football

The OTHER National Football League

With the playing of the Super Bowl championship football game this past weekend, the attention of the country was focused on the National Football League (NFL) and its teams.

The present day NFL was formed in 1920.  But if you were to read the article below, taken from The Christian Recorder, one of the sources in the African American Newspapers Collection from Accessible Archives, you might think that there was another “National Football League” that pre-dated the formation of today’s NFL.  However, that is not the case.  (Do you know why?  Click here to see the answer.)

Collection: African American Newspapers
Publication: THE CHRISTIAN RECORDER
Date: August 16, 1894
Title: THE PROFESSIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE
Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

NEW YORK, August 15.  At the Fifth Avenue Hotel last evening the National Football League was organized, under the name of the American League of Professional Football Players. The league was organized by the election of A.A. Irwin of Philadelphia, as president, and George Stackhosue, of New York, as secretary, E.B. Talcott of New York, C.H. Byrnes of Brooklyn and President Irwin were elected as a board of directors. The season will open on Oct. 1 and continue until July 1, 1895, inclusive. Each team will play five games in the different cities in the league. During the season the professional football club of Sunderland, England, will visit this country.

With the playing of the Superbowl championship football game this past weekend, the attention of the country was focused on the National Football League (NFL) and its teams.  The present day NFL was formed in 1920.  But if you were to read this article from The Christian Recorder, one of the sources in the Accessible Archives African American Newspapers Collection, you might think that there was another “National Football League” that pre-dated the formation of the NFL .

All images included in blog posts are from either Accessible Archives collections or out of copyright public sources unless otherwise noted. Common sources include the Library of Congress, The Flickr Commons, Wikimedia Commons, and other public archives.

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