Goodbye, Corolla, Goodbye: 1920s-1930s

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The next in our series bidding farewell to the UA yearbook, Corolla, today’s post looks at volumes from the 1920s and 1930s.

Though both of these volumes are presented in digital form here, only one of them is in the digital archive (1938). A digitized version gives you quick access to the item, but there’s a unique pleasure in turning the pages of an old book.

Thirty Corollas are in the digital archive; all of them are available in print in the Hoole Library reading room.


The cover of the 1927 book features the Tiffany stained glass window that is now in the Hoole Library lobby, visible from the outside of Mary Harmon Bryant Hall:


The window once hung in Gorgas Library, where Special Collections began its life. But the window was originally given to the University in 1925, several years before Gorgas Library was built. Apparently, that window is well-traveled!

This volume features several illustrations of events from the University’s past and campus locations, including Little Round House. It looks like it’s standing there all by itself — because it is. In 1927, Gorgas Library hadn’t been built yet.


Here’s another of illustration, this one of the burning of the campus during the Civil War.


Even when the book keeps itself firmly in the present, it’s pretty different from what we’d expect today. For example, it was perfectly normal to paraphrase a quote from Shakespeare (Henry IV Part II ) in an overview of the year in football:


The blurb ends with a phrase in Latin: “Sic honor et gloria,” or “With honor and glory”!

Near the end of the book is a parody newspaper page. It’s got some content that we might consider pretty un-PC, but it shows the sense of humor of the day. For example, the top stories compare fraternity members to mental patients:


Finally, here’s a look at the Corolla staff, which by this point was as co-ed as the University:




This year saw a new fad in graphic design, one which this volume deployed a little too much:


Throughout the book, pictures are set at an angle, sometimes in collages like the above and sometimes on otherwise normal pages, like this one for the football team:


George Denny, for whom Bryant-Denny Stadium is named, is also pictured in the volume. He and William Bankhead, an Alabamian then serving as Speaker of the U.S. House, were apparently “ardent supporters” of the Tide:


Here’s one of the many pages of student photos. Some of the men had hair as meticulously styled as the women:


This volume also featured several Corolla Beauties. Up into the 1960s, a handful of female students graced the pages of the yearbook each year. In 1938, they were chosen by a film star:


Tyrone Power was a heartthrob, a leading man that often played swashbucklers, such as the title role in The Mark of Zorro.

Here’s one of the ladies chosen as a “beauty.” Check out those eyelashes!


Next week, keep an eye out for more posts saying farewell to the Corolla, featuring volumes from the ’50s and ’60s, and ’80s, and ’90s.

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