About the Duke Football Programs Digital Collection

Duke's football program began when the school was located in Randolph County, N.C., and known as Trinity College. President John F. Crowell introduced the sport and coached the first team. The school's first game was against the University of North Carolina on November 27, 1888; Trinity won 16-0. From 1895 to 1919 football was banned by the Board of Trustees as being "too dangerous physically and it distracts from academics." The program was reinstated in 1920 and become very successful, especially under the leadership of coach Wallace Wade, who coached the Blue Devils in two Rose Bowls, including the 1942 Rose Bowl played in Durham.

The records of the Duke University Football Program in the University Archives include a large collection of game programs, which start in 1922. While the bulk of the programs are from home games, programs from selected away games as well as bowl games are also present. The digital version of this collection includes images of all program covers present in the collection. These covers depict the growth of the football program, how the game is viewed, as well as the evolution of the Blue Devil mascot. Caricatures of rival mascots, the rise of the Atlantic Coast Conference, and Duke football stars are also documented.

The materials in this collection are made available for use in research, teaching and private study. Texts and images from this collection may not be used for any commercial purpose without prior permission from Duke University.

Although these texts and images are made publicly accessible for the limited uses described above, they are not all in the public domain. Where copyright persists in this material, that right is owned either by Duke University or by the creators of the object or their descendents. When use is made of these texts and images, it is the responsibility of the user to secure any necessary permissions and to observe the stated access policy, the laws of copyright and the educational fair use guidelines.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Duke University Football Programs, University Archives, Duke University.

The Duke Football Programs originate from the Duke University Office of Sports Information Football Records, which are a part of the Duke University Archives. Staff in the Digital Production Center scanned and created basic metadata for the collection in 2007; the project went live in April 2008.


  • Tom Harkins & Tim Pyatt, Project Sponsors
  • Michael Adamo, Digital Production Developer
  • Will Sexton, Metadata Analyst/Programmer
  • Sean Aery & Thomas Crichlow, Digital Projects Department
  • Jill Katte, Digital Collections Program Coordinator
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