Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Auburn University professor pens children's book telling how 'War Eagle' cry originated

Auburn University professor pens children's book telling how 'War Eagle' cry originated - Just in time for the BCS championship game, an Auburn University professor has published a children's book that tries to explain just where the school's "War Eagle" cry comes from.
"Even diehard Auburn fans, if you ask them why we say 'War Eagle,' can't always tell you the official version," said Francesca Adler-Baeder, a professor of human development and family studies who co-wrote the book with her husband, Patrick Baeder. "I was one of them."
The idea for the book began as part of freshman orientation several years ago, when, to explain the story to new students, Adler-Baeder wrote it in rhyme and read it as if she was a grandmother in a rocking chair. It was a hit, and others -- including Auburn administrators -- encouraged her to publish it.
Adler-Baeder said the book is a synopsis of several versions of the War Eagle story. No one's certain where the battle cry came from; even the university's website provides three different options. In the most popular version, it dates to the first game against the University of Georgia in 1892, when a Civil War veteran's pet eagle reportedly broke loose. Other options claim spectators confused "Bald Eagle," the nickname of a tackle on an opposing team in 1914, with "War Eagle," or that it stems from the name Plains Indians used for the golden eagle, whose feathers they wore.
"The War Eagle Story" was illustrated by Tiffany Everett, an amateur artist who lives in Auburn, and published by Mascot Books, which prints children's books for school fundraising. It's for sale on Amazon.com and will be available in Auburn-area bookstores, said Adler-Baeder, who is scheduled to read the book at several Auburn elementary schools Monday. Part of the proceeds will go to scholarships and other programs at the Center for Children, Youth and Families.


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