Handsome Dan

In 1889, Yale Football tackle Andrew Graves purchased a bulldog from a New Haven blacksmith for $5.00. the dog was led across the field before football and baseball games, and was famed for his ferociousness. “The Philadelphia Press recalled that ‘a favorite trick was to tell him to “Speak to Harvard”. He would bark ferociously and work himself into physical contortions of rage never before dreamed of by a dog. The current University mascot, Louis, is the fifteenth Handsome Dan to grace the Yale Bowl with his beauty and charisma.

Played at the beginning of every game, and after every Yale touchdown, Cole Porter’s “Bulldog” is the song most commonly associated with Yale football.

Handsome Dan is often featured on Yale programs, including this one from 1959 which features two generations (one stuffed and one living):

And, humorously in this 1948 Harvard program:

We have a nice selection of Yale programs on our website, including several featuring Handsome Dan:



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