Posts Tagged ‘Wilbur Gobrecht’

Mystery Photograph

May 11, 2010

A reader sent me this photo in an attempt to determine if the team in the photo is the 1910 Dickinson College Red Devils and if the player seated at the left in the front row is Frank Mt. Pleasant.


A photo of the 1910 Carlisle Indians-Dickinson College game can be found at this link: The player at the far left is wearing a Carlisle jersey. The forearm stripes may not have been unique, but were different from most other teams’ uniforms. All the jerseys in the photo are different from the jerseys worn by Dickinson in 1910. Also, Frank Mt. Pleasant graduated in the spring of 1910 and coached Franklin and Marshall that fall.


Follows is a photo of the 1909 Dickinson team of which Mt. Pleasant was captain. Wilbur J. Gobrecht in his history of Dickinson College football reported that in 1903, Dickinson switched to black jerseys and black stockings with half-inch red and white stripes. This uniform design was used for 25 years. As captain, Frank Mt. Pleasant is seated in the middle of the center row in the photograph. I am not very good at identifying people from photographs, so take my opinion with plenty of salt. The player in the first photo looks very different to me than the Captain of the Dickinson squad.

Perhaps someone seeing this photo can identify the team, the year and the players.

The Kidnapping of Frank Cayou

November 10, 2008

Rusty Shunk recently informed me of the existence of “The History of Football at Dickinson College: 1885 – 1969” by Wilbur J. Gobrecht. Why might I be interested in this book? The reason is simple. Several Carlisle Indians attended Dickinson College, its prep school and Dickinson School of Law. Some of them also played on Dickinson’s football team. Today’s piece is about an off-field incident involving one of these men.

In 1898 Francis M. Cayou enrolled in Dickinson College as member of the class of 1902 and played halfback on the 1898 football team – after Carlisle finished its season and only in the game against Penn State. Gobrecht uncovered an interesting story regarding Cayou told in 1930 by Rev. William H. Decker, also a member of the class of 1902, after he discovered a long-forgotten search warrant that had been issued by George W. Bowers, a Carlisle justice of the peace. That warrant gave Constable H. M. Fishburn the right to search the premises of the Mountain House at Sterretts Gap for “one F. M. Cayou, forcibly taken from Carlisle on Jan. 22, 1899.”

Frank had been warned of possible nefarious actions being planned by the class of 1901 but paid no heed to them. Rev. Decker recalled how the handsome Cayou took his girlfriend to the Sunday evening service at First Presbyterian Church on the square and was abducted on departing the church after the service. Members of the class of 1901, knowing he was there, placed a black maria wagon in the adjoining alley and waited for their opportunity. As the Indian exited the church, they tore him away from his girl and threw him bodily into the paddy wagon or hearse, which was used is not clear. Once he was inside, the wagon tore off madly over the icy streets into the dark countryside. “Burlys” of the class of 1902 rushed up, grabbed the horses’ harness and tried to cut it with knives but were unsuccessful.

To be continued …