The “I” on Red Hill – Then and Now
The “I” on Red Hill on the ISU campus was originally a “T” created by students in 1919 because ISU began as a two year technical institute. ISU grew as a center of higher education and students called for it to become a four year institution but ISU’s department heads weren’t all on board with the idea. Major renovations were made at the time but nothing was done about the “T” until the students went to the hill and turned the “I” into the numeral 4 to symbolize their needs for a school where they could get a 4 year degree. In 1927 the school became a university and an “I” was created that became a reminder of the fight the students went through to get their university.
Over time Mother Nature has taken it’s toll as erosion washed away the supporting soil under the concrete slab.
In a press release in the summer of 2013, Public Information Specialist Andrew Taylor wrote, “Idaho State University officials have determined the iconic ‘I’ on Red Hill in Pocatello poses a safety risk and a committee comprised of students, faculty, alumni and community members has been formed to make recommendations on the structure’s future.”
The safety risk is to the Red Hill Trail, a doubletrack/paved path for bikers, walkers, runners etc. which was completed in 2008. The north end of the trail starts across from the ISU Student Union Building and rises along the base of Red Hill where it overlooks Davis Field and ISU Maintenance Facilities.
Let’s bring back the “I” on Red Hill
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