A WOMAN OF LETTERS (1898)

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The year is 1898. She stood all of 4’10” . . . and her game was Basketball.Sarah DeForest Hanscom wears the letters of her team, University of California – and she was enrolled at the Berkeley campus near San Francisco. Sarah was a member of the first intercollegiate women’s basketball team, and graduated from UCB in 1899.

James Naismith invented the game of basketball towards the end of 1891, with the first actual game being played in 1892 at Springfield, Massachusetts. Instead of throwing the ball through a metal hoop with netting, players aimed it at a hanging peach basket. If that wasn’t odd enough, the first basketball was actually a soccer ball. What cool trivia we’ve accumulated here! It’s certainly a testament to the popularity of Naismith’s new game, that it managed to spread all the way to California in only 6 years – and Sarah DeForest Hanscom, at 4’10”, was one of its pioneer players.

Sarah DeForest Hanscom, CA-Berkley Girls Basketball (1899)

1898 - Sarah DeForest Hanscom

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