Thievery and brawls mark the storied history of the Stanford Axe.
It made its debut on April 13, 1899, at a baseball game when Stanford students used it to decapitate a straw man dressed in blue and gold. In a postgame brawl, Cal students stole the ax and it remained locked in a vault in Berkeley until 31 years later, when Stanford's "Immortal Twenty-One" stole it at Cal's annual Axe Rally. Upon their return to campus, the school celebrated by canceling classes for two days, and the Immortal Twenty-One were presented with "Block S" letters.
Following years of negotiations between the school presidents, it was decided that the Axe would go to the winner of The Big Game. -- Kevin Gemmell