Where does the name “Ole Miss” come from?

by Travis Normand
May 21, 2018

I stumbled upon this blog posted back in 2014 and thought it was pretty interesting. I wanted to re-post it / share it here for those who enjoy college football history.

 

 

 

Evidence Reveals Ole Miss Named for Train, Not Antebellum Reference
Oct. 6, 2014

This is the second segment in a two-part series on the evolution of the term “Ole Miss.” The piece is written by Dr. Albert Earl Elmore, a noted scholar who holds degrees from Millsaps College and Ole Miss Law School with a Ph.D in English Literature from Vanderbilt.

The History of the Name “Ole Miss”

The controversy about “Ole Miss” as a name for the University of Mississippi was conceived in innocent ignorance and perpetuated by the misinformation of the Internet.

Let us begin with the Internet misinformation that appears in the endlessly consulted Wikipedia entry for the name Ole Miss: “The student yearbook was published for the first time in 1897. A contest was held to solicit suggestions for a yearbook title from the student body. Elma Meek, a student, submitted the winning entry of ‘Ole Miss.’ Meek’s source for the term in unknown. Some historians theorize she made a diminutive of ‘ole Mississippi’ or derived the term from ‘ol missus,’ an African-American term for a plantation ‘old mistress.’”

To continue reading: HottyToddy.com

To read the rest, click here and visit HottyToddy.com.

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Off-Season Stories – The Platypus Trophy

Platypus Trophy following restoration in 2007

Half Beaver, Half Duck

by Travis Normand

This story came out last November (2012) but didn’t get much attention.  Now that it is mid-summer, it is a great time to revisit the story.  Hopefully this will help you pass the time until kick-off.

Also, this is one of the best rivalry trophies I have ever seen.  What other rivalry can say that characteristics of the mascots for each team involved in the rivalry actually come together somewhere in nature?  Is there an animal that is part Buckeye and part Wolverine? No. What about part ‘Gator and part Seminole? No.  Aggie and Longhorn?  No.  In my opinion, it would be a real shame for Oregon and Oregon State to NOT use the Platypus as their rivalry trophy.

In Oregon, Civil Rivalry but Quirky One
by Greg Bishop
Published: November 22, 2012
NYTimes.com

CORVALLIS, Ore. — In the broadest, most stereotypical sense, one of the oldest rivalries in college football pits Ducks against Beavers, hippies against farmers, liberals against conservatives. It is defined by proximity and mediocrity, by civility and acrimony, by close games and foul weather and the last 0-0 tie in Division I.

The Civil War, they call it.

The series started in 1894, when Oregon State University, then known as the Oregon Agricultural College, defeated the University of Oregon, 16-0. It will continue Saturday when two top-20 teams meet here for far more than local bragging rights.

For years, the programs seemed to lack a central ingredient to any rivalry: something to win. There was no Golden Egg (Mississippi and Mississippi State), no Keg of Nails (Louisville and Cincinnati) and no Apple Cup (Washington and Washington State).

This brings us to a mystery, to the story of the Platypus Trophy, once missing, stolen and lost — “I’ve heard rumors,” Oregon offensive lineman Nick Cody said — now found.

“I haven’t seen this since 2007,” Warren Spady said as he surveyed his handiwork this week.

Spady drew the platypus assignment in 1959, as an undergraduate at Oregon. He bought two blocks of wood and began to carve, using a stuffed platypus for inspiration. He worked day and night for a month, with four mallets and six chisels, until his forearms ached, until the beak resembled a Duck and the tail looked like that of a Beaver.

While he sanded the trophy smooth, the game approached. He never did finish the feet.

In the early 1960s, the trophy went missing for months, then years, then decades. In 1986, while on sabbatical at Oregon, Spady bumped into the platypus, his platypus, in a water polo trophy case on Oregon’s campus. Then it disappeared again.

Read the rest of this article HERE

You can also check out the Platypus Trophy Wikipedia page for more info.