What the Press Thought

These sources are from a variety of newspapers and journals and are in chronological order. The publication will be linked to the article, and a summary of the article follows the publication name.

Birmingham Age-Herald Recount of the game with detail to injuries. Says that brutality was caused by hard feelings between the lines.

The Philadelphia Inquirer.  Account of the game, tells of unintentional rough play. Also mentions that Yale beat Harvard due to luck.

Daily Charlotte Observer. Account of the game; game progressed slowly because of the amount of injuries. Entire column about injured players.

The Philadelphia InquirerPennsylvania/Princeton game crippled Princeton, prompting major lineup changes, are not expected to succeed against Yale.

The Philadelphia Inquirer. Account of the game and the crowd, stated Harvard played much better but luck was just against them.

Dallas Morning NewsAccount of the game, recalls injuries but no mention of excessive brutality.

The State. None of the injuries to the Yale players are as serious as reported, and Harvards injuries were also greatly exaggerated.

The Sun. Harvard team recieved an ovation on returning home, team in good condition save Wrightington and Hallowell.

Kansas Semi-Weekly Capital. The harvard/yale game "degenerated early in the play," cited Hinkey as having unduly injured opposition before.

The Philadelphia Inquirer. States Harvard would have won but for the bad referees. Says the game was very brutal, and people want to see football not prizefighting.

The State. Account of Harvard v Pennsylvania game, states that the team had been crippled by the Harvard/Yale game.

The Philadelphia Inquirer. All players have recovered, and Captains Hinkey and Trenchard have met and come to an understanding.

Outlook. Overall negative report of the game, speaking of the slugging and brutality that occured. Numerous boxing comparisons.

The Philadelphia Inquirer. An English man who saw the game compared it to rugby, and the opinion is that the rules must be changed to prevent injuries.

The Philadelphia Inquirer. Dr. Brooks says that his comment about slugging at the game was misunderstood, and the only vicious play was made by Hinkley.

The Independent. Criticism of modern football saying its too rough, cites Yale/Harvard game and speaks of serious injuries that did not happen as fact.

Christian Advocate. States that football is dangerous and needs banned, cites Harvard/Yale game. Also states that too many people have their hand in the business of football

New Haven Evening Register. "It is too bad that the game of football must past for review before such a severe judge as the 'Hartford Times."

Outlook Football ought to regulate the games more, or prohibit them until the players can behave in a more professional manner.

Outlook. Scathing review of previous article, runs two testimonies of the game- one to the danger and one to the decency.

The Independent. Football needs reformed and taken less seriously by colleges. Cites brutatlity in Yale/Harvard and Yale/Princeton game.

Congregationalist. All the debate on if football is or isnt too rough is absurd, football is good for young men although the money part has gotten out of hand.

The New York Times. Football is too violent for college athletes, and extravagent expenditures disgust many people.

Outing For November. Summary of the new rules added to football during 1894.

Boston Medical and Surgical Journal. Football is attractive to intellectual men because of the skill requried. Current playing style limits skill plays for brute force.

Boston Medical and Surgical Journal. Discourse on whether athletics are good for college men, cites injuries and wasted time, also cites health benefits.


“Yale Again Triumphant” New York Times (11-25-1894)

An ordinary rebellion in the South American or Central American States is as child’s play compared with the destructiveness of a day’s game, and the record of French duels for the last dozen years fails to show such a list of casualties as this one game of football produced…Even the most enthusiastic devotee of football admitted that the play to-day will do much to injure the game and may call for interference by the college authorities.  A prohibition of further games by the Yale eleven by the college Faculty is something more than a possibility in the opinion of many of the alumni present.”

“Is It Football or Pugilism?” Daily Charlotte Observer (11-25-1894)

“The game a disgraceful fight all the way though, Harvard doing the most fighting – Murphy lies eleven minutes on the field before being carried off in an ambulance – Butterworth among the many injured players.

“Disgraceful to College Sport” Kansas Semi-Weekly Capital (11-27-1894)

“From the reports of the Harvard-Yale game at Springfield on Saturday, the game degenerated early in the play to a brutal exhibition of ugly feeling and tactics utterly obnoxious to true sport.  In an interview in which he states that if the game is to be played as it was on Saturday he is opposed to its remaining any longer as intercollegiate sport.”

“Mo more serious blow has ever been delivered against the American game of football than the manner in which the Harvard-Yale game was played today. 

“Football Atrocities” Outlook (12-1-1894)

“One thing was conclusively settled at the annual football game between Yale and Harvard, played last Saturday at Springfield – namely, that the intercollegiate game, as it is now indulged in, must be either radically reformed or resolutely suppressed by college authorities…It is a question of savagery versus civilization…it is to be hoped that the faculties of the small colleges as well as of the great universities will take to suppress what has become the national evil of football.”

“On the gridiron, Auburn Goes down in a Glorious Game” Birmingham Age Herald (11-25-1894)

“The great feature of the game was what may be fairly called its brutality.”

“Brutal Sport” Muenchener Neuste Nachrichten reported in the Harvard Crimson (2-2-1895)

"The football tournament between the teams of Harvard and Yale in Springfield had terrible results. It turned into an awful butchery. Of twenty-two participants seven were so severely injured that they had to be carried from the field in a senseless condition. The vertebral column of one was put out of joint; a second one's nose was broken; a third lost an eye and a fourth broke his leg. The rest suffered severe internal injuries.

'The intention to injure each other in all their attacks was clearly evident. Therefore there can be no question of accident. Furthermore both teams appeared upon the field with a crowd of doctors, ambulances and attendants, which from the very start did not fail of producing a gruesome impression upon the spectators.

'Many ladies were present who fainted away at the awful cries of the injured players. The indignation felt towards the brutality of the students was powerful, but terror so dominated the spectators that nobody dared interfere.

'From other towns, too, incidents of brutality in football are reported. In Shreve (Ohio) and in Worcester (Mass.) they resulted in the death of a young man at each place.

'Many professors at the Universities are openly proclaiming in the newspapers their disgust at this disgraceful sport and protest against allowing its continuance. They are complaining a great deal about the behavior in general of a majority of the students. The study of the sciences has become a side issue.

'The cult of all possible sports dominates all the colleges to such an extent that the parents of the students are in despair about the matter without being able to make any headway against the abuse.'"