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2012 Archives

Oddities from the photo archive – “Peruna” the SMU pony sleeps in an upstairs apartment?


 The following story ran in the Sept. 19, 2012, edition of the Dallas Morning News Photography blog.

September 20, 2012

By Jerome Sims

The things you find when you’re looking for something else! The 1949 photo above surfaced when I was looking through some old SMU files. Raised a Baptist, I knew the Methodists did some pretty strange things (dancing!), but this image demanded explanation. A little research provided the answer.

In the front page article from Sat., Oct. 29, 1949 headlined “Legally It Was Class as Usual,” about SMU’s homecoming game with the University of Texas, the story unfolded:

“… while pep rallies were going on, precaution was taken to protect Peruna, SMU pony mascot, from Texas University fans who might want to ‘borrow’ him.

The little pony spent the night in the upstairs apartment of Claude R. Fussell, manager of the Rendezvous Stables, 3822 Northwest Highway. Fussell led Peruna up a narrow circular stairway to his quarters over the stables. Peruna tried out Fussell’s bed, didn’t like it, then tried to chew a green throw before he discovered it wasn’t grass.

Last year Texas students swiped a pony they thought was Peruna before the big game in Austin. The pony turned out to be Peruna’s brother.”

College students – I should have known!