Cabinet of Curiosities

Cabinet of Curiosities: Ichabod

Ichabod trinketsFar left shelf:

Folk art Ichabod whirligig
Collection of Denise Ottinger

This whirligig was purchased at Wheatland Antiques Mall, Topeka

Ichabod bobble head doll, c. 2004 (top)

Ichabod’s original pastel colors were exchanged for the pure primaries of red, yellow and blue at the time of Washburn’s 125th anniversary in 1990. These bobble heads were produced with the updated colors.

Ichabod metal figurine, 1948 (bottom)
Collection of Bill Carruth and Monette Mark

This figurine stands in the alternate pose designed by Bradbury Thompson, as seen in the 1938 Kaw yearbook. It once belonged to Arthur J. Carruth, Jr. (1887-1962), journalist and ultimately co-publisher of the Topeka State Journal. Carruth graduated from Washburn in 1908 and was chairman of the Board of Regents from 1941-1962.

Lower shelf

Ichabod button, 1948

Bradbury Thompson (1911-1995)
Original design for Ichabod, published in The Kaw, 1938

In 1938 graphic designer and Washburn alum Bradbury Thompson won a competition held by The Kaw yearbook to create an image of an Ichabod, as a logo for the Ichabods, the college’s sports teams. Thompson depicted his Ichabod with the 19th-century clothes and mutton chops of the real Ichabod Washburn. He described his Ichabod as having “courage and enthusiasm, as shown by his brisk walk. He is democratic and courteous, for he tips his hat as he passes. Sincere in his search for truth and knowledge, he studiously carries a book under his arm. His friendly smile makes you like him. He is neatly dressed.”

A 1934 graduate of Washburn, Thompson went on to become one of the most influential graphic designers of the 20th-century. He taught at Yale University from 1956 until 1995.

Ichabod hard hat, 2014
Washburn University, courtesy of the Office of Human Resources.

This hard hat was made for employees to wear during the reconstruction of Morgan Hall.

Far right shelf

Mark Lundeen, b. 1958
Ichabod, 1995
Collection of Mulvane Art Museum, Washburn University

Sculptor Mark Lundeen created the statue of Ichabod that stands in Joss Garden behind the Bradbury Thompson Alumni Center. In 1995, he made over 200 small replicas of that work, as a fundraiser for Bradbury Thompson Alumni Center. A native Nebraskan, Lundeen is a well-known realistic sculptor now living in Loveland, CO.

Ichabod marionette, c. 1939

In the 1930s and 1940s Washburn’s theater department taught courses in marionette puppet design and production. According to the 1940 yearbook, the department’s 250 marionettes were used in plays staged on campus and in the region.

For the 75th anniversary of Washburn, in 1940, the theatre department created puppets of the administrators and the new Ichabod. Only the Ichabod survives.

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