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About the Collection

The first yearbook of the University of Wisconsin was published in April 1884 and called the Trochos, which is a Greek word for badger. The second yearbook, also called Trochos, was not published until 1887. The first Badger was published in February 1888, and the Badger was published until 2003, with one hiatus in 1973-74. The Alumni Association helped publish volumes for those two years which basically only contain student photographs.

A confusing fact is that until 1932 the yearbooks were done by the junior class and the date on the cover is the class year of the junior class. Thus the first Trochos has '85 on the cover, and the first Badger, although published in 1888, is called the '89 Badger. This means, for example, that a person who was a senior in 1910 would have their senior photograph in the 1911 Badger. Also, the yearbooks covered athletic and social events of the year, or even two years, before the date on the yearbook. In 1932, the yearbook became a senior class publication; there are two 1932 yearbooks, and afterwards the date on the yearbook is of the senior class.

Also remember that many people did not have photographs in the yearbook, so you may not find a senior picture, although you may find a person in a group photograph of a fraternity, sorority, sports team, etc. Also, because the Badgers were often printed on colored paper, with various type fonts, images on pages with text over them, etc., the search engine may not work well. You may want to browse individual years of the Badger.