The roots of contemporary American football can be traced to the late 19th century, when, in 1875, Harvard lost to Tufts. The first professional football league game followed in 1903—the Massillon Tigers won that year’s all-Ohio championship.
Almost from the beginning, marketers tried to capitalize on the popularity of college football. In 1888, cigarette maker Goodwin & Co. published the first football card, an illustration of Henry Beecher, who was the captain of the Yale Bulldogs.
The Beecher card was part of a set of 50 cards celebrating athletes from a variety of sports. In 1894, chewing-tobacco company Mayo Cut Plug released the first actual set of football cards, each bearing a sepia photograph of one of 35 players from Harvard, Yale, and Princeton. One Princeton player with the last name of Poe is thought to be the nephew of poet Edgar Allen Poe.
The precursor to the National Football League didn’t arrive on the scene until 1920 and football cards were not produced in sets until after World War II when, according to football-card collector Mike Thomas, Leaf and Bowman began making cards for players such as John Nolan and Larry Olsonoski. Topps cards dominated the 1950s (the Johnny Unitas rookie card from 1955 is a much-traded collectible) and 1960s (ditto Joe Namath’s rookie card from 1965). In that decade, Fleer also entered the picture.
Players were not the only things depicted on cards. In 1960, Fleer issued a set of cards with decals of college-team pennants (Nebraska paired with Purdue, Stanford with Navy, etc.), as well as a set of cards bearing decals of American Football League logos (the gun-toting, cowboy-booted Texans player running for a touchdown in his ten-gallon hat is a collectible classic).
Beyond cards, collectors gravitate to just about anything with a player’s signature on it, from jerseys to helmets to footballs. As with music, unused tickets and ticket stubs are also fairly popular. But one of the most collectible football memorabilia categories is the Super Bowl.
For football fans, it doesn’t get any better than the Super Bowl. Football memorabilia collectors feel the same way about the objects and ephemera commemorating any of the Super Bowls that have been played since 1967, when Bart Starr led the Green Bay Packers to victory over the Kansas City Chiefs...
Signed Super Bowl helmets and footballs are particularly prized, as are signed jerseys. Reproductions of Super Bowl rings have become quite popular in recent years, and the card companies have been diligent about making sure that fans can add special Super Bowl cards to their collections—many are auto-signed to replicate the signatures of players.
Rounding out Super Bowl memorabilia are the actual programs and ticket stubs from the games themselves, for those fans not fortunate enough to actually attend. And then there are the patches, lapel pins, snowglobes, and bobblehead caricatures of players standing next to oversized reproductions of the coveted Super Bowl ring.
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Kingstonian: Hams still at academy helm for nowThis is Local London, May 6th
The event, featuring a charity football match, kicks-off at 12 noon and also features face painting, live music, a bouncy castle and a football memorabilia auction. “It is all about raising awareness of the illness and getting friends and family...Read more
AFC Bournemouth legend Steve Fletcher supports benefit match for Ferndown ...Blackmore Vale Magazine, May 6th
The raffle prizes included signed football memorabilia kindly supplied by Poole Towns Robbie Yates and Ex-AFC Bournemouth player, John Sainty. The raffle & donations raised in excess of £1000 for the #Score4Sammo fund. Ben Scott, chairman of the club ...Read more
Dickinson's Real DealUTV Ireland, May 5th
David Dickinson and the team are in Leominster. Will Simon Schneider score with football memorabilia? Will Debbie Serpell pay the right notes for musical photo albums? 45m 5 days. episode screenshot Play ...Read more
Cookies on this websiteUTV Ireland, May 5th
NEW Dickinson's Real Deal. Mon 4 May 4:30pmMonday 04 May 4:30pm. David Dickinson and the team are in Leominster. Will Simon Schneider score with football memorabilia? Will Debbie Serpell pay the right notes for musical photo albums? 45m 6 days...Read more
Falcons DT Jarrett's house catches ablaze as he watches NFL DraftFOXSports.com, May 2nd
Fortunately, nobody was hurt, but some of Jarrett's football memorabilia was lost. While the cause of the fire has not been determined, the family believes an electrical fire sparked the blaze. "It was an unexplainable feeling," the 6-foot, 300-pound...Read more
Football memorabilia stolen in burglary - can you help police identify two men?Torquay Herald Express, April 28th
POLICE are appealing for information after commemorative football memorabilia was stolen during a burglary in the South West. Arsenal and Plymouth Argyle football club commemorative scarves and pins, cash and jewellery were among the items taken ...Read more
Everton FC hosts huge football memorabilia collection to raise funds for boy ...Liverpool Echo, April 11th
The family of a six-year-old boy with a rare genetic condition collected more than two miles worth of football scarves, flags and shirts - and took their haul to Goodison. Mark and Rachel Lund started the collection in the hope of breaking a world...Read more
Football memorabilia and tickets snapped up in fundraiser for attacked Watford ...expressandstar.com, April 9th
Football memorabilia and tickets have been snapped up for a big fundraiser in aid of Watford fan and attack victim Nic Cruwys. Nic Cruwys. Mr Cruwys was attacked in Little's Lane, Wolverhampton, after the Wolves game against Watford at Molineux last ...Read more