Department Blog

Special Collections

Colby E. “Babe” Slater: first alum to win an Olympic gold medal

July 27th, 2012 by Sara Gunasekara

Colby E. “Babe” Slater (1896-1965) was the first University of California, Davis alumnus to win an Olympic gold medal. Slater graduated from the University Farm School (now the University of California, Davis) in 1917. An outstanding athlete, Slater played on the U.S. Olympic Rugby Team and won gold medals for rugby in 1920 and 1924. At the 1924 Paris Olympic Games, the inexperienced U.S. Rugby Team beat the skilled French team to win the gold. The disappointed French fans rioted in the stands. 1924 was the last time that rugby was played in the Olympics. However, rugby will be reintroduced into the Olympics for the 2016 Games.

After returning from the Olympic Games, Slater bought land in Clarksburg, California, where he farmed for many years.

Special Collections holds the Colby E. “Babe” Slater Collection. The collection contains correspondence, diaries, publications, ephemera, photographic material, and realia. Most of the collection pertains to Slater and the United States Olympic Rugby Team winning gold medals at the Olympic Games in Antwerp, Belgium (1920) and Paris (1924). The collection also includes material related to the history of the University of California, Davis; the First World War; agriculture; and the history of Yolo County, California. More information about the Slater Collection may be found in the finding aid available on the Online Archive of California.

Colby E. "Babe" Slater

National Day of the Cowboy

July 25th, 2012 by Sara Gunasekara

Did you know that July 28, 2012 is the National Day of the Cowboy? In celebration of it, here is a photograph from our Eastman Originals Collection.

At the Lakeview Round-Up, Lakeview, Ore., 1941.

Look Familiar???

July 20th, 2012 by Jenny Hodge

Can you identify today’s photograph from the University Archives? This photograph appears to have been used in UCD Catalog in 1988 and though we do not have an exact date we can approximate that it was taken in the 80’s. But where was this photograph taken? Does anyone recognize the the machinery in the background? The students? The subject matter being taught? Any observations or comments are welcome!

Baseball

July 9th, 2012 by Sara Gunasekara

In celebration of tomorrow’s Major League Baseball All-Star game, here is an image from our Eastman Originals Collection.

Members of the Modoc baseball team, undated

July is Park and Recreation Month

July 5th, 2012 by Sara Gunasekara

Did you know that July is Park and Recreation Month? In celebration of it, here is an image from our Eastman Originals Collection.

In Caliveras State Park, Calif., 1947

Chronicles of Mr. Spud

July 3rd, 2012 by Jenny Hodge

Uncle Spud wants YOU to stop by Special Collections! After the holiday check out our reading room and current exhibit on UC Davis traditions. Have a safe and fun 4th of July!

Happy Fourth of July!

July 2nd, 2012 by Sara Gunasekara

In honor of the Fourth of July, here is an image from our Eastman Originals Collection.

July 4, undated