Husky Through the Ages

 
 
The husky mascot has been a tradition at Northeastern since 1927 with the inauguration of King Husky I by President Speare. In 1955, controversy struck, prompting the University to steer away from live mascots and adopt a permanent incarnation of the husky: a bronze statue.  Subsequently, the University adopted a different type of live husky mascot... Explore this exhibit to learn more!
 
 

Husky Through the Ages

Friday, December 2, 2011

March 4, 1927 - King Husky I is crowned

March 26, 1941 - King Husky I dies of old age

April 16, 1941 - Queen Husky I is crowned

July, 1941 - Queen Husky I dies

January, 1942 - King Husky II is crowned

August, 1952 - King Husky II abdicates

September 24, 1952 - King Husky III crowned

June, 1955 - King Husky III dies

September, 1955 - Death of King Husky III announced, causing outrage from students

September, 1955 - Princess Regent Husky I crowned

February, 1958 - King Husky IV replaces Princess Regent Husky I

August, 1958 - King Husky IV dies of distemper

August, 1958 - King Husky IV's father, Alyeskas Suggen briefly acts as mascot

1959 - Mr. Husky tradition (student wearing husky costume) begins

1959 - Husky Statue Fund Drive begins

1960 - Alyeskas Suggen retires as temporary mascot

September, 1962 - Husky statue installed in the Ell Student Center

September, 1965 - King Husky V is purchased by five members of the class of 1970

1970 - Class of 1970 graduates, taking King Husky V with them

1970 - Queen Husky II purchased by class of 1974

September, 1972 - Queen Husky II abdicates due to stage fright

September, 1972 - King Husky VI crowned

December, 1972 - King Husky VI escapes from his kennel and is hit by a car, sustaining injuries that required that he be put to sleep three days after the accident

King Husky I was trained in Poland Springs, Maine by Leonhard Seppala.  When Vice President Carl Ell sought out Seppala in 1927, he did so not only because Northeastern needed a mascot but because Seppala had already inspired one great tradition: the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.  In 1925, Nome, Alaska experienced an infamous diphtheria epidemic in which teams of sled dogs played an important role in bringing diphtheria serum through extremely harsh conditions.  Leonhard Seppala and his team of Siberian huskies carried the serum over 91 miles of the treacherous relay (passing his cargo to the more famous Gunnar Kaasen, driver of Balto, who covered the final stretch of trail and delivered the serum to Nome).  The efforts made by Seppala and the other teams have since been commemorated yearly by the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.  Having heard of Seppala's great achievements in 1925, Ell was eager to obtain one of Seppala's Siberian husky pups. Now, 85 years later, members of the Northeastern community have Seppala to thank for their own tradition of the husky mascot.

 

At right, Leonhard Seppala (left), King Husky I (center), and Ray Todd, a member of the Northeastern University student council, pose for a photograph while another husky observes.

Exhibit Banner (l to r):
A007050. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > King Husky I.
A017772. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > Husky Statue.
A017769. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > Mr. and Mrs. Husky.

King Husky I:
A006390. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > King Husky I.

King Husky II:
A005979. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > King Husky II.

King Husky III:
A007251. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > King Husky III.

King Husky IV:
A007270. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > King Husky IV.

King Husky V:
A007274. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > King Husky V.

Queen Husky II and King Husky VI:
A017766. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > Queen Husky II.
A017767. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > Queen Husky II.

New Mascots:
A017768. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > Mr. and Mrs. Husky.
A005529. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > Husky Statue.

Leonhard Seppala:
A007238. Office of University Photograph collection (A103). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Drawer 34, Mascot and Seal > King Husky I.

Huskiana collection (A20). University Libraries. Archives and Special Collections Department. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts. Box 1, folders 1-8.

This exhibit was designed and created by Abigail Cramer, Archives Assistant, Archives and Special Collections.