Be a Pal and Help Out an Archivist

These pictures were in an old Hanszen College scrapbook that came in earlier this summer. Most of the stuff in it was identified, but not these two. Any thoughts?

I love this guy’s little smile:

Hanszen scrapbook Pipe at Pool

This one looks more recent, but it’s not where the bike track is now:

Hanszen scrapbook bikeAs always, any help is appreciated!

Bonus: This comes from an observant reader. New tiles for the roof of Sewall. I watched them moving the stacks of tile into position–they threw them from man to man across the length of the roof. It was quite pretty.


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24 Responses to Be a Pal and Help Out an Archivist

  1. Sandy Havens says:

    Top photo is in a corner of the pool in the gym. Wet footprints on the tile floor and the info on the blackboard indicate a swim meet. Hair cut, pipe and audio equipment indicate 1950’s. I think the person pictured was a member of the phys ed department but I am not sure.

    Beer-Bike used to be held on the campus side of the stadium parking lot.

  2. The bike photo is roughly from the 1970’s. The bike track was on that side of the stadium while I was at Rice, 1975-1981. I know that the race was held around the main campus in 1966, because there is a really scary about-to-crash photo in that year’s Campanile.

    The rider is wearing a Skid Lid helmet, introduced roughly in 1970. It was much better than the leather hairnet helmets before then, but was rapidly replaced by the Bell Biker helmet introduced in 1975 (

    The bike frame lettering is hard to read, but I’m guessing it says “Nishiki”. Those look like clincher rims, so it might be a personal bike, not a college bike.

    Check Campaniles for Hanszen bikers wearing a Skid Lid.

  3. almadenmike says:

    My impulse reaction is that the top photo is of PE instructor Bob Bland … a much younger Bob Bland than I knew. (But I’m not certain of this identification.)

    • Richard A. Schafer says:

      That’s my reaction, too.

      • Keith Cooper says:

        That is almost certainly Robert “Boogie” Bland, racquetball player par excellence. Note the trademark grin as he clenches that pipe, although it was often a cigar during active sports such as soccer, touch football, or racquetball.

      • Lou Ann Montana says:

        That is my guess as well. Coach Bland had a lot of spirit, as his nickname suggests!

  4. Hannes Hofer says:

    The beer bike track used to be on the east side of the Stadium. I think it was moved in the early-mid 90’s. It is my understanding that the early races took place on the Inner Loop, but the 90 degree turns were too dangerous.

  5. Yeah, it’s a Nishiki, mid-to-late 70s. Non-clinchers were much less common back then. Hanszen did have a few nice bikes similar to that. I thought the bar-end shifters were too late to be mid-70s but some early adopters did in fact have them.

    • The thick foam on the handlebars is also typical 70’s stuff.

      I put bar-end shifters on my bike in 1980 and I certainly was not the first person to do that.

      WRC had a couple of college bikes with sew-ups. I rode the Crescent a few times, though I wasn’t fast enough to make the team.

  6. Randolph Wile, '83 says:

    The Beer Bike track used to be in the campus-side stadium parking lot. Judging from the cars (including what looks to be a Dodge Omni or a VW Rabbit) and the bike, I would say that the photo was taken in about 1975 or so.

  7. James Medford says:

    Beer-Bike moved to its current location on the west side of the stadium in 1985 (my senior year).

    • Anne Hutton says:

      The last year the race was held on the north side of the stadium was 1981, my sophomore year, when Hanszen won the women’s race, but we didn’t break the track time records. The new track on the west side was shorter, so new time records started in 1982.

  8. Grungy says:

    The VW Rabbit in the background, just above the rider’s rear wheel, was introduced in 1974.

  9. grungy1973 says:

    This doesn’t appear to have been taken from the stadium lot, because of the alignment of Sid and Hermann Professional Building. But I can’t figure out where else it might be. Wiess lot wasn’t that big, and we should see Wiess (unless that featureless building on the left is Wiess) if it is Wiess lot. H lot didn’t have those trees and did have a short hedge.

  10. grungy1973 says:

    Okay, I take that last one back.
    It’s somewhere from turn 4 through the front straight on the old track, and the featureless building is likely part of Hanszen.

  11. James Medford says:

    On further review, I think the second photo was taken in 1984. I zoomed in on the rider’s shirt, and recognized it as the Hanszen Beer-Bike shirt from my junior year. I looked on page 270 of the 1984 Campanile and confirmed this. Also, the helmet the rider is wearing in this photo can be seen on another rider in the lower right photo on page 270. I think the rider is John Rubarth, Hanszen ’84.

  12. Yeah, I can go along with it being John Rubarth. Yes, it’s Hanszen. Rubarth’s body happens to be hiding the tower, just by chance, or it would be obvious. Certainly the small German, Japanese and domestic hatchbacks of the late 70s and early 80s that are visible here would be consistent with student cars of 1984.

    • Richard Miller (Hanszen '75 & '76) says:

      I think it is Weiss. You can see the old tower of Hanszen next to Sid. I almost think it might be the parking lot right across from Weiss (toward the Western end) probably either around the beginning of the year or the end of the year, Too many cars are parked on the road for it to be during normal times. I believe the only time this number of cars were allowed was when students were moving in/out

  13. Bill Sloan says:

    It looks like ” Boogie ” Bland , but I saw him with a cigar in his mouth more often than a pipe . We used to play handball with him when I was at Rice from 1955 to1959.

  14. Leoguy says:

    I’m certain that is “Coach” Bland. He was my PE coach/drill sargent. The photo must be before 1970 because when I knew him he had a flat-top haircut. In my memory, he always had a cigar in his mouth.

  15. John Wolda says:

    “Boogie” always had a flattop haircut

  16. El Gordo says:

    It’s Boogie all right.

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