SCUA recently received two accessions documenting UO track and field history. The items were donated by two alumni, Clayton Steinke and Kenny Moore, who competed during the 1960s under head coach Bill Bowerman. These new materials complement existing administrative and coaching collections, but also contribute to understanding the unique perspective of the student-athlete. Coincidentally, both accessions include uniforms that provide a visual component of the legacy of UO track and field.
In 1962, four members of the UO team broke the world record for the four by one mile relay. Later that year, Steinke served as an alternate runner on the UO team invited to compete in the same relay distance in a meet against the New Zealand national team. As representatives of both the United States of America, and the University of Oregon, Bowerman devised a unique uniform. In order to satisfy the AAU (Amateur Athletic Union), the resulting singlet and shirt include references to the AAU and USA, but also pays homage to the University of Oregon. In addition to his uniform, Steinke donated his letterman’s jacket, scrapbooks, a memoir, correspondence and photographs.
After representing UO in collegiate meets, Kenny Moore competed in the marathon at both the 1968 and 1972 Olympics. He recently donated components of his 1972 Munich Olympics uniform, including his opening ceremony marching clothes (jacket and shirt), his singlet and shorts from the marathon, and a navy blue rain jacket. Moore also donated his letterman’s jacket. In addition to uniforms, Moore donated his research files collected while writing Bowerman and the Men of Oregon: The Story of Oregon’s Legendary Coach and Nike’s Cofounder.
The University of Oregon is well-known for a dynamic and vibrant athletic program. These new materials will provide researchers with unique stories illustrating the impact of intercollegiate athletics on student-athletes. Furthermore, these materials add additional voices to the overall history of the university. If you are interested in donating your UO athletic related materials, please contact our University Historian and Archivist, Jennifer O’Neal (firstname.lastname@example.org).
–Lauren Goss, Accessioning and Processing Archivist