This photograph shows an early University of
Kentucky football game between State University
(S.U.), the University of Kentucky's name
before the state legislature gave it the
current moniker, and Purdue University. The
football game was played in the year 1915.
The grounds were pasturage for President
Patterson's cows until 1892 when the University
began playing football regularly. Around that
time, the grounds, located along Winslow Street
(Euclid Avenue), were prepared for football.
"Main Street businessmen and some faculty
formed a stock company. From the stock sales,
labor donated by engineering students, and with
Patterson's cows evicted, the grounds were
improved and enclosed by a fence, and wooden
stands were erected on both sides of the field"
Stoll Field was dedicated in 1916 at the first
Kentucky-Vanderbilt football game which
Vanderbilt won 45-0. In 1918, World War I
soldiers were housed in "hastily constructed
barracks ... at the east end of Stoll Field,
but they were hardly in use when the war ended"
(Cone, 1989). It was surrounded by a running
track after the end of World War I. McLean
Stadium was built around it in the 1924 season.
This stadium lasted, modified with additional
seating, through the 1972 season, when the old
field and stadium were finally abandoned for Commonwealth
Stadium. The destruction of the field and
the stadium allowed a second addition to the
Center and the Center
for the Arts, later named after Singletary
The field was named after Richard C. Stoll.
Stoll was part of the University during its
early days as State College, later as State
University and, finally, the University of
Kentucky. He served on the Board of Trustees
after graduating in 1895 until his death in
1949, only missing one three-year interval
The University of Kentucky's early football
games are documented in the old issues of the
Kentucky Kernel on microfilm in the M.I.
King Library PNM department.
The mission of the Special Collections Research Center is to locate and preserve materials documenting the social, cultural, economic, and political history of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Materials are acquired regardless of format and include both primary and secondary sources; Kentuckiana is collected comprehensively. Special Collections maintains the records management program for all records generated by the University and serves as its archival repository for permanent records. As part of the mission, the Special Collections Research Center advances and supports the research, teaching, and scholarship of the University and beyond by preserving and providing access to its holdings.