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History of Cheer...

Princeton graduate Thomas Peebles introduced the idea of organized crowds cheering at football games to the University of Minnesota. However, it was not until 1898 that University of Minnesota student Johnny Campbell directed a crowd in cheering "Rah, Rah, Rah! Ski-u-mah, Hoo-Rah! Hoo-Rah! Varsity! Varsity! Varsity, Minn-e-So-Tah!”, making Campbell the very first cheerleader and November 2, 1898 the official birth date of organized cheerleading. Soon after, the University of Minnesota organized a "yell leader" squad of 6 male students, who still use Campbell's original cheer today In 1903 the first cheerleading fraternity, Gamma Sigma was founded. Cheerleading started out as an all-male activity, but females began participating in 1923, due to limited availability of female collegiate sports. At this time, gymnastics, tumbling, and megaphones were incorporated into popular cheers, and are still used today. Today it is estimated that 97% of cheerleading participants overall are female, but males still make up 50% of cheering squads at the collegiate level. (Cheerleading/Facebook)