In 1947, The Florida Flambeau held a contest for a song to become the school's alma mater; "High O'er the Towering Pines" was written by Johnny Lawrence and submitted to the competition. The song was announced as the winner of the competition on November 21, 1947, but was not officially made the alma mater until 1949.
"The Hymn to the Garnet and the Gold" was originally written by J. Dayton Smith for chorus and was first premiered by the Collegians at the 1950 Homecoming. In 1958, Charlie Carter arranged the piece for the Marching Chiefs and it was performed as the closer to the Homecoming show, cementing it as a Homecoming tradition at Florida State.
The 1950 Homecoming half-time show included a dedication ceremony naming the stadium in honor of university President Doak Campbell. There was also a special performance by the band, christening it the Marching Chiefs and premiering the "FSU Fight Song." Student Doug Alley wrote the lyrics to the fight song as a poem which first appeared in the Florida Flambeau. Professor of music Thomas Wright saw the poem in the newspaper and wrote a melody to it as he was inspired by the surge of school spirit.
Fifty years later, the FSU Fight Song is one of the most widely recognized college tunes in the country. Mission Control used the Fight Song to awaken alumnus and current professor Norm Thagard one morning in 1983 while he was aboard the Challenger spacecraft.