Winning Them All: The Evansville Aces 1964-65
January 25 - April 19, 2015
This exhibition will recall the epic season when the Purple Aces went undefeated and claimed the school’s fourth College Division National Championship (today’s Division II). In addition to achieving the national championship (a feat they had also accomplished the prior year), they also defeated several major college teams—including Iowa, Northwestern, and Notre Dame—en route to their perfect season. In an era before ESPN, the Aces were not only an outstanding basketball team; they were one of the major social activities in the City. Over 12,000 fans packed Evansville’s Roberts Municipal Stadium on a regular basis to cheer for their hometown team.
Blessed with talented and dedicated players, the Aces were paced by All-Americans Jerry Sloan and Larry Humes. An NBA player and longtime coach, Sloan is a member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Humes was Indiana’s High School Mr. Basketball before coming to the Purple Aces; is the Aces second alltimeleading scorer; and is a member of the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame.
The team was led by legendary coach Arad McCutchan. McCutchan compiled a record of 515-313 during his 41 year career; won five national championship;, and was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1981.
The climax of the season was the national championship game against the Southern Illinois University Salukis at Roberts Stadium. In two earlier, contests during the regular season, the Aces defeated the Salukis— that included future hall of famer Walt Frazier — by one point on each occasion. The National Championship was also tightly contested, as Evansville defeated Southern Illinois in overtime by a score of 85-82 to complete the perfect season.
Decades of Change: Evansville 1900-1945
April 14 – Ongoing
Presented in partnership with the EVANSVILLE COURIER & PRESS
From 1900 through Evansville’s major involvement in the World War II home front effort, the City experienced many important events as it and the nation transitioned from the horse and buggy era to the atomic age. Opening in the Town Hall and Arms for Victory Galleries this exhibition examines a period in which Evansville experienced a major race riot; two major floods; dedicated Bosse Field; welcomed Evansville College (today’s University of Evansville); opened its first airport; endured the Great Depression; and became a major producer of war goods as the United States and the Allies battled the Axis powers during World War II.