A century of memories: Dome yearbook celebrates 100 years

Author: Erik Runyon


In 1906, the University of Notre Dame was a relatively unknown school consisting of a half-dozen buildings and a little more than 200 students. Walking around campus you wouldnt pass the football stadium, bookstore, Dillon Hall, or any women for that matter. Over the last 100 years, the University has grown immensely in not only size, but in prestige, honor and spirit.

Notre Dames student yearbook, the Dome, this year will celebrate the past 100 years with its centennial anniversary. The yearbooks provide unique perspectives on the last century, as seen through the eyes of the students. Photos in the yearbooks include early campus scenes, social life, sports, famous world figures and musicians who visited campus, as well as noted Notre Dame personalities such as Rev. Theodore Hesburgh, C.S.C., and Knute Rockne.

To commemorate the occasion, historic copies of the publication will be on display before all home football games this fall in the Dooley Room on the first floor of the LaFortune Student Center from 10 a.m. until noon.

The first issue of the Dome was published in 1906 and included photos of the staff, faculty, student body and student organizations, accounts of campus events and athletic contests, short stories and poetry, and advertisements from numerous Michiana organizations, two of which are still alive and well today – Saint Marys College and the Philadelphia candy store.

The editor of the 1906 Dome was senior Charles L. ODonnell of Kokomo, Ind. ODonnell went on to become a Holy Cross priest and a member of the faculty before he was named University president from 1928 to 1934. During his tenure, the University constructed the Law School building, Alumni and Dillon Halls and Notre Dame Stadium. Father ODonnell also is well known for his refusal to cut faculty salaries during the Great Depression.

The Dome has been published continuously since 1906, with the exception of 1919 and from 1944 to 1946 when a majority of Notre Dame students were enrolled in the armed forces during World Wars I and II.

The editor of the 2006 Dome is senior Moira Madden of Cincinnati, Ohio. The Dome staff has been working non-stop on this years edition of the book.

Our responsibility is to respectfully honor the work of the past yearbook staffs and add our own history to that tradition,Madden said.

The centennial edition will include a special souvenir section looking back on the history of the yearbook. The section will include feature stories as well as photos, including packages on the first yearbook, notable alumni, sports as reported through the years by the Dome, campus construction, changes in social life, and year-by-year highlights. The yearbook also will feature reflections by former Dome editors and reproductions of historic covers.

We expect students to appreciate the book as always because it reflects their past year as students at Notre Dame,Madden said.We also want to stress to students that the book is actually larger than past years. In addition to ‘their book,they will get the added bonus of extra pages of fun facts from the past 100 years.

The centennial edition is on sale to the public and can be reserved for future purchase by contacting the Student Activities office during business hours at 574-631-7308.

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