Press release from Milan '54 Museum
(Milan, Ind.) - Milan 54, Inc. is pleased to announce the successful completion of the fund raising campaign to acquire the “Hoosiers Collection” which is the largest known collection in existence of movie props and uniforms from the 1986 sports classic “Hoosiers.” The success of the campaign was due in large part to the matching opportunity provided by the Efroymson Family Fund and the tremendous support of individual Hoosiers from across the state of Indiana and throughout the United States who supported the Museum’s efforts in numbers never seen before. The campaign raised a total of $49,500 to acquire, preserve and display the collection. “We are very grateful to the support of “Hoosier” enthusiasts and especially the Efroymson Family Fund for making this purchase possible” said Marianne Wiggers President of Milan 54, Inc. “The Efroymson Family Fund‘s matching opportunity gave us the last big push needed to get us over the top.” Other larger contributors to the Hoosier Collection campaign included the Duke Energy Foundation, Pacers Sports and Entertainment, the Enterprise Holdings Foundation and the Hillenbrand Company.
The “Hoosiers Collection” contains more than 180 items consisting of basketball uniforms, cheer leading outfits and other assorted movie props. Included in this collection is a large assortment of the Hickory Huskers uniforms including “Jimmy Chitwood’s #15 home uniform as well as Barbara Hershey’s ¾ length “Betty Rose” vintage coat that she wore when confronting coach Norman Dale about his past. “The Hoosiers Collection will be a wonderful addition to the museum and will preserve these historic sports and cultural artifacts for the people of Indiana forever” said Wiggers. The “Hoosiers Collection” will be on permanent display in the new museum in Milan.
In 2001 the film “Hoosiers” was selected for preservation by the United States National Film Registry at the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically and aesthetically significant to American culture.”
About the Efroymson Family Fund:
The Efroymson Fund is a donor-advised fund of the Central Indiana Community Foundation and continues a long legacy of charitable commitments by the Efroymson family. The fund was established in 1998 by Dan and Lori Efroymson to improve the quality of life for individuals and promote the vitality of communities. Since its inception, the fund has awarded more than $74 million in grants to non-profit organizations in central Indiana and beyond.
About the Milan 54 – Hoosiers Museum:
Before Indiana adopted the high school class basketball tournament system, teams from all sizes of schools competed against each other for that one coveted title—Indiana State Basketball Champions. In 1954 the reign of the large Indiana High Schools ended when the team from Milan High School in Milan, Indiana (with an enrollment of just 161) defeated the Muncie Central team (with an enrollment of 1,662). A shot taken in the last moments brought the score to Milan 32-Muncie 30. Basketball enthusiasts from all over the United States cheered for the Milan Indians Boys Basketball team and sent messages of congratulations. Thousands of fans gathered in the small town of Milan to watch as a huge parade brought the team back to town. In 1986 the small town’s accomplishment was made into the movie “Hoosiers” and the fan base for the Milan Indians team grew even more. Today people come from all over the United States and many countries of the world to see the Milan 54 – Hoosiers Museum and re-live the “David vs Goliath event by walking in the footsteps of the young men who did what was thought to be impossible.
The museum is packed with items from the 1954 Indiana State Basketball Championship as well as the 1986 movie “Hoosiers.” The museum has recently completed an extensive expansion and is located in the historic former State Bank of Milan Building in downtown Milan, Indiana at 201 West Carr Street. For more information visit www.Milan54.org or call 812-654-2772.