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Encyclopedia > George Preston Marshall

George Preston Marshall (18961969) was the long-time owner and president of the Washington Redskins of the National Football League (NFL). Year 1896 (MDCCCXCVI) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display calendar). ... Year 1969 (MCMLXIX) was a common year starting on Wednesday (the link is to a full 1969 calendar). ... City Landover, Maryland Other nicknames The Skins Team colors Burgundy and Gold Head Coach Joe Gibbs Owner Dan Snyder Fight song Hail to the Redskins League/Conference affiliations National Football League (1932–present) Eastern Division (1933-1949) American Conference (1950-1952) Eastern Conference (1953-1969) Capitol Division (1967-1969) National... For other uses of National Football League, see National Football League (disambiguation). ...




Marshall was born in Grafton, West Virginia on October 11, 1896 to Thomas Hildebrand Marshall and Blanche Preston Marshall. In 1932, while he was the owner of a chain of laundries in Washington, DC, founded by his father, he and three other partners were awarded an NFL franchise for Boston. This team became known as the Boston Braves, as they played on the same field as baseball's Boston Braves. Marshall's partners left the team after one season, leaving him in control. In 1936 he moved the team from Braves Field to Fenway Park, changing the team nickname to the Redskins. In 1937 he moved the team to Washington. He was married to film actress-author Corinne Griffith from 1936 to 1958. Grafton is a city located in Taylor County, West Virginia. ... October 11 is the 284th day of the year (285th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1896 (MDCCCXCVI) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display calendar). ... Year 1932 (MCMXXXII) was a leap year starting on Friday (the link will take you to a full 1932 calendar). ... Aerial photo (looking NW) of the Washington Monument and the White House in Washington, DC. Washington, D.C., officially the District of Columbia (also known as D.C.; Washington; the Nations Capital; the District; and, historically, the Federal City) is the capital city and administrative district of the United... In sport, a franchise is a club given permanent rights to play in a specific league. ... Nickname: City on the Hill, Beantown, The Hub (of the Universe)1, Athens of America, The Cradle of Revolution, Puritan City, Americas Walking City Location in Massachusetts, USA Counties Suffolk County Mayor Thomas M. Menino(D) Area    - City 232. ... 1936 (MCMXXXVI) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will take you to calendar). ... Fenway redirects here. ... Year 1937 (MCMXXXVII) was a common year starting on Friday (link will take you to calendar). ... Promotional Picture Corinne Griffith was a Hollywood actress who is believed to have been born in Texarkana, Texas, on November 24, 1895. ...

Although his team enjoyed great success, Marshall is known more for many of the frills which now mark the modern football game. During the early days of the NFL, college football was more popular. Marshall decided to incorporate elements of the college atmosphere into the pros. Innovations which he introduced include gala halftime shows, a marching band, and a fight song. The Redskins marching band is currently the only one officially sanctioned by any NFL team. The fight song, "Hail to the Redskins" is one of the most famous in the NFL. Marshall also suggested two major rules changes designed to open up the game and increase scoring which were subsequently adopted. One was to allow a forward pass to be thrown by any player who was behind the line of scrimmage at the time at which he released the pass, rather than a minimum of five yards behind the line as had been the previous rule. Another was the move of the goal posts from the end line to the goal line, where they were (and are) located in Canadian football, to encourage the kicking of field goals. This change remained in place for about four decades until NFL goal posts were returned to the end line in the mid-1970s as part of an effort to lessen the influence on the game of kicking specialists, many of whom were by that point foreign-born soccer players frequently derided by self-styled purists. Hail to the Redskins is the second oldest fight song for a professional American football team (after Go! You Packers! Go!, composed in 1931). ... In American and Canadian football the line of scrimmage is the imaginary transverse line crossing the football field across its narrower dimension, which passes through the last position of the football, after the end of the most recent play and following the assessment of any penalty yards. ... Canadian football is a sport in which two teams of twelve players each compete for territorial control of a field of play 110 yards (100. ... A field goal (formerly goal from the field) is a general term used in some sports wherein a goal may be scored either during general play (from the field) or via some sort of free shot. ... The 1970s decade refers to the years from 1970 to 1979, inclusive. ... Football is a ball game played between two teams of eleven players, each attempting to win by scoring more goals than their opponent. ...

Marshall did many things to try and endear the team to the people of Washington. During the 1937 season, Marshall rented a train and brought 10,000 fans to New York to watch the team play the New York Giants. These actions paid off, and even today, Redskins fans are considered among the league's most loyal, and some of the most likely to travel in large numbers to away games. The Redskins also hold the NFL record of most consecutively sold out seasons. Year 1937 (MCMXXXVII) was a common year starting on Friday (link will take you to calendar). ... Midtown Manhattan, looking north from the Empire State Building, 2005 New York City (officially named the City of New York) is the most populous city in the state of New York and the entire United States. ... City East Rutherford, New Jersey Other nicknames Big Blue Wrecking Crew, Big Blue, G-Men, The Jints, The New York Football Giants Team colors Royal Blue, Red, Gray, and White Head Coach Tom Coughlin Owner John Mara (50%) and Steve Tisch (50%) General manager Jerry Reese League/Conference affiliations National...

In the 1950s, Marshall was the first NFL owner to embrace the new medium of television. He initiated the first network appearances for any NFL team, and built a huge television network to broadcast Redskins games across the South. // Recovering from World War II and its aftermath, the economic miracle emerged in West Germany and Italy. ...


According to professor Charles Ross, "For 24 years Marshall was identified as the leading racist in the NFL".[1] Though the league had previously had a sprinkling of black players, just one year after Marshall entered the NFL, blacks were excluded from all its teams. While the rest of the league began signing individual blacks in 1946 and actually drafting blacks in 1949, Marshall held out until 1962 before signing a black player. That only came when Interior Secretary Stewart Udall issued an ultimatum--unless Marshall signed a black player, the government would revoke the Redskins' 30-year lease on the year-old D.C. Stadium (now RFK Stadium), which had been paid for by government money. Marshall's chief response was to make Ernie Davis, Syracuse's all-American running back, his number one draft choice for 1962. Ernie Davis's response was: "I won't play for that S.O.B." He demanded a trade and got one, to Cleveland for All-Pro Bobby Mitchell. Mitchell was the first African American football player to play a game for the Redskins, and he played with the team for several years, initially at running back, but he made his biggest impact at wide receiver. An African American (also Afro-American, Black American, or simply black) is a member of an ethnic group in the United States whose ancestors, usually in predominant part, were indigenous to Africa. ... Year 1946 (MCMXLVI) was a common year starting on Tuesday. ... 1962 (MCMLXII) was a common year starting on Monday (the link is to a full 1962 calendar). ... The United States Secretary of the Interior is the head of the United States Department of the Interior, concerned with such matters as national parks and The Secretary is a member of the Presidents Cabinet. ... Stewart Udall Stewart Lee Udall (born January 31, 1920) was an American politician. ... This article or section should include material from Tenancy agreement A lease is a contract conveying from one person (the lessor) to another person (the lessee) the right to use and control some article of property for a specified period of time (the term), without conveying ownership, in exchange for... Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium, informally known as RFK Stadium, is a sports stadium that opened in 1961. ... Ernie Davis (December 13, 1939 - May 18, 1963) was an American Football player who became the first African-American to win the Heisman Trophy. ... Syracuse University (SU) is a private research university located in Syracuse, New York. ... A (sports) draft is the process by which professional sports teams select players not contracted to any team, often from colleges or amateur ranks. ... For historical information about the Cleveland Browns (including all-time records, Hall of Famers, notable players and coaching history, see Cleveland Browns Archives Browns redirects here. ... Robert Cornelius Mitchell (born June 6, 1935, Hot Springs, Arkansas) is a former American football running back/ wide receiver who played for the Washington Redskins and Cleveland Browns. ...

Ross asserts that Marshall propelled the NFL to institute a "color barrier" akin to that of its baseball brethren. As a result of Marshall's prodding, owners like Art Rooney and the fabled George Halas fell into line. Of course, no one openly admitted that a racial line existed, but it was apparent that it did. Indeed, years later, Halas remained defensive of the thinly veiled policy. "The game," claimed the legendary league founder and coach, "didn't have the appeal to black players at the time." Hence, from 1934 through the 1945 season, blacks, excluded from the NFL, were forced to settle for less than financially-rewarding exhibitions or semi-pro leagues. Arthur Joseph Rooney, Sr. ... George Stanley Halas (February 2, 1895 - October 31, 1983), nicknamed Papa Bear and Mr. ... Details of the history of black players in American professional football depend on the professional football league considered: the National Football League (NFL), which evolved from the first professional league, the American Professional Football Association, or the American Football League, (AFL), a successful league from 1960 through 1969, with which... Year 1945 (MCMXLV) was a common year starting on Monday (the link is to a full 1945 calendar). ...

Marshall suffered a debilitating stroke in 1963, soon after founding the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The Pro Football Hall of Fame is the National Football Leagues Hall of Fame. ...

He died in October, 1969, and his funeral was held at the National Cathedral in Washington with a huge crowd in attendance. Marshall is buried in Indian Mound Cemetery, Romney, WV.

His legacy includes the George Preston Marshall Foundation which serves the interests of children in the Washington, DC area.


"The Bears are front-runners. Quitters. They are not a second-half team, just a bunch of cry-babies."

"We'll start signing Negroes when the Harlem Globetrotters start signing whites." The Harlem Globetrotters are a basketball team that combines athleticism and comedy to create one of the best-known sports entertainment franchises in the world. ...

"Mr. Marshall was an outspoken foe of the status quo when most were content with it. His fertile imagination and vision brought vital improvements to the structure and presentation of the game. Pro football today does in many ways reflect his personality. It has his imagination, style, zest, dedication, openness, brashness, strength and courage. We all are beneficiaries of what his dynamic personality helped shape over more than three decades." - NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle Alvin Ray Pete Rozelle (March 1, 1926–December 6, 1996) was the commissioner of the National Football League (NFL) from January 1960 to November 1989, when he retired from office. ...

"Marshall was totally involved in all aspects of his team’s operation and endured his share of criticism for not integrating his team until being forced to do so in 1962." - Pro Football Hall of Fame, as part of Marshall's qualifications for induction. Children at a parade in North College Hill, Ohio Racial integration, or simply integration includes desegregation (the process of ending systematic racial segregation). ... The Pro Football Hall of Fame is the National Football Leagues Hall of Fame. ...


  1. ^ Outside the Lines: African Americans and the Integration of the National Football League, by Charles K. Ross, New York: New York University Press, 1999, ISBN 0-8147-7495-4.

External links

  • Pro Football Hall of Fame
Preceded by
First class ever
Pro Football Hall of Fame
Class of 1963
Succeeded by
Class of 1964

  Results from FactBites:
George Preston Marshall - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (992 words)
George Preston Marshall (1896 1969) was the long-time owner and president of the Washington Redskins of the National Football League (NFL).
Marshall was born in Grafton, West Virginia on October 11, 1896.
In the 1950s, Marshall was the first NFL owner to embrace the new medium of television.
George Preston Marshall - definition of George Preston Marshall in Encyclopedia (816 words)
George Preston Marshall (1896 - 1969) was the long time owner and president of the Washington Redskins of the National Football League (NFL).
Marshall caved in, finally, when Interior Secretary Stewart Udall issued an ultimatum: Sign a fl player or be denied use of the new 54,000-seat D.C. Stadium (later renamed RFK) that the government had paid for, and to hell with the 30-year lease Marshall had signed.
Marshall's chief response was to make Ernie Davis, Syracuse's all-American running back, his No.1 draft choice for 1962.
  More results at FactBites »



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