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Library exhibits document ASU's dramatic name change


September 25, 2008

Two exhibits at Arizona State University document the story of how Arizona State College became Arizona State University after voters approved Prop. 200 on the November 1958 ballot.

The exhibits, which will be up through the fall semester 2008, are titled “ASU Celebrates 50th Anniversary!”, which is in the Hayden Library Rotunda, and "A University in Fact: The Great Name Change Campaign," in Luhrs Gallery on the fourth floor of Hayden Library on ASU’s Tempe campus, and in the Hayden Library Rotunda.

The exhibits include newspaper pages with photos of the students delivering the petitions – with 63,956 signatures – to get the name-change proposition on the ballot, and a page from the Arizona Republic on Thursday, Nov. 6, 1958, with a headline screaming that “It’s University at Last.”

There also are “then and now” photos showing football and basketball uniforms from 1958 and 2008, and golf attire from the two years.

And, there’s a photo of a billboard proclaiming, “Vote 200 yes. ASU. Arizona State University. A new name. A true name.”

The exhibit also includes a photo of a bold “anti-ASU” statement: “No 200” burned in the center of the field at Sun Devil Stadium.

All of the images, documents, artifacts and ephemera are drawn from the University Archives. The exhibits are sponsored by the Department of Archives and Special Collections. For more information, contact Karrie Porter Brace, (480) 965-4925 or karrie.porterbrace@asu.edu.