KU Libraries launch crowdsourcing campaign to “Preserve the Phog”

Monday, February 8, 2016

KU Libraries is launching a new crowdsourcing project entitled “Cordially yours, Forrest Allen: Preserving the legacy of the Phog,” a campaign aimed at preserving memorabilia from KU legend, Forrest “Phog” Allen. Gifts can be made online at launchku.org/phog.

Allen is well known on KU’s campus for his vast contributions to Jayhawk basketball, winning 24 conference championships and three national titles. His leadership in the National Association of Basketball Coaches also guided the successful creation of the NCAA basketball tournament. His legacy is partially honored through the Allen Fieldhouse, the basketball arena on KU’s campus.

The University Archives at KU Libraries has a vast physical archive of Allen memorabilia, documents and materials. Documents include blueprints of an experimental backboard, scripts of Allen’s radio program, and his correspondence featuring a set of letters between Allen and a very young Bob Dole. These materials highlight Phog’s successful career in basketball, ultimately earning him the nickname the “Father of Basketball Coaching.”

“Housing paper records in the University Archives does not, unfortunately, ensure that the paper they are printed on will be available forever. Paper deteriorates,” said Becky Schulte, university archivist for KU Libraries. “Creating a digital archive is state-of-the-art in today’s environment, guaranteeing the best means to make materials available for future generations."

“Cordially yours, Forrest Allen: Preserving the legacy of the Phog” is an effort to remedy deterioration through the preservation and digitization of more than 66,000 Phog documents.

This crowdsourcing campaign provides students, parents and KU fans an opportunity to support the preservation of a KU legend. To thank donors for their participation, incentives are provided at varying donation levels and include, among others, a chance to win KU basketball tickets, an invitation to a private event and more.

The project launches on Monday, February 8 and will run for eight weeks. For more information on the campaign, incentives and to donate, visit www.launchku.org/phog. KU Libraries encourage engagement through social media sharing and commenting.

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