Leather football helmets were introduced in 1893, after doctors warned that a blow to the head could be fatal or cause 'instant insanity.' Football helmets didn't really catch on until the 1920s, however, and weren't mandatory until the 1930s.

When most people think of classic vintage football helmets, they think of the leather padded style popular in the 1940s. The first logos were put on helmets in 1948, and leather was soon phased out. The helmets most valued by collectors today are the older leather ones, with the exception of more modern helmets worn (and/or signed) by famous players, and those with logos which are no longer in use or from teams that no longer exist.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Vintage Football Card Gallery

Vintage Football Card Gallery

This great database of pro and collegiate football cards from the 1950s and 1960s offers scanned images of cards fo… [read review or visit site]

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Pittsburgh Steelers Throwback Full Size Football Helmet San Francisco 49ers Full Size Football Helmet Andrew Luck Signed Autographed Full Size Colts Helmet Coa ProofVtg Denver Broncos Rawlings Football Helmet Old Logo Hnfl-medium Very Nice Cond!Kansas City Chiefs Full Size Football Helmet Riddell Tampa Bay Bucaneers Throwback Fullsize Football HelmetVintage Riddell Kra-lite Suspension Football Helmet!2014 Leaf Mini Helmet Teddy Bridgewater Auto Autograph Jsa Coa Louisville VikingOakland Raiders Throwback Full Size Football Helmet Riddell Florida Gators Custom Fullsize Football Helmet Ny Sack Exchange Signed Jets Green Full-size Helmet W/sack Exchange - Psa/dnaRiddell Denver Broncos Throwback Fullsize Football HelmetJoe Namath New York Jets Signed Full Size Pro Line Helmet Jsa Loa2012 Bowman Andrew Luck Helmet Refractor Auto Rc SspPeyton Manning John Elway F/s Autograph Helmet Auto Steiner Elway Holo'sVtg Washington Redskins Rawlings Air-flo Football Helmet Old Logo! Hnfl-largeAyrton Senna Helmet 1/2 Rothmans, Very Rare!Jack Lambert Signed Mini Helmet Hof 90 Inscribed Steelers Nfl Gold SharpieCarolina Panthers Full Size Football Helmet Tom Brady Signed Autographed Patriots Mini Helmet With CoaTom Brady Signed New England Patriots Mini Helmet Nfl With CoaPatrick Willis Signed Autographed Riddell San Francisco 49ers Mini Helmet Coa Full Size 3" Football Helmet Number Decals - Indianapolis Colts - Set Of 20 2012 Prominence Andrew Luck Rc /80 Helmet Auto SpMinnesota Vikings Full Size Football Helmet Riddell Baltimore Ravens Throwback Fullsize Football Helmet Joe Montana Autographed San Francisco 49ers Mini Helmet Steiner HologramRiddell Vsr4 Authentic Nfl Full Sized Proline Dallas Cowboys HelmetChicago Blackhawks Team Signed Jersey Helmet - Patrick Kane + Jonathan Toews + +Brewers 2013 All Star Carlos Gomez Signed Riddell Mini Helmet AutoDenver Broncos Full Size Football Helmet Ladainian Tomlinson San Diego Chargers Signed Full Size Helmet Jsa2014 Leaf Mini Helmet Mike Evans Auto Autograph Tristar Coa Texas A & M HelmetEric Reid Speed Mini Helmet Auto Autograph Signed San Francisco 49ersJ.j. Watt Signed Auto Houston Texans Full Size Helmet Jsa AutographedRiddell Revolution Adult Football Helmet - Black - LargeNew Orleans Voodoo Arena Riddell Auth. Football Helmet Full Size W/case Vsr-4Bo Jackson Oakland Raiders Autographed Riddell Mini Helmet - -item #1758406Cleveland Browns Nfl Riddell "on Field" Authentic Helmet Pro-line (lg.) In BoxSeattle Seahawk Helmet Signed By 41 Players From 2013 Super Bowl Team1984 Oklahoma State Cowboys Game Used Worn Bike Football Helmet Thurman Thomas New Orleans Saints Full Size Football Helmet Atlanta Falcons Full Size Football Helmet Ladanian Tomlinson Autographed Authentic Helmet Full Size~university Of Rhode Island Rams~game Used Football Helmet~riddell Vsr 4~cool!Lynn Swann Signed Steelers Mini Helmet Coa And Photo SigningRiddell Missouri Tigers Custom Blackout Fullsize Football Helmet 2012 Kansas City Cheifs Game Used Worn #40 Peyton Hillis Helmet Nfl RareMike Trout Signed Full Size Rawlings Mlb Authenticated Helmet & Coa L@@k AngelsRandy Moss Autographed/signed New England Patriots Riddell Authentic Nfl HelmetTom Brady Signed New England Patriots Throwback Mini Helmet Michigan Auto GaBaltimore Ravens Full Size Football Helmet Houston Oilers Full Size Football Helmet Very Rare 1981-86 Penn State Psu Game-worn Helmet, Two National ChampionshipsEddie Lacy Autographed Signed Green Bay Packers F/s Helmet Jsa Witness #w610604Tennessee Titans Full Size Football Helmet Buffalo Bills Throwback Full Size Football Helmet Jack Lambert Signed Pittsburgh Steelers Custom Mini Helmet Jsa Derek Jeter Autographed Mini-helmetRiddell Miami Hurricanes Custom Fullsize Football Helmet