Library and Archives

October 16, 2018

Snippets from the Past: St. Kate’s Yearbooks

Happy American Archives Month! St. Catherine University’s Archives would like to highlight one of the most popular collections viewed by visitors and researchers: yearbooks. First produced in 1919, St. Kate’s yearbooks have had several names over the years. They were called La Concha (Spanish for “seashell”) during 1919-1976, Renaissance (French for “rebirth” or “revival”) in 1977, and Etos (Greek for “year”) during 1978-1996. The Archives has yearbooks from 1919-1996 available for perusal. There are some gaps in the 1930s when the Depression prevented production of a yearbook for several years. Yearbook publications eventually came to a stop in 1996.

In looking through the yearbooks, viewers will discover things they did not know about or have forgotten about. Whether it is information pertaining to faculty, students, organizations, athletics, departments, campus life and events, or other unique features, the yearbooks highlight them all. Patrons who seek information about their family members or other important people in their lives often go through them. Let’s explore some of the yearbooks!

Advice for getting a teaching position

Early yearbooks contained sections for jokes, stories, "advice," and other light-hearted fun. Interested in reading some Kat-Tales? Check out the 1921 version of La Concha! Some of the tales might make you laugh out loud. Here's one of them, with some advice for getting a teaching job.

St. Kate's original seal The University’s original seal made its first yearbook appearance in 1921. If you were not yet aware, St. Kate’s used to be called the College of St. Catherine back in the day.

St. Kate’s yearbooks are aesthetically different, showing how graphic design and publication styles have changed over the years. Here's a sample of some of their covers.

Sample of yearbook covers

Are you up for a challenge? Try completing this 1937 Classword Puzzle!

Crossword puzzle from 1937 yearbook

These “Shades of Physical Education” and “Outline of Classes” photographs from the 1940 yearbook are breathtaking. The photography themes of shade and silhouette make for striking images.

Photographs of athletics and students in class

Are you interested in exploring the hairstyles of St. Kate’s students over the years? Take a look at these hairdos!

Hairstyles through the years

St. Kate’s yearbooks are an institutional treasure. They consist of more than just words and images—they tell stories and strengthen memories. Come to the Archives and Special Collections and see for yourself!

For more information, please visit the our website. You can also email us at, call 651-690-6553, or drop by room 62 in the lower level of the Coeur de Catherine library in person. Our hours are Wednesdays and Thursdays from 12:00 PM - 4:00 PM.