CU History

History Notes

On the following pages one can find interesting stories and fun facts about the history of CU: student life, traditions, professors, events and more! Check back frequently for links to new content, pictures, and historical stories.

CU vs. UC – Have you ever wondered why the University of Colorado is called CU?
Life of the Library – Find the history of the library’s transitions at CU on this page.
Mary Rippon – She was the first female professor at CU, and this is her story.
Oh Those Beanies! – Yes, the underclassmen had to wear funny hats to class.



Articles by Silvia Pettem

Silvia Pettem (A&S ’69) is a Boulder historian and member of the Heritage Center Advisory Board who writes a weekly column for the Daily Camera.  She is also the author of Separate Lives: The Story of Mary Rippon. Visit Silvia’s official website for more information about her and her current projects.

Silvia Pettem not only graduated from CU, but has written many articles about CU, early school life, milestones, and notable people. Click on the links below to read these articles.

Walks and Talks Highlight CU’s Variety of Trees
Antoinette Bigelow Earned the Respect of CU Women
CU Promoted Itself at the Columbian Exposition

CU President Farrand Also Served Mankind
President Sewall’s Daughter an Early CU Graduate
CU Medical School Cadavers Buried in Columbia Cemetery
Muriel Sibell Wolle Remembered as her Namesake is Demolished
Guggenheim Law Building was Senator’s Gift to Boulder
Playwright and Professor Linked in Spirit in Mary Rippon Theater
When CU Taught the Language of the Enemy
Women’s Athletics at CU Started with Basketball
Nixon Years Marked Student Demonstrations in Boulder
Mary Rippon to Receive Posthumous Honorary Degree
Founding of CU was a Community Effort
Elusive Professor Brought Physics to CU
Elaura Jaquette to be Remembered on her 61st Birthday
Journalist Amos Bixby was on the Scene During University’s First Year
University’s Vetsville Housed Post-War Lifestyle
Stripper Tempest Storm Visited CU Campus in 1955
After a Lifetime Traveling World, Jane Sewall Wrote About Boulder


CU-Related Oral Histories at Carnegie Library

Listen to interviews of the men and women who were students, faculty or staff at CU through the twentieth century. Links will take you to the Maria Rogers Oral History Project at the Carnegie Branch Library for Local History in Boulder, Colorado. Click around and hear some stories today!

Oral histories organized by name.

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