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Phoenix Mascot Collection

Identifier: EUA090


This collection includes information about the Elon University mascot, The Phoenix. The information contained in this collection encompasses the origins of the Phoenix mascot, the process of branding/marketing and choosing an appropriate logo, the Phoenix Sculpture, and the Phoenix Rising Plaque on campus. The collection is arranged into five boxes. Boxes one and two are arranged chronologically, and then alphabetically by type of material. Box three is arranged chronologically within the box and then alphabetically by type of material. Boxes four and five are arranged chronologically. For further information, please consult the Historical Note and Detailed Description of the Collection sections below.


  • Creation: 1991- Ongoing

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

The nature of the Archives and Special Collections of Belk Library means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. The Archives and Special Collections of Belk Library claims only physical ownership of most materials. The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to the U.S. Copyright Law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research of otherwise should be fully credited with the source.

Biographical / Historical

On May 9, 2000 it was announced at Elon University that the Phoenix would be the school's new mascot, replacing the long-time Fightin' Christians mascot. According to an article in the Spring 2000 issue of the Magazine of Elon, "Elon President Leo M. Lambert called The Phoenix the 'perfect choice' because of the connection of the college's triumphant recovery from the 1923 fire that destroyed the campus main building, including classrooms, records, the library and chapel." During the weekly event, College Coffee, the launch of The Phoenix took place outside the Koury Athletic Center and featured a large egg in a next that eventually broke open and a 14-foot banner rose in a cloud of smoke. The banner included the image of The Phoenix, unveiling the new athletic mascot to a crowd of students, faculty, staff, alumni and trustees. During 1998-1999, Alan White (former Director of Athletics) co-chaired the fifteen member Athletic Identity Task Force that helped select the new athletic mascot for Elon. Over 125 names were suggested by alumni, Elon employees, and other members of the community and The Phoenix was chosen, after receiving high marks from focus group testing and surveys that involved students, faculty, staff, alumni, and trustees. Also from the article in the Spring 2000 Magazine of Elon issue, "The Phoenix is a rare creature with remarkable connections to Elon and its 111-year history. The Phoenix's plumage matches the school's maroon and gold colors. As described by the ancient Greek historian Herodotus, once every 500 years, when it feels its death approaching the Phoenix builds a nest in an oak tree. (Elon is Hebrew for oak). After being consumed by its own flames, the Phoenix rises again to fly to the temple of the sun. The bird is a symbol of immortality, light, knowledge and everlasting vigor. Ancient philosophers described the sacred bird as a leader and an emblem of hope, providing connections to the promise of higher education."


2 Linear Feet (4 Archival Boxes)

Language of Materials



The collection is arranged into four boxes. Boxes one and two are arranged chronologically, and then alphabetically by type of material. Box three is arranged chronologically within the box and then alphabetically by type of material. Box four is arranged chronologically.

Physical Location

The collection is located in the Carol Grotnes Belk Library Archives and Special Collections at Elon University. Please contact the Archives and Special Collections staff for further details about the location.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Acquired 2012. Office of University Communications.

Related Materials

Please consult with the Archives and Special Collections staff for additional information about related materials to this collection.

Processing Information

Processed by Juliana Siler

Juliana Siler
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Belk Library Archives & Special Collections Repository

100 Campus Drive
2550 Campus Box
Elon North Carolina 27244 USA