*Onward like the swallow going
Flies the speed of oar and shell.
Oh the wild delight in knowing, ‘
Tis our pow’r that does the rowing…..
Captivated by the book ,”The Boys in the Boat”, Melanie Barstow has successfully volunteered to conduct tours of the University of Washington shell house and related historic spots. The response has been large.
In her talk, she reviews the book’s story, noting:
- the Depression era
- the fortitude of the rowers
- the privations of the young men
- the hard and dangerous jobs they had to take
- the adversities, including the family’s abandonment of the principal character at his age of 15.
Altruism, self-sacrifice, and fortitude were the sine qua non that made possible the successive triumphs of this Husky crew, This culminated in their Olympic triumph in Berlin in 1936 as they represented the U.S. Specifically, the order of finish; USA/Italy/Germany. It is notable that the margin between winning and not winning is at times measured in hundredths of a second. In 1936, the times were 6:25.4, 6:26, and 6:26.4.
*All in unison of action, with the noble satisfaction….
…..Coolly every power invoke…
Onward, make her cut the water,
Onward make her cut the water—
And for fame of alma mater, stroke, stroke, stroke.
*Excerpts from the Cornell Rowing Song.