A Walk in Our ‘Shoe: 100 Years of Ohio Stadium

A black and white image of a large building showing the exterior and interior of a football stadium. Flagpoles with waving banners ring the top row of the stadium. The image is from a photographic illustration of Ohio Stadium used on a commemorative handout promoting the opening of the stadium.
Thompson Library
Thompson Gallery (Room 125)
1858 Neil Avenue Mall
Columbus, OH 43210-1286

August 20, 2022 - February 26, 2023
Exhibit Hours: 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday & Sunday: 12:00 PM - 6:00 PM
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Over the past 100 years, thousands of fans have cheered The Ohio State University Buckeyes to victory in Ohio Stadium, affectionately known as the ‘Shoe. TBDBITL has brought audiences to their feet for Script Ohio and families and friends have joyfully watched as their students became graduates in that same stadium. A Walk in Our ‘Shoe: 100 Years of Ohio Stadium celebrates the history of the Horseshoe. On view in the Thompson Library Gallery August 20, 2022-February 26, 2023, the exhibit is presented by University Archives and is free and open to the public. 

Visitors to the Ohio State campus usually pause at Ohio Stadium. Fondly called the Horseshoe since it opened in 1922, Ohio Stadium is a massive structure that holds just over 102,000 fans. For most people cheering in the stands and at home, the ‘Shoe is the focal point of the University on football Saturdays. Although football will always be its main purpose, its designers successfully predicted that the stadium would be much more. Throughout its history, the walls of the ‘Shoe have seen track stars breaking records, students living underneath its stands, musical guests belting out a favorite tune and parents beaming as their children receive their degrees. The traditions and stories surrounding Ohio Stadium are as diverse as those who have been there. 

Artifact highlights of the exhibit include: 

  • Football uniforms and gear from the 1920s and 1930s 
  • Goal post piece from the 1955 Rose Bowl  
  • Dedication game day program from 1922 
  • Woody Hayes’ football playbook 
  • Jim Tressel’s play calling sheets 
  • Lego Ohio Stadium constructed by Professor Paul Janssen (Physiology and Cell Biology) 
    • Get your very own Lego figure seated inside the Lego stadium by making a donation to the University Archives and the Heart and Vascular Center and The Ohio State University!

Learn more about the Ohio Stadium:

Check out some of the great press coverage of the exhibition:


Photo of Tamar Chute Tamar Chute
University Archivist