What would be the ultimate Nike holy grail? The original weartest pair of Air Jordans? Bruce Kilgore's initial drawings of the Air Force 1? How about a pair of shoes worn by Steve Prefontaine? No, no, and no. Try a rusty old waffle iron, discarded decades ago and buried in Bill Bowerman's yard. But not just any old waffle iron—this was the one Bowerman used to create the "waffle sole," Nike's first technologically advanced step towards becoming the athletic shoe juggernaut it is today. The iron, along with one of the first pairs of waffle-soled shoes, was rediscovered last year, and just now has been put on display on Nike's Beaverton campus. A sacred relic has made it home.

[The Oregonian]