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ASU: Then and now


1919 photo of the freshman class of 40 students from The Sahuaro Yearbook
August 21, 2019

You've come a long way, SparkySparky was not the university's original mascot. Former mascots include an owl and a bulldog — in case you're wondering where the building name "Bulldog Hall" came from. Sparky was created in 1948 by alumnus and Disney illustrator Bert Anthony, who was rumored to have based Sparky's facial features on those of his former boss, Walt Disney..

Arizona State University is quite different from the four-classroom school that began in 1886 with 33 students (and a different name — Territorial Normal School).

Today, the university's locations span the globe. Its student body has passed 100,000, hailing from more than 130 nations. Its research has gone into space, beneath the sea and deep into the human psyche.

But some things don't change. Families still unload piles of dorm supplies, first-year students still make a year-launching trek up "A" Mountain and students still take photos on the steps of Old Main on the Tempe campus.

Here we've rounded up a few photos from the archives and compared them with modern images.

Top photo: The 1919 freshman class (a total of 40 students), from The Sahuaro yearbook. Photo courtesy of ASU Library

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