One of the Texas National Guard aerial photos gives us a beautiful look at the old old stadium–that is, the old stadium before it was expanded in 1938. Just to be clear, I don’t mean the very first stadium (such as it was). The first stands, complete in time for the 1913 season, were just wooden bleachers:
I’m talking about the the original “old stadium” built in 1921, at the same time as the Fieldhouse. These were the first new structures on campus, by the way, since West Hall was completed in 1916. Some time ago I posted a 1921 aerial shot of the stadium taken from the Main Street side. Just for fun, here it is again:
The 1933 picture, though, was taken from the west side and unfortunately it’s a bit blurrier than the others in the series. (Yes, there is a lot going on in this unusual photo, so much that I can only manage to talk about one thing at a time. I’m just warming up here.)
Twelve years after it was built, the stadium looks more or less unchanged. But within only a few years of when this picture was taken, growing crowds began creating problems. Lovett insisted that if improvements were to be made, Rice boosters would have to raise the money for the expansion. I wrote about that project in this post on the 1937 Owl map.
And just by chance, a couple of days ago I ran across two photos of that addition being constructed:
Bonus: I admire their confidence.