Marie Hyde Apple, BSE ’31
Marie Hyde Apple, BSE ’31, Professor Emerita of Health and Physical Education, was the first chair of the Department of Women’s Physical Education. She was born in Fairmont, Minnesota, but when she was quite young her family moved to La Crosse, Wisconsin, where she grew up. She attended La Crosse State College and the University of Wisconsin before beginning a teaching career at Oshkosh State Normal School in 1916.
She came to Kent State Normal School in 1918 as the physical director of women, and she also became an associate professor in the Department of Health and Physical Education. Apple earned a bachelor’s degree in education in 1931 while teaching at Kent State. She earned a master’s degree at Columbia University in 1932 and then rejoined the Kent State faculty.
The 1926 Chestnut Burr notes that a lack of facilities and equipment made her work challenging for the first eight years she was at Kent State. However, in 1926, the completion of the Wills Gymnasium offered her the space and resources needed to excel in her role, which was to oversee “training-school classes in physical training, practice teachers in physical education, and the college physical training classes for girls.”
Apple was the first chair of the Department of Women’s Physical Education. She was a member of the Women’s Athletic Association, which was founded in 1928 to sponsor competitive individual and team sports for women. An athlete herself, Apple enjoyed bowling, tennis and badminton. She was an advisor of the Physical Education Club, which was comprised of male and female students studying physical education, and she was a faculty member on the athletic board.
The completion of the Wills Gymnasium offered her the space and resources needed to excel in her role.
Her teaching career in the Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation at Kent State University spanned 35 years, and she retired in 1953. Her papers, along with the Apple family papers (she married James G. Apple on Sept. 13, 1924), are housed at Kent State University Libraries, Special Collections and Archives.
Apple was granted emerita status in 1969 for her pioneering work in the development of physical education at Kent State. University records show her death date as Sept. 10, 2003, but no supporting paperwork exists. If that date is correct, she would have been around 107 years old (estimating that she was 20 years old when she began teaching in 1916).
Apple Hall was dedicated to Marie Hyde Apple on November 22, 1969. It was a part of 11 two-story residence halls comprising the small-group housing complexes, which also included Altmann, Heer, Harbourt, Humphrey, Metcalf, McSweeney, Munzenmayer, Musselman, Stewart and Van Campen. These dorms were designed to assist first-year students with their transition to campus life. However, due to other campus renovations and expansions, several were deemed obsolete in 2008 and demolished, Apple Hall among them.
According to a 2008 Kentwired.com article, for many alumni who once called these small-group dorms “home,” the demolition was truly a loss. As a result of requests from alumni, souvenir bricks from the buildings to be torn down were made available.
“I have so many wonderful memories of KSU, most especially [of] my freshman year at Apple Hall,” said Katie McArthur ’99. “Apple Hall was a special place where being new to college and away from home didn’t seem so intimidating. Apple Hall will be missed!”