Bob Parks scrapbook collection
Scope and Contents
The Bob Parks collection contains the photographs and scrapbooks compiled by Bob Park during his time as a student athletic and coach of the track and cross-country teams at Eastern Michigan University. Records span from 1949, when Eastern Michigan University was known as Michigan State Normal College until 2000 when Parks retired after coaching the team for 34 years. The collection is arranged into four series: Albums, Photographs, Scrapbooks, and Identified Photograph copies.
The Albums series includes albums from 1949 until 1996. The Photographs series contains team and group photographs taken from 1949 until 2000. The Scrapbooks series includes the years 1949 until 1996. The Identified Photographs copies contains the copies of photographs that Bob Parks has been able to identify.
- 1949 - 2003
Track and field at Michigan State Normal School began as early as 1882 as an intramural sport. By 1888, “Field Days” took place over a three day period. These programs where early track meets, a typical program for “Field Days” included the following events:
dashes (100 yards, 220 yards), runs (the 440, half-mile, and mile), jumps (standing broad, running broad, high jump, hop, and step), bike races (individual quarter, half, five mile, and mile tandem bike), high kick, shot put, hammer throw, pole vault, wrestling, horizontal bar, and the class drill with the “all-around” relay.
In 1892, the Normal School joined the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA), and began participating in games and meets with other schools. In 1915, under the direction of F.G. Beyerman the team won the indoor Western Michigan Intercollegiate championship.
Lloyd Olds, a graduate of the Normal College, began coaching the team in 1921. During Olds' tenure, the team won numerous titles including the state-wide collegiate meets in 1923-1926, 1931-1933, 1936, and 1940. In 1926, the Medley Relay team won at the Drake Relays and in 1940 a relay team broke the American college record and reset the record the following year.
Olds left the College during World War II to serve in the Navy with their physical training program. Upon his return he asked to be relieved of coaching and he devoted his time to teaching and the development of the intramural athletic program.
Assistant coach George Marshall became the head track coach after Olds departure. Under Marshall the track team won the state titles in 1947 and 1948. In 1947 and 1951 the New York Times rated the track team as the best college team in the nation. In 1960, team member Hayes Jones became the first Normal College athlete to become a member of an Olympic team.
In 1967, Robert C. “Bob” Parks, who attended Michigan State Normal College from 1949 until 1952, became the head coach. Parks coached at Eastern Michigan University for 34 years, during which time he also taught in the College of Education. Parks was named “Coach of the Year” for the Mid-American conference 26 times and NCAA Division I “Coach of the Year” in 1990, among dozens of other coaching recognitions. His teams won 45 MAC conference titles and seven NCAA Division I individual titles, plus two relays. Ten of his athletes made 15 appearances in Olympic Games, winning gold, silver, and bronze medals.
Robert C. “Bob” Parks was a track star in high school and continued with track at Michigan State Normal College attended Michigan State Normal College where he was a student from 1949 until 1952. After graduating from the Michigan State Normal College, he taught and coached at several Michigan high schools and at Western Michigan University, with his track and cross country teams receiving many awards.
Parks came to Eastern Michigan University in 1967 and coached at EMU until his retirement in 2000. During his tenure at EMU he also taught in the College of Education. Parks was named “Coach of the Year” for the Mid-American Conference (MAC) 26 times and NCAA Division I “Coach of the Year” in 1990, among dozens of other coaching recognitions. His teams won 45 MAC conference titles and seven NCAA Division I individual titles, plus two relays. Ten of his athletes made 15 appearances in Olympic Games, winning gold, silver, and bronze medals. Parks is a member of the Eastern Michigan University Athletic Hall of Fame and the United State Track Coaches Association Hall of Fame.
His daughter Sue Parks joined the staff of EMU as the coach of the Women's Cross Country and Track and Field teams.
10.3 Linear Feet (1 record center carton, 4 flatboxes, 11 archive boxes )
Language of Materials
The Bob Parks scrapbook collection contains the photographs and clipping scrapbooks of both the Track and Field and Cross Country teams that Parks coached from 1967-2000 as well as when Parks was a team member during from 1949-1952. Materials in the scrapbooks were collected and compiled by Bob Parks. The collection contains three series: Albums, Photographs, and Scrapbooks.
Existence and Location of Copies
Whenever possible the photocopied photographs that Coach Parks identified are located in box seven. These items are identified by two locations
- Bob Parks scrapbook collection
- Courtney Dornburg
- 2012 February 15
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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- Code for undetermined script
- Language of description note