THE LINTON-STOCKTON HIGH SCHOOL MINER
The Linton Miner has enjoyed a rich tradition at Linton-Stockton High School. It has served the school well as a mascot representing the coal industry associated with the Linton area. The Miner is a source of pride not only for the students and school personnel but also for the community. In this region, the Miner is readily identifiable with Linton. The following is an account of how the school chose its nickname, the usage of the Miner logo, and a brief history of the Linton Miner mascot.
Red and Blue
From 1900 until 1926, the athletic teams at Linton High School were known as the Red and Blue. The symbolic title was derived from the school colors. In the early 1900s, naming a school team based upon the school colors was a common practice. The school colors at Linton were the red and blue found in the American flag; this was a reflection of the patriotic attitude of the school and community. The players’ uniforms for the various Linton sports teams during those early days were either plain or featured the letter “L” on the front of the shirts.
The last visible remnant of the Red and Blue usage in Linton survived until August 20, 1996, when the vacant building that housed the old Red and Blue Restaurant was demolished. The restaurant, which was located southwest of the high school on the northeast corner of North Main and Northeast H Streets, was closed in 1976 shortly after the death of the owner Hazel Bedwell. The restaurant had been a popular place for the high school students who ate lunch there when the school had an open campus.
Red and Blue Restaurant
During the 1922-1923 school year, many changes took place at the high school in Linton. The student body and faculty moved into a new brick building at the north end of Main Street. The name of the school was changed from Linton High School to Linton-Stockton Joint High School. The name engraved on the limestone above the main entrance of the new building was “Linton-Stockton High School,” which later became the official school name. Within the next few years, another change occurred: the high school sports teams known as the Red and Blue became the Miners. Schools in Indiana were starting to be identified by school mascots rather than colors during this time period.
The name Miners was chosen to honor the industry that was the main contributor to the growth and economics of early Linton. This name was adopted during the time when Gerald W. “Two-Penny” Landis taught and coached the major sports teams at Linton. He coached his first football team at Linton in 1923, but the word Miners did not appear on the uniforms or in school publications until 1926.
The first written record of the Linton students being referred to as the Miners appeared in The Revue (school yearbook) of 1926. The theme of the yearbook was based on coal mining. The artwork that appeared in the annual was taken from drawings made during a class sketching trip to a coal tipple in the Linton area. Harold Graves, a senior in Gladys Terhune’s art class, created the drawing of a coal tipple that was repeated throughout the annual.
Coal Tipple Drawing by Harold Graves
Graves also drew four other sketches depicting miners working in an underground mine, which were used as divider pages for the classes in the yearbook.
Sketches of Coal Miners by Graves
In this same annual the basketball and track teams were pictured wearing warm-up suits, featuring the word “Miners” on the front of their shirts.
1926 Basketball Team
History of the Logo
Although sports teams had been known as the Linton Miners since 1926, the school did not have a Miner logo until James “Jim” Callane came to teach at Linton. Callane was the varsity basketball coach and also taught health, biology, and physical education at Linton from 1971-1976. He designed the Linton Miner logo to promote pride in Linton athletics.
The Athletic Department at Linton-Stockton High School ordered license plates to sell to Miner fans in 1972. The license plate was to feature a picture of a miner and “LINTON MINERS.” When the plates arrived, the miner was a cartoon-styled character of a Forty-Niner Miner. Although the Forty-Niner Miner character was designed cleverly, it did not depict a miner who worked as a coal miner in the Linton area.
Original License Plate Ordered in 1972
Callane used the Forty-Niner Miner from the license plate as the model for his coal miner logo. He was also inspired by the John Purdue-Boilermaker character. Callane presented the idea of painting his Linton Miner design on the gymnasium wall to James Gabbard, who was the high school principal, and the idea was approved.
The Linton Miner was first displayed to the public at a home basketball game in 1972--this was the official beginning of the Linton Miner logo. The Miner that appeared on the north wall of the gymnasium was a cartoon-styled character wearing red pants, a white shirt, blue vest, red handkerchief, and black boots and belt. The hard hat, pickax, and lantern were charcoal gray.
Original Miner by Callane
Callane spent four or five nights working on the project. He used an opaque projector to place the Miner outline on the gymnasium wall. He purchased the paint himself to complete the project. Bill Carpenter, a student teacher under Callane, also helped with the painting. At that time Linton had only one gymnasium, which was constructed in 1938-1941. This building served as the high school gymnasium until the construction of the new gym in 1980, at which time the old gymnasium became known as the junior high gym.
The Miner logo was well accepted by the students, school personnel, and community. Consequently, the character became the official high school logo through acceptance. No record exists to verify that the logo was officially adopted by the school corporation, but the vote of approval was high judging by the number of people who wore clothing with the Miner logo and the new signs that appeared throughout the city of Linton. As Callane’s design was not officially adopted by the school system, there were many Callane-inspired versions of the Miner that were created and used over the next thirty years.
At the beginning of the 2000-2001 school year, changes occurred once again at the high school as classes were taught in the newly-constructed high school building. As the students and school personnel moved into the new facilities and into the twenty-first century, Charlie Karazsia, high school athletic director and physical education teacher, decided that the Miner needed to be updated to reflect a more modern Miner. He contacted Joe Hart, art and physical education teacher at Union High School in Dugger, Indiana, about designing a new Miner.
Hart submitted three sketches of a new Miner logo. Karazsia took the designs to Chantel Carpenter, club sponsor, to have the Lettermen/Letterwomen Clubs vote on the design. They selected the Miner breaking through the wall. The new logo was drawn by Nathan Page, a Union High School senior in Hart’s art class in 2003. Using Page’s sketch, Hart painted the final version of the new logo.