimming, which began as a GAA activity in 1972 has exploded into one of the most competitive and successful programs at CHS.  Since 1973, three girls have won individual state championships and teams have won 8 Sectionals, 8 Conference, and 3 County championships.  The girls have finished in the top ten of the state three times, placing 8th in 1976, 5th in 1989 and 9th in 1991.   Like the boys, the girls had to practice in the wee hours of the morning at the Wabash College pool.  When the IHSAA began crowning a State Girls' Swimming Champion in March of 1973, Mary Lee Gilbert wasted no time sending a representative team to Indianapolis.  Sara McGaughey started the tradition of excellence with a 9th place finish in the 50M Fly. 
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  • Evolution of Basketball Uniforms – Part 6
    Wednesday, May 29, 2019 2:59 AM
    Since Title IX became the law of the land, the game of basketball for the ladies has undergone a cataclysmic change, but if you Google the words “Granny Ball”, you can still see girls basketball being played in Iowa and Kansas the same way it was played in the early days with grannies wearing replicas of the original uniforms. 
    The uniforms for girls began to look just like the boys after Title IX. 
    I hope you enjoy the pictures of the early basketball uniforms for girls. Most are from my home county of Montgomery County, Indiana, where basketball really started. Here in Crawfordsville, we firmly believe that the first game of organized basketball was played right here in the old YMCA on March 16, 1894. 
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  • Wednesday, May 8, 2019 2:54 AM
    The short shorts era changed drastically when the Fab Five came on the scene. The Fab Five was a nickname given to the 1991 University of Michigan men’s basketball team. They were considered to be the greatest recruiting class ever. The class consisted of Jalen Rose, Chris Webber, Juwan Howard, Jimmy King and Ray Jackson. Rose, Webber, and Howard all had distinguished NBA careers. 
    King played for a couple of years and Jackson never made it to the “Big Show.” None of the five was ever on a team that won an NCAA or NBA championship. However the Fab Five changed the face and the appearance of basketball forever when they brought a popular “Hip Hop” style to the game complete with trash talk, shaved heads and most importantly, longer, baggier pants. It was the longer, baggier pants that set the style for the present basketball uniform. Oddly enough, without the shaved heads, they looked like the Wingate Spartans of 1913 and 1914. I guess it's true that “whatever goes around comes around."
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  • Evolution of Basketball Uniforms – Part 2
    Wednesday, May 1, 2019 9:55 PM
    So the uniforms reflected the place where they games were played. Teams started out playing outside on the dirt or on cinders as the early Linden teams did and the uniforms had to give the players some protection. Again, “Butch” Dale reported that the uniforms of those days consisted of the more-or-less standard athletic shorts and a sleeveless shirt which was much like a man’s undershirt, gym shoes, wool stockings, some ankle length and sometime knee length as you can see in the early pictures of the Wingate and New Richmond teams. The pants were below-the-knee baseball or football pants. Once again Leland Olin recalled with a chuckle that his team of the early 1900’s wanted to switch to the standard basketball shorts, but was talked out of it by Jack Blacker, a fellow member of the team, because he didn’t want all the girls making fun of his bare legs.
    Kobe Bryant must have felt the same way about short shorts. One year the Lakers wore retro uniforms in honor of Jerry West when they played the Celtics. Bryant said the shorts made him feel “naked,” and he felt “violated.” He commented, “I don’t know how it feels to wear a thong, but I imagine it feels something like what we had on the first half.” Proving that you are what you wear and that clothes make the man, the Celtics beat the Lakers 110-91 with Bryant shooting 6-25 from the field.
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  • Evolution of Basketball Uniforms – Part 1
    Wednesday, April 24, 2019 4:00 AM
    This article has been percolating in my mind for several weeks and the titles have been thoughts like “What Goes Around Comes Around,” or “The More Things Change, The More They Stay the Same,” but I settled on the Evolution of Basketball Uniforms. As you look at basketball uniforms from the early 1900’s when the game really took off to the present, the uniforms for the most part reflected the places where the teams played. For example, look at the uniforms worn by the early Wingate teams and the other early Montgomery County teams. They guys look like they are dressed to play football and there was good reason for that type of protection. At first they needed extra padding because they played outdoors or if they were fortunate enough to have an indoor court, the walls were the out of bounds lines and the bleachers were two feet from the playing floor. There were posts in the corners or the court and sometimes along the sidelines. (There were also pot-bellied stoves in the corners to provide the only heat on the cold winter days and nights).
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  • Tuesday, April 16, 2019 10:44 PM
    Baseball exploits this summer, like the recent perfect game, bring to mind Oren Edgar "Eddie" Summers. He created a legend on the diamond and a niche in history for Ladoga, his hometown. He was the only known baseball pitcher to successfully pitch in the major leagues with either arm.
    One July day in 1909, Summers was pitching right-handed for the Detroit Tigers. Facing a left-handed pinch-hitter, Summers tossed his glove into the dugout and called for a glove for the right hand. Donning it, he hurled a strike with his left arm.
    Summers was a workhorse with either arm. He lasted 18 scoreless innings against Washington in a game called by darkness July 14. Washington used two pitchers, but Summers went it alone. Summers had noteworthy help. The team in¬cluded the immortal Ty Cobb and Ownie Bush of Indianapolis, later a manager and the man in whose honor Bush Stadium is named.
    Summers pitched 31 consecutive scoreless in¬nings in July 1909, a record that stood for 22 years. He blanked Philadelphia in the last inning, then threw 18 scoreless innings against Washing¬ton. July 22, he held New York runless for nine innings, and July 27 he pitched three innings before Cleveland scored.
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  • Oren Edgar Summers – The Chief – Part 4
    Wednesday, April 10, 2019 4:00 AM
    For his five year career, from 1908 to 1912, Ed Summers pitched in 168 games and had a 68-45 record for a winning pct. of .602 with a 2.42 era. He pitched 999 innings and had 79 complete games. In his rookie year with the Tigers, he led the pitching staff with 24 wins, second in the American League and had an ERA of 1.64 fourth in the league. He was instrumental in the Detroit club going to the World Series in 1908 against the Cubs (the last time the Cubs won a World Series until they won it in 2016) and 1909 against the Pittsburgh Pirates. He had the misfortune of being the losing pitcher twice both years. 
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  • Oren Edgar Summers – The Chief – Part 2
    Wednesday, March 27, 2019 4:00 AM
    Eddie’s pitching was a major factor in the Tigers’ winning the American League Pennant in 1908 and 1909. He had a 24-12 record in 1908 as a rookie (still a record for rookies in Major League baseball) with the Tigers, where he was a teammate of future Hall of Famers Ty Cobb and Sam Crawford. The Tigers were managed that year by another future Hall of Famer, Hughie (Ee-yah) Jennings. Other American League rookies that year were Shoeless Joe Jackson of Black Sox fame, Donie Bush, Smokey Joe Wood who won 34 games for the Boston Red Sox in 1912, and Frank (Home Run) Baker.
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  • Oren Edgar Summers – The Chief – Part 1
    Wednesday, March 20, 2019 4:00 AM
    Oren Edgar Summers, nicknamed “Kickapoo” or “Kickapoo Chief,” because of his Kickapoo Indian ancestry was raised on a farm near Ladoga and attended the Ladoga schools. He was an outstanding athlete in high school and once competed in a track meet in which the Ladoga Leader of Mar. 27, 1903 reported that, “Edgar Summers stood first in the pole vault, running broad jump, running high jump, standing hop, step, and jump, and running hop, step, and jump, giving him a total of five firsts.” He is one of only three Montgomery County athletes to play Major League baseball. The other two were Dick Dietz, who played for the Giants, and Warren Darst Gill, another Ladoga boy who played for the Pirates in1908. He was nicknamed “Doc” and became a dentist after he left the Pirates. Ed attended Wabash College in 1903 and at the age of 19, played football and coached the team. He returned to Wabash after his playing career was over and coached the baseball team in 1916 to a 9-6 record. The Little Giants split two games with Purdue, lost to Illinois, Michigan, and Notre Dame, and defeated DePauw twice. According to the Wabash Magazine of the fall of 2008, “Students touted him for his baseball knowledge and leadership.” “The entire performance of the Little Giants reflected the highest credit upon the coaching of Summers,” wrote one student. 
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  • A look at Harold Hugh Gray – Part 8
    Wednesday, March 13, 2019 4:00 AM
    Being a true Hoosier basketball player and fan, Hugh Gray attended every game of the 1919 finals and recorded the final score of each game. How he ended up with a Jeff ribbon is anybody’s guess and is lost in the history of the final games of the Indiana Basketball tournament which took place nearly 100 years ago next March. Bloomington won the 1919 State Tourney by defeating Jeff 18-15. The Bloomington team was coached by Cliff Wells that year and had a record of 23-3.

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  • A look at Harold Hugh Gray – Part 7
    Wednesday, February 27, 2019 4:00 AM
    The souvenir program had pictures of the new Purdue library and the Memorial Gymnasium inside and out. Whenever a building is labeled as a memorial, it is always there to remember some person or event. I discovered that the Memorial gymnasium was built in memory of the 17 people who were killed in a train crash as the Purdue football team was on its way to Indianapolis to play Indiana University. Of the 17 killed, 14 were football players. There are 17 steps going up to the gymnasium in honor of the 17 people who were killed. One of the players on the football team that year was a 27 year old farm boy from Veedersburg, named Charles Furr.
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The Paper of Montgomery County,
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